Petraeus is right

Christian Science Monitor:

The United States’ top commander in Afghanistan has warned that a planned Koran-burning event in Florida could put US troops in danger.

Gen. David Petraeus added his voice to mounting protests from both the US and abroad over the Dove World Outreach Center’s plans to burn Korans on Saturday to mark the anniversary of the September 11 terror attacks. His comments ratcheted up the pressure on once-obscure pastor Terry Jones to call off the event.

The controversy comes as some 120,000 US and allied troops are waging a counter-insurgency campaign against the Taliban in Afghanistan, a campaign whose goals include winning support for the US-backed government from the largely Muslim population.

General Petraeus said that burning Korans “is precisely the kind of action the Taliban uses and could cause significant problems – not just here, but everywhere in the world we are engaged with the Islamic community,” according to CNN.

“It could endanger troops and it could endanger the overall effort in Afghanistan,” Gen. David Petraeus said in a statement issued Monday …

“Even the rumor that it might take place has sparked demonstrations such as the one that took place in Kabul yesterday,” he said. “Were the actual burning to take place, the safety of our soldiers and civilians would be put in jeopardy and accomplishment of the mission would be made more difficult.”

Mr. Jones, the pastor of the center in Gainesville, Florida, has touted the activity as “International Burn the Koran Day.” Jones also authored a book titled “Islam is of the Devil,” which has a Facebook page and Twitter account.

In remarks published by Florida radio station WOKV on Tuesday morning, Jones insisted he would not be deterred.

Regular readers know of my issues with Islam.  I’ve been hard on the faith and will likely continue to be.  It seems the more I learn about the religion, the more issues I’m finding with the belief system… but a mass burning of Korans is as problematic on a number of levels.

The first is simple and seemingly obvious.  Burning the Koran is a provocative act that goes against the grain of Christian thought.  I can’t find a single tenet upheld by this sort of action.  I cannot imagine Christ exhorting His followers to do this under any circumstance.  It is stooping unnecessarily to a level matching that of the Islamists.

The second is as important, perhaps more so. Mass burning of Korans is offensive and provocative and will do more to inflame the ignorant than it will to persuade them to change their ways.  Although I continue to believe that the extremists will have to be dealt with in the extreme, there is the hope, albeit slight, that moderates within Islam would do what is necessary to reform the faith, to live up to this rather weak notion that they practice a religion of peace.  This will do nothing to embolden the so called moderates to step up and assume some responsibility.  Quite the contrary.  And in that respect, I believe Petraeus to have nailed this.

This brand of Christianity, if it can even be called that, needs to go.  Quietly and quickly.

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  • Peter F.

    Amen, Rick. There’s no need to sink to this level. It’s un-Christian and in horrible taste. Sort of like putting a mosque 1.5 blocks from Ground Zero.

  • SPQR

    See? Now I know that I’m right. Our resident ditz, Goober, at #48 is saying that this is a 1st Amendment issue.

    Tell me, gooper, who has earned more of a right to “opine” on civil rights?

  • jim m

    “The fighting started on 9/11 but for liberal Americans, the fighting won’t start, if ever, until after a nuclear terrorist attack. “

    Wouldn’t start even then. Libs don’t see our way of life as worth defending.

  • jim m

    SPQR –

    This IS a 1st amendment issue. If you are going to claim that the muslims have the right to build the GZ mosque then this fool has the right to burn korans. The mosque should be built elsewhere and the fool should find a better way to announce his contempt for islam like sponsoring a draw mohammed art fair.

    To give your own injunction a turn: Don’t be so vain and so foolish as to believe that because others here argue with you and disagree with you, that means that you are right. In fact that shows that you are thinking less clearly than they are.

  • SPQR

    Jim, where did you read that I condone the building of a recreation center and mosque near Ground Zero? That is a bizarre assertion.

  • Bob

    Book burning is anti-American, anti-freedom and anti-intellectual even when it involves a vile screed like the Koran. This Nazi-like behavior should be condemned.

    The beneficial effects of gratifying the burners and pissing off the radical Muslims are still not enough to justify it.

  • WildWillie

    I didn’t agree with a crucifix being placed in a glass of piss for arts sake. But it happened. I didn’t agree with the slaughter of thousands of americans in the name of Allah but it happened. Our troops are in danger regardless whether this guy burns korans or not. He has the right to do this. Now the left does knew the point of the mosque, it isn’t whether they could, buy why there.

    Personally, you cannot piss off muslims. They live in a pissed off mood at anything contrary to their belief, so it doesn’t matter. They will kill people now just because of the thought of burning them. Patreus is wrong, you cannot please those that hate. ww

  • 914

    Pewter F-

    “There’s no need to sink to this level. It’s un-Christian and in horrible taste. Sort of like putting a mosque 1.5 blocks from Ground Zero.”

    Yea, sort of. Minus the 3,000 muslims slaughtered at the site of the proposed book burning.

    “Book burning is anti-American, anti-freedom and anti-intellectual even when it involves a vile screed like the Koran.”

    Anti-freedom? Not! Anti-American? How? Anti intellectual? I agree with you there after all, we are talking about primitive barbarians here.

  • JLawson

    Wayne:

    By whom?

    By the folks we’ve been showing respect to, and have gotten precious little from in return.

    I’m really starting to think that any – ANY – religion that has to have riots to show how ‘offended’ they are by something, whether it’s a Koran being supposedly flushed or cartoons that aren’t properly respectful, or crucifixes being dipped in urine, or iconical paintings being made out of dung should be told “Too damn bad. Give respect to get respect, until then – tough shit.”

    Oh, wait – the only religion that does that frequently is Islam, the Religion of Perpetual Offense. And frankly, I’m getting just a bit tired of it.

  • jim m

    “They will kill people now just because of the thought of burning them. Patreus is wrong, you cannot please those that hate.”

    indeed.

  • 914

    Sorry Pewter, I mean Peter.

  • Rance

    Two points that I haven’t seen anyone make yet:

    One. It’s not about inflaming the people that we are already fighting, it’s about inflaming the people who are sitting on the sidelines to the point where they join in the fight.

    Two: Saying there are no moderates in Islam based on your reading of the Koran, doesn’t take into account a persons ability to accept or reject the parts the disagree with. Christians filter the teachings of the Bible all the time.

  • SPQR

    The building of a mosque near Ground Zero isn’t a 1st Amendment issue either.

    It’s a matter of showing sensitivity the the despair of friends and relatives of people who were murdered by Muslims on 9/11.

    But that is another issue; a distraction to divert attention away from the valid points which Rick made.

    You’re floundering and grasping at straws, people.

  • jim m

    Saying there are no moderates in Islam based on your reading of the Koran, doesn’t take into account a persons ability to accept or reject the parts the disagree with.

    no. People are saying that there are no moderates because they are siomply not in evidence. These so-called moderates are merely those who do not have the desire to get involved in the fighting but will not openly stand against the extremeists in any meaningful way. In the middle east you find the moderates silently acquiescing to the demands of the fanatics.

    SPQR- we are saying that like the GZ mosque the koran burning is an issue of free speach. Both are offensive and both should be reconsidered. But the problem is that by and large opponents of the koran burning are more than happy to abrogate the 1st amendment rights of these individuals while they are unwilling to do the same to the muslims. Neither should have their rights abridged. The primary reason I hear that we should abrudge the rights of the korn burners is that it offends muslims. I don’t give a rip who it offends. We have allowed other groups to offend Jews and offend Christians and offend grieving families. Why should muslims be exempt? In fact their very hypersensitivity and their quick adoption of violence as an acceptable response tells me that the last thing we should do is acomodate them.

    First rule in behaviorism: Behavior that is rewarded is repeated. We reward the violent behavior of muslims every time we back down. In order to change their behavior we cannot back down. Not ever.

  • galoob

    The building of a mosque near Ground Zero isn’t a 1st Amendment issue either.

    It’s a matter of showing sensitivity the the despair of friends and relatives of people who were murdered by Muslims on 9/11.

    You have no understanding of the First Amendment. Almost any First Amendment activity (speech or expressive action) of any effect is controversial. Free speech is meant to provoke reaction, not to show “sensitivity.”

    It’s amusing how right wing authoritarians appeal to “sensitivity” in the same way academic feminists or lefty racialists do when they want to ban “anti-wimmin,” “racially insensitive” or “patriarchal” speech. It’s called “political correctness,” you have your own brand.

    And while General Petraeus has the right to free speech, it really should not be within a general’s official duties to be making opinions on Americans free speech activities, however misguided they are. What’s next, generals saying people should not protest against war?

  • SPQR

    … and, oh yeah, it’s also a matter of preventing Muslim radicals from building a monument at the site in NYC that they consider to have been one of their victories, like they have already done at the site in Pennsylvania where United Flight 93 crashed on 9/11.

  • SPQR

    General Patraeus is just protecting your sorry ass, goober.

  • jim m

    Christians filter the teachings of the Bible all the time.

    Ah, but there in lies the difference. Christians can oppose the church on their views on abortion, homosexuality, marriage of priets, etc and have no fear of reprisal (OK maybe the RCC bans you from taking communion if you are a pro-choice poliitician, but even that is rare). In the case of a muslim, they may personally disagree with the koran on some of these issues or they may interpret it differently than the conservative imams, but they do not do anything publicly. To do so would be to risk being labeled aas an apostate. Apostacy is punishable by death.

    All muslims are required to enforce that law. As there is no “official” church body that makes decrees about these things all it takes is one imam or even one fanatic to decide that you are an apostate and they can be justified in murder.

    Just look at the acceptance of honor kilings. These are cultural rather than religious for the most part, but the fact that they are accepted so widely stands as proof that people are unwilling to stick their necks out for what would be basic human rights.

  • Rance

    “These so-called moderates are merely those who do not have the desire to get involved in the fighting but will not openly stand against the extremeists [sic] in any meaningful way.”

    I don’t expect them to physically stand up to armed factions any more than I expect you to stand up against an armed drug dealer in an American city.

  • jim m

    Rance, not only will they not stand up, but they will not speak up. If the moderates really were the majority in this religion there would be no problem in suppressing the extremists.

    The fact becomes clear that they are actully a tiny minority. If they were the majority they would have no fear of standing up and shouting down the fanatics. But they do not.

    People in the drug infested neighborhoods do not stand up because they feel that they cannot find the support to stand against the violence in their midst. But when they realize that there are those who would stand with them (police, community groups etc) they can do so and they do.

    Muslims in America have the entire nation waiting and wanting to stand with them against the extremeists in their midst. Yet they can only funnel more money to front organizations. They can only support the offensive GZ mosque proposal. They can only excuse the actions of the extremists. They can only call for more accomodations to the religious extremists and for implementation of Sharia law.

  • TexBob

    Hmmm, lets see. We have a book that incites hatred and violence against non-believers and burning such a book incites hatred and violence against non-believers. So what is the problem?

    If anything, it will create a target rich environment for Petraeus as the mask falls from those so called “moderate muslims”

  • Big Mo

    To hell with considering what sets off the jihad nuts, given the fact that they seem to be lying in wait for opportunities to go rage-boy nuts. Focus instead on whether we should be burning books. I don’t like the stench of that in America.

  • SPQR

    Jim, there are Muslim-Americans fighting (and dying) alongside infidels in Iraq, Afganistan and in the forgotten war in southeast Asia. So don’t say that there aren’t moderate Muslims standing up to the tyranny of the radicals.

  • jim m

    There’s a difference between standing up in the community against those who are fomenting religious violence and fullfilling the oath you took when you entered the armed services. The first gets you targeted for doing it and the second gets you targeted for not.

    I’m not saying the there aren’t those who disagree with the radicals. I’m just saying that their numbers aren’t meaningful and that they do not speak out against the radicals in the community. I’ve heard precious few voices speaking out against the GZ mosque in the muslim community.

    And if you are going to refer to the rest of us as infidels then perhaps we can start refering to muslims as heathens? I am not without faith, just without their brand of it.

  • SPQR

    Um, Jim, now you’re going loopy on me.

    It wasn’t like I implied that you were a heretic. I was simply making a distinction between Muslims and non-Muslims.

    But you got that, didn’t you?

    Whoa, you sure are ornery today.

  • jim m

    Perhaps I am a bit ornery. If a muslim wants to call me an infidel then fine. I get that. I just objecting to the idea that we should call ourselves by the same terms. Why not just start refering to ourselves a dhimis at that point?

    And this whole idea that we should do something or not do it for the explicit reason that we shouldn’t piss off the muslims is BS.

  • Sheik Yur Bouty

    SPQR,

    Jim is absolutely right on this, and you (and Rick) are all wet.

  • jim m

    The problem for the left is that religious tolerance is a one way street. It is important that we not offend the muslims, so we cannot draw cartoons and we cannot criticize their faith and we cannot be rude and burn their koran. We must let them build a victory mosque in New York.

    And yet we cannot rebuild a church that was at ground zero to begin with. We cannot complain if our tax dollars go to make art that blasphemes our faith. We cannot complain if our faith is criticized or ridiculed.

    No we have to shut up. But if the muslims are treated to even the slightest bit of the same we must punish those who do so. I’m sorry. I don;t see where they are so special.

  • Trump

    Good, so next time I see Muslims burning an American flag, I can go out and blow up a few of them, correct?

    Because that’s the behavior you’re rewarding here.

    It’s a 1 way street, where the Muslims are in charge. At least, when we act that way, that’s how THEY see it.

    So here’s the deal. When they burn the US flag, I’ll be human and not go out and blow up a few Muslims. And if they see us burning their koran, they can also be human and not blow anyone up.

    No double standards Rick. Should I be blowing up Muslims or not? You tell me how to conduct myself here. Yes or no?

  • Peter F.

    Sorry Pewter, I mean Peter.

    That’s okay, 914.

    Grayly yours,
    Pewter

  • Wayne

    JLawson
    I agree. I just wanted to know where you were coming from.

  • SPQR

    I dunno, guys. Neither Rick, nor JT have intervened yet, which should tell you that I’m hitting some home runs out of the park today.

    But if it makes you feel better to believe that ol’ Jim there is right, hey, close it up there in the infield, guys.

  • galoob

    Jim, there are Muslim-Americans fighting (and dying) alongside infidels in Iraq, Afganistan and in the forgotten war in southeast Asia. So don’t say that there aren’t moderate Muslims standing up to the tyranny of the radicals.

    SPQR, how in heck can you say that and then say that American Muslims should not be able to build a mosque in NYC or anywhere else they own the property?

    Is this the same SPQR, on the one hand tarring all Muslims as radicals, on the other defending the sensitivities of moderate Muslims?

    Or do you just lose track of your arguments?

    Me, I stick with the Constitution. It’s easier that way.

  • SPQR

    “Me, I stick with the Constitution. It’s easier that way.” – goober

    ^THAT^, from our resident ditz whose favorite reference sources are David Corn, Katrina vanden Heuval and other crackpots on the staff of The Nation; a far left rag that has advocated revisions to the U.S. Constitution, and a rag that is even scorned by the rest of the MSM, and a rag whose staff was under investigation for subversive activities …, although Holder might have dropped that investigation, too.

    C’mon goober, pay attention. I’ve never tarred all Muslims as radicals.

    Actually, what I’ve said here, goober, is that Muslims aren’t my enemies. Far left Democrats are my enemies.

    And BTW, where did you read that I defended the sensitivities of moderate Muslims? Cut and paste it, or admit that you just made that one up, just as you fabricate most of the other inane gibberish that you post here, you clueless ditz.

  • galoob

    Calm down, SPQR, and answer my question –

    SPQR, how in heck can you say that Muslim-Americans are fighting with the USA in Iraq and Afghanistan, as they are, and then say that American Muslims should not be able to build a mosque in NYC or anywhere else they own the property?

    I think you just want to dictate to people what they can’t do, whether it’s Muslims building mosques or Christians burning Korans. I say laissez-faire.

    Also, show me where I ever quoted or cited The Nation on anything. I don’t have anything particularly against them, but I’m just as prone to read The American Conservative.

  • WildWillie

    I will type slow for you galoob: No one says they cannot build their mosque. Get it? Are you mentally challenged? Nevermind. We all acknowledge they can, we are talking about should they. If their faith is so compassionate like some say, I haven’t seen it with the whole mosque issue.

    Christianity has been perverted on radio, art and television yet no one really rose up except to say those that are offended are zealots and nuts. Well, are those offended by this alleged burning zealots and nuts? And if so, should they just be dismissed as crackpots like Christians are? What is good for the goose as they say. They brought the fight to us,, we didn’t ask for it but we will do what needs to be done. Muslims do not control our constitution or any other freedom we have. They simply do not. If you allow muslims and terrorists to change our constitution, then they have won. I think it will be healthy for all muslims to know what freedom is. We all have the right to be offended. People have the right to offend. Simple. Burn away. It will be a great life lesson. ww

  • SPQR

    Now, goober, don’t get cutesy and don’t take my words out of context …, and, oh yeah, don’t try to bullshit me. You’re too lame to be even marginally effective.

    BTW, FYI, I don’t care if Muslims build mosques wherever there are concentrations of Muslims – just not on the sites where they believe that they had victories over the infidels, as they’ve done in Spain, Portugal and elsewhere. If you can’t grasp my reasoning there, then, well, scurry back into your hole, you little cockroach. I’m running out of patience with you.

  • SPQR

    “but I’m just as prone to read The American Conservative.” – goober

    Yeah, right, and you also have black friends, and you could be persuaded to vote for a Republican if the moon was at its equinox.

  • “Saying there are no moderates in Islam based on your reading of the Koran, doesn’t take into account a persons ability to accept or reject the parts the disagree with. Christians filter the teachings of the Bible all the time.” Rance

    Moderate muslims do accept and reject the parts of the Qur’an that they personally feel comfortable and uncomfortable with, just as Christians and Jews do, the problem however isn’t what moderate Muslims believe, the problem is the inability of the institution of Islam to reform itself because to do so would require rejecting its own core tenets.

    This point is inherent to Islam’s very foundational premise and is unavoidable.

    This theological point and its implications is little appreciated in the West; Muhammad never claimed that the Qur’an were his words…

    The claim is that the Qur’an is God’s direct words written down verbatim…the implications of which are that Muhammad is the final prophet because we’ve finally got the ‘right stuff’ directly from the big guys mouth…

    Thus for anyone to change one word or even one comma is to change God’s words, to set one’s understanding above God’s. Which is blasphemy in any religion…

    It would be like Christianity ‘reforming’ itself by agreeing that Jesus wasn’t divine and didn’t die on the cross. Or Judaism rejecting Abraham and Moses and the Ten Commandments.

    They could do that but if they did, those religions wouldn’t exist anymore.

    Just so with Islam, its core theological tenets absolutely and fundamentally do not permit change, of any kind or to any degree (the Qur’an is GOD’s own words) and, because of that theological premise, moderates have no theological basis upon which to propose reform.

    And upon that premise rests the entire theological foundation of Islam.

  • SPQR

    FYI, folks, The American Conservative Magazine’s name is misleading.

    One of its writers is Pat Buchanan, an isolationist and anti-war loony tune, a former conservative to be sure, who now writes articles with a decidedly liberal slant, because he despises the Bushes and especially GHW Bush. In fact, American Conservative probably has nearly as many liberal writers and editors as Time Magazine has, although it has 1/20th the circulation, appealing only to liberals who want to have their biases and their delusions affirmed by outcasts from the Republican Party.

    It is such an obscure rag that it took me a few minutes to remember that, or I would have mentioned it in my post #88 @ 6:05. Why am I not surprised that goober is familiar with it?

  • exceller

    Islam is offensive to me, and I’m sick and tired of watching western civilization stand by and get trampled. Too bad if they are offended. If they are so tolerant they’ll get over it, if not its their problem.

  • LiberalNitemare

    What if they are only burning the Koran in order to open a dialogue?

  • 914

    Honestly folks. 91 comments to get to the truth.

    @ #92 Nailed it..

    This is thier way of building bridges just like the cordoba house would lift everyone above the puny inconvenience of 911

  • jim m

    “What if they are only burning the Koran in order to open a dialogue?”

    I think that the dialogue would be no different than when the cartoons were published. Those sought to provoke discussion and not violence but the muslims don’t understand anything but violence.

    The only dialogue the muslims want with us is our forced conversion and short of that either our dhimmi tax or our death. Not a lot of anything I care to talk to them about.

  • Weegie

    I’m just wondering why some (note I said some, not all) of the same people calling for them not to do this (I’m talking about the Democrats specifically) because it might undermine the mission in Afghanistan had no qualms about undermining the mission in Iraq with their anti-war and anti-Bush lies and propaganda.

    And that wasn’t some small fringe bunch like this, either, that was an entire national party saying anything and everything to effect a military defeat on our troops in Iraq just to regain political power in the elections.

    This is why I consider their new-found concern for the troops and not undermining the mission to be insincere.

  • Homer

    No good can ever come from burning books. We are better than that. Is that what the side with the moral high ground does?

  • Olsoljer

    Let me think, if I was still serving would I want to BE part of the target rich environment subjected to IEDs, snipers, suicide bombers?
    (Thinking about Vietnam, wandering in the jungle, snipers, booby traps, not knowing who the enemy was etc.)

    OR………….would I want THEM to be the target rich environment angered and incited to the point of gathering in large numbers and showing themselves? (Thinking of the massive losses and defeats we inflicted during the 68 TET offensive).

  • …. The United States’ top commander in Afghanistan has warned that a planned Koran-burning event in Florida could put US troops in danger ….

    Gee whiz.

    And here was I believing it was fourteen hundred years of the false fuhrer’s fanatically-fascistic followers’ furiously raping, sexually-mutilating and millions of mass-murders, culminating in their converting several American air-transport aeroplanes and their crews and passengers into 200-ton fuel bombs and, in acts of war, gutlessly dashing them into our nation’s buildings, symbols and institutions, that put us all — and our beloved Troops — in danger.

    Well that and Mr Petraeus’s ridiculous Rules of Engagement, that is.

  • fitley

    You pathetic racist, inbred, corn nut teeth, hydrocephalic headed, goobers. Chill out, have sex with your kid and/or pets. We don’t need the likes of you being the retarded face of the United States. Shut up, sit down.