Falwell’s Fake Jihadi Fired after Blogosphere Investigation
The blogmind knows all and exposes all…
Caner, a Baptist clergyman of Turkish descent, claimed for years to have been a fervent jihadist until Jesus changed his heart. He said he was raised in Turkey, attended a madrassa, and didn’t speak English until he was a teenager. His story won him fame on the Christian conservative speaking circuit and led to his appointment as dean.
In May, AlterNet reported that Caner had lied about his past in order to exploit popular sentiment after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
Caner became a star on the evangelical circuit when he began regaling audiences with stories of growing up in Turkey and being trained to wage violent jihad against America. His “jihad to Jesus” story and his claims to be an expert on violent Islam (“Jesus strapped a cross on his back so I wouldn’t have to strap a bomb on mine”) brought him a national audience and eventually led him to Liberty University’s seminary. During his tenure, enrollment soared.
But a group of Muslim and Christian bloggers and others (including Right Wing Watch, for which I write) documented serious discrepancies with known facts about his life story in claims made by Caner in sermons and other speaking appearances. It turns out that he didn’t grow up in Turkey, but in Ohio.