NBC News Terrorism Expert: ‘We Have to Put Ourselves in the Eyes’ of Terrorists to ‘Understand’ Them

On Wednesday’s edition of The Cycle on MSNBC, NBC News terrorism expert Evan Kohlmann was at it again, telling the hosts that we, as Americans, must “put ourselves in the eyes” of Islamic terrorists considering “there wouldn't be violent attacks but there would be an uproar” and “anger” among Christians if Muslims burned crosses or trampled “Christian artifacts.”

After giving his thoughts on freedom of speech and the broader freedom of expression, Kohlmann launched into explaining how we must come to understand those who commit terrorist acts in the name of Islam: “We have to put ourselves in the eyes of our adversaries sometimes and we have to understand that reacting violently, burning Korans, getting very worked up about this, it doesn't necessarily help our agenda.”

Seeking to further impose his hubris upon viewers, he added: “If our agenda is to promote peace and reconciliation and understanding, you know, saying bad things about Islam is not going to solve that problem.”

Kohlmann’s attempt at creating another moral equivalency between Western civilization and ruthless Islamic terrorists came for the second time in a week, as he blasted the French National Front party on Friday, declaring that they are “as much of the problem as jihadists are” for France going forward.

Back in August, he blamed the news that the Islamic terror group ISIS was waterboarding its captives on “the behavior that they've seen meted out to prisoners at Abu Ghraib, at Guantanamo to their own captives.”

(h/t: Right Scoop)

The relevant portion of the transcript from MSNBC’s The Cycle on January 14 can be found below.

MSNBC’s The Cycle
January 14, 2015
3:10 p.m. Eastern

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: France Terror Siege; Charlie Hebdo Sells Out, Printing 2 Mil. More Copies]

EVAN KOHLMANN: You know, look, we have to be – we have to balance this. We have to understand there is a right to freedom of speech, a right to freedom of expression. We should respect that and there shouldn't be pressure on people to restrain what they are writing on the basis of whether or not there should be violence. On the other hand, you know, look, we do also have to recognize that if people in the Muslim world started burning crosses and they started trampling across Christian artifacts, they wouldn't be violent attacks but there would be an uproar here, right. There would be anger and we have to put ourselves in the eyes of our adversaries sometimes and we have to understand that reacting violently, burning Korans, getting very worked up about this, it doesn't necessarily help our agenda. If our agenda is to promote peace and reconciliation and understanding, you know, saying bad things about Islam is not going to solve that problem. So, you know, once again, freedom of speech is a great thing and it should absolutely be respected and there should not be prior restraint, but let’s also remember we have to respect people if we want that respect back. 

Censorship Mohammed Cartoons Europe Religion Christianity Islam France MSNBC The Cycle Terrorism Evan Kohlmann
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