- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 6, 2006

In case you have been the least bit curious as to why al Qaeda and other Islamist terrorist organizations are convinced — beyond a mushroom-cloud shadow of a doubt — that they can defeat the United States, the evidence is no further away than your newspaper, radio, network or cable news outlet. If all else fails, the twisted leadership of these evil terrorist organizations know they can always count on the liberals in the mainstream media, as well as the liberals in Congress and Europe, to act as their unquestioning propaganda ministers. To prove that what we once believed to be up is now down, and what we thought to be right is now wrong, we have several examples that embolden al Qaeda with every news report or printed word.

First, is the case of Army Sgt. Santos A. Cardona. Don’t recognize the name of this very honorable man? Maybe it will ring a bell if I said he was the “dog handler” recently found guilty of using a dog to unlawfully threaten a former high-ranking Baath Party member. Or, as some liberals in the press have maintained, found guilty of “torture.” How hard must murderer Abu Musab Zarqawi be laughing with that news. He brutally beheads Nicholas Berg and then reads that some in our country equate a distinguished soldier holding a barking dog in front of a prisoner with “torture.” Of course, let us not forget why Nicholas Berg was killed. Zarqawi said it was to avenge the “abuse” of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison. A story that CBS News proudly broke with apparently no thoughts as to the consequences of its action. Would Nick Berg be alive today had CBS not run the story? No one will ever know. But as a Pentagon source told me with regard to Abu Ghraib, “the liberal media turned what was really nothing more than a fraternity prank gone bad into ‘torture,’ and as an instrument to dishonor the U.S. military.”

Next on the list of “torture” as defined by the liberals in the media, Congress and Europe is something called “waterboarding.” Not familiar with this brand of “torture”? It’s a method that may be employed by the CIA in which terrorists who harbor information about future attacks against the U.S. or U.S. forces are strapped to a board and dunked into water so as to prod their faulty memories.

To say the New York Times, The Washington Post, the major networks, and every other liberal news organization is outraged by this alleged treatment of terrorists would be an understatement. Never mind that such tactics may save thousands of lives in the U.S. or hundreds of U.S. troops. As far as the liberals are concerned, it is an evil beyond comprehension.

Again, if dunking a known terrorist into water for a few seconds is “torture,” what word would the Times, Post or networks use to describe what the insurgents do to the young Iraqi policemen they capture? Young men who are only trying to feed their families and help their nation. Young men who, before they are shot to death or beheaded, have their teeth ripped out with pliers, have their fingernails torn out, are burned with cigarettes, have their fingers sliced off, and are electrocuted. The liberals in the media don’t seem too worked up about this real torture.

Don’t take my word for it. Do an online search and compare how many words the New York Times and Washington Post use to condemn our nation and “waterboarding,” as opposed to the unthinkable torture these young Iraqi policemen endure.

Finally, we have the case of Haditha — a town in Iraq where U.S. Marines may have knowingly killed innocent civilians. If in fact this happened, it’s a disgrace and those guilty must pay the highest price possible. That said, these Marines are U.S. citizens who deserve every right granted to them under our laws—innocent until proven guilty being paramount.

Of course, as far as the left-of-center media is concerned, these Marines are already war criminals. And, if truth be told, the media could care less about their guilt or innocence. The media are just grateful that they have the Haditha case with which to hammer the Bush administration and tarnish the 99.9 percent of U.S. soldiers who have not only served honorably, but many of whom have lost their lives to save Iraqi civilians. The liberals in the media understand that with each news report on the new My Lai, each case where a U.S. soldier is punished for letting a dog bark in the face of a war prisoner, with every story that equates dunking a terrorist in water with chopping off a human head, they tell these Islamist terrorists that political correctness is weakening our foreign policy and military and robbing us of our will to prosecute the war or defend our nation. They know but don’t care. For them, the real enemy is Mr. Bush and conservative beliefs.

Down is now up. Wrong is now right. And the terrorists are not only grateful, but on the way.

Douglas MacKinnon served as press secretary to former Sen. Bob Dole and as a White House and Pentagon official.

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