GOP Fox Rhetoric Endangering Troops Fighting for USA
The inflammatory and inaccurate Fox/Republican Party created drama ginned up over Park 51 has led to Florida pastor Terry Jones of The Dove World Outreach Center in Gainsville, Florida, saying they will mark the ninth anniversary of the September 11 attacks by burning copies of the Quran. The Florida church has a sign reading “Islam is of the devil” on its front lawn, coining a phrase from the pastor’s book of the same title. The church is inviting “Christians” to burn the Muslim holy book from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
“We believe that Islam is of the devil, that it’s causing billions of people to go to hell, it is a deceptive religion, it is a violent religion and that is proven many, many times,” Pastor Terry Jones told CNN’s Rick Sanchez last month.
CNN reported tonight:
Talk about regressive, anti-constitutional and anti-Christian behavior. And think, these are the same folks waving flags and claiming to have ownership of patriotism.
Both top US commander in Afghanistan, General David Petraeus, and one of his deputies, Lt. Gen. William Caldwell are warning Americans that burning the Quran will endanger the troops in Afghanistan (and around the world), who are there fighting a war started by Republican President George W. Bush.
“It could endanger troops and it could endanger the overall effort in Afghanistan. It 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,” Petraeus said in a statement provided to Fox News.
A pause while we ponder how Fox reconciles this statement from their hero who is calling their actions out as dangerous to our troops, their mission, and our own safety.
CNN reports that Lt General Caldwell warned:
“We very much feel that this can jeopardize the safety of our men and women that are serving over here in the country,” said Caldwell, the head of NATO efforts to train Afghan security forces.
Caldwell said American troops “are over here to defend the rights of American citizens, and we’re not debating the First Amendment rights that people have.” But he added, “What I will tell you is that their very actions will in fact jeopardize the safety of the young men and women who are serving in uniform over here and also undermine the very mission that we’re trying to accomplish.”
The Wall Street Journal reports:
“Afghan protesters chanted “death to America” and speakers called on the U.S. to withdraw its military convoy. Some of the protesters threw rocks at a passing military convoy, although officials told the rock-throwers to stop.”
Petraeus made the point that the Taliban will use this as propaganda to drum up anger toward the US.
And it’s not just the troops in danger. CNN reports:
“Thousands of Indonesians gathered Sunday outside the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta to protest a Florida church’s plan to burn copies of the Quran. Protesters in Jakarta carried signs saying, “Jihad to protect Koran” and “You burn qu’ran you burn in hell.”
In other words, the result of the Republicans’ fear-mongering behavior regarding Park 51 is contradictory to the Republican claims to be “pro-troops” and “pro-constitution”.
As Edward R. Murrow once said, “We cannot defend freedom abroad by deserting it at home.” Nor can we have hawkish leaders who recklessly and irresponsibly take to the airwaves to hate and fear monger regarding freedom of religion in this country (as it pertains to Park 51). And lastly, we can’t have a Republican front-runner for 2012 who understands so little about the world that she would endanger our troops and this country’s national security every time she opens her mouth.
Sarah Palin owns this mess, along with the majority of Republicans who got on board her hate talk express and Fox News who gave oodles of airtime to selling this hate with little or no pushback from reality or the law.
Democrats like Harry Reid who gave shelter to the hate talk because he had his eye on his reelection campaign may not have created this or endorsed it, but by failing to denounce it and thereby giving way to his moral cowardice, deserve to be called out. Harry left the President out on a limb after Obama took the proper stand regarding our Constitution because Harry was pandering to his fearful base.
If leaders prove themselves to be this cynical and willing to use any means possible to get elected, they don’t deserve to be considered leaders. Leaders of both parties need to stand up for our freedoms and stand up for what makes this country great instead of giving the Taliban more propaganda from which to recruit and propagate hate.
Republicans, you own this debacle. Our nation’s safety is once again at risk so that you could win another election term. Is there anything Republicans hold sacred enough that they won’t violate it to gain power?
A fearful nation awaits a leader from the Republican Party to grow enough courage to take a stand for us, for our troops and their mission. All we’re hearing is the cynical silence of dead air, as they hope this passes by unnoticed by the American People. Do Republicans want another 9/11 so they can finally convince themselves that their erroneous and much repeated belief that we never had a terrorist attack under Bush is somehow vindicated?
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.