As reported this weekend, Fox News reporter Steven Centanni and his cameraman, who were abducted and then released by Islamofascists, were forced at gunpoint to convert to Islam. Yesterday, on Fox News Sunday, Brit Hume and William Kristol reflected on the kind of religion that would resort to gunpoint conversions.
Although most Muslims would never use the threat of death to convert the unwilling, this is nonetheless a savage condemnation of the kind of extremism that Islam breeds. Now for the political dimension: Imagine the frenetic response if an Israeli or Christian group had done this, yet the sounds of silence from our European and American elites are deafening.
The double standard against mainstream religions such as Judaism and Christianity is a natural outgrowth of the anti-establishment crowd that despises anything that smacks of absolutes or has a hierarchical structure. Whether civic or religious in nature, any assertion, value, or principle that requires suplication in any form is anathema.
The irony is that although there is nothing in the world more rigid, more patriarchal, or more inflexible, than the Islamic religion, the left is reticent to criticize it, or, more specifically, they will deign to criticize this particular act but none will agree that it is consistent with the precepts or tenets of the faith.
A cursory review of the Koran tells us something rather different. Further, the 18th century Wahabi movement, which has flourished in Saudi Arabia, is the most popular sect among "true believers." It's also one that demands death for any who blasphemes it.
We would do well to candidly recognize that Muslim extremism is spreading across the globe like a religious wildfire and it's finding fertile ground in virtually every place it attacks. We can wring our hands and spend time like our ivory-towered academics analyzing the genesis of this movement or we can agree that it began long before 9/11, and that regardless of how erudite we may be in our exegesis, the fact remains that the Islamofascists are bent upon our destruction.
Mr. Centanni was remarkably calm in his interview and had nothing but predictably kind words for the religion of Islam. Indeed, it pains decent people who are forced to conclude that such a religion is de facto dangerous to the common good. But although untold millions of Muslims practice it in peace there are disturbing numbers who contend those peaceful Muslims are themselves heretics because they are unwilling to take arms against the "infidels," we Westerners.
The best efforts of liberals worldwide to minimize and obfuscate the truth, the Islamofascists are excelling beyond our wildest nightmares in making the case that we are indeed in a perilous situation. Whether or not we aggressively prosecute this enemy, it will never abate.
Indeed, we can only hope to depreciate it to the point where it's less lethal, and that can only be done when we speak with one voice.