Pamela Geller

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Pamela Geller is an American conservative blogger, at Atlas Shrugged, the Truth About Islam, and is known for suspicion of both clearly radical Islamism, but also concerned that Islam is inherently dangerous to the West. " I believe in the idea of a moderate Muslim. I do not believe in the idea of a moderate Islam... I think a moderate Muslim is a secular Muslim." New York Times reporter Anne Bernard, Geller asked, "so you’re saying if someone is a devout Muslim, meaning if he or she is practicing and believing in the tenets of Islam, they cannot in your view be a political moderate?" Geller responded with a simple "no". [1]

She is also the executive director of Freedom Defense Initiative (FDI)/Stop Islamization of America (SIOA), and is a regular columnist for Andrew Breitbart's Big Government and Big Journalism, and the American Thinker. With Robert Spencer, she coauthored the book The Post-American Presidency: The Obama Administration's War on America. Her interviews on experts on jihad include John Bolton, Geert Wilders, Bat Ye'or, Benjamin Netanyahu, Mark Steyn, Steven Emerson, Christopher Hitchens and Natan Sharansky.

The site "won the 2005 "Best New Blog" Jewish & Israeli Blog Award, was a finalist in the 2005 Weblog Awards, and finished in third place for "Best Conservative Blog" in the 2008 Weblog Awards. Atlas also won the "Grande Conservative Blogress Diva" Award for 2008 and for 2009."[2]

Qur'anic translation & prayer

One of her positions is "I also believe that a true translation, an accurate translation of the Koran, is really not available in English, according to many of the Islamic scholars that I’ve spoken to. That’s deeply troubling. And I don’t think that many westernized Muslims know when they pray five times a day that they’re cursing Christians and Jews five times a day. I don’t think they know that. " Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic sent this to Reuel Marc Gerecht, generally considered a pro-Israel hawk but also an expert on the Arab world. [3]

Gerecht responded,
Let's take the Qur'an first, Muslim prayers second. Concerning the translation of the Muslim Holy Book, who might these Islamic scholars be? Since Ms. Geller is without Arabic, it's impossible for her to compare the original to a translation. She must depend upon others, who, if I follow Ms. Geller, are involved in a conspiracy to hide the ugly truth about Islam. If the translations were more "accurate," we would all see what's apparent to Ms. Geller, who ascertained the truth despite the blinding scholarly conspiracy. One has to ask whether Ms. Geller has perused the translation masterpiece by Cambridge's late great A.J. Arberry or my personal favorite, the awesomely erudite, more literal translation and commentary by Edinburgh's late great Richard Bell? Both gentlemen are flag-waving members of Edward Said's most detested species--Orientalists. Now if you look at these translations--especially if you look at Bell's, which is blessed with exhaustive notes in a somewhat complicated formatting--even the uninitiated can get an idea that Muhammad had trouble with Christians and especially Jews during his life. If you look at the Qur'anic commentary by Edinburgh's late great William Montgomery Watt (another Orientalist), who was always attentive to Muslim sensibilities in his writings, you can also fine in clear English Muhammad's unpleasant ruminations about Christians and Jews.

"Ground Zero Mosque"

She denies being a leader against it, but does say she gives "voice to the voiceless", saying 70% of Americans oppose it.
I treated the ground zero mosque story the way I treat every other story. To me it was an outrage, to me it was deeply offensive, to me it was indicative that interfaith dialogue and mutual respect and mutual understanding is a one-way street with Islamic supremacists, not Muslims. I believe that Muslims are more victimized by Islamic supremacists than even non-Muslims. But I covered it the way I covered any other story.[1]

Justin Elliott, writing in Salon, argues that Geller was a key in creating the issue regarding the Cordoba House project. He suggests the term "Ground Zero Mosque" first was used in Fox News interview on 21 December 2009, with Laura Ingraham, guest host for Bill O'Reilly, talking to Abdul Rauf's wife, Daisy Khan. The tone of this interview was generally positive. [4]

Elliott's LEXIS/NEXIS search shows no reference until early May 2010. On 6 May, Geller blogged, "This is Islamic domination and expansionism. The location is no accident. Just as Al-Aqsa was built on top of the Temple in Jerusalem." The next day, her group, Stop Islamization of America, whose associate director is Robert Spencer, launched the "Campaign Offensive: Stop the 911 Mosque!" There was a brief mention on the 9th, in the New York Post column of Andrea Peyser, that "there are better places to put a mosque."

The term did not hit conventional media, according to Elliott, until 13 May, when Peyser wrote a full article, quoting from Geller: "What could be more insulting and humiliating than a monster mosque in the shadow of the World Trade Center buildings that were brought down by an Islamic jihad attack? Any decent American, Muslim or otherwise, wouldn't dream of such an insult. It's a stab in the eye of America." Peyser stated the opening date would be September 11, 2011. [5]

Soup

In Canada, Campbell'a Soup has offered a line of halal packaged foods, which they do not plan to offer in the U.S. Geller has protested the move, saying that the Islamic Society of North America, not halal, is the problem: "No one is suggesting they refrain from this line. No one is suggesting they not have halal food. I'm not against halal food any more than I'm against kosher food. My issue is who's doing the certifying." Geller, who is an active critic of the proposed mosque in lower Manhattan. alleges that ISNA has ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, which is not listed as a terrorist organization by the U.S. Department of State.

The matter, however, has spread to a Facebook page, "Boycott Campbell Soup for their certification of their products as halal and supporting the Muslim Brotherhood." [6]

Respite from jihad

Geller is very familiar with cinema history and has written thoughtfully about reflecting on the Western culture expressed in movies. The does, however, say "Islamic law forbids representational art. It forbids music. With its laws allowing polygamy and wife-beating, it forbids love. And these are the kinds of laws they are trying to bring into Europe and America today, right under our noses." In contrast, she says,
American music, American film. These things should rightly be considered two of our unquantifiable gifts to the world. We ought to look back in order to go forward in the right direction, and so it is useful to revisit them. Grab the popcorn, dim the lights, sit down, kick off the jihad, and indulge in a thoroughly Western pastime! Revisit the days when America was still America. And gather the strength to fight -- for art, for music, and for love.[7]

References