NYT Caught Changing Rice's Interview
Michael Moore could not have done a better job.
Further evidence the NYT and their anti-Bush MSM cannot lie like they used to, the RNC website provides Secretary Rice's actual quotes from her interview with the NYT where she stressed the obligations of the Palestinians to fully police their new Gaza territory. The NYT edited out many words from her answers to give the false impression that the administration was hard-lining the Israelis. Without the blogosphere, the NYT could pull this off without a challenge.
Here is the complete post from the RNC:
NY Times Distorts Secretary Rice's Words on IsraelFriday, August 26, 2005
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice gave an interview to the New York Times on August 17th in which she spoke at length about Israel, Gaza, and the Palestinians' responsibilities going forward. But the NY Times quoted her words out of context and framed in such a way that the result seemed very cold and unfriendly to Israel. The Times wrote:
"Everyone empathizes with what the Israelis are facing," Ms. Rice said in an interview. But she added, "It cannot be Gaza only."
Israel began the forcible eviction of thousands of Gaza settlers on Wednesday, and Ms. Rice called it "really quite a dramatic moment in the history of the Middle East." Ariel Sharon, the Israeli prime minister, she added, had shown himself to be "enormously courageous."What Secretary Rice actually said was quite different, and she put great emphasis on the Palestinians' responsibility to dismantle the terrorist organizations. The full transcript of her interview is available here.
The first part of the Times quote was lifted from Rice’s response to the Times’ question about how she could “assure that [Gaza] is not the last step for a good while?”
I know, in having talked to [Sharon and his government] and watched how hard and I think everybody empathizes with what every Israeli has to be feeling and with people uprooting from homes that they have been in for a generation and the difficulty and the pain that that causes.
And so I watched Prime Minister Sharon's address to the nation and it was really remarkable statesmanship.The quote, "It cannot be Gaza only," comes from an answer to an entirely different question, later in the interview:
...the question has been put repeatedly to the Israelis and to us that it cannot be Gaza only and everybody says no, it cannot be Gaza only. There is, after all, even a link to the West Bank and the four settlements that are going to be dismantled in the West Bank. Everybody, I believe, understands that what we're trying to do is to create momentum toward reenergizing the roadmap and through that momentum toward the eventual establishment of a Palestinian state.
In other words, it's not the US telling Israel that it can't be Gaza only, it's others who are telling the US and Israel that, and she is responding that there were four settlements dismantled in the West Bank as well.
In the NY Times quote, Rice appears to be saying that the dismantling of Jewish communities in Gaza is "really quite a dramatic moment in the history of the Middle East."
Here is the actual quote, which notes the historic opportunity now facing the Palestinians, to build political and economic institutions that will change the entire region:
...it is also giving to the Palestinians an opportunity to breathe freely in Gaza, to live without the shadow of settlers and the Israeli army and to begin to build the institutions that are, I think, ultimately going to be the institutions for statehood, whether it is the security forces that are being reformed or the economic structures that I think will start to come into being, you know that Jim Wolfensohn has a significant plan for Gaza but it will be not just for Gaza, it really is for the creation of the basis for economic prosperity for Palestine. And so -- and you can associate, at the same time, with the joy of the Palestinian people that there's a chance that life will get better and so this is a really quite dramatic moment in the history of the Middle East.
But the worst part is that the NY Times missed the real story, a point that Secretary Rice kept coming back to throughout the interview – the responsibility of the Palestinians to now dismantle the terrorist organizations.
Here is what she said:
QUESTION: But if -- we were just talking about moving from disengagement to the roadmap, does it continue --
SECRETARY RICE: Yes. That's where I was going. That's exactly where I was going. This comes to the fact that you cannot simply let a terrorist organization sit forever, that you cannot -- that there is an obligation in the roadmap to dismantle the infrastructure of terrorism, not just coexist with it.
SECRETARY RICE: And so that is one of the most important next elements. I know that the Palestinians have been concerned and so are the Israelis, to have calm in this period of time. It has been a good thing that thus far the Palestinian factions have more or less respected that calm, but that isn't a substitute for the dismantling of the terrorist organizations, because as Abu Mazen himself has said, you can only have one authority and one gun.
SECRETARY RICE: So the answer to the question, what comes next, is that one of the obligations in the roadmap is that the Palestinian Authority should have unified security forces that are all under the authority of the Palestinian Authority and its leadership, its elected leadership. There will be elections in January. But the Palestinian Authority is going to have to deal with the infrastructure of terrorism, that's one of its obligations.
QUESTION: So the -- is it still then the U.S. position that disarmament, dismantling are the next steps for Israel in the expected steps on the right --
SECRETARY RICE: No, I'm not talking about a sequencing here because the roadmap is assiduously not sequencing one step after another. It gives, in parallel, certain obligations to both sides. And the obligation of the Palestinians has to do with the dismantling of terrorist infrastructure and organizations and they're going to have to do it.
[NOTE: all emphasis added by RJC]
Thanks to Rick Richman, who blogged about this here.