On the front page of the New York Times yesterday, above the fold, is an article by Andrea Elliott headlined Behind an Anti-Shariah Push: Orchestrating a Seemingly Grass-Roots Campaign. The placement of the piece shows how important the Times considers its “investigative” project, as does the almost full page devoted to it on the jump on page 16.
Oddly, the article is datelined Nashville. Why? Apparently to provide a lead that is connected to current news:
Tennessee’s latest woes include high unemployment, continuing foreclosures and a battle over collective-bargaining rights for teachers. But when a Republican representative took the Statehouse floor during a recent hearing, he warned of a new threat to his constituents’ way of life: Islamic law.
The representative, a former fighter pilot named Rick Womick, said he had been studying the Koran. He declared that Shariah, the Islamic code that guides Muslim beliefs and actions, is not just an expression of faith but a political and legal system that seeks world domination. “Folks,” Mr. Womick, 53, said with a sudden pause, “this is not what I call ‘Do unto others what you’d have them do unto you.’ ”
Similar warnings are being issued across the country as Republican presidential candidates, elected officials and activists mobilize against what they describe as the menace of Islamic law in the United States.
But it can’t be that Americans are increasingly aware of a real threat. No, it’s all the machinations of
an orchestrated drive that began five years ago in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, in the office of a little-known lawyer, David Yerushalmi, a 56-year-old Hasidic Jew with a history of controversial statements about race, immigrationand Islam. Despite his lack of formal training in Islamic law, Mr. Yerushalmi has come to exercise a striking influence over American public discourse about Shariah.
Working with a cadre of conservative public-policy institutes and former military and intelligence officials, Mr. Yerushalmi has written privately financed reports, filed lawsuits against the government and drafted the model legislation that recently swept through the country — all with the effect of casting Shariah as one of the greatest threats to American freedom since the cold war.
Richard Weltz of American Thinker summarizes the piece perfectly in his title: Blame the Jews and Republicans. Quoting from his piece:
And, of course, Americans’ concern about Islamic influence over our society is also “the same kind of rhetoric that appears to have influenced Anders Behring Breivik, the suspect in the deadly dual attacks in Norway on July 22. The anti-Shariah campaign, they say, appears to be an end in itself, aimed at keeping Muslims on the margins of American life.”
Forget the universities that have been pressured into installing footbaths for the religious demands of Muslim students; forget Harvard’s bowing to Muslim demands for gender-separate hours at the gym and swimming pool; forget the refusal of Muslim cabbies at the Minnestota airport to service passengers with dogs or alcohol; forget the establishment of Shariah-compliant investment funds and banking services by our financial infrastructure; and forget all the evidence in plain sight of efforts to inflict Muslim belief and practice on our society — and others in the Western world. It’s all just Jewish and Republican make-believe to the New York Times.
Just so. Tennessee legislator Womick is a Republican. Also mentioned as concerned about sharia are Newt Gingrich, Michele Bachmann, and James Woolsey (whoops, he’s a Democrat, but that isn’t mentioned). Also the major role of Brigitte Gabriel’s terrific group, ACT for America. Frank Gaffney co-stars as “a hawkish policy analyst and commentator who is the president of the Center for Security Policy in Washington. Well connected in neo-conservative circle….” Neo-conservative is about the most damning name a Times reporter can call someone, so you know these anti-sharia folks are really, really bad.
And unfunny as it is, I couldn’t help laughing at the headline an article below the anti-sharia one on the NYT’s front page: Afghans Rage at Young Lovers; A Father Says Kill Them Both. That’s what sharia gets you, but the Times prefers to wander around America blindfolded.