The mainstream media and press hated former President Trump, but they now may be realizing just how nice it was to have a President that actually spoke to them. Even left-wing liberal media outlet CNN has expressed disappointment in the Biden administration’s relationship with the press.
On Wednesday, CNN’s chief national affairs correspondent Jeff Zeleny expressed “I have never seen a president, covering the last four of them, who was so protected by his aides in terms of often not wanting him to answer some questions.”
Zeleny’s comments came after Biden’s much-anticipated meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, saying Biden wanted to set his own narrative after the meeting when addressing with the press, stating “we have seen President Biden do that pretty well.” However, he added, “what we have not seen him do is answer questions like that without his aides screaming at him to stop.”
That being said, we can’t entirely blame his aides for stopping the President from getting in his own way. When Biden does answer questions, it too gets him in trouble. On the same day, Biden angrily responded to CNN reporter Kaitlan Collins’ question; prompting him to later apologize to the press for being a “wise guy.”
Biden said on Wednesday that he warned Putin that Russian cyberattacks on ‘critical’ U.S. infrastructure would draw a serious American response – and told his counterpart just how harmful a cyber attack might be on an oil pipeline that is the lifeline of the Russian economy.
Biden threatened retaliation and made his explicit comment publicly – even as he denied making any kind of a ‘threat’ in his meetings with the Russian president – as they discussed ransomware attacks that shut down the Colonial pipeline and has other U.S. and multinational businesses on edge.
His cyber saber-rattling came during a contentious press conference where he also shouted at a CNN reporter who yelled out a question asking why he was so confident the Russian strongman would change his behavior, given his denials and his history.
‘I’m not confident I’ll change his behavior. What do you do all the time?’ he said.
Biden walked up to the reporter, with his suit jacket off on an unusually hot day, and accused her of not knowing her business – gesticulating while holding his Ray-Ban sunglasses.
‘When did I say I was confident? I said … What I said was – let’s get it straight,’ Biden said.
‘I said what will change their behavior is if the rest of the world reacts to them and it diminishes their standing in the world.
‘I’m not confident of anything. I’m just stating the facts.’
Minutes after the tense exchange, Biden sought to clean up the incident, speaking with traveling reporters under the wing of Air Force One.
‘I shouldn’t have been such a wise guy with the last answer I gave,’ Biden said.
All in the Family? Andrew Cuomo’s Brother, CNN’s Chris Cuomo Accused of Sexual Harassment
A guest essay written for the New York Times by veteran television journalist and former executive producer Shelley Ross alleges CNN host Chris Cuomo sexually harassed her when they had previously worked together.
The alleged incident occurred when the two worked together at ABC News in 2005 and Ross now wants the host to “journalistically repent” for his behavior of squeezing her buttock without her permission.
“At the time, I was the executive producer of an ABC entertainment special, but I was Mr. Cuomo’s executive producer at ‘Primetime Live’ just before that,” she wrote. “I was at the party with my husband, who sat behind me on an ottoman sipping his Diet Coke as I spoke with work friends. When Mr. Cuomo entered the Upper West Side bar, he walked toward me and greeted me with a strong bear hug while lowering one hand to firmly grab and squeeze the cheek of my buttock.”
Ross added Cuomo said to her, “I can do this now that you’re no longer my boss” and did it “with a kind of cocky arrogance.” Ross said she told him he couldn’t, pushed him off her and revealed her husband was right behind her, and they quickly left the party.
The party was for an ABC colleague’s departure. Later that evening, Cuomo sent her an email, which Ross printed. The email stated, “[T]hough my hearty greeting was a function of being glad to see you … christian slater got arrested for a (kind of) similar act, (though borne of an alleged negative intent, unlike my own)…and as a husband I can empathize with not liking to see my wife patted as such.”
Cuomo added he would like for Ross to pass along an apology to her “very good and noble husband,” and also “I apologize to you as well, for even putting you in su]ch a position.” He added he would remember his lesson the next time he was happy to see her.
Ross writes in her essay, “Mr. Cuomo may say this is a sincere apology. I’ve always seen it as an attempt to provide himself with legal and moral coverage to evade accountability.”
Afghan Journalists Release Photos After Being Severely Beaten by Taliban for Covering Women’s Protest
Two Afghan journalists, photographer Nematullah Naqdi and reporter Taqi Daryabi were severely beaten by the Taliban for reporting on a women’s protest in Kabul. The two were battered after being beaten with batons, electric cables and whips. The beating occurred after being detained for several hours by Taliban fighters a day earlier.
The two men, who work for Afghan’s media outlet Etilaat Roz, released photos of their bruised bodies once back in their Kabul office, after being released from Taliban custody. Naqdi told Agence France-Presse “One of the Taliban put his foot on my head, crushed my face against the concrete. They kicked me in the head…I thought they were going to kill me.”
Daryabi added “we were in so much pain that we couldn’t move.” Naqdi said he was told “you are lucky you weren’t beheaded” when asked why they were being beaten. When covering a protest on Wednesday outside a Kabul police station calling for an end to Taliban violations of women and girls, Naqdi said a Taliban fighter immediately tried to grab his camera when he began taking photos.
The Taliban were also rounding up anyone filming or taking photos of the demonstration, added Naqdi. The two say they were taken to a nearby police station where the beatings took place, only to be released after several hours.
The New York Post reports dozens of Afghan reporters have been beaten or accosted in recent weeks since the Taliban has recovered control of Afghanistan. The Taliban, however, claims that they will uphold press freedoms under their new regime. As has been proven time and time again, not much faith, if any, can be placed into anything the Taliban says or promises.
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