Just as my book Religion of Peace? confronts this very notion. Ms. Amanpour, I am available to provide for you an alternative view.
"CNN explores religious fundamentalism," by David Bauder for AP (thanks to all who sent this in):
NEW YORK - Christiane Amanpour's work on the documentary series "God's Warriors" took her directly to intersections of extreme religious and secular thinking.
She watched, fascinated, as demonstrators in San Francisco accused teenagers in the fundamentalist Christian group BattleCry of intolerance in a clash of two cultures that will probably never understand each other.
Understanding is what Amanpour is trying to promote in "God's Warriors," which takes up six prime-time hours on CNN this week. The series on religious fundamentalism among Christians, Muslims and Jews airs in three parts, 9 p.m. EDT Tuesday through Thursday.
"I'm not interested in drumming up false fears, or falsely allaying fears," CNN's chief international correspondent told The Associated Press by phone from France, where she added last-minute touches to the series. "I just want people to know what's going on."
Amanpour traveled extensively over eight months to work on the series. The trips to Amanpour's native Iran are most fascinating. She explored the ancient roots of the conflict between Shiites and Sunnis, and talked with one of the country's most accomplished female politicians about how Muslim women are treated.
Another segment tried to explain why so many devout Muslims are willing to give their lives to a cause.
"To the West, martyrdom has a really bad connotation because of suicide bombers who call themselves martyrs," she said. "Really, martyrdom is actually something that historically was quite noble, because it was about standing up and rejecting tyranny, rejecting injustice and rejecting oppression and, if necessary, dying for that."...
This is true in both Christianity and Islam. Amanpour fails to point out, however, that in Islam, but not in Christianity, a martyr is someone who kills for Allah, and is killed in the process (cf. Qur'an 9:111). One might forgive "the West" for getting this "bad connotation" in the face of the Islamic scriptural jihadists use to justify suicide attacks.
"I did come away with a sense that we — or those people who don't want to see religion in politics and culture — if we don't look into it and see what is going on, we're in danger of missing it and not be able to react to it properly," she said.
Ain't it the truth, Ms. Amanpour?
Amanpour was one of the last reporters to talk to the Rev. Jerry Falwell. She interviewed him a week before he died about the legacy of the Moral Majority, the organization that thrust evangelical Christians onto the political stage.
The segment on Christians explores BattleCry in some depth, digging at the roots of an organization that fights against some of the cruder elements of popular culture and urges teenagers to be chaste. In noting how girls at some BattleCry events are encouraged to wear long dresses, Amanpour asks the group's leader how it is different from the Taliban.
Well, uh, Ms. Amanpour, one might note the absence of AK-47s, the lack of opposition to the education of girls, the absence of burqas, the absence of divine sanction for wife-beating, and sundry other things. Unless you're too blinded by political correctness to notice, as is evidently the case.
In a non-judgmental way, she visits a family that is home-schooling its children and explores the influence of Evangelicals on the courts.
Homeschooling is evil too? Sheesh. Over 9,000 terror attacks committed in the name of Islam since 9/11, and Christiane Amanpour is spending her time demonizing homeschoolers.