The “most busted name in news” is at it again, this time joined by a number of its fellow purveyors of falsehood. The target of the attacks is once again Donald Trump. And this time the claim — promoted not only by CNN but by The Washington Post, New York’s Daily News, and others — is that Agata Kornhauser-Duda, the wife of Polish president Andrzej Duda, snubbed Trump when he extended his hand for a handshake.
Here, thanks to the Washington Examiner’s Becket Adams, is a video of the shot heard round the world. Like Trump’s now-infamous body-slamming video, this one is formatted as a GIF, meaning that the clip loops back on itself several times:
— David Lewis (@davidclewis) July 6, 2017
In fairness, it does appear that Mrs. Duda rejects Trump’s outreached hand. It turns out that wasn’t the case. A more complete video, provided surprisingly by MSNBC (which chose evidently not to play this hole), shows the two first ladies shaking hands, after which Kornhauser-Duda turns back to the president and shakes his hand. Here is a video still capturing that exchange:
If there was awkwardness in the meeting, it wasn’t initiated by President Trump. Certainly, there was no slight. But that’s not how the mainstream media packaged the story. Here’s CNN’s Chris Cillizza:
— Chris Cillizza (@CillizzaCNN) July 6, 2017
The Daily News was more pointed in its tweet, which includes a screengrab of the video and the triumphal declaration “First Lady of Poland snubs President Trump’s attempted handshake.”
— New York Daily News (@NYDailyNews) July 6, 2017
Some enemies of the president went for the bon mot. Here’s Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page:
— Clarence Page (@cptime) July 6, 2017
Other sites, including CNBC and Mediaite, weighed in with similar messages. None verbalized the underlying narrative, which might be encapsulated as “See how much the current U.S. president is reviled around the world?”
Since the video went viral, several fair and balanced sources have exposed the lie for what it was. None, however, could top the tweet posted by an eyewitness to the proceedings. It was none other than President Duda himself:
Contrary to some surprising reports my wife did shake hands with Mrs. and Mr. Trump @POTUS after a great visit. Let's FIGHT FAKE NEWS.
— Andrzej Duda (@AndrzejDuda) July 6, 2017
Hey, who knows? This presidential tweeting thing may catch on!