Once again, this is not evidence that Rauf is an extremist wolf in moderate sheep's clothing. For Muslims, the idea that US foreign policy is hostile to Muslims and that Americans don't care about the deaths of innocents is widely held. By definition, this makes Rauf's opinion mainstream in most majority Muslim countries.
On other issues, Rauf would be considered quite liberal in the Muslim community.
But to equivocate between the intentional killing of civilians by al Qaeda and the unintended killing of civilians by the US is worse than wrong -- it is evil.
Yes, we kill civilians sometimes. That is truly one of the many sad realities of warfare.
When al Qaeda kills civilians they not only do it intentionally, but they also celebrate it.
No one in the West praises the Predator drone operator who accidentally blows up a wedding party. We think of such acts as the regrettable but inevitable outcome of war.
But in many parts of the Muslim world "The Magnificient 19" -- the men who carried out the 9/11 attacks -- are praised as heroes and martyrs.
I heard someone on the radio today (Hannity or Rush?) make a good point about this. He mentioned that Rauf's equivocation seemed very much in line with Rev. Jeremiah Wright's theory of America. Which may be why Obama's State Department has no problem with paying for this guy to go on a goodwill mission to the Muslim world. If these are the kinds of speeches he has been delivering, then of course they will like what he is saying!
Let me add that the SOB still has a right to build a mosque wherever the hell he wants. Even the Nazis have that right.
Our responsibility is not to block the building of the mosque. It is to speak the truth, even if it hurts the feelings of some on the Left and of Muslims.
On this issue Pam has done a stellar job at digging into the imam's background. But I would warn her that she is being inconsistent when she claims that she does not want the government to intervene in the case.
What do you call a zoning commission other than a government agency? That is government by definition. If you wanted a zoning commission to stop the building of the mosque, you are asking a government agency to intervene! It's really not that complicated.
Also, I don't take some of what Rauf is saying as that offensive. It doesn't sound to me like he's questioning al Qaeda's role in the Madrid and London bombings. It just sounds poorly worded to me. But I could be wrong on that.
And the N word doesn't really offend my sensibilities, as long as it it used to connote something negative about those saying it (ie, that those who created artificial categories of race by assigning that word to black people are wrong).
But the stuff on 9/11 and US killings of civilians? I don't see how you could take that any other way. Rauf clearly holds some very troubling views on the country he allegedly loves (ie, us).
Anyway, good job on digging this up! Has any one seen the videos or audios promised by Steve Emmerson yet? Apparently, this is only the tip of the iceberg.