In an interview with Meet the Press on Sunday, Attorney General Loretta Lynch said that it was crucial for federal investigators to turn over every stone while trying to determine what motivated Omar Mateen to kill 49 people at an Orlando nightclub last Sunday. But judging from her opinion on Mateen’s relationship to Islam, “every stone” is up for interpretation.
“The FBI is releasing a partial transcript of the killer’s calls with law enforcement from inside the club,” Lynch said. “But what we’re not going to do is further proclaim this man’s pledges of allegiance to terrorist groups and further his propaganda.”
Host Chuck Todd, as liberal as they get, appeared somewhat stunned. “We’re not going to hear him talk about those things?
Lynch said, “We will hear him talk about some of those things, but we are not going to hear him make his assertions of allegiance and all that.”
Several public reports have already surfaced about the calls Mateen made to 911 and a local news station. Both CNN and the Washington Post have reported that Mateen pledged his allegiance to ISIS, expressed solidarity with the Boston Marathon bombers, and mentioned that the U.S. needed to stop bombing “his country.”
But since those motivations don’t fit with the Obama administration’s political agenda, they are being scrubbed out of the investigation in favor of those that do. Lynch, in a separate interview on CBS, said that the main focus of the investigation would be to determine why Mateen targeted gays and Latinos. It has not been reported that Mateen mentioned either of these demographics in his calls, though the transcripts may show otherwise.
There is a time and a place for politics, but this isn’t it. The DOJ and the FBI owe it to the victims of this attack and the American people at large to investigate Mateen’s motivations honestly and without prejudice. If this was primarily an anti-gay hate crime, then the evidence will show it accordingly. If this was primarily another example of radical Islamic terrorism, the same will be true. Either way, we deserve the clear, unvarnished, unmanipulated truth. It’s not “propaganda” to report the facts. It’s propaganda to hide them.