Another Satan Emerges
The Great Satan (Al-Shaytan Al-Akbar) now has company. No not just the Jews. Nor even the godless Russians. Nor the Indians. Make way for the Chinese. The News reports that the "attack on Chinese nationals in Balochistan is said to be the first reaction to Chinese government’s steps to curb Muslim insurgency in its own territory." This follows on recent attacks by Islamic radicals on Chinese in Islamabad. What's it all about? The Online Times describes the ongoing war between China and Islam on its Western boundaries.
The Chinese executioners came for Ismail Semed before 9am. They led him out of his cell as the sun climbed over the Tien Shan mountains in the land he called East Turkestan. ... The end seems to have been quick. A group of prisoners were executed at the jail that morning, February 8, Chinese officials confirmed, and economy was the order of the day. ... Buhejer [his wife] described it to a reporter who called from Washington on behalf of Radio Free Asia, about the only source of regular news on this forbidding place. “I saw only one bullet hole,” she said, “in his heart.”
The dead man was one of 9m Uighur Muslims in China’s far west, a Turkic people whose quest for national identity is one of history’s lost causes. The dying embers of their struggle flamed into protests, shootings and bombings in the 1990s, all concealed from the world until September 11, 2001, when China discovered the usefulness of the “war on terror”.
I guess it's Bush's fault. But however that may be, China is waging a battle of cultural extermination against its Muslim minorities with a genuine ruthlessness, before the word became debased by the accusations of CAIR.
“I was in the People’s Armed Police when the rebellion broke out in ’97,” said a burly Chinese driver, who proceeded to give a vivid and satisfied account of this barely known massacre.
“For a while we lost control,” he said. “The insurgents got into an armoury, killed our men and seized the weapons. There was chaos. We brought in the army - they changed into police uniforms - and then we got even. The central government ordered us to crush them without any hesitation. Believe me, we did.
“We lost a few people but we killed - I don’t know exactly - thousands of them. These people know our strength. We taught them a good hard lesson.” Rebiya Kadeer, a Uighur businesswoman and politician now in exile, says she saw a horrific police video of the “good hard lesson” when she went to Yining in 1997 to investigate. It showed unarmed adolescent boys and girls shot dead on camera, their bodies tossed into trucks. A mother and her group of children, aged five or six, crumpled under a volley of bullets. The taped slaughter went on and on, with excited commands and shouts of glee from the Chinese on the soundtrack. Perhaps one of them was the driver.
One of the most fascinating questions -- one worthy of a book -- must be why Osama Bin Laden chose to order his suicide airplanes into Manhattan rather than say, Beijing or Moscow. Both these nations have been campaigning against Muslims for centuries. And the answer, I suspect, lies in the "excited commands and shouts of glee form the Chinese on the soundtrack". Or the veritable rain of shells that fell on Grozny in the recent past or the vicious campaign that still rages through Chechnya today. Maybe Bin Laden attacked America because he knew how it would fight. In a mode where even prisoners in Guantanamo Bay could insist upon their Korans being handled with white gloves, while a large section of America's own media would condemn this treatment as too harsh.
Attack Beijing or Moscow? Any Chinese or Russian response to a Bin Laden attack would have gone as unreported as the Chinese reprisals of 1997 -- the year incidentally that Hongkong was returned to its motherland -- no need to raise any jitters about that. War by al-Qaeda against China or Russia would have been just kinetic war. One in which radical Islam would lose 100 men, women and children for every Chinese or Russian it killed. That was a losing proposition. What Osama needed was information war, one which would allow him to dish out propaganda instead of take losses, and that could only be started by attacking the United States of America. Western politics would do the rest. Only after the information war started was it feasible to extend the military campaign. Strange as it may seem September 11 was a necessary prelude to attacking the Chinese.
There are times when I am tempted to think that the Western Left is radical Islam's Ring of Power. And the brilliance of al-Qaeda's reliance on it as a force-multiplier is that the defeat of radical Islam must consequently come at the price of altering the structure of post-war Western politics itself. In a sense the Western Left has become a hostage to the current world crisis, and perhaps the only part of the Left that understands this are the signatories of the Euston Manifesto, who realized that al-Qaeda had already claimed its political soul: that unconciously, almost imperceptibly, the Left in uncritical embrace of any foe of America had come to align itself with the most brutal, obscurantist, repressive theocrats on the planet. And would conceivably share its fate with them.
But al-Qaeda's allies can only control events up to a point. Elemental forces are ranged against it. Chief among which is the sheer, simple brutality of countries like Putin's Russia and China. If a snapping point is reached, even the Left may not forever restrain the West. The end point of debasing the coin of information is absolute bankruptcy.