No, The Justice Department Didn't Reverse Its Decision to Release 'Full' Orlando 911 Transcript

Posted: Jun 21, 2016 2:30 PM
No, The Justice Department Didn't Reverse Its Decision to Release 'Full' Orlando 911 Transcript

As reported here yesterday, the Justice Department released a censored, partial transcript of a 911 call between Orlando terrorist Omar Mateen and law enforcement authorities during his rampage at Pulse Nightclub, omitting repeated pledges to ISIS and references to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi. The Department also translated sentences Mateen said in Arabic to English, including replacing Allah with God.

After outrage, the Justice Department released the uncensored version of the partial release. 

Speaker Paul Ryan, after calling the initial censorship preposterous, released the following statement. 

“I am glad that the administration reversed its decision and has now shared the full transcript with the American people. But this should have never been an issue in the first place. The attempt to selectively edit the record reflects a broader, more serious problem: this administration’s continued effort to downplay and distract from the threat of radical Islamist extremism. This is unacceptable. To defeat terrorism we have to be clear-eyed about whom we’re fighting," Ryan said.  

There's just one huge problem. The Department of Justice is still censoring material on a number of levels and the so-called "reversal" is hardly a full transcript. Further, the "full" transcript still fails to print what Mateen actually said. 

First, the FBI won't release the audio. Reading a printed, translated transcript in English, rather than listening to Mateen toggle between English and Arabic gives Americans a completely different picture of what happened during the attack and is misleading at best. 

"When you are a Jihadi you don't use the word 'God.' What was he witnessed shouting in the nightclub as he was mowing down his fellow Americans? He wasn't shouting 'God is the greatest' in English, he was shouting 'Allahu Akbar,' so the idea that he suddenly translated into English for the dispatcher is absurd," Dr. Sebastian Gorka said in an interview with Fox News last night.

Second, the so-called "full transcript" is only about a minute in nearly 28 minutes of conversation between Mateen and authorities. Where are the other transcripts? We're barely scratching the surface. 

The American people are entitled to the truth about what happened in Orlando, which requires the release of full audio and all transcripts, both translated and non-translated.

This post has been updated with additional information.