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Should America blame itself for the Muslim world's hatred?
Jewish World Review ^ | Oct. 27, 2003 | Jonathan Tobin

Posted on 10/27/2003 4:50:25 AM PST by SJackson

Even in a world where anti-Semitism is becoming increasingly accepted, occasionally someone can say something that shocks even the French. The speech of Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad at a meeting of a conference of Islamic countries last week contained so much blatant anti-Jewish bigotry that French President Jacques Chirac felt compelled to condemn it. To the applause of his fellow Muslim world leaders, Mahathir informed the world that it was being run "by the Jews." The Malaysian spiced this rather routine litany of anti-Semitic invective by going on to state that the Jews "invented … human rights and democracy so that persecuting them would appear to be wrong, so that they can enjoy equal rights with others."

To his credit, President Bush made a point of personally refuting Mahathir's screed.

It would be nice to think that Mahathir's speech was just the ravings of a nutty Malaysian. That appeared to be the spin the administration wanted to put on the affair. Even as she condemned Mahathir's words, National Security Advisor Condoleeza Rice tempered that by saying, "I don't think they are emblematic of the Muslim world."


Perhaps Rice missed the fact that Ahmed Maher, foreign minister of Egypt, supposedly a U.S. ally, praised Mahathir's speech as "a very, very wise assessment." And Hamid Karzai, recently installed by the United States as the leader of Afghanistan, called it "very correct."

And those were just the comments from the "moderates." Far from being unusual, this type of Jew-hatred has become typical in an Arab and Muslim world that has become the global producer of anti-Semitism. Jews and Americans have become the boogeymen of the Muslim imagination, filling heads with ready-made excuses for the failure of Muslim civilization to keep up with the West.

This drivel has been hammered into the minds of young Muslims around the world in schools paid for by America's Saudi "allies."

But, predictably, for some Americans the answer lies not in confronting the dementia that passes for wisdom in the Muslim world, but for America to change its policies. It didn't take long for such a suggestion to appear on the Op-Ed page of The New York Times. The author was Times columnist Paul Krugman, the Princeton economist who usually confines himself to rabidly partisan attacks on Bush's domestic policies.

But on Oct. 21, Krugman told his readers that the Malaysian leader isn't really such a bad guy.

In a piece titled "Listening to Mahathir," Krugman said that the bulk of the speech was an accurate depiction of Muslim problems. If he indulged in Jew-baiting, we should, Krugman said, understand he was just throwing his constituents "rhetorical red meat" as part of a "delicate balancing act aimed at domestic politics."

In other words, Mahathir was no different from, say, a politician in the American South in the 1950s who had "progressive" views, but who ranted about the threat to white America from blacks in order to stay in office. Except, of course, that Krugman and the rest of 2003 America no longer believes that such balancing acts are either justified or defensible.


According to Krugman, it really isn't Mahathir's fault that he has to say such nasty things. "The rising tide of anti-Americanism and anti-Semitism" is, according to this sage of Princeton, due to Bush's war in Iraq and "unconditional support for Ariel Sharon."

Krugman's view is in line with the views of a State Department panel that recently toured the world trying to find out why Muslims don't like us. That panel — packed with anti-Israel academics — came back to tell us that America's bad image in the Muslim world was largely our own fault. They think that we should increase our efforts to make nice with Arabs and Muslims, and even rethink our foreign policy.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS: worldopinion
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1 posted on 10/27/2003 4:50:25 AM PST by SJackson
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To: SJackson
Well, if you listen to the Left, North Korea was peaceful until Bush came around, Muslims got along great with Jews until Bush came around, Castro was not repressive until Bush came around and Arabs did not become "radicalized" until Bush came around.
2 posted on 10/27/2003 4:57:43 AM PST by Guillermo ( Proud Infidel)
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To: SJackson
3 posted on 10/27/2003 5:05:15 AM PST by Stultis
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To: SJackson
And the New York Times just sinks deeper into the poo.
4 posted on 10/27/2003 5:10:56 AM PST by DeuceTraveler
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To: SJackson
Radical Islam is going the way of the Nazis --blaming all of their society's ills on a Jewish scapegoat and stirring up anti-semetic sentiments.

The reason these Muslim countries have a low standard of living has far more to do with political repression and a lack of basic human rights than any Jewish conspiracy.

5 posted on 10/27/2003 5:20:07 AM PST by The Great RJ
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To: SJackson
If the "Muslim World" hates us, how come every soldier I hear from who spent time in Iraq says that nearly all the civilians were friendly and appreciative?

Our media loves reporting about foreigners who hate us, so they have a de facto alliance with the Muslim fanatics just like they did with the "antiwar" protestors in 1980s western Europe.


6 posted on 10/27/2003 5:24:39 AM PST by E Rocc (Collectivism is to freedom as raw sewage is to fresh water.)
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To: SJackson
Should America blame itself for the Muslim world's hatred?

No, but of course some American's will. However, they won't understand the entirety of the question. The word "itself" will escape them. They will want to blame others in America for Muslim's hatred. What they don't understand that fundamental Islam fears and therfore hates the freedom that we and many other western cultures were built upon and continue to enjoy. The Islamists don't care what political stripe we wear "left or right"; they want to kill us all. Oh the moderate Muslim will say they want to convert us to their glorious way of life, but in the end knowing "free" people will never bow to their insidious philosphy even the moderates will agree to destroy us and the freedom we represent.

The "religion of peace" is built upon and sustained by hatred and fear. That is the single issue that most if not all apologists for Islam leading right up to those that say "we are to blame" fail to understand.

7 posted on 10/27/2003 5:26:47 AM PST by ImpBill ("America! ... Where are you now?")
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To: SJackson
The article you posted on Friday just NAILS people like Krugman for who and what they are. It bears repeating. BTTT

Shame, Honor and Terror in the Middle East-The Arab addiction to irregular warfare ^ | October 24, 2003 | David Leo Gutmann
Posted on 10/24/2003 8:38 AM EDT by SJackson

The rush of Arab guerrilla fighters to Iraq following the defeat of Saddam’s regular forces has mobilized a corresponding rush of pundits to the media outlets, eager to instruct us as to why the Arab Street is so angry with America.

For the most part they name the usual suspects, the “Marxist–Lite” factors that our academicians and Middle East experts are comfortable with: that ours was a Capitalist war for oil; that we are seen as the new Western colonialists; that we support the settler state, Israel, against the dispossessed Palestinians, and so forth.

Mention is rarely made of long-established Arab military traditions, or of irrational features of Arab psychology, particularly their profound vulnerability to shame, and loss of honor.

In regard to military history, the Arab’s preference for guerrilla over conventional war reflects a long tradition, one that began in antiquity, with the Bedouin raiders. Their way of war- brilliantly described by T.E. Lawrence in The Seven Pillars of Wisdom – is based on hit and run forays by camel-mounted Bedouin who appear suddenly out of the desert, tear up an unsuspecting enemy camp, and then disappear back into the waste, carrying “honorable” loot: thoroughbred horses, camels and women.

The traditional Bedouin created a nearly pure “Shame” culture, whose goal was to avoid humiliation, and to acquire sharraf - honor. Thus, the goal of the Bedouin raid is not to finally win a war, for such inter-tribal conflict is part of the honorable way of life, and should never really end. The essential goals of the raid are to take wealth – not only in goods, but also in honor - and to impose shame on the enemy.

Any opponent worth fighting is by definition honorable, and pieces of his honor can be ripped from him in a successful raid, to be replaced by figments of the attacker’s shame.

The successful attacker has “exported” some personal shame to the enemy, and the enemy’s lost honor has been added to the raider’s store.

This calculus of shame and sharraf is an important element in all Arab warfare, whether waged by Saddam Hussein, Yasir Arafat, or a Bedouin sheik. In particular, that same dynamic drives the Arab preference for irregular over conventional war.

Irregular tactics - spiced with Terror – have on occasion defeated regular armies; but win, lose, or draw in the military sense, terror tactics can be a far more efficient means of meeting psychological goals - i.e., shedding shame and capturing honor - than all-out war. Here are some reasons:

First off, guerrilla warfare is the only form of combat in which Arab fighters regularly outperform the West. Little wonder then that irregular conflict, blended with terrorism, has always been the default military option for the Arabs, and one which they eagerly take up after their regular armies have been humiliated in the field.

Thus, the Palestinians, backed by the whole Arab world, turned to terrorism after the calamitous defeat of the Egyptian, Syrian and Jordanian armies in the Six-Day’s War, their fantasy being that the Fedayeen would redeem Arab honor and give Allah another chance to crush the Jews.

Secondly, In terms of spiritual as against purely military goals, the irregular fighter never really loses. At the battle’s end Goliath may own the bloody field, but David the stripling is always the moral victor. By crushing David, Goliath only adds to his own shame; and even if he loses, David always adds to his honor. For if David falls, his honor can never be smirched or stolen; and as a martyr he casts irrevocable shame on those who killed him.

The effectiveness of terrorist irregulars would no doubt be increased if and when they acquire weapons of mass destruction.

But until then, their material impact is limited.

They kill a few soldiers and civilians; they scare off some investors and tourists.

But it is in the moral domain, on the battleground of David and Goliath, that they have a destructive effect far beyond their numbers.

Thirdly, the terrorist’s actions have the effect of imposing shame on the same enemy whose people he kills.

A major aim of terrorist operations is to bring about the symbolic emasculation of the enemy’s military and civilian populations.

Thus, as the enemy non-combatants give in to their fear of terror attacks and huddle passively at home, they become vulnerable to the terrorist’s boast, recently broadcast by Hamas:

“We will win, because the Jews love life too much, while we love death.”

At this point, the terrorist has succeeded in multiple ways: Insult has been added to injury, and his enemies have been psychologically castrated, symbolically re-gendered into women.

But for the terrorist to succeed militarily (as well as symbolically and psychologically) he needs to recruit supporters in the enemy camp.

Shame societies avoid humiliation and attract support by blaming others for their defeats.

Once established, their Victim Identity achieves for them two major goals: it triggers the rage that fuels the worst terrorist outrages, and it mobilizes the terrorist’s natural allies in the enemy camp.

Thus, even as the victim posture reduces the Arab’s shame, it provokes a predictable and corresponding guilt reaction among the “progressive,” peacenik elements of the enemy society.

The voices of “Peace Now” and “Move On” zealots are heard, all of them shedding their own guilt by accusing their fellow citizens of driving the victims of oppression to terrorism.

“One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter” becomes the dove’s mantra.

In this manner, the progressives become useful idiots for the terrorists.

As “transmission belts” they abet the terrorist’s mission of spreading guilt, shame and defeatism among the target population.

Egged on by a leftist media that deplores the struggle as a “quagmire,” the terrorized, demoralized civilians soon demand an end to the long, costly, inconclusive struggle.

Finally, like the French in Algeria, the Soviets in Afghanistan, and the Israelis in Lebanon, the humiliated enemy, defeated by a numerically inferior but spiritually superior force, would slink away, carrying the burden of Arab shame with them as they go.

This is the catastrophic outcome that we are now approaching in Iraq.

A premature American pullout would ignite a wave of Jihadist triumphalism, and bring on terrorist attacks, complete with WMD, that could soon render intolerable most urban life in the West.

The military effort against terrorism is vital, but not enough; we have to fight on the psychological /spiritual/ conceptual fronts as well. Where to begin?

Only regime changes towards democracy can break up the natural, hard-wired linkage between shame, victimhood and terrorism that we find in the Islamic societies.

The sentimental symbiosis between the shame society’s “victims” and the “Liberal Guilt” subcultures of the targeted democracies is equally “genetic,” hence unbreakable.

But there is a third crucial link in the terror chain that is not hard-wired, that can be weakened: the dialogue between the Jihad-friendly "liberal" elites and their larger, usually conservative audience, the citizens who consume their classroom lectures, their editorials, their politicized news reports and films.

When, in a democracy, this citizenry loses heart, then the military war against terror is soon abandoned.

In a democracy we cannot, even in wartime, interfere with the free expression of defeatist, “Amerika” bashing sentiment; but we can, in ways consistent with the First Amendment, mount rhetorical counterattacks, from the conservative and centrist camps, that neutralize its demoralizing effect.

If we are to defeat terror, a kind of regime change is required: on our campuses, in our press, and in Hollywood.

And responsive to that need, previously silenced voices are being heard.

Organizations like Students for Academic Freedom, FIRE, Campus Watch, ACTA and the National Association of Scholars are fighting the good fight for free speech on our thought-policed campuses; and networks like Fox News are providing pulpits for informed conservative opinion on TV.

Perhaps most hopeful of all, a lively and uninhibited blogger’s Samizdat offers new internet outlets, unmonitored by the Thought Police, for a new generation of gifted commentators who gleefully and intelligently refute the pious orthodoxies of the pro-jihad Left.

Finally, the battle against terror is won or lost at home.

If we refuse to be guilty about the war that we have to fight, and if we can refuse the temptation of a shameful retreat, then we will eventually prevail on the fighting fronts as well.

8 posted on 10/27/2003 5:45:34 AM PST by Matchett-PI (Why do America's enemies desperately want DemocRATS back in power?)
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To: Matchett-PI
Bump for later....
9 posted on 10/27/2003 5:47:35 AM PST by Rummyfan
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To: SJackson
And just what will be the fall-out of electing Joseph Lieberman, a very jewish man, to the office of POTUS?

With our enemies ranting and raving anti-jewish rhetoric, how in the world could a jewish President even seem remotely sane?

Wouldn't Arabs everywhere, including here, rise up and condemn us even more? To me, it would be like putting a bulls-eye on our back.

Mr. Lieberman seems to have more common sense and "niceness" than his co-horts, but I would truly fear if he won the office.

10 posted on 10/27/2003 5:56:31 AM PST by SnarlinCubBear (to you he's a me he's short, hairy, and cannot speak clearly. I have no problem w/this.)
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To: SJackson
Most statements coming out of Washington on this issue, like Rice's, are something between a prayer and a hope that if we ignore the problem, maybe it will just go away.

This is not the only subject the political class likes to ignore. Illegal immigration is another.

We delude ourselves to our own mortal peril.

11 posted on 10/27/2003 5:57:40 AM PST by Gritty
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To: SJackson
Muslim children are raised to hate infidels. This has been so for centuries. So somehow Americans are to blame for this hatred that has existed since long before the new world was discovered, let along American was founded?

Has the educational dumbing down taken hold to that extent?
12 posted on 10/27/2003 6:02:57 AM PST by Let's Roll (And those that cried Appease! Appease! are hanged by those they tried to please!")
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To: SJackson
13 posted on 10/27/2003 6:13:48 AM PST by conservativecorner
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To: SJackson
We are at a crossroad that most politicians evidently believe that the average American is too dumb to understand.

The entire world is becoming more and more evil every decade. The French sneer at those that hold to a difference between good/evil as engaging in primative moralizing. "Truth is relative", is the thin veneer of an excuse thrown out by those preferring to do evil. This is the chism that continues to grow wider and deeper between the USofA and the rest of the world. "Back to the Dark Ages", should be the favorite bumper sticker for Europeans as they throw off every moral lesson of history and embrace the abuse of despots and dictators toward their own citizens as being a neccessity at times and in certain situations.

Rather than condem Saddam's "Kingdom of Torture", France embraces it as a way to unify and control the violent, ignorant, clans that inhabit that area of the world. France could care less if a soccer player is being hung by his heels and tortured, or which school girl is being yanked out of class and raped, as long as it doesn't interfere with buisness.

In the interest of painting an honest picture, the USofA wasn't very concerned either as long as Saddam was content to remain a small player on the world's stage. But the maniac wasn't content to do that. The American response could have been to level the entire country and everyone in it rather than give the general population there a chance for more freedom and self determination, but that is not the way we operate.

The new ideal in Europe is for very limited freedom for their own people, as the rights of the socialist state becomes paramount. We are resented for not embracing the same, so attempts are made against the people's of the USofA by underhanded means via their own politicians, political parties, ngo's, the U.N., and trade agreements.

The answer of demoncrats is to go along with the direction the rest of the world is headed, and repubicats are moving in that direction themselves. The people in the crosshairs are those decendents of freedom in the, so far very successful attempts, to wrest away from them their right to self determination, the right to determine and direct the future of their nation, control of their own private property, and gun ownership. The weapons used aginst them are rabid immigration, a criminal and activist judicial system, gun control, removal from them of their control of their national resources, wealth, trade protections, sovereignty, jobs and consitution. "Just because you are paranoid doesn't mean they are not out to get you", is not just a river in Egypt anymore.=o)
14 posted on 10/27/2003 6:20:47 AM PST by MissAmericanPie
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To: The Great RJ
15 posted on 10/27/2003 6:22:33 AM PST by southriver4
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To: dennisw; Cachelot; Yehuda; Nix 2; veronica; Catspaw; knighthawk; Alouette; Optimist; weikel; ...
If you'd like to be on or off this middle east/political ping list, please FR mail me.
16 posted on 10/27/2003 6:54:32 AM PST by SJackson
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To: SJackson
"Should America blame itself for the Muslim world's hatred?"

Of course not. People are always infuriated when truth confronts their delusional systems, and they always blame it on the truth-teller.

"the Jews 'invented … human rights and democracy so that persecuting them would appear to be wrong, so that they can enjoy equal rights with others.'"

"Liberals" and Muslims have many things in common--but in nothing are they more alike than their convoluted logic and their fanatical commitment to delusions.

17 posted on 10/27/2003 6:55:39 AM PST by Savage Beast (Truth is a relentless searchlight!)
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To: SnarlinCubBear
I hope you are not saying that being a Jew disqualifies anyone from the presidency, or any other public office, in this land. We have quite enough of this sort of religious discrimination, both overtly, in terms of active antisemitic, anti-catholic, or anti "fundamentalist" rhetoric directed at candidates, and covertly, in terms of the kind of opposition to good, principled candidates for office who adhere to and profess their religious and ethical principles publicly.

Lieberman, although a fellow Jew, would never receive my vote for president, but because of his policies, not his religion. But disqualified? Please NOT!
18 posted on 10/27/2003 6:58:35 AM PST by MainFrame65
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To: Matchett-PI; MissAmericanPie; E Rocc
The article you posted on Friday just NAILS people like Krugman for who and what they are. It bears repeating. BTTT

An interesting book on press coverage, used briefly as a J-School text, which you can usually find used. Big Story: How the American Press and Television Reported and Interpreted the Crisis of Tet 1968 in Vietnam and Washington [ABRIDGED, by Peter Braestrup

19 posted on 10/27/2003 7:12:43 AM PST by SJackson
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To: SnarlinCubBear
Wouldn't matter, there's plenty of anti-American and anti-Christian rhetoric to go around as well. They're not killing Jews in Southeast Asia, or in Iraq. They're killing infidels.
20 posted on 10/27/2003 7:15:58 AM PST by SJackson
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