Monday, January 04, 2010


Marty Peretz yesterday:

President Obama used the terms "terrorism" and "terrorist" six times in his weekly address to the nation. I don't know how long it has actually been since he's uttered those words. But my memory is that it's been a very long time.

Since Peretz, or whatever bright-eyed pup intern he has in his employ, or a combination of the two, managed to get onto the White House Web site to provide that link, you'd think an additional two seconds' worth of effort might have been expended to search the site and get an answer to question. In fact, the last time appears to have been New Year's Eve.

This morning, I spoke with John Brennan about preliminary assessments from the ongoing consultations I have ordered into the human and systemic failures that occurred leading up to the attempted act of terrorism on Christmas Day....

And before that it was December 28:

THE PRESIDENT: Hey, guys. Good morning, everybody. I just want to take a few minutes to update the American people on the attempted terrorist attack that occurred on Christmas Day and the steps we're taking to ensure the safety and security of the country.

... a full investigation has been launched into this attempted act of terrorism and we will not rest until we find all who were involved and hold them accountable.

... I've ordered two important reviews because it's absolutely critical that we learn from this incident and take the necessary measures to prevent future acts of terrorism. The first review involves our watch list system, which our government has had in place for many years to identify known and suspected terrorists so that we can prevent their entry into the United States....

The word "terrorism" even showed up twice in the Nobel speech.

Peretz also adds:

The New York Times also tried to make its amends ... or, rather, was forced by circumstances into doing so. And, yes, its editorial also used the words "terrorism" and "terrorist," locutions it otherwise quite faithfully avoids, especially in its news reports, lest the opprobrium of ideological murder prejudice the readers of the Times against its practitioners.

This was written a day before the Times posted the text of an upcoming Magazine story called, um, "Inside Obama's War on Terrorism," in which some form of the word "terror" appears 65 times, not counting the title.

The story, by the way, is a profile of John Brennan. Brennan's title in the Obama administration is, er, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism.

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