Monday, June 20, 2011

A Pentagon terror scare and a media taboo. - WSJ.com

Losing His Religion - WSJ.com

We learn from the CBS story that Melaku is a lance corporal in the Marine Reserves. The Associated Press adds that he is a naturalized American citizen, originally from Ethiopia. CBS also reports that "Melaku was carrying a notebook that contained the phrases 'al Qaeda,' 'Taliban rules' and 'Mujahid defeated croatian forces' when he was detained," but "that the suspect is not thought to have been involved in a terrorist act or plot."

All of which raises an obvious question--but one that goes unanswered in the reports from CBS and AP, as well as others from ABC News and the Washington Post. We could only find one news organization that had the answer: Fox News Channel, which reports that Maliku is Muslim.

Now, it's possible that Fox simply got a scoop here, but our guess is that this fact was omitted from the other reports because of the politically correct taboo against making a connection between Islam and terrorism. It's analogous to the case we cited Monday in which the Chicago Tribune refused to mention the race of the members of "groups of youths" who had been attacking people in a downtown neighborhood, but it's worse. Whereas race is not necessarily relevant to the motive of the Chicago attacks, religion almost always is when a Muslim commits an act of terrorism or a related crime.

These politically correct strictures are not applied in a consistent or reciprocal fashion. If Maliku were a Christian and had been arrested outside an abortion clinic, you can bet his religion would have been widely reported. And the press sensationalizes "hate crimes" by whites against blacks or non-Muslims against Muslims...

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