The View From 1776

Do Arabs Hate Christianity, or Liberal-socialism?

      http://www.thomasbrewton.com/index.php/weblog/do_arabs_hate_christianity_or_liberal_socialism/

Response to a reader’s question.

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Responding to Faith Without Fealty?, a reader wrote:

“As I read this, an idea occurred to me that might be worthwhile giving some thought to:

Is the hate in the Arab world toward the West really towards Christianity or the social-liberal establishments that claim to be Christian?”
Posted by JG ?on? 10/23 ?

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Knowing nothing more about opinion in the “Arab street” than what we all see on TV and read on the internet and in the print media, I can only speculate about the question posed.  So I asked my long-time friend Peter Juge for his reactions.  Peter spent many years in Africa and the Middle East as a State Department foreign service officer and as a Mobil Oil officer in Nigeria and Saudi Arabia.

Peter’s reply was:

“All I know, Tom, is it is more than just Christianity. It is toward the whole package that the West represents today - our entire liberal life style including all our indulgences, lack of morals, women’s rights, even our casual dress. The West is very frightening to them not because of Christianity but the appeal of the former.

Somehow, they don’t really understand how, Westernization has sliped stealthliy into Saudi Arabia, and the rest of the Arab world; but it surely has - MacDonalds, KFC, Booze, Raunchy Videos, that titilate but offend. It is very much like the events that took place “back when” in our Bible Belt. But there “sufistication” so-to-speak won; that was the national norm and it prevailed.

The BIG difference in the Arab world is - the fundamentalist Muslims control education. From grade school through high school, it is the mullahs who are in charge. And who keep youth on the path of righteousness. There is one hell of a turmoil going on within people in the Arab world trying to deal with this. The current explosion is not surprising.

And wait, just wait, until, when, and I think it is when rather than if, Arab women en masse deceide they have had enough of the mullahs. I have no way of knowing what that will produce, but somehow I just don’t think it will necessarily be the boon for us we may think it is. Just have a look at whom the West is throwing up as role models for them.”

That suggests antipathy more to the liberal-socialist establishment that claim to be Christian, because it’s that half of our population who measure social progress by the degrees to which hedonistic license crowds out old ideals of personal morality.  I know nothing specific about the religious laws of Islam that prescribe personal conduct, but it’s probable that the life of personal responsibility preached by Christianity is more congruent with Islam than the licentiousness of which Manhattan and Hollywood liberals are champions.

On the other hand, socialistic collectivism is more compatible with Islam than is Judeo-Christian individualism, which pushes moral responsibility onto each person.  Islam views the Koran as the literal and exact word of Allah, which governs political and religious conduct within a single framework.  It is therefore more in synch with socialism. which decapitates civilization by destroying all spiritual religious content and rolls everything under the regulatory scrutiny of intellectual councils.

From a longer-range historical perspective, however, it appears that nothing other than Islam is compatible with Islam.  For a thousand years after Mohammed’s Hegira in 622 AD, there never was a decade when the militant forces of Islam weren’t conquering and pillaging Christian cities in the Eastern and Western Roman Empires.  For perspective on that I recommend Bernard Lewis’s short tome, “What Went Wrong? The Clash Between Islam and Modernity in the Middle East.”

Osama Bin Ladin and other Islamic radicals, as well as American and European liberals, use the Crusades as a justification for terrorist attacks on the West.  Hypocrisy is too weak a word to characterize that assertion.  Muslims had been slaughtering Christian males and selling Christian women and children into slavery for roughly 700 years before the first Crusade.  Western Europe for 700 years lived in mortal terror of Islamic military conquest.  In short, Islam is a thousand times more guilty of aggression and crime than the Christian Western world.

We are, therefore, not dealing with a rational situation in confronting Islamic terrorism.  Unlike the situation in normal international disputes, we are not called upon to craft a reasonable diplomatic solution to disputes over territory or natural resources.  We are dealing with people who have only one objective: to kill us and obliterate every trace of Western civilization.

For that insurmountable reason, liberal-socialists’ faith in collective security via international agreements negotiated in the UN is bound to fail, just as every other aspect of liberal-socialism has failed since 1789.