Once again the troller-in-chief has dropped a bit of wisdom on his enemies. You can all rest assured that it will be quite some time before they can manage to stop tearing their hair out, tossing dirt on their heads and rending all their garments. You have to admit, the president’s gotten pretty good at this game.
At the National Prayer Breakfast last week, conservatives accused President Barack Obama of comparing Christianity to the Islamic terrorist group ISIS when he observed that many religions had been used to justify violence throughout history.
“So we’re responsible for the Crusades a thousand years ago?” [Tucker] Carlson complained. “Who’s ‘us’ anyway? And by the way, who ended slavery and Jim Crow? Christians. The Rev. Martin Luther King. Christians.”
“Christianity is the reason we don’t have slavery in the world today,” he added.
The President may be correct, and he may have made some great points, but the folks at Fox News see this as yet another Obama attack on Christianity. In fact, according to host Eric Bolling, Christians are entirely innocent of any wrongdoing…
“Reports say radical Muslim jihadists killed thousands of people in the past few months alone. And yet when you take Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, whatever, their combined killings in the name of religion––well, that would be zero.”
Here’s a bit of trivia for you: Israel has no constitution. Why is that? Well, how do you square a “Jewish State” with the “separation of church and state”? You’d have to dispense with any equivalent to our establishment clause, followed by the first amendment, and then you’d have to go through the wrenching process of spelling out what role religion should play in the government. Then you’d have yourself a big political problem, attended likely by some left vs. right-wing rioting in the streets, or even a civil war. What I’m saying is that Israel recognizes that whatever it does, it does in part to “defend Judaism.” Because of that, it’s not interested in sacrificing national cohesion for the sake of having a proper constitution. And given what Israel does on a day-to-day basis, I think we can dispatch with Bolling’s argument.
But of all the responses to Obama’s reasonable historical point-making, here’s the weirdest one, from “national security and terrorism correspondent for PJMedia” Patrick Poole:
Controversy still swirls around Obama’s comments during the National Prayer Breakfast this week, where he chastised Christians for getting on their “high horse” over the ongoing global jihad, invoking medieval abuses that occurred hundreds of years ago during the Crusades and Inquisition.
But perhaps it is Obama who should avoid getting on his high horse, since according to recently published statistics, Obama’s drone campaign has killed more people during the six years of his presidency than were killed the 350 years of the Spanish Inquisition.
What a non-sequitur. Friends, some of us are outraged by what the Taliban or ISIS will do to infidels (to the Yazidis for example), but let’s remember what our Christianist forebears were doing to Muslims, and Jews, during the Crusades. Poole’s counter argument to that is pointing out the death toll in our foreign policy? Highlighting the drone war against overseas terrorists, which he himself supports?
Bizarre. Then again, maybe not inexplicable. You look at the writings of this Poole guy and you see a man who is obsessed with The Muslims. Obsessed with their hopelessly evil lives and reflexively terrorist ways.
The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), which bills itself as “the largest Islamic umbrella organization in North America,” is meeting in Washington, D.C., this weekend for its annual conference. One former ISNA speaker won’t be in attendance this year — al-Qaeda cleric Anwar al-Awlaki was killed in a CIA drone strike in Yemen on September 30, 2011.
On September 1, 2001, just days before the 9/11 attacks, Awlaki gave an infamous lecture on “tolerance” at the 2001 ISNA convention, just as some of his disciples were preparing to launch the largest terrorist attack in American history.
In 2011, terrorism expert Patrick Poole took it one step further. “The Muslim Students Association has been a virtual terror factory,” Poole contended. “Time after time after time again, we see these terrorists – and not just fringe members: these are MSA leaders, MSA presidents, MSA national presidents – who’ve been implicated, charged and convicted in terrorist plots.”
They include al Qaeda cleric and Colorado State University student Anwar al-Awlaki, who was killed in a drone strike following his orchestration of the Fort Hood massacre and other plots…
Poole can find tracks from the multi-headed international terrorist hydra that go right back to American Muslim groups like the Muslim Student Association and the Islamic Society of North America. And these associations are with Muslims so dangerous…we had to execute them with drones! But then the president mentions the Crusades, and out he crawls:
So Barack Obama has killed at least 2,500 in drone strikes during the six years of his presidency, not including those killed in Iraq or Afghanistan. The Spanish Inquisition reportedly killed 2,250 over 350 years.
So it’s all hypocrisy. I mean, the Spanish Inquisition would kill you for taking the Lord’s name in vain? Obama will kill you for trying to blow up American civilians! Touché, sir.
It’s all quite nonsensical…until it isn’t. Credit Twitter for the solving of this mystery. Poole doesn’t twit much himself, but he sure loves to re-tweet something when it catches his fancy:
— First Things (@firstthingsmag) February 5, 2015
Patrick believes that the Crusades were all ‘just wars.’ The slaughter of hundreds of thousands of people at the hands of marauding Christians was all quite in keeping with decent and civilized behavior. By way of First Things, here’s why:
But the Crusades…were holy wars, and that is what made them different from what came before. They were made holy not by their target but by the Crusaders’ sacrifice… Crusaders who undertook that burden with right intention and after confessing their sins would receive a plenary indulgence. The indulgence was a recognition that they undertook these sacrifices for Christ, who was crucified again in the tribulations of his people.
And the sacrifices were extraordinary.
You like that? And you thought today’s Christians had learned to avoid foisting this sort of holy bullshit. But you were wrong.
In each case, the faithful went to war to defend Christians, to punish the attackers, and to right terrible wrongs. As Riley-Smith has written elsewhere, crusading was seen as an act of love—specifically the love of God and the love of neighbor. By pushing back Muslim aggression and restoring Eastern Christianity, the Crusaders were—at great peril to themselves—imitating the Good Samaritan. Or, as Innocent II told the Knights Templar, “You carry out in deeds the words of the gospel, ‘Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.’”
Now it all makes sense right? This Global War on Terror is only their latest act of Christian love, and Barack Obama is their lay-commander-in-chief. Folks like Poole don’t mind at all that the president’s foreign policy has killed so many Muslims overseas, innocent civilians most damningly because, if you didn’t yet know, this is the Great Post-Modern Crusade. The newest and most epic battle between good and evil. They only dislike his unwillingness to admit that a holy war is what he, and the rest of us, are really waging. Which is certainly cause to point out his cowardice – not to mention hypocrisy.
For comparative purposes, I would note, as I reported here at PJ Media last month, that Boko Haram reportedly killed 2,000 over several days in a massacre in Northern Nigeria.
Be careful of the fall off that high horse, Mr. President…
Of course if he’d ever gotten off his holy steed, and somebody like Anwar al-Awlaki had somehow managed to kill someone, the yelling and garment-rending would increase by a hundred-fold. And suddenly the president would be seen mounted upon an entirely different kind of horse, and carrying an APPEASEMENT coat of arms.