Obama compares ISIS to the Crusades, receives heavy backlash

Published: Saturday, February 07, 2015 @ 8:45 AM
Updated: Saturday, February 07, 2015 @ 8:45 AM

Trending on Facebook

More popular and trending stories

"Unless we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ," President Barack Obama said Thursday at the annual National Prayer Breakfast.

Obama talked about ISIS at the annual National Prayer Breakfast Thursday.

But — and this is the part a lot of his critics are mad about — he compared the group's acts of terror to the Crusades and Christianity, among other analogies.

"In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ," Obama said. 

Some viewed the comparison as an attack on Christianity. 

Fox News contributor Laura Ingraham said, "We've evolved, and sorry, this Islamic Jihadist movement is regressing. So the president could just say that, but, instead, he always has to lecture us. It's something in his DNA."

Conservative commentator Michelle Malkin's interpretation? That the president essentially blamed the Crusades for ISIS brutality.

To be clear though, he wasn't blaming, but rather appearing to draw a comparison between horrific events whose perpetrators often claimed a divine mandate. 

So there was definitely an attempt to draw a comparison, though his stated point was that "No God condones terror."

The more interesting takeaway, though, might be that others took his comments Thursday to mean he was finally linking ISIS to Islam.

For a little context, the White House has been catching a lot of heat lately for avoiding the terms Islamist terrorist or Islamic radicals when referring to ISIS. 

In January Sen. Lindsey Graham had this to say on "The Hugh Hewitt Show": "When I hear the president of the United States and his chief spokesperson failing to admit that we're in a religious war, it really bothers me."

To which Obama explained to CNN, "It is absolutely true that I reject a notion that somehow that creates a religious war because the overwhelming majority of Muslims reject that interpretation of Islam. They don't even recognize it as Islam." 

And for as dissatisfied as many Republicans seem on Obama's stance, The Jerusalem Post notesGeorge W. Bush — Obama's Republican predecessor — also, "never characterized the fight in religious terms." He instead used the term "war on terrorism."

"The terrorist practice in fringe form of Islamic extremism that has been rejected by Muslim scholars and the vast majority of Muslim clerics; a fringe movement that perverts the peaceful teachings of Islam," Bush said in 2001

The White House hasn't yet commented on the backlash following Thursday's speech. 

This video includes images from Getty Images. 

North Korean officials reach out to Republicans for help understanding Trump: report

Published: Tuesday, September 26, 2017 @ 3:58 PM

VIDEO: President Trump Speaks To U.N. General Assembly On North Korea

North Korean officials are reaching out to Republican-linked analysts in an attempt to better understand President Donald Trump, according to a report published Tuesday by The Washington Post.

>> Read more trending news

The effort began before Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jung Un started trading fiery rhetoric in the wake of the Hermit Kingdom’s repeated missile tests, the Post reported.

“Their number one concern is Trump,” a source, who was not identified, told the newspaper. “They can’t figure him out.”

The Post reported that at least seven invitations have been extended to Washington-based analysts, including Douglas Paal, an expert on Asia who served on the National Security Council under presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.

Paal, who is currently vice president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, told the Post that he declined North Korea’s request to arrange talks between its officials and “American experts with Republican ties.”

Read more from The Washington Post

“The North Koreans are clearly eager to deliver a message,” Paal said, adding that North Korean officials wanted the meeting to take place in a neutral location, such as Switzerland. “But I think they’re only interested in getting out of the country for a bit.”

This image made on Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2017, from propaganda video released by North Korea, shows U.S. President Donald Trump. Military analysts say North Korea doesn't have the capability or intent to attack U.S. bombers and fighter jets, despite the country's top diplomat saying it has the right do so. They view the remark by North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho and a recent propaganda video simulating such an attack as responses to fiery rhetoric by U.S. President Donald Trump and his hardening stance against the North's nuclear weapons program. Words say "Madman Trump in the 70th anniversary of the U.S. Air Force babbled that if there will be an attack on the North, the F-35 will lead the way" and "F-35, B-1B and Carl Vinson, lead the attack if you will. That will be the order you head to the grave." (DPRK Today via AP)(AP)

Related

Vladimir Putin bares chest, goes spearfishing

Published: Saturday, August 05, 2017 @ 8:40 AM

Vladimir Putin - Fast Facts

Russian president Vladimir Putin took a short vacation to begin August, heading to Tuva in southern Siberia to fish, swim and catch some rays.

In images and footage released by Russian state television, Putin and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu can be seen enjoying the outdoors, The Associated Press reports. Putin is seen swimming and fishing, including spending two hours hunting a pike while spearfishing.

>> Read more trending news

Most of the images of Putin feature him bare-chested, except for the photos where Putin dons a wetsuit.

Putin is known for his love of adventure and the outdoors, and has taken active vacations since becoming Russia's president, The Associated Press reports.

In this photo released by Kremlin press service on Saturday, Aug. 5, 2017, Russian President Vladimir Putin holds a fish he caught while fishing during a mini-break in the Siberian Tyva region, a few days ago.(Alexei Nikolsky/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)

Manuel Noriega, former Panamanian dictator, dead at 83

Published: Tuesday, May 30, 2017 @ 1:09 AM

048177 19: General Manuel Antonio Noriega poses February 13, 1988 in Panama. In February 1988, two US federal grand juries indicted Noriega on drug trafficking charges and both American and Panamanian citizens strove to remove him from office. (Photo by Greg Smith/Liaison)
Greg Smith/Getty Images
048177 19: General Manuel Antonio Noriega poses February 13, 1988 in Panama. In February 1988, two US federal grand juries indicted Noriega on drug trafficking charges and both American and Panamanian citizens strove to remove him from office. (Photo by Greg Smith/Liaison)(Greg Smith/Getty Images)

Former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega has died at age 83, multiple news outlets, including TVN and Telemetro, reported early Tuesday.

>> PHOTOS: Notable deaths 2017

>> Read more trending news

>> Click here or scroll down for more

Prince William: 'Nobody should be bullied for their sexuality'

Published: Saturday, May 13, 2017 @ 10:37 AM

PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 17:  Prince William, Duke of Cambridge attends a reception at the British Embassy during day one of their visit on March 17, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Ian Vogler - Pool/Getty Images)
Pool/Getty Images
PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 17: Prince William, Duke of Cambridge attends a reception at the British Embassy during day one of their visit on March 17, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Ian Vogler - Pool/Getty Images)(Pool/Getty Images)

Prince William offered a message of support for the LGBT community Friday evening at the British LGBT Awards.

>> Read more trending news

The Duke of Cambridge, who was named "straight ally of the year" for the British lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities, spoke via a video message, according to the BBC. In the brief video, he talks about how he's become passionate about "protecting from bullying, particularly online." He said he's "encountered a number of tragic stories about LGBT young people who have sadly felt unable to cope with the abuse and discrimination they face in their lives."

Prince William concluded: "It is 2017, and nobody should be bullied for their sexuality, or for any other reason."