What is Catholic Exchange? In its own words, "Catholic Exchange is a non-profit media organization that seeks to bring the Good News of Jesus Christ as proclaimed by the Catholic Church to the world through the modern tools of mass communication". Sounds good to me. And yet one of its listed columnists is a man called Daniel Pipes.
Who is Daniel Pipes? Broadly speaking, he can be defined as "an American historian and counter-terrorism analyst who specializes in the Middle East." In reality, Pipes is a rapid supporter of Israel, with a penchant for demonizing Arabs and Muslims. He has an apocalyptic vision in which radical Islam is engaged in a winner-takes-all war against the western world. Sounds familiar, doesn't it? He defended internment of Japanese-Americans during the second world war. And of course, he sees the parallels today, arguing that "There is no escaping the unfortunate fact that Muslim employees in law enforcement, the military, and the diplomatic corps need to be watched for connections to terrorism, as do Muslim chaplains in prisons and the armed forces...Muslim visitors and immigrants must undergo additional background checks."
He is at his most extreme when discussing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and declared unequivocally that "There can be either an Israel or a Palestine, but not both.. to those who ask why the Palestinians must be deprived of a state, the answer is simple: grant them one and you set in motion a chain of events that will lead either to its extinction or the extinction of Israel." He even founded Campus Watch, designed to root out "anti-American and anti-Israel" biases. Of course, he will loosely throw around the "anti-semite" slur against anybody who disagrees with the policies of Israel.
Now, Pipes is entitled to his views, but what in the name of God is he doing writing for Catholic Exchange? How does his venom contribute to bringing the "Good News of Jesus Christ as proclaimed by the Catholic Church to the world"? As I noted yesterday, the support for Israel from the likes of Falwell and Dobson arises from their bizarre dispensationalist theology, not from anything in Catholic teaching. In recent times, the Vatican has never recognized the existence of the state de jure, only de facto. In other words, Israel is a secular state with the rights and responsibilities of every other secular state, with no God-given "land grant", and certainly not one that can be taken by force. In fact, the Catholic church is admirably even-handed in its approach to the Israeli-Palestinian crisis. I ask again: what is Pipes doing on Catholic Exchange?