The New York Times just can't stop using precious print space to attack rival news organization Fox News, based on an exaggerated claim about Muslim "no-go-zones" in England by a terrorism analyst who appeared on the channel after the Charlie Hebdo massacre. Fueled by an obsessive anti-Fox crusade by a left-wing French comedy show, the latest story made Page 4.
The nation's establishment press is virtually ignoring the existence of horrifying and officially approved Islamic State videos showing the executions of accused homosexuals and adulterers.
A search this morning at Google News on "Islamic State gay" (with "Islamic State" in quotes, showing duplicates) for items appearing since January 14 returned 83 results. Roughly 30 of them are directly relevant, and almost none are from U.S. establishment press outlets. As usual, the British tabloids and new media outlets are ahead of the game. Here are several paragraphs from the U.K. Daily Mail's coverage (bolds are mine):
On Wednesday’s edition of The Cycle on MSNBC, NBC News terrorism expert Evan Kohlmann was at it again, telling the hosts that we, as Americans, must “put ourselves in the eyes” of Islamic terrorists considering “there wouldn't be violent attacks but there would be an uproar” and “anger” among Christians if Muslims burned crosses or trampled “Christian artifacts.”
Reporting on the release of Charlie Hebdo's first issue since the January 7 terrorist attack, NBC's Today and ABC's Good Morning America on Wednesday refused to show the cover of the satirical magazine that depicted a cartoon image of Mohamed. Despite such censorship, both networks touted the publication as "a triumph for free speech" and "a kind of declaration of defiance against terror."
The New York Times, perhaps stung by conservative criticism of its timid coverage of the Charlie Hebdo massacre, went along with the liberal masses in mocking Fox News, based on a tweet by Rupert Murdoch and an exaggerated claim by a Fox News analyst. The unconfined glee came through in a sniping article by Stephen Castle and Robert Mackey.
Not long after 12 cartoonists and editors were murdered at the Paris office of the Charlie Hebdo magazine last Wednesday, news outlets around the world faced a difficult dilemma: produce images of satirical cartoons of Mohammed from the weekly publication and face the possibility of being attacked by other terrorists; or play it safe by using other pictures instead.
One organization that wrestled with the problem was National Public Radio, which debated whether or not to post such illustrations on its website, according to Mark Memmott, the company's standards and practices editor.
It's not enough to read the transcript. You really need to view the video to appreciate the depths of Christopher Dickey's world-weary, dismissive, preening political correctness. Asked on today's Morning Joe to comment on Muslim preachers inciting violence from their pulpits, Dickey of The Daily Beast sniffed that the problem is "exaggerated," claimed that the number of violent Muslims is "infinitesimally small" [down even from the "minuscule" number he cited last week], and engaged in the most fraudulent form of moral equivalency, saying that there are also crazy Christian, Jewish and Hindu preachers who incite their congregations.
Two days after 12 people who worked at the controversial Charlie Hebdo -- “a weekly, French satirical newsmagazine” -- were shot and killed by four gunmen -- Vox website content editor Max Fisher tried to assert the publication's importance by pointing to the “Love Is Stronger Than Hate” cartoon cover of the November 2011 edition.
The cover depicts Charlie Hebdo -- the magazine portrayed by a generic male staffer with a pencil behind his ear -- kissing a generic Muslim man, with the smoldering ashes of the office in the background.
The New York Times smugly explained to Buzzfeed why it refuses to rerun the "offensive" images of the Prophet Muhammad published by Charlie Hebdo: "we do not normally publish images or other material deliberately intended to offend religious sensibilities." So why has the Times previously run cartoons that offend Christian and Jewish sensibilities, without any apparent concerns?
At 4:45 p.m. Wednesday afternoon, the New York Times, teasing an item entitled "‘Dangerous Moment’ for Europe, as Fear and Resentment Grow," tweeted that "The Paris terror attack seems certain to accelerate the growth of anti-Islamic sentiment in Europe."
Consistent with a long-established nasty habit, the opening sentence of the report by Steven Erlanger and Katrin Bennhold has since been revised without notice, and is tagged as appearing on Thursday's front page. The headline is the same, but the first sentence now reads: "The sophisticated, military-style strike Wednesday on a French newspaper known for satirizing Islam staggered a continent already seething with anti-immigrant sentiments in some quarters, feeding far-right nationalist parties like France’s National Front." Yeah, those are Europe's biggest problems, not Islamic terrorism.
Following the deadly Islamic terrorist attack in Paris on Wednesday, major broadcast networks ABC and NBC joined other news outlets in not showing any of the controversial cartoons of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad from the Charlie Hebdo magazine during their evening newscasts.
Despite initially telling Buzzfeed that they would not be showing any of the cartoons, CBS News did go forward and displayed three of them on the air during the CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley. The three were shown as part of a report by CBS News foreign correspondent Elizabeth Palmer from Paris that led off the broadcast.
Chait writes that “the Muslim radical argues that the ban on blasphemy is morally right and should be followed; the Western liberal insists it is morally wrong but should be followed. Theoretical distinctions aside, both positions yield an identical outcome.”