As news of the ultra-violent Islamic State in Iraq and Syria’s (ISIS) repugnant activities has filtered into America’s consciousness, right-wing politicians and media outlets have made the group the latest cause célèbre in their endless rhetorical war against the twin evils of Islam and immigration.
An extremist group too radical for even Al Qaeda to stomach, ISIS has horrified the world with the recent beheading of two American journalists and its brutal massacres of Iraqi religious minorities. Though there is no evidence that ISIS has operatives in America, ultraconservative Texas Gov. Rick Perry has suggested that the group has sent combatants over the U.S.-Mexico border, while WorldNetDaily, a far-right conspiracist online tabloid, claims that ISIS is working with Mexican drug cartels to infiltrate this country.
The LGBT- and Muslim-bashing hate group Christian Anti-Defamation Commission (CADC), takes it one step further than that.
In an unsigned Sept. 4 blog post apparently written by CADC head Gary Cass (Cass is known to write most of the posts on the CADC site), the group seems convinced that ISIS is already here – and it thinks American Christians must prepare to fight back with “overwhelming Christian just war.” In the post, titled “I’m Islamophobic, Are You?,” CADC says “every true follower of Mohammed wants to … subjugate and murder you. They believe they have been given a mandate by Allah (Satan) to dominate the world.”
That, of course, is in direct conflict with Cass’s own belief that in fact it is Christians who have been given a mandate for dominion. Cass’s mentor, the late D. James Kennedy of the anti-LGBT group Coral Ridge Ministries (of which Cass is the former executive director), once said, “As the vice regents of God, [Christians] are to exercise godly dominion and influence over … every aspect and institution of human society.”
According to the new CADC post, the only way to permanently prevent Muslims from pursuing their “infernal goals” is for Christians to “obtain a gun(s), learn to shoot, teach your kids the Christian doctrines of just war and self defense, create small cells of family and friends that you can rely on if some thing [sic] catastrophic happens and civil society suddenly melts down.”
The CADC post considers and rejects the slightly less harsh options of conversion and deportation. The former is dismissed as “not biblically doable,” because according CADC’s reading of the bible, Arabs are descended from Ishmael, who was cursed to be “an ass of a man; His hand shall be against every man, and every man’s hand against him.” While seemingly keen on deportation (CADC is not specific as to where) or forced sterilization, the post is skeptical that American “politicians will do anything until it is too late, unless, of course, ‘we the people’ demand otherwise.”
Apparently uncertain that “we the people” will come to our senses in time, CADC concludes without regret that, “The only thing that is biblical and that 1400 years of history has shown to work is overwhelming Christian just war and overwhelming self defense.”
“We will have to face the harsh truth that Islam has no place in civilized society. Muslims cannot live in a society based on Christian ideals of equality and liberty. They will always seek to harm us. Now the only question is how many more dead bodies will have to pile up at home and abroad before we crush the vicious seed of Ishmael in Jesus name?”
CADC’s dismissal of Arab Muslims as not worth trying to convert because they are “the vicious seed of Ishmael” bears a chilling similarity to the idea, promulgated by the anti-Semitic Christian Identity theology, that Jews are fundamentally evil because they are the spawn of Satan and Eve. CADC’s theory about Ishmael is reminiscent of the “Hamitic myth,” a racist interpretation of Genesis which holds that black people are descendants of Noah’s son Ham, who was supposedly cursed for gazing without shame on his father’s naked body, and that because of this supposed lineage, blacks are ordained by God to be subservient to whites.
Aside from this unsettling racist digression, the essay’s bellicose tone is in keeping with some of Cass’s more recent activities. After several years out of the spotlight, Cass, who had previously endorsed only political solutions to the problem of achieving Christian dominion, in 2011 teamed up with radical anti-Muslim activists to launch a “911 Defend Students Campaign,” which consisted mainly of leafleting California schools with literature portraying the Prophet Mohammad as a sex-crazed pedophile. One of his partners in that venture was Steve Klein, a Muslim-hating ex-Marine who consulted on “The Innocence of Muslims,” a wildly offensive YouTube film that prompted protests in some majority-Muslim countries. Klein, who in 2011 described Muslims as “a cancer that WILL attack us and KILL as many as they can,” is linked with California’s secretive and militant church at Kaweah, which has worked with the ex-Marine to train a militia that will be ready to battle the jihadist “sleeper cells” it believes are embedded in California’s central valley.
CADC, it would seem, has fully bought into Klein’s paranoia, and it hopes its readers will too. “Forward this article you[r] friends and family,” CADC admonishes its audience. “Let them know the truth about Islam and it’s [sic] danger to our children and grandchildren.”