The International Writers Magazine:Things Fall Apart
HYPOCRISY and Jihad
1978, Ayatollah Khomeini stormed into Tehran and evicted Shah
Reza Pahlavi from the Peacock Throne. So ended the
dynasty of the Persian King and the door to a new era of Islamic
theological rule in Iran was opened. The Western world sat back,
watched and accepted. The Iranian crowds were so enthralled with
their new leader that they destroyed breweries, evicted foreigners,
burnt American flags and wrapped up their women in black.
They did not stop
at demonstrating their anger until they stormed the United States embassy
and held the diplomatic core hostage for over 400 days. Except for President
Jimmy Carter, who incidentally was probably the most human and peace
loving president the United States has ever had, the Western world sat
back, watched and again did nothing. Then along came the war between
Iraq and Iran. For eight years, two Islamic factions fought a bitter
conflict that left over 1 million dead. The West still kept silent.
That is, except for the USA that fed Iraq with sufficient weapons to
keep its arms industry in the black and feed its scientists with information
for further development of even more sophisticated destructive machinery.
But in 1989 a new kind of threat was laid out on the democratic Western
table. An obscure and unknown British author called Salman Rushdie wrote
a book called The Satanic Verses. The book irritated the
Iranian leader to such to the extent that he issued a death warrant
on the blasphemous writer. He called on all Muslims around the world
to seek and kill Mr. Rushdie. What did the Western world do? You guessed!
And now we have the whole issue raised once again, but on a grandiose
scale. A series of cartoons printed in a Danish newspaper, the Jyllands-Posten
indecently depicting the Prophet Muhammad has upset our Islamic brethren
the world over. Muslims everywhere are on the rampage burning Western
embassies, destroying Christian churches and even shooting priests in
such far away places as Lebanon, Syria, Turkey and Indonesia. Demonstrations
are taking place with all kinds of anti-Western slogans, chants and
menacing threats invoking a Holy War. Politicians are scared
stiff, journalists are flabbergasted and the overall Western democratic
population is dumbfounded. Rivers of ink have flown in all directions
searching for reasons, answers, and solutions yet in the end it all
boils down to the same issue. East is east and West is west and
never the twain shall meet. Lets face it; we are all, Muslims,
Christians, Jews, Hari Krishnas and other Godly followers in an
almighty fix. Forget about global warming, South American nationalism,
stock market results, bird flu, Aids, poverty, economic upturn or downturn
and umpteen numbers of other worldly problems, the human race faces
a crucial situation and far more dangerous situation than all the rest
put together. Unless something is done pretty soon to appease the flames,
this new Islamic furore is going to end up by destroying all of us,
one way or another.
Who is to blame? No one and everyone, yet I would start with Western
We can all go back centuries to the days of Catholic inquisitions, expulsion
of Muslims and Jews from el Andalus and dozens of other
historical events that could be used to construe the hypothesis of todays
anti-Western attitudes. Yet, without sounding like a worn out 33rpm
record, the creation of the state of Israel and the expulsion of the
Palestinians way back in the 1940s is what triggered the whole
affair off. For the past 60 years, the Western world has allowed this
sizzling situation to fester without really doing much about it. Every
president of the United States has had a go at trying to work out a
peace deal. All have failed. The United Nations has been
going over the process year after year, decade after decade arriving
always at the same conclusion; status quo! Why do I consider the West
hypocritical? Ill tell you. Its simple; its the oil.
The West has been living off the fruits of oil for nearly two centuries.
Industry, business, commerce and superb standards of living have all
been fuelled, if you pardon the pun thanks to the rich oil fields in
the Islamic world. No government, and it does not matter from what continent,
dares tamper with the Arab hierarchy in case the pumps are suddenly
shut down. In the old days, everything was running smoothly until the
Shah of Iran upped the prices in the mid 70s. Suddenly the West
was in turmoil. It did not matter when he was eventually kicked out,
provided the new bosses kept the stuff flowing. The Arab world rejoiced
in their new found wealth and everyone was happy. But the Israeli-Palestinian
wound continued to fester.
I ask; why cant Israel accept a Palestinian state? Is it so difficult?
Why cant Arabs recognise Israel once and for all? Why has the
West not stopped the Islamic hatred years ago? Nobody dares!
Take the feminist movements in the West. Equality in all directions
translated into sexual freedom, similar pay packages, identical opportunities
in the private and public sector have all been achieved thanks to thousands
of protests, marches, government lobbying and all other tools within
a democracy that can be used in the name of female freedom.
Why is it though, that women have never condemned, in earnest, male
Islamic treatment of the opposite sex? Why dont we see similar
movements aimed at them? Sure, there have been tapered down debates
on television or articles in womens magazines, but whole scale
protest? Never! And were talking about nearly a third of the worlds
population that is breaking the human rights rules!
Then there is the press. For years the Western press has lambasted dictatorships
around the world from South America to the Balkans, from the Far East
to Africa. Yet when it comes to some of the most ruthless dictatorships
in the Middle East we have absolute silence. If we look into objective
or subjective criticism that include the so called tabloid
press there is no hesitation to insult the British Royal family, to
give an example, or ridicule the United States president, not to mention
the Pope. Ah! But suddenly the cat is out of the bag. Along come the
Danes and appear to blaspheme a Muslim prophet. Lordly be! Freedom of
the press, Western press that is, is put to the test. Some journalists
are saying, whoopee! Its a free for all. Others are
hiding under their printers. Hypocrites!
Then we have the politicians. Why are all the Western ones, especially
the Europeans trying their utmost to cover up the foul up? Why are they
pussy footing around when they should be standing up and telling their
Middle Eastern counterparts, all together, look, you guys, you
better control your people or else weve all had it!
I tell you, were in a real mess and I have no way of telling how
its all going to end, but one thing is clear. Its about
time we in the West faced up to the fact that the Jihad
has started. It could be every-man-for-himself in the very
© James Skinner. February 2006.
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