David V has already blogged about the BBC report (and upcoming Panorama programme) on Boston bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev reading “right-wing extremist literature… espousing white supremacy and government conspiracy theories”, but I thought this was worth a further post.
In the video report for the story the BBC’s Hilary Andersson is shown looking at publications Tsarnaev is said to have read. The narration is as follows:
Andersson: “When these ethnic Chechen brothers Tarmerlan and Dzhokhar were caught on camera near the bomb site it was soon put down to the work of jihadists. They had been reading militant Islamic websites and had links to the troubled Islamic republic of Dagestan.
But now the BBC has found out that Tamerlan, the older brother was also reading right-wing American literature months before the bombings.Articles about government conspiracies, gun rights, white supremacy, and about the minds of mass killers.”
For some reason the BBC has blurred the footage of the literature that Andersson is reading so that only a couple of headlines can be made out. Here’s a screengrab:
The video, and the online article, go on to quote – unchallenged – the view of a member of Tamerlan’s local mosque that he was merely “a Muslim of convenience”. Andersson is clearly trying to play up the white supremacist angle (the type of people the BBC pointed fingers at in the first place) and downplay the Muslim angle.
Why, then, is the BBC be so reluctant to identify the publications that Andersson is seen reading? The clue could be in the top-right corner of the above picture where the blurry words “Close Gitmo” can be seen in part of a headline.
“Close Gitmo Now” is the headline for an article in the American Free Press (AFP) published on April 10, 2013 (five days before the bombing). I’ll be amazed if it’s not copies of this publication that Andersson is seen perusing in her report.
The AFP is a vehemently anti-Semitic weekly paper which peddles all manner of conspiracy theory, usually linked in some way to the neocon New World Order that’s run by the Jews. The recent IRS scandal? The Jews were behind it, of course. And the above “Close Gitmo Now” article describes the 9/11 attacks as “false flag”. It’s that level of nuttiness.
What doesn’t quite fit Andersson’s narrative, and perhaps explains the reluctance to identify the publication, is that while the AFP is very anti-Jewish, it is also sympathetic to Muslim grievances. In one article which blames pro-Israeli propaganda for inciting Anders Breivik’s horrific murderous spree, the writer says Europeans should fear Jews, not Muslims:
“These Europeans ignore the fact that the Muslims they proclaim to be enemies of Christianity actually revere Jesus Christ as a beloved prophet, as did Mohammad himself. At the same time, they ignore the ugly hostility toward Christianity that is an article of faith in Israel…”
I’m sure the Christians whose churches have been bombed across the Muslim world feel very reassured by that.
AFP contributors such as Mark Dankof are regulars on Iran’s Press TV. Wikepedia offers this take:
In a May 2011 article Dankof protested the British government attempting to shut down Press TV, blaming it on “media outlets and correspondents with provable connections to the American Jewish lobby; Israeli intelligence; and Neo-Conservatives thirsting for a War of Civilizations with Iran specifically, and the Islamic world generally.” In a May 2011 article, Dankof also quoted from and wrote that the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion accurately reflect the state of the world. He lauded PressTV as one of the few exceptions to the Jewish control of the media.
As I said in the comments under the earlier blogpost, I imagine quite a few young Muslims read the American Free Press. It spouts the same bullshit that Islamists do, and that is what will have appealed to Tamerlan.
Just for good measure, the AFP even says that the Tsarnaevs were probably framed for the Boston bombing.
It’ll be interesting to see if the full Panorama programme highlights any of the above information, because the teaser items certainly haven’t.