Um, Fort Hood? WashPost Headline Cites Boston as First Terror 'Success' In a Decade

One of the Washington Post's front-page stories on the Boston bombing had this headline when the story turned to page A7: "After a decade of plots foiled or botched, one success." That's a strange headline that seems to forget the "successful" terror attack at Fort Hood. Six paragraphs below that headline, reporters Scott Wilson and Peter Finn recall 13 dead and 30 wounded by Major Nidal Hasan.

After noting the failures of Omar Abdulmutallab (the unsuccessful "underwear bomber") and Faisal Shahzad (whose Times Square van bomb didn't detonate),  Wilson and Finn unspooled six paragraphs of publicity for the left-wing Southern Poverty Law Center to underline America's "far right" domestic threat:

Since Obama’s election, there has also been huge growth in the number of anti-government “Patriot” groups. The Southern Poverty Law Center reported last month that because of the prospect of federal gun-control legislation, “the threat of violence appears to be looming.”

The center, which monitors hate groups, said that the number of Patriot groups reached record levels in 2012 and had grown by 813 percent over the past four years. [??]

The movement is marked by a loathing of what adherents believe is a tyrannical federal government and a fear that the United States will be absorbed by some kind of global government.

In a letter to Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. last month, the Southern Poverty Law Center warned that “as in the period before the Oklahoma City bombing, we are now seeing ominous threats from those who believe that the government is poised to take their guns.”

The April 19, 1995, bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City killed 168 people and was the largest terrorist attack in the United States before the Sept. 11 attacks.

When Timothy McVeigh carried out the Oklahoma City bombing, the Patriot movement had been galvanized by the 1993 Brady Bill, the 1994 ban on assault weapons and the deadly conclusion of the standoff at the Branch Davidian compound outside Waco, Tex., among other events. The Southern Poverty Law Center has described the recent growth in Patriot groups as a second wave.

There's nothing wrong with balancing your speculation -- but the Post did not give six paragraphs of expertise to groups that monitor Islamic terror groups.

We should also remind news consumers that the Post did NOT devote six paragraphs to how the SPLC's "hate map" was used by Floyd Corkins to select and go shoot up the Family Research Council last summer. The Post article on the Corkins plea deal mentioned that in one paragraph late in the story. 
 

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis