Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Paradigms and Points of View

Today the Western powers and media want to domesticate us like sheep, to keep us tame and domesticated. But why are animals domesticated? So that they can be slaughtered in the end!

Abu Bakar Bashir, August 21, 2006

"What we say is terrorists, terrorism, is evil, and America doesn't engage in it, and these guys do, yet, suddenly, our competition has discovered `fair and balanced,' but only when it's radical terrorism versus the United States. "

Roger Ailes, Fox News chairman

What do the people who call for coexistence with the West say? They call for the abolishment of the so-called 'clash of civilizations.' How can you call upon us to abolish the clash of civilizations, while America violently attacks Muslims in Iraq, in Afghanistan, and in all corners of the world?

Saudi Cleric Nasser bin Suleiman Al-'Omar, April 19, 2006

"Maybe the purpose of all this is to find out if America today is as strong as when we fought for our independence or when we fought for ourselves as a Union to end slavery or as strong as our fathers and grandfathers who fought to rid the world of Nazism and communism. The terrorists were counting on our cowardice. They've learned a lot about us since then. And so have we. "

Rudolph Giuliani, at a funeral for a friend

From a Muslim Brotherhood's website for children: Afghanistan is "currently under the oppressive American occupation that is now aspiring to control the Muslim world. [This occupation] began with Afghanistan, and then [moved on] to our beloved land Iraq; and lo, it now threatens Syria and so on. [U.S. President Bush] has declared a Crusade against the Muslim world, and our role is to prepare ourselves for jihad against the enemies of Allah."


"We're a peaceful nation. Yet, as we have learned, so suddenly and so tragically, there can be no peace in a world of sudden terror. In the face of today's new threat, the only way to pursue peace is to pursue those who threaten it."

President George W. Bush

"The spread of democracy is just an excuse. The same with the hunt for Osama bin Laden - it's just an excuse. It is Islam that the West can't stand... The attack on Islam is like a hand. One finger is the war in Iraq and Afghanistan. Another finger is the imprisonment of Muslims at Guantanamo Bay. The third finger is the publishing of the pictures of the Prophet Muhammad. We must see things as they are, and those pictures [of Muhammad] are one part of the military fight that the West is conducting against Islam..."

Mullah Krekar, Dagbladet (Norway), March 13, 2006.

"All attempts to destroy democracy by terrorism will fail. It must be business as usual."

Margaret Thatcher

Translations via MEMRI, http://memri.org
Other quotes from BellaOnline, http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art12842.asp

OH, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet,
Till Earth and Sky stand presently at God’s great Judgment Seat;
But there is neither East nor West, Border, nor Breed, nor Birth,
When two strong men stand face to face, tho’ they come from the ends of the earth!
--Rudyard Kipling

A very clear component in the Long War is a strong clash between points of view, references by which each group judges the actions of another. Lately, there has been a rising tide of voices crying out how the West is growing in Islamophobia. In the east, there is much anti-West racism, that seems to brand everybody not of them as wicked and evil because they are not either Arab or Islamic. The impression that gets sent west is one that seems to say, "If a Muslim is attacked, it is an attack on all Islam. If the West is attacked, it is the holy Resistance, and therefore good."

It is easy to see how this is developing. A Saudi writer commented, "We kill in the name of Allah, blow up cars in the name of Allah, and slit throats in the name of Allah and Islam, and then we protest when others depict the Muslims as terrorists." But currently most of the world's publicized acts of terrorism, that is, attacking indiscrimantly in a way that is not aimed particuarly at military targets, has been done by Muslims.

Well, duh!

In the east, instead of pointing out a causal relationship, " The Taliban regime in Afghanistan was attacked because they supported people who had been attacking the West and would not extradite them because they were protecting them," they see the multinational attack against the regime as proof that the West is trying to put down Islam. It is conveniently forgotten that the Taliban was doing things to its populace that they don't even do in Saudi Arabia in harshness and cruelty, and that a large number of Afghanis were fighting them in a civil war, and that the assembled troops were in part welcomed as help by those people. No, it was a West vs. East attack, the evil, Satanic forces of the non-Islamic world attacking the righteous.

One group sees the other as evil and unrighteous, and the other returns the favor. One group kills in a terrorist mode, indiscriminately killing non-combatants, because it's hard to attack military targets and they want to generate fear, because that is one of their weapons. They feel like David attacking the evil and unrighteous Goliath who is keeping them suppressed. In retaliation, the other group goes after those who want to kill it, using more sophisticated weapons, trying to operate in a world where the rules of war were designed to fight against nation-states, not pan-national religiously inspired movements. Others, seeing the hand of an oppressor at work, fall in line in solidarity with the first group, insuring more of the behavior, and the other side closes ranks and goes after those who want to kill it. And the spiral continues.

The West scratches it's head, looking for a way out and says, "You say we are bad when you attack us for saying members of your group are bad, because they attacked us earlier and we struck back to protect ourselves. Even though we do not condemn your faith but the actions of your people, you wonder why we have the attitude we do, " and in the east, they say, "The fact that your governments retaliate when our people attack you shows your black heart.
An attack on one of us acting in the name of God is an attack on both our faith and our righteousness, and this proves that your way of life and all of you are bad. We will keep fighting until you convert and become one of the righteous, or die."

A perfect formula for a long, long war.

The only ways out are either victory by one side or the other, or a shifting of the paradigm. And that will be the hardest war of all.


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