CAIR pressures retired general, critic of Islam, to back out of West Point event
The Council on American-Islamic Relations announced Monday night that it had successfully prevented retired Lieutenant General William G. “Jerry” Boykin from speaking at an upcoming prayer breakfast at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.
“We welcome Mr. Boykin’s withdrawal from this event and hope that the speaker who replaces him will offer cadets a spiritual message that promotes tolerance and mutual understanding,” said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad in a statement.
West Point initially balked at the calls to remove Boykin — a former military intelligence officer — from the event.
Lt. Col. Sherri Reed of West Point told The Associated Press that cadets are “purposefully exposed to different perspectives and cultures.”
“The National Prayer Breakfast Service will be pluralistic with Christians, Jewish, and Muslim cadets participating,” Reed said. “We are comfortable and confident that what retired Lt. Gen. Boykin will share about prayer, soldier care and selfless service, will be in keeping with the broad range of ideas normally considered by our cadets.”
Boykin backed out of the event on his own volition, according to a report from Fox News.
The retired lieutenant general has been on CAIR’s radar for casting Islam in a poor light, specifically in speeches in which he analogizing the War on Terror to a war against Satan.
CAIR and the group VoteVets.org pushed hard for a retraction of Boykin’s invitation to the event due to his “Islamophobic” views.
CAIR and People For the American Way failed to stop a speech Boykin gave in Ocean City, Md., last week. This week it seems they have been successful.