hopperbach


Wednesday, October 12, 2005

None dare call it terrorism

Michelle Malkin has penned a great column today which takes a look at the almost non-existent coverage of the recent OU bombing in light of a litany of other "non-terrorist" happenings over the years. She points out what seems to be a troubling pattern of cover-up and shoddy reporting:

Oct. 12 marks the fifth anniversary of the bombing of the USS Cole. Seventeen American sailors were murdered in the attack. They were casualties of a war with radical Islamic terror that America hadn't yet declared and which the mainstream media still refuses to acknowledge today.

Too many of us were blind in 2000 -- unable or unwilling or simply too uninterested to connect such blood-stained dots as al Qaeda's 1993 World Trade Center bombing attack, the 1996 Khobar Tower bombings, the 1998 African embassy bombings, and the attack on the Cole. After Sept. 11, 2001, all of our eyes should have been pried wide open to the evils of Muslim extremism that exist among us in both organized and freelance form.

The watchdogs in the national press, however, insist on clouding our vision.

Since 9/11, I've reported on the media's reluctance to highlight the convicted Washington, D.C.-area snipers' Islamist proclivities and journalists' refusal to call Egyptian gunman Hesham Hadayet's acts of murder at the Israeli airline counter at Los Angeles International Airport on July 4, 2002, "terrorism."

Middle East scholar Daniel Pipes noted how quickly the media sought to whitewash the bloody bus-hijacking by Croatian illegal alien Damir Igric a month after 9/11. Although the incident "echoed similar attacks by Palestinians on Israeli buses," Pipes observed, the "media attributed the violence to post-traumatic stress syndrome."

National Guardsman Ryan Anderson (a.k.a. Amir Talhah), a Muslim convert who allegedly attempted to pass sensitive military information to al Qaeda over the Internet, rated barely a blip on the media radar screen.

Similarly, press accounts have downplayed the disruption of terrorist cells on American soil: The Lackawanna Six were just nice Muslim boys led astray. The Virginia Jihad Network was just a group of weekend paintball enthusiasts. Those indicted imams in Lodi, Calif., are just misunderstood "moderates." Terror suspects deported on immigration charges are just victims of discrimination.


We had forgotten about a lot of these, hadn't we? Malkin then turns to the subject of the OU bombing and after briefly recounting the facts behind that case, she brings us a telling letter she recieved from OU student journalist Rachael Kahne:

"I've been working on this story since the night it happened, and have been stonewalled at every turn. . . . Minutes after the explosion, police busted into a student's apartment and arrested four Muslim students who were there for a small gathering (the president of the Muslim Student Association assures me this was in no way a "party"). Among those arrested [and later released] was Fazal Cheema, Joel Henry Hinrichs' Pakistani roommate. I was baffled when I heard this. I didn't know how police would be able to identify who Hinrichs was, where he lived, who his roommate was, and then find where his roommate was in a matter of minutes. Something isn't adding up, and I've been wracking my brain for the past week trying to figure out what happened here. OU isn't saying anything more than the typical PR spin, and the FBI won't talk."


Interesting observations from someone who was fairly close to the action.

Mark Davis of the Dallas Morning News also published a column expressing his bewilderment over the lack of coverage. Like Malkin he suspects political correctness to be a primary culprit:

As for the terrorist angle, Mr. Hinrichs is now the subject of understandably intense scrutiny, virtually none of it from the mainstream media. You might think the story fizzled because there was, in fact, no death beyond the bomber. True enough, but I'd suggest that if a raid revealed some radical plan to bomb an abortion clinic anywhere in America, the suspects would be household names by nightfall without a single fuse lit.

Something about the nature of this event has swallowed almost whole the normal curiosity one would expect from the usual sources.

Is it political, because acknowledging a terror threat on our soil might bolster President Bush's war logic? Is it economic, out of fear of scaring people away from football games? Is it geographic snobbery because it didn't happen on either coast? Or is it a PC fear of seeming to lunge toward a jihadist angle?


Probably all of the above. But hopefully with pundits like Davis and Malkin continuing to beat the drum, this story will not be allowed to whither on the vine like so many have in times past.

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