Transcript: ABC News' Terry Moran Interviews Pastor Terry Jones


Moran: General David Petraeus in Afghanistan said today we are very concerned about a possible koran burning in the US, it puts our soldiers in jeopardy very likely and this event could very well be used by extremists here and around the world in the same way they used images from Abu Ghraib -- they would use them to inflame public opinion and to incite violence against our soldiers. What you are planning to do General David Petreaus said puts American lives, American soldiers at risk. What are you going to do about that?

Jones: Well, we understand his concerns and we share those concerns and we understand those concerns are valid. we just had, the question is, the questions that we have is if we don't do it when do we stop backing down. when do we stop giving in to Islam, or radical Islam, when they burn flag, when they kill Christians, when they burn churches, when they threaten to kill the president of the United States. if we back down now fine but how much can we back down until we actually stand up and say enough is enough. Actually I think instead of sending a message to us, that they should send a message to them. and Say look, no matter what that church does, they have freedom of speech, they have freedom of religion, that is America, no matter what that church does right or wrong, in your eyes, in my eyes no matter what that church does, if you retaliate, then we will retaliate. i believe we need to send a message to them, not try to blame us or send us a message. we need to send a message to radical Islams

Moran: Didn't Jesus say love your enemy and if you're struck on one cheek, turn the other cheek

Jones: Yes he did.

Moran: What happened to that.

Jones: In my opinion, that is very valid.

Moran: Why not live it?

Jones: In my opinion, that's what you usually should do. In my opinion you should probably do that 90 percent of the time, 95 percent, 99 percent of the time. But there is a time as Jesus threw them out of temple, and Jesus called the religious leaders snakes, there is a time, it's a minority, a very very small minority but there is a time to stand up to hold ground and say no, now is not the time to turn the other cheek, now is the time to face challenge.

Moran: So in this instance, it's an exception to teaching of Jesus Christ

Jones: Well I believe Jesus at times acted very radically. But of course I would not consider this to be the normal mainstream way of responding. But we feel at this particular time it's that important.

Moran:Your fellow Christians here in the Gainesville community are responding in part, some of them, by reading koran at their worship services to announce a different way of practicing Christianity and of encountering and engaging Islam, what do you think of that?

Jones: I think that is an abomination. A Christian church the bible condemns all other so called holybooks and for a Christian church to read the koran, a book that denies Jesus, a book that denies his deity, resurrection from the dead, crucified savior, for us to read that book from pulpits, that, that is absolutely terrible.

Moran: What does that tell you about the way many of your fellow Christians here in the Gainesville community feel about you and look at what you're planning to do.

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