Santorum: Quran Burning Was ‘A Mistake Which We Should Not Have Apologized For’

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"Santorum: Quran Burning Was ‘A Mistake Which We Should Not Have Apologized For’"

Rick Santorum, appearing on ABC News’ This Week with George Stephanopoulos, made waves with his assertion that he “[doesn’t] believe in an America where the seperation between church and state is absolute.” But, having taken issue with the view espoused by Thomas Jefferson, the Supreme Court and reflected in the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, Santorum showed a remarkable lack of respect for the traditions and values of religions other than his own.

Responding to a question from Stephanopoulos, Santorum disagreed with President Obama’s decision to issue an apology after it emerged on Tuesday that copies of the Quran had been burned with garbage at Bagram Air Field, a U.S. base north of Kabul. “This is unacceptable, the idea that a mistake was made, clearly a mistake, which we should not have apologized for,” said Santorum. Stephanopoulos pressed Santorum on why he found the apology unacceptable:

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: But if it was a mistake, isn’t apologizing the right and smart thing to do?

RICK SANTORUM: Well, again, it suggests that there is somehow blame, this is somehow that we did something wrong in the sense of doing a deliberate act wrong. I think it shows that we are — that I think it shows weakness.

Watch it:

Indeed, Santorum is correct that the inadvertent burning of Qurans doesn’t justify the more than 30 deaths from violence and suicide attacks across Afghanistan over the past week. But apologizing has been part of a U.S. effort to relieve tensions and appeal for calm across Afghanistan. The surge in violence since Tuesday has posed a serious challenge for NATO forces and Afghan President Hamid Karzai as NATO forces have drawn down and Afghan security forces take a “lead” role in combat operations.

Santorum doesn’t have a whole lot of crebility in talking about the Quran given that he once thought it was written in “Islamic.” But his assertion that U.S. forces had nothing to apologize for dovetails with his broader views on Islam. Last week, Santorum argued that “The idea that the Crusades and the fight of Christendom against Islam is somehow an aggression on our part is absolutely anti-historical,” and told a restaurant in South Carolina, “[Equality] doesn’t come from Islam. It doesn’t come from the East and Eastern religions, where does it come from? It comes from the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, that’s where it comes from.”

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