Tuesday, July 17, 2007


"Rebellions can be made by 2 per cent active in a striking force, and 98 per cent passively sympathetic" TE - Lawrence

David Seaton's News Links
The vast majority of the victims of Islamist terrorism are Muslims themselves and most attacks occur in Muslim countries. For every non-Muslim, killed or wounded literally thousands of Muslims have died all over the world. Islamist terrorism is basically an Islamic problem of which the west receives only the overflow because of the its direct interference in the affairs of those countries. There appears to be a revolution in the making in the Islamic countries against what are perceived there as repressive regimes, regimes which are at the same time subservient to western -- read American -- interests. Islam is seen by many as and effective "iindigestible" defense against western domination. Of course, practically everything that the Bush administration is doing and has done to fight even peaceful Islamic movements is making things much worse. The behavior of the Bush administration is disturbingly similar to previous administration's activities in Central and South America in the 70s, and 80 and many of the people involved are the same.

As an ideological cover for the counter revolution America's neocons have substituted "Islamo-fascism" for communism and invented the racist term "Eurabia", to describe a decadent Europe, invaded and soon to dominated by violent, primitive, and especially more fertile Muslims.
This is simply rubbish. If there are many Muslims in Europe today it is for historical and economic reason: long standing European colonialism in the Magreb and Africa, poverty in their countries of origin and Europe's need for cheap labor. This is not an "invasion".

The agitpropism "Eurabia" is one of the most sinister and counterproductive ideas being shopped around by the neocons. The eminent orientalist, Bernard Lewis is the neocon's guiding star in all things Muslim. As Gideon Rachman (who so happens to be Jewish) wrote in the Financial Times, "Mr Lewis equates Osama bin Laden and Muslim immigrants. They are all part of the same attack on Europe. This seems a little rough on many of my neighbours in London. My local postman, hairdresser and convenience store owner are all Muslims. So are the schoolgirls who play football at my children's school - incongruously clad in headscarves and shorts. As far as I can tell, none of these people is intent on destroying western civilisation from within."

If this seems to be simply a soft, morally relativist, multiculturist view, it also extremely practical.
As TE Lawrence (of Arabia) said, "Rebellions can be made by 2 per cent active in a striking force, and 98 per cent passively sympathetic". This struggle is about information. What is vital for western countries, in order to avert attacks, is to have very good advance information about who is a potential bomber and who isn't and who their contacts are and where their funds come from... and that information is only in the mosques and in the Muslim communities themselves. If the Muslim community in general perceives indiscriminate hostility toward themselves from non-Muslims of the sort that the "Eurabia" thesis implies, then it will be difficult for peaceful Muslims (Lawrence's 98%) to communicate with non-Muslims and logically that information about "suspicious" members of their community (Lawrence's 2%) will not be easily forthcoming, and that will mean that more attacks will succeed and that in turn will create more indiscriminate hostility and therefore less information will be forthcoming... A vicious circle if ever there was one.

So right after Al Qaeda itself, the most dangerous enemy of European security is the neocon's Islamo-fascist, paranoia scenario. DS

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