Facebook Bans Article About Countering Jihad — on 9/11
Scroll to the bottom for an update.
On the 17th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, Facebook suspended FrontPage Magazine Editor Jamie Glazov for 30 days because he shared an article about countering jihad. His post did not even contain commentary about the article, merely the link.
"Facebook has banned me for 30 days for posting my article on the 9 steps we need to take to counter Jihad. Let that sink in," Glazov tweeted. He shared a screenshot of Facebook explaining, "This post goes against our Community Standards."
The article, "9 STEPS TO SUCCESSFULLY COUNTER JIHAD," was reposted in honor of the anniversary of 9/11.
The article, first written during former president Barack Obama's tenure, presented nine steps for "a future administration" to counter radical Islamic terrorism. Glazov suggested President Trump should "label the enemy and make a threat assessment" — unlike Obama's policy of refusing to utter the words "radical Islamic terror." He also suggested Trump should scrap the "Countering Violent Extremism" strategy implemented by Obama.
Other recommendations included: "stop 'partnering' with Muslim Brotherhood front groups" like CAIR and ISNA; "implement a concrete 'countering-jihad' strategy"; launch a "counter-propaganda campaign"; counter any sedition against the U.S. Constitution on the basis of pushing sharia (Islamic law); use surveillance to put pressure on Mosques, Islamic groups, and schools; bring Muslim reformers and other opponents of jihad into the U.S. government; and ridicule radical Islam, with such skits as Bill Maher's Burka Fashion Show.
It seems entirely appropriate for Glazov to share this article on the anniversary of the most deadly terror attack on U.S. soil, perpetrated by radical Islamic terrorists.
Facebook did not provide an explanation for the judgment that this article violated their Community Standards. Most likely, they ruled that Glazov's article constituted a "Tier 3 hate speech" violation.
The social media company defines "hate speech" as "a direct attack on people based on what we call protected characteristics — race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, caste, sex, gender, gender identity, and serious disease or disability." Such attacks involve "violent or dehumanizing speech, statements of inferiority, or calls for exclusion or segregation."
Glazov's article did not dehumanize Muslims or claim that they were inferior. It did not even technically call for exclusion or segregation, although perhaps the suggestion that government should surveil mosques seemed too extreme for Facebook.
Even so, such a disagreement would constitute a policy dispute, not hate speech. Glazov was not claiming that Muslims — because they are Muslims — are inferior or inhuman. He was claiming that some type of Muslims — radical Islamic terrorists — are a clear and present danger, as 9/11 proved, and therefore America must protect against their deadly ideology.
Is self-defense hate speech? Facebook seems to think it is. Otherwise, the social media platform seems to be privileging one religion over another...
This is not the first time Facebook has suspended Glazov. The social media site banned him for seven days in April, for attempting to report a physical threat made against him. Glazov mockingly called Islam "the Religion of Peace," asking, "Is this unsafe to the community Mr. Zuckerberg?"
When Twitter suspended Glazov a month later for posting sections of the Quran and the Hadith, that social media site actually gave him an explanation, saying he had violated "rules against hateful conduct."
This is far from the first time Facebook has effectively censored a person based on the content of their speech. Christian scholar Robert Gagnon has been repeatedly suspended on Facebook, and in April the social media platform suspended a German history professor for saying that "Islam is not a part of German history."
The social media giant also recently "shadow banned" Prager University, a conservative video nonprofit that is suing Google and YouTube for continued discrimination against conservative content. Facebook prevented at least nine PragerU Facebook posts from reaching any of their 3 million followers. Facebook finally fessed up that an actual employee was responsible, and they did not fire him.
About 100 Facebook employees have joined a group aiming to curb the company's "political monoculture" that demonizes conservatives.
Later this month, Attorney General Jeff Sessions will meet with state attorneys general to investigate whether or not companies like Facebook, Google, and Twitter are violating anti-trust laws. A former Reagan anti-trust lawyer has already started the process, suing Apple, Facebook, Google, and Twitter for anti-trust violations and discrimination against conservatives.
These stories may continue, but the tide is turning. Seventeen years after 9/11, radical Islamic terrorism is still a threat. Facebook should not be restricting articles about how to prevent another 9/11, least of all on the anniversary of that horrific attack.
Update: Glazov reinstated.
Early Friday morning, Facebook reinstated Glazov, ending the suspension and explaining that it was a "mistake."
"VICTORY!" the FrontPage Mag editor posted on Facebook. "Facebook Lifts Frontpage Editor Jamie Glazov’s 9/11 Ban. Social media network apologizes, says it was a “mistake” -- but the battle against leftist fascism ensues."
He linked to another article explaining that "Front-page editors are happy to announce our free speech victory: Facebook has lifted Frontpage editor Jamie Glazov's 30-day ban on Facebook, apologizing and saying that the block was a 'mistake'."
"We have no doubt, of course, that no 'mistake' had actually occurred in this matter and that the ban has only been lifted because of the publicity that we engaged in — and received," the editors wrote. "While it is a positive development that Facebook has lifted the ban on Jamie (for now), this story is crucial to amplify now more than ever, seeing that Facebook, and all of leftist-run social media, is, at this moment, clearly accelerating its totalitarian attack on the free speech of conservatives."