Big Three Networks Avoid Calling ISIS 'Terrorists;' Label Them 'Rebels' and 'Militants'

August 8, 2014 - 11:08 PM

[More in the cross-post on the MRC's NewsBusters blog.]

The Big Three networks steered clear of labeling the Islamist group ISIS "terrorists" on their evening newscasts on 8 August 2014. Instead, ABC's World News and CBS Evening News labeled the genocidal radicals "militants." NBC Nightly News used the more benign "rebels" in their coverage of the group's latest attacks on the Kurdish part of Iraq.

The closest that a journalist at ABC, CBS, or NBC got to using the "terrorist" label was Scott Pelley's teaser at the very top of CBS Evening News:

SCOTT PELLEY (teaser): Tonight, back in battle: The President orders U.S. warplanes to attack Sunni Muslim extremists in northern Iraq to stop a campaign of terror. But he makes Americans this promise:

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: I will not allow the United States to be dragged into fighting another war in Iraq.