July 28, 2008


Al-Qaeda chemical expert 'killed' (BBC, 7/28/08)

Reports from Pakistan say a leading al-Qaeda chemical weapons expert, Midhat Mursi al-Sayid Umar, has been killed in a missile strike.

Taleban officials in the tribal area of South Waziristan confirmed to the BBC that he was killed in a missile strike that left at least six people dead.

Posted by Orrin Judd at July 28, 2008 12:49 PM

Why is the word killed in sneer quotes? Is there some sort of doubt? Or is he in some sort of "killed"-like state that requires greater explanation? Or did the headline writer want to use some other word that describes this freedom-fighter's demise in an emotionally loaded way, but the writer didn't have the guts to use it?

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at July 28, 2008 1:34 PM

'Killed' in BBC scare quotes. Does that mean he's pinin' for the fjords?

Posted by: Gideon7 at July 28, 2008 1:41 PM

I thought it might've been a quotation from a press release or spokesman, but there's no longer quotation given (e.g. "He has been killed.").

The article also mentions that Midhat was reported killed before, only to re-emerge. He was just "stunned," so-to-speak. But if that's the point they were trying to make, they should have said "reported killed" without the quotation marks.

Posted by: Just John at July 28, 2008 4:04 PM

Do they want this guy to still be alive? For what?

On a different tack, how would the BBC have reported events in 33 AD? Nearly dead, perhaps dead, once-dead, or just 'crucified'?

Posted by: ratbert at July 28, 2008 4:56 PM

Like the "Norwegian Blue just pining for the fjords" I guess.

Posted by: narciso at July 28, 2008 9:54 PM

Kipling's World. The 'Screw-Guns' strike again.

"...You may hide in the caves, they'll be only your graves,
but you can't get away from the guns!"

Posted by: Mikey at July 29, 2008 6:02 PM
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