Time Magazine Reporter Tweets He Cannot Wait to Defend Drone Strike on Julian Assange

Submitted by Darren Smith, Guest Blogger

Michael GrunwaldIn what became a highly charged row, Time Magazine Reporter Michael Grunwald posted on twitter “I can’t wait to write a defense of the drone strike that takes out Julian Assange.” After a frantic and very pointed response Mr. Grunwald deleted the post and issued an apology which read “It was a dumb tweet.  I’m sorry.  I deserve the backlash. (Maybe not the anti-Semitic stuff but otherwise I asked for it.”

Time Magazine issued a statement distancing itself from the controversial tweet. “Michael Grunwald posted an offensive tweet from his personal Twitter account that is in no way representative of TIME’s views. He regrets having tweeted it, and he removed it from his feed.”

The fact that a news reporter of a major publication in the United States advocates the extra-judicial assassination of another person who publishes information to the public is certainly disturbing in itself.  But, is it also equally as disturbing that it might be an insight into the mindset of some reporters of their mode of being defenders of the U.S. Government’s and the administration’s practices?

One has to question what the role of a news reporter is when they publicly state they cannot wait to defend an action that the President’s Administration has been widely criticized for engaging in for many years.  Defending a presidency might be a role for a Whitehouse Spokesperson or a Defense Attorney but how objective can we believe a mass media reporter to be when he, on his own volition, advocates defending those responsible for a future demise of a dissident by tweets such as this?  Is this an insight into a culture that might exist in some circles of the news media where defending illegal actions by the government is considered common practice?  And one also has to question the direction news outlets might be fostering in the way they might be steering their reporters in how information is presented to the readers.

So what is to become of journalism if its role is simply to be a profession that launches attacks on those who criticize a government’s actions and then rushes to defend this government if it chooses to carry out illegal activities?

62 thoughts on “Time Magazine Reporter Tweets He Cannot Wait to Defend Drone Strike on Julian Assange”

  1. Pingback: dean goetz
  2. Unfortunately, the majority of the community of journalists in this country has moved solidly into left of center territory and thus have become apologists for and/or supporters of the administration. Gone are the days when reporters maintained a fairly good firewall between their emotions and their reporting: they had opinions but their desire to get the FACTS and report them outweighed their biases.

    Being an unbiased observer is tough. It is only human nature to be involved emotionally and this emotional involvement bleeds through the reporter’s work. But, the ability to report and not editorialize is what makes great reporters great.

    Most of today’s reporters came through a highly radicalized college environment that emphasises the notion that reporters are instruments of social change and should use their reach to influence public opinion in the interest of social activism.

    Higher education has become more so a place where education takes a backseat to political ideology. The phenomenon is not new as I experienced the same when I was in college some 30 years ago. In political science, and American and world history, there was a definite slant that favored socialist and liberal ideology. Of course, I also would decry a conservative slant as well because no one is served well by a slant on history that favors one political dogma above another. History is just that and should be taught as fact.

    Political science was a subject that I never really enjoyed. Never, that is, until I had to retake it due to the fits and starts of my college education: 6 years and I still never got a degree because I changed my major several times. At any rate, I only enjoyed polysci when I gained enough life experience to have honed my bullshit detector to a fine edge. I passed the course (barely) because, try as he might, the professor could not fail me due to the fact that I completed the assignments and tests with mostly the “right” answers. I almost failed when my final paper mostly didn’t square with his version of the truth.

    The problem I had was with the penchant the professor had for giving undue attention to socialism and his apparent love for same. I had many public rows with him in class much to the bemusement of my classmates for my efforts often robbed him of the chance to inculcate in us his belief of what the correct system was. He lacked objectivity and refused to just teach choosing instead to always circle around to his belief that the ills of any particular form of governing was due to a lack of applying the correct “principles of government” as he’d often say. That was his code for socialist policies.

    I rarely listen to conservative pundits and I never listen to liberal ones. Pundits always lack objectivity and they often deal in revisionist history. As a group, they always seem to be stuck on one view or another without flexibility. Mostly, I see them as thinking they are right and those of opposing views are categorically wrong. Singularly, they lack color with their differences often boiling down to shades of gray.

    I also don’t watch the punditry shows either. Nothing irritates me more than trying (and succeeding evidently) to dupe the public by having night after night different wags from either side come on to argue back and forth in a childlike “OH YEAH” kind of format that neither informs debate nor does it entertain me.

    Today, more and more, these feckless reporters cum social activists are destroying the craft. Long live the independent ad hoc journalists of the Internet. But beware, there are many on the Web that are not what they seem as they are proxies of special interests of all persuasions. Also, there are many rumor mongers and outright liars.

  3. What this country really needs now is a journalist with the intelligence and integrity of Edward Murrow who had the courage to challenge the red baiting of Joseph McCarthy. This new wave of terrorist hysteria is reminiscent of the rampant fear of Communism in the 1950s. But now instead of reporters with the professionalism of Murrow we are forced to be exposed to the opinions of people like Gtrunwald who have absolutely no objective journalistic integrity but who simply parrot the government’s propaganda…Grunwald is truly a disgrace to the journalist profession

  4. Ozzie;

    One former person of State said;

    “What ever it is you think your country is doing, however bad, conspiratorial and depraved you believe it has become;

    believe me when I tell you this – it is far, Far worse than you can imagine”!

    Ashcroft was informed that if he did NOT “back off” from detailing the tyranny, cronyism and corruption in the federal bankruptcy system, he would become a target like Governor Siegelman, James Traficant and Senator Ted Stevens.

    Thus, the laying on his back in the hospital guy took a $50 million NO Bid “Deferred Prosecution Agreement” contract awarded to him by New Jersey U.S. Attorney Chris Christie.


    You go from $150K per year to having millions in your pocket, you become a whole different person. Everyone tells me that if Romney & his gang had offered me the $18 million they gave Michael Glazer of Kay Bee, instead of the $850,000 they offered me – I would have sung a different tune too.

    One likes to think such isn’t true;
    but you really don’t know until put to the specific test…

    Damn shame that everyone at the top of our federal system of justice are


  5. seamus 1, August 18, 2013 at 11:59 pm

    seamus 1, August 18, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    “In a related tweet, Mr. Grunwald stated, “I am currently writing an article in defense of hate crime charges against those who would mock the president by wearing rubber novelty masks purchased at Spencer’s Gifts.””
    Which demonstrates the affects of doublespeak inducing propaganda on a lot of the trolls who come over here to satisfy their masochism.

    It is a vain thing that exposes the troll’s ideology.

    Huh? Wha? (scratches head)
    It isn’t about you, you are not a troll.

    Good for you that you did not get it.

  6. Time Magazine Reporter Michael Grunwald is an ignorant bigoted cretin.

  7. Eric Prince is the guy I was thinking of.

    The board of directors has had incredible turn. You don’t want to know who has been, and/or is currently on that board. Although it will satisfy one issue. You won’t give a flying phu*k about Grunwald.

  8. Gene,

    Stupid? Most assuredly. But right now I’m not so concerned with stupid. The news about Ashcroft is stunning. Wasn’t this the guy who while racked with pain in a hospital bed refused some unsavory Gonzales deal? And was offended by exposed breasts on statues. And now he is with Blackwater? And didn’t Blackwater have another owner? I don’t recognize the Mccombs name.

  9. Why would anyone trust Time magazine anyway?!!!!! Thats like saying in 2013 that maybe Goebles (Hitler’s propaganda minister) might not be completely trustworthy! This guy’s obviously an AH but few media persons are not these days.

  10. time magazine

    no doctors waiting room is complete without a six month old copy of one.

  11. Just a few days ago my mother told me about an article in Time Magazine she read recently and she described it as a conservative magazine. I am disgusted with Grunwald’s comment but happy to read that some of you share some of my favorite journalists currently working including Amy Goodman and Jeremy Scahill. I will tell mom to cancel the magazine or what’s left of it as it is just a rag now.

  12. Otteray Scribe;

    I’ll look at the stuff provided tomorrow.

    Meanwhile, Goldman Sachs is making a deal with Goldman Sachs – on how much they can steal from eToys – while putting it ALL under Seal….

    Because they are aware I’ve now found an attorney who won’t take a bribe!

  13. U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft said the No1 problem with corruption in America is corrupt federal judges in collusion with high ranking members of the DOJ’s U.S. Trustee office

    Then he received a $50 million NO BID contract from NJ U.S. Attorney Christie.

    Now USAG Ashcroft is a many times over multi-millionaire as the head of Academi, that was named Xe – which was named Blackwater….


  14. seamus 1, August 18, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    “In a related tweet, Mr. Grunwald stated, “I am currently writing an article in defense of hate crime charges against those who would mock the president by wearing rubber novelty masks purchased at Spencer’s Gifts.””
    Which demonstrates the affects of doublespeak inducing propaganda on a lot of the trolls who come over here to satisfy their masochism.

    It is a vain thing that exposes the troll’s ideology.

    Huh? Wha? (scratches head)

  15. Elaine;

    Instead of going through a long process of pointing out how you have “bought” into the media hype of the parties you’ll mention; I’ll just give you this simple “ab absurdo” black hole in the logic of what you present.

    You presented the following testimonial as your logical proof

    “He has been a vocal critic of private military contractors, particularly Blackwater Worldwide, which is the subject of his book, Blackwater: The Rise of the World’s Most Powerful Mercenary Army.[36] The book received numerous accolades, including the Alternet Best Book of the Year Award, a spot on both the Barnes & Noble and Amazon lists of the Best Nonfiction Books of 2007, and notable mention in the New York Times.[37]

    As my rebuttal – here’s the following Facts. Democracy Now gets funding from Soros and Ford Foundation. Amy gets $1 million a year from a “secret” deal.

    Barnes & Noble is part of Babbages deal that had McCurry from BAIN Company. It is a deal brokered by Paul Traub from the NeoStar bankruptcy (where Traub, Romney and the Bush’s met) with Alan C. Bush from Dallas/Tandy Corp. (Most are unaware that Bush’s and Romney’s are related)

    Jack Bush (also from Dallas) is a Bain executive that goes from one bankruptcy scheme to another. Barry Gold boasted how he gets jobs from Jack Bush (such as Jumbo Sports with Paul Traub – and Stage Stores with Paul Traub).

    Romney’s Bain also owns Clear Channel Communications which speciously has the same exact number of stations (800) that “they” claim they have network deals with.

    Clear Channel was acquired from Red McCombs

    Who owns Blackwater…….

    Do you really believe that Romney & Red McCombs are going to let their right hand reach speak bad about what Romney & Red McCombs are doing with their left hands?


  16. Wikileaks has just released three new encrypted “insurance” files. They are big. They are torrent downloads, or it would take forever.
    3.6 GB
    49 GB
    349 GB

    Lisa Lockwood has the information with the links on her post from earlier today.

    Wikileaks is encouraging blogs and social media like Facebook and Twitter to spread them around so no government or business can shut them all down. The Guardian has a page devoted to Wikileaks and whistleblowers.

    I read that Bank of America is already in a semi-panic mode. They know Assange has had them in his sights for a while now, and they don’t know exactly what he has. They are concerned about something, or the cockroaches wouldn’t be scurrying for cover. The BoA angle was covered in a Forbes magazine article with suggestions for damage control when the lid does blow off.

    I did a few calculations on how long it would take a super fast supercomputer running at 1×10^18 operations per second to crack the encryption key. According to my figures, it would take 3×10^51 hours to crack. That exceeds the age of the universe.

  17. So this is the end of journalism because a reporter has an opinion? At least he tweeted what he thought and didn’t mask an anti-Obama screed under the pretense of criticizing a reporter. Put on your big boy pants and deal with it. A lot of us think Julian Assange ought to meet with a nasty accident. He is an opportunist who uses “whistle blowing” as a way to mask his Marxist ideals. The world would not mourn his loss.

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