The title of Beinart’s article is “John Bolton and the Normalization of Fringe Conservatism.” Who decided that Geller, Gaffney and I were “fringe”? Why, Beinart and other Leftist journalists, of course. And by dint of constant repetition, they hope to put that view over on the American people. Saul Alinsky’s 13th Rule for Radicals is “‘Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.‘ Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions.” The Left consistently does this; in the case of counter-jihadis (including me), it presents our statements, however correct and demonstrable, as egregious and individual to us, and something no decent person would agree with — that’s freezing and personalizing the target. Then Leftists move to “cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy,” demanding that others on the Right disavow and condemn, or at very least shun, the target. And establishment conservatives have always willingly played along, allowing their associations and allies to be dictated by their enemies.
Thus it is entirely to be expected that the Left would be trying to destroy John Bolton by association with Pamela Geller and me. We have already been frozen, personalized, polarized, and isolated; now they can use their successful work with us in order to hit Bolton. Trump, however, appears to be made of stronger stuff than the establishment Right, and so it’s unlikely to work, but that’s not for want of trying.
Leftist hit man Peter Beinart’s article here is a quintessential example of this. In a recent CNN panel, Beinart characterizes Pamela Geller as “a woman who had repeatedly, endlessly defamed Islam itself, saying it itself is the problem.” With 32,000 jihad attacks around the world since 9/11, and numerous jihad plots in the U.S., and criminals quoting the Qur’an to justify their criminality, there is ample reason to be concerned about Islam. But in the Left’s bizarro world, even to suggest such a thing is to make one a monster, far outside the realms of acceptable discourse. That’s Beinart’s core assumption.
“John Bolton and the Normalization of Fringe Conservatism,” by Peter Beinart, The Atlantic, March 24, 2018:
In 2016, Bolton played a crucial role in Frank Gaffney’s rehabilitation inside the conservative movement. For close to two decades, Gaffney has been Washington’s most dogged peddler of anti-Muslim conspiracy theories.
For the millionth time, if it is “anti-Muslim” to oppose jihad terror and Sharia oppression, it was “anti-German” to oppose Nazism.
He’s traveled the country testifying against the construction of mosques, arguing that since Islam is a totalitarian political ideology, not a religion, American Muslims don’t deserve the protections of the First Amendment. Bolton’s intervention on his behalf is particularly intriguing because, in his own writing and remarks, he’s largely avoided anti-Muslim bigotry. But in today’s conservative movement, anti-Muslim activists are a legitimate constituency group, like people who support gun rights or oppose abortion. And Bolton has proved, in this case and others, all too willing to empower them.
Gaffney believes in the existence of a vast, secret network, run by the Muslim Brotherhood, to infiltrate the United States government and replace it with Sharia law….
Gaffney didn’t make this up: a captured internal Muslim Brotherhood document says that the Muslim Brothers “must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and “sabotaging” its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.” — “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Brotherhood in North America,” by Mohamed Akram, May 19, 1991. All the major Muslim organizations in the U.S. — CAIR, ISNA, MAS, MSA, IIIT, and more — are listed in this document as partner organizations in this effort.
What Bolton has done, again and again, is to elevate the anti-Muslim bigotry of others. In 2010, he wrote the forward to Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer’s book, The Post-American Presidency: The Obama Administration’s War on America. Bolton’s forward begins with the words, “Barack Obama is our first post-American president.” But he leaves the meaning of those words vague. It is Geller and Spencer who declare that “Barack Hussein Obama” is pursuing the “implementation of a soft sharia: the quiet and piecemeal implementation of Islamic laws that subjugate non-Muslims.”
This is a common tactic of Leftist “journalists”: they present something that is demonstrably true as if it were self-evidently false, as well as a terrible thing to say, without bothering to offer any refutation. In reality, the Obama administration worked hard to secure special privileges and accommodations for Muslims in workplaces and schools. The Obama Justice Department sued a New Jersey township for rejecting a mosque. It forced a school district to pay $75,000 to a Muslim teacher who was fired after demanding time off with pay to make the hajj. It went to court to challenge state anti-Sharia laws. Obama declared at the UN that “the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam,” which is tantamount to saying that Sharia blasphemy laws must be implemented in the future. There are many, many more examples of this, but no examples at all of the Obama Justice Department working to secure special privileges and accommodation for Jews, Christians, Hindus or Buddhists, or declaring that the future must not belong to those who criticize their revered figures.
In 2010 and 2011, Bolton spoke at rallies against the “Ground Zero” mosque sponsored by Geller and Spencer’s organization, Stop Islamization of America. But Bolton has not echoed Geller’s wilder and uglier theories: among them that Obama is Malcolm X’s love child or that Muslims practice bestiality.
These are false claims propagated by Leftists determined to destroy Geller’s reputation. She actually never claimed either one. Rebuttal explanations have been available here on the Geller Report for years, but Peter Beinart and others like him are not really interested in a fair and honest discussion; they just want to defame and destroy their targets. This is a common tactic: as Ayaan Hirsi Ali said when a smear campaign led to her honorary degree from Brandeis being rescinded: “My critics have long specialized in selective quotation — lines from interviews taken out of context — designed to misrepresent me and my work.”
He’s never said, as Spencer has, that “there is no distinction in the American Muslim community between peaceful Muslims and jihadists.”…
Same thing again. I’ve had an explanation of this statement here for years, but it doesn’t matter. The point of Beinart’s article and others like it is to destroy, not to discuss. In any case, my point is demonstrably true: again and again we have seen that jihadis operate freely in U.S. mosques, and aren’t put out. Garland jihadis Ibrahim Simpson and Nadir Soofi were members in good standing of the Islamic Community Center of Phoenix. The Boston Marathon jihadis Tamerlan and Dzhokar Tsarnaev were members of the Islamic Society of Boston, as were many other jihadis. Jihadi cop-shooter Edward Archer was an active member of a mosque in Philadelphia. And so on.
Once upon a time, the American right made room for conservative Muslims. Now it makes room for people who want to deny them equal rights.
When did we ever say anything to deny Muslims equal rights? Never, of course, and nor does Beinart offer any evidence to the contrary in this article. But again, truth or accuracy is of no interest to him. Destroy foes of jihad terror is the game, and any weapon will do.