It appears that Donald Trump and his foreign policy team have consulted with Daniel Pipes, a thought leader within the organized anti-Muslim movement.
This information was included in a recent Bloomberg View article titled “The Trump Doctrine Revealed” by national security columnist Josh Rogin.
This is not the first time the real estate mogul and politician has consulted the work and advice of anti-Muslim figures.
“Sources close to the campaign told me Trump has also spoken with controversial historian Daniel Pipes,” Rogin writes.
Pipes has a long history of making troubling statements about Muslims and has contributed money to a network of anti-Muslim groups and personalities. He is also the head of the Middle East Forum, a neoconservative think tank which claims to promote “American interests in the Middle East” and protect “Western values from Middle Eastern threats.” He is also the editor of the publication Middle East Quarterly. Pipes has said his organization is “focused heavily on Middle Easterners living in the West” and uses its contributor’s knowledge of the Middle East to understand “these new populations and the issues they raise.”
In Rogin’s piece, he demonstrates that while some of Trump’s policies may appear to be reactionary, this is usually not the case.
“Sources close to the campaign tell me that Trump’s foreign policy proclamations are not ad hoc; in fact most are planned months in advance. For example, on Dec. 7 when Trump announced his idea to ban Muslims, it appeared to be a response to the terror attack in San Bernardino only days earlier. Sources close to the campaign say it had planned to announce the policy well before that attack happened.”
Trump stirred controversy in December when he cited a shoddy poll commissioned by the Center for Security Policy (CSP) to justify his call for a moratorium on Muslim immigration into the United States. CSP is a think tank headed by notorious anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist Frank Gaffney and has a history of publishing suspect ‘reports’ that are biased against Muslims. Pipes and his group have associated with Gaffney and contributed funds to his organization.
In 2010, Pipes claimed it would serve the U.S.’s “strategic interests” to support the Bashar al-Assad regime over the Syrian rebels in order to prolong the country’s bloody civil war.
“I don’t want to see this end,” he said about the Syrian civil war in an interview with Real News. “I don’t want to see them turn their guns on us or our allies.”
An estimated 250,000 individuals have been killed in the civil war since it began in 2011. Ironically, it has also led to the displacement of thousands of Syrians and others, who now happen to be the same refugees that Trump says are not welcome in the United States.
Pipes has also led on he is not in favor of admitting Muslim immigrants and has previously offered a clash of civilizations narrative to support this view.
In a 1990 article in National Review, he wrote, “Fears of a Muslim influx have more substance than the worry about jihad. Western European societies are unprepared for the massive immigration of brown-skinned peoples cooking strange foods and maintaining different standards of hygiene. Muslim immigrants bring with them a chauvinism that augurs badly for their integration into the mainstream of the European societies.”
He noted he was not entirely against Muslim immigrants coming into Europe and the United States if, of course, they “modernize.”
Pipes did, however, criticize Trump’s calls to ban Muslim immigrants and instead suggested tweaking the proposal to banning “Islamists.” (Pipes often quarrels with his colleagues in the anti-Muslim movement over the concept of “Islamism.”)
Though, he did commend Trump for raising a “critical and urgent issue” with such a proposal because, in his words, “Muslims present a disproportionately large source of problems.”
In the name of national security, Pipes has also advocated for increased Muslim profiling. He joined with other radical anti-Muslim figures in opposition to the Park51 community center — or Ground Zero mosque as it was slandered — in New York City, saying it “carries the unmistakable odor of Islamic triumphalism.”
Indeed, Pipes has truly positioned himself as a controversial figure responsible for fomenting anti-Muslim sentiment in the United States and it would be in all of our best interest if those seeking higher office rejected Pipes and his policies.
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