Not gonna lie: it was really weird to hear CNN reporter Clarissa Ward say that the Taliban chanting “Death to America” also “seem friendly.” But in light of the full video, it was clear enough that she at least knows that the Taliban are bad dudes.

We have to assume that CNN reporter Nick Paton Walsh also understands that. So maybe he could’ve found a better way to report on the Taliban’s takeover than this:

Listening to Paton’s report, he’s not a Taliban apologist. So why is he framing their actions as “crowd control for the benefit of the United States”? This isn’t crowd control; this is terrorism. The Taliban is literally terrifying Afghan citizens. They’re not doing it for the benefit of the United States; they’re doing it because they’re terrorists.

More from Walsh:

Any appearance of calmness and order is an illusion. Walsh knows that. He has to. We understand the importance of these journalists reporting what they see, but framing something like this as maintaining order is insulting to viewers’ intelligence and an absolute slap in the face to the people of Afghanistan, who no doubt do not see the Taliban as peacekeepers in any sense.


It’s important to point out that Walsh himself says that what’s happening is an “extraordinary foreign policy failing of [Joe Biden’s] unconditional doing.” That’s an accurate characterization of the situation.

And that makes the suggestion that the Taliban are simultaneously maintaining calm and order while terrorizing Afghan citizens even more jarring.

What is that? Crowd control?

Miller’s not usually wrong about this stuff, but let’s hope CNN defies his expectations this time.