Is there a robust zone of Muslim belief that lives up to the term "moderate?" Or is "moderate Islam" more of a hopeful Western construct? Wafa Sultan and Daniel Pipes disagree.
Daniel Pipes is director of the Middle East Forum and a prize-winning columnist who writes for the New York Times Syndicate. His website, DanielPipes.org, is one of the most accessed internet sources of specialized information on the Middle East and Islam.
The Wall Street Journal calls Mr Pipes "an authoritative commentator on the Middle East." CBS Sunday Morning says he was "years ahead of the curve in identifying the threat of radical Islam."
For example, Pipes wrote in 1995, "Unnoticed by most Westerners, war has been unilaterally declared on Europe and the United States." The Boston Globe states that "If Pipes's admonitions had been heeded, there might never have been a 9/11."
Pipes received his AB (1971) and PhD (1978) in History from Harvard University and spent six years studying abroad, including three years in Egypt. Mr Pipes speaks French and reads Arabic and German. He has taught at the University of Chicago, Harvard University, the US Naval War College, and Pepperdine University.
Pipes also served in various capacities in the US Government, including two presidentially-appointed positions: vice chairman of the Fulbright Board of Foreign Scholarships and member of the board of the US Institute of Peace. He was director of the Foreign Policy Research Institute in 1986-93.
Wafa Sultan is an author and well known critic of Islam. Sultan trained as a psychiatrist in Syria and is a U.S. naturalized citizen.
James Taranto (born 1966) is a Manhattan-based columnist for The Wall Street Journal and editor of its online editorial page, OpinionJournal.com. He is best known for his daily online column, entitled Best of the Web Today, in which he links to and comments on news stories and Web sites submitted by readers. He also appears occasionally on Journal Editorial Report.
Wafa Sultan, author of A God Who Hates, and Daniel Pipes, director of the Middle East Forum, discuss the threats posed by Islamic education and upbringing. Sultan argues that America is facing a huge threat from madrasas within the U.S., with Pipes advocating "special scrutiny of Muslims."
Wafa Sultan, author of A God Who Hates, argues that with respect to the United States Constitution, Islam doesn't qualify as a religion. She explains that Islam is both a religion and a state, which is incompatible with a non-Muslim government. "It is impossible for someone to be a true Muslim and a true American at the same time," she argues.