Omer Subhani: “Spencer debates fool; Avoids LW’s Danios like the plague”

Robert Spencer recently debated Moustafa Zayed, and from what I’ve heard, Zayed did not fare so well.  Zayed authored a book entitled The Lies About Muhammad: How You Were Deceived into Islamophobia, in which he attempted to refute Robert Spencer’s book The Truth About Muhammad: Founder of the World’s Most Intolerant Religion.

LoonWatch’s sister site SpencerWatch had publicized Zayed’s book when it first came out (seehere).  This was the first I had heard of Zayed or his book, so I immediately ordered it.  After reading just half of it, I’d made my judgment: the book sucked.  Here is what I wrote then in the comments section of SpencerWatch (just under a year ago from today):

Danios says:

August 29, 2010 at 7:32 pm

I have read about half the book [by Moustafa Zayed]. Sadly, it is very poorly written and the arguments are weak. Overall, the “refutation” was highly ineffective. In fact, I would go so far as to say the book is childish. It was painful to read, and was quite simply tiresome.

Waste of money in my humble opinion. Worse than that, the author’s failure to effectively refute Robert Spencer’s arguments will give the impression that Spencer’s arguments are strong. So in a way, this book does more harm than good. More likely, however, the book will simply be disregarded.

I was honestly skeptical of the book when I bought it, simply because I have seen so many “Muslim scholars” fail so miserably when debating Spencer. Even then, however, the author managed to surprise me by how poorly it was written.

This is not to say that Spencer’s book is well-written or convincing. I will eventually devastate the arguments in his book, just like I am doing now with The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades). The inability of “Muslim scholars” to write dispassionately and from a neutral analytical perspective hampers their effectiveness quite considerably…

No wonder then that Spencer chose to engage in debate with Zayed.  This follows Spencer’s modus operandi: engage in debate with those who are weak debaters, fastidiously avoid debating with those who are skilled debaters (and who have solid grasp of the subject matter), and then crow in victory over one’s supposedly undefeated record.

Robert Spencer has repeatedly chickened out of debating me, making excuse after excuse to get out of it, which prompted us to write an article entitled Internet Sociopath Robert Spencer Scared of Debate.  So when he saw Spencer crowing in victory over his recent debate with Zayed, Omer Subhani wrote the following post calling Spencer out:

Spencer debates fool; avoids LW’s Danios like the plague
Zayed, deceit, and body language – Jihad Watch

Why is Robert Spencer too cowardly to debate Danios of Loonwatch?

He will debate this fool, Zayed, but dodges Danios like the plague. I smell something. And it smells like chicken.

Danios has repeatedly told Spencer he would debate him, but Spencer just makes excuses. I think the bigot knows deep down he will be disposed of like the trash that he is.

Perhaps it is a bit too harsh to refer to Zayed as a “fool.” I’m sure he’s a lovely guy and I don’t want to insult him.  Having said that, I don’t think he’s adequately equipped to take on Spencer.  And in doing so, he is doing a disservice to those he is trying to defend.  Sheila Musaji at The American Muslimrecently published an excellent article, in which she notes that “useful idiots” (again, perhaps too harsh a term) lose in debate against the Islamophobes, only to give the illusion to the audience that the Islamophobes have a strong argument.  They are doing more harm than good.

In any case, so long as Spencer keeps making up excuses to avoid debating me, he will be quite the cowardly hypocrite, whining that so-and-so is too scared to debate him while at the same time fastidiously avoiding debating me.

Update I: On an unrelated note, check out page IV of The “Allah is the Moon-God” Nonsense Could be the Stupidest Anti-Muslim Conspiracy Theory Yet, which I just published.

Loonwatch Has Been Warning about an Anders Behring Breivik for Years

Robert Spencer and his biggest fan: Anders Behring Breivik

Robert Spencer and his biggest fan: Anders Behring Breivik

Loonwatch Has Been Warning about an Anders Behring Breivik for Years

Anders Behring Breivik is by all accounts an intelligent individual, wealthy and from a privileged background. He believes Europe is under assault, that it is being colonized by the hordes of the evil “green” menace known as ‘Islam’ and that Europe’s leaders are responsible for the onslaught. He believes this despite the fact that there are no Muslim Armies occupying ANY European nation, there are no Muslim Armies that have set up bases in ANY European nation.

How did he come to the irrational conclusion that his very way of life was under imminent threat?

His inspiration can be gleaned from the words of his manifesto, 2083: A European Declaration of Independence. In his own words he was inspired by Andrew Bostom, Robert Spencer, Bat Ye’or, Pamela Geller, Geert Wilders, Ibn Warraq, Serge Trifkovic, the so-called “Vienna School” and a plethora of other Islamophobes and anti-Muslims.

LoonWatch since its inception has been warning about the ever increasing radicalization of the anti-Muslim Movement, its trans-atlantic nature, as well as the eventuality of violence. We documented numerous instances of “inciting violence,” both in the speech of the leading Islamophobes as well as in the conduct and speech of their followers.

One only needs to look at our piece on Pamela Geller, “The Looniest Blogger Ever,” in which Geller engages in all of the well worn conspiracies that we are used to and which Breivik shared, as well as her pronouncements of genocide against Muslims and the “political elites” who enable them.

Robert Spencer’s influence on Breivik’s ideas about Islam, Muslims and the West seems to be greater than anyone else. He cites Spencer numerous times (64) in his manifesto, always glowingly, for instance he writes on p. 754,

About Islam I recommend essentially everything written by Robert Spencer. Bat Ye’or’s books are groundbreaking and important, though admittedly not always easy to read. The Legacy of Jihad by Andrew Bostom should be considered required reading for all those interested in Islam. It is the best and most complete book available on the subject in English, and possibly in any language. Ibn Warraq’s books are excellent, starting with his Defending the West . Understanding Muhammad by the Iranian ex-Muslim Ali Sina is also worth reading, as is Defeating Jihad by Serge Trifkovic.

Like Spencer, Breivik believes in waging a Crusade against Muslims. Spencer declared in his bookThe Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades), “God Wills it!,” that was the battle cry of the Crusaders. There is more in Danios’ series rebutting The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades).

We have been trying to prevent the grisly terrorist attacks that rocked Norway by making people aware of the serious threat from radicals who in the guise of freedom and under the mantle of liberty wish to impose their truly destructive, exclusivist ideology upon the masses.

However, our protestations were generally unheeded. It resulted in the Beslan of Norway and now we have a manifesto from a killer inspired by the extremists who we have been exposing for years. Anders Behring Breivik is the polo sweater wearing anti-Muslim Right-wing nationalist Crusader icon of Islamophobes worldwide, he is their Che Guevara and he will inspire more copycats in his wake.

Ellison Speaks of the Organized anti-Muslim Industry

Keith Ellison is well aware of Spencer and comp. He realized that their books, blogs, interviews, etc., infiltrated the highest recesses of the Republican party.

Keith Ellison Shrugs Off Conservative Mockers

“You know it still doesn’t matter,” Ellison said of the mockers and the hearing. “Because a lot of good people stood up. A lot of people who are not Muslims stood up and said this is bad, this is ugly and we don’t like it.”

Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) isn’t sweating the mocking his emotional testimony before Rep. Peter King’s (R-NY) hearings on Muslim extremism last week generated from the right.

Asked by TPM Wednesday about the drubbing he’s received from conservative pundits since he teared up before King’s panel, Ellison basically said, what else is new?

“Well, you know, I don’t anticipate some people will appreciate everything that I say and stand for,” he said. “But I’ll say this: American people realize that when we say freedom and justice for all, that means all. You know, Muslims too.”

Ellison said it’s open season on the right when it comes to Muslims.

“Look there is an organized anti-Muslim industry in the United States,” he said. “It’s Pam Geller, it’s Robert Spencer, it’s Steve Emerson…it’s Frank Gaffney. They’re well-known entities.”

“They sell books doing this, they tell people they’re counter-terrorism experts, and you know,” Ellison added. “But what does that have to do with the whole economic discussion we’ve been having?”

Looking back on the King hearings, which generated more controversy about King than they exposed secret Muslim extremism in America, Ellison said they showed that the conservative anti-Muslim machine he describled is not the mainstream of the country.

Peter King’s “Muslim Hearings” are Political Theater to Target Muslims

Peter King’s “Muslim Hearings” are Political Theater to Target Muslims

Loonwatch was live blogging the controversial (anti)-Muslim Hearings being chaired by bigoted ex-IRA terrorist supporter Peter King. It was a circus. It devolved along partisan lines with Republicans predictably falling behind the rhetoric and narrative of Peter King. Democratic Congressmen/women issued strong rebukes: Rep. Sheila J. Lee, Rep. Al Green, Rep. Keith Ellison, Rep. Andre Carson, Rep. Laura Richardson, Rep. Sanchez, and others delivered the message home that these Hearings were nothing more than political theater meant to castigate and intimidate a minority group and most importantly they were bereft of facts and therefore unbeneficial.

The leading witnesses for King were non-experts, Zuhdi Jasser, AbdiRizak Bihi and Melvin Bledsoe, all of these individuals were bereft of any credentials or expertise in the field of radicalization, terrorism or extremism. Zuhdi Jasser is considered an apologist for Neo-Cons and is viewed with suspicion amongst American Muslims for his close association with Islamophobes and war-mongerers. AbdiRizak was incomprehensible at times and much of what he and Bledsoe said were anecdotal and not factual evidence.

King began the hearings with what can only be classified as a bigoted comment, he said, “Moderate leadership must emerge from the Muslim community.” He said this to set up a straw man argument for what would become a recurring attack on CAIR, almost making it into a hearing about CAIR.

After getting its name wrong, calling it the “Committee of American Islamic Relations,” he and other Congressmen labeled CAIR a Hamas and Muslim Brotherhood group. This is the usual trope brought forth by Right-wingers and anti-Muslims such as Robert Spencer and co., the best response came from Sheriff Lee Baca (one of the anti-Loons of 2010) when he said, ‘If CAIR is this terrorist group or has terrorist links then why hasn’t the FBI prosecuted them? Why haven’t they charged them? They wouldn’t be around if they were terrorist or terrorist sympathizers.’

Some highlights included:

Keith Ellison made three important points: 1.) Security is important to all American Muslims, 2.) Hearings threaten our security and 3.) We need increased engagement with Muslims.

Ellison also got quite emotional while mentioning the story of a Muslim first responder who died saving people but was the victim of a smear campaign by Islamophobes who attempted to link him to the 9/11 attacks.

Andre Carson brought up an excellent point about the fact that cooperation between law enforcement and communities such as the American Muslim community is endangered by the backdoor actions and methodologies of  organizations such as the FBI when they send agent provocateurs into Muslim mosques. Such actions cause distrust and engender fear that Muslims’ civil rights and liberties are being violated. One really only has to look at the example in California of the criminal Craig Montielh who was later arrested and confessed that he was sent by the FBI on a fishing expedition to entrap Muslims.

There were also other quite interesting WTF moments: Such as when Peter King mentioned Kim Kardashian and CAIR in the same sentence. Or when non-expert witness Melvin Bledsoe told Rep. Al Green “you don’t know what these hearings are about.” There was also the earlier moment when Peter King denied making the comment that “there are too many mosques in America.” A blatant falsity.

We will have more in depth coverage but it is safe to say that American Muslims are in for a rocky Islamophobic time with these hearings.

Chicago Tribune Fail: Quotes Robert Spencer on Tariq Ramadan

Manya Brachear

Manya Brachear

The Seeker, Manya Brachear’s blog about religion on the Chicago Tribune website has a post, Chicago welcomes once-banned Muslim Scholar, about the upcoming trip of Islamic scholar/reformer and Oxford professor Tariq Ramadan to the United States (hat tip: iSherif).

You may remember that Tariq Ramadan had his visa revoked by the Bush administration, ostensibly because he donated money to a charity organization that it was later charged had links to Hamas. The charge was clearly fallacious as the organization was not listed as a banned charity in America at the time that Tariq Ramadan made his contribution.

The real reason seems to be that Tariq Ramadan was banned by Bush due to a policy of ideological exclusion and Ramadan’s fierce opposition to the American wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. This was further confirmed when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton ordered Ramadan’s visa to be reinstated.

Unfortunately the blog post quoted Robert Spencer, one of the leading Islamophobes in the West today.

But author Robert Spencer says that popularity is dangerous. In interviews, he has criticized Clinton for making an exception to U.S. law that prohibits supports of terrorist groups from entering the country. Spencer said Ramadan should still be barred for donating money to a group that funds Hamas.

Spencer contends that the scholar has the same goals as Osama bin Laden–to impose Shariah law in the West. While Ramadan paints himself as a moderate intellectual, Spencer said, he is actually a “stealth jihadist.”

It is a severe lapse in judgement for Brachear to quote Spencer’s claims since they are false on their head. It is an attempt on Spencer’s part to “poison the wells.” The fact is Ramadan has never supported Hamas or terrorism, in fact he has been one of the most outspoken critics of both. “Stealth Jihad” is just paranoid new speak that serves bigots who wish to cast normal, law abiding Muslims as evil villains who are secretly working behind the scenes to take over the West. It is in fact the new “Protocols of the Elders of Zion.”

Our website has copiously dissected many of Robert Spencer’s blog posts exposing his unsavory associations, pseudo-scholarship and blatant bigotry against Muslims and Islam. One of our premiere contributors, Danios has gone through whole chapters in Spencer’s books and revealed how shoddy and inaccurate a lot of his work has been. To quote Robert Spencer on Muslims and Islam is equivalent to quoting David Duke on Judaism or Jews.

One instructive point in regards to all of this is that one of Spencer’s closest friends and a co-founder with Spencer of The Freedom Defense Initiative, Pamela Geller has gone to the extreme (and insane) level of calling Tariq Ramadan, “a cold blooded Jihadists.” An exercise in hyperbole that the worst enemies and strongest critics of Ramadan won’t even engage in. However, one must ask Spencer if he agrees with that characterization by his friend Geller who he cross-posts from regularly? It also seriously puts into doubt the objectiveness of Spencer and whether he should ever be quoted by mainstream media.

I urge our readers to contact Manya and to politely express their disappointment at the inclusion of a bigot such as Spencer on a professional blog such as hers.

Contact: mbrachear@tribune.com

Here is some information that may be helpful to share with Manya (remember to be polite and topical):

The fact is Spencer is not taken seriously by academia especially in the field of Islam: He has been repudiated over and over. Take a glance at our archives:

Academics and members of the American Library Association condemn Spencer and his work: Robert Spencer Rejected by Academics, still Supports Geert Wilders

DePaul Law Professor M. Cherif Bassiouni condemns Spencer

His former friend and ally Charles Johnson has also condemned Robert Spencer as an “Anti-Islamic Bigot:”

Robert Spencer goes postal on Charles Johnson

Spencer’s association and fervent support for anti-Muslim European neo-Fascists and supremacists also disqualifies him from being mentioned as a true neutral observer and commenter on Islam or radical Islam:

Robert Spencer Teams up with Euro-Supremacists Again

Spencer has also joined a genocidal Facebook group which called for the extermination of Turks:

Robert Spencer: Wanna be Conquistador

Robert Spencer’s arguments have been shown to be filled with errors and excessive prejudice:

The Church’s Doctrine of Perpetual Servitude worse than Dhimmitude

Robert Spencer Misrepresents Facts — Again

Robert Spencer Worried about ticking ‘Muslim Demographic Time Bomb’

There is more information exposing the bigotry and anti-Muslim motive that mars the work of Robert Spencer in our archives, if Manya Brachear truly cares about the information she wishes to present to readers then she should take a serious look at who she chooses to quote as an expert.

Contact USA Today for their Epic Failure

Oren Dorell

Oren Dorell

Oren Dorell, a reporter with USA Today wrote an article recently on so called “Honor killings,” of which there have been six in the past two years. Unfortunately, his article was rendered inaccurate and ineffectual because of a severe lapse of judgment on his and USA Today’s part in citing Robert Spencer as an authority on Islam and Radical Muslims.

The portion that we are speaking about goes,

“There is broad support and acceptance of this idea in Islam, and we’re going to see it more and more in the United States,” says Robert Spencer, who has trained FBI and military authorities on Islam and founded Jihad Watch, which monitors radical Islam.

Of course, Robert Spencer, per his modus operandi is again lying. There is neither broad support or acceptance of honor killings as an idea in Islam. Two points which Spencer will be hard pressed to prove, especially since Islam expressly condemns the pre-Islamic tribal practice. Spencer also attempts to play prophet here, a role that he has failed at over and over.

This is an especially egregious report in light of the events that played out in the Fathima Rifqa Bary case, a case which Michael Kruse, a reporter for the St.Petersburg Times noted was in part “created” by Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller. Throughout the case, without any of the facts present Spencer was claiming that Rifqa would be killed in an honor killing and that her parents were extremists, he still believes this today regardless of the fact that the authorities investigated the matter and repudiated Spencer and his far right cronies when they sent Rifqa back to Ohio and found the charges against the family to be baseless.

We urge our readers to contact Oren Dorell and USA Today to rectify this epic failure in citing Spencer as an authority on Islam or radical Islam.

Contact Brent Jones, for corrections and clarifications: accuracy@usatoday.com

Contact Oren Dorell: odorell@gmail.com

Remember to be polite and topical.

The fact is Spencer is not taken seriously by academia especially in the field of Islam: He has been repudiated over and over. Take a glance at our archives:

Academics and members of the American Library Association condemn Spencer and his work: Robert Spencer Rejected by Academics, still Supports Geert Wilders

DePaul Law Professor M. Cherif Bassiouni condemns Spencer

His former friend and ally Charles Johnson has also condemned Robert Spencer as an “Anti-Islamic Bigot:”

Robert Spencer goes postal on Charles Johnson

Spencer’s association and fervent support for anti-Muslim European neo-Fascists and supremacists also disqualifies him from being mentioned as a true neutral observer and commenter on Islam or radical Islam:

Robert Spencer Teams up with Euro-Supremacists Again

Spencer has also joined a genocidal Facebook group which called for the extermination of Turks:

Robert Spencer: Wanna be Conquistador

Robert Spencer’s arguments have been shown to be filled with errors and excessive prejudice:

The Church’s Doctrine of Perpetual Servitude worse than Dhimmitude

Robert Spencer Misrepresents Facts — Again

Robert Spencer Worried about ticking ‘Muslim Demographic Time Bomb’

There is more information exposing the bigotry and anti-Muslim motive that mars the work of Robert Spencer in our archives, if USA Today truly cares about what they print and the information they wish to present to readers then they should take a serious look at who they choose to quote as experts.