Islam

Fareed Zakaria Doesn't Reconize Reality of Radical Islam

| by Frank Salvato

Newsweek recently ran an article by Fareed Zakaria
titled, Learning to Live with Radical Islam.
In this article Mr. Zakaria contends that in our quest to prevail over the
virulent factions within the fundamentalist Islamic culture we in the West must
learn to discern the radical Islamist from the jihadi; the fundamentalist from
the terrorist. Although Mr. Zakaria touches on a few noteworthy points –
specifically the West's need to engage in the war of ideas – his thesis that,
“We can better pursue our values if we recognize the local and cultural
context, and appreciate that people want to find their own balance between
freedom and order, liberty and license,” ignores the fact that jihadis rule by
force and that their “cultural context” and “license” is no less than
totalitarian.

That the United States and the Western nations engaged in the violent struggle
against radical Islamist aggression were delinquent in engaging in the war of ideas goes without
saying. In reaction to the act of war perpetrated on the United States on
September 11, 2001, our government reacted to secure the nation, to strike at
the heart of the governments and terrorist organizations that executed the
slaughter of 3,066 innocents at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and in
Shanksville, PA. This response was immediate for the simple fact that it was
within our government's purview; it was something that could be executed with
an order.

Additionally, it was easy for the West to engage violent jihadist organizations
and the countries that abetted them both economically and diplomatically
through the use of sanctions and diplomacy. In the weeks and months after
September 11th, there was a great outpouring of cooperation from countries
sympathetic to our plight and position. Through this cooperation was forged
Operation Enduring Freedom in which fifty-one (51) countries
contributed to the liberation of Afghanistan from the Taliban, the totalitarian
figurehead government that provided safe haven to al Qaeda. This cooperation
also gave birth to economic sanctions against terrorist organizations and the
individuals and state sponsors that aided them. Financial institutions around
the world froze bank accounts that provided the financial fuel for the violent
jihad.

But the United States and the West were delinquent in understanding the war of
ideas, the ideology behind aggressive Islamofascism. Almost immediately after
the attacks of September 11th, President Bush took to the airwaves and decried
that Islam was a “religion of peace.” Many understood this action to have
emanated from a two-fold need:

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▪ The need to circumvent any reactionary or vigilante aggression against the
Islamic community here in the United States

▪ The need to keep from alienating Middle Eastern allies the West would
certainly need to partner with in the upcoming battles to be waged

The repercussions of this declaration were many, with many of them being
detrimental to the mission of defeating radical Islamist aggression here on the
home front.

An honest examination and understanding of the Quran and the Hadith (understand
that both must be read in context to one another to accurately understand the
teachings of Muhammad) present some extremely disturbing revelations where
violence, anti-Semitism and global conquest are concerned. These revelations,
documented in a plethora of scholarly writing, lay waste to the notion that
Islam, traditionally, is a religion of peace. Accurately depicted,
fundamentalist Islam – exampled by Wahhabism, the prevalent form of
Islam in Saudi Arabia – is an aggressive ideology that subjugates women,
oppresses societal interaction, institutes the death sentence for apostasy and
which has, over the centuries, been spread by the sword.

This declaration led to the widespread dissemination of propaganda at the hands
of the American Fifth Column, who took
the opportunity to exploit the naiveté of the American people. In the aftermath
of the September 11th attacks so-called civil rights groups in the West
launched a full-scale re-education campaign that completely disavowed the
violent history of Islam.

Organizations such as CAIR, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, were
courted to provide “sensitivity training” to government agencies and law
enforcement. CAIR has since suffered the exposure of truth in its designation
as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial
regarding the funding of the terror group Hamas. Its leadership has also been
the target of myriad terror related prosecutions. And recently, the FBI cut off contacts with the CAIR
“amid mounting concern about the Muslim advocacy group's roots in a Hamas-support
network.”

This declaration also led to a rash of instances where school children in the
United States and the West were subjected to portray Islam as a “religion of
peace.” In at least one instance, a California school had grade school children
take on the task of being “Muslim for a day,” transgressing their own contrived
institution of separation of church and State.

To say that the attacks perpetrated by fundamentalist Islamists – and by
definition the nineteen (19) hijackers of September 11th, 2001, were
fundamentalist Islamists – produced a contrecoup effect where the factual
understanding of Islam is concerned would be an accurate assessment. This
artificial understanding of Islam by the West, especially here in the United
States, has been facilitated by an unengaged, apathetic and perhaps sympathetic
Islamic community.

That Mr. Zakaria expresses his desire for the West to discern between the
fundamentalists that literally call for our conquest and those who violently
act upon that call is akin to asking a bleeding man stranded in the ocean to
discern between the aggressiveness of a great white shark and a tiger shark;
while one is more aggressive they will both eat you.

But perhaps the biggest flaw with Mr. Zakaria's contention stems from his lack
of understanding of the philosophy that exists as the cornerstone of Western
culture as well as the US Constitution: Natural Law.

From the philosophy of Natural Law was derived the following:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,
that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that
among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness...”

This defining tenet of Americanism is not unique to the American citizenry.
It does not recognize geological borders. It applies to every man, woman and
child who exists on the face of the earth. It has been the catalyst for war and
charity. It has deposed dictators, tyrants and despots. It has jailed the
corrupt and freed the virtuous. It stands as the promise of hope; as the shining
beacon of liberty that cuts through the darkness of totalitarianism. It stands
steadfast in the face of atrocity seeking out avenues through which the
innocent can be rescued and the tyrannical would be vanquished.

True Americans embrace this honor, this commitment to humanity, this
responsibility. They have sacrificed blood and treasure and in many cases made
the ultimate sacrifice to provide “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”
to the oppressed, all in the quest for a more humane and equitable world.

That Mr. Zakaria would have us discern between two vicious ideological factions
within the fundamentalist Islamic community, only to cavort with the lesser of
two evils, flies in the face of Americanism's adherence to Natural Law. It
cannot be, especially within the context of confronting the totalitarianism of
fundamentalist Islam, that the end justifies the means.

Read the Opposing Views debate, "Does Islam Promote Violence?"

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