Islamic terrorists shouted in Arabic “Allahu Akbar” (Allah is Greatest) and “We are avenging the Prophet Mohammed” as they sprayed their victims with hundreds of bullets from their semi-automatic weapons.
Their targeted victim was the top editorial cartoonists of the satirical Charlie Hebdo magazine who published cartoons deemed “offensive” by Muslim leaders around the world.
The first comment came from Josh Earnest, the White House spokesman, who refused to call this an act of terrorism, but made sure to add the now typical non-sequitor which routinely follows Islamic terrorist attacks, that “Islam is a religion of peace” and therefore should not be associate with the “extremists” in Paris with Islam.
Then President Obama issued his own statement, but in keeping with his administration’s 6 year old prohibition on using the term “Islamic terrorism,” he simply referred to the attack as “terrorism” — a vanilla term conspicuously devoid of any descriptive term explaining the motivation behind the attack. Thus, to the proverbial Martian it literally could have been eco-terrorism, white supremacist terrorism, or narco-terrorism. (But admittedly, calling this an act of “terrorism” was a step up from the classification of Major Nidal Hassan’s similar massacre at Fort Hood as “workplace violence.”)
Then in live comments delivered later, both President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry gave blustery defenses of the U.S. determination to protect the right of free speech and vowed that neither the French nor anyone in the West would be cowed into silence by terrorism.
Secretary Kerry said as follows:
“Today, tomorrow, in Paris, in France, or across the world, the freedom of expression that this magazine, no matter what your feelings were about it, the freedom of expression that it represented is not able to be killed by this kind of act of terror.” Nice words of bravado.