Both General Petraeus and President Obama have made the argument that if Pastor Terry Jones and his congregation of Christian haters actually make their Koran bonfire Islamist fanatics will take it out on our troops on the Afghan (and Iraqi) war front. As it happens, I don't think that the First Amendment protects this ghoulish horror walpurgisnacht. Indeed, the founding fathers could not have intended the protection of such infamy as a cardinal principle of the constitution. So, yes, I am an originalist in that the grotesque discourse of burning some one else's bible was never a thought in Thomas Jefferson's mind. That's why I want the president to seek an injunction against the church and its minister. That's what I wrote a few days ago and it's what I still believe.
And, of course, many Muslim believers may be driven to shoot our soldiers even if the burning of the Book does not take place, which it looks like it won't. People all over the world were murdered when Mohammed's turban went up in smoke in a Danish cartoon. But the fact is that Muslims -no, not all Muslims but enough Muslims- are at war with American and allied combatants...and also American and allied non-combatants. That's a big part of Islam's terror war. Do the president and his general believe that, since Pastor Jones has relented from his demented and satanic intention, Allah's warriors will pack up their guns and disassemble their explosives? If they believe this, if you believe this, you are all fools.
It may even be that we might persuade some of the Islamic faithful if we actually protect their holy book. And what would we lose if we do?
P.S.: The news is good that Secretary Gates persuaded Pastor Jones to stop the auto-da-fé against the Koran. But there will be no lessening of jihadist killings of American and allied personnel or of Muslim believers who do not believe what the true believers believe. In any case, there are more Islamic fanatics in the world than anyone is willing to admit. And certainly less Christian fanatics than ACLU liberals believe. The ACLU does have ways to fight religious Christians: forbid them from putting creches in the town square, for example, and don't permit Christmas and Easter holidays to be mentioned in public schools. As for Muslims, leave them alone. The real question, then, is why don't we leave everyone alone. But not permit the burning of the books...anyone's books.