Far from being an indiscriminate attack on Islam or Muslims, The Third Jihad consistently distinguishes between Islam's peaceful, moderate mainstream and the totalitarian jihadists who seek a global Islamic theocracy. The documentary's opening lines are unambiguous: "This is not a film about Islam. It is about the threat of radical Islam. Only a small percentage of the world's 1.3 billion Muslims are radical."
But where those radicals hold sway, liberty and pluralism are endangered. "Have you ever stopped to think about what would happen if the Islamists won and their version of Sharia law was put into place?" Jasser asks. The 72-minute film depicts the chilling consequences: Subjugation of religious minorities. Abuse of women. "Honor" killings. Anti-gay brutality. Stifling of free speech. Support for terrorism.
Bin Laden may be dead and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed behind bars, but a key message of the film is that jihadists pursue their goal of a West dominated by radical Islam with undiminished fervor. "On my website we talk about the Islamic state of North America by 2050," says Imam Abdul Musa, a prominent Islamist interviewed for The Third Jihad.
Radical groups like CAIR use the calumny of anti-Muslim bigotry to defame those who warn of Islamist militancy. Fear of being smeared has intimidated too many politicians and journalists, which is why the Zuhdi Jassers of the world -- devoted Muslims who are pro-American, pro-democracy, and anti-Islamist -- are inestimable allies in the war against the jihadists.
Happily, he is not fighting alone. During the recent furor over the film, New York City Councilman Robert Jackson, a Muslim, refused to toe the CAIR line. "I initially thought from reading about it that it cast a negative image on all Muslims," he said. "In my opinion it does not. It focuses on the extreme Muslims that are trying to hurt other people." Similarly, the American Islamic Leadership Coalition issued a strong statement defending The Third Jihad as "factually accurate and important."
You needn't take their word for it. Watch the film for yourself at TheThirdJihad.com, and gain crucial insight into one of the central struggles of our time: the war of ideas within Islam.
Jeff Jacoby is an Op-Ed writer for the Boston Globe, a radio political commentator, and a contributing columnist for Townhall.com. href="http://www.townhall.com/Secure/Signup.aspx">Sign up today
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