Utah’s Teenage Killer, the Muslim Connection Ignored
By: Warner Todd Huston
I have been watching the “reportage” on the regrettable incident of a teenaged killer’s rampage in a Utah shopping mall with mounting interest. In nearly every story of this crime the fact that this youngster is from a Muslim background is either muted or ignored altogether.
The AP, for instance, avoids identifying the boy as a Muslim in all their stories that I saw. In one, they merely identify the region in Bosnia in which he lived as the “northeastern enclave where up to 8,000 Muslim men and boys were slaughtered in 1995″ but do not even speculate as to the boy or his family being Muslims. It is all rather dutifully avoided. In another story, the AP doesn’t even use the word Muslim at all.
Even in the local press, like the Utah Desert News, the issue of his background is ignored or made entirely incidental. The Desert News, in fact, makes just one mention that the “family are Muslims from Bosnia who had lived in the vicinity of Sarajevo” in a rather lengthy and otherwise complete story of the incident.
Worse, the New York Times is making the wild assumption that it is “Bosnian immigrants”, not the rest of America, that should be afraid for their lives in theirs titled “Anti-Bosnian Backlash Feared in Utah”.
In the Times’ story the Muslin issue is given scant notice and the focus is put on how we ignorant Americans are sure to start beating up “Bosnians” right and left. The word Muslim seems to have been replaced rather ridiculously with “Bosnian”, as if Americans will seek out “Bosnians” upon which to take out their anger instead of Muslims. The fact is, though, “Bosnians” do not loom as the enemy in the minds of Americans, but Muslims do. How many Americans would instantly become wary if someone were to tell them they are “Bosnian”?
In the Times’ story the word Muslim is used exactly once:
The number of Bosnian refugees in the Salt Lake City area has been estimated to be 3,000 to 7,000, most of them Muslims fleeing violence by Serbs in the early 1990s.
So, the Times seems to feel regular Americans are the threat not rampaging Muslims. And, even if this boy was not a practicing Muslim, something we do not know as a factor because of the current deficient state of reporting, the fact that he is from a Muslim family is quite germane to the story.
I would find it perfectly reasonable to include in these stories language that could benignly bring up the issue without fanning the flames of anti-Muslim sentiment. It would not be beyond reasonability to say something such as “It is not known if the boy’s Muslim background is a factor in his rampage”, or some such rhetoric.
But to wholly ignore the issue seems rather un-journalistic, wouldn’t you say? It would also seem to be out of character for the MSM in the normal scheme of things.
The 18 year-old killer, Sulejmen Talovic, was driven from his home with his Mother at four, he lived in the aforementioned refugee camp until he was about 9 and then he moved to the USA with his family in 1998. He was thought to be a “loner” with no friends, but wasn’t thought of as a troublemaker, being generally a quiet youngster.
That all ended this week with his murderous trip to the mall.
Of course, it isn’t possible with what is known to say that his Muslim background directly led to this rampage, or that it was a result of religious extremism. It is wholly possible that this kid was so mentally traumatized by his young life in a war zone that he snapped.
But, here are some interesting facts. The USA is the good guy in the story of Bosnia’s Muslims. In fact, Bosnian Muslims today are one of the few Muslim communities who have thus far violently opposed the kind of religious hatred funded by the Saudis with their exportation of Wahhabism and one of the few that are vehemently pro-American because of the advocacy the US offered them in the efforts to stop Slabodon Milosevic’s campaigns of ethnic cleansing.
So, it seems somewhat unlikely that he learned any hatred of the USA from his familial traditions.
But the boy is still a Muslim and he wouldn’t be the only one to stray from his family’s traditions and ideals to take on a radical ideology.
So we are left with at least two possibilities as to the boy’s motives.
- He adopted a radical Muslim hatred of the west
- He was so traumatized by his youth he just snapped and there is no religious influence
Neither possibility is discussed in any story about this incident, however.
The question is, why is his Muslim background being completely ignored?
Is it just a question of not knowing the facts and the MSM doesn’t want to speculate? This would be a hard thing to believe since speculation is one of their favorite games. Remember how Timothy McVeigh was immediately called a Christian, a White Separatist, or that he was part of a militia, etc.? There was little waiting for facts to emerge with McVeigh. Another incident that showed the MSM’s willingness to run with any point no matter if it is proven or not was the Richard Jewel bombing story. That poor guy was so hounded by the MSM that it ruined his life as he was convicted in the press before anything was ascertained.
So, are we to believe that the MSM suddenly got a conscience and decided to go cautious on this boy’s Muslim background?
But as to the MSM’s real motive on this one… well, I’ll leave that to each of you.