Should anyone still be laboring under the impression that sectarian differences invariably keep Sunni and Shi'ite jihadis from cooperating, notice what is happening, not in the Middle East, but right here at home.
When five courageous congressional representatives recently wrote letters to the Inspectors General of the Office of the Director of National Security (ODNI) and the Departments of Defense (DoD), Homeland Security (DHS), Justice (DoJ), and State (DoS), requesting an investigation into the extent of Muslim Brotherhood influence within the U.S. government, they were met with a barrage of criticism from expected quarters: Muslim Brotherhood affiliates and front groups, leftist liberals who support them and even conservative voices that mostly just failed to read the letters.
What might not have been expected was condemnation from figures more commonly associated in Washington policy circles with the Iran Lobby than the Muslim Brotherhood. An opinion piece published in the Huffington post on Aug.1 by an off-beat blogger named Robert Naiman seems to span the Sunni-Shi'ite divide in its call for Representative Michele Bachmann to be removed from the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI).
Attached to Naiman's hackneyed attempt to label the Congressional letters a "conspiracy theory" because they take seriously the Muslim Brotherhood's own assertions about "destroying the Western civilization from within," is a letter from a motley collection of "former U.S. officials, NGO leaders, and academics."
While it comes as no surprise that a small clutch of former U.S. government officials greets the possibility of Muslim Brotherhood infiltration into American policy making circles with untroubled equanimity, that Iranian regime stalwarts Stephen Kinzer, Juan Cole, Ervand Abrahamian, and Gareth Porter have signed on together with the Sunni defense crowd deserves mention. While Naiman himself seems to have studied economics and mathematics at some point, his online nattering in defense of the Iranian regime's right to do pretty much whatever it wants with its nuclear weapons program perhaps drew their attention. In any case, the presence of these four Iran Lobby types among the letters' overall 18 signatories makes quite a respectable showing for the Shi'ite contingent.
Kinzer, a former New York Times reporter and author, was first noted for his Iran Lobby credentials in this writer's 2009 Center for Security Policy paper, "Rise of the Iran Lobby." Kinzer thinks Khomeinist Iran is just the sort of Middle East country the U.S. should partner with and, not much of an Islamic history buff, claims the U.S. is responsible for "producing a region that is a pit of violence and hatred and terror and war."
Similarly, University of Michigan professor Juan Cole blogs often to advise against the most serious measures to bring Tehran into compliance with UN Security Council Resolutions and its own obligations as a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. This may have something to do with Cole's antisemitic views about the State of Israel and something he calls "Zionofascism."
Ervand Abrahamian is an Iranian-born Armenian scholar and author who keeps company with the likes of Iran Lobby founder, Trita Parsi, (president of the National Iranian American Council - NIAC) and fellow cast members of the 2011 anti-American film, "American Coup," including Kinzer, Parsi, and Gary Sick, a regime defender and former National Security Council staffer now at Columbia University. Gareth Porter, another staunch supporter of the mullahs' regime, told the Iranian media outlet, Press TV, that U.S. sanctions against Iran "were forced on it by the Israeli lobby."
So, what to make of these Muslim Brotherhood cheerleaders from the Shi'ite side of the great Islamic schism? Michael Ledeen, Freedom Scholar at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, provides a brilliant explanation in the Summer 2012 issue of the "Claremont Review of Books" with his essay entitled, "The New War Against America."
Ledeen writes of a "global alliance" against America that includes all of the Dar al-Islam, both Sunni and Shi'a, in opportunistic collusion with "radical secular leftists."
The visceral enmity of Iran is clearly visible: This is a regime that has been at war with the U.S. for over 33 yrs., leads the terror troika with al-Qa'eda and Hizballah that a U.S. Federal District judge found jointly responsible for the attacks of 9/11, continues to back Iraqi and Taliban fighters who kill Americans, forges partnerships with tyrants from North Korea and Syria to Venezuela, and develops nuclear weapons to threaten Israelis with genocide and the U.S. with blackmail.
Yet, successive U.S. administrations repeatedly give Iran a pass, seek its cooperation in endless negotiations and fail to defend our national security interests. Likewise, the Muslim Brotherhood that Representatives Bachman, Franks, Gohmert, Rooney and Westmoreland want investigated has been completely open about its intentions to replace secular governments everywhere with strict Islamic law (sharia) through the waging of jihad.
The alarmingly naive and dangerous shift in U.S. policy to empower Brotherhood forces sworn to our destruction is nowhere more evident than in the new American support for jihadist Brothers now taking power in Egypt and on their way to ousting Bashar al-Assad in Syria. The willingness of National Security Council Deputy Denis McDonough in June 2012 to meet in the White House with Hani Nour Eldin, an avowed member of the designated terrorist group Gamaa Islamiyya, to discuss the release from U.S. prison of Omar Abdel Rahman (the "Blind Sheikh") is emblematic of an unprecedented U.S. willingness to embrace those who would destroy us.
Sensing the apparent collapse of American resolve to combat this global alliance, the Brotherhood and the Khomeinists feel emboldened to join forces to press the attack—against Rep. Bachmann and her colleagues, as well as other brave champions of American democracy like Reza Kahlili, the Iranian-born lecturer at the Department of Defense's Joint Counterintelligence Training Academy targeted for attack by the U.S. HAMAS front group, Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR). At the macro level of Arab/Muslim "balanced opposition," it is all about Dar al-Islam vs Dar al-Harb.
There will always be plenty of fitna to divide Sunni and Shi'a, but to preserve American exceptionalism, we must soon acknowledge and confront the global alliance that is coming against us at the broader level with "an American grand strategy," as Ledeen puts it, one that utilizes all our strengths from information warfare to the physical battlefield.