(Image credit: Witnesses Unto Me)
Ergun Caner, the infamous fake ex-jihadi, popular speaker and former president and dean of the Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary, has filed a lawsuit against a Christian blogger and pastor, claiming copyright violations over a video he doesn’t own the rights to.
Due to the costs of battling someone like Caner in court, Smathers is now seeking donations to a legal defense fund. He will be represented by Kel McClanahan Esq., the Executive Director of National Security Counselors, a 501(c)(3) non-profit with a history of fighting for government transparency.
Smathers is amazingly transparent about his past. Back in 2003 Smathers worked for American Online as a software engineer. He sold a list of AOL email addresses to an online casino, something which garnered a significant amount of media attention at the time.
He was charged and pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit interstate transport of stolen goods, in this case a list of email addresses, and conspiracy to violate the CAN-SPAM Act of 2004.
Smathers was incredibly transformed from “self centered jerk” to servant of God. He recently graduated from Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, pastors a church and serves as chaplain for a national missing persons agency called Let’s Bring Them Home.
He has also been among the many Christians who have made an effort to expose the fraudulent claims of Caner. Now Caner has come after Smathers in the form of a lawsuit.
Interestingly, the Bible clearly tells Christians to do everything to avoid dragging another Christian into the secular court system.
The Caner lawsuit stems from Smathers’ posting of a video of Caner speaking to a group of U.S. Marines in New River, North Carolina before they were deployed in 2005.
Caner was speaking to the soldiers about cultural issues they would face from the perspective of a former Muslim. The problem is that everything he claimed about his past was demonstrably false.
Caner claimed that he came to America when he was 14 years old. In reality, as Smathers proved by obtaining and posting critical court documents, Caner emigrated to the U.S. with his family at 2 years of age.
After Caner’s parents divorced, he was placed under the care of his Lutheran mother in Ohio.
That’s a far cry from his claims about learning everything he know about American culture through TV shows like the Andy Griffith Show, the Dukes of Hazzard and professional wrestling. His real biography is far less exciting than the one he created.
The lies get even more blatant.
“My madrassa in Istanbul, Turkey; my madrassa in Cairo, Egypt, there’s no question of what the doctrine of jihad was,” Caner told the Marines. “It is only when we come to America and hear westernized Islam we hear that ‘Oh, Islam means peace.’”
“I was sworn to jihad. At the age of 9 until I was 18 years old and I became a believer in Jesus Christ, I was sworn to jihad. I followed the protocols. I knew the three waves. I understood what you do before you take the death plunge, as we call it. I understand why the guys were in the bars with the hookers the night before the bombing of 9/11, because, ‘Eat drink and be merry; tomorrow we are forgiven,’” Caner said in the clip.
Through Texas-based attorney David Gibbs, Caner claimed ownership of the video posted to Viddler. Smathers points out that he obtained the video directly from the Marines and that Caner simply cannot own a U.S. government work.
Smathers filed a grievance with the Texas State Bar Association since, according to Smathers, the lawyer abused the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) in an attempt to cover-up the records of Caner’s lies.
Caner has also made claims about debating imams in mosques in Arabic. The problem is, Caner doesn’t speak Arabic and has even made up words.
Other videos exposing Caner produced by James White of Alpha and Omega Ministries can be seen here and many other posts on Caner, his lies and what White calls the “Great Evangelical Cover-up” can be seen here.
His lies are too numerous to count. In a single clip one individual pointed out:
3:54 – Claims he had been a Muslim for 20 years.
Truth: Came to faith when he was 14.
3:37 – Claims his father was a Hadithic scholar.
Truth: His father was a Muslim, but there is no evidence he was a scholar (which is an official title in Islam).
4:25 – Claims everywhere he lived prior to coming to America was Islamic majority.
Truth: Sweden does not have an Islamic majority.
9:18 – Claims to have engaged in 41 debates.
Truth: No record of such debates can be found and none of the people he claimed to have debated acknowledges said debate.
9:26 – Claims to have debated an Imam at University of North Texas and getting hammered (with questions).
Truth: No record of such a debate exists.
In another clip, in less than three minutes, several lies can be seen.
Claims his name is actually Ergun Mikel Mehemet Giovanni Jahner. – 00:15
Truth: All official documents show his name to be Ergun Michael Caner.
Claims he was in the “Islamic Youth Jihad” until the age of 15. – 00:27
Truth: Lived in America from the age of 3, became a Christian at 14.
Claimed to train in Jihad – 00:37
When? At age 2?
Claims to have been born in Stockholm, Sweden – 00:53
Yes! Caner was born in Sweden… or was it Turkey?
Claims to speak Arabic – 1:15
Caner speaks gibberish, no Arabic or Turkish speaker knows what he is saying. Maybe he’s speaking in tongues.
Claims to have worn Islamic garb to church and school. – 1:33
Truth: All existing photos of Ergun Caner, including yearbook photos, class photos, and church photos, show him wearing western garb. Remember, he came to the US when he was 3 years old.
Claims to speak a different language and have poor English – 1:50
Truth: Caner came to the US when he was 3 years old… why would his English be broken, and where would he have learned Arabic or Turkish?
Uses the words “towel-head” and “sand-n*gger” in a sermon – 2:08
Why would anyone call someone who has lived in the US since they were 3 anything?
Claims his English was poor – 2:24
He moved to the US and attended US schools from the age of 3.
Claims to have been in jihad – 2:38
When? At age 2?
Caner’s lies have already resulted in some negative repercussions, such as the removal of Caner as dean of Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary – the seminary associated with Liberty University – in 2010, citing “factual statements that are self-contradictory.”
It’s important to note that Caner was chosen by the founder of Liberty University himself, Jerry Falwell Sr. Note that in a 2005 article by the Washington Post describing the choice, Caner’s lies about his past are repeated.
The seminary’s investigation “found discrepancies related to matters such as dates, names and places of residence” in his speeches and writing, as Bob Allen of the Associated Baptist Press pointed out.
Caner now serves as Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs at Arlington Bible College.
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