A Fox News contributor announced in a lengthy and scathing email to colleagues that he had not renewed his contract with the network, which he called a “propaganda machine for a destructive and ethically ruinous administration,” BuzzFeed News reported Tuesday.
Retired Lt. Col. Ralph Peters wrote in the email, which BuzzFeed obtained and published, that he felt “Fox News is assaulting our constitutional order and the rule of law, while fostering corrosive and unjustified paranoia among viewers.”
“Over my decade with Fox, I long was proud of the association,” he added. “Now I am ashamed.”
BuzzFeed noted that Peters was a harsh critic of President Barack Obama’s approach to foreign policy, and to Russian President Vladimir Putin in particular.
“He tried to romance Putin and he got date raped,” Peters said in 2014, referring to Obama in a segment BuzzFeed flagged.
In his email, Peters said of the scrutiny over Russian election meddling: “Despite increasingly pathetic denials, it turns out that the ‘nothing-burger’ has been covered with Russian dressing all along.”
And later, he commended Fox Business network, certain Fox News hosts and Fox News’ hard news reporters, who he said “continue to do their best as talented professionals in a poisoned environment.”
The network told TPM in an email that Peters had used his opinion “as a weapon in order to gain attention.”
“Ralph Peters is entitled to his opinion despite the fact that he’s choosing to use it as a weapon in order to gain attention,” the network’s statement read. “We are extremely proud of our top-rated primetime hosts and all of our opinion programing.”
According to Peters’ contributor page on Fox News’ website, his last appearance on the network provided him a platform to cut squarely against the grain — by calling for a ban on assault weapons.
This post has been updated.