Hussein Ibish of the ADC has taken a potshot at Daniel Pipes and Jihad Watch director Robert Spencer in a Philadelphia Inquirer op-ed.
The idea that Islam, and by extension Muslims, are inherently violent and irrational has become commonplace in our culture. . . .
Since 9/11, right-wing evangelical preachers such as Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell, and commentators such as Robert Spencer and Daniel Pipes, have spared no effort to spread fear and hatred of Islam and the growing American Muslim community.
This defamation probably has its greatest parallel in the anti-Semitic ideas that took hold in American culture between the First and Second World Wars. . . .
Violence, extremism and intolerance are universal human failings. They certainly are not particular to any culture or faith.
Pipes and Spencer sent this reply to the Inquirer:
How ironic that in an article purporting to deplore stereotyping and misrepresentation (“Violence is a human, not an Islamic trait,” op-ed, Feb. 1), Hussein Ibish resorts to his own mudslinging — in particular against ourselves.
Mr. Ibish falsely states that we have propagated the idea that “Islam, and by extension Muslims, are inherently violent and irrational.” We challenge him to document such a statement by either of us. Nor is their any more truth to his calumny that either of us has “spread fear and hatred of Islam and the growing American Muslim community.”
Rather what we have done, consistently and repeatedly, is point out the dangers of the totalitarian movement known as radical (or militant) Islam, one which threatens Muslims no less than the rest of humanity.
Mr. Ibish’s defamation also has a darker undercurrent. Whatever Mr. Ibish’s own views may be — and he loudly proclaims himself not to be a supporter of radical Islam — the fact is that in this and his other writings, he waves away the grisly record of radical Islam. Imagine a German in the 1930s dismissing Nazi atrocities, as Ibish writes about radical Islam’s violence, by saying that “violence, extremism and intolerance are universal human failings.”
This pattern has recurred throughout his career. Like the Italian Fascists who ignored Mussolini’s crimes but praised his efficiency in making the trains run on time, Ibish once lauded Hamas (which President Bush calls “one of the deadliest terrorist organizations in the world today”) for “running hospitals and schools and orphanages.”
In his Inquirer op-ed, Mr. Ibish has once again acted as an apologist for the crimes of a brutal totalitarian movement. He thereby makes himself one of its cadres.
In this context, that Mr. Ibish then dares compare our views to those of anti-Semites of the 1930s is a bit rich; and even more so when one realizes that the radical Islam he praises is the main source of anti-Semitism today, one which threatens a new Holocaust against Jews.
All this would be laughable were it not for the respect the media accords this man’s reckless and defamatory statements. We deeply regret that this newspaper has opened its pages to such an extremist as Hussein Ibish.
Daniel Pipes and Robert Spencer