Gates of Vienna
Foothills of the Blue Ridge, VA
June 26, 2007
President George W. Bush
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
Dear Mr. President:
I write to you with great sadness, the kind of despair that descends on one after hopes have been dashed many times, after repeated betrayals by a leader who said what I wanted to hear, but whose actions have not lived up to his words.
You have a chance to redeem yourself with the many millions who voted for you. At 11:30 a.m., when you speak tomorrow at the Washington Islamic Center, you could put all of our hearts at ease if you change the direction and tenor of your communications to Muslims in this country.
Sir, you must stand up for our pluralist values. You must ask the Muslims you address tomorrow to disavow the Islamists who were responsible for September 11th. You must forcefully tell them to rein in their children in this country, twenty-five per cent of whom think suicide bombing attacks are a justifiable and honorable way to deal with the enemy.
You must name the enemy out loud to the Muslims you will be addressing. You must specifically condemn Hamas and Hezbollah by name. It is not sufficient or honorable for you, as the sitting President, to vaguely refer to “terrorists.” It is imperative that you say it: Islam as it is practiced by many of these groups is not a religion, but a political ideology which seeks to dominate the rest of us by force.
You must tell these Muslims – at least the ones who are American citizens – that it is wrong to refer to Israel or to American Jews as the “Zionist lobby.” You know very well there is a vocal Muslim lobby in this country. You must address them directly: if they do not refrain from anti-Semitic remarks, then you, as a Texan, will speak forthrightly about the powerful, well-funded Islamist lobby, led by the Muslim Brotherhood and its followers and fellow-travelers.
You must tell those in the audience at the Islamic Center – funded by the Wahhabist Saudis – that they are obliged to begin demonstrating American-style moderation, that they must cease their demands for special privilege and their claims that jihadism does not exist. You know their claims are lies, Mr. President, and you must tell them you know it. Otherwise you are merely another politician whose soul has a price – and you will be thusly judged by your fellow Americans and by history.
It is your job to give direction and leadership to all of us, including the Muslims who live here. Tomorrow you have a shining opportunity; I beg you not to tarnish it with weasel words and untruths. Your people have had all they can take, sir, and they need you.
You have sent men into battle to fight the enemies of America. Do not betray your soldiers by refusing to speak up in their behalf in front of this group. Their lives are in your hands; if you let them slip through your fingers for God-knows-what political reasons, then their blood is on you. After tomorrow, if you do not speak up, fewer parents will want to meet with you. What comfort could you offer them? Your tears are not enough.
Please prayerfully consider what you will say tomorrow at the Islamic Center. We will all be listening. We will all be waiting to hear you uphold the oath of office you took – twice – to protect us.
May God have mercy on all of us, but particularly on you. You asked for this job, you fought hard for it. Now go out tomorrow and perform it.
This is your last chance to regain my loyalty, and I am sure that is true for many others who voted for you. If you do not stand up for the liberty you were so willing to name, then we are lost to you and can only wait in silence for you to leave.
I await your speech.
Sincerely, your fellow citizen,