Saturday, April 26, 2014

Confronting Militant Islam: Time to Criticize Our Own

Gary Fouse

I have thought long and hard before composing this piece because I don't like to air dirty laundry in front of our enemies, who for purposes of this essay, are the militant Islamists who seek to impose their values upon the rest of us-one way or the other. It's hard because I am going to criticize people who should be on our side, and in some cases, are definitely on our side.

As I have often said, Christians and Jews need to stand together to face the Islamist threat (Note: I did not say Muslim threat. I said Islamist threat. There is a distinction.) Unfortunately, we don't. On the Christian side, it is sickening to see entire national churches that have aligned themselves with the Palestinian cause and march hand in hand with those who want to destroy the Jewish state of Israel. Need I mention the Presbyterian Church USA and the Methodist Church UK? How about the All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena, where Pastor Ed Bacon laments about "Evangelical Zionists", equating them with those who carried out the Inquisition and Holocaust? (Yes, I personally heard him say it. Here it is. It is at the one hour mark in the video.) I have come to the conclusion that this is not about what they consider justice. It is anti-Semitism.

Then there are the interfaith groups, which include Christians, Jews and Muslims. On the surface, they seem admirable, especially in America, where we believe in accepting all religions. Surely, some of them are well intentioned on all sides. However, the few that I have witnessed consist of gullible or progressive Jewish rabbis and Christian pastors combined with  dissembling imams. Those are little more than exercises in indoctrination taking advantage of our natural instinct to see the best in our fellow man. Incredibly, I have met a lot of Jewish people who seem to have never even heard of the Holocaust. Try to fight anti-Semitism and point out Islamic anti-Semitism, and you make as many Jewish enemies as Muslim enemies. I can personally attest to that.

Take the Anti Defamation League, for example. They will speak out when the anti-Semites are skinheads, neo-Nazis, or Aryan Brotherhood types. But while they are looking under the bed for those folks, Israel's neighbors are trying to kick down the front door, while Muslim immigrants in Europe are literally driving European Jews out of their respective countries. Suffice to say, the ADL is usually missing in action when anti-Semitism comes from Islamic quarters, and that includes on American university campuses. The Jewish Federation? In many parts of the country (like Orange County), they are part of the problem as is Hillel depending on what the local chapters are. It is a case of hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil when it comes to anti-Semitism on university campuses arising out of the Israel-Palestinian conflict. I should add that in the case of Hillel, while I leave it up to the individual Jewish college student to make his or her own decision when it comes to these issues, I expect the adult leadership to be active and speak out when anti-Semitism raises its ugly head on a college campus. Instead, too many simply tell the students to stand down, telling the public that Jewish life is thriving on campus, pointing out all the wonderful social events going on, and in the case of UC Irvine, pointing with pride to I-Fest, a one-week festival featuring signs telling people that Israel invented cell phone technology, belly dancing, and hookah stands. Great. That is Hillel at UC Irvine.

But there is one other issue I would like to address, and this goes to the so-called counter-jihad movement in the US, of which I consider myself a part. Like everybody else, we have our differences and squabbles (though nothing like the Sunnis and Shia), and I admit I have been no exception at times. I will not name any names here, but there are some people who are at the top of our movement, people who are nationally known, people who are doing great and courageous work, people whom I respect and support, but who need to stop and do some self examination. All too often, some of these people tend to get swelled heads and inflated egos because of their fame and look down at the little folks in the movement forgetting who they are dealing with.

I strongly suspect that some of these people who are flying around the country giving speeches see their audience as nothing more than fans who come to listen to their speeches, shake hands, buy their books, get an autograph, and have their picture taken with a famous person. Do they know that many of these people are in the trenches fighting the battles at public meetings and universities, writing letters to the newspapers, protesting, complaining to cowardly university administrators, confronting militant Islamist speakers and stealth jihadists when they make speaking appearances, videotaping and documenting hate speech, and in many cases providing the information that the big shots run with? In many cases, do they even know who their local resources are around the country when they appear in these locales? I don't think they do.

Some of these people need to stop and take a gut check. We don't need arrogance and big egos. In the end, it is counter-productive to our common cause.

Of course, these are not the greatest problems. The bigger problem is that we currently have a government that is not protecting us from militant Islam. But that is the subject for another discussion.

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