Even the fact that Norah O’Donnell asked the question is astonishing: ordinarily all the mainstream media outlets march in lockstep behind Obama and take everything he says as Gospel. As the official dogma becomes ever more preposterous, however, the facade is increasingly harder to maintain. This is not remotely on the level of the piece in The Atlantic, but it is a small step toward reality. “Only CBS Pushes Back On Obama’s Refusal to Label Terrorists Islamic,” by Kyle Drennen, NewsBusters, February 19, 2015 (thanks to Claire):
While all three network morning shows on Thursday covered President Obama defending his refusal to label terrorism as Islamic extremism during a Wednesday speech, only CBS This Morning actually pushed back on the President’s argument.
Co-host Norah O’Donnell asked former deputy CIA director Michael Morell: “You heard people faulting President Obama for failing to identify this as Islamic extremism. Do you think this is a pseudo-controversy over semantics or is this a failure to properly identify the enemy?”
I understand what the President is saying and I agree with it. We do not want to create the perception that we are at war with a religion. But the reality is that Al Qaeda and ISIS believe they are religious warriors. They believe that they are fighting on behalf of their religion, for their religion. It’s not rhetoric on their part, they really believe it.
During a news brief on NBC’s Today, anchor Natalie Morales simply quoted Obama: “The President again defending his refusal to call terrorists ‘Muslim extremists,’ saying the U.S. has one thing going for it that Europe doesn’t, a long tradition of embracing immigrants, including Muslims.”
ABC’s Good Morning America did the same, with anchor Amy Robach noting: “President Obama addressing criticism for not using the term ‘Islamic extremists.’ At a White House meeting the President insisted ISIS fighters are not religious leaders, but rather terrorists who have perverted Islam.”
On Wednesday night, the CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News barely touched the controversy.
ABC’s World News Tonight ignored it altogether….