Not long ago, some predicted that the newfound ease of recording and disseminating videos would keep Islamists on their best behavior during anti-Islamist events, thus bringing the familiar displays of hatred and thuggery to a close. Robert Spencer dubbed it the "YouTube effect," arguing that "jihadists, their allies, and their dupes have realized how bad they look when they try to intimidate and shout down anti-jihadists."
So much for that. If the numerous interruptions, all captured on video, of a February 8 talk at UC Irvine by Ambassador Michael Oren did not cast grave doubts on this theory, then two incidents from the past week certainly should. Big surprise: both occurred on campus as well.
The first was not a disruption, but a shocking admission from a Muslim Students Association (MSA) member at UC San Diego, following a lecture by activist David Horowitz on May 10 (video here). In the question-and-answer session, the keffiyeh-clad woman asked Horowitz to expound on "the connection between the MSA and jihad terrorist networks." He began with his standard riposte: "Will you condemn Hamas, here and now?" She refused to do so, leading to an exchange that ended with her coldly expressing support for genocide:
Horowitz: I have had this experience at UC Santa Barbara, where there were fifty members of the Muslim Students Association sitting right in the rows there. And throughout my hour talk I kept asking them, "Will you condemn Hezbollah and Hamas?" And none of them would. And then when the question period came, the president of the Muslim Students Association was the first person to ask questions. And I said, "Before you start, will you condemn Hezbollah?" And he said, "Well, that question is too complicated for a yes-no answer." So I said, "Okay, I'll put it to you this way. I am a Jew. The head of Hezbollah has said that he hopes that we will gather in Israel so he doesn't have to hunt us down globally. For it or against it?!"
MSA member: For it.
The second incident took place a day later in Sweden, at a lecture on free speech given by Lars Vilks, the cartoonist who was targeted in a recent murder plot for representing Muhammad as a dog. Vilks started by exhibiting "what some might deem offensive pictures of Christian symbols," according to one report. Naturally, no trouble there. But then he ran a clip from a film that depicts the Islamic prophet going to a gay bar — and chaos promptly erupted (video here):
When Mr. Vilks showed a scene from the film at Uppsala University in Sweden, a protester charged the dais and hit him, breaking his glasses. Police were forced to detain or pepper-spray some unruly members of the crowd as other protesters yelled "Allahu akbar" — "God is great."
Islamists labor to conceal their actual beliefs and darker tendencies, but sooner or later their true selves burst through. Such repeated failures may be the Achilles' heel of the stealth jihad.