(ANTIMEDIA) — Project Veritas has released the second installment of its “American Pravda” investigative series aimed at exposing “the real motivations behind the decision-making process at our dominant media corporations.” Part One, released early Tuesday morning, caused chaos on social media as Donald Trump and his camp took to Twitter to gloat while major news outlets scrambled to poke (inaccurate) holes in the video and generally downplay the scandal. Meanwhile, White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders encouraged the media and “everyone across the country” to watch the exposé, which showed CNN producer John Bonifield describing the Russia narrative the network is pushing as “mostly bullshit.”
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CNN shrugged off the video, releasing the following statement:
“CNN stands by our medical producer John Bonifield. Diversity of personal opinion is what makes CNN strong, we welcome it and embrace it.”
Brian Stelter, host of CNN’s “Reliable Sources,” tweeted the network’s official statement, pointing out that Bonifield “isn’t involved in Russia or Trump coverage,” to which the president of Project Veritas, James O’Keefe, replied, “That’s just the reaction we were expecting and it just punctuates the video we release about CNN tomorrow.” Brett Arends of MarketWatch lashed out at O’Keefe in a tweet, saying, “Give it up, James. You goofed. You got nothing but a few edited remarks by ONE CNN employee.” New York Times writer Sopan Deb also attacked the video on Twitter, saying, “CNN has probably 1,000 producers, not including APs, PAs, etc. But sure, let’s use 1 guy’s private comments to represent the whole network.” There’s a good chance they might be eating their words right about now.
Part Two of American Pravda is much shorter than its predecessor — and potentially way more damning. The video shows a short exchange between a Project Veritas journalist and prominent political commentator for CNN, Van Jones, in which Jones, who has personally discussed the Russia/Trump conspiracy on CNN, calls the Russia narrative a “nothing burger.”
PV Journalist: “What do you think is gonna happen this week with the whole Russia thing?”
Jones: “The Russia thing is just a big nothing burger.”
PV Journalist: “Really?”
While the question is slightly vague, it’s hard to imagine what else “the Russia thing” could be referring to. While mainstream journalists are accusing O’Keefe of “deceptive editing” and criticizing his undercover approach, it’s important to note what is being seen and heard in these videos. Unless both Jones and Bonifield retract or blatantly contradict their own statements in these conversations (which is possible but highly unlikely), the content of these videos is highly concerning and should be addressed accordingly rather than swept under the rug or explained away. Undercover investigative journalism has long been an effective technique and has been used by investigative journalists and mainstream media outlets to expose corruption and scandals for over a hundred years.
According to a Periscope video posted early this afternoon, O’Keefe is just getting started, so CNN might want to stop defending themselves for the time being. “The Most Trusted Name in News” is rapidly losing the trust of Americans — one retweet at a time.
It’s necessary to view these videos objectively and critically while keeping in mind that exposing corruption within a news organization does not mean supporting the current presidential administration. It simply means that truth takes precedence over bias.