While you have probably already read articles about how the First Amendment and our soldiers will be placed in jeopardy if Pastor Terry Jones and his congregation decide to burn a bunch of Korans tomorrow, you probably have not read many that support such an initiative. Well, I say burn, baby, burn!
First and foremost, no one should ever cower to the threats and demands of terrorists. If Jones decides not to burn the Koran, Americans will be seen as submitting to the Islamists. As submitters, we will be viewed as a bunch of weak-minded cowards. This in many ways is a culture war and if you don’t understand the culture of the Islamists, you won’t understand what will result if Jones backs down.
Second, our soldiers have been in harm’s way fighting the extremists since 9/11. The notion that burning a few Korans will significantly increase the amount of danger they’re in is ridiculous. The extremists have been fighting our men and women in uniform with everything they have. In fact, countries like Iran that assist the Taliban with logistics, intelligence, and funding are tapping into their reserves.
We must realize that Islamist extremists don’t like us. In fact, they hate us and want to see the United States and Israel wiped off the planet, and they will do anything and everything to see that happen whether Jones burns some Korans or not.
While Jones should never have mentioned the idea of burning Korans in the first place, the fact is, he did. Since he did, he should not be stopped. His actions and the actions of his followers will reflect poorly on his church; however, in not moving forward with burning the Korans, a society rooted in a culture of hatred (i.e., the Islamist extremists) will be able to declare victory over our own constitutional rights of freedom of expression, freedom of religion, and freedom of speech.
Kerry Patton served in the U.S. Defense and Justice departments, and as a contractor within the Homeland Security and State departments. He has worked in South America, Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Europe, focusing on intelligence and security interviewing current and former terrorists, including members of the Taliban. He is the author of “Sociocultural Intelligence: The New Discipline of Intelligence Studies.” Currently, Mr. Patton teaches for Henley Putnam University and is the Northeast Regional Director for Stand Up America www.standupamericaus.com.