Taking the Islamic Challenge Seriously

When Muslims commit acts of terror, it is standard operating procedure for some authority or other to assure the populace that “this has nothing to do with Islam.” This is said so frequently as to induce a boy-who-cried-wolf reaction in anyone with an ounce of contrariness. Nowadays, if there’s a fender bender on the next block or a glitch in our computer, we automatically assume that it probably has something to do with Islam. So it’s refreshing to finally hear a world leader (in this case, a former world leader) admit that global Islamic terror actually does have something to do with Islam.

In a keynote address in April at Bloomberg Headquarters in London, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair described radical Islam as the single biggest threat facing the world today.  He went on to criticize Western commentators who “go to extraordinary lengths” to avoid linking terrorism with Islam.  “It is bizarre,” he said, “to ignore the fact that the principal actors in all situations express themselves through the medium of religious identity.”

Although Blair suggested that radical Islamic ideology “distorts and warps Islam’s true message,” he nevertheless emphasized that this extremist movement is based in religious belief.  He added that we in the West can gain a better understanding of the Islamist ideology by remembering “the experience of revolutionary communism and fascism.”  His main message?  The “defeating of this ideology” should be at the top of the global agenda.  In short, Blair is calling for ideological warfare against “Islamism” (his term for radical Islam).

During the Second World War and during the Cold War that followed, we didn’t hesitate to engage in ideological warfare first with Nazism, and then with communism.  It was considered perfectly legitimate to go after the ideas which lay at the base of these totalitarian systems as a way of weakening belief in them.  And we didn’t particularly worry about who might take offense.  But what if the ideology that threatens you comes wrapped in the cloak of religion?  Blair calls for the defeat of the “Islamist” ideology, but how can you engage in ideological warfare if criticism of the enemy ideology is off-limits?

In our multicultural times, it is considered extremely bad manners to criticize a religion other than one’s own. Respect for other people’s deeply held convictions—no matter how different from our own—is considered to be the hallmark of civility and tolerance.  Thus, while we feel free to talk about the evils of Nazism, communism, secularism, and capitalism, very few would even consider talking about the evils of Islam.  It is taboo.  As a result, when bad things are done in the name of Islam, our “commentators” (as Blair calls them) are quick to absolve Islam itself.  The formula “this has nothing to do with Islam” is just one way of ignoring the religious dimension of terror.

Yet, when jihadists explain their motivations they almost invariably cite the words and example of Muhammad as found in the Koran and Hadith—two sources with which they appear to be quite familiar.  That the average jihadist knows the Koran better than the average Christian knows the New Testament should tell us something, but apparently it hasn’t.  Sun Tzu, the Chinese military strategist, said that the first rule of warfare is to know your enemy, but in general we refuse to acknowledge what our Islamist enemies consider to be the most salient fact about themselves.  This reluctance to identify the enemy’s major motivation puts us at a considerable disadvantage—one that we didn’t labor under in previous wars.  Consider that our involvement in the Iraqi War lasted roughly twice as long as our war with Nazi Germany even though we were fighting a much less powerful opponent.  Our ongoing engagement with tribal warriors in Afghanistan has lasted longer still.

Still and all, the West would probably prevail if the struggle with Islam were confined to armed combat.  But our civilizational struggle with Islam goes far beyond that.  For example, the gradual Islamic takeover of Europe is being accomplished by cultural jihad rather than armed jihad.  In Europe, the spread of Islam doesn’t require fighting in the streets; it only requires that Europeans get used to burqas in the shopping malls, streets closed for prayer, cancellation of talks critical of Islam, naked anti-Semitism, and the establishment of religious and cultural ghettos in major cities.  We could add the Islamization of schools to the list.  In his speech, Blair alluded to a recently uncovered plot by Muslims to take over more than twenty schools in the Birmingham area.  The Muslim code name for the plot was “Trojan Horse.”

The point is, we have very little defense against the Trojan-horse type of jihad.  It’s not just that we are hindered by a multicultural ideology that demands that we be tolerant unto death, it’s also that the cultural jihadists are well aware of this weakness in our armor.  They know that we dare not criticize a non-Christian religion, and they know how to take advantage of our reluctance.  Criticize anything Muslim or Islamic and charges of religious bigotry and Islamophobia will soon come your way—and maybe a lawsuit as well.

The beauty of this from an Islamist point of view is that hardly anyone in the West dares to take advantage of Islam’s weakest point—its theology.  Theologically, Islam is a house of cards.  It could never withstand the kind of scholarly examination that Christianity has been subject to.  For example, the Koran is a primitive patchwork of borrowed ideas, half-told stories, and endlessly repeated curses.  It’s arranged arbitrarily by length of chapter because, as one of its translators admitted, “a strictly chronological arrangement is impossible” (The Koran, Penguin Books, 2000, p. x). Historian Thomas Carlyle was even less charitable.  Although he considered Muhammad to be one of the great men of history, he described the Koran as “a wearisome confused jumble, crude, incondite; endless iterations, long-windedness, entanglement; most crude, incondite—insupportable stupidity, in short” (On Heroes and Hero Worship).

The world is full of poorly written books, but this particular one is supposed to have been written by God himself. One would think that God could have done a better job.  The point is that anyone who has read the Koran and has even a passing knowledge of scripture studies will realize that Islam’s “holy book” would not meet the tests of critical and historical evidence we apply to the Christian revelation.  The further point is that such tests constitute potent weapons in our ideological arsenal—if we are willing to use them.

In past ideological struggles we sought ideological victory—the discrediting of the belief system that inspired our enemies.  If we don’t do something similar in our global civilizational struggle with Islam (or, if you prefer, “Islamism”), we need to face the very real possibility that we will lose the war—both militarily and culturally.  As I wrote two years ago:

Ordinarily one keeps one’s reservations about another’s religion to oneself.  But if we are in a fight to the death with Islamic ideology/theology, why wouldn’t we want to examine it more carefully?  Why wouldn’t we want to call into question the revelation on which it is all based?  And, further why not seek ways to disillusion and demoralize the proponents of that ideology? In short, why shouldn’t we want Islam to fail? (Christianity, Islam, and Atheism, p. 211)

It can be argued that such an approach is unfair, uncivil, offensive, and insensitive.  Maybe so.  But thirty years hence, how would you like to be the one to explain to your burqa-wearing granddaughter as she is married off to a man thrice her age that we lost the culture war against Islam because it would have been insensitive to fight back?

Another, more practical argument against attacking the ideological basis of Islamism and thus undermining the faith of the jihadists is that it won’t work.  Many take it for granted that a deeply held faith cannot be easily shaken by criticism, and Islamic beliefs seem as unshakable as they come.  Given that assumption, it would be a waste of time to try to sow the seeds of doubt in the minds of true believers.  But deeply rooted beliefs are not always as deeply rooted as they appear. For instance, thirty-five years ago it seemed that the Catholic faith was deeply rooted in Ireland, but Ireland, like many other once solidly Catholic societies, has since experienced a significant decline in faith.

More to the point, Islam has also suffered a crisis of faith—and not that long ago.  By the early 1970s the majority of Iranian, Iraqi, and Egyptian women had abandoned their traditional garb for Western-style clothing, and Western entertainment was all the rage. Muslims continued to observe their religion, but they did so in more or less the same fashion as a lukewarm Christian does—that is, more as a social obligation than a religious one. In the Muslim world, for most of the twentieth century, Islam could hardly be called a deeply rooted faith.  According to Islam scholar Raymond Ibrahim:

During the Colonial era and into the mid-twentieth century, all things distinctively Islamic—from Islam’s clerics to the woman’s ‘hijab,’ or headscarf—were increasingly seen by Muslims as relics of a backward age to be shunned.  Most Muslims were Muslim in name only. (Crucified Again, p. 10)

The radical Islamist movements of the twentieth century, such as the Muslim Brotherhood, were formed for the purpose of renewing the faith that was slipping away.  And they were largely successful in doing so.  The point to keep in mind, however, is that the “deeply rooted belief” we now see in the Muslim world is of fairly recent vintage.  Moreover, that deeply rooted belief rests on the very shaky foundation of the Koran.  Jihadists do what they do because they believe that God commands them to do it.  They also believe they will be richly rewarded for their endeavors in paradise.  But what if the Koran was not written by God?  What if it is a man-made fabrication—the invention of a self-serving schemer?  Who wants to blow himself up in a suicide attack if the promised reward is nothing more than a clever recruitment tool made up for the purpose of replacing warriors lost in battle some 1400 years ago?

Did Muhammad actually receive a revelation? Was the Koran written by God? These seem like fairly central questions. And seeing that countless lives hang upon the answers, one would think that more people would be asking them. It’s not as though these are strictly personal, private questions for the individual conscience to ponder. They are also, as with all publicly proclaimed religions, a matter for general discussion. Jihadists don’t hide their lamp under a bushel. Muhammad-doubters, then, should not be reluctant to blow it out. One might even say that they have a public duty to try and extinguish it.

As long as Muslims believe that Muhammad received his marching orders from God, the Islamic jihad will continue. If we want to put a stop to the jihad, we need to put a dent in that belief. As we have seen time after time in history, even deeply rooted beliefs are susceptible to change. If enough non-Muslims start asking certain questions and ask them insistently, there is a decent chance that Muslims can be returned to that state of doubt about Islam that prevailed in the Muslim world a mere sixty years ago.

William Kilpatrick


William Kilpatrick taught for many years at Boston College. He is the author of several books about cultural and religious issues, including Why Johnny Can’t Tell Right From Wrong; and Christianity, Islam and Atheism: The Struggle for the Soul of the West and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Jihad. His articles have appeared in numerous publications, including Catholic World Report, National Catholic Register, Aleteia, Saint Austin Review, Investor’s Business Daily, and First Things. His work is supported in part by the Shillman Foundation. For more on his work and writings, visit his website, turningpointproject.com

  • Don

    A very good article. Last week I heard a Muslim commentator explain that Muslims and the West generally needed to acknowledge the terrorism within its ranks in order to create an atmosphere for change. He argued that the constant “cover-up” of what he called the “cancer within Islam” prevented Muslims from confronting the problem and resolving for itself the problem of Islamism.

    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

      In Europe, many Muslims, and especially Muslim women, are manifesting their confidence in the Republic and proclaiming their adherence to its values.

      The president of the Muslim women’s movement, « Ni Putes Ni Soumises » [Neither Sluts nor Door-mats] Sihem Habchi, in a forceful attack on “multiculturalism” has demanded “No more justifications of our oppression in the name of the right to be different and of respect toward those men who force us to bow our heads”

      Rachida Dati, herself a Muslim and former French Minister of Justice (garde des Sceaux) told the National Assembly that “The Republic is alone capable of uniting men and women of different origins, colours and religions around the principles of tolerance, liberty, solidarity and laïcité making the Republic truly one and indivisible” Likewise, Fadela Amara, another Muslim and former Secretary of State for Urban Policies has declared that “For this generation, the crucial issues are laïcité, gender equality and gender desegregation, based upon living together in harmony throughout the world, and not only in France”

      All three favoured the banning of the hijab in state schools and they are loud in their support of the principle of the Jules Ferry Laws that public education should be obligatory, free, and lay [obligatoire, gratuit et laïque] and they utterly reject «communautarisme » by which they mean ethnic and religious solidarities and allegiances that threaten to override Republican unity.

      • Art Deco

        are manifesting their confidence in the Republic and proclaiming their adherence to its values.

        ‘It’s values’, as in

        1. Run everything from Paris, bar what you concede to the Eurocrats in Brussels. Leave local elected councils to puzzle over the shape of municipal swimming pools (with the prefect’s permission, of course). It helps toward this end if you delineate 38,000 miniscule municipalities who are stretching their resources if they purchase one garbage truck, institute no county government at all, and make use of contrived provincial government which does not map to the country’s historic regions.

        2. Stuff all the senior positions allocated to elected officials with crooks and scoundrels who are also alumni of an institution which hands out 80 diplomas per year.

        3. Enact a labor code which includes a table of contents which runs on for eighty pages, then puzzle over why your frictional unemployment rate is a two-digit number.

        4. Hoover up immigrants from impecunious Maghreb countries, puke housing and medical benefits at them, and then puzzle over why so many of them are idle in the wonderfully lubricated labor market you’ve created.

        5. Enforcing the law in slum neighborhoods is vulgar. That aside, it’s not in the police union contract.

        6. You tell me that Daniel Malan once said he would not make himself look ridiculous by banning someone from wearing a particular type of cap? Waal, South African Calvinists are vulgar to; en la Republique, we are stylishly brazen in our stupidities.

        • Michael Paterson-Seymour

          My point was that Muslim women, in particular, are attacking “multi-culturalism” and asserting Western values of “laïcité, gender equality and gender desegregation.”

          Hardly “islamification,” is it?

          • SebastianVenier

            Mr. Paterson-Seymour: While it may seem heartening that Muslim women in France are not all (although I suspect most are) submitting to Islam’s social strictures, Christian Europeans should not take too much comfort from that. Neither are they accepting or celebrating Christian values. Instead, they are pledging themselves to the values of the French Revolution, with its militant anti-clericalism – which means anti-Catholicism – and violent rejection of any religion, even the traditional Catholic faith of France, from public life.

            The values they assert that you characterise above as Western might better be characterised as cultural Marxist. It is the embrace of cultural Marxism that has largely led Western civilisation to its present debased and largely God-less distress. As is Tony Blair, the “liberated” women of Ni putes ni soumises are cultural Trojan Horses (Trojan Mares, in their case?). Don’t be in too great a hurry to embrace alien, feminist Leftist politicians merely because they claim to resist some aspects of Islam. That does not mean they truly embrace being French, other than in the hollow sense of laïcité. Hollowed-out, secularised Western nations that permit mass immigration are simply begging for Islam to fill the void in their societies that they themselves have created.

            Art Deco: I’m not sure how you worked Daniel Malan into the discussion, but my hat’s off to you! ANC South Africa is food for thought as well, in terms of unforeseen consequences…

            • Michael Paterson-Seymour

              It is anachronistic to describe the values of Du Contrat Social and the Declaration of the Rights of Man & of the Citizen as cultural Marxism is anachronistic. The great Catholic historian Hilaire Belloc put it very well: ““The scorn which was in those days universally felt for that pride which associates itself with things not inherent to a man (notably and most absurdly with capricious differences of wealth) never ran higher; and the passionate sense of justice which springs from this profound and fundamental social dogma of equality, as it moved France during the Revolution to frenzy, so also moved it to creation.

              Those who ask how it was that a group of men sustaining all the weight of civil conflict within and of universal war without, yet made time enough in twenty years to frame the codes which govern modern Europe, to lay down the foundations of universal education, of a strictly impersonal scheme of administration, and even in detail to remodel the material face of society—in a word, to make modern Europe—must be content for their reply to learn that the Republican Energy had for its flame and excitant this vision: a sense almost physical of the equality of man.”

              Those are truly French values and they enabled the armies of Napoléon to give a code of laws to a continent and to restore the concept of citizenship to civilisation.

              • Glenn M. Ricketts

                Perhaps: many of these points are debatable. Indisputable, however, is that the French Revolution also drenched its mother country and Europe in blood. A pretty steep price to pay for “social progress,” I’d say.

              • Art Deco

                I seem to recall that the Hapsburg dominions managed to sort out their land titles, institute elected conciliar bodies at all levels, and produce codified laws without sticking their people with something along the lines of the Civil Constitution of the Clergy or turning education over to a vigorously anti-clerical state apparat.

                • SebastianVenier

                  Good point, and it’s worth remembering that the revolutionary French under Bonaparte destroyed the fabric, minutely worked out over many centuries, of the Holy Roman Empire and fatally weakened the Habsburg imperium, although that had enough residual strength to endure until killed off by the Great War. The resulting Germany which featured impersonal schemes of administration and had the material face of its society remodelled in detail, something Belloc also considered a beneficial result of the French Revolution, proved to be a rather more difficult neighbour.

                • Michael Paterson-Seymour

                  Whether there was much to choose between the Civil Constitution of the Clergy (largely reproduced in the Concordat of 1801) and Josephism & Febronianism is an open question

                  • Art Deco

                    There was considerable (and eventually successful) resistance to Joseph II.

                    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

                      Not before it had been internalised by many of the clergy, as a German version of Gallicanism. This was strengthened by the practice whereby cathedral chapters chose (and, in some cases, still choose the bishop)

                      Attachment to the national establishment and suspicion of Rome remains strong in the German Church

                    • Arriero

                      – «Attachment to the national establishment and suspicion of Rome remains strong in the German Church.»

                      Absolutely. That’s why I’ve always considered the German Church to be a «protestanized Church».

                    • Arrerio

                      Be calm, be quiet, be prayerful.

              • SebastianVenier

                Hilaire Belloc was far better about Islam and the Crusades than he was about the French Revolution, about which he appears to have had a large blind spot. If the French revolutionaries did indeed “frame the codes which govern modern Europe,” we have little to thank them for – and they have a lot to answer for. Impersonal schemes of administration of the sort Belloc, incongruously, seems to approve when they are of French origin have been responsible for the deaths of tens of millions. That, at least, is not something the ancien régime was guilty of.

          • Art Deco

            Hardly anything to write home about, either. France has its agreeable qualities. None of those are on the list.

            • SebastianVenier

              Having lived there for several years, I should agree that the best of France owes nothing to the Revolution or Bonaparte. Perhaps the worst thing about the France I knew in the 1960s and 1970s was the cult of Bonaparte, one of the most evil men who has walked this earth.

      • Glenn M. Ricketts

        That’s heartening, but I fear that they’re significantly outnumbered by jihadists and advocates of sharia. Perhaps oddly at first glance, the European secular left seems to be marching with them – they’re “the other,” it seems

        • Michael Paterson-Seymour

          There is no doubt, as Robert Redeker pointed out ten years ago (Le Monde, 11/21/01) that the French Left has replaced “sovietophilia” with “islamophilia,” and that Palestinians and the contemporary Muslim masses replace the proletariat in the intellectuals’ imagination as the pure, ideal alternative to Western capitalism.

          I also find that many young Catholics, “third-worldists,” and anti-globalization activists, have embraced a myth constructed on the demonized figures of “Jews-Israelis-Zionists” supported by the “Americans” and, in opposition to that, no less mythical, of the Palestinian Arab ‘innocent victims.’“ On one side stands the “cosmopolitan Satan,” the unholy trinity “United States/Israel/The West.” On the other side stands the “dominated and the oppressed.”

          In this way, they recycle the anti-semitism of their parents and grandparents, with old stereotypes of the rich Jew and the dominating Jew under the “varnish of progressivism.” The Jew is once more the stand-in for capitalism, imperialism, cosmopolitanism, indeed the whole economic order.

          • Glenn M. Ricketts

            Michael, I think you undervalue the cultural Marxism and long-time mandatory anti-clericalism which have long dominated and stifled the Left, in France and Europe overall.

            Those folks seem to fix on absolutes – absolute “tolerance,” absolute “diversity,” absolute belief in “climate change” catastrophe, just as it was once the absolute belief in the redemptive role of the working class. And given the Left’s long-time. reflexive hostility to Christianity – epitmomized by Peter Viereck’s apt phrase, “the antisemitism of the intellectuals” – it probably wasn’t hard to join forces with militant Islamists, also passionately anti-Christian.

            • Michael Paterson-Seymour

              Alain Finkielkraut argues that traditionally anti-Semites were Nationalists: “the French who worship a cult of their identity and who love each other in opposition to Jews.” “Contemporary anti-Semitism,” however, is the domain of the French who “do not love each other, who think in terms of a post-national future, who rid themselves of their Frenchness to better identify with the poor of the Earth, and who, through Israel, group Jews in the camp of the oppressors.”

              Finkelkraut regards this “universalism” as simply a secularised version of Christianity, ” the natural expression of a religion that claims to manifest a revealed truth which, valid for all men, summons them to conversion.” In the same way, he regards Marxism as another Christian legacy: “Progressivism is born of the idea that history has an absolute beginning and a necessary end, and that it unfolds globally according to a divine plan,” a view he shares with many of the New Right.

              • Glenn M. Ricketts

                I agree that modern anti-Semitism stems from “race-blood-and-soil” ultra-nationalism. But I tend to regard Marxism as more a perversion of Christianity, than as a “legacy.”

          • Art Deco

            I also find that many young Catholics, “third-worldists,” and
            anti-globalization activists, have embraced a myth constructed on the
            demonized figures of “Jews-Israelis-Zionists” supported by the
            “Americans” and, in opposition to that, no less mythical, of the
            Palestinian Arab ‘innocent victims.’

            You occasionally run across such people in this country. In my experience, their median age is about 60.

            • Michael Paterson-Seymour

              I know some who are students at ENA or Sciences Po.

      • Arriero

        The comment of Rachidi Dati summarizes pretty well the french (revolutionary) concept of Nation.

        Nation = social atomization until reaching the most indivisible elements, the citizens.

        This conception of Nation is the most prominent political innovation coming from the French Revolution and the main difference with the American Revolution´.

        France existed before the Revolution. The French Nation (understood politically) did not exist before the Revolution.

        The concept of Nation was, indeed, created by opposition ot the Ancien Regime but at the same time it was only possible to create a nation under the preexistent statal structure of the Ancien Regime.

        Throne&Altar Vs. Citizenship. That’s the real political fight of the Revolution.

  • bill b

    What William is saying needs to be done, has been done by no Pope.
    Popes and Vatican II only refer to moderate Islam and this Pope is the same. Ergo Catholicism as an institution will do nothing but extol what they see as the real Islam…moderate Islam. Radical Islam believes that the peaceful and tolerant Koranic passages of the Mecca period are abrogated or nullified by the militarist Koranic passages of the Medina period which came later.
    Popes should read about abrogation and Islam free on the internet. Then they’d know that radical Islam is logically plausible under the rule that contradictory passages are nullified by later passages. The New Testament epistles abrogate the Levitical Jewish laws of the Old Testament. Likewise radical Islam sees violent passages of Chapter 9 of the Koran abrogating the tolerance of chapter 2 of the Koran.
    The Church since the advent of world media is trying to look always like Mr. Nice in order to undo the Inquisition centuries…Mr. Nice…except on sex and abortion…but Mr. Nice on the death penalty and notice no mention of wifely obedience neither in the Vatican II documents nor in the catechism….and Mr. Nice on other religions.
    Mr. Kilpatrick can write on this long and hard but Rome is involved in image building and Rome will not disabuse itself of ” real Islam is moderate”. Popes don’t even give the impression that they read deeply in this area of abrogation.

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  • Numerous problems for me in this article… often referred to but never shared…WHAT “is Islam’s true message,”

    The debate with communism and nazism are far from over… Hitler’s ‘Third Reich’ is alive and well, in charge and controlling much of the world today. Pretending ‘it’ died with Hitler, especially without letting anyone know what Hitler meant by it is the lie. The myth of racism used to cover up bigotry at all levels of discourse and authority keeps the coming storm off the radar.

    • Mary

      In a nutshell Islam’s message is Submission to Islam because Allah wills it.
      Therefore the world is divided into the House of Islam and the House of War….that which is already Muslim and that which is not.
      In the House of War (where you live) anything is permitted in order to bring submission to as long as it serves Islam.
      The essential holes in its knitting are – Submission to Islam for Muslims (subjugated non-muslims are not saved from hell-fire) still doesn’t guarantee salvation. Allah has predestined some for paradise and others for hell….so there isn’t much you can do about it anyway.
      The biggest hole in Allah’s knitting is that Allah is not bound but utterly unfettered in Allah will….it is a god of Will only….that is all that can be known and the Koran is Allah’s law that we can know.
      BUT if Allah is unfettered will he can make 2 + 2 = 5….he is not bound by reason nor as Judaic/Christianity say bound by His Covenant. Therefore Allah is arbitrary will and freely changes his non-rational mind.
      THEREFORE why could any Muslim trust the Koran….Allah can simply change his mind….hey, fellas Koran is off now I have a new rule and a new religion…..
      See it gives them no comfort or security because Allah is whimsical.
      To kill or be killed for Allah is the ONE thing by which one may be saved….the one thing which beats Allah’s arbitrary odds.
      BIG incitement don’t you think?

      • Sorry, but your opinion is like listening to a protestant how Catholicism works.

        • David Kenny

          To Michael Eisbrenner. You have not answered Mary’s comments. You have not done her the courtesy of refuting her argument with rational analysis or study. Your comment is silly and essentially ad hominem. She has obviously read the Koran and various analyses of it particularly the recent book, “The Closing of the Muslim Mind”, which shows that Muslim scholarship ceased in the 1100s when a Jihadist movement killed anyone questioning the current interpretation of the Koran and all rational analysis of the statements in the Koran ceased. You might do her the courtesy of acknowledging this and reading the book yourself. You might learn something.

          • David, if Mary wants her comments commented on let her speak for herself. The trouble with these conversations is they make no difference in the very people that count. The ‘intent’ of the Koran is to convert everyone on this planet to Islam or else. I do not know how any other message is allowed when its founder prescribed it. Death by religion leaves very little wiggle room. There is no scholarship from a western standard period. I might be wrong but open and clear communication is not allowed, especially publicly in the Muslim world. If someone is allowed to kill you because something you say or do offends their sensibilities there is very little chance for communication. The world is full of closed minds living on ‘rules’ to stifle thought. Some odd or even cultural norm for ‘courtesy’, hate speech, or any other excuse to be right is positional and never makes a difference for everyone.

            • SebastianVenier

              With respect to Islam, this comment seems accurate. I still don’t understand what, in 2014, German national socialism that was thoroughly defeated almost 70 years ago has to do with it.

      • Objectivetruth

        Good post, Mary. On a similar logic, Islam looks at God as a “master” (almost a master/slave relationship with man), and Catholicism looks at God as a “Father” (A Father and adult son/daughter relationship with man.)

    • Art Deco

      The debate with communism and nazism are far from over… Hitler’s
      ‘Third Reich’ is alive and well, in charge and controlling much of the
      world today. Pretending ‘it’ died with Hitler, especially without
      letting anyone know what Hitler meant by it is the lie. The myth of
      racism used to cover up bigotry at all levels of discourse and authority
      keeps the coming storm off the radar.

      Sober up.

    • SebastianVenier

      Your comment might be comprehensible if you would let us know “what Hitler meant by it.” Otherwise, this seems entirely disconnected from contemporary reality.

      • The first question is when Hitler introduced the Third Reich, when did the First end and the Second begin? Answer: when Moses introduced the ten commandments. The second question is what is the intention of the Third Reich. answer: to return the world to the First.

        • SebastianVenier

          The First Reich was the Holy Roman Empire (“of the German Nation”) in its various forms between the Pope’s crowning Otto I in 962 and 1806 – although many date it from the Papal coronation of Charlemagne at Christmas 800 instead. The HRE was ended formally when Francis II renounced his title to ensure Bonaparte could not steal it. Francis continued in office as Emperor of Austria, so one could argue that Austria-Hungary – at least the Austrian parts – carried on as a rump First Reich. Some contend the title of HRE is not abolished as no Emperor had the power to do so: the only figure with that power is the Pope.

          The Second Reich was Wilhelmine Germany from 1871 through 1918.

          And the National Socialist government of Germany, which was no Reich at all, began with Hitler’s winning the chancellorship in 1933 and ended in the ruins of Berlin in 1945.

          But, Mr. Eisbrener, you are looking far beyond the German nation! I’m confused by the assertion, if I understand, that Hitler intended to revive ancient Israel in its earliest form. Given the Nazis’ actions in power, that’s hard to follow. Perhaps I misunderstand you entirely…

          While Islam is mixed up with all sorts of things, including the HRE and Austria (Crusades, two battles with the Ottomans at Vienna, many other campaigns…), I don’t see how Islam fits in here.

          I agree that, unfortunately, we aren’t finished with Communism yet.

          • You may want to read Mein Kampf … Your history is not Hitler’s opinion. I stated his. He was not interested in returning the world to any portion of Israel. His vision is unrelated on every level to the Judea-Christian mindset. The Third Reich is a return to the First. No Jews or Christians allowed. No one with a ten commandment mindset allowed. He got his wish.

            • Art Deco

              You’re not making minimal sense.

            • SebastianVenier

              Mr. Eisbrener: To enable one to follow your logic please explain what the First Reich that came to an end at Mount Sinai was. I have neither time nor inclination to read Mein Kampf, and I suspect few of the other participants here do either. But I would be interested to know, if you are willing to enlighten us.

              As for Hitler’s opinions, they don’t appear to have led him to wisdom or Germany (and his native Austria, which is of course part of the German Nation) to success. Thanks to the legacy of Nazism, Germans and Austrians today appear culturally paralysed in the face of a civilisation-threatening influx of immigrants who for the most part have not the slightest interest in accommodating to German ways. Quite the opposite…

              Unburdened by the legacy of Nazism, the Swiss are much more robust in the defence of their confederation.

  • hombre111

    This article has its grain of truth, and people should be concerned. But the Church cannot and must not lead some kind of anti-Muslim Cold War. It is the duty of governments to recognize, explain, and organize an effective response.

    • TheAbaum

      Everything is the duty of government to you. Except for the duties of the people which is to pay, unless they are designated recipients.

      All bow to the golden cow.

    • M

      Unfortunately parts of Africa are hotbeds of fanaticism and fundamentalism — Boko Haram in Nigeria, Joseph Kony and his Lord’s Resistance Army (which kidnapped at least 66,000 children between 1986 and 2006,) and anti-gay vigilantism in Uganda. Clearly this isn’t just a Muslim problem. While fanaticism is not limited to Africa, I have to wonder whether the problems are caused by poverty correlating with untreated mental illness.

    • cestusdei

      The cold war is already upon us. Our Christian brethren are being butchered while you sit by and watch.

      • hombre111

        And, oh flint fist, what are you doing?

        • cestusdei

          I don’t vote for those who do nothing. I don’t support the ones doing the butchering. The very least you could do is voice support for the Christians. Instead you give aid and comfort to the persecutors.

          • hombre111

            And you know this because…?

            • TheAbaum

              And you dispute this because….?

            • cestusdei

              Because you blame the US for what the terrorists do. You evidence no interest in their persecution of Christians, which predates the foundation of the US.

              • hombre111

                There is no excuse for what the terrorists do. But US policies have not made this any easier.

                • Art Deco

                  What policies? The use of terror as a method made repeated appearances in the Near East from the end of the 1st World War to 1968 and has been a continuous feature of political life therein since the latter date. It serves the goals of political actors in the region. The problem is their goals.

                • cestusdei

                  Right there, you excused them. A bit like saying “well she shouldn’t have dressed that way so she didn’t make it any easier on the guy who attacked her.”

                  • hombre111

                    Ave, nickel-knuckles. Not really. Americans see themselves as this benign uncle strolling through the world, kindly bestowing blessings and bravely defending the weak. When I was in South America, America was this ominous force demanding to get its way, or else. Among the Moslems? Every Moslem knows by heart that the U.S. has given its total support to Israel, which relentlessly crushes the Palestinians. Israel is a rock forced down the throat of the Arab world.

                    And even as I see the outrage in Crisis over the growing menace of the Moslems, the Moslems have had to deal with real American bombs dropped on helpless people. They know how many hundreds of thousands of children have died because of the sanctions between the first and second Gulf wars. The second Iraq War, with its hundreds of thousands Iraqi dead was an open threat to the other nations in the Gulf region: obey, or perish.

                    Crisis is forever angry about the menace of secularism. The Moslems, who are much more religious than most Americans, see America pushing its culture onto the rest of the world, to them, secularism in spades.

                    As I said, this still does not justify what Moslems have done. But you can’t stick a stick in a beehive and blame the stings you suffer on the bees.

                    • cestusdei

                      And Leftist radicals see America as the source of all evil in the world. Someone stubs their toe and it’s Bush’s fault. Islam has since day one attacked its neighbors. It has oppressed every non-Muslim population it conquered. They do it today and every day. Real people have been tortured and butchered for their Christian faith by Muslims and with Muslim quiet approval. If the majority didn’t agree with it they would put a stop to it, but they allow it. They are aided by people like you who say “there there, we can’t blame you, it’s the nasty Americans who made you stone that Christian to death and burn down that church…” Ridiculous. Lenin called folks like you “useful idiots” and they caused untold damage during the cold war.

                    • hombre111

                      Hail, carbon fiber fingers. I do not see America as the source of all evil in the world. But, as the most powerful and wealthy nation history has ever seen, our enormous impact is both positive and negative. When we are good, we are very, very good. When we are bad, we are very, very bad. Christians survived for thousands of years in Iraq, members of one of the most ancient Catholic communities on earth. But with the Iraq war, they have come under terrific attack, so much so that most of them have left their native country. All the Iraqi thugs needed was an excuse, and we were that excuse.

                    • cestusdei

                      Survived? You don’t know the history of those poor oppressed people. Nor do you care. If they were Muslims being treated that way by Christians you would care. They have never needed much excuse to oppress Christians. You actually bolster that excuse by agreeing with them. You are so blind you don’t see how you give them aid. You buy into their narrative and sympathize with the oppressor. Just disgusting and vile. You claim to be a Christian, but help those who kill us.

                    • hombre111

                      Hail, Fist studded with nails and barbed wire. Have you become a Nagging Parent like Lucy in the Peanuts comic strip, who reads my mind, accusing me of motives I don’t have? Well, here is my five cents.

                    • cestusdei

                      Today a pregnant woman in Sudan is facing death for converting to Christianity. It has NOTHING to do with US policy, Bush, the war in Iraq etc. It is all about Islam and its intolerance and hate. You stand with those who would kill her. I stand with her against them. That sums it up.

                    • hombre111

                      YOU said I stand up for the Moslems. Classic ploy to avoid a discussion about U.S. behavior abroad.

                    • Art Deco

                      What’s the point of discussing ‘U.S. behavior abroad’? There’s a difference between a reason and a pretext, in both your case and in the case of violent foreign paramilitaries.

                    • Hombre111

                      Be peaceful, be prayerful, time is short.

                    • cestusdei

                      I mentioned US behavior and it has NOTHING to do with this threat to murder a Christian convert. You pat the Muslims on the back with understanding while they kill Christians. Now you want to change the subject. Classic ploy of a “useful idiot.”

    • TheAbaum

      “It is the duty of governments to recognize, explain, and organize an effective response.”


      • Objectivetruth

        The man’s a total embarrassment.

        • TheAbaum

          Hombre or the man in the video?

          • Objectivetruth

            Heh, heh……….

            How do I answer this??!!

            Take your pick: and “c) All of the above” applies.

    • SebastianVenier

      Isn’t it the duty of the Church to take up the challenge of refuting a false and violently hostile religion that is insinuating itself in Christian societies? We have been here before, and previous Popes knew what to do. Why not today?

      If you are inferring that Islam is a political system as well as a religion, I agree. However, one can put no faith in any Western government to resist it, especially not the U.S. government under current administration. And with the heir to the British throne saying that he would like to change the sovereign’s courtesy title of “Defender of the Faith” (something Henry VIII should have had the decency to give up once he chose schism and heresy) to “Defender of Faiths” in order to pander to Muslims, don’t look to the Sceptr’d Isle for much spine either.

      • Art Deco

        Isn’t it the duty of the Church to take up the challenge of refuting a
        false and violently hostile religion that is insinuating itself in
        Christian societies? We have been here before, and previous Popes knew
        what to do. Why not today?

        Because the clergy is largely composed of aspirant den-mothers-on-salary and the higher clergy of commissioner-of-social-services wannabes. They have the attitudes of the mental health trade and the social work apparat. The rest is just an idiom.

        • SebastianVenier

          Too true for comfort. I guess we need to pray for better shepherds, in addition to everything else. But is modern Western society capable of producing enough of them to make a difference?

      • hombre111

        My sister lived and worked among Muslims in Bangladesh for many years. More than enough time for her to see the best and the worst. I think the Moslems become militant because the Koran ends with victory, while the New Testament ends with a crucifixion, then victory. For hundreds of years, the Muslims  ruled with no equals, but they have been in eclipse for a long time, overcome by the West. Reactionaries are reactionaries. In the Clive Bundy case in Nevada, the disenchanted reactionaries showed up with their guns. It is some kind of natural law. So, how do you separate the reasonable Muslims from the dangerous reactionaries? There are about a million Muslims and, if only 5% were nut-jobs, we are still talking about fifty million people. No easy answer here, folks. And I think the Church does best by speaking reasonably to the 95% of Moslems who are not anxious to murder Westerners.

        • Art Deco

          What’s Cliven Bundy got to do with Near Eastern political violence? You remind us all age isn’t pretty.

          • hombre111

            He is an extremist, and he was quickly surrounded with armed extremists, armed to the teeth, and prepared to use their weapons. The Feds backed away. In a game of chicken, it is the sane person who flinches first. And so, Bundy and his extremist whacko pals are blood brothers to the extremist nuts in the sand in west Asia.

            • Art Deco

              In other words, he gets imported into any discussion because that’s the bright shiny object distracting you now. Rather like that poster who insisted that all political discussions must be prefaced by a discussion of Newt Gingrich.

              • hombre111

                The Not-Okay Child checks in.

                • Hombre111

                  It is time for us to rest, now.

  • phranthie

    The endless inculcation of this abstruse and incomprehensible koranic script into young minds to remember and repeat verbatim must be damaging to them. Certainly it appears to be cruel and callous. I wonder whether any studies have been done on this. Many Catholics, myself included, have learned our cathechism and prayers by rote — and are thankful for it — but this voluminous and mechanical bombardment of the young mind is in another category altogether.

  • Art Deco

    the gradual Islamic takeover of Europe is being accomplished by cultural
    jihad rather than armed jihad. In Europe, the spread of Islam doesn’t
    require fighting in the streets; it only requires that Europeans get
    used to burqas in the shopping malls, streets closed for prayer,
    cancellation of talks critical of Islam, naked anti-Semitism, and the
    establishment of religious and cultural ghettos in major cities.

    Just to point out that non-indigenous Muslims constitute about 5% of the population of Europe and arrive from source countries which have fertility rates just above (or just below) replacement levels. Suggest that the phenomena you reference reflects a different cultural reality, what the disreputable Mr. Sailer calls ‘leapfrogging loyalties’. You have a professional-managerial bourgeoisie who feel little in common with the broad mass of their countrymen and make use of mas;s immigration and these contrived accommodations as a wedge against those they find to be their real antagonists: those adhering to the vernacular culture in their own country.

    Consider the contrast between the Bloomberg Administration’s disposition toward the flimflam imam’s proposed community center adjacent Ground Zero and its disposition toward the Orthodox Church which had been unable to re-build nearby; consider how a bourgois of my grand-father’s generation might have reacted to the idea of a Shinto shrine at Pearl Harbor; or consider that Bruce Crumley is still employed by Time, Inc. (See: http://world.time.com/2011/11/02/firebombed-french-paper-a-victim-of-islamistsor-its-own-obnoxious-islamophobia/). You see this tripe all over the Occident.

    • TheAbaum

      “grand-father’s generation might have reacted to the idea of a Shinto shrine at Pearl Harbor”

      Be careful, or our resident Imperial Japanese apologist might be telling you that such a provocative statement is casus belli.

  • JP

    There may have been several factors in the past that described our “tolerance” for violent Islam. But, currently fear is what drives most of this tolerance. For Europe it is more so than here. In the US, the accumulation of political influence through money, lobbyists, and propaganda by Muslim activists has created a social, political and cultural “no-go zone”. Any public figure whether he is a politician, actor, or artist tries to buy off this influence through silence. Best to avoid the debate altogether.

    Modern day branding (a marketing ploy which ties 100% of a person or companies fortunes to its public perception) has created a Catch-22. Firms spend countless millions building up their brand through clever and careful marketing. So too do those people who depend upon a favorable opinion of the masses who purchase their products or services. Yet, the more a person has built up decent public brand, the more difficult it is to maintain that brand. Political activists figured this out many years ago. Destroy a person’s “brand” and you destroy their employment as well as their ability to feed their families. How many celebrities have seen their careers ruined because of one “slip-up” or carefully orchestrated media blitz. Gay activists as well civil right activists have perfected this form of legalized blackmail. Islamic activists are not far behind. And who knows? In the near future saying or doing something that is perceived as anti-Muslim will be viewed as toxic as saying something or doing something that is perceived today is as being ant-gay?

    Today, if you hold views that are not Muslim friendly and you are a writer, artist, musician or some person who depends upon good public branding you remain silent.

    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

      And yet, the anti-Zionism (and covert anti-Semitism) of the Left (including the Catholic Left) is considered acceptable.

      • JP

        Yes. For the Left holds the key to the modern day media infrastructure. The most recent example of this was the treatment of former Mozilla founder and CEO, Branden Eich. In a weird way it was breathtaking (if not terrifying) to see how quickly his reputation was destroyed. And it was destroyed not for what he said, but for what he did (giving $1000 to the Prop 8 campaign).

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  • cestusdei

    If they claim that it isn’t Islam then why don’t they do something about it and why do they protest when we do?

    • msmischief

      haven’t they issued fatwas on the grounds that someone defamed Islam? If they issued some about this, it might be plausible.

      • cestusdei

        You can get a fatwa on anything. If millions of them rioted and marched against these things it might convince us that they really are peaceful.

  • SebastianVenier

    Thank you, William Kilpatrick, for this and your previous fine articles about the truths of Islam and the fecklessness of our Church today (and every other Western institution) in confronting Islam resurgent and again encroaching into Christian lands, this time with the collusion of our post-Christian governments. And while I have criticised Art Deco in another thread today, his comments here are good.

    It was my misfortune – or perhaps good fortune, as it proved a salutary reminder – to be visiting downtown New York, within a block of the World Trade Center, on the morning of September 11, 2001. In the aftermath, I asked myself what really moved those Arab men to kill themselves in order to kill as many people, all perfect strangers to them, as indiscriminately as possible. President G.W. Bush’s explanation that they were cowards misunderstanding a Religion of Peace was patent nonsense; so much so he should have been ashamed to say it, and condemned by his fellow Americans for saying it. We all know neither happened; today’s U.S. president is not Muslim but in his conduct of policy might as well be. The only way I could think of begin to understand what I had witnessed that day was to read those non-pilots’ flight orders: the Koran. So I did, and I learned that they were true to Islam’s book and – as far as I could tell reading in translation – understood it as well as it can be understood.

    Professor Kilpatrick implicitly scorns the weasel-term Islamist, although he does not discard it altogether. Discard it! It is Islam we are confronted with, as Christendom has been for 1,400 years now. Does anyone describe a “radical” Christian or Jew as a Christianist or Judaist? To try that thought-experiment is to see how ridiculous the euphemism Islamist is.

    Tony Blair is now pleased to acknowledge that what he insists on calling radical Islam – as distinct from that peaceful religion he and G.W. Bush still believe is out there somewhere – poses a threat to the West. But Blair is a Trojan Horse himself, complete with conversion to Catholicism (it is not my place to question his sincerity, but I cannot help wondering…). Blair now questions “radical Islam,” something he was very circumspect about when he was Great Britain’s prime minister and presiding over an unprecedented flood of immigration, much of it Muslim, from which his country may never recover. But Blair never, we should note, questions Islam itself, despite Islam’s hostility to his social liberalism.

    Tony Blair questions the influence of religion in public life, period. Blair has about as much use for Catholic Christianity in public life as does the U.S. Democratic Party. Beware this newly arrived false-friend. Blair’s dream is the be the first true president of the anti-Christian European Union, which is committed to driving Christianity out of European life altogether. The Leftists of the EU imagine that a secular paradise will ensue; in fact Islam awaits, no longer in the wings but right on stage in Europe (and increasingly in America), to fill the void the EU seeks to create.

    To say that our Popes, at least since Pope St. John Paul II and really since the Second Vatican Council and Nostra Aetate, have failed the Christian faithful as pastors warning against the threat of Islam to Christians in Europe, the Middle East and everywhere else Islam is in the ascendant would be a charitable understatement. Our shepherds need to recover the Christian fighting spirit that held the line against invading Islam at Poitiers, in the Holy Land for a brief time, at Lepanto and before Vienna. Pope Francis needs to find again the strength, wisdom and vision of Pope St. Pius V, before it is too late. That is not a call to violence, but to moral courage and the strength to speak the truth about allowing a false religion and its harsh culture to insinuate itself into our civilisation – which will soon cease to be our civilisation should we fail to defend it, something earlier Popes and prelates, Urban II among them, well knew.

    What can we as Catholic Christians do? Demand, with all the respect to them that is their due, that our prelates speak the truth about Islam and resist, as did their more sanguine predecessors, Islam’s spread in what remains of Christendom and elsewhere. That means opposing a naive ecumenism of the sort Nostra Aetate appears to invite. Demand of our secular politicians that they accord Christianity the deference it is due as our civilisation’s founding faith and the fount of our culture. Not succumb to the suicidal folly of the diversity-multiculturalism cult (and its pitch-men, prominently among them Tony Blair), which is a deadly weapon aimed at the heart of our civilisation and which, furthermore, is contradicted by all of human history. Concerning Islam specifically, as Professor Kilpatrick notes, the Koran and Hadiths are very vulnerable to systematic criticism – point that out at every opportunity.

    Pray the Rosary! The Church celebrates the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary on 7 October, the date of the great victory of Pope St. Pius V’s Holy League over the Ottoman Turks at Lepanto in 1571, when Venetians, Spaniards and Genoese – hardly natural allies – joined forces in defence of Christendom. If Lepanto is any indication, appealing to Our Lady through the Rosary is very efficacious in the defence of Christianity against the Islamic threat.

    Pray that Russia may be properly consecrated to Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart, as she commanded us at Fatima almost 100 years ago and as no Pope has yet done. Christians, Catholic and Orthodox, must join spiritual forces to contain and repel Islam. Without the Consecration, it is hard to see how the enfeebled Christendom of today can accomplish that.

    • Art Deco

      What can we as Catholic Christians do?

      Practice concision.

      • SebastianVenier

        Art Deco: Once again, a snide toss-off instead of an answer. Unsupported assertions and arrogant dismissals appear to be your rhetorical stock-in-trade. Not very impressive.

  • Barach Hussein Obama

    You infidels.

    Do you not understand that your descendants will praise Allah and live under Sharia law?

    Your churches will be Mosques, and your Cathedrals will be Grand Mosques and women will be modest and quiet. You will embrace Islam.

    As I have said

    “The Future Must Not Belong To Those Who Slander The Prophet Of Islam”.

    We will not tolerate any criticism of the Prophet (Peace be upon Him).

    • Objectivetruth


      Christ has already been victorious, you have already lost.

      You, are but mere mop up work for Christ’s Church Militant, the Catholic Church.

      Christ’s Truths always wins…..

      • John200

        Look again, Obj, this Barach “Who’s Sane?” Obama is a parody.

        No enemy to you or me.

        • Objectivetruth

          Figured as much……but thought I’d play along!

  • Dick Prudlo

    This may seem to be beside the point, but have we not been instructed that proselytizing is “pious nonsense” by our current Bishop of Rome. With that I think, in order to give it a try, we may have to wait a bit.

    • Art Deco

      On a good day, he’s deadweight.

  • Paul

    Although I agree with much of the article, I have to add that anything Tony Blair has to say has to be viewed with a lot of skepticism for he is no stalwart defender of Christianity. His conversion to Catholicism , which was done after his resignation as PM, is nothing more than a cynical move after the shut-down of all Catholic adoption agencies during his premiership for their anti-gay adoption stance. Blair’s true agenda is the secularisation of the UK and of Europe, and it is done by expounding multi-culturalism. I think Blair at one point was even thinking of starting his own religion !?!
    As for Islam per se , what we need to understand is there is a difference between Islam , as a religion, and cultural practices practised by the Muslims. These 2 aspects are too often confused, and it is this confusion that allows extremists to perpetrate the most inhumane acts of violence. Poverty in many Islamic countries acts as a driving force for radicalisation.
    The only conclusion to be drawn is for all religions to come to the same consensus that hate & violence against another human being is detrimental to society.

    • Joseph

      “The only conclusion to be drawn is for all religions to come to the same consensus that hate & violence against another human being is detrimental to society.”

      Very good points, also about the difference between Islam and cultural practices of Muslims.
      Some Muslims are terrorists but does that mean that Islam teaches terrorism?
      Also, I could give examples of Christian terrorists, Jewish terrorists, Hindu terrorists, and even Buddhist terrorists. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, or Buddhism teaches that people should engage in terrorism.

      • Objectivetruth

        Please…..give us some examples of Christian terrorists?

        • Yohan Anthony


          You get religious extremist terrorists in almost every religion. That doesn’t necessarily mean the religion is bad, and I’m speaking as a Catholic. That being said, there are some disturbing elements in Islam, such as the discrimination of nonMuslims, and the way women are treated.

          • Objectivetruth

            You really had to dig deep for the NLFT, didn’t you?

            As far as a posting a Wikipedia “List of organizations designated by the Southern Poverty Law Center as hate groups”, you’ve totally lost credibility. The pro gay, pro abortion, anti Catholic SPLC is a “hate group” unto itself, and basically a laughable joke. And I asked for examples of “terrorist” groups, not groups designated by as “hate” because they support marriage only between a man and a woman, pro life, etc……especially from the ridiculous Southern Poverty Law Center!

            • TheAbaum

              ” I can’t recall the last time a Catholic high jacked a an airliner and rammed it in to building while quoting the New Testament.”

              No, they march in front of the death mills.

            • Yohan Anthony

              Objectivetruth, you said I “dug deep” for the NLFT? I’ve known about the for years. My point is that there are plenty of groups that use very religions as a means to an end. Am I saying that Islam is a perfect religion? Absolutely not. There are some disturbing things in the religion, as I mentioned earlier. What I was trying to say was that you shouldn’t automatically bash a religion just because someone does something violent in the name of said religion. That being said, if you read the texts of said religion and find some things encouraging violent acts against innocents, etc. I can see where you’re coming from. I’m not trying to bash the Catholic faith, I’m a Catholic myself.

          • Glenn M. Ricketts

            Yes, but numbers matter as well, and I can’t see any equivalency at all. Seems as if you’re really reaching here. There’s a qualitative and quantitative difference where terrorism and violence are concerned.

            And whereas Judaism was founded by patriarchs and prophets, Christianity by Apostles and martyrs, Islam was established and guided by warlords.

          • Art Deco

            The “Southern Poverty Law Center” is a skeezy direct mail mill dedicated to expanding Mrs. Morris Dees’ collection of expensive knick-knacks. Serious people never cite it.

            Please read Robert Spencer on this subject: ‘moderate Islam is a cultural habit; ‘radical Islam’ is authentic Islam”. A modus vivendi can be reached with Muslim populations, but it is reached due to the ad hoc adjustments people make in the course of their mundane life, not as an extension of Muslim observance.

            Given that fascistoid movements have for 34 years years controlled the government of Iran, have for 25 years controlled the government of the Sudan, and have the adherence of millions or an organized and vigorous insurrectional force in Pakistan, Afghanistan, central Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, the West Bank, Gaza, Egypt, Libya, and Northern Nigeria, I cannot figure why you scrounged for references to Christian Identity. Christian Identity is a local curio – an episodic aesthetic offense to residents of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho and nothing more.

          • SebastianVenier

            Surely you jest if you are positing equivalence on the basis of this evidence! The difference is simple: A Christian engaging in terrorism does so in violation of the tenets of his religion; a Muslim does so in fulfilment of the tenets of his. That is not a reason to hate Muslims – something Christianity forbids – but to see things as they are and exercise due caution. The existence of the principles of jihad in Islam should be enough to make any prudent Western government end Muslim immigration. But there are no prudent Western governments when it comes to preserving their societies.

    • mollysdad

      Tony Blair is no more a Catholic than the crystal-hugging, contracepting, abortion enthusiast of a wife of his.

  • TomD

    “In our multicultural times, it is considered extremely bad manners to criticize a religion other than one’s own.” Unless your religion is orthodox/traditional Christianity, where uncivilized, bad-mannered criticism seems to be the order of the day, each and every day.

    The enemy of my enemy is my friend. What radical Islam and the Western Left share in common is a deep, visceral hatred for the traditional West. They both denounce orthodox Christianity relentlessly and seek to destroy its influence in the world, some with violence, most not. This may account, in some twisted way, for the reluctance of so many, especially journalists and academics in the West, to honestly critique Islam, most especially its fringe elements. Hatred makes strange bedfellows.

  • Objectivetruth

    And Tony Blair only needs to look to his own country’s spineless monarchy for fault, the Prince of Wales, the impotent Prince Charlie, Islam’s biggest cheerleader. Several years ago, Britain dropped in many of its schools the teaching of the Holocaust and the Crusades so as not to offend Muslims.

    Paraphrasing George Weigel from several years ago, he put it best: “One can not be a fifty yard line Christian. Either Jesus Christ is the Son of God, our Lord and Saviour, or He is not. Either Mohammed is the last great prophet, or he is not.”

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  • Nick_Palmer3

    The broad outlines of the current moment were laid out in Samuel Huntington’s “Clash of Civilizations” in his 1992 lecture, 1993 article, and in more detail in his 1996 book. Professor Kilpatrick’s analysis seems spot on, given my limited knowledge. I do believe that Huntington’s work might help to further frame and understand the detailed nature of the conflict between radical Islam and Western civilization.

    The challenge, as is clear from the Comments section, is formulating and implementing an effective response. I wish I had some great ideas, but…

    I do, however, know one thing — Abaum’s distrust of “government” as a locus for the solution is right. At least our current government.

    • TheAbaum

      The problem with the idea of government “solutions” is that it presumes the existence of “solutions” which are identifiable, definable, attainable, enforceable an durable and that government has the ability to marshal omniscience, or at least unique or superior knowledge, free from corruption.

      The reality is that there are rarely “solutions”, to start with-only tradeoffs, and tradeoffs that are fraught with epistemic traps and unforeseen consequences.

  • mollysdad

    Read Robert Spencer’s book “Did Muhammad Exist?”. The answer is, there were no Muslims for sixty years after Muhammad is supposed to have died.

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