Kahanist and amateur blogger, Joe Kaufman, is a strange character that lies somewhere between the disturbing and the comical. Styling himself as a gumshoe detective out to expose the nefarious fifth column activities of American Muslims, he sees enemies and conspiracy theories at every corner and in every American Muslim organization.
Much like Miguel De Cervantes’s fictional character Don Quixote, Kaufman has succumbed himself to a fantasy world in which he is a roving chivalrous knight. He will travel all over the country to every city, town and valley with his handful of supporters protesting Muslim gatherings, conferences, and parades.
His goal is the immediate closure of American Muslim organizations no matter how silly his claims and how absent the evidence to his charges. Motivated on by a perceived threat to Israel he has created two Orwellian style projects to reach his goal: Americans Against Hate and CAIR Watch.
Suffice it to say that these sites are mere receptacles of lies and misinformation. They are held to no professional standards of journalistic ethic or accuracy and instead feed the hydra industry of hate blogs that have perforated like cancer through the internet in the past few years. This would not be so disturbing if it were not for the fact that such amateurish and hateful material sometimes passes for expert analysis in the mainstream thus receiving more attention than it really warrants.
Kaufman’s most recent piece “New CAIR Generation” published in the notoriously anti-Muslim FrontPageMag is a manifestation of his Don Quixote-like blunderings and amateurish low-standard buffoonery. In it, he attempts to pre-empt the rising generation of CAIR leaders by linking them to cut-and-paste quotes taken out of any meaningful context or place.
The real apprehension underlying Kaufman’s alarmist and, at times, incoherent piece is the fact that the new CAIR generation leaders that he speaks of are all upstanding American Muslims, born and raised in the USA, comfortable and confidant in their religion and their identity. Long gone are the days when the mere fact that the old generation were immigrants could be held against them, that somehow they must be guilty by association, that they speak with an accent and so must be suspicious characters. Kaufman seems to woe this development therefore hoping to preclude it by launching his own “next generation” of spin.
Kaufman, a supporter of the Extremist JDL Rabbi Meir Kahane who called all Arabs “Dogs” and sought their forced expulsion from Israel has also said in Kahane’s defense that “[i]t was perfectly understandable, if he were to have hated Arabs. Just like, during the Holocaust, it was perfectly understandable for a Jew to hate Germans…If the Kahanes’ memory serves us any purpose, it’s to show that trust (and peace) is ultimately between only ourselves.”
Kaufman the radical has also written after 9/11 enthusiastically asking for the nuking of Muslim nations: “If the decimation of Hiroshima and Nagasaki was the right thing to do, in response to Pearl Harbor, then why the heck are we saving our nuclear weapons now? And furthermore, if we’re not using them, why do we have the nukes in the first place? After all, there is no more Soviet Union to compete with. If the attacks are not a good enough reason to use them, then what are we holding on to them for?!!! Now, at this point, you may think of me as being no less than a madman, but hear me out, for I have a method to my madness.”
If indeed he has a method to his madness, it is better suited for discussion at a tea party with the Mad Hatter and Alice in Wonderland. For the rest of the non-fantasy population, Kaufman’s method is simply madness.
While Kaufman makes his living out of calling for the expunging of Muslim nations and the shutting down of all American Muslim organizations, the American Muslim leaders he maligns are too busy to heed his desperate antics for attention; they are out there building bridges between communities and leading much-needed conversations that chisel away at misunderstanding and stereotypes.
In conclusion, the most fitting tribute that could be paid to this modern day polemic was delivered to him when he received the American United for Separation of Church and State’s Onion Award for “his consistent record of trashing everything Muslim with a broad brush of innuendo, association and excessive rhetoric,” reminding us once again that Kaufman’s so-called “Americans Against Hate” is indeed the ultimate oxymoron.
M. T. Akbar is a Chicago based law student and civil rights activist. He contributed this article to Media Monitors Network (MMN).
by courtesy & © 2007 M. T. Akbar