If democracy dies in darkness, common sense ends in the newsroom of the Washington Post.
All sense of decency fades to black amidst the bleeding of a thousand screens, hemorrhaging both the light source and life force of plasma until the only glow that remains is the patina from the horsebit on Ben Bradlee’s Gucci loafers; his mortal remains interred five years ago in Oak Hill Cemetery; his remnants—the Florentine shoes and Jermyn Street shirts—piled in a cardboard box of an urn, next to a coffee can of a pencil cup from the office of Herbert Block (“Herblock”).
And yet the paper infuses its digital pages with the spirit of its analog fame. More like the mean-spiritedness of its most infamous acts and ignominious lies, from violating the secrecy of grand jury testimony to printing the testimony of a fictitious child, from denying evil to dressing it in a shroud of euphemisms about austerity and scholarship.
The latter summarizes the Post’s initial headline about the death of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, leader of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
The original headline reflects the true face of the Post, of the attempt to disguise fascism by giving it a human face, of not showing the faces of the innocents murdered by al-Baghdadi, of veiling the forced annexation of lands and peoples, of draping the destruction of churches and the bombing of ancient ruins, of eroding history by erasing it altogether.
In writing the first rough draft of history, after running columns for the last three years about the supposed triumph of fascism in America, the Post ignores—its editors lack the will—to report accurately the defeat of a genuine fascist in a raid by America’s special forces.
Austere in its principles and profligate in its audacity, the Post shames its staff and embarrasses its readers.