Diana West

Then the news would be that Peter King is planning to hold hearings on "radical Islam" without calling two of the leading jihad terrorism and Shariah critics as witnesses. And the world (if the world were paying attention) would wonder: What's up with that? Even hearings focused on the mere myth of "radical Islam" would benefit from jihad and Shariah critics, given that jihad and Shariah are about as "radical" as expressions of Islam get.

So what's really going on here?

Point Two: Politico prefaces King's white flag over the witness list by calling it "a move that will come as a relief to Muslim leaders."

That's interesting, particularly after we've unpacked Emerson and Spencer's specialties a little. Why would Muslim leaders be "relieved" that experts on jihad and Shariah aren't going to testify in open hearings before the American people? I think the answer is they don't want to see the doctrinal and historical and cultural links that bind jihad and Shariah to mainstream Islam exposed. Think of it: We've come almost a decade since 9/11 without even lame hearings (like King's unfortunately promise to be) on the links between Islam and jihad. Indeed, both government and media, beginning on 9/12, have increasingly self-censored themselves into decoupling Islam from jihad altogether. Here, all of a sudden, appears the possibility of a bona fide national discussion.

But no. Can't have that. And won't have that. King has banned the experts from the bench. Which makes you wonder what his game is really all about?

Diana West

Diana West is the author of American Betrayal: The Secret Assault on Our Nation's Character (St. Martin's Press, 2013), and The Death of the Grown-Up: How America's Arrested Development Is Bringing Down Western Civilization (St. Martin's Press, 2007).