Tuesday, July 19, 2005

A mind like a scalpel

Ilana Mercer doesn't write nearly enough on this subject for my taste. But when she does, take notice. Some quotes from her latest at WND.com:
[On Islam] Individualism is, at best, negligible. The ummah – the community of believers or the "Nation of Islam" – is pre-eminent. Infinitely less eminent is the infidel, whose inherent inferiority, codified in elaborate dhimmi jurisprudence, makes him fair game. Responsibility is always externalized. Muslim savagery toward innocents has been felt from Beslan to Bali, from Kashmir to Casablanca. Yet, they'll invariably shift the blame (successfully, I might add) to Israel, America, Russia and other "occupations."

Helping to make the "Islamikazes'" case are countless liberals and libertarians, as well as elements on the American right. They lay the blame for the killers' latest actions exclusively on American and British foreign policy: foreign forays begat the suicide bomber; case closed.

Our adventurous foreign policy might be a necessary condition for Muslim aggression but it is far from a sufficient one. Muslims today are at the center of practically every conflict in the world. They were slaughtering innocent, pacifist Jews in Israel well before the Jewish state was a figment in the fertile mind of Theodor Herzl (and well before the "occupation" of 1967: in 627, Muhammad decapitated 900 Medina Jews. The women were only raped). Governments, abetted by the Fourth Estate (and a fifth column), have framed strife in Sudan, East Timor, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Nigeria, Indonesia, Pakistan, Kashmir, the Philippines, Lebanon, Egypt, Israel, the Balkans and Russia as sectarian or regional. The struggle in these spots, however, has more to do with the overriding refusal of the one faction to abide the others (unless they've been conquered or preferably killed).
How many times does this point need to be made? (Answern of course: As often as it takes)
Islam is a warrior religion, or more accurately, ideology. It actively strives (demands from its followers they strive) to become a world dominating force. Rigid intolerance toward anyting non-Islamic is its hallmark. It aims to make one living hell of all the planet as Sudan or Saudi is now, especially but not exclusively for 'infidels'.
Not that our cultural relativists would admit to it, but the concept of truth in Arab culture is extremely elastic. Al-Ghazzali, "the famous 11th-century Muslim theologian, claimed that the lie is not wrong in itself. If the lie is the way to achieve good results, then it is permissible. It is necessary to lie when the truth might lead to unpleasant or undesired results," writes Dr. David Bukay. More recently, Arab sociologist Sania Hamady (Katz, 2002) has documented the low value attached to truth in Arab culture. Feelings, flights of fancy and fabrications are integral to Arab discourse. Lies are also potent political weapons, having successfully achieved the delegitimization of Israel, for instance. Clearly, Muslim leaders have learned that Westerners demand nothing more than a denunciation of terrorism. So they denounce – and get on with the business of Jihad (which is, like Shari'a, an essential tenet of true Islam).
This point was new to me, but it rings so true. Who can forget the Iraqi minister of information during the campaign to depose Saddam? Even while the studio was shaking from the impact of American ordnance, he was insisting the 'Yanks' were being driven from the land. All the world shook its head in bewilderment as this man kept lying against a truth no one could possibly deny.

But the Arabs understood, and empathized. It made perfect sense to them.

Mercer then explains (for those of you who still don't get it) how this same second nature of lying comes in handy when they finally do get themselves to condemn violence and terrorism. The words come out of their mouths, but they don't mean it. Thheir media know they don't mean it. Their people know they don't mean it. And if there was any doubt, they usually say the exact opposite in their own language, openly in their media, which almost no one bothers to translate.
Since two-facedness is both a way of life and a political strategy, there's nothing extraordinary about the countless Muslim leaders who pose as moderates, forswear terrorism, and then do what the Quran commands: "instill terror in the hearts of unbelievers" (8:12).
Mercer's writing is a dissection. Read it all.


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