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Claiming Chris Christie Has An ‘Islam Problem,’ Pipes And Emerson Demonstrate NRO’s Islamophobia Problem

Daniel Pipes

Daniel Pipes

(h/t: Frank Gold)

Claiming Chris Christie Has An ‘Islam Problem,’ Pipes And Emerson Demonstrate NRO’s Islamophobia Problem

By Matt Duss on May 1, 2012, ThinkProgress

In National Review, Daniel Pipes and Steven Emerson — two key figures in the Islamophobia network discussed in CAP’s 2011 Fear, Inc report — write that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (R) “has a problem, specifically an Islam problem, that can and should get in the way of his possible ascent to higher office”:

In short, Christie has hugged a terrorist-organization member, abridged free-speech rights, scorned concern over Islamization, and opposed law-enforcement counterterrorism efforts. Whenever an issue touching on Islam arises, Christie takes the Islamist side against those — the DHS, state senators, the NYPD, even the ACLU — who worry about lawful Islamism eroding the fabric of American life.

A perusal of the authors’ case against Christie reveals it as comically weak, full of highly questionable characterizations and buttressed by links that don’t actually demonstrate what they’re supposed to. In a typical example, they criticize Christie for voicing support for Mohammed Qatanani, imam of the Islamic Center of Passaic County, “on the eve of his deportation hearing for not hiding an Israeli conviction for membership in Hamas.” They do not mention that the hearing resulted in Qatanani being cleared of charges.

Pipes and Emerson knock Christie for his concern over revelations of the New York City Police Department’s spying on New Jersey Muslims, suggesting that he should’ve shown “gratitude” for the NYPD operating outside its jurisdiction.

And of course the authors take special offense at Christie’s bold defense of New Jersey state superior court judge Sohail Mohammed against attacks by anti-Islam activists, in which Christie offered the most cogent summation of the anti-sharia movement on record: “It’s crap. It’s just crazy.”

Pipes and Emerson suggest that there is tension between Christie’s friendly relations with Muslims and his “ostentatiously” pro-Israel stance. “This makes him unusual,” the authors write, “for a pro-Israel stance typically goes hand-in-hand with concern about Shari’a.” But in asserting such a zero-sum relationship between support for Muslim constituents and support for Israel, Pipes and Emerson inadvertently demonstrate two things: First, their own ignorance about Israel. Since its founding, Israel has maintained a publicly-funded Sharia court system for the some 19 percent of Israelis who are Muslim. (Israeli society is fraught with numerous challenges, but imminent takeover by sharia law does not appear to be one of them.) And second, that their real agenda involves creating difficulty for Christie among pro-Israel voters. As with all such smear efforts, the goal here isn’t to actually demonstrate that Christie has done anything wrong, merely to create the sense that there are “troubling questions” about Christie’s views and relationships.

While Pipes and Emerson fail to demonstrate that Chris Christie has an “Islam problem,” they succeed in demonstrating that National Review still has an Islamophobia problem. Last month the magazine took important steps to rid itself of two writers who had expressed bigoted views toward African-Americans. It’s long past time that National Review do the same with those of its writers expressing similar views toward Muslim Americans.

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  • Senor

    I pay no attention to what Daniel Pipes is saying. I am more concerned about what “Beez in the Trap” means.

  • Reynardine

    Daniel Pipes might find more gullible people if he didn’t go around looking like the Devil.

  • krissmith777

    Chris Christie? An Islamophobe?

    The same guy who appointed a Muslim judge and called all the hubbub about Sharia law “crap?”

    That’s sure a good one.

  • fox news

    I bet some good amount of money was transferred to Pipes bank accounts recently.

  • Pamela

    The only problem Gov.Christe has is respect for other people and a brain

  • Black Infidel

    I was just reading the comments on the ThinkProgress link. This comment I agree with 100%:

    why are we supposed to be concerned about “Islamization” in our culture when “Christianization” has always been a much bigger threat?

  • Black Infidel

    Chris Christie is anti-Islamophobe, but he still sucks. CC still shares a lot of things that make him bad as the rest of the Republican/Conservative/Right Wing/Tea Party crew. The state of New Jersey will always be a cesspool no matter who is running it.

    http://www.ihatenewjersey.com/

  • http://webdawah.blogspot.com/ Webdawah

    Good exposition of the hypocrisy and anti-Muslim agenda of these pseudo-intellectuals.

  • Sir David Illuminati membership number 16.69

    Mindy
    Payed to be paranoid.
    no honour

  • mindy1

    Paranoid much???

  • Sir David Illuminati membership number 16.69

    “Israeli society is fraught with numerous challenges, but imminent takeover by sharia law does not appear to be one of them”
    Loved that comment guys

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