On Thursday, Washington, D.C.’s Fox 5 reported that officials with the Department of Homeland Security are warning mosques to be prepared for possible violent protests set to take place over the Columbus Day weekend. According to the Washington Times, the protests are, in part, the brain child of Jon Ritzheimer, the Marine veteran who organized a protest at an Arizona mosque earlier this year.
Meanwhile, R. Skyler Oberst, writing at Spokane Faith and Values, suggested counter-protesters respond with “a hand in friendship…” Oberst, however, started his article by referring to the protests as “a modern-day, global kristalnacht (sic)…”
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There’s only one problem with that characterization. Krystallnacht, or the Night of Broken Glass, was a violent protest sanctioned by the Nazi government against Jews:
The pretext for the pogroms was the shooting in Paris on November 7 of the German diplomat Ernst vom Rath by a Polish-Jewish student, Herschel Grynszpan. News of Rath’s death on November 9 reached Adolf Hitler in Munich, Germany, where he was celebrating the anniversary of the abortive 1923 Beer Hall Putsch. There, Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels, after conferring with Hitler, harangued a gathering of old storm troopers, urging violent reprisals staged to appear as “spontaneous demonstrations.” Telephone orders from Munich triggered pogroms throughout Germany, which then included Austria.
The Nazi regime then went on to make Jewish life in Germany impossible. The rest is history.
For starters, the protests scheduled for the weekend are not sanctioned by the government. If anything, the government is working with mosques and groups like CAIR to minimize their impact. Second, many of those participating feel their culture, even the very soul of their nation, is under attack by those who want to replace the Constitution with Sharia law.
Simply put, they see what is currently happening in Europe and the Middle East, and they don’t want to see it happen here. Recently, for example, Faye Higbee noted that one Kansas college made radical changes to its chapel in order to appease its Muslim student population.
In 2012, Christians in Dearborn, Michigan, were viciously attacked and stoned by Muslims at an Arab festival as police simply watched. A video report of that, courtesy of the United West, can be seen here.
A Facebook page, Global Rally for Humanity, says “humanity is attacked daily by radical Islam” and is calling for protests around the world. Organizers suggest those wanting to hold local protests start similar pages for their area. A search of Facebook reveals several pages have been set up.
Some organizers have urged protesters to leave their firearms at home, while others have said activists should exercise all of their rights under the Constitution, including the right to bear arms.
Ritzheimer, who is organizing the rally in Phoenix, Arizona, made headlines recently when he threatened to arrest lawmakers who support President Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran.
Being somewhat acquainted with Oberst, I can understand and appreciate his desire to reach out to those with whom he disagrees. After all, his response is far better than what we’ve seen from many on the left in the recent past. But to compare a lawful, peaceful protest to Hitler’s Krystallnacht is going just a bit overboard, to say the least.
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