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LA Times takes heat for honoring promise of confidentiality

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  1. Newsgathering
The Los Angeles Times is taking political heat this week from the McCain campaign for refusing to release a video it…

The Los Angeles Times is taking political heat this week from the McCain campaign for refusing to release a video it obtained through a confidential source, of Sen. Barack Obama at a dinner for a Palestinian-American professor.

Sen. John McCain himself has called on the newspaper to release the video, while his running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, accused the Times of hiding the footage to protect Obama — even though the newspaper was the first to publicize the video in an article in April. Times Editor Russ Stanton was quoted this week defending the decision to withhold it: "The Los Angeles Times did not publish the videotape because it was provided to us by a confidential source who did so on the condition that we not release it. . . . The Times keeps its promises to sources."

The five-year-old video apparently shows Obama at a dinner for Columbia University Professor Rashid Khalidi, who is outspoken in favor of Palestinian rights.