Loretta Lynch: We Scrubbed The Orlando Killer's Pledges Of Allegiance To Terror Groups In 911 Transcript

Matt Vespa
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Posted: Jun 20, 2016 11:00 AM
Loretta Lynch: We Scrubbed The Orlando Killer's Pledges Of Allegiance To Terror Groups In 911 Transcript

UPDATE: The transcript has been released. Katie noted that Omar Mateen, the killer, said that he was a "soldier of the caliphate." If you read the transcript, the scrubbed version comes off as rather absurd.

OM: In the name of God the Merciful, the beneficial [in Arabic]

OM: Praise be to God, and prayers as well as peace be upon the prophet of God [in Arabic]. I let you know, I’m in Orlando and I did the shootings.

OM: My name is I pledge of allegiance to [omitted].

OM: I pledge allegiance to [omitted] may God protect him [in Arabic], on behalf of [omitted].

UPDATE II: FBI says Mateen "identified himself as an Islamic soldier who pledged allegiance to a terrorist organization which was bent on killing Americans." Yet, the transcript still needs to be...redacted?

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On Sunday, Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced on Meet The Press that she would be heading down to Orlando, Florida this week to continue briefings on the case. She also said that a partial transcript of Orlando killer’s calls with the Orlando Police Department would be released today, but it would be scrubbed of any allegiances the shooter made to terrorist organizations (via RCP):

LORETTA LYNCH: What we're announcing tomorrow is that the FBI is releasing a partial transcript of the killer's calls with law enforcement, from inside the club. These are the calls with the Orlando PD negotiating team, who he was, where he was... that will be coming out tomorrow and I'll be headed to Orlando on Tuesday.

CHUCK TODD: Including the hostage negotiation part of this?

LYNCH: Yes, it will be primarily a partial transcript of his calls with the hostage negotiators.

CHUCK TODD: You say partial, what's being left out?

LYNCH: What we're not going to do is further proclaim this man's pledges of allegiance to terrorist groups, and further his propaganda.

CHUCK TODD: We're not going to hear him talk about those things?

LYNCH: We will hear him talk about some of those things, but we are not going to hear him make his assertions of allegiance and that. It will not be audio, it will be a printed transcript. But it will begin to capture the back and forth between him and the negotiators, we're trying to get as much information about this investigation out as possible. As you know, because the killer is dead, we have a bit more leeway there and we will be producing that information tomorrow.

So, what we’re going to get is an incomplete record. Killer Omar Mateen shot and killed 49 people at Pulse nightclub. It’s the worst mass shooting in American history, and he declared his allegiance to ISIS during those calls. Granted, the CIA has found no direct links yet, but ISIS sure has taken to heart the despicable action of this man. Over the weekend, an American with the terrorist network said that Mateen is “one of the soldiers of the [caliphate], was one of the few that was truthful to his lord.” He posted to Facebook various messages, urging Russia and the United States to stop bombing ISIS—and that we shall now “taste the Islamic state vengeance” (via NYT):

The gunman who committed the massacre at a popular gay nightclub in Orlando used multiple Facebook accounts to write posts and make searches about the Islamic State. “Now taste the Islamic state vengeance,” he declared, denouncing “the filthy ways of the west.” He even searched for references to the massacre while he was carrying it out, a United States senator said.

In his posts, the gunman, Omar Mateen, called on the United States and Russia to stop the bombing campaign against the Islamic State, the extremist group that controls parts of Syria and Iraq. He pledged allegiance to the group’s leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, and said, “may Allah accept me,” Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin wrote in a letter to Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive.

“You kill innocent women and children by doing us airstrikes,” Mr. Mateen wrote, according to the letter. “Now taste the Islamic state vengeance.” And in what Mr. Johnson described as the gunman’s final post, he wrote, “In the next few days you will see attacks from the Islamic state in the usa.”

The Times added that Mateen was “cool and calm” during the negotiations, in which police did most of the talking. Still, he obviously held Islamic fundamentalist sympathies, which are pertinent to this attack. Even lefty outlets, like Salon, reported that folks who were in the bathroom overheard the 911 calls, where Mateen said he was shooting people so the U.S. would “stop bombing his country.”

To say that Islamic terrorism had nothing to do with this attack isn’t honest, and neither is scrubbing the killer’s allegiances to such groups during these calls.

FBI Director James Comey gave a press briefing on the attack on June 13, where he said that the Justice Department would be transparent with any new findings going forward in this investigation.