Jihad Watch director Robert Spencer explains some of the key failed policies and analyses that the Trump administration State Department should jettison quickly and decisively.
Front Page Magazine, by Robert Spencer, October 31, 2016:
Sam Harris thinks it’s “unbelievable” that Maajid Nawaz and Ayaan Hirsi Ali made it to the Southern Poverty Law Center’s hit list of “Anti-Muslim Extremists.” He said nothing about me or the other people whom the SPLC included, which is not surprising, since he has quite recently expressed willingness to acquiesce in other contexts to the demonization that the SPLC list exemplifies.
Hemant Mehta of The Friendly Atheist blog ably sums up the outrage over Nawaz and Hirsi Ali being included: “If criticizing religious beliefs makes them extremists, then it won’t be long before other vocal atheists end up on that list too. And make no mistake, that’s what Nawaz and Hirsi Ali are doing. That’s all they’re doing. They’re not anti-Muslim; they work with moderate Muslims. They’re critical of the worst aspects of Islam.”
The problem with being angry about Nawaz and Hirsi Ali being on the SPLC list, but silent about everyone else who is on it, is that what Mehta says about Nawaz and Hirsi Ali can quite accurately said about everyone else on the list. If criticizing religious beliefs makes them “extremists,” then it won’t be long before everyone who dares to utter a critical word about Islam will be on the list — and that is indeed the objective of the list: to stigmatize and marginalize any and all such critics. Mehta protests that Nawaz and Hirsi Ali are “not anti-Muslim; they work with moderate Muslims. They’re critical of the worst aspects of Islam.”
But no one would think that the other 13 were “anti-Muslim” if it hadn’t been for the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and their allied groups insisting that we were all these years, in their avidity to conflate opposition to jihad terror and Sharia oppression with hating a group of people — a tactic designed to discredit opposition to jihad terror and Sharia oppression. Mehta and co. are falling for and validating the same smear tactics hey are decrying when used against their friends.
And as for working with moderate Muslims, for 13 years Jihad Watch has contained this invitation: “Any Muslim who renounces violent jihad and dhimmitude is welcome to join in our anti-jihadist efforts.” It is Nawaz (as well as other moderates) who has attacked me, in what appears to have been a cynical attempt to gain support for himself among Muslims; I never attacked him, and would have have been happy to work with him otherwise.
In complaining that Nawaz and Hirsi Ali are merely “criticizing religious beliefs” and are “not anti-Muslim,” Mehta is strongly implying that the others on the SPLC list are doing something beyond “criticizing religious beliefs” and are indeed “anti-Muslim.” On Twitter the last couple of days I’ve seen many people express outrage that Nawaz has been lumped in with the likes of Spencer; but when I ask them what the big difference is between us, or for quotes from me that are actually “bigoted,” they go silent.
Mehta, Harris, Haider and the others who are only angry with the SPLC’s hit list because it included Nawaz and Hirsi Ali are, by their selective outrage, acquiescing to and legitimizing the SPLC’s demonization of the other people on the list. (In his own defense, Hemant Mehta wrote me to explain, somewhat unsatisfactorily: “I focused on those two because they’re well known in atheist circles.”) This is a self-defeating choice for them to have made, for the SPLC has never identified anyone whom it considers to be a legitimate critic of Islam, and never will: the point of lists such as the one they released yesterday is to demonize and silence everyone who dares say something about Islam that is not warmly positive.
The turn of Mehta, Harris, and Haider will come for the same treatment. One wonders if, when this happens, there will be anyone left to speak for them who has not already been smeared as “anti-Muslim,” with their tacit approval.
Jihad Watch, by Robert Spencer, October 27, 2016:
The objective of this libelous new report from the hard-Left money-making and incitement machine the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) is made plain within it: “Before you book a spokesperson from an anti-Muslim extremist group or quote them in a story, research their background — detailed in this in-depth guide to 15 of the most visible anti-Muslim activists— and consider the consequences of giving them a platform.” They wish to silence those who speak honestly about the nature and magnitude of the jihad threat, blaming us for a supposed rise in “Islamophobia.” If they really want to stamp out suspicion of Islam, of course, they will move against not us, but the likes of Omar Mateen, Syed Rizwan Farook, Tashfeen Malik, Nidal Malik Hasan, Mohammed Abdulazeez, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, and the myriad other Muslims who commit violence in the name of Islam and justify it by reference to Islamic teachings.
The SPLC doesn’t do that because its objective is not really to stop “Islamophobia” at all, but to create the illusion of a powerful and moneyed network of “Islamophobes,” who can only be stopped if you write a check to the SPLC. That’s what this is really all about. In constructing this illusory edifice, the SPLC labels me and fourteen others “anti-Muslim extremists.” We are, of course, no more “anti-Muslim” than foes of the Nazis were anti-German, but note the word “extremists.” That’s the mainstream media and Obama administration’s term of choice for jihad terrorists. In what way are we “extremists”? Has anyone on the SPLC’s hit list (and given the SPLC’s track record of inciting violence against its targets, that is exactly what it is) ever blown anything or anyone up? Beheaded anyone? Boasted of our imminent conquest of any territory and the massacre of or enslavement of its people? No, all we have done is speak critically about jihad terror and Sharia oppression. The SPLC is trying to further the libel that we are the other side of the coin, the non-Muslim bin Ladens and Awlakis. Until we commit any terror attacks or conspire with others to do so, however, the SPLC’s libel is only that: a libel.
It’s also passingly ironic that the SPLC list includes several people who are doubtless horrified to be in this company, as they have endeavored for years to distinguish their message from that of those whom they themselves would smear as “Islamophobes.” But their temporizing and pandering didn’t work: they ended up on the Index of Prohibited Thinkers anyway, as will, ultimately, anyone who dares to note that Islam just might have something to do with the acts of murder committed in its name and in accord with its teachings.
The entry on me is accompanied by a nifty watercolor, but otherwise has little to recommend it, other than as an example of the Left’s strange tendency to present true statements as if they were self-evidently false, without bothering to explain why. Apparently the SPLC knows its supporters and is aware that it doesn’t need to bother with troublesome things like, you know, facts.
Nonetheless, I have replied in detail here so that the record, for anyone who is fair-minded, is clear. Much more below.
“Field Guide to Anti-Muslim Extremists,” SPLC, October 25, 2016:
Robert Spencer — Jihad Watch* // American Freedom Defense Initiative* // Stop Islamization of America*
Robert Spencer is commonly referred to as one of the few real intellectuals in the anti-Muslim movement, and it is true that he is the author of more than a dozen books, two of which made the New York Times Best Seller List. But Spencer is entirely self-taught in the study of Islam,
An odd objection. One cannot be both “self-taught” and a “real intellectual”? In any case, it’s false: I am indeed mostly self-taught in the study of Islam, and make no secret of or apologies for it; every day’s headlines proves me correct. Nonetheless, the fact is that I did first read the Qur’an and began studying Islam in earnest while at the University of North Carolina, in courses taught by Professor Gordon Newby, author of A Concise Encyclopedia of Islam, who was coming over from Duke to teach courses about Islam, and Professor David Halperin of UNC.
he has partnered with a woman known as one of the least reasoned enemies of Islam in the country, and he is given to the same kinds of extravagant, and often provably false, claims that characterize most Muslim-bashers.
“Provably false”? Really? Where? When? By whom? Certainly not by the SPLC, either in this hit piece or any other.
Spencer has complained of “Shariah enclaves” and predicted that they will grow across America;
Some news articles from just the past few weeks:
There are plenty more where those came from.
referred to Barack Obama as “the first Muslim president”;
This one epitomizes the dishonesty of the SPLC. The quote comes from an article I wrote in 2007 discussing how Obama was not a Muslim, stating that his obvious affinity for Islam and the Muslim world could make him into “our first Muslim president” the way Bill Clinton was called “our first black president.” After eight years of Obama, I’d say I was proven correct in rather spectacular fashion.
Jihad Watch, by Robert Spencer, October 26, 2016:
Now that we know that the mainstream media is simply and solely a propaganda arm for the Left and the Democratic Party, it is interesting to see some of those who, we’re told, are deeply concerned about Trump’s “racism,” breaking ranks. There are Middle Easterners who are deeply concerned about jihad and Islamic supremacism, and they are not falling for the party line.
If America is ever going to fight effectively against the global jihad, the mainstream media stranglehold must be broken.
“American Mideast Coalition Endorses Donald J. Trump for President in Washington DC. October 17th,” New English Review, October 21, 2016:
On October 17th, 2016, over 250 leaders of numerous diverse Middle Eastern communities in the United States gathered in Washington DC to endorse Donald J. Trump for President of the United States.
Warmly received were Donald Trump’s foreign policy and national security advisors General Bert Mizusawa, Professor Walid Phares and Attorney Joseph Schmitz, who explained the nuances of Trump’s foreign policy toward the Middle East and Africa.
Also present were a number of foreign dignitaries including, Serbia’s Ambassador Djerdj Matkovic, Filip Jasinski (First Counselor of the Polish Embassy), Yasser Elshimy (Policy officer at the Egyptian Embassy), Mohamed Bahzad (Kingdom of Bahrain Embassy), Khaled Darief (Libyan Embassy), Karl Lagatie (Belgian Embassy), Gregor Csorsz (Austrian Embassy) Mamad Talibov (Azerbaijan Embassy) as well as Caroline Hurmdal, Chima Pavan and Ben Norman (UK Embassy). They were introduced by Mideast Hispanic Women for Trump Astrid Mattar-Hajjar.
Numerous community leaders recounted the foreign policy failures of the Obama/Clinton years and expressed their support for the direction Donald Trump will take as President. Where Obama has shunned moderate, secular voices in the region and has partnered with radicals (such as the Muslim Brotherhood and the Islamist regime of Iran), Donald Trump promises to do exactly the opposite: to support the moderates and oppose the radicals. This change in direction was endorsed vociferously and cheerfully by the participants – Sunni and Shi’a Muslims, Assyrian, Chaldean, Coptic and Maronite Christians, Yazidis, Kurds, Jews and Africans.
The Co-chairs and officers of the American Mideast Coalition for Trump, John Hajjar, Tom Harb, Eblan Farris and Hossein Khorram introduced the large coalition of several Middle East and East African pro-Trump groups coming from across the United States to the capital to express their rejection of the Obama-Clinton policies both at home and overseas, and to support an alternative program advanced by the next President of the United States, Donald Trump.
Among the community leaders who addressed the audience were Assyrian American Ms. Nahren Anweya from Michigan, Iranian-American leader Dr. Mohammed Hamzepour from Virginia, Lebanese Shia Imam, Sheikh Mohammed el Hajj Hassan and Chaldean-American leader Sam Yono, both from Detroit, Ethiopian American Laban Seyoum and American Sudanese Ibrahim Ahmed Beja, both from Virginia, Turkish American Sal Simsek of Connecticut and Egyptian American Dr. Ashley Ansara from Florida. In addition, Mauritanian American Ahmad Sidi Moila and Yazidi American Khalid Haidar from West Virginia spoke to the press.
At the close of the event, the names of the very important Donald J. Trump for President Inc.’s “Middle Eastern American Advisory Committee” members were announced.
It should be noted that this event was heavily covered by Middle East media including al Arabiya, al Jazeera, Skynews Arabia, al Hurra TV, Radio SAWA, Voice of America Persian, Radio Farda as well as major social media broadcasts.
The Advisory Board and AMCT are now heavily campaigning for Mr Trump across the country and particularly in all battleground states.
Robert Spencer discusses redemptive jihad as one explanation for “sudden jihad syndrome”. Muslims who have become Westernized may feel guilty and actually fear what will become of them in the hereafter. They may believe that the only way to redeem themselves is to commit jihad as taught in the Quran.
Jihad Watch director Robert Spencer explains how Barack Obama’s public statements about Islam do not accord with Islamic teachings or the reality of current events.
Right, and Hillary is honest, too.
Front Page Magazine, by Robert Spencer, September 30, 2016
Here we go again. This is like having to prove that water is wet or that Hillary Clinton is crooked, but since Barack Obama has once again affirmed that jihad terrorists are twisting and hijacking the Religion of Peace, once again it is necessary to prove that unfortunately that is not the case. Obama is right about one thing: this question matters for what strategy the U.S. and the free world should pursue against the jihadis. That’s what makes his denial and willful ignorance nothing short of catastrophic.
CNN reported Thursday that Obama said the question of whether or not to use the term “Islamic terrorist” was “sort of manufactured” issue. He claimed, yet again, that “terrorist organizations like al Qaeda or ISIL…have perverted and distorted and tried to claim the mantle of Islam for an excuse for basically barbarism and death.”
Warming to his point, Obama said: “These are people who’ve killed children, killed Muslims, take sex slaves, there’s no religious rationale that would justify in any way any of the things that they do.”
Is he right? Of course not.
“Killed children”: “It is reported on the authority of Sa’b b. Jaththama that the Prophet of Allah (may peace be upon him), when asked about the women and children of the polytheists being killed during the night raid, said: They are from them.” — Sahih Muslim 4321
“I was very happy to learn about the relevant hadith. I felt overjoyed when I heard it. [Mus’ab Ibn Juthama] told the Prophet Muhammad that while the Muslims would attack the polytheists at night, women and children would be harmed. The Prophet Muhammad answered: ‘[Their offspring] constitute part of them.’ They are part of them, said our beloved Muhammad. This is not merely someone’s opinion. Thus, killing their women and children is permitted.” — Sudanese Muslim cleric Muhammad Al-Jazouli
“Killed Muslims”: “They but wish that you should reject faith, as they do, and thus be on the same footing: but do not take friends from their ranks until they emigrate in the way of Allah. But if they turn renegade, seize them and kill them wherever you find them…” — Qur’an 4:89. To “emigrate in the way of Allah” would involve their becoming Muslim — but if they “turn renegade” after that, then they are to be killed.
“The punishment of those who make war against Allah and his messenger and spread corruption in the land shall be to put them to death or to have them crucified or to have their hands and feet cut off on alternate sides, or to banish them from the land….” — Qur’an 5:33. The Islamic State claims that is the caliphate, the sole authority that Muslims should obey, and that to oppose it therefore constitutes making war against Allah and his messenger. No exception is given in this Qur’an verse or anywhere else: nowhere are Muslims who are considered to have made war against Allah and his messenger exempted from this death penalty.
“Take sex slaves”: The seizure of Infidel girls and their use as sex slaves is sanctioned in the Qur’an. According to Islamic law, Muslim men can take “captives of the right hand” (Qur’an 4:3, 4:24, 33:50). The Qur’an says: “O Prophet! Lo! We have made lawful to you your wives to whom you have paid their dowries, and those whom your right hand possesses of those whom Allah has given you as spoils of war” (33:50). 4:3 and 4:24 extend this privilege to Muslim men in general. The Qur’an says that a man may have sex with his wives and with these slave girls: “The believers must win through, those who humble themselves in their prayers; who avoid vain talk; who are active in deeds of charity; who abstain from sex, except with those joined to them in the marriage bond, or whom their right hands possess, for they are free from blame.” (Qur’an 23:1-6)
Obama also said: “But what I have been careful about when I describe these issues is to make sure that we do not lump these murderers into the billion Muslims that exist around the world…”
Calling them “Islamic terrorists” wouldn’t do that, any more than referring to “American senators” means that all Americans are senators. Calling them what they are simply opens the door for us to understanding what they are all about, and how best to counter them.
Clinging determinedly to his fantasies, Obama added: “If you had an organization that was going around killing and blowing people up and said, ‘We’re on the vanguard of Christianity.’ As a Christian, I’m not going to let them claim my religion and say, ‘you’re killing for Christ.’ I would say, that’s ridiculous.”
Sure. But if this group was basing its actions on some twisted interpretation of Christian scripture, law enforcement and intelligence officials would be derelict in their duty if they didn’t study that interpretation — even if they understood it was wrong — in order to understand the motives and goals of the enemy and develop effective ways to defeat them.
Yet that is exactly what Obama has forbidden: on October 19, 2011, Farhana Khera of Muslim Advocates wrote a letter to John Brennan, who was then the Assistant to the President on National Security for Homeland Security and Counter Terrorism and is now the head of the CIA. The letter was signed not just by Khera, but by the leaders of virtually all the significant Islamic groups in the United States: 57 Muslim, Arab, and South Asian organizations, many with ties to Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, including the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), the Muslim American Society (MAS), the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), Islamic Relief USA; and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC).
The letter denounced what it characterized as U.S. government agencies’ “use of biased, false and highly offensive training materials about Muslims and Islam” and demanded that all mention of Islam and jihad be removed from counter-terror training materials. Brennan immediately complied.
So since then, it has been administration policy to ignore and deny the motivating ideology of jihad terror. That is a recipe for defeat and disaster: you cannot defeat an enemy you don’t understand. Under Barack Obama, refusing to understand the enemy is official U.S. government policy.
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and author of the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is The Complete Infidel’s Guide to Iran. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.
PJ Media, by Bridget Johnson, Sept.30, 2016:
WASHINGTON — Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson told the Washington Ideas Forum this week that he’s “very concerned” about the “prospect of terrorist-inspired plots because of terrorist organizations’ effective use of the Internet, where somebody could self-radicalize at home, in their garage, in their basement, online without us knowing about it.”
Johnson said “the prospect of a homegrown violent extremist self-radicalized, you know, one or two individuals, who could commit an act of violence in a public place or a public gathering” is “the thing that keeps me up at night.”
“We have, since 9/11, gone a long way in addressing the vulnerabilities that existed then,” he noted. “The way I put it is our government has become pretty good at detecting threats to the homeland from overseas, plotting terrorist-directed plots at their earliest stages.”
The DHS chief said that requires “a whole of government approach” with a strong “role for the public — public vigilance, public awareness and, something that I’ve been very focused on in my time as secretary, building bridges to communities, particularly American-Muslim communities, to encourage them to help us in our efforts.”
Johnson was asked about his recent speech to the Islamic Society of North America, in which he said, “It is frustrating to listen to those who foment fear, suspicion and intolerance, who don’t know the mistakes of history, and are in the midst of repeating them.”
“I had nobody particular in mind,” the secretary insisted to the Ideas Forum.
“The other thing I said in that speech was something that I have done from time to time, which is you have an opportunity to look at a room full of American Muslims. And you tend to view the group solely through a security lens, a Homeland Security lens,” he continued. “And we spent a lot of time talking to young American Muslims about what they should not become. And I decided in that address, which was to thousands of American Muslims, it’s the largest gathering every year of American Muslims, to talk about what you can become in this great country.”
Johnson emphasized that “those of us who are students of history can learn from it.”
“And those of us who don’t know the mistakes of history are going to repeat them. And I do worry about a lot of the rhetoric, which has the effect of vilifying — vilifying American Muslim communities here, which drives them in the exact opposite direction of where we want them to go in this country,” he said. “I’m not referring to anything presidential candidates say. But I have before called it out when I hear it.”
Johnson was asked about the TIME magainze op-ed earlier this month of Matt Olsen, former director of the National Counterterrorism Center, who wrote that “this year, ISIS isn’t simply a passive observer of American politics,” but is rooting for Donald Trump.
“I think we should be concerned about rhetoric that have the effect of isolating the American Muslim communities here, vilifying Muslims and driving them to a place that our enemies would like them to be to make them more susceptible to the recruitment effort,” Johnson said.
Otherwise, the DHS chief said, “I’m not going to comment on what the candidates say specifically because I’m not supposed to.”
Johnson acknowledged “sometimes that gets hard.”
“I will say that when we hear rhetoric that is inflammatory, that strikes fear, that vilifies American Muslim communities, that is counter to our to our homeland security, national security efforts in the environment we’re in, where we have to be concerned about homegrown violent extremists, that some of whom may find the appeals of the Islamic State to be something that they are drawn to,” he added. “And so when we vilify American Muslims and we say you’re different from all the rest of us, that’s exactly what terrorist organizations want them to hear.”
Jihad Watch director Robert Spencer discusses two recent protests by Muslims against the labeling of the 9/11 hijackers as Islamic terrorists, and shows how they’re part of ongoing efforts to intimidate Americans into thinking it wrong to oppose jihad terror.
Front Page Magazine, by Robert Spencer, Sept. 27, 2016:
The evidence is scant that Arcan Cetin, a Muslim migrant from Turkey, murdered five people in Cascade Mall in Burlington, Washington last Friday night in the name of jihad and Islam, but the evidence that does exist is striking. Amid his busy online activity, Cetin posted admiration for the Islamic State caliph al-Baghdadi and Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei and a call for Muslims to repeat “SubhanAllah” multiple times.
It’s hard to imagine a scenario in which someone who did not have jihad sympathies would post anything positive about Baghdadi or Khamenei, but the problem in Cetin’s case is that these references come without any supporting context. Dahir Adan, who stabbed nine people in a mall in St. Cloud, Minnesota last week, had a sparse social media presence, but did take the time to list the Qur’an as his favorite book on his Facebook page. Cetin, who by contrast was all over social media, never speaks about Islam or jihad – except in the posts about Baghdadi and Khamenei, and the “SubhanAllah” post.
And so NBC News reported that “when asked on Sunday whether they could rule out terrorism as a motive, Mount Vernon police Lt. Chris Cammock said no.” It couldn’t be ruled out, but there was no initial indication that Arcan Cetin was a hardcore true believer a la Orlando jihad mass murderer Omar Mateen, who called 911 in the midst of his massacre to declare his allegiance to the Islamic State and repeatedly proclaimed that his murders were for Allah.
But Cetin could be something even worse. CBS News reported that he “was described by those who knew him as ‘creepy’ and a ‘bully,’ and he had a handful of arrests for assaulting his stepfather, as well as a DUI.” He was “reportedly ordered to undergo a mental health evaluation in August 2015, and that was completed as of March 2016.”
He scared at least one neighbor: “Amber Cathey, 21, lived in an apartment next to Cetin for the past three months and said she was so frightened by him that she complained to apartment management and kept a stun gun handy. Cathey said she blocked him on Snapchat after he sent her a photo of his crotch. ‘He was really creepy, rude and obnoxious,’ Cathey said.”
A high school classmate recalled that Cetin “was very hurtful towards girls. He would sexually harass them. And bully a lot of them.”
So Cetin had a history of violent, abusive behavior, and sexually harassed women. Not coincidentally, he comes from a cultural that sanctifies violent, abusive behavior, particularly toward women: “Men have authority over women because Allah has made the one superior to the other, and because they spend their wealth to maintain them. Good women are obedient. They guard their unseen parts because Allah has guarded them. As for those from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them and send them to beds apart and beat them” (Qur’an 4:34). The Qur’an also teaches that Infidel women can be lawfully taken for sexual use (cf. its allowance for a man to take “captives of the right hand,” 4:3, 4:24, 23:1-6, 33:50, 70:30). The Qur’an says: “O Prophet, tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to bring down over themselves of their outer garments. That is more suitable that they will be known and not be abused. And ever is Allah Forgiving and Merciful.” (33:59) The implication there is that if women do not cover themselves adequately with their outer garments, they may be abused, and that such abuse would be justified.
Arcan Cetin may not have known or cared about any of those Qur’an passages. But he may have lived in an environment in which such attitudes were taken for granted. Ex-Muslim cartoonist Bosch Fawstin has recounted how, even growing up in a secular, non-observant Muslim household, anti-Semitism and misogyny were commonplace and taken for granted. Even though no one in the house was particularly devout, no one thought to question the bedrock assumptions that Jews were evil and women were inferior.
If that is the kind of household Arcan Cetin, another apparently secular Muslim, grew up in, he and people like him should concern authorities even more than people like Omar Mateen and the San Bernardino killers, Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik. Mateen, Farook and Malik were all devout and observant Muslims; Cetin, at least as far as we know right now, was not. When devout, observant Muslims who believe that the supreme being has ordered them to “kill them wherever you find them” (cf. Qur’an 2:191, 4:89, 9:5) end up doing so, it should surprise authorities who aren’t thoroughly sold out to politically correct fantasies. When, on the other hand, someone like Arcan Cetin goes jihad, his actions show that the violent jihad option is a live one even for the “moderate,” secularized Muslims upon which Western authorities are staking the future of the free world.
Arcan Cetin shows that even thoroughly assimilated Muslims who love video games and kidding around with non-Muslim friends on social media still retain a good many Islamic cultural attitudes that are incompatible with Western culture, and, at times of personal crisis, may pick up a rifle and start shooting.
This is a case that proponents of the massive Muslim migrant influx into the West should ponder. But they won’t.
Front Page Magazine, by Robert Spencer, Sept. 16, 2016:
Barack Obama’s fantasy Islam made a new appearance Monday, when he issued a statement congratulating and praising Muslims on the occasion of the Muslim feast of Eid al-Adha:
Michelle and I extend our warmest wishes to Muslims across our country and around the world who are celebrating Eid al-Adha. This special holiday is a time to honor the sacrifice, resolve, and commitment to God demonstrated by Abraham.
In speaking of Abraham, it is important to remember that there is no parallel in the Qur’an to Genesis 22:15-18, in which Abraham is rewarded for his faith and told he will become a blessing to the nations: “by your descendants shall all the nations of the earth bless themselves, because you have obeyed my voice.” The Muslim audiences Obama was addressing don’t read Genesis. They read the Qur’an.
In the Qur’an, Allah says that Abraham is an “excellent example” (uswa hasana, أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ, a term applied also to Muhammad in 33:21) for the believers when he tells his pagan family and people that “there has arisen, between us and you, enmity and hatred for ever, unless ye believe in Allah and Him alone” (60:4). The same verse goes on to say that Abraham is not an excellent example when he tells his father, “I will pray for forgiveness for you.” Hatred is held up as exemplary; forgiveness is explicitly declared to be not exemplary.
Obama was thus reinforcing a worldview that takes for granted the legitimacy of everlasting enmity and hatred between Muslims and non-Muslims — and was doing so precisely in the context of trying to build bridges between Muslims and non-Muslims.
…It is also a celebration of the ways faith can transcend any differences or boundaries and unite us under the banners of fellowship and love….
Yes, indeed. Just look at Fort Hood, and Boston, and Chattanooga, Garland, San Bernardino, Orlando, as well as Paris, Brussels, Nice, and all the rest united us under the banners of fellowship and love. Of course, Obama would insist that these had nothing to do with Islam: all the evidence that refutes his politically correct fantasies is waved away. The national conversation that needs to be had about how jihadis use the texts and teachings of Islam to justify violence and supremacism is once again kicked down the road.
Ahmad al-Mohammed and one other of the jihadis who murdered 130 people in Paris in November 2015 had just entered Europe as refugees.
In February 2015, the Islamic State boasted it would soon flood Europe with as many as 500,000 refugees. And the Lebanese Education Minister said in September 2015 that there were 20,000 jihadis among the refugees in camps in his country. Meanwhile, 80% of migrants who have come to Europe claiming to be fleeing the war in Syria aren’t really from Syria at all.
An Islamic State operative boasted in September 2015, shortly after the migrant influx began, that among the flood of refugees, 4,000 Islamic State jihadis had already entered Europe. On May 10, 2016, Patrick Calvar, the head of France’s DGSI internal intelligence agency, said that the Islamic State was using migrant routes through the Balkans to get jihadis into Europe.
But none of this information has been allowed to interfere with Barack Obama’s fantasies. Meanwhile, back in the real world, the Islamic State celebrated Eid al-Adha by not only slaughtering animals, but by hanging men it had designated as U.S. spies upside down from meat hooks and slaughtering them “like sheep.”
It might have been illuminating for Obama to have taken a moment to explain how and why that was not a proper celebration of this feast of “fellowship and love,” and why Muslims must reject the understanding of Islam offered by the Islamic State. But while he has repeatedly asserted that the Islamic State is not Islamic, he has never bothered to explain exactly why it isn’t, or how this misunderstanding of Islam became so widespread. That’s how things work in fantasies: we don’t know how Mary Poppins can fly or Harry Potter can make things disappear with the wave of a wand – they just can. For Obama, Islam is a religion of peace. It just is. And no proliferation of infidels hanging from meat hooks will disturb his comforting fantasy.
PJ MEDIA, BY ROBERT SPENCER, SEPTEMBER 14, 2016:
This war has gone on for a very long time, and last Sunday, the 15th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 jihad attacks, among all the reminiscences, and eulogies, and encomia, virtually no one attempted to explain why.
There’s a simple reason this topic wasn’t discussed: among our political and media “elites,” no one knows the answer.
Even the most dire estimates of exactly how long this is going to take have fallen wide of the mark. General Petraeus said in 2010 that it could take another ten years to defeat the Afghan “insurgency.” Do you think the Taliban is likely to be disbanded and Afghanistan to be a stable, functioning republic in 2020?
In 2007, Britain’s security chief, Admiral Lord Alan West, said it could take 30 years to defeat terrorism in the United Kingdom. Do you think that in 2037, Britain will be peaceful and free of jihad terrorists?
The very idea is preposterous, and it is preposterous for the same reason that 15 years after 9/11, no one knows why this strange war has lasted so long.
West said more in that 2007 interview:
I now realize that we are talking about a generation — and by that I would say 30 years. That doesn’t mean necessarily that we are going to stay at a severe level of threat for all those years. But to be able to say one has absolutely changed the mind-set and thought of people IS going to take a generation.
West nailed the answer there — but no one seemed to notice.
Because nothing, nothing whatsoever, is being done in Britain or anywhere else to change “the mind-set and thought of people.”
That is precisely why, fifteen years after 9/11, the West is weaker and more vulnerable than ever.
The entirety of Western intelligentsia, the totality of our political and media elites, steadfastly refuses to acknowledge exactly what the “mindset and thought” of the terrorists really is, and where it comes from. Because of that refusal, policies that don’t deal with the actual problem keep being applied and re-applied — at the cost of thousands of American lives, billions of American dollars — and we have nothing to show for this expenditure besides a sharp and continuing loss of American power and prestige.
The jihadis who struck the U.S. on September 11, 2001 have made such immense advances since then not because they are strong, or clever, or capable, but because we are weak, short-sighted, and resolute. Resolute not in fighting them, but in maintaining our denial about who they are and what they want.
The denial is so complete that we have taken numerous steps to actually enable them to achieve their goals: the billions gifted to the Islamic Republic of Iran and the welcoming of the massive Muslim migrant influx are just two of the most recent examples.
On the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, instead of stories about the jihad threat and how it can be defeated or at least contained, the media posted articles that would give an uninformed observer the impression that 3,000 Muslims were killed on 9/11. The media preoccupation today is almost entirely with Muslims as victims:
“Muslim Americans still struggle with hate crimes, 15 years after 9/11,” claimed AOL.
“For many Muslims, especially those born after Sept. 11, Islamophobia seems to be a fact of life,” lamented the Huffington Post.
The Washington Post ran a piece by Rep. Keith Ellison:
I’m the first Muslim in Congress. I believe America can beat Islamophobia. Fifteen years after 9/11, American Muslims have seen both progress and peril.
After Fort Hood, and Boston, and Garland, and Chattanooga, and San Bernardino, and Orlando, and Paris, and Brussels, and Nice, and so very many others, this myopia is ludicrous to the point of being grotesque.
And it is the key reason why this war drags on, fifteen years after 9/11: millions unthinkingly accept the dogma that to speak honestly and accurately about the jihadis’ motives and goals is to descend into “racism” and “bigotry,” and to endanger innocent Muslims.
Fifteen years after jihadis murdered nearly 3,000 Americans, it is still almost unheard-of for there to be an honest discussion of jihadi motives and goals in the mainstream.
The free West is dug in: wholeheartedly committed to denial, willful ignorance, and policies that are self-defeating to the point of suicidal. In light of that, the wonder is not that this war has lasted so long, but that we have held out so long.
Unless the political landscape changes considerably and this denial is decisively rejected and discarded, much darker days are coming.
Front Page Magazine, by Robert Spencer, Sept. 14, 2016:
These are times that try men’s souls, and it happens occasionally that when tried, some souls reveal that they’re not what they appear to be. Several days ago, I received an email from an FBI special agent, saying that he wanted to speak with me and asking for contact information for Pamela Geller. The agent was looking for us, he told me when he got me on the phone, because he had a duty to notify us that the bureau had picked up word that a Muslim had mentioned our names and was looking for us in order to kill us. And now that jihadi has an unlikely ally, at least in wanting Pamela Geller dead: a putative foe of jihad terror, Theodore Shoebat.
Theodore Shoebat runs the website Shoebat.com, which many take as a reliable source for news of jihad activity that the mainstream media does not deign to report. Shoebat.com, however, has a reputation for sensationalistic unreliability: to take one notorious example, it posted a photo of a young German woman holding a sign reading, “Will Trade Racists For Rapists.” Amazing! Shocking! Astonishing proof of the suicidal stupidity of the European Left! There was just one catch: the sign was photoshopped. The original read, “Will Trade Racists for Refugees.” Shoebat.com never acknowledged this or retracted its original post.
In this, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Theodore Shoebat is the son of Walid Shoebat, who styles himself an ex-Muslim and reformed jihadist. Walid Shoebat, who certainly has demonstrated a broad knowledge of Islam and the jihad threat, has been challenged repeatedly, most notably on CNN, to substantiate his claims about his past. Several years ago I myself gave him a chance to answer all the charges against his veracity in a video interview; in purporting to do so, Walid Shoebat talked for a long time, said very little of substance, and left the principal charges of his own dishonesty unanswered. In personal exchanges more recently, I was struck by his dishonesty again.
And now this. In a video posted last Thursday, Theodore Shoebat says: “Pamela Geller is worthy of death.” Her crime? Appearing at a “Gays for Trump” event along with gay activist Milo Yiannopoulos at the Republican National Convention in July. For that, says the learned Shoebat the younger, “In Biblical law, in the government of Christendom, she is worthy of death.”
Is that so? Yes, says Theodore, because Romans 1:32 speaks of those who “having known the justice of God, did not understand that they who do such things, are worthy of death, and not only they that do them, but they also that consent to them that do them.” Pamela Geller is not homosexual, you see, but by appearing at the event, she gave “consent” to those who are, and thus she also is “worthy of death.”
Theodore Shoebat doesn’t mention that this passage refers not only to men who “have burned in their lusts one towards another,” but also to those who are guilty of “iniquity, malice, fornication, avarice, wickedness,” and are “full of envy, murder, contention, deceit, malignity, whisperers,” as well as “detractors, hateful to God, contumelious, proud, haughty, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,” and those who are “foolish, dissolute, without affection, without fidelity, without mercy” (Romans 1:26-31). All of these people are, in the Apostle Paul’s view, “worthy of death.”
In today’s overheated and jihad-preoccupied environment, however, Theodore Shoebat’s charge that Pamela Geller is worthy of death is not theological musing, but arguable incitement to murder. If his father was indeed a jihadi, Theodore’s words demonstrate that old habits and mindsets die hard, and aren’t always effaced by a change of creed: Theodore Shoebat, like his father in his jihadi days, apparently wants to see those who challenge his religious ideas dead, and thinks he is being righteous in calling for the deaths of those whom he hates.
In contrast, I oppose jihad terror and Islamic supremacism not because I want to substitute Christian supremacism for it, but because I believe in the extraordinary wisdom of the Founding Fathers in mandating that Congress shall not establish a state religion for the United States of America. In a society in which people will inevitably differ on fundamental questions, the idea that we must put up with one another and live peacefully despite our disagreements is our only alternative to a society in which the adherents of one religion (or secular belief-system) attempt to gain and enforce hegemony over their fellow citizens of other beliefs and creeds.
I don’t believe in Islam and don’t wish to live under a government that forces me to conform to its sensibilities; nor do I wish to live under a Christian government that forces non-Christians to conform to its sensibilities. This is not by any means to equate Islam with Christianity, or to engage in any moral equivalence between the two; Islam’s doctrines of warfare against and subjugation of unbelievers are without parallel in authentic or traditional Christianity. But that is not the Christianity of Theodore Shoebat.
Theodore Shoebat has substituted one tyranny for another. He represents what free people who wish to live in a free society must resist.
CJR: I stopped following or posting anything from Shoebat.com a long time ago for the reasons Robert Spencer outlines above. The Shoebats are religious zealots and they harm the reputation of the Counter Jihad movement. The recent change of my website banner was done in part to eliminate books authored by them in the original banner. (I also wanted to add Catastrophic Failure and Defeating Jihad)
Front Page Magazine, by Robert Spencer, Sept. 7, 2016:
“Islamophobia” is running rampant in the heretofore bucolic town of Oswego, New York, and Muslims are worried. Are marauding bands of “right-wing extremists” pulling hijabs off little old Muslim ladies and daubing swastikas on the walls of mosques? No, the “Islamophobia” in question appears on Oswego’s new 9/11 memorial monument, which dares to refer to the perpetrators of the September 11, 2001 jihad terror attacks as “Islamic terrorists.” In this age of Obama, Oswego should have known better!
WWMT reported last Thursday that the monument was “causing controversy,” as “the Islamic Organization of the Southern Tier worries the wording could encourage hatred toward Muslims living in the area, painting all Muslims with the same brush….The Islamic group has asked that the monument just read, ‘terrorists’ or even ‘Al-Qaeda terrorists.’”
Calling the 9/11 hijackers “Islamic terrorists” is “painting all Muslims with the same brush”? This is an oft-used and tired talking point. How does identifying the motivating ideology of the 9/11 attackers paint all Muslims with the same brush? Does referring to the Italian mafia amount to calling all Italians mafiosi? Does referring to German Nazis mean that one is calling all Germans National Socialists?
This is just an attempt to deflect attention away from the ideology of the 9/11 hijackers, and to keep people ignorant and complacent regarding the fact that those hijackers were working from Islamic principles that are embedded within the Islamic texts that are read and studied and taught by the Islamic Organization of the Southern Tier.
And it isn’t by any means the first time. In April 2014, Muslim groups protested against the screening of a seven-minute film entitled “The Rise of Al Qaeda” at the National September 11 Memorial Museum in New York City. Sheikh Mostafa Elazabawy, the imam of Masjid Manhattan, huffed: “The screening of this film in its present state would greatly offend our local Muslim believers as well as any foreign Muslim visitor to the museum. Unsophisticated visitors who do not understand the difference between Al Qaeda and Muslims may come away with a prejudiced view of Islam, leading to antagonism and even confrontation toward Muslim believers near the site.”
This was an extraordinary complaint in light of the fact that the film in no way conflated al-Qaeda with Muslims as a whole. All it did was use the words “jihad” and “Islamist.” Nonetheless, Akbar Ahmed, a noted Islamic scholar at American University, insisted that many visitors to the museum were “simply going to say Islamist means Muslims, jihadist means Muslims. The terrorists need to be condemned and remembered for what they did. But when you associate their religion with what they did, then you are automatically including, by association, one and a half billion people who had nothing to do with these actions and who ultimately the U.S. would not want to unnecessarily alienate.”
That the terrorists themselves were the ones who associated their religion with what they did, not the 9/11 Memorial Museum, Ahmed did not address, any more than did the Islamic Organization of the Southern Tier when it was complaining about the 9/11 monument in Oswego. (Atta reminded himself in a note found in his suitcase: “Increase your mention of God’s name. The best mention is reading the Qur’an. All scholars agreed to this. It is enough for us, that [the Qur’an] is the word of the Creator of Heaven and Earth, Who we are about to meet.”) Ultimately, the museum stood firm about the film, but it did remove the term “Islamic terrorism” from its website. What Oswego will do remains to be seen.
These episodes are illuminating: even to note the obvious fact that the 9/11 hijackers identified themselves as Muslims and explained that they were doing what they did because of Islam is now supposedly offensive to other Muslims, and so must not be done. Even to take notice of the hijackers’ Islamic self-identification is unacceptable evidence of “Islamophobia.” This is as ludicrous as it is self-defeating. That it has become official administration policy in dealing with the jihad threat, and enough of a cultural norm that the Islamic Organization of the Southern Tier wasn’t too embarrassed to protest against a simple truth being told in Oswego, is evidence of how severe the crisis we are in really is.