On June 16, the Heritage Foundation hosted a forum titled Benghazi: The Difference It Makes Is Accountability in the Allison Auditorium.
The first panel was called Unanswered Questions, Unaccountable Officials, Broken Trust and was moderated by Chris Plante, a talk radio host on WMAL. The other panel members were Clare Lopez of the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi and the Center for Security Policy; Brigitte Gabriel, Founder of ACT! for America; and Frank Gaffney, President for the Center for Security Policy.
A law student at the American University, Saba Ahmen, was attending the panel wearing an Islamic head covering. She asked very politely, “There are 1.8 billion Muslim followers of Islam, 8 million plus Muslims in this country and I don’t see them represented here. How can we fight an ideological war with weapons? How can we ever end this war? The jihadist ideology that you talk about is an ideology. How can you ever win this thing if you don’t address it ideologically?”
Brigitte Gariel responded to the student’s question after a response from Frank Gaffney. She gave a heated explanation of why radical Islam matters, even if the majority of Muslims are peaceful. “There are 1.2 billion Muslims in the world today; of course, not all of them are radicals. The majority of them are peaceful people.”
Gabriel went on to point out that there are about 180 to 300 million Muslims dedicated to the destruction of western civilization, which is as big as the United States’ population. “So why should we worry about the radical 15 to 25 percent? Because it is the radicals that kill.”
She went on to say that the other 75 percent are peaceful people; but the majority of Germans, Russians, Chinese, and Japanese were peaceful people too. Yet, the peaceful majority were irrelevant; and as a result, tens of millions of them were slaughtered by the radicals in charge.
Gabriel said to Ahmed, “As an American citizen, you sat in this room and instead of standing up and asking something about our four Americans that died and what our government is doing to correct the problem, you stood there to make a point about peaceful, moderate Muslims.” Ahmed did not seem to be offended by Gabriel’s response, and replied that “as a peaceful American Muslim, I would like to think that I’m not irrelevant.”
Chris Plante asked Ahmed if she could tell him “who the head of the Muslim peace movement is?”
With a laugh, she answered, “I guess it’s me right now.” The audience and panel cheered her.
The portion of the panel discussion was described by Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank as “ugly taunting of a woman in the room who wore an Islamic head covering.” You can see for yourself whether this was an ugly exchange or not.
This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom