by Robert Spencer
What could be more multicultural than featuring a jihad murderer posing with a jihad victim?
The Canadian newsmagazine Maclean’s has made an all-out bid to get noticed this week by placing confessed jihad murderer on Omar Khadr on its cover. Khadr, a Canadian citizen, pleaded guilty to war crimes charges in connection with killing of U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Spee in Afghanistan in 2002, and spent ten years in Guantanamo. For the mainstream media, killing an American soldier and serving a stretch in Gitmo is an irresistible one-two punch, making Khadr both a victim and a hero.
Looking for all the world like a successful young professional, Khadr beams out from the cover, accompanied by Rinelle Harper, a victim of racist violence against Canada’s aboriginal people, and Amanda Lindhout, who was kidnapped and tortured by Islamic jihadists. Possibly Maclean’s editors were unaware of the irony of having Khadr share the cover with Lindhout, as he almost certainly shares the world view and priorities of her captors; or maybe they thought putting the two together on the cover along with a genuine victim of racism would buttress Khadr’s victimhood status and obscure his ideological connection with Lindhout’s torturers.
Whatever the case may be, Maclean’s cover is no less grotesque than the Rolling Stone cover that featured Boston Marathon jihad murderer Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Grotesque and revealing: confirmed once again is the mainstream media’s inveterate hostility to America and the West, such that those who wage war against the United States and its allies, and who are punished for doing so, are celebrated as heroes, while those who defend the U.S. and Judeo-Christian civilization are despised and marginalized.
One need not search Maclean’s cover archives to know that neither Sgt. Spee nor any of his comrades were ever featured – unless in a piece disparaging and criticizing the U.S. military and war effort. Canadian freedom activist Ezra Levant said of the Khadr cover: “It’s a disgrace that he is on the cover of a mainstream news magazine, being portrayed as a victim, and in the company of two real victims, including a victim of Islamic terrorism. They have managed to transform a pathological murderer into a ‘victim,’ providing Al Qaeda with a great PR victory.” Levant himself, however, despite his heroic stand for the freedom of speech against the authoritarian and oppressive Canadian Human Rights Commission, has almost certainly never graced the Maclean’s cover – unless to herald a hit piece attacking him.
In October 2010, at the height of the controversy over the proposed Ground Zero Mosque, the New York Times ran an extensive profile of my colleague Pamela Geller. Entitled “Outraged, and Outrageous,” the piece accused her of waging “a form of holy war through Atlas Shrugs, a Web site that attacks Islam with a rhetoric venomous enough that PayPal at one point branded it a hate site,” and described her in superior and condescending tones ordinarily reserved for anthropologists studying primitive peoples in the bush. The following month, the Times profiled Daisy Khan, wife of Ground Zero Mosque imam Faisal Abdul Rauf, calling her “an Eloquent Face of Islam” and lamenting that “despite her message of inclusion, Ms. Khan has been accused by critics of being an extremist in a moderate’s garb” and praising her for having “gained a reputation as a bridge builder.”
In a sane world with a responsible media, one might think that one of the organizers of a project to build what would certainly have been taken by Muslims worldwide as a triumphal mosque built at the site of a jihad victory would have been the subject of the skeptical, sneering profile, while the defender of a view held by 70% of Americans – that the mosque should not be built – would have been lauded as a hero, but the anti-American bias of the mainstream media is now so pervasive as to be taken for granted nearly everywhere.
No one was surprised, after all, when CNBC moderators lit into the Republican Presidential candidates as if they had all committed heinous crimes, while asking the Democrats, in the words of Ted Cruz, “which of you is more handsome and why?” Cruz declared: “The questions asked in this debate illustrate why the American people don’t trust the media.” The Maclean’s cover featuring Omar Khadr is a further illustration of why that mistrust is wholly justified. The mainstream media has become a propaganda organ of the enemies of freedom. The only good aspect of this degeneration is that the media’s bias is now so naked and obvious that few people, if any, think of Maclean’s and its stateside counterparts as worth trusting or paying any attention to at all.
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