Interrupted repeatedly by chants of “Donald Trump! Donald Trump! Donald Trump!” as he was speaking in Poland on Thursday, President Trump delivered a ringing affirmation that he would defend Western civilization: “Just as Poland could not be broken, I declare today for the world to hear that the West will never, ever be broken. Our values will prevail, our people will thrive, and our civilization will triumph.”
Now, we’re used to Presidents affirming that civilization will triumph. Barack Obama did it, too. Trump’s remarkable innovation here, and sharp departure from the example his predecessor set, is in declaring that Western civilization would triumph. Barack Hussein Obama, by contrast, was famous for declaring the triumph of Islamic civilization, most notably when he told the United Nations General Assembly on September 25, 2012: “The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam.”
If the future is not to belong to those who are perceived as slandering the prophet of Islam, Sharia blasphemy laws criminalizing criticism of Islam will have to have been imposed; people aren’t likely to give up criticizing Muhammad voluntarily, especially as jihad terror attacks incited by his teachings become an ever more common feature of life in the West. Thus if the future doesn’t belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam, it will be because the freedom of speech has been extinguished and Islamic values have prevailed: Islamic civilization will have triumphed.
If that was not what Barack Obama wanted, he never gave any indication of it during eight years in the White House. The Democrats constantly pointed to his killings of bin Laden and al-Awlaki as indication that he was tough on terrorism, but amid foreign and domestic policies indefatigably supporting the Muslim Brotherhood and its auxiliaries in the United States, unstinting opposition to the freedom of speech regarding criticism of Islam, and an appalling deal that gave aid and comfort to the Islamic Republic of Iran, those killings only made clear that while Obama evidently opposed violent jihad, he had no serious objection to other methods of Sharia imposition and Islamization.
In Warsaw Thursday, Trump offered a radically different vision. “We are fighting hard against radical Islamic terrorism,” he declared. “And we will prevail. We cannot accept those who reject our values and who use hatred to justify violence against the innocent.”
“We cannot accept those who reject our values.” After eight years of Obama acting as if the freedom of speech and the right to bear arms were burdens to be cast off rather than rights to be defended, this is an extraordinary statement. It is also one of the reasons why Trump’s notorious “travel ban” contains a little-noted directive that is clearly designed to preserve American values. The March 6 executive order states:
To be more transparent with the American people and to implement more effectively policies and practices that serve the national interest, the Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Attorney General, shall, consistent with applicable law and national security, collect and make publicly available the following information:…information regarding the number and types of acts of gender-based violence against women, including so-called “honor killings,” in the United States by foreign nationals.
Muslims commit 91 percent of honor killings worldwide. A manual of Islamic law certified as a reliable guide to Sunni orthodoxy by Al-Azhar, the most respected authority in Sunni Islam, says that “retaliation is obligatory against anyone who kills a human being purely intentionally and without right.” However, “not subject to retaliation” is “a father or mother (or their fathers or mothers) for killing their offspring, or offspring’s offspring.” (Reliance of the Traveller o1.1-2). In other words, someone who kills his child incurs no legal penalty under Islamic law. In this case the victim was the murderer’s daughter, a victim to the culture of violence and intimidation that such laws help create.
The Palestinian Authority gives pardons or suspended sentences for honor murders. Iraqi women have asked for tougher sentences for Islamic honor murderers, who get off lightly now. Syria in 2009 scrapped a law limiting the length of sentences for honor killings, but “the new law says a man can still benefit from extenuating circumstances in crimes of passion or honour ‘provided he serves a prison term of no less than two years in the case of killing.’” And in 2003 the Jordanian Parliament voted down on Islamic grounds a provision designed to stiffen penalties for honor killings. Al-Jazeera reported that “Islamists and conservatives said the laws violated religious traditions and would destroy families and values.”
Until the encouragement Islamic law gives to honor killing is acknowledged and confronted, more women will suffer. President Trump is trying to keep women from suffering in this way in the United States.
That element of the executive order is the kind of thing that is involved in ensuring that “our civilization will triumph”: stopping the encroachment of Sharia values in the United States. Trump in Warsaw wasn’t just paying lip service to unattainable ideals, any more than Obama was when he said that “the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam.” Obama worked very hard to make sure that would be true, and now his successor is working very hard to ensure that Judeo-Christian civilization survives instead. Americans can be grateful that we do not, for the moment, have (as Trump as said) a President of the world, but a President of the United States.
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and author of the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is The Complete Infidel’s Guide to Iran. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.