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How American President Thomas Jefferson Responded to Radical Islam in 1801 Puts Today’s Western Leaders to Shame


The current War on Terror isn’t the first time that America has battled Islamic fighters overseas. During the Jefferson administration, the United States went to war with the so-called “Barbary states” – Morocco, Tripoli, Tunis, and Algiers. It was the first declared war on foreign soil in U.S. history (H/T YoungCons).

These four Muslim states controlled much of the Mediterranean, engaging in piracy on the high seas against ships from “infidel” countries. They would demand large tributes from a nation in exchange for “protection” from the caliphate as their ships passed through. If the nation refused, state-sponsored corsairs (think: pirates) would capture the ships and enslave the sailors.

This was a problem long before Jefferson became president. In 1786, Jefferson and John Adams met with the Tripoli’s ambassador to Great Britain to demand to know by what right the Muslim states could attack another nation’s ships and enslave the sailors. The response is revealing.

Jefferson recorded the ambassador’s response, in which he said that Islam “was founded on the Laws of their Prophet, that it was written in their Qur’an, that all nations who should not have acknowledged their authority were sinners, that it was their right and duty to make war upon them wherever they could be found, and to make slaves of all they could take as Prisoners, and that every Musselman (Muslim) who should be slain in battle was sure to go to Paradise.”

In other words, the Muslim ambassador openly proclaimed that the Qu’ran teaches that Muslims have a duty to wage war against those who have not accepted the


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