‘Freaked’ CNN staffers reportedly ‘terrified’ purge of the woke now underway after latest move

With the dismissals of CNN on-air talent underway in earnest, the expression “the beatings will continue until morale improves” evidently barely covers the sentiment of current employees “freaked out” that they may be next.

When Chris Licht took over as chairman and CEO of the international news network earlier this year, he did so with a promise to return to fact-based reporting by “fearlessly speaking truth to power, challenging the status quo, questioning group-think, and educating viewers and readers with straightforward facts and insightful commentary while always being respectful of differing viewpoints.”

Now, according to insiders who spoke with The Washington Post under anonymity, with the termination of White House correspondent John Harwood and removal of “Reliable Sources” host Brian Stelter in August, the shakeup has become very real and created a “confusing and unsettling time” in house.

“People are freaked out,” one individual identified as a CNN journalist reportedly told the outlet. “It almost feels like there’s a pattern. Is there a purge going on? They seem to be sending a message: ‘Watch what you say. Watch what you do.'”

Early in August, CNN’s Don Lemon had attempted to suggest that was not the case as he told Charlamagne The God during an interview, “Yes, I will be able to do what I do on CNN…which is to tell the truth,” he claimed,” which is to inform the American electorate and the American public and also the world, because we’re an international news organization. So if I’m not allowed to do that, then I will go on and do it somewhere else.”

Of course, his comments came before the removal of Stelter and Harwood, who still had time remaining on their contracts.

“It’s a really confusing and unsettling time from top to bottom at CNN,” one producer told the Post. “I don’t know anyone who is happy right now.”

Perhaps that is to be expected as other outlets continue to speculate or report on insider information pertaining to who might be next on the chopping block. As Jon Nicosia, the former managing editor at Mediaite had presented following Stelter’s sudden termination, “don’t expect John Berman, Alisyn Camerota, Jim Acosta, Brianna Keilar, Jake Tapper, John King, and Don Lemon to still be at the network OR have their current show assignments.”

Despite the realities being faced, disillusions like those espoused by Lemon linger on as one insider told the Post, “Longtime CNN personalities are disappearing, and the viewers don’t know why.”

Those concerns were supported by some on social media commenting on the report including one apparently troubled individual worried for the job security Trump Derangement Syndrome suffering Jim Acosta.

“I worry about Jim Acosta,” Nancy K wrote in part. “His anchoring on weekends many times just doesn’t seem like he is into the broadcast…Is he next?”

However, the overall lack of self-awareness among CNN employees may be a case of invincible ignorance as Licht has made clear the direction he is seeking but when it comes to the distinction between facts and opinions, one “journalist” said colleagues don’t know where their CEO’s lines are being drawn and “I think they’re hoping people will just guess what to do.”

Kevin Haggerty


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