Saturday, October 13, 2007

Why "Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week" is a joke & Why David Horowitz should not be trusted.



When I first heard of “Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week” (IFAW) and looked into it I thought it was not intended to be serious. I doubted that anyone could believe the ridiculously simple explanations the IFAW had for the problems in the Middle East. Now after looking into this for nearly two months I have realized what is going on:

An interest group, and more specifically a small group of individuals, is simply looking to make money.

We will get back to this point later but first let’s begin with a narrative of events. First, after viewing the terrorism awareness project’s website and seeing that the David Horowitz Freedom Center claimed that IFAW would “rock the nation” at over 200 college campuses and then proceeded to list the names of the schools I was delighted. I was delighted not because I supported IFAW craziness but because Horowitz, like an overconfident James Bond villain, revealed the details of his plan way to early in the game. We wrote a letter to each University's president that was allegedly hosting an IFAW and explained in this letter why the campaign was bigoted and hateful. We included in this letter the website for IFAW so that administrators could actually see the self-incriminating site.

The total number of different schools which appeared on this list over the course of the last 2 months was 161 and so we sent 161 letters. There are two types of responses we received. The first type of response from University presidents was that they thoroughly searched all student activity calendars and student groups and could not find ANY INSTANCES OR EVENTS related to IFAW. The second type of response echoed the first but also added that no such events would be condoned if scheduled. It is hard to blame Universities for taking this stance considering how hypocritical IFAW is. The campaign is supposedly focusing on the oppression of women and the oppression of homosexuals. Yet by some bizarre logic the organizers of this campaign thought that qualified speakers for these issues would be former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum (who by no stretch of the imagination could be construed as a supporter of gay rights) and Ann Coulter (who has advocated eliminating women’s suffrage). Also, for a campaign that is so opposed to Fascists Nazis, it is amazing that organizer David Horowitz defended Ann Coulter recently for her supremacist and anti-Semitic comments that leading Jewish organizations strongly condemned.

Initially the list was numbered on the site but it is not numbered any longer. This is probably because Horowitz and the organizers of IFAW did not want the public to easily discern the large number of schools which have dropped off the list. As of today that list only has about 99 names on it. It still lists, however, schools which have asked not to be associated and have claimed not to be the hosts of any IFAW events. In actuality IFAW maybe happening at a small number of schools but it is certainly not going to “rock” anything. It is just much more of the same from the same group of extremists.

Is there a problem with radicalism in Muslim countries? Absolutely. However Horowitz and IFAW are not helping address this issue in anyway. Instead of reaching out to moderate Muslims they reject them and instead malign an entire religion.

Horowitz and IFAW are no different from the leftists they supposedly love to hate. The term Islamo-Fascism is used to lump in as many Muslims nations as possible and brand them with a term (Fascism) that people at all ends of the political spectrum agree is wrong. How different is this, however, from leftists that go around yelling and screaming about “American Neo-Imperialism”? We all agree that the age of empires was a sad one that brought with it the horrors of slavery, the holocaust, exploitation and depopulation but to use politically charged terms like “American or Western Neo-Imperialism” or “Islamo-Fascism” shows that one has no desire of persuading the mainstream or general public but rather only the intention to score points with a small extremist segment of the population.

This is where we can come back to the conclusion I drew earlier on. I asked myself how is it possible that people like Mr. Horowitz and the like can actually say what they say and do what they do even though they have a high school education. Certainly anyone with a college degree should know very well that the world is far more complex than IFAW would like to make it. How could someone like Horowitz, who was a committed Marxist, become a right wing extremist? Generally ideological attachments develop at a young age and get stronger; rarely do you see ideological epiphanies years into ones intellectually developed life like we see in Mr. Horowitz’s example. What Mr. Horowitz realized, (and I believe he is a real leftist still at heart) is that Leftists were too marginalized in the United States and the Reagan era cemented that into reality. Mr. Horowitz brilliantly decided to exploit capitalism for his own personal gain since he was finding it far more difficult to earn a decent wage or get rich as a Lefty. So he jumped ship, and publicly disavowed leftist’s ideology and followed the cash.

I think this is the only explanation for the type comments and actions we see by these individuals. The more controversial they can be in public on the right end of the political spectrum the more money they can solicit from extremists and the more books they can sell through their right wing networks. Unfortunately for leftists the same dynamic does not exist on the left. How many left wing pundits do you really see? Al Franken? Compared to the right? Remember the question is not about activists but pundits. Certainly there are numerous activists on the left and the right but being a pundit is where the exposure, fame (or infamy) and consequently, the cash is.

David Horowitz’s so called 501 ( c ) 3 “Non-Profit” organization the David Horowitz Freedom Center, formerly known as the Center for the Study of Popular Culture is the front Horowitz has set up to make money. You would think that at a “Non-Profit” the officers would be dedicated to the educational goals of the organizations, the educational goals which got them a tax exempt status, and not in it for the cash. Usually in organizations like this, salaries are divided among several individuals in different programs and amount to a minor percentage of the overall budget so that the majority of dollars donated go to programs and not administrative costs. Perhaps Horowitz is a committed “conservative” and doesn’t care about the money; well let’s check out the organizations 2004 public tax returns.

Mr. Horowitz doesn’t seem to be living the average “non-profit” lifestyle since he was raking in a cool $337,000.00 a year. That equals nearly 19% of the entire “non-profit’s” assets for that year. Being the head of this organization he likely sets his own salary. I am sure he and people like Ann Coulter bring in some cash from the books they sell too. Maybe it was just a good year; you can find tax returns for the other years available publicly here 2005, 2003, and 2002.

As you can seed Mr. Horowitz seems to make more each year after the start of the war with Iraq. Do you think he might have a personal monetary interest in beating war drums at Iran? Interestingly, for Mr. Horowitz it seems that the sound of rattling sabers is “Cha-Ching!”

The formula for these pundits is simple: Say you hate the left, get your cash from the right.

Make no mistake, this is not a group that has no values, it is just that what they value is money and they are willing to exploit the right to get it. I wonder when the real conservatives will wake up and realize they are being scammed by leftists in disguise who are playing on their weaknesses.



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3 comments:

JMK2006 said...

The American right, not the left, is ultimately the best protector of liberal democracies.

Your criticisms of Santorum and Coulter are self-servingly and/or delusionally short-sighted. You need to do some homework about the contexts in which the one opposes "gay rights" (a euphemism) and the other women's suffrage.

JMK2006 said...

Allegedly opposes women's suffrage, btw.

Gabe said...

*Instead of reaching out to moderate Muslims they reject them and instead malign an entire religion.*

Yousef,

What is your definition of a "moderate Muslim?"

Do "moderate Muslims" believe:
1. Israel has the right to exist?
2. Terrorists or those with terrorist sympathies should have their activities monitored in the United States?
3. The United States is a nation based on Judeo-Christian values?
4. Suicide bombings are never justified?
5. Israel should be supported because it is a democracy?
6. Hamas and Hezbollah are terrorist organizations?
7. The War on Terror is justified?

I suspect there aren't too many "moderate Muslims" around. In any case, David Horowitz should be able to present his side and let students get all views. Many in the alliance between socialists and radical Muslims simply want to silence him. That is true fascism. It is not surprising that Hitler was a National Socialist and that so many radical Muslims are drawn to socialism themselves.