Bryan Fischer, who wrote a blog post this week arguing that the U.S. should have “no more mosques, period,” explained to TPM today that “every single mosque is a potential terror training center or recruitment center for jihad” and thus “you cannot claim first amendment protections if your religious organization is engaged in subversive activities.”Fischer, the “Director of Issues Analysis” for the American Family Association, is hardly a fringe figure on the right. He’s scheduled to speak at the Value Voters Summit in September alongside Michele Bachmann, Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin and Mitch McConnell — and the AFA is a sponsor of the event.
Today in an interview with TPM, Fischer compared Muslims to the Hutaree militia, a Christian militia group in Michigan whose members were charged with plotting to attack police.
“The fact that they were a Christian militia did not stop them from being locked up,” Fischer said. And since “the Koran’s entire purpose is subversive,” religious protections should not necessarily extend to Muslims. He pointed to a 1991 memo from the Muslim Brotherhood that is a favorite rallying point for right-wing terrorism analysts. As we’ve reported, the memo is purportedly written by a “North American operative” of the group, and refers to a “Civilization-Jihadist” plan aimed at “eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within.”
“We’re talking about a movement that is dedicated to the overthrow” of American civilization, said Fischer. “Their work in America is a kind of grand jihad.”
When it was pointed out to Fischer that the Muslim Brotherhood — or any religious group — might not necessarily be representative of the entire religion, he replied: “They’re at the heart and center. They’re at the soul of Islam in America.”
Fischer also claimed that 80% of mosques in America are funded by Saudi Arabia, which according to Fischer means 80% of mosques are a “hotbed” for jihadist activity. “We’re going to find out that there’s Saudi Arabian money behind that mosque at Ground Zero.”
The “Ground Zero mosque,” he said, is a “thumb in the eye” of America, and represents the “classic pattern of Islam to build mosques on the site of their greatest conquests.”
Though Fischer stood by his claim that there should be no new mosques built in America, he was clear that “I’m not saying we tear any of them down.”
But when asked why he wasn’t more concerned for the supposed jihadist activity taking place in existing mosques, Fischer provided the following allegory: “There was this insane asylum” that “developed a simple little test to decide whether inmates were ready for the outside.” They would “turn on the shower full blast” and “send in inmates with a mop and a bucket” to clean up. Those “inmates ready for the outside were the ones who turned off the tap.”
“We need to turn off the tap” when it comes to mosques, Fischer said.
Asked if the AFA supports his position, Fischer said that the “American Family Association as an organization has taken no position on the building of mosques in America.”