The fiery N.Y. Times columnist returns from book leave with an attack on the real “traitors” in America: a White House that has compounded lies with incompetence to spy on Americans, run “black site” Eastern European prisons, and prosecute an unjust war.
NEW YORK—In his Sunday opinion column for the New York Times, Frank Rich, who returned from book leave last week, shook off the cobwebs to launch a vigorous defense of newspapers—and an attack on the real “traitors,” including top officials.
Rich opens by recalling charges of treasons against the late New York Times editor Abe Rosenthal when he published the Pentagon Papers in 1971. “Today we know who the real traitors were: the officials who squandered American blood and treasure on an ill-considered war and then tried to cover up their lies and mistakes,” Rich observes.
Now history is repeating itself, as the Bush administration and its defenders “are desperate to deflect blame” for the Iraq fiasco, “and, guess what, the traitors once again are The Times and The Post. This time the newspapers committed the crime of exposing warrantless spying on Americans by the National Security Agency (The Times) and the C.I.A.‘s secret ‘black site’ Eastern European prisons (The Post). Aping the Nixon template, the current White House tried to stop both papers from publishing and when that failed impugned their patriotism….