Thursday, February 10, 2005

The Washington Times: Beltway Bigot Spigot 

Faces under the hood:
Long criticized for its brand of journalism, The Washington Times makes a habit of publishing the work of extremists — including the wife of the newspaper's managing editor. By Heidi Beirich and Mark Potok

Feb. 9, 2005 -- Marian Kester Coombs is a woman who believes America has become a "den of iniquity" thanks to "its efforts to accommodate minorities."

White men should "run, not walk" to wed "racially conscious" white women and avoid being out-bred by non-whites. Latinos are "rising to take this country away from those who made it," the "Euroamericans." Muslims are "human hyenas" who "smell blood" and are "closing in" on their "weakened prey," meaning "the white race." Blacks, Coombs sneers, are "saintly victims who can do no wrong." Black solidarity and non-white immigration are imposing "racial revolution and decomposition" in America.

Coombs describes herself as just "a freelance writer in Crofton, Maryland." But this is one writer who's a bit more well-positioned than she lets on.

Marian Kester Coombs is married to Francis Booth Coombs, managing editor of the hard-right newspaper The Washington Times. Fran Coombs has published at least 35 of his wife's news and opinion pieces for his paper, although his relationship to her is not acknowledged in her Times bylines.


Most of Marian Coombs' especially inflammatory writings have appeared in white supremacist venues such as The Occidental Quarterly, which ran her glowing review of a book on "racially conscious" whites by Robert S. Griffin, a member of the neo-Nazi National Alliance. But the Times has published its share.


The Washington Times has taken something of a public relations beating recently. This Jan. 20, it ran an ad attacking Jews as "those folks of the anti-Christ." After the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington complained, Times general manager Richard Amberg Jr. wrote the group to profusely apologize, claiming the Times "never knowingly" allows ads that "denigrate religions."

That may be. But in just one sample period in late 2004, the newspaper ran at least nine similar ads — on Oct. 11, 13, 15, 20, 22, 26, 29, 30 and 31 — many of them plugging an anti-Semitic book called For Fear of the Jews.

On Dec. 6, it went one better, publishing an ad for the Institute for Historical Review, a leading anti-Semitic hate group that specializes in denying the World War II Holocaust.

The Washington Times is relatively small (circulation 102,000) and money-losing (it's been estimated that its backer, the Unification Church, has spent more than $1 billion to keep it going over the past 22 years). But its influence cannot be measured in those statistics. President Reagan once described it as his favorite paper. The first President Bush said it "in my view brings sanity to Washington, D.C."

Read it all: "The News That Fits" via the Southern Poverty law Center


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