"What happened to the Arabs in Egypt, Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Palestine, Morocco, Yemen, and in other countries? What caused the Arabs to lose the rationality with which they led the world in the 10th century? Why have the Arabs gone crazy in such a manner? Is it because they have lost hope in comprehensive reform? [Or] because they have lost hope in the success of the Arab world? Is it a result of the huge gap between the haves and the have-nots? Is it a result of the degrading poverty that reduces many Arabs to rummage through garbage cans to find food? Is it a result of the pervasive corruption prevalent in governmental institutions that do not want and are not willing to undergo any reform that would result in the unraveling of even a single thread from the luxurious carpet on which they rest, with the support of the police establishment which is capable of obstructing any call for reform...?
"Did this ... occur because of the rule of the dark religious educational system which incites to war against modernity, democracy, and the new liberalism, and permits the spilling of the blood of its supporters, pioneers, and students? Is it because the cultural elite have abandoned its political role and in so doing has paved the way for the clerics, with their white, green, or black turbans, to set the tone of political action in the Arab world to such a degree that we no longer distinguish between the
political and the religious? The impure has become interwoven with the holy, the mosques have turned into proving-grounds for armed political campaigns, chaos has spread and in the Arab world a thousand religions have sprung up, all of them [claiming to be] Islam...
"Did this occur as a result of the fact that the intellectuals have distorted the truth and lack the courage to tell the truth to their students? Is it a result of the frightening spread of illiteracy and
cultural ignorance in the Arab world, with the result that the vast majority of people do not read, do not know, [and] do not think?
"Is it a result of the cumulative political and cultural repression from which the Arab people have suffered for the last fifteen centuries? Is it a result of the proliferation of holy sites and the proliferation of totems in Arab life to the extent that most people have lost faith in their efficacy and [so] have invented their own totem, which is represented in a nationalist totems such as Abd Al-Nasser or Saddam Hussein, or in a counterfeit religious totem such as Bin Laden, Muqtada Al-Sadr, Al-Zarqawi, or many others?
"Did this occur as a result of the fact that terrorist groups have huge incomes from the charity tithes streaming in daily from good Muslims all over the world? In a recent report it was said that the worth of Sheikh Al-Qaradhawi, one of the preachers of terrorism in the Arab world, is estimated at tens of millions of dollars. From the 'Al-Taqwaa' Bank alone he lost three million dollars after it was shut down by the Americans...
"Did this occur as a result of the huge sums that the terrorists obtain by growing hashish and opium on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border...?"
'The Arabs have Surrendered to the Demagogic, Hysterical, Provocative Media'
"All of the verses, all of the prophetic traditions, all of the wise sayings, all of the poems and the words of intellectuals encouraging thought and the application of reason have been wiped out from the Arab memory. The Arabs have surrendered to a fake religious culture. The Friday sermons, the religious programming, the religious literature and the turbans have become the decisive factor in every matter - in religion, politics, the economy, society, education, and culture. The Arabs have surrendered to the
demagogic, hysterical, provocative media and have begun to search the news editions for bloodshed, beheadings, the dragging of bodies, the flaying of skins, and the destruction of homes. The most endearing sight of the year for the Arabs was that of the mass graves in Iraq."
'Anyone Who Thinks and Makes Use of His Intelligence in the Arab World is Detestable, Condemnable, and Accursed'
"Anyone who thinks and makes use of his intelligence in the Arab world is detestable, condemnable, and accursed; he is of the seed of serpents and the fruit of Satan, he is an agent of the new American colonialism, one who writes [in support] of the Marines, and a spy in the service of foreign intelligence agencies. The Islamists who hijacked Islam, stole it and counterfeited it ... are now leading the flocks of Arabs towards the annihilation of human history ... not through reason but through distorted emotions and promises of the hidden Hereafter, and through a lack of pure and simple faith in Allah. Indeed, the Arabs have lost their pure faith in Allah and have turned into slaves of blood-drenched religious totems, instead of being servants of Allah...
"The Arabs think in a medieval fashion regarding politics, society, the economy, and education, even if [they do this] by way of modern electronics. For their foods and their transportation they make use of the latest in Western science and technology in all of the various fields, but at the same time they think in a medieval fashion and behave in their lives as though they are still living in the Middle Ages, and indeed they are still slaves to a medieval mentality and to thinkers from the Middle Ages...
"Unfortunately the Arabs' stupidity has grown, as has their thirst for blood, and they have distanced themselves from reason. Their humanist political values have attenuated and they have begun speaking to the world with the sword, the axe, and armies of masked bandits, robbers, and murderers..."
THE ROOTS OF ISLAMIC RAGE: A PERVASIVE SENSE OF SHAME AND HUMILIATION AND THE RELATED URGES FOR JIHAD REVENGE
What's particularly grating for Islam's peoples --- one of the major sources of their festering rage and sense of shame and kinetically charged humiliation --- are the repeated victories of Israel in several wars with numerous and far larger Arab countries. The sense of rage and shameful incomprehension started in 1948 when, after the UN partitioned Palestine into a Jewish state and an Arab state, five Arab armies invaded the tiny Jewish population that had no organized military and were quickly defeated. It continued through wars in 1956, 1967, and 1973 . . . the Arab defeats ever greater and brought off ever quicker.
How Could This Happen?
How could a tiny country of 5 million Jews --- in 1947, only 1 million --- constantly defeat huge Arab states and militaries in open warfare?
These defeats, remember, have been all the more humiliating because Islam, alone of the world's religions, originated as an ideological adjunct of a new, rapidly expanding militarist Empire --- the Arab Empire, which was later followed by successive waves of expansion carried out by the Ottoman Empire, the Tatar Empire in Russia, and the Moghul Empire in India. The Ottomans even ruled over large areas of Christian Europe, just as earlier the Arabs had overrun the Christian Middle East, North Africa, and Iberia.
The outcome? From the outset, military victory, imperial expansion, and Islamic dominance over others were linked in Muslim minds with the truth and inevitable triumph of their religion. A second outcome? It happened much later. Specifically, the thrust into the Arab and other Muslim countries of European imperialisms in the 19th and early 20th centuries --- the Europeans industrialized and organized in modern nation-states --- made a huge dent in this religo-ideological outlook. Even so, it took the repeated military triumphs of tiny Israel, always outnumbered by frontline Arab states roughly 20-30:1 and 80-100:1 by all their Muslim adversaries (including Iran), to drive home just how pitifully weak and backward the Arab and Muslim peoples were.
For the best study ever of why Arabs lose their wars with Western countries --- especially Israel --- it's by Colonel Norvell B. De Atkine, a retired American officer who has trained soldiers from several Arab countries and a variety of different services. He finds that they are the victims of their own shame-honor culture, social caste systems, lack of effective criticism of the officer hierarchy from lower-level officers and NCOs in training exercises or lost battles, promotion through patron-client networks rather than by displayed skills and perfromance, and by general mental rigidity. http://www.unc.edu/depts/diplomat/AD_Issues/amdipl_17/articles/deatkine_arabs1.html
Familiar to everyone by now. In the mental void that prevails in Islam, only some raw, fully lunatic conspiratorial theory such as Jews nefariously controlling the world and holding back Arab wealth, prestige, influence, power, and military victory has made sense. Israeli triumphs and survival rankle all the more because Jews, historically in Islam --- though generally safer under its rule than in Christain countries except in the emerging nd later solid liberal democracies of Northwestern Europe and the English speaking-world in the 19th and 20th centuries --- were also subject, inferior dhimmi peoples, who were supposed to wear certain clothing, a badge for identity, yield to Muslims walking on roads or sidewalks, never challenge Muslims in Muslim-run courts of law, and pay special taxes to the Muslim despots each year.
Suddenly, this tiny group of people --- who didn't even have, like dhimmi Christians, powerful Christian countries anywhere to protect them from Muslim rapacity where it emerged (especially in the declining Ottoman empire) --- had its own country, inside what Muslims regard as inviolable Muslim territory (once conquered, it must always remain Islamic), and what's more shameful, emerged as a regional giant power.
Paranoid-charged conspiratorial thought isn't confined to the 1.2 billion Muslim peoples. In no other countries, though, is it so systematic, so pounded into people's minds by the mass-media, half-literate clerics, barely literate pundits, and moonbeam scholars. In no other countries does it find such a vast, psychologically receptive audience. The more lunatic the theories and reports, the more eagerly, it seems, they are gobbled up with eager frenzy.
An exaggeration? Hardly. Consider the . . .
RAW CRACKPOT HOKUM ABOUT JEWISH GLOBAL RULE AT THE 2003 ISLAMIC SUMMIT
At the Islamic Summit Conference held in Malaysia back in late 2003, Mahathir Mohamad --- the semi-dictator of Malaysia itself --- said this about the rife, high-charged sense of humiliation all over the Islamic world these days:
"I will not enumerate the instances of our humiliation," Mr. Mahathir said. "We are all Muslims. We are all oppressed. We are all being humiliated. . . . Today we, the whole Muslim [community], are treated with contempt and dishonor. . . . There is a feeling of hopelessness among the Muslim countries and their people. They feel that they can do nothing right." He added: "Our only reaction is to become more and more angry. Angry people cannot think properly."
And the causes of this blazing sense of shame and enraged humiliation? For Mahathir, the poor Muslims --- all 1.2 billion of them world-wide --- couldn't compete with Islam's alleged chief adversary, 15 million Jews, their arrogant enemy. "We are", he said,
"up against a people who think. They survived 2000 years of pogroms not by hitting back, but by thinking. They invented and successfully promoted Socialism, Communism, human rights and democracy so that persecuting them would appear to be wrong, so they may enjoy equal rights with others. With these they have now gained control of the most powerful countries and they, this tiny community, have become a world power. We cannot fight them through brawn alone. We must use our brains also."
Any Changes Since That Summit?
All this conspiratorial hokum, part-and-parcel, it seems, of Islamic world-views these days, was in 2003. Two and a half years later, so Mahathir noted ruefully, the Islamic world ignored his warnings and is more backward and humiliated than ever:
It is, therefore, not surprising that today the world associates Islam with backwardness. This angers us Muslims. But the fact is that we are backward. We are almost totally dependent upon others for almost all our needs in life. Even in the extraction of the wealth and resources that Allah has blessed us with, we depend on others. The whole Muslim Ummah of 1.5 billion is one huge consumer society, procuring all our needs from outside our community, including our defense and security requirements.
We produce practically nothing on our own, we can do almost nothing for ourselves, we cannot even manage our wealth. We hire other people to do everything for us. When doing this we seem not to have faith in Muslim ability or qualifications.
to return to your original place.
For the buggy prof take on the failures of modernity in Islam, click here
. For his views of Israeli military superiority, see this lengthy analysis.
Similar Comments Could Be Made About the Changing Balance between Islam and Others
in Matters of Religious Tolerance
Long after 1400, Islamic societies were generally more tolerant than Christianity when it came to allowing other faiths to exist within their countries: at any rate, for the Jewish and Christian minorities in the Muslim-run societies . . . and by far.
That started to change in the 19th century, with the break-up of the Ottoman Empire. Starting with the Greek national revolution in the 1820s, the Ottoman religious-political leadership (the Caliph) began systematically encouraging mass killing of Greeks --- Greece the first of its colonies to win its independence --- and later of other rebelling Christian colonies and minorities: Bulgarians, Armenians, and so on. This brutal policy culminated in the Armenian genocide of WWI. In earlier centuries, by contrast, Ottoman rule was known for being tolerant as empires go and permitting a great deal of local, decentralized rule in its Arab and European colonies. (After WWI, the Ottoman Empire disappeared, and Turkey was reduced to a rump Islamic country, which facilitated the emergence of Ataturk and a military-led westernization of Turkish life . . . starting with secularism. Even today, Turkey is the only Muslim country in the world with a constitution enshrining such secular activity.)
Shifts Toward Brutality in the Modern Era
In the turbulent flux at work in the Arab and wider Muslim countries during the 19th and 20th centuries, their societies buffeted by one unruly change after another --- including the steady decline of the Ottoman empire in power and influence, while Britain, France, Italy, and Spain acquired imperial rule over Arab states --- the Islamic imposition of dhimmi-status for Jews in Islam, which already had in-built inferior status and penalties and did entail pogroms and massacres off and on between the 8th and 19th centuries, became increasingly and repetitively violent. Massacres and pogroms became frequent in many Middle East countries, even if nothing remotely approximated the Nazi Holocaust itself. As A British professor
, a specialist in Middle East history, notes in this connection:
:It has long been a staple of anti-Israel propaganda that Arabs and Muslims have never had anything against Judaism or Jews but only against Zionism and Zionists. After all, did not Muslims treat their Jewish minorities far better than their European counterparts? Did not Arabs and Jews coexist harmoniously for centuries prior to the advent of the Zionist movement?
"This idyllic picture is at odds with the historical record. True, persecution of Jews in the Islamic world never reached the scale of Christian Europe. But that did not spare them from centuries of legally institutionalized inferiority, humiliating social restrictions, and the sporadic rapacity of local officials and the Muslim population at large. In pre-Zionist Palestine itself, Arab peasants, revolting in the 1830s against a military conscription imposed by Egyptian authorities, took the occasion to ravage the Jewish communities of Safed and Jerusalem, and when Arab forces arrived from Egypt to quell the insurrection, they slaughtered the Jews of Hebron in turn. A century later, in June 1941, following an abortive pro-Nazi coup in Iraq, the Jews of Baghdad were subjected to a horrendous massacre in which hundreds perished. And so on and so forth."
Until the post-WWII era, the persecution of Jews and violence against them lacked the pseudo-Darwinian racism of the Nazi sort that is now rife in much, if not most, of Islamic countries, with Jews described as demons --- the descendents of apes-and-pigs, fit only for destruction. As we'll see in a few moments, everything that flourishes in neo-Nazi circles by way of paranoid-charged hatred and yearning for violent revenge against Jews for their alleged evil and dominance is now rife in those same Islamic countries . . . and for that matter, is repeated incessantly in Islamic mosques and cultural centers in most of West Europe these days, and even now and then in the US.
Hatred and Racism Unleashed in the Arab World and Iran after WWII
Since WWII's end, much of Islam has --- alas --- been seething more and more with a mix of vitriol and ignorant, vicious superstition toward others, with a huge pick up in momentum of this raw truculent way of seeing the world starting in the late 1970s. The Iranian Shiite revolution in 1979 --- and, almost simultneously, Wahhabi Saudi efforts to counter it with massive expenditures on promoting Dark Age Sunni fundamentalism of the most xenophobic, racist, misogynist, and rigid crackpot sort world-wide, the two Islamo-Fascisms vying for influence and power --- mark the turning points in much of Islam's descent into jihadi-inspired terrorism and urges for destruction of their turnip-ghost tormentors.
As an earlier buggy article showed, European fascism --- especially the Italian sort, but also later Nazi Germany --- had a big impact on the secular-oriented Baathist parties of Syria and Iraq, which later seized power in those countries in the 1950s and 1960s, following which a secular Islamo-Fascist system of rule emerged under brutal dictators. In WWII, the Mufti of Jerusalem --- the spiritual head of the Palestinian people --- took refuge in Berlin, became a good friend of Hitler's, helped organize the mass-murdering SS Handjar Division that slaughtered tens of thousands of Serbs and Jews in Yugoslavia, and extolled the death-camps of the Nazi regime. Condemned at the end of the war by the Nuremberg Trial as a war criminal to be executed, the Mufti hotfooted it to Cairo, where he found refuge and subsequently became the personal mentor of the young Yasser Arafat.
Here you see a photo of the Mufti of Jerusalem inspecting the Handjar SS murderers in Bosnia during WWII,
The Persecution and Violence Unleashed Against Christian Minorities in Islamic Societiesto Intensified in the 19th and 20th Centuries Too.
Christian minorities in the Islamic-governed countries also entailed an inferior dhmmi-status that, historically, was certainly better than the treatment of Islamic minorities in Christian Europe during the Middle Ages and well into the modern era after 1600, but that also turned increasingly persecutory and violent after 1800 . . . especially in the wake of the growing break-up of the Ottoman Empire, in decline until its total disappearance at the end of WWI. Widespread massacres of Greeks, Bulgarians, and Armenians became common-place as these subject colonial peoples struggled for their independence.
But note. There was a difference between the responses of the outside European countries toward Ottoman and Arab persecution and violence against Christian and Jewish minorities.
Tersely put, despite the repeated efforts by the declining Ottoman rulers to violently and viciously crush Christian rebellions within their own empire starting with the Greek struggle for independence in the 1820s --- followed by large-scale massacres of Bulgarians and others later in that century, culminating as we noted in the horrendous Armenian genocide of WWI --- Arab and Ottoman Christians could generally count on support from outside Christian powers to protest or penalize their Muslim rulers when the massacres became public. In the 1880 British election, for instance, William Gladstone --- the head of Britain's Liberal Party --- stumped all through Britain to protest the Conservative government's efforts, led by Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli, to play down the massacres and tout the need for Britain to work closely with the Ottomans to block Russian and Austro-Hungarian power in the Balkans. Gladstone won, and the massacres tapered off, Bulgaria eventually winning its independence.
Similarly, in the 1890s, Ottoman massacres of Armenians in Turkey and elsewhere --- a fairly common occurrence by then --- were sufficiently publicized in the British press that even the Conservative governments in power decided that they could no longer make friendship with Istanbul the linch-pin of their imperial Mediterranean policies and began shifting their diplomatic and military efforts on Egypt . . . nominally an independent country by then, but under noticeable British influence. As for the horrifying Armenian genocide in WWI carried out by the Turks, WWI was on, Turkey was an enemy country that the British couldn't influence, and most of Europe was unaware or indifferent to the genocidal campaign despite the efforts of the American embassy to publicize what was happening in the deserts of Turkey . . . somewhere between a million and a million-and-a-half of Armenian men, women, and children deliberately marched into those arid areas and left to die.
Almost a century later, Turkey --- an electoral democracy despite existing human rights abuses --- hs never admitted responsibilty for the Armenian genocide, and simultaneously any Turkish scholar or journalist who discusses the genocide objectively risks severe retaliation, not just from the authorities but by jihad-enraged Turks.
THE OTHER ROOTS OF ISLAMIC RAGE AND SCAPEGOATING HATRED
The failure of the dictatorial regimes everywhere in the Islamic and Arab countries to develop their countries' economies, overcome poverty, and open up political life to legitimate, legally protected opposition has markedly reinforced these radical jihadi tendencies. (Malaysia, with 25 million people is a minor exception as far as backwardness goes; but a quarter of the population are Chinese (another 7% are Indian), and the Chinese created and still dominate the major financial and manufacturing firms and industries)
Not that these were the only influences that further aggravate and reinforce the psychic dislocations in Islamic life.
Shame and Humiliation Infest Shame-and-Honor Oriented Islamic Countries
On the contrary, radical, hate-filled Islamic fundamentalism has made ever larger inroads into Muslim societies world-wide by feeding on the pervasive, high-throbbing sense of shame, humiliation, and raw anger that Mahathir, among numerous others, has referred to.
Simultaneously, demographical explosions in every Muslim country has aggravated this raving psychic syndrome. In the Arab countries alone --- 60 million in 1948, now 320 million fifty-eight years later --- a good half of all the populations are under 16 years of age, and that means there are tens of millions of young men who have little in the way of a future, economically or otherwise. Most of these men, remember, are sexually repressed in jarring unnatural ways --- no, not just until 16, but into their twenties and thirties, at any rate until they marry.
You hardly have to be well-grounded in psycho-dynamic theory to understand how this high-energy repression of normal human urges eats away at the emotional lives of young people and makes the men particularly prone to raw, fantasy-laden outlets --- aggressive, and full of resentment towards women, the unattainable object of desire who constantly tempt them and who must be fought off. Sexual activity for the unmarried, remember, isn't just sinful in Islamic countries. As others have noted, it's a criminal offense even if the degree of punishment will vary across those countries. Small wonder that 6 of the 10 countries whose populations lead the world in accessing Internet porno sites are Islamic, with a 7th --- India --- having the third largest Muslim population world-wide, topped only by Indonesia and Pakistan.
WASHINGTON: A recent survey has found that Muslim states seek access to most sex-related websites and Pakistan tops the list.
The survey by Google has revealed that among the top 10 countries searching sex related sites, six were Muslims, reports the Daily Times.
The countries according to their rank are
7. Saudi Arabia
9. Philippines and
In short, take perennially high unemployment levels among teeming multitudes of young men with no future, add in massive sexual repression and a inflamed, high-octane sense of humiliation and anger, and you have a volatile, half explosive mixture of rippling mental disorder marked by rage, resentment, and disruptive confusion that seeks out enemies to make sense of a turbulent, hard-to-understand world among the rapidly swelling populations of Muslims around the world. Not surprisingly, large numbers of them hunger desperately for new meaning, order, and purpose in life.
Nor Is That All.
The causes of Muslim rage and scapegoating conspiratorial paranoia run on.
Above all, to make things around the Muslim world worse still --- a chief source of its economic and technological backwardness, along with the political rule of dictators --- there's the corrupt, crony dominance everywhere in political, economic, administrative, and military hierarchies of small but powerful patron-client networks.
For a good 95% of the population, these networks are closed forever, period. Not hard to figure what the level of resentment and alienation is likely to be in consequence, is it? Adding insult to injury, virituall all career advancement in these and other key institutional hierarchies in Muslim countries --- whether in the public or private sectors --- is reserved for those who serve their patrons faithfully and fawn over them, rather than talent, performance, and professional promise. The result of all this? The prevailing, non-stop persistence of predatory, thoroughly corrupt elites . . . and totally incompetent to boot. Nor is that all. At the peak of all of these patron-client networks, the El Supremos with unchallenged power, are the dictators themselves. Whether called Kings, Emirs, Supreme Ayatollahs, or Presidents-for-Life, it doesn't matter, They either stay the top-dogs until they die off and are replaced by a son or --- fairly frequent from the 1950s until the end of the 1980s --- are killed in some coup or violent overthrow.
Suppose a Coup or Rebellion Succeeds, What Then?
Nothing much of importance changes. How could it?
When a new ruling clique does seize power violently, the second-tier elites in the crony patron-client networks either flee into exile, are jailed, killed off, or --- if they seem vital to the new dictators, say because they have some financial knowledge ---are co-opted by the new El Supremos . . . and that's it. Nothing else really changes. The corrupt, predatory patron-client networks and hierarchies remain essentially the same. Only the names of the big enchiladas have been changed, and not anything else. Pervasive corruption still prevails. Advancement up any institutional hierarchy will still hinge on serving your superiors and feeding them endless sycophantic hokum.
The Muslim countries, in short, are paradigms of dysfunctional institutional development, crony networks, and predatory corrupt elites of marked professional incompetence.
Even in the three or four electoral democracies --- Turkey, Bangladesh, Indonesia, and Malaysia (Iraqi electoral democracy is still in its infancy) --- there are no noticeable differences in the way institutions and hierarchies operate except that the very top-guy President or Prime Minister can be changed without killing him off. Otherwise, the same pervasive institutional deformities and crackiling mal-function prevail. Small wonder that no Muslim country --- not one of the 46 Muslim-ruled ones, or any of the other 10 large-minority-Muslim ones --- has emulated the Asians or the 5 or 6 Middle-Income Latin American countries and moved up a hierarchy of sustained economic development and technological advance.
The exception, remember, is Malaysia, a tiny country of 25 million people. And also more developed, though still at middle-income levels, thanks to the fact that a quarter of the population are Chinese. All the major financial institutions, corporations, and export-oriented firms are their creations and ongoing successes.
The Political and Psychological Consequences Seen from the Perch of Dictators or the Jihadists Out to Topple Them:
Not surprisingly, all these sources of rippling, manic rage and resentments sizzle almost in the Islamic world these days save for small sane groups of middle class, cosmopolitan types --- the latter found in North Africa, Turkey, parts of the Middle East, and Asia only, and with waning influences --- are easily tapped by dictators and jihadist revolutionaries alike for their own agendas.
The jihadists' and crony-dictators' agendas, it goes without saying, differ in substance.
At the core of each, both agendas entail blame-shifting for Islam's faults and backwardness onto others and encourage the Muslim masses, in kinetically charged, rage-filled ways, to scapegoat these foreign devils and demand revenge against them. The key enemy, needless to add, is now Jews --- a tiny people of 15 million world-wide dispersed among dozens of countries. Jew-demons are held directly responsible for Islam's teeming troubles and backwardness by means of some invisible and insidious conspiratorial dominance manipulating all others around the world --- or indirectly by their alleged control of the United States, its allies, apostate Muslims, and menacing globalizing forces.
JEW-HATRED, SCAPEGOATING, AND OTHER NEO-NAZI VITRIOL
Everything, to underscore this point, that has flourished in neo-Nazi circles since WWII --- Holocaust denial, Jew-hatred, Hitlerian-adulation, hallucinatory, hate-filled conspiratorial delusions, and crazed blame-shifting and scapegoating, not to overlook the scale and magnitude of frenzied, violent urges for Jews' extermination --- now flourishes on a vast scale in virtually all Islamic populations around the world save in the small, generally well-integrated Muslim cirlces in the United States . . . not that it's absent here.
Witness the Deep Islamic Thinker with his nifty poster at the Holocaust-chanting demonstration yesterday, whose photo is preceded by another photo of some neo-Nazi KKK lovelies at a different rally. Except for the missing sheets, the Islamic Thinker-Rappers could be interchanged with the KKK headbangers:
A Washington Post article notes in this connection that the Protocols of the Elders of Zion --- a forgery that was created by extremist right-wing Russian exiles in the 1920s, was rife in Nazi Germany after 1933, and is so popular in the Arab world that both Syrian and Egyptian TV have run lengthy serial-dramas of the conspiratorial hokum --- are taught to Saudi students this way:
" 'A 10th-grade Saudi textbook on the hadith and Islamic culture for boys contains a lesson on the "Zionist movement." A key part of the lesson teaches students about the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, an anti-Semitic forgery that purported to expose a scheme for Jewish global domination and has been widely circulated since the early 20th century. Despite repeated debunking and a notorious role in inciting Nazi violence, the protocols are still taught to the 10th graders as an authentic document revealing what Jews genuinely believe. The lesson goes on to blame many of the world's wars and discord on the Jews.
The lesson also lists the following "goals of the Zionist movement' ":
"Instill a fighting spirit among the Jews, as well as religious and nationalist fanaticism to challenge [other] religions, nations, and peoples.
"Establish Jewish control over the world. The starting point for this is the establishment of their government in the promised land, which stretches from the Nile to the Euphrates.
"Incite rancor and rivalry among the great powers so that they fight one another, and kindle the fire of war among states so that all states are weakened and their state arises."
The protocols "were discovered in the 19th century. The Jews have tried to deny them, but there are many proofs of their veracity and their origin among the elders of Zion."
"The following points summarize the protocols:
"Undermine the foundation of the existing international community and its systems to enable Zionism to gain sole control over the world.
"Eliminate Christian nationalities, religions, and nations in particular.
"Work to increase the corruption of existing governments in Europe. Zionism believes in the corruption and collapse of these governments.
"Gain control over the means of publication, propaganda, and newspapers; use gold to incite unrest; and exploit people's desires and spread depravity."
"The decisive proof of the veracity of the protocols and the infernal Jewish plans they contain is that the plans, plots, and conspiracies they list have been carried out. Whoever reads the protocols -- and they emerged in the 19th century -- will realize today how much of what they described has been implemented."
"Examples of how the Zionists achieve their goals:
"Sedition, ruses, and conspiracies throughout history. Examples include . . . the French Revolution: The Jews exploited the French Revolution to fight against religions, break down values, and spread meaningless slogans. They had a hand in planning the revolution and its code of morals.
"The First World War: The Jews played a role in starting it.
"Bringing down the Ottoman Islamic caliphate. . . .
"The Bolshevik Russian revolution against tsarist rule. It is known that the roots of Marxist thought are Jewish. Karl Marx was a Jew from Germany."
"You can hardly find an example of sedition in which the Jews have not played a role."
"Attempting to inundate peoples with vice and rampant prostitution. The Jews have taken control of this trade and they try to spread it. They manage bars in Europe and America, as well as in Israel itself."
"Gaining control over literature and the arts; spreading degenerate, pornographic literature; and encouraging perverted trends in literature, thought, and the arts."
"Gaining control over the film industry in the Western world and elsewhere."
"Fraud, bribery, theft, and swindles."
For a more wide-ranging analysis of Saudi textbooks --- used, to repeat, in Muslim cultural and studies centers all over the world --- see this related Washington Post article. The degree of raving paranoia, scapegoating, and conspiracy-mongering of the most lunatic sort infest those textbooks from the 1st through the 12th grades . . . right down to instructing Saudi students in the latter grade that . . .
"Jihad in the path of God -- which consists of battling against unbelief, oppression, injustice, and those who perpetrate it -- is the summit of Islam. This religion arose through jihad and through jihad was its banner raised high. It is one of the noblest acts, which brings one closer to God, and one of the most magnificent acts of obedience to God
Note that the Saudi textbooks also insist that the Muslim world is at "war" --- the term used is "clash" ---- not just with ape-like Jews, but Christian "swine":
"As cited in Ibn Abbas: The apes are Jews, the people of the Sabbath; while the swine are the Christians, the infidels of the communion of Jesus."
"God told His Prophet, Muhammad, about the Jews, who learned from parts of God's book [the Torah and the Gospels] that God alone is worthy of worship. Despite this, they espouse falsehood through idol-worship, soothsaying, and sorcery. In doing so, they obey the devil. They prefer the people of falsehood to the people of the truth out of envy and hostility. This earns them condemnation and is a warning to us not to do as they did."
"They are the Jews, whom God has cursed and with whom He is so angry that He will never again be satisfied [with them]."
"Some of the people of the Sabbath were punished by being turned into apes and swine. Some of them were made to worship the devil, and not God, through consecration, sacrifice, prayer, appeals for help, and other types of worship. Some of the Jews worship the devil. Likewise, some members of this nation worship the devil, and not God."
"Activity: The student writes a composition on the danger of imitating the infidels."
"The clash between this [Muslim] community (umma) and the Jews and Christians has endured, and it will continue as long as God wills."
"It is part of God's wisdom that the struggle between the Muslim and the Jews should continue until the hour [of judgment]."
"Muslims will triumph because they are right. He who is right is always victorious, even if most people are against him."
And Hitlerian and Nazi-Adulation Aren't Confined to Saudi Arabia. They Are Rife, Apparently, in the Palestinian Nation:
"The Hamas newspaper this week chronicled with pride the ways in which different foreign leaders singled out the Palestinians as examples of ideal revolutionaries. The first leader cited by the Hamas weekly, Al-Rissala, for praising the Palestinians was Adolf Hitler:
"Adolf Hitler, while exciting the Germans of the Sudetenland - the Sudetenland is a German province that the Allies had annexed to Czechoslovakia after the First World War - told them in his broadcasts: Look at what the Palestinian revolutionaries are doing to Great Britain!!"
[Al-Rissala (Hamas Weekly), May 18, 2006]
It may be surprising to Western observers to see Palestinians taking pride in having been praised by Hitler. But it is important to understand that the utter revulsion of Hitler expected in the West is not true in Palestinian society. Palestinians can be found who are named "Hitler" as a first name: Hitler Salah [Al Hayat Al Jadida, Sept. 28, 2005], Hitler Abu-Alrab [Al Hayat Al Jadida, Jan. 27, 2005], Hitler Mahmud Abu-Libda [Al Hayat Al Jadida, Dec.18, 2000].
This phenomenon of Palestinians being named after Hitler was explained in an article in the official PA daily praising the rewriting of history and the doing of "justice" to Hitler:
"Even Adolf Hitler, who after the fall of Nazi Germany turned into a political horror for most of the writers and artists, during the last decades has started to return himself to his part of the picture. There are some in Britain who defended Hitler and tried to do justice for him. There are elderly people, among them Arabs, who still carry the name Hitler since their fathers, who were charmed by him, linked them [their children] with his name."
[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, April 13, 2000]
One article explained the phenomenon of naming Palestinians after admired foreign leaders - such as Napoleon and the Nazi General Rommel:
"Sometimes parents name their children with foreign names, due to the father's admiration to a foreign personality. This is the source of the names: Rommel [famous Nazi General] and Napoleon."
[Al-Ayyam, November 15, 2001 "Woman's Voice" supplement].
The admiration for Hitler is consistent with the status of Mein Kampf, which a PA daily cited as a book on the best sellers' list.
[Al Hayat Al Jadida, Sept. 2, 1999].
All of which leads to our next point . . .
. . . Other Turnip-Ghost Enemies in Muslim World-Views Not Confined Just To
Extremist Jihadi-Fundamentalism Islam
In this twisted psychic syndrome of vicious, paranoid-infested scapegoating and frantic cravings for revenge, it doesn't follow that there aren't other enemies of Muslims besides Jews. They teem, they abound, they swarm, they're everywhere. They're also the vast majority of the world's population: whether Protestants, Catholics, Orthodox, and Coptic Christians; Buddhists, Confucians, Hindus, seculars, Taoists, Sikhs, New Age adherents, animists, and what have you. Come to think of it, lots of Shi-ite Ayatollahs would like to slaughter Sunnis, and even more Sunni imams would like to exterminate the Shias.
More to the point, virtually everywhere world-wide where Muslims are a fairly large minority and don't govern the countries in question, Islamic rage and rippling manic urges for revenge against infidels --- always near the surface these days, it seems, until it erupts in outright mob-violence --- can easily be set off on almost any pretext to attack their feared or hated non-Muslim neighbors: whether Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, Jews, animist, secular, or what have you. In Nigeria, four years ago, a Miss Universe contest to be held in the country ignited days of mob-violence, church-burning, and homicidal attacks in the Muslim minority-population that, in the end --- after Christians retaliated --- left hundreds dead, more than a hundred churches destroyed, and several thousand homeless.
More recently, cartoons in a Danish newspaper made millions of Muslims world-wide go ape and run rampant with mob-violence in more than a dozen countries. In Thailand, the mere existence of a Buddhist majority of 95% has been enough to incite repeated homicidal attacks and terrorism against Buddhist farmers, merchants, and families by Muslim terrorists for years now.
A Clash of Civilizations?
The answer: the vicious, on par-boil psychic dislocations and rage that we've analyzed here, and reflected in what Samuel Huntington, the most creative political scientist of the last 50 years, has called Islam's "bloody frontiers". Muslim populations just don't seem to live in peace easily side-by-side with large non-Muslim populations . . . even as, in Indonesia --- 95% Muslim --- where there might be a tiny island with non-subservient Christians or others who aren't just five per cent of the total number of inhabitants.
Will it be very long before the violence begins to spread in West Europe itself, as the increasingly alienated, increasingly numerous Muslim populations clash more and more with their neighbors' loose, freewheeling, post-modernist cultures and life-styles . . . all directly at odds with what Islamic fundamentalisms of all sorts, themselves on the marked upswing among European Muslim populations, regard as right and proper, coupled with those same high-octane urges for revenge and the ingrained belief Islam should dominate everywhere?
THE KEY QUESTION: WILL ISLAM EVER CHANGE, REFORM, AND ADAPT TO THE MODERN WORLD, LOSING ITS DARK-AGE SUPERSTITIONS AND JARRING SCAPEGOATING EXCUSE-MAKING FOR ITS PERVASIVE BACKWARDNESS?
Well, the world changes, and possibly some Islamic countries will evolve politically and culturally in the future and once again join the rest of the world in tolerance, open-minded scholarship, science, and philosophy --- owing, we hope, to a growing revulsion among their more moderate citizenry that unequivocally condemns, intellectually attacks, and militarily fights radical Islamist jihadi terrorism and totalitarian religious ideologies.
That's the real clash of civilizations: at the heart of the Islamic world itself, between more secular-minded modernists and increasingly enraged, paranoid-driven fundamentalists. No one, though, should have illusions. Click here for a lengthy and impressively illuminating exchange involving four members of an up-to-date symposium on whether Islam can ever adapt to modernity, universal human rights, democracy, tolerance for other religions, secularism, and a vigorous embrace of civil liberties and pluralism: two of the panelists are critics of Islam, two are reform-minded Muslims.
Even in the US --- where the fairly small, diverse Muslim population, about 3 million in all, is generally well-educated, well-integrated, and well-off economically (with a higher income than the average US citizenry) --- Saudi oil-money, Iranian oil-money, and extremist fundamentalists have combined to create in certain sectors a whole sub-culture filled with venom, prejudice, hate, and urges for subjugating and dominating the 99% who are regarded as decadent infidels to be despised and fought one way or another. On this latter tendency, see this well-documented study that appeared in 2005 that traces these jihadi-infused influences and lavish inflow of money from Wahhabi Saudi sources . . . even if not limited to them.
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PS: For an up-to-the-moment, highly illuminating symposium on Islam's prospects for reform and change of a desirable sort --- which features two Islamic reformers and two outsiders who are skeptical that the reformers will have much influence --- click here.