Cheat-Seeking Missles

Monday, September 04, 2006

CAIR: "Beyond Terrorism" Or More Tripe?

The Council on American-Islamic Relations excitedly introduced its fancy new logo [right] at the Islamic Society of North America convention, just in time for the fifth anniversary of September 11.

The logo presentation was just a wee bit upstaged by the appearance of "mass-murdering Iranian faux moderate Mohammad Khatami," who blamed the increase in terrorism in the world not on himself, not on the radical Imams, not on the doctrine of Jihad, but on America. Just what we want North American Muslims to believe.

Anyway, CAIR explains the logo:
The four crescent shaped objects represent people from four corners of the earth all coming together. They are holding hands with heads bowed in prayer signifying that peace and justice is achieved when people work together towards the common center of mutual good. The four crescents have different shades reflecting the human diversity.
All the crescents are a shade of blue -- a rather nice symbol of how far diversity goes with Muslims.

But rather than take on the logo, as many have done before me, I'd like to put it into some context via a logo that was introduced a few years back.

Several years ago, British Petroleum began re-imaging and re-branding itself as "BP, Beyond Petroleum." Isn't their new green and yellow logo just about as pretty and un-dirty crude-oil-ly as you can imagine?

The once omnipresent BP TV ads feature people talking about what an oil company should be -- forward looking, not tied to petroleum, committed to stopping global warming and protecting the environment through their actions and their research into finding greener, cleaner, forever renewable resources.

WaPo described the campaign:
Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide uses the campaign it coordinated as a case study. "The rebranding entailed the introduction of a new visual identity . . . designed to help BP transcend the oil sector, deliver top-line growth and define the company as innovative, progressive, environmentally responsible and performance driven," Ogilvy's Web site said. The ads won two PRWeek magazine's campaign of the year awards in 2001.
The logo concept apparently didn't include basic maintenance of infrastructure as one of BP's innovative, progressive and environmentally responsible attributes. The resulting oil spills and closure of the BP's Alaska pipeline destroyed most of the goodwill the "Beyond Petroleum" campaign had built -- goodwill that has been valued at as much as $1 billion.

To get an idea of the extent of the damage, just type "beyond petroleum" into your favorite blog browser, and see what turns up. Because people had let themselves believe there might really be a new kind of oil company, BP's fall was personal and reaffirming of the old resentments and misgivings about Big Oil. Here's one such person, who actually worked on the BP campaign at Oglivy:
“I guess ‘beyond petroleum’ is just advertising. It’s become mere marketing - perhaps it always was - instead of a genuine attempt to engage the public in the debate or a corporate rallying cry to change the paradigm." (source)
Back to CAIR. Their new logo is supposed to be symbol of a new CAIR, or there's no point in it whatsoever. So what's new at CAIR? Here's how they talk about it:

“God does not change the condition of a people unless they themselves change that which is in their inner selves (Holy Quran 13:11).” ...

On behalf of the entire CAIR family, it is my pleasure to introduce CAIR’s new logo and brand identity. We are transforming ourselves to better reflect our core identity of being:

  • Islamic – Timeless values informed by Islam.
  • American – Promoting pluralism for a better America.
  • Just – Commitment to equal rights, equal access and equal respect for all.
  • Educational – Innovative approaches to educating others.
  • Inclusive – Celebrating diversity and promoting dialogue. (source)
What is transformational about celebrating their Muslim heritage by leading off their Web site's home page with an invitation to a Sept. 8 DC dinner featuring none other than "his excellency" Mohammad Khatami, whom they refer to as "Iran's first Reformist President. He focused his tenure on the Rule of Law, Democracy and the inclusion of all Iranians in the Political decision-making process." Really? Here's a counterpoint from Pooya Dayanim on Regime Change Iran:
Mohammad Khatami was the president of Iran between the years of 1997 and 2004. The State Department listed Iran as the number-one state sponsor of terrorism during those years. Among other things, during the Khatami years, Iran refused to hand over to the United States the Iranian intelligence officials who supervised the attack on the Khobar towers that killed American soldiers. Khatami continues to support Hezbollah, Hamas, and has called for the destruction of the state of Israel.

During the Khatami era, freedom of press and assembly was relaxed by the Iranian intelligence and security apparatus to lull the reformists and true democrats into a false sense of security; thousands and thousands of students, journalists, women, clerics, and women started to express their opinions freely. For their foolish faith, many of them would pay. Khatami was president during the biggest crackdown on the Iranian media since the beginning of the Iranian revolution. Khatami was president when Jews were sent to prison on charges of espionage. Khatami was president when Canadian journalist Zahra Kazemi was killed and Khatami was president when thousands of university students were arrested after the 1999 student rioting. I could go on.
If Khatami reform is what we can expect from Islam, CAIR's new logo is nothing more than a cover-up. There's absolutely nothing "Beyond Petrodollar-Funded Terrorism and Repression" here.

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