Archive for December 3rd, 2008

Muslim Voices Revisited

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2008

In July of 2007, I ran a relatively simple post called “Muslim Voices” It was a repost of a cartoon depicting the Muslim response to the Rishdie knighthood versus the London bombings.

Muslim Voices

Original Link.

This post has been one of our most commentated threads, from the most diverse audience. I have received death threats (which were forwarded to the FBI, by the way), comments from Muslims in many countries, Christians, Jews and even atheist.

Why did this one cartoon ignite such a response? It’s not any different from the posts I have done before that take Muslims to task for not shutting down the terrorist in their midst. Why was this one treated differently? I’m not at all sure.

In light of the recent Mumbai, India attacks, it will be interesting to see if another cartoon frame should be added that looks like the London one, but titled Mumbai.

“‘Blasphemy’ Ban Would Trample Religious Freedom” by Chuck Colson

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2008

I recently told you about the plight of Christians in the Indian state of Orissa. What I called a “wave of anti-Christian violence” has left dozens of people dead and tens of thousands homeless.

Well, according to recent reports, the “wave” has taken a sinister new turn—a reminder of the precarious state of religious freedom around the world.

According to Christian groups working in the area, Christian leaders, in particular, pastors, “carry a price on their heads.” The “going price” being offered by Hindu militants to “kill a pastor is $250.” If a person isn’t willing to go that far, he can receive “foreign liquor, chicken, mutton and weapons” for destroying Christian property and churches.

While extremist Hindu groups deny this particular charge, there’s no denying that Christians in Orissa are the victims of persecution. Nor is there any denying that anti-Christian violence is taking place around the world. For example, Iraq’s Christian population is being driven out of its ancestral home as its Muslim neighbors jockey for influence in post-Saddam Iraq.

Yet while the world becomes increasingly scrupulous to all sorts of rights, including the “rights” of animals and even plants (I’m not kidding), it largely ignores the ongoing assault on the most fundamental human right: religious freedom, freedom of conscience.

So while commentators were consumed with the results of California’s Proposition 8, banning same-sex marriage, they missed what was going at a special assembly of the UN. There, Islamic nations led by Saudi Arabia made progress toward criminalizing blasphemy.

While the declaration urging “respect” for religion, places of worship, and symbols sounds good, Donald Argue and Leonard Leo remind us that appearances are deceiving. These members of the Commission on International Religious Freedom called the declaration a “cleverly coded way of granting religious leaders the right to criminalize speech and activities that they deem to insult religion”—say, like prohibiting conversion from Islam to Christianity.

Given Saudi Arabia’s role in promoting the declaration and the regime’s abysmal record concerning religious freedom, it’s hard to disagree with that assessment. It’s difficult to imagine the Saudis making it easier for individuals to convert to and practice Christianity in their and other Islamic countries.

What Saudi clerics and Hindu activists call “respect” is more properly called “religious persecution.” This confusion is the result of what scholar Thomas Farr describes as the failure “to advance religious freedom in any political or cultural sense” around the world.

What’s needed, as Farr writes in his new book World of Faith and Freedom, is the message that religious freedom is a “precondition for stable self-government.” Government doesn’t give it; government can’t take it away. It “lies at the heart of human dignity” because it recognizes that there are areas where government has no place intruding.

The UN, as so often happens, pretends to defend human rights all the while doing the opposite. The price of freedom, we are reminded, is vigilance—and outrage expressed in cases like this.

Original Link.

“Enough of Radical Islam” by Ben Shapiro

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2008

Enough with the pseudonyms. Western civilization isnt at war with terrorism any more than it is at war with grenades. Western civilization is at war with militant Islam, which dominates Muslim communities all over the world. Militant Islam isnt a tiny minority of otherwise goodhearted Muslims. Its a dominant strain of evil that runs rampant in a population of well over 1 billion.

Enough with the psychoanalysis. They dont hate us because of Israel. They dont hate us because of Kashmir. They dont hate us because we have troops in Saudi Arabia or because we deposed Saddam Hussein. They dont hate us because of Britney Spears. They hate us because we are infidels, and because we dont plan on surrendering or providing them material aid in their war of aggressive expansion.

Enough with the niceties. We dont lose our souls when we treat our enemies as enemies. We dont undermine our principles when we post more police officers in vulnerable areas, or when we send Marines to kill bad guys, or when we torture terrorists for information. And we dont redeem ourselves when we close Guantanamo Bay or try terrorists in civilian courts or censor anti-Islam comics. When it comes to war, extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice, and moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.

Enough with the words. Talking with Iran without wielding the threat of force, either economic or military, wont help. Appealing to the United Nations, run by thugs and dictators ranging from Putin to Chavez to Ahmadinejad, is an exercise in pathetic futility. Evil countries dont suddenly decide to abandon their evil goals — they are forced to do so by pressure and circumstance.

Enough with the faux allies. We dont gain anything by pretending that Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are true allies. They arent. At best, they are playing both sides of the table. We ought to be drilling now in order to break OPEC. Building windmills isnt going to cut it. We should also be backing India to the hilt in its current conflict with Pakistan — unless Pakistan can destroy its terrorist element, India should be given full leeway to do what it needs to do. Russia and China, meanwhile, are facilitating anti-Western terrorism. Treating them as friends in this global war is simply begging for a backstabbing.

Enough with the myths. Not everyone on earth is crying out for freedom. There are plenty of people who are happy in their misery, believing that their suffering is part and parcel of a correct religious system. Those people direct their anger outward, targeting unbelievers. We cannot simply knock off dictators and expect indoctrinated populations to rise to the liberal democratic challenge. The election of Hamas in the Gaza Strip is more a rule than an exception in the Islamic world.

Enough with the lies. Stop telling us that Islam is a religion of peace. If it is, prove it through action. Stop telling us that President-elect Barack Obama will fix our broken relationship with the Muslim world. They hate Obama just as much as they hated President George W. Bush, although they think Obama is more of a patsy than Bush was. Stop telling us that we shouldnt worry about the Islamic infiltration of our economy. If the Saudis own a large chunk of our banking institutions and control the oil market, they can certainly leverage their influence in dangerous ways.

Enough. After the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, the plane downed in Pennsylvania, the endless suicide bombings, shootings and rocket attacks in Israel, the Bali bombings, the synagogue bombing in Tunisia, the LAX shootings, the Kenyan hotel bombing, the Casablanca attacks, the Turkey synagogue attacks, the Madrid bombings, the London bombings, and the repeated attacks in India culminating in the Mumbai massacres — among literally thousands of others — its about time that the West got the point: were in a war. Our enemies are determined. They will not quit just because we offer them Big Macs, Christina Aguilera CDs, or even the freedom to vote. They will not quit just because we ensure that they have Korans in their Guantanamo cells, or because we offer to ban The Satanic Verses (as India did). They will only quit when they are dead. It is our job to make them so, and to eliminate every obstacle to their destruction.

So enough. No more empty talk. No more idle promises. No more happy ignorance, half measures, or appeasement-minded platitudes. The time for hard-nosed, uncompromising action hasnt merely come — its been overdue by seven years. The voice of our brothers blood cries out from the ground.

Original Link.

“They’re Winning” by Steve Emerson

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2008

Terrorism expert Steve Emerson says there’s no hope of victory in the war on terrorism until we call it what it really is.

This past Saturday, the New York Times ran an op-ed piece entitled “What They Hate about Mumbai,” focusing specifically on the free market sins of that great city. With contrived evenhandedness, the op-ed managed to blame both Hindus and Muslim extremists—without blaming either party in particular for the murderous attacks.

Without realizing it, the Grey Lady had hit upon a great travel series. In the best spirit of jihad for dummies, why not a year’s worth of op-eds focusing on “Why They Hate____” filled in, mad-libs style, with the U.S., Britain, Italy, Spain, Germany, the Netherlands, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Israel, Jordan, Iraq, Egypt, Kenya, and the other 74 countries where radical Islam has reared its violent head? With only the moral blindness that the New York Times could capture, each op-ed would portray the attacks in a contrived even-handed way, without blaming, or even naming, the perpetrators of the attacks—Muslim jihadists.

Watching and reading the last 5 days of reports of the Mumbai attacks was an Alice in Wonderland experience. Even after an Islamic terrorist group took credit, TV anchors and reporters assiduously avoided the term Islamic terrorist. They must have consulted with the Thesaurus for the Politically Correct to determine that the word “gunmen” would not offend any jihadist.

The real truth is that there is war against the West and the Jews by Islamic jihadists.

On Wednesday, even though everyone knew by then that the perpetrators were jihadists, CNN constantly referred to the terrorists as “extremists”—with no modifier. Hell, they could have been the Basque ETA or the ultra right wing U.S. militia. Then a CNN anchor asked his guest with totally innocence, “Now why would an extremist group target a Jewish house of worship?” Because, my dear politically correct anchor, it was an Islamist terrorist group.

Read the rest of the article here.

“Where Terror Brings Traffic Jams” by Stan Goodenough

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2008

Stan Goodenough who runs the “Jerusalem Watchman” blog always has a clear eye on the happening in Israel. From his post “Where Terror Brings Traffic Jams”, I learned that Rivka Holtzberg, the wife of Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg, was pregnant.

Two traffic jams brought commuters to a stop in Israel today (Tuesday, December 2).

The first, a massive snarl-up, began building in the early hours of the morning on the ring roads around Tel Aviv. Tens of thousands of people on their way to work in the “White City” found themselves at a standstill. Israel’s Internal Security Services had received warning that Palestinian Arabs planned to carry out a terror attack, or series of attacks, in the bustling Mediterranean metropolis. Roadblocks were erected at the entrances to and exits from Tel Aviv, manned by police and the paramilitary Border Police. It was the most serious such alert for some time.

The plot was reportedly foiled around mid-morning when police swooped on a house in nearby Bat-Yam and nailed two Arabs. One of them led officers to a trash can where he had hidden explosives brought in earlier from the Samarian town of Jenin. They were intended for use in an attack on Tel Aviv’s Central Bus Station in the evening. The goal: to kill as many Jews as possible. The would-be murderer: a Muslim.

Barely was the alert lifted, and the traffic began to untangle, when a second jam set in in Jerusalem. As I was collecting my children from school, a police helicopter started circling overhead. Very quickly, the stream of traffic along the nearby main road stopped and began to back up.

This time it was not because of a planned terrorist attack, but a successful one. Fourteen hours earlier, an Israeli Air Force plane touched down at Ben Gurion Airport, where it was met by a large crowd of mourners. On board were the bodies of six Jews – victims of the Mumbai massacres that took place late last week. They had been murdered simply because they were Jews. Their killers were Muslims.

As I look out of my window towards the Mount of Olives where Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg, 29, and his 28-year-old wife Rivka and her unborn child were about to be interred, I hear, floating up from the Hinnom Valley, the Muslim muezzin chanting his call to prayer. His words were likely the same as the last ones heard by the Holtzberg’s before their killers fell upon them. “Allahu akber” – Allah is greater.

In Chabad House in Mumbai, and in Jerusalem, Israel, all praise for the killing of Jews goes to him.

Original Link.