John on June 12, 2009 at 8:48 am
One of the best parts of Friday morning is Charles Krauthammer. After a brief list of comparisons made by Obama in a recent speech, he writes:
That’s the problem with Obama’s transcultural evenhandedness. It gives the veneer of professorial sophistication to the most simple-minded observation: Of course there are rights and wrongs in all human affairs. Our species is a fallen one. But that doesn’t mean that these rights and wrongs are of equal weight.
A CIA rent-a-mob in a coup 56 years ago does not balance the hostage-takings, throat-slittings, terror bombings and wanton slaughters perpetrated for 30 years by a thug regime in Tehran (and its surrogates) that our own State Department calls the world’s “most active state sponsor of terrorism.”
True, France prohibits the wearing of the hijab in certain public places, in part to allow the force of law to protect Muslim women who might be coerced into wearing it by neighborhood fundamentalist gangs. But it borders on the obscene to compare this mild preference for secularization (seen in Muslim Turkey as well) to the violence that has been visited upon Copts, Maronites, Bahais, Druze and other minorities in Muslim lands, and to the unspeakable cruelties perpetrated by Shiites and Sunnis upon each other.
Even on freedom of religion, Obama could not resist the compulsion to find fault with his own country: “For instance, in the United States, rules on charitable giving have made it harder for Muslims to fulfill their religious obligation” — disgracefully giving the impression to a foreign audience not versed in our laws that there is active discrimination against Muslims, when the only restriction, applied to all donors regardless of religion, is on funding charities that serve as fronts for terror.
On that last point, is Obama really talking about the Holy Land Foundation? From Wikipedia:
The Holy Land Foundation was the largest Islamic charity in the United States. It was formerly known as Occupied Land Fund. It had its assests frozen by the European Union and U.S., and shut down by the U.S. government following accusations of funding Hamas. During a 2008 trial of the charity leaders, it was dubbed “largest terrorism financing prosecution in American history.” In 2009, the founders of the organization were given life sentences for “funneling $12 million to Hamas.“
How horrible of us to make life so difficult for Muslims who only want to donate to militant jihadists in peace.
Seriously though. For Obama to say that the US has made it difficult for Muslims to donate to charity without mentioning this relevant history is just the sort of thing that makes conservatives flinch whenever he opens his mouth. The open hand of friendship to Muslims abroad too often becomes the back of the hand to Americans here at home.
Category: Foreign Affairs |