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December 3, 2007

Important Perspectives On The Teddy-Bear Intifada

Topics: Understanding Islam

Although I linked to "Not Child's Play - The teddy-bear intifada" at NRO in a previous post today, calling it required reading - important perspectives from writers knowledgeable of Islamism, two particular pieces stand out in my mind and cause me to give them more attention.

Tawfik Hamid, currently a medical doctor and Muslim reformer living in the West, and a former member of the Islamist terrorist group - Jemaah Islamiya, has this to say about the silence of the world's Muslims over the teddy-bear riots in Sudan. The heads of national security in the West should listen to what he has to say:

We have much to learn from the teddy-bear riots in Sudan. We see, in stark relief, the hypocrisy of many Islamic organizations in the West; in democratic societies they demand freedom of religion and civil rights -- whether it is the right to wear the hijab, or have prayer rooms in football stadiums, or be provided with Islamic foot baths in college restrooms. In contrast, Westerners in Islamic nations lack basic civil rights. Today, because a student named a stuffed animal "Mohammed," Gilliam Gibbons rots in jail, and large mobs clamor for her decapitation.

The silence of the world's Muslims should send warning signals to heads
of national security. Powerful Islamic bodies have not condemned the violent reaction of the rioters, and Muslims -- who not long ago took to the streets to protest cartoons -- cannot muster a word in her defense. Why? Because Islamism is far more pervasive among Muslims than politicians and the media can comprehend. A community that is silent in the face of barbarism is one that tacitly endorses it. Who really is a "moderate Muslim?" Free nations must not allow our cherished tolerance to be exploited by an Islamist community which seeks to use our civil protections to end civil protections.

Victor DavisHanson, a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the author, most recently, of A War Like No Other. How the Athenians and Spartans Fought the Peloponnesian War, adds:
Same old, same old-whether a teddy bear, a cartoon, or a papal sermon, whether in Khartoum or Islamabad.

They take offense, we understand or rationalize or equivocate -- either out of condescension or fear of terrorism or worries over oil or multicultural guilt or all that and more.

Then the moderate Muslim spokesman is trotted out to condemn the nuttiness, but also to anguish over the media that "sensationalizes" and "inordinately" reports the latest Islamic lunacy.

We usually then get the silly Timothy McVeigh or IRA comparison, and forget the entire absurdity -- until the next opera, film, or novel brings out the fist-shaking, swords, and death threats.

The only drama seem to be our infighting over whether this reflects Islam itself or the reaction of radical Islamists angry at the modern world -- or whether at this point that really matters any longer anyway.

It's in all of our interests that we take the time to read more perspectives on the teddy-bear intifada: Not Child's Play - The teddy-bear intifada.

For a truly sobering wake-up call, watch this O'Reilly video with Brigitte Gabriel on the Brit teacher teddy-bear jihad. In the video, Eric Vickers who opposes U.S. government's investigation of Muslim groups with possible terrorist ties, and who is a spokesman for the American Muslim Council, and an ardent Islamic activist who has gone as far as speculating that the space shuttle Columbia disaster in 2003 may have been an act of divine intervention against Americans since it took place - with what he deems great symbolic importance - over Palestine, Texas - dances around condemning Islamists and blames everyone else but Islamists for Muslim-related violence.

Just as Tawfik Hamid says, "The silence of the world's Muslims should send warning signals to heads of national security. Powerful Islamic bodies have not condemned the violent reaction of the rioters, and Muslims -- who not long ago took to the streets to protest cartoons -- cannot muster a word in her defense. Why?"

I think we all know the answer to the why, or at least by now, should.

Required reading:

Does anyone ever notice that the Muslims we consider our allies are either former Muslims (see, e.g., Ibn Warraq), secular Muslims (people who maintain a cultural affinity to Islam but don't care much about doctrine), or well-meaning reformer Muslims who either forthrightly acknowledge that Islam must be changed fundamentally (see, e.g., Irshad Manji) or rationalize that Islamic scripture does not have to be taken literally and that the bellicose passages are somehow limited to the circumstances of the Seventh Century (rationalizations that are not very compelling no matter how much we want to believe them)? - Andy McCarthy
Be informed. Do follow the link and read it all....

Posted by Abdul at December 3, 2007 7:49 AM



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