Has Rick Warren become a shill for Islamic terror?
That’s the charge of a well-documented article by an investigator published in FrontPageMag.com.
Warren is promoted on the “speakers corner” of the Islamic Society of North America, an arm of the Muslim Brotherhood and a financier of the Hamas terror organization.
Fifteen months ago, Warren spoke to ISNA’s annual convention with these opening words: “As-salamu Alaykum. I come to you today deeply humbled and honored by this invitation. I truly mean that. I applaud your courage for inviting an Evangelical pastor. Thank you.”
He shared the podium at that event with Siraj Wahhaj, an “unindicted co-conspirator” in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing; Zulfiqar Ali Shah, the former South Asia director of KindHearts, a Hamas fundraising group shut down by the FBI in February 2006; and Naeem Muhammad, a U.S. staff member of Islamic Relief, a “charity” the Israeli government has claimed is a front for Hamas.
When Joe Kaufman asked Warren’s chief of staff, David Chrzan, why Warren’s picture and bio still resides on ISNA’s website 15 months after the speaking engagement, he received this reply: “The website you reference lists Pastor Warren as one of the speakers at the 2009 ISNA Conference held in Washington, D.C., this past July. Pastor Warren’s bio on the site does not represent an endorsement of ISNA or its activities, but rather as one of the speakers who was invited to address the conference.”
Surely Saddleback Church and Rick Warren understand why ISNA is still promoting that appearance. It is a conscious effort to “mainstream” the Muslim Brotherhood front by association with a man who has been called “America’s pastor.”
Yet, Warren does not seem to be concerned.
There is a striking double standard among some Christian celebrities regarding appearances before evil groups, including those promoting hate and violence and terrorism.
I can’t imagine that Rick Warren would accept an invitation to speak to a Ku Klux Klan convention or a meeting of neo-Nazis.
Of course, he could attempt to justify such an appearance the way he rationalized his high-profile speech to ISNA – by saying he was searching for common ground in addressing problems in the world, or perhaps even that he was doing as Jesus did – by preaching to the lost.
But that would be disingenuous, and the condemnation Rick Warren would receive would be universal. That’s why Rick Warren doesn’t speak to organized meetings of neo-Nazis or Ku Klux Klan members.
He does speak to Muslim Brotherhood front groups, however – and makes no apologies for it.
I suppose Warren can close his eyes to what the Muslim Brotherhood represents – the birthplace of al-Qaida and virtually every other Muslim terror group active in the world today.
The official motto of the Muslim Brotherhood is: “Allah is our objective. The Prophet is our leader. Quran is our law. Jihad is our way. Dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope.” It promotes jihad, or holy war. It promotes Shariah, or Saudi-style law, that oppresses women and non-Muslims as, at best, second-class citizens. A 2004 fatwa by Sheikh Yousef Al-Qarahawi of the Muslim Brotherhood made it a religious obligation for Muslims to abduct and kill Americans in Iraq.
The founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, Hassan Al-Banna, was a strong ally of Adolf Hitler. Ever since, it has been involved in virtually every Islamic war and conflict around the world.
But closing one’s eyes to evil is not responsible. In fact, the record of the Muslim Brotherhood is so clear that pretending it and its various tentacles are something other than they really are is the worst kind of appeasement. It’s not only not heroic, it’s cowardly.
Furthermore, Rick Warren did not attempt to evangelize those who attended his speech at ISNA. Instead, he affirmed their faith in Islam; he made them feel comfortable worshipping a false god – something, obviously, Jesus would never do.
It was not an opportunity for Rick Warren and the gospel when he spoke to ISNA. It was an opportunity for an evil, anti-American anti-Christian organization to wrap itself in the respectability of one considered a mainstream Christian leader.
It’s time for Christian celebrities like Rick Warren to show some discernment and responsibility. This is not just misguided ecumenicism. It’s blasphemy.