In an emerging scandal, NBC News has produced tapes proving beyond deniability that the new deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence is ... a Christian. Lt. Gen. William G. "Jerry" Boykin has been captured on a series of grainy tapes, attesting to his faith at churches and prayer breakfasts. Having driven the Judeo-Christian value system out of the public square, the classrooms and the Alabama Supreme Court, liberals now want to drive it out of church.
In one "inflammatory" remark, Boykin said that the enemy was not Osama bin Laden or Saddam Hussein, but "is a spiritual enemy. He's called the principality of darkness. The enemy is a guy called Satan."
Islamic leaders in the United States instantly denounced Boykin's unflattering characterization of bin Laden and Hussein as an attack on Islam. They haven't been this huffy since describing bin Laden as "not a true Muslim" and Hussein as a "secularist." If our enemies aren't "true Muslims," why are the "true Muslims" always so offended on their behalf?
James Zogby, president of the Arab American Institute, has called for Boykin to be fired. After the 9-11 attacks, Zogby said: "Regardless of who is ultimately found to be responsible for these terrorist murders, no ethnic or religious community should be treated as suspect and collectively blamed." But apparently they are collectively offended. They might want to think through the implications of that. If we have to apologize for the general, then maybe they should apologize for 9-11.
Zogby made the curious argument that Boykin is "unfit for the position" because he has "become a weapon our enemies will use against us." On Fox News' "Hannity and Colmes," a Clinton administration official made the same inane point, saying Boykin's remarks "could be used as a recruitment video for Osama bin Laden." I love the idea of moderate Arabs carefully poring over American newspapers before deciding whether or not to join al-Qaida.
In fact, an Arab-American was quoted in the Boston Globe saying Boykin's remarks "made most people in our community think the Bush administration is racist." That's interesting. The deputy undersecretary of defense calls Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein evil – and all those patriotic Arabs we keep hearing about are lost to Bush forever! Osama supporters are now moving decisively to the Dean camp.
In another talk, Gen. Boykin recalled seeing a Somalian warlord on television laughing at Americans and saying they would never capture him because his God, Allah, would protect him. Boykin said: "Well, you know what? I knew that my God was bigger than his. I knew that my God was a real God, and his was an idol."