I am a jihadist and I am tired of not being given credit.

how-us-ambassador-chris-stevens-may-have-been-linked-to-jihadist-rebels-in-syria[1]

It must be incredibly frustrating as an Islamic Jihadist not to have your views and motives taken seriously by the societies you terrorize, even after you have explicitly and repeatedly stated them. Even worse, those on the regressive left, in their endless capacity for masochism and self-loathing, have attempted to shift blame inwardly on themselves, denying the Jihadists even the satisfaction of claiming responsibility.

It’s like a bad Monty Python sketch:

“We did this because our holy texts exhort us to to do it.”

“No you didn’t.”

“Wait, what? Yes we did…”

“No, this has nothing to do with religion. You guys are just using religion as a front for social and geopolitical reasons.”

“WHAT!? Did you even read our official statement? We give explicit Quranic justification. This is jihad, a holy crusade against pagans, blasphemers, and disbelievers.”

“No, this is definitely not a Muslim thing. You guys are not true Muslims, and you defame a great religion by saying so.”

“Huh!? Who are you to tell us we’re not true Muslims!? Islam is literally at the core of everything we do, and we have implemented the truest most literal and honest interpretation of its founding texts. It is our very reason for being.”

“Nope. We created you. We installed a social and economic system that alienates and disenfranchises you, and that’s why you did this. We’re sorry.”

“What? Why are you apologizing? We just slaughtered you mercilessly in the streets. We targeted unwitting civilians – disenfranchisement doesn’t even enter into it!”

“Listen, it’s our fault. We don’t blame you for feeling unwelcome and lashing out.”

“Seriously, stop taking credit for this! We worked really hard to pull this off, and we’re not going to let you take it away from us.”

“No, we nourished your extremism. We accept full blame.”

“OMG, how many people do we have to kill around here to finally get our message across?”

.

“My friend Joseph from the United States wrote this on my wall after hearing my discussion with Dave Rubin and he gave me a permission and copyright to share it under my name”

  • Mitch Workman

    This is truly, wonderfully and bleakly hilarious.

  • Adrian

    Yep, a simple satire, yet so obviously and painfully true. This disease, a cultural at that, of ours here in the west, towards self-flagellation is utterly obscene.

  • Robyn Ryan

    White guys have been trying to conquer and convert the mid-East for 1000 years. Never works.

    • Ben Donahue

      That’s partially accurate. The “white guys” were in control of the middle east long before Islam was a religion. The crusades were in response to rapid and violent Islamic imperialism. Not to say that their “ownership” of those lands was morally acceptable. But neither was the conquering of Turkey, North India, North Africa, Spain, and the Balkans.

    • octagon<3

      And Muslims haven’t done the same?

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dev%C5%9Firme

      • Dylan Stewart

        I think it’s safe to say MEN who worship gods have been trying to conquer everything since the dawn of civilization. It never works and never will.

    • Kjetil Hauge

      It is estimated that over 1 million white europeans were enslaved by the arabs during the slave trade in North Africa.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barbary_slave_trade

      • People

        Do not deny the Muslims their credit in African slave trade, dwarfed the Atlantic slave trade in numbers over 1200 years. Yes, yes I know the Muslims took the women. So they could be “nice” to them. The men they killed. Of the men, or boys, taken into slavery, they were castrated. No genetic markers left. And even if 60% of castrated men, and boys, bled out and died, the value of a court eunuch still made it worth it! Pity the imperial Europeans finally stamped it out.

        • Kjetil Hauge

          Two wrongs doesn’t make a right. The arabs were just as imperialist and expansionist as the Europeans, but they were outrun by the development in technology and innovation in Europe.

          • People

            You shouldn’t voice it as technological change “just happens”. The culture of the West created the environment wherein technological change took off. Islam wasn’t outrun, it wasn’t a productive driver, beyond what was gained through conquest and aggregation.

          • Kjetil Hauge

            Where did I say it “just happend”? I know very well the reasons why Europe advanced ahead of the rest of the world in exploration and technology, but I didn’t feel like writing an essay.

          • ” The culture of the West created the environment wherein technological change took off”

            That was the traditional view until Jared Diamond wrote Guns, Germs, and Steel.

          • People

            The politically correct crowd LOVES guns germs and steel. But it’s Monday morning quarter backing, hindsight explaining why the winners won. Must of been the weather, must of been the rain. Just never the players. “Big ideas” to comfort the PC crowd.
            Yet Guns germs and steel can tell you nothing about China pre- vs post-1980. But property rights – a simple idea liberals loath – can.

          • Sure, ideas matter, nobody denies that fact. I’m a hardcore capitalist through and through. But in the context of world history, geography matters more.

            Don’t get me wrong, market liberalization will absolutely improve any economy, but Mongolia and China are not going to see the same effects even if they have identical policies.

            The primary reason Islam fell and Europe did not has to do with this guy named “Genghis Khan” who absolutely destroyed the Muslim world but happened to spare Europe due to a coincidence of history (Mongol Hoard was recalled when he died to decide a new successor).

          • People

            Check out how many books are published annually in the entire Muslim world. Guess Mongols still keeping them down. And chew on geography more important than ideas assertion long enough you’ll see the absurdity. Good luck.

          • “Guess Mongols still keeping them down.”

            Nope, mostly Western nations.

            “And chew on geography more important than ideas assertion long enough you’ll see the absurdity.”

            Explain to me why land locked countries don’t do as well as those with many ports when they have the exact same market based policies. Nope, geography doesn’t matter! LOL!

          • People

            Champ, Islam is regressive. End paragraph. Turkey, the “modern” Arab state is only “modern” because Kemal Ataturk suppressed Islam. As a soldier of the Ottoman Empire he rightly diagnosed the cause of centuries of stagnation. Abolition of Caliphate, Sharia courts, on and on. Even a law on hats. Prior to openly Western leaders suppressing Islam, the only force that moderated Islam was European colonialism. You’re talking about hundreds of years of an ideology moderated only by outside forces. Never from within. Choke on that fact Jack.

            No one said geography plays no part. One should say ideas are far and away more influential. But a Liberal’s got to build a house of cards like they got to build a house of cards, there’s no stopping it. Carry on.

          • I think you must be referring to the history where Europeans were slaughtering Jews, who fared relatively well in the Muslim world by comparison. At that time, Islam was the center of learning and progress in the world. Like China, the Muslim world fell to the Mongols.

            But hey, let’s not let facts and evidence get in the way of your Simple Simon worldview. Let’s live in the Republican information bubble where Western Europe’s superior ideology somehow managed to stop the Mongol Hordes. Respectable historians who share this view = zero, but hey, at least you have true academics like Bill O’Reilly.

            Islam as a whole is no more backwards or regressive than many ideologies produced by the Western world like Fascism and Nazism for example. When you cherry pick evidence to conform to your narrative, you can construct any kind of reality that you wish.

          • People

            Good job, Moonbeam. I wasn’t sure everyone recognized you as an idiot, but you cleared that up.
            Islam was a “center of learning” in the aggregate only as it applied to the conquest of other civilizations that possessed learning. Desert Arabs were not scholars, Moonbeam. A materially bereft and illiterate culture. What they didn’t destroy, Muslims took and benefited by aggregation of absorbed knowledge. The “center” because they destroyed neighboring civilizations. The early years of Islam are of note actually because of the *lack* of records, yet unlike earlier religions, the people surrounding the rise of Islam were record keeping cultures. The recorded birth of Islam is a blackhole because Muslims brought nothing to the table. There are shipping records, trade decreased and time of travel across Mediterranean world increased exponentially because of Islamic antagonism. Denied conquest and left its own, Islamic “learning” shrivels under weight of its doctrine. You’d do well to abandon your myths. There’s not much you can bring to the table to contradict several hundred years of history. Results speak for themselves numb nuts.

          • It’s unfortunate that you’re too emotionally invested in this issue to have a rational discussion of the subject. It’s like discussing rape with a rape victim, you are damaged goods. Your hatred of Islam is self-evident, and clouds any possibility of objectivity. All information, in your case, has to be filtered through the lens of your bias (which does not put truth at the center).

            As for me, I could care less. My pursuit is intellectual honesty (something completely foreign to you) and truth. I’m not Muslim, but even if I were, intellectual honesty is more important to me than constructing narratives and preserving belief systems. I think one day you might get where I’m at, but maybe not. It’s difficult for people to suspend their emotions when it comes to politically sensitive topics.

            You couldn’t be intellectually honest and logically consistent if your life depended on it. You simply cherry-pick facts and evidence to conform to your worldview, and discard any information which does not. You’re the opposite of an intellectual, you are a typical partisan, low-information voter.

          • People

            Weird. I cite wide variety of information to illustrate the point. You fall back on a forced narrative that only exists because its spoken, by folks like yourself, who want it to be so. No relation to events in the world, just catch phrases you’ve learned since the 90s. I guess I’m the low information one. Oh well.

            Nice timing too, champ. After a few Muslims massacre a Christmas party, now known as a “holiday” party, because of folks like yourself insisting that it’s so. I guess your “Islam is great, or no different than any other ‘religion'” narrative has a few loose strings you felt compelled to tidy up.

            By the way, evidently the group of Muslim men that helped the couple prepare in the days before this attack remain unaccounted for at this time. Perhaps you should spend your time getting them the message. Cheerio, loser.

          • Once again, you’re too emotionally invested in this issue to have a rational discussion of the subject. It’s like talking genetics or biotechnology with an anti-GMO activist. You’ve already convinced yourself that Islam is the most evil thing on Earth, and you’re not willing to entertain any information which may contradict that belief.

            That’s basically the opposite of intellectual honesty. That is intellectual cowardice. The complete unwillingness to question and even challenge your beliefs. It’s the hallmark of a partisan who is really only capable of repeating information, not analyzing and digesting it.

            Do you think that it is actually possible for you to offend me by criticizing Islam? I’ve already told you that I’m not Muslim, and I’m completely dispassionate about this and pretty much all political issues. You’re only demonstrating to me your own emotionally weak state.

            Muslims kill people, yep, I acknowledge that fact. Do you acknowledge that the US government has killed over a million Muslims? Probably not, because you’re not intellectually honest. This issue is too near and dear for you. You get all worked up and excited over it. You can’t think straight about it.
            The bottom line is that a rational discussion is not possible with intellectual cowards. If you can demonstrate to me that your brain is capable of processing information which may or may not conflict with your current views (in other words, learning) on the issue, then prove it, and we can move on. Until then, you’ll be just like all the other intellectual cowards, forced to repeat themselves over and over again without ever having to question what they are saying.

            http://foreignpolicy.com/2009/11/30/why-they-hate-us-ii-how-many-muslims-has-the-u-s-killed-in-the-past-30-years/

          • People

            Listen twit, just go back through the discussion here, pick out the specific points I brought up, explain to me how they do not suggest a retrograde influence of Islam and we’re all good. The rest of this psycho-babble from afar is a bit much.

          • Awwwww now she’s getting emotional again. She’s name-calling!

            Sorry but you have not demonstrated the ability to discuss this topic dispassionately on an academic level. It’s like talking science at an anti-GMO protest, doesn’t work.

          • People

            I’m not sure anyone reading this thread would credit you many winning arguments. If we parse your rants and declarations of dispassionate wisdom, I believe your assertions to include geographic determinacy, and the West is keeping Islam down. That’s it of substance. That the West killed Muslims during war doesn’t really speak to the sclerotic nature of Islamic society, the jump off point of discussion, which has a longer time horizon than the 30 years posited by the article. The evidence of the retrograde nature of Islam spans 100s of years.

          • The evidence speaks for itself. If you could address my argument, you would. Because you can’t, you have to resort to other tactics.

            Your “summary” of my argument is a straw man so I don’t feel compelled to defend that. I’ll gladly defend *my* argument, which you have yet to address.

          • Michael Caisley

            Wow, there are a lot of bullets in the air here. No one is going to convince anyone of anything it seems, big surprise. Let me just add one word that seems to get lost: NOW. The ideology that is blowing itself up right now is radical Islam. So grading ideologies on a nastiness scale is not important outside of intellectual fisticuffs that can go on ad infinitum while actual people are dying – mostly other muslims by the by. I have been reading comments for about an hour now and it has become surreal. A lot of smarty smarty muscle flexing is going on and it’s so not sexy. Identifying solutions has been subsumed by intellectual pissing contests. You are all very very smart, with references to history that give me goosebumps; that’s obvious but clearly it’s getting us all nowhere. You’re all great. Now, anyone have anything truly constructive to say? Yeah, it’s a trap I suppose because if you criticize me then you are proving my point. Sorry in advance. 😉 Seriously though. Any ideas?

          • Three things need to be considered at the beginning of any discussion about the threat of “radical Islam.”

            1) Most suicide bombings are not committed for religious reasons, but rather, political reasons. Robert Pape of the University of Chicago has compiled a database of all suicide bombings in the last 2 decades. By far, the Tamil Tigers have committed more suicide attacks than any other group, and they are influenced by Marxist-Leninist ideology and are largely atheistic. Using religion as a scapegoat only distracts from the real issues here which are entirely political.

            “”What nearly all suicide terrorist attacks have in common is a specific secular and strategic goal: to compel modern democracies to withdraw military forces from territory that the terrorists consider to be their homeland.” This is true in Sri Lanka, it is true in the Middle East.”

            2) The United States has been bombing and intervening in the Middle East for well over 50 years. No military response of the United States could reasonable be construed as “retaliation” given that we are clearly the aggressors in this conflict, even with 9/11 (which itself was a retaliatory act).

            3) There is no substantial evidence to indicate that Islam is any worse than many secular ideologies like nationalism, Nazism, communism, fascism, etc. Indeed, the United States has killed over a million Muslims in the last 2 decades. Americans are lying to themselves if they claim that if one million Americans were killed by a Muslim government, and they had no state apparatus with which to retaliate, they would not resort to asymmetrical warfare methods like suicide bombings.

            I’m all for nuance and a rational discussion of the subject, but everything needs to be taken into context. Muslim terrorism cannot be viewed in a vacuum.

          • Michael Caisley

            Understood. So we now have your context requirements, but it is incomplete I think. All of your points are sound and supported and that’s a great breakdown of western meddling. I’d like to add one thing to the cauldron if I may. And that is what I’ll call the internal problem. Hear me out. If we remove western powers from the board, what remains is still a hot mess. There is a very real on-going whole sale slaughter of muslims by other muslims going on in the middle east (particularly Syria, Iraq, the Lebanon, etc) RIGHT NOW while we sit comfortably in our pajamas and tap tap away on a lap top. Thousands of muslims are murdered monthly by groups like ISIS without the West having to lift a finger. These are typically muslims who are rendered apostate because of the more literal shari’ah of the barbaric groups. Then there are the non-muslim regional tribes, like the Yazidis, of whom 5K were massacred by ISIS last year. That’s not a vacuum. So, it really is a mess there and I don’t pretend to know all of the historical, geographical, or political kerplunk moves that led to this that or the other. But I can’t help but think that it’s a little parochial, not to mention NON-PRODUCTIVE to blame western intervention ONLY. Also not helpful to talk about ideologies that aren’t the scariest now. I’m sure in 1940, Nazism cast the greatest shadow and caused the most human suffering. And suicide bombings in the main RIGHT NOW (Pape’s thoughts notwithstanding) don’t appear to be political tools, rather religious martyrdom with infidel body counts. I’m not saying you’re wrong; you clearly know your shit and care a lot about this issue. I’m merely suggesting that we’re missing the larger picture by focusing SOLELY on our military misadventures abroad. Does that make sense? If you disagree that’s totally cool but I must insist that you do two things. 1) at least consider what I’ve said. 2) Not make this personal and call me a nasty name like those being thrown around this forum willy-nilly. Everyone is just shouting at each other and it’s childish. I’m sincerely trying to understand this problem exactly like you are. I believe I’ve been courteous with this follow up so I trust you’ll do the same. Thanks. MC.

          • “That’s not a vacuum.”

            Actually it is, because you’re forgetting that we created this ISIS problem in the first place. If your position is “we created this problem and now it exists,” that’s one thing. Then say that. Don’t pretend like ISIS is just a problem “even without the West” because that’s factually incorrect. We created the ISIS problem. We continue to finance Wahhabism. To talk about these issues in a vacuum is intellectually dishonest.

            “But I can’t help but think that it’s a little parochial, not to mention NON-PRODUCTIVE to blame western intervention ONLY. ”

            Unfortunately nobody ever did that, it’s only in your imagination that people are blaming interventionism “only.” “Primarily” doesn’t mean “only.” I blame the West specifically for what the West has done. For example, The West is largely responsible for Pol Pot coming to power. The Islamophobes always try to frame the discussion to be something like “so you’re saying ISIS is not responsible for killing people?” No, that’s not what I said, did you even read it? I said the US government is responsible for Pol Pot/ISIS/etc. coming to power in the first place, so yes, we are responsible for his/their killings. That doesn’t mean he/they are not responsible, there can be such a thing as shared responsibility you know.

            “And suicide bombings in the main RIGHT NOW (Pape’s thoughts notwithstanding) don’t appear to be political tools, rather religious martyrdom with infidel body counts.”

            What do you mean “appear?” I’m talking about evidence (not appearances) and provided some, where is yours?

            “I’m merely suggesting that we’re missing the larger picture by focusing SOLELY on our military misadventures abroad.”

            I don’t think I was focusing “solely” on this, but I will direct my focus to the greatest cause of the problem. Unlike the Islamophobes, I refuse to ignore the big elephant in the room. Yep, ISIS is bad. Yep, Pol Pot was bad. What’s that got to do with the fact that they wouldn’t be in power in the first place if it wasn’t for our foreign policy? You can’t get around that.

          • Michael Caisley

            Look man, with all due respect, it sounds like you’re shouting at me. Did I read what you wrote? Every word. I read just about every comment on this forum. I made it clear that I respected your very comprehensive theory of the origins of this violence and was very polite. Did you read what I myself wrote? I made it VERY clear that I wasn’t an expert, that I just wanted to join a conversation, throw some ideas out there and see what you thought. But most importantly keep it courteous. Hence terms like “appear” ; open ended comments, not assertions. But you just yell at me like a bully. I don’t claim to know all the moving parts of this crisis, only that it IS a crisis. You took everything I said and threw it in my face as if I had personally affronted you. My mistake for wanting to have a courteous conversation. All I’ve seen on this forum is people who would otherwise in person probably be quite civil, even neighbors or friends, say the most horrible things to each other. I’m not, nor do I want to be in that camp. So I won’t continue with this. Peace. MC.

          • I’m sorry that you feel offended, but I don’t believe I have said anything that a rational person would construe as being “offensive.” Unless of course that person were under the impression that their arguments should be free from rational scrutiny. You can disagree with someone without getting angry. If you think there was anything emotional in my response then I would suggest you are projecting.

          • Michael Caisley

            Bronson, I did not say I was offended. And I don’t believe I should be beyond scrutiny of course. Where did I say that? I said I welcomed, even wanted your input. An olive branch. Did you not read that? Do you not practice what you accuse everyone else of doing? You seem to be putting a lot words in my mouth, Bronson. I was talking about civil discourse.

            Let’s revisit your words:

            “Then say that. DON’T PRETEND…”

            “To talk about these issues in a vacuum is INTELLECTUALLY DISHONEST.”

            “it’s only in your imagination”

            ” I’m talking about evidence…and provided some, WHERE IS YOURS?”

            “The ISLAMOPHOBES ALWAYS try to frame the discussion to be…”

            You CANNOT tell me these condescending clarifications are necessary to state your case. And, I once again reinforce, to help me understand it in light of an idea I brought up politely. Omit them and your message goes unchanged. It’s not ego bruising. It’s about unnecessary language in response to a politely curious point of view. This is an informal conversation not a public debate. I was not offended; now you are the one projecting. I hope you can recognize this. Goodbye. MC

          • Right now you are occupying the lower rungs of the debate pyramid, criticizing the tone of the arguer rather than the substance of the argument. In principle it really shouldn’t matter how I present the argument, you should be able to analyze and address it independent of me. I’m not important, any other suggestion is simply an ad hominem.

            My argument is rather simple and straightforward. You’ve spent a lot of time talking about me but precious little time addressing my *actual* argument.

          • Michael Caisley

            You couldn’t help yourself could you? Well, I’ll humor you this last time because this is important, friend. You know a lot of about geo-politics and its trappings but when getting into ethics you’ve wandered into my domain. So let me explain a couple of things to you:

            This isn’t some Hitch/Al Sharpton debate – that’s entertainment. In real civic discourse, TONE IS EVERYTHING, friend. What you say is NOT as important as how you say it. Did I blow your mind? Why is that you ask? BECAUSE when facts evolve, ideas are combined, or people are persuaded, you don’t have to back pedal while tipping your hand. You’re not left standing with proverbial dick in your hand. And of course you have to clumsily reach into your bag of logical fallacies. Boy do I love these! It’s laudable I suppose, but misguided. Let me explain to you what an ad hominem error is. It’s when you error by attacking someone’s character AS IF IT WERE an entire riposte. AS IF IT WERE a solid argument. My comment was not meant to substitute as a rejoinder to your precious argument you narcissistic blowhard. We never got that far because you would not agree to my terms, even after laying out YOUR oh so important “context”. If you didn’t like my terms, then don’t engage. That simple.

            Let’s look at how our discussion would have gone. And yes it’s a counterfactual but at this point I don’t care. Do you really think I’m going to convince you of anything? Probably not, so then the fireworks start. And that’s why tone matters. otherwise, as I have witnessed with your other discussions, it devolves into childish name calling. Plus you’re just talking AT each other. Did you learn anything from any of those discussions? Of course not. Because you are so sure of yourself that nothing can creep into that self righteous head of yours.

            I’m sure you didn’t appreciate being called a nitwit or an idiot. Right? It’s unnecessary right? Listen to people, otherwise, again, you and the rest are just talking AT each other; noise in a vacuum. I really tried to engage someone in civil discourse and you didn’t disappoint. The experiment failed, as it has on just about every internet forum I’ve participated in (with the exception strangely of a conservative forum.) How sad. Now go away and talk at someone else. This conversation is over. And don’t be a brat and respond. Why do I get the last word you ask? How can that be? Oh no! Because I started this conversation, set the terms, and you broke them. Goodbye.

          • ” Do you really think I’m going to convince you of anything?”

            That actually requires you to present a valid argument related to the subject matter. Then and only then will I change my position on the issue.

            Unlike you (and a majority of the worlds population) I am utterly convinced only by the argument itself, not any arbitrary characteristic of the person presenting the argument (ad hominem). Being dispassionate and unconcerned about petty things like tone or formalities gives you the liberty to focus 100% of your attention on the argument itself. I imagine this is a skill/privilege you will never be able to enjoy because for most humans they find it impossible to divorce their feelings and emotions from political debates. I don’t have that problem. To me it wouldn’t matter if we were best friends or worst enemies, my position would remain the same until a better argument is presented. I’m no more likely to be convinced by kind words than scathing rebuttals. To me it’s all about the argument itself. The person presenting the argument is irrelevant/totally unimportant to me. I don’t care about their tone or their previous affiliations or who is paying them or anything even remotely related to anything besides the argument itself.

            You say “tone is everything” because you come from a different world. A world where an argument is judge based upon some irrelevant characteristic of the one presenting the argument. You are under the mistaken impression that I subscribe to this mentality and that my goal is to “influence” you through such illegitimate tactics. You are sadly mistaken on that point. I treat others exactly in the way that I would like to be treated — as irrelevant. I’d rather people not care who I am or where I’m from or what I think at all, just the argument itself. I’m not important, nor are my feelings and sensibilities, and neither are yours.

            I have no desire to be dishonest and appeal to your emotions in order to convince you of my position. I would rather simply state the facts and let the pieces fall wherever they may. I’m not really concerned with whether or not people *believe* in facts. The great thing about science is that you don’t have to believe in it for it to be true.

          • Michael Caisley

            Great! Good luck.

          • People

            Actually I addressed the geographic determinacy and was being charitable by skipping the number of times you mention GMO. You’re basically a fool, bro, there’s nothing anyone can do to prevent that. Keep on keeping on.

          • You have no argument, I accept your surrender. You can leave now.

          • People

            For the record, you have advanced no counter argument re: the regressive character of Islam. For the last few posts, you’ve been unilaterally declaring your “victory”, childish but we’ll skip that. You don’t seem to understand that the regressive character of Islam is not something to be debated away by you. It predates you and outlasts you; you have no effect on its course. Likewise, it’s also beyond my influence. Which calls into question your extreme focus on the motivations of those who disagree with you. It seems you have a penchant for haranguing other commenters, who rightly point out your arguments are almost entirely based on projection. Indeed, rather than advance an argument, you avoid the topic entirely in favor of such uninformed psycho babble. As with your proclaimed “victory”, your proclaimed “intellectual honesty” just doesn’t exist.
            Prior to your fascination with the character of others, you did make an attempt to forward an argument – largely a mishmash of disjointed Liberal talking points and relativism – but dropped any effort to respond to counter evidence provided. In favor of your preferred hysterics described above. That seems to be where you’re most comfortable. Very child like to insist on a world of your own projection. (I don’t seem to be alone in this observation.) The longer this goes on, the further you retreat. Perhaps that’s victory when you find the world at large doesn’t inhabit that of your imagination.

          • I will simply copy and paste my argument, again.

            “Islam as a whole is no more backwards or regressive than many ideologies produced by the Western world like Fascism and Nazism for example. When you cherry pick evidence to conform to your narrative, you can construct any kind of reality that you wish.”

            But we both know you can’t address it. How can you argue against a fact? I’m not disputing that radical Islam is bad, just no worse than comparable secular ideologies produced by the West.

            The reason you don’t have a counter argument is because you can’t have a counter argument. You’re trying to assert a fact and I’m simply putting it into context. You want to view the fact in a vacuum and I’m providing additional facts which illuminate your fact and put it into perspective.

            Ideologues don’t like additional facts or context or perspective because it threatens the narrative which the are desperately trying to promote. They want everyone else to view their factoids in a vacuum as they do (because if they did that, they would also share your narrow view of the subject), and that is why you get angry at me for putting things into context.

          • Hasan

            Geopolitics and the context that you laid down doesn’t explain why ISIS has institutionalized sexual slavery. It does not explain the jihadist insurgency in Pakistan. It doesn’t explain the entire system of governance in Saudi Arabia.

            1) Why do you bring up the Tamil Tigers into this discussion? They are not radical Islamists. That is/was a local dispute. Radical Islam is not. Furthermore you cannot dismiss all of this as just a political issue since the entire purpose of this exercise in terrorism is to establish a theocracy, a caliphate, which while being a political struggle, is aided by religion. There is no concept in Islam of the separation of church and state. The state itself is responsible for spreading the religion.

            2) Yes, much of that is true.

            3) Your entire thesis about radical Islam being no worse than Nazism or Fascism should be worrying since those ideologies caused a lot of damage. One of them led to a world war.

          • “Geopolitics and the context that you laid down doesn’t explain why ISIS has institutionalized sexual slavery. It does not explain the jihadist insurgency in Pakistan. It doesn’t explain the entire system of governance in Saudi Arabia.”

            Oh yes it does. If Saddam Hussein was in power there would be no “ISIS problem” in the first place. That’s pretty much checkmate. But to go down the list, the war in Pakistan is a direct result of our pointless war in Afghanistan (we are also drone bombing Pakistan as well), which itself was based upon a previous pointless war against a secular socialist regime in that country.

            As for Saudi Arabia, if you don’t think the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s very existence as a state is directly related to US/Western foreign policy then I think you need to crack a history book. Our “great ally” is the greatest exporter of radical Islam in the world.

            1) The Tamil Tigers have committed more suicide bombings than any other group in history, and pioneered using women as suicide bombers. This was in response to the assertion that “why is it that only Muslims strap bombs to their chests.” It is a direct and thorough refutation, so it is quite relevant.

            Furthermore, most of the available evidence indicates that terrorism is mostly about politics, not religion. If they had tanks and jets and missiles they would use those instead, but they don’t. For example, the state terrorism that America and the West commit against the Middle East and around the world isn’t taken into account, because it doesn’t fit the narrative of “terrorism is about religion.” No, it’s about politics. Secular regimes commit terrorist acts all the time.

            3) I agree that secular ideologies have been more destructive than Islam based upon the available evidence, and I’m glad that you share that view.

            This was a direct refutation to the assertion that “Islam is the mother load of bad ideas.” Nope, Nazism is worse, sorry.

          • Hasan

            The fact that ISIS came into power in Iraq and Syria was definitely facilitated by the American invasion of Iraq. The scene you have set explains the contributing factors that allowed ISIS to come into power. It however does not explain the fact that European Muslims have been flocking to join ISIS or that it has institutionalized slavery, is executing homosexuals and committing genocide. Where do you think they get that idea from?

            Let’s take this one idea at a time.

          • Sure it does. Muslims are tired of being bombed and killed by Western countries, what’s so hard to understand about that? Their motivations are political in nature.

            “or that it has institutionalized slavery, is executing homosexuals and committing genocide. ”

            It explains it entirely. Simply put, there wouldn’t be an ISIS problem without US foreign policy and you can’t get around that fact. No “genocide,” no “institutionalized slavery,” no “executing homosexuals” under Saddam’s secular regime.

          • Hasan

            I was born in a Muslim household. I am more frustrated at your inability to link certain theological doctrines to their real world implementations. The fact that ISIS has institutionalized slavery and is executing homosexuals has little to do with US foreign policy. It has everything to do with scripture and how they use it. The fact that ISIS came into power does have something to do with US foreign policy. I am also not sure why you are holding up Saddam Hussain to be the gold standard for secular regimes. Why are you lauding “secular Saddam” when he used chemicals weapons against the Kurds? The situation was rather more complex.

            Simply put there wouldn’t be an ISIS problem if Muslims hadn’t conquered the Middle East. How far back do you want to go in this causal chain? You have identified one part of the puzzle. My contention is that there is another part too. According to a report by pew research centre, the vast majority of Muslims in Muslim majority countires in the Midlle East, North Africa and South Asia want Sharia to be the law of the land. Can we please factor that into this discussion?

          • You being “born Muslim” doesn’t add to your argument in any way, just like me having served in Afghanistan doesn’t add to my foreign policy arguments. The argument stands or falls based upon it’s own merits independent of the one making it.

            I do not have an “inability to link certain theological doctrines to their real world implementations.” I simply contest the hilarious unsupported assertion that billions of people can be categorized into a single belief system called “Islam” and that they share identical or similar views on every subject. That’s about as accurate as saying “secular.”

            Because two people happen to self-identify with the term “Islam” does not allow us to draw any conclusions regarding their other views. That would be like self-identifying as “good.” I think I’m good. I’m sure billions of other people also think they are “good.” Since we have not defined the term “good” we have no way of knowing what else they believe in, other than that they believe that they are good.

            “The fact that ISIS has institutionalized slavery and is executing homosexuals has little to do with US foreign policy.”

            It has everything to do with foreign policy, because you can’t explain to me how ISIS could do that in the absence of US foreign policy. Just explain to me how ISIS would have come to power under Saddam.
            “Why are you lauding “secular Saddam” when he used chemicals weapons against the Kurds?”

            Stating a fact is not “lauding.” It’s a fact that he had a secular regime, I said nothing more and nothing less.

            ” The situation was rather more complex.””

            Yes the situation was complex, kinda like that pipeline running through Syria or the petrodollars in Libya and Iraq, that one country that we just HAVE TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT because reasons. It’s complex alright, it’s complex in that some people want some shit that belongs to other people and they are willing to kill in order to get it.

            “Simply put there wouldn’t be an ISIS problem if Muslims hadn’t conquered the Middle East. How far back do you want to go in this causal chain? ”

            As far back as is relevant to the discussion. If everyone converted to their form of radical Islam it wouldn’t be a problem either, what’s your point?

            “According to a report by pew research centre, the vast majority of Muslims in Muslim majority countires in the Midlle East, North Africa and South Asia want Sharia to be the law of the land. Can we please factor that into this discussion?”

            Which version of Shariah?

          • Hasan

            My being born Muslim was a reply to your idea that “Muslims are tired of being bombed and killed by Western countries, what’s so hard to understand about that?” It was also meant to lead to the point of theological doctrines that you so casually dismiss.

            “I simply contest the hilarious unsupported assertion that billions of people can be categorized into a single belief system called “Islam” and that they share identical or similar views on every subject. That’s about as accurate as saying “secular.” ‘

            Which I have not asserted. Why are you bringing that up? By the way, what do you think Islam is? I am curious. Is it the expression of faith, independent of the scriptures, in God? Is Islam just what Muslims believe? What is any religion for that matter? I contest the hilarious assertion that ISIS is committing genocide because it is angry at the US. I contest the hilarious assertion the Pakistani Taliban want to impose Sharia in Pakistan because they hate US foreign policy. I contest the hilarious assertion that Boko Haram is so angry at US foreign policy that it is murdering people in Africa.

            “As far back as is relevant to the discussion.”

            How far back is relevant to the discussion? Can these people only react to US foreign policy or must they bear some personal responsibility for the acts that they commit?

            “Which version of Shariah?”

            Give me two radically different versions of Sharia that you know about. Please make it so that it so one of the versions is in alignment with ideals of freedom and liberty.

          • “I contest the hilarious assertion that ISIS is committing genocide because it is angry at the US. I contest the hilarious assertion the Pakistani Taliban want to impose Sharia in Pakistan because they hate US foreign policy. I contest the hilarious assertion that Boko Haram is so angry at US foreign policy that it is murdering people in Africa.”

            I wonder who asserted that? My argument is much simpler. US foreign policy promotes radical Islam in a variety of ways:

            1) Gives them credibility. The narrative is promoted as a crusade against Islam, and the United States helps to promote this narrative with its foreign policy. Radical Islamists enjoy much more support than they otherwise would without an imperialist US foreign policy.

            2) Destruction of secular regimes, organizations, and institutions. Saddam Hussein, Gadaffi, socialist government in Afghanistan and Iran, when it comes to killing secular/moderate leaders America has a special talent. Just name places where America has been and look at the outcome. Iraq — ISIS. Syria — ISIS. Iran — Ayatollah. Afghanistan — Taliban. Libya — Various Islamist groups.

            3) Support for radical regimes, groups, and *actual* terrorist organizations, both directly and indirectly. The most obvious example is of courser Saudi Arabia which may have been complicit in 9/11. But even if they weren’t, they are by far the worlds premiere promoter both financially and ideologically of radical Islam. Our “great ally” is among other radical Islamic “allies” like the Mujahideen, radical groups in Syria, Shiite militias in Iraq, the radical groups we armed in Libya, etc. etc. etc.

            So while authoritarian progressives tend to portray it as an either/or thing (either it’s the US government or radical Islam), it’s actually a symbiotic relationship. They both help each other to grow in a negative feedback loop. More radical Islam means we need to spend more money “fighting it.” More “fighting it” leads to more radical Islam.

          • _Give me two radically different versions of Sharia that you know about. Please make it so that it so one of the versions is in alignment with ideals of freedom and liberty._

            The voluntary one that both sides agree to in a civil dispute (usually divorce). US law also allows Jews to utilize a similar system. Works more like arbitration.

          • Freeman Ath Eist

            Islam is most definitely more backwards than any current system.

            Classic whataboutery, “oh the crusades” seriously like how long ago?

            Oh Naziism, the Westerners faught against that, you left that bit out, like all the west were in on that, Naziism no longer exists, died 80 years ago.

            It also had equality laws, hunting laws, socialist systems, advanced education systems and to some level secularism.

            Islam which by the way, Kills Jews becuase they are Jews, just like the Nazis has no equality, kills indiscrimately anyone who it deems as anything else, even other muslims.

            Islam is also current, Islam has 1.6 billion followers, and an arguable percentage of them can easily be swayed to commit attrocities with their devine license.

            I dont recall Nazi beheadings of rape victims or stoning women to death.

            Aks yourself this, why is it, if Islam is peaceful and innocent, if there is no issues with Islam or the religion, why is every nation that isnt majority Muslim having severe issues with Islam?

            Why just Islam?

            Why in the Uk where we have so many different religous groups is only one particular group raising so many concerns?

            Surely its becuase they keep doing things that are deemed as bad for all the other people who are not Muslim??

      • Quite comparable to Greek and Roman slavery, or slavery in general, which isn’t unique to any religion.

        • Kjetil Hauge

          Yes. But you know as well as I do that whenever we talk about slavery in our world, it’s always “the white man enslaving the coloured man”.

          • I’m not too concerned with popular imagination, just intellectual honesty.

            Islam as an ideology doesn’t seem to be any worse than many secular ideologies that I can name off the top of my head. To me it is immaterial what ISIS believes, only their actions. When they kill innocent civilians, they are wrong. Just like when the US and French governments bomb innocent civilians, they are also wrong. I don’t make special excuses for one or the other, I consider myself to be a neutral observer rather than the emotionally invested nationalists/religious fanatics who feel compelled to weigh in.

          • Kjetil Hauge

            Come on now. How can you possibly claim that Islam as an ideology isn’t any worse than any secular ideologies? ISIS has 100% coverage for what they do in the islamic texts. The Hadiths and the Quran supports a lot of what they do, they haven’t plucked their ideology out of thin air. So please, do refer to some of that intellectual honesty you talked about.
            You can’t possibly compare the ideology of Islam with secular ideologies presented by Socrates, Spinoza, Thomas Jefferson, Nietze, Karl Marx, Voltaire and many many more. That’s just absurd.

          • “Come on now. How can you possibly claim that Islam as an ideology isn’t any worse than any secular ideologies?”

            Which secular ideologies, the ones that I can name specifically off the top of my head?

            Ok, Nazism. Stalinism. Maoism. Juche. Pol Pot’s ideology whatever the hell that was supposed to be (agrarian socialism I guess).

          • Kjetil Hauge

            Ohh Jesus, why didn’t I see this lame argument coming again? I thought we were going to have an intellectual honest debate here.

            All those ideologies you mentioned are fascist ideas. If you’re going to bring in nazism, Hitler was a Catholic, read Mein Kampf if you don’t believe me. On every belt buckle on soldiers it said “Gott mitt uns” (God with us). Doesn’t sound very secular to me.

            Juche is practiced in Northern Korea, one of the most religious states in the world. They have to worship a supreme leader day and night. They have to fear him and love him at the same time. Sounds much like the monothestic gods if you ask me. Now that Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il are dead, they’re finally a trinity too. Nice try tho.

            Now, on to the secular IDEAS. The ideas that was born during the renaissance and the age of enlightenment. The idea of equality and liberty for all. Aren’t those secular ideas? ISIS is closer to nazism as they’re both fascist ideologies void of free thought.

          • Your Intellectual Honesty = Zero

            You are grasping at straws. It is widely recognized within the academic community that Hitler probably did not believe in God (and it was utterly incompatible with Nazi ideology to boot). But as someone very skilled in political persuasion, of course used religion to his advantage when necessary (Saddam did the same, though he is also widely recognized as a secular leader promoting Baathism).

            The problem is that you’re trying to protect your belief rather than be honest with yourself and admit the truth: that the evidence clearly demonstrates that religious ideologies are no more destructive than secular ideologies. The evidence is quite clear on this issue (Pol Pot completely eliminated religion in Cambodia).

            “Hitler’s public relationship to religion has been characterized as one of opportunistic pragmatism.[10] His regime did not publicly advocate for state atheism, but it did seek to reduce the influence of Christianity on society. Hitler himself was reluctant to make public attacks on the Church for political reasons, despite the urgings of Nazis like Bormann. Although he was skeptical of religion,[11][12] he did not present himself to the public as an atheist, and spoke of belief in an “almighty creator”.[13][14] In private, he could be ambiguous.[15][16] Evans wrote that Hitler repeatedly stated that Nazism was a secular ideology founded on science, which in the long run could not “co-exist with religion”.[17] In his semi-autobiographical Mein Kampf (1925/6) Hitler declared himself neutral in sectarian matters and supportive of separation between church and state, and he criticized political Catholicism.[18] “

          • HoolyHoopStuff

            You seem to want to argue and fiercely defend your view rather than engage in meaningful debate.

            You have your agenda and your fixed upon it. Almost as though you’ve been indoctrinated.

            Reality is exceptionally complex with so many interdependent variables. Reality is in the grey area, things are not black and white, they are not dichotomous. To simplify reality is to ignore complex truths.

            You blame the West fully, and it’s not ALL the West’s fault. Responsibility is shared and if you are dogmatically going to reject that, you aren’t willing to question your own beliefs.

            I flip flop regularly in my take on world events and history – because I know enough to realise I may not be 100% correct all the time. I question myself a great deal and I’m constantly adapting my opinions.

            Try to play devil’s advocate sometimes – it’s a useful exercise.

            All the best.

          • I’m more concerned with the truth and putting everything into context and perspective rather than trying to appear neutral. Sometimes the truth lies in the middle , sometimes it doesn’t (like with vaccines, which are safe). It’s less important to me how people view the truth than the fact that I just state it and let the pieces fall where they may. I prefer the Glenn Greenwald approach to journalism rather than the court stenographer CNN approach which simply repeats what “anonymous officials” say without bothering to fact check or weight the evidence.

            I’ve put a substantial amount of thought into this issue. I used to be Islamophobic in high school and when I was in the military, so actually I have seen this particular issue from both sides. Weighing all of the evidence in totality, it is safe to say that foreign policy is *primarily* responsible for most of these problems. I can easily imagine a largely secular Middle East similar to Indonesia (the largest Muslim country on Earth) since that was the trend prior to Prime Minister Mossadegh being overthrown in Iran, the secular Baathist regimes being undermined and limited from expansion, and other secular pan-Arabist ideologies. The US support of Saudi Arabia is by far the greatest contributor to radical Islam in the world. Without this there likely wouldn’t be such a thing as “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” it would have been destroyed/annexed long ago by some other regime based upon secular governments which tend to be more efficient economically and militarily.

            Political Islam today is mostly a new movement that began as a response to, you guessed it, foreign policy. The perceived failures of Western ideas like secularism and democracy lead people to search for answers elsewhere, and of course The Koran and “true Islam” was offered as the solution. Foreign policy is a very, very big reason why those Western introductions like secularism and democracy failed in many Middle Eastern countries. The demands of “stability” and “national interests” outweighed our ostensible support for secularism and democracy and that was reflected in Middle East policy. We couldn’t have all these secular governments nationalizing their oil industries, or having governments change policies based upon the whims of the voters of the Middle East. We can’t afford to have anyone get too strong that isn’t “our guy” like Saudi Arabia. We need stability, we have our national interests, and ultimately these things take precedence over Western “values.”

            Just look at Iran when the CIA overthrew Mossadegh vs Iran now. Look at how much influence radical Islam had in Iran back then versus secularism. The story of Iran tells the story of the Middle East. Radical Islam was on it’s way out the door just like it happened with Christianity in the West. The tide was turning towards secularism and away from religion, but we completely turned that tide because it was in our perceived national interest to do so. This is called “blowback.”

            It’s the same reason why the greatest exporter of radical Islam (Wahhabism) is our “great ally” in the Middle East. National interests take precedence over alleged cultural values of “The West.”

          • “Now, on to the secular IDEAS.”

            LOL! I love it when ideologues try to cherry pick the good and pretend like the bad doesn’t exist You’re sounding more and more like a religious apologist with every post.

            Yes, let’s move on to Pol Pot’s secular ideology of agrarian socialism. We’ll compare the 2 million people that he killed to…what? Who? Islam? He killed more people in 4 years than Islam has killed this century. Don’t even get me started on Mao.

            But we both know how you’re gonna respond (cognitive dissonance). Rather than accepting the evidence and changing your view accordingly, you will simply declare communism to be a religion, and Pol Pots secular ideology to also be a religion.

            In that case, what exactly is a religion, and how do we separate it from political ideologies?

          • “All those ideologies you mentioned are fascist ideas.”

            Yep, that’s the point. If the position is that “religion is worse than secular ideologies, and Islam is the motherload of bad ideas, I don’t believe that position is supported by the evidence.

            There is no reason to suggest that Islam is worse than fascism. None at all. Why is it so hard for you to admit that the world is composed of good and bad people who do good and bad things for a variety of reasons, and that the entirety of political reality cannot be boiled down to “secular” and “religions?”

          • Kjetil Hauge

            I have never claimed there aren’t good and bad people in the world, but as a man once said; to make good people do bad things you’ll need religion.
            Mao and Pol Pot were horrible people yes, that’s not exactly a secret. But they were totalitarian and demanded to almost be worshiped by the people. I’ll grant you they were both non-religious, but that’s not an argument for non-religious people being prone to become totalitarian dictators or evil people. Hitler was also a vegetarian, it would be equally absurd to use that as an argument for his evil doings. The secular ideas (that came out of Europe at least) promoted justice, equality and liberty for all and it was one of the slogans coming out of the French revolution. If you call Pol Pot’s ideas secular, then that’s ideas I as a secular person would reject as would most other people in today’s modern society.

          • The specific fallacy that you are committing is called “special pleading.” Because I have provided direct, contradictory evidence to your assertion that “it takes religion to make good people to do bad things,” you attempted to deflect by claiming that secular ideologies are also “religions.”

            No, Pol Pot was not “religious.” His ideology was not a “religion.” He was not “worshiped by the people.” Many didn’t even know of his existence. He systematically eliminated religion from society, and guess what? Evil still existed of course. People were bashing children’s heads against trees for non-religious reasons. People were torturing people for non-religious reasons. People were still doing evil things for non-religious reasons. You can’t get around these facts by declaring “good things secular, bad things religion.” It doesn’t work that way. You can’t retroactively apply the term “religious” to secular acts which you deem to be evil. That’s incredibly intellectually dishonest.

            This kind of black and white thinking reflects a profound commitment to an anti-religious bias which compels you to ignore contradictory evidence. Instead, you have decided that only the secular ideas which you happen to agree with count in your equation of “secular good, religion bad.” You simply ignore the bad of secular ideologies and ignore the good of religions (example: it can make people who otherwise wouldn’t care at all, to suddenly have compassion, you can’t just ignore the good and point out the bad), and cherry-pick the information which conforms to your ideology and biases. This is known as “confirmation bias.”

            The truth is that Islam is NOT the “motherload of bad ideas.” I have conclusively demonstrated that there are, in fact, worse ideas out there, and many of them are completely secular. Thus, my position is based upon the EVIDENCE. What is your position based upon, ideology? Now who is being religious?

          • Kjetil Hauge

            Right. Is the pot calling the kettle black? Special pleading? That’s practically your entire mantra throughout this discussion and as far as your “evidence” goes you’ve provided nothing than your own subjective bias and assumptions.

            Show me one civilization, one society that threw of theocracy and adopted the teachings of Socrates, Spinoza, Paine, Lucretius, Descartes etc. and decided that’s what we should teach our children and then fell into tyranny and chaos. Show me that society and we’ll be on an equal playing field. As it is all you’ve shown that the idea of a supreme leader and an all powerful entity at the top is a horrible idea to begin with.

          • LOL here you go again, “bad things rubber, good things glue.” “Secular” does not consist of “just things I agree with.” That’s not how it works, sorry. I’ve given you plenty of examples of brutal secular regimes in history, plenty. You simply ignore the evidence because it doesn’t conform to your belief system. Instead, you declare that “secular” only consists of the things that you like.

          • Arun

            If it is immaterial what ISIS believes, then you cannot possibly figure out how to stem the constant trickle of recruits it makes all over the Western world.

            It is immaterial what any law-abiding person believes in, none of our business — that I agree with. When they do things like ISIS does, whatever it takes to detect them, deter them, stop them is useful. If promising to bury dead jihadis wrapped in pigskins will deter them, that is a legitimate thing to do — but you can’t figure that out their beliefs are immaterial.

          • “When they do things like ISIS does, whatever it takes to detect them, deter them, stop them is useful. If promising to bury dead jihadis wrapped in pigskins will deter them, that is a legitimate thing to do — but you can’t figure that out their beliefs are immaterial.”

            None of that will work of course. What probably would work is if we stop bombing Muslim countries, overthrowing secular regimes, and supporting the spread of radical Islam through “great allies” like Saudi Arabia.

          • Arun

            If ISIS’ beliefs are not material then why is “supporting the spread of radical Islam” relevant? All Saudi Arabia is doing is spreading a belief that is relevant to nothing, as per you.

          • Conceded, it is important to the extent that it affects actions and consequences. I’m pretty sure I said that already, but I’ll just go ahead and repeat it again in case there is any confusion.

            See how easy that was? It’s called intellectual honesty. For me the truth is more important than protecting beliefs. I have no problem whatsoever changing my position based upon the evidence (unlike you). My overall argument remains the same and is not substantially affected by a change in words. US foreign policy is the main driver towards the spread of radical Islam, agree or disagree?

          • Arun

            If you don’t mind, what have you presented that should cause me to change my mind?

            Radical Islam was spreading in India’s neighbor, Pakistan, back in the early 1950s itself; similarly, Pakistan’s Z.A. Bhutto had started building up Afghan mujahideen from 1974 itself, long before the Soviet invasion, and US support of jihadis to hit the USSR. So while US foreign policy definitely is a contributory cause to radical Islam, I wouldn’t call it the main driver.

            Here’s a short clip of a Javed Ahmed Ghamidi video. (You can look up Ghamidi on Wikipedia, though it doesn’t mention that he has been forced into exile from Pakistan.)

            http://pakteahouse.net/2015/11/21/javed-ahmed-ghamdis-views-about-source-of-terrorism/

            He has a lot of things to say in 5 minutes, but I’ll just mention a little. His answer as to why the Muslim world suffers from terrorism is that Muslims are taught 4 things in their madrassas and as civics. They are that

            1. Ghamidi says Muslims are taught they have the right to kill apostates, idolators, hypocrites anywhere in the world.

            2. Ghamidi says Muslims are taught that the only legitimate authority is Islamic; non-Islamic rule is illegitimate. Whenever Muslims have the strength, they must overthrow non-Muslim authority.

            3. Ghamidi says that Muslims are taught that there must be one world Muslim government – the Caliphate. Anything else is wrong.

            4. Ghamidi says Muslims are taught that the nation-state is kufr, and is not admissible in Islam.

            Ghamidi says – this is the root cause of terrorism in the Muslim world.

            Now, this is one man only, who knows his native Pakistan well, perhaps the subcontinent, but perhaps not so well the larger Islamic world (though Bangladesh, India, Pakistan account for about 500 million of the world’s Muslims). Who knows if his diagnosis is correct? or if correct, applicable outside Pakistan? (It largely isn’t true in India, except in pockets. I don’t know enough about Bangladesh to comment – except that there is a huge ongoing struggle there between Islamism and the tattered tags of secularism.)

            The point is that he has made this argument. He has not invoked US foreign policy. He has linked terrorism to what young Muslims are taught in their formative years. US foreign policy has nothing to do with what is taught in Pakistani schools. Us foreign policy does have to do with the constant appeasement of the Pakistani state, which helps sustain the otherwise economically unsustainable radicalism. (e.g., on appeasement, see Michael Kugelman, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/michael-kugelman/pakistans-raheel-sharif-g_b_8583900.html )

          • How do you explain the Islamic Republic of Iran then? How do you explain ISIS in Iraq and Syria? How do you explain the primary exporters of radical Islam (Saudi Arabia) as the “great ally” of the United States?

            Please tell me, in your imagination, how you believe ISIS would have overthrown Saddam Hussein or perhaps Uday or Qusay. How would that have gone down in your imagination? “Saddam would not have brutally suppressed this threat to his rule because….?” Or perhaps Saddam just would have let them carve out their own Islamic state within his territory, that totally sounds like something Saddam Hussein would allow to happen.

            Tell me how ISIS gets started in Syria without US interventionism. I want to know. Let’s assume they get their ass kicked in Iraq by Saddam, so they move somewhere in Syria, then what? Remember, no Ambassador Stevens to run them guns and weapons from Benghazi, they just have to somehow overthrow Syria’s secular Baathist dictator by themselves, without US intervention. How does that play out?

            How would the terrorist regime in Libya have come to power under Gaddafi? That was another secular ruler overthrown by the US government, for what purpose? What exactly was accomplished by this?

            I could go on and on. I’m sure you are familiar with the secular, socialist Prime Minister Mossadegh of Iran who was overthrown in a CIA coup, which eventually lead to the creation of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

            Pan-Arabism seems to have been a larger force than radical Islam, but the US government actively promoted radical Islam as a counterbalancing force against pan-Arabist ideologies promoted in Egypt and by the Baathists and Gaddafi. Pan-Arabism is largely secular. We’ve built up our “great ally” Saudi Arabia with tanks, jets, and kinds of arms, but what would be the problem if Saddam invaded and installed a secular regime? I don’t see the problem there.

            Any single piece of evidence by itself would not be enough to demonstrate the US role in the affairs of the Middle East, but when taken in totality, the weight of evidence is clearly stacked against US interventionism.

          • Arun

            How do you explain Boko Haram?

          • US foreign policy of course. It’s the best explanation for why radical Islam is so popular in the Middle East right now. Rather than the minority fringe view that it was becoming, the tide was turned with the rise of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Saudi Kingdom, both products of US foreign policy.

          • Arun

            Simplistic, but not likely true. Far more likely, ever since the success of OPEC, Middle Eastern countries have been awash in cash – and guest workers from Asia and Africa. Some of these workers are indoctrinated and carry ideology back to their home countries. Nothing to do with US foreign policy.

          • None of your assertions are supported by the evidence regarding Boko Haram. What we do know is that, like ISIS, they subscribe to Wahhabism, which is the state religion of Saudi Arabia and their main export besides oil. Saudi Arabia is our “great ally.”

          • Arun

            Saudi Arabia ought not be our ally, but regardless of the US foreign relations with Saudi Arabia, they have a lot of oil, hence a lot of money, and they have the drive to spread their religious ideology; which, under the cover of the First Amendment, is largely allowed even internally within the US. US hostility to Saudi Arabia would not change any of these facts. It is through this propagation of Wahhabism that Nigerians got infected.

          • How can you say that US foreign policy has nothing to do with this? If Saddam invaded Saudi Arabia and the secular Baathists (combined with the secular regime of Iran) were able to create a pan-Arab union based upon secular principles Wahhabism wouldn’t be the problem that it is today.

          • Arun

            BTW, Boko Haram has killed more people than ISIS.

          • And Pol Pot (atheist) killed more people than Boko Haram. What’s your point?

    • TexasJester

      We could do it in a week without nukes, if the politicians would just let the military do their job..

      • Robyn Ryan

        No. I’m a retired military officer. It is impossible. Not only logistically, but culturally. Ask the Russians, the Brits, and Genghis Khan. They will not be subjugated. Especially not by Christians.

        • TexasJester

          Simple: MASSIVE carpet bombing campaign. Blow up anything and everything – then send in the foot soldiers to shoot anything left living.

          Kill them all, and let God sort them out…

  • brilliant.

  • Leo Islamicus

    Only dimwits with agendas like Faisal and Sam Harris can high five each other for this triviality. Actual research by academics definitively demonstrates that the stated motives of terrorists are political (see Pape and Feldman). Also, please Google bin Laden’s rationale for 9/11. Islam has been around for 1400 years. Its canonical texts are unchanged. Muslims have acted upon and built civilizations around a tolerant interpretation of their canonical texts. ISIS is a 10-year old Frankenstein that is a direct result of the amoral political decisions made by Western nation states.

    • Dylan Stewart

      There are plenty of secularists and people inspired by art, science and mathematics living in the Middle East who have suffered as a result of the political decisions made by Western nation states. Why are they not massacring people shouting “Science is great” and releasing statements that explicitly state that their inspiration was drawn from “On The Origins of Species”? Where are they?

    • Ely Obo

      It doesn’t have to be only religious or only political; it can be (and is) both. There are social and political aspects and there are religious ones *as well*. You don’t have to deny the religious aspects in order to recognise the non-religious aspects.

      There is a spectrum of beliefs and interpretations in Islam (as in other religions) and ISIS *is* an Islamic organisation even though their interpretation is very niche. Denying that this is the case just makes it harder to find a workable solution.

    • tinkapuss

      “Dimwits”?

    • Kjetil Hauge

      Yes. It was so tolerant that they invaded south Europe and enslaved over 1 million Europeans to camps in northern Africa.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barbary_slave_trade

    • nursemedic

      Thank you for my first BIG guffaw of the day! Citing Ilan Pape is the academic equivalent of citing Mickey Mouse; only less credible.

    • Lewis ‘Pony’ Moore

      ISIS was very likely FACILITATED by the political actions of the West (power vacuum in Syria/Iraq) but it is unfair to say it was a result of it. That sounds far too close to blame.
      ISIS is doing what the vast majority of their followers believe (literally) to be their part in the ‘End of Days’.
      i.e. ISIS was inevitable. It was simply a case of when and where.

      • People

        ISIS is just doing an historical reenactment of how Islam spread. Beside the fact that the Byzantines and Persians exhausted themselves fighting, it was kind of mystery as to how desert Arabs extended such a large empire so quickly. But if you pay attention you might now learn!

        • Not substantially different from the spread of other religions.

          • People

            That’s a pretty lazy arm chair assertion. Crack a book on it. Islam’s path most resembles that of Genghis Khan, who was nonreligious.

          • The spread of Christianity was plagued with violence as well, as were all religions.

      • Explain to me how you would have heard of ISIS if Saddam (or Uday, or Qusay) were still the dictator of Iraq. I’ll wait right here.

        Come up with some scenario in your imagination where ISIS somehow magically overthrows the Baathist regime in Iraq without western intervention. I’ll get my popcorn.

        • Lewis ‘Pony’ Moore

          You got your popcorn? 😉
          Cool.
          In all seriousness though, where to start…? Coming up with an imaginary scenario seems a bit pointless as there are no limitations.
          The idea of a caliphate forming and having a massive holy war is a core tenant in Islam, the key to this is ‘gaining authority over territory’.
          The ways and means this could have happened seem infinite to me, as I said before – simply a case of when and where. (not small scale, might have taken another 80 years and happened in Africa)
          So do you really need an imaginary story to properly contemplate that there are large percentages of the Islamic people that want to bring about Sharia Law in it’s truest form? There are small percentages that want to bring about the ‘end of days’. At some point, someone, somewhere was going to destabilise a region and hey presto, the extremists move in.
          In this instance it was Bush & Blair etc and it was very very wrong, but should we be focusing on the nimwit that opened Pandora’s box, the reason it existed in the first place, or the shit that is currently flying out of it?

          • Definitely the idiots who opened the box. Since Islam is not substantially different than secular ideologies which advocate the killing and murder of dissidents, there is no reason to put Islam into some special category. This is especially true if we describe Islam as a whole rather than the very specific notion of Islam that you are referring to practiced in certain regions of the world. You refer to this as “true Islam” as does ISIS, but the problem is that most Muslims, apparently, do not self-identify with “true Islam” according to your definition (the one that ISIS also supports).

            Within 80 years Muslim society could transform as quickly as western society has (Jim Crow, Universal Suffrage, Colonialism, etc.). Globalization seems to be a larger cultural force than radical Islam is (look at Indonesia).

            I’m sorry but “Islam” is not this single unified force that you imagine it to be. Like any word that happens to describe over a billion people, it actually describes people with a wide range of political views (much like “Christians”).

          • William_Brown

            And yet ‘the west’ is a single, unified force?

          • Absolutely not, Nazism, Nationalism, and Communism are also secular ideologies produced by The West, which are OBJECTIVELY worse than Islam by every measurable standard (lives lost? liberty lost? destruction of property?).

          • George

            The West got rid of those ideologies, bred from its immaturity, at huge cost in lives and property, though war and economic warfare.
            The West is glad to be rid of them. Western leaders and people fought against them openly and by name, and planned their defeat and extinction in concert.
            Would that the Islamic world could destroy its own miscreations in like manner..

          • Yep, would that Western nations stopped bombing Muslim countries, propping up brutal dictators, overthrowing secular and democratically elected governments, and spreading radical Islam through “great allies” such as Saudi Arabia, perhaps Islam would have a chance to reform.

          • Lewis ‘Pony’ Moore

            I fully agree that a wide range of people with a wide range of beliefs identify themselves as Muslim and Christian etc etc and I truly hope that if foreign policy is corrected that Islam DOES evolve in the way that Judaism and Christianity have into a more tolerant and secular society.
            (Which incidentally is the only alternative society to a completely segregated one in which each group stays in their own corner) However… I am more inclined to believe that the people that take a religious text at it’s literal meaning are closer to the ‘true followers’ of that religion than those that cherry pick the bits that they like to suit them.
            I’ll explain my reasoning behind this:
            Approx 75% of America identify themselves as Christian and yet a scary percentage of them never actually bother to read the bible. They interpret God in the way that feels right to them. There’s a lot of people out there that call themselves Agnostic without actually understanding the correct definition.
            I watched a fascinating debate show today that summed it up rather well, they had a room full of people of all different religions and beliefs and they were discussing their view on what God is. There were people there that identified as Christian and yet didn’t believe that the resurrection was a literal thing! The best one was the people that called themselves Christians and Muslims but didn’t see God as an entity but rather “the energy and spirit that is in all life”. The guy with the turban speaks up: “That’s Sikhism”.
            I think that the world is a lot better off when people view God ‘as love’ than when they interpret the religious texts literally, but I struggle to class those literal-reading people as anything but devout. The ‘wishy-washy liberal types’ (not my terminology) are better people, but a lot of them are closer to ‘Spiritual’ than they are to Islam or Christianity.
            I could be wrong but it certainly LOOKS to me like ‘true’ Christianity is more like the Amish and ‘true’ Islam is more like ISIS.

          • The problem is that both you and ISIS believe that there is such a thing as the “One True Islam” or Christianity or whatever. When has that ever been the case? How could there be Sunni’s and Shiites if that were the case? How could there be different schools of thought if there is such a thing as the One True Correct version? How can there be Catholics and Protestants? Are Mormons TRUE

          • Lewis ‘Pony’ Moore

            How can there be Catholics and Protestants? That’s mainly political; the Protestant reformation and rejection of Catholic tradition as binding authority, rejection of the Pope as infallible.. protestants were basically returning to the scriptures as the ‘truth’ rather than being told only this organisation is allowed to interpret.
            Shiites are a bit like Catholics and Sunnis are more like the hard line protestants that reject half-way men between the people and God. Shiites opted for bloodlines, Sunnis went for strict faith-based adherance.
            Plus it comes down to semantics over how many true caliphates there have been.
            None of this contradicts what I said as Sunnis and Protestants are closer to the literal readings.

            I agree with a great deal of what you wrote about the political development, it’s fact.
            What I’m saying is that this was not a reform of Islam but a secularising move AWAY from pure Islam just like Christians in America are horrified by Christianity in some of it’s purer forms in Africa.
            Now, just like you say if anyone denies the involvement of the west, then they are being intellectually dishonest, so too are you my friend when you say that Islam is capable of reform.
            In actual fact, the very nature of Islam is that to issue a Fatwa, that contradicts, reforms, denies or undermines anything that is written is to be considered Apostasy and therefore no longer Muslim. They will NEVER change their views and never consider anything written to be ‘metaphorical’ or ‘guidelines’.

            I’ve got no problem with 90% of Muslims because I don’t see them as blindly following their true religion, they GENUINELY see it as a religion of peace but they are cherry picking the early bits.
            http://counterjihadreport.com/

          • I don’t see what gives you or ISIS the authority to tell Muslims (or anyone for that matter) what the ONE TRUE CORRECT version of Islam is. You don’t get to decide that, it doesn’t work that way. There isn’t a ONE TRUE CORRECT version. Like any religion, it’s open to interpretation.

            You can keep repeating yourself and saying that you know the ONE TRUE CORRECT version, but it doesn’t make it right. Secular Islam is practiced today, you saying that it’s not “TRUE” Islam is just an assertion.

          • Lewis ‘Pony’ Moore

            because it’s written down in a bloody book.
            If I started changing the story of Harry Potter there would be a ‘true’ original version and an abridged version. It’s that simple.

          • Nice try, but we’re not talking about the Koran. The Koran is not Islam. Islam is much more than that. It’s a term that describes over a billion people.

            A more accurate analogy would be you claiming to know which Harry Potter fan club was the “true” and “correct” one. Or which review was the “correct” interpretation of the works.

          • Lewis ‘Pony’ Moore

            Ok, this is my final comment on the matter.
            What you are talking about is coming from a position of ignorance on the matter. If you can go away and read and study and then still claim what you just said, you will be able to bring about world peace. Congrats.
            Please please please, start with this site:
            http://www.quran-islam.org/home_%28P1%29.html
            I did not create this site, I do not even agree with the ideologies this site talks about but the front page makes it REALLY obvious that you are deluding yourself.
            “True Islam is derived from the Quran and not from the traditions or cultures of Muslim people”

            *Mic drop*

          • I accept your surrender and agree that you aren’t able to form a valid, logically consistent argument for your defense of US foreign policy or criticisms of Islam. I know you want to make excuses for that and blame me, but the evidence speaks for itself.

            For example your latest argument is that “TRUE ISLAM” (TM) is whatever this website says it is. Bizarrely, you think this was some kind of profound intellectual insight, enough to prompt a “mic drop.”

            Seriously, that’s what you did. You found a website with the words “True Islam” after a quick Google Search, and believe that you’ve somehow come up with an unassailable argument. The fact that you actually believe in yourself is just hilarious to me.

      • André Philipps

        The core group of ISIS and source of much of their ability to function were former military and government members of Saddam Husseins Baath Party that post-Iraqi Freedom were thrown out into the streets, barred from government employment and left out to dry with no way to market their learned skills. They promptly buddied up with the only group offering them some kind of employment – islamist insurgents.

        And then of course Maliki decided to coup-proof the newly-built iraqi army by kicking out shiite and kurdish personnel and replacing them with sycophants, making it pretty easy for a professionally-organised group like ISIS to kick their asses and take over half the country.

        The question for ISIS was never jsut when and where. It was also “how strong” and their rather high strenght is a diret consequence of the mishandling of the Iraq War and occupation by the US-led coalition.

    • jottritter

      You seem to be conveniently forgetting that, in Islam, there is no real separation of “church” and “state”; one of the main motivations behind BOTH WTC attacks was outrage that, “Crusader” troops were still being allowed to be stationed near the, “Holy Cities”- if that’s not a, “religious” motivation, I don’t what is…..

    • bootsyjam

      If you knew about Islam you would know that it’s always political as it explicitly states how a State should be run using Islamic law. The belief that this is the right way comes from the religion.

  • pissmonger
  • Carl Sagan

    Harris: I just want to point out that this effort to get at root causes only ever runs in one direction. No one doubts the political and economic justifications that people give for their behavior. When someone says, “Listen, I murdered my rich neighbor because I knew he kept a pile of money in a safe. I wanted that money, and I didn’t want to leave a witness,” nobody looks for an ulterior explanation for that behavior. But when someone says, “I think infidels and apostates deserve to burn in hell, and I know for a fact that I’ll go to paradise if I die while waging jihad against them,” many academics refuse to accept this rationale at face value and begin looking for the political or economic reasons that they imagine lie beneath it. So the game is rigged

    Wood: Yes. However, the countervailing current in social science is the tradition in ethnography and anthropology of taking seriously what people say. And this can lead to the exact opposite of the materialist, “root causes” approach. When Evans-Pritchard, for example, talks about witchcraft among the Azande, he’s describing exactly what they say and showing that it’s an internally consistent view of the world. This is something that anthropology has done quite well in the past, and it gives us a model for how we can listen to jihadis and understand them without immediately assuming that they are incapable of self-knowledge.

    What I’m arguing for in the piece is not to discard either type of
    explanation but to remember the latter one and take the words of these ISIS people seriously. Even though at various points in the past we’ve ignored political or material causes, this doesn’t mean that ideology plays no role, or that we should ignore the plain meaning of words.

    Of course, we don’t know what people actually think. Maybe they’re
    self-deluded; maybe they don’t really believe in the literal rewards of martyrdom. We can’t know; we’re not in their heads. But this lack of knowledge cuts both ways. Why do so many people instantly resort, with great confidence, to a material explanation—even or especially when the person himself rejects it? It’s a very peculiar impulse to have, and I consider it a matter of dogma for many people who study jihadists.

    Harris: Yes, especially in cases where a person meets none of the material conditions that are alleged to be the root causes of his behavior. We see jihadis coming from free societies all over the
    world. There are many examples of educated, affluent young men joining organizations like al-Qaeda and the Islamic State who lack any discernible material or political grievances. They simply feel a tribal connection to Muslims everywhere, merely because they share the same religious identity. We are seeing jihadis travel halfway around the world for the privilege of dying in battle who have nothing in common with the beleaguered people of Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, or Somalia whose ranks they are joining, apart from a shared belief in the core doctrines of Islam.

    The other side of this coin, of course, is that even the most grotesque, seemingly nihilistic actions of the Islamic State become
    perfectly rational—which is to say, straightforwardly self-interested—given the requisite beliefs. Once you imagine what it would be like to actually believe in paradise, and in martyrdom as the surest way of getting there, it becomes obvious why someone would want to join the Islamic State. If a person truly believes that the Creator of the universe wants him to wage war against the evil of unbelief and that the Islamic State is the very tip of His spear, he has to be insane not to join the cause.

    Harris: I now have a rogues’ gallery in my mind of pseudo-liberals, both Muslim and not, who are reflexive apologists for theocracy. These people will deny, at every turn, the link between deeply held religious convictions and bad behavior. According to them, all the mayhem we see in the Middle East is “blowback.” Everything is a
    product of our callous meddling in the affairs of other countries. We
    have no enemies in the world but the ones we’ve made for ourselves by being bad actors and rapacious guzzlers of oil. Many of these people appear to have been bewitched by Noam Chomsky.

    • If Islam is the “motherload of bad ideas,” that assertion should be able to stand up to rational scrutiny. It should be able to stand up to the evidence. Sam should not be the intellectual coward he is, and acknowledge the contradictory information (which is quite abundant).

      Islam vs….Pol Pot? Maoism? Stalinism? Nazism? Nationalism? What exactly are we comparing Islam to, if it is the “mother load of bad ideas?” Oh right, just the secular views that you happen to agree with, and not the bad ones. That sounds awfully like people who cherry pick the parts of holy books that they agree with and discard those which are clinically insane. On this particular issue, Sam Harris has abandoned his reason and his intellectual honesty and instead is protecting his beliefs through a host of cognitive biases. He’s too emotionally invested in the issue. He sees Islam as a threat to the secular values that he holds dear, which causes him to overreach and demonize all of Islam beyond proportion to the threat.

      Islam is NOT substantially worse than fascism, or a wide range of secular (political) ideologies that I can name off the top of my head. That’s just a belief that you and Sam Harris have that you need to get rid of (because it’s not consistent with the evidence). Sorry, but secular ideologies can lead to bad outcomes just like religious ideologies. It’s the idea/position itself that needs to be judged, not “Islam” or “Secularism.” No nuance = stupid.

      • Peter Ford

        I don’t see how anything you’re saying could be seen as particularly relevant to the comment by ‘Carl Sagan’ that you are replying to.

        Anyway, I think Harris retracted his statement that Islam is “the mother lode of bad ideas” and replaced it with “a mother lode of bad ideas”.

        But even if you didn’t know that, I’m still a bit confused by your comment. Do you understand the definition of mother lode? Harris wasn’t saying Islam is the worst idea amongst all bad ideas ever (which would imply he thought it was worse than Naziism). He was saying that it is a major source/propagater of bad ideas.

        • I can name many secular ideologies that are worse than “Islam,” so if we are going to group “Islam” into a single, unified ideology then we can also do that with “secularism.” The premise here is that you believe that you know what the ONE TRUE CORRECT version of Islam is (ISIS also shares this view). But if that’s true how could there be shiites and sunnis? Catholics and Protestants? Mormons? When has there ever been a ONE TRUE CORRECT version of any religion? Look how many variations of Buddhism there are, some are even violent. Why is your particular interpretation the ONE TRUE CORRECT one?

          I would argue that US foreign policy is a motherload of bad ideas. It has certainly lead to more death and destruction in the this century and the previous one than Islam has. It created Pol Pot for example. It created the Vietnam War. Overthrow of Iran’s secular socialist regime (now Iran is an Islamic state). Ditto for the secular regimes of Iraq, Syria, and Libya.

          Ironically, US foreign policy is the greatest promoter of radical Islam in that the most secure regime is Saudi Arabia (the main exporter of radical Islam), also due to US foreign policy.

          If Sam Harris was legitimately interested in *true causes* he would focus on US foreign policy which seems to be at the epicenter of the spread of radical Islam and other radical ideologies as well.

          • Joshua Cj Cohen

            I can name many secular ideologies that are worse than “Islam,”

            I’d love to see that list. Hold on, I have it right here.

            IDEOLOGIES THAT ARE WORSE THAN ISLAM:
            1)Communism

            “If Sam Harris was legitimately interested in *true causes* he would
            focus on US foreign policy which seems to be at the epicenter of the
            spread of radical Islam and other radical ideologies as well.”

            Really? There was no radical islam before US Foreign Policy? Have you ever taken a history class in your life?

          • “I’d love to see that list. Hold on, I have it right here.”

            I already listed them in the previous reply, did you read it or what? There are many ideologies worse than Islam, anyone who denies that is just an idiot.

            “Really? There was no radical islam before US Foreign Policy? Have you ever taken a history class in your life?”

            Read what I said, rather than whatever idiotic things that you’re trying to see. I said:

            “If Sam Harris was legitimately interested in *true causes* he would focus on US foreign policy which seems to be at the epicenter of the spread of radical Islam and other radical ideologies as well.”

            At no point did I say that “there was no radical Islam before US foreign policy.” I said that US foreign policy seems to be the main driver for it’s spread, and give several examples (none of which you addressed, of course).

          • Bert Beukema

            LOL. USA foreign policy as an ideology, are you insane? Do you even have the concept of an ideology in your head? American foreign policy is not an ideology, it is a ludicrous statement.

            You also seem to misunderstand what Secularism means; the separation or church and state. Nothing more. It is not an ideology, it is a form of government. There are no secular ideologies, only secular countries. And invariably they are a million lightyears better to live in than any Islamic country.

            It’s your deflection and hypocrisy that fuels the animosity towards Muslims, you simply cannot be honest and truthful. Always you must deflect and always you seem to have the need to involve the USA into this. Then you connect it with all kinds of suppositions and assertions that are, kindly spoken, utter bullshitting.

            Islamic violence and aggression has always existed. It is the bread and butter of Islam, it’s foundation is in war and massacres, in monism and apartheid. Millions of Muslims are dead because Muslims murder each other with a fervor. Look at what happened in Iraq when Saddam was deposed, hundreds of thousands dead because of sectarian violence.

            Look at the massacres in Kashmir where Mosques and religious zealots drove the pandits out. Look at Pakistan and Bangladesh, how many Hindus were murdered on the streets? Millions were driven out because Muslims demanded a homeland just because of their belief. Yet that is what you kindly forget, while you strive for the destruction of Israel, which has a thousand more reasons to exist. If the Jews had been Muslims returning to their ancient homeland you would all have been cheering them home. Hypocrites.

      • Freeman Ath Eist

        So its a numbers game, which ever ideoligy kills the most wins?

        Who was the worst serial killer, Ted Bundy or Ian Brady?

        Secularism, multiple beliefs

        Islam, one belief

        Which one is better? the one that gives people the freedom to choose another belief or the one that says this is the only way of doing things?

        I think the point you miss, is that Western secular democracy, which has its flaws, it is not the perfect system but it is by far the best way of doing things, you can argue otherwise but you would be wrong.

        Islam is a growing religion, in most cases it is not a free choice, it is forced on its followers, it starts of as a few innocent worshippers just being moderate and enjoying life, living in your neighbourhood, then it grows and begins to ask for “special privaleges” which other people equal under that nations law do not get, it hreatens people who critisize and is cleverly labelled as a race, which means if you cant be physically silenced there is a nice smearing insult they can use to silence anyone who speaks against it, then come the Islamists, who begin to radically change your neighbourhood, Tell me I am wrong I am from Slough. And then a lack of integration and then there comes the extremists, sex offences go up, crimes change, police powers have to change to suit the new demographic, people move away, more muslims move in, the voing pool changes, councils implement Sharia courts, the power and intimidatory tactics grow, eventually you have a muslim majority and the whole country is flipped from a secular democracy to an Islamized state, then comes the convert or die part, and all the other luxuries that come with Islam,

        You say good bye to science in schools, innovation, free speech, equality for women and homasexuals, and the ability to choose any other thought process.

        It has happened across northern Africa, is happening in Europe and it actually is a threat to democracy.

        A smart person who has seen it first hand or who understands Islam sees the threat and tries to warn the others.

        You are wrong about the assumptions about Sam,

        At great risk to himself he has taken on the responisbility of challenging all religons not just Islam, he does so from a scienific and reasonable view point.

        He even credits Islam in some cases for not being against abortion, and not standing in the way of stem cell research,

        However, as religions go, it is the only one which commands its enforcement through any means necesary, through slow conversion and force, even murder.

        There may be honest fascist regimes that existed once that were worse than Islam, but if we talk about in todays current age, and if we comapre religions, Islam is the worst,

        Comparing communism and Islam or atheism and Islam is just a non scientific ridiculous argument,

        Its as if you are saying people can do no wrong with god, if someone kills for god its fine, but if a communist who has no god does it then its a terrible crime and we should all be religious so that we can kill with divinity and a clear concious.

        Ooh damn those atheists, killing more than we do!! how disgusting it is that a human can not only do bad with out god, but they can do good things, just for the sake of it!! how dare they show us that our morals are the same, except they have the freedom to choose theirs and they have to deal with their concioence when they make a mistake, where as a religious person can get away wih any crime as they have a divine license.

        • “Secularism, multiple beliefs

          Islam, one belief”

          Wrong. Everything that follows from this false premise is necessarily going to lead to a wrong conclusion. Garbage in, garbage out.

          Islam is not “one belief” any more than Christianity is. If it were there would be no such thing as “Sunnis and Shiites” or “schools of thought” or “interpretations.” There would be no such thing as secular Muslims or socialist Muslims or American soldier Muslims.

          “There may be honest fascist regimes that existed once that were worse than Islam, but if we talk about in todays current age, and if we comapre religions, Islam is the worst,”

          Nope, North Korea is worse.

          “Its as if you are saying people can do no wrong with god, if someone kills for god its fine, but if a communist who has no god does it then its a terrible crime and we should all be religious so that we can kill with divinity and a clear concious.”

          I said nothing even remotely similar to that, but you can feel free to quote the part which you think closely resembles something that I said of that nature.

          As for your xenophobia and fear of immigrants, perhaps you should advocate a foreign policy which doesn’t involve bombing these countries to hell forcing mass evacuations and refugees.

  • nice_guy

    So funny and yet so deeply meaningful !!

  • The Great Cornholio

    The regressive leftie should have also called the Jihadist an Islamophobe.

  • Perfect.

  • Dougal Cooper

    Was this the five minute argument or the full half hour?

  • carlos

    Spanish translation. Traducido al Español.

    Soy un Yihadista y estoy cansado de que no se me de credibilidad

    Debe
    ser increiblemente frustrante como terrorista islámico que la sociedad
    que aterrorizas no tome tus puntos de vista y motivos en serio, incluso
    después de declaralo de forma explícita y repetitiva. Peor aún,
    aquellos de la izquierda regresiva, en su infinita capacidad para el
    masoquismo y el odio a sí mismos, han tratado de echarse la culpa
    interiormente a sí mismos, negando a los terroristas incluso la
    satisfacción de reclamar la responsabilidad.

    Es como un mal sketch de Monty Python:

    “Hicimos esto porque nuestros textos sagrados nos exhortan a hacerlo.”

    “No, no lo hicisteis.”

    “Espera, ¿qué? Sí, si lo hicimos …”

    “No,
    esto no tiene nada que ver con la religión. Ustedes están simplemente
    usando la religión como un frente por razones sociales y geopolíticos.”

    “¿QUÉ
    !? ¿Ustedes siquiera ha leido nuestra declaración oficial? Damos la
    justificación coránica explícita. Esta es la yihad, una santa cruzada
    contra los paganos, blasfemos, y no creyentes.”

    “No,
    esto no es definitivamente una cosa musulmana. Ustedes no son
    verdaderos musulmanes, y difaman una gran religión al decir eso.”

    “¿Eh
    !? ¿Quiénes sois vosotros para decirnos que no somos verdaderos
    musulmanes !? El Islam está literalmente, en el centro de todo lo que
    hacemos, y hemos implementado la mas fiel interpretación, literal y
    sincera de sus textos fundacionales. Es nuestra única razón de ser “.

    “Nop.
    Os hemos creado. Instalamos un sistema social y económico que os aliena
    y priva de derechos, y es por eso que hicisteís esto. Lo sentimos.”

    “¿QUÉ?.
    ¿Por qué os disculpaís?Nosotros simplemente os masacramos sin piedad en
    las calles, Tomamos como blancos a civiles inconscientes – la privación
    de derechos ni siquiera entra en esto!”

    “Escucha, es culpa nuestra. No os culpamos por no sentiros bienvenidos y que esteis encabronados”.

    “En
    serio, dejad de tomar la autoría de esto! Hemos trabajado muy duro para
    sacar esto adelante, y no vamos a dejar que nos lo quiteís.”

    “No, nos comemos el marrón de su extremismo. Aceptamos toda la culpa.”

    “Dios mío, ¿cuántas personas tenemos que matar por aquí para finalmente llegue nuestro mensaje?”

  • Lutz Barz

    mission impossible

  • A better question is “why am I a jihadist?” “What radicalized me?” When you ask that question, it invariably goes back to the foreign policy of Western secular governments.

    I don’t mind talking about the causes of radical jihadis blowing people up, but if foreign policy is not acknowledged as the primary cause of the rise of radical Islam then it’s not an intellectually honest discussion.

  • Mark

    This is an inaccurate caricature of concerns on the Left about how the legacy of colonialism is proxy wars between Russia and the US (and various allies in between) in Islamic (and other) countries that create conditions of insecurity in which barbaric ideologies can more easily take hold. It’s taking a historical view of the distortions of power and politics that have taken place with a polarisation of world super power politics. Reducing this important discussion to ‘regressive lefties’ banging on about colonialism as a kind of self-loathing is totally missing the point. It’s a straw man argument and a caricature. If you are serious about these issues, rather than name-calling, you could simply acknowledge the real basis of the argument and take it from there.

  • André Philipps

    “Who are you to tell us we’re not true Muslims!?”

    Try the rest of Islam. Daesh haven’t exactly made any friends with their over-the-top takifiri tendencies and violence primarily directed at other muslims. They’re functionally the new Kharijites at this point.

    Also, way to mistake high-level analysis of long-term effects with low-level ideology resulting from these.

  • not important

    “OMG, how many people do we have to kill around here to finally get our message across?”

    “All of us”

    And if Westerners don’t start fighting back in our own countries they will too.

  • CB

    That is so good.

  • rasungod0

    The Onion did it first, though slightly different:

  • Arun

    It may amuse you that I posted this above on the liberal site dailykos.com; and was informed by a site administrator that this violates the site guidelines, and until I acknowledge that, my posting privileges are suspended.

    Of course, I’m abandoning that site. I had learned of this article via this interview of Sarah Haider by Dave Rubin:

    http://www.ora.tv/rubinreport/2015/11/19/sarah-haider-on-feminism-atheism-and-homegrown-terrorism-0_4sorba3ovpxo

    and now I’ve learned the reality of the regressive left. They too will want to shut you up.

  • cihans

    I live in a Muslim country and you guys have no understanding how dangerous it is. It is so dark ages So no wonder these guys act like they are living in the dark ages.

    Yes western powers nourished the extremism. Fed extremism to the people and used dark ages ideals to build an extremist belt against communism.

    Fed, armed, trained and protected.
    Meddled with the affairs of secular states.
    Backed and staged military coups.
    Harbored known criminals.

    Now everyone pays. Especially the secular people or minorities living in muslim countries.

  • Jeffrey Wilson

    This is awesome and totally true.

  • Martijn Hover

    As a matter of fact, it is actually true. 😉

  • Francisco Franco

    GENIUS!

  • David B Madore

    What would Evolutionary Psychology say about this?…..hmm

  • awesome

  • Alvaro Cornejo

    too bad there arent enough voices like yours Faisal

  • madoc62

    This is running full force today. I’ve already encountered EXACTLY this sort of derangement several times in just a few online discussions already. And the day is still young.

  • Alethea Leiter

    Well done

  • Lemming

    I think my one big takeaway from reading your posts is to not take agency away from people. People have their responsibility to take for their own respective actions.

  • Ian Hare

    Brilliant and so true of the insidious culture of self blame so pervasive in the white Western world today!

  • Kurchatov

    Taj mahal ,the Indian monument is widely viewed as a symbol of love. I was constructed by the Muslim emperor Shah Jehan who ruled the Hindu majority India. The architects and craftsmen were all Hindu. Shah Jehan ordered chopping all their hands after the construction so that they cannot build such a building again. And the chief architect was killed.

    This was Islam before the US foreign policy.

  • Neil Dunford

    Whilst regressive lefts are desperate to be a sponge bob blamepants – they’re also removing any notion that people other than themselves are capable of making and being responsible for, their own thoughts, words, actions and their related outcomes/results, (as abhorrent as they can be). It’s as if they think the whole of the middle east is full of kids that just don’t know any better, and it’s the West’s fault, for not raising them right. Not that long ago, this kind of attitude, would have been related to, “White Man’s Burden”. Of course, at the same time, they make themselves an automatic whipping boy for those that don’t want to be held responsible for their behaviour. So the regressives aren’t helping, they’re enabling.

  • kirby elena

    is it possible to get the full name of the writer because I would love to post it next to where I have linked this from secular humanists on facebook

  • Risto Kantonen