Hamas and Hezbollah: The Standard Response

Hamas is a US government designated terrorist organization. When confronted with an accusation that he or she supports Hamas, the standard Muslim response is, "I am not a terrorist."

Wow. What a non-sequitor!

Hamas is a Sunni Muslim political organization in the Middle East that uses various tactics to achieve its aims, including running people for elected office, offering charity to widows (especially widows of martyrs a.k.a. suicide bombers) and, yes, terrorism.

Here is the rub. Many -- and perhaps most -- Muslims do not agree that Hamas is a terrorist organization. Why?

There are a couple of reasons, I think. First, they see the situation in Israel and the Palestinians in the West Bank as extremely unjust and Hamas as the most passionate fighter against that injustice. So, in their support of Hamas, they focus on the goals of Hamas and discount Hamas's terrorism methods.

Second, they deny that Hamas engages in terrorism. Terrorist attacks are defined as those aimed at innocent civilians. In the view of many Muslim apologists, no one in Israel is an innocent civilian. Thus, they define away the terrorism problem.

Hezbollah is a Shiite organization similar to Hamas with a history of committing terrorist acts (including taking hostages, and bombing the US embassy in Beirut) directly against the United States. Yet, shockingly, a local Muslim who is a former United States Marine, Mahmoud El-Yousseph, approves of Hezbollah, calling its members "freedom fighters." For an excellent rundown of the activities of Hezbollah, see Central Ohioans Against Terrorism.

What an amazing cognitive dissonance.

I do not for a moment believe that these Muslims would strap bombs on themselves in America. But I have serious concerns about them when they work for any branch of the federal, state or local government, if they can persuade themselves to overlook the terrorist activities of Hamas and Hezbollah. they are either intellectually dishonest (mostly) or they are hiding their jihadist tendencies.

We need to send a clear message to the Muslim community: if you want us to believe that you oppose terrorism, you must also denounce organizations who use terrorist tactics, even if you generally support the goals of the terrorist organizations. You cannot oppose terrorism by supporting terrorist organizations. You cannot make these organizations into non-terrorist organizations by denying that they are terrorist organizations.

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