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Robert Spencer to Debate Achmed the Dead Terrorist and The Dictator

Sheila Musaji of The American Muslim (TAM) has been keeping a close eye on the loons who write for Jihad Watch.  The chief loon of JW, Robert Spencer, had initially been slated to debate David Wood, another Christian loon like himself.  Realizing no doubt that they are on the same side of the loony equation, the debate has been scrapped.  Instead, both Spencer and Wood have agreed to face off against Anjem Choudary and Omar Bakri.

As Musaji presciently noted, “[b]oth Choudary and Bakri are part of the Muslim lunatic fringe.”  The nefarious duo are very familiar to the Muslim community of the U.K., not because they have a large following (they don’t), but because they are routinely trotted out by anti-Muslim right-wingers.  The set-up is always the same: a right-winger pundit will invite one of these two clowns onto their show for a “debate.” By making the hated Choudary and Bakri the representative for the Muslim side, the debate is of course already won.  Muslims are left thinking, “with friends like these, who needs enemies…”

Anjem Choudary and Omar Bakri are absolutely despised by the vast majority of the Muslim community, even by the ultra-conservative and radical Muslims they pretend to represent.   They are caricatures, just one step away from being Achmed the Dead Terrorist or a character thought up by Sacha Baron Cohen (like Ali G or Admiral General Aladeen, A.K.A. The Dictator).  Choudary and Bakri play the part of terrorists and radical Islamists, which is why hateful Islamophobes love giving them ample air time: look at how crazy those Moozlums are!

It’s absolutely no surprise then that Robert Spencer and David Wood, two loons in their own right, would debate two even loonier loons.  Spencer wastes his time engaging such unserious clowns, because–just as Sheila Musaji noted long time ago–he has a pattern of seeking out complete fools to debate with so that he can then crow in victory afterward.  Meanwhile, Spencer will doggedly avoid debating anyone (1) with a serious grasp of knowledge of the topic at hand and (2) the debating skill to back it up.  And of course, (3) anyone named Danios.  What’s interesting is that even Robert Spencer’s debating partner, David Wood, seemed to imply on his website that Anjem Choudary and Omar Bakri are weak debaters.  Wood agrees with Choudary and Bakri’s view that Muhammad existed, but he doesn’t think that they will be able to make the convincing argument.  Why not just debate Achmed the Dead Terrorist or The Dictator?  It would certainly be just as enlightening and perhaps a bit more entertaining.

Robert Spencer’s homepage boldly declares that he is “the acclaimed scholar of Islam”, and yet he has no educational qualifications to validate that lofty claim.  In fact, all he has is an M.A. in Christian studies…If I get an M.A. in Buddhist studies, does that mean I get to be “the acclaimed scholar of Judaism”?  Spencer has never had his work submitted for peer review in the academic world, and so his arguments–while they certainly might pass off in the non-scholarly world–have never been tested by the real experts in the field.  Spencer’s version of peer-review is debating the equivalent of Achmed the Dead Terrorist and The Dictator.

In any case, let’s not beat around the bush.  It’s me in particular who Robert Spencer fears. One would think that he would want to debate me now that I’ve won the Brass Crescent Award for Best Writer last year (and was runner-up the year before), in no small part due to my writings against Spencer.  I have been refuting his book for a long time now, decimating his arguments one by one.  Spencer can’t respond intelligently, so of course, he naturally fears facing off in debate.  It has now officially been 684 days–that’s 1 year, 10 months, and 14 days–since I agreed to have a radio debate with Robert Spencer.  In that time, Spencer has furiously been generating excuse after excuse to avoid the debate.

Spencer continues to use my anonymity as an excuse to cover up his cowardice.  I’m an anonymous blogger and I have expressed my intent in preserving that anonymity for now.  Yet, Spencer repeatedly insists on a public venue–so that I “show my face”–knowing full well that I won’t accept such a condition.  In this way, Spencer gets out of the debate and can then disingenuously claim that I was the cause of the impasse.

Robert Spencer engages in typical right-winger projection: look how cowardly Danios is that he doesn’t show his face.  But, it is Spencer who is the coward, at least when it comes to defending his views.  What difference does it make who I am or what I look like?  The obvious answer is that Spencer wants to engage in ad hominem attacks against me, instead of focusing on the substantive value of his arguments, which my writings have shown to be severely lacking.  It’s now quite evident to all who want to see it: my refutations of his book are irrefutable.  I know it, you know it, he knows it.

And that’s why Robert Spencer will keep running away from me.  Instead, he’ll debate fools and loons.  Yawn, what’s new?

Danios was the Brass Crescent Award Honorary Mention for Best Writer in 2010 and the Brass Crescent Award Winner for Best Writer in 2011.

*  *  *  *  *

Here is Sheila Musaji’s article from TAM:

David Wood and Robert Spencer “Debate”?

by Sheila Musaji

David Wood is not as well known as Robert Spencer, so a little background is in order.  Wood is an Evangelical pastor and has a series of polemical articles on Answering Islam.  His focus seems to be on anti-Muslim polemics.

Kiera Feldman reported on an incident in 2010:

Organized by Stop the Islamization of America, the first rally against the “Ground Zero mosque” was held in a plaza near the site of the Twin Towers on June 6th—D-Day. “We are not hatemongerers!” Pamela Hall proclaimed from the podium. “We just want our families and our future to be safe from the racist, bigoted ideology that murdered 3,000 people.” In the crowd, signs ranged from “Everything I need to know about Islam, I learned on 9/11” to crude drawings of Mohammed with the label “beast.”

Toward the end of the rally, two dark-skinned men were overheard speaking Arabic. The crowd transformed into an angry mob, surrounded the men, and shouted, “go home” and “get out.” The Bergen Record reported that the two scared men, Joseph Nasralla and Karam El Masry, had to be extricated by police. It turned out they weren’t even Muslim. They were Egyptian Coptic Christians who’d trekked cross-country from California to join the cause against the “Ground Zero mosque.” Nasralla later told John Hawkins of Right Wing News that the Record coverage was indeed accurate, adding that he’d been shoved and his camera knocked to the ground. “He said he was worried that things might have really gotten out of hand if the police hadn’t escorted him and Karam El Masry away,” Hawkins wrote.

“I actually caused that by accident,” an evangelical pastor named David Wood told me with a chuckle. He meant the near race riot. Wood is a PhD student in philosophy at a respectable New York institution whose name he didn’t want me to use. Passionate about proselytizing to Muslims, Wood’s expertise is Christian apologetics, the practice of arguing unbelievers into faith. He is best known as the creator of a viral video “Of Mosques and Men,” which argues all Muslims—even those who seem “peaceful,” like “good citizens in public”—had an urge to “smile when there were terrorist attacks.” But Wood allows himself a little laugh about violence when Muslims are on the receiving end.

As he tells the story of that day, “[The Copts] were complaining about not having anything to hand out. And I said, ‘I’ve got some pamphlets on Islam, specifically on whether Islam is a religion of peace.” The pamphlets contained passages of the Qur’an selected to suggest the answer is no. “People thought they were there to defend the mosque and promote Islam,” Wood explained. “Lots of people were fired up about that.” But it was a goofy case of mistaken identity, a funny little mix-up. “The guys who were doing it were actually Christians,” Wood told me as if clearing up the whole matter. “They weren’t Muslims.” In other words: the mob’s anger and actions were justified, but misdirected. Aim better next time?

Garibaldi of Loonwatch has written exposes about Wood in two articles here and here

Wood and Robert Spencer will have a “debate” this coming Sunday on the thesis of Spencer’s new book Did Muhammad Exist?  This “debate” will be moderated by Pamela Geller.  That may be the only time that you will see the combination of Pamela Geller and moderation in the same sentence.

Wood made the “challenge to a debate” by video and Spencer accepted the “challenge”.

Spencer is still falsely claiming that Muslims are afraid to debate him, and says in his acceptance: So David Wood will do their work for them.  Read my article Danios vs Spencer:  18 months and Spencer still avoiding a debate for the Saga of Spencer’s avoidance of a debate with Danios.  See The Muslim Communities Useful Idiots for information on some of Spencer’s past debates with Muslims, and why I believe that engaging with bigots is not productive.

These are not individuals who hold respectable, if controversial opinions.  These are bigots, and engaging them in such a forum only provides them with some veneer of respectability.

Hosts like Hannity, or Bolling can claim that they have been “fair and balanced” because they included a Muslim.  And, full time, paid mercenaries in a “holy war” against Islam like Spencer, will claim “victory” no matter what the outcome.  If they have no “facts” that will stand up to scrutiny, they will stoop to ridiculous slurs, as they did with Christina Abraham.  And, when all else fails, if any Muslim says anything reasonable, they will say that it is taqiyya.

This sort of devious, unethical, and downright childish behavior, is not surprising from individuals who consistently “get it wrong” when it comes to Islam and Muslims, and who see no ethical problem with simply removing articles from a site when they are proven to be inaccurate.  Not too surprising for individuals who are co-founders (Spencer & Geller) of a group, Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA), which has been designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.  The group is also described by the ADL in the following terms: “Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA), created in 2009, promotes a conspiratorial anti-Muslim agenda under the guise of fighting radical Islam. The group seeks to rouse public fears by consistently vilifying the Islamic faith and asserting the existence of an Islamic conspiracy to destroy “American” values. The organization warns of the encroachment of shari’a, or Islamic law, and encourages Muslims to leave what it describes as the “falsity of Islam.”

I believe that it is not “cowardly” to leave these folks alone, just sensible.   It is not that their claims cannot be, and have not been answered, but rather that they have proven themselves time and time again to be untrustworthy and dishonorable in both their tactics and their responses to reasoned argument.

Spencer and Wood seem to have a mutual admiration society.  Spencer posted a notice about the “debate” with a note to watch Wood’s video, and Wood posted a notice with a note to read Spencer’s book.

The notice points out that this “debate” will be right after Geller and Spencer’s “Jessica Mokdad Human Rights Conference” (their most recent anti-Muslim hate fest) ends.  It is worth noting that David Wood will be a speaker at Spencer and Geller’s conference.  I’m sure their promotional video will be more exciting than the actual “debate”.

It seems pretty obvious that rather than a debate, this is a calculated publicity stunt to gain a little more notoriety for their conference, and to publicize Spencer’s book.  I’m sure that they will both have an opportunity to get in a few anti-Muslim zingers in the course of this “debate”.  Let the bigots talk among themselves.

UPDATE 4/30/2012

Just when you thought things couldn’t get any more strange.  Robert Spencer just posted a new notice about tonights “debate”.  The debate is now to be between Spencer and Wood (on the same side) versus Anjem Choudary and Omar Bakri.

Both Choudary and Bakri are part of the Muslim lunatic fringe.  Just type their names or the term lunatic fringe into our TAM search engine for more information on these disreputable folks.

I’m curious as to how Spencer is going to talk to Omar Bakri since the last I heard he had been denied re-entry to England, and arrested in Lebanon.

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  • http://www.youtube.com/user/GargamelGold?feature=mhee CriticalDragon1177

    @British

    Personally I don’t have a problem with anyone wanting Anjem Choudary as far away from them as possible. After all he is a nut job, but if you’re serious, you really ought to know better than to lump him in with all other Muslims in the same box, especially if you spend a lot of time here. In reality he doesn’t even represent mainstream British Muslims.

  • british

    start the great purge of muslims from Britain! First on the list Anjem Chowderhead!

  • Hass

    Spencer will try to look good in front of the audience by PICKING TO CHOOSE THE ONES WHO AREN’T EVEN SCHOLARS i.e. Choudhary.

    Sorry Spencer, your bleak attempt to win a debate has been found out. And your marketing attempts to promote your book are quite open too… it doesn’t take a genius to figure out your petty strategies.

  • Géji

    @john spielman Says: “Dear Geji; Sorry to be late in responding to you, but I didn’t see your last post til now”

    Oh yes you saw-it, even before I reminded you on the other thread. But chosen to ignore-it cause as I suspected you had no logical answer to provide refuting my yet very simple questions you brought upon yourself, other than coming back with nonsensical rants that beats-around-the-bushes when you could have been just as easily shortened- to answer yes or no.

    > “As far as Jesus is God, this is the core belief in Christianity because not only did the disciples affirm this in their writings to the early church (John’s, Peter’s Paul’s epistles or letters but Jesus Himself confirmed this fact as recorded in the gospel accounts and proven by His miracles of walking on water, multiplying the loaves and fishes, healing the blind deaf and dumb, and raising the dead and finally by His resurrection from the dead after His crucifiction”

    Funny, cause even with all “His miracles”, I thought a large section of -“the core belief in Christianity” – was that Jesus was only the 2th person of trinity as son of God, and not God the father himself.

    > “So Jesus with the Fatherand Holy Spirit (one GOD -the Hebrew iterm is Ehad I believe) created the heave and earth (John 1). He gave the law to the Israelites and He spoke through the prophets.”

    So you see, when I’m saying you’re beating around the bushes for no reason, when a simple YES would have suffice to answer my whole question, i.e., — Is Jesus as “GOD” the one who gave the laws/instrustions to the Bible prophets and their followers to carry-out his orders such as ~ him ordering to carry-out genocidal warfares that eliminates everything that breaths & Those ordering on women & Those ordering stoning even those that curse him and his kings? — Thus, YES Géji it is Jesus that did that, would have sufficed and would had save you lots of time typing as well. —— So thus as far it is official! -(according to you) Jesus as “GOD” ordered those punishments to be carried-out by his believers. Therefore, He didn’t did-it himself did he? but ordered others to do it for him isn’t.

    > “As followers of Christ we are not allowed to exact punishment in His name. Vengence belongs to the LORD as we are unqualified to punish”

    Let’s drop the hypocritical cop-out and be consistent shall we. And remember that we already establish it’s your Jesus-(again according to your own words “GOD”)- that “HE gave” the laws/instructions that ordered the punishments his Biblical prophets and their “Israelites” followers carried-out and applied against those infidel sinners such the “evil” Cananites ordering that annihilated them t’ill the last one that breaths including their farm animals, and the stoning of those that curses him and his kings.

    So then why are you contradicting yourself a minute later by saying – “As followers of Christ we are not allowed to exact punishment in His name” – Didn’t you said by the same token that he (Jesus) actually fulfilled the Biblical laws/instructions the prophets carried-out punishing infidels when he came to earth as God/man?

    So by contradicting yourself, you’re either proving your Jesus “GOD” is very contradictory, he’s one thing one moment and different thing the other, by extension proving he is not “GOD” at all as you says he is, thus fake. Or you have to admit since according to you his “GOD”, he did did ordered such cruel punishments in the Bible for his prophets and their followers to carry-out against infidels. He did not did-it himself, but ordered others to do it. Which makes your whole assertion of quote – “As followers of Christ we are not allowed to exact punishment in His name” – FALSE.

    ————————————-

    Sir David: “His holy angels …. MMMMM sounds like drones to me
    No change there then”

    Oh yes ‘dear’ Sir David, I see you too are smelling from miles-away the usual hypocrisy of our dear Mr john spielman . He first claimed Jesus-(“GOD” according to him) will have no help whatsoever carrying-out the delightful job at slaughtering infidels, but then he(Jesus) somehow now a minute latter he’ll have “His holy angels” as helpers? I wonder if john spielman think George W Bush is one of those “holy angels”, since Bush precisely stated such when he invaded Iraq and Afghanistan with the “holy” blessing of Jesus the warrior “GOD”.

  • Sir David Illuminati membership number 16.69

    His holy angels …. MMMMM sounds like drones to me
    No change there then

  • http://shaw john spielman

    cont’d. Now the old testament tells us why God “gave” the land of Canan to Israel, it was because the Cananites were so evil (practicing idol worship and engaing in child sacrifice to Molech) Deuteronomy9:5. The penalty of sinning against God was terrible for the Cananites and later for Israel when they turned from God and were nearly wiped out as a people by the Babylonians as God had revealed by the prophets.But now we the world are in an age of Grace (undeserves love and mercy of God)
    As followers of Christ we are not allowed to exact punishment in His name. Vengence belongs to the LORD as we are unqualified to punish (Let him who is without sin cast the first stone). Luke 19 parable is about the end of this age when Christ returns as King of king and Lord of lords. We will not be carrying out His opunishments as it will be Jesus Himself with His holy angels (see Revelation 19 and 2 Thessalonians)

  • john spielman

    Dear Geji; Sorry to be late in responding to you, but I didn’t see your last post til now.
    As far as Jesus is God, this is the core belief in Christianity because not only did the disciples affirm this in their writings to the early church (John’s, Peter’s Paul’s epistles or letters but Jesus Himself confirmed this fact as recorded in the gospel accounts and proven by His miracles of walking on water, multiplying the loaves and fishes, healing the blind deaf and dumb, and raising the dead and finally by His resurrection from the dead after His crucifiction.
    So Jesus with the Fatherand Holy Spirit (one GOD -the Hebrew iterm is Ehad I believe) created the heave and earth (John 1). He gave the law to the Israelites and He spoke through the prophets. He fufilled the entire sacrifical and judicial system on the cross (Matthew 5:17-18 an many otrher passages)so now we are in a age of grace where our sins don’t always result in immediate punioshment by God.

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/GargamelGold?feature=mhee CriticalDragon1177

    @khushboo

    Actually I take it back, I have heard of him, in fact Loon Watch featured something written by him awhile back. I had just forgotten the name of the guy who wrote this article that Ilisha linked to originally.

    Goat Milk: Death by tweet? How Hamza Kashgari’s fate will shape the face of Islam today
    http://www.loonwatch.com/2012/03/goat-milk-death-by-tweet-how-hamza-kashgaris-fate-will-shape-the-face-of-islam-today/

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/GargamelGold?feature=mhee CriticalDragon1177

    @khushboo,

    I don’t I’ve heard of him until now. Is this guy you’re talking about?

    Wajahat Ali
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/wajahat-ali

  • khushboo

    How about Wajahat Ali vs. Spencer? He’s not anonymous and could easily bring him down to his knees!

  • flow

    Some people so hate salafis that they boil with rage. They then try to sound as if they have something to say. They dont!
    http://www.salafitalk.net/st/viewmessages.cfm?Forum=8&Topic=10142
    http://www.takfiris.com/takfir/articles/heigk-the-cult-of-omar-bakri-operating-within-the-united-kingdom-and-faking-attachment-to-salafiyyah.cfm
    Here is a taste:
    “Anjem Choudary is a Hardcore Takfiri.He makes
    Takfir of the Muslim Rulers. He even made Takfir of Sheikh Bin Baaz
    (RahimaHullah). (I personally heard him say that
    he believes that Sheikh Bin Baaz is a Kafir.
    (Wa’iyyadu’billah- We seek refuge in Allah). He is very Jaahil with regards to the Deen.”
    “… then when you criticize these people, and
    describe them as they are, it is as if you are an
    enemy of Islam and the Muslims, as if these
    people represent Islam and the Muslims in the first place. They only represent their own groups,
    and their own agendas and their own partisanship and their own innovated methodologies.”
    “…….attempting to deceive other
    muslims with their claimed attachment to the
    way of the Salaf.”
    Basic lesson: Do not let your hatred of a person or group of people turn u away from being just.

  • rookie

    The “Debate”:

    ttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmZe6Y-RXfc&feature=player_embedded

  • rookie

    Truth Seeker say:
    “A lot of Salafis have more in common with Choudary and Bakri than you are afraid to admit.”

    Oh dear, this moron ir right again.
    They all have beards.

  • http://blah.com dan15

    “Please don’t call these bozos “Salafis”. They’re not. They are Takfiris and Kharajites…Their inspiration is not from the Book and the Sunnah or The Salaf, but from the 20th/21st century political movements/ideologues. They are blowhards who need to heed the advice of the Ulema.”

    A lot of Salafis have more in common with Choudary and Bakri than you are afraid to admit. Given that the Salafis have no problem beating women in Tunisia or attempt to destroy Egypt pre-Islamic heritage or slaughtering women and children in Algeria’s civil war, is it so hard to believe that a lot of Salafis who themselves want to declare EVERYTHING bidah would come to the defense of Choudary and Bakri? After all, don’t they, in spite of all the mischief they cause, consider them to be brothers in Islam as opposed to liberal Muslims whom they regard as murtads and worthy of execution?

  • Abdullah67

    Please don’t call these bozos “Salafis”. They’re not. They are Takfiris and Kharajites…Their inspiration is not from the Book and the Sunnah or The Salaf, but from the 20th/21st century political movements/ideologues. They are blowhards who need to heed the advice of the Ulema.

  • Michael Elwood

    @Muneeb

    “It seems like Mr Spencer wrote this in his new book:
    The Arabian conquests are a historical fact; that the Arabian conquerors actually came out of Arabia inspired by the Qur’an and Muhammad is less certain.”

    Spencer is wrong about the historicity of the Arabian conquests. Some conquest by Arabs did happen, but not to the extent that the pseudo-scholar Spencer assumes. Dr Daniel W. Brown pointed this out in his book “A New Introduction to Islam” (scroll down to the section titled “The ‘Invisible’ Conquests”):

    http://books.google.com/books?id=ViTmBB8DQNcC&lpg=PA109&ots=E70Hix6sGt&dq=daniel%20w.%20brown%20the%20invisible%20conquest&pg=PA109#v=onepage&q&f=false

    However, he is right that the Arabian conqueror weren’t inspired by the Quran. But not because Muhammad and the Quran didn’t exist. The Quran says:

    2:190 You may fight in the cause of GOD against those who attack you,
    but do not aggress. GOD does not love the aggressors

    4:94 O you who believe, if you strike in the cause of GOD, you shall
    be absolutely sure. Do not say to one who offers you peace, “You are
    not a believer,” seeking the spoils of this world. For GOD possesses
    infinite spoils. Remember that you used to be like them, and GOD
    blessed you. Therefore, you shall be absolutely sure (before you
    strike). GOD is fully Cognizant of everything you do.

    Let my just say, in case I haven’t said it before, or often enough, that I think Spencer is a big, fat, sophist. In a previous debate called “A Fictional Muhammad,” Spencer took the exact opposite position that he did in this recent debate:

    http://19.org/1045/robert-spencer-bill-warner/

    Either he doesn’t credit his groupies with enough intelligence to see that he takes two mutually exclusive positions, or he’s so confident in his sophistry that he thinks that no one will notice.

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