And yet, 13 years later, the equation of anti-American Islamic terrorism with anti-Israeli Islamic terrorism remains inexplicably controversial.
Witness the collective gasp from the liberal elite when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated bluntly last week that, “Hamas is ISIS. ISIS is Hamas.”
“Not so,” they protested. “Hamas is a national liberation movement.” And, to some extent, it is. But like ISIS (and al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and other radical Islamic groups), Hamas is comprised of fanatics that use violence, summary executions and terror to achieve their objectives. And what, exactly, are those objectives? For ISIS — Islamic State in Iraq and Syria — and Hamas, which are both Sunni groups and both off-shoots of the Muslim Brotherhood, they are the establishment of an Islamic theocracy, the imposition of Sharia law, the purge of apostates and the blood of Westerners (Americans or Israelis, depending on the group in question).
To say that “Hamas is ISIS, and ISIS is Hamas” is not to turn a blind eye to the varying geopolitical interests of different Islamic terrorist groups. Hamas — like the Shiite group Hezbollah — seeks primarily to annihilate Israel and “expel the Jews from Palestine,” while ISIS wants to expel Jews, Christians, Shiites, and all secular Muslims from the entire Middle East.
Hamas’ target may be smaller and its goals less ambitious. But the two groups share common ideologies, objectives and tactics. Most importantly, they share a common enemy — the West and its ideal of liberal, secular democracy.
“Many countries are beginning to understand that [Islamic terrorism] is one front,” Netanyahu said Sunday, and that “[ISIS and Hamas] are branches of the same poisoned tree.”
The Saudis get it. The Jordanians get it. Even Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas gets it.
But our Golfer-in-Chief and his Secretary-of-Wind-Surfing do not. Even the barbaric beheading of journalist James Foley is not enough to wake this administration to the interconnected threat of radical Islam.
Indeed, when asked about Netanyahu’s comparison last week, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said: “I think by definition they are two different groups. They have different leadership. And I’m not going to compare them in that way.”
Well, of course she’s not. Because to do so would be to undermine the president’s narrative of terrorism as disparate acts of “deranged or alienated individuals” (his words). And it would imply that America had a leadership role to play in defeating this global menace.
Remember how Obama began his presidency with an apology tour and a speech in Cairo suggesting that America could contribute best to world peace by breaking down anti-Islamic stereotypes? The Great One actually thought he could make peace with Muslim extremists — after all, it was only George Bush, not America, they hated.
Now, six years into his presidency, his own Defense Department says ISIS is more dangerous than al-Qaeda ever was, and members of Congress believe that the terrorist threat to America is greater now than before 9/11.
Since his first inauguration Obama has failed to understand the nature of the radical Islamic threat. Indeed, in May 2013, he even naively declared that “the global war on terror is over.”
To which ISIS now essentially responds, “How do you like me now?”
The Coming Apocalypse: A Damning Critique Of The West's Failure To Halt Islamic Fanatics And, Now, After A Savage Murder That Confirmed His Worst Fears, He Looks Into The Future