And Michael Moore is blind to it all.

I would fight and die for a Muslim's right to build a mosque in every city in America. Our soldiers are fighting to gain such freedom of religion and expression for Iraqis and Afghans. These are not freedoms that Islam offers.

Our soldiers also are fighting to preserve Michael Moore's freedom to produce works that mock democracy, denigrate our leaders and even ridicule the military – without him having to fear death by stoning or beheading while executioners chant "Allah hu Akbar."

It has become fashionable for Moore and his fellow hatriots to say, "I support the troops, but not the war." This is akin to saying, "I support doctors but not surgery."

Let me state emphatically: I support the troops and their mission.

There is a final irony. In his film, "Roger and Me," Moore chased an automobile executive for an interview. Now, a young film producer, Michael Wilson, is making a documentary titled, "Michael Moore Hates America." He continues to pursue Moore for an interview, but Moore has dodged him at every turn. The worm has turned.

Patriotism should not be confused with cynicism, skepticism and criticism.

Nor should hatriotism be confused with the bravery, honor and sacrifice that makes men free.

Ergun Mehmet Caner is coauthor of "Christian Jihad" (Kregel, June 2004) and professor of theology and church history at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va.

© 2004 Southern Baptist Convention, Baptist Press.  All rights reserved.  Used with permission.