What was so different about this “fake news” story that a prominent legacy media outlet would fire a reporter after pushing other fake news for years with no sackings? Perhaps, it’s because this particular story could have, as reported by Townhall, “Pushed Us Closer to World War III.”
The AP reported a Russian missile had hit inside Poland, killing two people.
What was the problem with the report? Russia didn’t fire the missile; it was “a Ukrainian anti-aircraft missile that went awry.”
Matt Vespa wrote, “The AP report cited one anonymous source, which turned out to be wrong. The news organization fired the reporter who wrote the story, citing a failure to adhere to editorial standards regarding sourcing.”
But, apparently, accountability only goes so far. According to a Hot Air headline, “Hmmm: Associated Press fires reporter for erroneous Russian-missile story … but not editors.” Why not? An article of this significance must have passed through an editorial process before publication.
Hot Air’s Ed Morrissey reported, “Last week, James LaPorta reported for the AP that a Russian missile had struck rural Poland, killing two people. That report got picked up by a number of outlets, and for good reason given that an attack on Poland could provoke NATO’s Article V and force a military response.”
“Poland quickly de-escalated the issue, and hopefully everyone learned a lesson from it. Not least of whom was LaPorta himself, or so it seems.”
The AP reportedly fired LaPorta “supposedly for misrepresenting the sourcing.” Then the AP issued the standard blah, blah, blah, about its supposed “rigorous editorial standards and practices….”
But Morrissey was less than convinced, writing, “That explanation defies belief, however. Wouldn’t the editors upstream of LaPorta have checked in with the senior manager first on an editorial call of this magnitude? Clearly, they were cognizant of the potential consequences of this report. It seems as though the AP is hoping to contain the damage by isolating it on the reporter, but this sequence doesn’t make much sense.”
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