Commentary

Did Army College Just Cave? Islam Expert Postponed After Muslim Activists' Uproar

Combined Shape

The Muslim community successfully got the U.S. Army War College to postpone bringing a speaker to campus that a Muslim’s rights group claimed is an “islamophobe.”

The Council on American-Islamic Relations had its Philadelphia chapter pressure the school into stopping this event from taking place, according to the Washington Times.

And, unfortunately, it worked — the event was kicked to the curb.

Raymond Ibrahim, the man in question, is an expert in the long history of Islamic terrorism across the globe. He was invited to speak at USAWC in the wake of the launch of his latest book, “Sword and Scimitar: Fourteen Centuries of War Between Islam and the West.”

CAIR claimed in a May 28 letter to USAWC superintendent Army Maj. Gen. John S. Kem and provost James G. Breckenridge that Ibrahim’s talk would further stoke anger against the Muslim community.

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“We also do not believe that there is any benefit to the U.S. in promulgating the inaccurate thesis that Islam is our enemy, as this stereotype only alienates millions of Muslim-Americans,” the letter read.

Initially, CAIR’s requests were ignored.

But when the Muslim civil rights group launched a scathing petition declaring Ibrahim — who is of Egyptian descent — an “Islamophobe” and stating that the school would enable “white nationalism” by inviting him, the USAWC almost immediately postponed the event.

“They are playing the race card,” Ibrahim said in response to these allegations, the Washington Times reported.

Should the Army War College have let Raymond Ibrahim speak?

Army War College spokesman Robert Martin said the speech was postponed so their education team can “pair Mr. Ibrahim’s military history insights in close proximity with another historical perspective, at a time when [the Army War College] curriculum has addressed historical analysis of influences on conflict,” in a statement to PennLive.

Ibrahim, however, argues that the college did not merely postpone the talk, but canceled it entirely.

“Regardless of the baseless and hysterical nature of CAIR’s and its Islamist allies’ allegations, on June 10, the U.S. Army War College caved in to their demands and canceled the event,” the author wrote in a PJ Media article about the debacle.

Ibrahim said he provided a counter-offer to the college on the day they decided to cancel his visit, saying, “In my last phone call with the USAWC on that same day, I suggested a compromise: turn my lecture into a debate, and pit me against any academic of CAIR’s choosing. Even though I was under no obligation to make such a concession, it still wasn’t good enough for the USAWC.”

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“If an ethnic Egyptian and native speaker of Arabic, with verifiable credentials, whose extended relatives continue to be persecuted because they are Christian, can be characterized by Islamist groups with terror links as a ‘racist’ and ‘white nationalist’; and if, of all places, the U.S. Army War College, as opposed to the average ‘liberal’ college, can so easily capitulate to such patently deceptive tactics—the true motives of which are to keep the actual and troubling history between Islam and the West concealed from the military—know that the hour is late indeed,” Ibrahim concluded.

He’s exactly right.

Of all the colleges that should be throwing off the gloves in a fight for freedom of speech and the open exchange of ideas, one would think USAWC would be first in line.

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Ryan Ledendecker is a freelance journalist and writer. He began reporting news and writing commentary during the 2014 Ferguson riots. Prior to that, he worked as a web editor and columnist for an award-winning local newspaper.
Ryan Ledendecker plunged headfirst into news reporting and political commentary while on the ground during the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri. He later wrote extensively on Donald Trump's presidential campaign and election.

When he's not writing, Ryan spends time improving his barbecue skills. He has his own brand of BBQ rub and is a trophy winner in the world of competitive BBQ.
Birthplace
Illinois
Nationality
American
Location
St. Louis, Missouri
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Science & Technology




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