My published reply on Daniel Pipes’s poser : Getting Serious about identifying Islamists.
Note : Some parts of this blog do not appear in the original reply.
Is Peter’s right to privacy more important than Paul’s right to life and the lives of his family, friends and neighbours?
Let’s not confuse between “Islamists’ and “Muslims.” An Islamist in the present context is one who intends to do or does social damage and mass murder in the name of Islam. Islamist-terrorists could be bearded, turbaned and fierce looking brown men from the East; they could be white, seemingly mild-mannered and soft-spoken Christian-born youngsters from Arkansas or Honolulu or Glasgow from church-going families (assuming, for the moment, that church-going families are paragons of virtue).
The former are trained to be violent towards non-believers right from their cradle; others are those who suddenly discovered that Islam is the right path to heaven and Bashar-al Assad is the cruelest villain who needs to be caught and punished, and for that reason rush to Syria via an obliging Turkey immigration. It could even be some who get a violent erection at the sight of one cutting another’s throat ever so slowly and steadily while mouthing the greatness of Allah and his Prophet. You might also find among them a young teenage girl (Christian-born, Hindu-born or Muslim-born) who fantasizes adventure in temporarily marrying a Jihadist with blood-stained hands and then marrying another when this one is dead. It takes all kinds to make up an Islamist.
You have all kinds among those who had gone to Syria to ‘fight the villain Assad” and then are forced to stick around and cut throats lest their own throats be cut. From Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and other few Muslim countries, there is a steady flow after sound battle-training byTaliban, ISI , Al-Qaeda, Harkat-ul-Jihad-al Islami Bangladesh (HuJI-B) and Boko Haram and Al Shabab from Western Africa. There is also the free flow of funds and channelling of trade (oil, mainly) through supposedly US-friendly (and practically US-made) Saudi Arabia.
So how do you stem the flow? By vigilance and counter-measures, but not by relentless killing. Every Muslim – good or bad – killed will be seen as the murder of a Muslim (not an Islamist-terrorist) and thereby beget a dozen in his place. Screen and watch everyone – visitor or domestic – without isolating Muslim citizens for special screening and extra-intensive and insensitive treatment. Big brother is watching anyways, so let him set his eyes a little more carefully on all citizens.
The government is already encroaching on privacy by frisking the private regions of every individual walking into an airport or similar places where people gather where the ‘Islamist’ is likely to find a more effective ‘yield’ in human lives and limbs. They easily find the breast implant s, copper IUD in the vagina, secret cameras, pace-makers – even staples on your ribs and probably chuckle over the findings at tea time. So in reality personal privacy no longer exists. (It never existed – after all, the Biggest Brother, God, had always been watching you even when you fiddled with yourself in the bathroom).
Not long ago, British immigration used to conduct ‘virginity tests’ on South Asian women entering the Country pretending to be newly married to British citizens. It is safely assumed that George Bush had installed an eavesdropper in Angela Merkels’ bedroom and that the CIA wouldn’t let Obama remove it. So what? Life goes on and ageing Angela probably has a blissful married life with Joachim regardless. When it is a case of lives versus privacy, life assumes far greater importance and, like it or not , we tacitly accept it. So search and eavesdrop better. It is already being done, and a number of suicide bombings and gun attacks were presumably foiled before they could happen; though some unfortunately got through. Minimize the possibility even further.
Religious fanatics are a dangerous lot, as long as their words prevail even in parts of the society there will never be peace. A Jihadist like Anjem Choudary, who openly speaks for the cause of Islamic State and gets away with it in England, would quote the civilized laws of western nations when caught or tried while insisting on practicing the laws of Moses borrowed by Sharia in the host country. I do not think there is anything wrong in democratic governments enforcing the Sharia law on those who want Sharia law within the area of their occupation, or the Inquisition laws of Christianity on those who want those laws to prevail within their community and demand that those laws should be imposed in the entire nation. Such people thrive even in the West – particularly the United States. How about seating Anjem Choudary in a pit and stoning him for being a terrorist originally from the developing world? (That racist and discriminatory suggestion is on account of the fact that Saudis don’t stone or behead people from the West; only those from the ‘developing’ nations).
United States is the larges exporter of weapons. If you include the clandestine exports through smugglers, which go directly to the extremists – Islamists – in the Arabian and North African regions, Pakistan and Afghanistan, they are way above all the rest. It is well known that Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Turkey and several African countries provide secret channels for equipping the ‘Islamists’ who do not make any sophisticated weapons on their own. It is only a matter of time before they get hold of a dirty bomb. If Mr. AQ Khan could sell the technology to such customers diametrically opposite the religious spectrum (and both anathema to the Sunni majority of Pakistan) as North Korea and Iran, there is no reason to believe that the lure of money, extreme religiosity or the desire to annihilate the Shia Sect and other Kaffirs, annex Kashmir or destroy Israel will not persuade them to part with, even if only un-enriched uranium – which would be enough to make a dangerous number of dirty bombs. Islamists cannot be conquered till the greedy weapon manufacturers of the US and Easter Europe stop supplying them sophisticated weapons through secret channels for money. Allah has given his jihadists only the technology to make crude bombs, but they still have lots of oil wealth from captured areas as well as donations from the filthily rich Sheikhs.
It would be right to watch every citizen – I’m sure CIA gleefully watch the President since the Oval Office episode – for his action and inclination. Don’t interfere with legitimate criticism of the government or the governing, but look out for secret meetings, sudden spurt in religious enthusiasm, unusual interest in guns and chemicals that could be used to make crude bombs. The eyes of suspicion should fall on all – Christian, White Supremacist, pro-Nazi, Hindu, Jewish, Sikh and Buddhist enthusiasts – for all of them have a way of causing harm by becoming terrorists, or by enlarging the Islamic spirit of vendetta.
Teach evolution in school (with a caveat that science has a long way to go to understand it all); let the parents or the preacher teach Genesis, Salaat or Gayatri at home if they must. The child will learn to sift out the nonsense when she grows up. Religions give rise to extremists though you might not call them Islamists. There will be lesser and lesser Mike Bickle and Billy Grahams and Ayatollah Khomeini’s in the coming generations.
Allow no public display of religious devotion, wearing of religious (though not cultural) identity symbols or public worship. Close not just the Madrasas, but all religious and missionary schools. Stop school assemblies where prayers are offered to particular gods – any god. One can always learn one’s religion at home; there will be no stoppage of priests visiting their parishes so long as they don’t travel through Sodom or Gomorrah to get there. God should know by now that Christian (Catholic) agents of his are the worst and most numerous paedophiles in the world. Certainly prevent televised sermons and fake healing.
For 1300 years the muezzin had been calling the faithful to prayers before the sinful kaffirs invented the loudspeaker; he can still do it from now on. Did Jesus use a bell? No. Is there a mention of bells in God’s temples or tabernacles in the Bible? No. The only bells mentioned in the Bible are tiny ones to be worn by Aaron the priest when he enters the ‘Holy Place” and they couldn’t have made much shrill and annoying noise. So keep the church bells un-rung, or at least muted. This should also apply to the bells in the huge ostentatious Hindu temples that dot not only Asia, but also Europe and British Island in every town.
There might be a hue and cry if you discriminate between religions; hence treatment and restraints should be equal and equitable. Soon enough the Christian will find peace in not having to watch a horde of Muslims displaying their backsides to the street, and Muslims will be happy in not hearing the temple chants and church bells. China is doing it – if only they had not given a special status to Uighur-majority Xinjiang Province, they would have had absolute social peace. I have not heard of any Chinese, even an Uighur, rushing to join the Islamic State.
Answer to Islamic extremism is not counter-extremism. Americans can bomb a few religious goons along with a lot many innocent civilians (not to forget women children, babies in the womb and cattle as desired by God of the Bible), but they cannot bomb and destroy a mind-set. A lot many Muslims – not just the Islamists – feel that they have had a bad deal since the end of the first world war and Britain cut up the old Islamic world (much of it part of a Caliphate) like an ill-fitting jigsaw puzzle. The west has not shed the feeling that the starving (mostly made starving by their own avarice) ‘developed nations’ need to be looked down upon. Hindus think it is time for them to avenge the atrocities done to them by Muslims, conveniently forgetting the greater and more recent atrocities done by the ‘friendly’ British. Israelis believe that they have a right to the place that is historically theirs; Palestinians believe that Jews were never in the place except as a minority; and that they need to get back the place – at least a part of it. Pakistanis want to annex Indian side of Kashmir because its population is largely Muslim (especially after driving out the Hindus); many Kashmiris want to be independent and free of the eternal squabble – thereby (a few, fortunately) Hindus get the idea that India must declare itself a Hindu nation and render their own Muslim and Christian citizens second-class.
You churn all these grotesque ideologies together; you find that destroying the physical body of Islamic state (if you could) would not end the human suffering and death that began with Cane killing his brother Abel and God promising punishment only on those who would accuse Cane of the crime. Hatred of Jews (much as hatred of the Blacks, Asians and Hispanics) is rampant in the US and Europe; part of the support for Israel arises from the desire to keep Jews out of their parts of the world. Daniel Pipes supported Christian-evangelist Ted Cruz while the latter was still in the running, but Pastor Mike Bickle endorsed Ted Cruz in the hope that the latter will drive away Jews from the US! (The merciful Lord will show no mercy to his own tribe).Cruz defended the Pastor for some time till the opposition became unbearable. You hear of a clamour in the United States – a nation that grew fast and strong through free flow of immigrants and beliefs and boasts of maximum Nobel prizes on account of the immigrant Jews as well as other people of all faiths and denomination – to make it a Christian nation, and to dump the First Amendment that set an example to the rest of the civilized nations, while also wanting to strengthen the second amendment that would give every white a chance to take a shot at another white, black, Asian or whoever.
Religion begets hate. Racial or tribal hatred that leads to war is just the other side of the same coin. So discourage show-casing one’s religion. Instead ask the clerics to de-indoctrinate the indoctrinated and the would-be indoctrinated about the peaceful side of Islam (just as there could be a peaceful side to Christianity, Judaism or other religions) with greater enthusiasm and sincerity so that while the government is prying into everybody’s conversations and actions and shopping carts, there is a simultaneous attempt to create a situation that could do away with the big brother’s 24X7 watch sooner than later.
Islamists just happen to be a newer and different (not necessarily harsher) version of Crusades (which they quote often enough). Luckily, though Islamist’s Allah is the greatest, he has very few jet planes and drones. The advantage of it is that they will never win; disadvantage being that this bloodletting could go on and on.
Sorry to end with that note.