The New York Sun has an even better than normal editorial today defending Ahmad Chalabi in the context of CNN’s lack of objectivity with respect to Arab leaders. CNN interviewed King Abdullah of Jordan, who as much as accused Ahmad Chalabi of being a crook. Writes the Sun, “one can only wonder what were the reasons that the network yesterday failed to challenge the Hashemite ruler with the obvious follow-up questions.” Here are a few–but I very much recommend reading the whole editorial:

2. About that alleged embezzlement. The Jordanian charges against Petra Bank, which you refer to, were made in a special “security court” established under martial law–an emergency measure adopted following the war in 1967. If the charges were so strong, why weren’t they made in an ordinary Jordanian court?

3. This special Jordanian security court was established on April 1, 1992. It had its first hearing on April 8, 1992. The following day, April 9, 1992, the court handed down a 223-page decision against Mr. Chalabi. How was it possible for this court to thoroughly and fairly examine matters involving a complex international banking empire and issue a 223-page ruling all in the space of 24 hours? Is this the way the rule of law works in Jordan?

4. Did the timing of the Jordanian security court’s attack on Mr. Chalabi and his bank have anything to do with Mr. Chalabi’s appearance in a “60 Minutes” segment in early 1992, in which he showed documents detailing the links of your father, King Hussein, to arms purchases by Saddam Hussein’s Iraq?

5. After Mr. Chalabi was convicted, he apparently met twice with your father. If these Jordanian banking abuses of which Mr. Chalabi was supposedly guilty of were so severe, why did the king not arrest him? [New York Sun, 4/28/03]

The one I like best, though, is where the reporter would demand if the King is a stooge of the CIA.

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