Memo to Michigan: Part 2 – Sharia the Threat

Center for Security Policy, May 8, 2018:

Part I:  Controversy erupts in Michigan gubernatorial race as barbs are traded over sharia.

Part II:

Controversy erupted in the Michigan gubernatorial race as barbs were traded over sharia. The Center for Security Policy has been the leading voice in the ideological fight against sharia supremacism for many years. This is a series to spotlight our many resources for understanding and combating the civilization jihad.

In 2010, an extraordinary group of veteran national security practitioners and other highly skilled individuals came together to provide a second opinion on the nature of the war in which we have found ourselves since at least 9/11.  Their joint effort was modeled after an earlier “exercise in competitive analysis” conducted in the 1970s by a group informally known as Team B.

Like the original group, which focused on the threat posed by the Soviet Union, Team B II set out to evaluate carefully all the available facts concerning the doctrine, strategy, tactics and order of battle of today’s most immediate enemy – and to recommend appropriate responses.  And, as with the earlier initiative, Team B II was determined to go where those facts led and, if necessary, to challenge the conventional wisdom and governing policy prescriptions.

The result was the book, Sharia: The Threat to America.

Center President and CEO Frank Gaffney presents the key findings of this book in the following video:

The full book is available for free below, or on The abridged version is available here.

Shariah-supremacism’s Assault in Michigan, and America

Center for Security Policy, by Frank Gaffney, April 30, 2018:

The “civilization jihad” is underway in Michigan. That’s the stealthy, subversive warfare the Muslim Brotherhood employs to “destroy Western civilization from within.”

The Brotherhood and other Sharia-supremacists insinuate themselves and their influence operations into government, the media, schools, popular culture, businesses, other faith communities and politics. And anyone who notices – let alone objects – is slandered as an “Islamophobe” and bigot.

That’s what happening at the moment to State Sen. Patrick Colbeck, who is running for Michigan governor in a crowded field that includes a suave doctor with unacknowledged ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, Abdul el-Sayed.  And prominent figures on both sides of the political aisle are submitting to demands to denounce Sen. Colbeck and suppress his warnings.

Such appeasement will intensify, not terminate the threat Sharia-supremacism poses to Michigan – and America, and must be opposed.


Correcting Disinformation on Shariah from Buzzfeed by Christopher Holton, April 30, 2018:

On April 24, the web site Buzzfeed published a commentary piece masquerading as a news story entitled “A Republican Running For Governor In Michigan Is Using Unfounded Conspiracy Theories Against A Muslim American Rival.”

That article focused on the controversy brewing in Michigan between gubernatorial candidates Patrick Colbeck and Abdul El-Sayed.

Politics aside, there is one passage in the Buzzfeed article that simply cannot go unchallenged because it echoes the worst kind of disinformation from the global Jihadist movement:

Sharia — often used as a fear-inducing term associated with anti-Western beliefs — is simply a religious code of conduct, no different than those contained in other Abrahamic religions.

This statement is so incredibly false that there are only two possibilities as to its inclusion in the Buzzfeed article:

  1. The reporters and editors at Buzzfeed are simply ignorant and are just lazily parroting propaganda.
  2. Someone at Buzzfeed knows better, but included this specious passage anyway, indicating the possible presence of the Shariah doctrine of taqiyya, or sacred deception, in the practice of US journalism.

There is no other form of religious law on earth that compares to shariah–also known as Islamic law. From the very basics, shariah is different because it is the only form of religious law that is meant to apply to people of other faiths. Jewish rabbinical law applies to Jews. Catholic canon law applies to Catholics.

Shariah applies to Muslims, Jews, Christians, everyone. Large sections of shariah texts deal exclusively with rules and regulations for kafirs, a derogatory term meaning “non-believer.”

The Basics of Shariah and Why It Isn’t Just A Religious Code of Conduct

Shariah is the detailed system of Islamic law based on the Islamic scriptural trilogy of the Quran, the Hadith (sayings and stories of the life of Muhammed) and the Sira (the biography of Muhammed).

Shariah is considered immutable, indivisible and mandatory to follow in all aspects of life. It encompasses personal ethics and legal issues, church and state, this world and the afterlife. Shariah does not differentiate between rules enforced by individual principle from laws enforced by the state. Because shariah is said to reflect the will of allah, as opposed to the will of humans, it covers all areas of life and not just those of interest to the state or society–such as dress and grooming. Shariah deals with questions of belief and religious practice, criminal and legal matters, and other fields, including finance and war. There is no such thing as a separate secular authority or secular law under shariah, since religion and state are not distinct, but are one.

Shariah regulates the believer’s attitudes and actions on everything.

Shariah covers virtually all aspects of life, whether the aspect at hand is a religious issue or not. Whereas canon law and rabbinical law cover religious issues and ecclesiastical issues primarily, shariah covers issues of criminal punishment, civil justice, economics/finance and war, in addition to purely ecclesiastical matters.

But what is most important for Westerners to know, shariah can be accurately described as reactionary and, in its implementation, barbaric.

Shariah mandates as a religious obligation:

• Violent jihad against non-Muslims to establish Islam’s rule worldwide (known as the caliphate).

• The killing of apostates from Islam.

• The killing of adulterers and homosexuals.

• Severe discrimination against women. This includes persecution of women.

• Barbaric punishment (limb amputations, crucifixion, beheading, whipping, stoning, etc).

• Severe discrimination against, and the subjugation of, non-Muslims.

• For those Muslims who cannot engage in physical jihad using force, shariah mandates that they support jihad financially.

Shariah and its tenets are completely at odds with everything America and Western civilization stand for: freedom, equality, tolerance and justice. The promotion of shariah represents a commitment to the replacement of secular political orders. In other words, shariah sets as its goal the destruction of documents like the US constitution and the basic liberties set out therein.

But don’t take my word for it. There are plenty of scholarly, authoritative works on shariah which detail its many tenets.

Shariah According to the Scholars


Our first scholarly shariah source is Reliance of the Traveler: A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law.

Reliance of the Traveler is one of the world’s most widely read manuals of Shariah law. It has been endorsed by a variety of Islamic authorities, including Al Azhar University in Cairo, IIIT (International Institute of Islamic Thought) in Herndon, Virginia, the Fiqh Council of North America, the Islamic Fiqh Academy in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, the Mufti of the Jordanian Armed Forces and the Imam of the Mosque of Darwish Pasha in Damascus, Syria.

These can hardly be termed as those pushing “anti-Muslim conspiracy theories.”

Here are some of the highlights from the 1,232 pages of Reliance of the Traveler:

• Page 59 Female Genital Mutilation:

e4.3 Circumcision is obligatory (O: for both men and women. For men it consists of removing the prepuce from the penis, and for women, removing the prepuce (Ar. bazr) of the clitoris…(A: Hanbalis hold that circumcision of women is not obligatory but sunna, while Hanafis consider it a mere courtesy to the husband.)

Zakat is an obligatory religious tax in Islam mandated by shariah. It is sometimes erroneously referred to as tithing in Western media. Western observers are particularly concerned about zakat because shariah either permits or mandates that it support violent jihad:

• Page 272 Categories of recipients of zakat


h8.17 The seventh category is those fighting for Allah, meaning people engaged in Islamic military operations for whom no salary has been allotted in the army roster (O: but who are volunteers for jihad without renumeration). They are given enough to suffice them for the operation, even if affluent; of weapons, mounts, clothing, and expenses.

• Pages 595-597 Apostasy from Islam


(O: Leaving Islam is the ugliest form unbelief (kufr) and the worst.

o8.1 When a person who has reached puberty and is sane voluntarily apostatizes from Islam, he deserves to be killed.

o8.4 There is no indemnity for killing an apostate (O: or any expiation, since it is killing someone who deserves to die).

Acts that entail leaving Islam

(1) to prostrate to an idol, whether sarcastically, out of mere contrariness, or in actual conviction…

(2) to intend to commit unbelief, even if in the future.

(3) to speak words that imply unbelief such as “Allah is the third of three,” or “I am Allah.”

(4) to revile Allah or His messenger

(5) to deny the existence of Allah

(6) to be sarcastic about Allah’s name

(7) to deny any verse of the Koran or anything which by scholarly consensus belongs to it, or to add a verse that does not belong to it.

(8) to mockingly say, “I do not know what faith is”

(9) to reply to someone who says, “There is no power or strength save through Allah.”

(10) for a tyrant, after an oppressed person says, “This is through the decree of Allah,” to reply, “I act without the decree of Allah.”

(11) to say that a Muslim is an unbeliever (kafir)

(12) when someone asks to be taught the Testification of Faith (There is no god but Allah, Muhammed is the Messenger of Allah) and a Muslim refuses to teach him it

(13) to describe a Muslim or someone who wants to become a Muslim in terms of unbelief (kufr)

(14) to deny the obligatory character of something which by the consensus of Muslims is part of Islam…

(15) to hold that any of Allah’s messengers or prophets are liars, or to deny their being sent

(16) to revile the religion of Islam

(17) to believe that things in themselves or by their own nature have any causal influence independent of the will of Allah

(18) to deny the existence of angels or jinn or the heavens

(19) to be sarcastic about any ruling of the Sacred Law

(20) to deny that Allah intended the Prophet’s message to be the religion followed by the entire world.

There are others for the subject is nearly limitless.

• Page 599-602 Jihad

o9.0 JIHAD

(O: Jihad means to war against non-Muslims, and is etymologically derived from the word mujahada, signifying warfare to establish the religion.

“I have been commanded to fight people until they testify that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, and perform the prayer, and pay zakat. If they say it, they have saved their blood and possessions from me, except for the rights of Islam over them. And their final reckoning is with Allah.”

The Obligatory Character of Jihad

“He who provides the equipment for a soldier in jihad has himself performed jihad”

o9.3 Jihad is also personally obligatory for everyone able to perform it, male or female, old or young, when the enemy has surrounded the Muslims on every side, having entered our territory, even if the land consists of ruins, wilderness, or mountains, for non-Muslim forces entering Muslim lands is a weighty matter that cannot be ignored, but must be met with effort and struggle to repel them by every possible means.

The objectives of Jihad

o9.8 The caliph makes war upon Jews, Christians and Zoroastrians provided he has first invited them to enter the Islam in faith and practice, and if they will not, then invited them to enter the social order of Islam by paying the non-Muslim poll tax (jizya)…


Our next scholarly shariah source is “A Summary of Islamic Jurisprudence” by Dr. Salih Al-Fawzan, published by Al-Maiman Publishing House in Saudi Arabia.

Sheikh Fawzan is considered one of the most esteemed Shariah scholars in the entire Islamic world, having received three degrees in Shariah from the University of Imam Muhammad in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. He is a member of the Council of Senior Scholars, the Fiqh Committee in Mecca and the Committee for Supervision of the Callers in Hajj. He also heads the Permanent Committee for Islamic Research and Fatwas. He is the Imam at the Prince Mut’ib Ibn Abdul-Aziz Mosque, hosts a national radio program in Saudi Arabia and has published 60 books.

Several chapters of Volume 1 are devoted to zakat. Chapter 8 is devoted in its entirety to “Entitled Recipients of Zakat.”

This chapter provides a complete explanation of the 8 categories of recipients of zakat who are entitled to receive it. Of particular interest to those of us in the West is the seventh category. From pages 364-365 of A Summary of Islamic Jurisprudence, Volume 1:

 “The seventh category is that spent in the Cause of Allah such as that given to warriors who volunteer in fighting for the Cause of Allah and they do not take salaries from the Public Treasury of Muslims. Generally, the phrase “the Cause of Allah” refers to the war against the enemies of Muslims, as Allah, Exalted be He.”

This passage is particularly important because it defines “the Cause of Allah.”

To conceal or deny that zakat funds warfare is a form of taqiyya (sacred deception).

It is not refutable; zakat funds warriors who volunteer to fight for the Cause of Allah against the enemies of Muslims, but who do not draw a salary. This can only be interpreted to mean irregular combatants–terrorists.

Despite what the braintrust at Buzzfeed may say, there is nothing like this is any other form of religious law.

Volume 1 of A Summary of Islamic Jurisprudence also includes an entire chapter devoted to Jihad. From pages 471-472:

Jihad (Fighting in the Cause of Allah)

Allah has ordained jihad (fighting in the Cause of Allah) in order to render His Word the highest, His Religion the victorious, His enemies the defeated, and to test the faith of His true servants.

In Islam, Jihad enjoys great importance, as it is the highest level in religion and one of the best acts of worship to the extent that some scholars consider jihad the sixth pillar of Islam. Jihad is ordained according to the Quran, the Sunnah (Prophetic Tradition) and consensus of Muslim scholars.

Volume 2 of A Summary of Islamic Jurisprudence includes more mundane matters which illustrate further that shariah is anything but “simply a religious code of conduct” such as Buzzfeed claims. Here are some of the topics covered in this work:

•  Page 79: Hawalah

This is the infamous money and asset transfer system that has been used in financing of terrorism and money laundering, as detailed in this Treasury Department report:

• Page 265: Inheritance of Daughters

Allah instructs you concerning your children: for the male, what is equal to the share of the two females.

• Page 436: Divorce

The Spoken Forms of Divorce

Direct pronouncement: It includes the word “divorce” or any of its derivatives that indicate that the husband divorces his wife, and it carries no other meaning than divorce, such as saying to one’s wife, “I divorce you,” or, “You are divorced,” or “You have become a divorcee.” In such cases the divorce is valid and effective.

Page 479: Chapter 10 Verifying the Slave Girl’s Non-Pregnancy

No chapter in A Summary of Islamic Jurisprudence more vividly illustrates the fact that shariah is incompatible with human rights than this one. Keep in mind that this book was written in 2005. The inclusion of this topic can only be described as troubling in the extreme:

Verifying that the slave girl is not pregnant is achieved by her master abstaining from having sexual intercourse with her for a specified period sufficient to make sure that she has not conceived. Thus, when a slave girl is sold, given as a gift or captured and she is fit to have sexual intercourse, her new master is prohibited to have sexual intercourse with her or even foreplay until making sure that she is not pregnant.

Page 637: Apostasy

If anyone (Muslim) changes his religion (i.e. apostatizes), kill him.


Our final scholarly source is The Hudud: The Hudud are the seven specific crimes in Islamic criminal law and their mandatory punishments

Chances are, this 433-page book contains details all most of what you have heard about the barbaric nature of shariah. It was written by Dr. Muhammad Ata Alsid Sidahmad, who is Professor of Islamic Law at the International Islamic University, Malaysia. He has been teaching shariah since 1986. He holds a LL.B in shariah from the University of Khartoum in Sudan and a Master’s and Ph.D from Temple University in Philadelphia. He was the founding Dean of the Faculty of Law at Bayero University in Nigeria and, since 1984, has been a member of the Islamic Fish Academy of the Organization for Islamic Cooperation in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

This book covers the implementation of shariah criminal law and its punishments. Hudud literally refers to the punishments and prohibitions under shariah. Here are some highlights, which, once again, show that shariah has to resemblance to rabbinical law or canon law and is not just “simply a religious code of conduct” as Buzzfeed reported.

• Page 97

Implementation of the Hudud is Mandatory

• Page 113

Partial implementation of shariah is strictly prohibited

• Page 169

Testimony and Women

The four schools of law, namely the Shafiyyah, the Malikiyyah, the Hanafiyyah and the Hanabilah, out of extreme care, in establishing a hudud crime, are unanimous in rejecting women’s evidence in proof of hudud crimes. They rely on an opinion expressed by Ibn Shihab al Zuhri, a companion of the Prophet, that it was the practice since the time of the Prophet and the two Caliphs after him, that the testimonies of women in hudud crimes not be accepted.

• Page 219

Chapter 9 Types of Hudud Punishments and Their Modes of Execution

Death Penalty

The death penalty can be executed by beheading, crucifixion or stoning.


The Hanafiyyah and the Hanabilah rule that all beheadings should be by the sword.


This is to put to death by nailing or binding the offender’s hands and feet to a cross. It is in one crime only that crucifixion is mentioned as an option, that is hirabah.

The recompense of those who wage war against God and His apostle and strive to make mischief in the land are to be…crucified…”


This is to put the convict to death by pelting him with stones until he is dead. It is applicable in one crime only, which is illicit sexual intercourse by a man or a woman.

The Mode of Stoning

The majority opinion among the jurists is that the male convict will be stoned without confining him to a ditch and without tying him up.

But if the convict is a woman, legal authority abounds on the tightening of her clothes securely around her, or her confinement in a ditch up to her chest before she is stoned. The objective is to protect her from getting naked in her strife.

All the upper part of the body including the head, but not the face, can be pelted with stones.


This is cutting off of part of a limb as punishment for certain crimes. In hudud, amputation is ordained in two situations only. First, if all the conditions are satisfied in a crime of theft, such as stealthiness, minimum amount, lawful custody, nature of the stolen item, proved by confession or witnesses.

Stoppage of Bleeding

It is the duty of the state to provide medical facilities to stop bleeding after amputation. In the early days, they used to constrict the damaged blood vessels by immersing the wound in boiling oil. But today, modern medical treatment, such as closing with sutures, tying blood vessels or sealing them by diathermy is permissible.


This is a recognized hudd punishment: beating the convict with a whip, rotan, strap, lash, or the like. These whipping instruments are subject to specifications in terms of size and elasticity so as to deliver the required pain…

The point of illustrating all of these aspects of shariah is to correct the disinformation propagated by Leftist media outlets in the West, such as Buzzfeed, which seek to whitewash the true nature of shariah. It is disheartening that such disinformation has become the norm in such outlets, either due to a lack of intellectual integrity or perhaps the curiosity that is supposed to be a hallmark of responsible journalism.

But there are other sources that have explained the importance of shariah and, in so doing, vividly illustrate the stark contrast between shariah and civilized forms of law, both religious and secular. Those sources are Jihadi leaders who have written and spoken extensively on shariah. Here is what they have said:

Shariah According to the Jihadis

• The sharia has forbidden us from taking infidels as confidants, inducting them into our secrets.
• The sharia forbids us from appointing infidels to important posts.
• The sharia forbids us from adopting or praising the beliefs and views of the infidels.
• The sharia forbids us from assisting infidels against Muslims; even the one who is coerced has o excuse to fight under the banner of infidels.
• The sharia commands us to battle infidels—both original infidels and apostates, as well as hypocrites. As for waging jihad against the infidels who have usurped the lands of Islam, this is a duty considered second only to faith, by ulemaic consensus.
• The sharia does not accept the excuses made by hypocrites—that they befriend the infidels because they fear the vicissitudes of time.
• We are duty-bound by the sharia to help Muslims overcome the infidels.

Ayman al-Zawahiri
Al Qaeda leader

Democracy is based on the principle of the power of creatures over other creatures, and rejects the principle of God’s absolute power over all creatures; it is also based on the idea the men’s desires, whatever they may be, replace God absolutely, and on the refusal to obey God’s law. In Islam, when there is a disagreement or a difference of opinion, one refers to God, his Prophet, and the commands of sharia.

Ayman al-Zawahiri
Al Qaeda leader

From the point of view of ideology and sharia, we are required to establish God’s rule over any part of this earth, regardless of particularities and details. This can only happen, however, if the nation adopts this ideology and safeguards it.

Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah
Leader of Hezbollah

The laws of the shari’a embrace a diverse body of laws and regulations, which amounts to a complete social system. In this system of laws, all the needs of man have been met: his dealings with his neighbors, fellow citizens, and clan, as well as children and relatives; the concerns of private and material life; regulations concerning war and peace and intercourse with other nations; penal and commercial law; and regulations pertaining to trade and agriculture.

Ayatollah Khomeini
Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic
Of Iran 1979-1989

Reason also dictates that we establish a government in order to be able to ward off aggression and to defend the honor of the Muslims in case of attack. The shari’a, for its part, instructs us to be constantly ready to defend ourselves against those who wish to attack us.

Ayatollah Khomeini
Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic
Of Iran 1979-1989

It will be the duty of the Muslims to engage in an armed jihad against the ruling group in order to make the policies ruling society and the norms of government conform to the principles and ordinances of Islam.

Ayatollah Khomeini
Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic
Of Iran 1979-1989

Regarding which shared understandings, exactly, is it possible that we agree with the immoral West?… What commonalities, if our foundations contradict, rendering useless the shared extremities—if they even exist? For practically everything valued by the immoral West is condemned under sharia law. As for this atmosphere of shared understandings, what evidence is there for Muslims to strive for this? What did the Prophet, the Companions after him, and the righteous forebears do? Did they wage jihad against infidels, attacking them all over earth, in order to place them under the suzerainty of Islam in great humility and submission? Or did they send messages to discover “shared understandings” between themselves and the infidels in order that they may reach an understanding whereby universal peace, security, and natural relations would spread—in such a satanic manner as this? The sharia provides a true and just path, securing Muslims, and providing peace to the world.

… Offensive Jihadis (are) an established and basic tenet of this religion. It is a religious duty rejected only by the most deluded. So how can they call off this religious obligation [Offensive Jihad], while imploring the West to understandings and talks “under the umbrella of justice, morality, and rights”? The essence of all this comes from right inside the halls of the United Nations, instead of the Divine foundations that are built upon hating the infidels, repudiating them with tongue and teeth till they embrace Islam or pay the jizya [tribute] with willing submission and humility… Muslims, and especially the learned among them, should spread sharia law to the world—that and nothing else. Not laws under the “umbrella of justice, morality, and rights” as understood by the masses. No, the sharia of Islam is the foundation.

They say that our sharia does not impose our particular beliefs upon others; this is a false assertion. For it is, in fact , part of our religion to impose our particular beliefs upon others.

Thus whoever refuses the principle of terror[ism] against the enemy also refuses the commandment of Allah the Exalted, the Most High, and His sharia.

Osama Bin Laden

Brief Supports Extreme Vetting for Jihadists

AFLC Files Brief in SCOTUS on Behalf of National Security Experts in Support of Extreme Vetting for Islamist Sharia Ideology


Washington, D.C. (February 28, 2017) — Yesterday, lawyers from the American Freedom Law Center (AFLC), a national, nonprofit Judeo-Christian law firm, filed an amicus curiaebrief on behalf of seven national security experts (Andrew C. McCarthyCenter for Security PolicyFrank GaffneyDr. Robert J. ShillmanAdmiral James “Ace” Lyons, Jr., U.S. Navy RetiredLieutenant General William G. Boykin, U.S. Army Retired, and Ambassador Henry F. Cooper) in the United States Supreme Court in the case litigating the President’s proclamation restricting travel from certain countries.

The AFLC-authored brief argues that the President’s most recent executive proclamation suspending entry and creating a more rigorous entry vetting process for immigrants and travelers from certain high-risk countries (Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela, Yemen, and Somalia) was a constitutional and statutorily permitted first step before implementing a more thorough-going “extreme vetting” of potential jihadists.  The brief lays out the policy and legal basis for an extreme vetting of Islamists who advocate or adhere to a political ideology predicated upon Sharia supremacism.  The brief argues that it is classic and extant Islamic law that is the threat doctrine underpinning jihad by the various Islamic groups, whether they be Al Qaeda, the Islamic State, or the Muslim Brotherhood.

David Yerushalmi, AFLC Co-Founder and Senior Counsel, and described by The New York Times as one of the central leaders of the anti-Sharia movement in the U.S., explained,

“The litigants and other amici will focus on the narrow statutory issues of the proclamation, and especially on the power of the executive branch to exclude travelers from failed states.  Most of the president’s adversaries will claim the revised travel ban is a disguised ban on Muslims while the President and his legal team from the Solicitor General’s Office will flee from that fight by arguing that it has nothing to do with Muslims or Islam.  This brief plants a flag of coherence on the beach we must take if we are to protect this country’s security from the quiet and legal infiltration of jihadists flowing in from not only Muslim failed states, but also Muslim functioning states, Africa, and even Europe.”

Robert Muise, AFLC Co-Founder and Senior Counsel, and considered one of the country’s top First Amendment litigators, added,

“The AFLC brief argues that the President has not only the authority for a travel ban, he has the constitutional and statutory authority to impose an ideological vetting process to screen for Sharia-adherent Islamists.  This will be the first time since 9-11 that this issue will be squarely and coherently briefed to the Supreme Court.  It begins the all too important policy discussion at the highest levels within the Halls of Justice and, as such, within the inner reaches of the law.  It turns the lawfare of the Islamists and Progressives in on itself and reshapes and indeed opens up new fronts on the legal and policy battlefields enabling those who cherish western civilization and our constitutional republic to take an offensive and ultimately rational posture into the lawfare and policy trenches.”

As one piece of the evidentiary framework for the brief, AFLC cites to a relatively recent peer-reviewed study, co-authored by Mr. Yerushalmi, revealing the statistically relevant correlation between sharia adherence at U.S. mosques and the propensity to preach and to propagate violent jihad against the West.  The study was first published by the Middle East Quarterly and subsequently in expanded form in Perspectives on Terrorism.

Copies of the National Security Experts’ amicus curiae brief may be downloaded here.

No, the Problem in London Is Not ‘Islamist Extremism’

Prime Minister Theresa May speaks outside 10 Downing Street, June 4, 2017. (Reuters photo: Kevin Coombs)

Islamists want to impose sharia law on the West — which means all Islamists are ‘extremists.’

National Review, by Andrew C. McCarthy, June 5, 2017:

The Western schizophrenia about radical Islam is on full display in Britain, in the aftermath of the latest jihadist atrocity, the third in just the past three months.

Three terrorists rammed a van into a crowd on London Bridge and then went on a stabbing rampage, brutally assaulting pedestrians while braying that each blow was struck “for Allah.” A duly outraged Theresa May donned her prime-minister hat to announce that her government is “leading international efforts to take on and defeat the ideology of Islamist extremism around the world.” She also slipped on her amateur-imam cap, adjusted her rose-tinted glasses, and proclaimed that “Islamist extremism” is an ideology

that preaches hatred, sows division and promotes sectarianism. It is an ideology that claims our Western values of freedom, democracy, and human rights are incompatible with the religion of Islam.

And what right-thinking Western politico’s post-mass-murder speech would be complete without May’s insistence that this ideology is — all together now! — “a perversion of Islam and a perversion of the truth.”


What does Theresa May know about Islam such that she can decide what is a perversion of it? Precious little, I’d wager. Otherwise, she’d not babble on about “Islamist extremism,” a term right out of the Department of Redundancy Department.

If you are an Islamist in the West, you are, by definition, an extremist. An Islamist is a Muslim who believes Islam requires the imposition of sharia, Islam’s ancient, totalitarian societal system and legal code.

“Islamist” is a term we in the West use in the hope that, because there are Muslims who are tolerant, pro-Western people, it must not be inevitable that Islam itself — or at least some interpretations of Islam — will breed the fundamentalist, literalist, supremacist construction of Islam.

It may be a grave error to adopt this hope, especially since it has been elevated into seemingly incorrigible policy. Does the incontestable existence of moderate Muslim individuals necessarily translate into a coherent, viable doctrine of moderate Islam? Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, to take just one very influential Muslim leader, says no: The West’s invocation of “moderate Islam” is “ugly,” he counters, because “Islam is Islam, and that’s it.” Erdogan is a close ally of the Muslim Brotherhood, the world’s most influential Islamist organization. If he’s right that there’s just one true Islam, rest assured that it’s not friendly to the West. Erdogan describes the Western call for Muslim migrants to assimilate in their new European societies as “a crime against humanity.”

Meanwhile, many students of Islam observe that its aggressiveness, intolerance of non-Muslims, and subjugation of women are indisputably rooted in Islamic scripture. Wherever there is Islam, they maintain, there will inevitably be Islamists; and when those Islamists reach a critical mass of population (which can be considerably less than 50 percent), there will inevitably be sharia activism.

They may be right. I don’t want them to be . . . but hope is not a national-security strategy — even if it has been the West’s national-security strategy for a quarter-century.

Obviously, there are gradations of extremism. Some Islamists are violent jihadists. Some support violent jihadists but eschew violence themselves. Some may reject violence (or at least say they do) and claim to seek sharia imposition only by peaceful persuasion. Some may lie about their intentions, pretending to oppose both violence and the imposition of sharia, or pretending that sharia is really moderate, peaceful, and perfectly compatible with Western notions of freedom, democracy, and human rights. But they all want sharia. If you are a Muslim who wants British law supplanted by Islamic law, that is not a moderate position, even if you’re not prepared to drive a van into a crowd of infidels over it. If that’s where you’re coming from, you are a Muslim extremist — an Islamist.

To speak of “Islamist extremists” is either gibberish or a form of political correctness designed to conceal a position one knows makes no sense but feels compelled to take anyway. Since I believe Prime Minister May is no dolt, I am betting on the latter: She is using “Islamist extremist” as code for “terrorist,” even though she knows, deep down, that this makes no sense — i.e., it is inconsistent with her correct insistence that the violence that aggrieves Britain is ideologically motivated.

Jihadist terrorists do not kill wantonly. They kill for a purpose: namely, to impose sharia. The ideology that motivates them does not endorse violence for its own sake. It reflects what Islam takes as the divine imperative that life be lived under the strictures of sharia. That is the ideology.

The problem that Mrs. May has is that it is an ideology shared by many Muslims who are not terrorists. Britain, like many in America, wants to embrace these Muslims as “moderates,” notwithstanding their hostility to Western society and law. May would prefer not to connect the dots that tell us these Muslims, even if not jihadists themselves, are pillars of the ideological support system in which jihadism thrives — they are, as some have aptly put it, the sea in which the jihadist sharks swim, and without which the sharks could not survive.

It is not merely al-Qaeda or the Islamic State that says Islam is incompatible with the Western understanding of human rights. In 1990, the 57 member-governments of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (now renamed the Organization of Islamic Cooperation) issued the Cairo Declaration of Human Rights in Islam. These representatives of the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims took this action precisely because Islam could not be content with the so-called Universal Declaration of Human Rights promulgated in 1948 by the United Nations General Assembly. The latter is incompatible with the two key provisions of the Cairo Declaration: Articles 24, which states: “All the rights and freedoms stipulated in this Declaration are subject to the Islamic Shari’ah”; and Article 25, which adds: “The Islamic Shari’ah is the only source of reference for the explanation or clarification of any of the articles of this Declaration.”

The Western understanding of freedom and democracy holds that people have a right to govern themselves. We draw a line between the secular and the sacred, rejecting the establishment of a state religion. To the contrary, as explained by Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, perhaps the world’s most influential Sunni sharia scholar, “secularism can never enjoy a general acceptance in an Islamic society,” because “the acceptance of secularism means abandonment of Shari’ah, a denial of the divine guidance and a rejection of Allah’s injunctions.” Qaradawi elaborated (in his book, How the Imported Solutions Disastrously Affected Our Ummah), “Islam is a comprehensive system of workship (Ibadah) and legislation (Shari’ah).” Thus: “The call for secularism among Muslims is atheism and a rejection of Islam. Its acceptance as a basis for rule in place of Shari’ah is downright apostasy.”

Lest we forget, apostasy from Islam is a capital offense in Islamic law. It is punished as such not just by terrorist organizations but by governments in Muslim-majority countries. In the Middle East, at least, sharia is not extremist Islam. It is Islam.

Pace Prime Minister May, it is not “Islamist extremism” that “claims our Western values of freedom, democracy and human rights are incompatible with the religion of Islam.” This is a conceit of leading Islamic scholars and governments. One need not agree with them or concede that theirs is the only interpretation of Islam. But one should grant that their interpretation is no perversion — and that they just might know a lot more about the subject than non-Muslim politicians in the West.

Mrs. May is half right. We are confronted by an ideology. But it is sharia supremacism, the belief that Islamic law must be imposed on society. To limit our attention to violent jihadists is to remain willfully blind to what inspires the jihadists. That is what has to be confronted, if we have the stomach for it.

American Security and Islamic Reform


The government must vet aliens for sharia-supremacist ideology.

National Review, By Andrew C. McCarthy — February 11, 2017

‘Do you think Islam needs reform?”

Wouldn’t it be interesting, wouldn’t it get us to the crux of the immigration debate, if our best news anchors — I’m looking at you, Chris Wallace and Bret Baier — would put that question to every major politician in Washington?

Instead, the press is asking not just the wrong question but one that utterly misses the point, namely: “How many terrorist attacks have been committed by immigrants from this handful of Muslim-majority countries?” It is the same wrong question posed by the imperious federal judge in Seattle who suspended President Trump’s temporary travel ban on aliens from those countries — seven of them. It is the same wrong question that animated the incorrigible Ninth Circuit appeals court in upholding this suspension — and intimating along the way that Trump, and by implication all who fear for the future of our country, are anti-Muslim bigots crusading against religious liberty (the Ninth Circuit being notoriously selective when it comes to protecting religious traditions).

Does the Trump administration realize it’s the wrong question? I wonder. Instead of attacking the question’s premise, the administration undertakes to answer it. It seems not to grasp that the security argument is not advanced, much less won, by compiling a list of terrorist plots.

Let’s try this again.

Islam does need reform. This is critical to our national security for two reasons that bear directly on the question of which aliens should, and which should not, be allowed into our country.

First, reform is essential because the broader Islamic religion includes a significant subset of Muslims who adhere to an anti-American totalitarian political ideology that demands implementation of sharia — Islamic law. This ideology and the repressive legal code on which it rests are not religion. We are not talking about the undeniably theological tenets of Islam (e.g., the oneness of Allah, the acceptance of Mohamed as the final prophet, and the Koran as Allah’s revelation). We are talking about a framework for the political organization of the state, and about the implementation of a legal corpus that is blatantly discriminatory, hostile to liberty, and — in its prescriptions of crime and punishment — cruel.

Islam must reform so that this totalitarian political ideology, sharia supremacism (or, if you prefer, “radical Islam”), is expressly severable from Islam’s truly religious tenets. To fashion an immigration policy that serves our vital national security interests without violating our commitment to religious liberty, we must be able to exclude sharia supremacists while admitting Muslims who reject sharia supremacism and would be loyal to the Constitution.

Second, sharia supremacists are acting on a “voluntary apartheid” strategy of gradual conquest. You needn’t take my word for it. Influential sharia supremacists encourage Muslims of the Middle East and North Africa to integrate into Western societies without assimilating Western culture. The renowned Muslim Brotherhood jurist Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, who vows that “Islam will conquer Europe, conquer America,” urges Muslim migrants to demand the right to live in accordance with sharia. Turkey’s sharia-supremacist president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, admonishes that pressuring Muslims to assimilate is “a crime against humanity.” The Organization of Islamic Cooperation, a bloc of 57 Muslim governments that purports to speak as a quasi-caliphate, promulgated its “Declaration of Human Rights in Islam” in 1990 — precisely because what the United Nations in 1948 presumptuously called the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is neither “universal” nor suitable to a sharia culture.

Voluntary apartheid does not require insinuating terrorists into migrant populations. It requires insinuating assimilation-resistant migrant populations into Western countries. Those populations form sharia-supremacist enclaves, which (a) demand the autonomy to conduct their affairs under Islamic law as a challenge to the sovereign authority of the host country, and (b) become safe havens for incitement, radicalization, paramilitary training, fundraising, and jihadist conspiracy — the prerequisites for terrorism.

The problem is not that our “See No Islam” policies may be letting some small percentage of trained terrorists into the country (although that is certainly a problem). The main problem is that we are creating the conditions under which anti-American enclaves can take root, the Constitution can be undermined, and today’s young Muslim teenager becomes tomorrow’s radicalized jihadist.

RELATED: Weeding Out Terrorist Immigrants Isn’t Enough

We cannot grapple with these challenges if we are intimidated into silence by such questions as whether a “Muslim ban” is being proposed; whether heightened scrutiny would be tantamount to a “religion test”; how many refugees or aliens from this or that Muslim-majority country have been charged with terrorism crimes; whether Muslims would be disproportionately affected by immigration exclusions; and whether a ban on a few Muslim-majority countries can be justified if most Muslim-majority countries are exempted.

Such questions are designed to make vetting Muslims seem inconceivable. They are meant to exhaust you into conceding: “If we have to fret so mightily about the potential impact of immigration laws against Muslims, how could we possibly contemplate examining Muslims directly to sort out sharia supremacists from pro-American Muslims?” You are to pretend that there is no obvious subset of Muslims who are hostile to our country. You are to assume that screening for hostile Muslims would be illegal because to ask about Islam would offend religious liberty — but because you know there are hostile Muslims, you silently hope the authorities have figured out some sneaky, roundabout way to screen for them without appearing to screen for them.

Enough of that. We need to move beyond the “are we targeting Muslims” nonsense and get to the critical question: How do we embrace our Islamic friends while excluding our sharia-supremacist enemies?

Here’s a suggestion: Bring our Muslim friends, loud and proud, into the process.

The only people who may have more interest than we do in Islamic reform are Islamic reformers: courageous Muslims who embrace American constitutional principles of liberty and equality. And at great risk to themselves: Under the supremacist view of sharia, those who depart from Islamic-law principles set in stone a millennium ago are apostates, subject to the penalty of death. You’re not supposed to question that, though, because it’s, you know, “religion.”

How about we stop consulting with the Muslim Brotherhood and other sharia supremacists who tell us Islam is just fine as is, even as its aggressions mount? How about we bring the reformers very publicly into the vetting process, to help the administration tell the good guys from the bad guys? To help the administration show that it is not Muslims but anti-American totalitarians that we seek to exclude.

It is the reform Muslims who tell us that Islam can separate sharia from spiritual life and that pro-Western Muslims do exactly that. It is the sharia supremacists who are outraged by the very suggestion that reform is possible, let alone necessary. If we continue taking our cues from the latter, it means that their noxious political ideology is part and parcel of Islam, and therefore that screening to keep that ideology out of our country is a violation of First Amendment religious liberty.

In other words, if you’re unwilling to say that Islam needs reform, then we can’t vet . . . and we are doomed. On the other hand, if Islam does need reform, isn’t it imperative that we identify the Muslims who resist reform — the sharia supremacists who seek not to join but to radically change our free, constitutional society?

— Andrew C. McCarthy is as senior policy fellow at the National Review Institute and a contributing editor of National Review.

Is It a ‘Muslim Ban’?

protestsTrump’s goal is not to exclude Muslims from our country; it is to exclude sharia supremacists, a significant subset of Muslims.

National Review, by Andrew C. McCarthy — January 30, 2017:

President Trump’s temporary ban on entry into the U.S. by various categories of aliens has caused a firestorm. That owes in part to the rash implementation of perfectly legal restrictions, but the hysteria is out of proportion to the minimal harm actually done.

One of the most dismaying parts of the debate has been the banter over whether Trump has imposed a “Muslim Ban.”

It is no surprise, of course, that Islamists — along with their friends and stooges on both sides of the political aisle — have used the opportunity to agitate and hand-wring over the specter of America “at war with Islam.” That, after all, has been page-one of their playbook for a generation.

There has also, however, been indignation on the other side, from Trump defenders denying that the executive order (EO) is in any way a “Muslim ban.” Time after time this weekend, right-of-center news outlets and commentators could be found defying their guests and counterparts to find the word “Muslim” or “Islam” in the EO. I sympathize with the frustration. The EO is clearly not a ban on all Muslims, or even of any specific Muslim. Since the other side is slanderously suggesting otherwise, there is an irresistible urge to seize on anything that proves them wrong.

Yet the only reason there is an EO is the threat posed by sharia-supremacism, which we inexactly refer to as “radical Islam.” You can’t have radical Islam without Islam. Therefore, the people the EO seeks to exclude are, of necessity, Muslims — not all Muslims, of course, but a significant subset of them nonetheless.

Trump got to the EO (which is a temporary stop on the way to a more refined policy) by starting — during his campaign — with the proposal of a temporary categorical ban on all Muslims. I highlight temporary because it is important. Trump never took the position that all Muslims outside the U.S. should be banned from our country for all time. He recognized the need to separate our Muslim friends from our radical Islamic enemies. He was groping for a way to do that while protecting the country.

For decades, Washington has been suicidally unwilling to target our radical Islamic enemies for fear of offending Muslims in general. Trump’s more security-minded approach — which many Americans outside Washington regard as common sense — was to call a temporary halt to the admission of Muslim aliens until the government could figure out an effective way to screen out Islamists from pro-constitutional Muslims who would be an asset to our country.

During the campaign, then, Trump asked Rudy Giuliani — the former New York City mayor and renowned federal prosecutor — to help him develop a policy that would solve this dilemma. Rudy then put together a team of advisers, of which I was a member, to work the problem. Trump’s proposals consequently evolved away from a coarse categorical ban, adopting instead a threat-based approach that would rely on vetting rather than banning, and that would target the places where the threat is most prevalent.

Again, since the threat is radical Islam, the geographical focus would necessarily involve places where that ideology is most prevalent. Those are Muslim places.

As president, Trump is now moving national policy in the direction of the threat-based strategy of heightened vetting (which he calls “extreme” vetting) that he called for during the campaign. It is not something that can be accomplished overnight. Thus, just as he did during the campaign, Trump is starting with temporary exclusions that are categorical: an indefinite ban on Syrian refugees, a four-month ban on other refugees, and a three-month ban on aliens from seven Muslim-majority countries that were cited by Congress and President Obama because of vetting challenges.

These bans are not the ultimate objective. The goal is to give the public immediate protection while the government has a few months to refine threat-based vetting procedures.

As already noted, there were implementation problems with Trump’s EO. Nevertheless, if our choice is (a) the Washington approach of never getting to a good national-security policy because it could offend Islamists and the Left, or (b) Trump’s approach of imperfectly implementing a good national-security policy at the risk of offending Islamists and the Left, then give me Trump’s approach every time.

All that said, though, we should not hide under our beds in shame every time an Islamist, a Democrat, or a media talking-head spews: “Muslim ban!” Of course we’re banning Muslims. We’re moving to an exclusion of radical Islam, and radical Islam is exclusively made up of Muslims.

Go through the EO. Refugees in general and those from Syria in particular are problematic because of the heavy concentration of Muslims, some percentage of which are adherent to radical Islam. The seven countries in Congress’s Obama-era statute were cited as vetting problems because they are Muslim-majority countries embroiled in savage wars and terror promotion, which have resulted in governments that either hate the United States or are too dysfunctional to provide background checks on their nationals. It is not our fault that majority-Muslim societies tend to breed such pathologies.

Our goal is not to exclude Muslims from our country; it is to exclude sharia supremacists, a significant subset of Muslims. They reject our Constitution. Many of them would like to kill us. All of them want us to submit to their law. The threat they pose is not hypothetical — they have killed thousands of Americans and are actively plotting to kill thousands more.

I make no apologies for wanting to keep them out of my country. Nor do I look at excluding them as excluding religion. It is, instead, the exclusion of a totalitarian political ideology — something that our law already explicitly endorses. See, e.g., Section 1182(a)(3)(D) of federal immigration law (“Immigrant Membership in Totalitarian Party”): “Any immigrant who is or has been a member of or affiliated with the Communist or any other totalitarian party (or subdivision or affiliate thereof), domestic or foreign, is inadmissible” (emphasis added).

If we are serious about banning sharia-supremacism — or, if you insist, “radical Islam” — that is inescapably going to involve banning Muslims. All sharia supremacists are Muslims, just like all members of the Irish Republican Army are Irish.

Sharia supremacism is an interpretation of Islam that traces to both its seventh-century origins and to the cementing, a millennium ago, of its classical legal code — which is totalitarian, discriminatory, and in some particulars, brutal. That code holds that all the world must be governed by Allah’s law, sharia. It is, to repeat, less a religion than a form of totalitarianism under a religious veneer.

Sharia-supremacism is not the only interpretation of Islam — not by a long shot. It is, however, an aggressive interpretation of Islam. That matters: Since other interpretations of Islam tend to be passive, and since tens of millions of Muslims identify with Islam more culturally than canonically or theologically, sharia-supremacism is far more influential and threatening than its mere numbers indicate. Whether its adherents constitute a quarter, a third, a half, or some other percentage of global Islam is beside the point. As we see throughout Europe, it punches way above its weight in countries where Islam accounts for less than 10 percent of the population.

It is true that only a small percentage of sharia supremacists become violent jihadists. That is not much comfort since we’re talking about a small percentage of millions of people. More significantly, though, jihadism is not the totality of the threat against us. Communities in which sharia-supremacism is prevalent are supportive of jihadist goals and thus become safe harbors for radicalization, as well as jihadist recruitment, training, and fund-raising. As illustrated by the deterioration of Europe under mass-immigration by Muslims from the Middle East and North Africa, sharia-supremacists aim to establish anti-assimilationist enclaves that breed jihadism while challenging the sovereignty of the host country.

That is the threat we must confront. That doing so involves restrictions against Muslims is unavoidable. We should not pretend otherwise. And we should not apologize for saying so.

— Andrew C. McCarthy is as senior policy fellow at the National Review Institute and a contributing editor of National Review.

The Response to This Weekend’s Terror Attacks Showed Willful Blindness in Real Time

New York City firemen near the site of the bombings in Chelsea, September 18, 2016. (Retuers photo: Rashid Umar Abbasi)

New York City firemen near the site of the bombings in Chelsea, September 18, 2016. (Retuers photo: Rashid Umar Abbasi)

National Review, by Andrew C. McCarthy, Sept. 19, 2016:

In the all too familiar pattern, things are going boom, Americans are under attack, and the American political class is already busy playing the “See No Jihad” minuet.

In a rational world, where our highest imperative would be to understand the threat that confronts us rather than to find the least offensive way of describing it, it would be patently, undeniably obvious that we are targets of international terrorism fueled by Islamic supremacist ideology. Nevertheless, the political class can only bring itself to say this kicking and screaming, and only if there is no other plausible alternative — which basically means a terrorist caught in the act while wearing an ISIS T-shirt.

That is because Islamic supremacism is a mainstream interpretation of Islam. The political class has convinced itself that uttering the plain truth would be condemning all of Islam, meaning all Muslims — notwithstanding that no one sensible claims Islamic supremacism is the only way of interpreting Islam, and, in fact, jihadist battalions kill more Muslims than non-Muslims.

Speaking forthrightly would also undermine a fiction the political class inanely believes is essential to social cohesion: The notion, oft-repeated by President Obama and Hillary Clinton, that Islam is part of the fabric of American life, as native in our history as apple pie and Judeo-Christian culture.

Islam, of course, is an alien belief system. That doesn’t make it bad per se. Our society is a melting pot and many things alien to it have blended their way in, making us more vibrant, dynamic, innovative, and successful. Clearly, though, not everything alien is benign and welcome.

Many Muslims embrace the Western culture of reason, liberty, and equality, and they flourish in our society, to which they are a real asset. Nevertheless, nothing is more alien and hostile to our society than Islamic supremacism — which, at its core, is sharia supremacism. Its adherents resist assimilation and seek to impose a totalitarian system that suppresses liberty and is systematically discriminatory against non-Muslims, women, apostates from Islam, homosexuals, and other groups.

Because we are trapped in a politically correct fantasy world in which terrorism has nothing to do with Islam and Islam is innately American, the political class can never admit that obvious jihadist attacks — such as those that just occurred in New York, New Jersey, and Minnesota — are international terrorism. Indeed, we are in a state of such self-parody that, this weekend, it somehow became “intemperate” and “un-presidential” to conclude that attempts (some successful) to detonate IEDs — as in, improvised explosive devices, a.k.a. bombs — were in fact bombings.

The playbook has become so tired. Nothing can be considered terrorism, even a mass-casualty attack with the objective of intimidating a civilian population or government (the legal definition of terrorism) unless and until there is convincing evidence connecting it to a known terrorist organization — usually ISIS or al-Qaeda. It is acceptable, you see, to label as “terrorism” an attack connected to these organizations because the political class has pronounced them as non-Islamic (even anti-Islamic), since they do not adhere to the imaginary, relentlessly benign Islam that the political class has dreamt up and designated as the one and only “true” Islam.

Thus, when a terrorist attack happens, the first thing we must do is worry about evil, divisive haters (we know who we are) who dare presume to call it a “terrorist attack.” After all, they could stoke a “blowback” — i.e., “hate crimes” against Muslims, committed mainly by the white racists with which America teems.

This reaction stems from the political class’s designated representatives of the Islamic community in the United States. These are Islamist-activist groups, mostly sprung from the Muslim Brotherhood — CAIR being the most notorious. In point of fact, said groups are not representative of most Muslims in the West. In reality, they are hostile to pro-American Muslims, especially those who oppose sharia encroachment and favor a peaceful solution to the Israeli–Palestinian conflict in which Israel’s right to exist is acknowledged.

Still, the Islamists, aside from being well funded by overseas sources, are loudest and leftist. Therefore, they are the ones who receive the political class’s sympathetic attention. Indeed, over the last two decades (and particularly in the Obama years), they have become government consultants who instruct policymakers on how to think about, and talk about, terrorism.

Here is reality: The enemy that unifies the terrorist siege against the U.S., Israel, and the West is Islamic supremacist ideology, which aims to bring the world under sharia dominion. This ideology is far more important than ISIS and al-Qaeda because it is what created ISIS and al-Qaeda. It was the catalyst before those jihadist organizations existed, and it will be around when they are gone — for as long as we fail to take it on without apology and discredit it in the light of day.

The attacks spurred by this ideology, like those carried out this weekend, are international terrorist attacks, regardless of whether the operatives who execute them are affiliated with or inspired by a designated international terrorist organization. There are no “homegrown” attacks because the ideology is alien. There are no “lone wolves” because the wolves are part of a huge pack — a fundamentalist Islamic anti-Western movement that has millions of adherents, some percentage of which will always be willing to take up arms and kill for the cause.

Pro-American Muslims need us to help them discredit the fundamentalists. We cannot do this without openly acknowledging — as, for example, Egyptian president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has courageously done — that the roots of jihadist aggression are Muslim scriptures. This must not be obscured by political correctness. The scriptures in question must be acknowledged and reinterpreted in a manner that confines them to their historic context and nullifies a literal interpretation of them in modern life.

If we don’t confront the animating ideology and its stealth supporters with every bit as much energy as our police pursue the murderous jihadists, we lose. Winning begins with cashiering political correctness, with speaking openly about, and understanding, what we are up against.

— Andrew C. McCarthy is a senior policy fellow at the National Review Institute and a contributing editor of National Review.