Robert Spencer Denounces Walid Shoebat and Son for “Sensationalistic Unreliability” and “Dishonesty”

From Robert Spencer at FrontPage:

THEODORE SHOEBAT JOINS THE JIHAD, SAYS ‘PAMELA GELLER IS WORTHY OF DEATH

…Theodore Shoebat runs the website Shoebat.com, which many take as a reliable source for news of jihad activity that the mainstream media does not deign to report. Shoebat.com, however, has a reputation for sensationalistic unreliability: to take one notorious example, it posted a photo of a young German woman holding a sign reading, “Will Trade Racists For Rapists.”… the sign was photoshopped. The original read, “Will Trade Racists for Refugees.” Shoebat.com never acknowledged this or retracted its original post.

Theodore Shoebat is the son of Walid Shoebat, who styles himself an ex-Muslim and reformed jihadist. Walid Shoebat, who certainly has demonstrated a broad knowledge of Islam and the jihad threat, has been challenged repeatedly, most notably on CNN [see here and here – RB], to substantiate his claims about his past. Several years ago I myself gave him a chance to answer all the charges against his veracity in a video interview; in purporting to do so, Walid Shoebat talked for a long time, said very little of substance, and left the principal charges of his own dishonesty unanswered. In personal exchanges more recently, I was struck by his dishonesty again.

And now this. In a video posted last Thursday, Theodore Shoebat says: “Pamela Geller is worthy of death.” Her crime? Appearing at a “Gays for Trump” event along with gay activist Milo Yiannopoulos [see here – RB] at the Republican National Convention in July. For that, says the learned Shoebat the younger, “In Biblical law, in the government of Christendom, she is worthy of death.”

The Shoebat operation has always been crude and hateful, but it has become increasingly so in recent months. At some point the father and son adopted a form of Roman Catholic traditionalism, burning bridges with evangelicals.

However, although I must confess that I visit Spencer’s and Geller’s websites only sporadically, I am not aware that either of them has ever in the past warned readers about Shoebat’s “dishonesty” or of the “sensationalistic unreliabaility” of Shoebat.com. In 2010, Spencer appeared alongside Shoebat and Kamal Saleem at an unofficial Fort Hood shooting memorial event, and Geller has supported Shoebat in disputes with Daniel Pipes* and Mosab Hassan Yousef (more on the latter here).

In July and August, Spencer wrote several posts critical posts about the bereaved father Khizr Khan, yet he did not feel any need to address sensationalistic misrepresentations produced by the Shoebats that were then heavily promoted by Team Trump. Of course, one is not obliged to write about everything, but Spencer writes about these things for a living and Shoebat’s false claims loomed large in the conservative media narrative of a story that Spencer was addressing.

There has been some conservative discontent with the Shoebats over the past year: last September, WND complained that Walid Shoebat had made a “smear attack” against End-Times author Jonathan Cahn, while the Messianic Jewish commentator Michael Brown tackled Theodore’s anti-gay hatred in February; but it seems that it has taken personally offensive comments about Spencer’s closest ally for him to feel that Shoebat’s honesty was a subject he ought to address.

It is hard to take Spencer pontificating on the need to retract and acknowledge errors – I’ve seen him quietly scrub blog posts (which is not the same as making a retraction), and there was no rebuke when Geller posted, and then scrubbed, the totally bogus claim that Obama wears a Muslim ring (although Spencer was himself slightly more cautious on the subject).

Also, since Spencer now feels the need to discuss Shoebat’s dishonesty, when is he going to have anything to say about Kamal Saleem? Spencer did not just appear with him in 2010 – he interviewed him in 2013, and, unlike Shoebat, Saleem remains a significant presence on the conservative “counter-jihad” speaker circuit, working closely with General W. Jerry Boykin.

Shoebat’s ex-terrorist claim is actually rather modest, based on supposedly having planted a bomb on behalf of the PLO in the 1970s. The story is at least plausible, although his framing of this as “jihad” is retrospective and it is not much of a basis on which to claim expertise on Islam and the evils of Muslims. In contrast, Saleem’s claims are extravagant and nonsensical. The only difference, it seems, is that Saleem hasn’t said anything nasty about Geller.

Footnote

* This was a few years after Pipes had endorsed Shoebat’s backstory, stating that “Walid Shoebat took the time to visit me in my office today and to show me proofs that his life story is a true one. I accept that it is.”

One Response

  1. There are many actors in the “Pitting” against one another game, leading to the violence especially in the Christian vs Islam through intimidation &even the seduction against the Church, underscored by the many alters figured in the freemasonic Israeli supreme court – hindu Vishnu, Lo Egypt , revealed through the transgendered one under the “bird’s foot” atop the US capitol dome, in its works of “Intimidation & Seduction” governing the two houses of the congress housed in it , unto the “Violence & Sodom” even to the prophecy of the days of ‘Noe & Lot” , where the same violence & sodom – the cause of the two utter destructions then.

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