An advertising war has erupted over just what the Muslim word “jihad” means in America and why it’s important not to let the term be sugarcoated.
And the latest volley in the battle is both sly and stunning.
The most recent flare-up began with a controversial series of advertisements from the American Freedom Defense Initiative on New York subway station clocks. The ads depicted the burning towers of 9/11 and a Quran quote: “Soon shall We cast terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers” (3:151).
Pamela Geller, the group’s executive director, believes the clock ads convey an important message about the immediate danger of jihad.
“Metaphorically it’s so powerful,” she explains in a new column on WND. “The clock is ticking, from a civilizational point of view. Bombs, at least in movies, tick and are set off by clocks. The urgency of our message is mirrored in the placement.”
The Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, however, called the ads “Islamophobic” and “bigotry” and responded with a series of bus advertisements of its own designed to put a more America-friendly spin on the Islamic practice of jihad.
When asked by WND if she was spreading Islamophobia, Geller said, “Truth is not a phobia. As soon as Muslims stop quoting the Quran and invoking Islam’s traditional doctrine of jihad to justify violence, I will stop calling attention to what they do.”
CAIR’s advertisements link to a site called MyJihad.org and portray “jihad” as merely a person’s goal or ambition, showing smiling Muslims and such innocuous struggles as staying fit or building friendships.
“My jihad is not to judge people by their cover,” states one ad. “What’s yours?”
Geller, however, claims the CAIR ads are “designed to distract from and obscure the true meaning of jihad.”
The word “jihad” is defined by Muslim apologists as the personal struggle of the individual believer against evil and persecution, yet it is also the term for a religious war against infidels undertaken by Muslims, a holy obligation often cited by terrorists as the reason for their violence.
“Freedom fighters have successfully educated the American people about the most brutal and extreme system of governance, the Shariah: Americans know how inhuman it is, and Muslim Brotherhood operatives are still reeling from that stunning defeat,” Geller explains. “So now they hope to whitewash jihad? That’s oceans of blood they would have to conceal. Oceans of blood.”
Now Geller announces the latest volley in the advertising war, a series of bus ads that will recast the “MyJihad” banners according to the word’s other definition.
“‘Jihad, holy fighting in Allah’s cause, with full force of numbers and weaponry, is … and obligation and duty in Islam on every Muslim’ – Times Square bomber Faisal Shazad,” reads one of the new AFDI ads. “That’s my jihad. What’s yours?”
Another pictures Osama bin Laden, accompanied by one of his quotes: “‘The first thing that we are calling you to is Islam.’ That’s my jihad. What’s yours?”
Still another variation in includes a victim’s description of the Fort Hood mass murder by Major Nidal Hassan: “Reloading, firing again, reloading, firing again, while screaming Allahu Akbar.’ That’s my jihad. What’s yours?”
These new ads direct people to MyJihad.us, a web address that redirects to a page on Geller’s Atlas Shrugged site.
“Our new ads depict actual jihadists carrying out their own jihads and is a truth antidote to CAIR’s deceptions,” Geller states. “This usage of jihad is much more influential and widespread among Muslims worldwide than the benign and whitewashed understanding of it being pushed by Hamas-tied CAIR, and the fact that some Muslims don’t think of jihad as involving violence does not cancel out the fact that many do.
“It is reprehensible to put a happy face on mass murder, ethnic cleansing, honor violence and religious persecution,” she continues. “Our AFDI campaign shines the light of truth to break through the fog of CAIR’s deceptions.”
As WND has reported, AFDI has run advertisements on buses and other public areas before in a effort to educate Americans about violent nature of jihad and the dangers of “Islamization” in America, but efforts to have them banned by court order have been defeated.