Fascist “journalist” Marc Thibodeau of Quebec’s La Presse defames Ensaf Haidar for meeting with Robert Spencer

Today Quebec’s French-language La Presse features a lengthy hit piece by “journalist” and hard-Left propagandist Marc Thibodeau, entitled “La femme de Raif Badawi liée à un auteur ‘extrémiste,’” that is, “Raif Badawi’s wife linked to ‘extremist’ author.” Badawi is the Saudi writer who is imprisoned there for insulting Islam; Thibodeau doesn’t see fit to include the fact in his headline, but his wife actually has a name, Ensaf Haidar.

The “extremist author” in question is, of course, me. Thibodeau and La Presse are stooping so low as to try to defame Ensaf Haidar and besmirch her cause of trying to get her husband freed, because she had the temerity to meet with me recently, despite my being on the SPLC/CAIR list of people with whom one must not associate, or else.

My interaction with Thibodeau was a classic example of how Leftist propagandist “journalists” play fast and loose with the facts and omit inconvenient details in order to force incidents into their cookie-cutter narrative. It is also a classic example of the Left playing the Alinskyite game of isolating and destroying one target, and then using their success as a weapon to isolate and destroy another. I’ve been defamed by the Left and Islamic supremacist groups for years; but why is Thibodeau targeting Ensaf Haidar? Is she too inconvenient in illustrating, by her husband’s plight, the inhumanity of Sharia speech restrictions which Thibodeau and his ilk are working so hard to bring to the West?

I could tell from his first email to me that Thibodeau’s pen was sweating blood, but I tried to reason with him anyway, and to get him to realize that the only effect his piece could have would be that an innocent man would continue to suffer in prison, and could end up dying there. Like any good fascist, Thibodeau was undaunted. He followed the Brownshirts’ example: dissenters must be defamed and destroyed, whatever the cost. If you don’t read French, put Thibodeau’s article through an online translator and note how much of what I tell him he ignores: he gives the impression that the SPLC and CAIR are neutral authorities; he takes their view of my work as axiomatically true, without questioning either their motives or their accuracy; he shows no awareness of or interest in any legitimate reason why someone might oppose jihad mass murder and Sharia oppression of women, gays, and others, and takes for granted that to do so is “bigoted” and “hateful”; and he is blithely indifferent to the possibility that his work could result in the murder of an innocent man (or two, if some Antifa Leftist takes his smearing of me as an “extremist” seriously and decides to finish his work).

I’ve talked with a great many establishment media journalists over the years, and they’re pretty much all as arrogant as they are clueless, and not intelligent enough even to realize that the Left party line might not always be infallibly correct. But Marc Thibodeau is easily one of the worst ever. Any legitimate news organization would fire him for this piece; instead, he will probably be given a raise.

1. Thibodeau to Spencer:

I’d like to know what was the purpose of your meeting with Mrs Haidar in Washington? Her lawyer, Irwin Cotler, says he was not aware that this meeting had been planned during the tour.

Did you initiate this meeting with Mrs Haidar? Could you indicate for how long you’ve known her and in which circumstances you initially met or made contact? I saw she describes you as «her hero» in one of your online exchanges.

Mrs Haidar indicated online that she can «confirm» after meeting with you that «islamophobia is a big lie invented by Islamists in the west to intimidate and silence people who speak the truth about Sharia law». Do you share this analysis? If so, why? There is a debate on this issue in Quebec, where the prime minister was recently caught up in a controversy after stating that there is no islamophobia.

Thank you for your time,

Marc Thibodeau

2. Spencer to Thibodeau

1. To discuss the plight of her husband in prison in Saudi Arabia and ways to call attention to the human rights abuses involved in his case. I was not aware that a meeting with Mr. Cotler was planned during this tour.

2. No, I did not initiate the meeting. I came into contact with her some time after she began working for her husband’s freedom. I am honored by her characterization, although it is a bit generous; it is a refreshing change from the years of libel, false claims and false charges, and defamation I have received from groups such as the Southern Poverty Law Center, and innumerable media reporters.

3. Yes, I agree with Ms. Haidar. “Islamophobia” is a propaganda neologism designed to intimidate people into thinking it is somehow “hateful” or “bigoted” to oppose jihad mass murder and the Sharia oppression of women, gays, and others. It was chosen by the Muslim Brotherhood organization known as the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT) in the 1990s in order to stifle criticism of jihad terror, according to former IIIT operative Abdur-Rahman Muhammad. The controversy in Quebec stems from the deliberate conflation of two phenomena that are actually quite disparate and unrelated to one another: vigilante attacks upon innocent Muslims, which are never justified under any circumstances, and honest analysis of how jihad terrorists use the texts and teachings of Islam in order to justify violence and oppression. The purveyors of the “Islamophobia” myth try to shut down and discredit that analysis by conflating it with the vigilante violence, falsely claiming that such analysis leads inevitably to such vigilante attacks. The Quebec Premier was criticized by ill-intentioned and dishonest journalists, of which there are a great many, who decided to represent his words as some kind of denial that there was ever violence against innocent Muslims, which obviously was not what he was saying.

3. Thibodeau to Spencer:

Thank you for the answers.

SPLC and CAIR continue to describe you as an extremist that encourages hate towards muslims in general rather than jihadis in particular. What do you think of the way they characterize you? What is, in your assessment, their motivation for doing this?

Their analysis mentions various issues, including the fact you were banned from entering the UK in 2012. Also that your writings were referenced «dozens of times» by Anders Behring Breivik in his manifesto. I’ve read that you consider the UK acted like a «quasi Islamic state» in deciding to deny you access. Also that the Breivik references are similar to Charles Manson quoting the Beatles and that they give no indication of the value of your work on jihadism. Does this reflect the outlook you have today on these incidents?

4. Spencer to Thibodeau:

1. I think it’s outright libel, and neither you or they can produce a single quote from me encouraging any kind of hate toward anyone. I am looking into legal avenues against them. As for their motivation, the SPLC’s Mark Potok said in a speech a few years ago that the SPLC’s intention in labeling groups “hate groups” was to destroy them. The SPLC is an attack machine to defame, destroy, and silence those who dissent from its agenda.

2. In reality, I was banned from the UK in 2013. You can read the letter to me from the UK Home Office here: https://www.jihadwatch.org/2013/06/britain-capitulates-to-jihad. In it, you will note that I was banned for saying that Islam has doctrines of warfare against unbelievers. That is a readily demonstrable, easily provable fact; see, for example, here: https://www.jihadwatch.org/2013/11/pope-francis-authentic-islam-and-the-proper-reading-of-the-koran-are-opposed-to-every-form-of-violen

In other words, I wasn’t banned for “extremism” or “hate speech,” I was banned for enunciating an unwelcome fact. Meanwhile, the UK government doesn’t have the best track record in this regard. Just days after I was banned, the British government admitted Saudi Sheikh Mohammed al-Arefe. Al-Arefe has said: “Devotion to jihad for the sake of Allah, and the desire to shed blood, to smash skulls, and to sever limbs for the sake of Allah and in defense of His religion, is, undoubtedly, an honor for the believer. Allah said that if a man fights the infidels, the infidels will be unable to prepare to fight.”

And Syed Muzaffar Shah Qadri’s preaching of hatred and jihad violence was so hardline that he was banned from preaching in Pakistan, but the UK Home Office welcomed him into Britain.

The UK Home Office also admitted Shaykh Hamza Sodagar into the country, despite the fact that he has said: “If there’s homosexual men, the punishment is one of five things. One – the easiest one maybe – chop their head off, that’s the easiest. Second – burn them to death. Third – throw ’em off a cliff. Fourth – tear down a wall on them so they die under that. Fifth – a combination of the above.”

Theresa May’s government also admitted two jihad preachers who had praised the murderer of a foe of Pakistan’s blasphemy laws. One of them was welcomed by the Archbishop of Canterbury. Meanwhile, the UK banned three bishops from areas of Iraq and Syria where Christians are persecuted from entering the country.

I don’t know where you are getting that quote from me saying that Britain acted like a “quasi Islamic state” in banning me. I don’t recall saying that, but I suppose it’s possible. Please supply your source. In any case, I believe the UK government is so avid to appease its restive Muslim population that they have a bad record of letting in jihadis and banning foes of jihad terror and Sharia oppression. That’s not acting like a quasi-Islamic state, that’s acting like a foolish, short-sighted, fearful, and appeasement-minded state.

As for Breivik, he incorporated the full text of a documentary I appeared in in 2002 into his “manifesto.” No one knows where he got it, as the text had never been published and was not online, and it is unlikely that a non-native speaker of English sat down and flawlessly transcribed a two-hour documentary himself. But in any case, every time I speak in that documentary, which is often, my name appears. That means he mentioned me often, yes. But when you say that my writings were referenced dozens of times by Breivik, you’re giving the impression that I was calling for violence such as his attack, and therefore am complicit in it. In reality, I have never called for, or condoned, or approved of any violence. The SPLC doesn’t mention it, but Breivik in his “manifesto” actually criticizes me and others for NOT calling for violence. You will then say, “Well, yes, but your hate drove him to violence.” At that point I would challenge you to produce any example of this hate. He committed a horrific act of violence and appeared to agree with me on some things, although given the fact that he praised al-Qaeda and said they (not I) had inspired him to be violent, and expressed willingness to work with Hamas, there really isn’t much congruence between his world view and mine. Does his act discredit my work? I am calling attention to an obviously genuine threat: there have been over 34,000 jihad terror attacks worldwide since 9/11. If any point of view was discredited when some madman acted violently and did so supposedly in the name of that point of view, then socialism, communism, and pretty much everything else would also be discredited, no? So yes, I do think that to claim that I incited Breivik to violence is like claiming that the Beatles incited Manson to violence. Those who make this claim are trying to destroy my work on false pretenses. Floyd Corkins planned mass murder at the Family Research Council offices because the SPLC told him the FRC was a “hate group.” Does that mean the SPLC incited Corkins and is responsible for his violence? I’m sure you don’t think so; we’ll see how willing you are to be fair and consistent in my case.

Ensaf’s husband is in prison for having the wrong opinions, and could be killed there. Consider what you are enabling when you try to defame her by association with me.

5. Spencer to Thibodeau:

By the way, when you invoke CAIR against me, are you planning to note these facts? CAIR is an unindicted co-conspirator in a Hamas terror funding case — so named by the Justice Department. CAIR officials have repeatedly refused todenounce Hamas and Hizballah as terrorist groups. Several former CAIR officials have been convicted of various crimes related to jihad terror. CAIR’s cofounder and longtime Board chairman (Omar Ahmad), as well as its chief spokesman (Ibrahim Hooper), have made Islamic supremacist statements about how Islamic law should be imposed in the U.S. (Ahmad denies this, but the original reporter stands by her story.) CAIR chapters frequently distribute pamphlets telling Muslims not to cooperate with law enforcement. CAIR has opposed virtually every anti-terror measure that has been proposed or implemented and has been declared a terror organization by the United Arab Emirates. CAIR’s Hussam Ayloush in 2017 called for the overthrow of the U.S. government. CAIR’s national outreach manager is an open supporter of Hamas.

6. Thibodeau to Spencer:


Thank you for your comments. I will evidently reflect them in my piece.

Could you be more specific about the circumstances in which you initially started to exchange with Mrs Haidar? I’d particularly like to know if you reached out to her or vice versa. I’d also like to know if a third person introduced you to her. If i understand well from your previous response regarding the meeting in Washington, Mrs Haidar initiated it. Or was it somebody else?

Some people who know Mrs Haidar have suggested that you may be hoping to use her to burnish your image or forward your ideas on islam. I’d like to know what your think of this.

Marc Thibodeau

7. Spencer to Thibodeau:

I don’t as a rule contact people I don’t know. She reached out to me. A third person did not introduce us. Ms. Haidar initiated the meeting in Washington.

At Jihad Watch I was reporting on Raif Badawi’s case long before Ms. Haidar came to Canada or that I ever thought I would meet her. Those who suggest this kind of exploitation on my part are those who, like you, think there is something wrong and disreputable about reporting accurately about the contents of Islamic texts, and about jihad terror and Sharia oppression. Despite constant defamation from your colleagues and friends, I do not share that view, and thus do not believe it necessary to take steps either to burnish my image or to forward my “ideas of Islam,” which in fact consist of nothing more than the actual teachings of Islam as recorded in the Qur’an and Sunnah, and as those teachings have been lived out throughout its 1400-year history. See my books The Complete Infidel’s Guide to the KoranThe Truth About Muhammad, and The History of Jihad.

8. Thibodeau to Spencer:

Thank you for your response.

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