• With: Judy Miller, Cal Thomas, Jim Pinkerton, Ellen Ratner

    PINKERTON: More flagrant, though, is CNN running phony footage and the BBC running a tweet from Syria that they actually said was Palestinian, and again, speaking of no reaction, you know, the British reporter for the BBC John Donnison, he said, oh, I made a mistake, I accidentally smeared the Israelis when I really meant to smear the Syrian government, oh too bad. And again, stone silence, no reaction, the BBC certainly won't fire him. Who knows what he will be doing a week from now, other than tweeting again.

    SCOTT: Judy, the coverage of what happens there tends to focus on how many rockets were fired and how many casualties on both sides, but there seems to be a vast moral gulf between the two sides. Here is a look at the cover of the New York Daily News and then, basically the same title and the same photo, almost, in the New York Post. Very similar coverage of Hamas members dragging somebody through the streets on, you know, tied to a motorcycle, somebody they had executed on suspicion of being an Israeli sympathizer or spy.

    MILLER: Exactly, and that's part of the challenge for a reporter of covering what's going on in Gaza, because there are many more reporters this time around from in 2008-2009, which is the last time Israel went into Gaza, but they are still the captives of Hamas, they're being led about, they're being shown things, we have no way of knowing whether or not the people who were being portrayed as victims, were really killed by Israelis rockets or injured by Israeli rockets fire. We don't know. Even The New York Times, Jon, ran an editorial saying, "Hamas's Illegitimacy," talking about the fact that Hamas is responsible for this, but the subtitle of that editorial was "Israel Is Not the Only Party Responsible for the Current War." What does that tell you about the...

    THOMAS: I thought Bret Stephens, The Wall Street Journal wrote a dreaded (ph) mea culpa column this week where he said he was wrong when several years ago he said that it was right for Israel to pull out of Gaza. Some of us have been saying that for a long time. I think the big failure of the media is that they do not accurately report on the history of these two movements. They don't believe the Palestinians and the Muslim radicals who say they want to kill all Israelis and Jews and get them out of there, they don't believe it even though that's what they say.

    SCOTT: All right. Coming up, next on "News Watch," a new twist in the coverage of the Benghazi attacks.


    SEN. DIANNE FEINSTEIN, D-CALIF.: We have seen wrong intelligence before and a lot of people were killed based on bad intelligence.

    UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Reworked talking points about the Benghazi terror attacks, getting reaction from both sides of the aisle. And getting more attention from the mainstream media. But will media attention add pressure to get the answers about who knew what and when? That's next on "News Watch."



    FUDGE: All of the things that have -- they have just lied about things that have gone on in this administration; they have never called a male unqualified, not right, not trustworthy. I don't recall it ever happening. They didn't even say that about General Petraeus who they're all up in arms about. So, there's a clear, in my opinion, a clear sexism and racism that goes with these comments that are being made by, unfortunately, Senator McCain and others.

    RICHARD WOLFFE, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Now that John McCain has sunk his teeth in, he's made it about presidential authority and frankly it's outrageous that there's this witch hunt going on on the right about these people of color, let's face it, around this president. Eric Holder, Valerie Jarrett, now Susan Rice, before it was Van Jones. This is not about who is hawkish in the same way John McCain is about foreign policy, because if you look at Iran and Libya, Susan Rice checks those boxes, this is a personal vendetta--

    CHRIS MATTHEWS, HOST OF "HARDBALL WITH CHRIS MATTHEWS": So you think McCain is being -- McCain and people like Lindsey Graham -- McCain who had his own daughter attacked -- accused of having an illegitimate child when in fact adopted a young girl from South Asia, you're saying that McCain is being driven by racial prejudice here?

    WOLFFE: There's no other way to look at this.


    SCOTT: Another week and another twist in the media coverage of the Benghazi terror attacks and the aftermath. Ambassador Susan Rice and the reworked talking points about the deadly event. You kind of got a sense of it there, Jim. There's the suggestion that any criticism directed toward the Obama administration is either racist or sexist. Is that the new media meme?

    PINKERTON: As Rich Wolffe says, no other way to look at it. Period. I mean, that settles that. Let me struggle a little bit. I mean look, it's clear that, you know, Jane Newton (ph) for Time magazine made the point, this sort if base politics for the Democrats. If in fact the Obama administration nominates her, and obviously, see her support there and the tack that they'll take at sort of a mass political level. At the elite level, I think the administration is doing a pretty good job of saying, well, actually the talking points were massaged by James Clapper and by the Justice Department and by everybody -- a lot of fingerprints on there, and then David Petraeus came along and said, well, actually, you know, there are reasons why they took out all the Al Qaeda stuff from the talking points that Rice delivered on the air, and I think that argument among the elites is kind of prevailing. I think that it means that if the president does appoint Susan Rice, I think her confirmation will go through pretty quickly.

    SCOTT: Not everybody agrees, though. Maureen Dowd wrote this in The New York Times. "Rice should have realized that when a gang showed up with RPG's and mortars in a place known as hot bed of Al Qaeda sympathizers and Islamic extremist training camps, it was not anger over a movie. She should have been savvy enough to wonder why the wily Hillary was avoiding the talk shows." And this from The Washington Post. Dana Milbank writes, "True. Rice was following orders from the White House, which she does well. But the nation's top diplomat needs to show more sensitivity and independence, traits Clinton has demonstrated in abundance. Obama can do better at State than Susan Rice."

    RATNER: Well, you know, I'm -- I'm -- I actually, Washington Post did run an article called "Susan Rice's Tarnished Resume." I have to tell you, I was very disappointed in the press for not bringing up her -feelings her about her and what she's said about regime change in Africa and some countries and for not really looking in more to her resume.

    THOMAS: Let me -- let me bring up a point here on this whole racism and sexism business. It never cuts the other way. Liberals can criticize conservative African-Americans and conservative black women, like Allen West now soon to be former congressman of Florida. Condoleezza Rice, Clarence Thomas as not being authentically black, as not being down for the struggle, as being Oreos or handkerchief-head Negroes, all of these things have been used by left wing African-American women against conservatives, and it's no problem. But it's only when you criticize the content of their character, not the color of their skin or their gender, that all of a sudden it's racist and sexist.

    MILLER: I mean, where is the evidence of racial prejudice in the questions being raised about Susan Rice and what she did and said? She went out; she gave a set of talking points. It's not as if she's a reporter who just has to work with the material you are given and you're trying to confirm it. She had access to the classified. She should have known that that material could be nuanced, she could have done great many things, but instead, Jake Tapper and others have praised her as a good soldier. And MSNBC, "Morning Joe" suggested that the optics of this are very good for the Democrats, because any questions raised about her will be interpreted as racist. And I think that's wrong.


    PINKERTON: But look, Dana Milbank and Maureen Dowd, if they had to, would vote for confirming Susan Rice if they had a vote in the U.S. Senate. Nothing will make--

    RATNER: I don't know--

    PINKERTON: -- big chunks of the chattering class and the media in President Obama's second term as to be sort of light critics of what they're doing. They keep some detachment and some ironic distance especially important to Milbank and Dowd, and meanwhile the agenda goes forward, that kind of tarnished resume will not stop her from being the next secretary of state.

    RATNER: If the press did their job, there would be some serious questions.

    PINKERTON: That's a different question, but I agree with you on that. If they did, that's a huge if.

    SCOTT: The former CIA head David Petraeus, we've talked about this, his belief that the attacks were carried out and planned as terrorism attacks, and then came his resignation from the CIA. The New York Times put this piece out, "A Phony Hero for a Phony War," Lucian Truscott wrote it, "and now comes Dave Petraeus in the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. No matter how good he looked in his biographer-mistress's book, it doesn't make up for the fact that we failed to conquer the countries we invaded and ended up occupying undefeated nations." Was it a hit piece?

    MILLER: It was a hit piece. I think it was completely scandalous that the Times ran that attack on David Petraeus, and I want to salute Fred Kaplan of Slate magazine, who has a book coming out called "The Insurgency," spent a lot of time with Petraeus. He has some questions and problems with him, but on the other hand, he says Truscott's piece was over the top. David Petraeus was not in charge of invading Iraq, he was in charge of turning around a situation that was bad, and Truscott gives him no credit for that.

    SCOTT: There's more "News Watch" to come. If you see something that you feel shows evidence of media bias, tweet us @foxnewswatch on Twitter.

    Up next, did negative coverage doom Mitt Romney?


    SCOTT: President Obama winning another four years in the White House, delivering his victory speech on election night and thanking his family and his supporters. According to the Pew Research Center, he could have also thanked the media for his win. The people of Pew found media coverage of President Obama was more positive at 29 percent during the last week of campaigning before Election Day. Coverage of Mitt Romney on the other hand, mostly negative, 33 percent that same week. So, should this be a big thank-you to the media for his reelection.

    RATNER: No, I mean, I think he would have lost the election because of their get out the vote thing and other things as well.

    SCOTT: You're talking about Romney.

    RATNER: That's right, but if you look at the media's coverage and the Pew people said that they thought it was that reporters were paying attention to the polls. Well, you know what? Reporters, unless they're reporting on a poll, should not be paying attention to polls when they write their story, and they should be aware of any unconscious bias.

    SCOTT: Somehow, Jim, I suspect, you're not surprised by those numbers from Pew.

    PINKERTON: No, I'm not, and look, I've cited before Evan Thomas saying that it could be 15 points in an election, then he amended that to say 5 points. OK, so even 5 points covers a potential Romney victory.