This piece is co-authored by Buckley Carlson
Imam Feisal Adbul Rauf and his wife, Daisy Khan, the two halves of the public – and outwardly, “peaceful” – face of the Ground Zero Mosque effort, have proved themselves extremely competent practitioners of modern day media interaction; soft-spoken and articulate, they are faithfully “on-message” with their aspirations to help “bridge” the cultural divide, and to be regarded as the “anti-terrorists.”
Rauf and Kahn are nimble, and seemingly non-threatening. They are also the lucky beneficiaries of a compliant and un-inquisitive media.
For who can honestly begrudge Rauf and Kahn their inability to reconcile Rauf’s post-911 assertion that America was an “accessory” to the terrorist slaughter of 3,000 of her own; their refusal to disclose the sources of the $100 Million they are raising; or their malleable condemnation of “terrorism?” And is their apparent condemnation of terrorism conditional, such as it is with many who identify with political Islam? Also, what about Rauf’s refusal to denounce the violent terrorist group Hamas as a terrorist organization?
These would seem the salient questions…and yet, these queries are never made during the “interviews” to which these two submit. If only their “mainstream” inquisitors would dig as deep within the Muslim community as they do looking for any trace or nuance that could be construed as “racism” among the “tea parties.”
Rauf and Kahn’s public retreat from the use of the term “Cordoba House” – with it’s unmistakable historical reference to an Islamic culture that celebrates military victories by eradicating all traces of its enemy (and importantly, that vanquished enemy’s religious culture) by erecting a mosque as an enduring monument to the Supreme Power of Islam – certainly bespeaks a sophistication about “communications framing” that you aren’t likely to find in many “men (or women) of the cloth.” So, let there be no doubt, these two are exceptional.
But, what if Rauf and Kahn were more than just clever media manipulators and were actually “front men” for something more insidious?