Friday, March 17, 2017
Pieces of the Puzzle
From practically ignoring Zuhdi Jasser for years (other than some debate he had with him ages ago), Robert Spencer suddenly took the time to write a detailed refutation of over 2,500 words of a recent screed by Jasser.
This is rather odd, since a while back when Spencer gave a speech (during which he of course didn't mention Jasser or any of the other Better Cops, like Maajid Nawaz) and opened up the end for a Q & A with the audience, he grudgingly agreed with a civilian in the audience that there is a problem with so-called Muslim "reformers" like Jasser. As I pointed out in my essay on this -- Ees not jure job...? -- Spencer only addressed the point after this civilian pressed him on it, then there was a strange moment in the video where it seems a few seconds (or more) were censored. As I described it in that essay:
At 1:06:02, while Spencer is drinking from his water bottle, there's an obvious editing splice in the tape, meaning something was cut out. Since this video is from "JihadWatchVideo" recording an event for the group Spencer is affiliated with, "ACT for America", we may reasonably surmise that Spencer himself had a few seconds edited out, right at the point where he's discussing the problem of Zuhdi Jasser with that female audience member -- it's a problem for her, at any rate, not for Spencer, apparently; for right after the seeming edit splice in the tape, he says:
" -- look, I don't really want to talk about Zuhdi Jasser because he's a good guy... and I don't doubt that Zuhdi Jasser's heart is in the right place..."
What's changed since then? Perhaps what finally got Spencer to take notice of Jasser and talk about his deficits at length (not that these Better Cop "reformers" are important, right?) was that Jasser attacked him. That's a sure-fire way to get Spencer to take notice and do his job of analytically diagnosing problems in our various battle spaces of this most exigent war of ideas we are all, in one way or another, engaged in.
So, I will be analyzing Spencer's refutation of Jasser, piece by piece.
The public discussion on the jihad threat has been essentially dominated on the one hand by those who insist that Islam is a religion of peace and jihad terror is caused by poverty and solved by foreign aid and “outreach,” and on the other hand by those who recognize that there is a problem within Islam but maintain that moderate Islam and moderate Muslims are the solution, and should be the focus of our counter-terror efforts. The former point of view is, of course, that of George W. Bush and much of the Republican establishment, as well as the Democrats. The latter point of view is that of the rest of the Republican establishment — many Fox hosts, CPAC, etc.
Um, Spencer forgot to mention in that "latter" category his old friends David Horowitz, Horowitz's main man Jamie Glazov, whose "Glazov Gang" missives are a regular feature at Spencer's Jihad Watch (remember his "Why I Love Muslims" series...?), and their friend & colleague, Daniel "Pipes Dream" Pipes.
Speaking of Jamie Glazov's two-part series "Why I Love Muslims" published at Jihad Watch in 2015, see my two comments I posted there (under my nickname there at the time, "voegelinian") here and here. I remember being pleasantly surprised at the time that "Angemon" didn't zoom in to pester me as he had so many times before (and would so many times after that). But, sure enough, after I lodged my third comment, he just couldn't control himself. As a friend and commenter there put it so aptly, responding to Angemon: