‘Airplanes took aim’: NY Times slammed for whitewashing cause of 9/11 attack

The New York Times deleted the tweet after an uproar followed on social media ridiculing the paper and accusing it of fudging the facts.

By World Israel News Staff

The New York Times came under a storm of criticism for a since-deleted tweet and story which appeared to whitewash the cause of 9/11, the horrific terror attack on the Twin Towers and the Pentagon that resulted in the death of 2,977 people.

The original tweet, which was posted on Wednesday to the Times’ official twitter account to mark the 18th anniversary of the 2001 attack, read:

“18 years have passed since airplanes took aim and brought down the World Trade Center. Today, families will once again gather and grieve at the site where more than 2000 people died.”

Social media users, including well-known media personalities, jumped on the tweet, whose peculiar wording appeared to blame the airplanes themselves for the attack.

The tweet was also criticized for used the word “died” instead of “killed” or “murdered.” It also severely under-counted the number killed by nearly 1,000 people.

The fact that the tweet didn’t mention that radical Islamic terrorists carried out the attack was the most cited criticism.

Fox News’ Todd Starnes wrote, “The @NYT says airplanes caused 9/11. Wrong. It was Muslim terrorists who waged jihad on American soil and killed thousands of our fellow countrymen in the name of their religion.”

“Twin Towers NOT brought down because ‘airplanes took aim’ at them, but b/c radical Islamists hijacked planes & took aim at them,” Former Gov. Mike Huckabee said, now a Fox News contributor.

Other similar tweets from lesser known figures followed the same line. Jim Hanson, a former U.S. special forces operator, tweeted, ” The @nytimes shows again they do propaganda. Not news. Their tweet (deleted after ridicule) said ‘airplanes took aim’ on 9/11. No. Jihadists took aim. And killed thousands. Shame.”

Peter Lloyd, a British author, tweeted, “The New York Times is so woke they say ‘airplanes’ targeted the World Trade Centers – as opposed to Muslim extremists.”

The question of whether to underscore the Muslim nature of most of the world’s terror attacks has long been a political football.

During his presidency, Barack Obama came under fire for his refusal to label Islamic terror as such. At a September 2016 Town Hall, Obama was asked why he refused to use the term ‘Islamic terrorism.’

He said he wanted to “make sure that we do not lump these murderers into the billion Muslims that exist around the world, including in this country, who are peaceful, who are responsible, who, in this country, are fellow troops and police officers and fire fighters and teachers and neighbors and friends.”

Those opposed to this view say that understanding the religious underpinnings of Islamic terrorism is critical to fighting it effectively.

Following the criticism, the Times updated its tweet to read, “18 years after nearly 3,000 people were lost, families of those killed in the terror attacks will gather at the 9/11 memorial. There will be a moment of silence at 8:46 a.m., then the names of the dead — one by one — will be recited.”