Who's with President Bush?

Frank Gaffney

2/18/2003 12:00:00 AM - Frank Gaffney
President Bush has characterized the choice to be made in this war on terror: "Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists." The stark clarity of this binary decision has served the United States well in marshaling a large number of nations in the fight against al Qaeda and a smaller, but still ample, number for the next phase of this war: the liberation of Iraq. Regrettably, in the months since September 11, 2001, people who have made no secret of their sympathy for terrorists, provided them financial support, excused their murderous attacks and/or sought to impede the prosecution of the war against them have repeatedly been put in the company of the President. In other words, individuals and organizations who appear to be "with the terrorists" have time and again been allowed to be with the President in the White House and elsewhere. For example: In addition to the President, a number of his senior subordinates -- including Cabinet officers -- have met, in some cases more than once, with members of the aforementioned and other organizations with troubling attitudes towards jihadist terrorists. A particularly bizarre instance was FBI Director Robert Mueller’s keynote address last year to the American Muslim Council. The AMC has a long record of activities hostile to the Bush Administration’s prosecution of the war on terror. It has even urged Muslims not to cooperate with the FBI! Nonetheless, according to a press release dated last Thursday, Mr. Mueller has invited the AMC’s chairman, Dr. Yahya Mossa Basha, to attend an upcoming meeting with him and “leaders of major Muslim and Arab-American organizations.” It is very much in the President's interest -- and the Nation's -- that moderate, law-abiding, peace-loving and patriotic American Muslims be embraced and empowered by the Bush Administration and all those who support it in waging a war on terror, not on Islam. To do so, however, the Administration must not allow those who are “with” its enemies in that struggle to continue being with the President and his team.