They refused to use the word torture to describe torture because it offended Republicans. Now they refer to an incident in which a mysterious figure on a motorcycle sticks a highly sophisticated bomb on the side of a car in Tehran, assassinating a scientist, and it's not an act of terrorism. It's an act of "terrorism". Maybe they're just using it in the British fashion to indicate the Iranians are merely describing it thus. But what word would the NYT use to describe a targeted car bomb, if, for example, it was planted by Hamas in, say, Tel Aviv or New York and killed a government scientist? Seriously, this matters. If this was not an act of terrorism, designed to create terror among scientists and others in Tehran, then it was an act of war.
My fear is that this is state terrorism directed by Netanyahu, in an attempt to increase tensions to bring about the full-scale war against Iran's nuclear program, over Washington's objections. But once US allies sanction car-bombing assassinations, it is legitimizing their use by others here. You reap what you sow.