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Posts tagged "Robert Spencer"

For David Horowitz, the godfather of the modern anti-Muslim movement, the culture war that began when he was young never ended. Only the target has changed.

As one of the founding Marxist intellectuals of the New Left in the 1960s, Horowitz was a self-professed political radical — a pugnacious advocate of civil rights and equality. Now, a half-century later, he has undergone an about-face and set his sights on Muslims.

For Horowitz, Muslim Student Associations “are arms of the Muslim Brotherhood, which is the fountainhead of the terrorist jihad against the West.” Hillary Clinton adviser and Muslim Huma Abedin is a “Muslim Brotherhood operative” who is “worse than Alger Hiss.” And the Palestinians, all of them, are even worse.


AP IMAGES/PHELAN M. EBENHACK

“No people have shown themselves as so morally sick as the Palestinians,” Horowitz said. “In the history of all mankind, there was never a people who strapped bombs on their bodies and killed innocent people. No other people has sunk so low as the Palestinians, and everyone is afraid to say it.”

In the last decade, Horowitz has become a respected elder of a growing movement of hawkish neoconservatives, conspiracy theorists and former federal officials united in their twisted fears that Islam is on the march — a movement he describes in Orwellian terms as a “counterjihad.”

Through his David Horowitz Freedom Center, a wealthy nonprofit based in Sherman Oaks, Calif., he has financed leading Islamophobes driving public opinion and attacked universities as leftist “indoctrination” programs. He leads several conservative publications, all dedicated to tenaciously defending Israel and viciously attacking Islam as a religion of “hate, violence and racism.”

A report from the liberal think tank Center for American Progress, “Fear, Inc.,” exposed Horowitz as a prominent member of a “small network [that] produces talking points and messages relied upon and repeated by every segment of this interconnected network of money, grassroots leaders, media talking heads, and elected officials.” The report’s author, Wajahat Ali, chastised Horowitz as a self-serving and toxic presence in a field of anti-Muslim pundits. 

Virulent Muslim-basher Robert Spencer, director of the website Jihad Watch, is on his nonprofit’s payroll, and Horowitz’s online FrontPage Magazine publishes the work of Daniel Greenfield and Daniel Pipes, both of whom add to right-wing fears that Muslims are infiltrating the West. Horowitz also works closely with Pamela Geller, collecting money for her anti-Muslim hate group, Stop Islamization of America.

What led Horowitz to this moment, such that he seems to have abandoned his former radicalism for civil rights in favor of blind rage against the left-wing of American politics and now Muslims? At 75, is it merely an overcorrection to views he held as a young man? Or, as his parents were communists, is it as the New York Times Magazine described, a “fierce Oedipal struggle entwined with radicalism”? 

“He’s a person who is, first and foremost, a self-promoter, who has used his name to champion political causes and used the guise of media and freedom and democracy and free speech to actually inject poison into the pluralist racial and religious dynamic of America,” Ali told the Intelligence Report. 


David Horowitz works closely with a circle of Islamaphobes that includes Daniel Pipes and Pamela Geller.

Red Diaper Baby
For a man who was raised in the heart of the Communist Party, who saw his parents targeted by McCarthyism, it seems needless to point out the irony of Horowitz’s worry that radical Islamists have infiltrated the halls of American power with nefarious plans to tear down constitutional freedoms. 

David Joel Horowitz was born on Jan. 10, 1939, in Forest Hills, N.Y., a neighborhood in Queens, to parents who were both schoolteachers and members of the Communist Party USA. It was an exciting childhood, filled with intrigue. 

“Underneath the ordinary surfaces of their lives, my parents and their friends thought of themselves as secret agents. … Even if we never encountered a Soviet agent or engaged in a single illegal act, each of us knew that our commitment to socialism implied the obligation to commit treason, too,” Horowitz recounted in his 1998 memoir, Radical Son. 

His family eventually broke from the party after Soviet General Secretary Nikita Khrushchev delivered his 1956 speech “On the Cult of Personality and Its Consequences,” which outlined violations of human rights under Joseph Stalin. It was also that year that Horowitz graduated from Columbia University with a degree in English and left for London to work at the Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation, returning home in 1968 to lead Ramparts, the political and literary magazine of the “New Left” — a movement of liberal activists seeking to drastically reform the cultural landscape with a wide range of social reforms. 

The magazine was shuttered in 1975, but by that time Horowitz was already in the Bay Area working for the Black Panthers and quickly became a confidant of the group’s co-founder, Huey P. Newton. It wasn’t long before that relationship began to sour, beginning with the murder of Betty Van Patter, a bookkeeper at Ramparts who Horowitz had brought to the Panthers. On Dec. 13, 1974, she disappeared from the Berkeley Square tavern in Berkeley. Her body was found in San Francisco Bay. 

As fate would have it, it was then, as the wave of left-wing activism born in the 1960s began to break, that Horowitz felt the first rumblings of doubt regarding his political views. 

Horowitz was convinced that Van Patter’s murder led directly to the Panthers, and her death plunged him into a depressive episode revolving around his inability to marry his political convictions with what he feared was a harsher reality — that the very people he thought were the answer to the world’s injustice had carried out her murder. “It was inconceivable to me that the Panthers would kill Betty Van Patter,” he wrote, despite coming to believe exactly that. 

The Black Panthers were never officially tied to Van Patter’s death, but the event proved to be decisive in guiding Horowitz’s political future. 

Spurred by his doubts and perhaps the prevailing political winds, Horowitz leaned increasingly right on issues such as sexual promiscuity in the gay community and LGBT rights, U.S. foreign policy, the question of racial equality and affirmative action. But it wasn’t until 1985 that Horowitz would make an entrance as a major player on the conservative right.

That year, Horowitz publicly announced that he had voted for Ronald Reagan in the presidential election, an act of political treason to his allies. 

In a coming-out essay titled, “Goodbye to All That” and published in The Washington Post, Horowitz and his writing partner Peter Collier chastised the Left and set out to break ranks, once and for all, with all they knew. “Casting our ballots for Ronald Reagan was indeed a way of saying goodbye to all that — to the self-aggrandizing romance with corrupt Third Worldism; to the casual indulgence of Soviet totalitarianism; to the hypocritical mainstream politics,” the pair wrote. 

Horowitz had changed. 


Human rights activists have regularly protested appearances by David Horowitz, including a 2007 event at Columbia University, his alma mater. Horowitz was at the New York university as part of the “Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week” he sponsors at colleges around the nation. AP IMAGES/BEBETO MATTHEWS

Enemies Everywhere
Fueled by a bitter sense of betrayal, and a hunger to correct the errors of his own personal politics, Horowitz carried the bare-knuckled activism he practiced in the tumultuous 1960s into the heart of the modern conservative movement. 

In 1988, he formed the Center for the Study of Popular Culture (CSPC) in Los Angeles, hoping, according to the group’s website, to “establish a conservative presence in Hollywood and show how popular culture had become a political battleground.” He had minor successes, including getting PBS to broadcast a documentary about the horrors of communist Cuba. 

Then Horowitz turned his attention to targeting “tenured radicals” at American universities. He went after them with a fevered intensity, publishing the tabloid “Heterodoxy” to present conservative interests to university students who, he feared, were being indoctrinated by the entrenched Left. He began tracking the activities of liberal professors — an effort designed, more honestly, to target intellectuals with views at odds with his own. 

He was prolific. He published wild tracts and pamphlets, including “Hating Whitey,” which argued that modern black leaders had squandered the legacy of the civil rights movement by restructuring “the civil rights agenda as a radical cause.” In a book of that same title, published in 1999, he made white nationalist claims about black-on-white crime, voicing criticisms of affirmative action that would last through the election of President Obama, who he called a communist with a “curious background.” Horowitz went on a crusade against reparations for slavery. He has attacked minority “demands for special treatment” as “only necessary because some blacks can’t seem to locate the ladder of opportunity within reach of others,” rejecting the idea that they could be the victims of lingering racism.

“The fact is that it is not tolerable in America to hate blacks, but it is okay in our politically correct culture to hate white people,” he wrote in “Hating Whitey.

“Of course, the leftist academy has a ready answer for every question about black racism: Only whites can be racist.” 

But it wasn’t until after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks that Horowitz discovered a new enemy in “radical Islam.” In 2006, the CSPC was rebranded as the David Horowitz Freedom Center, focusing its attention on “the efforts of the radical left and its Islamist allies to destroy American values.” Horowitz began financing Jihad Watch, a quasi-academic blog that spreads misinformation about Islam. 

Directed by Robert Spencer, a Catholic, the blog aims to “track the attempts of radical Islam to subvert Western Culture.” It is popular among those who see the mere presence of Muslims outside the Middle East as a threat to freedom. His ideas have appealed to people such as Anders Breivik, the Norwegian who killed 76 people as a political statement against immigration. Breivik’s 1,500-page manifesto attacking multiculturalism, and especially Muslims, mentioned Spencer 162 times. 

Since 2007, the Freedom Center has held annual Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week on multiple college campuses — 119 to date — to “protect students from indoctrination and harassment.” In reality, as with most of Horowitz’s public events, the program is focused on creating controversy, if nothing else. 

During one such week in 2010, Horowitz appeared at the University of California-Santa Barbara. Midway through the program, he began to debate a Muslim student wearing a traditional Palestinian keffiyah — what Horowitz called a “terrorist neckerchief.” When the young woman asked Horowitz to clarify the connections he had been drawing between the Muslim Student Association on campus and radical terrorists, he instead asked the woman to denounce Hamas. 

 “For it, or against it?” he barked, demanding an answer. It was a trap. 

While she would later claim she was thinking unclearly and intimidated, she bashfully replied, “For it.” Horowitz nodded and smiled. It was a rhetorical trick — the kind Horowitz has perfected. If she supported Hamas, Horowitz argued, the Muslim Student Association to which she belonged was actually tied to a terrorist organization, as defined by the State Department.  

The video made the rounds on conservative news outlets, seeming to confirm for Horowitz and his followers that his fight with the “radical faith” was on target. Islam was on the move — everywhere. 

Fueling the Fire
To understand the harm caused by Horowitz, it is important to see just how deep his influence goes on the political right. As the GOP becomes increasingly influenced by Tea Party politicians who bring conspiracy theories to the debate, Horowitz and his acolytes have emerged as the experts on radical Islam and its terrifying infiltration into American society and government.

Horowitz has accused anti-tax activist Grover Norquist of being a secret Muslim plant in the federal government. More famously, he has led the charge that Huma Abedin, a long-time aide to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, is a Muslim Brotherhood agent sent to “penetrate” the U.S. government. Horowitz argues that Abedin, who is married to former U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner, has “been given a special dispensation to marry a Jew so she can infiltrate our government.” 

“If you wondered how it’s possible that Obama and Hillary would not know or would pretend what was happening wasn’t happening in the Middle East, or how they could turn over Egypt as they have to the Muslim Brotherhood, which is the fountainhead of Al Qaida and all these terrible Islamic Nazi organizations, the answer is not really hard to find: the chief adviser to the American government on Muslim affairs,” Horowitz said in a 2012 radio interview with Janet Mefferd. 

Yet, somehow, Horowitz has mostly avoided charges of racism or bias, often citing First Amendment protections and relying on young audiences of politically conservative college students — where the “leftist offensive is most visible” — to popularize his views and draw support. A gifted rhetorician, his attack on Islam is often couched in a defense of Israel and civil rights, or defended as necessary for security. 


Texas Gov. Rick Perry AP IMAGES/SUSAN WALSH
Given his annual salary of more than $540,000, according to federal tax filings from 2013, Horowitz has not avoided charges of political opportunism — a point made clear in his wildly vacillating history of political views. 

In 1991, Fred Gardner, a former colleague at Ramparts, said Horowitz and his writing partner Peter Collier “were never radicals for a minute.” “Their goal was and is personal success. It’s no coincidence that they were ‘left’ in the ’60s and ‘right’ in the ’80s,” Gardner said. 


U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) AP IMAGES/J. SCOTT APPLEWHITE
Neither Horowitz, nor a representative from the Freedom Center, responded to multiple requests for interviews. But it’s no surprise his rise comes as anti-Muslim sentiment finds a home on the far right of American politics, where Muslims are often decried and where Tea Party activists and xenophobic conservatives happily count Horowitz as their friends. Tea Party favorites Texas Gov. Rick Perry, U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert and U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz are all regular participants at Horowitz’s annual, lavish Restoration Weekend, summits appealingly held in five-star hotels that bring together influential Islamophobes and public officials to exchange ideas. 


U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R–Texas). AP IMAGES/CHARLIE NEIBERGALL
Is it any wonder that Cruz has ranted that “Shariah law is an enormous problem” or that Gohmert has said, “This administration has so many Muslim Brotherhood members that have influence that they just are making wrong decisions for America”? 

It is these connections to powerful politicians that are concerning, ensuring that Horowitz’s toxic activities affect the mainstream — and the lives of American Muslims.

“He hires the Luca Brasis of the anti-Islam movement,” Ali said, comparing Robert Spencer to Mario Puzo’s famed hitman from The Godfather. “He subsidizes. He gives them a platform. He enables and supports people who share his ideological vision. And what’s more dangerous than that?”

h/t: Ryan Lenz at the Southern Poverty Law Center

h/t: Anna Lekas Miller at The Nation

If Breitbart publisher Steve Bannon was under the impression that giving anti-Muslim activists Pamela Geller, Robert Spencer and Frank Gaffney a rather public platform at this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference after the organizers at the American Conservative Union banned them from direct participation would leave them feeling chastened or even grateful for the opportunity, Robert Spencer disabused him of that notion within moments of beginning his address. Rather than touching upon the nominal topic of his speech, “Why I am not a conservative,” Spencer lit straight into the exact kind of personal attacks against ACU board members Grover Norquist and Suhail Khan that not only got him banned but from which Bannon had specifically asked him to refrain.

“There’s no ‘personal attack,’” Spencer claimed after Bannon tried to steer him back to his speech topic because, he stated, he wasn’t personally acquainted with either Norquist or Khan. “What I do know is that they’re completely in bed with the same people Barack Obama is listening to to press the Muslim Brotherhood-positive foreign policy of the United States, and domestic policy as well.”

It was the sort of red meat that only about sixty percent of the once-capacity crowd had stuck around for more than an hour of painfully boring speeches to hear — and they ate it up, giving Spencer a standing ovation at the end of a short speech in which he also claimed “the United States government has sold out to the Muslim Brotherhood” and that, “This is not about me.”

Geller was next up to the microphone, which she used to claim that God himself had a hand in her being given the opportunity to speak at CPAC despite her banishment. “The media is self-enforcing the sharia,” she asserted to the audience by not giving enough coverage to what she called jihadist attacked inside the United States. But while she encouraged others to do the same, she warned them, “You are a ‘racist Islamophobic anti-Muslim bigot’ if you touch this subject.”

Despite her concerns about the “libel” of such statements about her motivations, Geller used her time to explain more about her suit against the New York Metropolitan Transit Authority, which first denied her the ability to run anti-Islam subway ads and then were forced to do so by a lawsuit she brought based on the First Amendment. “You know why I had to sue?” she asked the audience rhetorically. “Because I’m insulting the savages, that’s why,” she finished to nervous titters.

She also called out the “My Jihad” counter-campaign against her ads by the Council on American-Islamic Relations that seeks to educate Americans that “jihad” does not inherently mean religious war. “This so so bizarre and so insulting and so offensive to the intelligence of the American people,” she said, “But this is the war, you see. The war is in the information battle space. The war is in the war of ideas. And we are being completely shut out by our own,” by not being allowed to host panels on it at CPAC.

“Now, am I saying that [ACU Board Member]Suhail Khan is as bad as al-Awlaki?” she asked her audience. “He’s worse! Listen to me! He’s worse because look what he’s done to this conference. Look at the effect that they have had on this conference. That was stealth jihad, that’s what that was.”

Frank Gaffney, whose presentation was nominally about the problems with reducing America’s nuclear arsenal, used the question-and-answer session to join in the attacks on Norquist and Khan, claiming that Norquist — who is the anti-tax advocate behind Americans For Tax Reform — was the “protege” of a Muslim convicted of supporting al Qaeda and that it was at Norquist’s insistence that Karl Rove brought Khan into the White House during the Bush Administration despite the fact that Khan supposed is “a prince of the Muslim Brotherhood.”

The problem with CPAC organizers not apparently aligned with the Muslim Brotherhood, according to Spencer, is that “people are very anxious not to appear bigoted and racist and so they court Muslim groups that they believe to be moderate — and I’m not saying that there are no moderate Muslims and no Muslims that don’t want to kill us, I’m very glad that there are Muslims that don’t want to kill us and I know that there are lots of them. The thing is, though, that there are many groups that are not moderate at all, that have the same goals as the al Qaeda groups and all the others that are involved in violent jihad but they are just achieving those goals by different means.”

“This is manifest and obvious in all kinds of ways,” he added. “The infiltration is very great and its very sophisticated and people for the best of intentions fall for it. We have to be more alert and more aware.”

But it was when birther Orly Taitz stood up and lectured the panelists about not allowing her and her followers to discuss Obama’s supposedly real citizenship that Geller echoed the views of more than one CPAC attendee about the whole thing: “It’s inappropriate,” she said.

h/t: The Raw Story

Readers may or may not remember Eric Allen Bell—he’s the filmmaker and former “Kos Kid” who, back in 2010, was supportive of the construction of the Murfreesboro mosque, which had become one of the lightning rods of the anti-mosque hysteria that began sweeping the nation that summer.

Please bear with me here as this story gets quite labyrinthine, which is not unusual when looking into the history of people who fancy themselves to be brave counter-Jihadists and human rights advocates, but who are in reality nothing more than rank bigots with loud voices and a cadre of like-minded followers. Understanding the history of such people, the organizations they create, and their relationships to each other is key to being fully aware of their objectives.

Back to Mr. Bell. In January 2012 in a Daily Kos “diary” (a blog post by Daily Kos users), Bell suddenly began railing against the term “Islamophobia”, asserting that the website Loonwatch was involved in apologetics for radical Islam, and expressing sympathy for anti-Muslim propagandist & white nationalist admirer, Robert Spencer. Still, he held off praising the likes of anti-Muslim hate blogger Pamela Geller, but that didn’t last long.

Shortly thereafter, in March 2012, Bell penned an article for FrontPage Magazine praising Robert Spencer and his cohort Pamela Geller, which Spencer proudly displayed on his website. For the record, FrontPage Magazine is edited by David Horowitz who, along with Spencer & Geller, is part of the “anti-Muslim inner circle” as described in a 2011 report by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Also of note, in 2011 both Spencer & Horowitz saw fit to lump the Anti-defamation League in with the “Jihadist apologists” via blog posts for National Review Online. Why would they attack a respected 100-year-old organization that “fights anti-Semitism and all forms of bigotry, defends democratic ideals and protects civil rights for all”? Because the ADL had the temerity to publish a highly critical report about Stop Islamization of America (SIOA) which exposed its ties to other extremist anti-Muslim groups & individuals (SIOA is headed by Spencer & Geller ).1

I’m pointing all this out to show that there’s a pattern here: There are people who are united by hatred. People whose hatred is so blinding that they’ll viciously attack and smear anyone who points out their bigotry, lies, associations with and/or support for some of the most morally reprehensible groups and individuals in existence.

Finally, again, we return to Mr. Bell. We left him after his early 2011 “epiphany”, which caused the veil of liberalism to finally drop from his eyes and allow him to see how courageous and righteous Spencer & Geller’s messages of fear and loathing truly are. But wait—there was yet another epiphany to come!

How typical. Even when they do have “facts”, they don’t. They deal primarily in misinformation, disinformation, innuendo, and vague or tenuous “links” (see Frank Gaffney’s attempts to smear Grover Norquist and CIA Director John Brennan, or Michele Bachmann’s smear of Huma Abedin).

Guess what happened next? Last month Bell began posting anti-Semitic comments on Facebook, such as this Timeline Photo with a graphic showing the largest media companies (larger version found here) with a caption asking:

These 6 companies control over 90% of the media. What religion must one belong to, in order to have a chance at being CEO of one of these companies? BONUS QUESTION: What name or names is a person called, for even raising this basic and reasonable question?

Hmm, let me guess… Jewish & anti-Semite?

Further down, in response to a comment, he replies:

It isn’t “the Jews” or even most Jews. Look at it the other way around. Is there a head of a TV network or a movie studio that is not Jewish? The answer is almost always no. Look at who runs the IMF, the Federal Reserve and the US Treasury, just to name a few. Is it “the Jews”? No. But is it almost exclusively Jewish? Yes.
February 11 at 12:10pm

Nope, nothing anti-Semitic there. After all, he issued a disclaimer in the first sentence, so that means anything he says after that is inoculated against being anti-Semitic, right? RIGHT?? Like if you say, “It isn’t ‘the Muslims’ or even most Muslims, but are terrorists almost exclusively Muslim?” then you’re not an Islamophobe. Oh wait, but that’s different… No, it’s NOT—it’s exactly the same.

In the following he whines about the twin evils of Islam & Judaism:

See, here is how it works. You can criticize any religion except Islam, because then the death threats come. And if you criticize Judaism, you get called a Nazi and your reputation will be destroyed. Religion poisons everything.
February 10 at 4:45pm

Just like Islam, one must distinguish between the rank and file and the leadership. And just like as [sic] in Islam, there is much spin control and rationalization regarding the darker passages in Judaism, especially as they pertain to elitism and supremacy.
February 10 at 4:51pm

He gets seriously creepy in this post where he opens with a comment criticizing Islam & religion in general, then moves on to Jews again:

Will there ever be a day when hundreds of millions of women are not suffering under Islamic gender apartheid? Will there ever be a day when hundreds of millions of children are not brainwashed into believing superstitions, for fear of burning in hell when they die? Will there ever be a day when a small but elite group no longer takes from others, under the premise that they are “god’s chosen”? […]

One more shot at Jews:

So you believe that “god” gave a plot of land to his “chosen people”?
February 18 at 3:24am

Here’s where he ends up in a really dark place:

Nature creates dominance hierarchies. We need more low functioning people to do the manual labor. We need fewer high functioning people to lead. To meany [sic] leaders and we have a conflict. Historically there are probably more highly intelligent people living on this planet than ever before. That there are also a lot of mindless, superstitious breeders is nothing new.
February 18 at 5:36am

It goes on with more disclaimers and Facebook commenters who excuse anti-Muslim bigotry, but balk at anti-Semitism. I couldn’t stomach any more.

This is the sort of person Spencer, Geller, Horowitz, et al. embrace and welcome into the fold. These are the people Charles backed away from, with good reason and to his credit.

On Monday, People For the American Way delivered a petition with 178,000 signatures to House Speaker John Boehner calling for the removal of Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann from the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. Bachmann, one of Congress’ leading purveyors of conspiracy theories, earned rebukes from Boehner and others last year when she accused several Muslim-American government employees, include top Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin, of being secret agents of the Muslim Brotherhood.

The petition, to put it mildly, hit a nerve among Bachmann’s allies in the anti-Muslim Right. FrontPageMag, an online outfit led by David Horowitz, has published a full three articles defending Bachmann and accusing PFAW of “smearing” the “vindicated” Bachmann by launching an “all-out war” on her.  In one article, Robert Spencer of JihadWatch argues, “If they really had any genuine concern for the American way, instead of calling for her removal from the Intelligence committee, the People for the American Way would be calling for Bachmann to be appointed to chair that committee.”

Yesterday, Horowitz launched his own petition, titled, ironically, “Stop the Witch Hunt Against Rep. Bachmann.”

Horowitz and Spencer aren’t the only ones coming to Bachmann’s defense. The Center for Security Policy’s Frank Gaffney, who was the source of the bulk of Bachmann’s accusations against Abedin, and conservative columnist Diana West discussed the petition on Wednesday’s edition of Secure Freedom Radio. People For the American Way, Gaffney suggested, is part of the “Red-Green Axis” and should be called instead “People For the Islamist Way.”

H/T: Miranda Blue at RWW

(via Allen West on FNC’s Fox and Friends: “The FBI Is Participating In ‘Cultural Suicide’”)

Appearing on Fox & Friends, West criticized the FBI for reportedly removing Islamophobic training material. The culling of FBI training materials comes after Wired’s Danger Room found that counterterrorism agents at the FBI’s training center in Quantico, VA were taught that “devout” Muslims are more likely to be “violent” and that Muslims are likely to be terrorist sympathizers. The works of notorious anti-Islam writers Daniel Pipes and Robert Spencer were found in the FBI’s library and FBI counterterrorism “expert” William Gawthrop was shown telling an audience at an FBI sponsored event that Islam bore similarities to the Star Wars Death Star.

But West, whose own experience in counterterrorism includes mock executiing an Iraqi whom he suspected of witholding information about an ambush on his men, has decided that removing Islamophobic material from the FBI’s training facilities amounts to a Muslim Brotherhood conspiracy. He told Brian Kilmeade:

WEST: Well I think we have to understand that when tolerance becomes a one-way street it will lead to cultural suicide. And we should not allow the Muslim Brotherhood or associated groups to be influencing our national security strategy.

KILMEADE: Do you believe they are?

WEST: Oh absolutely. When you go and look at the Fort Hood report of Major Malik Nadal Hassan, you will find that it makes no reference to Islamic jihadism, Muslim extremism, it doesn’t talk about his association with al Alwaki and it is classified as workplace violence. […] If we continue to be recalcitrant in identifying who the enemy is to be less offensive to them, then we’re going to put ourselves in a bad situation. […] Now you have an environment of political correctness which precludes these agents from doing their proper job and due diligence to go after the perceived threat.

Anti-Muslim activists have attacked the new TLC reality show All-American Muslim as “propaganda,” “a video version of jihad,” and “A Little Taqiyya on the Prairie.” Television critics, meanwhile, have praised the show for portraying the diversity of the American Muslim community.

Activists Complain All-American Muslim Is An “Attempt To Manipulate Americans Into Ignoring The Threat Of Jihad”

Geller Calls Show “An Attempt To Manipulate Americans Into Ignoring The Threat Of Jihad,” Smears Show Supporter As “Dhimmi Jew.” From a WorldNetDaily column by Pamela Geller:

The premise behind the creation of the show is the fictional construct “Islamophobia.” “All-American Muslim” is designed to counter “Islamophobia” by showing Muslims who aren’t terrorist monsters, but ordinary people living ordinary lives, balancing tradition and modern life, dealing with their families, their jobs, etc.

Yet based on the most recent FBI statistics, hate crimes against Muslims are at record lows - the lowest since 9/11. Contrast that to the record highs in anti-Semitic attacks against the Jewish people; so where’s TLC’s Jewish family series?

Left-wing sites are shamelessly pushing, promoting and propagandizing the new “All-American Muslim” show. The dhimmi Jew Alyssa Rosenberg urged viewers to watch the show, writing at Think Progress: “Normally, I would never tell you to watch something just because it would make someone mad. But noted Islamophobe Pamela Geller is apparently vexed that TLC’s ‘All-American Muslim,’ a new reality show about a group of Muslim families in Dearborn, Mich., doesn’t achieve what she thinks of as balance, by which she means including story lines where Muslims commit crimes based on their faith.”

[…]

The danger is in the deception and obfuscation of the truth, which results in the intellectual disarming of the American people. “All-American Muslim” is trying to show nominal Muslims as the norm, as if their existence takes away the threat from devout Muslims. It is mentioned once but never explained: The man has to convert to Islam because a Muslim woman cannot marry a non-Muslim man. This is a supremacist measure designed to make the Muslim community always expand at the expense of the non-Muslim one. But there is no hint of that in this show.

Clearly this program is an attempt to manipulate Americans into ignoring the threat of jihad and to bully them into thinking that being concerned about the jihad threat would somehow victimize these nice people in this show.

The problem is not people, it’s ideology. The show doesn’t address that. [WorldNetDaily, 11/15/11]

Geller Depicts NYC Terror Suspect As “All-American Muslim.” In the headlines of several Atlas Shrugs blog posts on Jose Pimentel, who was arrested in New York City on terrorism charges, Geller repeatedly describes him as an “All-American Muslim”:

  • Noted moderate Muslim Akbar Ahmed blames jihad of NY All-American Muslim bomb plotter on “Islamophobia,” issues veiled threat [11/21/11]
  • Mom of NYC All-American Muslim bomber: She “couldn’t deal with him after he started reading the Koran in 2001”” [11/21/11]
  • Omerica: FBI Turned Down the Case of the All-American Muslim NYC Bomber Twice [11/21/11]
  • All-American Muslim: New York jihad bomb plotter wanted to show “there was mujahideen in the city ready to wage Jihad” [11/21/11]
  • All-American Muslim: NYPD Arrest Muslim Terror Suspect “plotting to bomb police patrol cars, postal facilities and US soldiers” [11/20/11]

For more on Geller’s anti-Muslim activism, CLICK HERE.

Spencer: “The Problem” Is That The Show Depicts Muslims Who Are “Undoubtedly Harmless, Completely Uninterested In Jihad And Islamic Supremacism.” From a Human Events column by Robert Spencer:

And so we meet one zaftig girl who loves to have fun and go to clubs, and who is in the process of getting married. Another young woman, provocatively dressed by Muslim standards, is trying to open up a club of her own. A young hijab-wearing wife shares the joy of her pregnancy with her loving husband. They’re balancing the demands of faith and family with life’s daily pressures, just like most Americans. So why — the show implies — are non-Muslim Americans so mean to them?

Yet it is noteworthy that both the woman who is getting married and the one who is trying to open a club acknowledge that they are not all that religious. And that is the problem at the heart of All-American Muslim. The Muslims it depicts are for the most part undoubtedly harmless, completely uninterested in jihad and Islamic supremacism (although there is a notable undertone of something quite different here and there, such as when the career woman’s “friend and business partner Mahmoud” tells her, his voice full of quiet menace, that a Muslim woman is really better off tending to her family than opening a club).

But Americans aren’t suspicious of Muslims who are trying to get married, open clubs, and play football. Americans are suspicious of Muslims who are trying to blow up American buildings, subvert American freedoms, and assert the primacy of Islamic law over American law. The problem people have with Islam is not with every Muslim person. It is with Islam’s teachings of violence against and the subjugation of unbelievers. It is with the supremacist ideology and the fervent believers in those noxious doctrines of warfare and subjugation. [Human Events, 11/15/11]

For more on Spencer’s anti-Muslim activism, CLICK HERE.

Family Security Matters: “A Little Taqiyya On The Prairie.” From a column by Clare M. Lopez on the right-wing website Family Security Matters:

Misconceptions about Islam do, in fact, abound; but it is not likely that “All-American Muslim” will do much to clarify how Islamic supremacism and violence against non-believers derive directly from the doctrine, law, and scriptures of Islam itself. That every Muslim believer does not behave in conformance with such fundamental tenets of the faith is obvious and to be acknowledged with relief. Unfortunately, though, television shows that gloss over the reality of Islamic ideology not only obscure the full truth about Islam from non-Muslims who then remain unprepared to defend against its hostile elements, but also leave no space for Muslims who themselves oppose jihadist terrorism, inequality between Muslims and non-Muslims, misogyny, honor killings, the apostasy death penalty, and vicious hudud punishments. This is why the new TLC series might more accurately be called “A Little Taqiyya on the Prairie.” Taqiyya, of course, is the sanctioned Islamic practice of deceit and dissimulation to defend or promote Islam. [Family Security Matters, 11/23/11]

WorldNetDaily Promotes Right-Wing Group’s Advertiser Boycott Against “Propaganda” Show. From a WorldNetDaily article:

Critics say the program is nothing more than video jihad propaganda, and the Florida Family Association says it is contacting companies whose advertising appears on the show to ask them to quit. So far, 18 of 20 companies contacted have done so, the group said.

The organization said that among the companies that initially supported the program, but later did not have any advertising aired, were Airborne Vitamin, Amway, Diamond Foods, Dyson Vacuum, Estee Lauder, HTC Phones, Home Depot, McDonald’s, Petsmart, Pfizer, Sears, Sonic, T-Mobil and Wal-Mart.

The Florida group said it sent out an email alert to constituents only a week ago, who then contacted the sponsors.

"The Learning Channel’s new show ‘All-American Muslim’ is propaganda clearly designed to counter legitimate and present-day concerns about many Muslims who are advancing Islamic fundamentalism and Shariah law," the organization’s report on its work said. "The show profiles only Muslims that appear to be ordinary folks while excluding many Islamic believers whose agenda poses a clear and present danger to liberties and traditional values that the majority of Americans cherish." [WorldNetDaily, 11/22/11]

WorldNetDaily Touts “Critics” Who Call Show “A Video Version Of Jihad.” From a WorldNetDaily article:

According to The Learning Channel, its coming new “All-American Muslim” program is a “powerful series” taking viewers “inside the rarely seen world of American Muslims.” And it uncovers a “unique community struggling to balance faith and nationality.”

Critics, however, say it is nothing more or less than a video version of jihad.

[…]

Jerry Newcombe, Truth in Action Ministries’ senior producer and analyst, says the major problem with the program is that it’s not going to show the reality of “pure Islam.”

"It’s a free country. Muslims are free to practice their religion here (thanks to Christianity, ultimately). What is sad, though, is that the truth about the goals of radical Islam are hidden from many Americans through programs like the one on TLC. Islam wants to take over the world. If they have to use force, they’ll do that. But otherwise, they’ll do it by what Robert Spencer calls ‘stealth jihad,’" Newcombe said.

A line from one of the first two episodes illustrates what both Geller and Newcombe are describing, when one of Muslim women says in a panel discussion, “We live our lives just like anyone else.”

That perception is one of the reasons why Jihad Watch publisher and Executive Director Robert Spencer shares the concerns expressed by Geller and Newcombe.

Spencer says the program is attempting to produce a neutral view of Islam.

"The show apparently is trying to show that Muslims go to clubs, like to have fun, etc. But this doesn’t really establish anything," Spencer said.

"The problem people have with Islam is its teachings of violence against and the subjugation of unbelievers. The problem is not with every Muslim person. It is with the supremacist ideology and the fervent believers in those noxious doctrines of warfare and subjugation," Spencer also said.

Geller agrees.

"It is trying to show nominal Muslims as the norm, as if their existence takes away the threat from devout Muslims," Geller said. [WorldNetDaily, 11/10/11]

FrontPageMag: Show Promotes “Submission To Islam Through The Hijab And The Shahada.” From a column by Daniel Greenfield at the David Horowitz-operated FrontPageMag:

The theme of All-American Muslim is that Muslims are just like us. It’s the same message that Hollywood has been blasting at us for ten years as if anyone were under the impression that Muslims are aliens from another planet.

Muslims are like us; that’s the problem. The Nazis were like us too. So were the Communists. They were and are what we are capable of becoming if we fall under the sway of a totalitarian ideology that insists it has the right and duty to enslave the human race. And so we’re treated to endless scenes of normalization. Muslim women care about their looks. Muslim men like sports. Muslims hold down jobs and deal with the same issues that we do.

[…]

The Muslim families in All-American Muslim are being allowed to make choices that don’t exist in the Muslim world, and rather than embracing their new freedom, the show defaults to promoting a submission to Islam through the Hijab and the Shahada. And there’s nothing American about that. [FrontPageMag, 11/14/11]

For more on Horowitz’s anti-Muslim activism, CLICK HERE.

Critics Say All-American Muslim Depicts Diversity Of Muslims

Philadelphia Inquirer: Show Offers “Purposefully Diverse” View Of Muslims, “From The Strictly Observant To The Seamlessly Assimilated.” From a review of All-American Muslim by Philadelphia Inquirer TV columnist David Hiltbrand:

The portrait of Muslim Americans depicted on the show is a purposefully diverse one, from the strictly observant to the seamlessly assimilated.

The gratifying part of All-American Muslim is that no matter where on the religious spectrum these families fall, as soon as the cameras go inside their living rooms, they quickly feel like neighbors.

All-American Muslim is a much needed counter-narrative to negative images of Muslims that seem to saturate the news,” says Rugiatu Conteh, outreach and communications director for the Philadelphia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

The religion could certainly use an image upgrade. A new study conducted by the Pew Research Center indicates that 24 percent of the general public believes American Muslim support for Islamic extremism is on the rise.

Only 4 percent of American Muslims agree. [The Philadelphia Inquirer, 11/13/11]

You may think that when you buy a Butterball turkey this Thanksgiving you’re as American as apple pie. But, you’d be wrong. In fact, you’re the victim of a “stealth halal” conspiracy.

In a column on The American Thinker, anti-Islam blogger Pamela Geller explains that halal meats are already prevalent throughout most of the meat industry, but now they have even infiltrated the popular frozen turkey producer Butterball.

A citizen activist and reader of my website AtlasShrugs.com wrote to Butterball, one of the most popular producers of Thanksgiving turkeys in the United States, asking them if their turkeys were halal. Wendy Howze, a Butterball Consumer Response Representative, responded: “Our whole turkeys are certified halal.”

“In a little-known strike against freedom, yet again, we are being forced into consuming meat slaughtered by means of a torturous method: Islamic slaughter,” Geller writes.

She continues that if you like freedom and hate sharia, you should boycott Butterball and ask them to stop selling these nefarious birds:

Non-Muslims in America and Europe don’t deserve to have halal turkey forced upon them in this way, without their knowledge or consent. So this Thanksgiving, fight for your freedom. Find a non-halal, non-Butterball turkey to celebrate Thanksgiving this Thursday. And write to Butterball and request, politely but firmly, that they stop selling only halal turkeys, and make non-halal turkeys available to Americans who still value our freedoms.

Geller’s anti-Sharia cohort Robert Spencer called this revelation “shocking” on his Jihad Watch blog — and touted the “Boycott Butterball Turkey” Facebook page, which so far has 758 “likes” and encourages supporters to “keep calling and writing. All halal should be labeled.”

Spencer’s not the only one to be outraged.

The site Bare Naked Islam provided this “WARNING” for its readers: “ALL ‘BUTTERBALL’ TURKEYS ARE HALAL-SLAUGHTER CERTIFIED. JUST IN TIME FOR THANKSGIVING. I have just learned that the turkeys so many Americans enjoy for the holidays are certified Islamic-blessed, halal-slaughtered birds.”

And anti-Islam, anti-bear activist Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association tweeted this warning on Tuesday: “Be advised: every single Butterball turkey sold in America this Thanksgiving has been sacrificed to Allah first.”

TPM is awaiting a comment from Butterball, and we’ll update when they respond. Meanwhile, stay tuned for our expose on Communist infiltration of the turducken.

H/t: TPM Muckracker

ispu:

From ISPU Fellow Daniel Tutt at the Huffington Post

The small but influential network of anti-Muslim pundits and bloggers that have been central in the creation of widely accepted myths such as “President Obama is a Muslim,” that “practicing Muslims cannot be loyal Americans” and that “sharia is a threat to America” have been taking their show on the road. Speaking at packed gala dinners, fundraisers, conservative conferences and even training FBI and law enforcement, this small but interconnected network of speakers, bloggers and pundits have managed to attract elected officials, including senate and congressional representatives to attend their events.

In light of the recent report by the Center for American Progress, “Fear Incorporated: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America,” which exposed the $42.6 million industry that fuels the Islamophobia infrastructure in America, American Muslims have begun to challenge this grassroots movement by waging their own counter-grassroots movement. Through protesting their conferences, writing petitions to hotels that host them, forming coalitions with Muslim and non-Muslim organizations, and a wide array of other strategies, American Muslim organizations and activists are beginning to take the small industry of Islamophobic speakers head on. This type of agitation is being recognized by the network. As one of the chief architects of the Islamophobia network, Robert Spencer has noted, many Muslim Americans have begun to challenge their views head on, resulting in hotels backing out of speaking contracts for events where Spencer, Pamela Geller and Frank Gaffney are to appear.

Read More

Former Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-CO) blasted Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) for failing to take a hard-line against Muslims or embrace the Islamophobia currently sweeping across the GOP.

Tancredo, who has suggested that bombing the Muslim holy cities of Mecca and Medina would serve as a good “deterrent” against Islamic terrorism, opines in the Daily Caller:

What is not yet as widely known about Perry is that he extends his taxpayer-funded compassion not only to illegal aliens but also to Muslim groups seeking to whitewash the violent history of that religion. Perry endorsed and facilitated the adoption in Texas public schools of a pro-Muslim curriculum unit developed by Muslim clerics in Pakistan.

Tancredo cites “Islam scholar” Robert Spencer — Spencer plays the role of a “misinformation expert” in the Islamophobia network examined in the Center for American Progress’ new report Fear, Inc. — who examined the program and concluded:

The curriculum is a complete whitewash and it’s got the endorsement of Perry. It’s not going to give you any idea why people are waging jihad against the West — it’s only going to make you think that the real problem is ‘Islamophobia.’

Indeed Perry did develop a relationship with Pakistani religious leader and philanthropist Aga Khan and helped facilitate a 2009 agreement between Texas and Aga Khan organizations in the “fields of education, health sciences, natural disaster preparedness and recovery, culture and the environment.” At the signing ceremony, Perry said:

[T]raditional Western education speaks little of the influence of Muslim scientists, scholars, throughout history, and for that matter the cultural treasures that stand today in testament to their wisdom.

Not all conservative pundits have bought into the anti-Muslim hysteria. The Center for Security Policy’s David Reaboi and conservative blogger Ace of Spades have written lengthy rebuttals and characterized the attacks on Perry and his Aga Khan connections as inaccurate. But Perry’s involvement in the development of curriculum to teach Texas high school students about Islam has served as a rallying cry for anti-Muslim advocates who see the curriculum as a threat to their portrayal of Islam as an inherently violent religion.

Tancredo concludes his anti-Muslim editorial by suggesting that Perry’s affiliation with Grover Norquist, a Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) board member and president of Americans for Tax Reform, is yet another sign of “Perry’s Muslim blind spot.” Tancredo asks:

Why does [Perry] think he can claim to be the “tea party candidate” while endorsing a whitewash of Islamic extremism in Texas schools?

H/T: ThinkProgress Security