The Triumph of Nice

In the summer of 2012, Michele Bachmann and four other House members sent a letter to the Inspector-Generals of key government agencies asking them to open an investigation into possible Muslim Brotherhood infiltration of the U.S. government.

The letter to the Department of State specifically raised concerns over Huma Abedin, then-Deputy Chief of Staff and top personal aide to the Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton.  The letter stated that Abedin “has three family members—her late father, her mother, and her brother—connected to Muslim Brotherhood operatives and/or organizations,” and noted that the Department of State had “taken actions recently that have been enormously favorable to the Muslim Brotherhood and its interests.”

For their pains, the five Republican House members were severely castigated, not only by Democrats but also by fellow Republicans.  For instance, Senator John McCain, who had “every confidence in Huma’s loyalty to our country,” characterized Bachmann’s assertions as “ugly and unfortunate attacks” on “an American of genuine patriotism and love of country.” As with McCain’s response, most of the criticism of Bachmann et al was addressed not to the merits of the charges but to their insensitive nature.  The charges were variously described as “vicious,” “extreme,” “outrageous,” “sinister,” and “offensive.”  Republican campaign strategist Ed Rollins expressed concern that the Republican Party would become the party of “intolerance and hate” if Bachmann had her way, and he admonished her to seek forgiveness:

Shame on you, Michele!  You should stand on the floor of the House and apologize to Huma Abedin and to Secretary Clinton and the millions of hardworking, loyal Muslim Americans for your wild and unsubstantiated charges.  As a devoted Christian you need to ask forgiveness for this grievous lack of judgment and reckless behavior.

Such exercises in shaming were formerly confined for the most part to communist Chinese re-education camps, but of late they seem to have become standard operating procedure in our own society whenever anyone steps over the sensitivity line.  And who can tell where those fault lines lie?  They are constantly being re-drawn.  Moreover, as in the case of Mozilla CEO’s Brendan Eich, they can be applied retroactively.  Eich was recently forced to step down from his position following the revelation that he had contributed $1,000 to the campaign in support of Proposition 8 six years ago.  An apology was demanded from Mozilla by gay activists and was soon forthcoming.  Here are some excerpts from Mozilla executive chairwoman Mitchell Baker’s statement:

We know why people are hurt and angry, and they are right…. We didn’t move fast enough to engage with people…. We’re sorry.  We must do better…. We will emerge from this with a renewed understanding and humility….

“A renewed understanding” of what?  That one must never hurt the feelings of those who believe that same sex-marriage is good for our society, but that it’s all right to trample over the lives of those who disagree?

If questions about the nature of marriage are to be decided on the basis of feelings, why not questions of national security?  It’s telling that the immediate response to the possibility of Brotherhood penetration of the State Department was on the order of “Shame on you!”  For his part, House Speaker John Boehner said the accusations against Abedin were “pretty dangerous.”  But if the accusations were true, wouldn’t that also be pretty dangerous?  After all, there is such an organization as the Muslim Brotherhood and it is dedicated to the overthrow of governments like ours.  According to a strategic memorandum prepared for the Muslim Brotherhood in North America, the aim of the Ikwahn (the Brotherhood) is a “civilizational jihad” for “destroying the Western Civilization from within” (A. McCarthy, The Grand Jihad, p. 58). In 2010, Mohammed Badie, the leader of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, declared:

Arab and Muslim regimes are betraying their people by failing to confront the Muslims’ real enemies, not only Israel but also the United States.  Waging jihad against both of these infidels is a commandment of Allah that cannot be disregarded.

That sounds dangerous to me—maybe even more dangerous than “how painful and injurious it is when a person’s character, reputation, and patriotism are attacked.”  As it turns out, Huma Abedin’s family connections to the Muslim Brotherhood have been firmly established and, as former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy points out, Huma herself worked for many years as assistant editor for the Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs, a publication “that promotes Islamic-supremacist ideology.”  Moreover, Abedin was a member of the executive board of the Muslim Student Association at George Washington University.  The Muslim Student Association was the first Brotherhood organization in the U.S. and, while not every MSA student becomes a Brotherhood member, the MSAs in America do have a reputation for producing more than their share of radicals.  Take Anwar al-Awlaki, the terrorist who mentored two of the 9/11 hijackers and who later conducted al-Qaeda operations out of Yemen.  He was president of the MSA chapter at Colorado State University and later became the spiritual guide for the MSA at George Washington University (after Abedin had graduated).

It may be that Abedin is completely innocent of any wrongdoing, but her own and her family’s connections to the Muslim Brotherhood should raise serious concerns.  As McCarthy points out, the State Department’s own guidelines about foreign family connections would disqualify her for a security clearance for such a sensitive position.  But Americans today seem attuned to other sensitivities—ones that trump concerns over sensitive government positions falling into enemy hands.  Were government secrets betrayed?  Nowadays, that question seem almost archaic and certainly far less pressing than more urgent questions such as, “Were someone’s feelings hurt?”  “Was any group offended?”

Bachmann and her colleagues were concerned that the State Department had “taken actions that have been enormously favorable to the Muslim Brotherhood and its interests,” and they went on to list five specific instances.  McCarthy lists at least half a dozen more that occurred during Hillary Clinton’s watch at State.  It might be sheer coincidence that the State Department’s embrace of the Muslim Brotherhood coincided with Huma Abedin’s tenure as Clinton’s top aide.  But suppose for the sake of argument that the worst-case scenario were true.  Suppose Abedin were actually an agent working for the Muslim Brotherhood?  Such things are not unheard of.  It’s an established fact that Soviet agents infiltrated the U.S. government before, during, and after the Second World War, and that one of them—Alger Hiss—held a sensitive position at the State Department.  Why is it implausible that Muslim Brotherhood operatives could infiltrate Washington and influence government policy?  Of course, to even ask the question is to court derision and ridicule and demands for abject apologies. As Ed Rollins made clear, anyone who raises such concerns “need[s] to ask forgiveness.”

But again, suppose it were true? Suppose the evidence were overwhelming? Would any amount of evidence be sufficient to override the argument from feelings? Or has our commitment to being nice and inoffensive rendered us incapable of meaningful action in our own defense? Back in 1966, sociologist Philip Rieff wrote a book titled The Triumph of the Therapeutic. That verdict may have been a little premature at the time, but it seems safe to say that the therapeutic mode of judging now reigns supreme. We have become a society that values feelings over truth, and that is a very dangerous state of affairs.

In fact, Bachmann and the four House members did provide sufficient evidence to justify an inquiry into Muslim Brotherhood influence. In response to a request from Representative Keith Ellison, they supplied 16 pages of evidence. Nevertheless, they were reprimanded and their petition was brushed aside. Once upon a time parents admonished children that “it’s not nice to point.” That, essentially, was the argument used to silence the five Representatives—in effect, “It’s not nice to point. You are being hurtful. You are hurting the feelings of the whole Muslim community.”

The strategic memorandum for the North American Muslim Brotherhood explains that Western civilization can be destroyed “from within” by “sabotaging its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers….” In other words, the document expresses a confidence that we will assist in our own downfall. Lenin is supposed to have said that “The capitalists will sell us the rope by which we will hang them.” The Muslim Brotherhood have a similar belief. They believe (and there is little to gainsay their belief) that we are so in thrall to the tyranny of nice that, if they play their cards right, their civilization jihad campaign will meet with little resistance. They seem to understand us very well.

(Photo credit: REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque)

William Kilpatrick

By

William Kilpatrick taught for many years at Boston College. He is the author of several books about cultural and religious issues, including Why Johnny Can’t Tell Right From Wrong; and Christianity, Islam and Atheism: The Struggle for the Soul of the West and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Jihad. His articles have appeared in numerous publications, including Catholic World Report, National Catholic Register, Aleteia, Saint Austin Review, Investor’s Business Daily, and First Things. His work is supported in part by the Shillman Foundation. For more on his work and writings, visit his website, turningpointproject.com

  • Bob

    We’ll never learn. As the saying goes “We have the watches, but they have the time.” It’s not a matter of if, but when Muslim terrorists attack the United States again, and my fear is the next time will be nuclear in nature. Coming from Muslims already here in the United States.

    • Vinnie

      The point of this essay is that they won’t need to “attack” with anything. They will take over the inner workings of our government just like progressives did with education and law. Remember, progressives and Islamists are joined at the hip, at least until one or the other decides the other’s usefulness is over.

      • Bob

        “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.”

        • Valentin

          That is not always true, and it caused loads of problems during WWII when Eisenhauer trusted the Soviets just because they fought the Nazis. What happened when the US allowed the Soviets to take East Germany as well as the rest of eastern Europe? The Soviet soldiers raped thousands of women and girls and put Priests in re-education camps where they were beaten in the dark. This was allowed because people didn’t listen to George Patton but instead said “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”.

          • Victress Jenkins

            George Patton wanted to take his division and a division of the German Army into Russia. He & General MacArthur could have freed the world!!

            • Valentin

              That’s right, unfortunately Eisenhower as well as others didn’t like Patton because he was both a tough General and a successful one.

  • Guest

    Another great article. Great work. Thanks.

    All one has to do is read the com boxes here to see your point. Truth is always below perceived feelings. It is a tyranny.

    • Bob

      And make no mistake, the terrorist’s number one target on 9/11 was either the White House or Capitol. Take time to imagine that scenario, and if the passengers on flight 93 hadn’t fought back, we would have been looking at a burning White House.

  • marbo

    … from the Government of “nice” to the church of “nice… we are in such times that add to confusion not truth! As for “nice” it can be also translate to be “sinister” by it’s intent.. Thank you! Very relevant article …

    • Glenn M. Ricketts

      Yes: it’s definitely not “nice” to mention abortion or, worst of all, the Church’e teaching on marriage and sexuality during homilies at Mass. Affluent, “educated” attendees are very thin skinned and will be very, very, very hurt and upset at such insensitivity.

      • Victress Jenkins

        We wouldn’t want that, would we??!! Objective truth always wins!!

        • Objectivetruth

          Why….thank you!

      • jacobhalo

        We, at the traditional Latin Mass, hear sermons on abortion, homosexual marriage and sexuality and we have a 95% attendance rate, with a ton of young people.

        • Glenn M. Ricketts

          That’s also what I hear when I have the opportunity to attend Mass in the EF. Unfortunately, I live in an area where many of the clergy still think that Latin causes lung cancer.

        • Objectivetruth

          What parish do you have Latin Mass at, Jacobhalo?

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  • Fred

    Thank you for yet another excellent article. So much more going on than meets the eye for the casual observer. I was struck by the recent public statement by British PM David Cameron about being a Christian nation which should be obvious but seemed more out of despair than joy. Following that the former Arch Bishop Rowan Williams reply about being post-Christian was telling, as was the expected vitriol from many corners denouncing any relationship with Christ with hate in their voices. Why focus on Huma Abedin though as we have just this Easter the unprecedented act of current white house occupant revering the Masjid Negara (mosque built on a church) in Kuala Lumpur praying with the Grand Imam Ismail Muhammad, one of the sweetest sounds he’s ever heard. Also on record visiting many other mosques while travelling abroad, more than cathedrals or synagogues I believe, and only there when demands are made to cover offensive images to non-believers like the Crucifix. Some days I wake up and pinch myself in dis-belief how much our country has changed.

  • entonces_99

    When President Reagan appointed Michael Boudin to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, was there a lot of hand-wringing about *his* family connections, especially his sister who was a co-founder of the terrorist Weather Underground and was a participant in the deadly 1981 Brink’s robbery?

    • Art Deco

      It was George Bush the Elder, not Ronald Reagan, who appointed Michael Boudin to the federal court slots. His father, Leonard Boudin was a member of the red haze but had never had any affiliation with violent organizations (bar that his daughter had gone off on these tangents).

  • What a stupid, uncharitable harengue! No facts, just innuendo and slanderous suggestion of guilt merely by family association.

    Qadafi was right, Islam will conquer Europe because they believe, have hope and thus have children, unlike the so-called Christians in the West. The enemy is not without, but within… the mirror, destroying this nation in the voting booth.

    • Valentin

      What Christians? The has west has become a post-Christian world and the few good Christians left are the ones that Muslims go after the most. Just look at comments they leave on youtube where they would rather slander the Church than anyone else.

      • tom

        True. Western Civilization is dead. We’re left with Leftists or Islam to fill the vacuum.

        • Valentin

          Just remember the Church is eternal.

      • Glenn M. Ricketts

        And just watch how hard the secularist governments of Western Europe and, increasingly, the United States, will come down on those dangerous Christian “bigots.”

        • Valentin

          Let’s just hope that when it does happen that we suffer through it faithfully, just as many saints have in the past.

  • Watosh

    It has been rather obvious for some time now that our government has already been taken over by a foreign power which is not Muslim.

    • Vinnie

      China?

      • No, the red-white-and-blue military-industrial-financial complex.

        • TheAbaum

          I remember when you used to post something worth reading.

  • Valentin

    I think Muslim American is an oxymoron.

    • A Catholic American is an oxymoron.

      • Valentin

        It depends on what you mean by American, because most people who came back from WWII wouldn’t call the US American anymore.

        • Art Deco

          Are you referring to the country as it is, or as it was in 1947?

          • Valentin

            I think there is something about the country in 1947 that isn’t in place any more for example a lack of both true love, chastity, and from what I hear the understanding that men could handle their business (at least that is what I hear from a priest that grew up in the 50’s in Phile)

          • There is no difference. The American adults in 1947 fathered the boomer generation, those who bequeathed us with the sexual revolution. Among them, one could find the Catholic John Kennedy denying his faith in public in order to get elected.

            • Valentin

              You are right but at least back then young men could go to the seminary and actually come out as proper priests where as afterwards and still today they filter out the real men and allow effeminate fruitcakes into the position of priest.

              • You are certainly aware that most pederast predatory attacks by priests on the youth occurred before the 80s, aren’t you? Take a guess at when they went to seminary and who admitted them.

                • Valentin

                  I guess that they came in during the 60’s when loads of men used the seminary as a cheap escape from the draft, that as well as the sexual revolution probably brought in perverts as well as turned a few priests into them.

                  • Art Deco

                    Valentin, if you look at the cohorts which came of age during the period running from 1964 to 1972, you will discover that about 45% had some sort of military service, about 25% were disqualified (contingently or without recourse, commonly for medical reasons), and about 30% who did not enlist for a mess of reasons and were not conscripted called up by their draft board either. That 30% would amount to about 600,000 men per cohort at that time. Somehow, I think men wishing to avoid military service had other avenues than being one of the 4,000 or so who entered major or minor seminaries each year at that time. Please recall that seminary admissions began to tank in 1965, coincident with the close of the 2d Vatican Council (and with the escalation of the war in Indochina).

                    • Valentin

                      Ok I wasn’t aware of that but I also think that it also matters as to where in the US we’re talking about with whether or not there were Catholics that could be described as American beyond just having a passport. For example Philadelphia was and still is a primarily Catholic city because of all the Irish, German, Italian, and Puerto Rican immigrants. Plus the current bishop is a real good solid bishop.

                    • jacobhalo

                      I’m from Phila. and most of the Catholics are Catholic in name only. Most do not practice the faith. Churches and Catholic schools are closing left and right.

                    • Valentin

                      That would explain why the city always looks like a mess whenever I have driven there. But compared to a lot of other diocese the Bishop as well as some of the priests there seem pretty solid.

                  • How about the second part of my question, who admitted them to seminary? Who were the diocesan vocation directors and seminary deans and professors? I answer, those men from the so-called Great Generation.

                    The troubles that we are living today have their roots much farther back. We tend to focus on when and by whom they became prevalent, but not on their mentors and enablers.

                    Roughly, it was the scandal of total war during WWI that got the people to lose hope and be vulnerable to ideas that until then found few adepts.

                    But a similar loss of hope happened in America after the Civil War, when America was destroyed by those trying to hold on to betrayed the American ideals and those trying to stamp the former ones.

                    Yet, never, ever has America been a place friendly to Catholics or informed by Catholicism, except the parts which belonged to Spain or Mexico.

                    • Valentin

                      You are right and even in Mexico there was a point where secularists practically took over politics and the military.

                    • TheAbaum
                    • Objectivetruth

                      Next he’ll be telling us how the Germans were justified in bombing Pearl Harbor.

                    • TheAbaum
                    • Objectivetruth

                      Great flick….!

                    • When did the Germans bomb Pearl Harbor? If you’re talking about the Japanese in 1942, yes, they were justified. It was an attack to a military base of a country which was blockading Japan, an act of war. And, since we’re at it, the US were not justified to use nuclear weapons on Japan. It is always immoral to use nuclear weapons.

                    • Art Deco

                      The year was 1941, not 1942, and Japan was not under blockade. Pretty basic stuff, chum.

                    • The US blocked access by Japan to oil and rubber and froze its assets, all acts of war (v. http://bit.ly/1hya9u7 ). Pretty basic stuff, dude.

                    • Art Deco

                      Economic sanctions are not acts of war.

                    • Dominicus

                      Economic sanctions are political act of war that is a precursor to a military strike. Economic sanctions could be argued as immoral as well considering the intended target is never affect, but it is the innocent population that suffers.

                    • TheAbaum

                      “It is always immoral to use nuclear weapons.”

                      No, that’s your opinion.

                      The official estimates of the casualties involved with invasion of Japan were TEN MILLION Japanese civilians and an additional 1.7 MILLION U. S. million military casualties. That of course would have been perfectly moral.

                      On the other hand, it is interesting to see the mind that says it’s OK to kill over a blockade.

                    • An opinion based on the CCC (v. http://bit.ly/1l8JY18 ) and shared with the American bishops and Pope Benedict XVI.

                    • TheAbaum

                      Even if I stipulated that your malicious malinterpretation was driven by something other than an expressed antipathy, these paragraphs didn’t exist in 1945.

                      It’s almost hilarious that you would quote this while excusing the attack on Pearl Harbor.

                    • Yes, they did, for the principle had already been articulated by St. Augustine, which the CCC quotes.

                      Laugh on. It was a just act of war against a nation engaging in unjust acts of war against another without provocation. If you cannot dettach your idolatrous nationalism from your thinking, that’s your problem and loss.

                    • TheAbaum

                      Oh, Augustine spoke of nuclear weapons?

                      This has nothing to do with nationalism. It does have a lot to do with your bias and degenerate thinking that says its moral to start a war and immoral to end one.

                    • It’s really a sad soy things when people are unable to grasp the concept of principle. Then again, even the geography of the world seems beyond your grasp, for, the last time I checked, America is not in the Far East. No wonder that you still hold on to middle-school, or worse, Hollywood, notions of recent history. So much ignorance even blinds your morals to justify the preemptive annihilation of civilians based on statistics.

                    • TheAbaum

                      “It’s really a sad state of things when someone is unable to grasp the concept of principle. ”

                      Yes, but that describes your entire exchange on this. Hawaii wasn’t part of Japan’s territory, either.

                      You can’t get past your admiration for the fascist state that launched an ill-advised war, simply because they attacked a nation you despise.

                    • Art Deco

                      It’s disconcerting the screwballs who show up here, over and above the sorosphere trolls. One of the regulars is an advocate for every enemy the United States government has faced in the last 60 years (and I’ll wager some prior to that). Another seems to think Saddam Hussein (who, per Freedom House, ran the most persistently godawful government in the world bar that of the Kim clan in North Korea) was an avuncular version of Gen. Pinochet.

                    • TheAbaum

                      What’s worse is when a formerly coherent poster becomes intellectually hydrophobic.

                    • Par for the course: anyone who doesn’t worship an idolater’s idol is a hateful fascist.

                    • TheAbaum

                      YOU have expressed your position on the United States. It’s not my inference, it’s your explicit declaration.

                      Of course, you pretend that it is principle – there’s too much military industrial complex – while ignoring the fact that there was an absolute fact in Imperial Japan.

                    • Art Deco

                      Taking you to task for writing press releases for the Japanese military as they operated normally ca. 1938 amounts to ‘worship[ing] and idolater’s idol’?

              • Art Deco

                Just to point out in my old diocese, all but 3 of the 50 priests who had accusations against them were ordained prior to 1980. None were ordained after 1989.

            • Art Deco

              Not precisely. He said it would be inconsequential for public policy making. In his case, it was inconsequential in just about any other setting as well (though the newspapers covered this up until 1975).

      • jacobhalo

        I am a Catholic first and an American second.

  • Here’s another perspective. Did you know that NATO contracts with the Taliban for logistics? And who are the real culprits here??
    Qatar, Pakistan, and Turkey
    http://www.rightsidenews.com/2014043034217/editorial/rsn-pick-of-the-day/the-manipulation-of-the-american-military-by-the-muslim-brotherhood.html

  • Michael Paterson-Seymour

    I am reminded of a remark of the historian, Lord Macaulay, “To punish a man because he has committed a crime, or because he is believed, though unjustly, to have committed a crime, is not persecution. To punish a man, because we infer from the nature of some doctrine which he holds, or from the conduct of other persons who hold the same doctrines with him, that he will commit a crime is persecution, and is, in every case, foolish and wicked…. When Elizabeth put Ballard and Babington to death, she was not persecuting. Nor should we have accused her government of persecution for passing any law, however severe, against overt acts of sedition. But to argue that, because a man is a Catholic, he must think it right to murder a heretical sovereign, and that because he thinks it right, he will attempt to do it, and then, to found on this conclusion a law for punishing him as if he had done it, is plain persecution.”

    • Gail Finke

      ??? Looking into someone’s background because she AND family members belonged to a possible terrorist organization is persecution? No. It’s called “getting a security clearance.” If someone who, it would seem, should not have a security clearance DOES have one, it is not insulting to inquire about why.

      • Michael Paterson-Seymour

        As Macaulay goes on to point out: “Man…is so inconsistent a creature that it is impossible to reason from his belief to his conduct, or from one part of his belief to another.”

  • hombre111

    Bachman was involved in typical Republican/Tea Party hardball, playing to the mob, trying to embarrass Clinton and the Obama Administration. End of story. Try to find a better example to justify your outrage.

    • Art Deco

      Have Abedin’s 1st degree relations had ties with the Muslim Brotherhood or not?

      • hombre111

        Most of my relations are Mormons. I have no plans for polygamy, nor do I secretly teach that we are destined to be gods.

        • Art Deco

          How does that bear on the utility of investigating Abedin’s connections and history?

          • Guest

            Apparently Mormons are involved in terrorism. Who knew?

        • Bob

          Trying to remember when Mormon’s in the name of their faith rammed two hijacked airliners into two of our tallest buildings killing thousands of Mericans.

          • hombre111

            You and the next two missed my point. Maybe it was just too subtle. But guilt by association is a poor argument. By the way, Bob, you do not put an apostrophe in the plural. It’s Mormons.

    • JP

      The Muslim Brotherhood has been involved in terrorist attacks from the murder of Syrian Cadets in 1979, the assassination of Sadat in 1982, to more recent terrorist attacks in Libya, Egypt, and Palestine. Their ultimate goal is the re-establishment of the Caliph throughout North Africa and the Middle East, and ultimately the world. With this in mind, one might very well ask what was Huma doing as Hillary’s Chief of Staff at the State Department.

      Funny, people like you can only see the world through the veil of politics. It was once believed that Democrats were serious about National Security That, of course is a pipe dream. For Democrats, it is politics first, second, and third.

    • cestusdei

      Playing to the mob? That is the Democrat play book. They seek to demonize the opposition and use the IRS to eliminate them. I am sure that the Muslim terrorists appreciate your support though.

      • hombre111

        Sorry, iron fist, but nobody demonizes like Sean and Rush. Everybody else is an amateur.

        • Art Deco

          And you’ve spent how much time listening to either one?

          • hombre111

            Don’t have to stick my head in an outhouse every day to know that it is an outhouse.

            • cestusdei

              Outhouse=Democrat party.

              • hombre111

                Nice try, but the modern Democrats are waay too cowardly and conservative for me.

                • cestusdei

                  I suspect you are to the Left of the Sparticist league.

                  • hombre111

                    I am inspired by the meaning of the Resurrection and the coming of the Kingdom of God. What the Repubs and the Dems have to offer is a craven, worldly, self-centered bucket of grey water.

                    • cestusdei

                      Yet you worship what the Liberal Dems and those to the Left of them want.

                    • hombre111

                      As I have said again and again, the Dems are much too conservative for me. In their desire to get re-elected, they put off doing vital things, like dealing with global warming and the surrender of our country to the .01%.

                    • cestusdei

                      Yes, I suspect that the old USSR would be to the right of you. So you are a socialist and buy into the fallacies of global warming. Knee jerk PC beliefs seem to be your bag.

                    • hombre111

                      Thou speakest correctly, oh knuckles of titanium. The Soviets endangered the world with their nuclear weapons and were busy trashing the environment. Their leaders became fabulously wealthy. The only political view I could espouse is which proclaims that we are children of God, then citizens of the world, then citizens of our country, then citizens of our state and city.

                    • cestusdei

                      In other words they are just like the liberals today. I remember guys like you defending the USSR to the hilt.

                    • hombre111

                      Not me, flinty fist. I was a good Catholic boy shocked by the tragic face of Cardinal Mindzenti (sp?), and so I took a strong stand against godless communism. Little did I suspect that, when the dust settled, materialistic capitalism would do more damage to faith than the communists.

              • TheAbaum

                It’s actually Satan’s branch office.

            • TheAbaum

              You couldn’t stick your head anywhere,due to your rectal-cranial impaction.

        • cestusdei

          Every watch MSNBC? Or listen to Pelosi or Read? Utterly vile hatred drips from their mouths. You must be deaf to anything but their propaganda.

          • hombre111

            Actually, comparing MSNBC to Rush and Sean is like comparing a barn animal to two polecats.

            • cestusdei

              After 8 years of Bush bashing, and his daughters. Attacks on Palin’s Down’s Syndrome child, and all the other vile hate I can only surmise that you believe it is okay to hate as long as you hate a conservative.

              • Art Deco

                The stereotyped character of everything he says is notable.

              • hombre111

                Well, no. As long as that conservative did not start a three trillion dollar war, or as long that conservative pledged his whole fortune as a guarantee that the war was for a just cause, or as long as his daughters felt compelled to sign up to fight as enlisted cannon-fodder for the war their daddy started. I have only admiration for Palin and her Down’s Syndrome child, but doubt if she can see Russia from her house, and wonder why she resigned as governor after half a term.

                • TheAbaum

                  “and wonder why she resigned as governor after half a term.”

                  And we wonder why you didn’t quit after the same period of time.

                • cestusdei

                  As I remember that war started when thousands of Americans were immolated by our enemy. I guess we are to blame for Pearl Harbor too? Are there still 57 states like Obama says.

                  • hombre111

                    Nope. Released not too long ago was a book called “The Three Trillion Dollar War,” which summarized the eventual cost of Bush’s war against a country that had never attacked us.

                    • cestusdei

                      So if there was no 911 we would still have had a war? Nope. They attacked us, we are fighting back. I am sure that they appreciate your support and aid. Every Christian they kill is one you help to kill by your appeasement of terrorism.

                    • hombre111

                      No, club fist. The Iraqis had nothing to do with 911. This has been proven again and again. That was Al Queda, in Afghanistan. We had Osama trapped and let him get away because Bush shifted his attention to Iraq, in response to Neo-con strategy. First, the excuse was weapons of mass destruction, which of course, were not there. More profoundly but harder to explain, we were going to bring Democracy to the Middle East by force and, as a happy by-product, control the oil. Kind of like the colonial powers making the East and Africa safe for Christianity. For that, we trashed a country with God knows how many casualties on the Iraqi side, with tens of thousands of our own killed and maimed. The fact that we are going over this again shows how willfully out of touch the far right still is.

                    • cestusdei

                      This war is against all the terrorists and Iraq certainly fit the bill. So did you support the war in Afghanistan and the killing of Osama? War for oil? Are we still playing that? If so then why don’t we control all the Iraqi oil and why isn’t the price of gas 10 cents a gallon? Oh and why did Obama attack Libya? For oil, right? Obama lied and people died.

                    • hombre111

                      Oh, fist of steel, how you retell history to fit your narrative. Al Queda attacked us, but there were no Al Queda in Iraq until after we invaded. We might have had the right to invade Afghanistan and get Obama. We cornered him, in fact, and let him get away because we had turned our attention to Iraq. Read the “Agenda for the Twenty-First Century,” and you will see the Neo-con agenda that led us into Iraq.

                    • Art Deco

                      We’d been in a stat of belligerency with Iraq for 12 years. In 2002, the government faced a trilemma: remove the sanctions, leave the sanctions on (which Big Consciences were assuring us were responsible for a six figure tally of excess deaths per year), or remove the government. There was no option without potential pitfalls.

                    • hombre111

                      “Big Consciences” included Pope John Paul, who begged the U.S. to lift the sanctions, which were causing the deaths of so many children. His Big Conscience also caused him to oppose Bush’s invasion via a personal delegate sent from Rome. This is what I mean by cafeteria conservatives, who reverence every thing the Pope ever said about sex, but ignore everything he ever said about social justice.

                    • cestusdei

                      There were some of them there. Also we know that Iraq had used chemical weapons in the past and had been developing nuclear weapons. The Israeli’s helpfully had bombed their reactor.

                      No comments about Afghanistan? Which means you did NOT support it either even though Osama was there. Likewise nothing about Libya. Who is retelling history by omission?

                    • hombre111

                      No reason to bring up Libya when we are talking about Iraq. The only chemical weapons were old shells left over after the First Gulf War. We supplied the chemical weapons they used against the Iranians and then against the Kurds. They had stopped developing nuclear weapons, as the UN inspectors testified. It was all a pretext to start a war. Go back and read the story again. Open your Catechism and read the rules for a just war. We violated most of them.
                      I agree with the Catechism that there is almost no good reason to start a war. I already stated that we could have been justified in going to Afghanistan to get Obama. After he was gone, we no longer had a reason to be there, but stayed, this time to help build a democracy. It turned out to be the longest war in American history.

                    • cestusdei

                      So Obama starts a war without Congressional approval, unlike Bush. People die. And you don’t want to bring it up? Instead you bash us for fighting back against terrorists? I am sure that the terrorists deeply appreciate your support. I am sure that Obama deeply appreciates your support of his war in Libya that caused some many deaths. i guess for you Libyan deaths don’t count.

                    • hombre111

                      I blame Bush and Congress for attacking a country that had not attacked us, with thousands dead and wounded on our side, and hundreds of thousand dead and wounded on the other side. No connection to Al Queda (proven). No WMDs (proven). Just a tactic recommended by the Neo-cons who served on the Bush cabinet. Libya is a smokescreen, a mosquito to distract attention away from a vulture. We did not invade that country, and it will not cost us three trillion dollars until the whole price is finally paid.

                    • Art Deco

                      You keep repeating yourself, but you never even attempt to address the trilemma the administration faced.

                    • hombre111

                      And Pope John Paul also did not understand, when he sent a delegate to beg Bush not to attack Iraq.

                    • Art Deco

                      He might have been taken more seriously if he attempted to address the real choices Bush had to make.

                    • hombre111

                      Let’s see…Al Queda was not present in Iraq…there were no weapons of mass destruction…Iraq had not attacked us…. Yep, Bush was between a rock and a hard place.

                    • TheAbaum

                      Al Queda was not present in Iraq…there were no weapons of mass destruction…

                      Right. The Kurds died of mass COPD.

                    • hombre111

                      Sigh. Time to cast more pearls. The Kurds died by the nerve gas weapons we gave Saddam in his war against Iran. We had twice encouraged the Kurds to revolt, and then failed to support them when they did. Saddam was not manufacturing nerve gas, as Bush and Secretary charged. We did discover some shells left over from the bad old days, and the Conservatives jumped all over this as “proof” of WMDs. But the original charge was, they are manufacturing these things, now.

                    • TheAbaum

                      If there’s any casting of pearls, it’s the people who take the time to answer you, because most of us know exactly what you are-a cheap partisan who hides behind his collar and lives off the efforts of others, working to destroy the Church from with in.

                      Why don’t you find out what Saddam was manufacturing, obtain a few cubic feet of it and take a deep long snootful.

                      If you are still talking after that….

                    • Art Deco

                      The trilemma has been explained to you before. We can explain this to you. We cannot comprehend it for you.

                    • hombre111

                      Big words are a toy for some folks, an excuse for lack of clarity and thought. Just put it down, one, two, three. And then take your Catechism, look up war and the explanation of the just war theory, and see if Bush was justified in doing what he did.

                • Art Deco

                  Well, you’ve confounded Gov. Palin’s remarks with Tina Fey’s and evidently did not bother to read newspaper reports or view any of the video of her resignation speech when she made it plain why she was departing office: anomalies in Alaska ethics laws had allowed Democratic Party trouble makers to inundate her with nuisance suits (there were fifteen separate complaints, among them were ones on the logos on her husband’s clothing and one filed in the name of a character on East Enders. Legal costs had put her and her husband $500,000 in debt and efforts on the part of supporters to start a legal defense fund for her resulted in another ethics complaint.

                  • hombre111

                    Sorry, Palin said what she said and the Dems made fun of her. And a woman who wanted to be VP resigned when the going got tough?

                    • Art Deco

                      You’re a great fountainhead of false and stupid Democratic Party talking points.

        • TheAbaum

          Nobody demonizes like you and you supposedly took Holy Orders.

          Get the log out of your own eye.

    • TheAbaum

      Clinton and Obama embarrass themselves and us. You embarrass the Church.

      • hombre111

        Sigh. I guess that means you won’t be coming to my 50th. Anniversary celebration.

        • Art Deco

          Sensible people do not celebrate fifty years of institutional parasitism.

          • hombre111

            Tsk. Surely that did not come from your Christ heart.

            • TheAbaum

              And your bromides do?

        • TheAbaum

          And participate in a fraud?

          • hombre111

            TheA, you are breaking my heart.

            • TheAbaum

              You’ll get over it when you are presented with a Che Guevara t-shirt.

              I hear they are trying to arrange a call from Fidel, himself.

  • Rich

    Interesting. Two articles today, one on hell, the other about a muslim who serves her country. Both about fear. Always fear. Oh well.

    • Crisiseditor

      Did you read our column on P.G. Wodehouse today in our Civilized Reader section? Not much fear there. We publish many articles on many different subjects. But we don’t imitate the milk toast official Catholic press that avoids controversy, nor do we follow the mainstream press when we choose topics they ignore. A magazine called “Crisis” will not shy away from problems, but we do occasionally publish upbeat pieces. (Did you read Rachel Lu’s column last week?: http://www.crisismagazine.com/2014/time-for-a-little-easter-cheer) However, our readers want what they can’t get elsewhere. How many sermons have you heard on Hell? Not many I bet.

      • elarga

        Dear editor: That would be “Milquetoast” not milk toast. Named after a comic strip character of the 1930s, Caspar Milquetoast.

      • TheAbaum

        And now he’s recycling his five month old trash…

      • WSquared

        Thank you for the work that you do. God bless you.

  • Thomas

    The woman mentioned in this article is the wife of former New York Congressman, Anthony Weiner. I believe Weiner is Jewish. I don’t get it. She’s a Muslim but is married to a Jew. Please help me fill in the details.

    • Art Deco

      Like the Smith Brothers. Two beards.

    • You are already filled to the brim with bigotry for implying that an individual is guilty by association with a group.

      • Thomas

        You’ve misread my question, so please get off of your high horse and withdraw the insult.

      • JC

        Does that go for Muslim brotherhood Members, KKK members, Al Quaida Members?

        • TheAbaum

          This is the guy who’s telling us a country that executed Priests (Mexico) was friendly to the Church.

    • no dog in this fight

      Simple, Not everyone is Bias. But sadly many , despite the willingness to recognize and admit that they harbor some form of bias, tend to hide behind the bias of others. Quit judging and start standing up for the truth.

      • Thomas

        Where is the bias?

        I asked a simple question that I thought someone could answer. I do feel that there are a just a few people here who are quick triggered and quick to judge. Perhaps they’re wanna be St. Augustines?

        In no way have I ever held a bias against any race or ethnicity. Some of you so-called theologians here need to learn how to say, “Can you please re-phrase the question.” Show a little humility and stop proving the lib-labs are correct that we’re all a bunch of uptight legalists.

        Try a smaller horse, pal.

    • publiusnj

      No Muslim married to a Jew could be prejudiced? Of course not. Just as no winner of an NAACP Lifetime Achievement Award could be a racist.

      • TheAbaum

        Somehow I think that the NAACP is engaged in the sale of indulgences.

    • TheAbaum

      Actually, she’s a statist married to a statist. A weird little dude with some bad moral hygiene, but a statist.

  • cestusdei

    Niceness is so often a cover for hate.

  • John O’Neill

    Clinton and McCain are both known for their anti Christian animus and their tendency to arm anti Christian Islamic rebels; first in Serbia, then Egypt and now Syria. Of course being anti Christian is as American as apple pie, n’cest pas?

  • Jdonnell

    Guilt by association is a paranoid tactic. There is no substance to this article. The author might do far better to ask about US govt. employees with commitments to Israel.

    • Gail Finke

      Good golly, you’re right. Membership in an organization has NOTHING to do with one’s personal actions or beliefs. People join any old organization! Belong to the NRA? You don’t necessarily care about the 2nd Amendment! The American Kennel Association? You might not even know what a dog looks like!

      Obviously, belonging to an organization doesn’t necessarily mean you espouse its aims. But for most people, most of the time, it’s a pretty good indication. This whole idea that even questioning someone who belongs to a possible terrorist organization (along with several of her close family members) is out of bounds takes radical individualism to a new and absurd level.

      • Jdonnell

        The article implies condemnation, not simply questioning. People often join organizations for many reasons not directly related to the organization’s goals. Family requests, etc. can account for membership. Second, the assumption here is that the Muslim Brohd. is filled with likeminded evil doers. There is a considerable variety of thought among its members, just as there is among Republicans, etc. Indeed, some of the latter have been advocating rather extreme, even violent, behavior. I might add that many of the comments attached to this article seem most unchristian, starting with those hostile ones from Augustine.

      • Interested

        Stop using reason and logic. It messes up the liberal narrative.

    • Art Deco

      Who said she’s guilty? Why not tell us why she’s not worth an inquiry, eh?

      Since Israel is not an antagonistic foreign government, the interest in investigating employees who contribute to AIPAC, &c would be correspondingly less intense.

  • JAW

    Let’s all recall that Saint John Paul II, the first Pontiff to visit a mosque, kissed the Qu’ran. This sent a signal throughout the muslim world that Christianity was capitulating to the triumph of Islam. Personally I will not submit to a false prophet who does not accept jesus Christ as the Son of God and Lord and Savior. The Qu’ran is nothing than a book of fairy tales

    • Darsow44

      Yes, your book of fairy tales (Bible) is much better than someone else’s book of fairy tales (Qu’ran).
      “My magical sky sorcerer beats your magical sky sorcerer!”

  • Gail Finke

    So nothing ever came of that? I remember being astonished, at the time, that she ever got to be one of Hillary Clinton’s top aides with those connections. Feelings, schmeelings. This is national security.

  • Kathy

    I think this obsession with being “nice” is what got Obama elected twice! He had absolutely no experience with anything that would have qualified him to become POTUS. However, we wouldn’t want to offend anyone or hurt anyone’s feelings by not voting for the man.

  • Greg Cook

    Perhaps there could also be an investigation of Grover Norquist’s Muslim wife, too. But since he is on the right wing I am not holding my breath.

    • Augustus

      If Grover Norquist was the Secretary of State and his wife had ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, you might actually have a point.

      • Greg Cook

        While Mr. Norquist is not Secretary of State, he wields enormous influence in Congress.

        • Art Deco

          When? He was tainted by the Abramoff scandal some years ago. His most notable shtick is something called the ‘taxpayer protection pledge’, which most Republican lawmakers I would wager would sign without being lobbied (and I blame them for that). Of late, he has been pushing open borders, a project of the House leadership of which most of the House Republican caucus wants no part.

          • TheAbaum

            If he had fifteen minutes of fame, it’s over.

        • TheAbaum

          So does George Soros.

  • Prof_Override

    ANYONE who would take a nut job like Michelle Bachman seriously needs to have their head examined. This is a slap in the face to the credibility of Crisis as a forum for genuine conservative thought. We don’t need more right wing reactionary noise.

    • JC

      What from Michelle B. is not to be taken seriously. She’s one of most brave members of congress that exist. She cares about the Constutionality of the present government, She cares about the presevation of the Christian family unit. She is anti abortion, anti same sex marriage, and she cares about preserving U. S. sovereignty. And she speaks out, intelligently about all the afore mentioned. All she is lacking is the Catholic faith to be any more supportive of What Crisis Magazine supports

      • Art Deco

        There are occasions when she seems to vet reality against ideology, but I would agree with you she is generally an articulate exponent; she’s also not a social climber, so cannot be intimidated in ways that others are.

    • Art Deco

      If you have a complaint about someone someone else’s expositions – Michelle Bachmann’s or Mr. Hargrave’s offer it. If you’re just here to demonstrate to the world you’re a snotty blowhard, take it somewhere else.

      • Prof_Override

        Instead of personal attack, address that which I’ve put forward. Bachmann has no credibility because she is an intellectual lightweight, thus you are so in defending such. Art Deco is a refined style, you are not. Please drop the moniker, you do it injustice.

        • Art Deco

          Bachmann has no credibility because she is an intellectual lightweight

          And we have that on your authority, no less.

          Back in the real world, she’s a tax attorney, an occupation which requires a meticulous mind, has two post-graduate degrees, and has managed to raise five children and provide temporary care to dozens of others in spite of suffering debilitating migraines. We need more such ‘lightweights’.

          (And fewer pretentious blowhards, while we are at it).

        • WSquared

          Even an “intellectual lightweight” or “nutjob” can say something true at least some of the time.

          The issue is whether what she is saying is indeed true, and not her intellectual pedigree or lack thereof.

          As for name-calling, you protest too much: you started it.

  • gothdave1

    If she had the ties to the Muslim Brotherhood – she should be fired and investigated. End of story!

  • jacobhalo

    Anyone who is tired of the “church of nice” that is the Novus Ordo, please joins us at Mater Ecclesiae in Berlin, NJ. We have nothing but the Latin Mass, and you will hear sermons that address the issues that are not talked about today in the Novus Ordo. We have a great pastor, who I could listen to all day. He is the greatest!! Check out their website MaterEcclesiae.org.

    • That would be the church of long faces, where people pretend to speak Latin and dress down anyone who who doesn’t toe the line to the smallest iota.

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