Monday, July 28, 2003

Pipes for Peace?

In a controversial move, the Bush administration nominated Daniel Pipes to serve on the board of the US Institute of Peace back in April. The Senate was supposed to begin hearings on whether to accept Pipes' nomination last week, but they have since been delayed.

Incidentally, Pipes provided plenty of ammunition for his critics in a speech he delivered to the Young America's Foundation over the weekend. This is how the speech was reported by the Media Research Center's Cybercast News Service:

After September 11, 2001, when President Bush declared a war on terrorism, Pipes noted he should have called for war on "militaristic Islam."

"Terror is a tactic; it's what they use to fight us," Pipes said. "Our enemy is not terrorism but those who stand behind it." The true enemy is what Pipes called a "body of ideas" that "militaristic Islam" supports.

In fact, it would be difficult to get the Middle East to accept Western ways, Pipes said. They have a different outlook and are reluctant to "go the Christian way," he said.

Pipes added that he doesn't perceive the Islamic people as divided into two groups: the radical terrorists and those who are not. He said "there is no history behind such an outlook and nothing that would support such optimism."

"It would be like saying there were good and bad Nazis," Pipes noted.
Note, especially, the last two paragraphs. This is a perfect example of why the Senate should say no to Pipes.

Update: CNS has since retracted the description of the comments excerpted above:

The article erroneously stated that Pipes doesn't perceive the Islamic people as divided into two groups - radical terrorists and those who are not. In fact, Pipes used the term "supporters of militant Islam," not Islamic people.

"My view is 'no, there is no good and bad in militant Islam,' no more than there are good and bad Nazis," Pipes said, according to an audiotape of his remarks.
If you're looking for reasons to be wary of Pipes, perhaps you'll have to look elsewhere. Or, just peruse Pipes' website.