War On Terror: Maintaining a high level of vigilance against an enemy is wearisome business, especially in this war. We salute those who have not succumbed to 9/11 fatigue.
One tireless watchdog is Rep. Sue Myrick, R-N.C., who earlier this year founded the Anti-Terrorism/Jihad Caucus to educate fellow lawmakers and Americans in general about the threat from militant Islam.
"The general public doesn't understand the threats we face from radical jihadists — who they are, what they want and what we can do about the threat," the feisty Myrick says on her Web site. "Americans are not being properly informed about the nature of the jihadist threat and their plans to do us harm."
This is an understatement. The media and academia have whitewashed jihad or ducked the issue entirely, petrified as they are of looking intolerant toward Muslims. Meantime, well-funded apologists such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations have gone on the offensive against the few critics who have spoken out, further confusing Americans about the gravity of the threat.
"The jihadists have become incredibly advanced in their public relations efforts," Myrick lamented. And we have limited tools to counteract their propaganda, thanks to institutionalized religious tolerance even for creeds hostile to our way of life.
The Anti-Jihad Caucus dares to right that imbalance. Its main goal is to educate members of Congress about the Islamic threat so they can talk candidly to their constituents about it. Myrick has already recruited more than 80 members to join her — including even some Democrats, such as Bud Cramer of Alabama and Ben Chandler of Kentucky.
"The group is currently learning about a variety of issues involving jihad, such as the history of Islam, the differences and similarities of Sunni and Shia Muslims, terrorist financing, terrorist use of the Internet, and terrorist infiltration techniques," Myrick said.
She has personally read numerous books on Islam and terrorism, as well as spoken to dozens of experts on the subject. Most striking in her own education, Myrick says, is discovering that jihad does not simply mean "internal struggle against sin," such as giving up smoking, as CAIR and other apologists have tried to sugarcoat it to mean.
Jihad, she says, is holy war against infidels. "It is the external jihad which should have everyone concerned," she said. "This jihad is used by groups like al-Qaida to justify killing innocent people they label 'infidels.' "
Another group is challenging Islamic apologists and terror supporters on college campuses. Led by Daniel Pipes, a Mideast scholar, Campus Watch seeks to expose professors who gloss over the religious roots of jihad and blame America and Israel for Islamic violence.
His Philadelphia-based nonprofit group singles out for scorn John Esposito of Georgetown University, who has consistently dismissed the threat from Islamist movements and even from Osama bin Laden. Not surprisingly, Esposito's pro-Islamic center at Georgetown is supported by a huge endowment from a Saudi prince.
Campus Watch aims to alert university regents, administrators, alumni and parents of students to "the problems in Mideast studies and encourage them to address existing problems."
"We challenge these stakeholders to take back their universities, and not passively accept the mistakes, extremism, intolerance, apologetics and abuse when these occur," it adds.
Campus Watch invites students to lodge complaints about such activities on campus, including those of the Muslim Student Association, which was founded by members of the dangerous Muslim Brotherhood, a worldwide jihadist movement whose motto is "The Quran is our constitution, the prophet is our guide; Death for the glory of Allah is our greatest ambition."
Education is key to winning this war, and the Anti-Jihad Caucus and Campus Watch are courageously doing their part. We need more like them.