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Ordered Liberty

The fall-out from this line of thinking is that we must conclude mainstream Islam, everywhere on earth including the Middle East, has nothing to do with violence, and therefore, it is “moderate,” and even “admirable.” Sure, it may be advocating the adoption of something called “sharia,” but we needn’t worry about that. After all, we have Western scholars of Islamic studies (mostly working in university departments created by lavish donations from Saudi royals) who will tell you that sharia is amorphous and evolving — such that nobody really knows exactly what it is, anyway. Consequently, nothing to see here, move along. You are to accept as an article of faith that there is no reason to believe people steeped in mainstream Islam will resist real democracy or that they will remain hostile to the United States. And, yeah, sure they are opposed to Israel, but that is just a “political dispute” about “territory”; it has nothing to do with ideology or mainstream Islam per se.

This is why there is such an energetic effort on behalf of the Obama administration and leading Republican establishment figures to portray the Muslim Brotherhood as a “largely secular” organization that you should think of as a “pragmatic,” “moderate” “political party” (or a series of “political parties,” “think tanks” and “political action committees”). You are not to see it the way it sees itself, and the way it actually is: an ideological movement rooted in the mainstream, supremacist interpretation of Islam that is undeniably regnant in the Middle East.

This is why the Obama administration and the Republican establishment work so hard to ignore the Brotherhood’s anthem: “Allah is our objective. The Prophet is our leader. The Koran is our law. Jihad is our way. Dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope. Allahu Akbar! Allahu Akbar!” This is why they labor to obscure the connection between the Brotherhood and Hamas, the Brotherhood’s Palestinian branch. This is why they are now trying to revise our understanding of Hamas: To borrow not only from Obama officials but from the meanderings of such top Bush administration figures as Condi Rice, you are subtly encouraged to start viewing Hamas as not a terrorist organization but a political “resistance” movement, engaged in some regrettable violence that is vaguely justifiable because Israel is an illegal, oppressive occupier.

Under this delusional view of our threat environment, the Muslim Brotherhood is not an ideological enemy to be feared but a political organization to be negotiated with and accommodated. You know, just like any other political entity. Thus, our security is not furthered by heightened surveillance of Islamic organizations (very much including Brotherhood organizations) that preach supremacist ideology. Islam, you are to understand, is not a problem. Rinse and repeat: The only problem is violent extremism, which has nothing to do with Islam.

Furthermore, in the world according to the Obama Left and the Republican establishment, since our security is not threatened by Islamist organizations, we must “partner” with them. After all, they simply must be innately non-violent; thus, the reasoning goes, if we accommodate them politically (i.e., accede to their calls for incremental acceptance of sharia), they will work with us in good faith and strive to keep young Muslims away from violent extremists. Funny, but it seems that even though Islam has nothing to do with “violent extremism,” young Muslims and violent extremists somehow keep finding each other.

When Senator McCain and his lemmings rebuke House conservatives for purportedly attacking Huma Abedin’s “patriotism,” there are two things at work. First, when the facts are against you — as they usually are against Sen. McCain — demagoguery and character assassination are the most effective response: The compliant, Islamophilic media will help intimidate your opponents into silence. We all are very familiar with this tactic. But we often miss the second tactic, which is more important because it goes directly to our conception of “patriotism.”

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