News Release

* Obama Speech Translated * AP’s NSA “Propaganda”

NORMAN SOLOMON, solomonprogressive at gmail.com, @normansolomon
Solomon is executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy and co-founder of RootsAction.org. He is the author of War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death.

He just wrote the piece “Obama’s Speech, Translated into Candor,” which states: “Here is a condensed version of President Obama’s speech from the Oval Office on Sunday night, unofficially translated into plain English:

“I kind of realize we can’t kill our way out of this conflict with ISIL, but in the short term hopefully we can kill our way out of the danger of a Republican victory in the presidential race next year.

“As a practical matter, the current hysteria needs guidance, not a sense of proportion along the lines of what the New York Times just mentioned in passing: ‘The death toll from jihadist terrorism on American soil since the Sept. 11 attacks — 45 people — is about the same as the 48 killed in terrorist attacks motivated by white supremacist and other right-wing extremist ideologies…. And both tolls are tiny compared with the tally of conventional murders, more than 200,000 over the same period.’

“While I’m urging some gun control, that certainly doesn’t apply to the Pentagon. The Joint Chiefs and their underlings have passed all the background checks they need by virtue of getting to put on a uniform of the United States Armed Forces.”

MARCY WHEELER, emptywheel at gmail.com@emptywheel
Wheeler writes widely about the legal aspects of the “war on terror” and its effects on civil liberties. She blogs at emptywheel.net. She just wrote the piece “6 Responses to Why the AP’s Call Record Article Is So Stupid,” about the NSA’s monitoring of San Bernardino shooting suspect Tashfeen Malik which states: “The AP engaged in willful propaganda yesterday, in what appears to be a planned cutout role for the Marco Rubio campaign. Rubio’s campaign immediately pointed to the article to make claims they know — or should, given that Rubio is on the Senate Intelligence Committee — to be false, relying on the AP article. That’s the A1 cutout method Dick Cheney used to make false claims about aluminum tubes to catastrophic effect back in 2002.

“And because editor (and author of the article) Ted Bridis has ignored the multiple people pointing out the errors in the article, I’m going to take the effort to explain how stupid it is.”

Wheeler’s other recent pieces include “Yes, Calling Only Muslims Terrorists Does Result in Disparate Treatment of Muslims” and “Metadata Surveillance Didn’t Stop the Paris Attacks.”