So Al Gore is launching a three-year, $300 million ad campaign to frighten us all into doing what he says (not what he does) to counter global warming. It is a safe bet this spectacular propaganda endeavor will feature prominently polar bears who will be described as endangered species due to the impact of climate change on their ever-less icy habitat.
While there remain serious disagreements about the scientific merits of the Gore crusade, one thing is clear: If man-made greenhouse gases actually are affecting climate change, it will be decades if not a century before the effects of such changes translate into widespread dangers to mankind.
In the meantime, the world is increasingly at risk from a far more imminent threat, one Mr. Gore and his ilk seem content to ignore. In fact, the caviling about global warming can be seen as a deflection from a menace that is at hand and that risks turning vast human populations into endangered species: the rapidly metastasizing, totalitarian ideology of our time that has come to be known as Islamofascism or, alternatively, Islamism.
Among those most immediately imperiled by the Islamofascists are Muslims who dare to challenge the repressive, seditious theo-political-legal code that the former describe as "Shariah" and seek to impose on their co-religionists and everyone else. Some of these endangered species cling to and seek to reform their faith. Others, like the estimable Syrian-born psychologist Wafa Sultan, have felt constrained formally to leave it.
All such individuals risk death at the hands of the Islamists on the grounds they are, respectively, "hypocrites" or "apostates" capital offenses under Shariah. At the very least, they can be charged with "slandering" Islam, which is also according to the Islamofascists" rule book a capital crime.
This is hardly an academic point. Dr. Sultan is in hiding somewhere in this country after an appearance on March 4 on the Islamofascists" favorite television network, Al Jazeera. In the course of a heated debate about the Danish cartoons with an Egyptian Islamist named Tal'at Rmeih, she bravely declared:
"All religions and faiths, throughout the history of humanity, have been subject to criticism and affronts. With time, this has helped in their reform and development. Any belief that chops off the heads of its critics is doomed to turn into terrorism and tyranny. This has been the condition of Islam, from its inception to this day. Islam has sentenced [its critics] to prison, and whoever crosses the threshold of that prison meets his death. The Danish cartoons have managed to break down the first brick in the wall of that prison, and to open up a window, through which the sunrays enter, after a lengthy darkness. The Danish newspaper exercised its freedom of speech. Liberties are the holiest thing in the West, and nothing is more important. But if Islam were not the way it is, those cartoons would never have appeared."
Dr. Sultan added: "If you want to change the course of events, you must re-examine your terrorist teachings, you must recognize and respect the right of the other to live, you must teach your children love, peace, coexistence and productive work. When you do that, the world will respect you, will consider you in a better light, and will draw you in a better light."
On March 16, one of the world"s pre-eminent Islamofascists, Sheik Yusuf al-Qaradawi took to the airwaves of Al Jazeera to denounce Wafa Sultan and provide the religious basis for her murder. Sheik Qaradawi declared she had "leveled accusations against Islam and the Muslims, and cursed Allah, His Prophet, the Islamic nation, the Shariah and the Islamic faith and culture. She did not omit anything. She was insolent and stopped at nothing."
Sheik Qaradawi has parlayed his platform as the host of Al Jazeera's popular "Shariah and Life" program into a prominence in the Muslim world that makes such statements life-threatening to those he criticizes. In a 2004 interview with the Egyptian newspaper Al-Ahram Al-Arabi, the sheik ordered those who strayed from Islam to be put to death. He has also described "the abduction and killing of Americans in Iraq as a [religious] obligation so as to cause them to leave Iraq immediately" and supported suicide bombings against Israeli civilians.
Al Jazeera thought it wise to apologize for allowing Wafa Sultan to appear. Dr. Sultan has been subjected to death threats and she and her family have been forced to conceal their whereabouts.
What makes this story the more appalling is that such a man and his colleagues at the European Council for Fatwa and Research have been engaged by prominent commercial institutions to serve as "Shariah advisers" in connection with the latters' "Shariah-Compliant Finance" operations. In that capacity, they not only have a say in where capital and credit flow in Western economies. They are also able to advance the legitimization of Shariah and to engage in what these Muslim Brotherhood types have called "financial jihad."
During the Cold War, a great Democratic Sen. Henry "Scoop" Jackson led the effort to help protect that era's most endangered species Soviet dissidents by publicizing their plight and penalizing their oppressors.
Today, we must do at least a much for our era's refuseniks, the Wafa Sultans here and elsewhere, for their fates are truly tied to our own.