Cliff May

I've been traveling a lot lately so I've been scanned, I've been patted and, on one occasion, there was even a close encounter with my "junk." But I am not among those who are cross with the men and women of the Transportation Security Administration. Why not? Because while waiting in the security queue, I always pause to remember who is really responsible for this inconvenience, this invasion of privacy and this monumental taxpayer expense: fanatics who adhere to interpretations of Islam that command the slaughter of non-Muslims as part of what they call a jihad -- a religious war -- that is to continue until infidels submit to Muslim supremacy and domination.

Most of the world's more than a billion Muslims are not waging jihad. But only a small minority denounces the militants without exception or equivocation. Part of the explanation: A Muslim who stands up to the jihadis will be branded by his more bellicose co-religionists as a traitor and an apostate - crimes for which they may be targeted for death along with Christians, Jews, Hindus and other "enemies of God."

Fundamentalist Islam is not the only doctrine that inspires individuals to engage in terrorism. But this talking point should not be pushed to the breaking point: Timothy McVeigh and Ted Kaczynski are rare and isolated cases. The jihadis, by contrast, are organized and supported by a network of oil-rich sheikhs and mullahs, by a long list of "civil rights" groups claiming to fight "Islamophobia" and, most significantly, by powerful Islamic regimes.

The Islamic Republic of Iran has long been the world's leading sponsor of terrorism. It has facilitated the killing of Americans in Iraq and Afghanistan and, back in 1983, it tasked Hezbollah, which functions as its foreign legion, to suicide-bomb American peacekeepers in Lebanon. Iran's rulers now seek nuclear weapons.

Saudi Arabia plays both ends against the middle. It fights al-Qaeda even as it supports tens of thousands of mosques and madrassas around the world in which the fundamentalist Wahhabi reading of Islam is preached and taught. In its 2010 International Religious Freedom Report, released last week, the U.S. State Department noted that Saudi textbooks "continued to contain overtly intolerant statements against Jews and Christians and subtly intolerant statements against Shi'a and other religious groups." According to a State Department cable that was included in the most recent WikiLeaks document dump, Saudi donors remain the chief financiers of al-Qaeda and other Sunni terrorist groups.


Cliff May

Clifford D. May is the President of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies.