Friday, July 15, 2005

Lots of madmen have had their say, but only for a day

I have to say, I never thought I'd see an editorial this honest and straightforward about the unpleasant facts of terrorism in a Canwest-owned Vancouver newspaper: "A religion of peace vs. apologists for terrorism." Hours after the terror attacks on the London subway and a bus last week, the Canadian Islamic Congress issued a brief statement that condemned the bombing. It offered no condolences, expressed no grief, displayed no shock; it was instead a directive to the public not to blame Islam. "We hope Canadian Muslims are not found guilty by association," said its national president, Mohamed Elmasry. Criticism forced him to subsequently toss in some disingenuous sympathy, but he'd shown his true colours. That Elmasry should be speaking as the head of any Islamic organization is an affront to what its followers call a religion of peace. Last year, he suggested all Israelis over the age of 18 should be murdered, arguing that because Israel has a civilian army they are legitimate targets for Palestinian suicide bombers. There were calls for his resignation, which Muslim leaders refused. Later, on a CBC radio program, he defended Islamic terrorism, saying the colonial powers committed worse atrocities and deserved what they got. Earlier this year, Elmasry defended the Syrian occupation of Lebanon as a peacekeeping mission and described Iraq under Saddam Hussein as some sort of paradise with full employment, a stable public service infrastructure, and one of the leading Middle East states in administration, education and health care before the intervention of the international coalition plunged it into chaos. No mention of the gassing of the Kurds, the torture chambers and rape rooms, the attack on Kuwait, war with Iran or the Scud missiles fired at Israel. As long as apologists for terrorism like Elmasry are allowed to be spokesmen for Islam, all Muslims are vulnerable to being found guilty by association. Bingo. It goes on, too, cataloguing all those facts - the appalling numbers of British Muslims positively gleeful at the 7/7 attack, the ideology of hate taught by Saudi-funded madrassas, the megalomaniacal intentions of militant Islamists to re-establish a far-reaching empire where all nonbelievers can be killed, suppressed, or forcibly converted, and the complete disconnect between Iraq, Afghanistan, and any purported justification for terrorism - surely familiar to most blog readers, but only now osmosing out to the non-news-junkie general public. In a Vancouver newspaper. There's hope for Canada yet, if we're finally getting to the point where honest debate about uncomfortable truths - damaging as they may be to the multiculti myth - can be aired. (Via NealeNews.)

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