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Jeremy Lassen
Posted on Tuesday, February 07, 2006 - 11:19 am:   

[Trying to move discussion of Iraqi-invasion blow-back away from the cartoons thread]

Trashhauler says :"These enemies were out there already, though not very noticeable to most people. "

Trashhauler seems content to play into Al Queda's hands, and embrace a war of civilizations. The sad fact is, after 9/11, public opinion polls throughout the Arab world showed overwhelming support for the United States, and condemnation for Al Queda and its actions.

After the US invasion and occupation of Iraq, this public sympathy has completely reversed itself. As I said before, the Invasion of Iraq radicalized otherwise moderate people, and turned them against the US, and the west.


Peace
-jl
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Trashhauler
Posted on Tuesday, February 07, 2006 - 12:02 pm:   

Jeremy, no, I'm not one to wish, "Mecca Delenda Est," or some such nonsense. And I've never been a fan of supporting Arab autocrats.

But short of abandoning our interests in the Middle East, we have to deal with the people and issues there. That includes many who opposed us even before Operation Iraqi Freedom. That from their perspective they had good reason is somewhat beside the point.

I agree that every war radicalizes people who would otherwise not be enemies and that contributes to war's cost and deadliness.
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Jeremy Lassen
Posted on Tuesday, February 07, 2006 - 07:36 pm:   

We obviously disagree, because IMO, the benefits of the Iraqi occupation do not outweigh the costs. One of those costs is completely loosing all support from moderate Arabs around the globe. We are radicalizing people, and creating popular support for our enemies.


What were the benefits again? Perhaps you, as a supporter of the war could list the benefits to American National Security that the invasion and occupation has brought.

From my perspective, the ONLY material benefit is creating permanent ground basing in the region for US troops. I suspect this was part of the Neocon plan all along, as Saudi was kicking US troops out of its country, just as the build up to war with Iraq began. But again, what has the price tag for these permanent bases been? I think its safe to say that we are LESS able to respond to regional threats, and project force, becase we are tied down in a three way civil war.

I could give you a laundry list of "benefits", but they are not really national security benefits... they are more Republican party/defense contractor benefits.

So again, what the US gained that has made this operation worth loosing the hearts and minds of 90% of the Arab population?
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Trashhauler
Posted on Tuesday, February 07, 2006 - 10:24 pm:   

Jeremy, it's hard to know how many hearts and minds we've lost, just as it's hard to know how many will come around, eventually. And most will come around, given enough time. It happens after every war, no matter how bitter. There aren't many Confederates, or Japanese, or Germans who still hold our warring against us. We needn't worry about that, so much, so long as the peace is just. Of course, there's always the chance that if they don't come around, it meant that their original animus was even more deeply rooted than we suspected. But probably not - most Arabs I've met are like everybody else.

The benefits of the Iraqi occupation are uncertain at this point, as one should expect. Success in the Iraqi campaign is not assured, of course. Even if we're successful, many of the benefits might not be known until after we leave. But I rather doubt any permanent bases will be gained. For one, our bases are situated to fight the insurgency and will lose their value after it's over. Two, we don't need 'em, since our military is expeditionary now, rather than constabulary or garrison. We'll pull back most of our people just as soon as we are able. Thank God. Third, it will be only a matter of time before the Iraqis ask or demand that we leave. And we will, just as we recently did from one of the 'Stans. As a military professional, my personal opinion is that our departure will be a happy day for all involved and can't come too soon. No, check that. I suppose it can come too soon. But let's hope it's as soon as possible.

By the way, what gave you the idea that the Saudis were going to kick us out? What they did was forbid the use of their bases and airspace for any operations in Afghanistan, forcing us to find intermediate bases in the 'Stans. Apparently, they didn't want to piss off Al Qaeda or the Arab street. But they couldn't kick us out, nor could we leave - not while Saddam still had his army. They were satisfied to let us sit there till hell froze over, so long as we were protecting their butts and they, at least, had no illusions about Saddam Hussein. One of the nicer, and most immediate benefits of OIF is shaking the dust of that damned country off our coats.
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Jeremy Lassen
Posted on Wednesday, February 08, 2006 - 12:16 am:   

No...in fact the Saudis were under tremendous internal and external pressure to oust US forces from the bases which they had occupied since the first Persion Gulf war. What do you think Al Queda's major beef with the US was anyway? (I'll give you a hint... It has something to do with infidel troops in the holy land.)

As for Permanent bases... Have you read any of the White papers that Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfield and the other Neocon players have been writing, non-stop, since 1994? Try Googling "Project for a New American Century".

Permanent bases in Iraq are their wet dream. That’s why we are currently building 10 US style military bases in Iraq, each with a price tag of several billion dollars. That’s why the Pentagon is estimating at least a 10-year occupation of Iraq.

On a separate note, you fail utterly to separate the hearts and minds of Iraqi's from... oh I don't know.. the Rest of the Arab world. Your talk of Germans and Japanse are irrelevant. I'm not even TALKING about the public opinion of the people in the country we are occupying. I'm talking about the public opinion of the countries that we need as our partners in the “war on terror.”

I'm talking about Nuclear armed states like Pakistan. I'm talking about Egypt, Syria, Iran, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and every other Arab state out there. THOSE are the people who we've lost. And yes.. It is pretty easy to gauge the where the hearts and minds are... Its called “public opinion polls.” There have been many, and the trend lines are clear.

And thank you. In your entire post, you have been unable to state on positive benefit to come from the invasion and occupation of Iraq. The best you can offer is benefits are uncertain, and won't be known until we leave??! What, are you a magic fucking 8-ball?

Maybe I'm just a little bit to careful here, but... if you don't know what the benefits of doing something are going to be, WHY IN GODS NAME WOULD YOU DO IT??! Why would you support it? Do you just blindly believe that… well… we’ve killed a lot of bad guys… we’ve Freed some people… there must be some benefits somewhere?

Christ... If you were a good little Neocon, and could spout Project For A New American Century propaganda at me, that would be one thing... but you sit there and tell me "We don't need permanent bases?!?!?" Somebody tell Dick Cheney and Rumsfield that, because that’s the basis of their entire foreign policy... You say you don’t know what the benefits of the war will be? Go read what the architects of this war have written. It’s all available on the web. Go and read what they think the benefits will be. Then come back and let me know how realistic their assessment is. Until then, you come off as an ignorant partisan cheerleader.

But hey. You’re a “military man”? Maybe big picture stuff isn’t your thing. So go back to following orders and let us free thinking citizens of the republic worry about whether shit will actually be of benefit to the country. Some of us adults actually understand the concept of cause-and-effect, and are pretty good at determining what the benefits (and drawbacks) of a given course of action might be. Let us worry about whether the people who planned and executed the war and occupation are in touch with reality or not. Let us worry about weather the cost to benefit ratio works out in our favor. Because you seem completely unconcerned about all of these little details. To busy hating us “liberals”, I guess.

Peace
Jeremy Lassen
(who sick of this drivel… I expect people who stand by the war in Iraq to give me better then touchy-feely magic-eight-ball bullshit as justification for this atrocity. At least know your PFNAC talking points!)
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Al Robertson
Posted on Wednesday, February 08, 2006 - 04:32 am:   

Hi all - I'm a long time lurker, but couldn't let this go:

Trashhauler, you wrote:

>> Getting their "fondest wish," if that's what it was, might not do them much good in the end. The Baathists are already learning that.

Which is I think taking the original point out of context. An American invasion of Iraq was Usama Bin Laden / Al Qaida's fondest wish; not the Baath party's fondest wish.

Usama was actually very much against the predominantly secular Baath regime. If I remember correctly, he'd even declared a fatwa on them.

Similarly, Saddam - Mr Baath Iraq - had opened Iraq to the weapons inspectors (Bush's repeated assertions that Saddam chose war by not letting them in are just plain wrong) and was co-operating with them, presumably because he wanted to avoid subsequent war / deposition / death of his sons / humiliating public trial / etc.

So, the invasion wasn't the Baathists 'fondest wish', for very obvious reasons. It was Usama's; it removed a regime he strongly disapproved off (both I think from a religious and a strategic point of view), provided him with a ready made recruitment narrative ('Fight the great Satan before they invade you, destroy your family with missiles, and lock you up in Guantanamo Bay!'), and helped create a training ground for a whole new cadre of highly experienced guerrilla warriors who (one assumes) he'll be able to use against the West, either through direct attacks or indirectly by pitting them against our proxy regimes out there.

Oh and -

>> There aren't many Confederates, or Japanese, or Germans who still hold our warring against us

Speaking (in part) as a European; yup, you're right, where there's been a perceived war of liberation people tend to be pretty cool, in the long run. But many European countries still loathe the Germans, and the Chinese still loathe the Japanese; because the Germans and the Japanese launched pre-emptive wars of aggression on their respective enemies based on very public - and very false - assumptions that masked an agenda based entirely on self serving geographical / economic gain. People don't forgive that kind of abuse of power so easily.

Btb - I do think you'd be very intrigued by the PNAC website; if nothing else it very clearly lays bare Neo-Con motivations, from their own mouths. If you're going to support them you should at least understand them.
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jim
Posted on Wednesday, February 08, 2006 - 07:30 am:   

Thanks so much for answering for me, Al. I could not possibly have said it better myself. (Other than pointing out that our unfortunate Trashhauler was merely repeating Bush and especially Cheney's repeated efforts to obfuscate who the real enemy might be, i.e. Usama & Al Qaeda. Saddam was an evil prick, no doubt. But he was contained, and somewhere, sometime--oh yeah, I remember, it was from Bush himself in the 2000 campaign--I heard someone say we cannot afford to be the world's police force. I actually agreed with him then. Too bad he couldn't keep that promise.)

And where in the hell was this breaking independence on foreign oil bullshit on September 12, 2001, when it could've actually done us all some good. Oh yeah, Bush's government was too busy trying to take care of all the Saudis who might've been in danger here in the US...
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Al
Posted on Wednesday, February 08, 2006 - 09:24 am:   

Hi Jim -

A pleasure, I'm glad you didn't mind me stepping in. Viewed as a whole I find this kind of rhetoric fascinating - very seductive, very down home and creating an implied narrative that's both in itself profoundly wholesome and that brings together all aspects of 'the War on Terror' in a clear and simple 'good vs evil' structure - but that, from an empirical point of view, has little or no relationship with reality.

The really interesting thing about the War on Terror (come to think of it) is the implied narrative that sits behind its many parts - for example, the interchangeable use of 'terrorist' for stateless Al Qaida operative, Iraqi resistance member, London bomber, Iranian mullah, etc, implies a single enemy, with single goals and motivations, who can (and will) be defeated with a single set of easily understood and endorsed strategies.

Indeed, part of that word's rhetorical function is to make those strategies very difficult not to endorse because questioning them sets the questioner up for the response, 'so, you're pro-terror then?'
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Lawrence A
Posted on Wednesday, February 08, 2006 - 11:59 am:   

Lassen: "We are radicalizing people, and creating popular support for our enemies."

Lassen:
"As I said before, the Invasion of Iraq radicalized otherwise moderate people, and turned them against the US, and the west."

typical clueless rubbish from know-nothing Lassen. Makes no sense. How does an invasion of one Muslim country by another from the Christian West turn people from so-called moderates into embracing religious fanaticism and superstition, how does that drive them to embrace Sharia law, hatred of women and gays, Hindus, Buddhists and pagans, a hatred of science and reason itself? Just curious.

Does the US invasion of Iraq drive people from the West who opposed the war to embrace Christian fanaticism and superstition? A westerner opposes the war in Iraq, therefore he understandably turns from a moderate "peacenik" to a rabid religious fanatic who calls for the death of homosexuals and the stoning of women for having sex. How does the current Iraq war drive Moslems to be supportive of the jihad in Kashmir, Thailand, Sudan, Nigeria, E Timor, Algeria, Phillipines etc? A support for jihad is never localised, (in this instance to Iraq), if one is a Moslem extremist one supports jihad against all infidels across the globe.

How does this work - the average so-called moderate Joe in the Muslim world opposes the invasion of one country by another, being just so "anti-war" you know as is evidenced by Joe Muslim's non-protests over Iran-Iraq war, Saddam's invasion of Kuwait, Darfur slaughter, Algerian civil war, jihad in Kashmir etc, so in his rage at this invasion of a country in the middle-east where peace and prosperity, justice and human rights, free discourse, freedom of association, ethnic harmony, transparent and accountable governance rule supreme, all this enlightenment straight out of Plato's Republic, overseen by a benevolent albeit somewhat dotty father figure like Mahatma Ghandi, namely Saddam (I mean Mike Moore implies as much in 9-11. Galloway too, and they are hardly alone); in Joe Muslim's rage at all this, he turns in his despair and frustration at this war he vehemently opposed, being the peacenik that he is, to..... a belief system that glorifies war and the killing of people as divinely sanctioned and promising an eternal paradise in the hereafter, being serviced by hordes of virgin youths for eternity, all this for fulfilling this most essential and urgent sacred duty of slaughtering human beings. HOW'S THAT?????

Is the invasion of Iran by Iraq in 1980 and the resulting war that led to in excess of a million casulaties, the loss of a whole generation of youth on both sides, also a cause of the radicalisation of Moslems? If not why one set of rules for a Moslem invasion of a Moslem land, and another for the invasion of a Moslem country by a Christian one? What are these rules?

Oh yes the invasion of Iraq which toppled Saddam leads to Moslems getting so mad at America that they embrace superstition and bigotry against all infidels, but Saddam's tyrannical rule which saw the slaughter of Kurds and Shi'ites, his fellow Sunnis, and Iranians, the banning of weather reports and cell phones and independent media, the state police getting children to spy on their parents, the killing by chemical gas of his own people, the torture of thousands of political dissidents and their killings as all these mass graves reveal didn't bother them at all, (heck Saddam was the hero of millions of Muslims during Gulf War one), any any more than they bothered Lassen and his ilk. The lack of democratic elections and political opposition didn't bother them neither, now elections have put Shi'ite radicals into positions of power in the Iraqi parliament, which is why Iran is delighted with the elections there and has benefited big time from the power vaccuum in post-Saddam Iraq - in which case extremists have plenty to be grateful for re the American invasion, since America has unwittingly allowed them to come to power, a power they did not have in Baathist Iraq. US did not create this radicalism in Iraq, it merely gave it a voice it did not have under Saddam, via the recent elections. In which case radicals have plenty to be grateful to America for. As for the foreign fighters fighting in Iraq, they were already radical, the presence of the US just attracted them as a magnet attracts iron fillings.

Islamic radicalism has always been there in the region in large dollops, always been widespread, for as long as Islam has been in the region. Not just in the M-E, but in Africa, Asia and the West as well. It has just been downplayed in the PC media, telling twits like Lassen and his ilk what they wanted to hear, with their heads in the sand. The media, heck the CIA, the White House, just like Lassen who has more in common with those he despises than he could possibly know, suffer from the delusion that it's just a tiny minority of extremists who want to harm us. Suddenly many Muslims (not all obviously) themselves reveal in recent world events that cannot be buried by the Associated Press and CNN and the NY Times, as much as they would love to do so, and as much as Lassen wishes they would, that it was all just a load of PC horse pucky denial, pure wishful thinking.

So Lassen thinks it's all picked up, gotten worse, that Islamic radicalism has "grown". So thinking it has grown and Lassen being who he is, he can only blame America for it. Crap - it has not grown, it's always been ubiquitous, it's just you've all been hiding away from it for so long.

There is no radicalisation of "moderates", you are all putting the cart before the horse, you have all just bought into the myth of the moderate Muslim is in the overwhelming majority crap. You have all been calling the radicals moderates, that's all. You mistook your wishful thinking for truth. It is merely that the "moderate" Muslim reveals himself not to be moderate at all, when push comes to shove. If he was a moderate, he would not embrace fundamentalism in the first place. Very easy to understand, but not if you are an ideologue apologist for Islamic extremism. It's just a big lie, what you want to hear, so you get your dumb media, MSM and so-called independent, and your know-nothing academics at your universities, to tell the lies you want to hear.

Lassen suffering from cognitive dissonance, - then illogically blames America for increasing radicalism, when the radicalism has always been there, it's just that the mask the PC brigade and media have been pretending the reality, is slipping.

Who here sees how Lassen contradicts himself re America causing increasing Islamic radicalism and the whole Danish cartoon hysteria and the apopleptic, hypocritical and deranged and violent Islamic response, in the light of Duncan's post on the subject which Lassen endorsed? It's a major contradiction.
I doubt many, if any people here do. I just know this paragraph of mine will probably be ignored. Lassen contradicts himself all over the place.

Lassen pretends to know what motivates youths in Islamic society when he knows less than nothing about its culture and history and contemporary reality, the good and the bad, and so obviously knows less than nothing about the religion. It's why he thinks he knows what he is talking about. Lassen like his fellow idiot apologists of Islamic fascism, such as the lying journos he gets his bullshit from, doesn't have a clue.

I guess the widespread Islamic extremism that saw a very successful jihad waged from the 7th century AD, from bloody century to bloody century, from the Persian Gulf into north Africa, across to Spain to the M-East and far into Asia that saw the slaughter of millions, the enslavement of millions, and the mass exodus of refugees over centuries, such as the Zorastrians from Persia, Jews from Arabia, Christians from the M-East and North Africa, forced conversions of millions more etc, the destruction of great civilisations like the Hindu civilisation (know what Hindu Kush means?) - this was the consequence of US foreign policy?

I know a fair few ex-Muslim apostates and plenty women from this world of which you know less than nothing, who would laugh in your face and in fact call you a wilfully blind idiot who ought to go live in Syria, or Iran or Saudi, and Yemen. Go live among the Egyptian Copts, tell them what you tell us here, you'll get punched http://freecopts.blogspot.com/ or in Darfur for a year, go live in Pakistan or Kashmir or North Africa, go live among what is left of the Lebanese Maronite community who I see just had some churches burnt and attacked yesterday - go live among them, heck for a month - and tell them what you tell us, and then come back and spout your bullshit here again.

Salman Rushdie, Naguib Mahfouz, the Syrian Enlightenment Party, would call you what you are - a useful idiot for Islamic fascism. The Islamic radicalism and jihadist violence has always been there, it's just not reported on, and not always given a voice or outlet, either by the media or governments themselves or both. just because as of late the media have had no choice but to reluctantly report it, and still misreport it, doesn't mean radicalism wasn't as bad as before, it was just the West was hiding from the ugly truth, and the truth came and bit the Western ostrich on the ass. Lassen who prefers like others here the feeling of sand in his ears, doesn't want to know, and so he doesn't, he just filters it all through his America is to blame routine, like a comic who has no new material regurgitating the same old crap.

The Moslem world just lost their power relative to the West's growing might over the last few centuries, Europe and then America, and so could not enact jihad with the same force against the West they now can do, oil wealth funding terror and the global village that the world has become, migration to Europe and N America in the last few decades, all making jihadists more powerful and effective in their violence. It is easier for geographically disparate jihadist groups to disseminate propoganda and co-ordinate their actions, using the West's technology against itself, 9-11 for example - it has just all brought it out of the woodwork.

Nowadays jihadism and it's support is still significantly under-reported because of PC know-nothingness - the western media is filled with Lassen and other Night Shade type zombies in their newsrooms wilfully not reporting what goes on in the world, but endless European and America navel gazing, telling their viewers and their readers what they want to hear. And round in round in circles we go, the blind leading the blind.

and no I never did support the war in Iraq, if anybody knows anything about the region you would not want to go near it with a ten foot pole, I mean as a tourist maybe, not as a soldier. The Left and the world, outside of America for the most part, to be fair, just opposed the war 'cause they are anti-American, not anti-war. Otherwise they would not have bothered to comment and shrilly protest at all, like those endless wars in East Africa which nobody knows nor cares about. If America was to invade Eritrea, rather than Ethiopia say, you would never hear the end of it, anti-American oh I'm sorry I'm supposed to lie and say anti-war rallies from London to Toronto to Rome to Sydney would be the order of the day.

This is not written for Lassen's sake, he just will find this all so incomprehensible, the very word he used in response to something similar I wrote a while back, all this beyond his little mind or rather mindlesness, along with most others here. I write this for maybe 4 or 5 people viewing this thread, if that many (who I assume just never, or rather rarely post and only lurk), please god there are a few out there, who are not sleeping the sleep of reason, otherwise this post of mine is just wasted.

here is a link, an interview from Der Spiegel English version with Hirsi Ali, brave and outspoken,. entitled "Everyone is afraid to criticise Islam"
http://service.spiegel.de/cache/international/spiegel/0,1518,399263,00.html
that is replete with FACTS and free of dogmatic ideological delusions. In Lassen speak, these delusions translate to "how to blame Islam on America, ignore the facts and tie yourself in knots"
Lassen don't waste your time reading the interview, you just won't get it. It contains FACTS see. and Lassen and facts are mutually exclusive, they occupy different dimensions of being. Same goes for those like-mindless.

After all it was Schiller who said, "With stupidity the gods themselves contend in vain." And I'm just a man.

To misquote Edward Abbey,
"There is science, logic, reason; there is thought verified by experience. And then there is Night Shades."

And yes Al we are going about fighting this war in the wrong way, can't defeat jihadists through folly and lies. Killing a terrorist doesn't kill the ideology behind terrorism, not that I have a problem with killing terrorists, just in the long term it's no solution. And thus neither conservatives nor Lefties for the most part know what the solution is, being ensnared in folly and lies. Believe it or not, the Danish cartoonists show the way. But how many people here will know what I mean and not misunderstand me?


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Jeremy Lassen
Posted on Wednesday, February 08, 2006 - 12:12 pm:   

lawrence, if you can not see how an unjustified grab for oil by the united states, via an illegal war that has killed tens of thousands of innocent women and children might make "joe arab" in the streets less sympathetic to the US, then you just don't have any critical thinking skills.

Thanks again for your wonderful 5K word screed. You are as fine an example of a war supporter as I have ever seen.
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Neal Asher
Posted on Wednesday, February 08, 2006 - 01:35 pm:   

Oh Jeremy, stop preaching to the converted and shouting at the unconvertable. Go and do some work. We need good books much more than we need ideologues - there's no shortage of them.
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Jeremy Lassen
Posted on Wednesday, February 08, 2006 - 02:05 pm:   

Too true Neal... too true.

(off to comission cover art, layout books, work on promotional campaings, and shamelessly shill books...)


Hey... we're running a 50% off sale right now... everybody should go and buy some of our books!!
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Trashhauler
Posted on Wednesday, February 08, 2006 - 06:52 pm:   

Al Robertson wrote:
____________

Trashhauler, you wrote:

>> Getting their "fondest wish," if that's what it was, might not do them much good in the end. The Baathists are already learning that.

Which is I think taking the original point out of context. An American invasion of Iraq was Usama Bin Laden / Al Qaida's fondest wish; not the Baath party's fondest wish.
___________

I'll make a correction before responding to other posts. Al is absolutely correct here. Although bin Laden was probably elated at OIF, it's certain that the Iraqis weren't hoping for it. That's not what I meant and my sentence was less than ept.
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Trashhauler
Posted on Wednesday, February 08, 2006 - 08:12 pm:   

Jeremy wrote:

No...in fact the Saudis were under tremendous internal and external pressure to oust US forces from the bases which they had occupied since the first Persion Gulf war. What do you think Al Queda's major beef with the US was anyway? (I'll give you a hint... It has something to do with infidel troops in the holy land.)

Actually, I've always read that the opposition to us in the Middle East had three basic reasons:

1. Our support for Israel over the Palestinians
2. Our support for autocratic regimes
3. Our "occupation" of Islamic holy places (or, at least, the country in which these places are found.)

While the Saudis undoubtedly felt pressure to get rid of us, there was no such official request. What I recall (because I was working shifts in the US Transportation Command operations center) were discussions about how the Saudi intransigence was gumming up the Afghan campaign. It's entirely possible that both parties welcomed the chance to separate. Now, at least, we don't have to go back to Saudi Arabia.

Jeremy next wrote:

And thank you. In your entire post, you have been unable to state on positive benefit to come from the invasion and occupation of Iraq. The best you can offer is benefits are uncertain, and won't be known until we leave??! What, are you a magic fucking 8-ball?

No, but I am careful. It doesn't make sense to claim results that haven't happened yet and might not happen. But if you simply want a list of interim benefits, I'll post a short one. Mind, though, some of these are arguably of minor benefit to any but those involved in them. In no particular order, I note that:

1. We are no longer wasting our time in Saudi Arabia.
2. We no longer need to keep a large fleet in the Gulf and we no longer have to fight a quasi-war in the no-fly zones.
3. The deteriorating sanction regime is gone.
4. Saddam is no longer a threat to Kuwait, SA, the Emirates and their collective oil fields.
5. The power of the Baathists in Iraq has been broken. Whatever the thruth about Saddam's old WMD program, he won't be building anymore.
6. We are slowly improving the chances of a stable Iraqi government.
7. We are encouraging the idea of democratic practices as an option over radicalism.
8. We are no longer on the strategic defensive in the region.
9. Libya turned their WMD assets over to us and we've flown all of it out.

I hasten to add that these are just some things that I've noticed - I don't represent the Adminstration in any way. Other welcome developments have happened that might or might not be related to our actions, such as the Syrians pulling their troops out of Lebanon, but causality is less certain there.

Jeremy also wrote:

Christ... If you were a good little Neocon, and could spout Project For A New American Century propaganda at me, that would be one thing... but you sit there and tell me "We don't need permanent bases?!?!?" Somebody tell Dick Cheney and Rumsfield that, because that’s the basis of their entire foreign policy... You say you don’t know what the benefits of the war will be? Go read what the architects of this war have written. It’s all available on the web. Go and read what they think the benefits will be. Then come back and let me know how realistic their assessment is. Until then, you come off as an ignorant partisan cheerleader.

You didn't ask me what the neocons thought, you asked me what I thought. Please note that, while I've naturally read the neocon stuff, I'm not, strictly speaking, a neocon. I'm a retired military officer, a ex- military pilot, and a middle rank DOD civil servant. If I'd had my druthers, we'd have pulled out of Saudi Arabia leaving them to face Saddam's tender mercy, after they got pissy over assisting our Afghan efforts. But I wasn't asked.

My comments about permanent military bases are the result of a lifetime of military planning and observing various operations. We typically spend lots of money on bases, even if they are destined to be temporary, as are most, if not all, of our Iraqi bases. There is nothing special about their locations in the absence of a continuing insurgency. We don't even have air service to more than about six of our bases and the surface transportation net does not led itself to large operational movements, except locally. Assuming we did keep those bases, we would be hard-pressed to support them logistically or deploy from them. They are useful now, of course, but are ill-suited for control of the region. I'm just trying to give it to you straight. If our goal is permanent bases, they won't be in Iraq. Besides, we already have "permanent" bases in the region, though they are typically placed in caretaker status when (if?) peace breaks out. And, of course, it also depends on one's definition of permanent, don't it?

You seem awfully hostile, Jeremy. That's okay, sticks and stones and all, but that's not my preferred way of conversing.



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Lawrence A
Posted on Thursday, February 09, 2006 - 05:53 am:   

Lawrence, if you can not see how an unjustified grab for oil by the united states, via an illegal war that has killed tens of thousands of innocent women and children might make "joe arab" in the streets less sympathetic to the US, then you just don't have any critical thinking skills.

Thanks again for your wonderful 5K word screed. You are as fine an example of a war supporter as I have ever seen.


Like I said against stupidity the gods themselves rail in vain. Lassen calls me a war suppporter when I never supported the war, I have made that clear at asimov's and here, and in my above post. Lassen can't help himself from lying. Lies and ideology go hand in hand. He lies with every post he makes, and he doesn't even know it - but that's what ideology is.

Lassen can't answer any of my points and so evades them by repeating the same old crud that I refute above. Joe Arab and Lassen think alike -little if any comment on Saddam's tyranny and numerous hundreds of thousands of victims of CONTEMPORARY Arab and Moslem conflicts across the world, including enslavement of thousands in Sudan and the mutilation of hundreds of thousands of young girls across north Africa and in Asia, and their total oppression, execution of gays, the persecution of minority faiths, the burning of Moslem people alive in Algeria and the abduction of Moslem girls as sex slaves by their fellow Moslems in Algeria, many of the hundreds of thousands of victims of Jamjaweed and allied Sudanese soldiers tyranny over the last few decades in Sudan are Moslem themselves, jihad in Nigeria, Phillipines, the slaughter of tens of thousands in Kashmir etc, appalling human rights record across the Moslem world, but madness at the US for invading Iraq, when Iraqi Baathists and Iranian theocracy slaughtered and tortured, displaced, forced into exile and tyrannised their own fellow Moslem nationals in the hundreds of thousands, tyrannised in the millions, and then slaughtered and maimed one another in the hundreds of thousands in the 1980-88 war. Talk about double standards, a double standard and moral relativism that Joe Arab shares with Lassen and the so-called liberal crowd. Having common enemies makes for odd alliances.

Lassen suffers from the delusion that because I don't suffer from his moral relativism, one set of rules for US govts and their lies and wars and another set of rules, namely a free ride for the tyranny and butchery of other non-Western nations, that I therefore support US govt lies and agendas.

Lassen you opposed the war in Iraq, the only war in the world you would think, so you are mad at the US govt, so are you inclined to embrace an ideology that supports the oppression of women, the execution of gays, and the killing of Buddhist monks? Arabs are upset at the US invasion, but not upset by any of their own jihads, or internal mass murder in Saddam's Iraq, but this hypocrisy doesn't occur to Lassen 'cause he shares in it. Being mad at the US is one thing, doesn't explain the embrace of superstition and the glorification of war as a religious duty.

When Lassen says I have no critical thinking skills it's pure projection on his part. After all read the first 5 paragraphs of my above post after the Lassen blather I quote, which reveal Lassen's non-critical non-thinking. He can't answer a single point in those paragraphs, how could he? so it all just sails over his head, and he goes on repeating the same gobbledegook as before which I debunk and show up as illogical in those self same paragraphs. Lassen couldn't even make the attempt to answer any of the points I raise, since there is no answer to any of the points I raise, other than Lassen doesn't know what he is talking about.

Once again the above is not written for the benefit of Lassen and fellow non-thinkers. Lassen's predictable ideological fact-free response which I saw coming a mile off, only proves the point I make. He just repeats the same crud on and on ad nauseum. What I write here is written for others.
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Ibn Warraq
Posted on Friday, February 10, 2006 - 04:14 pm:   

The question that must be asked is: Have our leaders and ourselves learned nothing from the longest record of imperialism and colonialism in human history?

Let us start at the beginning, with that history’s earliest phase.

The following 13 events and incidents occurred in the last years of Muhammad’s life.

1) The killing of Abu Afak.
2) The killing of Asma Marwan.
3) Attack upon the Banu Qaynuqa Jews.
4) The killing of Kab Ashraf.
5) The killing of Ibn Sunayna.
6) Attack against the Banu Nadir Jews.
7) The killing of the Shepherd.
8) Massacre of the Qurayza Jews.
9) The torture killing of Kinana.
10) The killing of a slave Wife and Mother.
11) The slaying of an old woman from Fazara.
12) The killing of Abdullah Khatal and his Daughter.
13) The attack upon Tabuk.

In the following chronology of early Islam, covering from 623 to 777, a span of 154 years, there are 83 major military conflicts involving Muslims.

570 – Birth of Muhammad in Mecca.
577 – Muhammad’s mother dies.
595 – Muhammad marries, starts to have children.
605 – Placement of Black Stone in Ka’aba.
610 – Mohammed, in a cave, hears an angel tell him that Allah is the only true God.
613 – Muhammad’s first public preaching of Islam at Mt. Hira. Gets few converts.
615 – Muslims persecuted by the Quraish.
619 – Marries Sau’da and Aisha.
620 – Institution of five daily prayers.
622 – Muhammad immigrates from Mecca to Medina, gets more converts.
623 – Battle of Waddan.
623 – Battle of Safwan.
623 – Battle of Dul-‘Ashir.
624 – Raids on caravans to fund the movement begin.
624 – Zakat becomes mandatory.
624 – Battle of Badr (see chapter on Badr).
624 – Battle of Bani Salim.
624 – Battle of Eid-ul-Fitr & Zakat-ul-Fitr.
624 – Battle of Bani Qainuqa’.
624 – Battle of Sawiq.
624 – Battle of Ghatfan.
624 – Battle of Bahran.
625 – Battle of Uhud. 70 Muslims killed.
625 – Battle of Humra-ul-Asad.
625 – Battle of Banu Nudair.
625 – Battle of Dhatur-Riqa.
626 – Battle of Badru-Ukhra.
626 – Battle of Dumatul-Jandal.
626 – Battle of Banu Mustalaq Nikah.
627 – Battle of the Trench.
627 – Battle of Ahzab.
627 – Battle of Bani Quraiza.
627 – Battle of Bani Lahyan.
627 – Battle of Ghaiba.
627 – Battle of Khaibar.
628 – Muhammad signs treaty with Quarish. (The Al-Hudaybiyya agreement was signed for a period of 10 years, which became the time limit for any agreement with non-Muslims. The agreement was broken after 18 months when Muhammad’s army conquered Mecca)
630 – Muhammad conquers Mecca (Quarish).
630 – Battle of Hunsin.
630 – Battle of Tabuk.
632 – Muhammad dies. …The reign of the Caliphs begins.
632 – Abu-Bakr (Muhammad’s fatherin-law) along with Umar, begin a military move to enforce Islam in Arabia.
633 – Battle at Oman.
633 – Battle at Hadramaut.
633 – Battle of Kazima.
633 – Battle of Walaja.
633 – Battle of Ulleis.
633 – Battle of Anbar.
634 – Battle of Basra.
634 – Battle of Damascus.
634 – Battle of Ajnadin.
634 – Death of Hadrat Abu Bakr. Harat Umar Farooq becomes the Caliph.
634 – Battle of Namaraq.
634 – Battle of Saqatia.
635 – Battle of Bridge.
635 – Battle of Buwaib.
635 – Conquest of Damascus.
635 – Battle of Fahl.
636 – Battle of Yermuk.
636 – Battle of Qadsiyia.
636 – Conquest of Madain.
637 – Battle of Jalula.
638 – Battle of Yarmouk.
638 – The Muslims defeat the Romans and enter Jerusalem.
638 – Conquest of Jazirah.
639 – Conquest of Khuizistan and movement into Egypt.
641 – Battle of Nihawand.
642 – Battle of Rayy in Persia.
643 – Conquest of Azarbaijan.
644 – Conquest of Fars.
644 – Conquest of Kharan.
644 – Umar is murdered. Othman becomes Caliph.
647 – Conquest of Cypress island.
644 – Uman dies, succeeded by Caliph Uthman.
648 – Byzantine campaign begins.
651 – Naval battle against Byzantines.
654 – Islam spreads into North Africa.
656 – Uthman is murdered. Ali becomes Caliph.
658 – Battle of Nahrawan.
659 – Conquest of Egypt.
661 – Ali is murdered.
662 – Egypt falls to Islam rule.
666 – Sicily is attacked by Muslims.
677 – Siege of Constantinople.
687 – Battle of Kufa.
691 – Battle of Deir ul Jaliq.
700 – Sufism takes root as a sect.
700 – Military campaigns in North Africa.
702 – Battle of Deir ul Jamira.
711 – Muslims invade Gibraltar.
711 – Conquest of Spain.
713 – Conquest of Multan.
716 – Invasion of Constantinople.
732 – Battle of Tours in France.
740 – Battle of the Nobles.
741 – Battle of Bagdoura in North Africa.
744 – Battle of Ain al Jurr.
746 – Battle of Rupar Thutha.
748 – Battle of Rayy.
749 – Battle of lsfahan.
749 – Battle of Nihawand.
750 – Battle of Zab.
772 – Battle of Janbi in North Africa.
777 – Battle of Saragossa in Spain.
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Ibn Warraq
Posted on Friday, February 10, 2006 - 04:16 pm:   

On the Christian and Muslim crusades...

"When accusing the West of imperialism, Muslims are obsessed with the Christian Crusades but have forgotten their own, much grander Jihad. In fact, they often denounce the Crusades as the cause and starting point of the antagonism between Christianity and Islam. They are putting the cart before the horse. The Jihad is more than four hundred years older than the Crusades". – Paul Fregosi, Jihad in the West: Muslim Conquests from the 7th to the 21st Centuries

On slavery...

Ibn Warraq writes that the Koran accepts slavery and recognizes the essential inequality of master and slave (suras 16.77; 30.28)

He also notes that..."Slavery in the Islamic world continued, astonishingly enough, well into the twentieth century. According to Brunschvig, black slaves of both sexes continued to to be imported into Morocco untill well into the twentieth century."

In a 1987 interview for the journal Awal, the Algerian writer and poet, Kateb Yacine said, with regard to Islam.."The Algeris Arabi-Islamic is an Algeria against herself, an Algeria alien to herself. It is an Algeria imposed by arms, for Islam does not develop with sweets and roses, it develops with tears and blood. It grows by crushing, by violence, by contempt, by hatred, by the worst humiliation a people can support. We can see the result."

In 1979, just after the Iranian revolution, Ayatollah Khomeini gave a speech in which he said, "Islam makes it incumbant upon all males, provided they are not disabled and incapacitated, to prepare themselves for the conquest of countries so that the writ of Islam is obeyed in every country of the world." He continued:"Islam says: Whatever good there is exists thanks to the sword and in the shadow of the sword." Followed by: "There are hundreds of other Koranic psalms and Hadiths urging Muslims to value war and to fight. Does all that mean that Islam is a religion that prevents men from waging war? I spit upon thoses foolish souls who make such a claim".

Not long afterwards he issued the famous fatwa uring that some pious Muslim should murder Salman Rushdie for writing his book "The Satanic Curses" which, by the way, describe Muhammads own "revision" of the un-revisible words of god when he had struck from the record, certain comments he had made (these were actually published on one early version of the Koran but later deleted) in which he complimented gods of a certain tribe that he was trying to chum up to. This, of course, would be heresy...recognizing any god other than Allah.
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Ibn Warraq
Posted on Friday, February 10, 2006 - 04:17 pm:   

On the issue of selective revision after the fact, there is also the story, in the Muslim books themselves, of a scribe named Abd Allah b. Sa'd Abi Sarh (try to say that three times..fast)who was employed, at Medina, to write down the prophets revelations. On a number of occaisions he had, with the prophets consent changed the closing words of verses. Having observed a succession of changes of this type, Abd Allah renounced Islam on the ground that the revelations, if from God, could not be changed at the prompting of a scribe such as himself. After his apostasy he went to Mecca and joined the Qorayshites.
The Prophet, by the way, had no qualms about ordering his assassination once Mecca was captured.

Muslims fly commercial airliners into buildings in New York City. No Muslim outrage.
Muslim officials block the exit where school girls are trying to escape a burning building because their faces were exposed. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims cut off the heads of three teenaged girls on their way to school in Indonesia. A Christian school. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims murder teachers trying to teach Muslim children in Iraq. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims murder over 80 tourists with car bombs outside cafes and hotels in Egypt. No Muslim outrage.
A Muslim attacks a missionary children's school in India. Kills six. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims slaughter hundreds of children and teachers in Beslan, Russia. Muslims shoot children in the back. No Muslim outrage.
Let's go way back. Muslims kidnap and kill athletes at the Munich Summer Olympics. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims fire rocket-propelled grenades into schools full of children in Israel. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims murder more than 50 commuters in attacks on London subways and busses. Over 700 are injured. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims massacre dozens of innocents at a Passover Seder. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims murder innocent vacationers in Bali. No Muslim outrage.
Muslim newspapers publish anti-Semitic cartoons. No Muslim outrage
Muslims are involved, on one side or the other, in almost every one of the 125+ shooting wars around the world. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims beat the charred bodies of Western civilians with their shoes, then hang them from a bridge. No Muslim outrage.
Newspapers in Denmark and Norway publish cartoons depicting Mohammed. Muslims are outraged.
Dead children. Dead tourists. Dead teachers. Dead doctors and nurses. Death, destruction and mayhem around the world at the hands of Muslims .. no Muslim outrage ... but publish a cartoon depicting Mohammed with a bomb in his turban and all hell breaks loose.
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Ibn Warraq
Posted on Friday, February 10, 2006 - 04:23 pm:   

Here is an interview with Ayaan Hirsi Ali in Der Spiegel. She knows whereof she speaks.

DER SPIEGEL 6/2006 - February 6, 2006
URL: http://www.spiegel.de/international/spiegel/0,1518,399263,00.html

SPIEGEL Interview with Ayaan Hirsi Ali

'Everyone Is Afraid to Criticize Islam'

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, the Dutch politician forced to go into hiding after the murder of filmmaker Theo van Gogh, responds to the Danish cartoon scandal, arguing that if Europe doesn't stand up to extremists, a culture of self-censorship of criticism of Islam that pervades in Holland will spread in Europe. Auf Wiedersehen, free speech.
SPIEGEL: Hirsi Ali, you have called the Prophet Muhammad a tyrant and a pervert. Theo van Gogh, the director of your film "Submission," which is critical of Islam, was murdered by Islamists. You yourself are under police protection. Can you understand how the Danish cartoonists feel at this point?
Hirsi Ali: They probably feel numb. On the one hand, a voice in their heads is encouraging them not to sell out their freedom of speech. At the same time, they're experiencing the shocking sensation of what it's like to lose your own personal freedom. One mustn't forget that they're part of the postwar generation, and that all they've experienced is peace and prosperity. And now they suddenly have to fight for their own human rights once again.

SPIEGEL: Why have the protests escalated to such an extent?

Hirsi Ali: There is no freedom of speech in those Arab countries where the demonstrations and public outrage are being staged. The reason many people flee to Europe from these places is precisely because they have criticized religion, the political establishment and society. Totalitarian Islamic regimes are in a deep crisis. Globalization means that they're exposed to considerable change, and they also fear the reformist forces developing among émigrés in the West. They'll use threatening gestures against the West, and the success they achieve with their threats, to intimidate these people.

SPIEGEL: Was apologizing for the cartoons the wrong thing to do?

Hirsi Ali: Once again, the West pursued the principle of turning first one cheek, then the other. In fact, it's already a tradition. In 1980, privately owned British broadcaster ITV aired a documentary about the stoning of a Saudi Arabian princess who had allegedly committed adultery. The government in Riyadh intervened and the British government issued an apology. We saw the same kowtowing response in 1987 when (Dutch comedian) Rudi Carrell derided (Iranian revolutionary leader) Ayatollah Khomeini in a comedy skit (that was aired on German television). In 2000, a play about the youngest wife of the Prophet Mohammed, titled "Aisha," was cancelled before it ever opened in Rotterdam. Then there was the van Gogh murder and now the cartoons. We are constantly apologizing, and we don't notice how much abuse we're taking. Meanwhile, the other side doesn't give an inch.

SPIEGEL: What should the appropriate European response look like?

Hirsi Ali: There should be solidarity. The cartoons should be displayed everywhere. After all, the Arabs can't boycott goods from every country. They're far too dependent on imports. And Scandinavian companies should be compensated for their losses. Freedom of speech should at least be worth that much to us.

SPIEGEL: But Muslims, like any religious community, should also be able to protect themselves against slander and insult.

Hirsi Ali: That's exactly the reflex I was just talking about: offering the other cheek. Not a day passes, in Europe and elsewhere, when radical imams aren't preaching hatred in their mosques. They call Jews and Christians inferior, and we say they're just exercising their freedom of speech. When will the Europeans realize that the Islamists don't allow their critics the same right? After the West prostrates itself, they'll be more than happy to say that Allah has made the infidels spineless.

SPIEGEL: What will be the upshot of the storm of protests against the cartoons?

Hirsi Ali: We could see the same thing happening that has happened in the Netherlands, where writers, journalists and artists have felt intimidated ever since the van Gogh murder. Everyone is afraid to criticize Islam. Significantly, "Submission" still isn't being shown in theaters.

SPIEGEL: Many have criticized the film as being too radical and too offensive.

Hirsi Ali: The criticism of van Gogh was legitimate. But when someone has to die for his world view, what he may have done wrong is no longer the issue. That's when we have to stand up for our basic rights. Otherwise we are just reinforcing the killer and conceding that there was a good reason to kill this person.

SPIEGEL: You too have been accused for your dogged criticism of Islam.

Hirsi Ali: Oddly enough, my critics never specify how far I can go. How can you address problems if you're not even allowed to clearly define them? Like the fact that Muslim women at home are kept locked up, are raped and are married off against their will -- and that in a country in which our far too passive intellectuals are so proud of their freedom!

SPIEGEL: The debate over speaking Dutch on the streets and the integration programs for potentially violent Moroccan youth -- do these things also represent the fruits of your provocations?

Hirsi Ali: The sharp criticism has finally triggered an open debate over our relationship with Muslim immigrants. We have become more conscious of things. For example, we are now classifying honor killings by the victims' countries of origin. And we're finally turning our attention to young girls who are sent against their wills from Morocco to Holland as brides, and adopting legislation to make this practice more difficult.

SPIEGEL: You're working on a sequel to "Submission." Will you stick to your uncompromising approach?

Hirsi Ali: Yes, of course. We want to continue the debate over the Koran's claim to absoluteness, the infallibility of the Prophet and sexual morality. In the first part, we portrayed a woman who speaks to her god, complaining that despite the fact that she has abided by his rules and subjugated herself, she is still being abused by her uncle. The second part deals with the dilemma into which the Muslim faith plunges four different men. One hates Jews, the second one is gay, the third is a bon vivant who wants to be a good Muslim but repeatedly succumbs to life's temptations, and the fourth is a martyr. They all feel abandoned by their god and decide to stop worshipping him.

SPIEGEL: Will recent events make it more difficult to screen the film?

Hirsi Ali: The conditions couldn't be more difficult. We're forced to produce the film under complete anonymity. Everyone involved in the film, from actors to technicians, will be unrecognizable. But we are determined to complete the project. The director didn't really like van Gogh, but he believes that, for the sake of free speech, shooting the sequel is critical. I'm optimistic that we'll be able to premier the film this year.

SPIEGEL: Is the Koran's claim to absoluteness, which you criticize in "Submission," the central obstacle to reforming Islam?

Hirsi Ali: The doctrine stating that the faith is inalterable because the Koran was dictated by God must be replaced. Muslims must realize that it was human beings who wrote the holy scriptures. After all, most Christians don't believe in hell, in the angels or in the earth having been created in six days. They now see these things as symbolic stories, but they still remain true to their faith.




Hirsi Ali: The criticism of van Gogh was legitimate. But when someone has to die for his world view, what he may have done wrong is no longer the issue. That's when we have to stand up for our basic rights. Otherwise we are just reinforcing the killer and conceding that there was a good reason to kill this person.

SPIEGEL: You too have been accused for your dogged criticism of Islam.

Hirsi Ali: Oddly enough, my critics never specify how far I can go. How can you address problems if you're not even allowed to clearly define them? Like the fact that Muslim women at home are kept locked up, are raped and are married off against their will -- and that in a country in which our far too passive intellectuals are so proud of their freedom!

SPIEGEL: The debate over speaking Dutch on the streets and the integration programs for potentially violent Moroccan youth -- do these things also represent the fruits of your provocations?

Hirsi Ali: The sharp criticism has finally triggered an open debate over our relationship with Muslim immigrants. We have become more conscious of things. For example, we are now classifying honor killings by the victims' countries of origin. And we're finally turning our attention to young girls who are sent against their wills from Morocco to Holland as brides, and adopting legislation to make this practice more difficult.

SPIEGEL: You're working on a sequel to "Submission." Will you stick to your uncompromising approach?

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Ibn Warraq
Posted on Friday, February 10, 2006 - 04:25 pm:   


Hirsi Ali: Yes, of course. We want to continue the debate over the Koran's claim to absoluteness, the infallibility of the Prophet and sexual morality. In the first part, we portrayed a woman who speaks to her god, complaining that despite the fact that she has abided by his rules and subjugated herself, she is still being abused by her uncle. The second part deals with the dilemma into which the Muslim faith plunges four different men. One hates Jews, the second one is gay, the third is a bon vivant who wants to be a good Muslim but repeatedly succumbs to life's temptations, and the fourth is a martyr. They all feel abandoned by their god and decide to stop worshipping him.

SPIEGEL: Will recent events make it more difficult to screen the film?

Hirsi Ali: The conditions couldn't be more difficult. We're forced to produce the film under complete anonymity. Everyone involved in the film, from actors to technicians, will be unrecognizable. But we are determined to complete the project. The director didn't really like van Gogh, but he believes that, for the sake of free speech, shooting the sequel is critical. I'm optimistic that we'll be able to premier the film this year.

SPIEGEL: Is the Koran's claim to absoluteness, which you criticize in "Submission," the central obstacle to reforming Islam?

Hirsi Ali: The doctrine stating that the faith is inalterable because the Koran was dictated by God must be replaced. Muslims must realize that it was human beings who wrote the holy scriptures. After all, most Christians don't believe in hell, in the angels or in the earth having been created in six days. They now see these things as symbolic stories, but they still remain true to their faith.

INTERVIEW: GERALD TRAUFETTER
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Ibn Warraq
Posted on Friday, February 10, 2006 - 04:31 pm:   

Or else see, for further clarification,this account by an Indian historian of the Muslim invasion of India in the 13th-14th centuries.

http://voi.org/books/siii/ch6.htm

Only to the blind are the facts of 14 centuries of history are strikingly clear. Still, let us look only at the present day. As President Ahmadinejad told an audience of Iranian religious students on Jan 5,2006: "We must believe in the fact that Islam is not confined to geographical borders, ethnic groups and nations. It's a universal ideology that leads the world to justice. We don't shy away from declaring that Islam is ready to rule the world. We must prepare ourselves to rule the world."
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Yasmine
Posted on Saturday, February 11, 2006 - 05:24 am:   

From: http://www.ntlworld.com/news/story_uk.php?page_zone=223.1.1&storyid=20877423

London braced for cartoon protests


Thousands of Muslims will gather in London to rally against the controversial cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed.

Christian groups will also show a united front when they join the United Against Incitement and Islamophobia rally in Trafalgar Square.

However, police fear that football thugs and extremists may try to hijack the event and will be monitoring the event closely.

A coalition of moderate Muslim groups including the Muslim Association of Britain, the UK Islamic Mission and the Islamic Society of Britain have organised the event.

Mayor of London Ken Livingstone and the Muslim Council of Britain are also supporting the protest.

A spokesman for the groups involved said: "The first message we want to send to the country is that of the legitimate voice of the Muslim community as opposed to those that hijacked last week's demonstration outside the Danish embassy.

"We are people of peace and are trying to do our best also in bridging the gap between Islam and the West."

The aim of the London protest was to send a message of calm to the Muslim world.

He said: "It may appear to them that there is a great Western conspiracy against their faith, but there are a large number of people who are on the side of reconciliation, and we hope that comes out loud and clear on Saturday."

Earlier, London Mayor Ken Livingstone warned that a subversive element might try to take part in the rally.

He said: "There is, as we have known for years, a small number of people who have one foot in a football club and the other in the BNP.

"These people are known by the police and they will make sure that any attempt to disrupt this demonstration will be dealt with."

All banners will be checked and only official ones will be allowed.

A spokeswoman for Scotland Yard said: "Our overall aim will be to work in partnership with the event stewards to ensure that the event is safe for those attending.

"We will have a policing presence in Trafalgar Square and a reserve of officers that can be deployed if necessary.

"Our officers will take necessary action to prevent disorder, crime from being committed and also to arrest offenders if crime is committed."

The original 12 cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed - one depicting him wearing a bomb-shaped turban - were first published in the Danish paper Jyllands-Posten in September.

The caricatures provoked angry protests from Muslims worldwide, who consider any representation of their Prophet to be blasphemous.
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Yasmine
Posted on Saturday, February 11, 2006 - 05:46 am:   

Thanks for that load of rubbish "Ibn Warraq" - nice to see you can pick and chose whatever suits your view point.

>>On the issue of selective revision after the fact, there is also the story, in the Muslim books themselves, of a scribe named Abd Allah b. Sa'd Abi Sarh (try to say that three times..fast)who was employed, at Medina, to write down the prophets revelations. On a number of occaisions he had, with the prophets consent changed the closing words of verses. Having observed a succession of changes of this type, Abd Allah renounced Islam on the ground that the revelations, if from God, could not be changed at the prompting of a scribe such as himself. After his apostasy he went to Mecca and joined the Qorayshites.
The Prophet, by the way, had no qualms about ordering his assassination once Mecca was captured.

That is completely untrue. There has been no changes to the Koran. But well done on writing a completely fabriacted story though. Also nice to see that you chose your character to be called son of God (literal translation of Abd Allah).


>>Muslims fly commercial airliners into buildings in New York City. No Muslim outrage.
Muslim officials block the exit where school girls are trying to escape a burning building because their faces were exposed. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims cut off the heads of three teenaged girls on their way to school in Indonesia. A Christian school. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims murder teachers trying to teach Muslim children in Iraq. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims murder over 80 tourists with car bombs outside cafes and hotels in Egypt. No Muslim outrage.
A Muslim attacks a missionary children's school in India. Kills six. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims slaughter hundreds of children and teachers in Beslan, Russia. Muslims shoot children in the back. No Muslim outrage.
Let's go way back. Muslims kidnap and kill athletes at the Munich Summer Olympics. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims fire rocket-propelled grenades into schools full of children in Israel. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims murder more than 50 commuters in attacks on London subways and busses. Over 700 are injured. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims massacre dozens of innocents at a Passover Seder. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims murder innocent vacationers in Bali. No Muslim outrage.
Muslim newspapers publish anti-Semitic cartoons. No Muslim outrage
Muslims are involved, on one side or the other, in almost every one of the 125+ shooting wars around the world. No Muslim outrage.
Muslims beat the charred bodies of Western civilians with their shoes, then hang them from a bridge. No Muslim outrage.
Newspapers in Denmark and Norway publish cartoons depicting Mohammed. Muslims are outraged.
Dead children. Dead tourists. Dead teachers. Dead doctors and nurses. Death, destruction and mayhem around the world at the hands of Muslims .. no Muslim outrage ... but publish a cartoon depicting Mohammed with a bomb in his turban and all hell breaks loose.

As for all of the above, there has been outrage from the Muslim people for 9/11 and every other point you have mentioned...how dare you suggest otherwise - the fact you do not chose to do your research properly before you spout your hate, is another matter.
Muslim outrage may not have been on front of the newspapers is not their fault. If they (media) would rather cover a story of a fantatical followed by a few dozen misguided (and in the view of the majority of Muslims, unIslamic) person, who wants to cause conflict that goes against the true teachings of Islam, than how are they to blame.
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al duncan
Posted on Saturday, February 11, 2006 - 10:44 am:   

I believe the reference is to Abdullah bin Sa'd. A quick interweb search reveals that there do seem to be Islamic writings on the 42 scribes which include claims that he changed verses in the Koran. This site laying out the case for and this site laying out the case against this story, however, both seem uselessly partisan, coming at it from the Christian or the Muslim angle with their own agendas not exactly far under the surface. Both of them work on logic along the lines of "it is out of the question that the Prophet of God allow such contribution because it is claimed many times in the Qur'ân that the Holy Book is dictated upon revelation and any contribution to it must be of divine inspiration."
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AT
Posted on Saturday, February 11, 2006 - 01:40 pm:   

Ibn Warraq (or should I call you Lawrence A), your hate spew doesn't belong here. Yasmine is right in saying that your statement that there has been no outrage is patently false. You and Lawrence A who talks of Muslims as "Joe Arab" are part of the worldwide problem we have today, where hate and misinformation spread by the few make the lives of the many hell. Lumping Muslims together and saying Death, destruction and mayhem around the world at the hands of Muslims .. no Muslim outrage is as outrageous as saying that Jews are killers, thieves, crooks and liars, though the ones that are, are the ones who've made Israeli policy for too long; and the ones who've aligned with those who turn a blind eye to this amongst the Christians who would like to turn the clock back, not 14 centuries, but further. The fact is, people of sense and moderation are not the ones that are quoted and portrayed in the media. Of Jews, neither the people from, say, the Courage to Refuse and Tikkun, nor the ones who have tracked the land and water theft continuing today in Palestine are the ones you read about and see on TV. I have never been able to get a letter into the mainstream media with my views, though I did once in the Jerusalem Post, and got hate mail that was frightening. As Rabbi Michael Lerner has said, once they've got the standard Jewish/Israeli interview (which has meant the Sharonists) they've got their Jewish point of view, as if there's only one. Muslims who are "moderate", an insult in itself (who classifies Christians and Jews as moderate?)just don't appear in the Western media, and there's not much free media elsewhere, though you should read more widely, as there has been condemnation of even this attitude to the cartoons, by quite a few Muslims leaders. Even the "moderates" that Jasmine's article mentioned are not what I would call the majority of Muslims in the world, who really couldn't care less about the portrayal of Muhammed, and would say that if you don't like it, don't look at it. I learned a bunch of old Muslim drinking songs from a prominent leader who is also a Muslim. The real problem with those cartoons isn't the portrayal any more than it would be about Jesus Piss. The problem is the attitude shared by you and the people who commissioned those cartoons, who think that Muslims are evil. Looking at the history of violence and religion is a farce if only one religion is picked; and the more fundamentalist, the worse they are.

Even Hirsi Ali's interview showed how lack of knowledge can mislead. She said, most Christians don't believe in hell, in the angels or in the earth having been created in six days. They now see these things as symbolic stories, but they still remain true to their faith. If only!

The problem today is that great leaps backward in thinking are being taken by the loud and the pushy of all of the "great religions" by people who do hate freedom and truth, while they say that we secularists are pushing our attitudes on them. I expect you to come back with more of your "facts" but before you do, look at those facts on the ground in Palestine, and put yourself on the other side of the Wall. The newspaper that commissioned those cartoons is Christian evangelical, which says loads. One of my best friends recently died and even in his obits he was vilified for speaking honestly about the Middle East, a place he knew intimately. He lived constantly with death threats, from Jews. Anyone who condemns a people, and anyone who claims that a "community" thinks this or that, speaks from ignorance, and ignorance is dangerous.
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AT
Posted on Saturday, February 11, 2006 - 01:59 pm:   

a correction. I didn't mean to imply that Muslims are "a people". They share a religion, but are many peoples, so "a people" is as wrong as saying that Muslims are "Joe Arab" or that Joe Arab is Muslim.

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