Tuesday, July 19, 2005

For those still unclear about what's at stake

Watching America is another indispensible resource for monitoring what goes on beyond the insular sphere of U.S. mainstream media. Their translations of articles, interviews, and opinion pieces from various media sources around the globe offer an interesting--if somewhat depressing--view of what the rest of the world thinks. Here's Saad Al-Ansi in the Kuwaiti Al-Ray Al-Aam, clearly defining for his readers what exactly he feels is at stake in today's global conflict between the west and Islam:
If the U.S. and its Western allies succeed in their bid to democratize the Islamic world, this would bring the extermination of the last civilizations that have stood against the West and its ideologies. In the long run, this Islamic civilization represents a real threat to them [the West]. This threat begins with the emergence of a unifying Islamic nationalistic core, represented by an Islamic regime at the social and governing levels. A new Islamic governing body would offer alternatives to the social, economic and political systems of the West. It would challenge to the West's hegemony and end the pillaging of the wealth of Muslim nations and other helpless countries around the world.

"A new Islamic governing body would offer alternatives to the social, economic and political systems of the West." I don't have the energy to list once again the horrors that have occurred in every land where Islamic social "regimes" have been imposed. If you just emerged from a forty-year coma, please scroll down to my previous posts and you'll find plenty to bring you up to speed. An "alternative" to the economic system of the west. If it weren't for oil and child labor, there would hardly be a viable Muslim economy anywhere on earth, save Pakistan (which enjoys the historical benefit of a century of British occupation), Turkey (which likewise benefits from having been temporarily rescued from Islam by secularist forces), and perhaps Afghanistan (which now and again has made herion a decent stand-in for oil). Islamic political systems range from psychotic theocracies (Iran, Afghanistan in the 1990s) to monarchic or dynastic holdovers from the eighteenth century (Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Yemen). Those Muslim nations that managed to take steps toward creating reasonably democratic secular governments are now fighting against a tide of Islamist sentiment that threatens to undo years of progress (Turkey, Indonesia, Pakistan). A number of non-Muslim-majority nations now even find their democratic (France, Holland) or monarchic (Thailand) traditions challenged by calls for regional sharia courts, integration of Islamic banking laws, or acceptance of social codes embraced by Islamists (gender apartheid, female circumcision, discrimination against gays).

Pacifists, multiculturalists, and anti-globalists who strain credulity to blame the west's sacrifice of countless lives and immeasurable resources on a phantom neo-con cabal or on Halliburton should take note of Al-Ansi's words. He understands better than they do what this is all about.


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