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Kenneth R. Timmerman: Trump's Temporary Ban on Muslims a No-Brainer

Image: Kenneth R. Timmerman: Trump's Temporary Ban on Muslims a No-Brainer
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By    |   Wednesday, 01 Jun 2016 03:53 PM

Gen. David Petraeus is a towering figure in the national security establishment. A hero of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, he speaks with authority when he describes how he forged alliances with Muslim partners in Iraq and Afghanistan to defeat al-Qaida.

But his recent foray into presidential politics, where he slammed Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump for proposing a temporary ban on Muslim immigration, shows that he prefers the warm fuzzy comforts of political correctness to truth-telling.

In my decades of reporting from and on the Middle East, I have had the opportunity to speak at length with Muslim scholars who have rejected Islamic supremacist ideology. I have also spoken with jihadis and would-be suicide bombers about their motivation.

Those experiences and the track record of political Islam over the past 35 years have convinced me that we ignore at our peril the threat these forces pose not just to our troops overseas, or to our allies in the Middle East and South Asia, but to the freedoms we still enjoy in this country.

Petraeus asserts blithely that Trump's proposal for a temporary ban on Muslim immigration is "hate speech" that plays "directly into the hands of al-Qaida and the Islamic State . . . [by] telling Muslims that the United States is at war with them and their religion."

That statement assumes that the overwhelming majority of Muslims from Dearborn, Michigan to Kuala Lumpur are illiterate, stupid and blind.

Practicing Muslims understand their religion far better than we do in the West. They understand that no one has "hijacked" Islam, as the apologists would have it; but that groups of Islamists, from al-Qaida to the Nusra Front to the Islamic State, are seeking to apply radical Islamic doctrine – Shariah – in its entirety.

The first victims of Islamic doctrine have invariably been Muslims. Petraeus couldn't fail to see that in Iraq, where al Qaeda slaughtered fellow Muslims in Ramadi and Fallujah for failing to bend to the iron discipline of a Shariah state.

In areas of Syria and Iraq ruled by the Islamic State since June 2014, ISIS has systematically murdered Muslims who failed to embrace the Shariah state. An October 2014 United Nations report found that in just the two months since ISIS conquered Mosul, ISIS fighters had slaughtered thousands of fellow Muslims in addition to their attempted genocide of Yazidis and Christians.

All of these killings were carried out in the name of Shariah. "Denounce ISIS? Muslims despise ISIS," writes Muslim activist and columnist Dean Obeidallah. The war we find ourselves in is not one of Islam against the West. "It's all of us versus ISIS."

You can't win a war if you don't know the enemy. Our enemy today is Islamic supremacism, those who seek to establish an Islamic caliphate with the ultimate goal of replacing our constitution with Sharia law.

So why do we need a temporary ban on Muslim immigration? Because we in the United States are ill-equiped at present to distinguish between a non-practicing Muslim, or a Muslim who does not accept the supremacist doctrines of Sharia law, and one who does.

The former pose no threat and are potential allies in the war against the Islamists. The latter pose an existential threat to America and must be utterly defeated.

Just days after the San Bernardino shootings last December, we learned that the Department of Homeland Security had shut down an intelligence-based screening program that had identified the mosque that shooter Syed Farook attended as a recruitment center for jihadis.

Once again, the Obama administration put political correctness ahead of the security of the American people, just as European leaders are doing today by allowing a massive, unverified influx of Muslim immigrants.

When Petraeus was serving as CIA director, the Obama administration adopted a failed approach toward political Islamists that helped spawn the so-called Arab spring, the Benghazi attacks, and ultimately the cancer of ISIS.

It was crafted by a former CIA intelligence analyst named Quintan Wiktorowicz, who joined the White House in January 2011 after two years in London, where he had been sent by the CIA to study a British counter-terrorism program called "Prevent." The idea was to steer young at-risk Muslims away from radical jihadi Muslim clerics, by leading them into the arms of slightly less radical jihadi Muslim clerics.

It was an abysmal failure, and the Brits abandoned it shortly after Wiktorowicz joined the White House staff, where he implemented a U.S. version of "Prevent" with equally disastrous results.

As I wrote in my book "Dark Forces: the Truth About What Happened in Benghazi," Wiktorowicz divided the Islamists into "nonviolent" Islamists, and the jihadis, but then acknowledged that both groups believed the same ideology. "They argue among themselves, but the arguments are almost exclusively about timing and tactics," said Dr. Sebastian Gorka, a scholar at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. In other words, when to use violence, and how much.

Of course, it is always possible that Petraeus is just auditioning for vice-president with Hillary Clinton. Two years ago, he told ABC News he thought Hillary would make a "great" president.

"Like a lot of great leaders, her most impressive qualities were most visible during tough times. In the wake of the Benghazi attacks, for example, she was extraordinarily resolute, determined, and controlled," he said. 

That is true. She was all of those things – in support of a massive deception, that the Benghazi attacks were a protest caused by a YouTube video and not a terrorist attack caused by the failure of the policies she herself had relentlessly pursued in Libya.

Welcome to the pretend-world of Clinton. How disappointing that Petraeus has embraced it. A temporary ban on Muslim immigrants until we can at least know our enemy enough to discern between legitimate refugees and refu-jihadis, is a no-brainer.

Ken Timmerman is a New York Times best-selling author. His latest book, "Deception: The Making of the YouTube Video Hillary and Obama Blamed for Benghazi," is forthcoming.
 

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Gen. David Petraeus is a towering figure in the national security establishment. A hero of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, he speaks with authority when he describes how he forged alliances with Muslim partners in Iraq and Afghanistan to defeat al-Qaida.
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Wednesday, 01 Jun 2016 03:53 PM
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