NBC's Brokaw Blames U.S. Drone Attacks for Motivating Islamic Terrorists

On Sunday's NBC Meet the Press, special correspondent Tom Brokaw used a discussion on the Boston Marathon bombings to argue more broadly that the "roots" of anti-American terrorism across the Islamic world are U.S. drone attacks: "I think we also have to examine the use of drones that the United States is involved in and – and there are a lot of civilians who are innocently killed in a drone attack in Pakistan, in Afghanistan, and in Iraq." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

Brokaw began by wondering: "We have to work a lot harder at a motivation here. What prompts a young man to come to this country and still feel alienated from it, to go back to Russia and do whatever he did? And I don't think we've examined that enough." Speaking of people in the Middle East, Brokaw warned: "There is this enormous rage against what they see in that part of the world as a presumptuousness of the United States."

The day after the bombing, Brokaw appeared on Today to caution his media colleagues against jumping to conclusions about the motivation of the attack.


Here is a transcript of Brokaw's April 21 Meet the Press comments:

11:11AM ET

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TOM BROKAW: But I think that there's something else that goes beyond the event that we've all been riveted by in the last week. We have to work a lot harder at a motivation here. What prompts a young man to come to this country and still feel alienated from it, to go back to Russia and do whatever he did? And I don't think we've examined that enough. I mean, there was 24/7 coverage on television, a lot of newspaper print and so on, but we've got to look at the roots of all of this because it exists across the whole subcontinent, and the – and the Islamic world, around the world.

And I think we also have to examine the use of drones that the United States is involved in and – and there are a lot of civilians who are innocently killed in a drone attack in Pakistan, in Afghanistan, and in Iraq. And I can tell you having spent a lot of time over there, young people will come up to me on the streets and say, "We love America. But if you harm one hair on the – on the head of my sister, I will fight you forever." And there is this enormous rage against what they see in that part of the world as a presumptuousness of the United States.

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Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen is a News Analyst for MRC