Speaking in the beautiful seaside city of Bergen Norway, Irshad Manji –a modernist Muslim woman, author of The Trouble with Islam Today and the maker of acclaimed documentary Faith without Fear– states:
“Western journalists are too careful. They feel ignorant and do not dare to ask the critical questions. Western ignorance is a form of racism in the worst sense, and fundamentalism gets off too lightly,”
Irshad Manji makes a valid point. Due to ignorance many Islamists and their supporters do not have to fear that they’ll face the same type of tough journalistic enquiries/questions as other members of society. They count on the ignorance of the media where Islam/Islamism is concerned, as well as on their own ability to obfuscate issues while playing the victim. It’s a tremendous mix that works, so when viewed from the Islamists’ prospective why would they change it?
In light of this fact, I am not surprised that when a modernist Muslim voice comes along like Irshad Manji, the strongest resistance to her message comes not from the ME, but from Islamists living within West, notably from Scandinavia and from Norway in particular. Manji says that:
“Jihad is an increasing phenomenon also in the West. I get more death threats from Western Europe than from the Arab world. Many of them in fact are from Scandinavia and Norway,”
The Islamists’ utopian message is a hopeless mixed bag of failed ideas, promises, and endless nightmares, and such an ideologies can’t ever hope to compete in the open market place of ideas, they’ll lose in every confrontation. So that’s where lying, obfusctaion, intimidation and death threats come in handy.
I recall the Sharon cartoon brouhaha a few years back, in which the former PM of Israel was characterized in a cartoon as a war mongering Jew eating a hapless Palestinian baby. It won the United Kingdom’s Political Cartoon Society’s best cartoon award, and when its founder, Tim Benson was asked why we never see an Arab leader presented in the same way:
Himel: My question to you is, why, in all these [images] don’t we see Sharon and Arafat eating babies?
Benson: Maybe because Jews don’t issue fatwas.
Himel: What do you mean by that?
Benson: Well, if you upset an Islamic or Muslim group, as you know, fatwas can be issued by Ayatollahs and such, and maybe it’s at the back of each cartoonist’s mind, that they could be in trouble if they do so.
Himel: If they do what?
Benson: If they depict, uh, say, an Arab leader in the same manner. Himel: Then they could suffer?
Benson: Then they could suffer death, couldn’t they?
Irshad Manji and Ayaan Hirsi Ali are two of the bravest women today, and it’s no wonder the Islamists and their supports are desperately afraid of their modernist Muslim message, the Islamists have nothing of value to offer in its place. More here *L* kGS