News and Commentary

Former NYT Veteran Rips Paper Over ‘Deeply Flawed’ 1619 Project, Russian Collusion Conspiracy Coverage
ILLUSTRATION - Various editions of the New York Times newspaper are on display on a table in Berlin, Germany, 23 April 2014. Photo: Ole Spata/dpa | usage worldwide (Photo by Ole Spata/picture alliance via Getty Images)
Ole Spata/picture alliance via Getty Images

A 28 year veteran of The New York Times slammed the paper on Wednesday for not correcting “deeply flawed articles” on the Russian collusion conspiracy and its “1619 Project.”

RealClearInvestigations editor Tom Kuntz, who left the Times in 2016 after nearly three decades at the paper as a reporter and editor, detailed significant gaps and misleading reports throughout the Times’ coverage of supposed Trump campaign collusion with Russian agents during the 2016 election. The veteran journalist also brought up significant, if not disqualifying, challenges to The New York Times’ effort to redefine the founding of the United States as the beginning of slavery in America.

The RealClearInvestigations editor left The New York Times in 2016 to lead the nonprofit news organization American Media Institute. Kunts left the paper because “I was at a point in my career at the Times when I was clearly not going to be running the place … I figured this was a good opportunity. So I made the move,” he told the Observer in 2016.

Kuntz said the paper would have published extensive corrections for mistakes in the past, but because of a new “woke-ing” of Times management and reporters, errors in its coverage of the Trump campaign and the in the “1619 Project” would likely be left standing in the paper.

“The 1619 Project – blasted by leading historians for gravely distorting the history and legacy of slavery in America – has already been awarded a prestigious George Polk Award and appears to be a front-runner for a Pulitzer Prize this coming Monday,” Kuntz writes.

“Similarly, in the face of the Mueller Report’s finding last year of no Trump-Russia collusion, the Times is not giving back the 2018 Pulitzer Prize it won with the Washington Post for coverage that uncritically pushed the conspiracy theories of anti-Trump intelligence sources,” he continues.

Kuntz maps out for roughly 5,700 words a series of unanswered questions and suspicious gaps in the Times’ coverage of the Russian collusion conspiracy, breaking up his piece into sections with sub-headlines such as:

  • You haven’t read this in the New York Times: Fusion GPS’s founders confirming in detail how their opposition research outfit was an early Times source.
  • On Twitter, Times reporters said Hillary Clinton-tied sources deceived them about the funding of the Steele dossier. But in print the paper has neither identified those who lied nor explained to its readers what happened.
  • BuzzFeed and the New York Times – not just the FBI or Democrats – share blame for smearing the reputation of Carter Page.
  • As a confidential source, Glenn Simpson in 2016 pitched to Times journalists and others the same sort of dirt on Paul Manafort and Ukraine that was also being peddled by a Democratic operative whose efforts were disclosed in Politico by a reporter now at the New York Times. The Times hasn’t explained this coincidence and much else about the Ukraine story.

Kuntz concludes that the Times has fallen short on its coverage of the Trump administration and in the “1619 Project” because it has drifted away from a journalistic pursuit of truth in favor of an agenda.

“It is the result of the long diversity push within the newspaper and of the left’s wider recent embrace of progressively byzantine identity politics, including among ‘woke’ upper-middle-class whites who are the foundation of the paper’s business model,” Kuntz writes of the “1619 Project.”

“The ‘woke’ pseudo-history of the 1619 Project and coverage of Donald Trump, the antithesis of wokeness, are two sides of a coin that the Times is not about to let out of its grasp,” Kuntz concludes. “Should the 1619 Project win Pulitzer acclaim next week, the Old Gray Lady’s admirers can celebrate a fairy tale ending for woke journalism — not the emperor’s new clothes, but the empress’s new facts.”

The Daily Wire, headed by bestselling author and popular podcast host Ben Shapiro, is a leading provider of conservative news, cutting through the mainstream media’s rhetoric to provide readers the most important, relevant, and engaging stories of the day. Get inside access to The Daily Wire by becoming a member.