Not only does the U.S. government build mosques but it posts official pages on the Department of State website celebrating "Muslim Life in America" - something no other religion in the United States benefits from. In addition to the predictable feel-good writing and photography, the website also has a bibliography with select readings, Internet sites, and nongovernmental organizations. All of the sections hold interest, but the organizational one does most of all. A close look finds that the State Department provides links to and thereby endorses groups that the federal government has either effectively shut down (the American Muslim Council), is currently investigating (Islamic Society of North America), or has arrested multiple employees of (Council on American-Islamic Relations). Additionally, other organizations on the list (Council on Islamic Education, Islamic Institute, Muslim Public Affairs Council) were long ago exposed as sympathetic to militant Islam.
It's hard to win a war, you know, when one's foreign ministry publicly endorses the enemy's friends and agents. It's dispiriting and confusing. So, how about it, State Department, and take down the offending web pages? (February 25, 2004)
February 26, 2005 update: Quite the reverse: rather than take the offending names down, the State Department chooses to endorse Islamists in a new way. On a page listing "Selected Non-Governmental Organizations," the only two Muslim ones honored to be named are CAIR and MPAC.
April 28, 2005 update: Not content with promoting the likes of CIE, ISNA, CAIR, and MPAC, the State Department is also now in the business of promoting Muslim exchanges. "Islamic Life in the United States" is the title of a $300,000 grant announced today that has four objectives:
1) to enhance the non-American participants' understanding of the place of religion, particularly Islam, in American life;
2) to broaden participants' awareness of and appreciation for the serious religious study conducted in the United States particularly the study of Islam;
3) to provide a forum for examination and discussion of the compatibility of religious practice and democratic social and political structures; the social benefits produced by mutually respectful coexistence among diverse religious communities; ways in which Islamic practice in the United States, in particular, functions in a multi-cultural, multi-religious context; and
4) to broaden the understanding of American scholars, clerics, and laypersons of the place of Islam in the societies of the Middle East.
Comment: (1) I find it hard to imagine the courts would allow such a program for any other religion beside Islam. (2) If this is not da`wa, it is coming awfully close.