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Saddam’s Media Water-Carrier to Produce GOP Debate

It’s bad enough that Newsmax is giving Donald Trump an opening to once again infuse the GOP race with his toxic, self-promoting nonsense by naming him as the moderator of the magazine’s upcoming Republican debate. But Michelle Malkin points out that Trump isn’t the only noxious character associated with the debate. Former CNN head Eason Jordan – the disgraced journalist who admitted to flacking for Saddam’s regime for years in an effort to keep CNN’s Baghdad bureau open – was also given a prominent role as an executive producer:

On Sunday, Newsmax and ION Television announced several key staff for their debate:

Eason Jordan, executive producer — Jordan worked for 23 years with CNN, where he served as chief news executive and president of news gathering and international networks. Jordan’s journalistic honors include Emmy Awards, Peabody Awards Edward R. Murrow Awards, Headliner Awards, ACE Awards, the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, the Vanguard Award, and the Livingston Award. He is the founder and CEO of Poll Position, a news, polling, and social media company. He is also a member of the Council of Foreign Relations.

As Michelle Malkin explains:

Former CNN head Eason Jordan is the disgraced journalist who admitted in a 2003 New York Times op-ed piece titled “The News We Kept to Ourselves” that he deliberately and intentionally whitewashed Saddam Hussein’s atrocities and regurgitated Hussein propaganda for a decade in exchange for access. Let me underscore that: In 2003, after the U.S.-led Coalition invasion of Iraq and the fall of Saddam Hussein, Jordan confessed that CNN had deliberately reported Baathist propaganda during the Saddam era because it was more urgent to keep their Baghdad bureaus than to tell the truth about that brutal regime.

And Jordan’s weak mea culpa in 2003 hardly makes up for the fact that he systematically carried water for a vile regime in exchange for access. He’s a disgrace to the profession of journalism and to his country. Here’s an example of one atrocity he helped cover up while working at CNN, which he revealed in his New York Times op-ed, “The News We Kept to Ourselves”:

Then there were the events that were not unreported but that nonetheless still haunt me. A 31-year-old Kuwaiti woman, Asrar Qabandi, was captured by Iraqi secret police occupying her country in 1990 for ”crimes,” one of which included speaking with CNN on the phone. They beat her daily for two months, forcing her father to watch. In January 1991, on the eve of the American-led offensive, they smashed her skull and tore her body apart limb by limb. A plastic bag containing her body parts was left on the doorstep of her family’s home.

I felt awful having these stories bottled up inside me. Now that Saddam Hussein’s regime is gone, I suspect we will hear many, many more gut-wrenching tales from Iraqis about the decades of torment. At last, these stories can be told freely.

“At last” these stories can be told freely? In other words, “at last” now that Jordan no longer needed access and acceptance from Saddam’s regime. This man should never again be given the privilege of working in media, much less as a producer for a Republican debate.

There are few times when Ron Paul does something worthy of praise. But both he and Jon Huntsman should be lauded for refusing to attend the Newsmax debate because of Donald Trump’s involvement. The other candidates may not mind that Trump is moderating. But they should seriously reconsider whether they want to be involved in an event produced by one of Saddam’s former water-carriers in the media.


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