Shoddy coverage by the Times | AspenTimes.com

Shoddy coverage by the Times

Dear Editor:

On Thursday evening, July 16, Dr. Daniel Pipes, director of the Middle East Forum and the Taube distinguished fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, gave an informative and enlightening talk on “Defeating Radical Islam” to a full house at Paepcke Auditorium.

It’s curious that The Aspen Times chose to cover the event on Friday, the 17th, with only a picture of Dr. Pipes, a brief description of his background and the large caption “RADICAL IDEAS.” Was Stewart Oksenhorn referring to what he perceived as Dr. Pipes’ “Radical Ideas” or to the “Radical Ideas” of militant Islam as Dr. Pipes described in his talk? Although I suspect the former, it’s hard to tell as the body to this so-called “coverage” was non-existent.

Instead of implying, whether intentionally or not, that Dr. Pipes is a “Radical” the Times could have reported about Dr. Pipes’ depth of knowledge of traditional Islam as a religion vs. Islamist fundamentalism, which he shared with his audience. As a result of Dr. Pipes’ extensive research and decades of immersion into this field, he has been warning since long before Sept. 11, 2001, about the threat of the latter, which he claims has much in common with the threats of fascism and communism in the past.

I recommend his book “Militant Islam Reaches America” for those interested, although I understand that it might indeed be a “Radical Idea” to pursue the truth about this topic in our present day. It seems that whether it’s because of apathy or fear or the pervasive and dangerous “political correctness” in our current environment, most of us are choosing to bury our head in the sand (or, in this valley, maybe get lost in the aspen trees) rather than face this grave challenge to our free and democratic society as we have known it.

Judy S. Kava

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