March 28, 2006

With the lack of news of any movement in the ominous stalemate between the West and Iran’s nuclear ambitions, much of the mainstream media’s recent attention has been turned to two white-hot issues: 1) the increasingly-rancorous debate on immigration reform, and 2) Abdul Rahman, the Afghan put on trial to face possible execution for converting from Islam to Christianity, who, after a court on Sunday dismissed his case, was supposedly freed yesterday.)

While these two issues might appear to be thousands of miles apart, both geographically and politically, I see a lot of similarity in the way they have become “hot button” issues with the majority of Americans.

In recent weeks, Jim Geraghty (TKS of National Review Online fame) has focused much of his attention on what he calls a “tipping point” taking place in the mindset of many in the West – the U.S., particularly – when it comes to Islam and Muslims in general. It is Geraghty’s view that, between the continuing bloody insurgency in Iraq, the bizarre and inflammatory statements by Iran’s President towards Israel and the West, the youth riots in France, and the almost-daily acts of terror committed by suicide bombers against innocents in Iraq and elsewhere, that many in the West, including those once sympathetic to the plight of Arabs and Muslims across the Middle East, are increasingly losing the ability to see those who occupy that region and/or practice the religion of Islam as anything but violent non-conformists incapable of compromise and civil discourse, hell-bent on destroying western civilization both from without and within.

Today, Geraghty offers more evidence of this, quoting recent columns by the New York Daily News’ Richard Cohen…

The groupthink of the Muslim world is frightening. I know there are exceptions — many exceptions. But still it seems that a man could be killed for his religious beliefs and no one would say anything in protest. It is also frightening to confront how differently we in the West think about such matters and why the word “culture” is not always a mask for bigotry, but an honest statement of how things are.

…and the incorrigible and always entertaining and astute Mark Steyn:

In a more culturally confident age, the British in India were faced with the practice of “suttee” — the tradition of burning widows on the funeral pyres of their husbands. General Sir Charles Napier was impeccably multicultural:

“You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: When men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows.You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours.”

One can only hope and pray that Arab leaders and Islamic clerics and their followers – both in the West and worldwide – will find the courage and the voice to take an active stance against radical Islam and the violent acts committed against humanity in the name of Allah. Otherwise, I’m afraid the voices and interests of that peaceful majority of Muslims worldwide will be drowned out by a violent and wicked minority seeking violent confrontation with Middle East democracies like Israel, modernity in general, and the West in particular: a conflict that can only lead to unprecedented human suffering and economic hardship worldwide.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 17:36 | Comments (0)
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