French television program debunks silly Fox News claims about “no go” zones in Paris

[Updated to add a second clip.]

As you’ve no doubt heard, Fox New finally apologized several times for its credulous interview with terrorism “expert” Steven Emerson, who claimed that Birmingham, the second largest city in England, is under the control of radical Muslims and that non-Muslims do not dare enter. (See for example this item from Britain’s Independent newspaper.) In reality, Birmingham does have a relatively large Muslim population, but it’s only about 22 percent of the population.

Emerson had already rather abjectly apologized several days before, calling his false claims inexcusable. This isn’t the first time Emerson has been off the mark, as another article (link) in The Independent pointed out. Among other things, in 2013 he claimed to have inside knowledge that a Saudi carried out the Boston Marathon bombings (the accused bombers turned out to be Chechens) and in 1995 he told CBS News that the Oklahoma City bombing was characteristic of Middle Eastern terrorism (it was carried out by anti-government Americans). Twitter users responded with the #FoxNewFacts hashtag making up their parody Fox News items, but best single remark I saw was from James Gleave (@jamesgleave1), who wrote, “The Fox News guy has apologised and called the city of Birmingham ‘beautiful’. The guy can’t get anything right, can he?”

Fox News also apologized for a different interview with a different “expert,” Nolan Peterson, who made similar suggestions about areas of Paris. A French comedy news show called Le Petit Journal did a report on this, sending brave journalists into the areas in question to ask residents if their areas were really like Iraq and Afghanistan, as Peterson alleged:

Of course, Fox News has never been noted for factual accuracy, but that hasn’t kept them from being the highest-rate news channel on cable in the U.S.

Here’s another clip from the same program, this one showing a couple of pretend Fox News reporters in a panic when they see that their taxi driver has a “Muslim beard” and that couscous is sold openly. The intro is in French but the “reporters” themselves speak imitation American English, so you shouldn’t have any trouble understanding them.

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