A cryptic tweet by Samantha Power, U.S. ambassador to the U.N., about the violent death of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl has triggered a backlash on social media.
“Daniel Pearl's story is reminder that individual accountability & reconciliation are required to break cycles of violence,” Power tweeted Sunday, after delivering the 2013-2014 Daniel Pearl Memorial Lecture at the University of California Los Angeles.
Pearl, who was Jewish, was beheaded in 2002 while on assignment in Pakistan by Al Qaeda terrorist Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
Power’s tweet was interpreted by some as implying Pearl was responsible for his own death.
On Monday, Power sent a corrected tweet that said the work of the Daniel Pearl Foundation -- not Pearl’s story -- is in fact the “reminder that individual accountability + reconciliation are required to break cycles of violence.”
However, the so-called “Twitterverse” had already ignited with numerous sarcastic responses with the hashtag #AmbPowersTweets.
“If Al Qaeda won't stop the cycle of violence, you should. It's your responsibility as a citizen of the world,” one post said.
Another read: “Oklahoma City bombing occurred due to the lack of climate change awareness. Protect this earth, it's the only one we've got.”
However, the Daniel Pearl Foundation and Pearl’s family on Monday seemed to support Power.
“We deeply appreciate @ AmbassadorPower for her profound and thoughtful speech @UCLA, a lovely tribute to our son Danny Pearl.”
In Power’s prepared lecture remarks, she said Pearl was killed “because he was a reporter, an American and, most of all, because he was a Jew.”
The foundation’s stated mission is: “to promote mutual respect and understanding among diverse cultures through journalism, music and dialogue.”
Power is the United States' permanent representative to the United Nations and a member of President Obama’s Cabinet. The White House did not return an e-mail Monday seeking an explanation for the tweet.