Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal will address a right-wing think tank in London next week that has been accused of pushing an anti-Muslim agenda.
During a speech to the Henry Jackson Society on Monday, Jindal will note the recent terrorist attacks in Paris and call on Islamic leaders to “stand up and stop” acts of terrorism by radical Muslims.
“Let’s be honest here, Islam has a problem. If Islam does not support what is happening in the name of Islam, then they need to stand up and stop it,” Jindal will say, according to a preview of his remarks from his office. “Many Islamic leaders argue that these are the acts of a radical few. OK, it is their problem, and they need to deal with it.”
In the prepared remarks, Jindal warns early on that his speech won’t be “politically correct.”
Jindal supporters have praised the speech as “brilliant” and “hard-hitting” for its frankness.
“It is the toughest speech I have read on the whole issue of Islamic radicalism and its destructive, murdering, barbarous ways which are upsetting the entire world,” conservative columnist Larry Kudlow wrote this week.
But a Tulane University professor who reviewed the prepared text claims Jindal’s comments are misinformed, inappropriate and could be offensive to Muslims.
“Islam certainly does not endorse killing people who oppose it, any more than Christianity does. He needs to get his facts straight,” said Mark Gasiorowski, a political scientist and expert on foreign policy and Middle East politics. “In my view, it is not at all appropriate for an elected official to insult others’ religion, as Gov. Jindal has here.”
Gasiorowski said Muslim leaders have condemned the terrorist attacks and aren’t responsible for the religion’s fringe.
“Many Muslim leaders loudly denounce and condemn attacks of the sort Mr. Jindal is discussing here,” he said. “He seems unaware of that.”
Several Muslim leaders contacted by The Advocate wouldn’t comment on Jindal’s speech. About 1 percent of Louisiana’s population identifies as Muslim.
Jindal, who is considering a run for president, is in Europe through Tuesday on what has been billed as an economic development trip that will be paid for by taxpayer dollars and Jindal’s campaign fund. He met with leaders from BASF SE, the world’s largest chemical manufacturing company, in Germany on Thursday, his office noted.
The Henry Jackson Society has been criticized by some in the British press as allegedly promoting anti-Muslim views. One of the group’s founding members resigned in 2012, accusing leaders of harboring an “anti-Muslim tinge.”
It’s not the only controversial group Jindal will address this month.
Jindal will speak at the Legatus summit, a meeting of Catholic business executives, in Florida at the end of January. Three other speakers — actor Gary Sinise, Fox News host Bret Baier and MillerCoors CEO Pete Coors — have all canceled appearances at the summit, citing controversy over the group’s anti-gay views.
About a third of the previewed portion of Jindal’s Henry Jackson Society speech deals with Islam directly or indirectly through immigration and assimilation.
Jindal is expected to repeat a disputed claim that Muslims have formed “no-go zones” in Europe that are ruled by Islamic religious law and don’t allow non-Muslims.
“(I)n the West, non-assimilationist Muslims establish enclaves and carry out as much of Sharia law as they can without regard for the laws of the democratic countries which provided them a new home,” Jindal’s speech reads. “It is startling to think that any country would allow, even unofficially, for a so- called ‘no-go zone.’ ”
British Prime Minister David Cameron called a Fox News commentator a “complete idiot” after he made similar remarks over the weekend about Muslim-ruled “no-go zones” in England.
Gasiorowski said he’s also unaware of any Muslim enclaves in the West where Sharia law is being carried out.
The over-arching theme of Jindal’s speech, which will take place at the House of Commons, is freedom. In addition to taking on “radical Islam,” he plans to talk about his parents’ decision to move to the United States from India in pursuit of the American dream and the need for America’s enemies to fear the country.
At one point, Jindal said he thinks it’s “completely reasonable” for nations to discriminate against allowing immigrants in who are not willing to assimilate.
“It is completely reasonable and even necessary for a sovereign nation to discriminate between people who want to join them and people who want to divide them,” Jindal will say.