As most of you know, for the past year Charles Johnson of Little Green Footballs has been attacking many people in the right-wing Counterjihad, including Fjordman, Diana West, Dymphna, and me, accusing us of being “fascist-enablers” and other appropriately odious labels for being willing to associate with Vlaams Belang and other groups he considers “neo-Nazis”.
Late last year I swore off posting about the conflict, and mostly I’ve kept my pledge. From time to time, however, both Fjordman and I have brought the topic up whenever it was necessary.
Today is one such time, even if it’s just to write a coda to the whole sorry affair. Yesterday CJ attacked Andrew Bostom in the comments at LGF, and threatened to publish their email exchange.
I happened to attend an event last night at which both Andy Bostom and Robert Spencer were present (more about that later). Andy told us that this latest attack was a bridge too far, and that he was going to pre-empt Charles Johnson by publishing their email exchange himself.
Today he has done just that. Here’s how he begins his post:
Confronting a Mendacious Bully
Anna Julia Cooper (d. 1964, at age 105), the pioneering black American scholar and educator: “Bullies are always cowards at heart and may be credited with a pretty safe instinct in scenting their prey.”
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Charles Johnson doth protest too much. For months I have endured in silence his distressingly stupid and vicious calumnies and threats — private, as well as public — against colleagues and friends — brave, decent souls who, unlike Johnson, are serious scholars, authors, and journalists, investigating the burgeoning threat of violent and non-violent jihadism/ Islamization in Europe.
When Johnson put my dear friend — the perspicacious writer and journalist Diana West — in his crosshairs, I was compelled to break my silence. Following Johnson’s e-mail threat to another close friend — the brilliant scholar and author Robert Spencer — after Raymond Ibrahim (editor/translator of The Al Qaeda Reader) simply blogged a favorable discussion (subsequently removed by Spencer, pace Johnson’s threat!) of Diana West’s September 18, 2008 Town Hall.com column at the Jihad Watch/Dhimmi Watch website — I noticed that National Review Online had a featured link (on 9/19/08) to the same West column.
As a rather gentle rebuke of Johnson’s bullying (not to mention months of his indiscriminate, irresponsible, and just plain idiotic spraying of charges of “Fascism”), I sent “CJ” an e-mail link to the NRO featured posting of West’s September 18, 2008 essay with the subject line heading, “Lookie!-NRO ‘Fascists’ have featured a link to Diana West’s ‘We are losing Europe to Islam.’“ A week later, when Diana’s follow-up column was also a featured link at NRO (9/26/08), I again forwarded the NRO link with a similar subject heading. And the next day (9/27/08) when social critic Roger Kimball (of The New Criterion, and Pajamas Media) had a lengthy, favorable discussion of West’s 9/26/08 column, I sent another e-mail with the subject line title, “Oh No! ‘Fascist’ Roger Kimball on Cologne and ‘Fascist’ Diana West.”
Johnson responded to this latter e-mail accusing me (on the basis of the three rather innocuous e-mails above, sent during a week) of “stalking” him!
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I wrote back in admittedly (albeit deservedly) caustic language highlighting the hypocrisy of Johnson’s attacks on those he perceived (see Anna Julia Cooper’s observation about a bully’s “pretty safe instinct in scenting their prey”) as vulnerable — independent writers and thinkers such as West and Spencer — while lacking the guts to similarly attack well-established conservative icons such as NRO, or Roger Kimball who had endorsed West’s writings (NRO twice, in successive weeks) on the Islamization of Europe.
Johnson then proceeded to blog the comments (below) at his website, which included a “threat” to publish my e-mails to him. Johnson’s warped characterization of my correspondence, and idle threats to “expose” those e-mails reveal his mendacity and prototypical bully cowardice. The e-mails are included below, preceded by Johnson’s public comments at his blog.
There follow the comments and the full email exchange between both parties. Pay a visit Andy’s blog to read the whole thing.
You’ll notice that one of the things Charles said was: “The only thing you’re achieving is to make yourself look like a fool.”
I’ll leave it to our readers (and for posterity) to examine the evidence for themselves and decide who is a fool and a cowardly bully, and who is a fine scholar and a man of integrity.