A Nazi in the Cabinet?

No more do we need Muslims there.

Fox News:

Mitt Romney said Tuesday that reports claiming he does not think a Muslim would be needed in his Cabinet are inaccurate, and that he would consider applicants "of any faith and ethnic group" for positions in a Romney administration.

We are currently engaged in a conflict which has been varyingly described as the "Global War on Terrorism," a "Clash of Civilizations," a "War on Islamofascism," and most ominously, the "Long War."  All of these descriptions have a foundation in truth.  We do, indeed, find ourselves fighting al Qaeda and its affiliates all over the world; the Islamic caliphate Osama bin Laden espouses is deeply fascistic in nature, and he surely desires to destroy what we would identify as Western civilization.  And given that there are well over one billion Muslims (millions of which are extremist), it's not unreasonable to suppose that this conflict isn't going to be polished off anytime soon.

Given the nature of the undertaking we're involved in, it's not surprising that someone asked a presidential candidate whether they would appoint a Muslim to a cabinet position - the only real surprise is that it hasn't been asked previously.  Based on Romney's response, editorials were written decrying his "racism" and "bias." But what did he actually say?  Here's Romney's account of the exchange:

"His question was, 'Did I need to have a Muslim in my Cabinet to be able to confront radical jihad and would it be important to have a Muslim in my Cabinet?' And I said, 'No, I don't think that you have to have a Muslim in the Cabinet to be able to, to take on radical jihad any more than in the Second World War where you needed to have a Japanese American to help us understand the threat that was coming from Japan.  I just rejected that argument."

Then Romney went on to clarify that he intended to fill positions in his administration with regard only to the qualifications of personnel, and without regard to their race, religion, ethnic origin, blood type, parking space, etc. etc. etc. ad nauseum.  In other words, the usual anti-discrimination list we are so used to seeing.

Now let's consider this position.  On the face of it, it appears quite rational, and representative of Americanism at its best.  Romney even takes a pretty good dig at the current politically correct nonsense of group identity, which claims that only a black woman can understand or represent black women, only a Muslim can understand or represent Muslims, and so on down the line.

We were perfectly well able to defeat Imperial Japan without a Japanese person in Roosevelt's war cabinet.

But that is a false analogy.  The color of a person's skin means nothing more than, well, the color of their skin.  If you were to compare a photograph of an Imperial Japanese soldier with that of a loyal American Nisei, you would certainly not be able to tell which was which - but the content of their characters, as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. might say, would be profoundly different.

Islam, however, is not a race.  You are born with whatever skin color you're born with, and unless you are Michael Jackson, that's the skin color you'll have until the day you die; but, while you might be born into a Muslim family, or Baptist, or Buddhist, or whatever, you aren't really a member of any religion until you are old enough to understand and follow it; and (in theory at least) you can change your mind and switch to a different one at any time.

Your choice of religion is, in many ways, the very definition of the content of your character.

So, a more accurate analogy for Gov. Romney would be that we were able to defeat Germany in the Second World War, without having a Nazi in the cabinet. Nazism is an ideology - a mind set.  It does not represent a birth characteristic but rather a viewpoint that is adopted.  This "adoption of viewpoint" is no different than Islam or Christianity or anything else that you make a rational decision to believe.

It is absurd to even contemplate having a Nazi in the cabinet during World War II.  Sure, a true-believing Nazi might be better able to understand Adolf Hitler than a freedom-loving American, but he'd be on the wrong side.  Such a person would be the last choice for running the nation's defense; you might want him in the basement being waterboarded for information, but certainly not around the cabinet table.

Are we in a war against Islamofascism, or are we not?  If we are not, then we need to carefully think through exactly what we're fighting against, or more usefully, exactly who or what is fighting against us.  Are they, indeed, something other than Muslims?  If so, it's not been widely publicized.

The entire problem is that the Terrorists' War on Us is driven, lock, stock and barrel, by their choice of religion, and their beliefs in its doctrines.  Osama bin Laden has absolutely no doubt that Allah has called him to wage jihad -- in the sense of personal, violent war -- against unbelievers and Jews.  Ahmadinejad has every confidence that Allah has ordained the destruction of Israel, and he wants devoutly to be the instrument by which his god accomplishes this.

Have not the terrorist's videotapes repeatedly called upon the people of the West to escape destruction by converting to Islam?  So what possible justification could there be to have a major government department be led by someone who, by definition, at least halfway sympathizes with the enemy?

Now, if there were a chance to marginalize the terrorists by persuading the vast majority of Muslims that their interpretation of the Koran was in error, that would be well worth pursuing.  And indeed, there are some "liberal" Islamic theologians who argue exactly that.  We should certainly see to it that their views, books, and arguments are widely spread, just as Saudi Arabia makes sure that the extremist Wahhabist sect, to which Osama bin Laden adheres, is spread worldwide.  But again, there is certainly no reason to have such a person in the American Cabinet, and every reason not to.

Romney's response that we don't need a Muslim in the cabinet was great as far as it went, but it didn't go far enough.  Not only don't we need one, we're better off without one - just as FDR needed no Nazis in his.

Petrarch is a contributing editor for Scragged.  Read other Scragged.com articles by Petrarch or other articles on Politics.
Reader Comments

These earlier posts might help you figure out what the War on Terror is all about:

This one explains how Muslims treat women in places where they rule.  Women who read this post are appalled.  The media won't touch it, of course, because suggesting that there's anything at all wrong with militant Islam might suggest that President Bush might have been right; they can't go there.


This article explains how the woman shortage brought about by Islamic custom fuels terrorism in Iraq and could lead to nuclear war.


We can't make rational decisions about the war on terror if we don't know what it's all about.  How many Americans understand the stakes in Iraq?

November 28, 2007 12:46 PM
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