Tuesday, July 05, 2005

"Is Radical Islam Its Own Antidote?"

 
Daniel Pipes fisks a proposal by Reuel Gerecht, who finds profit in comparing the political histories of Iran and Algeria to make his point — which seems to be this: give the Islamic radicals enough rope and they will hang themselves. That is, if they come into power, as they have in Iran, the resulting widespread “disaffection” will be enough to bring the Islamoterrorists to defeat. If not now, then soon.

Mr. Gerecht uses as his contrast the case of Algeria where the military intervened in the elections and brought on eternal civil war. The country remains a violent and deeply divided place, which he claims it would not be had the radicals come to power and then been voted out. Eventually.

Leaving aside the untold suffering that this idea has already brought to Iran, let’s consider Mr. Pipes’critique and solution.

Obviously, Daniel Pipes disagrees with this novel and radical approach to the problem of Islamic terrorism. For him, the middle way provides the best solution. Rather than begin with elections, these ought to be the culmination of a long process that includes establishment of the rule of law, freedom of speech, property rights, etc. Once these are in place — and it would take years — only then would elections make sense.

Mr. Pipes is right in theory. However, there is one problem which he doesn’t mention: none of these ideas -- private property, freedom of speech, etc., -- are compatible with any kind of Islam, be it moderate, radical, or some peace-loving Sufis. As Fjordman puts it in “Camel Economics”:
     Time is long overdue for some brutal honesty: Islam cannot coexist with Western society. All its basic tenets are hostile to every single idea on which liberal democracy and Western civilization are founded. Islamic culture cannot be integrated into the West any more than fire can be integrated with water.
One needs only to add that the converse is also true: Western culture cannot be grafted onto Muslim culture. The graft will not take; the body politic that is Islam will slough it off. What else can you expect in a society in which only Muslim men can ever be full members of the commonweal and that this law is written into the very heart of Islam?

Aren't we forgetting something here? In the good old days of the Soviet Union, the most equal of its citizens were the members of the Communist Party. This arrogant elitism has appeared in many forms throughout history. It has always been defeated, though not without a blood-and-toil response on the part of those it would seek to subjugate.

It's the same old un-freedom song, no matter how they try to transpose the key.

5 comments:

Always On Watch said...

Long before I had ever read Fjordman, when I was doing my post-9/11 research by means of materials at the public library, I came to the same conclusion: Islam and Western civilization are incompatible.

Know Islam = no freedom because Islam, any form of it, is a totalitarian ideology, the goal of which is to make the entire world a caliphate. Such evil doesn't spawn its own destruction.

I'm not deprecating Daniel Pipes, whom I respect; he has provided much valuable information through his books and his websites. But I believe that he's wrong in that Islam can be reformed. If it were to be, it would no longer be Islam.

erp said...

Islam is a theocracy which dictates every moment of a Moslem's life. Nothing is left to chance. The local imam rules and there is no court of appeals. There is absolutely no individualism, no independent thinking, and no deviation from the rules.

Moslem men need never grow up and assume responsibly for themselves and their families. They are never held accountable for their actions, but spend their lives in perpetual adolescence. Islam has taken the myth of the Garden of Eden to its farthest extension and heaped on the heads of their women the blame for the ills of the world.

In Islam there can be no economic gains, no science, no art, no beauty -- only death and despair. Unless the koran is revised to fit into the 21st century, Islam will be a quaint memory like the Arabian nights within a decade or two. The world has evolved far away from the 12th century when ignorance and superstition ruled.

Right now, the left has joined with the terrorists because their goal, the destruction of capitalism, individual freedom and free trade, parallels the goals of terrorists. However, should God forbid, their cause prevail, they will find that they are at the top of the list to be eliminated.

Dymphna said...

Probably every person has *some* self-loathing. It's a normal part of being human. The far Left, however, has taken that characteristic and projected into the culture at large. It's a malignant self-hatred and they're furious that the rest of us don't want to join. When you sense the hysteria in it, you know there's something reeallly whacked-out going on there.

Best to tip-toe around them on your way to the voting booth.

erp, that's a beautiful poppy.

Baron Bodissey said...

Re: cultural self-loathing -- see The Enemy Within.

Papa Bear said...

re: One needs only to add that the converse is also true: Western culture cannot be grafted onto Muslim culture.

What the theocrats are worried about is the possibility that Western culture may replace Islamic culture, as people decide that Islamic culture is incompatible with happiness and prosperity