Danish Muslim Clerics put Islam in hot water

Rent-a Riot dog bites the Islamic owners

As the riots in the Islamic capitals got out of control and brought international heat and attention on the regimes permitting the riots, the Danish Muslim clerics, led by Abu Laban and Ahmed Akarri, who had worked very hard to internationalize the problem, are now waving the white flag and are begging for some face-saving resolution of the matter.

In December, not getting an apology from the Danish government, they took their struggle to the defenders of the faith in the Middle East to get help from the Ummah. Spirited discussions took place in Cairo, Damascus and Riyadh. Even the 57 nation OIC got into the act. Intense diplomatic pressure was put on Danish P.M. Rasmussen, who, to his credit, did not give an inch to their demands for punishment and apology.

The Danish contigent prepared a 43 page hysterical dossier written in Arabic containing the 12 offending cartoons to illustrate the hostile attitude of Danish society, and the government towards Islam and distributed it in the top Islamic circles in the Muddle East. Muslim countries, keen to be seen as defenders of the faith jumped in the diplomatic fray. Authorities in Syria, Lebanon, Iran and Gaza ordered thousands of Danish flags to get ready for an orgy of flag burning and a show of strength. Unfortunately, the riots seemed to have backfired on the perperators as the whole world watched with disbelief the violence, destruction and death brought on by the Muslims in reaction to being portrayed as violent, among other things.

It turns out that the Danish Imams exaggerated by including three cartoons which they incorrectly attributed to as pulished in the Danish newspaper, and telling other lies and exaggerations to buttress the case as a hurt child would to a patient parent. This lie is now making the headlines in Denmark and causing the Imams to back down, and beg for peace. The Danish government’s response to this has been to question the patriotism of the Danish hotheads and deny them any legitimacy by excluding them from any future discussions between Muslims and Danish government on mutual understanding.

So what we have now is a no-win situation for the Muslims. If the hot-heads force the Danish government to back down and offer an apology as an appeasement, Muslims will be viewed as bullies who use violence to silence free speech. If the Danes don’t apologize, the West will be viewed as the victor over a fanatic religion and give encouragement to future transgressions against the religion which are surely coming. Either outcome spells disaster for Muslims. No wonder, Muslims feel trapped. Interestingly, this controversy has encouraged many moderate Muslims to come out and speak against the hotheads. A website, attributed to moderate Muslims Islam has recently appeared apologizing for the behavior of the extremists in Islam although it is mystifying why Norway was included in it because the politicians there were quick to apologize for the reproduction of the cartoons even before an apology was demanded.

For a detailed anatomy of the cartoon controversy, click on this article by WSJ contributor, Andrew Higgins: "How Muslim clerics stirred world against Denmark." Also see a Washington Times op-ed piece.

Here is a synopsis of winners, losers and wimps in this fiasco. The winners are clearly the Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen for standing up to the bullies in the face of boycott and death threats. Also noteworthy are the European editors, and Philadelphia Inquirer, the only major newspaper in the U.S. who took the cause later and re-published the cartoons. Condy Rice gets points for pointing out early on that the riots are a Syrian and Iranian concoction. And President Bush for support of the Danish stance, albeit little late.

Losers are clearly the noisy Danish Imams and their protectors in Saudi Arabia, Syria and Iran, and the OIC for making a big deal about the twelve cartoons, most of which are innocuous. Click here and judge for yourself.

The biggest loser of course is the Ummah, the Muslim community at large, also known as the Arab street. Watch the Muslim regimes retreat soon to repair the damage caused to themselves by their quick, stupid and automatic diplomatic actions. Egypt refused to advance discussions on a $70 million loan from Denmark at the height of the controversy! Watch her come back quietly to the table with tail between her legs.

The list of wimps is rather impressive.

1. US and British Mainstream media for refusing to publish the cartoons. The tragedy is that if all Americans saw the cartoons, they will see first hand that the noise made is totally uncalled for. Even an Egyptian and a Jordanian paper published these.

2. U.S. Staid Department and British foreign secretary Jack Straw’s condemnation of the publication of these cartoons. Remind me what these two countries stand for: Freedom of speech or appeasement of the mob. They are unaware of the threat to free speech or worse: pretend it is not there. In any case, the comments were totally unnecessary and show a lack of backbone. Rhymes, as you see fit. with Neville Chamberlain? Hello?

3. Publishers who fired their editors for publishing these cartoons including the ones whose editors resigned because of self-imposed censorship.

4. UN's high commissioner for human rights, Louise Arbor by jumping into the fray and demanding answers from Denmark and threatening investigations into racism and disrespect for belief. Is freedom of speech not a part of human rights? Hello?

5. Moderate Muslims, if there is a significant group as such, for not demanding restraint early on and letting the hotheads hijack their faith over and over again. As I have said before, moderate Muslims, you can not be on the fence anymore. The fence is on fire.

This has been a watershed victory of the values of the West versus the hypocrisy of Muslims. This, I hope, is the beginning of the end of wimpiness of the West when faced with the bullies, even though we have to appease the Saudis for their oil. No more confused silence on the part of the West when first confronted by this in November 1989 when the Ayatollah Khomeini announced a death sentence upon Salman Rushdie, a citizen of another country for writing a book. It did not matter that the book was historically accurate.

Lessons learned: No more comprises and no more apologies and appeasement. If we believe in our values, let the whole country, including the Staid Department stand for it. One more thing. Every time, GWB says Islam means peace, I want to throw up while the Muslims smirk at that statement. Islam does not mean peace, it means submission. Submit, or off with your head. Get it, Dubya?

Posted by Krishan Kumra at February 10, 2006 9:18 PM
Comments
Comment #123438

This entire fiasco demonstrates the utter unreliability of the international leftist establishment when it comes to defending the values of free societies, and the skill of our enemies in manipulating, intimidating and silencing the media.

In Europe, it’s almost as if they’ve already accepted the death of their civilization and are now just trying to placate and appease the Islamic element which is poised to take over their societies in the next 20-30 years.

Between the lines, you heare them pleading “Please give us another half-generation or so to enjoy our socialist utopias before you make us don the burqa and bow to Mecca 5 times a day.”


Posted by: sanger at February 10, 2006 10:29 PM
Comment #123454

I don’t know if the Philadelphia Inquirer is a liberal fish wrap or not … but even if they are, 3 cheers to them for sticking to their “freedom of the press” guns no matter what. I certainly don’t agree with liberals but I’m happy to call them fellow Americans as long as they walk their talk. If both parties do that it’ll allow us to continue to be a successful country via the 2 party system.

(And that’s why I think I’m smarter than most liberals since they think a country 100% liberal would work. I think that would be as successful as a country 100% conservative … WILDLY UNSUCCESSFUL!)

And I’m a Bush supporter, but not on this issue. The violence massively outweighed the poor taste of the cartoons and he should’ve spoke to that straight away. I know he has political and diplomatic considerations, but if he prides himself on trying to do the right thing despite the consequences … he should’ve supported the Danes and their PM wholeheartedly once the violence quickly got outrageous.

Nice article Krishan, you were right to ping the President on this one.

Posted by: Ken Cooper at February 10, 2006 11:35 PM
Comment #123456

Weekly Standard published the cartoons and an article about them. They are probably in bad taste, but if it had not been for the violent reaction, I not have given them a second look.

In this case, many normally wimpy Euro media outlets have done the right thing. I fear that it is because they are coming to grips with a demographic time bomb.

Posted by: Jack at February 10, 2006 11:43 PM
Comment #123462

The sad part about this is that I’m surprised at neither the reprehensible behavior of the right, nor these radical clerics. Both use the hatred and misunderstanding of foreigners to their selfish gain. It’s no wonder they’ve been the ones shouting the loudest. They are perfectly suited to one another.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 10, 2006 11:54 PM
Comment #123474

“We don’t want to fight
But, by Jingo, if we do,
We’ve got the ships,
We’ve got the men,
We’ve got the money, too”

From the Wikipedia article on “jingoism”

Sanger,
“… the utter unreliability of the international leftist establishment…”

‘Unreliable’ is an understatement. Where exactly is this international leftist establishment located? Can I make reservations to dine? And what is the dress code?

Stephen,
Good post. I’ve mentioned my views in the previous thread, that this entire issue is manufactured to create hate, which is something both Neocons and Muslim fundamentalists are anxious to do.

Krishan,
Yes indeed! We’ve got the ships, the men, and the money too.

Remember the Maine?

Let’s revisit Wikipedia for a definition of yellow journalism, which “refers to news organizations for whom sensationalism, profiteering, and in some cases propaganda and jingoism, take dominance over factual reporting. Most cases tend to be related to journalistic bias, and the endemic practices of particular organizations to operate as mouthpieces, for rather limited and particular allegiances, rather than for the public trust.”

Indeed. No more compromises, no more appeasement, no apologies, and heaven forbid, no wimps. Just some good ol’ fashioned, you know, manly bloodlust. Just doing your part to a poisonous atmosphere of hatred and intolerance, eh?

Allow me to suggest a Neocon motto. It comes from “Heart of Darkness,” by Conrad:

“EXTERMINATE ALL THE BRUTES”

Posted by: phx8 at February 11, 2006 12:29 AM
Comment #123475

Stephen, the right “shouts the loudest” because we get so little help from the left who won’t stand up to anyone in a fight—unless, of course, it’s the Bush admistration any time the Bush adminstratins tries to take an actual measure to defend not only our freedoms but our basic security.

But that’s an easy posture to take, isnt’ it? Because unlike what the left would have us believe, nobody gets jailed or persecuted in this country for simply complaining about the president. Taking on Bush is easy because there are no consequences and while doing so one can persist in the delusional notion that they are defenders of freedom.

This story gets right to the heart of the deeply disfunctional liberal mind-set. Those who proclaims themselves the brave defenders of freedom and then run and hide whenever defending freedom means you have a fight on your hands.

It happened with the Soviet Union. It is happening now with Islamic fundamentalism.

Some people never learn.

Posted by: sanger at February 11, 2006 12:32 AM
Comment #123479

Sanger,
So when Democrats & Republicans, liberals and conservates, when these groups supported going into Afghanistan after 9/11 in similar numbers, and continue to support it today, is there any possible way to fit that into your worldview?

I thought not.

You mention the USSR. The USSR lost in Afghanistan. The Soviets had no internal opposition, no critical media, no opposition party- yet they lost in Afghanistan.

Why will the West’s experience in occupying Afghanistan differ from the USSR defeat? Connect this with Krishan’s hateful article, and put it all together: how should we help the failed state of Afghanistan succeed?

Posted by: phx8 at February 11, 2006 12:43 AM
Comment #123481

Phx8, the left also supported the war in Iraq (that is, until they were against it).

And despite the revisionist history, there is a great deal of resistance to the war in Afghanistan now from the left and has been since the beginning.

There were actually very large protests against the Afghanistan when it broke out—and not coinincidentally, they were led by the same far left groups who are now shaping the Democratic party’s Iraq agenda.

Posted by: sanger at February 11, 2006 12:55 AM
Comment #123496

Sanger,

The left also supported the war in Iraq (that is, until they were against it).

Everyone voted to give the president the authority to go to war, partly because Bush claimed he needed this authority to push through a peaceful negotiation, and partly because of trumped up evidence. But you know what? I’m sure you’re as sick of hearing this knee jerk response as I am of hearing your broken record “they voted for it until they were against it”. Get over yourself. Bush brought us to war and screwed it up and now we’re in a big mess. It doesn’t matter how we got here.

Libby just said Cheney authorized leaking Plame’s name. Remember that Bush said that anyone that did that should be fired?

Heckuva job Brownie just said Bush knew that Katrina was going to be a disaster the day before it was.

So…. I can totally understand why you guys are on your fifth or sixth post about these cartoons. I wouldn’t want to talk about anything else either.

Posted by: Max at February 11, 2006 1:37 AM
Comment #123500

Sanger,
Busted.
“Eighty-seven percent of Americans now approve of the military attacks against Afghanistan, a number that has not wavered since the start of the attacks in October. Less than one in ten disapprove of the attacks.”
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2002/01/25/opinion/main325710.shtml

Public opposition to invading Afghanistan paled in comparison to opposition over invading Iraq. Spend a few minutes reviewing polls. Here, for example, is polling data on Iraq from September 2002.
http://cbsnews.cbs.com/stories/2002/09/24/opinion/polls/main523130.shtml

Wikipedia includes extensive links on protests against the invasion of Iraq.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_protests_against_war_on_Iraq#January_16.2C_2002
Very impressive numbers. Someone at Wikipedia took considerable trouble to document the remarkable numbers of protests. For example, on February 15, 2002 “Millions of people protested, in approximately 800 cities around the world. Listed by the 2004 Guinness Book of Records as the largest protest in human history, protests occurred among others in the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, Germany, Switzerland, Ireland, the United States, Canada, Australia, South Africa, Syria, India, Russia, South Korea, Japan, and even McMurdo Station in Antarctica. The largest demonstation this day occurred in London, where 2,000,000 protesters gathered…”

Contrast this with Afghanistan, using the same source:
“Several small protests occurred in various cities and college campuses across the United States and in other countries in the first days after the start of the bombing campaign.”
“On October 7, there was a peace rally of 10,000 to 12,000 people in New York City.”

Your statement, “There were actually very large protests against the Afghanistan when it broke out” is completely and utterly wrong. It is factually wrong.

As for Iraq: “the left also supported the war in Iraq”
Again, this statement is wrong. It is demonstrably incorrect. For example, in the AUMF for Iraq, almost half the Senate Democrats, in particular the liberal Democrats, voted against the resolution. I’ve posted the list of names before. Do you need it again? It seems a little impolite to pile it on, but then again, your statements were demonstrably wrong.


Posted by: phx8 at February 11, 2006 2:05 AM
Comment #123644

Sanger-
I can say honestly that I supported the war when it begun. Others can say otherwise. But Democrats, as whole, do not have to bear the burden of lying about why we got in there in the first place, what reasons were given.

You have to tell us that WMDs and Terrorists already waiting weren’t really the main reason. You have to switch from WMDs to WMD related program activities, or to claiming that they got slipped over the border, despite an utter absence of evidence that this occured.

You have to cite the president’s lack of the use of the term imminent, even as you forget that to wage a pre-emptive war, by definition, you have to be fighting an imminent threat. Imminence is implicit in the claim that we were going in to prevent another attack, if one is justifying the war under the Bush Doctrine. Your people were talking about the next smoking gun being a mushroom cloud over one of our cities, implying that the threat would come upon us so quickly, that we would not have the opportunity to handle it by traditional methods.

And yes, WMDs and Terrorists (as in those already there) were the main reason for the concern. Why else go through the UN, and claim that this is the reason action must be taken? Why else stake the reputation of your Secretary of State on a presentation to the world and your own country that focused almost exclusively on those two subjects? Why else circulate NIE’s, with their qualifying language edited out, to the Congress as a whole?

These are the questions you would like people to forget. As long as you can tiptoe through the tulips of the purpose of the mission being (admirably, and importantly enough) nation-building, you can say that your purpose was getting rid of a bloody tyrant. Never mind why we were entitled and obligated to do that in the first place, legally speaking.

The trouble is, as originally planned, this war was not supposed to have an occupational phase. Your folks had planned to leave the reconstruction and the new demands of governance to Chalabi and the other exiles. This is fact. Only after months of lawlessness and disorder did the occupation commence, and when it did it was half-assed and undermanned, and our soldiers paid the price for that with a bloody insurgency that never had to begin in the first place.

So don’t give crap about the left revising their story. Yours has revised as your mistakes began to sink your reputations. Even now, as you make protests about Murtha and others wanting to cut and run, your people are planning for the departure of a major portion of our troops.

The only conclusion I can draw, is that your folks want to appear to take the popularly approved strategy, without having to admit that it’s ours, often enough. Why else show such disrespect for our plans, then create ones that resemble them so closely.

As of right now, I think we’ve done a great diservice to both Americans and Iraqis alike by not entering into and fighting a war with a policy backed by integrity.

Reading about Vietnam, even in Tom Clancy’s series of Combat Biographies, we find that the failures of leadership took a great toll on those asked to execute those plans, and faced with often arbitrary demands and political considerations, folks often lied. Those below would often lie so they could do the job right, do it their way. Those above lied to enhance or protect their careers. In the end though, the film of lies separating the government and the brass from the reality on the ground costs even more lives and ensures that the ones failing in their leadership make things even worse.

It’s knowledge of the vicious cycles that these situations create that has people like me so critical of the president. To let things slide is to let the last bit of control loose from our fingers.

In the end, we lost the war in Vietnam because we fought the war we wanted to fight instead of the one we should have fought. We started out with lousy leadership for the South Vietnamese, and never got better. We confused our armed forces with a messenger service, trying to send signals with our strategy, rather than use overwhelming force on crucial enemy targets and centers of gravity. We failed to get the Vietnamese to take ownership of their end of the fight, which left South Vietnamese without the motivation to carry the fight to the North, and made Vietnamization a losing proposition from the start.

Worst of all, instead of building a concensus that Americans could agree on, we let the war turn us against one another, the hawks inflating the importance of the war without being able to convey the gist of what made Vietnam necessary.

Iraq presents us with a number of advantages, in that we have a populace that is invested in improving Iraq, but other disadvantages have come from the way we started this war, the way Bush has tried to build consensus on it, and the secretive, revisionist, dishonest attitude that has plagued leadership on this war.

We will not win this war by will alone. We must have, in addition to that, the material and human resources necessary to pull it off.

The right, in its hubris, will not even consider how much it has handicapped itself in the prosecution of this war, and will go right on keeping us in this battle with one arm tied behind their back. I think there is still a chance to turn things around and get us fighting this war properly, but if the Right doesn’t soon justify further involvement here by way of better means of fighting this war, it will find that the consensus, across party lines and demographics will be to withdraw.

That, I am sure, will be a disaster, and we will be back fighting a worse threat later.

The Republicans have got to wake up and stop blaming Democrats for their lack of support. We didn’t hold a gun to anybody’s head. The Republicans have to take ownership of their mistakes, and realize that in perpetually defending themselves politically, they’ve let down America in its real world defense.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 11, 2006 1:50 PM
Comment #123684

sanger,

I second your comments.

It bears repeating that phx8 doesn’t even believe we are fighting a war on terror or need to. So arguments about whether Iraq was necessary or supported are rather moot.

Democrats were indeed ‘duped’ into voting for the war because they believed that it was political suicide to not vote for it. But as soon as it looked safe to oppose it they did.

This must be taken into account in the future, because the left just can’t be counted on even when you get their stamp of approval in the outset. I suspect that ether we cannot fight any wars, or the only time we will ever get sustained democrat support for any military action are when we have a Democrat in charge in the first place. That’s just a reality we have to live with.

Despite Stephen and phx8’s belief that we are not in a war, and that there is no such thing as muslim extremists— no Islamofascism to confront or defeat— the battle will come to us eventually as evidenced by the furor over these cartoons and the certainty of Iran getting nuclear weapons.

Let’s just wait until we have a nuclear 9/11 on American soil— then we’ll have all the support we need. I suppose it’s sad that so many people will have to die first, but then that’s the paradox of liberalism for you.


Posted by: esimonson at February 11, 2006 4:33 PM
Comment #123693

Eric,
Partial points on my positions. For all practical purposes, the War on Terror ended in 2003. Al Qaida is no longer a functional organization, and terrorists are unable to operate outside their own local borders.

I was in favor of going into Afghanistan, and am in favor of staying. If anything, I don’t think we’re doing nearly enough in terms of rebuilding a failed state. My personal opinion is that the long-term threat from Afghanistan is very high. Generally speaking, I think the Bush administration deserves credit for its Afghan policies.

One poll from just before we went into Afghanistan stated that 87% of Americans thought the invasion would be a failure if we did not capture or kill Osama bin Laden. While OBL and Zawahiri are no longer able to actively participate, their words are poisonous incitements to violence. We need to redouble efforts. The Bush administration deserves criticism for this- not so much for letting him escape Tora Bora, imo, but for letting the hunt slip onto the back burner.

“Democrats were indeed ‘duped’ into voting for the war because they believed that it was political suicide to not vote for it. But as soon as it looked safe to oppose it they did.”

Personally, I think that’s true of some moderate Democrats. Most Democrats would disagree with that. As for Republicans- what was their excuse?

“I suspect that ether we cannot fight any wars…”

Gosh, I feel like such a spoil sport. We’ll fight wars as a last resort. Through international organizations we may help interventions to prevent genocides, such as we should have done in Rwanda, or as we successfully have done in Kosovo. But never again, hopefully, will we invade other countries on a pretext. It shames America and everything we stand for.

Islamofascists? No, I doubt there is any such thing. Muslim extremists? Of course, there are extremists of all kinds. There are plenty of people who spread hate, some who incite violence, and a few who act upon it.

As for Iran, I think we should assume they will eventually develop weapons. That will probably take at least a decade. We have a few years to work with. Spreading hatred, inciting violence, and talking about invading Iran will certainly result in disaster. The Bush administration and the Neocons have certainly set a course for catastrophe. The right course is obvious. We’ll probably have to wait for Bush to end his term, resign, or be impeached before actions to improve the long-term safety of the United States of America can be taken.

Posted by: phx8 at February 11, 2006 5:35 PM
Comment #123710

Stephen Daugherty:

Stephen Daugherty:

Point well taken, both on Iraq and Vietnam debacle. Both of them were executed in the lack of good judgment, lacking knowledge and relevant information on the populace and allies, and not being able to use all the tools of war winning such as capable diplomacy and capable battlefield prowess along with the righteousness of the moral high ground. Vietnam was a totally unnecessary disaster when West had the moral high ground, which eventually Reagan exploited to get rid of the red menace for ever. America lost respect of most of the world by giving into a hysterical, and by any sane account, a mostly irrelevant but very costly fiasco pushed on us by the faulty Domino theory. Besides 50,000 lives, and billions of dollars, the biggest loss was to the prestige and image of United States by a nasty war and a shameful retreat that could have been prevented or accepted early on. That was the real beginning of Anti-American sentiment in the world and we are still paying for it.

The situation in Iraq is quite opposite. We had the moral high ground, but the White House painted itself in the corner with the WMD issue while there were many more reasons for a regime change. There was no reason for the haste. Six more months would have convinced the world that Saddam had to go. We could have done more thinking and planning and some of the issues that we have had to deal with would not be a surprise to us. We have been reacting to realities that had not been thought of. There was only one plan. It was reasonably well executed but the book of plans at that point took us straight to the happy ending where every body rejoiced. It left out the critical and crucial grueling struggle in the middle that we now find ourselves in. Unable to predict when the story will end, we are yelling at each other for buggering this up. The Right is intellectually dishonest to do a mea culpa, admit there were mistakes made, and get on properly with the job. The Left is gloating over the pain that the nation is feeling by keeping the issue alive on life support because they have no plans of their own. Nasty business, and not in national interest at all. A debate is always good, but shrill dialogue is not conducive to a civilized debate. Left should calm down a little and the Right should accept that the White House could have done a much better job. One point both sides agree on: we can not walk away from it. So, get together and complete the job; with honor, dignity and praise.

Ahem! Can we go back to discussing the threat to the freedom of speech from Islam?

Posted by: Krishan Kumra at February 11, 2006 6:50 PM
Comment #123720

Eric-
Straight from the Ann Coulter handbook of discounting liberal good intentions. Maybe in the GOP fantasy world the Republicans are the only ones willing and able to defend America, but I think many Democrats honestly believed that this was the right thing. At least those who didn’t have the security clearance to find out how flawed the case really was.

In the declassified NIE on Iraq, information about Saddam’s capabilities was definitive, certain. The classified version was hedged, filled with qualifications and caveats. You tell me what it means when the public face of the evidence and the secret version differe so much, and the secret version turns out more reliable.

That’s a shitty way to start a war, and a screwed approach to gaining support for one. It’s arrogant to believe that you can lie to gain consent, then count on people’s unquestioning support when they learn the truth. You wasted the benefit of the doubt we first gave you. You wasted that opportunity to get our support without many questions asked by failing to be open, failing to put together a intelligence picture based on solid fact, and then failing miserably to manage the results of both the war and the dishonesty that you folks employed to get us into it.

Now, you have to earn what progress you attain. Yet, you still think you’re entitled to unconditional support. As much as you’ve tried to force it, things will never work that way.

I think the Iraq Invasion in and of itself, and the subsequent failure to secure the country have made it easier for Iran to get away with going Nuclear. With the invasion itself, we have a force commitment that makes it difficult to threaten on the ground military force, and also puts us in a position where Iran can both harrass us, and point to our behavior and discredit us in the eyes of others in the middle east. This is especially true in light of the Republican revisionism on the causus belli.

You’re fighting this war, as it is, in a world of your own. You’re acting like its all some public relations problem that we’re not doing better in Iraq, or that Bin Laden still walks free. Everything has to be considered in terms of the evil liberal media, and those relentless Bush haters. It can’t be your own actions, your own policies, or even just your own fault that things have turned out this way. No, it’s got to be somebody else’s problem, because you folks, naturally, are THE Right Wing. And if you’re right, how can you be wrong?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 11, 2006 7:39 PM
Comment #123724

KRISHAN,

Here’s an interesting point of preface for these SUPPOSED spontaneous angry Islamic outbursts. The cartoons themselves were printed on SEPTEMBER 30th 2005. There was a 3 month lapse between the printing and the actual riots. So that gives them atleast a one month window (even given that they may not have hit the Arab mainstream until then) before anything happened. 1 to 3 months before their “straw that broke the camel’s backs” riot.

WE have no obligation as a free society to submit but we do and we do so for the sake of advertizers. Weekly Standard’s advertizers know full well that their ads there are in a right-wing rag but for mainstream press it is more about creating the right atmosphere to get advertizing revenues. This whole thing about liberalism is far from accurate the reasons they do what they do is near purely capitaliatic and based on not going outside what is percieved as popular sentiment even bordering “conventional wisdom” to maintain readership and pop palatability. So there goes the right wing’s theory of the decade in a nutshell—Capitalism and catering is what the republicans are calling “liberal” without thinking it through or juxtaposing it to reallity—again.

Posted by: Jabbertime at February 11, 2006 7:46 PM
Comment #123729

Krishan-
The situation with Iraq wasn’t that nobody thought these situations would occur. It’s that nobody who thought that these things were possible or necessary were allowed input. The Bush administration had its idea of how to fight a war right, and they knocked out of commission any other forces that would take another direction.

Robust systems often have multiple streams of activity going on, all synchronized together. If one stream of activity fails, the other can pick up the slack without skipping a beat. Only a fool looks at something this complex and things that their notion of things alone will work. Unfortunately, our president and his people have Eric’s sort of confidence that they’re way not only is the right way, but the only possible right way there is. And that means they would lower themselves if they deign to consider such inferior strategies.

Back to the robustness of multistreamed processes. I look at a lot of the Right’s appreciation of Muslims, and I see the same problem: They don’t perceive that strong alternatives to their stereotypical approach to the residents of the Middle East exist. Because of that, there are opportunities to bring about positive results that they are just too pessimistic and overgeneralized in their thinking about the place to work out for themselves. Result? Well, you don’t plan for needs or possibilities you don’t think of.

My suggestion to all of y’all is to re-examine the situation as if you are just a beginner, and from there try and see other possibilities than just fear and anger and hate. It doesn’t have to be peace, love, and happiness, but it can just as easily be some solution that our picture of the glory of war makes us too lacking in humility to see.

All these ethnic slurs just serve to convince others that we’re not ready to be reasonable, and that takes some potentially advantageous options away from us. We should consider that radicals can wear out their welcome among their own people, and that we should do our best to wear out our welcome much slower than them.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 11, 2006 7:55 PM
Comment #123734

ESimonson,

Here’s what it is—very few trusted GWBush on anything upon him coming into office nevermind a war. He has always had our doubts especially the way he came into office from many democrat’s perspectives. When 9-11 happened he had our support as this is definitely our nation too as it is our vested interest. WE aquired info that it was Al Qaida based on intel so off we went actually supporting Bush (although not fully trusting him or his group) to fight Al Qaida and remove the Taliban. Now he put through tax-relief for the rigch several days after 9-11 eleven showing his amount of genuine concern for this nation and how he really has few genuine priorities—point being, he had partial trust from the left although supported in the endeavor against terror.

Then came Iraq, NO ONE BELIEVED the connections that they were claiming about their connections to 9-11 and “mushroom clouds” etcetera. But the hillbilly redneck factor turned the debate anti-democratic as the republicans latched on to it to attack those who actually supported full well the republican war against terror. They made alot of enemies and since with mouthjobs like Eddie Gillespie and Ken Mehlman doing everything they could to polarize and steroetype democrats even centrist ones as “girlymen” and “weak on defense” and the like, to make misguided political gains like the little sleezoid republiturds they are. So the republicans themselves made enemies of their own countrymen as they weaseled their agendas and broke laws and did all of this while they scapegoated the dems and even the centrists as being in cahoots with terrorists.

There was a time in America when I would have wanted to hear your viewpoints Eric as of now I wouldn’t piss on your types if you were on fire and would just as see your republican throats slit and floating in a river. I would literally physically beat a republican into the dirt for amusement now because of what you libelously said about us even of the centrists. You took this war and made enemies in your own country with it—and likewise if I were to ever meet you eric I would mop the floor with you laughing my ass off. that is how I feel about tyou stereotyping us with your sleazy wimpish friends. i would literally put you in the ER.

Posted by: Jabbertime at February 11, 2006 8:17 PM
Comment #123736

Jabbertime,
Great comment, and spot on. Yellow journalism at the end of the 19th century was at its core a money driven phenomenon. Capitalism and lack of journalistic ethics drove two New York papers into a no-holds-barred competition for readership; it led them to post increasingly extreme, jingoistic articles, and played a major role in sparking the Spanish American War.

Remember the Maine?

We see a remarkably similar case in the publication of these cartoons, a textbook example of yellow journalism occurring in Europe. The provocative insult took some repitition, but eventually evoked a response from Muslims. It’s almost like a Seinfeld episode, all about nothing, with nothing being extremists insulting the cultures of other extremists, and, in what might be the unintentionally funniest moment of the Bush years, the burning of a large number of Danish flags.

Krishan,
You accuse American media of being “wimps” for not publishing the cartoons. You say you want to discuss “the threat to the freedom of speech from Islam?” Care to explain why this is not an example of yellow journalism?

You “give points” to Condi Rice for coming down on Syrian & Iran, yet you accuse “The Staid Department” of being wimps. What is Rice’s position within the administration? Does she have any leadership responsibilities?

“5. Moderate Muslims, if there is a significant group as such, for not demanding restraint early on and letting the hotheads hijack their faith over and over again. As I have said before, moderate Muslims, you can not be on the fence anymore. The fence is on fire.”

Your words, Krishan. Who lit this fire? And do you believe there is such a thing as “moderate Muslims”? Sounds to me like you’re demanding polarization, which is tactic used by hate-filled extremists and terrorists, a mentality of ‘you’re either for us or against us.’

Posted by: phx8 at February 11, 2006 8:26 PM
Comment #123740

Jabbertime,
Critique the message, not the messenger. I just post comments here, I’m not a site manager, just trying to be helpful.

Posted by: phx8 at February 11, 2006 8:33 PM
Comment #123757

PhX8, I never said that YOU were against the war in Afghanistan or that a majority of Democrats were or are.

What I said is that there was a great deal of resistance to the war in Afghanistan, and what there was came from the left. Look at the New York Times editorials from that time; they were calling it a “quagmire” and Bush’s Vietnam three weeks in.

As for the size of demonstrations, it’s amusing to see somebody downplaying them and saying they were actually small. Usually we’re told by the left that a demonstration of ten thousand was actually a hundred thousand or a million!

In Iraq, the majority of the left supported the war just like they did in Afghanistan. But when the going got tough in Iraq in a way it didn’t in Afghanistan, they started jumping ship and flailing around for excuses (such as their having been lied to) to placate their far-left base, the folks, incidentally, who were against Afghanistan.

I’m not saying you’re “far left.” But those who are far left are increasingly in control of the Democratic party. And they’re becoming increasingly close to the sentiment and agenda in Europe. John Kerry even bragged about this fact, and time and again Bush is attacked for not maintaining friendships with the Europeans.

But now we find out that the majority of Europeans aren’t even willing to stand up for the freedom of the press and will beg and plead to be forgiven for supposedly insulting “the prophet of Islam” in a freaking cartoon!

Posted by: sanger at February 11, 2006 9:47 PM
Comment #123770

Sanger,
Off topic, about Afghanistan. It’s true, at the time the West invaded, there was concern about a ‘quagmire’ and heavy casualties. As it turned out, we avoided US casualties by bombing, and by fighting through proxies. It worked well, with the notable exception of OBL’s escape from Tora Bora. But what about today? Is Afghanistan a ‘quagmire’?

For most people, Afghanistan is off the radar. While looking at polling data last night, one thing struck me: there is very little available on US opinions about Afghanistan. It’s a big country, remote, predominantly rural, and it no longer rates enough attention in the US to even bother asking poll questions.

According to one site: “Violence blamed on Taliban militia and other insurgent groups has left many southern and eastern parts of Afghanistan off-limits to aid workers, government officials and police.”

A side effect of Iraq is that Afghanistan is so far off the radar, most people don’t even realize it is still a failed state.

“Although the national assembly election was a success, prospects for Kabul to extend its authority to the provinces and take on the powerful warlords, growing richer on the proceeds of the lucrative opium trade, do not look hopeful.”

The election allowed former members of the Taliban, as well as at least one Warlord, to win and take their seats in the assembly. It’s probably a good thing for national unity, but if people in the US were aware commited enemies of the US were serving in the Afghan government, they’d go nuts.

So in a sense, Afghanistan really is a quagmire. It’s just that, compared to the Okeefenokee swamp sized quagmire of Iraq, Afghanistan is a mere mud puddle. With fewer troops and fewer resources committed, Afghanistan continues to escape notice; but with large areas beyond the control of any government, threats from that part of the world are potentially greater than anything originating in an urban environment. Establishing governmental control is an enormous project requiring great resources, and that’s miles and miles and years and years away from happening.


Posted by: phx8 at February 11, 2006 10:59 PM
Comment #123791

All these liberals who say “Yeah, we wanted to go into Afghanistan too and the country still supports that! See, we make great decisions!”

#1 - Congrats on joining in on one of the easiest political and strategic decisions in our nation’s history.

#2 - The main reason dems hopped on board was because there was little to no outrage after Gulf War I. The “No Blood For Oil” mantra started to look stupid to even mainstream liberals. But they realized, after 9/11, the country was glad we took Hussein to task in Gulf War I. Here’s the kicker: THE VAST MAJORITY OF DEMOCRATS VOTED AGAINST GULF WAR I … and they were too afraid to look like little weasles AGAIN when it came to Afghanistan.

#3 - The dems, because of their Gulf War I fiasco, also wanted to look strong in Iraq. That’s why dems are featured here saying the things that they did about Hussein and WMD in Iraq: http://media1.streamtoyou.com/rnc/111505.wmv

But because Iraq wasn’t a 3 month wonder like Kuwait or Afghanistan … they decided to play wimp and whine “it’s too hard! it’s too hard!” and then back up the extremist rhetoric “Bush lied about WMD” depsite the video link above.

#4 - So, was it joining in on an easy decision in Afghanistan for the right reasons … or did what they always do … politicize the decision liked the y politicized their view of Iraqi WMD? Things that make you go “Hmmmmmm … ?”

Posted by: Ken Cooper at February 12, 2006 12:51 AM
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