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Finally, a word on the Times hit piece, in which I am a significant presence, and yet neither Scott Shane nor anyone else at the Times bothered to contact me for any comment whatsoever.
“Killings in Norway Spotlight Anti-Muslim Thought in U.S.,” by Scott Shane in the New York Times, July 24 (thanks to all who sent this in). The first clue as to the bias of Scott Shane comes in the title’s reference to “Anti-Muslim Thought,” as if I am fighting against human beings, rather than against a radically intolerant and repressive ideology. Seven years ago here at Jihad Watch I had an exchange with an English convert to Islam. I said:
“I would like nothing better than a flowering, a renaissance, in the Muslim world, including full equality of rights for women and non-Muslims in Islamic societies: freedom of conscience, equality in laws regarding legal testimony, equal employment opportunities, etc.”
Is all that “anti-Muslim”?
My correspondent thought so. He responded: “So, you would like to see us ditch much of our religion and, thereby, become non-Muslims.”
In other words, he saw a call for equality of rights for women and non-Muslims in Islamic societies, including freedom of conscience, equality in laws regarding legal testimony, and equal employment opportunities, as a challenge to his religion. To the extent that they are, these facts have to be confronted by both Muslims and non-Muslims. But it is not “anti-Muslim” to wish freedom of conscience and equality of rights on the Islamic world — quite the contrary.
[…] His manifesto, which denounced Norwegian politicians as failing to defend the country from Islamic influence, quoted Robert Spencer, who operates the Jihad Watch Web site, 64 times, and cited other Western writers who shared his view that Muslim immigrants pose a grave danger to Western culture.
Jihad Watch commenter Kinana of Khaybar analyzed these 64 citations here, and concluded:
“Breivik himself has apparently ‘quoted’ Robert Spencer by pasting in large unprocessed chunks of material from 3 different sources–the documentary, the crusades piece, and the article on Muslim persecution of Christians. Needless to say, Breivik never in his approximately 1500-page ‘compendium’ quotes Spencer as supporting his (Breivik’s) ‘revolutionary’ views, values, methods, proposals, and objectives.”
The Times piece continues:
More broadly, the mass killings in Norway, with their echo of the 1995 bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City by an antigovernment militant, have focused new attention around the world on the subculture of anti-Muslim [sic] bloggers and right-wing activists and renewed a debate over the focus of counterterrorism efforts.
17,000+ Islamic jihad terror attacks since 9/11. Two non-Muslim terrorists: Tim McVeigh and, sixteen years later, Anders Breivik. And Scott Shane suggests that the “focus of counterterrorism efforts” should be shifted from Islamic jihadists to “the subculture of anti-Muslim bloggers and right-wing activists.”
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