Vice Presidential Reflections on Terrorism

Ivy League college presidents and congressional Democrats aren’t the only ones having difficulty escaping a false moral equivalence between anti-Semitism and supposed “Islamophobia.” It’s a longstanding problem. Let’s revisit:

As Americans, we are unified in our commitment to protect our country from terrorist attacks, and we must seek justice for those who lost their lives in the recent attacks in Paris and San Bernardino.

That was California attorney general Kamala Harris in a December 17, 2015 statement that came up short on details, following the December 2, 2015 Islamic terrorist attack in San Bernardino. As observed here previously, American-born Syed Farook and wife Tashfeen Malik, a green-card holder born in Pakistan, entered a holiday party at the Inland Regional Center and shot dead Robert Adams, Isaac Amianos, Bennetta Betbadal, Harry Bowman, Sierra Clayborn, Juan Espinoza, Aurora Godoy, Shannon Johnson, Larry Daniel Kaufman, Damien Meins, Tin Nguyen, Nicholas Thalasinos, Yvette Velasco and Michael Wetzel.

Adams, Espinoza, Johnson, Velasco and Wetzel were alumni of Cal State San Bernardino. Isaac Amanios, 60, immigrated from Eritrea to California in 2000 to escape violence and repression. Bennetta Betbadal, 46, fled to America with her family to “escape Islamic extremism and the persecution of Christians that followed the Iranian Revolution.”

Attorney general Harris failed to name a single victim and did not name or condemn the two Muslims who killed the Americans. According to her statement:

Ultimately, not only is it immoral and contrary to our values to stoke fear and cast aspersions against an entire faith and the millions of law-abiding American Muslims, but it is also strategically unwise. This very community is a critical ally in the short and long term fight combatting terrorism and radicalization here at home and across the world.

For her 12/17 event, attorney general Harris did not gather relatives of the 12/2 victims or families of those slain in other terrorist attacks. Harris gave a platform to officials from the Muslim Public Affairs Council and CAIR, whose Los Angeles director Hussam Ayloush said “Islamophobic and xenophobic rhetoric by certain public figures has made Muslim communities an easy target for hate crimes.”

For Harris in 2015, the real problem was “Islamophobia,” an incantation to ward off any criticism of jihadist violence. And so on, a performance that rivals the 12/3/15 statement of the composite character president David Garrow profiled in Rising Star: The Making of Barack Obama.

In February of 2022, vice president Harris tweeted, “Trayvon Martin’s death ten years ago sparked a movement. Since then, we have watched too many others die. We have called their names. We have embraced their families. We have worked for justice – and still do – because their lives matter.” The vice president has trouble remembering the names of those murdered in San Bernardino eight years ago, so their lives must not matter quite as much.

On December 2, Harris called Hamas a “brutal terrorist organization” that on 10/7  killed “1200 innocent people including 35 Americans” and was still holding American hostages. Harris’ statement names not a single American killed or held hostage by Hamas. What goes around comes around, and might be around for a while.

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