When Pam Geller recently rebuked Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and the media for their reality-free “Jihad Denial” syndrome, she hit the nail on the head. The left is clearly full of Jihad deniers at every level of the Democrat Party, academia and the media – not to mention the nakedly political Justice Department and other segments of law enforcement currently controlled by the left.
With regard to Islamic Jihad, people on the left are delusional. They are inane and childishly naive. Jihad denial is literally psychotic.
Yet Jihad denial did not first manifest in a big way on the left. No, the entire premise of Jihad denial was thrust into the national conversation when President George W. Bush called Islam “a religion of peace” just days after 9-11. True, Bush and his (Rove advised) administration was not what many would call really conservative, but they are somewhat distinct from the hard core left.
And yet, just six days after 9-11 – at the Islamic Center in Washington, Bush said it was important for Americans to understand that the attacks “violate the fundamental tenets of the Islamic faith” and “Islam is peace. These terrorists don’t represent peace. They represent evil and war.”
Well this was hardly an established fact.
So why would Bush go out of his way to say so while the rubble is still smoldering and the body count not yet complete? It’s the establishment’s reflexive fear of being called anything resembling a racist or religious bigot in the media – a fear that transcends any particular issue and embodies the very essence of the establishment’s low testosterone messaging. They were cowed into this as the media started to blame us for making them mad while simultaneously worrying incessantly about “anti Muslim backlash.”
Back lash? What about THE ORIGINAL LASH?
Bush, being an establishment guy and surrounded by establishment advisors, continued three days later at a joint session of Congress, insisting yet again that Islam’s “teachings are good and peaceful, and those who commit evil in the name of Allah blaspheme the name of Allah.”
Is that what Allahu Akbar means? In context, no. It’s just not true, and it’s dangerous to pretend otherwise. Yet the very narrative that the left hides behind today was given a foundation and a springboard courtesy of the Republican establishment’s fear based thinking. It is this very template that underpins the entire argument – fatuous as it is – for the denial of Islamic Jihad as the force behind virtually every terror attack of consequence on the planet.
Let’s connect some dots. In a broader sense, this is not an isolated event. The Republican establishment has been complicit in many of the most destructive narratives in our politics for years. This is in fact standard operating procedure.
After the 37 days of the 2000 Florida recount – and ultimately, Bush being declared the winner over Al Gore – the Bush-Rove machine contritely limped into the Oval Office promising a “new tone in Washington.” Never mind that neither Bush’s supporters nor Bush’s adversaries were the least bit interested in such a new tone, the Rove mind had divined that this was the right way to go to “heal the nation.”
The Democrats and the media never healed, and in fact attacked Bush for all eight years.
Meanwhile, the new tone meant never challenging the liberal narrative on anything for those eight years. It meant abandoning one of the most powerful weapons the White House has, the bully pulpit. Now this is a serious problem that transcends politics when you consider that the liberal narratives are almost never true.
In short, the Bush White House refused to do for the truth what the other side is more than willing to do for the lie – which is to repeat it and repeat it and repeat it. George W. Bush is no longer involved in any meaningful way, but Rove certainly is- and more to the point – so is the strategy of abandoning the truth in favor of appeasement in Republican establishment circles.
What’s worse, the establishment often does it as a way to sabotage their own conservative base.
So no, Islam is not a religion of peace – yet John McCain was on NBC just days ago insisting it was, and that Donald Trump was to blame for turning them against the United States. McCain of course was noted for insisting that “we have nothing to fear from an Obama Presidency” – as he was ostensibly trying to defeat Obama. Yes Senator McCain, we actually do have a lot to fear. And it’s no wonder you didn’t defeat him.
McCain’s take was a natural establishment reaction to the fear of being called racist, as was Mitt Romney’s insistence in 2012 that Obama was “a nice guy who is merely over his head.” No Mr. Romney, he is not a nice guy, and apparently not over his head when it comes to destruction. And no, real unemployment did not dip below 8 percent before the election, and no, free enterprise was not to blame for the economic crash of 2008, and no, ANWR is not some beautiful pristine preserve that will be decimated by drilling.
And not a word countering any of this from the establishment Romney Campaign. They in fact agreed with all of it, even as none of it is true. This same template applies to the phony yet accepted narratives about the war on women, Hurricane Katrina response, Abu Ghraib, the Swift Boats, conservative racism – and on and on. All of these are more powerful because the Republican establishment refuses to engage. And as phony arguments are not countered, we do not “move past” them. They simply harden.
This is why we have an electorate that simultaneously recognizes that the country is on the wrong track while exonerating Obama from any culpability for any of it. Narratives matter!
Including the narrative that Islam is a religion of peace – another destructive narrative brought to us by the Republican establishment.
Note: This is part two of a series, “Not just stupid, Rove-stupid.” Find part one here.
Edmund Wright is a contributor to Breitbart, American Thinker, Newsmax TV, Talk Radio Network – and author of several books including Amazon elections best seller WTF? How Karl Rove and the Establishment Lost…Again.