This is an interesting point. First of all Rubin is not saying that Jared Loughner was indeed influenced by ‘political rhetoric’, though many in the main stream media are insisting that he was (for political gain of course). US political discourse pales in comparison to the highly charged rhetoric that’s the norm in the Middle East.
The point being made here is, that there are millions of murderous types on the scale of Jared Loughner, throughout the ME, of whom there is no question of their being fired up by the political/religious inspired rhetoric that one can hear there on a daily basis, and yet, Western leaders fail to recognize this.
If you look closer, the streets of the ME are filled to the brim with a lot of Jared Loughner types, with some of them sitting as heads of state. KGS
If One Extremist Gunmen Can Do So Much Damage in America, How About Ten Million Such People In The Middle East?
By Barry Rubin
When one crazed or ideologically obsessed gunman starts shooting in Arizona, people condemn him and start bemoaning the state of their society. How about a place with ten million people like that who are treated as heroes?
America this week is awash in a huge and passionate debate over whether angry political disagreements and harsh criticisms of certain views or groups inspired the attack on an American congresswoman (Jewish and a strong supporter of Israel, by the way). I’m not going to enter into that argument right now but I want to point out the Middle Eastern ramifications of what’s going on here.
Every day for more than a half century, Arabs and Muslims have been inundated every day with hatred for Israel, America, the West, Jews, and often Christians. You can read transcripts of Syrian broadcasts or Palestinian speeches from 50 years ago that sound just like what is being said by their successors now.
Let’s say that the proportion of lies, slanders, extremism,and incitement in the American discourse is one-tenth of one percent of all the words spoken on controversial issues. The equivalent figure for the Middle East is well over 95 percent.