Terry Jones, the pastor of a small radical church who plans to burn Korans on Sept. 11, said this morning that, although he takes the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan’s warning seriously, he will still go ahead with “Burn A Koran Day.”
Yesterday, Gen. David Petraeus said that Jones’ demonstration could endanger American troops in Afghanistan. Geoff Morell, the Pentagon spokesman, echoed those concerns today on MSNBC, saying burning Korans would put troops in more danger throughout the Muslim world.
But Jones, in an interview with CNN this morning, said he isn’t swayed.
“We are actually very, very concerned of course. And we are taking the general’s words very serious. We are continuing to pray about the action on Sept. 11. We are indeed very concerned about it. It’s just that we don’t know — I mean, how long do we back down? When do we stop backing down?” he said.
“We are definitely praying about it. We have firmly made up our mind, but at the same time, we are definitely praying about it. But like I said, I mean, how long, when does America stand for truth?” he went on. “I mean, instead of us being blamed for what other people will do or might do, why don’t we send a warning to them? Why don’t we send a warning to radical Islam and say, look, don’t do it. If you attack us, if you attack us, we will attack you.”
The end of Ramadan, Eid, a Muslim holy day, falls on Sept. 11 this year.
Jones went on to say that the Koran burning is not directed at moderate Muslims, only extremists, and that he hopes moderates will be on his side.
Asked how someone could be on his side when he was burning their holy book, Jones said he hopes one could be against what he was doing while supporting his message.
What message that is, exactly, is unclear. He said he wants to warn radical Muslims not to attack the United States, and he also wants to warn against trying to overthrow the Constitution in order to replace it with Sharia law.
We’ll have the video shortly.