- Jul 6, 2007
- Reaction score
- Portland, Oregon
Suicide of the West
Denial is no longer a river in Egypt but a British pathology.
By Melanie Phillips
When America was attacked on 9/11 by Islamic jihadis, it was said that this was a doomsday wake-up call for the West. Within a short while, however, much of Britain decided that 9/11 was actually Americas fault and that Israel was at the core of the problem.
When Britain was attacked last year on 7/7 by Islamic jihadis, it was said that this was a doomsday wake-up call for the U.K. Within a short time, however, much of the country decided that it was Britains own fault on account of Islamophobia and the war in Iraq.
Now 25 British Muslims have been arrested for an alleged plot to blast up to ten trans-Atlantic airliners out of the sky. This vast alleged conspiracy, thought to encompass many dozens more plotters from Germany to Pakistan, bears all the monstrous hallmarks of a classic al Qaeda operation. In addition, security sources say that dozens more al Qaeda-linked terrorist cells are at large in the U.K.
From the evidence of one opinion poll this week, the British public has at least woken up to the fact that we are in the throes of a world war. Not so, however, the British establishment and chattering classes. Denial is no longer a river in Egypt but a British pathology.
Deputy Commissioner Paul Stephenson of the Metropolitan Police described the plot as a criminal act which was not about communities but about people who might masquerade in the community, hiding behind certain faiths. So an act of holy war to be perpetrated in the name of Islam just happened to use that faith as a random bit of camouflage, just as it might have used Zen Buddhism, say, or Zoroastrianism?
Then theres the customary chorus that its all due to the war in Iraq and Britains poodling to America. This was also the premise of the letter last weekend by 38 Muslim groups, MPs, and peers that unless Britain altered its foreign policy it would get more terrorist outrages. This shameful threat to the nation produced a furious denunciation by the home secretary, John Reid, for proposing that terrorists should dictate British policies.
But the argument that foreign policy is the cause of the threat to Britain a claim trotted out by a wide spectrum of people is itself idiotic beyond measure. As Reid said, there was an al Qaeda plot in Birmingham to blow up Britain back in 2000 before 9/11, let alone the war in Iraq. Similarly, jihadi attacks on the U.S. began 22 years before 9/11 with the Iran embassy hostage crisis in 1979, followed by two decades of further attacks.
Even now, much of Britain fails to understand the apocalyptic messianism now driving the regime in Iran to develop nuclear weapons with which to blackmail the world.
It fails to acknowledge the religious nature of this world war, with even more alarming signs of an emerging Sunni and Shia strategic alliance in Iraq and Gaza, and with al Qaeda supporting Hezbollah in Lebanon. When President Bush said we were in a war against Islamic fascism, he was merely stating a demonstrable truth.
But many in Britain simply refuse to acknowledge that the root cause of the threat that Britain faces is Islam. This does not mean that all Muslims sign up to these evil ideas. Hundreds of thousands of British Muslims do not, while across the world Muslims are among the most numerous of its victims.
But an insupportable number do subscribe to extremist ideas. A recent poll revealed that a quarter of British Muslims believed the 7/7 attacks were justified, with the number rising to one third among younger Muslims.
Many of these young people live in a kind of cultural limbo, stranded between the repressive culture of the Asian subcontinent and the debauched and degraded culture of Britain. And the terrible message of the jihad is a siren song for those who have been abandoned in a psychic desert and who search for a meaning to their lives.
It gives them an identity which provides self respect because it casts them in a heroic mould: fighting to defend the kingdom of God. It is an identity built on undiluted hatred, on lies, on paranoia, on mass murder and even attempted genocide.
These are ideas that kill. And because they are ideas, some of the most significant recruiting grounds are not the backstreet mosques and madrassahs but those seats of intellectual inquiry, the universities. Britains campuses are now the prime hunting grounds of the jihad.
A recent Pew opinion poll across Europe revealed that, while Britain was the most respectful country of all towards its Muslim citizens, they repaid the compliment by hating their home country, the west and the Jews more than Muslims anywhere else. Why? The answer is inescapable. British Muslims are being radicalised by Britain itself.
Since Muslims whose minds are already bent by the propaganda of lies and hatred against America, Israel and the Jews pouring out of the Muslim world are further subjected by the BBC and other media outlets to daily even hourly diatribes about the evil of America, the evil of Israel and the fact that Britain is a patsy of evil America and evil Israel, who can possibly be surprised that untold numbers of impressionable young Muslims sign up to rid the planet of this apparent scourge?
The BBC, whose global influence is equalled only by its culpability, powerfully incites hatred by persistently misrepresenting Israels self-defence as unwarranted aggression, and giving air-time to an endless procession of Islamic jihadists, propagandists, anti-Western activists and bigots with rarely even a hint of a challenge.
The British political and security establishment, meanwhile, still fails to understand that it is not enough to thwart terrorist plots and disrupt terrorist cells but it must also combat the ideology of lies, hatred and paranoia driving certain Muslims to these terrible acts. Not only do they fail to do so, but they have even recruited jihadists into the very heart of government as advisers.
The mantra justifying this appeasement of extremism is that the vast majority of Britains Muslims are moderate. True, the vast majority oppose terrorism. But Britain has now effectively defined as a moderate someone who does not support mass murder and even then, only in Britain.
Where are the Muslim public figures condemning those in their community who support suicide bombings in Israel and Iraq? Or those who blame Israel and the Jews for all the ills of the world? Or who claim that the west is a giant conspiracy to destroy Islam?
You wont hear such condemnations from the head of the Muslim Council of Britain an organisation which venerates Sheikh Yusuf Qaradawi, who endorses suicide bomb attacks in Israel and Iraq who has said his aim is to get Britain to adopt Islamic values.
Nor from Syed Aziz Pasha, secretary general of the Union of Muslim Organisations of the U.K. and Ireland, who has said he wants public holidays to mark Muslim festivals and Islamic laws to cover family affairs which would apply only to Muslims a demand which astoundingly the Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly said she would consider. Are these really moderate attitudes?
The unpalatable fact is that there is actually a continuum of Islamic extremism in Britain. While probably only a small number on this continuum will ever be involved in violence, too many others subscribe to odious beliefs and ideas which maintain the sea of hatred and bigotry in which terrorism swims.
The key belief that sustains this continuum and fuels the global jihad is the paranoid falsehood that the West is engaged in a conspiracy to destroy Islam and that the puppet masters of the West are the Jews.
The centrality of anti-Jewish hatred to the threat to Britain and the West makes Britains animus against Israel and gross inversion of Israels 50-year fight to defend itself from extinction not merely a regrettable prejudice but an act of cultural suicide.
Israels many enemies in the U.K. will doubtless be highly satisfied with the United Nations resolution to end the Lebanon war. But by emasculating Israel, this resolution has further empowered Iran and boosted the global jihad against themselves.
Israels inept prosecution of the war in Lebanon and the resulting ceasefire are not merely a potential disaster for Israel. Al Qaeda and even more importantly, Iran will now scent not just Jewish blood but, in the apparent weakness of this key salient in the defence of the West, an opportunity to redouble their efforts to strike directly at Britain and America. For Israels fight is the worlds fight. Lose Israel, and the world is lost.
By the time Britain finally works out just who are its allies and who are its enemies, it may well be too late.
Melanie Phillips is author of Londonistan.