Yesterday, the right-wing blog Powerline posted a chopped audio clip from a July 30 interview to smear Rep. John Dingell (D-MI) as a Hezbollah apologist. This morning, the Washington Times follows their lead:
Here’s what Mr. Dingell had to say to a reporter in Detroit the other day during a television program: “I don’t take sides for or against Hezbollah; I don’t take sides for or against Israel.” When asked if he really wasn’t “against Hezbollah,” Mr. Dingell replied, “No.”
Part of what’s behind Mr. Dingell’s appalling refusal to condemn Hezbollah are the tens of thousands of Muslims, mostly Shi’ites, living in his Michigan district.
Dingell did condemn Hezbollah in the same interview the Washington Times criticizes. The Washington Times cuts Dingell’s answer off at “No.” Here’s the full exchange:
Q: You’re not against Hezbollah?
DINGELL: No, I happen to be “” I happen to be against violence, I think the United States has to bring resolution to this matter. Now, I condemn Hezbollah as does everybody else, for the violence.
Dingell also signed a letter on July 28, two days before the interview aired, calling on the EU to add Hezbollah to their terrorist list. He also voted for a House Resolution in March 2005 which made the same request. (In a subsquent post responding to “the loons at Think Progress,” Powerline nevertheless maintains that Dingell “does not quite deem [Hezbollah] a terrorist group.”)
There are legitimate criticisms of Dingell’s position on this issue. But they should be based on his actual views, not a dishonest caricature.
Contact Tony Blankley, the Washington Times Editorial Page Editor, and (politely) tell him to publish Dingell’s full response and stop misleading his readers.