US newspapers unite against Donald Trump's 'fake news' rhetoric

US newspapers are coming together to warn Donald Trump against his "fake news" rhetoric with a co-ordinated series of editorials condemning his attacks on the press.

The Boston Globe started the initiative, inviting newspapers across the country to stand up for journalists with articles on Thursday.

Nearly 350 news organisations pledged to participate, according to Marjorie Pritchard, op-ed editor at the Globe.

In St Louis, the Post-Dispatch called journalists "the truest of patriots", while the Chicago Sun-Times said it believes most Americans know Mr Trump is talking nonsense.

The Fayetteville Observer said it hopes Mr Trump will stop making such accusations, "but we're not holding our breath".

The North Carolina newspaper added: "Rather, we hope all the president's supporters will recognise what he's doing - manipulating reality to get what he wants."

Some newspapers used history lessons to state their case.

The Elizabethtown Advocate in Pennsylvania compared free press in the US to such rights promised but not delivered in the former Soviet Union.

The New York Times wrote: "If you haven't already, please subscribe to your local papers," it said.

"Praise them when you think they've done a good job and criticise them when you think they could do better. We're all in this together."

The Wall Street Journal, which said it was not participating, noted in a column by James Freeman that the Globe's effort ran counter to the independence that editorial boards claim to seek.

Mr Freeman wrote that the president has the right to free speech as much as his media adversaries.