In the final analysis the Washington Post fumbled the Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi headline three times; first, referring to him as the Islamic State's terrorist-in-chief," to "Austere Religious Scholar," and then finally, to "Extremist Leader."
The Washington Post has now changed its description of ISIS founder Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi from “Terrorist in Chief” to “Austere Religious Scholar” to “Extremist Leader” pic.twitter.com/h899LvZVLX— Jerry Dunleavy (@JerryDunleavy) October 27, 2019
Offering their best non-apology for lionizing a terrorist, Washington Post VP and Communications General Manager Kristine Coratti Kelly tweeted "the headline should never have read that way and we changed it quickly."
Regarding our al-Baghdadi obituary, the headline should never have read that way and we changed it quickly.— Kristine Coratti Kelly (@kriscoratti) October 27, 2019
Following the announcement that ISIS founder and leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi blew himself up along with his three children during a raid conducted by United States special forces, the mainstream media has done their best to downplay the victory - going so far as to praise al-Baghdadi.
For starters, the Washington Post lead with the headline: "Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, austere religious scholar at the helm of Islamic State, dies at 48."
Democracy Dies in- wait a second has the Post lost its damn mind? pic.twitter.com/GSf9OJSwnH— Buck Sexton (@BuckSexton) October 27, 2019
“Religious scholar?”— Sebastian Gorka DrG (@SebGorka) October 27, 2019
This is how the treasonous @washingtonpost describes a mass murderer who had Americans beheaded and our Muslim allies burnt alive.
Yes you are THE ENEMY of the American People and all that is sacred. pic.twitter.com/nW6S2sweJc
The Post writes that he "maintained a canny pragmatism as leader."
"Acquaintances would remember him as a shy, nearsighted youth who liked soccer."
The obit also waits until the 34th graf to inform readers he was a serial rapist of hostage sex slaves. https://t.co/TnybLYgQjz— Elliott Schwartz (@elliosch) October 27, 2019
The Times of London called al-Baghdad "A promising young footballer and a student of the Koran who became a terrorist, mass murderer and the world's most-wanted man."
The absurd headlines have also sparked a new hashtag - #WaPoDeathNotices - in which Twitter users envision similar obituaries for terrible people.
Adolf Hitler, passionate community planner and dynamic public speaker, dies at 56.#WaPoDeathNotices— Jason Howerton (@jason_howerton) October 27, 2019
Charles Manson, famous songwriter and meditation leader, dead at 83 #WaPoDeathNotices— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) October 27, 2019
Jeffrey Dahmer, lover of exotic cuisine, dies at 34. #WaPoDeathNotices— Jesse Kelly (@JesseKellyDC) October 27, 2019
Mainstream US news, meanwhile, went to great lengths to downplay the event.
James Clapper - Obama's former National Intelligence Director (who is now under criminal investigation) said that al-Baghdadi's death could "galvanize" ISIS, telling CNN's "State of the Union" "What is going to be interesting is to the extent to which this negatively affects ISIS or does it galvanize ISIS, the remnants of ISIS, which still survives as an ideology and has franchises in other places besides Syria."
CNN also knocked President Trump for the level of detail President Trump went into about the raid - suggesting it has increased the risk to sources that may still be on the ground.
CNN's Vinograd on al-Baghdadi raid: The level of detail that President Trump went into in that press conference increases the risk to sources that may still be on the ground. It’s really unprecedented when you think about how much detail he actually went into. It is irresponsible pic.twitter.com/RnqZNzQAq8— Wojciech Pawelczyk 🇵🇱🇺🇸 (@PolishPatriotTM) October 27, 2019
Speaking on CBS "Face the Nation," President Obama's Jt. Chiefs Vice Chair James Winnefeld slammed Trump for "piling humiliation" on ISIS after the operation.
"If you look back at the bin Laden raid, we treated his body with respect that is due under Islam," he said. (h/t Paul Sperry)
Admiral James Winnefeld tells @margbrennan that he's worried about Trump's "piling on" by describing al-Baghdadi as a "dog." Says it sends a signal to followers "that could cause them to lash out possibly more harshly in the wake." pic.twitter.com/L6y7a17bm0— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) October 27, 2019
Perhaps US forces should dump chunks of al-Baghdadi's body in the ocean, just to be safe?
The Democrats are unbelievable. On a day where @realDonaldTrump’s order to strike led to the death of our most wanted terrorist leader, somehow the Democrats are using it as an opportunity to criticize the President. Elected Democrats hate Trump more than they love our country. https://t.co/SWcpZRJ037— Robby Starbuck (@robbystarbuck) October 27, 2019