Pamela Geller’s praise for the desecration of dead bodies is not “funny”
by Sheila Musaji
After a video surfaced on youtube of U.S. military personnel urinating on the dead bodies of Afghans, many individuals and organizations objected to such behavior.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said such behavior is “entirely inappropriate for members of the United States military. I have seen the footage, and I find the behavior depicted in it utterly deplorable. I condemn it in the strongest possible terms. Those found to have engaged in such conduct will be held accountable to the fullest extent.”
Carsten Jacobson, a spokesman for Nato’s international security assistance force in Afghanistan said such an act was ‘despicable’ and ‘grossly against all the moral values the coalition forces stand for’.
Gen. Jim Amos, the Marine Corps commandant said “The behavior depicted in the video is wholly inconsistent with the high standards of conduct and warrior ethos that we have demonstrated throughout our history. Accordingly, late yesterday I requested that the Naval Criminal Investigative Service pull together a team of their very best agents and immediately assign them responsibility to thoroughly investigate every aspect of the filmed event.”
Sen. John McCain, a Navy veteran who fought and was held prisoner in the Vietnam War, said the incident “makes me so sad.” McCain, the top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, called the Marine Corps one of America’s strongest institutions and said its image has apparently been tarnished by “a handful of obviously undisciplined people.” “There should be an investigation, and these young people should be punished.”
Pentagon spokesman and Navy Capt. John Kirby said: “We are deeply troubled by the video. Whoever it is, and whatever the circumstances—which we know is under investigation—it is egregious behaviour and unacceptable for a member of the military.”
One of those organizations objecting to this barbaric behavior was CAIR. In a letter faxed to Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta, CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad wrote:
“We condemn this apparent desecration of the dead as a violation of our nation’s military regulations and of international laws of war prohibiting such disgusting and immoral actions.
“If verified as authentic, the video shows behavior that is totally unbecoming of American military personnel and that could ultimately endanger other soldiers and civilians.
“We trust that this disturbing incident will be promptly investigated in a transparent manner and that appropriate actions will be taken based on the results of that investigation. Any guilty parties must be punished to the full extent allowed by the Uniform Code of Military Justice and by relevant American laws.”
Pamela Geller wrote only about CAIR’s objections, and said that this was “siding with the jihadists against the US military” and called their objection an example of CAIR whipping “itself up into an Islamic frenzy”. During the course of her rant she said Here’s the thing. Hamas liars, CAIR, say [sic] jihad and pure Islam is “fringe,” “extremist.” So why do they CAIR about disrespecting the Taliban? According to CAIR lies, Taliban and jihadists do not represent Islam, they have “hijacked Islam”; so why would CAIR care about “respect”? CAIR calls these Marines immoral, but considers honor killings, clitorectomies, forced marriage, child marriage, polygamy, subjugation of women, slaughter of non-Muslims, Jew hatred moral? She closed with “I love these Marines. Perhaps this is the infidel interpretation of the Islamic ritual of washing and preparing the body for burial.”
Geller, unlike CAIR must have inside information and therefore, she doesn’t need any verification of authenticity. At this point, there has been no investigation. No one knows who the dead are, or whether or not they are Taliban. No one even knows if they were fighting the soldiers in the video, or if this is another case like that of the “kill team” who murdered Afghan civilians in cold blood, for sport, and then mutilated the bodies and took “trophies” of body parts. No one knows who the soldiers are, or if this is a genuine video. No one that is, except for Geller.
Actually, contrary to the Islamophobes lies, you only have to read through this list of fatwas and statements by Muslim scholars condemning all sorts of violence, terrorism, beheadings, suicide terrorism, honor killings, clitorectomies, child marriage, anti-Semitism, holocaust denial, etc. to know that Muslims themselves strongly object to such behavior no matter who commits it. And, CAIR itself has condemned terrorism and other forms of sectarian and political violence.
CAIR and all decent Muslims say extremists are “fringe”. And, any Muslims who have participated in such behavior are not acting according to Islamic standards. Such behavior is to be condemned. I can’t even comprehend the mental gymnastics that a person would have to go through to advocate for and encourage the emulation of the worst behavior of extremists. Anyone, anywhere who desecrates the bodies of the dead is engaging in reprehensible behavior.
If it is found that this is a genuine video, and this incident actually happened, then any decent human being would find such behavior disgusting. And, it is clear from the statements above by many other individuals who don’t belong to CAIR, and are not Muslims, decent people find such behavior reprehensible. It would also seem that if Geller truly “loves” these young soldiers, then she would be concerned about their mental, emotional, and spiritual health.
A few of Geller’s readers comments show just what sorts of extremists find her site worthwhile: — I don’t care if they bury these murdering pigs in feces and blood! Kill ‘em all and let G*d sort ‘em out! — You CAIR bastards would really be going nuts if those brave Marines didn’t turn off that camera before they came back and took a shit on those goat-fuckers. Burn up with rage! Do something crazy! We’re waiting for you to pop, one at a time! You death cult members in The States are living in front of a wall of eyes that never blink. And if you don’t behave it might soon be your day to wear the salty piss of the noble warriors who hose you down on behalf of a proud and grateful nation. — Ditto…..CAIR….Your days are numbered. The citizens of this nation have had about enough of your shit. It is clear you have not the slightest idea what we will, and can do when backed into a corner by sick fools such as yourselves. Your day of reckoning will come. God Bless our warriors and the horses they rode in on .... CAIR ... Piss-off. — Oh what a disgrace if such a despised and base race, which worships a misogynist pedophile demon, should be allowed to massacre a people which has the faith of omnipotent God! With what reproaches will the Lord overwhelm us if we do not promptly and fully aid those who are being brutalized and murdered because they profess the Jewish or Christian religion! Let those who have been accustomed unjustly to wage private warfare against other of the faithful now all unite and go against the Mohammedans in a Holy Crusade and end with total victory this war against monstrous evil which should have been begun and completed long ago. Let those who for too long a time have been dhimma, now again become knights. Let those who have been fighting in service of Mohammedans against their own Christian brothers and sisters and their own Jewish cousins now fight in a proper way against all the followers of the misogynist pedophile demon. Let those who have been wearing themselves out in both body and soul in vain attempt to win the dark hearts of the Mohammedans now labor for glorious honor against them. Behold! On the one side will be the completely destroyed Mohammedans, on the other the fierce and righteous protectors of humanity. On the one side will be the destroyed enemies of the Lord, on the other, his friends who will shout at all the Mohammedans as they destroy them, “It is the will of God! It is the will of God!! It is the will of God!!!” — Islam is a creed that people CHOOSE to follow. These sick mutts need to be urinated on. Defecated on too. Islam has utter contempt for others, we are just returning the favor. F&*K Islam. F^&K Mohammed. F#$K Muslims.
CAIR wrote a follow up press release titled Tea Party Speaker Says She ‘Loves’ Marines Who Desecrated Corpses to which Geller responded with an article titled Hamas-CAIR Attacks US Marines, Pamela Geller, and Atlas Readers in Defense of Jihadists in which she says Notoriously anti-American Hamas-CAIR has issued one of their priceless hate and fatwa-inducing missives attacking my very funny post: CAIR Condemns Alleged “Desecration” of Dead Jihadists by U.S. Marines in Afghanistan.” In this article she repeated her original statement “So let me be perfectly clear. I DO love those Marines. We are at war with an enemy that means to slaughter us and overthrow the United States of America. I don’t CAIR that these Marines wee wee’ed on murderous savages.”
What had CAIR said this time? The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today condemned remarks by Pamela Geller, the leader of an anti-Muslim hate group and a frequent speaker at Tea Party events, applauding the alleged desecration of Afghan corpses by U.S. Marines. CAIR then listed the background of this incident as outlined above and mentioned many of Geller’s past statements, and some of the hateful comments on her article.
Geller is wrong. Geller’s remarks, and the remarks of her followers should be condemned by decent people. There is nothing “funny” about her post.
There is a reason that the ADL (A Jewish anti-defamation group) has said that Pamela Geller & Robert Spencer’s Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA) is a “group that promote an extreme anti-Muslim agenda”. There is a reason that The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated SIOA as a hate group, and that they are featured in the SPLC reports Jihad Against Islam and The Anti-Muslim Inner Circle. There is a reason that Geller and Spencer are featured prominently in the Center for American Progress “Fear Inc.” report on the Islamophobia network in America. There is a reason that Geller is featured in the People for the American Way Right Wing Playbook on Anti-Muslim Extremism. There is a reason that Geller is featured in the NYCLU report Religious Freedom Under Attack: The Rise of Anti-Mosque Activities in New York State. There is a reason that Geller is featured in the Political Research Associates report Manufacturing the Muslim menace: Private firms, public servants, and the threat to rights and security. There is a reason that the SIOA’s trademark patent was denied by the U.S. government due to its anti-Muslim nature. There is a reason that they are featured in our TAM Who’s Who of the Anti-Muslim/Anti-Arab/Islamophobia Industry. There is a reason that Geller is featured in just about every legitimate report on Islamophobia and anti-Muslim hatred.
And the reason is not that she is “funny”. Simply reading the comments her writings provoke shows that what she writes is taken all too seriously by a certain segment of the population.
Caner Dagli has just published an email exchange between himself and Geller’s partner, Robert Spencer.
This was the tail end of a rather long email exchange, this particular one occasioned by Pamela Geller’s praise for the urinating Marines. I’m generally against publishing emails, but this alarmed me and I want it out there in case he pulls a stunt. Spencer will likely cry foul, but he’s free to publish the entire exchange if he likes. I will do myself if he tries to use selective quotation to smear me. The email exchange began when he mischaracterized some things I said on Twitter, and I contacted him requesting that he amend his post on his blog. Most recent first:
On the contrary, you are the one who has ignored reasonable questions I asked you and brushed by substantive points I made in response to your own points. Then you accuse me of being incapable of reason? You have a fine capacity for projection.
What will you do at Holy Cross if I come up to you? Howl for the police? I shall bring a video camera in case you decide to play the faux-victim game of which your colleagues are so fond.
On Jan 12, 2012, at 1:10 PM, Caner Dagli wrote:
Incredible. You couldn’t even rise to saying, “Maybe what she wrote is in bad taste.”
Under no circumstances should you try to contact me if you visit Holy Cross. These last few exchanges have shown me that you are incapable of reason. At best you are a dupe, and worst just a standard issue hypocrite.
On Jan 12, 2012, at 1:00 PM, Robert Spencer wrote:
With what? That this is the infidel interpretation of the Islamic ritual of washing the body to prepare it for burial? Actually I doubt that that is what these Marines had in mind. Geller is of course engaging in satirical hyperbole, which she does with verve and bite. Leftist writers often engage in something analogous to this, although none of them are as intelligent, quick-witted or talented as she is, but when she does it, they suddenly become blunt literalists incapable of recognizing satire or irony, and schoolmarmishly insist that she assuage their hurt feelings.
In any case, I certainly did not recommend you meet her, but only asked if you had done so, since you seemed to know all about her real beliefs and motivations. In fact, she is an individual of extraordinary vision and perceptiveness, with a courageous and indefatigable commitment to freedom. I am proud to know her and work with her.
On Jan 12, 2012, at 12:31 PM, Caner Dagli wrote:
So you still think I need to meet Geller before coming to some kind of judgment about her? “I love these Marines. Perhaps this is the infidel interpretation of the Islamic ritual of washing and preparing the body for burial.”
Spencer and Geller can attempt to paint Geller’s callous and heartless statements as “funny” or as “satirical hyperbole”, but that doesn’t hold up to any sort of scrutiny.
It has been reported that Joseph Chamblin, Marine That Urinated On Dead Taliban Says He Would Do It Again: “Chamblin, who was one of the Marines shown in the video, was court-martialed and pleaded guilty. He was fined $500 and demoted, WSOC said. The other Marines in the video, as well as several others who allegedly played a role in the incident, faced similar charges. Chamblin told WSOC the incident occurred after a gun battle between his men and the Taliban left nearly a dozen enemy dead. He and his colleagues were ordered to recover the bodies.”
During the interview Chamblin said: “If an infidel touches the body, they’re not going to Mecca or paradise. So, now these insurgents see what happens when you mess with us.” Which is a totally incorrect assumption. Such behavior would not be any sort of a deterrent, but only further antagonize the enemy forces. It is right up there with the Islamophobic fail of Jihawg Ammo or the silver bullet gun oil, or even Bible Verses on Rifle Scopes which only provide propaganda ammo to the Taliban and other extremists.
Pamela Geller immediately posted My kind of Man .... oh yeah in which she commented:
Atlas readers are familiar with my whispering, every now and again, “I want me some Robert Mitchum,” my absolute preference for the disappearing cultural icon—men who love their masculinity, as opposed to the present day’s iconic “metrosexual,” you know—those who fight their masculinity. Anyway, I couldn’t help but of think of that archetype watching this Marine. Honest, forthright, rational and true.
Yes! And he’s right. It is a deterrent. And while my work pales in comparison to this hero, I, too, stand behind my posts that garnered enormous hate mail from the left as well.
Sgt. Chamblin has been tried. There are still three more trials to come.
Sheila Musaji is the founding editor of The American Muslim (TAM), published since 1989. Sheila received the Council on American-Islamic Relations 2007 Islamic Community Service Award for Journalism, and the Loonwatch Anti-Loons of 2011: Profiles in Courage Award for her work in fighting Islamophobia. Sheila was selected for inclusion in the 2012 edition of The Muslim 500: The World’s 500 Most Influential Muslims published since 2009 by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre in Amman, Jordan. Biography You can follow her on twitter @sheilamusaji ( https://twitter.com/SheilaMusaji )
Australian soldiers in Afghanistan post racist comments on Facebook http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/1507031/Smith-apologises-for-racist-Facebook-posts
DOD rails Rolling Stone for publishing pictures, Fred Childers http://www.ksla.com/Global/story.asp?S=14338461
How common are casualty photos like ones gathered by Stryker “kill team?”, Adam Ashton http://blog.thenewstribune.com/military/2011/03/28/how-common-are-casualty-photos-like-ones-gathered-by-stryker-kill-team/#ixzz1I0JFbevK
The Kill Team, Mark Boal http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/the-kill-team-20110327
The “Kill Team” Photographs, Seymour M. Hersh http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/newsdesk/2011/03/the-kill-team-photographs.html#ixzz1I0NtEJCi
“Kill Team” War Crimes in Afghanistan, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/kill_team
New video emerges of US troops cheering wildly as innocent Afghan civilians are blown up, Andrew Gregory http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/top-stories/2011/03/29/new-video-emerges-of-us-troops-cheering-wildly-as-innocent-afghan-civilians-are-blown-up-115875-23023103
This is not about ‘bad apples’. This is the horror of war, Robert Fisk http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/fisk/robert-fisk-this-is-not-about-bad-apples-this-is-the-horror-of-war-6289046.html
U.S. Afghan atrocities reflect poorly on all, Tony Norman http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11088/1135456-153.stm
U.S. Army Apologizes Over Graphic Afghan Photos http://www.rferl.org/content/us_army_apology_graphic_afghan_photos/3540081.html
U.S. soldiers’ ‘kill team’ killed Afghanis, used body parts in poker games: report, Corky Siemaszko http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/2011/03/28/2011-03-28_us_soldiers_kill_team_accused_of_murdering_afghani_civilians_for_sport_report.html?r=news
Video on “kill teams” by John Whitehead, Rutherford Institute http://www.rutherford.org/OnTarget/2011/03-30-2011.asp
What really links the ‘urinating marines’ video with Abu Ghraib, Jonathan Jones http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/jan/12/urinating-marines-video-digital-age?newsfeed=true
Where is the U.S. Government Getting It’s Information on Islam and Muslims?, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/where_is_the_u.s._government_getting_its_information_on_islam_and_musl
Whether or not a ‘kill squad’ is to blame, civilian deaths often go unreported, Julius Cavendish http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/julius-cavendish-whether-or-not-a-kill-squad-is-to-blame-civilian-deaths-often-go-unreported-2252474.html
Why Do They Hate Us?, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/why_do_they_hate_us_-_tam_article_collection1/