Don’t get me wrong. He NYT IS the newspaper of record so it’s great that they’ve outed Giuliani’s neocon pro-Israel stack of Mideast policy advisers including Daniel Pipes and Norman “WWIV” Podhoretz. It’s a great story. But why didn’t they note that Ken Silverstein at Harper’s has been reporting the story for months (as have I, but Ken was there first)? In fact, Ken’s first story came out on August 27th in which he reported that Giuliani’s team of advisers included Podhoretz, Martin Kramer and Charles Hill. He also published a subsequent story about Pipes joining the team and another about Pipes’ support for the war crimes notion of razing entire Palestinian villages in retaliation for attacks on Israel. In other words, he was all over this story before it was a gleam in the NYT’s eye.
I’m a former academic and I was trained if you didn’t credit your sources you were just plain no good. Maybe journalism is different. I’m not sure why it should be but maybe it is. But I do believe in setting the record straight and Ken should get the credit even if Marc Santora and Michael Cooper aren’t willing to give it to him. [UPDATE: Michael Cooper has written saying that Marc Santora began researching this story in the summer and did not know about Ken’s work. That’s an honest reply. However, if I could find Ken’s work by doing a Google search on Daniel Pipes it seems to me that a crack NYT journalist should’ve been able to do so as well. I’m not saying this to be snarky. I just think that given the importance that attaches to NYT reportage that other journalists who are the first to report a story deserve credit or acknowledgement for that when the NYT follows with a later story.]
Another great quotation from Ken’s reporting is this characterization of the overall Mideast policy group:
I asked Augustus Richard Norton of Boston University, an expert adviser to the Iraq Study Group, for his take on Giuliani’s crew. He dubbed the group “AIPAC’s Dream Team.”
We shouldn’t let that phrase die. It should attach to Giuliani like Elmer’s glue every time any of us mention him.
By the way, one thing the Times story missed out on completely, which is very important, is that Giuliani’s rejection of the notion of creating an independent Palestinian state flies in the face of bipartisan consensus U.S. policy going back decades. In other words, Giuliani is a radical troglodyte when it comes to his views on Israel. I guess you can’t quite say that in the august NYT–but I just did.