I’ve been monitoring the English-speaking world’s response to the Mumbai attacks of last week, and in that time I’ve encountered (out of dozens) one editorial cartoon and one column that actually cut to the heart of the matter.
If you go to Daryl Cagle’s archive of political toons, you’ll find a subsection on the Mumbai attacks. Some of the images are clearly angry; some are reflective; some are mournful — but only one actually seems to get to the point, and it wasn’t even included in the Mumbai subsection. For the most part, you sense the outrage; but there’s almost a subtle squeamishness (to my mind) about the source of the outrage. It’s almost as though the cartoonists don’t want to directly state what the root of the Mumbai atrocity was.
In a recent piece he begins by pointing out how furious the reaction was in, ahem, Certain Quarters to the publication of a Danish cartoonist’s mockery of Mohammed in 2006, and has this to offer:
[W]hile the Pakistani government’s sober response [to the Mumbai killings] is important, and the sincere expressions of outrage by individual Pakistanis are critical, I am still hoping for more. I am still hoping — just once — for that mass demonstration of “ordinary people” against the Mumbai bombers, not for my sake, not for India’s sake, but for Pakistan’s sake.
This is pointing to the crux, the heart of the issue that no one really wants to face. Those ten murderous psychopaths in India were not working with a “previously unknown” group, whether or not they were “stateless” (as Pakistani authorities said initially). Friedman does not explicitly delineate here who these “ordinary people” are, but he goes on to say:
We know from the Danish cartoons affair that Pakistanis and other Muslims know how to mobilize quickly to express their heartfelt feelings, not just as individuals, but as a powerful collective. That is what is needed here.
And there it is, a bit more starkly. While some of the toons on Cagle’s site seem to indict Pakistan, and many others bewail generic terrorism, virtually no one seems to want to point to the actual problem.
Muslim fundamentalism today is as virulent as Christian fundamentalism was in the 1500s, and is every bit as dangerous — and the fact is that the Mumbai assailants were Pakistani only by citizenship and terrorists only by semantics.
Before all of that, first and foremost, they were Muslim.
Before you go imagining I’m trying to be a bigot here, I’ll concede that prior to 2001, terrorist attacks in the US were almost exclusively perpetrated by our own citizens — Christians, one should note. But I am not being unreasonable in pointing out that there is a clear predisposition in certain Muslim factions toward violent demonstrations of protest over inane caricatures; and that the acts of destruction which have been perpetrated in New York, Madrid, London and now Mumbai have, to a fault, all been perpetrated by Muslims who are acting from within their specifically-twisted belief systems.
That is simply not a coincidence. These persons’ Muslim beliefs have been corrupted, to be certain, by “mullahs” who deserve nothing more than bullets in their skulls — but, as Friedman asks, where is the righteous outrage from other Muslims? When hundreds are willing to take to the streets in foaming, screaming protest over a cartoon, why are there not thousands — millions — doing the same to protest the murder of nearly two hundred human beings in an act of indiscriminate slaughter?
In his column Friedman mentions a comment from a Muslim friend of his regarding the Catholic church and its endemic population of rapist-priests; interestingly, I was thinking something similar a day or so before I read his piece. To my mind, any Catholic who refuses to protest, weekly, against the rape of boys by clergy is complicit in continuing abuse. The same is so, I believe, of every Muslim who does not protest, vehemently, the actions of their extremist fringes. This silence is a tacit endorsement.
The cartoon I mentioned, by Don Wright, is below. It’s an effective and valid expression of everything I brought up here.
Wright nails it. He accurately labels the terrorists as being Islamic, and he accurately declares what they worship, what they hold holy — not their alleged god, but the power of the gun.
I know the US is far from perfect. I detest, as both an American and a human being, the atrocity our nation perpetrated in Iraq, a sovereign country which had done nothing to our land or our people, and which posed no threat to us whatsoever. I loathe the idea of pax americana, of spreading “democracy” at gunpoint. I have maintained, for years now, that the best course we could have taken would have been to simply stay in Afghanistan, stabilize that nation, eradicate the Taliban from its population, and help it rebuild and transform itself into a model democracy. Alas, we had an asshole for a VP, an idiot for a CinC, and a Sec’y of Defense for whom war was better than Viagra.
Our national upfuckery, however, does not invalidate the very real fact that — as the Q’ran says* — forcing Islam onto others is not the way to spread the faith. And until the moderate Muslim world rises up universally against this religious psychopathy, it will continue until some lunatic fringe shitbrain somewhere gets his hands on a seriously badass weapon.
Muslims, the threat is coming from within your ranks. It is up to you to do something about it. If you continue not to act, you have no right to protest when you are greeted with hostility and mistrust by those of us who are not bomb-wielding religiously-deranged fools; and if you think the backlash now is bad, just wait until some Allahtard pops a CBRN in a major city someplace, and Muslims everywhere suddenly find themselves rounded up and deported en masse to Saudi Arabia — or incarcerated in “peace camps.”
* “The Cattle,” 6.125:
Therefore (for) whomsoever Allah intends that He would guide him aright, He expands his breast for Islam, and (for) whomsoever He intends that He should cause him to err, He makes his breast strait and narrow as though he were ascending upwards; thus does Allah lay uncleanness on those who do not believe.
This is one example of several that state clearly it’s up to Allah to determine who believes and who does not.
This also essentially transforms Islamic terrorists into blasphemers, arrogating upon themselves the power of God. Yet there are no fatwahs declared against them. Why?
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