Friday, September 29, 2006

al-Zawahiri's Speechwriters?

Old al-Zawahiri is a pretty sharp charactor; definitely reads the Washington Post -

After two books that made President Bush look pretty good, Bob Woodward is out with a new one that comes awfully close to calling the president a liar....

What's striking, instead, is that anyone could still disagree with this assessment of the role of Iraq....the war in Iraq has worsened the terrorist threat.

- and
New York Times for talking points before he gives one of his fiery jihad speeches:

...U.S. President George W. Bush, Zawahiri brands him a "deceitful charlatan" and liar, and questions: “why don't you tell them how many million citizens of America and it's allies you intend to kill in search of the imaginary victory and in breathless pursuit of the mirage towards which you are driving your people’s sons in order to increase your profits?”

Powerline comments:

Zawahiri knows that because of the incompetence (or worse) of American journalists, he can ridicule the idea of connections between al Qaeda and Iraq, even though he himself attended, according to multiple reports, a conference of Islamic extremists in Baghdad in 1999.

It's interesting to think about the possible explanations for the fact that al Qaeda's leaders believe that their most effective public relations strategy is to repeat the Democratic Party's talking points.

Equally interesting is how the media simply reports Zawahiri's rants without qualifiers, as if it were fact, but when President Bush speaks, we get this:

President Bush today lashed out at critics of his policies in Afghanistan and Iraq, denouncing predictions of impending failure in Afghanistan and complaining that some have "selectively quoted" from a classified intelligence assessment...

....In his speech, Bush quoted what he described as a powerful answer to the critics this week by British Prime Minister Tony Blair...

The Times uses scare quotes to make their not-so-subtle point:

President Bush asserted Friday that critics who claim the Iraq war has made America less safe embrace ''the enemy's propaganda.''

When I listen to the words of the mainstream media, and the words of Ayman al-Zawahiri, I start to lose track of who is the "war critic" and who is the "enemy"....

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