NYT Responds on Iran Alarmism

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Steve Rendall
srendall@fair.org
Tel: 212-633-6700 x13

NYT Responds on Iran Alarmism

Public Editor: 'I think the readers are correct on this'

NEW YORK - New York Times public editor Arthur Brisbane has responded to concerns raised in a FAIR action alert last week (1/6/12), agreeing that the paper wrongly suggested that the International Atomic Energy Agency has concluded that Iran is developing a nuclear weapon.

In a post at his Times blog (1/10/12), Brisbane agrees that the paper was incorrect in referring to "a recent assessment by the International Atomic Energy Agency that Iran's nuclear program has a military objective." As FAIR pointed out, the IAEA report does not make such a firm conclusion, and many critics question the evidence that Agency has collected.

Brisbane concluded:

I think the readers are correct on this. The Times hasn't corrected the story but it should because this is a case of when a shorthand phrase doesn’t do justice to a nuanced set of facts. In this case, the distinction between the two is important because the Iranian program has emerged as a possible casus belli.

While not mentioning FAIR, Brisbane wrote: "Some readers, mindful of the faulty intelligence and reporting about Saddam Hussein's weapons program, are watching the Iran nuclear coverage very closely."

He is correct. FAIR thanks all the activists who wrote to the New York Times.

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FAIR, the national media watch group, has been offering well-documented criticism of media bias and censorship since 1986. We work to invigorate the First Amendment by advocating for greater diversity in the press and by scrutinizing media practices that marginalize public interest, minority and dissenting viewpoints.

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