CNN accepts resignations of 3 involved in retracted story

Anthony Scaramucci, an associated of President Donald Trump. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)
Updated 27 June 2017
0

CNN accepts resignations of 3 involved in retracted story

NEW YORK: CNN accepted the resignations Monday of three journalists involved in a retracted story about a supposed investigation into a pre-inaugural meeting between an associate of President Donald Trump and the head of a Russian investment fund.
The story was posted on the network’s website on Thursday and was removed, with all links disabled, Friday night. CNN immediately apologized to Anthony Scaramucci, the Trump transition team member who was reported to be involved in the meeting.
The story’s author, Thomas Frank, was among those who resigned, according to a network executive who requested anonymity because the person was not authorized to discuss personnel issues. Also losing their jobs were Eric Lichtblau, an assistant managing editor in CNN’s Washington bureau, and Lex Harris, head of the investigations unit.
CNN, in initially taking down the story, said it didn’t meet its editorial standards. The episode is a damaging blow for a network that Trump has frequently derided as “fake news,” and for a story that never even made it onto any of CNN’s television networks.
The story had been quickly questioned both internally and externally, including by the conservative site Breitbart News. It was determined that the story was posted without going through the expected checks and balances for a story of such sensitivity, the executive said.
The failure to follow proper procedures is what led to the resignations, the CNN executive said.
It’s not immediately clear what in the story is factually incorrect, or whether CNN will continue to report on the issue. The retracted story had said the Senate investigations committee was looking into a January 16 discussion between Scaramucci and Kirill Dmitriev, whose Russian Direct Investment Fund guides investments by US entities in Russia. Scaramucci, in the story, said he exchanged pleasantries in a restaurant with Dmitriev.
The report also said that two Democratic senators wanted to know whether Scaramucci had indicated in the meeting whether sanctions against Russia would be lifted, a decision that could impact the investment fund.
Following the retraction, Scaramucci tweeted that CNN “did the right thing. Classy move. Apology accepted. Everyone makes mistakes. Moving on.”


Fake news watch: Jumping to conclusions about Paris protests — and a ‘premature’ retirement

Updated 11 December 2018
0

Fake news watch: Jumping to conclusions about Paris protests — and a ‘premature’ retirement

  • An inaccurate translation from the yellow vest protests claimed that a French police officer warned demonstrators not to destroy Paris if they wanted to avoid the same fate as Arab Spring protesters in 2011
  • Kuwait’s ambassador to Morocco has denied media reports claiming that Moroccan women are being prevented from entering Kuwait

CAIRO: A round-up of bogus reports and phony facts in the mainstream and social media.

1 An inaccurate translation of video footage from the “yellow vest” protests claimed that a French police officer warned demonstrators “not to destroy Paris” if they wanted to avoid the same fate as Arab Spring protesters in 2011. The woman was actually a protester herself — and was shouting about police brutality, making no mention about Arabs whatsoever. Several news outlets and social media users circulated the footage with the made-up translation, however. The Arabic website RT tweeted an article about the video, saying: “French policewoman breaks into tears: Come kill me. Don’t destroy Paris like what the Arabs did to their homelands.” The tweet was later replaced.

2 Kuwait’s ambassador to Morocco has denied media reports claiming that Moroccan women are being prevented from entering Kuwait. Abdullatif Al-Yahya said the news published by a Kuwaiti newspaper and circulated by Moroccan media was “baseless.” He stressed that “Moroccans, men and women, go daily to Kuwait, without any problems.”

3 A rumor circulating on social media about famed Saudi actor Nasser Al-Qasabi claimed that he decided to retire. A few hours later, the actor denied the rumors. In June, another false report claimed that Al-Qasabi had died.