Guy Benson
Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL) has spent the last 48 hours defiantly fending off denunciations of his execrable attack ad that intentionally distorts his Republican opponent's words while directly comparing him to the Taliban:




The spot begins with a woman's voice ominously intoning, "Religious fanatics try to take away our freedom in Afghanistan, Iran, and right here in Central Florida."  At the ad's conclusion, the narrator tells "Taliban Dan Webster" to keep his hands "off our bodies and our laws."  In case viewers somehow missed Grayson's subtle message, Webster's name is scrawled across the bottom of the screen in faux- Arabic print.  The entire presentation is disgusting and absurd from start to finish--and would have been so even if the clips of Webster weren't deliberately taken out of context, which subsequent evidence clearly proves.  (For a full recap of the controversy, Grayson's greatest hits, and the latest poll showing Webster ahead, be sure to read Jillian's piece on the homepage).

After recovering from the shock of viewing such a caustic and dishonest hit job, one could be forgiven for feeling overwhelmed by Grayson's sheer hypocrisy and baffling metaphors. 

Grayson's spot warns about "religious fanatics" stealing away "our freedoms."  Leaving aside the offensive and tortured application to central Florida, Grayson is correct to state that actual religious fanatics do deprive women of many freedoms--and sometimes their lives--in both Afghanistan and Iran.  As we've witnessed over the last year, Iranian women continue to face ritual stoning and other forms of gruesome violence if they're deemed to have fallen short of their  Islamofascist (and male) rulers' capricious standards.  In Afghanistan, malignant remnants of the wicked Taliban regime treat women like chattel, and routinely extinguish female lives without an ounce of mercy, or a second thought. 

Time Magazine's recent cover story on the plight of women in Taliban-controlled sections of Afghanistan featured an arresting photograph of a beautiful young woman who's nose had been sliced off by the Taliban as retribution for her alleged misdeeds:



A chilling vignette from the piece:

The Taliban pounded on the door just before midnight, demanding that Aisha, 18, be punished for running away from her husband's house... Shivering in the cold air and blinded by the flashlights trained on her by her husband's family, she faced her spouse and accuser. Her in-laws treated her like a slave, Aisha pleaded. They beat her. If she hadn't run away, she would have died. Her judge, a local Taliban commander, was unmoved. Later, he would tell Aisha's uncle that she had to be made an example of lest other girls in the village try to do the same thing. The commander gave his verdict, and men moved in to deliver the punishment. Aisha's brother-in-law held her down while her husband pulled out a knife. First he sliced off her ears. Then he started on her nose. Aisha passed out from the pain but awoke soon after, choking on her own blood. The men had left her on the mountainside to die.  This didn't happen 10 years ago, when the Taliban ruled Afghanistan. It happened last year.

If American forces precipitously withdraw from that country, the story explains, Aisha's torturers would again seize widespread power, and would immediately and brutally re-subjugate women.  This would represent an egregious instance of "religious fanatics...taking away [women's] freedoms" -- the very notion that Grayson purports to find so alarming.

Yet Grayson demands an immediate US withdrawal from Afghanistan, calling the American military "occupation" a pointless waste of resources.  He went so far as to pen a column for the Huffington Post urging American leaders to heed Osama bin Laden's advice and abandon the country, post haste.  Even if one shares Grayson's concerns about an open-ended US commitment in Afghanistan, one might nonetheless be disturbed by his callous lack of concern about the unimaginable horrors that would befall many good Afghans if we were to exit in an irresponsible or reckless manner.  In an online Q&A session with Washington Post readers last November, Grayson flippantly pronounced himself unconcerned with any such fallout:

Anonymous: I agree with your stand to pull out of Afghanistan but what answer do you give to those who think there will be chaos after our departure and we are therefore obligated to stay?

Rep. Alan Grayson: No. There is chaos right now in Somalia (I know; I've been there), and we managed to find our way out of there. What's next, occupation of Burkina Faso?


The disturbing reality is that Alan Grayson really isn't genuinely concerned about religious fanatics stripping women of their rights.  He's far more interested in painting conservative Republicans as the dangerous zealots, and he ham-handedly tries to accomplish that goal by lumping his opponent in with a truly bloodthirsty lot--the Taliban--to whom Grayson is eager to capitulate in Afghanistan. 

It turns out Grayson wasn't lying, for once, when he informed Ed Schultz's audience whom he identifies as the real foes of this country:

"Fox News and their Republican collaborators are the enemy of America."

It's a disgrace that these "enemies" appear to be the only ones Grayson is actually invested in defeating.

Guy Benson

Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Senior Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography