Josh Marshall

Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.

Articles by Josh

I discussed yesterday what I referred to as the scourge of verbalism when it comes to what we call ISIS, al Qaida, their various subsidiaries, franchises or whatever else. I wanted to flag your attention to this new piece by J.J. Goldberg in The Forward. It is definitely on the verbalist side of the divide. But it's also the best version of the argument I've seen. I would not even say that I disagree with it in its particulars. I read through it and I find myself saying, yes, yes, yes, that yes, this yes.

But on the global point, we're arguing here with strawmen and making a grand battle over something that simply pales in comparison to anything that actually matters in terms of combating ISIS or virtually anything else. Is there someone out there who thinks that ISIS's core recruits don't think they're involved in a religious war or pursuing a purified form of Islam, in fact the only true version of Islam? Who is this person? Is anyone shocked or have their basic strategic perspective shaken up by the thought that the jihadis who run ISIS think they're trying to push forward an eschatological endtime?

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Wayne Barrett is an elder statesmen and giant of the New York City press world. And he's got a file on Rudy Giuliani. In fact, it's probably not a file it's the file on Rudy. It's probably even fair to say he's not a fan of the former Mayor. He used the file to compile "Rudy: An Investigative Biography." And after Rudy again castigated the President as a half-breed outsider who wasn't raised "like us" and isn't "like us" at all, Barrett, apparently had to pull out the file.

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It looks like The Daily Caller is manufacturing phony quotes that are being attributed to State Department official Marie Harf.

It appears the Caller has now deep-sixed the fake quotes without noting any correction or anything else.

Did The Daily Caller make up this a phony quote?

I've generally ignored this Marie Harf sub-drama. How much of a glutton for punishment do I need to be? From a distance it sounded like a clumsy expression of a fairly straightforward point, which is that endemic poverty, social stagnation and repression are often breeding grounds of extremism and terrorist violence. To hear versions of this argument you need look no further than the well-known liberals in the Bush administration who frequently made the argument that poverty, corruption and lack of democracy were the breeding ground of terrorist recruitment in the Muslim world - those dreaded 'root causes.'

So tonight I found my way to an article in the Daily Caller with a follow up outrage by Harf (now it's her undergraduate thesis) reported by Patrick Howley. And in that piece he quotes the part of her exchange with Chris Matthews in which she said, "We need to get to the root cause of terrorism, and that is poverty and lack of opportunity in the terrorist community."

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