Thursday, June 16, 2016

The Media's Apologetic Coverage of Islamic Terror

by Tarek Fatah
The Toronto Sun
June 14, 2016

Western media have fawned over Muhammad Musri, president of the Islamic Society of Central Florida, and others seeking to shift blame for the mass murder away from radical Islamism.

In the wake of the Islamic terrorist attack on a Florida gay nightclub, the media's coverage has been almost apologetic. To go by the coverage, it's as if an Islamist jihadi didn't just massacre 49 Americans, and the West bombed Mecca instead.
Despite the apologetic tone of the media, the words of a spokesman for the Florida mosque attended by ISIS-inspired jihadist Omar Mateen, were inadvertently insightful. This mosque wasn't only frequented by Mateen. Another congregant blew himself up in Syria while serving ISIS.
Asked by Erin Burnett on CNN what was being preached at this mosque that would motivate two young men in the congregation to become ISIS jihadi terrorists, its spokesman was succinct: "It's like any other mosque, it's simple."
With those few words, this spokesman implicitly acknowledged what critics of North America's mosque establishment have been saying for 15 years. That is, many of them are incubators of hate and jihad.
The Orlando media circus started early Sunday morning within hours of the massacre. At the first press briefing, police presented one individual as a spokesman of Orlando's "faith communities." He wasn't a Christian, like many of the victims, but a Muslim.
In addressing reporters, Muhammad Musri, president of the Islamic Society of Central Florida, appeared to shift blame for the mass murder away from the ISIS-inspired jihadi who committed it, towards a concern about mass shootings in general and, presumably, support for gun control.
As he put it: "I would ... like to caution many in the media in rushing to judgment and sensationalizing the story. Because we do not want to shift the story from what it is ... We hope this will be one of the last mass shootings our country has been going through. As a nation, we have to look at the issue of mass shootings and we should do something to stop the mass shootings that are happening all the time."
CNN anchor Don Lemon said on-air that "the Muslim community and the gay community are very close."
Then there was CNN's Don Lemon, an openly gay television anchor who, while talking to a representative of the Council of American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said, "As a matter of fact the Muslim community and the gay community are very close."
Taking the cue, Rasha Mubarak of CAIR responded: "Absolutely. These [Gays] are part of my family. We have been working together ... My friends in the LGBTQ community told me "we are not going to let this divide us; the hugs were tighter ..."
I almost choked, considering that while this may be Mubarak's point of view, others affiliated with CAIR have complained in the past about Muslims not being able to freely express their opposition to same sex marriage and homosexuality.
As the Kurdish activist Ejder Memis commented from Australia on attempts to minimize the hatred jihadists have for homosexuals: "The LGBT community is being sold out to Islamofascists right before our eyes."
On the other side of the globe, the Chilean Palestinian broadcaster Lalo Dagach said it best: "We now live in a world where criticism of Muslim Homophobia is [considered] Islamophobia."
On Monday evening, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne illustrated Dagach's point. She told hundreds mourning the dead of Florida: "Homophobia cannot be fought with Islamophobia."
The question left unanswered is this: Should we fear Islamophobia or Islamofascism?
In the meantime, a jihadist newspaper in Pakistan carried this as its front-page headline: "Afghan youth roasts 50 Americans."
Tarek Fatah, a founder of the Muslim Canadian Congress and columnist at theToronto Sun, is a Robert J. and Abby B. Levine Fellow at the Middle East Forum.

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