Daisy Khan's 'Postponed' Travels — Now What?

Khan's husband, the peripatetic and elusive Rauf, appears to be in the UAE right now, on the final leg of his $16,000 taxpayer-funded swing through Bahrain, Qatar and the Emirates. From Abu Dhabi (a place awash in so much oil wealth that it is home to gold-tipped minarets, and artificially cooled sand at the better beaches), he's been giving interviews to local reporters, duly repackaged by the New York Times -- thus filtering his remarks back to the U.S. without the inconvenience of facing any tough questions about his equivocations over the terrorists of Hamas, or his offshore sources of funding, or the emerging news, reported in the NY Post, about his record as an "alleged slumlord." (More links and details on the Human Events site, under the headline "Taxpayer-Subsidized Slumlord.")

Here's Rauf in the English-language online edition of the Middle Eastern National, effectively re-defining as "moderate" anyone who agrees with him, and as "radicals" all those -- this would be the majority of Americans -- who believe it would be indecent for him to go ahead with his plans for a $100 million high-rise mosque and Islamic center on a site so close to Ground Zero that on Sept. 11 it was hit with wreckage from the Islamist attacks (which, according to Rauf in a December interview with the New York Times, was a big reason he picked the site).

As Rauf describes it to his Arab audience, those who disagree with his plans are "a small minority" of "very small, loud and vociferous voices," who dare to contest his vision that "the American creed" now requires him to build a mosque, originally named for the Muslim Cordoba conquest, near Ground Zero. Asked by the National reporter in Abu Dhabi whether he would have chosen a different site for his mosque and Islamic center if he had foreseen the controversy, Rauf replied, as paraphrased by the reporter, that "the Prophet Mohammad instructed Muslims not to dwell on past decisions and wonder about alternative outcomes."

... So, to all you "loud and vociferous" folks out there who believe that the basic fabric of democratic society involves at least some minimal willingness to compromise, to correct mistakes, and to take into account the feelings and interests of others -- especially within striking distance of a site where monstrous and duplicitously engineered acts of war, committed in the name of Islam, killed more than 2,700 Americans -- well, sensitivity, schmensitivity. Fuggedaboutit. Credit someone, somewhere, for the "postponement" of Khan's taxpayer-funded trip to the UAE. But we're still left with a Cordoba paradigm in which Rauf stipulates that the views of a majority of Americans amount to nothing more than the irritating noise of a  "small minority," while his own preferences are to be accepted, yea, submitted to, without question -- lest the questioners be denounced by Rauf as radicals and by Khan as bigots. After summering largely off the U.S. public radar in Malaysia and the Arabian Gulf, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, self-appointed keeper of the "American creed," is due back in the U.S. shortly before the ninth anniversary of the Sept. 11th attacks. One might hope that he and his wife will refrain from hijacking the real meaning of that solemn day with yet more of their campaign to become the inflexible and self-promoting arbiters of "tolerance" at Ground Zero. But I wouldn't bet on it.