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David Warren: What Hamas teaches ^ | February 1, 2006 | David Warren

Posted on 02/06/2006 10:27:04 AM PST by Tolik

There is a new book by Efraim Karsh, just coming out from Yale, which everyone who feels entitled to an opinion about “the Middle East” may feel compelled to read. The book is entitled, Islamic Imperialism: A History, and supplies just what it promises with comprehensive scholarly footnotes. The topic is so large, that I don’t want to reduce it to a blurb. Some things require a book. And the authority of Prof. Karsh’s previous book, Empires of the Sand: The Struggle for Mastery in the Middle East, 1789-1923, is sufficient to promote the new one. The author, who heads a programme at the University of London’s King’s College, is among the few we may rank with Bernard Lewis as knowledgeable interpreters of Middle Eastern affairs, from the deep historical perspective.

But some things can be reduced to a sentence. The quest to establish “Allah’s empire on earth” is not something that began yesterday. Nor have the fundamental differences in outlook between the civilization founded on Christianity, and the civilization founded on Islam, recently emerged. Nor even the contrast in ideas about how war should be fought, and how victories should be consolidated.

The specific terrorist means used by fanatical “Islamist” secret societies are a product of our times, but it is profoundly naïve to look upon the ends which Osama bin Laden and others contemplate as in any way foreign to Islamic tradition. For in that tradition, the Prophet himself declared, “I was ordered to fight all men until they say, There is no god but Allah.” And the belief that every free-born adult Muslim male is called to advance the domain of Islam, by force wherever it will be effective, has been part of the teaching of all branches of Islam through 14 centuries. Any Muslim who denies this is denying the tenets of his own faith, and there is no shortage of Koranic texts with which to correct him.

And while it is true that wars have been fought at one time or another in history, to advance every known religion, including Buddhism, there is no other known religion (except arguably certain forms of ancient Persian Zoroastrianism, or early modern Japanese Shintoism) that preaches imposition of belief by force.

Now, the reader will recall that President George W. Bush of the United States is committed to spreading democracy through the Middle East -- beginning with Afghanistan and Iraq -- as the ultimate antidote to terror. Notwithstanding what you have read, most days in the mainstream media, those projects have gone surprisingly well. But this was under American direction, in two countries whose peoples were exhausted by long intervals of murderous totalitarian rule. Moreover, they were two of the most secularized countries in the Islamic world.

A large part of the shock of last week’s decisive electoral victory of Hamas in Palestine is being absorbed under the surface.

On the surface, we should now all be able to see that the “peace process” with Israel is dead. Even those who are in no diplomatic position to admit this, admit it by their acts. The Israeli, European, and North American donors upon whose financial support the Palestinian leadership have long depended, are now preparing to withdraw their subsidies. These will most likely be replaced by less visible funding from radical Saudi Arabian sheikhs, and Iran’s revolutionary ayatollahs (who in turn get their money from what we pay for oil). The additional co-operation that this will bring about between Shia and Sunni funding sources, for the common project of annihilating Israel, is worth a note in passing. That Israel’s enemies are our enemies becomes a little clearer, to those in the West for whom it was not already clear as daylight.

Hamas claims to be acting, not as the broker for its constituents’ interests, but as the popularly acclaimed voice of God. Its manifesto unambiguously proposes to advance a strictly Islamic political order, and an overwhelming majority of Palestinian Arabs believe that this is a legitimate cause. Even the losing Fatah factions agreed that Islam itself requires the “recovery” of Israel, the gradual “restoration” of a Sharia theocracy, and the imposition of Islamic authority upon subject Christians and Jews. The only disagreement was over the tactics by which results could be obtained.

This is what is more fundamentally shocking, specifically to the Bush administration and moderate observers throughout the West. Here was an election in the Arab world, done to Jimmy Carter standards, but not under American tutelage. And it comes a few weeks after a half-election in neighboring Egypt brought a large harvest of new Assembly seats to the Muslim Brotherhood.

Democracy is not just voting. Democracy is a whole bourgeois way of life, and a method for resolving disputes peacefully. It is not essentially compatible with millenarian religious schemes. We ask, “Can Islam and democracy co-exist?” What if Hamas has given us the answer?

KEYWORDS: davidwarren; hamas

1 posted on 02/06/2006 10:27:06 AM PST by Tolik
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To: Lando Lincoln; quidnunc; .cnI redruM; Valin; King Prout; SJackson; dennisw; monkeyshine; ...

Nailed It!
Moral Clarity BUMP !

This ping list is not author-specific for articles I'd like to share. Some for the perfect moral clarity, some for provocative thoughts; or simply interesting articles I'd hate to miss myself. (I don't have to agree with the author all 100% to feel the need to share an article.) I will try not to abuse the ping list and not to annoy you too much, but on some days there is more of the good stuff that is worthy of attention. You can see the list of articles I pinged to lately  on  my page.
You are welcome in or out, just freepmail me (and note which PING list you are talking about). Besides this one, I keep 2 separate PING lists for my favorite authors Victor Davis Hanson and Orson Scott Card.  

2 posted on 02/06/2006 10:27:58 AM PST by Tolik
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To: Tolik

David always nails it. We all should read him often

3 posted on 02/06/2006 10:32:23 AM PST by Roverman2K
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To: Tolik

We ask, “Can Islam and democracy co-exist?” What if Hamas has given us the answer?


Well said!

4 posted on 02/06/2006 10:32:23 AM PST by timsbella (Mark Steyn for Prime Minister of Canada!)
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To: Tolik

...why is this considered cutting edge? The only people who would consider this new and unexplored are Left wing historical revisionists...

5 posted on 02/06/2006 10:34:31 AM PST by Tzimisce (How Would Mohammed Vote? Hillary for President!)
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To: Tolik
"[Peace] initiatives, the so-called peaceful solutions, and the international conferences to resolve the Palestinian problem, are all contrary to the beliefs of the Islamic Resistance Movement" - Hamas Charter, Article 13.

"The Muslim women have a no lesser role than that of men in the war of liberation; they manufacture men.... raising the children upon the moral concepts and values which derive from Islam; and of educating their sons to observe the religious injunctions in preparation for the duty of Jihad awaiting them." - Hamas Charter, Articles 17&18.

"This, for the purpose of calling upon the Arab and Islamic peoples as well as their governments, popular and official associations, to fear Allah in their attitude towards and dealings with Hamas, and to be, in accordance with Allah's will, its supporters and partisans who extend assistance to it and provide it with reinforcement after reinforcement, until the Decree of Allah is fulfilled, the ranks are over-swollen, Jihad fighters join other Jihad fighters, and all this accumulation sets out from everywhere in the Islamic world, obeying the call of duty, and intoning "Come on, join Jihad!" Hamas will only be of help to all associations and organizations which act against the Zionist enemy and those who revolve in its orbit." - Hamas Charter, Article 33.

"Safety and security can only prevail under the shadow of Islam.... The members of other religions must desist from struggling against Islam." - Hamas Charter, Article 31.

"Jihad becomes a duty binding on all Muslims.... We must spread the spirit of Jihad among the [Islamic] Umma, clash with the enemies and join the ranks of the Jihad fighters.... I indeed wish to go to war for the sake of Allah! I will assault and kill, assault and kill, assault and kill." - Hamas Charter, Article 15.

"Allah is its goal, the Prophet its model, the Qur'an its Constitution, Jihad its path and death for the case of Allah its most sublime belief." - Hamas Charter, official slogan, Article 8.

Mohammed, The Mad Poet Quoted....

6 posted on 02/06/2006 11:19:39 AM PST by PsyOp (The commonwealth is theirs who hold the arms.... - Aristotle.)
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To: dennisw; Cachelot; Nix 2; veronica; Catspaw; knighthawk; Alouette; Optimist; weikel; Lent; GregB; ..
If you'd like to be on this middle east/political ping list, please FR mail me.

Articles on Israel can also be found by clicking on the Topic or Keyword Israel.


7 posted on 02/06/2006 11:21:41 AM PST by SJackson (elected members of Hamas: businesspeople, professionals, not terrorists. Scott McClellan)
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To: SJackson
We ask, “Can Islam and democracy co-exist?” What if Hamas has given us the answer?

Freepers, lets get on it! If the answer is NO then these things follow:
1. Promoting democracy is a waste of time. Democracy will just bring more radical and terrorist organizations in to legitimate power

2. The old "Shah" model, or even the "Saudi" model of client rulers makes sense.
3. Kissinger and the "real politic" wing was right, Bush and the neocons were wrong.
4. We are headed towards an inevitable world war with
Islam. We need to think what victory would look like.
5. People probably won't acknowledge #4 above until a few cities are nuked or some bio-outrage kills millions.

8 posted on 02/06/2006 12:15:12 PM PST by Jack Black
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