Shoot the Messenger

About that Team of Rivals deal:


P.J. Crowley, the state department spokesman, stepped down Sunday after saying publicly that treatment of Wikileaks suspect Pfc. Bradley Manning in military detention has been "ridiculous and counterproductive and stupid." In a statement, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton wrote that she accepted his resignation with regret....

The remark by Mr. Crowley last week to a small audience at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, first reported by the blogger Philippa Thomas, was rejected by none other than President Obama at a press conference on Friday. Mr. Obama said that he had been assured the treatment of Private Manning was "appropriate and are meeting our basic standards...." 

The president's comment likely sealed the fate of Mr. Crowley, whose service as the chief spokesman for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has been rocky at times.

I think this is wrong. And it's very hard for me to believe that, circa 2006, Senator Obama wouldn't say as much.
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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

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