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March 27th 2016 print

Peter Smith

Identifying The Enemy

The enemy, we are told again and again, is not Islam but 'radical Islam'. There is comfort in that appellation, certainly, but unless and until the West acknowledge that violence is enshrined in the Koran, the soft pillow of such delusions will smother us

lamb shadow smallZuhdi Jasser is a self-proclaimed devout Muslim and, I believe, an all round good guy. He is a medical doctor and a former lieutenant commander in the US Navy. He founded and heads the American Islamic Forum for Democracy. He rejects what he calls political Islam. He is a regular media commentator. After the attack in Brussels he correctly pointed out that the problem lies within Islam, as he always does. And again, par for the course, he argued that Islam needs a reformation. At the same time, he expressed “love” for his religion.

I will guess (without too much risk of being wrong): the religion Dr Jasser loves is about moderation, peace and tolerance, and exists separately from the state. But what is his religion? That to me is the mystery. Religions need a scriptural base. Islam has the Koran (the very words of God) and the Sunna and canonical Hadiths (the instructions, doings and reported sayings of Muhammad). I imagine Dr Jasser’s scriptural base is a subset of this Islamic scripture from which all of the nasty bits have been excised. For example, this nasty anti-Semitic bit from the Bukhari Hadith 52:177:

The Hour will not be established until you fight with Jews, and the stone behind which a Jew will be hiding will say “O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, so kill him.”

Dr Jasser and others of like mind do not express themselves on this point. On this point we hear only platitudes.

Unfortunately, Jasser and other ‘moderate Muslims’ are part of the problem. They are not part of the solution, however well meaning they may be. They give verisimilitude to the idea that moderate, peaceful and non-political Islam exists, if only it can be extracted from the violence and intolerance within which it is enmeshed. But there is no hope at all of disentanglement on this scale. Nothing of coherence would be left in its wake. It is the apogee of delusion.

It also creates a related delusion, effectively bolstered by President Obama, which will lead to the West’s demise unless it is jettisoned. This is the delusion that we are fighting against ‘radical Islam’. Obama gives this fabrication particular credence because of his refusal to let the words pass his lips. Which means Mrs Clinton can’t either, otherwise he will set the Department of Justice on her and she will rightly go to jail for handling classified emails on her unsecured private server. But that is by the way.

In an irony of ironies, Obama has conservative commentators falling over themselves to condemn his refusal to name the fabricated enemy. Meanwhile, the real enemy, Islam, unadorned with qualifiers, gets a free pass. Islam itself is the enemy – only Donald Trump among the Republican contenders gets close to getting this . The distinction between moderate and radical Islam exists only in the fevered minds of the Western media and most politicians. There is only one Islam. It is encompassed in Islamic scripture.

When I make this point people often cite Indonesia and Malaysia as examples of moderate Islam in practice. Pew published the results of a world survey of Muslims in April, 2013. Seventy-two percent of Muslims in Indonesia and 86% in Malaysia favoured making sharia the law of the land; of those, 48% and 60% favoured stoning for adultery and 18 and 62 percent favoured death for leaving Islam. It is consoling, I suppose, that these percentages, on the whole, are less confronting than in, say, Pakistan (84, 89, and 76 percent); in Egypt (74, 81 and 86 percent) or in Afghanistan (99, 85 and 79 percent).

Hand-severing for theft also appears prominently, a favoured punishment in the Muslim world. Pew didn’t survey what should happen to homosexuals but it probably wouldn’t be pretty. To put it mildly, it is evident that wherever Islam predominates, Enlightenment values are not uppermost in the scheme of things.

It is a cliché of course; but how in the world can you defeat an enemy you  will not correctly identify? Whenever and wherever the Islamic scriptures are taught the recipients of this learning are being poisoned; note the text above as one among many hateful injunctions. Sometimes it is quick acting; sometimes so slow that its deleterious effects only show up in future generations. As one of many examples, three of the four men responsible for the London bombings in 2005 were the sons of Pakistani immigrants. As one said on a left-behind video tape:

I and thousands like me are forsaking everything for what we believe. Our drive and motivation doesn’t come from tangible commodities that this world has to offer. Our religion is Islam, obedience to the one true God and following the footsteps of the final prophet messenger.

As Churchill (The River War) put it, back in 1899: “No stronger retrograde force exists in the world.” And it is resilient to all that the modern world can throw at it. Look online and see the photographs of women living in, say, Egypt and Afghanistan in the 1950s compared with now. As Peter Berger notes in Islam and Secularism in the Middle East:

Islamic revival is very strong in cities with a high degree of modernisation, and in a number of countries it is particularly visible among people with Western-style education; in Egypt and Turkey, for example, it is often the daughters of secularised professionals who are putting on the veil and other accoutrements expressing so-called Islamic modesty.

Terrorists have to be stopped and caught. Terrorist states and enclaves have to be defeated. But all the counterterrorism and military might in the world will not ultimately defeat this scourge. At best it will force it underground, as it did in Turkey under Atatürk; as it ever waits for the time and opportunity to surge again.

Islam is a potent religious ideology whose adherents are obeying instructions from God and his appointed messenger. You don’t get that? Then you can’t ever defeat it, full stop.

And even if you do get it, defeating it now that it is metastasising inside the gates will be a close run thing at best.

 

Peter Smith, a frequent Quadrant Online contributor, is the author of Bad Economics

Comments [23]

  1. Eeyore says:

    I wonder how one goes about defeating it or if it is possible to do so.

    We carp about politico’s obfuscation on the matter but assuming they all came to reality tomorrow do we think Trump-esque answers of massed forced deportations and walls is the answer?

    Surely it must be, as you quite rightly point out even Ataturk could only keep it suppressed, modern wealthy Turkey did not lure the more excitable then and since, so I cannot see that having an effect in the future on any note.

    Does that leave us and our kids to a perpetual gate keepers role? What a sad state of affairs that would be, is a cultural cold war the best we can hope for?

    • ianl says:

      > I wonder how one goes about defeating it or if it is possible to do so

      Yes. As I noted a few threads back, this question remains unanswered because there is no sensible answer.

      It is easy enough to guess that this view has been excorciated as negative, not-positive, cynical and so on … But the question stubbornly remains unanswered and unaddressed. So one wonders who are the actual cynics.

      • Of course it is possible to defeat Islam. It only needs the strength of will to oppose it. Unfortunately our will to oppose Islam has in the past been, and is still now, being sapped by leftists dominating the media and institutions like the judiciary and academia.
        This is mainly due to the leftists’ enthralment/fascination with totalitarianism.
        Leftists invariably support totalitarianism, of all sorts, over freedom/capitalism. In the past they have promoted secular totalitarianism of varying sorts such as communism, Nazism, environmentalism etc. and they currently now support the theological totalitarianism of Islam over those values inherent in western civilisation.
        The single biggest weakness of capitalism/freedom is that despite the wealth, prosperity and happiness that it has enabled, nobody has ever properly defined what it is so that it can be defended properly. My [simplistic] definition is that capitalism is a system of governance where individuals are allowed to own property [including intellectual property] and that where ever possible all interactions between people should be conducted on a voluntary basis.
        The other weakness of capitalism is that the prosperity it creates often allows people to become bored. To my mind John Howard lost office because people, especially those in the media, became bored due to the fact that the majority of us were prosperous. It was not because of ‘work choices’ or any of the other reasons/excuses given.
        The people who get bored the easiest, and are the most likely to get bored are those whose existence is guaranteed, especially by the efforts of others. That is why most ‘revolutionaries’ of the past and even now are mostly ‘middle class’. The majority of Islamic terrorists are those on ‘welfare’ of some sort. Welfare mostly provided by the societies who the terrorists wish to destroy. The Islamic terrorists now, and the ‘revolutionaries’ of the past – the Lenins, Stalins, Trotsky, Che Guevara, Castro etc. etc. – are not/were not involved in any wealth creating activities as such before they became revolutionaries, their existence is/was provided for them by the effort of others.

        • ianl says:

          > Of course it is possible to defeat Islam. It only needs the strength of will to oppose it

          I’m afraid your “answer” is exactly the rhetoric I am despairing of.

          Please note the actual question:

          HOW do we go about “defeating” it ? *Details* are required, especially when the populace is cowering from appalling Groundhog Day slaughters. Rhetoric, we are drowning in … and have seen how useless it is.

          • We fight all totalitarians by stating clearly and loudly what we are fighting FOR – freedom/capitalism – and not just what we are fighting against. We do it by rearing/educating our/your children and grandchildren to have values and to stand up for those values. I have 4 children and 10 grandchildren. My message to them has been simple, learn HOW to think, not what to think, and to stand up mentally as well as physically for things that they KNOW are right.

            We also should never give in or despair, the only guaranteed way not to win is not to fight. Despite the apparent futility of it, I have done my little bit to fight the ‘global warming’ scan by writing and recording a song about it. You can listen to it here on Quadrant – http://quadrant.org.au/opinion/doomed-planet/2010/01/the-king-has-got-no-clothes/
            I have not been able to get air play for it, mainly because the media are generally left wing and the sentiments of that song are like blasphemy to them. Never-the-less I haven’t and won’t give in.
            So please keep ‘fighting’ Ian, don’t give in.

        • gardner.peter.d says:

          One of the difficulties we face is that many of our post WW2 laws and treaties are based on Western values and the assumption that Islam will not impinge on Western civilisation. Hence we are extremely vulnerable to an insurgency of the type now being conducted. For example, our own laws on religious tolerance were framed when all relevant religions in Western countries accepted a reasonable separation between state secular business and religious affairs. They aimed to prevent conflict and tension between different religions rather than between the state and the churches. They are not designed to defend our civilisation against a religion that does not accept such a separation and seeks to undermine it.

          Perhaps this is the place to start, to review the constitution to ensure the maintenance of a clear separation of powers between the state and all religious institutions.

    • gardner.peter.d says:

      Attaturk was very careful to ensure the population of Turkey was 99% Muslim. The Lausanne treaty of 1923 provided for a compulsory transfer of populations, Muslims for Christians. Most Greeks had already left Turkey; Muslim families from Crete to the borders of Albania were forcibly uprooted and dumped in Turkey, ‘a thoroughly bad and vicious solution’, warned Curzon, ‘for which the world will pay a heavy penalty for a hundred years to come.’ In 1927 the Turkish foreign minister assured the British ambassador that the Kurds were bound to disappear like what he described as ‘Red Hindus’; if the Kurds showed any disposition to turn nationalist, Turkey would expel them, just as they had done with the Armenians and Greeks.

      The Turkish republic was secular only insofar as Islam permitted it to be. The regime was and is now becoming again vehemently racist and opposed to Jews, Christians, Kurds and Armenians among others. Curzon was right. Now Turkey is blackmailing a weak and incompetent EU into supporting its one-for-one trade (I’ll trade you a rejected asylum seeker for a Syrian) in immigrants. Turkey is reverting to the nastiness of Attaturk.

      I find it hard to understand why Attaturk is regarded as a hero in Australia. If he is held to be an exemplar of how to set up a modern law abiding democratic state than Australia’s path is clear: Muslims should be forcibly removed. Doesn’t stack up does it? Australia has some thinking to do.

  2. Ian MacDougall says:

    Islam is a potent religious ideology whose adherents are obeying instructions from God and his appointed messenger. You don’t get that? Then you can’t ever defeat it, full stop.

    Too true.
    The perpetual problem for Islamic countries is the way their religious establishments block any mass transition to modernity. Islamic Pakistan mustered the resources to develop a nuclear weapons program (aimed mainly at India), but education applicable to the modern world encourages the youth to develop critical skills and to think for themselves, while the clerics would prefer to raise Islamozombies ready willing and able to blow up a rival mosque or two, or a railway terminal crowded with infidels.
    The writer and blogger Ibn Warraq is an outstanding example of one who has broken free. He is not by any means the only gushing crack in the mighty dam wall of Islam.
    .
    ibnwarraq.com/

    • ianl says:

      > The writer and blogger Ibn Warraq is an outstanding example of one who has broken free

      I think he’s a hypocrite, albeit a very disingenuous one.

      Simple question for him, one he’s constantly dodged answering:

      Do you want to see Australia as a theocracy ?

      • Ian MacDougall says:

        ianl:
        Have you been to http://ibnwarraq.com/ ?
        Go there, and you will read:

        Welcome to the official Ibn Warraq website, where you will find a guide to my books and articles. I was prompted to create my own website by the existence of impostors on the internet who pretend to be Ibn Warraq. Here is what I wrote on this problem a few years ago:
        “…I am forced to address a problem that I have ignored for many years. There are many unscrupulous people on the Internet- on chat rooms, Twitter, and, above all, Facebook- pretending to be Ibn Warraq, speaking as Ibn Warraq, making comments and analyses in the name of Ibn Warraq. May I take this opportunity to state clearly that I, Ibn Warraq, author and editor of Why I am not a Muslim, Defending the West, Why the West is Best, and seven other books, do not have any Facebook or Twitter account, that I have never participated in any discussions in “chat-rooms”. I do not have an “official Ibn Warraq Website” either [ I do have one now, May 2015, of course]. If you need to know the opinions of Ibn Warraq, read his books, and his occasional articles in the press (Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, Die Welt, Der Spiegel, and so on) and even rarer articles on the Internet at New English Review, National Review Online, and Jihad Watch.
        “The entry on Ibn Warraq on Wikipedia poses problems of another kind: partial quotes, and general tendentiousness….

        So I would expect in the light of the above that he would have an answer the question “do you want to see Australia as a theocracy?”
        It would be a definite “No!”

  3. Keith Kennelly says:

    Denandsal

    I’m with you. It only takes desire and will to defeat Islam.

    When used in a positive fashion these will always overcome negativity.
    The west is positive and has the ambition of prosperity, freedom and happiness on earth. Islam is entirely negative in its ambitions and it’s only rewards are death and a supposed heaven.

    positivity and goodness always triumph in the longer term.

  4. Bill Martin says:

    With every passing day and the ever more frequent terrorist atrocities, the unrelentingly insane attitude of most western leaders toward Islam is an increasingly maddening phenomenon. Following every terrorist atrocity, their primary concern is for the mental well-being of Muslims, rather than the physical safety of their non-muslim citizens. Sure, not each and every Muslim is constantly preoccupied with murdering infidels but precious few ever do anything to stop their brethren doing so. Where are the enthusiastic demonstrations by throngs of Muslims protesting against Islamic terrorism? While most of them leave the dirty work to an evil few, they fail to stand up for the victims of the carnage. Some might be simply deterred by fear for their own safety, but London to a brick, the vast majority does not much disapprove of what the militants do, or only ever so slightly. Face reality and come to your senses, you deluded idiots! We are at war with Islam, unequivocally and repeatedly declared by the Islamists and it is well past the time when we just as openly acknowledge the challenge and respond to it with all and every means at our disposal.

    First step: Organise a robust and committed alliance of like minded, non-islamic countries where the leaders as well as the citizens understand and appreciate the true nature and magnitude of the threat of Islam and are prepared to sacrifice blood and treasure to fight against it. There must be no ambiguity about the task ahead and all the allies must be fully committed to it.

    Second step: Sever all diplomatic, political and economic ties with every Islamic country, primarily with Saudi Arabia and Iran, and put them on notice, together with all other countries with substantial or majority Muslim populations, that we are vigilantly watching them for signs of hostile actions or intent towards us and will not hesitate to retaliate with overwhelming force. Never fail to respond promptly and forcefully every time such a threat is identified or reasonably suspected.

    Will such decisive, sweeping actions be detrimental to our economies? Most definitely, but the west is well placed to absorb such transient pain, far more so than the Muslim countries affected. Ultimately, they need us incomparably more than we need them. Practically everything they need/use, including food in many instances, come from the west. Oil is their only gift of geography and the non-islamic world is, collectively at least, self sufficient at present.

    Third step: Intern everyone residing in western countries, including their families, who is reasonably suspected of empathy with the enemy, erring on the side of caution. This might well mean the internment of entire Muslim communities in some instances or even of all Muslim residents. They ought to be employed in occupations commensurate with their qualifications and abilities, paid fairly for their labour, treated well, housed and catered for according to the average standard of the host countries, including the provision of health care and education for their children.

    Fourth step: Put all the countries of the Alliance on war footing, adjusting political, economic, industrial, security and information processes accordingly. Spare no effort in ensuring that every one of the countries, as well as the Alliance as a whole, develop and maintain all their war fighting capabilities at the highest possible level.

    Are these harsh, extremely demanding requirements? They most certainly are. However, they are, and have always been, absolutely essential when fighting a war of survival. Either that or capitulation. There is no other option.

    • Eeyore says:

      Thank You Bill for voicing what is the only answer I have read that provides a path that, assuming it was followed, may lead to ensuring the safety of western society albeit at enormous cost, I agree that if we are in a war there is no point pussyfooting about.

      Softly softly has not seemed to be effective.

      How do you think that fits into the local geopolitics in Asia? Given its mix of religions represented in the geographic area?

      Do you see the proposed alliance projecting its military strength outside of its borders?

      The first step would necessarily mean that the citizens are educated on the threat would it not? Control of the MSM would seem necessary wouldn’t it?

      • Eeyore says:

        Its my beautiful boys that will be doing the defending and fighting, its them and their fellow life savers that will be coming home in boxes, the idea alone that this may be the only answer brings tears to my eyes.

      • Bill Martin says:

        I fully realise that the course of action I propose is, most unfortunately, somewhat of a pie in the sky, at least for now. The gravity of the situation is understood and appreciated by far too few people and practically by no politician of any global significance, therefore the measures I suggest are not likely to be adopted in the foreseeable future. Which, unfortunately, means that by the time the peril becomes unavoidably obvious to the bulk of the population and a sufficient proportion of politicians to act, our dire fate will probably have been sealed already. I wish I could muster more optimism over the issue, but in spite of my generally optimistic nature, I can not.

    • ianl says:

      At the very least, an attempt at a real answer, as against either khumbaya or “yell louder”.

      It is the potential harbinger of WW3, however. Pakistan posseses nuclear weapons and has sufficient homocidal zealots in its’ top military to use them at some flashpoint.

      • Avalon says:

        Who was it who said that the difference between an extremist Muslim and a moderate Muslim is that the extremist Muslim wants to kill you while the moderate Muslim wants the extremist to kill you?

    • acarroll says:

      But Bill, remember the Jews!

  5. pgang says:

    Enlightenment values Peter? Here you have a piece dedicated to the severest logical criticism of Islam, yet you fail to properly describe that which exists within the culture you are defending. You meant to say Christian values of course, but perhaps this secular outlet wouldn’t pass that.

    I don’t think the Enlightenment values underlying Marxism, Lamarkianism, Communism, National Socialism, Maoism, Darwinism / Eugenics, Progressivism, etc really stand up to the light of scrutiny. And Churchill would agree with that. He knew that the West could win because it was upheld by Christian values, at least in the UK and USA.

    The big issue with Islam is its devotion to a singular deity. That is the fundamental concept that will not allow it to embrace the plurality of Christianity. The trinity reflects the total reality of creation (or vice versa) – the one and the many – perhaps the most important of philosophical concepts. The trinity also offers an approachable, human face of God that allows us to identify His will and purpose in our own lives as well as the cosmos. So Islam can never be at peace with the West as long as we identify as Christian, because their god dehumanizes humanity and debases creation with its separateness, and fails to identify with the fundamental concept of existence – the relationship between individuality and the group. The Father, Son and Spirit relate to one another, yet remain one. Allah simply exists.

    So you will find Islam somewhat ambivalent towards Enlightenment values since they too are dehumanising. And neither will those values find any inner strength with which to hold back Islam. That is the story we are seeing playing out in the west today.

    • Ian MacDougall says:

      pgang:

      I don’t think the Enlightenment values underlying Marxism, Lamarkianism, Communism, National Socialism, Maoism, Darwinism / Eugenics, Progressivism, etc really stand up to the light of scrutiny. And Churchill would agree with that. He knew that the West could win because it was upheld by Christian values, at least in the UK and USA.

      Marxism, Lamarkianism, Communism, National Socialism, Maoism, Darwinism / Eugenics, Progressivism…. That is one helluva list to hold up to “the light of scrutiny”.
      Take your ‘Lamarkianism’ for example. Jean Baptiste Pierre Antoine de Monet, Chevalier de Lamarck was one of the early pioneers of evolutionary theory, which has itself ‘evolved’ from admittedly crude beginnings to its modern neo-Darwinist form. Neo-Darwinism underlies all of modern biology, including medical science, a problem for which is the rapid and ongoing evolution of disease organisms such as bacteria and viruses.
      The bastard offspring of Lamarckism was Lysenkoism, which came to dominate Soviet biology under Stalin. You might find the odd valley in the Urals or elsewhere where the residents have yet to hear of the death of Stalin and the end of the Lysenkoism he fostered, but even so, I dare say you would have to search long and hard.
      But living organisms are not the only evolving entities. Ideas evolve, like the idea of evolution itself, making the evolution of ‘evolution’ a study in its own right: just like, say, the evolution of Christianity. That religion did not just drop out of the sky fully formed any more than did a modern salmon or humpback whale. So where did it start? In Judaism? In ancient Greek mythology (the dying and reviving god)? With the Nativity? All arguably contributed to it: as did the Schoolmen, who debated and attempted to resolve its rather thorny and numerous philosophical problems. And then we have the pertinent observation of the economic historian RH Tawney: “the last of the Schoolmen was Karl Marx.”
      http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/article/history_09
      http://www.philosophybasics.com/movements_scholasticism.html

    • Peter says:

      Only just caught your comment Pgang. QOL would have no difficulty in my experience if I were to use the term Christian values. Whatever you call them I am referring to values which separate church from state, which give rise to free speech, religious freedom, tolerance, and treating one another non-discriminately and decently. Clearly Islam falls foul of these values. I believe that these values in the West arose out of our predominantly Christian civilisation. However, I do not think that Christianity is the only religion in which they find a home. Jewish values and the values of other major religions, except for Islam, are in broad sync. I regard the struggle against Islam as a worldwide struggle because no other religion – so far as I know – has such a poisonous scripture. We need non-Christians as well as Christians on board. Of course the struggle would have more chance of success if Christians were more numerous and also if Christian church leaders had more backbone. Peter

  6. Bran Dee says:

    The first step after recognising the Mohammedanism is a hostile ideology is to stop treating it as a benign religion and stop providing government funding for its schools. A number of such schools around Australia have been put on notice for the mismanagement and siphoning of government funding, and that funding is of the order of 90% of running costs because the schools are in low socioeconomic zones.
    The easily observable custom of the schools to mandate the headscarf as part of female student uniform underscores the ideology with its them and us divide.