The first post tells why. It may be too little, but hopefully not too late.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

The pretty sounds of Islam

Defending Islam is a job that is dark but far from lonely. While the whole world observes if not feels the effects of Islam daily - in the continuous warfare Islam wages against it, - apologists of Islam are legion. Moreover, the intended audience for Islamic propaganda is generally quite willing to accept it, happily providing it with high pulpits of the leading newspapers and magazines, and amplifying that propaganda with its own progressive and "tolerant" scholarly commentary. This is understandable - after all, if the world refused to deal with terror-producing Muslim countries, it would have to also refuse another product of theirs, without which it simply cannot survive. Oil, you know. Then there is so-called religious tolerance , which is a definitive sign of civilization and progress. Because Islam is known as a religion, it is immune from the just criticism and accusations that could target its very existence. Thus Muslim propaganda dutifully continues to be fed to the "well-informed" Western audience, which then builds its political sympathies on this information platform. Meanwhile, politicians that are drawn from the same progressive and educated audience know that it's best for them to be in tune with their constituency, and increasingly are on the side of Islam. We now have a US president who, having received Muslim education during his formative childhood years, refers to the call to Muslim prayer as "one of the prettiest sounds on earth at sunset”. Perhaps it is worth remembering that this sound contains the same words as heard by Danny Pearl and others who shared his fate, before they were beheaded by other lovers of that sound, - "Allahu Akbar!" and the statement of acceptance of Muhammad as the Apostle of Allah. Barack Obama recites those words perfectly and knows their meaning well. It does not matter to what political orientation the willing or inadvertent propagandists of Islam belong - whether it's George "the Religion of Peace" W. Bush or the naive leftist Nicholas Kristof of The New York Times - as long as the job is done, by omission or commission. 
The printed word from the sources accepted as serious and progressive, such as The New York Times, is perceived by the "educated" public like Pravda was by faithful Communists in the Soviet Union - unquestioningly, immediately becoming part of the foundational axiom. Our omniscient intelligentsia like to think of themselves as independent but follow the media's call like Pied Piper's - pick yourself the appropriate group of his listeners. Both their ignorance about Islam and disinformation are used by the Muslim propagandists. In this disinformation, the apologists of Islam employ deceptive cliches that, thanks to the progressive media, never get tired. Recently I wrote about one that was used by the Muslim congressman, Keith Ellison. To counter Bill Maher's characterization of the Koran as a "hate-filled book" (forward the video to 2:26), Ellison quoted a wonderful passage from that book, "anyone who takes the life, it's as if he killed the whole world" (Koran 5:32). What he failed to say, of course, was that the Koran gives that passage only as a quote from what the Jews were "decreed", nowhere indicating that this decree pertains to the Muslims. The Koran mentions this decree only to accuse the Jews of violating it, among their other transgressions ("And our messengers had certainly come to them with clear proofs. Then indeed many of them, [even] after that, throughout the land, were transgressors"), to justify the Koranic hate toward the Jews, unambiguous and lethal. It is remarkable that hardly any other Koranic quote is usually given to illustrate Islam's pacifism - so hard is it to find expressions of tolerance in the "religion of peace". One possible and oft-repeated exception is "There is no compulsion in religion", which is quoted without mentioning, of course, that it was abrogated by verses like "Fight and kill the disbelievers wherever you find them, take them captive, harass them, lie in wait and ambush them using every stratagem of war" (Koran 9:5). The journalists Steve Centanni and Olaf Wiig, kidnapped and forced to convert under pain of death, can testify to the veracity of "no compulsion".
No wonder that the same Jewish decree, lifted by Muhammad from somebody familiar with the Talmud, was cited by the 9/11 mosque imam Feisal Abdul Rauf in his recent article, in which he tries to bring the reader to understanding that Islam is just another Abrahamic religion. That decree, having nothing to do with Islam and negated by the whole history of Muslim conquest, is the only support he could muster to his "fact ... that true adherence to Islam at its essence is as peaceful as true adherence to Christianity". These propagandist lies were published by another beacon of the Western capitalist freedom - The Wall Street Journal, which could not stay behind the progress. Now that we know what "true" adherence to Islam is, we only need to enlighten the miriad of Muslim clerics of the highest authority who swear by violent jihad as the primary virtue of a Muslim. Rauf has as much right to call Islam "Abrahamic" as a thief who stole an heirloom to claim his membership in the family he robbed. Muhammad used the Biblical names he learned from Jews and Christians who had lived in Arabia before he mass-murdered and expelled them. Pathetically plagiarizing the Scriptures while accusing the Jews and Christians in intentionally perverting Allah's word (Koran 5:13-15, 41), he distorted the meaning of and relations between those names, conflating Mary the mother of Jesus with Miriam the wife of Moses, and Haman with pharaoh. In contrast to the Pentateuch, the Koran never names Abraham's son in the sacrifice story, which results in the Muslims' belief that it was Ishmael, the progenitor of the Arabs, not Isaac, the ancestor of the Jews. Islam's founder and "perfect man" whose example is to be followed, Muhammad could do no wrong - whether he "married" a 6 year-old girl (Sahih Bukhari 7:62:64), murdered his critics, ordered genocide of the Jews, or reneged on treaties at a concocted pretext. 
As for Islam being a religion, it is telling how imam Rauf describes himself in the article's footnote as "the founder of Cordoba Initiative, an independent, multifaith and multinational project that works to improve Muslim-West relations." Usually, in expressions like that "Muslim-West", a certain symmetry is implied: "Jewish-Christian", "capitalist-communist", "East-West". The "West", to be sure, is not a religion - but so is "Muslim", a totalitarian political ideology counter to the "West" democracy, with the goal of making Muslim both the West and the East, conquering Rome of the West as it did Rome of the East, Constantinople, reconquering Cordoba and Andalus, killing and subjugating the disbelievers - truly a "multinational" project. "True adherence to Islam", Rauf says, "would end terrorist attacks" - and he is right. Of course it would, as that true adherence, from the Muslim standpoint, is when the entire world adheres, and terrorism is needed no longer. When everybody hears the call to Muslim prayer as pretty, and the sounds of other faiths are heard no more, as they are in Saudi Arabia, the land of Allah's Apostle. 

Monday, September 12, 2011

9-11: Tears, no fury...

On the first anniversary of 9-11, I wrote, "On this day, a year after the fanatic Muslim—predominantly Saudi—attack on the American soil, it seems that the affect expressed by the administration as well as the American media has largely been that of teary frustration and pain, not unlike the 'why me?' feelings experienced and expressed by anybody in grief. There has been little anger, let alone fury, in words or facial expressions of the nation’s leadership; instead, there is a lot of solemnity, quivering lips, and—especially initially—calls for reconciliation with Islam that was translated by the President as 'peace' instead of 'submission'. The mighty thunder of the only great power left on Earth, which all terrorists in the world—from Arafat who donated his poisonous blood to injured Americans, to Saudi financiers of terror—braced themselves for, has never come. The mosques, planted in the US and everywhere in the world by the Saudis to teach hatred in preparation for the whole world to become Dar-ul-Islam, the 'abode of Islam', are still churning out brain-washed fanatics ready to die while killing unnumbered 'kaffirs' regardless of their age and sex. Arafat has just recently become undesired in the administration’s eyes, but still remains the 'leader of the Palestinian people' instead of being recategorized into the oldest living terror chieftain. The 'Palestinian' state is still discussed as a desirable goal, while the majority of its potential citizens support continued murder of innocent Israelis. The administration is still trying to convince Arabs that they should support an attack against Iraq, while even its European continental allies, faithful to their familiar tactic of appeasing the murderer, deny their support. And American airlines, ready to risk passengers’ lives in fear of offending “Middle Eastern” guests, waste the effort of their security personnel, incompetent as it is, on checking the underwear of grandmothers in wheelchairs for explosive nail clippers they could hide there.

What has changed since? Arafat's poisonous blood has eventually killed him. The portrait of that brigand now decorates the office of his comrade-in-arms, Abbas, who is going to ask the UN for recognizing "Palestine" - a nonexistent state with an imaginary president: Abbas's "term", for what it's worth, ended in January 2009. Another US president has just declared now, "I’ve made it clear that the United States is not and never will be at war with Islam." Never mind that this statement is irrelevant grandiloquence or worse - a chronic delusion: if militant Islam is at war with the United States as it is, so is the United States with Islam, however unwillingly. It would indeed make sense to say, "We do not want to be at war...", but it would make no difference. 

Yes, it is difficult to identify the enemy: the wars have been between nation-states for a long time. Those wars are "normal", I guess. It seems insane and abnormally regressive to speak in terms of religious wars. In fact, however, there is no need for it, nor would it be correct. This is not a religious war not only because the United States does not represent a religion in conflict with another. It is not religious because there is nothing in Islam relevant to a religion that concerns the non-Muslim world. Does it really matter to anybody but devout Muslims that they believe in having a deity by the name of Allah, who used to have three daughters  - until, that is, that information in the Koran was abrogated in the Koran? What is of concern to the non-Muslim world is Islam as a political ideology: the Koranic claim on the entire Earth and humanity, to be brought into submission to Islam. By force and terror or by dawa, Islamic indoctrination. 

There is nothing truly unfamiliar in this sort of war that is neither religious nor against a nation-state. The Western world has never come into a direct conflict with Soviet Communism - only with its numerous and weakly connected proxies who would kick their Soviet advisers out as soon as they were sure of attaining necessary power. Nonetheless, if it were a direct conflict, it would be an ideological one. The war with Nazism was an ideological war: even though the Germans were a "master race", that notion included, in their eyes, at least the Nordic nations. Also, their allies - Nordic or not - would benefit from Nazi victories. The Nazis were not worried much about the Semitic origins of the Arabs, or the Slavic origins of their SS divisions "Galizien" and "Handschar", organized from Orthodox Ukranians, Catholic Croats and Muslim Bosniaks - the latter with the able help of the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Amin al Husseini, Arafat's relative. What mattered to Germans was those troops' zeal in exterminating the Jews, the Gypsies, and the enemies of Nazism. It's easy to forget that it was indeed Nazism and fascism that the world fought against in that war - because it is so much easier to identify the noun, Germany, and forget the adjective, Nazi, or just mean it as synonymous with Germans at the time but not now. Obviously, what's changed is not the nation - inasmuch as nations have continuity. It is the ideology that has dramatically changed. Even though we may conveniently think that it was Germany that was defeated, it was, in fact, Nazism, which had taken possession of the minds of Germans, like Islam has taken possession of the minds of Arabs and many others.

It is the we-are-not-at-war-with-Islam-religion-of-peace attitude of a teary Bush that first portended today's situation, when, after Taliban has been defeated, it is still on the verge of return, when Saddam's Iraq has become Iran's Iraq with a Koran-based constitution, when "friendly" dictators are being replaced with Muslim Brotherhood, and Turkey of Ataturk has become Turkey of a new Islamic sultan, Erdogan. It is a bit like leaving Mein Kampf as the foundation of social thought in Germany after Nazi defeat. The same intentional blindness is expressed in Obama's nonsense that "Those who attacked us on 9/11 wanted to drive a wedge between the United States and the world." What about those who attacked England on 7/7 and Spain on 3/11?  Are they also about "wedges"? Or are all these terror attacks by Muslims different, as the world perceives terror against Israel? With Israel, it's always Israel's fault - it's all "occupation", even though it's the same terror that tortured Israel before 1967 and any "occupation". What is so hard for the West to understand in that it's not because of "occupation", land, or any particular grievances? It would be good if it was: if we were the reason, we could and should be able remove it. No, we are not, and we can't. It is because Islam has finally gained sufficient strength to resume violent jihad bequeathed to Muslims by Muhammad, or Allah if you will: "Fight and kill the disbelievers wherever you find them, take them captive, harass them, lie in wait and ambush them using every stratagem of war" (Koran 9:5). Not enough strength to wage a war using armies and battles, but enough to blow up trains and restaurants, demolish buildings symbolic of non-Muslim might with thousands of the infidels inside, and shoot point-blank and cut throats of Jewish babies. It is cynical if not downright dishonest of the US president to claim that "people across the Middle East and North Africa are showing that the surest path to justice and dignity is the moral force of nonviolence". Those unnamed "people", aka Arabs, have shown nothing of the kind: ask Israeli diplomats who have just fled from Cairo, or Lara Logan, raped in the Tahrir square, a symbol of Egyptian newly acquired "freedom".  It is still tears for those who perished on 9/11 - not fury at those who murdered them - that dominate the 9/11 affect. America's post-9/11 wars, delimited by time and not by victories, are indeed not with Islam. That's why they will not prevent terror, a stratagem in the war Islam wages on humanity.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

What's in a name?

A lot. For instance, when the situation in the Middle East is discussed, it would help to use unbiased terminology. Whereas the “international community”, largely biased against Israel, may have accepted the absurd name, the “West Bank”, that was given by Jordan to the territory it illegally seized in the 1948-49 war, this should not be perpetuated if the discourse is based on intellectual honesty. The latter pertains also to the term “settlements”, which are Jewish villages and towns that differ from the Arab ones in the same area only by their civilization. Calling these towns and villages “settlements” biases the public perception by connoting their temporary character, ultimately targeting them for removal, as that has indeed happened in Sinai and Gush Katif. Needless to say, that was undisguised ethnic cleansing. The "international community" would not fail to classify it as such for anybody else, but not the Jews. But of course, when the Jews themselves invented a euphemism just for that occasion, "disengagement". Euphemisms are helpful to the "international community" when it deals with the Jews. When the Jews were shipped from the Warsaw ghetto to Treblinka, the Germans called it "relocation".

Accepting the name “West Bank” for Judea and Samaria is no different from accepting “al Quds” as the name for Jerusalem. Compliance with the non-Jewish naming conventions is already expressed in the names’ changes from Yehudah/Shomron and Yerushalayim. This could well suffice. It is the Arabs who are settlers in the Land of Israel, not the Jews who are the natives of that land. Imagine what would happen if the mandate given by the League of Nations to the UK, which allowed it to create Trans-Jordan from 80% of the territory instead of the promised Jewish national home, were called not Palestine but by its historic names - Judea, Samaria, etc. - what would the "Palestinians" be called now? "Judeans" - or perhaps simply "Jews"? Our language forms our thinking and ultimately actions. Let's get it straight.