It was clear on the morning of September 11, 2001, that the United States was at war with Islamic radicals, and while there may have been differences of opinion regarding strategy, there was no denying the need to defeat doctrinal terrorism. But as the U.S. became mired in foreign wars, critics questioned whether its actions were achieving the goal, and ultimately whether the goal was even justified. Voices on the left falsely claimed that Arab-Muslim extremism was an understandable response to western chauvinism, and instead of condemning terrorists for their actions, they started blaming the victims for allegedly insulting Islam.
We saw it with the Charlie Hebdo massacre, when progressive pundits blamed free expression for inciting violence instead of the ideology that sanctified the killing of “infidels,” “heretics” and “blasphemers.” Such attitudes arise from a perverse political correctness that elevates radical sensitivities over western cultural values. But how can secular apologists defer to a doctrine that repudiates liberal democratic traditions? How can they dignify claims of blasphemy against those who criticize beliefs they don’t consider sacred?
These questions were discussed at a program in Massachusetts entitled, “Freedom Isn't Free: From the Greatest Generation to the Challenges of Today," featuring former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Frank Gaffney, former CIA Operations Officer Clare Lopez and retired Admiral James A. “Ace” Lyons, Jr., who provided insight into how such issues affect government policy.
Progressives who reflexively condemn religion in politics or any perceived trespass of faith into the affairs of state are strangely silent when the religion is Islam. Incongruously, they often discourage free speech to avoid insulting radical beliefs.
The panel agreed that such muddled thinking influences the Obama administration’s views regarding national security and foreign policy...
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