Saturday, October 27, 2007

Sued For Terror Watching

Jamie Glazov

Frontpage Interview’s guest today is Bruce Tefft, the Director of CRA's Threat Assessment Center. He retired from the CIA as a case officer in 1995 after 21 years, 17 working in Stations abroad. He was a founding member of the CIA's Counter-Terrorism Center in 1985 and has been involved with terrorism issues since then. After his retirement, he continued studying Islamic terrorist techniques and training more than 16,000 first responders, law enforcement, military and intelligence officials in terrorism awareness and prevention. For a two year period following 9/11, he was the Counter-Terrorism and Intelligence advisor to the New York Police Department.

FP: Bruce Tefft, welcome to Frontpage Interview.
Tefft: Thank you, Jamie, it is a pleasure to be here.
FP: Tell us about the lawsuit filed against you for the “anti-Islamic” messages in your emails.
Tefft: Following 9/11, my former company, Orion Scientific Systems, provided some anti-terrorist software to the NYPD. I was detailed to help upload some data and then for the next two years my services were donated to the NYPD free of charge by the President of Orion as a patriotic gesture. I would commute to NY weekly from Virginia, my salary, hotel, air fare and all expenses covered by Orion. As an intelligence officer my focus had always been proactive, to find out what was going to happen. Law enforcement is traditionally reactive, looking for the criminal after a crime had taken place. My work with the NYPD was to provide the police officers some additional proactive capabilities in their fight against terrorism. The key to pro-action is awareness which is based on knowledge of the enemy.

Since I retired from the CIA in late1995, I have concentrated on studying Islam and terrorism from open sources, or OSINT (Open Source Intelligent). I receive about 1600 emails a day from around the world, containing articles and commentary on politics, war, intelligence and terrorism. As a result of my personal work I would disseminate 50-100 pertinent articles, sometimes with comments, to others who shared my interest in learning about terrorism. Over the years I gradually built up a readership of some 10,000 or so people who would receive my emails. Whenever I met people with an interest in terrorism, or provided training, I would always offer to add anyone to my email list who wished.

While in NY, I continued this practice with New York Police Department officers, including an Egyptian Muslim who asked to receive my emails. Naturally, since we are dealing with Islamic terrorism, most of the articles were critical examinations of Islam and terrorism. Although he requested to be placed on my list, and never asked to be removed, the Muslim officer, whose career was not advancing, decided that my emails (and comments) had created a hostile work environment where he could not be promoted and suffered emotional stress, so he brought a suit against the NY Police Department and myself last December to get my anti-Muslim terror work stopped. So far my legal bills have exceeded $65,000 and we have not yet gotten to trial.

FP: Well, we'll get back to your lawsuit in a minute. Let's talk a bit about the terror war. It appears that the West is in a serious dilemma. It thinks it can wage a war against an enemy without naming the enemy. Your thoughts?

Tefft: The "War on Terror" and the use of the terms "Islamofascism" or "radical Islam" are basic examples of faulty nomenclature. One terrorism is a tactic, used by an enemy. One wages war on the enemy, not the tactic. During WWII we did not wage war on the "blitzkrieg" or "kamikaze pilots" -- we fought a war against Nazi Germany and Imperial Japanese. We are fighting a 14-century year old war against Islam and its adherents, Muslims. And it is a war that they have declared on all non-Muslims as part of their religious mandate, their ideology, to make the whole world Islamic, under the Caliphate, and to convert, kill or enslave all non-Muslims.

The two main branches of Islam, Sunni and Shi'ite have both, as the initiation of the Third Jihad (Holy War) of the modern Islamic resurgence, have repeatedly declared war against the U.S. and the West -- the Sunni with bin Laden's 1998 Declaration of War and the Shi'ites when Ayatollah Khomeini overthrew the Shah and attacked our Embassy (sovereign U.S. territory under international law) in 1979. Ignoring the fact that we are indeed at war with Muslims, and not simply a tactic of war that they use, leaves us vulnerable to infiltration, subversion and other forms of attack and makes it impossible to defeat the enemy.

FP: Well sir, your point is well taken in the sense that we have to be honest in acknowledging that there are elements of Islam itself that inspire terror and that Islamic terror therefore is an outgrowth of Islam and cannot be washed away without a re-haul of Islam itself.

At the same time, when facing our enemy, surely it is crucial to use terms such as "Islamofascism" or "radical Islam" to understand and confront the enemy because what we are facing is also a political movement and definitely not an entire religion or every Muslim. Let us remember that millions of Muslims were and are victims, just like we are, of the radicals and fanatics in their midst. Many of them want to defeat the Islamo-fascists just as much as we do and it would be crazy and self-destructive for us not to ally ourselves with them.

Let’s also keep in mind that the term “Islamo-fascism” was created by moderate Algerian Muslims who were being terrorized by Islamic fanatics who sought to impose Sharia law in Algeria. And the term is historically based – since radical Islam is linked to fascism. After all, Hassan al Banna, the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood (from which today’s radical Muslim groups descend) was an open admirer and supporter of Adolf Hitler -- as was the principal theorist of the modern jihad, Sayyid Qutb.
In any case, without doubt there is a serious problem with the theological roots of Islam, since the instruction for all believers to wage war against all unbelievers in found in the Qur'an in Suras such as 9:29 and 9:5. All the schools of Islamic jurisprudence teach that it is part of the responsibility of the umma to subjugate the non-Muslim world through jihad. And yes, Islam rejects the separation of Church and State. So definitely, as you suggest, Islam itself and what it teaches is a serious problem. But much of our hope lies in those Muslims who want -- and practice -- a relaxation of their theological beliefs and who seek to lead some kind of reformation in their religion and cancel out the calls for violent jihad in their religious texts etc. Whether or not this can be done remains the painful and agonizing question, seeing erasing large segments of Islamic teaching, and overturning 1,400 years of history, is by no means an easy task.

Tefft: I understand what you say, and I've heard this argument before: "radical" Muslims kill and terrorize other Muslims as well so they must be different from the "moderates" that they are terrorizing. I don't think so. As with any group of human beings, there are factions in Islam and personal ambitions and petty egos of various leaders which will them to power. So there are conflicts between Muslims as well as between Muslims and everyone else. However, those Muslims killing other Muslims (which is forbidden in the Koran) do not view the "others" as true Muslims but rather as 'takfir' or apostates, thus not true Muslims and therefore subject to the same killing as the rest of us.

Like Nazism, Islam is an ideology one chooses to adhere to. Were there "good" or "moderate" Nazis? If not, then no one can claim that there are good or moderate Muslims as they are voluntarily subscribing to an ideology that advocates murder, torture and jihad and does not permit its follower to cherry-pick which parts they believe in. The requirement to accept the Koran as the literal word of God also carries with it the obligation to accept it all. And as you say, the Koran instructs all Muslims to wage war against non-Muslims and all schools of Islamic thought instruct the subjugation of the non-Muslim world through jihad. Therefore, I do not believe it wise to attempt to create artificial distinctions between Muslims that don't really as far as their attitudes towards non-Muslims is concerned.
As the prime minister of Turkey recently said: There is no radical nor moderate Islam. That is an insult to Muslims. There is only Islam.

We may wish to give Muslims the benefit of doubt, due to our humanistic and liberalized Western way of thinking. But treating the enemy as we wish they were, than as they are, will only lead to our ultimate defeat.

FP: Well sir, again, it is not Muslims that are the problem. Islam is the problem. There are many Muslims who want a modernized and democratic Islam – Salim Mansur, Thomas Haidon, Kamal Nawash and Mustafa Akyol are among them. And these reformers and moderates oppose the extremists in their religion just as much as any one us.

Yes, we cannot reform Islam without being honest about the violence, discrimination and hate that it teaches. And yes, there is a big question if the Islam with Islam taken out of it can remain an Islam at all. But there is a verse in the Qur’an (2:256) which states: "There is no compulsion in religion." As Daniel Pipes has pointed out, this verse, though very complicated in the many interpretations surrounding it, can serve as a foundation to a more enlightened Islam. Pipes profoundly notes that Islam can be what its believers make it, they “can decide afresh what jihad signifies, what rights women have, what role government should play, what forms of interest on money should be banned, plus much else.” And we have a big stake in trying to influence them in this matter.

Again, another whole problem is, obviously, as you have warned, is if there is any chance of any reformation succeeding at all.

In any case, this debate belongs in another forum my friend. Frontpage may soon organize a symposium on this matter and I hope you will join our panel.
Let’s continue:

How do you measure our enemy in the terror war today in terms of a comparison with Nazism or Communism? A greater or lesser threat to our civilization?
Tefft: Islam is a far more vicious and durable enemy than Nazism or Communism, and over the course of its history, responsible for far more deaths and atrocities than Nazism and Communism combined. In the 200 years from the founding of Islam by Mohammed, Islamic armies conquered more territory than the Roman Empire did in 2000 years. The Hindu holocaust alone, when Islam attempted the conquest of India, saw 80 million Indians massacred. Like Nazism and Communism, Islam is based on the anti-liberty principle of submission, enforced by raw power and terror. Unlike Nazism and Communism, both of which attempted to replace religion with a personality cult of the leadership, Islam used religion and an artificial cobbled-together construct of a god-figure.

FP: So is Islam an ideology or a religion?

Tefft: That is a good question, a key question. Consider the historical origins of Islam: Mohammed was literally an illiterate camel driver in Arab trading caravans (his first wife was the wealthy, elderly owner of one such caravan) who used to listen to the stories of his fellow Christian, Jewish, and pagan camel drivers. Mohammed was also reportedly an epileptic, subject to fits and seizures. During one of these fits, he wandered into the desert (probably also receiving too much sun) and collapsed in a cave where he claims he was visited by the Angel Gabriel who told him that he'd been chosen by God to received the third revealed Abrahamic religion. Gabriel explained that Christ had been sent as a prophet because God was disappointed in the behavior of the original 'Chosen People'.

Now, 500 years later, God is also disappointed in the Christians, so Mohammed will receive the Koran, a Holy Book written by God in Heaven (which begs the question of the linguistic, logical and grammatical irregularities in the Koran), in segments over his lifetime. In actuality, Mohammed made up the Koranic verses to meet whatever requirement he had in his daily life. When Mohammed later began prosyletizing, he attempted to recall and incorporate the various attributes of the Christian God and Jesus in his new "Allah-god", and was quite taken aback when the Jews rejected him as a false prophet -- thus beginning 14 centuries of hate towards Jews by Muslims.
Mohammed converted pagans by smashing the 350+ pagan gods and goddesses, claiming that the moon-god, Allah, had consumed all of them into himself and was the new, "one-god". This, by the way, is why the Muslims still follow a lunar calendar and the Islamic symbol is a crescent moon. Allah is the pagan moon-god.

Islam is an ideology with religious trappings. The Koran can quite logically be viewed as Mohammed's "Mein Kampf" -- it lays out his justification for murder, rape, torture and military conquest on a daily basis. Since Mohammed made it up as he went along, it lacks some of the coherency and consistency of the "Mein Kampf" but it has the same effect. It is full of contradictions, but Muslims start from the premise that Allah can make no errors, and mere mortals cannot know what Allah really means. So if there are contradictions, the principle of "abrogation" is applied -- whatever Allah says last, trumps whatever went before. This leads directly to the example of the so-called "peace, love and tolerance" of Islam vs. it's holy war bloodthirstiness.

When Mohammed was first shilling his new ideology as a religion, he met resistance from the established Christian and Jewish communities. So he, in essence, said, we are all people of the book (Islam accepts the Old Testament as gospel, not the New Testament), can't we all just get along together. When he was rejected, and even routed, his Koranic creations and pronouncements became less tolerant, directing Muslims to make the world Islamic, and convert, enslave or kill all non-Muslims. At the end of the Koran (and Mohammed's life of pillage and conquest) even that tolerance had disappeared as Allah directs all non-Muslims be killed until nature comes to the Muslims aid and "trees will tell you behind what rock the last Jew is hiding, so you can kill him too."

FP: Can Muslims who are loyal to Islam be loyal to a nation-state?

Tefft: No, it is not possible by their own tenets. The first principle of Islam, that Muslims reaffirm (auto-brainwashing) 5 times daily in their 'prayers', is that the Koran is the literal Word of Allah (and Mohammed is his messenger). Since Allah provided the laws and form of government in the sharia (Islamic law), and in the Koran there is no reference to democracies, republic, kingdoms or empires...these are all considered blasphemous. Muslims living in non-Muslim countries are to respect the laws of the country until such times as it can be converted to or conquered by Islam. The primary reason that Muslims hate the United States so much is that we (as other Western nations) have codified the separation of church and state into our Constitution. This is 180 degrees opposite the will of Allah (as revealed in Mohammed's Koran) of the non-separation of church and state.

For a Muslim to pledge allegiance to a non-Muslim nation state would be either hypocritical or blasphemous -- something a true Muslim would not, or could not do. This is the case unless he was under a special jihadist dispensation from an Islamic cleric (as the 9/11 hijackers were) to infiltrate enemy territory and to act as the enemy does, in order to perform his mission.

FP: But as I mentioned earlier, there are many Muslims and various Muslim organizations who are truly on our side and who want to democratize and modernize their religion. What do you think is the best way for us to help them do that?

Tefft: I don't know if there are "many" or not. One certainly does not see much evidence of them. Nor, if they wish to democratize and modernize Islam, are they truly Muslims -- which is ok, then they are no threat to the rest of the world.
Islam, unlike either Christianity or Judaism is not reformable. Christians are in general agreement that the Bible was written by humans, inspired by God; the primary and central tenet of Islam is that the Koran is the literal word of Allah. How does one 'reform', interpret or change, the Word of God (or Allah)? The answer is one can't and it would be blasphemous to try to do so and apostasy, in Islam, like so much else, is punishable by death.

I do not believe that there will be a Muslim Martin Luther reforming Islam. In truth, bin Laden, the Iranian Ayatollahs and the Saudi Wahabbis are the 'reformers' who are bringing Islam back to its original "pure" state. I suspect that anyone wishing to democratize and modernize Islam will have to re-write the Koran, leaving out 26 (of the 114) Chapters, or suras, dealing with holy war, fighting Islam's enemies, chopping their heads off, and etc. Of course then it would no longer be Islam -- perhaps a "Reformed Islam", such as Reform Judaism, or a Muslim Lutheranism.
But I'm an ex-spy, not a theologian -- from the psy-war aspect, the best thing the West can do in this war with Islam is to publicize and support morally and monetarily the apostates and ex-Muslims. They know the evils of Islam better than any outsider.

FP: So are you optimistic or pessimistic in the West’s ability to confront and defeat its enemy in this terror war? What advice would you give in terms of how the West can best prevail?

Tefft: While the war with Islam is eminently winnable, it is very difficult to be optimistic at this stage when one sees political correctness rampant and the Western leftists supporting Islam (as they supported the National Socialists and Lenin/Stalin in the last century), to the point our leadership (where is Churchill, Thatcher and Reagan when we need them?) is either too frightened or too ignorant to name our enemy.

Islam is basically a regressive ideology, reflecting the evil ambitions of Mohammed, a 6th century brigand. Even if it were to succeed temporarily in bringing a new Dark Age to the world, eventually it will collapse from its own internal inconsistencies and anti-humanistic beliefs. The West has prevailed in the past -- after the Crusades, the recovery of Spain from Muslims in 1492 and defeat of the marauding armies of Islam at the Gates of Vienna in 1529 for more than 500 years, Islam was contained. We need to recall that period, as well as the successful policy of containment from the Cold War, and again contain Islam to its existing borders and block its further spread.

FP: So how does it look like the trial will go? What are your expectations? Is there anyway that our readers can help?

Tefft: The trial is, of course, frivolous -- "legal jihad." It is an effort to shut me up and then shut me down. This is cloaked as an employment issue (which if it was truly, I would not be joined with the NYPD in the law suit since I was neither an employee of NYPD nor an employer of the Muslim. We have a motion to dismiss pending, but if that is rejected then we go to trial on a First Amendment basis.

Jamie, I need all of the help I can get. I have an excellent lawyer but he's not cheap. Friends have set up a Legal Defense fund for me here -- or checks can be made out to the Bruce Tefft Legal Defense Fund and sent to:
Bruce Tefft Legal Defense Fund
Jerry Goldman, Atty
Two Penn Center Plaza
1500 J.F.K. Blvd. Suite 1411
Philadelphia, PA 19102

FP: Bruce Tefft, thank you for joining Frontpage Interview.
Tefft: You are most welcome. Thank you for having me.

Jamie Glazov is Frontpage Magazine's managing editor. He holds a Ph.D. in History with a specialty in U.S. and Canadian foreign policy. He edited and wrote the introduction to David Horowitz’s Left Illusions. He is also the co-editor (with David Horowitz) of The Hate America Left and the author of Canadian Policy Toward Khrushchev’s Soviet Union (McGill-Queens University Press, 2002) and 15 Tips on How to be a Good Leftist. To see his previous symposiums, interviews and articles Click Here. Email him at

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