Why the New York Times wants an apology from Fox News

ISIS broken, but leader slipped away due to leak, says key general

As with so many media storms that include the words Fox & Friends, this kerfuffle broke out when a Saturday morning President Donald Trump Twittergasm included a blast against the Times for scuttling a plan to kill ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

Thomas told Herridge that an important lead on Baghdadi's whereabouts "was leaked in a prominent national newspaper about a week later and that lead went dead".

In response, the Times sent Fox News a lengthy letter explaining that it would have been hard for al-Baghdadi to have been tipped off by its story since the raid Thomas described occurred on May 16, 2015, and the Times story didn't run until June 8, which even "Fox & Friends" hosts should be able to figure out is three weeks later.

The president chimed in after the segment aired Saturday, tweeting that The Times has a "sick agenda" over national security. The response noted that the information in question had been announced by the Pentagon weeks before the report ran and that the Pentagon had "no objections" to the report when it was published.

"If we notified the press every time the N.Y. Times had to update an online story or correct something, your inbox would crash", the executive added.




The Times later sent a letter to the show, which has a history of botched reporting, criticizing the "little regard it has for reporting facts" and demanding "an on-air apology".

After taking a brief break in their respective corners to mop away the sweat, Fox News Channel and The tonight began another round of Competitive Insult Trading. General Thomas said exactly what Fox reported.

The dispute between the news outlets was magnified by White House attention. They talked about a May 16, 2015, raid in Syria, where US forces killed a top al-Baghdadi aide and captured his wife. On Monday, Fox & Friends co-host Steve Doocy issued an "update" on the matter, but not an apology. Relying in part on anonymous sources, it described a special forces raid the preceding month that killed a key ISIS leader, Abu Sayyaf, and captured his wife along with much electronic material.

"Baghdadi would have known that Umm Sayyaf, Abu Sayyaf's wife, was being held, if not from his own communications network then from the Pentagon's announcement and news reports about that announcement", Rhoades-Ha continued. The fact that US special forces conducted a raid was no secret.al-Baghdadi obviously knew that one of his chief lieutenants was dead, his wife was captured and various electronic files had been confiscated. "No senior American official complained publicly about the story until now, more than two years later", she wrote. The network suggested the Times should check to see whether Thomas' comments have merit and whether anything revealed in its report hindered US operations.

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