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Friday, August 11, 2006

Infidel, Educate Thyself

If you enjoyed Dean Barnett at SOXBLOG then you'll welcome his move to Hugh Hewitt's blog. For days now he's been on fire.

Take this post for instance:
SO HOW WILL THE WAR END? With lots of dead Jihadists. Just like World War II ended with lots of dead Nazis and imperialist troops of Japan. There were so many dead, the rest lost their will to fight on. Only when they realize their destruction is imminent (and accomplished to a great degree) will there be peace.

Until the Jihadists realize they can’t win, they will continue to fight. Every instance of Western weakness succors them. Every U.N. resolution, European cry for diplomacy and academic case for moral equivalency feeds their notion that their victory is inevitable.

Getting to victory will be an ugly thing. Our weapons will kill innocents, just as they did in Nagasaki and Dresden. And we will suffer our own losses. It’s becoming increasingly apparent that America will have to suffer a grievous loss before unshackling its own might. And our first grievous loss will not be our last. Like any global conflagration, this one will be full of horrors, horrors that most refuse to contemplate.

SO WHAT’S THE ALTERNATIVE? Graham Allison, Joe Nye and other Kennedy School types will tell you that we can talk Radical Islamists out of this whole crazy Jihad thing with just some judicious use of our “soft power.” We can win hearts and minds, they argue, if we just try a little tenderness.

Their argument, however, betrays a spectacular ignorance regarding Jihad philosophy . There’s nothing new going on here, nothing that’s not 14 centuries old. The only difference is that a trillion dollars in petro-dollars has given the forces of Jihad power and reach that even the Prophet never imagined. To think we can jawbone our way out of this is dangerously wishful thinking.
Emphasis mine.

If I had a dollar for every person I've met who expressed a strong opinion on geopolitics but admitted to not knowing very much about Islam ("but I'm sure they're just like us") I'd have a hundred bucks by now. But that's not the point. The point is I have yet to meet a pacifist who does know much about Islam. Leftists just aren't interested. For them it's all a big neocon hoax. Other people barely have time to track the news. Only those who have some understanding of Islam see clearly the imperative to resist it. They may disagree concerning timing or methods, but they don't question the threat.

The problem is Westerners who know something of Islam are in the minority. Western politics wouldn't be nearly so divisive if every infidel (or at least those who like to argue geopolitics) took some time to educate themselves. What are Islam's values? What are its goals? What are its methods for achieving those goals? What is its history? I'm confident that most anyone who digs for honest objective answers to these questions will arrive at conclusions similar to Dean Barnett's, and my own.

Some will instead come to see it Islam's way. The infidels are pigs and monkeys. They are unclean and unworthy of compassion or respect. Their lands and riches will belong to the umma soon enough. That some will feel this way we cannot help. There will always be misfits, and among them are the idealists and nihilists who can and have become traitors.

Most of the prominent voices questioning Islam, like Barnett, choose to use the qualifier "radical". As in "radical Islam". Is this really justified? If the intent is to imply that our enemy is a minority of Muslims I'm afraid it is in error. Jihad and sharia law are incompatible with civilization. Yet they are also fundamental tenets of Islam. Without them Islam is not Islam. In other words the very foundation of Islam is rotten, and the "radicals" who adhere to it are in the majority.

Many may consider this an unacceptable thing to say, but the power of such honest statements should not be underestimated. When Ronald Reagan called the Soviet Union an evil empire Western pacifists laughed, nervously. Years later word came from behind the ruins of the Iron Curtain that Reagan's words helped bring it down. We can pretend not to notice Islam's flaws, perhaps to avoid offending the moderates, but then again only radicals are offended by honest criticism.

What's that? They're all offended? Well then, not what I had hoped, but I do rest my case.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re. the Hewitt post -

.....a lot of dead jihadists-

The fight will be a lot more difficult than WW-2 and certainly the Cold War. The big differnce is that jihadists love to die and it is therefore going to be a lot more difficult to defeat them because we have to kill them all. Which means we have to find them all.

8/14/2006 08:17:00 PM  
Blogger Tanstaafl said...

There's no reason to kill billions. Is secularism only good for the West? I think Ali Sina has a good idea. Ridicule them. Get them to doubt their religion. Perhaps the left could help out with that?

Walid Shoebat had another idea. Take out the charasmatic leaders.

I use the word "civilization" deliberately. "Democracy" is only one of the components. The others include: Rule of law. Freedom of expression and religion (including the right to mock either). A free press. Private enterprise. Property rights.

Bits of civilization are everywhere, even Turkey. Anywhere there are ordinary people who don't like being held hostage by thugs and bullies.

8/15/2006 10:22:00 PM  

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