Jihad All Over the Place

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Jake Tapper has been on fire lately. This roundup of the jihadist ingathering from all over the world kind of puts all the embedded footage into perspective.

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  1. “It is being portrayed in the starkly religious language of the Crusades, pitting Christianity against Islam in a holy war. And this cannot be blamed entirely on our enemies.”

    The only people (aside from Islamists) who are alleged in this article to have portrayed the war thusly (on an intentional basis) are Jerry Falwell and company, and since I do in fact consider them our enemies, the second setence seems unjustified.

    another tidbit:

    “‘the U.S. administration seek[s] destruction, hegemony and a ban on freedoms in our Arab and Islamic world.'” – some islamo-fascists

    Ultra-fundementalist Jihadists complaining about restricitons on freedom? I’m not sure quite how to respond…

  2. “The only people (aside from Islamists) who are alleged in this article to have portrayed the war thusly (on an intentional basis) are Jerry Falwell and company,”

    There’s always Bush’s use of the word ‘crusade’ to consider.

    And circumstantially, just before the war started I was seeing a number of photos prominently featured on news sites which depicted US or British soldiers kneeling in prayer, or in one case being baptised.

    That’s clearly not part of an organized effort, but if I were a Muslim reading the NY Times and the BBC site, I might well get the idea that it’s a war of Christians against Muslims.

  3. True. Interestingly, “crusade” is a word similar to “jihad” in the respect that it has two different uses with respect to this situation. They can both signify either a simple endeavor or religious war, although clearly “jihad” is a word more thoroughly hijacked by radical muslims than crusade is by westerners. (The concept of holy war being but a relic in the west.)

    Ultimately, the article brings to light how this version of jihad is based on wrongly interpreting coincidental/careless comments and actions as some sort of an anti-muslim agenda. Some people are just intent on being victims, I suppose.

  4. geophile writes: “They can both signify either a simple endeavor or religious war, although clearly “jihad” is a word more thoroughly hijacked by radical muslims than crusade is by westerners. (The concept of holy war being but a relic in the west.)”

    It seems to me that the meaning of ‘crusade’ has mellowed in the last thousand years, while the meaning of jihad has become more violent, at least as far as it typically turns up in the media (arab or otherwise).

    But in the original usage, crusade certainly implied a great deal of violence.

    It occurs to me that mass media and fast long-distance communication probably had a lot to do with the rise of the violent meaning of ‘jihad’. Calling for jihad isn’t nearly as useful if your call doesn’t leave the valley you live in, or takes a year to spread across Islam, and people don’t care because they’ve never heard of your cause.

  5. Can I ask how this is any different from what they were saying 6 months ago, a year ago, or two years ago?

    They’ve been jihading all over the place (Nice Eddie Izzard reference, BTW) for a long time.

    Aside from a temporary upturn in jihad rehtoric, I don’t see how this is a significant change. It’s not like they were preaching peace until this war.

    These imams will be preaching the same thing regardless of our actions, and so shouldn’t be a factor in decision making. Especially since the vaunted Arab street seems remarkably quiet except in victory.

  6. A quick note about “jihad”: Muslims generally believe in two jihads, the greater and the lesser. The lesser jihad is the worldly struggle against the enemies of the faith. The greater jihad is the struggle of the believer against his own temptations and failings. IMO, those who call for (lesser) jihad right and left are those most morally bankrupt, those with the most need of the greater jihad. But “how much easier is self-sacrifice than self-realization”…

  7. Well, I’m sure they couldv’e put something together even without mass media. After all, the crusades were basically put together on word of mouth. Perhaps jihad simply never meant armed conflict back then.

    I agree Tox. Our best defense against terrorist reprisal from this conflict is to make Iraq as great a place without Saddam as it can be, as a message to the world. But then again, if the Islamists hated Saddam for being secular, what will he think of us, and our turning of Iraq into (gasp!) a democracy? And what of all the ignorant fools whose only information about Iraq will come from the fiery anti-americanism of the Imams? They’ll never have the benefit of seeing Iraq for themselves (until they blow themselves up in it), or see the post-Saddam paradise that it is supposed to become.

    Nonetheless, it is unknowable at this point what the conflict will bring in this regard. The threat of increased terrorism has never been a good argument either for war or against, but it has to be considered.

  8. Its jihad a-go-go baby…

  9. No one knows what this war will bring. And if someone tells you that they know, well, you can be assured that they are likely trying to sell their latest book. 🙂 Which is of course you shouldn’t believe the “parade of horribles” crowd, or the “we’re making the world safe for democracy” crowd.

  10. “…or see the post-Saddam paradise that it is supposed to become”

    Not likely, review America’s nation building experiments.

    Hell, Americans can’t even get it write at home.

    If you bought that rhetoric and/or book, I have some prime ocean fron property in Phoenix you might be interested in.

  11. How about adopting a larger historical perspective, to see why we’re hated. Isn’t ‘They hate us because of our freedom’ a bit simple-minded?

    Didn’t the US blow up a pharmeceutical factory in Sudan, not rebuilding it, no apologies, that caused the politics there to get a lot worse, not to mention 100’s of thousands dying from malaria, TB, cholera, etc., and just when they were headed towards more moderate gov’t?

    Didn’t the US give Turkey 80% of the arms used to kill Turkish Kurds?

    Didn’t the US approve blowing up a mosque in Beirut killing mostly women and children? (Clinton said 9-11 was karma for killing the American Indian, I think the cause may lie a little closer to home).

    Didn’t the US & UK arm Hussein with biological weapons (_after_ we knew he was a monster)?

    Didn’t the US ignore the rebels in Iraq at the end of the 1st war, when they offered to take over (with our air support) and install a more democratic US-friendly government, the end result being that they got slaughtered?

    Doesn’t Israel ignore countless UN resolutions while occupying more and more land that isn’t theirs, and doesn’t the Muslim world have reasonable grounds to fear that Israel has big plans for expansion, with the backing of the US?

    http://www.trumanlibrary.org/oralhist/wright.htm

    In other words, people, neither Israel nor the United States is as God Bless Us squeeky-clean as our media would love us to believe, the issues are not black and white, and they did not spring up overnight. This is not Norman Rockwell-world, things are complicated and messy here.

    Both Isreal and the US have done or been involved with or backed things that can easily be described as terrorist for decades. And we’ve both had disastrously arrogant, short-sighted foreign policy for decades. I personally don’t think arming monsters to fight our enemies is a good policy. We should draw a line somewhere, but maybe that’s just me. But is it a surprise that many countries hate, fear or distrust us? Only if you’re ignorant!

    I’d like to urge people to read more to gain a better historical perspective, and to pressure our media to tell us more than the: ‘They hate us because we’re free’ line for simpletons they’ve been spouting. And if we want to stop terrorism, we will have to take a long hard look at ourselves!

    I love the US, I hope you love it enough to educate yourself, so you can understand how we got here, and find the best way to deal with it. Obviously something’s gone quite wrong, and simplistic slogans like ‘They hate us because of our freedom’ don’t help anybody.

  12. Interesting comments made by “ms”. It’s very interesting when a country gives another country biologicical weapons one decade, then gets upset at them for having them the next (see US involvement in Iraq-Iran war of the early ’80’s).

    Granted, Saddam is a bad guy. Bear in mind who helped him come to power, and kept him there until it was inconvenient.

    Foreign policy is an amazing thing in that what you think would be the right thing isn’t always what happens, and when you repetitively screw over a particular ethnic or religious group and then say “God Bless Us”, they’re going to get just a mite-bit miffed at you. If you do it enough you wind up with with aeroplanes flying into big buildings. It’s really unfortunate that the reprehensible behavior of the corporate-few winds up having repercussions for the civilian majority.

    I live in a country that doesn’t have the best track-record when it comes to our foreign policy (or internal, for that matter), but I like to think that as a general rule we try our best. We went into East Timor to help an emerging sovereign nation shake off its opressors. Now we’re part of a mission to help an ancient sovereign nation shake off its internal opressor.

    I think we all believe this to be the right thing, even though they didn’t exactly ask us to come and help them out, and perhaps there were better ways of doing it. It’s what our leaders do NEXT that will decide whether we are actually the Liberators, or if we become the Bad Guys.

    If we ‘liberate’ Iraq and then leave them to decide what they want to do for themselves, then we’ve done the right thing. We cannot make that decision for them, however, without becoming the opressors.

  13. I said, as it is *supposed* to become, according to those who think it will become great immediately, which is different from me saying that it *will* become a paradise. Maybe my intent wasn’t stated as clear as it should have been. I’ll make it up to you: keep your property, and in exchange take pause before you go on the offensive, just to make sure that you are “write”.

  14. Just ran across this page, and I know this is an old posting, but I feel inclined to reply to ‘ms’.

    ms, what did the Indonesian Christians DO to them to deserve the jihad they’ve gotten, eh?

    (which includes burning their churches with them in them, rampant rape, even of little girls, because they are infidels)

    And by the way, ms, we did not sell Iraq bio weapons, maybe you should go look up some information that isn’t only found on sites that have an agenda.

    Also you may want to read the Quran to clear up any confusion you suffer about why jihadi’s do what they do.
    And speaking of Sudan, I wish we would have blown up more than a factory, you do realise they are a hardcore Islamist govt who enslaves Christians and animists in the south of the country…yes modern day chattel slavery.
    (approved in the Quran btw)

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