Joint Chiefs Chairman: ‘Arab Spring’ Brought “New Norm of Instability”

mtp-130130-panetta-dempsey-938a_grid-6x2By Patrick Poole:

A surprising exchange yesterday on Meet the Press yesterday with guests departing Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey.

Chuck Todd asked the Joint Chiefs Chairman if there were any lessons learned from the Benghazi debacle, which elicited a shocking admission:

TODD: And is there anything that could have been done better on the intelligence front, you think that could have given you more time to do something or is this something that, you know, this is– this is what happens in a place like Libya that right now is an unstable state?

GEN. DEMPSEY: Well, we– we’ve learned a lot from the Benghazi incident. And we– as the Secretary said, we work with the State Department and, you know, kind of surveying those parts of the world where– where there’s a new norm, if you will, of– of instability in terms of, you know, discussing the intelligence apparatus. It’s pretty easy to talk about the intelligence failures. We don’t talk much about them many times when we have intelligence and we’re able to stop or prevent, disrupt an attack so, of course, we should continue to learn from these events.

A “new norm of instability”? Wait, what? Why didn’t we hear about this during the presidential campaign? Whatever might have prompted this “new norm of instability”?

Read more at PJ Media

Mitt Romney Discusses Foreign Policy in Israel With CBS Face the Nation

7/29/2012 – CBS News’ Jan Crawford sits down with Mitt Romney in Israel to discuss his foreign policy position in regards to recent Middle-East developments in both Syria and Iran.

Obama Admin Embracing ‘Legitimate Islamism’

PJ tatler:

The National Journal reports:

In an article in the current National Journal called “The Post Al Qaida Era,” I write that the Obama administration is taking a new view of Islamist radicalism. The president realizes he has no choice but to cultivate the Muslim Brotherhood and other relatively “moderate” Islamist groups emerging as lead political players out of the Arab Spring in Egypt, Tunisia and elsewhere. (The Muslim Brotherhood officially renounced violence decades ago, leading then-dissident radicals such as Ayman al-Zawahiri to join al Qaida.)

It is no longer the case, in other words, that every Islamist is seen as a potential accessory to terrorists. “The war on terror is over,” one senior State Department official who works on Mideast issues told me. “Now that we have killed most of al Qaida, now that people have come to see legitimate means of expression, people who once might have gone into al Qaida see an opportunity for a legitimate Islamism.”

The new approach is made possible by the double impact of the Arab Spring, which supplies a new means of empowerment to young Arabs other than violent jihad, and Obama’s savagely successful military drone campaign against the worst of the violent jihadists, al Qaida.

Keeping some of them locked up at Gitmo has probably helped, too.

The administration’s quiet pro-Islamist approach goes hand in hand with something Rep. Allen West has been warning about lately: That the Obama administration is allowing the Muslim Brotherhood to influence policy in the US.

Rep. Allen West warned Monday that reports of the FBI’s training manual being edited to scrap portions considered offensive to the Muslim community signaled an increasingly “one-way street” level of tolerance that could lead to “cultural suicide.”

“We have to understand when tolerance becomes a one-way street, it will lead to cultural suicide and we should not allow the Muslim Brotherhood-associated groups to be influencing our national security strategy,” the Florida Republican said on “Fox & Friends.”

West noted that the report of Army Maj. Nidal Malik Hassan— who has been accused of the fatal shooting spree at Fort Hood, Texas, that killed 13 and wounded dozens more — makes no reference to Islamic Jihadism or Muslim extremism, and also fails to mention the suspect’s alleged association with Al Qaeda leader Anwar al-Awlaki.

Strange times we live in: The American administration steps up drone attacks on one type of violent Islamist, it lies that Republicans have declared “war” on women, while it is working with Islamists in Egypt and elsewhere who actually do wage war on women (along with non-Muslims of all types) wherever they can, every single day.

 

Maybe someone should send Bill Whittle’s whiteboard lesson on the Muslim Brotherhood to Obama.

Washington’s Secret History with the Muslim Brotherhood

Please note the date of this article. I am posting it to shed light on the fact that the United States foreign policy of courting the Muslim Brotherhood goes back as far as the Eisenhower administration in the 1950’s. The attitude that “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” does not help you if that enemy plans to conquer you in the end! This demonstrates a profound ignorance of the ideology of Muslim Brotherhood. Dupes then, dupes now. Even this author, Ian Johnson, seems to think the Muslim Brotherhood can be trusted to be moderate! Why is nobody taking the Muslim Brotherhood Memorandum of Understanding or The Project seriously?

By Ian Johnson Feb. 5, 2011 at NYR blog:

As US-backed strongmen around North Africa and the Middle East are being toppled or shaken by popular protests, Washington is grappling with a crucial foreign-policy issue: how to deal with the powerful but opaque Muslim Brotherhood. In Egypt, the Brotherhood has taken an increasingly forceful part in the protests, issuing a statement Thursday calling for Mubarak’s immediate resignation. And though it is far from clear what role the Brotherhood would have should Mubarak step down, the Egyptian president has been claiming it will take over. In any case, the movement is likely to be a major player in any transitional government.

Journalists and pundits are already weighing in with advice on the strengths and dangers of this 83-year-old Islamist movement, whose various national branches are the most potent opposition force in virtually all of these countries. Some wonder how the Brotherhood will treat Israel, or if it really has renounced violence. Most—including the Obama administration —seem to think that it is a movement the West can do business with, even if the White House denies formal contacts.

If this discussion evokes a sense of déjà vu, this is because over the past sixty years we have had it many times before, with almost identical outcomes. Since the 1950s, the United States has secretly struck up alliances with the Brotherhood or its offshoots on issues as diverse as fighting communism and calming tensions among European Muslims. And if we look to history, we can see a familiar pattern: each time, US leaders have decided that the Brotherhood could be useful and tried to bend it to America’s goals, and each time, maybe not surprisingly, the only party that clearly has benefited has been the Brotherhood.

How can Americans be unaware of this history? Credit a mixture of wishful thinking and a national obsession with secrecy, which has shrouded the US government’s extensive dealings with the Brotherhood.

Consider President Eisenhower. In 1953, the year before the Brotherhood was outlawed by Nasser, a covert US propaganda program headed by the US Information Agency brought over three dozen Islamic scholars and civic leaders mostly from Muslim countries for what officially was an academic conference at Princeton University. The real reason behind the meeting was an effort to impress the visitors with America’s spiritual and moral strength, since it was thought that they could influence Muslims’ popular opinion better than their ossified rulers. The ultimate goal was to promote an anti-Communist agenda in these newly independent countries, many of which had Muslim majorities.

One of the leaders, according to Eisenhower’s appointment book, was “The Honorable Saeed Ramahdan, Delegate of the Muslim Brothers.”* The person in question (in more standard romanization, Said Ramadan), was the son-in-law of the Brotherhood’s founder and at the time widely described as the group’s “foreign minister.” (He was also the father of the controversial Swiss scholar of Islam, Tariq Ramadan.)

Eisenhower officials knew what they were doing. In the battle against communism, they figured that religion was a force that US could make use of—the Soviet Union was atheist, while the United States supported religious freedom. Central Intelligence Agency analyses of Said Ramadan were quite blunt, calling him a “Phalangist” and a “fascist interested in the grouping of individuals for power.” But the White House went ahead and invited him anyway.

President Dwight D. Eisenhower in the Oval Office with a group of Muslim delegates, 1953. Said Ramadan is second from the right.

By the end of the decade, the CIA was overtly backing Ramadan. While it’s too simple to call him a US agent, in the 1950s and 1960s the United States supported him as he took over a mosque in Munich, kicking out local Muslims to build what would become one of the Brotherhood’s most important centers—a refuge for the beleaguered group during its decades in the wilderness. In the end, the US didn’t reap much for its efforts, as Ramadan was more interested in spreading his Islamist agenda than fighting communism. In later years, he supported the Iranian revolution and likely aided the flight of a pro-Teheran activist who murdered one of the Shah’s diplomats in Washington.

Cooperation ebbed and flowed. During the Vietnam War, US attention was focused elsewhere but with the start of the Soviet war in Afghanistan, interest in cultivating Islamists picked up again. That period of backing the mujahedeen— some of whom morphed into al-Qaeda—is well-known, but Washington continued to flirt with Islamists, and especially the Brotherhood.

In the years after the September 11 attacks, the United States initially went after the Brotherhood, declaring many of its key members to be backers of terrorism. But by Bush’s second term, the US was losing two wars in the Muslim world and facing hostile Muslim minorities in Germany, France, and other European countries, where the Brotherhood had established an influential presence. The US quietly changed its position.

The Bush administration devised a strategy to establish close relations with Muslim groups in Europe that were ideologically close to the Brotherhood, figuring that it could be an interlocutor in dealing with more radical groups, such as the home-grown extremists in Paris, London and Hamburg. And, as in the 1950s, government officials wanted to project an image to the Muslim world that Washington was close to western-based Islamists. So starting in 2005, the State Department launched an effort to woo the Brotherhood. In 2006, for example, it organized a conference in Brussels between these European Muslim Brothers and American Muslims, such as the Islamic Society of North America, who are considered close to the Brotherhood. All of this was backed by CIA analyses, with one from 2006 saying the Brotherhood featured “impressive internal dynamism, organization, and media savvy.” Despite the concerns of western allies that supporting the Brotherhood in Europe was too risky, the CIA pushed for cooperation. As for the Obama administration, it carried over some of the people on the Bush team who had helped devise this strategy.

Why the enduring interest in the Brotherhood? Since its founding in 1928 by the Egyptian schoolteacher and imam Hassan al-Banna, the Brotherhood has managed to voice the aspirations of the Muslim world’s downtrodden and often confused middle class. It explained their backwardness in an interesting mixture of fundamentalism and fascism (or reactionary politics and xenophobia): today’s Muslims aren’t good enough Muslims and must return to the true spirit of the Koran. Foreigners, especially Jews, are part of a vast conspiracy to oppress Muslims. This message was—and still is—delivered through a modern, political party-like structure, that includes women’s groups, youth clubs, publications and electronic media, and, at times, paramilitary wings. It has also given birth to many of the more violent strains of radical Islamism, from Hamas to al-Qaeda, although many of such groups now find the Brotherhood too conventional. Little wonder that the Brotherhood, for all its troubling aspects, is interesting to western policy makers eager to gain influence in this strategic part of the world.

But the Brotherhood has been a tricky partner. In countries where it aspires to join the political mainstream, it renounces the use of violence locally. Hence the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt says it no longer seeks to overthrow the regime violently—although its members there think nothing of calling for Israel’s destruction. In Egypt, the Brotherhood also says it wants religious courts to enforce shariah, but at times has also said that secular courts could have final say. This isn’t to suggest that its moderation is just for show, but it’s fair to say that the Brotherhood has only partially embraced the values of democracy and pluralism.

Sheikh Yusuf al-Qardawi

The group’s most powerful cleric, the Qatar-based Youssef Qaradawi, epitomizes this bifurcated worldview. He says women should be allowed to work and that in some countries, Muslims may hold mortgages (which are based on interest, a taboo for fundamentalists). But Qaradawi advocates the stoning of homosexuals and the murder of Israeli children—because they will grow up and could serve as soldiers.

Qaradawi is hardly an outlier. In past years, he has often been mentioned as a candidate to be the Egyptian branch’s top leader. He is very likely the most influential cleric in the Muslim world—on Friday, for example, thousands of Egyptian protesters in Tahrir Square listened to a broadcast of his sermon. He has also declared those demonstrators who have died defying the government to be martyrs.

That is an indication of the Brotherhood’s growing influence in the wave of protests around the region. In Egypt, the Brotherhood, after a slow start, has become a key player in the anti-government coalition; on Thursday, the new vice president, Omar Suleiman, invited the Brotherhood for talks. In Jordan, where the group is legal, King Abdullah met with the Brotherhood for the first time in a decade. And in Tunis, the Islamist opposition leader Rachid Ghanouchi, who has been a pillar of the Brotherhood’s European network, recently returned home from his London exile.

All of this points to the biggest difference between then and now. Half a century ago, the West chose to make use of the Brotherhood for short-term tactical gain, later backing many of the authoritarian governments that were also trying to wipe out the group. Now, with those governments tottering, the West has little choice; after decades of oppression, it is the Brotherhood, with its mixture of age-old fundamentalism and modern political methods, that is left standing.

* The appointment book and details of Ramadan’s visit are in the Eisenhower presidential archives in Abilene, Kansas. See my book A Mosque in Munich, pp. 116-119, for details of the visit. On the use of the Brotherhood post-9/11, see pp 222-228.

See also by Ian Johnson:

 

Obama Dances the Jizya

By Jessica Rubin at American Thinker:

In the classic Mafia protection racket scheme, the owner of a business must pay the pizzo for the Mafia organization to protect the owner from violence by an alleged third party — usually a branch the organization itself.  In the same way, the U.S. taxpayer is paying various “moderate” Muslim countries and organization to protect us from extremist Muslim organizations.  We pay not only in money, but by chipping away at our individual human rights in order to appease Muslim elements not to go over to the extremist elements.

In many ways, we are already paying the Islamic form of the pizzo — namely, the jizya.  Formally, the jizya is a “tax” paid by kafirs already living under Muslim domination.  It is a tax that must be paid at risk of losing one’s head.  Moreover, the jizya is not just a “head” tax; it is also intended to be a form of humiliation.

Qur’an (9:29) – “Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.”

Paying the jizya is just part of dhimmitude.  The full status of dhimmitude is a miserable, soulless existence.  The linguist and Arabic scholar Mark Durie has traveled extensively to record and observe the status of dhimmis in the ummah (Muslim world).  Think of the life of a cowering, abused dog.  As Durie says, “it involves embracing your own inferiority.”  Indeed, Sura 9:29 of the Koran says that the purpose of the dhimmi system is to “kill the soul” of the non-Muslim, so he will render willingly everything demanded of him.

Every time you go through security at an airport, you are in effect paying the jizya.  You are also being humiliated.  This is the price we must pay in order not to be blown up.

We pay Pakistan to be “on our side’ against al-Qaeda.  We pay the Karzai Mafia to hold fast against the Taliban.  We pay in blood and money.

Obama started his presidency by paying obeisance to the leaders of the ummah in the course of his apology tour and then made his shameless Cairo speech.  This humbling of the U.S. before the Islamic world is part of the “humiliation” that is central to accepting one’s status as a dhimmi.  As Mark Durie says, “The two most characteristic psychological traits of the dhimmi are gratitude and humility.  We are seeing both these traits shaping public discourse around Islam.  President Obama, for example, has spoken of the ‘debt’ the West owes to Islam.  This sense of indebtedness is being imparted to our schoolchildren through Islamicized history textbooks.”

The worst of the tribute we pay the Islamic world is the sacrifice of our values — i.e., our souls.  The right to free speech is being chipped away.  Any criticism of Islam is labeled Islamophobia.  This is the first soul-losing step on the road to full dhimmitude — part of which contains the principle that one must never say or do anything to offend Muslims.

Starting as early as 2008, there was a government memo that warned against “offending,” “insulting,” or being “confrontational” to Muslims.

Read the rest…

 

Front Page Video: Obama – The Anti-Israel President

Frontpage video:

 

Jamie Glazov interviews David P. Goldman, author of “How Civilizations Die”:

 

Three Fundamental Mistakes in Dealing with Islam

By Daniel Greenfield:

 
We made three fundamental mistakes in our dealings with Islam. First, we assumed that the only politically acceptable answer was also the right answer. This is the most common mistake that politicians make.

Second, we established a construct of a moderate and extreme Islam that reflected how we saw it from the outside. This construct had no theological relationship to any actual belief or movement within Islam. Had we made the division into modern and fundamentalist, we would at least have been using words that meant something. Instead we used moderate and extreme in a military sense to mean hostile and friendly or neutral. But as a Vietnam era president and military command should have known, in a guerrilla war not everyone who isn’t shooting at you is friendly or even neutral.

Our construct was black and white with few shades of gray. But the Muslim world is all shades of gray. The absolute choice we wanted them to make, “you’re either with us or with the terrorists”, was foreign to their culture and their way of life. Multiple layers of contradictory relationships and alliances are the norm in the region. You expect to betray and be betrayed, much as you expect to cheat and be cheated while bartering for a carpet at the souk. In a region where coalitions of Fascists, Communists and Islamists are doable, contradictions don’t exist, all alliances are expedient and built on an expected betrayal. The rise of Islam itself was built on broken peace treaties. So it is no wonder then that in response to Bush’s call, they chose both us and the terrorists. Appeasing America and the Islamists at the same time was their version of the politically safe middle ground, the path of least resistance and the only acceptable option.

And the more we prattled about the peacefulness of Islam, the more we looked like we could be easily appeased with a few gestures. And so it was the Islamists who were more threatening, who got the benefit of of their appeasement. We had asked Muslim countries for an alliance with no mixed allegiances, in a region where only kin could ask or count on such an arrangement. And we are not their kin, neither by blood and certainly not by religion. While we insisted that all people were the same, this was a statement of our belief, not theirs. And they did not believe that we believed it either.

Rather than learning what the Muslim world was, we had already decided what we wanted it to be. But our perspective was a foreign one. They might pander to it, but they would never dictate their own beliefs by it. We might talk of a moderate or extreme Islam, but that is our idea, not theirs. There is more than one form of Islam, they are not defined by their extremism or moderation. Nor by their approach toward violence. No more than we are.

Muslim theology is violent, because violence has always been a tool of its expansion. When we ask Muslims to disassociate themselves from violence, we are really asking them to disassociate themselves from Islam. And this they will not do. They will contextually condemn some acts of terror, depending on the identity of the perpetrators and the targets, and the impact of the acts on the nation and ideology of the Muslim or Muslims in question. But they will dub other acts of terrorist as valid resistance. The differences are not moral, but contextual.

The Muslim world is a gray zone full of alliances written on sand where every principle can be bent at need, but is dominated by a religion that pretends to be morally absolute. This is an inherent contradiction. And like most moral conflicts it is resolved through self-deception. Our absolute standards have no meaning when applied to the Muslim world. They have moral force, but little practical relevance.

Islamic moderation is not theology, but pragmatism. Its fanatics are the most trustworthy, and its pragmatists the least trustworthy. We have put our faith in the moderation of the pragmatists, but confusing pragmatism with moderate beliefs, morals or friendship is no better than lapping at the sand of a mirage and calling it water.

Our third and final mistake was to believe that we held all or most of the cards, and were free to give away as many of them as we wanted to. But the more we thought we were calling the shots, the more we were shot at. Because we were not in control. The political, religious and armed conflicts we were engaged in were being fought on their terms, not ours. They began the war. They decided when to initiate the violence or call a halt to it. Their violence set the tone, we tried to defuse it. Our attempts to promote moderation in the Muslim world were reactive. It is the bomber who has the initiative once he chooses to act. And so we tried to teach the bombers not to bomb, while the bombers taught us to appease them.

When a psychiatrist rewards rats for finishing a maze, is it the psychiatrist who is training the rats to finish mazes, or the rats who are training him to give them cheese. The answer to that question hinges on who controls the experiment. While we thought that we were experimenting on the Muslim world to make them more moderate, they were actually experimenting on us to teach us to appease them.

While we were trying to force the Muslim world into our maze with two openings, one labeled ‘extreme’ and one labeled ‘moderate’, they were really moving us into their meta-maze with two openings, ‘death’ or ‘appeasement’. Our plan was to keep forcing them to choose the moderate openings in order to moderate them and break them of any attachment to terrorism. But our chief method for moving them there was appeasement. Once we got bogged down in Iraq, appeasement became our only method. While we thought that we were leading them to the moderate opening in our maze by appeasing them, they were leading us to the appeasement opening in their maze.
Read the rest at Sultan Knish

Interview with Clare M. Lopez on Islam and the Enemies of America

Clae Lopez

At The Objective Standard, (TOS), Craig Biddle interviews Clare Lopez on a range of foreign policy issues including what our policy towards Iran should be, the situation in Egypt with the Muslim Brotherhood, the prospect for democracy in the Middle East, Iran’s connections in Central and South America and what the United States must do to defend itself against radical Islam.

The following is an excerpt from the interview on the subject of Iran and 9/11:

CB: In recent decades, we’ve drifted so far from that ideal that the U.S. government is not even capable of naming our enemies or their motivations, let alone sufficiently protecting Americans from them. Who are our main enemies today? Who attacked us on 9/11? And what motivates them?

CL: An Islamic jihadist alliance of al-Qaeda, Iran, and Hezbollah attacked us on 9/11. See the recent decision of Judge George Daniels in the Southern District Court in New York City for details in the legal case against Iran filed by widows and other family members of 9/11 victims. And see the affidavit about it that I wrote with my colleague and friend Bruce Tefft. In his ruling, Judge Daniels found that the Iranian regime provided direct and material support to al-Qaeda without which the attacks of 9/11 could not have taken place.

These attackers were and remain motivated by Islam. So are those who fund them, including wealthy sheikhs, members of royal families, and those who faithfully pay their annual zakat tax across the Muslim world. The doctrine, laws, and scriptures of Islam command all Muslims, everywhere, and in all times, to fight jihad to spread Islam. Those Muslim clerics who educated and indoctrinated 9/11 hijackers are the true believers, the most devout practitioners of Islam, and they ensured that those hijackers would be, too. They will not stop—nor will their allies in such pre-violent Islamic jihadist movements as the Muslim Brotherhood—until all the world is for Allah, or they are convincingly defeated.

CB: In addition to the New York court’s finding that the Iranian regime provided material support to al-Qaeda for the attack on 9/11, a federal court recently found that “the government of Iran aided, abetted and conspired with Hezbollah, Osama Bin Laden, and al-Qaeda to launch large-scale bombing attacks against the United States,” and that the Iranian regime was responsible specifically for the 1998 bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. The regime has also repeatedly been found smuggling weapons to other terrorist groups, such as Hezbollah and Hamas, that seek to kill Americans and Israelis; training the Taliban and other enemies of America; and sending operatives and weapons to kill American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. America has known about Iran’s involvement in similar assaults for decades. Every year since 1984, the State Department has acknowledged that Iran is a state sponsor of terrorism. For the past few years, it has even acknowledged that Iran is “the most active state sponsor of terrorism.” Yet, we have not eliminated the regime, nor declared war on it, nor even named it as our enemy. Why?

CL: It is difficult to know why six successive U.S. presidential administrations have treated the mullahs’ regime in Iran with kid gloves, as though afraid of it. Despite the Iranian regime’s repeated seizure of American hostages, its empowerment of terror allies and proxies, its twenty-five-year drive for deliverable nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, its genocidal threats against friends and partners such as Israel, and its alliances with some of the worst regimes in the world, in the final analysis this is a fragile regime that knows its days are numbered and that it will eventually meet its end at the hands of its own people.

It is long since past time that the American people know the truth about what this regime and its terror proxies have done to us, in the homeland on 9/11 and elsewhere, including Khobar Towers, our East Africa embassies, in Yemen when the USS Cole was attacked, and more recently in Afghanistan and Iraq where Iranian-backed terror militias equipped with Iranian-manufactured explosives and other weaponry have killed and injured hundreds of American troops. If our national security leaders will not hold these jihadis accountable, then the courts, the American people, and our elected representatives will have to do it for them.

CB: What in your view is the most pressing danger posed by the Iranian regime today?

CL: Clearly, the most critical threat from this Iranian regime is the imminent likelihood that it will acquire deliverable nuclear weapons. Given the millennialist Twelver Shi’ite ideology publicly professed by the Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, as well as by the fanatically-dedicated Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps commander, Mohammad Ali Jafari, and Qods Force commander Qassem Suleimani, the world has no choice but to take them at their word when they threaten Armageddon in the name of their deity. This Khomeinist leadership fulfills Iran’s own constitution, which commits the regime to the spread of the revolution to the entire world and the IRGC as a “religious army” to “strike terror into the hearts of the enemy.” When a set of national leaders who profess such jihadist beliefs is openly closing in on acquisition of the bomb, it is suicidal not to take them seriously.

CB: What can and should the United States do about this?

CL: The U.S. government, led by our president, should openly declare our support for the democratic aspirations of the Iranian people. We should state clearly that we consider the current regime in Tehran illegitimate, not because we say so, but because the Iranian people say so.

Next, we should formulate and implement a concrete program of tangible support for the democratic Iranian opposition, whomever they may be. Specifically, we should establish covert, discreet ties with the Greens Movement, the Mujahedeen-e Khalq, the various ethnic opposition groups (among them Azeri and Kurdish), and devise means of aiding labor groups, students, and women. Secure communications and broadcast assistance, in addition to democracy training (like we gave the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt) are among the categories of possible support the U.S. government could provide.

It is important that the U.S. government not decide for the Iranian people who should lead them after this regime is swept into the dustbin of history. This means not playing favorites: The Department of State must immediately remove the Mujahedeen-e Khalq (MeK) from the official U.S. Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTO) list and take emergency measures to ensure the safety of the 3,400 or so unarmed MeK civilians trapped at Ashraf City in northern Iraq, whom the U.S. government pledged under the Fourth Geneva Convention to protect. Currently, with the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq, those people face imminent slaughter unless something is done very quickly. A recent UN-brokered agreement may offer a solution: Ashraf residents are to be moved to Camp Liberty near Baghdad, which was recently vacated by departing U.S. troops. They are to be monitored under UN protection until resettlement elsewhere can be arranged—a resettlement that would be vastly simplified were the U.S. government to adhere to the U.S. law that governs the Foreign Terrorist Organizations list. To date, the MeK remain on that list, in contravention of U.S. law, apparently for political purposes that serve to maintain the mullahs’ regime in power in Tehran.

The following is an excerpt from the interview on the subject of the Islamist threat to the United States:

CB: What general strategy would you advise the United States to adopt with respect to the Islamist threat against America and the West?

 The United States must meet, engage, and end this threat first, by naming the name of the enemy. We are fighting to stay free of Islamic law. We fight all those who support sharia and seek to overthrow the Constitution of the United States. This means that we recognize and name the enemy not only as those who fight a violent jihad, with kinetic means, such as Iran, al-Qaeda, and Hezbollah, but also those who operate by stealth to achieve the same objectives: reinstatement of the caliphate and imposition of sharia globally.

The Muslim Brotherhood should be named a hostile “foreign power,” along with all of its many thousands of affiliates and front groups currently operating in the United States whose goals are recognized as inimical to the U.S. Constitution. Indeed, any in the United States who preach, support, or promote elements of sharia that are in contravention of the Constitution—as the Muslim Brotherhood does—should not be immune from possible deportation or prosecution for sedition or misprision of sedition and treason (depending on citizenship status). The First Amendment protects practices of devotional religion, such as prayers, worship, diet/fasting, pilgrimage, and proselytizing. Article VI of the Constitution is quite clear, however, that the Constitution shall be the supreme law of the land. Any practice of sharia Islam that contravenes U.S. law does not enjoy First Amendment protection and instead falls under the definition of alien legal, military, political, or social practice.

The U.S. government must be purged of all Muslim Brothers, their affiliates, and supporters. U.S. national strategic policy needs to be rewritten to reflect the recognition that sharia Islam, both violent and pre-violent, is antithetical and hostile to the U.S. Constitution and will not be permitted to make inroads into American society.

CB: What do you think is the best we can aim (or hope) for in terms of an administration following the 2012 elections—not just the president, but also the secretary of state and key directors and advisers?

CL: The best outcome of the 2012 elections would be a new national leadership that understands the realities of this world we live in, with all of its challenges. The new president would appoint cabinet directors and other advisers who are knowledgeable, first of all, about this country’s own foundational principles and committed to their restoration to a position of prominence in U.S. domestic and foreign policy. Those administration members would be knowledgeable about Islam and sharia, the threat that the Muslim Brotherhood poses to U.S. national security, and the Iranian regime’s long history of enmity to America. In terms of foreign policy, the new administration would revive America’s preeminent role as defender of genuine democracy and freedom in the world, restore America’s traditional friendships, and put all those hostile to the United States and our allies on notice that America is back and will stand with our friends and prove an implacable foe to those who declare enmity to us or our allies.

CB: Where can people read your work and keep up with your thoughts on these issues?

CL: As a senior fellow with the Center for Security Policy, I am a coauthor of the Team B II Report, Shariah: The Threat to America, which can be found at ShariahTheThreat.org, as well as at Amazon.com. I also publish often at Andrew Breitbart’s website Big Peace. As a senior fellow with the Clarion Fund, I write regularly for its website, RadicalIslam.org, where it is also possible to sign up to receive the Clarion Fund’s bimonthly newsletter, for which I also write. In addition, most of my published pieces eventually make their way to Pundicity.com, where those interested can sign up to receive an automatic e-mailing of those articles.

CB: Thank you for your time and valuable insights, Clare. Would that the next president had the intelligence and courage to nominate you for secretary of state.

Read the entire interview at The Objective Standard