Following the arrest of Anders Behring Breivik, I made the case that it was not unreasonable to suspect that Muslim radicals had been responsible for the terrorist attacks which took place in Norway on Friday.
Well, it seems that pointing out that Norwegian authorities had foiled an al Qaeda plot a year ago, that the attack had the markings of an al Qaeda attack, that a prominent Muslim leader living in Norway had threatened that country’s political leaders and that an Islamic organization had claimed responsibility for the attack makes me an Islamophobe.
Or so says Sheila Musaji, editor of The American Muslim. Musaji also deems the likes of former UN Ambassador John Bolton and editorial board of The Wall Street Journal as Islamophobes. Well, that puts me in good company:
No matter how much evidence Islamophobes are presented that this “adage” is false, they are determined to continually repeat the phrase until most people accept a lie as the truth. The claim that most, or all terrorists are Muslims ignores history. In fact, most terrorist attacks have been made by individuals who are not Muslim. The only way this can be denied is to re-define terrorism in such a way that it only includes acts committed by a Muslim, and to call other attacks something else.
Yes, there are Muslim terrorists, and they are just are frightening as all other terrorists. These are dangerous people. What is needed is a serious look at what causes this sort of radicalization and extremism, no matter what the political or religious motivation.
Would Musaji prefer that I had set my sights on ETA or the Tamil Tigers? Of course both organizations engage in terrorism. However, ETA generally confines its activities to Spain and France while the Tamil Tigers have not carried out an attack outside of Sri Lanka. Islamic terrorism, on the other hand, is a global phenomenon no matter how much Musaji wishes to minimize its breadth and scope.
Now for my part, I don’t want to minimize what Breivik has done. After all, 91 people are dead at his hands. As I stated previously, it must be determined if he acted alone or with others. And if he did act with others, it must be known how strong their organization is and if they plan more attacks. But notwithstanding the severity of these attacks we not only cannot deny the global nature of Islamic terrorism but we cannot discount the possibility Islamic terrorists could be still plotting an attack against Norway. Or is it Islamophobic to say that al Qaeda might be planning another attack on Norwegian soil?
While Musaji takes me to task for being an Islamophobe because I speculated that the attacks in Norway could have been carried out by Muslims, she seems awfully eager to embrace speculation that Breivik might have written for the “Zionist” blogs Gates of Vienna and Jihad Watch under the pseudonym of Fjordman. If Musaji wants to entertain that sort of speculation then that is her prerogative. But it makes me disinclined to take her accusations of Islamophobia seriously.