Thursday, April 08, 2004

New York Times drops ball on Ernest Strada

Today's NYTimes article on the Rice testimony is accompanied by a photograph of Rice embracing a white-haired man (the latter's face is not visible), accompanied by the caption:

After testifying before the Sept. 11 commission, National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice embraced Ernest Strada of the Village of Westbury, N.Y., whose son, Thomas, died in the attacks on the World Trade Center.

Ernest Strada? The Mayor of Westbury? The Republican Mayor of Westbury?

The Republican politician who got trotted out for a dutiful appearance defending his party's figurehead on Hardball (talk show of irresponsible right-wing blowhard pseudo-journalist Chris Matthews)? The Republican politician who was tapped for GOP-friendly quotes by reporters at The Washington Times and The Weekly Standard, publications famous for their right-wing slant and distortion?

I have no doubt that Strada's grief at the loss of his son is real. I suspect that his faith in Bush is real as well. But it's a simple journalistic error not to point out that the Sept. 11 victim conveniently on hand for a stage-managed hug with Condoleeza Rice was a Republican Party politician.

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