The mob that attacked the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad on Tuesday was in fact a collection of “mourners,” according to The New York Times — a statement that drew an angry response from the paper’s critics.
The protesters entered the embassy compound, where they torched the main reception area, scrawled graffiti on walls and caused other damage. The protesters then pulled back and vowed to camp outside the embassy in protest until the U.S. pulls all soldiers and diplomats out of the war-torn nation. No U.S. personnel were injured.
But in its reporting, The Times saw things differently, tweeting, “Hundreds of Iraqi mourners tried to storm the United States Embassy in Baghdad, shouting ‘Down, down USA!,’ in response to deadly American airstrikes this week that killed 25 fighters.”
Hundreds of Iraqi mourners tried to storm the United States Embassy in Baghdad, shouting “Down, down USA!,” in response to deadly American airstrikes this week that killed 25 fighters https://t.co/jrAtON72eR
— The New York Times (@nytimes) December 31, 2019
Many on Twitter rebuked the Times for its sympathetic characterization of the mob.
“Mourners?” Delete your newspaper. https://t.co/h96tC1CNm6
— Arthur Schwartz (@ArthurSchwartz) December 31, 2019
It’s like @JZarif has become the Managing Editor of the New York Times.
These are Iranian backed terrorists attacking US military personnel & diplomats shouting “Death to America” as they try to break into the US Embassy in Baghdad setting fires on the way. https://t.co/plrUF4Giu0
— Lee Zeldin (@RepLeeZeldin) December 31, 2019
The New York Times really tweeted this! This is absolutely disgraceful & the Writer can kiss My ass! “Mourners tried to storm the US Embassy in Baghdad”? Is @nytimes now siding with the countless Iranian Proxy Militias that despise the USA 🇺🇸 & wishes us death?Cus thats who i see https://t.co/fgayLXGCZx
— Matthew (@Matthew22192283) January 1, 2020
The New York Times again is Pravda on the Hudson spreading Anti-American propaganda. Thankfully thinking people see the lies. Iran operatives become “mourners “, Death to America becomes “down USA.”
Thank God for President Trump.
— Kevin Murphy (@taconicglobal) January 1, 2020
— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) December 31, 2019
President Donald Trump was asked about the attack on the embassy Tuesday night during a New Year’s Eve celebration at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida.
“Well, I think it’s been handled very well. The Marines came in. We had some great warriors come in and do a fantastic job. And they were there instantaneously, as soon as we heard,” Trump said, according to a White House media pool report.
“I used the word ‘immediately’; they came immediately. And it’s in great shape, as you know. This will not be a Benghazi. Benghazi should never have happened. This will never, ever be a Benghazi,” Trump said, referring to the 2012 stack on a U.S. diplomatic outpost in Libya that resulted in four American deaths.
“But we have some of our greatest warriors there. They got in there very quickly. As soon as we saw there was a potential for problem, they got in, and there was no problem whatsoever,” Trump said.
Trump was also asked about a potential war with Iran.
“I don’t think that would be a good idea for Iran. It wouldn’t last very long. Do I want to? No. I want to have peace. I like peace. And Iran should want peace more than anybody. So I don’t see that happening. No, I don’t think Iran would want that to happen. It would go very quickly,” Trump said.
Also Tuesday, Defense Secretary Mark Esper said additional troops will be sent to the embassy in Baghdad, according to CNN.
“At the direction of the Commander in Chief, I have authorized the deployment of an infantry battalion from the Immediate Response Force of the 82nd Airborne Division (in Fort Bragg, North Carolina) to the U.S. Central Command area of operations in response to recent events in Iraq,” Esper said, adding that even more troops “are prepared to deploy over the next several days.”
“This deployment is an appropriate and precautionary action taken in response to increased threat levels against U.S. personnel and facilities, such as we witnessed in Baghdad today. The United States will protect our people and interests anywhere they are found around the world,” Esper said.
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