Re: TERRORISM: looking for solutions

From: Mike Lorrey (
Date: Thu Sep 13 2001 - 16:49:50 MDT>
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Damien Sullivan wrote:
> Quick response to Greg's demonization of Islam:
> The Israelis quote the Old Testament to justify their atrocities in Israel;
> shall we condemn Judaism?
> And if Islam is so nasty, how come Moslem countries were historically more
> tolerant of other religions than Christian Europe? Christians and Jews were
> second-class citizens in the Arab Empire, but they were citizens. In Europe
> Moors weren't, and Jews were confined to the ghetto, or subjected to pogroms,
> at least for a long time.

Until the rise of muslim fundamentalism in the 1400s. The popular
revisionist claims are that muslims never hurt jews, yet there were
persistent campaigns to force conversion, and the 'second class citizen'
discrmination is the same thing that the muslims have generally claimed
is Israels treatment of palestinians. Why put an expiration date on

> I don't think you can brush over the history of these peoples. Afghanistan is
> a poor, violent, country, which got abused by the Soviets. The Palestinians
> were among the most well-off and educated of the Arabs, before they got
> invaded by the Jews and then crushed between them and the Arab armies.

Most palestinians are generally descended from jews forced to convert to
islam in order to escape second class citizenship to rise in the Ottoman

> The
> whole region's poor, resource-poor, and colonialized enough to develop
> grievances and not enough to pick up good habits. Except maybe for Iraq,
> which was a good secular country before the Gulf War...

Only demonstrating that religious fanatics don't have a monopoly on
extremism. I would hardly call the Baathist party a 'good' secular

> with sanctions, come
> poverty; with poverty, comes religion, and veils on women... The revolution
> in Iran has something to do with with our support of the oppressive Shah. And
> yet, Iran seems to have the most democratic structure of any Arab country (not
> that Iran is Arabic); it's just that the democratic decisions get overruled by
> the clerics. But there's movement toward moderation.

The persians were always the elite in the Ottoman world up until the
ascendancy of the Turks. The Shah provided western freedoms, which
offended the clerics, but the 'elected' prime minister we ousted was a
Soviet pawn as well. The Shiite idea of freedom was the freedom to
oppress anyone who isn't a cleric. The Pahlavis at least had a
historical record of leadership and stability. They weren't created out
of thin air.

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