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AIM: Media Largely Misses Yemeni Passenger Story

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Posted on May 10 2011 3:15 pm
Accuracy in Media is a citizens' media watchdog whose mission is to promote accuracy, fairness and balance in news reporting. AIM exposes politically motivated media bias; teaches consumers to think critically about their news sources; and holds the mainstream press accountable for its misreporting.
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From Accuracy in Media‘s Don Irvine:

There was more to the story of the passenger who disturbed an American Airlines flight on Sunday than was reported by most of the media.

While these and most other media reports did state that Almurisi had a Yemeni passport and California identification card, they somehow managed to miss reporting on what he said on the plane that startled passengers as well.

According to the AP, passenger Angelina Marty said that as Almurisi was moving to the front of the plane he was shouting “Allahu Akbar”  which is usually translated to “God is Great,” not something you want to hear on a plane.

The media took great pains to state that authorities were unsure of  Almurisi’s motives and that he had no clear ties to terror groups. Any mention of what he was shouting was largely overlooked, as the video shows.

Normally the media love eyewitness reports. But not in this case. An eyewitness report could lead to politically incorrect conclusions because Almurisi is from Yemen and was shouting the same words that were heard on the Flight 93 cockpit voice recorders as the plane was going  down on 9/11.

With the death of Osama bin Laden last week at the hands of U.S. Navy SEALs, the possibility of retribution is very real. The media chose to treat this case as just another disturbed airline passenger — rather than as the  potential threat to our safety and security that it was.

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