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Posted: 12 October 2008 12:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]  
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Wow, I’m about to catch hell from the Islamophobes and anti-Zionists alike on this one.

I’ll go with the anti-Zionists first…

Jewish populations in pre-1948 Muslim countries are well known. The conditions they lived in varied depending on the nature of politics and culture in the area.

Jews in Turkey were accepted, safe and active members of civil society for centuries. In fact, after the Reconquista Sultan Bayezid II said “Who are these [Spanish Christians] who make themselves poor by making me rich?” as he opened his country to Iberian refugees. After Israeli Independence Turkish Jews more or less stayed put, happy where they were. Jews in Muslim parts of India were just another ethnic group. Most left the subcontinent during the early 50s.

Jews in present day Syria, Iraq, North Africa, Yemen and a number of other places had been subject to long term, systematic discrimination and occasional official violence. In 1948 to about 1950 they were stripped of their land and possessions, attacked and expelled. The precise number of Jews displaced by Muslims like the number of Muslims displaced by Jews is not known. But towards the end of his life even Yasser Arafat (not what you’d call a hard core Zionist) allowed as how almost as many Jews had been dispossesed as Arabs. The UN at the time put the numbers in at least the hundreds of thousands.

Where did you think all those Israeli Sephardim came from?

It’s not “Israeli propaganda”. The facts are well-known to everyone with even a cursory knowledge of the history of the area.

Now for the Islamaphobes

By any measure more Muslim civilians have been killed by Jews and Christians in the last forty years than the other way around. I’m not just referring to battlefield casualties. Libyans blew up a couple planes. Many hundreds died when Reagan bombed population centers. The economic warfare against Iraq cost conservatively a quarter million lives, a probable majority women and children due to malnutrition, degraded water, lack of medical supplies and so on. Palestinian Arabs rocketed a lot of farmers, machine-gunned school buses, blew up schools and so on. But over the years Israel has killed a lot more of them than the other way around.

The killing in Iraq has not all been Sunni and Shia murdering each other, although there has been quite a bit of that. American cluster bombs, cruise missles, carpet bombing, artillery tanks and small arms have slaughtered many, many thousands. And a good bit of the ethnic cleansing has been part of American policy.

NATO led by the US has killed tens of thousands in Afghanistan. They are not all or even mostly Talibanis. Bomb a village to get the people shooting at you, and you will get a lot of people who aren’t. It may be acceptable losses. That’s a different discussion. But you can’t deny that they are civilian deaths.

By contrast, since the two wards began Western forces suffered fewere than 10,000 fatalities.

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Posted: 12 October 2008 01:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]  
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Telner, you won’t catch hell from me. I’m interested in facts, not affiliation. I perceive you are of similar mind. You are correct about Muslim integration of Jews in Moorish Spain. Don’t know about the more recent information, but I’ll take you at your word.

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Posted: 12 October 2008 05:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]  
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Here’s a fact: “You won’t succeed on Broadway if you don’t have any Jews.”

Sir Robin in Spamalot, by Eric Idle.

The nation that is friendliest to Jews seems to prosper.  Genesis 12:4. Go figure.

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Posted: 13 October 2008 05:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]  
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Great scholarship telner…this discussion could produce volumes of books.  Nice post Bruce!

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Posted: 13 October 2008 07:51 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]  
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mesomorph, is your avatar Gurdjieff?

If so, were you able to actually read “Beelzebub’s Tales”?

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Posted: 13 October 2008 09:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]  
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telner - 13 October 2008 11:51 PM

mesomorph, is your avatar Gurdjieff?

If so, were you able to actually read “Beelzebub’s Tales”?

Indeed, that is G.  Hoist a glass of Old Armagnac!

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Posted: 14 October 2008 09:07 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]  
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arildno - 11 October 2008 11:29 AM

Dee:
If you are told all through your childhood that only whores and other worthless women go about unveiled, then since you don’t want to be a worthless person, you’ll “willingly” go veiled.

How we should interpret this is, however, very simple:
Muslim women are morally incompetent, due to the brainwashing they have been subjected to.
Hence, for example, their “decision” to wear a veil cannot be regarded as the act of a fully rational individual for her own sake, and therefore, it would not necessarily be morally wrong to forbid her from wearing that veil, however much she wants to.
She is, quite simply, not morally mature enough to be respected for her “choice”.

You do this all the time—you morph from criticizing the ideology to making gross generalizations about millions of individuals who are adherents to that ideology, with no distinction between individuals and no acknowledgement that the interaction between any given individual and his or her various identities is bound to be complex and often even contradictory.  And anyone who calls you on it is “naive” or guilty of drawing a false equivilence between contemporary Muslim terror/Islamic fundamentalism and past or present sins of the Western world.

Well, you can’t paint me with that brush because you can search all day for a post from me stating that “what the Christians did back in the day was just as bad or worse”, or justifying “Muslim rage” as some sort of blowback, or some other nonsense.  I don’t play those games.

It would be useful, and realistic, and positive if we could search to find what is both generically wrong with Islam (it’s a “faith” after all) as well as what is specifically wrong with it (the odious moral code of the Quran, for starters), while at the same time acknowledging that over 1 billion people on this planet are at least nominal adherents, most of whom are complex, imperfect, not-always-as-rational-or-reason-based-as-we-would-prefer three-dimensional human beings who are stuck sharing the same mortal coil as you and I.

But no, you and Dee and the moron who started this thread just prefer to regurgitate “all Muslims are evil and you can’t trust any of them.”  All in the name of reason and individual conscience, I’m sure.

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Posted: 14 October 2008 09:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]  
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bigredfutbol - 14 October 2008 01:07 PM
arildno - 11 October 2008 11:29 AM

Dee:
If you are told all through your childhood that only whores and other worthless women go about unveiled, then since you don’t want to be a worthless person, you’ll “willingly” go veiled.

How we should interpret this is, however, very simple:
Muslim women are morally incompetent, due to the brainwashing they have been subjected to.
Hence, for example, their “decision” to wear a veil cannot be regarded as the act of a fully rational individual for her own sake, and therefore, it would not necessarily be morally wrong to forbid her from wearing that veil, however much she wants to.
She is, quite simply, not morally mature enough to be respected for her “choice”.

You do this all the time—you morph from criticizing the ideology to making gross generalizations about millions of individuals who are adherents to that ideology, with no distinction between individuals and no acknowledgement that the interaction between any given individual and his or her various identities is bound to be complex and often even contradictory.  And anyone who calls you on it is “naive” or guilty of drawing a false equivilence between contemporary Muslim terror/Islamic fundamentalism and past or present sins of the Western world.

Well, you can’t paint me with that brush because you can search all day for a post from me stating that “what the Christians did back in the day was just as bad or worse”, or justifying “Muslim rage” as some sort of blowback, or some other nonsense.  I don’t play those games.

It would be useful, and realistic, and positive if we could search to find what is both generically wrong with Islam (it’s a “faith” after all) as well as what is specifically wrong with it (the odious moral code of the Quran, for starters), while at the same time acknowledging that over 1 billion people on this planet are at least nominal adherents, most of whom are complex, imperfect, not-always-as-rational-or-reason-based-as-we-would-prefer three-dimensional human beings who are stuck sharing the same mortal coil as you and I.

But no, you and Dee and the moron who started this thread just prefer to regurgitate “all Muslims are evil and you can’t trust any of them.”  All in the name of reason and individual conscience, I’m sure.

You most certainly should not trust ANY childfucker worshipper, precisely BECAUSE he or she is a childfucker worshipper.
Rather, you are to demand from each of them to stop being a childfucker worshipper, and if they refuse, tighten the screw on them until they yield.
THAT is the proper moral attitude.

I’m certainly not blind to the trivial fact that Muslims have other personality traits and habits, but that is morally irrelevant, as long as they choose to align themselves to a fascistic death cult.

A person is never better than his worst attitude, and frequently far worse.

[ Edited: 14 October 2008 09:27 AM by arildno]
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Posted: 14 October 2008 09:30 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]  
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It would be useful, and realistic, and positive if we could search to find what is both generically wrong with Islam (it’s a “faith” after all) as well as what is specifically wrong with it (the odious moral code of the Quran, for starters), while at the same time acknowledging that over 1 billion people on this planet are at least nominal adherents, most of whom are complex, imperfect, not-always-as-rational-or-reason-based-as-we-would-prefer three-dimensional human beings who are stuck sharing the same mortal coil as you and I.

Fool.
It is for MUSLIMS it is incumbent to realize that non-Muslims are as worthy as themselves also when REMAINING non-Muslims, a realization that would necessitate the dissolution of their bond(age) to Islam.

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Posted: 14 October 2008 09:40 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]  
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bigredfutbol - 14 October 2008 01:07 PM
arildno - 11 October 2008 11:29 AM

Dee:
If you are told all through your childhood that only whores and other worthless women go about unveiled, then since you don’t want to be a worthless person, you’ll “willingly” go veiled.

How we should interpret this is, however, very simple:
Muslim women are morally incompetent, due to the brainwashing they have been subjected to.

You do this all the time—you morph from criticizing the ideology to making gross generalizations about millions of individuals who are adherents to that ideology, with no distinction between individuals and no acknowledgement that the interaction between any given individual and his or her various identities is bound to be complex and often even contradictory.

I think for people with more passionate biases or with a higher degree of authoritarian tendencies and who are less intellectually rigorous the fact that a part of their viewpoint intersects reality is often sufficient. For more responsible skeptics that suggests we may be on to something, but that we have to do the leg work to make sure, and to determine exactly what. But the morally and rationally incompetent automaton model does intersect reality in terms of authoritarians ... Muslim, Christian, Republican, Marxist (etc) authoritarians. Here’s some good intro material on the nature of the authoritarian beastie, and here’s probably the most authoritative study on them written up for laypersons, and perhaps the most pertinent chapter in terms of understanding neo-cons and theocrats both here in the US and in Muslim theocracies.

Byron

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Posted: 14 October 2008 09:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]  
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You do this all the time—you morph from criticizing the ideology to making gross generalizations about millions of individuals who are adherents to that ideology, with no distinction between individuals and no acknowledgement that the interaction between any given individual and his or her various identities is bound to be complex and often even contradictory.

Again, it is irrelevant if a person’s identity is “complex” or his world-view contradictory, as long as there are dominant elements within that making him or her regard people disagreeing with him or her on matters of faith as subhumans.
As Muslims are routinely told by their imams in mosques all across the world.
Cursing infidels is the main topic of their service to God.

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Posted: 14 October 2008 09:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]  
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arildno - 14 October 2008 01:46 PM

You do this all the time—you morph from criticizing the ideology to making gross generalizations about millions of individuals who are adherents to that ideology, with no distinction between individuals and no acknowledgement that the interaction between any given individual and his or her various identities is bound to be complex and often even contradictory.

Again, it is irrelevant if a person’s identity is “complex” or his world-view contradictory, as long as there are dominant elements within that making him or her regard people disagreeing with him or her on matters of faith as subhumans.
As Muslims are routinely told by their imams in mosques all across the world.
Cursing infidels is the main topic of their service to God.

And again, you are confusing the teachings of their imams (not all of whom are Wahabbis, of course) with each individual person’s own interpretation of those teachings.

It is clear that there is a serious problem in the Muslim world, and that Islam itself is the problem.  But you take your criticism a step too far when you imply—rather forcefully—that individual Muslims are simply blank slates for hate-filled preachers to write on.  You are also assuming that religious teachings will be the dominant element, or that a change in sociopolitical or economic status or geographic location would have no or little influence on how such teachings are processed.

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Posted: 14 October 2008 09:57 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]  
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arildno - 14 October 2008 01:30 PM

It would be useful, and realistic, and positive if we could search to find what is both generically wrong with Islam (it’s a “faith” after all) as well as what is specifically wrong with it (the odious moral code of the Quran, for starters), while at the same time acknowledging that over 1 billion people on this planet are at least nominal adherents, most of whom are complex, imperfect, not-always-as-rational-or-reason-based-as-we-would-prefer three-dimensional human beings who are stuck sharing the same mortal coil as you and I.

Fool.
It is for MUSLIMS it is incumbent to realize that non-Muslims are as worthy as themselves also when REMAINING non-Muslims, a realization that would necessitate the dissolution of their bond(age) to Islam.

Simple-minded dolt.
It’s not an either/or proposition.  One can realize that there is nothing to be gained from using atheism as an excuse for bigotry and STILL believe that there needs to be an accounting within the Muslim world by Muslims themselves.

You simply cannot grasp that these are not mutually exclusive positions.  Either that, or you don’t want to.  I don’t know which.

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Posted: 14 October 2008 09:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 29 ]  
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bigredfutbol - 14 October 2008 01:53 PM
arildno - 14 October 2008 01:46 PM

You do this all the time—you morph from criticizing the ideology to making gross generalizations about millions of individuals who are adherents to that ideology, with no distinction between individuals and no acknowledgement that the interaction between any given individual and his or her various identities is bound to be complex and often even contradictory.

Again, it is irrelevant if a person’s identity is “complex” or his world-view contradictory, as long as there are dominant elements within that making him or her regard people disagreeing with him or her on matters of faith as subhumans.
As Muslims are routinely told by their imams in mosques all across the world.
Cursing infidels is the main topic of their service to God.

And again, you are confusing the teachings of their imams (not all of whom are Wahabbis, of course) with each individual person’s own interpretation of those teachings.

It is clear that there is a serious problem in the Muslim world, and that Islam itself is the problem.  But you take your criticism a step too far when you imply—rather forcefully—that individual Muslims are simply blank slates for hate-filled preachers to write on.

I’ve never said that.
However, individual Muslims break their individual duties in not actually severing, and condemning such preachers, and for that sin of negligence, the vast majority of Muslims are guilty.

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Posted: 14 October 2008 10:07 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 30 ]  
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arildno - 14 October 2008 01:58 PM

However, individual Muslims break their individual duties in not actually severing, and condemning such preachers, and for that sin of negligence, the vast majority of Muslims are guilty.

I more or less agree with you here; I would argue that significant numbers of Muslims come from relatively secular and tolerant cultures.  A Bosnian or secular Turkish Muslim might justifiably feel that it is unfair to hold him or her responsible for the religious extremism which is much more common—and often predominant—in many Arab countries, for example.

However, it would be refreshing to see the voices of moderation and tolerance in the Muslim world speak up more often, and more forcefully.  We are in agreement on this point.

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