Dana Milbank’s take on Heritage’s ‘ugly’ Benghazi panel is utterly dishonest

posted at 12:41 pm on June 17, 2014 by Noah Rothman

Lurking in the hearts of both participants in and attendees of a panel discussion on the Benghazi attack hosted, though not sponsored by, by the conservative Heritage Foundation on Monday is darkness, xenophobia, and malignant Islamophobia. At least, that’s the picture painted by Washington Post’s Dana Milbank on Tuesday.

In his widely-circulated op-ed, “Heritage’s ugly Benghazi panel,” Milbank ripped Heritage for veering away from examining the issues surrounding the attacks to “accusations about the Muslim Brotherhood infiltrating the Obama administration, President Obama funding jihadists in their quest to destroy the United States, Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton attempting to impose Sharia blasphemy laws on Americans and Al Jazeera America being an organ of ‘enemy propaganda.’”

But the truly egregious offense came during a question and answer period. Saba Ahmed, a headscarf-clad American University law student, asked the panel whether the struggle against fundamentalist Islam could ever be won with a strictly military strategy. “We portray Islam and all Muslims as bad, but there’s 1.8 billion followers of Islam,” Ahmed said. “We have 8 million-plus Muslim Americans in this country and I don’t see them represented here.”

After a rather mundane, four-minute long response to this question from Center for Security Policy founder Frank Gaffney in which he offered the usual assertions that the War on Terror is not a war against Muslims or even Islam, ACT! for America founder Brigitte Gabriel delivered the impassioned response Milbank apparently found uncouth.

She said “180 million to 300 million” Muslims are “dedicated to the destruction of Western civilization.” She told Ahmed that the “peaceful majority were irrelevant” in the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and she drew a Hitler comparison: “Most Germans were peaceful, yet the Nazis drove the agenda and as a result, 60 million died.”

“Are you an American?” Gabriel demanded of Ahmed, after accusing her of taking “the limelight” and before informing her that her “political correctness” belongs “in the garbage.”

“Where are the others speaking out?” Ahmed was asked. This drew an extended standing ovation from the nearly 150 people in the room, complete with cheers.

The panel’s moderator, conservative radio host Chris Plante, grinned and joined in the assault. “Can you tell me who the head of the Muslim peace movement is?” he demanded of Ahmed.

“Yeah,” audience members taunted, “yeah.”

Ahmed answered quietly, as before. “I guess it’s me right now,” she said

Your first clue that this is a rather selective reading of what occurred at this panel should be that the last six paragraphs are nearly bereft of quotes presented in complete sentences.

Fortunately, Media Matters for America dug up a video of the exchange in question which they may have believed supported Milbank’s case. An objective viewing of the material suggests just the opposite.

Gabriel delivered a fiery, impassioned response to Ahmed’s question, and appeared to take offense to the suggestion that “We portray Islam and all Muslims as bad,” a straw man that Americans have been forced to address on a near daily basis since September 12, 2001.

“Great question,” Gabriel began. “What I find so amazing is, since the beginning of this panel, which we are hear about Benghazi attack against our people, not one person mentioned Muslims. We are here against Islam, or we are launching war against Muslims. We are here to discuss how four Americans died and what our government is doing.”

“We were not here to bash Muslims,” she continued. “You were the one who brought up the issue about ‘most Muslims,’ not us.”

“There are 1.2 billion Muslims in the world today,” Gabriel elaborated. “of course not all of them are radicals. The majority of them are peaceful people. The radicals are estimated to be between 15 to 25 percent, according to all intelligence services around the world. That leaves 70 percent of them peaceful people.”

She added, however, that this means that between 180 and 300 million people are “dedicated to the destruction of Western civilization.”

Gabriel violated an unspoken code of decorum when she declared, correctly, that the National Socialist movement in Germany did not represent the majority of Germans, but it did drive the post –Weimar agenda. She said the same of the Bolshevik Party in Russia and the Chinese who executed tens of millions during the Cultural Revolution. “The peaceful majority were irrelevant,” Gabriel insisted.

“I’m glad you are here,” she said, “but where are the others speaking out?”

Gabriel’s fiery monologue resulted in a standing ovation from her audience, many of whom probably share her opinions.

Gabriel then asked if Ahmed, who spoke with an accent in the same way that she did, was an ‘American citizen” – a moment portrayed in Milbank’s column as some lifting of the veil of bigotry behind Gabriel’s remarks. When Ahmed replied that she was, Gabriel scolded her for seeming to care more about how Muslims perceive America’s war on terror rather than how terrorists killed four American service personnel in Benghazi.

Chris Plante, who Milbank said “demanded” of Ahmed an accounting of who made up the peaceful wing of the Islamic community, closed by saying that “everyone agrees the [war on terror] can’t be won just militarily.” When Ahmed said that she represents the moderate Muslims whom she was defending, the audience and panelists erupted in applause.

There is nothing “ugly” here. There was nothing xenophobic or Islamophobic in this exchange, but merely an expression of opinions which Milbank apparently does not share.

Milbank defended his take by claiming that it was the reaction of the audience, not the panelists, which was the most damning. While that may be true, I have not hear his recording of the audience members surrounding him, it is a bit like fishing in the YouTube comments section in order to a make a point about the deteriorating discourse in the country. Those concerned citizens who attend a panel like this are not representative of any broad political movement, as much as Milbank appears to want them to be.

The rest of Milbank’s column is just as underwhelming. One audience member submitted the debunked assertion that President Barack Obama “watched people die” at Benghazi in real time.

“Gaffney also said the president’s view that ‘the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam’ is ‘a statement you could have found on al-Qaeda’s Web site,’” Milbank reported.

These are rather distasteful assertions – assertions which I would not have made. But their dark, ugliness is certainly debatable. Milbank, understanding that, made it clear that it was the exchange between Gabriel and Ahmed which was the true offense at this conference.

Watch the video. Do you see what Milbank saw? I didn’t.


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“We portray Islam and all Muslims as bad,” a straw man that Americans have been forced to address on a near daily basis since September 12, 2001.

Ever read the comments here?

corona79 on June 17, 2014 at 12:46 PM

Read most of the article at The Federalist about Milbank’s latest bout of hackery before this went up.

NotCoach on June 17, 2014 at 12:47 PM

This is the serious thinker (Milbank) we are talking about here

faraway on June 17, 2014 at 12:48 PM

In the seventh century of the Christian era, a wandering Arab of the lineage of Hagar, the Egyptian, combining the powers of transcendent genius, with the preternatural energy of a fanatic, and the fraudulent spirit of an impostor, proclaimed himself as a messenger from Heaven, spread desolation and delusion over an extensive portion of the earth. Adopting from the sublime conception of the Mosaic law, the doctrine of one omnipotent God; he connected indissolubly with it, the audacious falsehood, that he was himself his prophet and apostle.

Adopting from the new Revelation of Jesus, the faith and hope of immortal life, and of future retribution, he humbled it to the dust, by adapting all the rewards and sanctions of his religion to the gratification of the sexual passion. He poisoned the sources of human felicity at the fountain, by degrading the condition of the female sex and he [Mohammad] declared undistinguishing and exterminating war, as a part of his religion [Islam, not "radical Islam"], against all the rest of mankind.

Between these two religions [Christianity and Islam], thus contrasted in their characters, a war of twelve hundred years has already raged. That war is yet flagrant; nor can it cease but by the extinction of that imposture, which has been permitted by Providence to prolong the degeneracy of man. While the merciless and dissolute dogmas of the false prophet shall furnish motives to human action, there can never be peace upon earth, and good will towards men. The hand of Ishmael will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him. It is, indeed, amongst the mysterious dealings of God, that this delusion should have been suffered for so many ages, and during so many generations of human kind, to prevail over the doctrines of the meek and peaceful and benevolent Jesus.
- John Quincy Adams

VorDaj on June 17, 2014 at 12:50 PM

The internet has been the bane of leftists, I’ll bet they curse Gore for having invented it.

Bishop on June 17, 2014 at 12:51 PM

Ever read the comments here?

corona79 on June 17, 2014 at 12:46 PM

Occasionally.

imagine how many those two muslim animals could’ve killed if they had semi-automatic rifles?

nonpartisan on January 3, 2014 at 11:47 AM

Bishop on June 17, 2014 at 12:53 PM

I love the smell over the target in the morning.

Tsar of Earth on June 17, 2014 at 12:53 PM

BTW has anyone noticed that Obama now uses the words jihadi and Islamist? Did he get permission from CAIR?

BAby steps.

PattyJ on June 17, 2014 at 12:55 PM

After watching this exchange, Milbank’s opinion should be disregarded whenever voiced. His view of this situation is so far adrift from what actually occurred that he can only be described as delusional.

Throat Wobbler Mangrove on June 17, 2014 at 12:55 PM

After watching this exchange, Milbank’s opinion should be disregarded whenever voiced. His view of this situation is so far adrift from what actually occurred that he can only be described as delusional dishonest.

Throat Wobbler Mangrove on June 17, 2014 at 12:55 PM

NotCoach on June 17, 2014 at 12:57 PM

You guys really have no idea what a “straw man” is, do you?

everdiso on June 17, 2014 at 12:57 PM

Milbank has no idea what a “straw man” is, does he?

everdiso on June 17, 2014 at 12:57 PM

Slightly edited for accuracy. :)

22044 on June 17, 2014 at 12:58 PM

Dana Milbank is a shameless liar? That’s nothing new. In fact that’s what he regularly does.

gwelf on June 17, 2014 at 12:59 PM

After watching this exchange, Milbank’s opinion should be disregarded whenever voiced. His view of this situation is so far adrift from what actually occurred that he can only be described as delusional.

Throat Wobbler Mangrove on June 17, 2014 at 12:55 PM

Mr. Milbank has beclowned himself regularly on many previous occasions. His commentary is regarded concommitantly.

NOMOBO on June 17, 2014 at 1:00 PM

Milbank ripped Heritage for veering away from examining the issues surrounding the attacks to “accusations about the Muslim Brotherhood infiltrating the Obama administration

Egyptian Press Confirms Washington Infiltrated By Islamists

Resist We Much on June 17, 2014 at 1:01 PM

Milbank isn’t noted for his intelligence. And he apparently lives in an altered reality.

GarandFan on June 17, 2014 at 1:01 PM

That exchange gave me goosebumps. The lady was right on point. It would suck if the student felt slighted but she shouldn’t be. Nothing that was said there was an attack on her or the Muslim faith. It was a call for the peaceful majority of any culture facing domination by radicals, even here in America, to step it up and push back. Ultimately the radicals become the face of a whole group of people who want nothing to do with them.

coolrepublica on June 17, 2014 at 1:02 PM

You guys really have no idea what a “straw man” is, do you?

everdiso on June 17, 2014 at 12:57 PM

Is that more like a YouTube video, or a troll?

faraway on June 17, 2014 at 1:02 PM

The Real Story of what happened during the panel. Dana Milbank is a liar, but you already knew that.

reddevil on June 17, 2014 at 1:03 PM

Oh my, I just realized Dana Milbank is a male. He must have drawn his name in the same celestial lottery as Dana International.

Rix on June 17, 2014 at 1:04 PM

More Brigitte Gabriel please.

Free Indeed on June 17, 2014 at 1:04 PM

The Real Story of what happened during the panel. Dana Milbank is a liar, but you already knew that.

reddevil on June 17, 2014 at 1:03 PM

Read this, everdiso, and prepare to redact what you said.
We’ll wait.

22044 on June 17, 2014 at 1:06 PM

You guys really have no idea what a “straw man” is, do you?

everdiso on June 17, 2014 at 12:57 PM

They populate any Obama speech by the dozen. Tediously recognizable.

de rigueur on June 17, 2014 at 1:09 PM

Shout this from the rooftops. A frank and candid panel discussion. Milbank is full of spin.

jake49 on June 17, 2014 at 1:09 PM

When used in reference to the Nazis the phrase “Never again” does not refer to mentioning them. And Godwin’s Law is not a prohibition on referring to them.

There is only one way to fulfill the promise that “Never again” holds and that is to be vigilant in identifying the conditions and actions that led to the rise and reign of the Nazis.

Pablo on June 17, 2014 at 1:10 PM

Senior DHS Official, Mohamed Elibiary: Why, Yes, The Caliphate Is Returning And We Should Treat It Like A Muslim Version Of The EU…Or Something.

Who is Mohamed Elibiary?

He is a Homeland Security adviser who came under congressional fire for improperly accessing a federal database. The Egyptian magazine says he’s helped shape the administration’s counterterror strategy, including censoring FBI training materials dealing with jihad. He just got a promotion. He’s has now been reappointed to Secretary’s Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC) and promoted to Sr. Fellow position.

It also alleges he helped draft Obama’s remarks calling for former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to leave power. Mubarak had banned the Brotherhood as a terrorist group…so did the United States, NATO, EU, myriad countries, and the United Nations.

1) He is an Islamic cleric; and,

2) Admirer of the late Ayatollah Khomeini; and,

3) Has advised numerous law-enforcement organizations on homeland security-related matters; and,

4) Was named to President Obama’s Homeland Security Advisory Council in 2010; and,

5) Misused classified documents in an effort to promote the notion that ‘Islamophobia’ was widespread.

Mohamed Elibiary is a Texas-based Islamic cleric who founded Lone Star Intelligence LLC, a security crisis consulting firm, and the Freedom and Justice Foundation (F&J), a Muslim nonprofit group established in November 2002 to “promote a centrist public-policy environment in Texas by coordinating the state-level government and interfaith community relations for the organized Texas Muslim community.” F&J played a key role in successfully lobbying for the passage of Texas’s Halal Food Law (the state’s first Muslim consumer-protection statute), and for the institution of Islamic prayers (recited by Imams) in both chambers of the State Legislature.

Elibiary was a guest speaker at a December 2004 conference in Dallas, titled “A Tribute to the Great Islamic Visionary,” which was held in honor of the late Ayatollah Khomeini.

When a reporter subsequently asked Elibiary to explain why he had chosen to appear at an event honoring the iconic jihadist, Elibiary claimed not to have known in advance about the conference’s agenda. When journalist Rod Dreher of the Dallas Morning News voiced skepticism about Elibiary’s explanation, the latter threatened Dreher, telling him: ‘Expect someone to put a banana in your exhaust pipe.’

In 2006 Elibiary co-founded the North Texas Islamic Council, to coordinate the activities of the many mosques, Islamic schools, and community groups serving the Dallas-Fort Worth area’s 150,000+ Muslim residents.

Having cultivated a reputation as a ‘moderate’ Muslim — “the country’s leading Muslim deradicalization expert,” according to one media report — Elibiary has advised numerous federal, state and local law-enforcement organizations on homeland security-related matters. In 2008–2009 he was a Fellow at the University of Southern California’s American Muslim Civic Leadership Institute. And in December 2009, he helped establish the Texas Fusion Center Policy Council to help state and local law-enforcement personnel improve their information-sharing, analytical capabilities, and community relations.

In October 2010, President Barack Obama’s Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano appointed Elibiary, who had recently begun working with the Texas Department of Public Safety’s (DPS) advisory board, to DHS’s Homeland Security Advisory Council.

In October 2011 it was reported that Elibiary had recently been given access to a highly sensitive DPS database (the Homeland Security State and Local Intelligence Community of Interest, or HS SLIC) containing hundreds of thousands of intelligence reports intended solely to aid law-enforcement agencies. In fact, Elibiary was the only Homeland Security Advisory Council member (out of 26) who was permitted to view the HS SLIC.

Elibiary abused this privilege, however, when he gathered together a number of classified documents that, in his view, promoted “Islamophobia,” and presented them to a left-leaning media outlet, in hopes that the latter would write a story about DPS’s bias against Muslims. But the media outlet declined to do the story, saying: “We looked at the reports, and they weren’t as he [Elibiary] had billed them to us. They seem to be pretty straightforward, nothing remotely resembling Islamophobia that we saw. I think he was hoping we would bite and not give it too much of a look in light of the other media outfits jumping on the Islamophobia bandwagon.’

When journalist Patrick Poole asked a spokesman for the aforementioned media outlet if there was any indication as to what may have motivated Elibiary’s actions, the reply was unambiguous: “Oh, self-promotion definitely. It was clear up front that he wanted to be a quoted source in the story. We’ve used him as an unnamed source in previous stories. There’s nothing unusual or unseemly about that because officials do it all the time, but this was the first time he approached us with documents. Honestly, if they had been what he represented them as we would have probably run with the story. But we looked at them and saw this was a partisan hatchet job that could blow back on us so we passed on it.’

In early November 2011, Elibiary’s access to the HS SLIC database was revoked.

Resist We Much on June 17, 2014 at 1:10 PM

Milbank is always a flack for obama and insults political opponents, while claiming to be an objective reporter. He’s not any better than Tomasky and Eleanor Clift.

It’s a pity that Fox pays him to shill.

Schadenfreude on June 17, 2014 at 1:11 PM

Egyptian Press Confirms Washington Infiltrated By Islamists

Resist We Much on June 17, 2014 at 1:01 PM

Valarie Jarrett’s cover is blown??

Deano1952 on June 17, 2014 at 1:11 PM

Dana Milbank is a liar, but you already knew that.

reddevil on June 17, 2014 at 1:03 PM

Milbank is the same person that claimed he heard ‘kill him, kill him’ (about Obama) at a Palin rally.

Then he backtracked when asked by the Secret Service.

faraway on June 17, 2014 at 1:12 PM

Gabriel violated an unspoken code of decorum when she declared, correctly, that the National Socialist movement in Germany did not represent the majority of Germans, but it did drive the post –Weimar agenda.

Which code, and how was it violated?!

Gabriel’s fiery monologue resulted in a standing ovation from her audience, many of whom probably share her opinions.

Gee, ya think? Maybe that’s why there was a standing ovation? Maybe?

Akzed on June 17, 2014 at 1:14 PM

Ever read the comments here?

corona79 on June 17, 2014 at 12:46 PM

When you look in the mirror you should see a turkey.

Schadenfreude on June 17, 2014 at 1:14 PM

The internet has been the bane of leftists, I’ll bet they curse Gore for having invented it.

Bishop on June 17, 2014 at 12:51 PM

More like curse conservatives for misusing and ruining his precious contribution to civilization.

hawkeye54 on June 17, 2014 at 1:15 PM

Senior DHS Official, Mohamed Elibiary: Why, Yes, The Caliphate Is Returning And We Should Treat It Like A Muslim Version Of The EU…Or Something.

And we wondered what Barry would be doing after his Presidency ended

faraway on June 17, 2014 at 1:16 PM

everdiso on June 17, 2014 at 12:57 PM

As someone who employs a strawman argument (along with other fallacies) with only slightly less frequency than Barack Obama – it’s pretty bloody obvious that the one who needs to revisit the definition of a strawman argument is you.

Milbank is little more than an ideological hack – and only can see what he wants to believe through his myopic, naive, and mendacious eyes.

One other point that was missing in the well deserved factual smackdown of the questioner was that the 180 million to 300 million fundamentalist islamofascists gain cover and protection from the 1.8 billion Muslims in the world – the vast majority of whom are cowed by the islamofascists into being human shields because they lack the fortitude to speak out against those who embrace evil in the name of Islam.

Devoid of the millions among which to hide, devoid of the cover of the cowed, eliminating the evil would be far easier and cleaner.

Athos on June 17, 2014 at 1:18 PM

Egyptian Press Confirms Washington Infiltrated By Islamists

Resist We Much on June 17, 2014 at 1:01 PM

Valarie Jarrett’s cover is blown??

Deano1952 on June 17, 2014 at 1:11 PM

Was it ever a cover? Too many people haven’t cared to pay attention or just don’t care at all.

hawkeye54 on June 17, 2014 at 1:18 PM

DHS Adviser Says Caliphate’s Return Inevitable

DHS Sees Veterans As America’s Number One Terror Threat

Akzed on June 17, 2014 at 1:20 PM

“We have 8 million-plus Muslim Americans in this country and I don’t see them represented here.”

I also don’t see them marching in denunciation of Muslims who kill Christians. Get back to me when you start doing that.

rbj on June 17, 2014 at 1:21 PM

Egyptian Press Confirms Washington Infiltrated By Islamists

Resist We Much on June 17, 2014 at 1:01 PM

I love that anonymous comment on there. :) And that’s January, 2013, the the comment’s September.

http://predicthistunpredictpast.blogspot.com/2013/01/egyptian-press-confirms-washington.html

Axe on June 17, 2014 at 1:26 PM

*”the” now traveling in pairs for safety

Axe on June 17, 2014 at 1:27 PM

Devoid of the millions among which to hide, devoid of the cover of the cowed, eliminating the evil would be far easier and cleaner.

Athos on June 17, 2014 at 1:18 PM

It is also the primary reason that the “regular” muslims get killed right along with the “fundamentalist” ones – they use the herd to hide in.

GWB on June 17, 2014 at 1:27 PM

“moderate Muslim” silence = complicity

1.5 billion “peaceful” muslims continue to maintain their silence. I read that as total complicity.

Harbingeing on June 17, 2014 at 1:36 PM

Remember when the Sherrod video released by Breitbart was used to demonstrate that the NAACP was cheering her for putting the hate on white farmers? I have a hunski that says Millbank didn’t use the crowd’s reaction then.

jukin3 on June 17, 2014 at 1:36 PM

Once again, the left is successful in directing the discussion to anything but the subject at hand.

HiJack on June 17, 2014 at 1:43 PM

One audience member submitted the debunked assertion that President Barack Obama “watched people die” at Benghazi in real time.

The only thing debunked about that was Obama’s ability to watch anything in real time while absent from the situation room and on con calls with State. They had closed circuit feed from cameras mounted outside of the embassy and video feed from their drone.
“Real time” is presumably the reason they sent it instead of an armed drone, which would have been a hell of a lot more productive.

Recon5 on June 17, 2014 at 1:44 PM

Dana Milbank, screeching Keith Olberman’s BFF.

That’s all you need to know.

fogw on June 17, 2014 at 1:47 PM

Who is this Dana and why does anyone care what she has to say?

Texas Zombie on June 17, 2014 at 1:54 PM

DHS Adviser Says Caliphate’s Return Inevitable

Obumbles is pulling out all stops to help make it so. Coming soon to a neighborhood near you, too.

DHS Sees Veterans As America’s Number One Terror Threat.

Well, yes, they certainly are in the criminal minds occupying the WH, which DHS serves. You can’t imagine how terrifying vets can be in their way of thinking.

hawkeye54 on June 17, 2014 at 2:00 PM

Milbank defended his take by claiming that it was the reaction of the audience, not the panelists, which was the most damning.

Hmm. As I recall, Andrew Breitbart said something similar about the NAACP audience that Shirley Sherrod was speaking to, and she’s still suing his widow.

CitizenEgg on June 17, 2014 at 2:10 PM

Who the hell is Milbank? He’s a been nowhere, done nothing journalist that likes to listen to his own voice. If this country is getting its political information and news from the likes of this inept, babbling jerk, then we are in even more trouble than I had first expected.

rplat on June 17, 2014 at 2:14 PM

The hand of Ishmael will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him. It is, indeed, amongst the mysterious dealings of God, that this delusion should have been suffered for so many ages, and during so many generations of human kind, to prevail over the doctrines of the meek and peaceful and benevolent Jesus.

Been beating this drum here for weeks. If you are an atheist and you don’t understand what is really at play here, go grab a Bible and read it as a history lesson. Whether you believe in God or not, you can’t claim ignorance when it hits the fan.

If you are a Christian or Jew, you should already know what is going on.

Everyone else..get with the program.

Deckard BR on June 17, 2014 at 2:14 PM

VorDaj on June 17, 2014 at 12:50 PM

Thank you. You get it.

Deckard BR on June 17, 2014 at 2:15 PM

When you look in the mirror you should see my mama.

Schadenfreude on June 17, 2014 at 1:14 PM

Nah .. I hear she’s working Fallujah lately.

corona79 on June 17, 2014 at 2:16 PM

I think that is is Sharia law that is the turd in the punch bowl so to speak. If Islam was just a religion there would be no issue with it or its worshipers. The sticking point is Sharia. Under it the lives of Muslims and non-Muslims are subject to its laws and effects. The simple matter that Sharia can dictate it’s laws and customs to non-Islam members is incredible! But even worse is the “Reading” of the meaning of Sharia and how it is to be adjudicated. When Islam and Sharia are combined the result is not a religion but the dictates of a commune with life or death authority with no appeal process. No where in history has any civilized culture ever existed with such a structure. Neither can the West allow it to thrive in its present form. Like Gabriel said “The peaceful majority are irrelevant”.

inspectorudy on June 17, 2014 at 2:18 PM

Dana Milbank is a lunatic.

jawkneemusic on June 17, 2014 at 2:22 PM

“moderate Muslim” silence = complicity

1.5 billion “peaceful” muslims continue to maintain their silence. I read that as total complicity.

Harbingeing on June 17, 2014 at 1:36 PM

This is pretty much where I’ve landed on this topic. Don’t give a crap any longer. ‘Moderate’ muslim’s have had several hundred centuries to weed out their extremists, but for some reason can’t even be bothered to chastise them verbally.

Midas on June 17, 2014 at 2:26 PM

inspectorudy on June 17, 2014 at 2:18 PM

Or, as some have put it, “political Islam”. If Islam (like Christianity) were a solely spiritual endeavor, or if it (like Judaism) were solely concerned with a theocracy over its own tribe, then we wouldn’t have any of this trouble. But, Islam combines theocracy with evangelism, and insists that everyone, everywhere bow to their god and obey his dictates.

GWB on June 17, 2014 at 2:44 PM

You guys really have no idea what a “straw man” is, do you?

everdiso on June 17, 2014 at 12:57 PM

Is that more like a YouTube video, or a troll?

faraway on June 17, 2014 at 1:02 PM

Dana Milbank probably wet his panties when ‘Obama’ killed that straw man, Osama Bin Laden. You betcha.

HornetSting on June 17, 2014 at 2:53 PM

several hundred centuries

Midas on June 17, 2014 at 2:26 PM

I think you meant “years”, Midas. lol

GWB on June 17, 2014 at 2:56 PM

“Gaffney also said the president’s view that ‘the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam’ is ‘a statement you could have found on al-Qaeda’s Web site,’” Milbank reported.

These are rather distasteful assertions – assertions which I would not have made. But their dark, ugliness is certainly debatable.

This is as close as Noah can come to saying “She was flat out right and it is not debatable.”

LukeWarmAir readers, take note.

SirGawain on June 17, 2014 at 3:02 PM

Shill Milbank obviously suffers Carney Envy.

viking01 on June 17, 2014 at 3:11 PM

More Brigitte Gabriel please.

Free Indeed on June 17, 2014 at 1:04 PM

She’s always on the money, but she needs to develop a better TV/radio voice that doesn’t screech.

slickwillie2001 on June 17, 2014 at 3:24 PM

You could have saved half a headline Noah just by naming this post “Dana Milbank is utterly dishonest.”

It has the benefit of also being true in a general sense. Milbank’s agenda is to forward progressivism whether the facts suit him or not. He’s allowed to editorialize, but I don’t take seriously people whose opinions are derived solely from confirmation bias and echo chambers.

Any opinion columnist unwilling to acknowledge or report facts underlying their opinion is little different from a small child save the size of their platform.

BKennedy on June 17, 2014 at 3:41 PM

Ace’s take:

Dana Milbank “Grossly Misrepresents” Heritage Briefing on Benghazi to Make It Sound Like a Hate Crime in Progress

This part is especially delicious:

This part of Milbank’s original column shows him as biased and giddily ignorant. He’s actually proud to know nothing at all about the subject he’s allegedly covering. Watch and learn:

Plante had kicked off the forum by lamenting a ‘news media that is spectacularly uncurious when it comes to even the basic bare-bones facts of what happened in Benghazi that night.’ But the hour that followed showed exactly why Americans (or at least the non-Fox-News-viewing subset of Americans) are rightly skeptical: The accusers’ allegations grow wilder by the day.

Plante cast doubt on whether Ambassador Chris Stevens really died of smoke inhalation, demanding to see an autopsy report.

Gabriel floated the notion that Stevens had been working on a weapons-swap program between Libya and Syria just before he was killed.

Panelist Clare Lopez of the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi said the perpetrators of the attack are “sipping frappes with journalists in juice bars.”

Milbank reports that as a “wild claim” made by crazy Benghazi conspiracists.

He assumes that the panelists are lying, just making stuff up because they’re Crazy People who Only Tell Lies.

That shows his blatant partisanship and stupid prejudice — yes, Dana Milbank thinks anyone who isn’t a card carrying leftist is cognitively incapable of telling lie from truth.

But it also demonstrates his willful ignorance, and how the average member of the media has so studiously avoided coming into contact with any contamination of facts about Benghazi.

They’ve cocooned themselves so thoroughly that no discomfiting information can penetrate them.

If Milbank’s going to write about Benghazi — offer “opinions” on it — he at least should have a basic level of information about it. And before claiming that someone’s statement about terrorists having frappes with journalists is some kind of wild-eyed lie, he might want to google it.

Because this wild-eyed conspiracy theory was reported by the New York Times about a month after the Benghazi attack:

Suspect in Libya Attack, in Plain Sight, Scoffs at U.S.

By DAVID D. KIRKPATRICK

Published: October 18, 2012

BENGHAZI, Libya, Witnesses and the authorities have called Ahmed Abu Khattala one of the ringleaders of the Sept. 11 attack on the American diplomatic mission here. But just days after President Obama reasserted his vow to bring those responsible to justice, Mr. Abu Khattala spent two leisurely hours on Thursday evening at a crowded luxury hotel, sipping a strawberry frappe on a patio and scoffing at the threats coming from the American and Libyan governments.

That’s the first f***ing paragraph, for crying out loud.

But Dana Milbank is defiantly ignorant. As they say: He doesn’t know what he doesn’t know.

That’s real ignorance. Not knowing something is no sin. But being so actively ignorant to assume you know things (that this frappe business must be a Crazy Lie because Crazy Liars Tell Crazy Lies) to not even bother to check with a five second google search…?

And yet he offers his “opinions” on shit.

For all that they may be worth.

Googling “frappe” and “Benghazi” would have — yesterday or before — brought the New York Times article up near the top of the list.

Not today, though.

Today, this is the top hit disclosed by “frappe” and “Benghazi:”


Strawberry-Frappe-Sipping Benghazi Suspect Captured in Secret Raid

That’s from the notorious rightwing conspiracy-sheet New York Magazine.

A one-second google search.

He couldn’t be bothered.

Not only was this information — known by anyone with even a passing familiarity with the Benghazi attack — not part of his active knowledge base, but he refused to take even the most trivial steps to make it part of his potential knowledge base.

As for the American public being ‘rightly skeptical,’ I do not think that phrase means what Milbank thinks it means considering the FACT that 61% of Americans say that the Obama Admin has been “Dishonest” with details of Benghazi terror attack.

Resist We Much on June 17, 2014 at 3:57 PM

“Gaffney also said the president’s view that ‘the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam’ is ‘a statement you could have found on al-Qaeda’s Web site,’” Milbank reported.

These are rather distasteful assertions – assertions which I would not have made.

Why not? What makes them “distateful”?

WhatSlushfund on June 17, 2014 at 4:14 PM

More Brigitte Gabriel please.

Free Indeed on June 17, 2014 at 1:04 PM

Yes, please.

Smart, passionate, fiery women are the sexiest thing on earth.

UltimateBob on June 17, 2014 at 4:27 PM

Ace’s take:

A one-second google search.

He couldn’t be bothered.

Not only was this information — known by anyone with even a passing familiarity with the Benghazi attack — not part of his active knowledge base, but he refused to take even the most trivial steps to make it part of his potential knowledge base.

Resist We Much on June 17, 2014 at 3:57 PM

Thanks for posting this.

To be fair though, if I was researching an article and heard something about terrorists sitting around sipping strawberry frappes, I would think it was too ridiculous to even bother googling. Ace seems to have some prior knowledge that it was from a NYT article.

UltimateBob on June 17, 2014 at 4:41 PM

More Brigitte Gabriel please.

Free Indeed on June 17, 2014 at 1:04 PM

Yes, please.

Smart, passionate, fiery women are the sexiest thing on earth.

UltimateBob on June 17, 2014 at 4:27 PM

I agree. I’m actually kind of surprised that she doesn’t get more attention from Conservatives. She’s done some really impressive work, both on an informational level and an activist level.

WhatSlushfund on June 17, 2014 at 4:43 PM

That exchange gave me goosebumps. The lady was right on point. It would suck if the student felt slighted but she shouldn’t be. Nothing that was said there was an attack on her or the Muslim faith. It was a call for the peaceful majority of any culture facing domination by radicals, even here in America, to step it up and push back. Ultimately the radicals become the face of a whole group of people who want nothing to do with them.

coolrepublica on June 17, 2014 at 1:02 PM

You agreed not to comment on HA anymore (technically, you agreed not to comment ever again. Period.):

Yeah put up that link where I trash Mississippi. If you right I never comment again. If I am right you never comment again. How confident are you in your own bullsh!t?

coolrepublica on June 3, 2014 at 10:40 PM

Which was followed shortly by:

let’s get this clear

I consider talking about race here like trying to convert the Pope to Protestantism.

I am under no illusion that I am going to say or do something, or bring Jesus to say or do something that is going to change minds.

Republicans are no better for black folks than democrats. Both parties sucks! But Republicans suck more because no matter how bad things get for blacks in blue states, they only have to look at Mississippi and Alabama to see how bad sh!t could really be.

Given a chance between two crappy choices, a lot of blacks choose to pick the least sh!tty option.

coolrepublica on May 24, 2014 at 4:12 PM

Axe on June 3, 2014 at 11:30 PM

(Thanks, Axe!)

Regardless of whether you agree with coolrepublica or disagree… regardless of whether her statement was absolute fact or complete drivel, her comment from May 24, 2014 is indeed TRASHING Mississippi.

However, I am very pleased on this occasion to completely and wholeheartedly agree with your current (but in no way your earlier) comment. And since you obviously have no intention of abiding by your word, that is probably all the satisfaction I will get.

yaedon on June 17, 2014 at 5:17 PM

Gabriel then asked if Ahmed, who spoke with an accent in the same way that she did,

Sorry, I didn’t hear any accent from Ahmed. Gabriel has a strong one, sure, but not Ahmed.

yaedon on June 17, 2014 at 5:21 PM

corona79 on June 17, 2014 at 12:46 PM

I just read some of the comments – what’s your point? Another straw man? Ignoring reality is insanity. Now you can attach whatever straw man you like to that comment.

As for the video, I do not see what the issue is. I love this Ms. Gabriel! She gave an impassioned response with which I cannot disagree, although I am sure that this corona79 twit will see ugliness. I would have been one of those in the audience to stand for her comments. We need people to wake up, not cower under the name calling that the corona79′s like to use to shut the debate down. Or the Dana Milbanks for that matter. Gaffney’s response was well-measured but good too.

Honestly, watching all of this slaughter and standing by crying “Islamophobia” if someone comments (here or elsewhere) is infantile at best. But “progressives” are in fact very infantile. Which is OK so long as they stick to playing with navels rather than appearing to have anything reasonable to add to the discussion.

Chuck Ef on June 17, 2014 at 5:26 PM

The rest of Milbank’s column is just as underwhelming. One audience member submitted the debunked assertion that President Barack Obama “watched people die” at Benghazi in real time.

“Gaffney also said the president’s view that ‘the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam’ is ‘a statement you could have found on al-Qaeda’s Web site,’” Milbank reported.

These are rather distasteful assertions – assertions which I would not have made. But their dark, ugliness is certainly debatable. Milbank, understanding that, made it clear that it was the exchange between Gabriel and Ahmed which was the true offense at this conference.

Distasteful? Isn’t the first question whether they are accurate assertions?

I’m not 100% convinced that the claim that Obama watched people die has been ‘debunked.’ Too many of the people claiming that have every incentive to cover up for Obama. Besides, it’s almost irrelevant whether he watched in real time. There’s no denying he did nothing.

And no matter how distasteful you may find it, Gaffney was absolutely right when he said the statement that ‘the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam’ is something that could reasonably be found on Al Qaeda’s web site.

Surely any president from the country of free speech would take the time to say that free speech requires the right to criticize the prophet of Islam, even if he doesn’t agree with what was said.

There Goes the Neighborhood on June 17, 2014 at 5:30 PM

You guys really have no idea what a “straw man” is, do you?

everdiso on June 17, 2014 at 12:57 PM

I’m going to give the sock-puppet partial credit for actually forming a cogent question. That it has zero bearing on the topic, and only the slightest tangential value to any related discussion, makes that partial credit almost non-existent, but there you have it.

When you’ve got nothing else, deflect.

Freelancer on June 17, 2014 at 8:45 PM

yaedon on June 17, 2014 at 5:17 PM

Nice job!

JugEarsButtHurt on June 17, 2014 at 11:32 PM