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My first post is now posted here regarding the smear by Chris Matthews in which he said that mass murderer Osama bin Laden, in his new videotape, sounds like Michael Moore. Since then, there has been a slew of commentators making the same point with regard to anyone who opposes Bush's policies on war and terrorism. Newt Gingrich said this last night on Hannity & Colmes:
"I think it's quite clear as you point out, Sean [Hannity], that from this tape, that bin Laden and his lieutenants are monitoring the American news media, they're monitoring public opinion polling, and I suspect they take a great deal of comfort when they see people attacking United States policies."
So now it constitutes giving "comfort" to the enemy simply to be "attacking United States policies." And as my C&L post demonstrates, the White House has clearly embarked upon a strategy of expressly equating opposition to Bush's war and terrorism policies to treason.
A President burdened by an unpopular war and horrible approval ratings has no choice but to engage in gutter tactics like these. It's one thing for him and his followers to do this, but it's another matter entirely for our "journalists" to operate from this premise. It was all the rage on the cable shows in the days before the 2004 election to assert that bin Laden had released a new video in order to "endorse" Kerry, and they also claimed back then that bin Laden had lifted his talking points from the Kerry campaign.
There is no doubt that 2006 will be replete with these sorts of attacks. It is imperative that journalists not be permitted to get away with equating anti-Bush criticism with pro-terrorist subversion. That should go without saying, but it clearly doesn't.
It is still amazes how the very people who claim so solemnly that terrorism is the overarching problem of our generation play such cynical and self-serving games with it every chance they get.
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My second post, relating to the new wave of fear-mongering provoked by the latest bin Laden message, and the need for Bush opponents to formulate a strategy for addressing and undermining this hysteria, is now posted here.