Was anyone stabbed at the SIOA rally? Anyone hit on the head with a plank? Anyone threatened and now in hiding? Did any of the speakers call for “war”?
This kind of moral equivalence is ridiculous, but the New York Times is not just some raving and discredited Leftist dupe like Charles Johnson of Little Green Footballs. The New York Times in making this equation is trying to lend its still-considerable moral influence to the idea that we represent the American non-Muslim equivalent of this violent Islamic supremacist activity. It would thus be so much easier to dismiss us, and to focus law enforcement attention upon us, rather than to deal honestly with the problems we are pointing out, and to focus law enforcement attention upon jihadist activity.
Indonesia, the country with the world’s largest Muslim population, is engaged in a debate about religious tolerance that might seem familiar to Americans.
Last week, one day after Americans opposed to the construction of an Islamic center in Lower Manhattan pledged to “Stop the Islamization of America,” a group of Islamists rallied in Bekasi, outside the Indonesian capital, to fight the “Christianization” of Indonesia, by blocking the planned construction of a church.
Two leaders of the small congregation of Indonesia Christians in Bekasi were seriously wounded when the rally against their planned church by vigilantes from the Islamic Defenders’ Front, or F.P.I., turned violent. Murhali Barda, who leads Bekasi’s chapter of the Islamist vigilante group, was arrested on suspicion of leading the attacks on a church elder, who was stabbed in the stomach, and a female priest, who was hit in the head with a plank.
In June, the Bekasi F.P.I. leader told The Jakarta Globe, “All Muslims should unite and be on guard because … the Christians are up to something.” He also suggested that it might be necessary for mosques to establish militias and be prepared to fight a “war” to prevent “Christianization.”
As Al Jazeera explained in a video report last week, the small Christian group said that it had obtained all the necessary signatures from local residents who agreed to allow them to build their church, but then the Islamist vigilantes pressed people to withdraw their approval.
F.P.I. vigilantes have attacked a wide range of targets in the past, throwing rocks at members of minority Muslim sects, beating gay people, destroying bars and vowing to track down the editor of Indonesia’s short-lived version of Playboy magazine, Erwin Arnada, who is now in hiding….