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| October 2008
America’s leading Islamophobes spreading fear, bigotry and misinformation
America’s leading Islamophobes, according to Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) are: David Horowitz, Robert Spencer, Daniel Pipes, Michael Savage, Pat Robertson, Sean Hannity, Bill O’Reilly, Mark Steyn, Steve Emerson, Michelle Malkin, Glenn Beck and Debbie Schlussel.
David Horowitz is the Islamophobia movement’s premier promoter. Through his “Islamofascism
Awareness Week” (see Islamofascism Case Study), which brought leading Muslim-bashers to more than a hundred college campuses in October 2007, and via his website, FrontPage Magazine, which features the movement’s leading writers and links to other anti-Muslim sites, Horowitz has made himself the chief publicist of the Islamophobic movement. (Anti-Muslim and anti-Arab writings at Horowitz’s FrontPage Magazine have been exposed for inaccuracy by, among other outlets, the New Yorker magazine–4/14/08.)
But more than a promoter, Horowitz is also a key participant. He appears in his own venues as well as in other right-wing arenas, such as the Washington Times, the Weekly Standard and Fox News Channel.
According to American Muslim and former Nixon advisor Robert Crane (The Politics of Islam(ism): Decolonising the Postcolonial, 11/10-11/07), Robert Spencer is “the principal leader… in the new academic field of Islam-bashing.”
Spencer is the author of several books attacking Islam, including the New York Times bestsellers The Truth About Muhammad, Founder of the World’s Most Intolerant Religion (Regnery, 2006) and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) (Regnery, 2005). He is the publisher of the “notoriously Islamophobic website” Jihad Watch (Guardian, 2/7/06), a subsidiary of the David Horowitz Freedom Center; a columnist for right-wing outlets like Human Events and
WorldNetDaily; and a recurring guest on Glenn Beck’s CNN Headline News show, as well as several Fox News shows.
The founder of the Middle East Forum think tank, Pipes has been introduced by the national media as a “scholar” of Islam (e.g., CBS Sunday Morning, 9/10/06; Fox News Special Report, 11/26/02) and a “noted Middle East expert” (CNN Moneyline, 5/8/03) who was “years ahead of the curve in identifying the threat of radical Islam” (CBS Sunday Morning, 9/10/06).
However, Pipes’ “expertise” has included erroneously linking the Oklahoma City bombing to Islamic groups (USA Today, 4/20/95), as well as warning (National Review, 11/19/90): “Western European societies are unprepared for the massive immigration of brown-skinned peoples cooking strange foods and maintaining different standards of hygiene…. All immigrants bring exotic customs and attitudes, but Muslim customs are more troublesome than most.”
A defender of racial profiling of Arab-Americans (CNN American Morning, 11/18/02), Pipes has also warned (American Jewish Congress, 10/21/01) that “the presence, and increased stature, and affluence, and enfranchisement of American Muslims” entail “true dangers” for American Jews. As one of the leaders of the “Stop the Madrassa” campaign against a secular Brooklyn-based Arabic language school, he himself has admitted (New York Times.com, 4/28/2008) to misleading the public by using the word “madrassa” to get attention.
If Daniel Pipes and Robert Spencer serve the movement by providing intellectual arguments for its rank and file, Michael Savage serves as its angry rabble-rouser. And Savage’s reach is remarkable: His radio show Savage Nation reaches a reported 8.25 million listeners per week (Talkers Magazine, Spring/08), the third most popular political talk radio show in the country (trailing only Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity).
Savage is notorious for his relentlessly hateful language–he was fired from his MSNBC gig when he labeled a caller a “sodomite” and told him to “get AIDS and die” (FAIR Action Alert, 7/7/03)—and Muslims are often his target. “When I see a woman walking around with a burqa,” Savage told his listeners on July 2, 2007, “I see a Nazi… a hateful Nazi who would like to cut your throat and kill your children.”
Savage sees a monolithic Islamic scheme to take over the U.S.—“We know you want to take over America. We know you wanna push your religion down everyone’s throat,” (Savage Nation, 7/2/07), and imagines himself one of the few brave souls standing up against the onslaught (10/29/07): “I’m not gonna put my wife in a hijab. And I’m not gonna put my daughter in a burqa. And I’m not getting on my all-fours and braying to Mecca…. I don’t wanna hear anymore about Islam. Take your religion and shove it up your behind.”
Savage has even called (4/17/06) for killing a hundred million Muslims, saying that people are very depressed by the weakness that America is showing to these psychotics in the Muslim world. They say, “Oh, there’s a billion of them.” I said, “So, kill 100 million of them, then there’ll be 900 million of them.” I mean, would you rather die–would you rather us die than them? I mean, what is it going to take for you people to wake up?
Would you rather we disappear or we die? Or would you rather they disappear and they die? Because you’re going to have to make that choice sooner rather than later.
If you’re looking for Christian charity toward Muslims, don’t look to Rev. Pat Robertson or his
Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN). Robertson subscribes to Robert Spencer’s view that Islam is, in its essence, violent and irrational. He describes (700 Club, 8/29/06) Osama bin Laden as a true disciple of the Quran “because he’s following through literally word-for-word what it says.”
Robertson tells viewers of his signature CBN show, the 700 Club, that Islam is “not a religion” but a “worldwide political movement… meant to subjugate all people under Islamic law” (6/12/07). At the same time, he claims Islam is a “bloody, brutal type of religion” (4/28/06) whose followers only “deal with history and the truth with violence” and “don’t understand what reasoned dialogue is” (9/25/06). When cartoons that portrayed Muhammad negatively sparked protest among Muslims, Robertson announced (3/13/06): “These people are crazed fanatics, and I want to say it now: I believe it’s motivated by demonic power. It is satanic and it’s time we recognize what we’re dealing with.”
Remarking on reports that U.S. congressman Keith Ellison, a Muslim, was planning to be sworn in with a Quran, Fox News personality Sean Hannity (Hannity & Colmes, 11/30/06) drew a parallel between Islam and Nazism, asking a guest on his show, “Would you have allowed him to choose, you know, Hitler’s Mein Kampf, which is the Nazi bible?” (Hannity insisted he was not equating Mein Kampf and the Quran, rendering his point entirely unclear.) But more important than his occasional personal forays into Muslim-bashing, Hannity regularly provides a welcoming national platform to some of the country’s leading Islamophobes through his nationally syndicated Sean Hannity Show on radio and his Hannity & Colmes show on Fox News (with only occasional challenges on Hannity & Colmes by co-host Alan Colmes).
On the Sean Hannity Show (2/9/04), U.S. Representative Peter King (R.-N.Y.) told Hannity’s listeners that 85 percent of mosques in America are “ruled by the extremists,” constituting “an enemy living amongst us.” King added that while most American Muslims were more moderate, “they don’t come forward, they don’t tell the police.”
After the September 11 attacks, Fox News host Bill O’Reilly (9/17/01; FAIR Action Alert, 9/21/01) had a whole list of predominantly Muslim countries that he proposed to attack if they did not submit to the U.S.–starting with Afghanistan:
The U.S. should bomb the Afghan infrastructure to rubble–the airport, the power plants,their water facilities and the roads…. This is a very primitive country. And taking out their ability to exist day to day will not be hard…. If they don’t rise up against this criminal government, they starve, period.
Also on his list were Iraq (“Their infrastructure must be destroyed and the population made to endure yet another round of intense pain”) and Libya (“Nothing goes in, nothing goes out…. Let them eat sand”).
Mark Steyn has a penchant for using ethnic slurs, including “chinks” and “japs” (Spectator, 3/24/01), but he is at his most prolific and poisonous on the subject of Muslims. In his 2006 New York Times best seller, America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It, Steyn warns of the “demographic decline” posed by Europe’s emerging Muslim population and suggests there are lessons for Europeans in the Balkan example of ethnic cleansing. As he explains, “You can’t buck demography—except through civil war”:
The Serbs figured that out–as other Continentals will in the years ahead: If you can’t outbreed the enemy, cull ‘em. The problem that Europe faces is that Bosnia’s demographic profile is now the model for the entire continent.
The founder and executive director of the Investigative Project on Terrorism think tank, Emerson
regularly crops up as an “expert on Islamic terrorism” (New York Times, 1/16/01) in national media outlets ranging from the New York Times and Washington Post to CNN and NBC News (where he is employed as an analyst); he specializes in advancing allegations linking Muslim groups in the U.S. to fundamentalist Islamic international terrorism.
A proponent of a theory that “the U.S. has become occupied fundamentalist territory” (Jerusalem Post, 8/8/97), he has written (Jewish Monthly, 3/95; Extra! 7-8/95) that “the level of vitriol against Jews and Christianity within contemporary Islam… sanctions genocide, planned genocide, as part of its religious doctrine.” Veteran reporter Robert Friedman accused Emerson of “creating mass hysteria against American Arabs” (Nation, 5/15/95) with his film Jihad in America.
Emerson erroneously blamed the Oklahoma City bombing on Middle Eastern groups, proclaiming on CBS Evening News (4/19/95; Extra! 1-2/99): “This was done with the attempt to inflict as many casualties as possible. That is a Middle Eastern trait.” He said on CNBC (8/23/96) that “it was a bomb that brought down TWA Flight 800”; investigations by the National Transportation Safety Agency (8/23/00) and the FBI (11/18/97) concluded otherwise. He also misidentified (CNN, 3/2/93) the perpetrators of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing–blaming it, ironically enough, on Yugoslavians, when the people convicted of the attack were Arabs.
Despite his track record, he continues to be identified as a “terrorism expert” (Fox News Hannity & Colmes, 1/11/08; NBC Today, 6/4/07, Wall Street Journal, 6/6/07). Emerson can still be heard
testifying in congressional committees on terrorism (CQ Congressional Testimony, 4/9/08, 7/31/08), as well as on the media, in the middle of discussions about Islamic terrorism, warning (CNBC’s Kudlow & Company, 6/8/07) of the FBI’s failure to “battle… groups like the Council on American-Islamic Relations and other jihadists that don’t break the law.”
Michelle Malkin calls Islam “the religion of perpetual outrage” on her two blogs, MichelleMalkin.com (8/1/06, 2/11/08) and Hot Air (2/9/08), though Malkin herself seems remarkably easy to outrage. When celebrity chef Rachael Ray was featured in a 2008 Dunkin’ Donuts ad wearing a black-andwhite paisley scarf that vaguely resembled an Arab keffiyeh, Malkin created such an uproar over what she imagined to be a “hate couture” symbol of “murderous Palestinian jihad” (MichelleMalkin.com, 5/28/08) that Dunkin’ Donuts pulled the ad and issued an apology (Huffington Post, 5/28/08).
In her book In Defense of Internment: The Case for Racial Profiling in WWII and the War on Terror, Malkin argued that the mass incarceration of Japanese-Americans was explained and justified by what she presented as evidence of subversion; she drew a present-day parallel to alleged subversion amongst Muslim and Arab populations in the U.S. today. The main thesis of the book was condemned as historically incorrect by the Historians’ Committee for Fairness (8/31/04), which stated that Malkin’s book was “contradicted by several decades of scholarly research, including works by the official historian of the United States Army and an official U.S. government commission.” On her website (8/10/06) Malkin explained why she no longer uses the term “Islamofascism”:
I stopped using the terms “Islamic fascist” and “Islamofascism” a while ago… because they obscure rather than clarify. The views held by the Muslim jihadis who want to destroy us are not marginal views held only by a minority of “Islamic fascists.”
Glenn Beck claims he doesn’t hate Islam, just its “evil” extremists, but during his eponymous CNN
Headline News show and the Glenn Beck Program–the third highest-rated national radio talk show among adults ages 25 to 54 (CNN.com)–he has repeatedly associated Islam with Nazism. He drew a parallel between Mein Kampf and “jihad” because, he said, both mean “my struggle” (Glenn Beck, 11/17/06), and he has warned (Glenn Beck, 7/12/06) of “World War III and the impending apocalypse,” declaring that “whether you like it or not, this is a religious war. Radical Muslims want to wipe everybody else off the face of the earth.”
Beck reserves some hate-talk even for “good” Muslims (Glenn Beck Program, 8/10/06):
All you Muslims who have sat on your frickin’ hands the whole time and have not been marching in the streets and have not been saying, “Hey, you know what? There are good Muslims and bad Muslims. We need to be the first ones in the recruitment office lining up to shoot the bad Muslims in the head.” I’m telling you, with God as my witness… human beings are not strong enough, unfortunately, to restrain themselves from putting up razor wire and putting you on one side of it…. When people become hungry, when people see that their way of life is on the edge of being over, they will put razor wire up and just based on the way you look or just based on your religion, they will round you up. Is that wrong? Oh my gosh, it is Nazi, World War II wrong, but society has proved it time and time again: It will happen.Beck had made earlier allusions to putting Muslims in concentration camps, predicting in 2006 (Glenn Beck, 9/5/06): “In 10 years, Muslims and Arabs will be looking through a razor wire fence at the West.”
Beck has asked Muslim guests to distinguish themselves from Islamic terrorists. “I mean, you’re reasonable,” he said to Sharida McKenzie, organizer of a Muslim Peace March (Glenn Beck, 10/4/07). “How do we know the difference between you and those that are trying to kill us?”
Debbie Schlussel may tout herself to her fan club as the “greatest sexy, blonde and beautiful commentator,” but her Islamophobic rhetoric is as ugly as the rest.
Schlussel jumped to the erroneous conclusion (Debbie Does Politics, 4/16/07) that a “Paki” was responsible for the Virginia Tech shooting. (She remarked that “even if it does not turn out that the shooter is Muslim, this is a demonstration to Muslim jihadists all over that it is extremely easy to shoot and kill multiple American college students.”) When Sen. Barack Obama’s campaign team prevented two Muslim women from sitting behind him during a speech (see Islamophobia Election piece, page 25), Schlussel asserted (Debbie Does Politics, 6/19/08) that they were “Muslim Terror Front-Group Activists” (One of them faced this accusation because she held a position at the University of Michigan-Dearborn Muslim Students Association.)
Claiming a “unique expertise on radical Islam/Islamic terrorism” (DebbieSchlussel), Schlussel presents America as being in “the war of our lives with Islam,” and depicts the American Muslim community as a dangerous fifth column. She has asserted (FrontPage Magazine, 2/10/05) that “Fox’s 24… actually tells the truth about Islamic terrorists”:
They are here on our shores, pretending to be loyal Americans, and they are plotting to take over our country. With the help of plenty of complicit Muslim-Americans, working for the government and government contractors.
David Yerushalmi 
David Yerushalmi is member of the Board of Trustees of the Jerusalem-based think tank, the Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies (IASPS) with an affiliated office in Washington D.C. IASPS is dedicated to the defense of Israel. Naturally, SANE was one of the sponsor groups of a pro-Israel Washington DC rally on June 10, 2007.
David Yerushalmi is also a member of the Steering Committee of the Maccabim Foundation for Iranian Emigrants in Israel.
With these credentials, there is little doubt that the SANE, just like the Campus Watch, Jihad Watch and Dhimmi Watch, is another pro-Israeli, anti-Islam and anti-Muslim project exploiting patriotism and the prevailing anti-Muslim hysteria in the nation.
Dave Gaubatz 
Dave Gaubatz is the director of the Mapping Shari’a project.
Like Yerushalmi, Gaubatz is a controversial figure. The Southern Poverty Law Center included him in its list of leading Islamophobes, quoting his reference to Barrack Obama as “our Muslim leader” and his comparison of Islam to a “terminal disease.” Gaubatz’s 2009 book, “Muslim Mafia,” detailed an alleged plot by the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a leading American Muslim civil advocacy group, to infiltrate the American government. It was based largely on 12,000 documents that Gaubatz’s son, Chris, stole by posing as a Muslim intern at CAIR. Under a threat of legal action by CAIR, he has since returned the files.
Gaubatz was paid $350,000 for a two-year stint as director of the Mapping Shari’a study. Yerushalmi said those funds included hiring researchers and paying for surveyors, but he would not provide a breakdown of the costs, the Frontier reported. In a telephone interview to the the newspaper, Gaubatz described how he and one full-time and one part-time researcher spent 18 months crisscrossing the country.
 Fairness and Accuracy in Report - “Smearcasting: How Islamophobes Spread Fear, Bigotry and Misinformation,” October 2008
 ‘Mapping the Mosques’ zealots measure US imams’ beards by Abdus Sattar Ghazali – July 13, 2011 – American Muslim Perspective.