Mad libs: Leaving (omitted) out of 911 transcript is (barnyard epithet)

Getty Images / Olivier Douliery

Getty Images / Olivier Douliery

UPDATE at 3:17 p.m.: Well, well, well:

Still, it’s a poor reflection on the administration that it took even this long to do the logical thing rather than engage in pointless gamesmanship.

ORIGINAL POST:

Here’s how badly the Obama administration has botched the response to ISIS: The Group Formerly Known As the JV Team is now reckoned to be so powerfully inspirational, it has become The Group So Evil We Dare Not Speak Its Name.

More than a week after reporting that the Orlando shooter pledged allegiance to ISIS and its leader in a call to 911 during his murderous assault on a gay nightclub, the FBI today released a transcript of the call with those names redacted from the text. Here it is, in pertinent part:

Orlando Transcript

And here’s the official explanation:

“‘Part of the redacting is meant to not give credence to individuals who have done terrorist acts in the past,’ FBI Assistant Special Agent in Charge Ron Hopper said at a news conference. ‘We’re not going to propagate their rhetoric, their violent rhetoric, and we see no value in putting those individuals’ names back out there. We’re trying to prevent future acts from happening again and for cowards like this one, people like that influence them.'”

Now, I have not named this particular shooter at all, in large part because it is becoming ever clearer how much fame (or infamy) plays a role in motivating many mass killers — all the more so in the age of not only ubiquitous news media but social media as well. And it is understandable that law enforcement would not want to release audio of the killer making these statements, as that could easily be appropriated by ISIS.

However … it is ludicrous at this point to pretend we can un-ring the bell sounded by those initial reports. By now, it is known far and wide that the killer declared his allegiance to ISIS and its leader; the FBI doesn’t deny this, it simply has been told not to talk about it now (see Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s interview on Meet the Press yesterday). This is crazy in more ways than one.

For starters, we are not talking about some new or random group here. In all but name, this country is at war with ISIS. It may be a low-intensity war that has done nothing to decrease the self-declared caliphate’s ability to inspire terrorism around the world, but it is nonetheless an engagement with which everyone is familiar. Blotting out ISIS’s name from the 911 transcript makes about as much sense as if FDR had gone before Congress to say, “Yesterday, December 7th, 1941 — a date which will live in infamy — the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of … a nation I shall not name, lest Tokyo Rose — er, I mean, a certain ‘Rose’ in a large foreign capital — mention it.”

Second, this ham-fisted effort at this point is itself a potential source of ISIS propaganda. One can just imagine its spokesmen saying, “The Americans are so scared of us they won’t even speak our name, because they know it will only make us more powerful!” Redacting the transcript is exactly the kind of detached, “cerebral” plan that comes from an administration whose actions have been consistently governed by its notion of how it would like the world to be and act, rather than how it is and does.

Third, we have been inundated for the past week with warnings that omitting the fact the shooting took place at a gay club, and that many victims were LGBT persons and/or Latino, amounts to “whitewashing” the crime. I am unaware of any arguments that identifying the nightclub as a gay nightclub could encourage copycat crimes at other gay nightclubs. So if it’s important to know something central to the identities of the victims — and I wouldn’t argue otherwise — why would we pretend it’s also important to ignore something central to the identity of their killer?

If you’re looking for logic to this decision, you should look at propaganda value — but that of the left, not ISIS. From the beginning, left-wing politicians and pundits have been determined to take an act of terrorism committed by a self-professed adherent of ISIS, and make it about guns, Christian “bigotry,” anything but ISIS and the danger of radical Islamic terrorism. This is of a piece with that chosen narrative. Just like four years ago, the Obama administration finds itself in an election year in which its foreign policy is under scrutiny, and just like four years ago it is going to great lengths to spin an illusion that everything is proceeding well.

It’s not.

Reader Comments 0

41 comments
FIGMO2
FIGMO2

Redacting the transcript is exactly the kind of detached, “cerebral” plan that comes from an administration whose actions have been consistently governed by its notion of how it would like the world to be and act, rather than how it is and does.

Listening to personal accounts from survivors who went back into the club to find and save friends makes Obama's actions all the more offensive.

The lengths to which he will go to save himself are disgusting.

You're bubble is not opaque, Mr. "President". Americans can see you for what you are...a weak, self-serving narcissist. 

FIGMO2
FIGMO2

@MarkVV @FIGMO2

Well, I suggest he learn to live with the labels 'cause that's what his legacy will indicate.

He was in over his head from day one and didn't improve over time. He never looked beyond himself.

As far as his reelection? I attribute that to those voters who practice the soft bigotry of low expections. It's a liberal's burden to bear, not mine.


rmitch788
rmitch788

@MarkVV My opinion counts just as much as yours. HIs election and reelection are meaningless when it comes to the legacy he leaves in office.

MarkVV
MarkVV

@FIGMO2 And what are those offensive "Obama's actions?" Pray tell.

Now, calling a President, elected and reelected by a majority of Americans, "a weak, self-serving narcissist," that IS offensive and disgusting. 

lvg
lvg

@FIGMO2 What is offensive is the lengths  the cons will go to avoid discussing the true suspects of Mateen's radical transformation. They need those missing sections of the transcript to prove the lie that ISIS was behind the attack and then blame Obama for political reasons. Maybe they should read this Fox News report:


"Muslim leaders said it was unusual for Mateen to have made two visits to Saudi Arabia in consecutive years -- the first when he was just 24.

"It's not cheap to do so and people that young usually don't go twice,” said Adnan Khan, former leader of the Council of Pakistan-American Affairs. “And especially considering he appeared not to have come from a staunchly religious background."

Two trips in as many years is a bright red flag, said Mauro.

“A single trip to Saudi Arabia could be attributed to the mandatory hajj or umrah, but the second trip and the visit to the UAE suggest that his stated reason for traveling was a cover,” he said. “Even if the trip included legitimate religious travel, it does not mean the activity was limited to that.”

One umrah is usually enough for a Muslim, said Timothy Furnish, an expert in Islamic history and consultant to the Pentagon,  

"The fact that Mateen made two of those would suggest that he felt he had many sins needing rectifying and/or he was not engaged solely in religious activity but meeting with someone in Saudi Arabia," Furnish said."""


http://www.foxnews.com/us/2016/06/15/mateens-twin-trips-to-saudi-arabia-raise-suspicions.html

Jefferson1776
Jefferson1776

When you can't win, you just b1tch and moan.  The republican MO.  The GOP is the cause of the JV, which is no threat to US security.  Live free and not be a yard bird.

xxxzzz
xxxzzz

I agree with you very much about not mentioning the killers name.  There have been recent studies showing copycat crimes follow in short order.  This 24/7 for weeks encourages copycats.  At the very least you can not name or show the picture of the shooter.

xxxzzz
xxxzzz

I guess the Obama administration spends too much time watching Harry Potter.  The terrorist group whose name we dare not mention.

Lil_Barry_Bailout
Lil_Barry_Bailout

It's good that Obama caved.

Real Americans can handle facts, and Democrats need to learn how.

MarkVV
MarkVV

In the contest of "making a mountain out of a molehill ," this must be taking a prize. President Obama has talked quite clearly about the shooter being inspired by ISIS.

rmitch788
rmitch788

@MarkVV That is correct. So when transcripts are released, there was no need to remove the statements about Daesh. All in the name of clarity and transparency.

lvg
lvg

"""In this time of great decision, I have come to Cairo not to talk about the past, but to look to the future -- to a future that Egyptians can lead and can define. Ladies and Gentlemen: In our world today, a growing number of men and women are securing their liberty. And as these people gain the power to choose, they are creating democratic governments in order to protect their natural rights.

We should all look to a future when every government respects the will of its citizens -- because the ideal of democracy is universal. For 60 years, my country, the United States, pursued stability at the expense of democracy in this region here in the Middle East -- and we achieved neither. Now, we are taking a different course. We are supporting the democratic aspirations of all people.

As President Bush said in his Second Inaugural Address: "America will not impose our style of government on the unwilling. Our goal instead is to help others find their own voice, to attain their own freedom, and to make their own way."

We know these advances will not come easily, or all at once. We know that different societies will find forms of democracy that work for them. When we talk about democracy, though, we are referring to governments that protect certain basic rights for all their citizens -- among these, the right to speak freely. The right to associate. The right to worship as you wish. The freedom to educate your children -- boys and girls. And freedom from the midnight knock of the secret police.

Securing these rights is the hope of every citizen, and the duty of every government. In my own country, the progress of democracy has been long and difficult. And given our history, the United States has no cause for false pride and we have every reason for humility.

After all, America was founded by individuals who knew that all human beings -- and the governments they create -- are inherently imperfect. And the United States was born half free and half slave. And it was only in my lifetime that my government guaranteed the right to vote for all of its people.

Nevertheless, the principles enshrined in our Constitution enable citizens of conviction to move America closer every day to the ideal of democracy. Here in the Middle East, that same long hopeful process of democratic change is now beginning to unfold. Millions of people are demanding freedom for themselves and democracy for their countries.

To these courageous men and women, I say today: All free nations will stand with you as you secure the blessings of your own liberty.  Today -- after decades of murder, and tyranny, and injustice -- the citizens of Iraq are again reaching for the ideals of the Round City.

Despite the attacks of violent and evil men, ordinary Iraqis are displaying great personal courage and remarkable resolve. And every step of the way -- from regaining their sovereignty, to holding elections, to now writing a constitution -- the people of Iraq are exceeding all expectations.

The Palestinian people have also spoken. And their freely-elected government is working to seize the best opportunity in years to fulfill their historic dream of statehood. 

The Palestinian Authority will soon take control of the Gaza -- a first step toward realizing the vision of two democratic states living side by side in peace and security. """


From US Department of State- Someone in Cairo 2005

Lil_Barry_Bailout
Lil_Barry_Bailout

@lvg

It miiiiiight be time for you to take a break from the interwebs for a while.

RafeHollister
RafeHollister

Well elections have consequences and we are living with them.


Obama apologized in Cairo in 2009, saying both sides had done horrible things and he was going to bring us together.  He has been doing his best to minimize Mooselem (as Hillary calls them) atrocities ever since.  He seems to have done everything in his power to use political correctness to stifle law enforcement monitoring and investigation of mosques and Islamic organizations. He is trying his best to "mainstream" Islam into America.  Now he wants to bring in even more refugees.


It is as if America doesn't have enough problems, we have to go out and try to do multiculturalism better than the rest of the world.  It has not worked in other places, but rather than learn from their mistakes, Obama thinks his being so culturally diverse, he is uniquely qualified to make it work here, the Muslims have just not cooperated. 

lvg
lvg

Kyle:

"Here’s how badly the Obama administration has botched the response to ISIS: The Group Formerly Known As the JV Team is now reckoned to be so powerfully inspirational, it has become The Group So Evil We Dare Not Speak Its Name."


Obama:

"""President Barack Obama said on Tuesday that there’s no indication Omar Mateen was working with ISIS, but said the shooter was inspired by them.

Mateen was the gunman from South Florida who is shot and killed 49 people inside the Pulse nightclub Sunday morning.

President Obama met with his national security advisors on Tuesday and said the country is making significant progress in the battle against ISIS.

He added that the militant group has continued to lose ground in Iraq, Syria and Libya and has been cut off from the International Financial System.

The president said, however, that ISIS propaganda and videos are pervasive and it appears Mateen became radicalized through those messages.

“We are all sobered by the fact that despite the extraordinary hard """

http://www.wftv.com/news/pulse-shooting/omar-mateen-was-inspired-by-isis-said-president-obama/342896446


Responsible Journalism or more GOP/Trump demagoguery to stir the anger of the masses???????????????

RafeHollister
RafeHollister

@lvg This guy has nothing to do with ISIS says ivg.  Yet, the first time someone like Dylan Roof strikes out he is automatically linked to Christianity, the GOP, talk radio, etc.  The association is limitless unless they are Islamist, and then they are "a lone wolf".  The definition of hypocrisy.


Can you imagine, some GOP governor, in the midst of the aftermath of a racial incident, saying we are going to redact the 911 call transcript to exclude any reference to God, Christians, racism,white supremacy, etc.  

Kyle_Wingfield
Kyle_Wingfield moderator

@lvg So you missed what happened today -- i.e., what this blog post was about?


Lil_Barry_Bailout
Lil_Barry_Bailout

Does anyone else find it odd that folks like lvg seem to think that conservatives are somehow committed to protecting Saudi Arabia from scrutiny?

WTH do we care?

lvg
lvg

@Lil_Barry_Bailout Where are the missing pages from the 9-11 report? Oh I forgot when it comes to that minor incident, the Saudis name cannot be mentioned by edict from the cons.

lvg
lvg

@Lil_Barry_Bailout @lvg Where is your outrage that for fifteen years Saudis cannot be mentioned in connection with 9-11 even on a bipartisan and supposedly independent report? or that none ofthe cons including Kyle think it significant this guy and other lone wolves visited Saudi Arabia or one of its mosques in the US?

Lil_Barry_Bailout
Lil_Barry_Bailout

I'd be happy to have Obama release whatever report you're crying about. Why won't he? Is Obama in on the conspiracy?

Your guy is responsible for protecting us from Saudi-sponsored terrorism. Why does he protect them?

quickworkbreak
quickworkbreak

From add'l investigation into the shooter's past, he was aggressive even in elementary school. Based on his proclivity for going to gay clubs and using gay web sites over a span of years, I'm not convinced he wasn't a self-loathing closet case that used ISIS as a cover for his aggression.  Maybe he thought his surviving family would be more ashamed he was gay than sympathetic to ISIS.

lvg
lvg

Nothing so far shows ISIS, Al Queda or Hezbollah planned and directed the attack.


Nothing mentioned here in slander of FBI and Obama that killer traveled twice to Saudi Arabia before becoming radicalized.

Maybe Kyle and cons want to continue covering up that $900 million dollar gift that Trump got from a Saudi prince to avoid personal bankruptcy.Yeah I know the Clinton Foundation received millions in donations too- same as Trump getting money personally if you have limited brain cells.


Perhaps there are matters under investigation the FBI deems  confidential. Oh I forgot- Obama runs the FBI according to Kyle.



Kyle_Wingfield
Kyle_Wingfield moderator

@lvg "planned and directed"

You're focused on the wrong things. ISIS doesn't want only to "plan and direct" attacks. It also wants to inspire them, and it's proving quite capable of that.

lvg
lvg

@Kyle_Wingfield @lvg And the Saudis do not "inspire" radicals to hate infidels, hate gays and mistreat women as this dirt bag did?And there was no connection between the Saudis and the San Bernadino dirt bags? And Mateen did not say he was also inspired by the Tsarnaev brothers? And he was not inspired by Mr. Alwaki and the Al Queda faction the Saudis now back in Yemen?


You have been drinking the GOP Kool Aid. 

Kyle_Wingfield
Kyle_Wingfield moderator

@lvg And you, to ignore the man's own words, have been drinking something rather stronger.

Kyle_Wingfield
Kyle_Wingfield moderator

@lvg One need not think the Saudis are a bunch of swell folks who only wish us well to recognize they're not the only, or currently most direct, source of our problems in the region.

332-206
332-206

This is the FBI that Lil Barry believes will charge Clinton?

Touching. Really.

332-206
332-206

Yes. Your position has evolved...

332-206
332-206

Certainly.

As soon as you acknowledge receipt of the link you previously requested, in which you claim to be a Christian, with these words:

Lil Barry-"...as a Christian..."

Waiting.

Kyle_Wingfield
Kyle_Wingfield moderator

@332-206 This story does lend credence to the idea that, no matter the evidence, DOJ will do what is politically convenient.

Lil_Barry_Bailout
Lil_Barry_Bailout

@332-206

It's clear you haven't been paying attention.  I've repeatedly stated my belief that there won't be any charges, and that it borders on banana-republic-level corruption that the same gang that is supposed to make that decision is also working to elect Clinton.

Does that clear it up for you?

332-206
332-206

Stretch the implication to suit.

But the the notion that this administration, any administration, would find a compelling reason to take out their odds-on candidate for President less than five months before the election reflects a political naïveté that approaches fantasy.

It's more appropriately a fair index of opposition despair.

Eye wonder
Eye wonder

Fear not - Trump will Make America Great Again!!!

JohnnyReb
JohnnyReb

From before he was elected, Obama and the Left have espoused that all we need to do is "talk to them."

Tell them we are sorry for past transgressions, etc. and show them things have changed.

Well

Things have changed alright and not for the better.

Besides, how does the administration know who they are talking to when they don't even call their name.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAOVRkSCWmg