Regarding the slaughter of patrons of an Orlando night club by a man shouting Islamic slogans, NPR's Weekend Edition has come up with the state-of-the-art it's-not-radical-Islam rationale:
While the investigation continues, officials say it is possible the shooter in this week's attack on an Orlando gay nightclub mentioned ISIS to cover for the real reason for the attack.
Weekend Edition host Scott Simon introduced the show this way:
Federal agents and local police are fanning out across Florida to piece together the life of the man who opened fire on a gay nightclub in Orlando on Sunday. While there's still much to do, they are struck by the fact that the shooter, Omar Mateen, doesn't seem to have exhibited any of the warning signs often associated with radicalization. They're exploring whether Mateen invoked ISIS's name not because he follows that group, but perhaps in hopes of getting more publicity for his attacks.
Reporter Dina Temple-Raston tells Simon that Mateen's Googling to see if he was getting attention during the attack is an indication that Mateen was interested in publicity and not ISIS (to which he had pledged allegiance). She also reports that investigators can find little evidence to support the idea that Islamic extremism was at the root of the massacre:
And they say they've yet to find any indication that he became noticeably more religious, which is one of the indicators of radicalization. He still was going to the same mosque. The way he dressed didn't change. His relationship with his family hadn't changed in any way. And these are all typically warning signs that parents and friends and educators are told to look for if they're worried someone they're close to is radicalizing. I mean, this isn't science, but in this case – so far, anyway – it doesn't appear that any of those precursors were there.
Wow! Mateen was just a publicity hound!
By the way, that the same Florida mosque attended by Moner Abusalha, who went on to become a suicide bomber in Syria. Mateen had attracted the attention of the FBI, which three times interviewed him. The FBI "clearly found information that prompted some concern," and it appears beyond doubt that Mateen was, for whatever twisted reason, sympathetic and at least in larg part motivated by radical Islam.
We are a democracy and we don't lock up people for odious beliefs, though it is just possible that if the authorities were operating under less PC rules the Orlando massacre might have been prevented. We must look radical Islamic terroism squarely in the face and admit the truth, however scary or politically incorrect,
Mateen may have been a conflicted homosexual, had a rotten childhood and been a male chauvinist, but, whatever else he was, he killed 49 people and wounded slightly in the name of ISIS. That's more than a hint, Weekend Edition.
Meanwhile, the DOJ is releasing transcripts of Mateen's conversations with police during the massacre but scrubbing references to ISIS or Islam.