BEND, OR -- Deschutes County Republicans hosted a former FBI agent turned Islamic terrorism expert at a special event Tuesday night called "Understanding the Jihadi Threat to America." John Guandolo is the founder of "Understanding the Threat," whose stated mission is to educate state, local, and federal leadership and agencies on how to defeat Islamic jihad.
Guandolo's appearance drew criticism, but he tells KBND News he's not a hater, "This is the nature of this business. What they're trying to do is diminish the message by destroying the messenger." The Oregon Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) asked the GOP to drop Guandolo from last night's program. Guandolo says CAIR doesn't like his message because they're affiliated with a known terrorist group, "CAIR National, that is a Hamas Organization doing business as 'CAIR.' For those of you not aware, Hamas is a designated foreign terrorist organization by the united States government." Deschutes Democrats and the Oregon Democratic Party called for a boycott of the event, saying his appearance is evidence of the GOP's "decaying moral standards." Democrats call Guandolo a radical Islamophobe and conspiracy theorist. Guandolo says terrorists are winning by convincing Americans that it's unkind to call them 'terrorists.' He told the group, "How can you target something you don't define and how can you defeat something you don't target?"