June 26, 1996
The Wisdom Fund

Another Bombing, Another Media Frenzy To Denigrate Islam, Demonize Muslims

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 26 -- The bombing of the Murrah building in Oklahoma City last April raised no voices against Christianity and Christians, but the bombing of the Khobar barracks in Saudi Arabia has the media in a frenzy denigrating Islam, demonizing Muslims.

In fact even the Oklahoma City bombing had the media in a frenzy over Islam and Muslims until two Christians were caught and charged as the alleged perpetrators. But by then the damage had been done. Over 200 incidents against Muslims were reported.

Now the bombing in Saudi Arabia has the Washington Post and others raising fears of "Islamic terrorism" and "Muslim fundamentalists." CNN blames "pro-Islam, anti-US" Muslims as the likely perpetrators even before law enforcement agencies have identified any suspects.

And what's Islamic about terrorism? Self defense yes, just war yes, but we find no verse in the Quran, the authoritative text on Islam, condoning terrorism. Even if the perpetrators of the Saudi bombing are Muslim, there is nothing Islamic about their act.

As for Islamic fundamentalism, the media have yet to tell us what it is. Christian fundamentalism is a term applied to doctrines which are based on a literal interpretation of the Bible. There is no parallel in Islam. Christian fundamentalism is defined in terms of the irreducible minimum of Christian belief. If pressed for an answer, we would say the irreducible minimum for being Muslim is to profess: "There is no god but God! Muhammad is the Messenger of God." In the US, whose constitution guarantees the free exercise of all religions, why is this a public concern?

And as for being "pro-Islam, anti-US" what does that mean? Being pro-Islam has about as much to do with being pro- or anti-US as it has to do with being pro- or anti-Mars!

But the US media, not known for accuracy and fairness when it comes to Islam and Muslims, hide behind meaningless labels, cite the rhetoric of hatemongers, and then bemoan the divisions within the US that are tearing apart the very fabric of our society. The enemy is not out there. It is here. It is among us.

[The Saudi regime steered the FBI investigation toward Iran and its Saudi Shi'ite allies with the apparent intention of keeping US officials away from a trail of evidence that would have led to Osama bin Laden and a complex set of ties between the regime and the Saudi terrorist organizer.

The key to the success of the Saudi deception was FBI director Louis Freeh, who took personal charge of the FBI investigation, letting it be known within the Bureau that he was the "case officer" for the probe, according to former FBI officials.

. . . the signal from the CIA leadership was clear: Iran had already been identified as responsible for the Khobar bombing plot, and there was no interest in pursuing the bin Laden angle.

In September 1996, bin Laden's former business agent Jamal al-Fadl, who had left al-Qaeda over personal grievances, walked into the US Embassy in Eritrea and immediately began providing the best intelligence the United States had ever gotten on bin Laden and al-Qaeda.

But the CIA and FBI made no effort take advantage of his knowledge to get information on possible al-Qaeda involvement in the Khobar Towers bombing--Gareth Porter, "Al-Qaeda excluded from suspect list," Asia Times, July 2, 2009]

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