Forc­ing our mil­i­tary’s sub­mis­sion

Pres­i­dent’s ap­pease­ment af­ter Ko­ran burn­ing only tough­ens the mis­sion

The Washington Times Daily - - Opinion - By Adm. James A. Lyons By Deroy Murdock

The re­cent con­trived up­roar over the in­ad­ver­tent burn­ing of the Ko­ran led by cor­rupt Afghan Pres­i­dent Hamid Karzai and his con­trol­ling mul­lahs should be seen for what it is: a power-play tac­tic to make our mil­i­tary forces more sub­mis­sive to the dic­tates of Is­lam, a con­cept they call “dhim­mi­tude.”

Pres­i­dent Obama’s grov­el­ing apol­ogy to Mr. Karzai and the Afghan peo­ple only fur­ther in­flamed this un­for­tu­nate sit­u­a­tion. It not only con­veyed a sense of weak­ness but, in fact, gave le­git­i­macy to the mob vi­o­lence, which re­sulted in the sense­less mur­der of six mil­i­tary per­son­nel plus two In­ter­na­tional Force mem­bers. All told, at least 30 peo­ple were killed for the burn­ing of a book.

No mat­ter how the apol­ogy is ex­plained, it is seen through­out the Mid­dle East and by our “Mus­lim out­reach part­ners” as Mr. Obama sub­mit­ting and giv­ing in to the sa­cred­ness of an inan­i­mate book. In­stead of an apol­ogy, why didn’t our com­man­der in chief ex­press outrage at the sense­less up­roar and de­mand that those re­spon­si­ble for the mur­ders of the eight mil­i­tary per­son­nel be cap­tured and brought to jus­tice un­der our crim­i­nal code?

In­stead of ap­pease­ment, why hasn’t Mr. Obama stated in un­equiv­o­cal terms the rea­son the Ko­rans were burned? The fact is that the books were con­fis­cated be­cause they had mes­sages writ­ten in them by the ter­ror­ist pris­on­ers in­cit­ing vi­o­lence and at­tacks against our forces. For all we know, some of those mes­sages could have been writ­ten in the books be­fore they were given to the pris­on­ers by their Mus­lim cler­ics.

Ac­cord­ing to lead­ing Mus­lim schol­ars, when a Ko­ran is in­ten­tion­ally des­e­crated by writ­ing in it, the book is con­sid­ered to be un­clean and be­comes un­us­able and must be dis­posed of by bury­ing or “burn­ing.” So what’s the up­roar about? This is the mes­sage our com­man­der in chief should have put out to Mr. Karzai, with the fur­ther mes­sage that we will con­tinue this prac­tice in the fu­ture if the Ko­ran is go­ing to be used to pass mes­sages of vi­o­lence against our forces.

Adding to the chaotic sit­u­a­tion, on March 1, the U.N. rep­re­sen­ta­tive to Afghanistan, Jan Ku­bis, joined the mob scene by stat­ing that “af­ter the first step of a pro­found apol­ogy, then there must be a sec­ond step of dis­ci­plinary ac­tion.” He went on to im­ply that af­ter ac­cept­able dis­ci­plinary ac­tion, NATO forces then can say, “Yes, we’re sin­cere in our apol­ogy.” What un­be­liev­able au­dac­ity. Bear in mind that he rep­re­sents the same U.N. that for years granted ef­fec­tive im­mu­nity for U.N. troops when they raped young African girls.

In a March 4 ar­ti­cle, Army Spe­cial Forces Maj. Fer­nando M. Lu­jan noted that as a re­sult of the burn­ing of the Ko­ran and the vi­o­lence that fol­lowed, he and oth­ers were wor­ried about the fu­ture prospects for the ad­vi­sory mis­sion in Afghanistan, as well he should be. He thinks a cri­sis of trust ex­ists be­tween Afghans and Amer­i­cans and the way to re­solve it is for us to show more re­spect for Is­lam. He ap­par­ently ig­nores the fact that Is­lam is a to­tal­i­tar­ian le­gal-mil­i­tary-po­lit­i­cal sys­tem that is de­signed to con­trol ev­ery as­pect of an in­di­vid­ual’s life and is an­ti­thet­i­cal to our con­cept of free­dom, democ­racy and our re­spect for in­di­vid­ual hu­man rights.

Maj. Lu­jan high­lights some com­mon-sense tac­ti­cal points in his ar­ti­cle that our forces must fol­low if they want to sur­vive and gain a greater de­gree of “street re­spect.” It is this “street re­spect” that is es­sen­tial in Afghanistan and through­out the Mid­dle East for build­ing trust and a re­la­tion­ship.

How­ever, the ma­jor’s un­der­ly­ing theme is that in or­der to re­gain Afghans’ trust, we must show more re­spect to Is­lam. What does he mean by that? I be­lieve the ma­jor, un­for­tu­nately, has fallen into the trap of be­ing sub­mis­sive to a sev­enth-cen­tury men­tal­ity. The Pen­tagon has as well with its new guid­ance on how to treat the Ko­ran. Now it will be vir­tu­ally im­pos­si­ble to de­tect when the book is be­ing used to pass mes­sages be­tween ter­ror­ist pris­on­ers.

Clearly, our ap­pease­ment ap­proach to the Ko­ran-burn­ing sit­u­a­tion has not strength­ened our hand in Afghanistan or else­where in the Mid­dle East, par­tic­u­larly Iran. I would sus­pect that the pres­i­dent’s apol­ogy and his dec­la­ra­tion that he does not “bluff” with re­gard to Iran’s nu­clear pro­gram has fur­ther hol­lowed out his cred­i­bil­ity. I have great con­fi­dence in our mil­i­tary forces, par­tic­u­larly our en­listed per­son­nel. I know when the chips are down, they can be counted on to take the proper ac­tion. As part of their prepa­ra­tion for over­seas de­ploy­ment, they need to be made aware of Is­lamic sub­tleties to which they will be ex­posed and how to respond. Fur­ther­more, mil­i­tary forces whom we send in harm’s way must have the con­fi­dence that when they carry out their lead­ers’ or­ders in good faith, they will have the back­ing of not only their im­me­di­ate su­pe­ri­ors but their com­man­der in chief as well. That is not clear now.

The per­son­nel in­volved in the Ko­ran burn­ing should be re­turned to the United States if that has not been done al­ready. No dis­ci­plinary ac­tion should be taken to pacify the likes of Mr. Karzai and his con­trol­ling mul­lahs. We Amer­i­cans stand be­hind our mil­i­tary men and women who are pre­pared to make the ul­ti­mate sac­ri­fice to pro­tect our free­dom.

In or­der to stymie new and pro­posed re­quire­ments that vot­ers present photo iden­ti­fi­ca­tion at the polls, top Democrats cry rivers over those who would be­come dis­en­fran­chised for lack of ID cards. If they re­ally cared about these peo­ple — of whom there may be mil­lions — Democrats would join Repub­li­cans to as­sure that such in­di­vid­u­als re­ceived ID cards for ev­ery­day use.

In­stead, lead­ing Democrats use vi­cious racial rhetoric to ham­mer those who sim­ply want vot­ers to be who they say they are.

“Some peo­ple want to put their Con­fed­er­ate flags up again in Virginia,” for­mer NAACP Di­rec­tor Ben­jamin Chavis hissed. At a Jan. 31 rally in Rich­mond, Mr. Chavis ac­cused state law­mak­ers of try­ing to “lynch democ­racy.” Demo­cratic Mayor Dwight C. Jones added: “The fact that there’s a brother in the White House is just so un­set­tling to peo­ple.” Ac­cord­ing to Rep. Bar­bara Lee, Cal­i­for­nia Demo­crat, pro-pho­toID Repub­li­cans are “turn­ing the clock back to the days of Jim Crow.” Last July, for­mer Pres­i­dent Bill Clin­ton told Cam­pus Progress’ an­nual con­clave in Washington, D.C.: “There has never been in my life­time, since we got rid of the poll tax and all the Jim Crow bur­dens on vot­ing, the de­ter­mined ef­fort to limit a fran­chise that we see to­day.”

These di­vi­sive Democrats seem con­cerned about those with­out ID cards only on Elec­tion Day. The other 364 days of the year, such men and women are un­doc­u­mented cit­i­zens. Ab­sent photo IDS, these dis­con­nected Amer­i­cans do not par­tic­i­pate fully in the Amer­i­can ex­pe­ri­ence.

Those with­out a photo ID can­not open bank ac­counts. They may not board pas­sen­ger jets. They are not sup­posed to ride Am­trak trains. They may not pur­chase cough syrup con­tain­ing ephedrine and other metham­phetamine pre­cur­sors. In Illi­nois, they may not buy Drano. In fact, they may not en­ter the Jus­tice Depart­ment to de­nounce photo-id rules with­out first show­ing a photo ID.

Race-bait­ing Democrats ap­par­ently couldn’t care less about these un­doc­u­mented cit­i­zens. If they did, they would lead a com­mon-sense ef­fort to pro­vide photo ID cards to ev­ery Amer­i­can adult who needed one. By dis­play­ing new ID cards on Elec­tion Day, these po­lit­i­cally en­fran­chised Amer­i­cans would curb po­ten­tial and ac­tual bal­lot fraud and boost con­fi­dence in the vot­ing sys­tem.

Be­yond Elec­tion Day, these freshly doc­u­mented cit­i­zens would be so­cially en­fran­chised. With photo ID cards, they could cash checks, fly, visit gov­ern­ment build­ings and do plenty more that doc­u­mented cit­i­zens ac­com­plish daily.

“It’s per­plex­ing how so many groups com­plain­ing about voter ID laws have the funds to reg­is­ter vot­ers, ed­u­cate vot­ers and trans­port vot­ers to the polls, but never bud­get any­thing to rec­tify ID prob­lems,” de­clared De­neen Borelli, a fel­low ad­vi­sory board mem­ber of Project 21, a net­work of mar­ket-ori­ented black thinkers.

Civil rights or­ga­ni­za­tions and other groups that rail against photo ID rules “should ded­i­cate their re­sources to help peo­ple get IDS rather than com­plain about laws that have passed,” said J. Chris­tian Adams, a for­mer Jus­tice Depart­ment vot­ing rights at­tor­ney and au­thor of the le­gal-pol­icy page-turner “In­jus­tice.” “That’s what they did in 1964. But it’s harder to raise funds off of ac­com­plish­ments rather than com­plaints.” Mr. Adams in­tro­duced me to the chal­lenge of cre­den­tial­ing Amer­ica’s un­doc­u­mented cit­i­zens.

This year should see the first Amer­i­can Photo ID Day. Lo­cal and state gov­ern­ment of­fices should open on, say, the first Satur­day af­ter La­bor Day, al­low­ing cit­i­zens to se­cure free ID cards and even reg­is­ter to vote. Where nec­es­sary, the same vol­un­teers for civic groups, unions, the Tea Party, the GOP and the Democrats who de­liver vot­ers to the polls in Novem­ber should drive peo­ple with­out IDS to mo­tor ve­hi­cle bu­reaus and other par­tic­i­pat­ing in­sti­tu­tions. Thus, un­doc­u­mented cit­i­zens will be­come iden­ti­fi­able vot­ers — and doc­u­mented cit­i­zens.

If Democrats care about these dis­en­gaged Amer­i­cans, they will im­ple­ment this idea. If Repub­li­cans do not em­brace this per­fect method to re­duce voter fraud while boost­ing the life prospects of those with the least, then they truly are the Stupid Party.

IL­LUS­TRA­TION BY JOHN CAMEJO

IL­LUS­TRA­TION BY JOHN CAMEJO

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