Geert Wilders, a featured speaker at the Nashville symposium. At 00:45, he says, "I believe that our culture is far better than the retarded Islamic culture." Yes, you read that right.
Perhaps motivated by recent news that Tennessee has become a stronghold for radical Islamic forces, leading Islamophobes from around the world will be gathering in Nashville at the Loews Vanderbilt Plaza Hotel May 29-30 for "Understanding the Jihad in Israel, Europe and America," the first annual symposium presented by the online pub New English Review.
What is the New English Review, you ask? I'm still scratching my head on that one, too. There's no discernible mission statement or "about us" page, though there are individual bios of the various editors, publishers and contributors. A brief stroll through NER's current featured headlines reveals heady, reasonably well-written stories reflecting a nonetheless kooky, far-right stance. Think of it as The New Yorker for the Teabagger set. (Or is it the "Tea Bagger set"? For the sake of beleaguered copy editors everywhere, AP Style better settle this issue soon.)
Case in point:
It was evening, the prelude to that dreaded, protracted obscurity of seemingly endless night. The sky was handsomely streaked with crimson and indigo, amber and violet, vermilion and fuchsia, reproducing those alluring, decorative colors of autumn that celebrate incipient death. To the east, a snow capped Mount Lebanon thrust a silvery, humped silhouette into the darkening cerulean sky.
I mean, you're not going to mistake that for the barely lucid ramblings of Stacey Campfield now, are you? That passage is from a short story titled "The Blasphemy," by Ares Demertzis, a parable whose message could simply be put as "Kill the Muslims before they kill you."
And therein lies the thematic thread running through NER: Islam is an inherently sinister religion, and it's coming to gitcha! It's all there in the Koran, people! This has nothing to do with complex geopolitical situations, poverty or extremism, folks. The problem is simply that Islam and its Koran are inherently evil, according to the folks at NER. (I wonder if they've read our "holy book" lately--some of the stuff in there is pretty batshit crazy too, no? Not to mention our beloved Rummy's use of Christian scripture to promote the war in Iraq.)
That's why you need to sign up right now for "Understanding the Jihad in Israel, Europe and America"! Don't delay--the future of white people everywhere depends on you! Registration deadline is May 25!
Read about some of the featured disseminators of hatred and intolerance speakers, after the jump.
Geert Wilders, a member of the Dutch parliament and the leader of the Party of Freedom, will speak to the symposium by video. He's featured in the above YouTube video, calling Islam "retarded," and has been quoted as saying, "I don't Muslims. I hate Islam."
Hugh Fitzgerald, vice president and senior editor for Jihad Watch, which the Council on American-Islamic Relations calls an "Internet hate site" and which Guardian reporter Brian Whitaker describes as a "notoriously Islamophobic website."
Dave Gaubatz, a former agent for the U.S. Air Force's Office of Special Investigations and a right-wing loon. He also claims to have found WMDs in Iraq--or at least he found sites that weren't searched and he's certain there were WMDs there, which is the same thing, right?--and believes the Bush administration was involved in a massive cover-up to hide the discovery of WMDs (which, if you're completely out of your mind, makes a whole lot of sense).
Rebecca Bynum, New English Review senior editor and publisher, and current secretary of World Encounter Institute. Formerly news editor and board member of the aforementioned Internet hate site Jihad Watch.
It should be noted that there are several other speakers who are respected in various fields, though all share extreme views on Islam. And amusingly, one of the common gripes they all express is how Islam divides the world into believers and nonbelievers. Why does that sound familiar? Seems to remind me of some other religion I keep hearing about. And judging from our last presidential administration, it would seem Muslims have no monopoly on the holy war concept.