(The following article appeared in the April 13, 1994 issue of the now-defunct Lower East Side alternative newsweekly, Downtown).
After the Chicago-based Tribune Company was given a license by the FCC to begin operating its New York City television station in 1948, its Chicago Tribune newspaper began to support Wisconsin Senator Joe McCarthy’s anti-democratic campaign to brand all U.S. liberals and radicals as unpatriotic “Reds,” who deserved to be jailed and repressed because they were part of an alleged “international communist conspiracy.” As `Chicago Tribune’: The Rise Of A Great American Newspaper recalled:
“Throughout all of McCarthy’s campaigns against the Reds, rarely did the Tribune question the senator’s tactics…The Tribune staunchly defended him and furiously attacked his enemies…
“The Tribune continued to defend Senator McCarthy to the end of his days. The senator died on May 2, 1957, and on May 5…the paper summarized Senator McCarthy’s fight and career in a long and angry editorial, which concluded: `No man in public life was ever persecuted and maligned because of his beliefs as was Sen. McCarthy…the Republic has lost a stalwart defender.’”
On Aug. 23, 1952, Tribune media conglomerate owner Robert McCormick also had argued that “Every patriot in Wisconsin will vote for Senator Joseph McCarthy.”
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