Civilization, Its Enemies, and the Dumbest Conversation about ISIS on the Internet

Note added, September 3, 2022: To belabor the obvious–for those who need a belaboring–this post was a response to a post on a separate blog, then called Neo-Neocon, now called The New Neo. The original post was posted in 2014; I don’t know whether it still exists. Neo-Neocon was defending the idea of US military involvement in Syria (back in 2014), which I was opposing. A commenter on the original blog post on Neo-Neocon, “blert,” had attacked my views by doing a cursory Google search, finding what he thought were photos of me, mistakenly identifying me with a fashion model with the name “Irfan Khawaja,” and then offering an elaborate confabulation about how I was an out-of-the-closet gay academic jihad blogger (implying, inadvertently, that Irfan Khawaja the fashion model was one, too). Obviously, blert’s whole comment was premised on a series of really stupid, obviously false assumptions and fabrications. That hasn’t deterred people from making some more.

To be absolutely clear: I am not Irfan Khawaja the fashion model, and have never pretended to be. The references to Irfan Khawaja the fashion model below are obviously satirical references to the erroneous identification of us made by the commenter “blert” on Neo-Neocon. If I’m gay, I must be in the closet about it even to myself, and to all of the women I’ve ever married or dated. I know nothing about the sexual orientation of Irfan Khawaja the fashion model, have no interest in knowing, and have never made any assertions about it whatsoever. I don’t mind being called a “blog jihadi,” but I have no comment on whether Irfan Khawaja the fashion model is. I don’t sympathize with ISIS, and have no reason to believe that Irfan Khawaja the fashion model does. I posted his photo in the post to satirize the error of the commenter, blert. As my bio makes clear, I’ve never claimed to be a fashion model. All of the commenters below except Irfan Khawaja the fashion model grasp that I am not Irfan Khawaja the fashion model, and am not claiming to be.

I wouldn’t have to belabor these obvious points if Irfan Khawaja the fashion model hadn’t, eight years after this post was first posted, decided to misread it by identifying my views with blert the commenter, and then attacking me for what blert had said. The ludicrous results of this misreading are now in the comments. As Dwight Eisenhower put it, “There is no final answer to the question ‘How stupid can you get?'” Continue reading