This is a pattern. On Halloween, 58 were killed at a Catholic church in Baghdad, as Islamic radicals took church members hostage during Mass and executed the priests. ABC, CBS and NBC aired little anchor briefs, yet managed to put the weight of scrutiny on Iraqi government forces for attempting to storm the church and defeat the radicals.
On New Year's Eve, The New York Times reported from Baghdad on a cluster of 10 bomb attacks in which two people were killed and 20 wounded, all of them Christians. One week after an Islamic extremist group vowed to kill Christians in Iraq, the bombs were placed near the homes of at least 14 Christian families around the city. The networks didn't find that compelling, either.
But ABC, CBS and NBC combined to air 52 stories in one month -- just on the evening newscasts -- on the ground zero mega-mosque project.
Despite their cachet as world-news aficionados, taxpayer-funded National Public Radio couldn't locate news from Nigeria or Egypt as Christians were targeted and killed. NPR did find time for a story on how Israel's immigration policies, as Africans poured over the border from Egypt, were violating human rights. NPR's Nina Totenberg found the opportunity to apologize on PBS for using the term "Christmas party."
NPR finally caught up a bit Jan. 3, when evening anchor Robert Siegel talked to Los Angeles Times reporter Borzou Daragahi about the church attack in Egypt. He asked: "Are Christians a new front for Islamist militants in the region?"
Daragahi replied that "increasingly, it does seem that way. And, you know, you had the Christmas Eve bombings in Nigeria, you've had these attacks, constant attacks, really, stepping up recently on Iraqi Christians in Mosul, in Baghdad. And there does seem to be this concerted campaign to target this very vulnerable, dwindling community."
The reporter concluded, "(I)t's considered a tragedy that this community is being whittled down."
It's "considered" a tragedy? The American media's coverage of this religious war underlines their own distance from the story, and how they're somehow much more upset that some no-name, meaningless rabble-rouser in Florida became globally famous for threatening to burn one Quran in a trash can.
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