In 1918, U.S. Sen. Hiram Johnson is purported to have said, “The first casualty when war comes is truth.”

Johnson’s observation is appropriate for President Barack Obama’s war on terror, as truth has surely suffered a fatal blow.

The president and his advisers should tell the truth about the enemy we face. He could state the obvious — that we are fighting Islamic terrorists — but he continuously rejects the notion that ISIS is operating from a religious foundation. This is despite the fact that Islam is part of their name; that they are 100 percent Muslim; that they are controlled by Salafis; that they practice the five pillars of Islam; that they want to bring about an apocalyptic scenario where their messiah will return; and that they want to rule with religious Sharia law. This, in my humble opinion, seems to make them quite Islamic.

Yet the president refuses to mention Islam and only speaks of extremists in general. ISIS should not be categorized as extremists because they are actually devout Islamic fundamentalists who adhere to a strict Wahhabi and Salafi version of Islam that has over 4 million adherents in Saudi Arabia alone.

Not only is truth a casualty, but the search for truth fights against the tide of organizational deceitfulness and gets pulled under in a quiet death.

One example is the exploitation of the intelligence and information obtained by special operations forces when they raided the Osama bin Laden compound in Pakistan on May 2, 2011. To date, only 12 documents have been released, those that supported Obama’s re-election narrative that al-Qaida was crumbling, bin Laden was isolated and his influence was waning. These 12 documents are out of a total of 10 hard drives, nearly 100 thumb drives and a dozen cellphones seized in the raid. The Defense Intelligence Agency was given access to read-only versions of the documents obtained from the raid by the SEALs, and its analysis proved something different than what the administration was putting out. Once the administration learned of the DIA’s findings, it put a stop to the analysis and told DIA to speak no more about it.

Other false narratives by this administration include Secretary of State John Kerry stating the world is safer than ever, while the following week, the director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, stated we were living in the most perilous of times. The president called ISIS the JV (junior varsity) and we all now know that this was certainly not the case.

Not only is truth a casualty in this war, but institutions like our presidency have been severely wounded. We are being misled by our president.

Mark Kerry

emergency planner

Baton Rouge