The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has condemned the planned 9/11 Quran burning event organized by Pastor Terry Jones and his Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, Florida.
ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, We condemn this proposed Quran burning. The ZOA has not and will not support or condone burning religious scriptures of any faith.
This proposed act of Quran-burning is not only offensive and counter-productive, but a diversion from real issues that concern us regarding extremism in the Muslim world.
The ZOA has countless times articulated its genuine and substantive concerns about Islamic radicalism. We must combat jihadists as well as other Muslim extremists who legitimize, rationalize or seek to dishonestly sanitize violent, totalitarian doctrines that involve the murder and subjugation of non-Muslims and moderate Muslims. We oppose tirelessly Islamist terrorism and those Muslims who work for the subjugation of America, Israel and indeed all non-Muslim countries, whether this is attempted by immediate, violent and blatant means, or by gradual, non-violent and covert means.
We should be seeking out, promoting and working with moderate Muslims. It will not be possible to do so if we support or fail to criticize Quran-burning events such as the one proposed in Florida.
It has been argued, including by General David Petraeus, that this proposed Quran-burning will serve as a pretext for Islamist assaults here and overseas. His statement is misconceived. These are not the grounds on which we oppose and condemn this event.
Burning the Quran should be opposed because it is offensive, wrong and counter-productive, not because it can be used to justify Islamist violence. If we take that approach, we will soon find that all efforts to oppose or challenge radical Muslims will be quickly condemned on the same grounds. This will morally and physically disarm us and encroach on our ability as a free society to challenge dangerous enemies.
Radical Muslims need no pretext to attack us, so it is wrong to suggest that we are specially endangering ourselves by doing something, whether proper or offensive, to challenge them. Tragically, the attacks would come anyway, regardless of what we say and do today.