"Today's Washington Post carries an article that says 'Jewish groups and some conservatives have been lobbying the president to stop courting certain Muslim leaders.'
"The Post article quoted the leader of one of these groups[italics Chatterbox's] as saying: 'There is no such thing as peaceful Islam … Islamics cannot fit into an America in which the first loyalty is to the American Constitution. They should be encouraged to leave. They are a fifth column in this country.' "
—Nov. 18 press release from the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).
"Jewish groups and some conservatives have been lobbying the president to stop courting certain Muslim leaders who, they say, have equivocated on terrorism by condemning the Sept. 11 attacks but praising Hamas and Hezbollah. Those two groups, which are fighting Israel, are on the State Department's list of terrorist organizations. …
"The pressure on the administration is not coming just from Jewish groups. A split is emerging between two wings of the Republican Party—libertarians who consider Muslims the party's greatest immigrant asset and conservatives who conceive of the war exactly the way Bush tries to avoid, as a cosmic one between Islam and the West.
"The emerging spokesmen for the latter group are Paul Weyrich and William S. Lind of the Free Congress Foundation.
" 'There is no such thing as peaceful Islam,' Lind said[italics Chatterbox's]. 'Islamics cannot fit into an America in which the first loyalty is to the American Constitution. They should be encouraged to leave. They are a fifth column in this country.' "
—Hanna Rosin and Thomas B. Edsall, " Bush's Courting of Some Muslims Criticized," Washington Post.
Discussion: CAIR might choose to argue that "these groups" refers either to Jewish groups or to conservative groups. The undeniably bigoted remark that the Post attributes to William S. Lind might thus conceivably be attributed to the Free Congress Foundation, or to its Center For Cultural Conservatism, of which Lind is director. But the Postnever referred to "conservative groups"! It referred to "Jewish groups and some conservatives." By referring to Lind as "the leader of one of these groups," CAIR encouraged the false impression that Lind is the leader of a Jewish group.
(Thanks to reader Ethan Corey.)
Got a whopper? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. To be considered, an entry must be an unambiguously false statement paired with an unambiguous refutation, and both must be derived from some appropriately reliable public source. Preference will be given to newspapers and other documents that Chatterbox can link to online.
Nov. 23, 2001: Bud Selig
Nov. 16, 2001: Sara Jane Olson
Nov. 9, 2001: Donald Rumsfeld (item includes retraction)
Nov. 2, 2001: Dick Armey
Oct. 26, 2001: Gale Norton
Oct. 19, 2001: State Department Deputy Spokesman Philip Reeker
Oct. 12, 2001: Clarence Thomas
Oct. 5, 2001: Abdul Salam Zaeef
Sept. 27, 2001: Karl Rove, Ari Fleischer, and Dick Cheney
Sept. 20, 2001: Larry C. Johnson
Sept. 13, 2001: Yasser Arafat
Sept. 7, 2001: Tommy Thompson
Aug. 30, 2001: HHS spokesman Bill Pierce
Aug. 23, 2001: Variety Editor Peter Bart
Aug. 17, 2001: Tom Daschle
Aug 10, 2001: Robert Mueller
Aug. 3, 2001: Barbara Olson
July 27, 2001: Jeffrey Archer
July 20, 2001: George W. Bush
July 13, 2001: George W. Bush
July 6, 2001: Sumner Redstone
June 29, 2001: David Brock
June 22, 2001: Edmund Morris
June 15, 2001: George W. Bush
June 8, 2001: Nepali Prince Regent (subsequently, King) Gyanendra
June 1, 2001: Mary McGrory
May 25, 2001: Ari Fleischer
May 18, 2001: York, Pa., Mayor Charles Robertson
May 11, 2001: Ted Olson
May 4, 2001: Rear Adm. Craig Quigley
April 27, 2001: Ben Affleck
April 20, 2001: South Carolina state legislator Chip Limehouse
April 13, 2001: Gray Davis
April 6, 2001: Sumner Redstone
March 30, 2001: Spencer Abraham
March 23, 2001: George W. Bush, Rep. Jennifer Dunn, and/or the Treasury Department
March 16, 2001: George W. Bush
March 9, 2001: Russ Freyman, spokesman, National Association of Manufacturers
March 2, 2001: Paul O'Neill
Feb. 23, 2001: Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton
Feb. 16, 2001: Oscar spokesman John Pavlik
Feb. 9, 2001: Lynne Cheney
Feb. 2, 2001: Bobby Thomson
Jan. 26, 2001: Denise Rich