Friday, September 10, 2010

Pastor Jones: A Propagandist's Dream Reverend

Pakistani Christians shout slogans during a protest in Lahore to denounce the planned burning (AFP)

It is amazing to me that a country at war, and the US no less--which has still in place draconian laws allowing for "monitoring" citizens and "detaining" them; which still finds a need for the Guantanamo Bay prison camp, and feels compelled to proceed with a military trial against a "enemy combattant" who was 15 at the time of his capture, and mostly likely (or definitely depending on the pre-doctored report) too severely injured from being shot in the back twice, and slumped in the wrong direction to perpetrate the alleged crime--cannot manage to contain one of its own citizens, Pastor Terry Jones,  whose proposed actions are deemed by the General in Command (Petraeus), Secretary of State (Clinton), Secretary of Defense (Gates), Commander in Chief and President (Obama), UN Secretary General (Ban Ki-Moon), heads of state of national Allies (Afghanistan, India, Indonesia), and INTERPOL a high risk for harm to Americans, military and civilian, a setback to war efforts, and a risk to the civilian populations of allied nations.

But then I come from a country where at the first sign of truly violent ethno-political terrorism (not the longstanding bombs in mailboxes stuff) the Prime Minister imposed the War Measures Act (last in force decades prior). A Liberal and a leftist one at that (think Democrat on the left where some think Obama is), Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau had no reluctance in using wartime laws to ferret out the Marxist-Leninist Front de libération du Québec (FLQ) and dispense with them.

At the time the action was controversial. Canada was not at war, and there was no clear understanding of the extent or power of the group, which was an internal Quebec separatist one. After setting off over 95 bombs in the period 1963-1970 their violence extended to the building of an arsenal, and the planned abduction of the American Consul. They did abduct, in separate incidents over days, the Minister of Labour and Vice-Premier for the Province of Quebec, Pierre Laporte, and British Trade Commissioner James Cross. While the 2 were held for ransom, and as leverage to gain media attention for the FLQ cause, Pierre Laporte was eventually killed, and James Cross eventually released.

During the time of the October Crisis Trudeau brought in the Canadian Army to back up the Montreal police. This in itself was controversial. An exchange with a reporter who questioned whether the Prime Minister would really do as he said led Trudeau to make the remark which best defines his personality and his politics:

CBC Archives: Just Watch Me, 1970
NB 5:45-6:50

Think I'm overreacting? Just Read This:
Koran burning outrage builds as Muslims mark Eid

(AFP) – 3 hours ago

KABUL — The Afghan president said Friday a US pastor "should not even think" of burning the Koran at a provocative event marking 9/11, as Indonesia's leader said nothing less than world peace was at stake.

In a turbulent start to the festival of Eid al-Fitr, when Muslims worldwide mark the end of the Ramadan fasting month, radical Florida evangelist Terry Jones issued a heavily conditioned offer to call off his event.

"We have heard that in the US, a pastor has decided to insult Korans. Now although we have heard that they are not doing this, we tell them they should not even think of it," Afghan President Hamid Karzai said.

"By burning the Koran they cannot harm it. The Koran is in the hearts and minds of one-and-a-half billion people. (But) insulting the Koran is an insult to nations," Karzai said in an Eid message.

The commander of US-led forces in Afghanistan, General David Petraeus, the UN mission in Afghanistan and leading aid organisations have all said the burning will endanger the lives of Afghans and foreigners if it goes ahead.

Jones said on Thursday he was putting his event planned for Saturday -- the anniversary of the September 11 attacks -- on hold and would cancel it if a planned Islamic cultural centre near Ground Zero in New York was relocated.

Thousands of Afghans marched through a small town northeast of Kabul on Thursday, chanting anti-US and anti-Christian slogans to protest against the Koran-burning plans.

There have also been several protests by Islamists in Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim-majority country, which has suffered years of extremist violence.

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono lashed out anew against Jones and his tiny evangelical denomination, located in Gainesville, Florida, a day after calling on US President Barack Obama to intervene.

"This threatens peace and international security. This is something that endangers harmony among religious people," Yudhoyono said in a nationally televised address marking the end of Ramadan.

"I'm of course aware of the reported cancellation of the deplorable act by Terry Jones. However, none of us can be complacent until such a despicable idea is totally extinguished," he said.

"Therefore I continue to urge the government and people of the United States to ensure the prevention of such an incomprehensible, irrational and immoral act."

The imam leading the New York project has denied any quid-pro-quo deal with Jones to move the planned centre, prompting the Florida pastor to accuse him of acting in bad faith and threaten afresh to go ahead with the burning.

Yudhoyono had written to Obama to appeal for his personal intervention, saying that torching the Koran would cripple the US president's attempts to mend relations with the Muslim world.

Obama spent several years in Indonesia as a child after his mother married an Indonesian Muslim.

Concern is so high that US Defense Secretary Robert Gates put in a phone call to Jones to try to get him to change his mind, warning that the Koran burning would put US soldiers' lives at risk.

The State Department warned citizens of "the potential for anti-US demonstrations in many countries... some of which may turn violent", and global police agency Interpol predicted "tragic consequences".

The governments of Pakistan and India, which after Indonesia have the world's biggest Muslim populations and also suffer from communal violence, have added their voices to a chorus of global outrage against Jones.
Indian Muslims burn a US flag in Ahmedabad to protest the plan

The US already is at war; they already have wartime laws in place; why do they allow a previously obscure Florida Pastor to seriously jeopardize their war effort, and American lives?

Seriously, not a rhetorical question. Any ideas about why? Freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and freedom of action are always curtailed in times of war, and have been already in the US. So why is Pastor Jones allowed to carry on so? Why go along with an action which is deliberately provocative, combining 3 symbols--the Holy Book of Islam, the 2nd greatest celebration of  the Islamic faith, Eid Al-Fitr, and terrorism--joined in an emotional, dramatic display of contempt, and allow Pastor Jones a public and publicized burning of the Quran on the anniversary of 9/11? Why arm the other side in a War on Terror, and with propaganda material so good it would have been hard to dream up, except for a Pastor with a truly inflated sense of self-importance and a mastery of how to manipulate the media?

Canada, "America's Hat", is shaking its head in disbelief. At least this Canadian is.

Related Post:
Yet Another Ignominious Nobody Finds Fame Through Islamophobia: Burning A Holy Book in Commemoration of 9/11

19 comments:

Susanne said...

I think most Americans can't understand why this is such a huge deal. So a person decides to burn books. Why is this a threat to world peace? People in Muslims countries regularly burn our flag, they walk on the Israeli flag to make political statements in protest. To my knowledge, we've never threatened the end of world peace because they wanted to show their extreme dislike of us. So this man hates Islam? Is that a crime? Some people hate Christianity and any other religion. Do we all threaten the end of world peace because of someone else's dislike?

I'm not saying burning Qurans is wise or right or tasteful. But the reaction is bizarre. Why make such a huge deal about one man's hatefulness? Let him be hateful and don't give him the time of day. The fact that he is known worldwide is amusing because the media is at fault for that. I doubt people across the world would have known about this one man with a small church if it hadn't been for how they advertised (free advertisement!) for his Quran burning. You have to ignore such people.

This is what I find ridiculous: that we are even writing about this goober from day to day and give a flip about what his plans are for tomorrow.

Get over it. Ignore the stupidity.

oby said...

I agree with Susanne...but I don't think he is picking the date because of Eid...he is picking it because of 9/11. It will be September 11th...Eid happens to fall on that date this year.

But if we want to focus on the date...how about Rauf's intentions to open Park 51 on September 11th? That is no mistake in the date. No conflicting holidays then. It is a very deliberate date. People are upset about the date. Why doesn't he say he will move it to a less contentious day? He doesn't HAVE to open it on that day if it makes people uncomfortable and IMO if he truly is concerned about "goodwill" shold take at least that into consideration. It cuts both ways.

countrygirl said...

As I said before burning any kind of book is plain stupid but as someone is entitled to offend christians i don't see why someone can't offend muslims, or they are becoming a "protected folk"...I mean severals year ago a so called artist had a "bright" idea to put a crucifix in a jar full of piss, there was an outcry of course but nothing of this proportion.

Just wondering in islam it's forbidden any human rappresentation because it could lead to idolatry but it seems that some muslims had elevated a book (the koran) as an idol. as someone said it's only a book, you can burn it but you can't destroy the message....on the lighter side if you downloaded on your HD and delete il what is going to happen...isn't it the same thing?

It seems that muslim in islamic countries can be offended by severals thing, they were riled up by the danish cartoons, by a teddy bear, by the book of Rushid, by south park....right now in the western world many artists/writers/cartoonists are self censoring themselves for the fear of a possible muslim reaction and several people are getting tired of this, I'm wondering what would happen if someone would produce a movie like life of Brian (one of my fav movie) that would spoof Mohamed?

Wendy said...

It matters not "why" Muslims get upset but they do and there's nothing to be done about it. The pastor got his 15 minutes 'plus' of fame and that's a pity.

I'm sure nobody would keep poking a potentially violent dog or horse or whatever if they knew it would attack. Doesn't make it right that the animal can be vicious but why provoke it???

Susanne said...

"I'm sure nobody would keep poking a potentially violent dog or horse or whatever if they knew it would attack. Doesn't make it right that the animal can be vicious but why provoke it??? "

Yet, why let an animal control us to the extent that we go out of our way to tiptoe around it and fear it?

I'd never say the dear reverend's threats were in good taste or wise, however, I also condemn people who react to hatred with more hatred. And I know it's not just Muslims who do it.

I kind of like the "overcome evil with good" (Romans 12:21) advice and wish more of us would put that into practice instead of what we usually resort to.

I thought these verses were kind of fitting to all that is going on in the world today.

"Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble. Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing,
because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing." (I Peter 3:8,9)

Majed said...

Many suphisticated Muslims and wise heads console themselves with a lot of things,but it is just like someones `s daughter or sister is being raped and he is saying it is ok dear it is just your body but remember your soul is still intact. resorting the allegedly resorting to the word of Allah in 41/34 (The good deed and the evil deed are not alike. Repel the evil deed with one which is better, then lo! he, between whom and thee there was enmity (will become) as though he was a bosom friend.

About 9/11 I have always been skeptical about the truth behind it based only on the ground that we are still too good and at present too stupid and dull for such a clever and organized misdeed, besides that the dust surrounding the twin towers demolition has not yet settled,( here is the site for american engineers and archetects for 9/11 truth http: //www.ae911truth.org. ), that is why, I think Muslims should be given the benefit of the doubt, and shall be considered innocent untill proven guilty,and even if it was proven, why should all muslims feel guilty and responsible for deeds of a bunch of insane and misguided individuals just the Same as America and Christians in general do not want to have anything do with Mr.Jones and his church .
(but we also should not forget that the US and the christian world punished millions of innocent muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan for that) in the context above it is just fine to build the ground ziro islamic center and Muslims should not bow to the insane Mr. Jones blackmail who was actually seeking a scape and does not mind getting some face-keeping bargain on his way out. but as is said in the Quran that he wished to burn ( it may be that you dislike a thing while Allah has placed abundant good in it.) may be the outcome of this adversity is making the name of islam and quran reach a record number of ears out of which at least hundreds of thousands doubtfuls would want to hear and know about a reasonable God , and will be happy to learn about it.

And I personally think what one can take or not take depends on how thick his skin is and when is concerns our religion without shame I say we have very very thin skin may be because ...... and in this case it was just like Mr.Jones knocking at each muslim door and saying you eunuchs i am going to burn the holy words of God what are going to do about that. it is just human psychology that starts working here , and it always was and will be that Testosterone, courage , strength , violence , wars, demolition,victories, weapons that ever made history, Peace is only those few blank pages in human history.

Chiara said...

Susanne-thank you very much for both of your detailed posts here. I think one of the reasons I feel compelled to speak up about the Pastor is because I think that most Americans don't understand it, and that the debate has been wrongly framed by the media as American freedom of speech vs Islamic irrationality. It is important to understand that Muslims don't view it that way for the most part, and that, from a practical point of view, there are genuine security risks for US citizens abroad, in uniform or not.

I agree that a little more adherence to New Testament wisdom would go a long way. Seems the Pastor skipped those bits!:)

Thanks again for your comments.

Oby--I do think that the Pastor is capitalizing on this being Eid, 9/11, and an election year. I don't see the Park51 controversy the same way, because of the stated intent of the religious leaders heading each, and their respective tract records. Thanks very much for your comment, which made me clarify my own thinking further.

Chiara said...

Countrygirl--how 2 paesane like us can disagree so much is amazing! At least we do it as amiche! I think that the deliberately "teach them a lesson" attitude of a clearly Islamophobic Pastor making a very overt public gesture of insulting a faith group on one of their holy days puts this in a different category than the usual thumbing one's nose at a religion. It is, in my opinion, particularly offensive in light of linking Islam to terrorism, by the choice of the day, and thus slamming American Muslims who lost family in the 9/11 attacks, who serve in the American Armed Forces, and all Americans living and serving overseas who are at increased risk of reprisal--like it or not. To me it is just way to close to war crime against the US to be tolerated. Thanks again for your comment. You always make me think!

Wendy--I agree fully with your first paragraph, and I understand why you are using that analogy in the second--which is the premise set by some. I agree that in this circumstance, even if one did believe that Muslims or Islam were irrational it is neither the time nor the way to be administering such "lessons" to others by a Pastor whose speech and actions themselves are violent. Thanks very much for your comment!

Chiara said...

Majed-thank you very much for your thoughtful comment, and for the link to the American Engineers and Architects for 9/11 Truth. I had included the video by their founder on the next post but didn't add the link to the website in until you reminded me so thanks again. I hope you do enjoy the post on 9/11--9 Years on, as well. There are some thought provoking articles linked and the video from that group is compelling.

I believe you have captured well both the portrayal of how many Muslims may feel about this, including a wish that certain aspects of 9/11 be better investigated.

Thanks again for your comment and the link. I hope you enjoy the other related next posts on 9/11--9 Years on; and Eid Al Fitr and 9/11: Ignorance Breeds Contempt.

Syed Hussain Aleem said...

Hi Chiara,
What do you think is the reaction to the Quraan Burning on 9/11 anniversary at Ground Zero.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0w5vl5O53U

Majed said...

Islamophobia and paranoia that characterize the west is not a delusion but a tangible reality. it does not require the sixth sense to feel nor are muslims trying to fish for lapses and isolated individual incidences coming from squirts and nobodies.
actually if that was the case it would have passed unnoticed, but It crystallised and was given impetus when people like the head of Catholic church pope Benedict unscholarly quoting Byzantine emperor's criticism of Islam disregarding the fact that the Emperor was an adversary to a Muslim Caliph and was in position to say whatever he likes. also when the Italian prime minister Berlosconi identified Islam as the target of a “Western crusade”. and not to forget Bush Jonior `s crusades, and we not even spared by the Females who are supposedly the fair sex and hope of humanity and peace makers as we can recall Chancellor Angela Merkel who came to perfect the mural of the paranoids when as recently as 8th Sep 2010 honoured with a prize and a speech the Danish cartoonist whose drawings of the Prophet Mohammed (pbuh) had evoked widespread anger among muslims while at the same time she instantly jumped to demand the resignation of Mr.Thilo Sarrazin from the central bank board membership just because he published a book that contains stuffs agains (Jewish) and Muslims,
remember that Jewish (the big bosses) and alleged holocaust are the only two lines within which freedom of speech,press and the personal opinions can play and can not cross, fortunately for Muslims that God bless Mr.Thilo Sarrazin had put us along with our Jewish cousins in the same box.
and now dear Wendy is classifying us wonderfuly and Dear Susan going along with her, but I thought after reading Chiara `s post about dogs and that they love them in the west and consider them human `s friend which they are , but now i come to know that they not much better than muslims.
oh, yes I remembered that we most often destroy our worn away and disintegrating Qurans by burning them to Ashes to avoid desecration but a provoked man is blind both in sight and in insight.

oby said...

Majed...

I generally agree with a lot of what you say. I think you have a well balanced take on things although I don't always agree with you.. but in general I enjoy your posts.

Perhaps I am misunderstanding you but you say "alleged" Holocaust. I am not Jewish nor do I have anything to gain from the Holocaust...but when Muslims call it "alledged" as if it didn't happen it makes them look really ignorant. 6 million+ people died in the Holocaust mostly Jews but not all, and to deny that when there is evidence of it is outrageous. It is like saying that in the Iraq war "alledgedly" Muslims were killed. We all know it is true that Muslims have been killed...why deny it?

If I have misunderstood your meaning please take a moment to correct me.

Berlosconi should be ashamed of himself for using such irresponsible and inflammatory language. Islam is not a target of a Western Crusade. If that were the case you would see Muslim rights taken away, mosques closed by the government, people deported etc. It is a ridiculous term to use.

Is there some backlash going on in the USA? Yes I think there is, but if as Chiara says it is due to an election year and a bad economy rather than inherent hatred of Muslims, once the election is past and the economy improves it will dissipate and Muslims will no longer be the "other" as they are during a difficult time. NOT that it makes it any easier in the short term or makes it less painful. I get that.

People have gone on and on about burning of Korans....I personally find it wrong to burn anyone's holy book. A tiny fraction of churches have done something and even then,in some cases, they were individuals within those churches and not the congregation themselves. The president, many religious leaders, both Christian and Jewish have come out against burning them, and many many ordinary citizens have too. an infinitesimally small amount of people did it. What about the millions of ordinary people who spoke out against it, had counter protests against it? what about the churches and the University of Fla.( I believe) who had rallies planned to counteract Rev. Jones Koran burning? They can't force him by law NOT to do it because constitutionally he can...so the best the average person could do is stand up against it and try to counter what he was going to do...and I think the outpouring of support on behalf of Muslims and not burning the Koran was commendable. Yet, everyone is talking about a dozen churches/individuals...People weren't even silent...they said NO in a big way...it is impossible to control every person who is on the fringe. Why not focus on the millions that stood up for you? In Afghanistan there were several deaths due to the Koran burning by Rev Jones which didn't even take place. They rioted and got out of control and people got killed. Is that right? I hear "Death to Christians" was chanted at some of these protests. Why? Because a handful of people burned the Koran...Even at the worst islamophobic moments in America I am not sure anyone is protesting and shouting "Death to Muslims".

I understand it is a holy book, but to be propelled to such lengths over that feels very over reactive to me. If they had burned a big pile of Korans on the front steps of the Capital building and President Obama struck the match that lit them...then I could see the outrage. We are talking a handful of misguided individuals not an entire nation of people waiting to kick out muslims and close the door behind them.

Chiara said...

Hi Syed--Welcome to my blog, and thank you for your comment. That I am aware, there has been limited public reaction to the Quran burnings in the USA though individuals have been unhappy about it. I think that is partly due to the wisdom shown by the media in not publicizing these fringe acts by fringe people. Perhaps there was some remorse about giving Pastor Jones so much coverage, and then the media feeling like it had been played, and had contributed to increased threats. Thanks again for your comment, and I hope you will comment on older and newer posts of interest to you.

Majed-thank you for your comment, which has much substance and merit. I would disagree with saying "alleged holocaust" though, as it certainly did happen, and thanks to German record keeping there is much proof. 2/3 of the European population were killed as were homosexuals, indigents, Roma (gypsies), and others. It is certainly not the only genocide but as write Frantz Fanon pointed out, it is the one that has in recent times most affected Europe itself, whereas non-European genocides are given less press. I agree with my Muslim students, who, on learning the reality of the Holocaust (some come from countries where they were taught to deny its occurrence), still maintain that it doesn't justify the occupation of Palestine, nor the treatment of Palestinians. As others have pointed out, it was a solution to a problem Europe created, and that was convenient for Europe only.

Thanks again for your comment, in which there is much merit. "Squirts and nobodies" sums it up very nicely! :)

Oby-Thanks for your comment. I hope Majed replies to you. I agree that Berslusconi is a disaster; only outdone by the minister who wore the Danish cartoon that was most offensive to Muslims as a t-shirt and showed it off proudly to the press on his way in to the Italian parliament.
I do think there is a cultural gulf in understanding for Americans about how offensive it is to burn or dessecrate a Quran in this spirit of contempt. IT simply is for most Muslims, though most contain their reactions to it. At some point, I think it behooves Westerners simply to recognize that, and agree to respect the Quran in that spirit of not deliberately giving offense whether one agrees that offense should be taken or not. At the very least this would be a highly practical attitude to adopt for the USA while there are troops and citizens in war zones in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. Thanks again for your thoughtful comment.

Majed said...

Oby,

Thank you for reading my comments, you understood me just the way i meant it to be taken " alleged" Holocaust, but alleged can hardly be applied in case of Iraq a 7000 years old nation living in the same place and 96% muslims.while the jewish people are astray and do not belong to anywhere.
But alleged Holocaust because the Jewish are simply trying to register all those communists, Polish,Roma Gypsies, Arabs, Slavs criminals,, homosexuals and many other who were considered of inferior races and died in Nazis camps into the Jewish martyrs ` list and that is wrong,right now (Holocaust) became merely synonym of Jewish sufferings, besides Germany was fighting on many fronts at the same time, and we would be underestimating a super race when we say they were so irrational to waste their valuable time and valuable fuel (roughly 20000000) gallons according to a calculation of simpleton like me just to burn millions of people rather than digging larg holes and simply burrying them in.
and just as the Iraqi nuclear arsenal and support to Alqaeda was proven to be fabrication why should not one day Holocaust prove to be fabricated by the allies the same way.
And why should anyone consider it false or try to investigate it be treated as unti-semtic and labeled as Neo-Nazist and lose his credibility even if they were historians and researchers of heavy caliber and high credibility. take David Irvin for exmaple and check this site http://www.codoh.com/gcgv/gc426v12.html to reconsider your stand.
Those who feel guilty and sorry for what happened to the jewish should have given them a cozy piece of land in Russia or America or may be it was only right that they were given one of Germany `s most fertile and rich provinces as an atonement.
About all other things in your comment, I guess we really overreacted but media has played a major role in that, but i noticed that the more educated people were the lesser prone and responsive to provocation. and I from the recesses of my heart appreciate and thank all those stood against it and supported us and I am sure there a lot many of them in America.
Personally I never feel or hold any grudge agaist anyone I think things take their course the way it goes even if we could change some courses that means it was meant to be changed.I was living wonderful life in Kuwait before the Late Saddam Husain( may Allah be merciful with him) invaded Kuwait, my family was on of those last evacuated kuwait we lost everthing but for ourlives,I hated what saddam had done but personally loved and admired him and cried when he was hanged, as lion he lived and as lion he died, and were I a very rich man I would propose to his daughter just to have his blood in a boy of mine.

oby said...

Majed...

I am really at a loss for words for your entire post. I guess maybe that is why west and east will never meet due to very different mindsets.

The fact that you think the Holocaust was a scam leaves me a bit speechless. Yes you are right that there were people other than Jews who died in it...would you deny their deaths as well? Was it a scam that they died and burned under the Nazi's? I do agree that the Jews have painted it as only a Jewish thing and I do think that is wrong...but it doesn't stop me from seeing the whole thing as the lesson it is.

I am of partial German heritage and my grandmother sent money hidden in foodstuffs to her relatives during World War II because they wouldn't join in the Nazi propaganda and had been cut off due to their non cooperation. Was their experience "alleged"?

What about the photos,gas chambers,dead bodies stacked like cordwood, furnaces with some bodies found in them when the allies arrived,the word of the soldiers who liberated the camps...what about the fact that the Jews were systematically rounded up, businesses stolen or destroyed and put into Ghettos to "contain" them and then shipped off to concentration camps to either work them to death or simply kill them?

Majed...Bersculoni used the term Western Crusade against Muslims. I find that highly inflammatory. What I have just described to you in the above paragraph is a crusade against a people. It is the step by step systematic destruction of a people, in this case, the Jews. You should not call it alleged nor should anyone else because it is a damn good reminder of what can happen when people are not aware of the "other" and let things get out of control...Then it was the Jews...but it isn't only something that can happen to Jews...discrimination happens all over the world everyday...look at the Middle East, Africa, even in some parts of the West. No one should call it alleged because if it happened to the Jews it can happen to someone else and if it happened to you would you want the world to call it alleged? And please don't say it is happening to the Palestinians as no one is saying it is alleged and anyone with an ounce of common sense can see the truth in what is happening to them and can fully understand the perverseness of that situation.

Koran burning is obnoxious and offensive no doubt, But to call it a crusade is stupid. And of course, we know that that is a word that Muslims will feel on a visceral level due to the real Crusades hundreds of years ago. He is not doing the Muslims OR the West any favors by using such irresponsible language.

As for Saddam...we whole heartedly disagree on our admiration of him.I think he was a person who didn't treat his people very well, but of course, your view is different. I did feel bad about the way he met his end however...

I am sorry for your upset life in Kuwait...it must have terribly horrific for you and I am sure you didn't deserve it.

Majed said...

Oby,
I am so sorry, that my comment hurt you, but if they said that Holocaust was a crime against humanity I would have taken it for granted,but I only see that the jewish are the only who is crying I dont know anyone that suffered more the Russians why are not they crying, when you see tears in crocodile `s eyes do you think it is really crying, I know what happens in wars I have survived two of them one in kuwait and a worse one in Yemen they are as ugly as hell but they are real they are there and will always will be there in somewhere and it sucks and human being sucks.
I see jewish with suspecious eye. everybody sees them that way but some say it and some reserve.
May be I got it from Oliver Twist or may be from The Merchant of Venice unfortunately the jewish can neither ban it now nor call its writers unti-semetics.
God bless your sentimental and Compassionate soul pary for me , and sorry again.

oby said...

Majed...

You didn't hurt my feelings...sorry if I gave that impression. No sorrys are required :-)

I try (although I may not always be successful)to be fair about what people have suffered and lost, but also what people have inflicted. Humans are an incredible species. They are capable of such great compassion and love and kindness...they can create the most amazing art and science...but they can do things to each other that even the angels must find unbelievable. People all over the world...generally governments...have done some terrible things to people and I think we need to recognize that. What happened to the Jews could happen to any other minority if the circumstances were right. It is hard for me to recognize and understand the things my government has done to others because it reflects on me as a citizen even if I don't agree with it and can't stop it. But as a human being it is incumbent upon me to recognize it anyway. It is even harder when Muslims want us to stand up and say "yes America is bad and they have done bad things, you must admit that...and oh by the way...Muslims had nothing to do with 9/11...you guys did it to yourselves and are trying to pin it on us." It is very hard to stand up and admit America's part in world shame when Muslims won't recognize other peoples sufferings at their (muslims) hands. If they can't recognize that Muslim terrorists did 9/11 and they can't recognize that the Holocaust actually happened (even if you don't trust the Jews) how can they expect the rest of the world to be open and recognize the Muslims suffering? Muslims are not innocent of atrocities, the West is not innocent of atrocities and even the Jews who suffered in the Holocaust are not innocent. It is easy to see OTHER people's transgressions but far to easy to say "WE haven't done anything...we are the injured party." When Muslims say the Holocaust was a conspiracy and 9/11 was a conspiracy BUT all the stuff that has happened to them isn't, well it doesn't leave much room for discussion. And if we can't recognize our own transgressions...be they committed by Jews, Americans, Christians or Muslims there is very little hope of having any kind of meaningful discussion...

Majed said...

Oby, It was friday my day off yesterday, let me be clear, I am neither insensible nor numb to the suffering, pain and abuse of those 60 million victim of world II either those who were killed Hitler or by the Allies, nonetheless, I am totally against that someone (Zionists movement) comes in and appropriate those peoples tragedy and make it appear as if it was solely and exclusively his own just to indefinitely extract blood money from a proud nation that had also paid the price of his leaders mistakes in blood, money, assets and in an undue humiliation after honourably losing the war to adversaries who did not appreciate a good fight. No one in this world can pretend to be safe but I know life is precious gift from God and we should not give it up without a fight. We have a lot of Somali Refugees in Aden (Yemen) living in camps. I myself lived a few days in refugee camps in Jordan. Camp life is bad but human beings are remarkable creatures. A day or so then you do not know the difference after the first impact when you see that you are alive you say it is still ok I can live with this. It only really hurts when someone is missing.

Chiara said...

Oby--thanks for your further comment. Muslims recognize that the terrorists involved in 9/11 did so in the name of Islam. They do not recognize Islam in the action, for a number of reasons which have been addressed by Muslim leaders and average Muslims. Those include: suicide is not part of martyrdom; suicide is against Islamic beliefs; killing civilians is not a sanctioned part of Islamic warfare; jihad in the sense of warfare (as opposed to its most common meaning of being a struggle with oneself to be a better Muslim) is defensive.

Many people think that USA foreign policy did contribute to why terrorism has occurred against it. 9/11 was the biggest act, but in line with others against US embassies around the world, the USS Cole, etc. They don't agree that 9/11 should have occurred but they do think that part of the response to it should be to consider how the USA foreign policy contributes to negative sentiment against it and terrorism.

The vast majority of Muslims, including Majed from what he writes, recognize the Holocaust. They do not agree that Palestinians should be paying the price for it. But then again, neither does the United Nations, Amnesty International, UNHRC, etc.

Thanks again for your further comment. Your concern for all minorities is clear as is your concern about 9/11 and its sequellae.

Majed--thanks for your further comment too. I think you do make clear that your concern about the Holocaust is that political use is being made of it to oppress another people, the Palestinians. You write very eloquently, and knowledgeably of human suffering and resilience. Indeed, people adapt to their conditions, but the loss of loved ones is a constant ache. Thanks again for your commenting on this!

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