American conservatives are forcing reluctant progressives to actually examine the pre-modern ideas championed by their newest political ally, the Islamist movement.
The latest step came in the Sept. 22 Washington Post, where the “Fact Checker” pitched his column at Dr. Ben Carson for criticizing Islam’s support for ‘taqqiya,’ or deception to protect the faith.
The pitch went so wide that it hit his own credibility in the backside. It also leaves Kessler’s progressive friends — who are eager to ally with Islamic groups — exposed to more painful criticism from mainstream Americans.
“Taqiyya is a component of Shia that allows, and even encourages you to lie to achieve your goals,” Carson, said in a Sept. 20 interview with The Hill newspaper.
The reporter, Glenn Kessler, dismissed Carson’s argument after calling several university-credentialed Muslims. But Kessler failed to cite comments or evidence from non-Muslims who are critical of Islam.
That’s a classic case of sloppy work. It is as if a reporter only asked Washington Post editors to explain the Post’s Janet Cooke media scandal. or if cops only asked Catholics to testify about sexual-abuse in the Catholic Church.
“The ‘fact checker’ went to people who are demonstrable liars… [he doesn’t] have a single honest broker there,” said outside expert and best-selling author, Robert Spencer. If Kessler had wanted to recognize reality, he “could call me, or could call any number of scholars who are honest,” including Nonie Darwish, Raymond Ibrahim, or Andrew Bostom, said Spencer, who runs the successful jihadwatch.com site.
Kessler relied only on credentialed and biased experts to exclude evidence from authoritative Islamic texts, Spencer said.
“Taqqiya is indeed a Shiite concept, and it involves dissembling in front of Sunnis who are going to kill you,” Spencer told Breitbart.
Lying is endorsed in the Koran, which Muslims say is the unimpeachable list of perfectly transcribed commandments from Islam’s deity, Allah. “Let not believers take disbelievers as allies… except when taking precaution against them in prudence,” says one Koran commandment.
The Islamic equivalent to the Christian New Testament is a collection of stories about Mohammed, dubbed the Hadiths. The stories also commend lying. For example one story says that an Islamic disciple named Abu Ad-Darda said “We smile in the face of some people although our hearts curse them.”
The reputed final and exemplary prophet of Allah, Mohammed, also endorsed lying, for example, when he allowed a disciple to lie to and then murder a Jewish rival.
Mohammed also reportedly said “war is deceit.”
In contrast, the Christian deity, Jesus, urged his followers to turn the other cheek, and reportedly followed his own comments as he was being painfully crucified.
The unfamiliar alliance of Islamist progressives and American progressives is actually built on solid — albeit temporary — foundations.
Both groups claim that elite expertise can and should control populations of striving diverse humans. Both groups say they can build their version of Heaven on Earth. Both groups have totalitarian ambitions to control people’s knowledge, and both groups subordinate truth-telling to their ideological ambitions.
Still, their different styles and different constituency groups — gay-rights groups and the Taliban, for example — limit them to temporary, tactical alliances against their common enemy, the often-uncomfortable, free-market, free-will coalition of American conservatives, Christians, entrepreneurs and parents.
Kessler’s islamic advisors include Khaled Abou El Fadl, a law professor at the University of California at Los Angeles. According to Fadl, the word “taqiyya” derives from the Arabic words for “piety” and “fear of God” and indicates when a person is in a state of caution, Kessler wrote.
No, it does not, responded Spencer. “The word used for ‘guard’ in the Arabic is ‘tuqatan’, which is the verbal noun from ‘taqiyyatan’ — hence the increasingly familiar term ‘taqiyya,'” Spencer wrote online.
The basic problem is that the American chattering-class — including Kessler — refuse to recognize the institutionalized, aggressive and supremacist nature of Islam’s texts, said Spencer. “That’s a big problem with American analysts who do not understand that, and will not take it into account,” he said.
Western intellectuals have grown up in high-trust secular societies, and just can’t accept that Islamists come from a very different low-trust culture where they are under great pressure to lie for their collective religion, he added.
But that self-imposed blindness exists because chattering-class people are grasping for power and status in U.S. society. They can’t contain or defeat Islam on their own, yet they collectively refuse to let the combined strengths of other modernizing groups — including soldiers, cops, Hollywood, artists, non-university intellectuals, business executives and non-Islamic missionaries — get credit for helping to rebuild Islam and to dismantle its jihad doctrine.
That chattering-class’ collective grasp for power also imposes intense peer-pressure on its members — academics, journalists, TV people, politicians — to deny the obvious inability of their preferred skills, including persuasion, information and diplomacy, to solve the Islam problem, Spencer said.
Follow Neil Munro on Twitter @NeilMunroDC