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Hurray, We're Capitulating...

Old 01-26-07, 10:07 AM
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Hurray, We're Capitulating...

Great piece out of Germany:

"Hurray! We're Capitulating!"

By Henryk M. Broder

The West seems to have no trouble offending the Muslim world these days. What should we do about it? We might as well surrender. After all, we're already on our way.

This essay is an excerpt of Henryk M. Broder's book "Hurra, Wir Kapitulieren," ("Hurray! We're Capitulating") published by Wolf Jobst Siedler Verlag in 2006. The book spent a number of weeks atop the DER SPIEGEL bestseller list.


********

Ten years ago, in the spring of 1996, the world still seemed more or less okay. The towers of the World Trade Center dominated the Manhattan skyline, the American president had an affair with an intern, the Helmut Kohl era was coming to an end in Germany, and intellectuals killed time by debating over whether Francis Fukuyama was right in claiming that we have reached the "end of history" and whether capitalism had truly triumphed or socialism had merely lost the first round. In those days few were aware of the fine distinction between Islam and Islamism.

One had to look very closely to recognize the first signs of a brewing crisis. In Berlin, the Rote Grütze theater group was performing an enlightening piece called "Who Said Anything About Love?" To advertise the play, posters depicting a young man and a young woman, naked and full of innocence, were handed out in schools.


The schools had no qualms about displaying the posters, until a school official from Berlin's Tiergarten district requested a permit from the city's education authority. The agency turned down the request, arguing that the poster could hurt "the feelings of non-Christian pupils." The education authority was acting preventively and with what amounted to exaggerated concern for a cultural minority that had yet to be integrated into permissive German society. No Muslim pupils had complained about hurt feelings, nor had their parents expressed concerns about immoral harassment.

That was 10 years ago. Today everything has changed, except the resolve not to hurt the feelings of Muslims. The issue today no longer revolves around a group of Berlin pupils with an "immigration background," but around 1.3 billion Muslims worldwide -- many of whom are thin-skinned and unpredictable. At issue is freedom of opinion, one of the central tenets of the Enlightenment and democracy. And whether respect, consideration and tolerance are the right approach to dealing with cultures that, for their part, behave without respect, consideration or tolerance when it comes to anything they view as decadent, provocative and unworthy -- from women in short skirts to cartoons they deem provocative without even having seen them.

The controversy over the 12 Muhammad cartoons that were published in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten in September 2005 and led to worldwide protests and unrest among Muslims was merely a taste of what is to come, a dress rehearsal for the kinds of disputes Europe can expect to face in the future if it does not rethink its current policy of appeasement. As was the case in the 1930s, when Czechoslovakia was sacrificed in the interest of peace under the Munich Agreement -- a move that ultimately did nothing to prevent World War II -- Europeans today also believe that an adversary, seemingly invincible due to a preference for death over life, can be mollified by good behavior, concessions and submission. All the Europeans can hope to gain in this asymmetric conflict is a temporary reprieve, a honeymoon period that could last 10, 20, or maybe even 50 years. Anyone on death row breathes a sigh of relief when his execution is postponed to some indefinite time in the future.

The uproar over the Muhammad cartoons was symptomatic precisely because what triggered it was so insignificant. The drawings themselves were unbelievably harmless.

It took two weeks for "spontaneous" protests to begin. On Oct. 14, 2005, 3,000 Muslims staged a demonstration on Copenhagen's town hall square after Friday prayers. In a letter to Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen, ambassadors from 11 Islamic countries demanded that he take the "necessary steps" to avert an abuse of Islam. Rasmussen responded that it was not his responsibility to discipline journalists, and he refused to schedule a meeting with the irate ambassadors. The Egyptian foreign minister got the Arab League and the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) involved soon after. The OIC had already made clear what it wanted in its "Declaration of Human Rights in Islam" in 1990: "All have the right to freely express their opinions in a manner that does not run counter to Shariah law." In essence, what the OIC wanted was to compel Western nations to bring their form of freedom of expression into conformity with Shariah law.

Then a delegation of Danish Muslims traveled to the Muslim world, carrying a folder with the 12 cartoons from Jyllands-Posten, as well as of three significantly more provocative drawings in their luggage. The three drawings portrayed the Prophet as a pedophile devil, with pigs' ears and having sex with a dog. Where the bonus material came from and how it found its way into the documentation remains unclear to this day. But clearly someone was interested in generating the appropriate reaction. Newspapers in Arab countries promptly wrote that the Danish media had portrayed Muhammad as a pig, the original 12 cartoons magically turned into 120 drawings, and the Danish government was accused of being behind the whole thing.

European Union foreign ministers met in Brussels on Jan. 30, 2006 to discuss the crisis. Some believed that Denmark had missed its chance to resolve the conflict on its own. The foreign minister of Luxembourg wasn't just speaking for his own country when he said that the entire affair was "more a Danish than a European problem." The Austrian foreign minister went even further when she said: "statements and actions that degrade a religion in an offensive way should be clearly condemned." Even the Americans abandoned their Danish allies. During the course of a single day, three State Department spokesmen used adjectives like "unacceptable," "offensive" and "objectionable." Muslims got the message.

A year ago on Feb. 3, 2006, a "Day of Anger" was proclaimed. Across the Muslim world, the Muhammad cartoons were the focus of Friday prayers. Millions of Muslims who couldn't even locate Denmark on a map demonstrated against these insults to the Prophet, incited by their imams. The embassies of Denmark and Norway were set on fire in Damascus, the Danish embassy was torched in Beirut, firebombs were hurled at the Danish consulate in Tehran, and Danish and Norwegian flags were burned in Nigeria and Algeria.


In the past, an attack on an embassy would have been reason enough to go to war. But this time the affected countries did their utmost to "de-escalate." The victims were repentant and begged the perpetrators for forgiveness. Indeed, the West was intent on not doing anything that could possibly give offense and cause these fanatical Muslims to become even angrier.

Objectively speaking, the cartoon controversy was a tempest in a teacup. But subjectively it was a show of strength and, in the context of the "clash of civilizations," a dress rehearsal for the real thing. The Muslims demonstrated how quickly and effectively they can mobilize the masses, and the free West showed that it has nothing to counter the offensive -- nothing but fear, cowardice and an overriding concern about the balance of trade. Now the Islamists know that they are dealing with a paper tiger whose roar is nothing but a tape recording.

As different as the West's reactions to the Muslim protests were, what they had in common were origins in feelings of powerlessness and helplessness.

Critical souls who only yesterday agreed with Marx that religion is the opium of the masses suddenly insisted that religious sensibilities must be taken into account, especially when accompanied by violence.
(note from Ky-Fi---this is the best line I've read on the subject )

The representatives of open societies reacted like the inhabitants of an island about to be hit by a hurricane. Powerless against the forces of nature, they stocked up on supplies, nailed doors and windows shut and hoped that the storm would soon pass. Of course, whereas such a reaction may be an appropriate response to natural disasters, such a lack of resistance merely encourages fundamentalists. It completely justifies their view of the West as weak, decadent and completely unwilling to defend itself.

Those who react to kidnappings and beheadings, to massacres of people of other faiths, and to eruptions of collective hysteria with a call for "cultural dialogue" don't deserve any better.

"The West should desist from engaging in all provocations that produce feelings of debasement and humiliation," says psychoanalyst Horst-Eberhard Richter. "We should show greater respect for the cultural identity of Muslim countries. ... For Muslims, it is important to be recognized and respected as equals." In Richter's view, what the Muslims need is "a partnership of equals."

But Richter neglects to describe what this partnership might look like. Does achieving such equality mean that we should set up separate sections for women on buses, as is the custom in Saudi Arabia? Should the marrying age for girls be reduced to 12, as is the case in Iran? And should death by stoning be our punishment for adultery, as Shariah law demands? What else could the West do to show its respect for the cultural identity of Islamic countries? Would it be sufficient to allow Horst-Eberhard Richter to decide whether, for example, a wet T-shirt contest in a German city rises to a level of criminal provocation that could cause the Muslim faithful in Hyderabad to feel debased and humiliated?

The discussion over which provocations WE should put an end to so that THEY do not feel upset inexorably leads to the realm of the absurd.

Should devout Jews be entitled to demand that non-Jews give up pork? And should they have the power to impose sanctions if their demands are not met? Can a Hindu in India run amok because the Dutch do not view cows as sacred beings? Those who believe Muslims have the right to be outraged by the Danes failing to abide by an Islamic prohibition -- especially when it's not even clear that such a prohibition even exists -- must answer such questions clearly in the affirmative. Even illiterates must then be allowed to ransack bookstores; in a world in which anyone is entitled to feel offended and humiliated, anyone can also choose which provocations he is unwilling to accept.



The comments made by German pastor Burkhard Müller on Feb. 11, 2005 on "Wort zum Sonntag," a weekly Christian program aired on the ARD public television network, demonstrate just how far we are willing to go when it comes to denying reality. "Islam is a great religion," Müller said, only minutes after the previous news program had shown scenes of burning flags, devastated embassies and holy warriors yelling "death to the infidels!" Where does it come from, this determination to disregard the facts or conveniently distort them so that they cloud our perception of reality?

A natural tendency to avoid conflict

It comes from fear. Fear may be a poor counselor, but when it comes to educating the masses, there is no more effective tool. Mao famously said: "Strike one to educate one hundred" -- an axiom that helped him solidify his power.

It is not respect for other cultures which influences behavior, but rather the awareness of just how fanatic and ruthless our adversaries are. The wilder and more brutal they appear to be, the more likely they are to attract attention and gain respect. Whether venturing into unfamiliar territory means taking a walk in a different neighborhood or visiting a foreign culture, our natural tendency is to avoid conflict.

"Nowadays acts of terrorism are not committed for their own sake, but in the name of an ideology one could call Nazi-Islamism," Romanian-American author Norman Manea told the German daily Die Welt in March 2004. The only difference, in Manea's view, is "that this ideology invokes a religion, whereas the Nazis were mythical without being religious." Manea believes that what he calls a "World War III" has already begun. "The Europeans are putting off the recognition -- as they did in the 1930s -- of the tremendous tragedy that awaits them and that has, in fact, already arrived."

This sounds like an extreme exaggeration, conjuring up visions of a Day of Judgment, of an Apocalypse Now! Of course, in 1938 hardly anyone could have imagined where the policy of appeasing the Nazis would lead. History does not repeat itself, and yet there are parallels that do not bode well. The willingness to submit to self-deception is as widespread today as it was in the years leading up to World War II.

In late June 2006, every German paper reported the sensational news that Hamas was willing to recognize Israel. But the reports were not based on a binding declaration issued by the ruling prime minister and member of Hamas, but on a document drawn up by Palestinians in Israeli jails who were seeking to re-establish "national unity" between the warring Hamas and Fatah groups. The headline on the front page of Die Welt read: "Hamas Indirectly Recognizes Israel." The Süddeutsche Zeitung wrote: "Hamas Apparently Ready to Recognize Israel." "Hamas Gives Way -- Indirect Recognition of Israel," wrote the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. The Frankfurter Rundschau rejoiced over the "Recognition of Israel in the Middle of a Crisis," which the paper's Jerusalem correspondent described as a "manifesto for a state within the 1967 borders, which can be seen as an indirect recognition of Israel." The Berliner Zeitung went a step further when it wrote "Hamas Recognizes Israel," commenting in the corresponding article on the "realization of a necessity" and that Hamas had come to terms "with Israel's existence" and would accept a "two-state solution."


At least one of the Berliner Zeitung's assumptions wasn't entirely made up. Hamas had expressed a willingness to accept two Palestinian states, one in the territory occupied by Israel since 1967 and one on Israeli territory within the 1967 borders. But the prisoners' document did not even suggest a "recognition" of the Zionist state, no matter how "indirect." It existed solely in the minds of commentators. Fortunately various Hamas spokespeople quickly provided much-needed clarity, assuring the world that Hamas had absolutely no intention of recognizing Israel, directly or indirectly, and in fact was determined to continue its armed struggle to liberate Palestine.


The Europeans' wishful thinking stems from their need to avoid conflicts, coupled with a strong survival instinct. They may perceive reality, but they do so selectively.


The Berlin office of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War has published a paper describing the consequences of an American nuclear strike against Iran. According to its scenario, more than 2 million people would die within the first 48 hours, and another million would suffer serious injuries. Ten million would be exposed to high levels of radiation. But one question the paper neither poses nor answers is this: What would be the consequential damage of an Iranian nuclear attack once the country is capable of producing and using a nuclear bomb?

No one wants to address this question, and for good reason: No one knows how to prevent an Iranian nuclear attack, or even how to influence the Iranians' policies. In contrast, there is a very small but real possibility that public pressure can be used to influence the American government to move in one direction or another. The proponents of peace whose protests are directed against America's plans to attack Iran and not against the mullahs' nuclear policies are well aware of this difference. They are not blind in one eye, as they are often accused of being, but instead have a clear view of everything that is happening. And they are as delighted as children discovering a surprise. "Peace Signals from Tehran," the Berliner Zeitung wrote ecstatically in early July, when Iran did not for once flatly reject one of the European Union's many proposed compromises, but instead declared that it would "give it serious consideration."

"We capitulate"

For those facing a hopeless situation and powerless to change it, self-deception offers at least some succor.

Another option is "change through ingratiation." Oskar Lafontaine, a one-time chairman of the Social Democratic Party and German chancellor candidate, sees "commonalities between leftist policies and the Islamic religion." In an interview with Neues Deutschland, he says: "Islam depends on community, which places it in opposition to extreme individualism, which threatens to fail in the West. The second similarity is that the devout Muslim is required to share his wealth with others. The leftist also wants to see the strong help the weak. Finally, the prohibition of interest still plays a role in Islam, much as it once did in Christianity. At a time when entire economies are plunging into crisis because their expectations of returns on investment have become totally absurd, there is a basis for a dialogue to be conducted between the left and the Islamic world."

Lafontaine called upon the West to exercise self-criticism ("We must constantly ask ourselves through which eyes the Muslims see us") and expressed sympathy for the "indignation" of Muslims. According to Lafontaine, "people in Muslim countries have experienced many indignities, one of the most recent being the Iraq war. What we are seeing here is resource imperialism."

In examining similarities between Islam and the European left, though, Lafontaine ignored an important point: how long he would survive without his beloved Sancerre Sauvignon Blanc if a union between leftist politics and the Islamic religion truly came about. His dialogue with the Muslim world would have to be conducted while sipping fruit juice and mineral water. "If you can't beat them, join them!"


All the events of last spring are only a foretaste of something much bigger, something still unnamed. And when it ends, those who have managed to escape will ask themselves: Why didn't we see the handwriting on the wall when there was still time? If Muslim protests against a few harmless cartoons can cause the free world to capitulate in the face of violence, how will this free world react to something that is truly relevant? It is already difficult enough to see that Israel is not merely battling a few militants, but is facing a serious threat to its very existence from Iran. All too often it is ignored that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has already taken the first step by calling for "a world without Zionism" -- a call that pro-Israel Europeans only managed to condemn with a mild, "unacceptable." How would they react if Iran were in a position to back up its threats with nuclear weapons?

In 1972, more than three decades ago, Danish lawyer and part-time politician Mogens Glistrup had an idea that brought him instant fame. To save taxes, he proposed that the Danish army be disbanded and an answering machine be set up in the defense ministry that would play the following message: "We capitulate!" Not only would it save money, Glistrup argued, but it would also save lives in an emergency. On the strength of this "program," Glistrup's Progress Party managed to become the second-most powerful political party in the Danish parliament in the 1973 elections.

Glistrup had the right idea, but he was a number of years premature. Now would be the right time to set up his answering machine.

http://www.spiegel.de/international/...462149,00.html

Last edited by Ky-Fi; 01-26-07 at 10:09 AM.
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Old 01-26-07, 10:48 AM
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The cartoon thing was ridiculous, and no one should have caved over it.

However, am I the only person who can separate people from their religion? I don't judge people by their faith and I don't judge faith by its followers. If I did, I'd be forced to hate every Christian I know.
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Old 01-26-07, 11:30 AM
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Excellent read. Obviously we need to judge the individuals for their own actions and not just because of their religion, but we don't even seem capable of that.

"We need to understand their culture."
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Old 01-26-07, 11:06 PM
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Critical souls who only yesterday agreed with Marx that religion is the opium of the masses suddenly insisted that religious sensibilities must be taken into account, especially when accompanied by violence.


Translation: "We're going to offend everyone's religion except the one whose members have a propensity to blow things up."
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Old 01-29-07, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Vandelay_Inds
Yes. Muslims won't separate themselves from today's Islam.
I guess I've only ever met exceptions.
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Old 01-29-07, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by The Bus
I guess I've only ever met exceptions.
Those that haven't don't live to tell about it.
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Old 01-29-07, 01:11 PM
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Of course, in 1938 hardly anyone could have imagined where the policy of appeasing the Nazis would lead.
[buzzer sound] According to the rules, you lost

All the events of last spring are only a foretaste of something much bigger, something still unnamed. And when it ends, those who have managed to escape will ask themselves: Why didn't we see the handwriting on the wall when there was still time?
Booga booga!
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Old 01-29-07, 05:53 PM
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Originally Posted by eXcentris

Booga booga!
I honestly hope you're right and I'm wrong on this issue, and that this isn't going to turn into a continent-wide calmity full of horrible racial violence some ten or twenty years down the road, but I think you're putting your head in the sand.

*******

"The most alarming sentences that I have read in a long time came from the pen of my fellow atheist Sam Harris, author of The End of Faith, at the end of a September Los Angeles Times column upbraiding American liberals for their masochistic attitude toward Islamist totalitarianism. Harris concluded:

The same failure of liberalism is evident in Western Europe, where the dogma of multiculturalism has left a secular Europe very slow to address the looming problem of religious extremism among its immigrants. The people who speak most sensibly about the threat that Islam poses to Europe are actually fascists. To say that this does not bode well for liberalism is an understatement: It does not bode well for the future of civilization [italics mine]."


http://www.city-journal.org/html/17_...ies-steyn.html
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Old 01-29-07, 08:10 PM
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I remember reading about an American homosexual male who moved to the Netherlands because the Dutch were so much more sophisticated wrt: homesexuals than us yokels here. He wrote that he's afraid the Islamists are in the process of taking over the Netherlands and he is afraid.
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Old 01-30-07, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Ky-Fi
I honestly hope you're right and I'm wrong on this issue, and that this isn't going to turn into a continent-wide calmity full of horrible racial violence some ten or twenty years down the road, but I think you're putting your head in the sand.

*******
I don't have a problem admitting there's an issue, I have a problem with articles that just whine, rant and conclude on an apocalyptic warning wihout offering solutions or address what countries have beeing doing to tackle the issue. It's not like nothing is happening. There's seems to be healthy debate (and some policy changes) going on in a number of countries including where I live. Heck, not a week passes where I don't see an article in the local papers or a debate on tv about our policy of "accomodements raisonnables" towards religious communities. And a couple of days ago, I saw on CNN (unfortunately I just caught the tail end of it) a special on British Muslims and on the debating/questionning that goes on within the Muslim community.

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Old 01-30-07, 01:54 PM
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What the hell do goddamm raisins have to do with this?
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Old 01-30-07, 02:00 PM
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http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,248597,00.html
London Prison Changes Direction of Toilets in Respect to Islamic Law
Tuesday, January 30, 2007

E-MAIL STORY PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
Toilets in one London prison are getting a face-lift — or rather, a change in direction — to accommodate Muslim inmates who can't use them while facing Mecca, a British newspaper reported.

Government officials ackowledged using tax dollars for the changes to the facilities, but maintained that moving the toilets was part of "on-going refurbishment," according to an article in The Sun....
Hurray! We're still capitulating.
If Mohammed or Aslam doesn't like the direction that the toilet is facing, how about not committing any crimes so they don't have to face that dilemma.
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Old 01-30-07, 02:33 PM
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Nice to see they have time to report this, thought they were to busy making crap up about Obama though.
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Old 01-30-07, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by cinten


Nice to see they have time to report this, thought they were to busy making crap up about Obama though.
What is your opinion regarding the English having to use tax payer money to change the direction of toilets in prison? Or do you think Fox News made up the story?
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Old 01-30-07, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by bhk
What is your opinion regarding the English having to use tax payer money to change the direction of toilets in prison? Or do you think Fox News made up the story?
You forget this part:

"...moving the toilets was part of "on-going refurbishment,"

But then again, FOX news quoting The Sun is like a lobotomized patient quoting a paranoid schizophrenic.
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Old 01-30-07, 02:51 PM
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Originally Posted by bhk
What is your opinion regarding the English having to use tax payer money to change the direction of toilets in prison? Or do you think Fox News made up the story?
Don't care, it's just another story for islamaphobes to get all giddy about. The only reason you care is because you can make another snide comment about Islam. I could be wrong though, maybe you really have disconnected yourself from your hatred and are more worried about the English taxpayer. than taking a slap at islam.
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Old 01-30-07, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by eXcentris
You forget this part:

"...moving the toilets was part of "on-going refurbishment,"

But then again, FOX news quoting The Sun is like a lobotomized patient quoting a paranoid schizophrenic.
Usually they don't turn toilets 90 degrees as part of an "on-going refurbishment".
But this is just the latest in a small part of the capitulation going on in Europe. Remember Burger King not selling ice cream because the swirl reminded someone of the spelling of Mohammed?
The only reason you care is because you can make another snide comment about Islam. I could be wrong though, maybe you really have disconnected yourself from your hatred and are more worried about the English taxpayer. than taking a slap at islam.
No, actually I'm sniping at the Euro-peons.
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Old 01-30-07, 05:26 PM
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Do US prisons do anything to accomdate religious needs from prisoners? Specific meals, prayer time, etc.?

I'm honestly asking.
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Old 01-30-07, 05:35 PM
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Originally Posted by cinten
Don't care, it's just another story for islamaphobes to get all giddy about.
Ah yes, "Islamophobes". The buzzword of the multi-culti politically correct left. Have any concerns about the ultra-right tendencies of Islam, in regards to women's rights, freedom of religion and expression, virulent racism, gay rights, etc? Well don't voice them, because you'll be guilty of Islamophobia. Thoughtcrime!

Again, I have to bring out the quote I've posted before from Salmon Rushdie:

http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles...e.asp?ID=25464

Meanwhile, the BBC has been instructed we are told that the term “Islamic terrorist” can’t be used because it discriminates against Muslims. Never mind that all the terrorists who claim to be acting in the name of Islam tell us that it is Islam that is their motivation, the BBC can’t say that they’re Islamic terrorists because that’s now this new crime of what’s called “Islamophobia.” I mean I just have some problem with the word because it seems to me if you have a set of ideas which I don’t like, it’s perfectly OK for me to be phobic about them. There were plenty of people who seemed to have no problem being phobic about mine but, you know, “Salmanophobia” didn’t enter the language somehow.

*****************

And as far as the use of that word, it's really a microcosm of what's been going on in Europe. The multi-culti left has demonized criticism of political Islam to such an extent that it was largely removed from the mainstream of political dicussion for years, the net result being the empowerment of fascists on both the Muslim and European sides. The BNP and Front National LOVE that word, because it makes more disaffected people in the center turn to them. And of course the Muslim fascists love it when the multiculturalists defend them and deflect any criticism away from them. And how is this stifling of the criticism of Islam in the name of muliticulturalism actually WORKING in regards to helping integrate the next generation of Muslims into a secular society?

Here's a recent poll:

http://politics.guardian.co.uk/think...000984,00.html



More young Muslims back sharia, says poll


Stephen Bates and agencies
Monday January 29, 2007
The Guardian


A growing minority of young Muslims are inspired by political Islam and feel they have less in common with non-Muslims than their parents do, a survey reveals today. The poll, carried out for the conservative-leaning Policy Exchange thinktank, found support for Sharia law, Islamic schools and wearing the veil in public is significantly stronger among young Muslims than their parents.
In the survey of 1,003 Muslims by the polling company Populus through internet and telephone questionnaires, nearly 60% said they would prefer to live under British law, while 37% of 16 to 24-year-olds said they would prefer sharia law, against 17% of those over 55. Eighty-six per cent said their religion was the most important thing in their lives.

Nearly a third of 16 to 24-year-olds believed that those converting to another religion should be executed, while less than a fifth of those over 55 believed the same. The survey claimed that British authorities and some Muslim groups have exaggerated the problem of Islamophobia and fuelled a sense of victimhood among some Muslims: 84% said they believed they had been well treated in British society, though only 28% thought the authorities had gone over the top in trying not to offend Muslims. Munira Mirza, a doctoral student at Kent University who wrote the report, said: "The government should engage with Muslims as citizens, not through their religious identity."
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Old 01-30-07, 05:40 PM
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Originally Posted by eXcentris
You forget this part:

"...moving the toilets was part of "on-going refurbishment,"

But then again, FOX news quoting The Sun is like a lobotomized patient quoting a paranoid schizophrenic.
What he said. I'd wait for a bit of reporting from a paper that's fit to be used for something other than lining bird cages.
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Old 01-30-07, 05:42 PM
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I'm sorry, I didn't realize how badly changing toilets in Brittan will disturb my daily life. Who really cares if they altered toilets? I guess if they change the toilets the terrorists win.
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Old 01-30-07, 05:53 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by Ky-Fi
Ah yes, "Islamophobes". The buzzword of the multi-culti politically correct left.
Just like "Islamofascists" is the buzzword of the political right who needs to further demonize those they condemn.

FYI, I use neither of those words and I think that those who do, use them as substitutes to rational and intelligent debate.
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Old 01-30-07, 06:10 PM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by eXcentris
Just like "Islamofascists" is the buzzword of the political right who needs to further demonize those they condemn.

FYI, I use neither of those words and I think that those who do, use them as substitutes to rational and intelligent debate.
I don't see it like that. When people on the right use the term "Islamofascists" (as Bush did) they're ALWAYS talking about the radical, militant element of Islam---it's NOT used by anyone as a blanket term for all Muslims---I don't think even critics of the term would contend that it's used like that. I can't for the life of me see how it's unfair to describe militant Islam as "fascist" (unless you really want to nitpick about socio-economic theoretical minutia and definitions). But if you're talking about propensity for extreme oppression of individual liberties, a rigidly structured society, violent, imperialistic tendencies, racism, sexism, intolerance, etc., then militant Islam most certainly equals or surpasses Nazism.

On the other hand, I regularly see the phrase "Islamophobia" thrown out as a blanket condemnation of ANYONE voicing ANY criticism of Islam---it's most certainly not limited to people who actually hate all Muslims.

And I think a test of my theory is to look at liberal, progressive Muslims, like Irshad Manji. I don't believe anyone on the right has called her an Islamofascist, but she has certainly been called an Islamophobe.

http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles...e.asp?ID=19946

Last edited by Ky-Fi; 01-30-07 at 06:12 PM.
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Old 01-30-07, 06:18 PM
  #24  
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http://ca.today.reuters.com/news/new...TONING-COL.XML
Quebec town to immigrants: you can't kill women
Tue Jan 30, 2007 4:50 PM EST
By David Ljunggren
OTTAWA (Reuters) - Immigrants wishing to live in the small Canadian town of Herouxville, Quebec, must not stone women to death in public, burn them alive or throw acid on them, according to an extraordinary set of rules released by the local council.

The declaration, published on the town's Web site, has deepened tensions in the predominantly French-speaking province over how tolerant Quebecers should be toward the customs and traditions of immigrants.

"We wish to inform these new arrivals that the way of life which they abandoned when they left their countries of origin cannot be recreated here," said the declaration, which makes clear women are allowed to drive, vote, dance, write checks, dress how they want, work and own property.

"Therefore we consider it completely outside these norms to ... kill women by stoning them in public, burning them alive, burning them with acid, circumcising them etc."

No one on the town council was available for comment on Tuesday. Herouxville, which has 1,300 inhabitants, is about 160 km (100 miles) northeast of Montreal.

Andre Drouin, the councilor who devised the declaration, told the National Post newspaper that the town was not racist.

"We invite people from all nationalities, all languages, all sexual orientations, whatever, to come live with us, but we want them to know ahead of time how we live," he said.

The declaration is part of a wider debate over "reasonable accommodation," or how far Quebecers should be prepared to change their customs so as not to offend immigrants. Figures from the 2001 census show that around 10 percent of Quebec's 7.5 million population were born outside Canada.

Earlier this month the Journal de Montreal newspaper published a poll of Quebecers showing that 59 percent admitted to harboring some kind of racist feelings.

The Herouxville regulations say girls and boys can exercise together and people should only be allowed to cover their faces at Halloween. Children must not take weapons to school, it adds, although the Supreme Court of Canada has already ruled that Sikh boys have the right to carry ceremonial daggers.

Salam Elmenyawi, president of the Muslim Council of Montreal, said the declaration had "set the clock back for decades" as far as race relations were concerned.
"I was shocked and insulted to see these kinds of false stereotypes and ignorance about Islam and our religion ... in a public document written by people in authority who discriminate openly," he told Reuters.

Last year a Montreal gym agreed to install frosted windows after a nearby Hasidic synagogue said it was offended by the sight of adults exercising.

Newspapers say a Montreal community center banned men from prenatal classes to respect Hindu and Sikh traditions and an internal police magazine suggested women police officers allow their male colleagues to interview Hasidic Jews.

Montreal's police force is investigating one of its officers after he posted an anti-immigrant song called "That's Enough Already" on the Internet.

"We want to accept ethnics, but not at any price ... if you're not happy with your fate, there's a place called the airport," the officer sings.

An accompanying video shows clips of Muslims and Hasidic Jews and at one point shows shots of a partially nude woman to mock those who wear veils.

The Herouxville declaration is available, in English and French, at the "avis public" section of the town's Web site, http://municipalite.herouxville.qc.ca.
Looks like this town isn't ready to surrender.

Just like "Islamofascists" is the buzzword of the political right who needs to further demonize those they condemn.
Sawing people's heads off and blowing up women and children doesn't demonize them but someone else calling them Islamofascists is meant to demonize them?
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Old 01-30-07, 06:38 PM
  #25  
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to Herouxville. Basically, "this is who we are---if you respect that and want to live here, we welcome you. If you don't, then don't decide to live here, or understand that things only get changed through legal, democractic practices." Sounds good to me.

Although I suspect Quebec may be a bit ahead of the game in dealing with stuff like this, since they've already had lots of experience in maintaining their own cultural traditions despite constant encroachment from a powerful, slightly different culture. eXcentris?
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