THE FISH IS BACK IN THE BARREL. Here's how Mark Steyn opens his syndicated column, published yesterday in the Chicago Sun-Times: "By my reckoning, just five American newspapers mentioned the name of Imran Khan last week."
Uh, don't let Steyn count your change. Khan - the Pakistani cricket star whose Newsweek-enhanced press conference helped set off anti-American rioting, was mentioned in the following newspapers, according to searches of LexisNexis and Google News: the New York Times, the Washington Post, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Seattle Times, USA Today, the New York Sun, the Washington Times, the Tulsa World, the Los Angeles Times, Long Island's Newsday, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Saratoga Herald-Tribune, the San Diego Union Tribune, the Bayou Buzz of Louisiana, the Boston Phoenix, and - last but not least - the Pantagraph of Bloomington, Illinois.
That's 16. And let's keep going. Time and, obviously, Newsweek reported on Khan. National Review Online mentioned him. So did UPI and Bloomberg. Hell, so did KSBI-TV (Channel 52) in Oklahoma. So did ABC News. Ditto for PBS. So did CNN, whose Anderson Cooper actually interviewed him.
This week, the New Yorker reports on Khan, but that would be after Steyn's deadline, so we won't count that.
I'm sure I've missed some, but I've got other matters to attend to.
And in the same week a mere handful of American media outlets mentioned Imran, over a hundred newspapers mentioned Michael Isikoff of Newsweek. Isikoff was the guy who filed the phony-baloney story about some interrogator at Guantanamo flushing a Quran down the toilet. But Imran was the guy who, in a ferocious speech broadcast on Pakistani TV, brought it to the attention of his fellow Muslims, many of whom promptly rioted, with the result that 17 people are dead.
Could the media have done better? Of course. But Steyn's chronic inability to get basic facts right is amazing to behold.
Update: Okay, 15 papers. The New York Sun's only mention was in Steyn's column, which it published today. But still.