Wednesday, July 13, 2005

al-Jadida

Mudville Gazette's coverage of a car bomb that killed dozens of children in an attempt to take out a US checkpoint is many things at once. (Hat tip: Glenn Reynolds) It is a human tragedy; a horror story; a commentary on the nature of the "militants" so beloved by the Left; but it is also the Pro and Contra debate of our age written in blood.

Near the charred, shrapnel-scarred bombing scene women draped in black abayas wept as they walked by, and dazed children with tears in their eyes wandered amid bits of metal and bloody human remains. A pile of children's slippers lay on the street. "My cousin Mustafa was killed," said 11-year-old Mohammed Nouredin, gesturing toward a blackened engine block in the middle of the street. "That is part of his bicycle. His coffin was sent to Najaf," the traditional burial ground for Iraqi Shiites.

That's part of it. I can't bring myself to repeat the rest. There are those who, after the London bombing, had convinced themselves that all Muslims were enemies of civilization. There are sound arguments for that: the existence of the Jihad, the silence of most Islamic clergy. But what of the children? What of the Muslim children who are the targets of these "freedom fighters", "resistants" or "militants", whichever the BBC prefers to call them? In what category do they belong? The empirical fact is that no group has been killed more often and more brutally by the "Jihad" than Muslims themselves. During the French Algerian war several times more Algerian Muslims died than French. Anyone with a calculator can see the same is true in Iraq. One of the targets of the London bombing was a subway station frequented by British Muslims. The first objective of terror, indeed of the Terror, and the first objective of the Jihad is to maintain internal control over its base. For as long as internal control can be maintained, a terrorist movement need not defeat its armed enemy. It will never lose; hence in the estimation of the Peace generation, it will always win.

Logically, a large part of the War on Terror will consist of creating an insurgency within the insurgency. Fighting Islamic extremism must comprise organizing a revolt against Islam's internal oppressors. That would include waging intellectual war against Islamic fundamentalism within its own theological context -- a reformation -- it will include creating clandestine cells to strike at the gangs which beat women and intimidate men within the community. It will require all the skills of a resistance fighter struggling against bearded Big Brother. The Left has a word for such people: "Uncle Toms". That is how they've already characterized Hirsi Ali. That is to be expected. But many conservatives have also been blind to the urgent requirement of creating a liberation movement within Islam, in part because they half believe all Muslims are themselves the enemy; in part because they despair of Muslims ever rising up against the medieval institutions which constrain them; in part because they haven't thought about it. But they should. That pile of bloody children's slippers on an Iraqi street is a tally of spirits who were created to be free.

268 Comments:

Blogger desert rat said...

The answer has always laid with the Indigs. No Army of Occupation can control a Popular Insurgency, w/out excessive force. With neither the cultural tools or language skills the Marines & Soldiers make poor policemen.
Only the indigenous people can control their future.
Give them the tools, then get out of their way.

7/13/2005 06:03:00 PM  
Blogger Common Cents said...

To win against the Islamo-fascist movement we must win not just against the movement itself but also against the presuppositions of the movement. What are some of these presuppositions?

1 Hate spewing Imams are untouchable because winnable legal cases can not be brought against them due to their freedom of speech. (From the Imam's point of view they are protected because Allah protects them).

2 The individual financiers of terror are untouchable because winnable legal cases can not be brought against them.

3 The West is too decadent and morally weak to do what it takes to win against terror.

Until, the West chooses to act clandestinely against individual hate spewing Imams and financiers of terror the GWOT is unwinnable although survivable.

Until the West is able to embarke upon a propaganda war against the Islamo-fascists (the propaganda doesn't have to be false) the war is unwinnable.

By the way, does anyone know if an Islamic leader or a child of an Islamic leader has been a suicide bomber?

7/13/2005 06:12:00 PM  
Blogger Jason Erickson said...

Desert rat, in what way would you characterize al Zarchawi and his clan as a "Popular Insurgency"? It seems the strategy for defeating a popular insurgency must be quite different than a strategy for defeating a bunch of interlopers.

Wretchard, I've looked (though not hard) and it's not obvious to me how the left is characterizing Hirsi Ali as an "Uncle Tom". Can you cite some examples?

7/13/2005 06:22:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I would not cast Z as an Iraqi insurgent. He and his crew are just a small part of the challenge in Iraq.
When the Sunni population disengages from the fight, through politics & economics and rejoins the Government, in a diminished capacity, the Insurgancy will be over.
As in the KSA, aQ gangsters may still run loose in Iraq, but it will be Iraqis that bring him and his network down. They may still need our help in the ensuing firefight.
If the Iraqis cannot get the aQ cells identified and isolated, chances are we never will.

7/13/2005 06:31:00 PM  
Blogger Westhawk said...

The new Iraq can be the fertile field for the reformation of Islam. The Iraqis will have suffered more in recent times at the hands of the jihadists than anyone else in the Muslim world; they will thus have earned the moral authority to speak up for a reformed and modern version of Islam. Further, with American support and the experience of their own current civil war, they will come out of the present troubles with the most highly trained, experienced, and capable military force in the Islamic world, should they need that to defend or enforce their point of view.

But mostly it will be their moral authority that will allow the Iraqis, both secular and religious, to argue for a new, modern Islam.

The irony is that the jihadists have elected to use the media as their main tool. This is already backfiring fatally on them. They, assisted by television images and the internet, are dragging themselves and bin Laden's former stature in the Islamic world down into a wasteland where it will never recover. There a new beginning can sprout, starting in Iraq.

7/13/2005 06:37:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

Jason, for some quick links go to this copy of a Yahoo news article entitled "Dutch Muslim Culture Wars". Some excerpts:


Hirsi Ali's many critics contend that far from being a revolutionary, she brings a message that the West is all too willing to hear. They say that in calling for European governments to protect Muslim women from Muslim men, she and her admirers recycle the same Orientalist tropes that the West has used since colonial times as an excuse to control and subjugate Muslims. "White men saving black women from black men--it's a very old fantasy that is always popular," Annelies Moors, a University of Amsterdam anthropologist who writes about Islamic gender relations, said dryly. "But I don't think male violence against women, a phenomenon known to every society in history, can be explained by a few Koranic verses." ...

Karima Belhaj is the director of the largest women's shelter in Amsterdam. She's also one of the organizers of the "Stop the Witchhunt!" campaign against what she sees as anti-Muslim hysteria. On the day we talked, she was despondent. Arsonists had set fire for the second time to an Islamic school in the town of Uden. A few days later a regional police unit warned that the rise of right-wing Dutch youth gangs potentially presents a more dangerous threat to the country than Islamist terrorism. "The rise of Islamism is not the problem," Belhaj said. "The problem is that hatred against Arabs and Muslims is shown in this country without any shame." With her message that Muslim women must give up their faith and their families if they want to be liberated, Hirsi Ali is actually driving women into the arms of the fundamentalists, said Belhaj: "She attacks their values, so they are wearing more and more veils. It frightens me. I'm losing my country. I'm losing my people." ...

If Belhaj was sad, another "Stop the Witchhunt!" organizer was angry. Like Belhaj, Miriyam Aouragh is a second-generation immigrant of Moroccan background. A self-described peace and women's activist, Aouragh was the first in her family to attend university. She's now studying for a PhD in anthropology. She scoffs at the idea that Hirsi Ali is a champion of oppressed Muslim women. "She's nothing but an Uncle Tom," Aouragh said. "She has never fought for the oppressed. In fact, she's done the opposite. She uses these problems as a cover to attack Islam. She insults me and she makes my life as a feminist ten times harder because she forces me to be associated with anti-Muslim attacks."


"Uncle Tom" is precisely the phrase the Left has used to characterized Hirsi Ali.

7/13/2005 06:37:00 PM  
Blogger reliapundit said...

Here's how the BBC described what's going on in Iraq these days - in an article on the attacks which killed all those CHILDREN:

"Hundreds of Iraqis have died in attacks by militants opposed to the US presence and to a Shia-led government that took charge in Baghdad earlier this year. "
And they have the AUDACITY to use that "sanitized" phrase - which is so sanitized that its disconnected from reality - in this report:
At least 26 Iraqis, almost all of them children, have been killed by a car bomb in south-eastern Baghdad. A US soldier is also said to have died in the blast. Another three US soldiers are reported to have been injured. A car laden with explosives drove past a US army vehicle and blew up as troops handed out sweets, a witness said.

NOT CALLING a terrorist a terrorist (or putting the words in between quotations marks)is a display of EXACTLY the kind of BAD-THINKING which leads to BAD POLICIES such as:

banning profiling;
leaving borders defenseless; and "fighting with one hand behind your back."

FACT: there are many MILITANTS who DO NOT COMMIT MASS MURDER OF CHILDREN.


THOSE WHO DO COMMIT MASS MURDER OF INNOCENT CHILDREN ARE NOT MERELY MILITANTS; THEY ARE TERRORISTS!

PEOPLE WHO COMMIT INDISCRIMINATE MASS MURDER OF SOME CHLDREN - IN ORDER TO INFLICT FEAR - ( = TERROR) - OF CONTACT WITH THE US MILITARY ON OTHER CHILDREN are NOTHING BUT TERRORISTS - BY EFFING DEFINITION!

It's long passed time that the Left (which dominates the BBC in the UK as they do the entire MSM in the USA) accepted that our ENEMY in this WAR is the most brutal and evil we have EVER FACED - and that they are TERRORISTS!

And it's long-passed time they stopped apologizing for the ENEMY and their EVIL CREED and either joined us - or shut-up the eff and got out of the way.

If you cannot call the folks who blow up INNOCENT CHILDREN terrorists, then you have no integrity, and no courage,

and no business reporting the news!

I think perhaps it's time that the British government sold the BBC to al Jazeera. The BBC workers would be very comfortable there, and it would save the British taxpayers a lot of money!

7/13/2005 06:41:00 PM  
Blogger Dymphna said...

Children are a minority within a larger population. Shi'ites, while a majority in Iraq, are a psychological minority because the Sunnis held the power...so we have the deaths of children of a lower caste.

OTOH, the deaths of children are hard-wired into the human brain as a tragedy, a death of our future. Thus, perhaps the Shi'ites will rise up, will refuse to be bullied further...

One generalization about Iraqis is that they love their children dearly. So perhaps they will turn.

7/13/2005 06:56:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This quote tells an interesting tale
"..."Why do they attack our children? They just destroyed one U.S. Humvee, but they killed dozens of our children," he said as women screamed, slapped their faces and beat themselves over the head. ..."

The just destroyed one Humvee...

Here is a native, lamenting the amount of damage to US was insufficent grounds for the collateral damage done.

If US loses had been higher... well then the sacrifice could well have been worth it.

Pape may just well be right

7/13/2005 07:00:00 PM  
Blogger Karridine said...

"...would include waging intellectual war against Islamic fundamentalism within its own theological context -- a reformation --"

That 'reformation' began May 23, 1844 (1260AH) when the Forerunner of the Lord of Hosts was recognized and adored by humans.

His time on Earth was brief, and His coming released POWERFUL energies into the world of humanity. So disturbed were the mullahs and imams of Iran and Iraq that they had Him publicly tortured, then publicly killed (July 9, 1850)

WHEN there is a public examination of Him, His coming, His teachings and their relevance to 100 million Muslims, another billion Christians will be enlightened in the ensuing public examination of the fulfillment of Jesus' 3 promises and Isaiah and Ezekiel's promises...

The Lord of Hosts is not only the Promised One for Jews and Christians and Muslims, but also the Buddha Amit-Abha for Buddhists and the Promised Avatar for Hindus.

His coming is the one dynamic which can release humans from the left-right/us-them paradigms and conventional strictures now crippling the institutions and societies of humankind.

The al-Jazeeras and other Islamic news organs don't want to even RUN a story on The Glory of God, because in Arabic, it comes out too clearly, too obvious and to powerfully: Baha'u'llah (The Glory of God)!

7/13/2005 07:03:00 PM  
Blogger Monty said...

Wretchard,

I don't doubt that there is a prevailing disgust for these bloody murdering savages, both in Baghdad and London. How can one look at the murdered innocents and not feel both sorrow and terrible rage?

But this sorrow and this rage does not lead to change among the Muslims, and I find this to be the most disheartening thing. It was partly the excesses of the Crusades and the Inquisition that led to the Reformation and the branching of Protestantism; but so far we see little of this in the Muslim faith.

If Muslims cannot control their own rogue elements, then they face a stark future. A frightened Europe will eventually crush and expel them en masse, much as it did the Jews in earlier times. Russia will become even more savage and pitiless towards Muslims. And even America may find itself having to become more Draconian.

Iraq is simply a theater in a wider war, and I fervently hope that democracy takes root there. I hope that civil society andthe rule of law rather than theocracy can flourish there. For if not, we may have to face the fact that Islam and the West are simply incompatible concepts and cannot mix. If that is the case, we face some very difficult and conflict-filled years.

7/13/2005 07:03:00 PM  
Blogger TigerHawk said...

If it commits brutal offenses such as this, what is the source of al Qaeda's strength? The answer, I think, it that al Qaeda's form of jihad is the product of more than 70 years of ideological development. That ideology has appeal for all kinds of reasons rooted in ancient Arab and Muslim failures, including their failure to found legitimate governments and engage successfully with the modern world. But the ideology of jihadism also -- perhaps primarily -- succeeds because it competes against essentially nothing. There is no meaningful competing ideology in the Arab world, which sustains its rulers in the barren soil of monarchy or rank authoritarianism.

Just as communism's intellectual roots stretched back decades before the establishment of the first communist state, jihadi ideology is a coherent and highly developed political philosophy with roots long ante-dating the state of Israel, Western dependance on Middle Eastern oil, the presence of American soldiers in the region, or the first jihadi state -- the Taliban government of Afghanistan. As was the case with communism, it will take a long time to discredit and destroy this ideology.

How, then, do we destroy both al Qaeda and the jihadi ideology? The answer is, just as Wretchard suggests, that "we" -- meaning the West -- cannot. Just as the citizens of communist regimes did more to destroy communism in the end than the United States, only Muslims, and particularly Arab Muslims, can destroy the jihad. They will do so only when it is worth their great personal sacrifice to ruthlessly pursue the people in their own world who promote this ideology. (And in case it needs to be said, a settlement between the Palestinian Arabs and Israel will not motivate that sacrifice, and neither will the withdrawal of American soldiers from Arab lands.)

As with the decades-long war on communism, the war on Islamic jihad requires strategy that both contains the advance of the jihad as much as practical and motivates its most direct victims -- in this case Muslims -- to destroy it from within (as the Russians and the Chinese have both, in quite different fashion, destroyed communism). Containment, in this case, requires passive strategies (such as homeland security) and the active participation of the existing governments of the Islamic world. American strategy -- including, in my opinion, the war in Iraq -- has been constructed around coercing those otherwise uncooperative governments into that active participation. The demands of containment require us to coerce and cajole fundamentally hideous governments, including especially Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. Our wars in Afghanistan and Iraq (as well as other tactics, such as our flowering alliance with India and our careful diplomacy in Central Asia) have put us in a position to do that.

Unfortunately, steps we take to coerce the autocracies of the Muslim world also make us less popular among the Muslim masses. This is not different from the Cold War, in which active American efforts to contain communism -- the Cuban embargo, the military defense of South Korea and Vietnam, support for the insurgents in Angola, support for Taiwan, and support for Israel in 1967 and 1973 -- enraged the otherwise oppressed populations of the Soviet Union, Cuba, and so forth. As we learned during the Cold War, containment alone cannot dispose of an enemy founded in a well-articulated political philosophy. We therefore must combine containment of the jihadis with a long-term plan to motivate the Muslim world to discredit and destroy the jihad from within. This is the purpose and promise of the Bush Administration's "democratization" strategy.

Muslims need serious motivation to discredit and destroy the jihad because the jihadis are extremely dangerous and ruthless people. They have demonstrated their capacity for breathtaking brutality not just on September 11 and in the Sunni Triangle, but across the world over a period of at least twenty years. None of Western coercion of Israel, the retreat of the United States from the region or promises of Western aid or free trade will provide that necessary serious motivation. The only way to inspire Muslims to fight the jihad is to invite them to embrace a competing ideology that can fill the empty void of their civil society and give them something in defense of which they are willing to risk war with the jihadis. Moderate Islam -- the widely-proclaimed "religion of peace" -- might have filled that void, but it has not thus far and shows no prospect of doing so any time soon. The idea of popular sovereignty -- the philosophy of John Locke, if you will -- is the only political philosophy available in the West that holds any promise of competing with the evil coherence of Islamic jihad. It is also a wonderful thing to fight for.

The "democratization" of the Muslim world, therefore, is critical to the destruction of the jihadi ideology for at least three reasons. Least important is the reason most often given -- that it will "drain the swamp" of Muslim rage that festers under the heel of Muslim authoritarian and monarchical regimes. Far more importantly, popular sovereignty is an ideology that can compete with radical Islam. Indeed, with the death of communism, which was a sort of perverted version of popular sovereignty, it is the only ideology that can compete with radical Islam. Finally, and most importantly, democratic governments are governments worth fighting for. Generally speaking, Muslims are not going to turn in the jihadis in the back of the mosque because a monarch or a dictator threatens them or gives them money. They will, though, if those jihadis threaten an idea that they hold dear. Moderate Islam has failed to supply that idea. Communism is dead. The only alternative is the guiding light of the Englightenment, the idea of the social contract. John Locke will fuel the counterinsurgency within Islam.

Sorry for the long comment, but I thought it was germane. I also confess that I have written the same argument in a somewhat longer form previously.

7/13/2005 07:07:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

These people obviously think the War is an Insurgency against our occupation, not a Holy War against infidels.

These victims are Shia and Christen children and as such, Infidels to the aQ wahabbists.
The victims parents, quoted, do not percieve this to be the case, however. Interesting that they see aQ as fighting US, not them.

7/13/2005 07:07:00 PM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

ah yes, the children...

let's remember the kids targeted by arafat's minions..

the school buses targeted by the palestinians...

the babies that the palestinians targeted to kill...

...............

ah yes the children...

in the iran-iraq war remember the children USED as human mine sweepers?

how about the children brain washed to want to die for allah by the PA/Hamas/hezbollah?

these are all victims of islamo-nazis

then the children of iraq...

pretty sick people these islamo-thugs..

the leaders send thier kids to france to live, while they brainwash people to murder themselves....


ah the kids....

7/13/2005 07:14:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Chechnyian rebels attack Russian School. I forget how many children died there.

7/13/2005 07:18:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

One of the skills of a good clandestine organizer is the ability to create the feeling of "us" versus "them". And they only way to do that is not through words, but by creating confrontational experiences: that is, starting a fight. Operationally, this means creating Shi'ite cells to fight the AQ; creating Iraqi government bodies to fight the AQ. Creating cells in Western society to fight the AQ, through legal means, or at least not-so illegal means in the case of the West. Once people get hurt, as must happen, it becomes personal. The rebels become "we" and Muslim fundamentalists become "they".

Unfortunately we are outsiders. The classic first step of the organizer is submergence. You have to "integrate" with the people you want to organize. Then you stop being an outsider and start becoming an agitator. Muslim societies are highly resistent to this process, but not invulnerable. However, what one needs to create resistance cells is a cadre of really tough guys, preferably Muslims themselves, who are willing to do whatever it takes to fight.

We talk about the thousands of Al Qaeda who trained in Afghanistan. We should have the same kind of training camps producing counter-cadres. It is possible to produce a lesser kind of cadre, such as bloggers or intellectuals who we would encourage to simply think. That is crime itself under radical Islam. So much the better.

There's a necessary military component to the War on Terror. But there should also be an organizing component, a subversive component, a liberating component to it. We are the revolutionaries.

7/13/2005 07:23:00 PM  
Blogger Enigma said...

Good post, wretchard. Ultimate victory over Islamofascist terror will come from within, not without. But victory from within won't be possible until Muslims see that there is a different--and better--way. That seems to be our key strategem in the GWOT. Will this be achieved? Time will tell...

7/13/2005 07:26:00 PM  
Blogger Dymphna said...

Okay, okay. Wishful thinking.

7/13/2005 07:28:00 PM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

my fear?

the governments of the west will not have the will to fight, leaving the fight for the uneducated masses to handle...

Look for xeniaphobia/nationalism to sweep into europe, europe who murdered it's assimilated jews, now have a minority population who refuse to assimilate... the holocaust looks small as to what i fear may happen...

7/13/2005 07:33:00 PM  
Blogger Dymphna said...

Wretchard--

When I think back on Kennedy's call and then massive effort to "beat the Russians" at the space game, I wonder why we don't have a similar "beat the terrorists" competition? Why aren't there cadres of students learning Arabic?

Is it because academe is already lost, is ceded enemy territory?

7/13/2005 07:37:00 PM  
Blogger neuroconservative said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7/13/2005 07:38:00 PM  
Blogger neuroconservative said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7/13/2005 07:39:00 PM  
Blogger neuroconservative said...

Good points, Wretchard. I wonder, though, what are your thoughts about this? The idea of Al Jazeera spreading its propaganda within the Anglosphere, while our own broadcast media are unwilling and unable to provide any alternative, must be seen as a major obstacle setback in this effort you describe (not to mention its potential effects in the Far East).

7/13/2005 07:41:00 PM  
Blogger AZMu said...

>>> "What was the guilt of these innocent children?" said Abbas Zair, a 47-year-old high-school teacher who lost his 11-year-old nephew Ammar in the bombing. "Why could he [the bomber] not delay having his lunch with the Prophet Mohammad for a few minutes and commit the act against the American soldiers?" <<<

I think somebody else has pointed this out. It is OK to kill non-Muslims, specifically Americans. Somehow the Left and the media (spot the difference if you can) seem to give this line of thinking a complete free pass. Somehow, the hatred of the Other (the Left's favorite word when playing victim politics) is just fine when the Muslims are doing the hating.

Bizarre. And to think I had a leftist bent in my errant youth.

7/13/2005 07:46:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

We are clearly in the middle of a war of ideas. The key alliance that radical Islamism has made in this theater is with the Left. In the intellectual war we are facing the Riyadh-Berkeley axis, so to speak. And that axis includes a large part of the "Mainstream Media".

It's no use bewailing the stand the MSM has taken. We must face the facts and plan on carrying the message forward without them. We have the Internet, but it's not enough. So we must take a leaf out of the most successful propaganda arm in the world, which is the Left itself, and create all kinds of fora, from public speaking to legal advocacy to whatnot to carry the battle of ideas forward. Remember we are in a fight for our lives and for the soul of Western civilization, all that we are, so we have no choice.

But most importantly, we must learn to organize, especially among the enemy. The Left is able to burrow into the very heart of the Establishment. Pay them back in their own coin, with interest.

If we can get Al Jazeera outlawed, so much the better. If that's impossible we must infiltrate it and use it against its creators. Were I an Al Jazeera correspondent, I'd cover the massacre of children reported above and hope the editorial board suppresses it. Beat them to death with their own book.

7/13/2005 07:48:00 PM  
Blogger neuroconservative said...

There is also the issue of Saudi support for Wahhabi "education" in Pakistan and in mosques closer to home. I am losing patience with the Bush approach to Saudi Arabia, although I am intrigued by this. Can you imagine what would happen if the Saudi regime were to crack open, and be seen to be hollow?

7/13/2005 07:50:00 PM  
Blogger Monty said...

Wretchard wrote:

Unfortunately we are outsiders. The classic first step of the organizer is submergence. You have to "integrate" with the people you want to organize. Then you stop being an outsider and start becoming an agitator. Muslim societies are highly resistent to this process, but not invulnerable. However, what one needs to create resistance cells is a cadre of really tough guys, preferably Muslims themselves, who are willing to do whatever it takes to fight.

The problem we face can be seen in Afghanistan: Muslim fighters fight for Muslim causes, even if their cause happens to coincide with ours for the time being. We backed the Afghans against the Russians because it was strategically wise to do so at the time; but we did not see (or chose not to act on) the fundamentalist Muslim strain that eventually gave rise to the Taliban and the 9/11 attack on America.

We are operating on the assumption that Muslims in general and Arabs in particular want to live in a democratic nation/state and not a theocracy. But suppose that the majority of Muslims do not want to give up Shari'a and the Sunna in the public sphere? Suppose that Muslims refuse to integrate into the Western societies of which they are a part? Suppose that Iraq either now or in the near future becomes a theocracy much like Iran? We must face all these hard truths, because the events of the past few years have shown them all to be more likely than not.

President Bush has gambled that given a choice, Arabs will opt for democracy; he and his allies have stated time after time that the majority of Muslims wish for peace rather than war. And yet we wait in vain for this mass of Muslims to rise up and emphatically denounce the methods and means of terrorism. Instead we hear equivocation, passive hostility, and outright joy at America's misfortunes.

I am not hopeful about the prospects for the Muslim world, I must confess: the defects of tribalism, cronyism, and a stultifying religoius orthodoxy may be too great to overcome.

7/13/2005 07:53:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Jason,
quite a bit of the left, at least the European left, has blamed her for her situation, not the Islamists.

7/13/2005 07:53:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Westhawk,
I don't think that the Iraqi military will be better than the Egyptians, Iranians, or Turkish militaries, to name at least some.

7/13/2005 07:55:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

Monty,

One of the unnoticed victories of the War on Terror is how much more we "know" about Islamic society today than four years ago. And we "know" in terms of human experience. All the guys who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan or elsewhere -- even the guys who just write or comment on blogs (can't get any lower than that, can you) -- are operating on a different level from September 10, 2001. We are veterans of a sort, each in our own ways.

Very well, time to take things to the next level. Now there are thousands of Americans who understand at least some Arabic, know their way around in some rudimentary way. It's an asset waiting to be used. We know how to drop a bomb to within a few feet of target. But now we need to build up other skills. As a result of the last four years, we now "know". The next step is to apply what we know.

7/13/2005 08:01:00 PM  
Blogger trangbang68 said...

Today on his radio show,Michael Savage had on a guest named Paul Williams,a professed consultant to the FBI.Williams alleged that AQ has already smuggled 20 suitcase nukes into the USA along with 5000 storm troopers to ignite the fire storm.He said Bin Laden's aim is 4,000,000 casualties including 2,000,000 children.Does anyone know about this story.If true all bets are off.There won't be any time to reprogram the jihadist mindset.

7/13/2005 08:06:00 PM  
Blogger Monty said...

The past four years has given our military and intelligence arms a wealth of operational know-how, but I wonder how much our culture has learned. How many average Americans (or Britons, or Aussies) know what Wahhabism is? How many know the difference between the Shi'a and Sunni sects of Islam? How many know what Shari'a is?

We cannot win a war if we cannot name our enemy. Simply calling them "terrorists" misleads everyone, and all in the name of political correctness: no one wants to confirm what many already know, that we are fighting a significant portion of the Islamic faith. We are fighting against an ideology, just as we were in the cold war. But at least in the cold war, the politicians named Communism as the enemy. We are too timid to do the same with Islam, even though everyone knows in their hearts that this is where the true battle is.

Perhaps these are the wages of two generations of moral ambiguity and post-modernism in Western schools. We cannot speak harshly of the beast, even while it is eating us.

7/13/2005 08:15:00 PM  
Blogger Cutler said...

"These people obviously think the War is an Insurgency against our occupation, not a Holy War against infidels.

These victims are Shia and Christen children and as such, Infidels to the aQ wahabbists.
The victims parents, quoted, do not percieve this to be the case, however. Interesting that they see aQ as fighting US, not them."

At the risk of overreaching, I think that's because they've been convinced via decades of anti-West thought that this is a defensive war, prompted by Western imperialism and enslavement of Muslims in seperate actions around the world. Chechnya, Kashmir, Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, China, the Phillipines, are all interconnected. We're fighting a global insurgency, of which Al Qaeda are the stormtroopers/force multiplier. In some cases, they're probably even in the right [i.e. Chechnya and Xinjang], but they see all of it as a global effort to keep them down.

7/13/2005 08:21:00 PM  
Blogger Zach said...

I think that one critical difference between the Christian Reformation, and any potential Muslim Reformation is that the Catholic church was a very centralized organization which controlled access to, and interpretation of, the bible. When bibles could be and where printed in the local "vulgar" languages which the masses could understand, everything broke loose. Even then though, the reformation did not significantly change large portions of the Catholic world. Islam on the other hand is very decentralized and it actually mandates reading of the koran.

Of course, it is quite possible that some individuals will start re-interpreting the koran, such effort is likely to just turn into another sect. Gaining widespread, much less absolute conversion would be hard to imagine.

7/13/2005 08:25:00 PM  
Blogger Cutler said...

Monty, good post.

7/13/2005 08:25:00 PM  
Blogger sugar said...

we wait in vain for this mass of Muslims to rise up and emphatically denounce the methods and means of terrorism.

Because there really is no Muslim specific rallying cry or counter terror movement they can identify with. The "War On Terror" probably means to them "the West going after its enemies". Whereas the word "Jihad" strikes a chord with every Muslim. If you look at the names of rebel groups in Iraq they are overwhelmingly Muslim(or Arab) in connotation ie "Allah's Tears" or "Martyrs Brigades". You need to make a movement that resonates with them. Like Repubs identifying with the "Conservative" movement. We keep assuming they think in the same terms we do in the West. They dont.

7/13/2005 08:31:00 PM  
Blogger Andrew Scotia said...

We will be at this task for many years. And, the divise aspects wil cleave western societies right down to their cores. There isn't anything really that any of us can do about it in the long run except to try to moderate the exceses.

The islamists know this, want it to happen and long for the fight as the final battle from which they feel they will emerge as victors. Of course, they will lose when we pull the other hand, now behind our back, to the front and put it into action.

Many years ago, at the conclusion of a seminar in the UK about the conduct of ops in the "Malaysian Emergency" a number of us were having the obligatory whiskies, gin and tonics and pink gins. A vey elderly retired officer of the Tory, Colonel Blimp school mentioned that some day we would probably have to get the muslims "sorted out" and that would be a real task. With a faraway look in his eyes, he said something that has stayed with me all these years. "Odd thing about your average muslim.", he said. "He's never really happy unless he's got somebodies foot on his neck."

I think that the appeasers may instinctively understand that this is a renewal of a very ancient feud and that the result, in the United States at least, will be a Spartan State organized for total war. Before the end there will be windrows of the dead and the gutters will run with blood.

I honestly don't see any way around this sort of outcome since in islamist eyes it is a death struggle. In removing the tumour is islamo-fascism a lot of healthy tissue will have go with it.

Of course, I grew up in a family where my tiny mother, the Oriental Art scholar, told me the story of the Spartan boy and the fox when I was about five during a lecture on self control during a splinter removal. It was also common for me to be told before a football game to come home with my shield or on it. This in an upper middle class California family who still kept the japanned epaulette box with the epaulettes and officer's sash stained with the blood of my great grandfather at Shiloah when he was wounded as his second horse of the day was shot out from under him. It was common knowledge in the family that two ancestor's on my mother's side had been killed at Concord Bridge and just after, while harrying the British back to Boston. In my father's family papers, tipped into the back of the 1602 family Bible,dating from the English Civil War, there is an account of one of them riding down a file of infantry while leaning out of the saddle to sweep off the head of their officer with his sabre. This is in a Bible, for Heaven's sake. And, I still recall with fondness the Filipino sergeant who taught us about the "Spirit of the Bayonet".

No, the islamo-fascists don't have any idea what kind of Pandora's box they have cracked the lid on. Eventually we will seperate the chaff from the hard kernel's of pure will. I'll tell you for free how to tell when things are getting desperate for the dis-loyal opposition; when they begin to hold mass conversions to Islam, which has no compunction about accepting forced conversions.

7/13/2005 08:37:00 PM  
Blogger Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh said...

President Bush has gambled that given a choice, Arabs will opt for democracy; he and his allies have stated time after time that the majority of Muslims wish for peace rather than war. And yet we wait in vain for this mass of Muslims to rise up and emphatically denounce the methods and means of terrorism. Instead we hear equivocation, passive hostility, and outright joy at America's misfortunes.

I am not hopeful about the prospects for the Muslim world, I must confess: the defects of tribalism, cronyism, and a stultifying religoius orthodoxy may be too great to overcome.


Monty, no one can know if Bush's gamble can work, but I think we're morally obligated to try. Think of it this way--if we concede that muslims do not have the same yearning for freedom that we do, we give up the universalism that is perhaps the best part of the western tradition. That's one of the reasons why people like me and Wretchard can write here--neither of us has an ethinc connection to the West. I know the issue is more complicated--even the most devoted believer in classic natural rights doctrine would concede that sometimes there's sometimes too much cultural "superstructure" (to perversely misuse a Marxist term) to pull off what Bush is trying.

But we MUST try in my view. We need to do our best to make the experiment work in Iraq. It may fail for all sorts of combinations of reasons--lack of will on our part, lack of will on the Iraqis, ill fortune, etc. But the attempt must be made, for our own sakes if nothing else.

Perhaps these are the wages of two generations of moral ambiguity and post-modernism in Western schools. We cannot speak harshly of the beast, even while it is eating us.

I personally wouldn't worry too much about this, and I can say this as someone literally in the academic front lines. I have an Ivy League college degree and a PhD from a major research university. I actually think that American universities aren't as monochromatically Leftist as conservatives frequently make them out to be, and even if I'm wrong, it really doesn't matter. Academe's own ideology of moral equivalence and relativism has badly damaged its own moral weight and standing in larger society--my impression is that most students care not a whit for the opinions of their professors. And why should they? When they're constantly told that all authority figures represent a corrupt establishment, they naturally will not make the implied exception that tenured radicals make for themselves. College students used to go to college to be trained for leadership roles in society in a serious way. Now most go so that they can make a good living, and the average English or History Professor has all the moral standing of the dude next door. There are certainly long-range concerns, but the slow inner rot and hollowing out of the humanistic disciplines is more an effect than a cause of larger cultural problems in my view.


WWSH

7/13/2005 08:38:00 PM  
Blogger Dymphna said...

How many average Americans (or Britons, or Aussies) know what Wahhabism is? How many know the difference between the Shi'a and Sunni sects of Islam? How many know what Shari'a is?

We're learning fast, Monty. I know a lot more about Muslim women's clothing than I wanted to. Not to mention hadiths and hudnas.

What an anachronism it all is.

7/13/2005 08:45:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Were it not for Iraq, were it not for our politico/military's experience with rising constitutionalist democrats and entrepreneurial liberals, we'd have little evidence that from a war-crucible can arise a seoaration of Islam from jihadis. Of course, long peace with Muslim governments world-wide should be on our minds as a backdrop, but nothing states the case like recent enemy-state Iraq, that Islam can be separated from its jihad element.

Turning the left's tools, with the knowledge we've gained, is a right strategic adjunct. I can see the big propaganda portraits of suicide teens, adjacent a same-size portrait of a smiling free Iraqi, maybe drinking a local brand of something, having a bite to eat, smiling, with the banner "Allah Loves Life!" things like that. There is so much psychology and behavior mod knowledge on Madison Avenue. Film--movies--are--can be--life-changingly powerful even to western youth hardened by familiarity. Rock groups not so long ago ruled the Boomer generation. So much more. Wretchard may've never said anything more important than that we have reached an end of education, and now must step it up a level. Apply what we know.

7/13/2005 08:45:00 PM  
Blogger jonejinx said...

Wretchard,
What you said makes a lot of sense but it would seem that you have set the bar at fundamentlly re-engineering an entire religion. But almost every reformation of a religion consists of believers going back to the source material and recreating the original religion within the context of the times in which they live. With the prophet himself waging war on the city of Medina and Islam's subsequent expansion by military force would it actually be possible to do this with Islam?

7/13/2005 08:48:00 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

Great thought on how Iraqis' suffering through jihad will give them unique authority to change the course of Islam--that sounds like a strong possibility. It will be interesting to watch how the religion changes as a result-- or in any case how the confessions or character of some substantial subset of believers changes. I think it's a little optimistic, but something like that Has to happen, it would seem, just by virtue of Arab nations' increasing understanding that they must begin to adopt more than the trappings of modernity in order to avoid being, as the new Iranian President said, not nations but merely quasi-anarchic /tribal "petrol stations."

7/13/2005 08:55:00 PM  
Blogger Red River said...

From three conjectures:

"Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad recently "told an international conference of young Muslim leaders ... (that) ... Muslims must acquire skills and technology so they can create modern weapons and strike fear into the hearts of our enemies". Fecklessness and gunpowder are a lethal combination. The terrible ifs accumulate."

And they accumulate in Iraq as well.

A Democratic Iraq with a Manueverist Military and zero inhibitions on hunting down Jihadis is a fearful weapon.

7/13/2005 09:14:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

WWSH, I get your point--that the intended influence of leftish academics may not count for much, but your statement contains the acknowledgement of the derivative rot, the cynicism that a fool in authority creates for authority itself.

Granted, "think like me!" does not 'take', but what does take is disdain for appeals to selflessness and emotional attachment to national experience.

Granted, most kids are better than to self-subvert so easily.

But bureaucracies which invest credentialing power in individuals who inspire nothing but the failure of inspiration, are surely a moral/cultural problem worth an attempt to ameliorate. Less for what they do, than for the space they take from the other way of being.

The breach, the not-done, the opportunity cost.

Fortunately, as you point out, the effects are not catastrophic, as that great Michael Barone hard/soft America essay pointed out, the open marketplace straightens out a lot of hooey in a hurry!

7/13/2005 09:14:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

So, this really is the prose poetry philosophy blog.

Stuck in an packed Airbus, bags and jacket jammed under seat, we're marooned by a ground stop at a hub in the network, 350 miles away, we'll get an update in an hour on when we might take off.

Perfect time and circumstance to read a throroughly annoying book, to kill the time and grind your guts:
Sleeping with the Devil by Robert Baer

This book is written by a long-time CIA operator in the ME, describing hell unearthed by the oil industry, the Western powers who find satan's fuel under the deserts; and, the effect upon the ancient minds who live there thoroughly driven mad by the endless wealth and a suicidal religious frenzy.

The movie "The Mummy" seems a plausible allegory.

It's an annoying read, especially when you're stuck at Logan, where certain Saudi citizens attacked US from on 9/11.

I'm afraid we are not fighting back hard enough to win.

7/13/2005 09:17:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Wot a gasbag I am--all I meant was, that sort sets a bad example.

7/13/2005 09:19:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Tony, the "curse of oil" is a great insight--but, then, after you digest the insight, what? Robert Baer has a good reform in mind?

7/13/2005 09:23:00 PM  
Blogger Red River said...

"If we can get Al Jazeera outlawed, so much the better. If that's impossible we must infiltrate it and use it against its creators."

My philsopohy professors would call this putting one's nose on the contradiction.

The key in this debate is to pose a question so far away from the destination that it seems innocuous but which quickly sets the bait. The opponent follows the trail like a cat chasing a string until he enters a room of no return while closing all the doors.

The Left and Islam must be left in their own embrace, one neither able to let go, but recoiling in horror, not knowing if its a mirror or the real thing they have grabbed onto.

There is tremendously fertile ground here for a Milton of Arab extraction to frame the tumult of the times against a moral backdrop while using satire to put the two lovers - the Left and Islam in the same bed.

Somehow German and Arabic get mixed in my mind sometimes and all I hear is "Allah Uber Alles".

7/13/2005 09:26:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Buddy,

I hated the book. The author hates Arabs and al Sauds, and all American government officials are easily corrupted scum. That's the whole book, in a zillion boring names you can't keep track of.

Notably, it was recommended to me by a liberal friend, who no doubt is trying to convince me of his wisdom that all American governments are evil, thus demonstrating his non-liberalness, his even-handedness. He disdains not just Republicans, but all American administrations.

As I've told him over and over, to paraphrase the old song, "If loving America is wrong / I don't wanna be right."

Oh, plus, the writing is terrible.

7/13/2005 09:30:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Self-fullfilling prophecies running around like those cats chasing strings. Attack the West to save Allah, to survive attack West destroys Allah.

7/13/2005 09:33:00 PM  
Blogger Red River said...

Exhelodrvr:

"I don't think that the Iraqi military will be better than the Egyptians, Iranians, or Turkish militaries, to name at least some. "

The Iraqis were quite good at the end of the 80s. They destroyed Iran using combined arms offensives in just a few months. They took Kuwait. And had they not paused at the Kuwaiti border, they could have had Saudi Arabia as well.

A new Iraqi military based upon meritocracy, free inquiry, rigorous training, and embracing manueverism will be very hard to beat. They will also have extensive combat experienced officers and men when OIF ends as well. They will be the most formidable Arab Army standing - even better than the Jordanians.

7/13/2005 09:35:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Wonder if the baby-bomb--which came just some hours after troops caught Zarkawi's #2, the "Emir of Baghdad", al-Aziz--was connected to that big capture?

7/13/2005 09:41:00 PM  
Blogger Engineer-Poet said...

Andrew Scotia wrote:

"... the result, in the United States at least, will be a Spartan State organized for total war. Before the end there will be windrows of the dead and the gutters will run with blood."

I think you underestimate the efficiency of the modern industrial state.

If the United States decided that Islamic nations Had To Go, we could flatten their major cities and kill a hundred million or more within hours of the conclusion.  The rest would be cleanup, which we can do with frightening efficiency.  Consider the capability of a Predator armed with Hellfire missiles; we can pick out a single suspicious person from miles away and blow him to smithereens, without the people involved ever leaving an air-conditioned office.

If you extend this to eradication of the entire Magreb, it is not much more difficult; a few contracts for UAV's which can mix and spray binary nerve agents on demand, air-droppable geophones which listen for characteristic human footsteps, webcams fercrissakes...   All the fruits of technological society could be turned into pieces of the most efficient killing machine ever created.

If the people of the United States were angry enough with the Islamic world to want it all dead, we could do it.  From Marrakesh to Indonesia to the Moro of the Phillipines, we could seek out and kill 99% of all human life within a couple of years, maybe 99.9%.

This scares the living crap out of me, and I'm fearless.  No, I don't want to bet on it; I'm afraid that I might be right.

7/13/2005 09:47:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

But Red River,

Where will the Iraqi Army get all those T-72's we smoked?

7/13/2005 09:50:00 PM  
Blogger Engineer-Poet said...

... and it wouldn't take a total war footing to do it, either.  It would probably take fewer resources than trying to introduce democracy to Iraq, and have vastly less risk to Americans.

That's what's so utterly scary about it.

7/13/2005 09:50:00 PM  
Blogger Wild Bill said...

All these good ideas require one thing.. TIME !! Is there going to be enuff time to get some of them implimented before one of Osama's handlers comes knocking with a great disaster in his suitcase ?? If the American Hiroshima does happen, then there wont be time to stop what will happen next.. I dont even think anyone will want to stop it..

7/13/2005 09:58:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

But first let's try to find a way to bork ole over-serious sissy bin Laden. Buy a sit-com on Al Jeez, "The Beverly Jihadis"...or a vaudeville variety show, "I Don't Love Death"

7/13/2005 10:00:00 PM  
Blogger Hanba'al said...

Tony,
Tell him going to Vietnam and serve the people there, he might learn one or two things. Talk is cheap. I used to challenge my economic mentor that way and it shuts his mouth pretty quick.

7/13/2005 10:11:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Having seen fire, you can recognize smoke, huh, Lan?

7/13/2005 10:13:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

I remember reading somewhere a million years ago, about VC or NVA coming into a village after our guys had been there and inoculated the villagers against smallpox or something. Charlie came in and cut off every arm that had been inoculated. (Apocalypse Now? Like the Africans accusing us of causing AIDS?)

Just to prove the point that the West ain't coming to this town.

Whether or not that apochrypa is true (I can't find the book I read it in, tho the story is common on the Web), W's post on today's candy bombing is undeniable murder and mutilation of the innocent.

I take solace in the fact that we have faced fanatic suicidal enemies in the past, and conquered them.

7/13/2005 10:17:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Thanks Lan.

7/13/2005 10:19:00 PM  
Blogger Adam said...

Seems to me that a liberal movement within Islam cannot be created in peace and "stability" but only by war. The Jihad must be shown to be archaic and the enemy too willful. Do we in the west have the will to wait things out?

7/13/2005 10:30:00 PM  
Blogger Hanba'al said...

W. I like your term Riyadh-Berkeley axis. It exactly defines the enemies we are up against, within and without.

7/13/2005 10:49:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Within and without indeed!
---
In the piece linked below, Ledeen portrays the not so sophisticated views of Londoners, as well as describes their version of ignoring, nay encouraging, evil.
. The Jews.
It was widely noted, most passionately by the Iraqi blogger Hammorabi, that when Tony Blair reminded the House of Commons that many countries had been scourged by the terrorists in recent years, he omitted Iraq from the list.
In the growing recent literature about Great Britain's appeasement of Islamic terrorists over the past decade and more, we've come to understand that London was, in many ways, the epicenter of the terror network. Terrorists wanted in other countries were given safe haven in the United Kingdom, and the most amazingly hateful language was spewed out, openly and proudly, by various sheikhs and imams, all left to incite the faithful to terrible acts against innocent people the world over. For all this, her majesty's government had its reasons.

7/13/2005 11:06:00 PM  
Blogger Hanba'al said...

Brutality is a means to contest the wills of the participants. It will separate the run and the also run within so making targets are easier to identify. In a way, it controls internally and cleanse the rest. Externally, it sends a message to the appeasers to surrender for it makes no dents to the resolute. They fight one way or another, not because of covenience but because of principles. W. your Riyadh-Berkeley axis is very apt and that's why I am a US citizen. How ironic.

7/13/2005 11:06:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Where does the appeal of materialism/secularism fit into this?
Before the fall of Saddam, that was a significant element in Baghdad, at least.
Current day Iran regularly comes up with examples of younger folk delighting in rejecting the oppressive mandates of the mullahs.
---
re, the depressing quotes of the Iraqi adults at the scene of the children's massacre:
Wouldn't we expect western coverage to be as selectively biased in their Iraqi coverage as they are here?

7/13/2005 11:09:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Tony,
Rush was rehashing Wilson/Plame this morning.
Following the actions of the CIA in that whole fraudulent affair, is like watching the machinations of a bunch of democrat operatives, which, it seems, many of them are.
No wonder very few dots were connected.
And many were falsely connected in ways designed to sabotage Bush.

7/13/2005 11:14:00 PM  
Blogger husker_met said...

It may be the eternal optimist in me, but I worry much less these days about us losing the war, than about us inadvertently prolonging it.

When one pointy-headed Liberal shows me a socialist dictatorship that can manage without copious foreign assistance, or when one Jihadist trots out a mullacracy that has made a tangible improvement on the life of the average person, I'll lay awake at night.

Globalization, free market economics, democracy, and vapid Western pop culture march on. No one has yet produced a better system in which the benign elements of human nature can flourish.

Muslim mothers still, I think, want to see their children grow up and prosper, and Muslim fathers still bear the responsibility of providing for their families. Liberalism and Islamofascism have yet to come up with a curative for these basic, and universal, human qualities. Muslim reformation will, I suspect, tend to take care of itself.

These people may live in fear now, but they won't forever. If you believe like our Founders did, people eventually rise up.

The only real question is how much of a catalyst for change do we choose to be.

What I see in Iraq is the U.S. clearing the roadblocks for rapid positive change, affected by the Iraqis themselves. The WoT is the same type of deal, only for an entire region and/or religion.

Desert Rat I think nails it: We are teaching these people to fish, and giving them access to the metaphorical sea.

They'd eventually learn these lessons through trial and error and make do for themselves, but it's a hell of a lot more humane (to everyone involved) to accelerate the process.

The trade off, of course, is American lives for more rapid Muslim progress. Push too hard and American servicemen die, push not enough and backward Muslims nuke a city while the masses live in squalor and ignorance.

Moderation, while frustratingly slow, draws upon the combined powers of our military, economic system, political system and culture. Eventually we, and the indigenees will prevail, because there is no alternative.

Having said all that, I wish we'd dial back the moderation just a notch.

7/13/2005 11:16:00 PM  
Blogger Sparks fly said...

The Bible has much to say about these people. If a person were to read it their activities would be obvious. You don't have to be a genius just humble enough to get your body to open the book and read it.

7/13/2005 11:18:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh:
At minimum, leftist corruption of academia has resulted in a curriculum so filled with worthless tripe that many genuine academic courses are simply crowded out.
---
Perhaps your setting has more hard sciences than the average university?

7/13/2005 11:21:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

At least not all of our universities are as bad as that pointed to in Wretchard's comments above!
---
""White men saving black women from black men--it's a very old fantasy that is always popular," Annelies Moors, a University of Amsterdam anthropologist who writes about Islamic gender relations, said dryly. "But I don't think male violence against women, a phenomenon known to every society in history, can be explained by a few Koranic verses."
---
"Islamic Gender Relations" alone should be the tip off that what follows is pure bs.

7/13/2005 11:27:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Doug,

The scary thing to me is that a large percentage of our fellow citizens still think that we have a choice to pretend this world war doesn't exist, and Bush caused all the problems. Pardon my French, but wtf?

7/13/2005 11:38:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Husker,

With all due respect, your optimism is unfounded.

7/13/2005 11:41:00 PM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

There is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come.

W - you point "Fighting Islamic extremism must comprise organizing a revolt against Islam's internal oppressors. That would include waging intellectual war against Islamic fundamentalism within its own theological context.

One of the reasons this has not happened to date is the Left's control of the MSM and the Academy.

IMHO, the most subversive group within Islam could be the women.

Let's target them.

ADE

7/13/2005 11:48:00 PM  
Blogger truepeers said...

Doug: "Islamic Gender Relations" alone should be the tip off that what follows is pure bs.

Pure bs? Surely bs bs.

7/13/2005 11:50:00 PM  
Blogger truepeers said...

At least the academics are now taking bs seriously, giving us, presumably, the ability to discern bs bs:
http://www.pupress.princeton.edu/titles/7929.html

7/13/2005 11:53:00 PM  
Blogger Hanba'al said...

husker_met

While I appreciate your optimism, I often look back at my experience in my old country to wonder how could they let it set all back to rise again eventually you say, a 50 years later (30 years have passed and they are still at the bottom of the craps). Look at China today and look at China could be if they have not f*** themselves so bad with Mr. Mao. Russia is likewise. I know that because it suddenly dawns on me one day what I would become if I still stay on Vietnam (of course if I not dead in the concentration camp) instead of running to the USA that the Berkley axis is so disdain about. I am sure that if I stuck in Vietnam, I would be damn stupid beyond recognition and that unbelievable revelation is one of my fortunes never belonged to those have no such luxury in that unfortunate war.

It tells me one thing, in general, men's character is not enough unless they are genius but environment has also have tremendous impact on mankind's development. That is to hope the Muslim world to take a moderate stance and to condemn and prosecute the curse within them is a long term investment, and I believe they will do just that in a leasure time and rise to the occasion, as long as there is no force of destruction riding at their butts.
However my experience is the force of destruction is always swifter, always more resolute than the force of construction. So 20 years of destruction and 50 years of constructions (the optimistic time frame I'm using), which one comes to us faster? A simple mathematic isn't it? Within that 20 years, I am sure the 10 lbs bombs in London will grow exponentially and that's what bothers me. I can't speak for W.'s mind but I think I share his concern about how to diverge the obvious confrontation and I believe it's not pretty. Iraqis will fish, I am sure like Vietnamese eventually will fish. Like the Chinese after their 1921 revolution (84 years later and they have not learn how to fish properly yet). But the time to learn to fish properly will be longer than the time for the bomb to arrive. And the fishing condition will also depend on how resolute the next Admin regardless who will be in the House, the Dimwit or the Halfwit.

The enemy is resolute. That's a conslusive fact. Are we resolute? That's not a conclusive fact. If I can take 10 to 20 years down the road as a time frame, you can believe that I am as moderate as an appologist. And 4 years have passed since 2001 and the picture is still not that bright yet for the MadMullah is close to make his Gameboy and the Berkley axis still sing lullaby every days.

7/14/2005 12:20:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Guy comes up with pretty good description of the left!
---
"Rather, bull shitters seek to convey a certain impression of themselves without being concerned about whether anything at all is true.
They quietly change the rules governing their end of the conversation so that claims about truth and falsity are irrelevant.
Frankfurt concludes that although bull shit can take many innocent forms, excessive indulgence in it can eventually undermine the practitioner's capacity to tell the truth in a way that lying does not.
Liars at least acknowledge that it matters what is true.
By virtue of this, Frankfurt writes, bull shit is a greater enemy of the truth than lies are.

7/14/2005 12:23:00 AM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Wretchard -

What bothers me is our inability to distinguish who as a Muslim is a threat and who isn't.

Early reports say that MI-5 failed to flag or detect 3 of the bombers as Muslim extremists. And the Pakis in the neighborhood say that they were all quiet, religious young men that never caused any trouble. They claim to be "shocked! shocked! that such youth would do such a thing and I more than a little think that the majority of those who knew the participants are sincere.

Of course, I also believe that the same "moderates" will screw it up and blame the West, "root causes", racism, hostile Islamophobia, Zionism for the 4 blowing up their fellow countrymen. And not one Mullah will issue a Fatwa saying their slaughter was unIslamic, they are apostates, doomed to hell.

Not one Muslim on the street will call for the pieces of the bombers to be cast into the sea rather than pollute the soil of Mother England....and in hundreds of Muslim homes in the UK, pictures of the 4 will hung in a place of honor and underground DVDs of their home videos, life story, and family pictures will juxtipose with pictures of Abu Ghraib, Israelis killing Palestinians, and wounded Iraqis...will be cranked out for the viewing pleasure of Muslims from Washington State to London to Yemen to round the world all the way to Australia..

In the war we always come back to, WWII, we had no way of telling which Germans were fanatical Nazis, which Japanese were dedicated racist Yamoto militarists - so the solution was not to bother and war on all Germans and Nipponese.

Wretchard writes: But what of the children? What of the Muslim children who are the targets of these "freedom fighters", "resistants" or "militants", whichever the BBC prefers to call them? In what category do they belong?

A famous saying of an American Indian fighter, who is regarded unfavorably because he waged war like the Native Americans did - killing the men, women, and children of the enemy - said "Nits grow into lice". But it is true. That is why fascist, religious fundamentalists, and totalitarian governments of cultures place such a premium on indoctrinating children from the time they can understand words.

The Sunni that killed Shia kids only saw future Shiite lice. Al Qaeda's Fatwa says men women and children of the Zionist Crusaders should all be slaughtered. Beslan was no aberration.

And "moderate Islam" remains silent about it. Perhaps because they know their religious duty, taught from the time they too were "nits" is they are supposed to live by the literal word of the Koran, and the extremists strive to do that more than the moderates who I think harbor a guilt that they are more slack and less pure Muslims than the radical fundamentalists.

I really hope they can pull off a Reformation, but I am not optimistic..

7/14/2005 12:45:00 AM  
Blogger wretchard said...

Cedarford,

Good points. We are unable to distinguish the 'good' Muslims from the 'bad' Muslims with our current screening tools. This is their greatest strategic asset, the ability to submerge into a billion-man ocean. The answer of course, is to enter the ocean and propagate energy through it; to survey it; to know it better than the enemy knows it himself. Then we can localize, prosecute and destroy.

Hence, solving the terrorism problem requires engagement because you need the datum to develop the picture. Whether engagement means contact with enemy fighters in the field or entering the Muslim community as an organizer-agitator is a difference of degree, but not of fundamental kind. That's why the 1990s idea that the West could stand off and deal with Islamic fundamentalism without 'touching' the medium of Islam was a disguised prescription for doing nothing. A little diplomacy, a few academic reports, a few case officers operating out of embassies yielded -- nearly nothing.

I see the principal benefit of Iraq and Afghanistan as information. Information about what kinds of armed responses are effective; what kinds of intelligence gathering are effective; what kind of people we are dealing with. We could not have gotten that information without going into these places, except as an academic exercise, which of course means we wouldn't have gotten it at all. But the missing piece is that we haven't gotten into Muslim civil society. Hot damn it, the Brits didn't know a bunch of fish and chips kids were training to be suicide bombers in Leeds. Didn't know squat. What did MI5 call them? ">ily whites"? That's another way of saying they were broadcasting on a frequency that MI5 couldn't see. And we will never see until we sink our roots into their soil.

7/14/2005 01:09:00 AM  
Blogger Gordon said...

When I was at university a very long time ago the extreme left had too fixed stars in their political fimament, Anti-american and Pro-soviet. At least they had the excuse that the Soviets were "building Socialism" essentially an "ends justifying means" argument.
I wonder how they are able to justify to themselves their support for the insurgents in Iraq for example, where evil ends are pursued by evil means, unless their motivations then and now were not in fact "self hatred and the fascination of force and of barbarism"?

7/14/2005 02:44:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Let's not forget that many of the bombings of the "Sunni Insurgency" are paid for with Saudi funds brought in through Syria.
If this dried up, a lot of the insurgency would dry up.
---
And a search for "Trained in Pakistan" goes on for pages and pages - Another Example:
. Turkey suspects trained in Pakistan, intended to attack Bush.
ANKARA (AFP) May 04, 2004
A group of alleged Islamic terrorists arrested in Turkey on suspicion of planning an attack on a NATO meeting were trained in Pakistan and were planning to carry out a suicide mission against US President George W. Bush, Turkish press reports said Tuesday.
The suspects, who had been tracked by Turkish authorities for months before their arrest, were in possession of Turkish-subtitled video cassettes attributed to Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden calling for a jihad, or holy war, against the "great Satan" of America, according to the reports.

7/14/2005 03:49:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

That's a great example of the decline of the left, gordon.

7/14/2005 03:50:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

C-4 and Wretchard:
One obvious resource are the Israelis, who suffered through another year at 5,000 attacks/year!
6 percent of these were suicide bombers and that six percent produced half of the total fatalities.
As Hewitt's guest Yoni says:
"Islamic terror is nothing but Palestinian terror against Israelis, adopted elsewhere."
IOW
Israel is the training ground.
Must be plenty of Israelis with plenty of knowledge about the subject.
Yoni fears when they leave Gaza, it will become an exporter of terror.

7/14/2005 03:57:00 AM  
Blogger Abakan said...

I was 384, in the Green thread, however not surprisingly my response fits here too. I begining to think it will fit in any Belmont Club posting with the word Iraq somewhere in the title or body.

Nathan said,

"Abakan,

Okay, I think I understand better what you meant by "semantic construction." I think what we have between us is a difference of definitions.

Yes, clearly we do, and if we probe it further it will unlock many mysteries.

Merriam Webster's Collegiate Dictionary

Tenth Addition

war 1a (1): a state of usu. open and declared armed hostile conflict between states or nations
(2) a period of such armed conflict (3): State of War

1b : the art and science of warfare

war 2 a: a state of hostility, conflict, or antagonism
b: a struggle or competition between opposing forces or for a particular end ,a class war,
,a war against disease,

Real wordsmiths complained bitterly when 'on' replaced 'against' but real words smiths are probably too anal for most peoples tastes.

So, the War on Terrorism in context is a struggle against terrorism correctly defined in 2b. The Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are correctly defined in 1a (1), (2), and (3). The distinctions aren't very important.... to Americans who have degraded the use of English to a point that hinders actual communication.

So, our President declares that we are now engaged in War against Terrorism.

Here's where great mysteries unfold. War in 1a and 1b are designated as art and science. Art and sciences have evolved descriptive specific terms that are unique within their specific contexts.

So, who are we at war with again?
In the war against terrorism we are at war with terrorists. Gasp...
Does that mean we are in a struggle with Islamics fascists? It depends. Since Islam is a religion that imposes strict controls on individualism, it is for all intents and purposes a form of governance. So, we better be really careful because the perception by moderate, and fundamentalist muslims could quite easily missinterpret our endeavor as a crusade or holy war by Christians against Islam. After all, everyone knows that the United States is a Christian nation. We might be fine as long as we are perceived as struggling against Islamofascist terrorists. It's still going to take a bit of work since everyone knows that one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter. We might have to hand out candy to children, and rebuild infrastructure, and provide health care, etc. One thing is for certain. We have to state quite clearly that we are not at war against Islam. In the sentence above which context of war am I describing. You better know exactly, or we are in deep, deep, trouble. Are we in a struggle against Al Queda? Yes, but by this time everyone should know that Al Queda is a movement, or an umbrella organization, or choose the latest or your favorite descriptor. In any case Al Queda is too exclusive, and everyone should at this point know that they don't carry membership cards.
So, are we in a struggle with Osama? Yes, but Osama is just one man, and everyone knows that he will be replaced by yet another charismatic leader eager to wage war against the United States. BTW, what does war mean to Osama? Should we ask Webster? So, who are we in a struggle against? Gasp...
President Bush said we are in a struggle against terrorists. I'm comfortable with that, it works just fine for me. So, in our struggle against terrorists when will we declare Victory? Will there be terms for surrender? Will terrorists meet in Geneva or with the UN to discuss a cease fire? Are any of these terms really applicable? Do you want us to stop the struggle after we have won? Perhaps, we all will have earned a big fat peace dividend. We might spend it on education reform.

We are at war. Let's never forget that we are at war against the baathists and the taliban in Iraq and Afghanistan. See War 1a (1), (2), and (3). Refer to the Bush doctrine. We must acheive Victory in Iraq and Afghanistan. Let's also not forget that we are in a struggle against terrorists. A struggle that isn't properly described or defined using the terminology evolved from our studies of the art and science of warfare. A struggle that many believe will require the embracing of democratic principles by Muslims in Islamic nations. We have tried everything else. We are running out of options. Let's hope it works.

I know who we are at war with, and I know who we struggle against? Do you realize that we are talking about two separate concepts that are related. Or, that the terms we use are different for each concept?

7/14/2005 03:58:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

A training ground.

7/14/2005 03:58:00 AM  
Blogger sam said...

Here's what 'trained in afhanistan' brought up, Doug:

Syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer argued in the July 18 edition of Time magazine that the claim that the war in Iraq has increased Al Qaeda recruitment amounted to "nonsense." But Krauthammer ignored recent reports by the U.S. intelligence community that the Iraq conflict has been -- and will likely continue to be -- an effective recruitment tool and training ground for Al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations.

In a column titled "... Why That's Ridiculous," Krauthammer wrote:

For the next decade, whenever there is a terrorist attack anywhere in the world, there will be those blaming it on America: if only America had not been distracted from the war on terrorism by the war in Iraq, if only America had not stirred Muslim resentment and increased al-Qaeda recruitment by invading Iraq.

http://mediamatters.org/items/200507130002

7/14/2005 03:59:00 AM  
Blogger Rune said...

Hirsi Ali has left Islam and no longer considers herself a Muslim, so I don’t think she qualifies as an internal opposition to Islamic fundamentalism, if you meant someone fighting fundamentalist Islam with tolerant Islam. Perhaps , the author of The Trouble with Islam, is a better candidate – she still consider herself a Muslim, actually her attempts at reformation is based on a wish to save Islam, which she fears will destroy itself without changes. A very real fear, just witness Iran which apparently is one of the most areligious countries in the world. There’s another great Muslim, Badshah Khan, whom sadly seems to be all but forgotten today (at least his story is to be found on a site dedicated to “forgotten history”). Badshah Khan, an Afghan Pasthu, only assisted by his courage and personal integrity gathered an army of followers to join Ghandi in his peaceful struggle for independence - he even found inspiration for his peaceful struggle in the concept of Jihad. (Nonviolent Soldier of Islam: Badshah Khan: A Man to Match His Mountains) Anyway, I used to argue with Muslims that they have another path they could choose, and that they didn’t even have to look outside their own religion, if that’s what they find so disagreeable, to find great and courageous icons. I’m not so sure anymore that it’s realistic with such a peaceful alternative Islam, and if they think they can use terror and war in the west as a forge to temper their religion and hammer out a more acceptable Islam, they’ve got another thought coming. Also such a reformation has to come from within. It’s their job and their responsibility and they are to blame if they fail. But one would be a fool to say all people born to a Muslim faith are the enemy. As far as I’m aware, everybody agrees that it is not the individual man or child we are at war with, but the islamist ideologue. Also one should remember that Germans were the first victims of Nazism as well as the first to combat it.

Historically, all protracted wars are characterised by an increasing brutalisation and indifference to enemy suffering. I wonder if that is something which can be witnessed in western societies today, or if the War on Islamism is just too low key? Also I just don’t know that the war against Islamism can be won by acceptable means, what exactly are we to do if it can’t?

7/14/2005 04:00:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Cedarford, Wretchard

We are fighting on at least three fronts:

Islam, The Left, For Oil (= Iraq).

Confuse them, and you cloud your next action(s).

The most contentious of above? "For Oil (= Iraq)". Before I get beaten up, let me say that I think that OIF is one of the great strokes of genius, as it safeguards our food supply (legitimately) and at the same time gives us a base to wreck Islam (ok, ok introduce democracy, modernity, call it what you will). We have no reason to apologise for wanting to continue to eat. IMO, OIF needs no further justification than that. Anything else (and there is a lot) is a bonus.

The actions to be taken against Islam in the West are starting to be taken. Let's just hope they go far enough. Though normally I'd be aghast at two minutes silence for anything, if it gets Mohammod out on the street to experience his shame, it may save 50 children's lives (and Mohammoad's).

So that just leaves the Left. We have some new weapons (the blogosphere), but it will be difficult. They are really embedded.

We need a vocabulary, a taxonomy, to describe, identify, and rout the Left.

Let's keep blogging.

ADE

7/14/2005 04:05:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

In a war between Patton and the Abakan/Nathan Complex,
(have yet to figure out who said what in Abakan post)
I'd bet on Patton.
He'd have annihilated the A/N Complex before the A/N Complex got through defining war.

7/14/2005 04:09:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

ADE,
You want to target the wenches:
Shall we ply them with Ale?

7/14/2005 04:11:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Gordon, Doug
The Left and Islam share a common motivation, they both hate the West. So they both agree on what they want to destroy. Where they differ is on the detination.

Islam is clear on its destination. The Left has no idea.

ADE

7/14/2005 04:13:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

ADE,
Thats "Mohammead's."

7/14/2005 04:13:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"The Left has no idea."
Suicide Bombs and 72 Virgins Vs
"No Idea":
What's the difference?

7/14/2005 04:17:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Doug,

That is so not nice.

But seriously, why not.

Wreck the culture. Get the kids, get the women, remove burkas, forced marriages, clitoridectomies, poligamy, votes, give them education, basically f... up the males with their sexual hang-ups.

Then all that remains is the left.

ADE

Mohammoeads? A typo. Nothing to do with Mead, Allah forbid!

7/14/2005 04:18:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Sam,
I wonder what the collective IQ of the
"American Intelligence Community"
is?

7/14/2005 04:22:00 AM  
Blogger sam said...

Well, no OBL yet. Does that say anything?

7/14/2005 04:29:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Rune says,
"Historically, all protracted wars are characterised by an increasing brutalisation and indifference to enemy suffering. I wonder if that is something which can be witnessed in western societies today"
---
So far, we seem to be trying to have the "best of both worlds":
A PC War where we become less brutal, but still expect victory.

7/14/2005 04:32:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Sam
(Speculation Alert)
I understand that in WWII, Hiroshima and Nagasaki were left untouched so that the effects of the A Bomb would be clearer to the Japs.

ADE

7/14/2005 04:32:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Doug
The Left expects us to lose.
ADE

7/14/2005 04:34:00 AM  
Blogger sam said...

Nice. I follow you, ADE.

7/14/2005 04:35:00 AM  
Blogger Rune said...

ugh! The preview was ok!

... Perhaps Irshad Manji, the author of The Trouble with Islam, is a better candidate – she still consider herself a Muslim, actually her attempts at reformation is based on a wish to save Islam, which she fears will destroy itself without changes. A very real fear, just witness Iran which apparently is one of the most areligious countries in the world. There’s another great Muslim, Badshah Khan, whom sadly seems to be all but forgotten today (at least his story is to be found on a site dedicated to "forgotten history"). Badshah Khan, an Afghan Pasthu, only assisted by his courage and personal integrity gathered an army of followers to join Ghandi in his peaceful struggle for independence - he even found inspiration for his peaceful struggle in the concept of Jihad. (Nonviolent Soldier of Islam: Badshah Khan: A Man to Match His Mountains) ...

7/14/2005 04:37:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

ADE:
"Then all that remains is the left."
With THEIR sexual hangups.
That might qualify as a
WMD!
Now if we can just convince them that Saddam had them all along too, they should calm down:
Bush told the truth!
Saddam had WMDs!

7/14/2005 04:38:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

ADE,
The Japanese have continued to preserve the memorials.
I saw a picture of a tree that was just a short distance from ground zero that sprouted from the base and continues to live today!
They have also preserved buildings that survived.
(the shells at least)

7/14/2005 04:43:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Er, Doug, I've got a few WMD too. But I keep them to myself.

Ok, I confess, those Burkas do it for me every time.
ADE

7/14/2005 04:46:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Doug
Were you in WWII?
ADE

7/14/2005 04:47:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

I'm STILL fighting the battle of the bulge!

7/14/2005 04:50:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Exercise, Doug. Of a WMD kind
ADE

7/14/2005 04:51:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Afghan women are hot.

7/14/2005 04:51:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Actually, they are.

What a shame such beauty is lost to the world.

Old Mo has a lot to answer for. He could well be the most distasterous man in history.

ADE

7/14/2005 04:54:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

aGREED,
Indeed.

7/14/2005 04:55:00 AM  
Blogger Papa Bear said...

Sounds like a good excuse to bring back the Phoenix Program, although I'm not convinced that it would have a net positive effect over the long term.

The problem with such operations is how easily they can be corrupted and spun out of control, with operatives targeting people because they annoy someone with power, rather than because they are involved in terror operations. The is an especial concern in areas where the culture is prone to corruption.

I do agree with "common cents" that something must be done about the money men and the radical imams, both in Iraq and elsewhere, to convince them that they are not "untouchable" if they give any support or encouragement to terrorists

7/14/2005 04:56:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"What a shame such beauty is lost to the world."
---
Did you see the before and after pictures in National Geographic several years ago?
There was a cover shot of a beautiful young girl.
Then, more recently they found the same woman, and unfortunately the ravages of time spent in Afghanistan took a mighty toll.

7/14/2005 04:59:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

papa bear,
I too agree w/common cents:
Those evil spewers of hate have decades living as a protected minority.
What a Crock.

7/14/2005 05:02:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Yes Doug,

Isn't it a shame. If that girl had lived in the West, what a life she could have had.

ADE

7/14/2005 05:08:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Dream on.

7/14/2005 05:09:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"I know who we are at war with, and I know who we struggle against? Do you realize that we are talking about two separate concepts that are related. Or, that the terms we use are different for each concept? "
---
No, Actually, I don't.

7/14/2005 05:31:00 AM  
Blogger Marcus Aurelius said...

BINGO!

But many conservatives have also been blind to the urgent requirement of creating a liberation movement within Islam, in part because they half believe all Muslims are themselves the enemy; [emphasis added] in part because they despair of Muslims ever rising up against the medieval institutions which constrain them; in part because they haven't thought about it.

This is something I have been pounding on as well! I am a fan of LGF, but when CJ refers to Islam as the ROP I don't need the vocal & visual cues to catch the sarcasm. When I hear Michael Savage railing against Islam I think what a fool. When I read Ann Coulter's angry post-9/11 column I thought that will really turn this into a global hot war.

This came up not too long ago in this section when I said we need to be careful we do not drive normal Muslims to the Jihadis of death.

Mind you, I do like Ann Coulter and Savage is at best a coin flip.

7/14/2005 05:34:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"So, are we in a struggle with Osama? Yes, but Osama is just one man, and everyone knows that he will be replaced by yet another charismatic leader eager to wage war against the United States. BTW, what does war mean to Osama? Should we ask Webster? So, who are we in a struggle against? Gasp...
"
---
I wonder how well
"War of the Worlds"
would have sold, if it was intstead:
"War of the Words?"
---
Myself, I liked that Monster Ant movie.

7/14/2005 05:48:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Instead.

7/14/2005 05:49:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Our New Front?

"Maryam Namazie

Sweet 16 year old Atefeh Rajabi was publicly hanged in the city centre in Neka in Iran on 15 August 2004 for "acts incompatible with chastity".

In April this year, Amina was publicly stoned to death in Argu district, Afghanistan after being accused of adultery by her husband.

This month, physicians have been beaten for treating female patients and women have been brutally attacked for not being veiled in Basra, Iraq.

The list is endless.


And I thought the only problem was they couldn't drive cars.

Welcome to our best recruits.
Read it all

ADE

7/14/2005 05:50:00 AM  
Blogger Papa Bear said...


Al Jazeera
is starting to realize the level of bad PR that Al Queda is generating:

Al-Qaida's mindless acts have turned the aggressor, who colonises, massacres and pillages, into a victim. For all their material vulnerability, victims have a very powerful asset: their moral case as innocent victims. Perhaps, this is the cruellest dimension to these senseless crimes: That the powerless has been stripped even of his victimhood. Even this has been appropriated by the powerful.

They are not stupid. They realize that too many more high-profile atrocities against the West will have massive repercussions

7/14/2005 05:51:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

At least Ann had a very personal reason.
Not too much fun to think of your friend riding a 767 into the Pentagon.
Savage:
Depends on what he's been drinking.
Fridays are often worth a listen when he reminisces on the old days of Chrome, Cubes, and Rock and Roll.

7/14/2005 05:53:00 AM  
Blogger Pierre Legrand said...

Wretchard,

That was the best explanation of why we must democratize Iraq that I have read. Thank you as usual. The Administration could do far worse than to hire you to work with President Bush's speechwriters to aid his explanations of the war on terror.

Pierre

7/14/2005 05:56:00 AM  
Blogger Abakan said...

I guess the loonie left is correct. We have embarked on a crusade. The enemy is Islam.
Let's just skip all the pretense and call a spade, a spade. Let's reclaim Jerusalem. If we have to we can always use the nukular option.

It's obvious that a dangerous percentage of educated, intelligent, witty, and charming Americans, can't identify a change in context in an English word.

I sure hope we win this WOT. It will do my heart good to see the sailors, soldiers, and marines come on V-Day.

Did that help any Doug?

7/14/2005 05:56:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"If I find myself at a loss for an answer to the questions:
"Why the innocent?" and
"For what purpose?",
then, in all likelihood,
the crime is of al-Qaida's doing.
"

7/14/2005 05:58:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Abakan,
My lineage on my mom's side was from the
"Show Me" state.
That meant deeds, not words,
so I am but a cripple.
(like Truman.)

7/14/2005 06:02:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Easy reading means hard writing.
Hard reading means easy writing.

7/14/2005 06:07:00 AM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Red River,
"They destroyed Iran using combined arms offensives in just a few months."

They were stalemated with Iran. And you discount the other nations too much. Egypt nearly beat Israel in 1973, and they have had 25+ years of U.S. military aid, joint training, etc. Similar situation with Turkey.

7/14/2005 06:10:00 AM  
Blogger Abakan said...

I guess since I'm an atheist, I should probably hope you Christians win. I don't want my head separated from my shoulders. I must admit to some dark thoughts about finding some place to hide just long enough to see if you will kill each other.

It's been a long long struggle against Islam, and perhaps it's time to finish it all. let the chips fall where the may. Let God sort um out.

If only that DAMN BBC would start calling terrorists by what they really are, Muslims the world might see the truth.

Islamo-fascists is such a cool word. It just rolls right off the tongue. Hell, I feel cool when I say it.

Terrorist is just so damn undescriptive.

7/14/2005 06:20:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Sadly--since we're all news junkies--but the news itself is the AQ force-multiplier. That's monumentally obvious of course but watching a newscast from Trafalgar Square just now, one can't help but be struck by the depth and breadth of London in time, space, and the imagination. The same explosions if a gas main or weather storm would've barely made a single news cycle. I see it all around, so many so busy on immediate projects that they barely know there's anything at all going on.

What a problem for AQ--it's the mirror of their low-overhead advantage. Keep it low so as not to attract the anger of this oblivious half of the west, and their attack stalls. Amp up the attack, and get this half angry, and loud fiery things fall on their bases.

As Lan and others say, time is on our side--unless we deliberately or accidentally subvert the progression.

7/14/2005 06:27:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Abakan,
"Iswamofaswists" works for me also, since we are supposed to be so "sensitive" to their tendency to easily feel humiliated.

7/14/2005 06:33:00 AM  
Blogger Coffee Pond said...

Rememeber Kurtz? The pile of little arms sent him over the edge. His sin was how much more effective he was than the grocery clerks in charge. Calling Kurtz!

7/14/2005 06:35:00 AM  
Blogger Abakan said...

Here's a thought. If 10,000 copies of a Belmont post calling Islam or even Islamic-fascism the enemy in the WOT were air dropped into Bagdad or Kabul do you think the result could be the same as the bogus Koran story? If your answer is yes, and remember I said could be, not would be then you should be careful. You might be endangering the lives of our troops.

7/14/2005 06:53:00 AM  
Blogger ledger said...

Wretchard describes a horrible terrorists attack. I have analyzed the Iraq "Child Attack" and find it in line with the terrorist's goals to frighten the population by killing children who are given candy by American forces. It's a classic terror tactic - kill all those who interface with the Americans. That attack would be a seen as a solid win for the terrorists - or a long term loss.

Further, Wretchard notes that we are clearly in a war - a war of ideas and a shooting war. Wretchard also suggests that we take covert action an divide the enemy and destroy them via proxy fighters in cells (Wretchard, sorry about the blunt analysis).

Wretchard makes some good points. But, why wait for the next attack?

I would suggest one look closely at Wretchard 3rd Conjecture. He explains the asymmetrical warfare against the US could be very well be used against the enemy (and without borders). I would suggest that has a good idea.

It's well known that Syria, Pakistan and other countries frequently speak out of both sides of their collective mouths. They have now set a present.

I would point out that the terrorists have attacked multiple countries without regard to boundaries. Hence, why should not be do the same.

The world is a dangerous place. Who know when a "Cleric" of violence may bite the dusts in a shoot-out. Who knows when a rouge Paki General will be hit by a drive by shooting. Who knows when an unmarked aircraft will deliver a few small diameter bombs on al Qaeda training camp. Who knows when a Syrian ship may sink on the high seas. Who knows when a Predator Drone might accidentally discharges a Hellfire missile on a Saudi terror financier. These are but a few of the unpleasant possibilities for the enemy in the 3rd Conjecture.

7/14/2005 06:57:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Right. And, no propaganda in areas where there are westerners, will override their behavior and the natures of the relationships. If you're a Baghdadi, "America" is the soldier in your street.

Guess that's why the MSM reports so little of the day-to-day interaction. The "don't believe your lyin' eyes!" bit.

7/14/2005 07:02:00 AM  
Blogger lenie said...

I have not read through all the comments so excuse me if this is a repeat … but what role can Turkey plan in the democratization of the Middle East? In an earlier post someone wondered if Americans etc could define wahhabism, the differences between Shi’a and Sunni sects and Sharia. All of these, I as a westerner, long before 9/11, had learned the definitions of from a Turkish friend. Many Turks fear radical Islam. Last fall my Turkish friend visited the States. She went white with anger and disbelief that Canada is allowing Sharia. She has pondered why any educated Muslim woman would wear a veil while attending an American university, which is illegal in Turkey. She and many of her friends’ and colleagues understand and fear fundamentalism more than us in the west. Yes I know Turkey has become strangely anti-American as of late but I think this is coming more from Europe than the Middle East. However, Turks do not seem very fond of Arabs either. Ironically Europe often has used Turkey’s laws against Islamic religious fundamentalism as an example of a lack of religious tolerance as an excuse for barring Turkey from the EU. There is a fear that if Turkey joins the EU that the current government would use the liberal western ideas/laws to allow an increase of fundamentalism in Turkish society.

7/14/2005 07:12:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Once again folks
Name the enemy.
Kill them
Repeat

abakan and your definitons of war via Webster, words are great, but actions tell the tale.
Most of the terrorists of global reach are outside of our "War".
Does the word Hezbollah ring a bell. Do the countries of Iran and Syria sound familar.
Are we at wear with all those nation states listed on our State Dept.'s list of countries supporting terrorism?
No we are not.

Unending War
Nameless Enemies
so Orwellian.

7/14/2005 07:17:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Evil doer Ali bin el Monti is on the top 1000. He is sighted by a covert operative in a compound in Pakistan.
A stealth B-2 bomber is dispatched from it's on call station and the targeted compound is mysteriously destroyed.
Add another name to the list

7/14/2005 07:33:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Lenie, right...might as well legalize the Assassins as a legit political party.

7/14/2005 07:40:00 AM  
Blogger Sammler said...

ledger:

Wretchard's aim, with Three Conjectures and the like, is to prevent their coming true by pointing out clearly the forces pushing us toward them. If it is truly necessary, in the future, that we kill tens of millions to ensure the survival of our world, we will do so; but to find ourselves in such a situation would be a grevious favilure of foresight, and not to attempt to avoid it would be grossly immoral.

To interpret the conjectures as "advice" is diametrically opposed to their stated intent. (Though failure to make the distinction leads many on the left to hate Mr. Fernandez.)

7/14/2005 07:47:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

"And when He was come into His own country, He taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works? Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not His mother called Mary? And his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas? And His sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things? And they were offended in Him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, save in His own country, and in His own house. And He did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief." (Matthew 13:54-58 KJV)

"And He did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief"

Not that W is a prophet--just that the principle applies--and goes WAY back in time.

7/14/2005 08:03:00 AM  
Blogger ambisinistral said...

I've seen talk in this thread and elsewhere about the Reformation, and the need for a Reformation in Islam. I believe that misses the mark entirely.

It was not the Reformation that caused the explosive growth of Europe, it was the Scientific Revolution. That is, the idea that natural laws could not be determined by logic and rhetoric alone, but that any theory had to be tested against reality. While the Reformation was merely another religious schimsm, the Scientific Revolution was a fundamental break through in human thought that energized the West.

Besides, Salafism is their Reformation. Let us not forget that many early Protestant sects were extremely austere.

Islam, by accepting that the Koran is the spoken word of God has painted itself into a corner. If it can be questioned, and that questioning shows bits and pieces of it to be demonstratebly false, then the entire edifice begins to crumble. Modernity, which at its core includes the scientific method's ruthless questioning, threatens to do exactly that to the Koran and Islam.

I think it is no surprise that the Salafists are led by so many people with exposure to the West. Surely they can see, even if it only at a visceral level, what a threat unrestrained questioning of the Koran poses to Islam.

Islam is at a wrenching moment. Many of its core beliefs -- treatment of woman and apostates, the literal truth of the Koran, prejudice towards none Mohammedans (use the term freely, it greatly insults them) -- can not survive the onslaught of modernity. Its crash and tranformation will not, indeed is not, pleasant.

Add to that the fact that offensive weapons in the form of biological, chemical and nuclear weapons, have far outstripped defensive countermeasures and we are in dangerous times. A single miscalculation could lead to catastrophe on a dreadful scale.

7/14/2005 08:23:00 AM  
Blogger Hanba'al said...

lenie,
The problem with the Turks is because the war against Islamo fanatics has not defined yet and American has not resolute to win this war yet, for I still perceive it as an half hearted struggle. So they do not want to get caught in between. When it becomes an open and defined war with all the chips on the table, they will take side and I think they will take the right side But until then, they won't do a damn thing to screw themselves with more suicidal bombs arriving everyday.

7/14/2005 08:34:00 AM  
Blogger Andrew Scotia said...

Wretchard:

Your point about swimming in their sea is bang on. It is the "Political Officer" during the Raj and on the NW Frontier. It's the whole "Kim" thing.

There are two big problems with this approach. The first is time. It requires enormous amounts of formal and OJT to produce even a neophyte operator. The second is the "Few are called, even fewer are chosen" syndrome. It is the same problem that all the Special Operations military units have.

For years I have written about this and championed the return to low level HUMINT political operations. And, for years I have been reminded that the job description includes dysentery and worse and that it is unrealistic to expect Westerners to operate covertly in these conditions.

Having been evacuated from an AO w/ dysentery I can sympathize with this point of view.

I believe that you are advocating the use of proxies as change agents targeted and supported by regional Political Officers, a very pukka sahib concept.

Recall that the military Civil Affairs unit are now part of US Special Operations Command and that these units are mostly reserve units and are almost always "co-located" near a university since they are still heavy with academics and have become a refuge for mil intel types of the old school. they are now designated Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command.

There are plans afoot to "package" SO task forces in "unique ways" to address the issues found in the WOT. With luck, some workable solutions will be found.

7/14/2005 08:37:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Is the Koran not equally as subject to interpretation as the Bible? I don't mean the response to it, what I'm asking about is the internal logic, the statements themselves. Even a single contradiction means the book is divinely-inspired, but not Divine.

Muslims who are for peace might rent billboards with side-by-side contradictions copied, with an arrow pointed to the one that allows world peace and respect among all peoples.

"Why would Allah want death for his people?"

Then do not attack those who will deliver it.

7/14/2005 08:44:00 AM  
Blogger Cutler said...

Mr. Nyugen summed up my concerns. I am not worried about the ultimate attractiveness of American materialism/liberalism. I AM worried that before it does the job, the enemy will already be at the gates, or blowing them down. To paraphrase H.G. Wells, we're in a race between technology and stupidity.

7/14/2005 08:54:00 AM  
Blogger Nathan said...

He'd have annihilated the A/N Complex before the A/N Complex got through defining war.

Nathan's Dictionary, First Edition:

Patton - n. Hero.

7/14/2005 09:14:00 AM  
Blogger Nathan said...

That should probably be the other way around.

7/14/2005 09:17:00 AM  
Blogger Stephen Tyler said...

Ambisinistral--Said:

"It was not the Reformation that caused the explosive growth of Europe, it was the Scientific Revolution. ... the Reformation was merely another religious schimsm"

You will recall, Ambisinistral, that the Reformation preceded and made possible the Scientific Revolution, a revolution that would not have been possible had Catholicism continued its totalitarian grip on the world of that time. In Wretchard's view, one billion Islamists are in the totalitarian grip of a religion, and that religion makes medieval Catholicism look like the Boy Scouts. Something must first rip that religion apart. But, Ambisinistral, I agree with you in your initiating opinion. The need for a Reformation in Islam misses the point entirely because it is wishful thinking. Our main adversary in the WOT is the worldwide MSM. Wretchard and this amazing group of bloggers and possibly 5000 other such groups could, if they ever get on the same page, destroy that phalanx of the enemy. That my friends is our first objective. when everyone everywhere gets the truth, the Islamo-fascists (My preferred word, too.) could be defeated in 6 months - as when we rooted out the fascists Japanese Imperialists and the fascists German Nazis, those populations suddenly blossomed as if that terror never existed. I am convinced we will see the same in Muslim communities all over the world the day Islamo-fascism is crushed. Every civilized nation in the world must join the USA in providing huge contributions in funds and manpower. The WOT is operating in a thousand theatres, and we must overwhelm each of these regardless of how entrenched they may be in the cultures of those very same civilizations. This cannot happen if the people who must do this war are not hearing the truth.

7/14/2005 09:18:00 AM  
Blogger ambisinistral said...

Buddy,

No, the Koran is supposed to be literally the spoken word of God. Not words inspired by God, but his actual words, as spoken to Mohammed.

Here is a link to Moslem's website discussing the science and the need for the Koran to be 100% accurate: The Koran and science. Notice when he says, "The attitude that I carry with me even today, after over thirteen years of extensive research is that the day I find a confirmed scientific error in the Koran, I'll stop believing in it."

7/14/2005 09:21:00 AM  
Blogger Ron Wright said...

OK folks where are the LL and the MSM in showing their outrage on another atrocity of this religion of peace as some pretend it to be.

This is no different than a cult like David Koresch and the CoolAid followers of Jim Jones.

This is not a time for apologists nor the LL and the MSM "rooting" for the enemy in the GWOT.

Do you want to help? Well here's your chance to to this comment at LGF and drive this story to the American people and the free world. And in so doing ram it down the throats of the LL and the MSM that are so blind they cannot see.

Lord help us and MAY GOD BLESS AMERICA!
[Of course of your choosing or not]

We need to drive the story of the Iranian Journalist Akbar Ganji to the Am people and the free world.

LGF Link

7/14/2005 09:26:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Good links--thanks--here's another. Europe may be waking up...?

7/14/2005 09:35:00 AM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Desert Rat :

Once again folks
Name the enemy.
Kill them
Repeat


Sounds so simple, Desert Rat, I wonder why we haven't managed to do so in the last 4 years.

It might have something to do with our difficulty in finding them, a lack of cooperation by host communities, and a lack of international and USA internal consensus on HOW to punish or imprison them.

Most of the terrorists of global reach are outside of our "War".
Does the word Hezbollah ring a bell. Do the countries of Iran and Syria sound familar.
Are we at wear with all those nation states listed on our State Dept.'s list of countries supporting terrorism?
No we are not.


With our military stretched and China rising & N Korea threatening, mounting problems with Venezuela, Columbia, Mexico, Nigeria, Turkey....Do we have the ability to declare "War" on Hezbollah, Hamas, the Tamil Tigers, Syria, Saudi Arabia, the Chechen terrorists, the Shining Path, Nepalise Communist Guerillas, AND Iran???

I posit we don't.

We have cause to go after Syria if we can free our military from being tied down in Iraq.....but Hezbollah, for example?? They have stood down, and taken no actions against America for a long, long time.

There is no support among America's traditional allies for starting more wars or going after national liberation movements. There is no political will in America for taking on invasions of anymore countries unless they pose an immenent threat or openly attack us.

Israel would love us going after their enemies, but wouldn't contribute a man's blood or a single shekel to the effort.

7/14/2005 09:41:00 AM  
Blogger truepeers said...

ambisinistral,

As Rene Girard likes to say, we did not stop burning witches because we discovered modern science; we disovered modern science because we stopped burning witches.

In other words, the primary causal force in history is the ethical, not the narrowly scientific or technological, and the emergence of modern science depended on a prior evolution of ethical thought under the influence of Christianity.

Can Islam have a reformation? On some level, it has them all the time - they just don't look like the Protestant reformation, because when the Islamic reformers come down from the hills with their arms and Korans to reform the decadent townsmen, they are not leading the way to integration into a modern secular, scientific world. So far the many Islamic reformations have had the opposite effect.

Can there be a new kind of reformation? We have to hope so and do everything we can to encourage it. Otherwise, the only way into modernity for the Muslim world will be through a conversion process that many will resist with their lives.

7/14/2005 09:57:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

"Israel would love us going after their enemies, but wouldn't contribute a man's blood or a single shekel to the effort."

No Israeli war on terror. Jeeeeeez. History laughs, history weeps.

7/14/2005 09:58:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

c4 states:
Israel would love us going after their enemies, but wouldn't contribute a man's blood or a single shekel to the effort.

oh well cedar, such hatred....

interesting that israel has been fighting terror for years, (costing them a ton of cash) but that is not terror in your book is it?

israel hasnt helped the world in advanced medical procedures it's developed cause it's citizens have been blown to hamburger meat?

israel hasnt helped the world develop airline safety procedures and equipment due to PALESTINIAN (your buds) terrorism?

israel has never lost a citizen in fighting terrorism

yep israel is a virtual fucking oasis, free of your bud's (the islamo-thugs) violence...

THE fact is israel has repeatedly used it's blood and treasure to keep itself safe as well as the western world...

Yep Israel is raking in the cash with oil so high (opps that's right israel doesnt have oil)

Yep Israel is shirking it's world's duty to fight the bad guys... if only israel would use more live ammo...

btw that nuke reactor of saddam's that wasnt a threat to you of course.... remember that WMD? the one you most likely joined the world in scolding israel for blasting? (on a sunday night when it was empty of personal) oh, and while we are at it... remember the gulf war one when israel was being SHELLED, it was the usa that refused to allow israel to fight back...

your blantant hatred of israel is clear... it perverts every statement you make

7/14/2005 10:02:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

Israel would love us going after their enemies, but wouldn't contribute a man's blood or a single shekel to the effort.

TEL AVIV - In total, more than 90 people were wounded in the attack. 41 remain hospitalized.In total, more than 90 people were wounded in the attack. 41 remain hospitalized. - Lying in the burn ward at Netanya's hospital, Betty Levy, 15, said the bomb exploded just behind her, scorching her back. She said she ran to find an ambulance. "A woman next to me was on fire. I'll never forget that," she said.

A bomb was detonated outside an Israeli bus near the Ofra settlement in the Binyamin region of the West Bank.

Shots were fired at IDF soldiers ear the southern Gush Katif settlement of Shlav Wednesday evening.

earlier, sappers detonated two explosive charges that had been placed along the security perimeter of the Gaza Strip. The larger of the two, weighing 95 kilograms, was discovered near the security fence southwest of Kissufim.

A second charge that weighed 40 kilograms was detonated by sappers near the Gush Katif settlement of Netzer Hazani.

yep israel is lazy, cheap and of course totally safe...

7/14/2005 10:11:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

more from the peaceful lazy cheap cowardly israeli press

An Israeli woman in her early 20s was killed when a Kassam rocket scored a direct hit on a home in the Netiv Ha'asara kibbutz, just north of the Gaza Strip, on Thursday afternoon.

A total of four Kassams landed in Netiv Ha'asara, located about a kilometer outside of the Gaza Strip.

Another four hit the kibbutz of Nahal Oz, near the Karni crossing, causing damage to structures.

Three mortars were also fired at Netzarim, a Gaza settlement. One landed near a nursery school, and another near a playground.

An IDF jeep was hit in the attack. Luckily, no one was in the vehicle at the time. The jeep was completely destroyed.

gee C4 you are right, israel is a cowardly place where people would never lift a finger to fight your friends (islam-thugs), if only they had some balls and would just fire back......

would you be happy if israel would do like the arabs, the russians, the french do? and just overwhelm and bomb them bacK? me thinks you'd be bitching that israel is fighting too hard....

7/14/2005 10:16:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...

"We cannot win a war if we cannot name our enemy."

- monty

Would it help if we publically pronounced Islam the enemy? Would it even be true? My God, how many hundreds of millions of Muslims are there? And how do we appeal to them by first declaring their faith as our enemy in this conflict - declaring that their religion is the thing we seek to defeat, to destroy, or to alter to our benefit? How would this increase our chances of success in preventing many more 9-11's?

If you think a war against terror is difficult, contemplate the challenge of a war against a religion - and factor in the great masses of people who, subscribing to that religion, live relatively ordinary, peaceful lives, sustained, informed, and comforted by it. Do we no longer remember the importance of spiritual matters in daily life? Do we no longer remember that men will die to preserve and defend their faith, when it is under attack or when they perceive it to be?

Surveys have shown that the freedom that Middle Easterners most crave is the freedom of the press, which is a noble desire. But what the full realization of that desire might demonstrate, as it has with so many Iraqi Shiites, is that opposition to the policies or even to the existence of a particular regime is not synonymous with a rejection of the Muslim faith as the chief organizer of society and as guide to the appropriate ends of government. In other words, steps toward democratization in the Arab world and elsewhere among Muslims may liberate and reveal deep religious impulses less amenable to liberality, more opposed to a state of "guilty" compromise on the part of a ruling elite between the pious and the profane, between devotion to Islam and devotion to petty self-seeking.

When you stop and consider that democracy is not itself an ideology or governing philosophy, that it is simply the means by which citizens choose their government representatives, it guarantees by itself nothing in the way of liberal development and the establishment and maintenance of Western-style political order and civil society. It is merely a count of noses, not a guide of any kind to the ordering of national life. When it is said that our policy is one of seeking democratic reform in the Greater Middle East, we are confusing the mere right to vote and, I think probably, the right to publically express opinions without fear of persecution and prosecution, with an entire Western political philosophy and the broad culture within which it arose and by which it is supported.

Political and social freedom are not automatically and forever beyond the reach of any human beings, but they are demand-driven, arising spontaneously in societies where the level of development is such that popular participation in political decision-making and greater autonomy and individual responsibility generally are seen as the natural and legitimate requirements of citizens. And the development that favors these is best had in times of peace, times without terrible turmoil or trauma, times of relative quiet and reflection amid ordinary, workaday pursuits. No surprise that what Iraqis say, again and again, that they want is "normality." This is something of which Iraqis and Afghans have been deprived for decades. And continue to be deprived.

7/14/2005 10:31:00 AM  
Blogger James Kielland said...

Trish wrote:

"we are confusing the mere right to vote and, I think probably, the right to publically express opinions without fear of persecution and prosecution, with an entire Western political philosophy and the broad culture within which it arose and by which it is supported."

Brilliant. Thank you.

7/14/2005 10:36:00 AM  
Blogger James Kielland said...

A new article in USA Today by the always interesting Ralph Peters:

http://www.usatoday.com/news/opinion/editorials/2005-07-12-iraq-edit_x.htm

7/14/2005 10:37:00 AM  
Blogger Fernand_Braudel said...

...and insurgency within the insurgency...

Why am I reminded of Martin Luther and the Counterreformation of the Inquisition?

7/14/2005 10:40:00 AM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Cedarford,
Don't see how you can possibly come up with that twisted logic about Israel. We have consistently kept them from going after our common enemies. Which likely was a strategic mistake.

7/14/2005 10:48:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Every thing else he said rings the bell of possibility.
The Zionist mania comes to overwhelm the sensibilities.

7/14/2005 11:26:00 AM  
Blogger Charles said...

This piece in Wired Magazine addresses the question
Why GM Is High on Hydrogen
.

7/14/2005 11:31:00 AM  
Blogger Rick Ballard said...

Spend a few hours watching a Leni Riefenstahl retrospective while thumbing through Der Sturmer and it all adds up. Israeli perfidy predates the modern state of Israel by decades - you can read about it and see it for yourself!

7/14/2005 11:39:00 AM  
Blogger Abakan said...

desert rat said...
"Once again folks
Name the enemy.
Kill them
Repeat

abakan and your definitons of war via Webster, words are great, but actions tell the tale."

I'm sorry desert rat but you are wrong. Words tell the tale, and two people describing the same action may describe it deferently.

So, you must control the word and the action. Which is where we are failing miserably.


desert rat said,

"Most of the terrorists of global reach are outside of our "War".
Does the word Hezbollah ring a bell. Do the countries of Iran and Syria sound familar."

No, they are not outside our war. They are included in the struggle against terrorism. War is a single facet in a multifacetted strategy.

The Bush doctrine will play out. We can't possibly cover all the bases with military force at the same time. If we could we would have already done so.

As Wretchard pointed out the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan if we win and I'm less certain of that than I was 6 months ago, will have served only one purpose. Our struggle with terrorism will have been advanced by the removal of two state sponsors of terrorism.

Desert Rat said,
"Are we at wear with all those nation states listed on our State Dept.'s list of countries supporting terrorism?"

I guess that depends on how you define war. I can say without a shadow of a doubt that they will be very important in our struggle with terrorism.

Desert Rat said,
"No we are not."

And, strangely enough yes we are.

Desert Rat said,
"Unending War"

Yes our struggle against terrorism will be an unending war. I'm actually thankful for that rather bleak assessment.

Desert Rat said,

"Nameless Enemies"

We named them in them months prior to our military engagement with them. They were called Baathists, and the Taliban. If we are victorious against them, and absent success in the ascending order of conflict that civilized man prefers, we will name them again some months before our military engagement with them.

Desert Rat said,
"so Orwellian."

You are so right. 1984 was a novel about using words to control the perception of reality.

So, it would serve us both to remember that words and how they are used communicate and define reality, and becareful how they are used.

7/14/2005 11:40:00 AM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Doug writes we should listen to the Israelis since "they are the experts" on fighting terror.

C-4 and Wretchard:
One obvious resource are the Israelis, who suffered through another year at 5,000 attacks/year!
6 percent of these were suicide bombers and that six percent produced half of the total fatalities.
As Hewitt's guest Yoni says:
"Islamic terror is nothing but Palestinian terror against Israelis, adopted elsewhere."
IOW
Israel is the training ground.
Must be plenty of Israelis with plenty of knowledge about the subject.


Doug, I'm leery of ever joining the "Israel knows best, listen to them!" crowd because Israel's track record is doing technical things well while at the same time deepening the hatred and resistance.

Israel, unlike America so far, has involved it's general citizenry in their struggle, taken it past the "hero" 1st responder "kinda folks". Who have been getting big OT pay and federal money for the new police boat patrolling a reservoir in Missouri "the evildoers might strike", body armor for police dogs, or paying for hundreds of firefighters to go to Hawaii for a conference on "communications strategy in a high rise fire".

Israel enlists all citizens to watch for signs of terrorists, suspicious packages. Trains them in exactly what to do. Volunteers patrol around key infrastructure in times of high alert, not cops on a doubletime gravy train. It launched programs and national funding to train tens of thousands to be fluent in Arabic and local dialects of Arabic to penetrate easily and provide intel or targeting info. (Something Wretchard strongly believes in).

On the other hand, Israel has shown a near-malignant genius in cultivating hatred in a population under occupation, while at the same time has legalistically blocked itself from intervening against the worst of the Palestine Radicals inflaming the population.
1. No compensation for lands seized in the 1948, 1967 war. 2. For 25 years introducing Settlers of the worst sort of Right wing zealotry into the occupied lands and taking land and water from the Pals to give to the Settlers. 3. Making all matters peaceful resolution of grievances dependent on Palestinians going to Israeli military commanders, to land use ministries dominated by extremist Settlers, or hiring and using expensive Israeli layers to sue in Israeli courts that are set up to place all Settlers under protection of Israeli Law. 4. Branding all acts of opposition to occupation as "terrorism". And using the Israel slogan "never negotiate with terrorists" as reason not to address the opposition 5. Controlling all utilities in occupied land and dictating no new water may be drawn from wells, no building permit, no utility tie-in without going through an elaborate permit system requiring multiple signoffs. hat is built that Israeli officials did not sanction is bulldozed down. For years, Palestinians were completely stopped from increasing their water usage. 6. Construction of "Jews-only allowed" roads criss-crossing the West Bank. 7. Use of checkpoints to deliberately humiliate, and add hours onto Palestinian's daily commute. Use of extreme delays to destroy Palestinian businesses and commerce. Part of a strategy where extremist Settlers and sympathetic Zionist IDF members hoped by just making normal life so miserable that Palestinians would just quit and move to Jordan, Europe, or North America. 8. Not typically prosecuting Settlers who destroyed Pal crops, cut down olive orchards, or who fired on Palestinian protestors. 9. For years denying the Palestinians even existed as a people - claiming they were "just Arabs from elsewhere" squatting on the soil of future "Greater Israel", and refusing to talk to Palestinian leaders until forced to do so by the world. 10. Elaborate ID procedures, originally designed to move large numbers of cheap Palestinian labor to Israeli-owned farms and factories built in Israel proper or set up in Settlements near large masses of unemployed Pals, also serve security functions. Ability to detain and hold any suspicious subject of military occupation.

At the same time, Israel, with the world's highest per capita number of lawyers - is quite legalistic. Because of laws on free speech, security of bank accounts, freedom of religion - Israeli occupiers have not been able to crack down on Mosques and schools teaching hatred, stop public display of posters and videos lauding indicidual suicide bombers, or do anything about cash rewards to families of suicide bombers. Yes, Israel complains properly about foreigners giving money to the "heirs" of bombers, but does not garnish the money protected by law to pay the victims of bombings...

Not to let Palestinians and their "Arab allies" off the hook for their own intransigence, greed, corruption, and belief that violence is the only solution....

But Israel is perhaps the last country we wish to emulate on how to manage an occupation, deal with an insurgency, and eliminate terrorism. Frankly, their general policies have been as big a contributor as 57 years of Arab opposition in getting them where they are today - set upon, terrorized, isolated....

We can learn from some of their security tricks, and definitely use the systems they have set up to use volunteers to provide homeland security without bankrupting ourselves in funding "the hero 1st Responder professionals" to do it all...and the systems they have to train a large cadre capable of penetrating hostile Muslim neighborhoods for intelligence work and police actions.

And Israel has finally, it seems over Zionist opposition, abandoned the ever-growing, expanding Eretz Yisrael dream of Zionist theory in favor of constructing strong fences and eventual strong borders. But couldn't resist grabbing more Pal land in the process. Still, secure Borders, and abandonment of its long military Occupation and it's colonies is Israel's best hope for effectively ending terrorist attacks.

7/14/2005 11:43:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

rat, in the movie, Dr. Strangelove...Peter Sellars character...would go along there talking away making a compelling case...then as he neared the end of the topic his right arm would start twitching and spasming convulsively, trying to take over and close with a flourish, with a Heil Der Fuehrer salute...

Strangelove/Sellars didn't want to do the salute, he would fight it with his other arm, snarling and straining and biting, but the arm just had a mind of it's own...the scene would fade out with the man and his arm locked in combat with each other...the camera would dolly back to show the other people in the room looking on in complete astonishment.

It's a scream.

7/14/2005 11:47:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

"...We can learn from some of their security tricks....

You can try to fight those people, but watch out they will trick you.

7/14/2005 11:57:00 AM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Pork Rinds for Allah, exhelodriver, Buddy...

While there are people that say "unleash Israel" with the same sincerity others once called for Ike to "unleash Chiang Kai Shek" on the godless Commies controlling China - in practical terms - no nation will support any action the US undertakes in the ME that involves Israel.

Not even Australia or Britain will support us if Israeli military forces are joined to American military actions. That is what I meant when I said that any American action against any ME terrorist group or nation will not involve a single Israeli sodier lost or shekel spent.

The simple fact is, like it or not - they are unusable pariahs to the rest of the world, though useful to America, the Soviets, India, and China for dispensing or selling info on technical ooolies, or major US technology & defense secrets in the case of the Indians, China, and the former Soviet Union.

That is why Israel was isolated from the Gulf war, Afghanistan, and Iraq - at the insistence of our allies. And us. And spent no money or soldiers in those conflicts. Indeed, in the Gulf war, which took down what they thought was their greatest threat, Israel lobbied for and got an extra 3 billion for "suffering" Scud missiles and not retaliating and destroying the Coalition...And they got Patriot missile technology, which somehow found it's way to China by the mid-90s.

Think.

If Israel is "unleashed" and acts alone, it is immediately slapped with an oil embargo. And all the countries that broke the Arab boycott of 1973 are now lined up against Israel..except the US...which is also far shorter of oil than it was 30+ years ago. So any "unleashing" of Israel becomes America's mess, assuming we must save Israel before their 1-month strategic oil supply runs out - which would mean the US taking massive economic damage & having to invade and take over oil fields of a boycotting nation or two - not the best way to make friends globally and influence people.

So forget dreams of "mighty Israel unleashed" and come back to reality.

Israel's best hope is building strong Borders, hunkering down as the battle of what form of Islam prevails, and not stirring up anymore hornet's nests.

7/14/2005 12:11:00 PM  
Blogger Abakan said...

I continue to have great respect for many who post here even though I might disagree very passionately with their worldview. In that vein, I propose that everyone here indulge me in a private experiment.

Just for one day, on any topic, cast away your prefered lexicon. Here are two suggestions. Throw away the WOT. Throw away Islamic Fascism. You should notice a change in how your thoughts align themselves immediately.

7/14/2005 12:14:00 PM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

c4:
Not even Australia or Britain will support us if Israeli military forces are joined to American military actions. That is what I meant when I said that any American action against any ME terrorist group or nation will not involve a single Israeli sodier lost or shekel spent.

The simple fact is, like it or not - they are unusable pariahs to the rest of the world, though useful to America, the Soviets, India, and China for dispensing or selling info on technical ooolies, or major US technology & defense secrets in the case of the Indians, China, and the former Soviet Union<<<<

wow... "unusable pariahs" "selling secrets"

the hatred continues....

7/14/2005 12:15:00 PM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

c4: Doug, I'm leery of ever joining the "Israel knows best, listen to them!" crowd because Israel's track record is doing technical things well while at the same time deepening the hatred and resistance.<

newsflash... they really really really really hate us now...

oh and if we fight back? they will really, really, really, really, really, really hate us..

and guess what? if israel died tomorrow, the arabs will still really, really, really, really, really, really , really hate you......

can deepen the hatred the death cult already has.

you ASSUME the arab's have the ability to love christians and jews and pagans that dont bow to them....

7/14/2005 12:18:00 PM  
Blogger Nathan said...

the US...which is also far shorter of oil than it was 30+ years ago.

?

7/14/2005 12:19:00 PM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

c4: That is why Israel was isolated from the Gulf war, Afghanistan, and Iraq - at the insistence of our allies. And us. And spent no money or soldiers in those conflicts. Indeed, in the Gulf war, which took down what they thought was their greatest threat, Israel lobbied for and got an extra 3 billion for "suffering" Scud missiles and not retaliating and destroying the Coalition...And they got Patriot missile technology, which somehow found it's way to China by the mid-90s....

good, then Israel sold worthless technology to the chinese..

"suffering scud attacks" i guess you mean being hit by a refrig traveling at 200 miles an hour doesnt hurt...

ruining the coalition? you mean the 10 billion we GAVE to egypt to sit out of the way? great coalition... i remember the syrians fighting the iraqi's republican army.. (opps that was a dream)

as for greatest threats, never heard of Iran eh?

7/14/2005 12:23:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

The idea behind Israel sitting out GUlf War I was twofold, 1) to hold her own front just in case (which also held the coalition rear in the event of disaster), and 2) to not hand the anti-west forces of all stripes everywhere exactly what they want, the Mother of All Propaganda: Jewish Crusade against the neighbors.

7/14/2005 12:25:00 PM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

1. No compensation for lands seized in the 1948, 1967 war.

hey c4, what compensation was offered the jews throw out of the arab world in 1948?

why was there no state of palestine created from 1948 - 1967?????

7/14/2005 12:25:00 PM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

2. For 25 years introducing Settlers of the worst sort of Right wing zealotry into the occupied lands and taking land and water from the Pals to give to the Settlers.

what's your opinion on the concept of drip irrigation?

what's your opinion on arafat's attack BEFORE 1967 on Israel's water carrier, in an attempt to cause mass genocide?

what's your opinion on syria & lebanon restricting the flow of the river jordan to starve israel out of existence?

as for "Settlers of the worst sort of Right wing zealotry into the occupied lands" - read the UN resolutions, the land is "disputed" not occupied, as for the worse sort? yes right wing settlers build greenhouses, right wing europeans build death camps, right wing arabs behead westerners... if the setllers were so bad where is the DEATH TOLL from their genocide? after all gazan infant mortality is lower in gaza under israel "occupation" than egypt that USED to occupy it...

7/14/2005 12:30:00 PM  
Blogger david bennett said...

There is no surprise in this. The kids were Shia. The insurgents have been mirdering Shia since the beginning. The goal is civil war.

The Saddamites believe that once forced into a battle of survival, the Sunni will unite and win. The Jihadists believe that this will draw in huge resources from the rest of the Arab bloc and begin the "cleansing."

Allawi warned days ago that he thought civil war had begun or would soon begin. Certainly the killings of Sunni started a while ago. Those who read the nasty MSM will know that complaints that the elite Shia units of the police and army are regularly accused of torturing and killing Sunni. It is reported that among the many dead in fundamentalist Basra several hndred are Sunni. Iranian agents are said to be involved.

Shia clerics did not rule out civil war after this latest bombing. The corruption of the government and the fact that is a spoils system for dominant groups (primarily Shia)increases alienation.

And of ccourse if you read the MSM you would know the government is building closer ties with Iraq.

The Jihadist vision is quite simple. A holy war to destroy Shia and begin the unification of Islam. It is less implausible than the idea that if US troops invaded Iraq, the populace would spontaneously form into working givernments and we could soon leave. If Sunni are murdered, vague Arab support for the insurgency will broaden and harden.

And to get Sunni murdered, the continuing murder of Shia will quite possibly work. Just keep killing, there is plenty of time.

We of course will be caught in the middle. Protecting Sunni will alienate us from the elite units of the Iraqi army, alienation from Shia means new fronts in the south, our communications lines.

In the Islamic world, killing of Sunni will strengthen the conspiracy that we mean to destroy "true Islam."

Whether or not this will happen is of course uncertain. Allawi claims we are unprepared and part of the problem, but he has his own axes to grind.

However this is the kind of issue that has been warned about for years. It is naive to believe that the *whole* war was about going out and killing little enclaves of bad guys and then they'd all be dead and scared.

These are ruthless people, clever and sick, dedicated to revolution. We have encountered their likes before, "fiendish" is an appropiate word.

And in terms of popular perception we are talking about mobs equivalent to those in this group who drool at the thought of nuking Mecca and killing hundreds of thousands of worshipping pilgrims. If the fabled Shia restraint (which we conveniently assumed was infinite) breaks (and it is fraying) then millions of Sunni will be cheering at the sight of dead Shia children. Blood, you killed ours, we kill yours.

Revenge, a wonderful drug.

So the monsters kill Shia to get them to kill Sunni. Duh.

What made you think these are nice people?

7/14/2005 12:31:00 PM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

But couldn't resist grabbing more Pal land in the process.

the arab world control MILLIONS of square miles, and yet you focus on 20 square miles of disputed lands..

do you support the temple mount being returned to the jews since it is stolen?

do you support the return of hebron to the jews, since the arabs stole it?

do you support the return of bethlehem to the jews since the arabs stole it?

do you support the arab world returning the land it stole from the jews? the copt's the berbers?

if not you are a hypocrite......

7/14/2005 12:34:00 PM  
Blogger Ari Tai said...

We'll know the war is over when the extremists' own communities, world-wide, declare them heretics and act appropriately. They are well on their way in (the battle of) Iraq. And, every day we stay in the fight is a day that they act against their own best interests (v. suing for peace) given the necessity of terrorizing their own communities.

Extremists by definition have no throttle, no regulator. The real challenge is how to minimize our and others' casualties while killing those we can find, while waiting for this to happen (a realization by those same communities).

This is not unlike political warfare by ideologs who have no sense they've stepped well outside the tolerable. It's best just to stand quietly by while the electorate watches them self-destruct in their more and more outrageous positions and arguments.

7/14/2005 12:38:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Larsen 11:47 AM Started laughing hysterically part way through, stopped reading, will savor and pursue.

7/14/2005 01:04:00 PM  
Blogger truepeers said...

"Universities in the last quarter of the 20th century were the identity-forming places where the young learned which victims to identify with and (most especially) which victimizers to loathe, the inaugural ritual for modern and postmodern forms of identity." - Gil Bailie

Heh, some of us are still in school!

7/14/2005 01:08:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

bennet,
your most interesting post yet.

7/14/2005 01:10:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

lenie's post on Turkey, and C-4's comparison of supposedly socialist loving Israel's approach to security v the USA's pork belly model, lead me to believe that humans are way too complex for mere humans to comprehend.

7/14/2005 01:14:00 PM  
Blogger kstagger said...

This gives some idea of the mindset of a suicide bomber -
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,7-1692606,00.html

appears that most of them are middle class, extremely religious, and view Christians/Jews with a Medievel mind.

7/14/2005 01:19:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"(on a Sunday night when it was empty of personnel) "
---
Nathan,
Doubt if Patton would have done that.
"Modern" western man would do nothing at all.
Except Dither.
(and I betcha Patton has Mika's vote.)

7/14/2005 01:22:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

stagger,
Hewitt was citing stats that most of them were better educated than average, and many were college grads.

7/14/2005 01:24:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Would be fun to read a Wretch piece on Andrew's 8:37 AM post.
...unless it would be better left unsaid.

7/14/2005 01:31:00 PM  
Blogger Nathan said...

Doug,

I figure Patton would have rolled through it any day of the week. Think that's accurate?

7/14/2005 01:47:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Actually, C-4's comments on Israeli security measures are easy to follow:
A direct response to necessity.
Our Pork Belly Model is a result of long security and affluence, I fear.
Decadence even.

7/14/2005 01:49:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

nathan,
Yeah, Mika too.
...or maybe any day BUT sunday, since they would live to play another day that way.

7/14/2005 01:50:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Gotta go read about 4 or 6 articles on Instapundit re this Muslims vs Jihadis question--really, go, look.

7/14/2005 02:22:00 PM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Pork Rinds For Allah -

Well, first of all you pick a "handle" that is deeply insulting to anyone of the Muslim faith. Not exactly a sign of your objectivity.

Second, you claim the people who have had their Occupation boot on Palestinian throats for 38 years are the "real victims." You almost sound like an Iraqi sunni crying how screwed you have been by other Iraqi groups, the Americans, the Iranians...

Third, you didn't rebut any of my reasons, only said stuff like, "well with drip irrigation" (the water we stole is used more wisely) - ignoring B'tselem and WHO reports that Palestinians are rationed to 1/5th the water allocated to Settlers freshly arriving from Russia.

As for your explaination of why Israel sucessfully sues, negotiates, and lobbies American companies and all sorts of Europeans for full reparations for any land or property lost - but refuses to pay a single shekel to Palestinians for homes, lands, and property taken in 1948, 1967, and by the creeping thefts of the Settlements and the security fence.....

well.....

You embrace the "all Arabs are alike" strategy. So Libya tossing out their Jewish population or Zionists encouraging Aliya there somehow makes Palestinians complicit in what Libya does because "all Arabs are alike" and you say no payment for losses is owed to the Palestinians. Not even Israel agreed with that whopper when they petitioned for membership in 1949. They pledged their "best, sincere efforts" to compensate refugees. They lied. No surprise..And repeat the old "since all Arabs share one big chink of land" it is no inconvenience to steal 200 square miles of Palestinian land because the natives can always move to Morocco or such..

A load of crap.

************

Nathan writes a question mark:

the US...which is also far shorter of oil than it was 30+ years ago.
???


Nathan, back in 1973, the US produced 70% of all the oil it needed domestically. Now that figure is 40%, some say 37-38%. And we still got some oil from non-OPEC producers willing to break the Arab Embargo on Israel, and the US for supporting Israel. Those producers are now aligned against Israel. The 1973 Oil embargo was absolutely brutal on American jobs, inflation, economic growth, gas lines, heating oil shortages - and with 60% of our oil now imported vs. 30% then, a future embargo would be China's permanent gift of secure ME energy supplies and our longterm screwing.

Back then we also made all the natural gas we needed in North America. Now 10% comes from the ME. So an embargo will also screw us badly in natural gas availability and price.

7/14/2005 02:26:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

We sure have done a lot for
"Energy Independence"
Ain't we?

7/14/2005 02:36:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Or even Independence Independence.
Socialism corrupts,
Affluence plus socialism...

7/14/2005 02:37:00 PM  
Blogger Stephen Tyler said...

Dear Trish,

You initially posit religion as:

“...the great masses of people who ... live relatively ordinary, peaceful lives, sustained, informed, and comforted by (the) spiritual matters in daily life ..”

And then you make this great leap into totalitarianism. Witness:

“...(religion) as the chief organizer of society and as guide to the appropriate ends of government...”

Your second statement is the antithesis of civil society. Every square inch of civilization must reach the compromise you speak of and I will quote you exactly – “compromise on the part of a ruling elite between the pious and the profane, between devotion to Islam and devotion to petty self-seeking.”

The next Einstein just might be a 12 year old “self-seeking” little Iraqi girl.

When you narrow the goal we seek to a simple minded “Democracy,” you completely loose the point and I fault the administration for this problem. It is, in fact, representational government based on a constitution that limits that government, implements property rights, the rule of law and separation of powers that will spare Muslim societies the totalitarianism that threatens to destroy them. History has proven that your notion that religion ought to instruct the ruling elite has never produced a safe, productive, enduring community.

7/14/2005 02:43:00 PM  
Blogger Jim C. said...

Miriyam Aouragh is quoted as saying "[Hirsi Ali]'s nothing but an Uncle Tom...She insults me and she makes my life as a feminist ten times harder because she forces me to be associated with anti-Muslim attacks."

Translation: Hirsi Ali is hampering Aouragh's careful and quiet gathering of influence and power.

7/14/2005 02:48:00 PM  

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