" />

Right Web

Tracking militarists’ efforts to influence U.S. foreign policy

The Islamophobic Echo Chamber

Print Friendly

While it sometimes enjoys the trappings of a grassroots campaign, the anti-Islamic movement in the United States—which exploded after 9/11 and whose popular presence has increasingly been felt since the election of President Barack Obama—is in fact coordinated by a small coterie of right-wing foundations, think tanks, media figures, and bloggers, according to a new report by the Center for American Progress.

 

The report, entitled “Fear Inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America,” details the “echo chamber” created by right-wing think tanks and advocacy organizations like Frank Gaffney’s Center for Security Policy (CSP), Daniel PipesMiddle East Forum (MEF), David Yerushalmi’s Society of Americans for National Existence (SANE), Robert Spencer’s Jihad Watch and Stop Islamization of America, and Steven Emerson’s Investigate Project on Terrorism.

 

The reports produced by these self-professed experts on Islam are aggressively promoted by a coterie of like-minded bloggers like Pamela Geller; sympathetically reported by right-leaning media outlets like Fox News, the Washington Times, and David Horowitz’s Front Page Magazine; and ultimately regurgitated by rightist politicians like Newt Gingrich, who use the base instinct of fear to motivate the electorate. According to the report’s authors, this propaganda machine has been funded by seven key foundations, which have provided nearly $43 million in funding for the network over the last decade.

 

The subjects of the report and their sympathizers have not reacted kindly to its findings.

 

David Horowitz called the document a “typical fascistic attempt to silence critics…[who] inform the American public about the threats we face from the Islamic jihad.” Robert Spencer dismissed the authors’ characterization of him as “anti-Muslim” as “manipulative and propagandistic”—attributing the report to the work of the “Islamic supremacist propaganda machine,” apparently without irony. Outdoing the lot of them, Pamela Geller compared the document to “a Mein Kampf treatise,” likening it to “Goebbels attacking the Jew,” before unsubtly including a plug for her book on the “Islamization” of the United States.

 

Some of the foundations identified in the CAP report, like the Bradley Foundation and those run by Richard Scaife, have long been associated with various right-wing causes. Others are less well known, so the impact of the report on their funding activities remains to be seen. At least one foundation has reportedly expressed discomfort with having been publicly connected to the Islamophobia campaign. On the other hand, if the rather boldly hysterical reactions of the funders’ beneficiaries and sympathizers are any indication, no one need worry that the money will dry up anytime soon.

 

—Peter Certo

Share RightWeb

Featured Profiles

Rep. Illeana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), former chair of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, is a leading ”pro-Israel” hawk in Congress.


Brigette Gabriel, an anti-Islamic author and activist, is the founder of the right-wing group ACT! for America.


The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), one of the more effective U.S. lobbying outfits, aims to ensure that the United States backs Israel regardless of the policies Israel pursues.


Frank Gaffney, director of the hardline neoconservative Center for Security Policy, is a longtime advocate of aggressive U.S. foreign policies, bloated military budgets, and confrontation with the Islamic world.


Shmuley Boteach is a “celebrity rabbi” known for his controversial “pro-Israel” advocacy.


United against Nuclear Iran is a pressure group that attacks companies doing business in Iran and disseminates alarmist reports about the country’s nuclear program.


Huntsman, the millionaire scion of the Huntsman chemical empire, is a former Utah governor who served as President Obama’s first ambassador to China and was a candidate for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination.


For media inquiries,
email rightwebproject@gmail.com

From the Wires

Print Friendly

AIPAC has done more than just tolerate the U.S. tilt toward extreme and often xenophobic views. Newly released tax filings show that the country’s biggest pro-Israel group financially contributed to the Center for Security Policy, the think-tank that played a pivotal role in engineering the Trump administration’s efforts to impose a ban on Muslim immigration.


Print Friendly

It would have been hard for Trump to find someone with more extreme positions than David Friedman for U.S. ambassador to Israel.


Print Friendly

Just as the “bogeyman” of the Mexican rapist and drug dealer is used to justify the Wall and mass immigration detention, the specter of Muslim terrorists is being used to validate gutting the refugee program and limiting admission from North Africa, and Southwest and South Asia.


Print Friendly

Although the mainstream media narrative about Trump’s Russia ties has been fairly linear, in reality the situation appears to be anything but.


Print Friendly

Reagan’s military buildup had little justification, though the military was rebuilding after the Vietnam disaster. Today, there is almost no case at all for a defense budget increase as big as the $54 billion that the Trump administration wants.


Print Friendly

The very idea of any U.S. president putting his personal financial interests ahead of the U.S. national interest is sufficient reason for the public to be outraged. That such a conflict of interest may affect real U.S. foreign policy decisions is an outrage.


Print Friendly

The new US administration is continuing a state of war that has existed for 16 years.


RightWeb
share