The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Cracks in the Dam

Cracks have begun to appear in the dam—water has begun to seep through, only a trickle, but there are cracks. As we observe the barberous actions of like ISIS we wonder how it is that Western young men and woman can be drawn to this fanatic ideology.

Many just shake their heads as it is often reported that the kid who became a jihadi was "normal" and "moderate" and "peaceful." But a growing number of thinkers have begun to look deeper—at the underlying cause.

The prevailing narrative, spawned by political correctness, that Islam is "the religion of peace" forms a dam against a river of countervailing evidence.  

Daniel Greenfield writes:
Every week another lad or lass from St. Louis, Toronto or Sydney makes the trip through Turkey to the Islamic State. A reporter dispatched by a local paper to talk to the neighbors scribbles down the same recollections about how nice and normal Jihad Joe or Jihad Jane was.

Classmates remember a loud partier or a shy student. Neighbors mention that everything seemed normal until those last few years when he began wearing a robe and she began wearing a burka.
He goes on to note that nothing in their Western lives provides a hint to their actions and the underlying cause is something that media and politicians studiously avoid. Again, from Greenfield:
The answer lay in the topic that the media carefully avoided. As with the other Muslim terrorists, the meaning of their motives was in the little black book of their religion which commanded them to kill.

The Jihadist isn’t a serial killer. While there are some converts attracted to Islam for its violence, the Muslim convert usually doesn’t convert for the killing, he kills because he converted. Likewise the nice Muslim Jihadist next door might well be moderate by inclination and immoderate by faith.

As the Koran says, “Fighting has been enjoined upon you while it is hateful to you. But perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you; and perhaps you love a thing and it is bad for you. And Allah knows, while you know not.” (Quran 2:216)

Allah knows you have to kill. Even if you think you shouldn’t.

The nice Jihadists flocking to rape Yazidi girls in Mosul are convinced that Allah knows best and his Caliph knows best. The worst of them are acting on impulse. The best of them are acting on faith.

Faith is irrational. Believers believe without understanding and act without thinking. The holy men of our religions acted on faith. So do the holy men of Islam. It’s what they have faith in that is the problem.
If Greenfield is correct, and I believe he is, the obvious question is: what to do?

Each week we watch another beheading, we listen to genocidal rhetoric against Christians and Jews and anyone else who will not bow down to Islam. And we keep up the facade of Bush and Obama—that Islam is a "religion of peace."

Were that the case, the vast majority of Islam's holy men would be aghast at what has happened in the last two decades. They would frequently, publicly, and vehemently condemn the Jihadists. They would issue fatwas that commanded any "moderate" Muslim to fight what Barack Obama has called a cancer while at the same time equivocating by suggesting that "ISIS is not Islamic."

But we don't see the "good" Islam react frequently, publicly, and vehemently to condemn the "bad" Jihadists. Why?

And here, Greenfield widens the crack in the dam when he writes:
The problem isn’t “radicalization”. What Western governments call radicalization is the process by which the Muslim becomes aware of the dictates of his faith and their relevance to his life. It’s not the internet preachers with their fatwas. They are just the vectors for that awareness. The problem is Islam.

The current misguided thinking is that we can win a debate between a “good Islam” and a “bad Islam”. The good Islam will tell Muslims to refrain from joining ISIS, to work for social change, to embrace diversity and to champion democracy. But this “good Islam” is just a liberal’s conception of what religion should be. Its only real followers are liberal non-Muslims and it has little to do with what Islam really is.

Within the historical context of Islam and in the words of the Koran, our idea of the good Muslim is actually a very bad Muslim. And our idea of the bad Muslim is the best of all Muslims. When we argue that Islam is a religion of peace, we are pushing against the full weight of over a thousand years of history and religious ideas and counting on Muslims to be too ignorant of them to know any better.

Those who genuinely want to change Islam will not do it by lying to Muslims about their religion. Trying to convince the nice Jihadist next door that Mohammed would have rejected his expedition to rape and pillage non-Muslims in Syria is futile. The nice Jihadist may not be a scholar, but he knows his Koran.

If they want to change his mind, they will have to be honest about what Islam is.
And therein is what we have to do. We have to tell Muslims what Islam is. They won't like it, not a bit. But until we voice our view of Islam, we don't even have a place to start.

Greenfield has written an important piece. You should read it in its entirety. He ends this way:
“Deradicalizing” the nice ISIS Jihadist by lying to him will fail in the long run. Telling him the truth and offering him a clear choice is the only way ... If we destroy ISIS without exposing the ideology behind it, then we will have won a Pyrrhic victory because we will still be fighting the nice Jihadist next door for the next thousand years.
Slowly the crack widens and soon it will become increasingly difficult for the West to ignore. But 'leaders' like Barack Obama will try their damnedist to do so.

A thousand years is a very long time.

UPDATE (9/15/2014)

Roger Simon picks up on the thrust of Daniel Greenfield's thesis and on Barack Obama's claim that "ISIS is not Islamic"  when he writes:
The Islamic State is not only Islamic, it is the very paradigm of Islam, Islam distilled to its essence as practiced by Mohammed, massacring local tribes, raping and enslaving their women, and making war against everyone in his way until he had subdued as much of Arabia as possible. Who knows how many beheadings were involved, but can we assume the total significantly outstrips the Islamic State’s, at least for now ? Islam is far from the only violent religion — almost all have had their moments — but it is unquestionably the most unremittingly so. If Islam is said to have been hijacked, it is not by the thugs of the Muslim Brotherhood, ISIS, al Qaeda, al Nusra, Ansar al Islam, Ansar al Sharia, al Shabaab, Boko Haram, Jemaah Islamiyah, Hamas, Hezbollah and on and on. They are the true practitioners of the faith, following in the footsteps of Mohammed and obeying the prescriptions of the Koran and the Hadith to make the whole world Islamic or else. They don’t need to communicate with each other. They just do their thing, because the playbook has been written for them and they have studied it well. It is they who have been temporarily hijacked by a few whirling pacifistic Sufis or other moderate outliers before getting down to the unfinished business of finally crashing through the Gates of Vienna or defeating Charles Martel at Toulouse and returning Al Andaluz to its rightful owners. As one will recall, that was the stated intention of the al Qaeda maniacs who blew up the train at Madrid’s Atocha station just a few years ago.

But most of us know this. It couldn’t be more evident, even to Barack Obama. But he chose to lie about it at the very moment innocent men were being beheaded in the name of Allah. This can’t be the real Islam that is doing this said our president, our secretary of State, and their loyal claque at the State Department who would be outraged at Israel if it so much as sprained a Palestinian kid’s ankle but could barely pronounce the word Islam if the Islamic Republic of Iran dropped an atom bomb on Philadelphia and killed a quarter of a million people. It would just be another instance of “work place violence,” maybe of a slightly extended sort with a globalist overlay.

So everybody in our administration, and even most of our military, seems to lie these days, but the source of the lies comes from the top, POTUS. He governs our land where the truth dare not be uttered, the enemy never named. We all know we’re in a civilizational war with Islam, have been for quite some time and likely to be for a lot longer, but our officials and our mainstream media will do everything possible not to admit it. They assume, I guess, if we tell the Islamic world they’re peaceful often enough, they will become it. That’s the most optimistic view of it. The pessimistic view is that a number of our leaders and media want us to lose. Either way we’re in a pack of trouble.
And the crack in the dam widens by another fraction.