Corporate media and governments worldwide protecting Islamic extremists is wearing on the good-natured personality of one American soldier. Representative Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), who enlisted after the terrorist attacks of 9/11, is speaking out against the soft selling of an Al-Qaeda offshoot as freedom fighters.
Unleashed on Twitter, Gabbard railed against U.S. foreign policy in Syria and President Donald Trump’s failure to call a spade, well, a spade. In her words:
“The corporate media needs to stop referring to Al-Qaeda and their affiliated groups in Idlib as ‘rebels’ in a deceptive effort to make them seem like freedom fighters. I and thousands of Americans enlisted after Al-Qaeda’s attack on 9/11. The media and the Trump administration’s continued labelling of these terrorists as ‘rebels’ is a disgrace and dishonor for all our men and women in uniform and our entire country.”
Gabbard speaks from experience. While serving in Hawaii’s Army National Guard, she was deployed in 2004 to Iraq with the 29th Medical Company Support Battalion, where she saw combat.
Why are the president and legacy media, as she gripes, hemming and hawing about calling a terrorist a terrorist? Has the memory of 9/11 faded so fast? Gabbard has not forgotten the attack on American soil that killed nearly 3,000 people — and continues to take the lives of first responders 19 years later. And her mission is crystal clear.
Trumplomacy and Business as Usual Are Not Acceptable
The U.S. media have toned down their branding of Islamic terrorists, claiming the Idlib rebels are suffering from the onslaught by the Syrian army — genocidal terrorists in their own right. But the same journalists didn’t call out the Islamic extremists.
It is well documented that the Associated Press rephrased a statement by now-retired Indian foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale, substituting “militants” for “terrorists.” Perhaps journalists believe that writing about “rebels” instead of “terrorists” is evenhanded in an otherwise one-sided argument. Another legacy media print publication deep-dived into Pakistan and its relations with India, questioning why the region “has not been able to rein in anti-India militants.” Factor in a “revered military leader” and an “austere religious scholar,” and the whitewash seems complete.
Reuters, The New York Times, the major dailies and glossy monthly publications seem unable to type or print the word “terrorist.”
Is that because they may insult the terrorists? No one in this country should cheer for the progeny of Al-Qaeda: The very same line of thinking and religious fervor flew jets into buildings that fine autumn day. Perhaps being labeled a rebel lends credibility to the jihadis who murder innocents without compunction, but it seems far-fetched that journalists would root for an Islamic massacre on home soil.
President Trump has been placed on notice by Gabbard, who notified the man he must refrain from aiding Turkey in the “invasion of northern Syria,” which would anger Russia. But she also demanded that her compadres on the Hill pass her bill — Stop Arming Terrorists Act – which would upend decades of the United States assisting countries supporting, or at least ignoring, terrorist groups.
Regardless, Gabbard hopes to instill some reality in solid, factual reporting, putting mass media and Congress on notice. Not shy or timid, she pushes her quest to the Resolute Desk in the Oval Office. And we’ll see how the president reacts to Tulsi’s demands.
Read more from Sarah Cowgill.