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June 28, 2011

Washington Post Still Doesn't Connect Terrorist Dots

The Washington Post continued to soft-pedal the connection between terrorism and Hamas (the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement) in a June 19 report headlined “Zawahiri faces hurdles as Bin Laden Successor”. The Post spotlighted al-Qaeda’s new leader, Ayman Al Zawahiri, by interviewing Huthaifa Azzam, who lived in Osama Bin Laden’s home in the 1980s. The newspaper described Zawahiri as a terrorist within the first paragraph: “Ayman al-Zawahiri was then well on his way to terrorist superstardom.”

In a June 17 dispatch, “Bin Laden successor had early bent toward Islamist activism” The Post again used the word terrorist in the first paragraph, applying it to bin Laden and Zawahiri and al-Qaeda by extension. The newspaper reported that it was “ ... [Zawahiri] who helped Osama bin Laden in his terrorist assault on the West.”

The theological connection between the Islamic extremism of al-Qaeda and Hamas is made clear in The Post’s June 19 report, but in regard to Hamas, the terrorist description disappears: “[Huthaifa] Azzam recalled that Zawahiri would feign respect for Azzam’s father, Abdullah, a cleric who helped found the Palestinian militant movement known as Hamas” and influenced bin Laden.

By definition, terrorists threaten or use force against non-combatants to influence larger audiences and achieve political, economic, religious or other ends. In the cases of al-Qaeda threatening or using force against Americans and Hamas attacking Israelis, Post usage implies a double standard. It sanitizes Hamas despite its actions and even though it and al-Qaeda both long have been designated terrorist organizations by the U.S. government. — by Sophie Linshitz, CAMERA Washington research intern.

Posted by ER at June 28, 2011 03:09 PM

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