When it comes to Islam, sometimes it seems as if the media lets non-essentials crowd out the truth. Consider the brouhaha raised by the media in the wake of some controversial remarks.
Last week a man posed a question to Republican president candidate Donald Trump at a town hall meeting in New Hampshire. He said, “We have a problem in this country. It’s called Muslims. You know our current president is one. You know he’s not even an American.”
Trump interrupted, asking for a specific question. The man continued, “Anyway, we have training camps growing where they want to kill us. That’s my question: When can we get rid of them?” Trump answered in vague generalities.
Consider the man’s comments and question, one at a time. First of all, he blames all Muslims, including peaceful Muslims in this country. That is problematic. Religious freedom is for all in this country. As Kevin “Seamus” Hasson, founding director of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty once put it, In America you have the right to be wrong (theologically).
And we would be in big trouble if all the Muslims in this country were of the radical kind.
Next, the questioner charges Obama is a Muslim. We’ll deal with that below. The questioner also charged Obama was not even an American. This allegation, which seems to have its roots in Hillary’s 2008 campaign against Obama, has been answered sufficiently that he is an American.
Then the New Hampshire questioner brought up training camps, and he asked when are we going to get rid of them? The training camps or the Muslims. Or both?
The mainstream media and Hillary Clinton pounced on Trump for not denouncing the questioner to his face, or even afterwards. George Stephanopolous, former Clinton operative, grilled Trump on ABC-TV, asking him to denounce the man who asked him the question. Trump chose not to.
The issue of Obama supposedly being a Muslim comes up often. He does seem to favor Islam over Christianity at every turn. For example, Obama claims Islamic State is not Islamic because no real Muslims would do what they do. Then at the National Prayer Breakfast, he tried to tweak Christian noses by dredging up the Crusades—which, for the record, officially ended 1291.
My colleague and friend John Rabe, author of None Dare Call It Islam: Why the President and the Media Ignore the Truth About Our Radical Enemy, asks about such charges, “How come they never bring up examples from recent centuries?”
Robert Spencer is a walking encyclopedia on all things Islamic. He has written New York Times bestselling books on the subject. He runs the website jihadwatch.org.
I asked Robert about the allegation that President Obama is a closet Muslim.
Spencer emailed me: “Obama says he is a Christian. Rumors that he is actually a Muslim persist not because of ‘bigotry’ or ‘racism,’ but because of his domestic and foreign policies: if he were secretly a Muslim, it is unlikely that he would govern in any significantly different way.”
He also said in reference to some of the Muslim camps in America: “there is no hard evidence that they’re doing jihad terror training inside those compounds.”
Although the town hall questioner made some over the top statements, there is still an important question at issue: How real is the threat of radical Islam? Very real. And political correctness, embraced by many in our culture, simply masks that reality.
Lawrence Wright’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book on Osama bin Laden, The Looming Tower: Al Qaeda and the Road to 9/11, traces many facets of the rise of radical Islam in the 20th century.
He quotes the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, Hasan al-Banna, as saying: “It is the nature of Islam to dominate, not to be dominated, to impose its law on all nations, and to extend its power to the entire planet.”
Osama bin Laden recruited Muslim soldiers for international jihad. Lawrence Wright writes,
“Their text was a 180-page manual, Military Studies in the Jihad Against the Tyrants, which included chapters on counterfeiting, weapons training, security, and espionage. ‘The confrontation that we are calling for with the apostate regimes does not know Socratic debates…Platonic ideals…nor Aristotelian diplomacy,’ the manual begins. ‘But it does know the dialogue of bullets, the ideals of assassination, bombing and destruction, and the diplomacy of the cannon and machine gun.’”
Ideas have consequence. Some of these ideas are dangerous. Yet to our liberal media, it is almost as if “Islamaphobia” is just as much of a threat as radical Islam, only perhaps less so. That’s preposterous. There is a problem of radical Muslims in this world. The earlier we are honest about that, the quicker we can solve this problem.
[The photo by Jerry Newcombe shows the hole left in one of the World Trade Center towers in NYC by radical Islam.]