Southern Poverty Law Center Intel Report: Jihad Against Islam
I wasn’t going to post this Page because I’m not in the mood to deal with the inevitable trolling, but I decided to hell with that, the only one who can stop me from posting something here if he doesn’t like it is Charles—this is an important subject and I can always ignore the snark.
Speaking of Charles, I’ve highlighted the last paragraph of the article as it points out what I’ve been hearing him say since I joined LGF—namely, that not only do these tactics detract attention from the very real threat posed by actual terrorists, but they exacerbate tensions.
It also happens to echo much of what I said in this comment on Michael’s Page last week, Rep. Honda: Muslim hearings recall my life in internment camp.
Rarely has the United States seen a more reckless and bare-knuckled campaign to vilify a distinct class of people and compromise their fundamental civil and human rights than the recent rhetoric against Muslims.
It would also be hard to imagine a more successful campaign. In the span of the two years since the start of Barack Obama’s presidency in early 2009, an astonishing number of people have turned into a kind of political wolf pack, convinced that 0.6% of the U.S. population is on the verge of trampling the Constitution and imposing an Islamic, Shariah-guided caliphate in its place. Like the communists that an earlier generation believed to be hiding behind every rock, infiltrated “Islamist” operatives today are said to be diabolically preparing for a forcible takeover.
Ironically, the Constitution seems more threatened by certain Americans who, prodded into paranoia by clever activists, opportunistic politicians and guileful media players, seem downright eager to deny Muslims the guarantees of religious freedom and the presumption of innocence.
“As an American Muslim, what is of most concern to me is that it is no longer only a small cadre of dedicated Islamophobes who are expressing bigotry and even hatred towards the American Muslim community — but sadly, also many among our elected representatives and government officials,” Sheila Musaji, moderator of the website The American Muslim, wrote in an E-mail to the Intelligence Report. “It provides a veneer of respectability and reasonableness to what would otherwise be more easily perceived to be outright bigotry.”
Two Key Tactics
This coordinated anti-Muslim movement relies heavily on two key tactics. The first is arguing that the most radical Muslims — men like Osama bin Laden — are properly interpreting the Koran, while peaceful, moderate Muslims either don’t understand their own holy book or are strategically faking their moderation. The primary architect of this theory is SIOA co-founder Robert Spencer, who has researched Islam outside academia for more than three decades. He says the Koran itself is innately violent and calls for the utter subjugation of non-believers. Critics charge that Spencer ignores other passages and centuries of interpretive scholarship that mitigate the Koran’s occasional violent verses. Some also point out that the many violent admonitions of other holy books, including the Bible, are not usually taken literally by believers.
The second key tactic is to relentlessly attack individuals and organizations who purport to represent moderate Islam in America, painting them as secret operatives in the grand Muslim scheme (typically attributed to a conspiracy led by the Egypt-based Muslim Brotherhood) to destroy the West.
It is particularly perplexing trying to discern the ultimate goal of this corps of activists. If their aim is to isolate and destroy the violence-prone fanatical Muslim fringe, then it doesn’t make sense to undermine moderate Muslims and argue that only confirmed terrorists are interpreting the Koran correctly. But both tactics make perfect sense if the aim is to build a widespread, irrational fear and hostility against Islam in general — encouraging, rather than helping defuse, an eventual global confrontation between East and West.