Skip to comments.Shoeless George Bush (Daniel Pipes: President Bush Fails To Acknowledge Islamofascist Threat Alert)
Posted on 07/04/2007 1:14:02 AM PDT by goldstategop
When Dwight D. Eisenhower dedicated the Islamic Center in Washington, D.C., in June 1957, his 500-word talk effused good will ("Civilization owes to the Islamic world some of its most important tools and achievements") even as the American president embarrassingly bumbled (Muslims in the United States, he declared, have the right to their "own church"). Conspicuously, he included nary a word about policy.
Exactly 50 years later, standing shoeless, George W. Bush rededicated the center last week. His 1,600-word speech also praised medieval Islamic culture ("We come to express our appreciation for a faith that has enriched civilization for centuries"), but he knew a mosque from a church and he had more on the agenda than flattery.
Most arresting, surely, was his statement that "I have invested the heart of my presidency in helping Muslims fight terrorism, and claim their liberty, and find their own unique paths to prosperity and peace." This cri du coeur signaled how Mr. Bush understands to what extent actions by Muslims will define his legacy.
Should they heed his dream "and find their own unique paths to prosperity and peace," then his presidency, however ravaged it may look at the moment, will be vindicated. As with Harry S Truman, historians will acknowledge that he saw further than his contemporaries. Should Muslims, however, be "left behind in the global movement toward prosperity and freedom," historians will likely judge his two terms as harshly as his fellow Americans do today.
Of course, how Muslims fare depends in large part on the future course of radical Islam, which in turn depends in some part on its understanding by the American president. Over the years, Mr. Bush has generally shown an increased understanding of this topic. He started with platitudinous, apologetic references to Islam as the "religion of peace," using this phrase as late as 2006. He early on even lectured Muslims on the true nature of their religion, a presumptuous ambition that prompted me in 2001 to dub him "Imam Bush."
As his understanding grew, Mr. Bush spoke of the caliphate, "Islamic extremism" and "Islamofacism." What euphemistically he called the "war on terror" in 2001, by 2006 he referred to with the hard-hitting "war with Islamic fascists." Things were looking up. Perhaps official Washington did understand the threat, after all.
But such analyses roused Muslim opposition and, as he approaches his political twilight, Mr. Bush has retreated to safer ground, reverting last week to decayed tropes that tiptoe around any mention of Islam. Instead, he spoke inelegantly of "the great struggle against extremism that is now playing out across the broader Middle East" and vaguely of "a group of extremists who seek to use religion as a path to power and a means of domination."
Worse, the speech drum-rolled the appointment of a U.S. special envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference, directing this envoy to "listen to and learn from" his Muslim counterparts. But the OIC is a Saudi-sponsored organization promoting the Wahhabi agenda under the trappings of a Muslim-only United Nations. As counterterrorism specialist Steven Emerson has noted, Bush's dismal initiative stands in "complete ignorance of the rampant radicalism, pro-terrorist, and anti-American sentiments routinely found in statements by the OIC and its leaders."
Adding to the event's accommodationist tone, some of the president's top female aides, including Frances Townsend and Karen Hughes, wore makeshift hijabs as they listened to him in the audience.
In brief, it feels like "déjà vu all over again." As columnist Diana West puts it, "Nearly six years after September 11 nearly six years after first visiting the Islamic Center and proclaiming Islam is peace' Mr. Bush has learned nothing." But we now harbor fewer hopes than in 2001 that he still can learn, absorb, and reflect an understanding of the enemy's Islamist nature.
Concluding that he basically has failed to engage this central issue, we instead must look to Mr. Bush's potential successors and look for them to return to his occasional robustness, again taking up those difficult concepts of Islamic extremism, Shari'a, and the caliphate. Several Republicans Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney, and (above all) Fred Thompson are doing just that. Democratic candidates, unfortunately, prefer to remain almost completely silent on this topic.
Almost 30 years after Islamists first attacked Americans, and on the eve of three major attempted terrorist attacks in Great Britain, the president's speech reveals how confused Washington remains.
"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." - Manuel II Palelologus
Actions, not words, tell the tale.
“bombing and killing islamofacists.” damn that has a good ring to it!
Draft Sarko ‘08
ditto. I respect Mr. Pipes, but what does he think Bush has been doing for the last six years? Sitting on his hands? Under Bush and Blair's leadership two tyrannical regimes and thousands of Islamo-fascist murderers have been killed or imprisoned. Bush is trying to convince non-violent Islamic countries that their future lies in condemning the I-F killers and assisting the civilized world in turning away from violence. Calling all Muslims terrorists and killers will not persuade them to help the west.
I’m shocked, shocked, to read that Council on Foreign Relations member Daniel Pipes is endorsing fellow CFR globalists Guiliani, Romney, and Fred Thompson. What a coincidence!
LOL My first laugh of July 4--thank you!
Exactly right, not that I think anything COULD help convince them to help as much as we'd like.
Bush is already fighting enough battles, he doesn't need to say some rabble-rousing words which simply will not help anything. What, exactly, does Pipes think would be achieved by what he wants Bush to do?
The “War in Terror” is over (nothing more than a bumper sticker) just ask the Media, Democrat Presidential Candidates and Great Britain. Maybe after the next attack on US Soil it will be given it’s proper name “Islamic Wars”.
Absolutely and although I am no Brown fan I am hopeful that the PC stuff and dialogue nonsense he has been spouting is just that and although the words may change the actions will not.
Our troops fighting and dying overseas--in Afghanistan and Iraq and elsewhere--will beg to differ, I'm guessing.
Bush Needs to Read This:
I was a fanatic...I know their thinking, says former radical Islamist
By HASSAN BUTT - Last updated at 07:38am on 2nd July 2007
When I was still a member of what is probably best termed the British Jihadi Network - a series of British Muslim terrorist groups linked by a single ideology - I remember how we used to laugh in celebration whenever people on TV proclaimed that the sole cause for Islamic acts of terror like 9/11, the Madrid bombings and 7/7 was Western foreign policy.
By blaming the Government for our actions, those who pushed this “Blair’s bombs” line did our propaganda work for us.
Two doctors held over bomb attacks
Summer of chaos ahead as airports step up terror shield
More important, they also helped to draw away any critical examination from the real engine of our violence: Islamic theology.
The attempts to cause mass destruction in London and Glasgow are so reminiscent of other recent British Islamic extremist plots that they are likely to have been carried out by my former peers.
And as with previous terror attacks, people are again saying that violence carried out by Muslims is all to do with foreign policy.
For example, on Saturday on Radio 4’s Today programme, the Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, said: “What all our intelligence shows about the opinions of disaffected young Muslims is the main driving force is not Afghanistan, it is mainly Iraq.”
I left the British Jihadi Network in February 2006 because I realised that its members had simply become mindless killers. But if I were still fighting for their cause, I’d be laughing once again.
Mohammed Sidique Khan met with the author on two separate occasions
Mohammad Sidique Khan, the leader of the July 7 bombings, and I were both part of the network - I met him on two occasions.
And though many British extremists are angered by the deaths of fellow Muslim across the world, what drove me and many others to plot acts of extreme terror within Britain and abroad was a sense that we were fighting for the creation of a revolutionary worldwide Islamic state that would dispense Islamic justice.
If we were interested in justice, you may ask, how did this continuing violence come to be the means of promoting such a (flawed) Utopian goal?
How do Islamic radicals justify such terror in the name of their religion?
There isn’t enough room to outline everything here, but the foundation of extremist reasoning rests upon a model of the world in which you are either a believer or an infidel.
Formal Islamic theology, unlike Christian theology, does not allow for the separation of state and religion: they are considered to be one and the same.
For centuries, the reasoning of Islamic jurists has set down rules of interaction between Dar ul-Islam (the Land of Islam) and Dar ul-Kufr (the Land of Unbelief) to cover almost every matter of trade, peace and war.
But what radicals and extremists do is to take this two steps further. Their first step has been to argue that, since there is no pure Islamic state, the whole world must be Dar ul-Kufr (The Land of Unbelief).
Step two: since Islam must declare war on unbelief, they have declared war upon the whole world.
Along with many of my former peers, I was taught by Pakistani and British radical preachers that this reclassification of the globe as a Land of War (Dar ul-Harb) allows any Muslim to destroy the sanctity of the five rights that every human is granted under Islam: life, wealth, land, mind and belief.
In Dar ul-Harb, anything goes, including the treachery and cowardice of attacking civilians.
The notion of a global battlefield has been a source of friction for Muslims living in Britain.
For decades, radicals have been exploiting the tensions between Islamic theology and the modern secular state - typically by starting debate with the question: “Are you British or Muslim?”
But the main reason why radicals have managed to increase their following is because most Muslim institutions in Britain just don’t want to talk about theology.
They refuse to broach the difficult and often complex truth that Islam can be interpreted as condoning violence against the unbeliever - and instead repeat the mantra that Islam is peace and hope that all of this debate will go away.
This has left the territory open for radicals to claim as their own. I should know because, as a former extremist recruiter, I repeatedly came across those who had tried to raise these issues with mosque authorities only to be banned from their grounds.
Every time this happened it felt like a moral and religious victory for us because it served as a recruiting sergeant for extremism.
Outside Britain, there are those who try to reverse this two-step revisionism.
A handful of scholars from the Middle East have tried to put radicalism back in the box by saying that the rules of war devised so long ago by Islamic jurists were always conceived with the existence of an Islamic state in mind, a state which would supposedly regulate jihad in a responsible Islamic fashion.
In other words, individual Muslims don’t have the authority to go around declaring global war in the name of Islam.
But there is a more fundamental reasoning that has struck me as a far more potent argument because it involves recognising the reality of the world: Muslims don’t actually live in the bipolar world of the Middle Ages any more.
The fact is that Muslims in Britain are citizens of this country. We are no longer migrants in a Land of Unbelief.
For my generation, we were born here, raised here, schooled here, we work here and we’ll stay here.
But more than that, on a historically unprecedented scale, Muslims in Britain have been allowed to assert their religious identity through clothing, the construction of mosques, the building of cemeteries and equal rights in law.
However, it isn’t enough for responsible Muslims to say that, because they feel at home in Britain, they can simply ignore those passages of the Koran which instruct on killing unbelievers.
Because so many in the Muslim community refuse to challenge centuries-old theological arguments, the tensions between Islamic theology and the modern world grow larger every day.
I believe that the issue of terrorism can be easily demystified if Muslims and non-Muslims start openly to discuss the ideas that fuel terrorism.
Crucially, the Muslim community in Britain must slap itself awake from its state of denial and realise there is no shame in admitting the extremism within our families, communities and worldwide co-religionists.
If our country is going to take on radicals and violent extremists, Muslim scholars must go back to the books and come forward with a refashioned set of rules and a revised understanding of the rights and responsibilities of Muslims whose homes and souls are firmly planted in what I’d like to term the Land of Co-existence.
And when this new theological territory is opened up, Western Muslims will be able to liberate themselves from defunct models of the world, rewrite the rules of interaction and perhaps we will discover that the concept of killing in the name of Islam is no more than an anachronism.
This is a war of ideas, too. Something Ann Coulter and just a few besides her have the courage to do.
Funny thing—all this article did for me is to immediately bring to mind the following...
Shouldn’t that read “Clueless?”
Ah the land of co-existance... where green clovers yellow moons and blue diamonds live in peace...
No such critter in Is-Slime! They will declare hudna/ceasefire/rearm/reload, untill they are capable of murdering you and every one else!
Is-Slime IS the problem! It must be outlawed! It has all the redeeming social qualities, and values of headhunting, and cannabalism!
First, what value has islam brought to the world in the last hundreds of years? In other words, what contributions has islam given us that elevate humans and advance humanity?
Second, what has islam cost the world in terms of human lives lost, capital resources spent and intellectual energies used up fighting islam's inherent violent nature and its express desire to conquer and control the world?
Answering these two questions should help intellectually honest and rational humans, regardless of their faith, assess the cost vs benefit of islam. The real question is whether or not the world would be better off if there never was islam. Is that a world worth pursuing? Ultimately, given islam's nature, we have an "either/or" question unless islam reforms and conforms to the 21st century and beyond.
Mr. Pipes and the rest of us have been safe for the last six years, thanks Mr. President and our Men and Women in uniform. Name calling and insults by heads of state is childish,an example is Chavez.
You know that watching prissy, self-deluding Western leaders pirouette around the truth with their little fingers sticking out makes jihadis double over with laughter!
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