Americans are immoral

24 May, '03

Why should Americans be worried about the image we are projecting to young people overseas?

from cbn news

People invariably associate the US and Americans with what they see on TV and the movie screens. The article referred to above is attempting to find out why these movies are “the fuel of terrorist hatred” where many teenagers in countries like Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Korea, Lebanon, India among others directly associate the people of the United States with what they see on screen.

Well youths are easy to influence and mold and it is the duty of parents in the first place to explain the facts to their children, rather than shirk that responsibility.

We have many taboos in our societies, sex is the foremost “don’t talk about it” subject followed until recently by politics. If we are too afraid to discuss current issues with our children then we are not preparing them for the real world. If they don’t know that we regard nudity and sex and whatever else as “wrong” by our society’s interpretations, how are they going to be fortified against these things themselves?

Soon they will be flying off to universities, integrate more with societies through their jobs. If we are to build a good generation, we must also talk openly about everything and make sure they understand that what they see on TV or the movie screen is just that, a movie, not part of reality and not necessarily reflect the true situation or beliefs of the American people.

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  1. anonymous says:

    I wonder…

    Hello there,

    I’m a guy from Sweden and would like to ask you a question. My question is: News we get here in Sweden make us believe all Arab countries has a serious grouch against US – why is that? Would really appreciate a straight answer on this if it’s possible for you to explain.

    Best regards – Janne Johnsson

  2. anonymous says:

    Judge not lest ye be judged

    What most people in other countries do not understand is that what is portrayed by the American media is by no means a true representation of American culture, ideals, or morals.

    Many Americans loathe hollywood and all of the rot associated with it.

    Hollywood is generally a vipers nest of sleaze which represents and portrays a small minority of the real America.

    Americans generally dismiss Hollywood as radicals who have little voice in America. The educated people here laugh at or ignore most of what goes on or comes from Hollywood.

    In America, anyone can create pretty much whatever they want and sell it in the open market.

    The conservatives and moderates (togther probably about 90% of the citizens) are rarely portrayed by Hollywood…..perhaps we are viewed as “boring” in contrast to the mostly junk which emanates from Hollywood.

    II would venture a guess that in just about every country, 10% are “wacko” and are tolerated by the rest of that society.

    Judging America by simply digesting Hollywood filth is about as logical as judging ones intelligence by simply looking at the color of their hair.

    -An “average” American
    (who is proud of America, despite Hollywood)[p][/p]

  3. anonymous says:

    Re: I wonder…

    Not at all Janne. I would venture an educated guess that the vast majority of Arabs love America and Americans. The largest Arab population outside of the Arab world is in Detroit! They’re more than 300,000 strong. That should tell you a little about this issue.

    We have had an excellent relationship with the States since it began. We admire their principals, they’re constitution and their economy. We admire their military might. We’ve both been friends (as nations) for quite some time, and like any friendship, we might get into disagreements now and then, but that doesn’t (shouldn’t) shake the strong foundation of friendship.

    I hope I have shown a little bit of this feeling on this site.

  4. anonymous says:

    Re: Judge not lest ye be judged

    here here

  5. anonymous says:

    Re(2): I wonder…

    The biggest gripe the Arab and Muslim world in general have is the double-standard of successive American administrations vis-a-vis Israel and Palestine. You have to agree that their policies are not even handed. On one hand they talk about freedoms and democracy while on the other they stand against the ONLY popularly elected Arab leader: Yasser Arafat!

    If Bush and other administrations are to be believed in their postulations that they are with democracy, realising their errors for over 60 years, and promoting the rights of man in the Middle East specifically, then they must also balance their support and views with the Palestinians and Israelis.

    I don’t even pretend to have an answer to this dire question, but it is very plain that the Arabs and Muslims will probably never be sympathetic to the United States unless this disproportionate support is reconciled, and they will forever regard any American move as having an ulterior motive.

    The States is committed to the survival and support of Israel, now Bush says that they are committed to democracy in the Middle East. Is America ready for what that will bring if we do convert all of our current systems of authoritarian hereditary rule to democratic ones that might well result in Islamic republics which intrinsically be against US policies and interests?

  6. anonymous says:

    Re(1): I wonder…

    Hi again,

    Thanks for your answer and yes, I have noticed the broad spectrum of different views on your site. But still, it seems to me that the only one’s disapproving violently against US politics is Arabic people – movements, groups or individuals. Or maybe it’s not only the US but the western world? Anyway, I can actually see the reason for protesting against the US – looking back on the last 50 years or so would probably have most sane people speak up. But the extreme form it has taken are to me totally absurd.

    In my opinion there must be another way – if not, we haven’t learned anything from our history.

    Best regards – Janne

  7. anonymous says:

    Re(3): I wonder…

    Hello again,

    … and once again, thanks for answering.

    The Palestine conflict really is a tragedy, no doubt about that. It seems to have been going on forever and at the moment it’s looking worse than ever. To be honest, I believe we have to stop relying on politicians and so called leaders to solve every problem for us. In this case it’s more obvious than ever, I think they had their chance (well, many chances) but all of them have failed. So, why can’t ordinary people just sit down and talk to each other? As human beings we all have the same needs and desires, should it really have to be so hard to get along with your neighbors?

    I must confess that I don’t appreciate religion in any shape. In my opinion it’s the single worst cause for misery, cruelty, stupidity and any other human error you can think of, and I suspect it plays a major role in this conflict. But you can find a message in most religions, telling people to be kind to their fellow man, to help and support each other, etc. It’s a good message! It’s also a message everyone seems to be ignoring.

    Well, maybe I’m a dreamer. But I really do think that too many politicians have proven them selves to be corrupted crooks and religion is only one of the tools they use to stay in power. We (us, humans) should know better by now and we don’t need any of it anymore. The dark ages is gone – time to start thinking without restrictions!

    Do you think we will live to see a solution to this someday? What do you think would happen if the US cut their support of Israel? Wouldn’t that turn the region into an open war zone, soon after? Could Israel even survive as a state without the support?

    Democracy in the Middle East? No, I don’t think US realize the consequences and impact it would have. I mean, from what I have seen on CNN news, they were expecting people to throw flowers, not grenades, at them in Iraq. What a surprise… it’s kind of naive, I guess. Don’t get me wrong, I really like the States and I know a lot of nice people living there. It’s a pity they have to have so poor leaders, though – the guy they have right now reminds me of Homer Simpson and the Clown College episode.

    Best regards – Janne

  8. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Ok, Mahmood. I’m sorry, but I understand. Is there a way of exchanging email addrsses w/you and your posters privately, without posting them on the blog? It is not something I would abuse – many blogs allow posters to choose – or not – to be contacted via email – without actually giving up the address.

    And don’t worry – I’ll be back.

  9. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Thank you for your visit and am gratified that you enjoyed it! Please continue to come back.

    It is very naive to assume that any one person or viewpoint can offer a solution. I personally take whatever is broadcast with a pinch of salt. Not a single broadcast entity can say that they are unbiased. And no opinion is unbiased either, we are creatures of our own habits and environments, therefore people will read into an issue what they want. The intelligent person though is s/he who can stand up and say that they’re mistaken in their earlier assumption or view.

    I personally now feel that the American people are committed to Iraq and bringing democracy to it will prevail. I also think that the war on terror is good in as far as bringing democracies to our region. I would be thrilled if we have democratic processes as you enjoy in the States, controvertial they may be at times, but the essence works. There is a lot to learn from you and the other true democracies of the world, alas, we cannot commit completely to that ideal in our areas at the moment because we are ruled by a feudal system that is not going to disapear any time soon that’s why I (we) envy Iraq its position now. The despot is gone and the people even now have their hard work cut out for them in ensuring that not another takes over the mantle. They have the opportunity to draw their own modern constitution. If Germany and Japan’s experiences are anything to go by, then Iraq will be the powerhouse of the Middle East in the not too distant future.

    As to the Palestinian/Israely thorny issue, because of my bias, environment, upbringing I cannot but say that I stand with the Palestinian side. BUT, I do NOT condone violance in any of its forms, from either side. What I do believe however is that Israel whether we like it or not will stay. Our actions as Arabs in the last century proves it and leaves nothing to doubt. The Arabs are about 300 million, the Israelies are about 6 million, so if the Arabs all got together (will never happen) and spat at Isreal it will drawn! But do we have the mettle to stand against it and do something concrete?

    Forget it.

    In the News and World Report which deals with Islamic terrorism, it says that Saudi alone has spent some US$70 BILLION from 1975 to date supporting questionable organisations. I say that if that money was instead spent on upgrading our educational systems, democracy and human rights in the WHOLE Arab world, we would not have a problem with terrorism nor Israel. By now good educated people would have graduated and possibly reached postiions of power which might have very well tipped the scales into the Arab’s field to do something concrete about the Palestinian/Israeli issue.

    This lethergy in solving the problem experienced by the Arabs is a direct result of the absense of democracy. We just hope that Iraq will be the example in the future for our children to follow, maybe then all the pending issues will be on their way to resolution.

    Can we carry on a respectful and honest discussion of this very thorny issue on this blog? Initially I think yet we can, however I can guarantee that it will digress very quickly once the links appear on Google and I will be branded a heratic (have been already!), unpatriotic, against Arabs, and a plethora of other choice adjectives. The “other” side will take it as an opportunity as well. So in short, no we can’t publicly in any case!

  10. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Mahmood, I just found your site today, and I must say I am delighted. You are a joy to read. I would like to post here as an American to address one of the issues that has been raised here in the comments section: are Americans ready for the consequences of democracy in the Arab world. On a superficial level, the answer is “no”. We are always coming to terms, via one issue or another, with the consequences of our OWN democracy. But I think the premise of the question is that you assume that WE assume any given democracy will ‘agree” with the U.S. on any given issue. We do not. Democracy provides a venue for confronting disagreements and conflicting interests that is not perfect, but better than anything else devised so far.

    Also, regarding that “they’ll greet us with flowers” shiboleth – this is the ‘strawman’ technique of argument. Identify the ‘other’ (in this case the media vs. the administration) with a false premise, destroy the premise, discredit the ‘other’. As you are not here in the States, I feel free to assume you do not see the entire panoply of the media. And I must say, the internet has been a blessing when it comes to getting a robust picture of what goes on.

    Now, I would love to have a respectful, honest discussion of the Palestinian/Israeli issue and I think this site might be a good forum. But that is up to Mahmood.

    grayp

  11. anonymous says:

    Americans aren’t immoral

    Greetings from the UK Mahmood. I’m an American that has lived in Bahrain for almost six years providing communications services for the US base as well as supporting the Bahraini military.

    You’ve got a great website and a wonderfully refreshing outlook on politics both in Bahrain and concerning the US. I disagree that Americans are immoral– there are more muslims living in the US than in some of the gulf countries.

    I’d say the majority of Americans do *not* fall into the typecast that hollywood promotes. Thank you for understanding this. While I was in Bahrain (during the real ugly periods of bombings and protests), most of the misconceptions were thrown in my face by many Bahrainis and mostly, Saudis. I decided to leave Bahrain right after September 11th and particularly, when those two sailors were almost lynched in Budaiya. The GDN published several falsehoods of the events– one of the victims was my office mate and after a serious beating (both eyes blackened, nose fractured) he was held down and burned with cigarettes.

    I have to admit, following those events and the US embassy being molotov’d, I had enough of the anti-US hatred. I’m glad to see your perspective in the community and hope that your feelings permeate the area.

    Interestingly, I came back for three days to help with a computer problem in November and was trapped inside Applebee’s when that rioting mob came down on the Bahrain mall! I wasn’t hurt and only had a bit of tear gas in my lungs before we were able to get out and get back to the hotel. Still, I’m glad it wasn’t about the US.

    Take care and seriously, thanks helping smooth out misconceptions.

    Mick Lang

  12. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans aren’t immoral

    Mick I’m sorry that you have had such misfortune in Bahrain. My heart goes to you and your friends. Those criminals who mistreated your friend should have been put in prison and the key thrown out. Bastards. We keep saying that they’re “simple” people, fine, get the people who instigated, aided and abetted them into thinking that torturing anyone is a pardonable and even encouraged act. It’s like holding a single person responsible for his country’s action.

    I remember the reports in the GDN, and being Bahraini, I take everything the GDN prints with a truck-load of salt. The events were portrayed there that an American soldier kicked a pregnant shop assistant when his Ethiopian wife refused to pay rental charges for a wedding dress? The shop assistant called for help and the whole village came over and beat the American, his wife and a few of his friends. I’m sure that there is another side to this story. It’s just ugly. A situation which should have been contained went completely out of hand, and of course the police were no where to be found and they apparently were not called to solve the dispute. They should have done right from the start by the shop assistant. Calling a mob is easier it seems.

    It seems now that mob rule is the de facto standard of political expression in Bahrain now. This has to change, there are other ways to send your message and ensure that it is heard and acted upon. Some religious leaders have now started toning their sermons and telling people that getting out and demonstrating is not the only way to do it and are advising people not to get too emotional. Let’s see where this leads.

    As far as I’m concerned, I have no truck with anyone, American, European, Jew, Ismaeli, Muslim, Black, Blue, Green and any other shade. I just want to see the day when in my chosen country of abode that society as a whole respects personal freedoms and accepts that there are several ways to look at an issue. This is what I hope to accomplish through this online diary. If I have riled or raved about an issue, it should be taken as constructive criticism. If one finds that I have crossed their line, let me know, convince me that I’m wrong in my view and I’ll change. Simple as that!

  13. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    During the time when I lived in the US to study, I have met many many Americans from different backgrounds, ethnicity, religions, etc. I learned to judge a person by him/herself. Whatever background he/she came from is really [b]not[/b] a scale of how to judge the person. They are simple people and do not represent what their government does or Holywood produces. Instead they represent themselves. And that is the beauty; one of the best lessons I learned while I was there.

    After studying and broadening my mind and point of view, like never before. Not even 1 percent of what I learned during my life in Bahrain. I could totally agree with Mahmood[quote] I say that if that money was instead spent on upgrading our educational systems, democracy and human rights in the WHOLE Arab world, we would not have a problem with terrorism nor Israel. By now good educated people would have graduated and possibly reached postiions of power which might have very well tipped the scales into the Arab’s field to do something concrete about the Palestinian/Israeli issue.

    This lethergy in solving the problem experienced by the Arabs is a direct result of the absense of democracy.[/quote]

    Although, like many and probably most Arabs and Muslims, I disagree with the US foreign policy regarding the Palestinian/Israeli conflict. That is the basis of why many Arabs are against the war with Iraq, and the US in general. Although I’m also against that. However, I must say that this war has bought the “democratic wave” to our Arab world (from North Africa to the Gulf countries, there is no true democracy), and that must be given a lot of credit.

    The question is: will be democracy be good for our region, when the Islamic wave is, unfortunately, coming in strong? I think there is a better solution to all that. Let everything the way it is, but introduce something new. Justice.

  14. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Greetings.

    Define “Moral” ? (and I will tell you who you hate. Using MY definition of “hate”).

    Strange site. But polite…

    Forgive my interruption.

  15. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Dear Mr. Mahmood,
    I would have to disagree with I quote “vast majority of Arabs love America and Americans”!! I live in Egypt and I would say the vast majority of Arabs have formed a dislike towards the American government, and some of that dislike seems to reach the American people! Not just because of their pro-Israel anti-Palestine stand, but because of their intolerance of the Islamic faith, for witch practicing Muslims is their way of life!!

    you see if I tell an American that I believe along with my wife and daughters that the “hijab” is a good thing I am perceived as a sort of barbaric, ignorant, primitive man! not only that but they assume that it is their role to save me from my own ignorance! To help me reach freedom, to become like them!! Women should be able to were bikinis if they feel like it, thats OK!! but to cover all of her body is surely backward. She should be able to have sex any time she like with anyone she likes , but if she wants to stay pure, every one advises her that it is bad character to be shy and awkward. To me the American way of life is to live like an animal.

    Americans talk about human rights but they are really talking about what THEY perceive to be right and wrong! mabey someone needs to point out that the levels of theft, murder, rape, social disorder are higher in “westernized” countries than in ignorant “Islamic” countries!!

    Why is Is the Islamic wave bad and the nudity and triviality waves good? why can’t the Islamic wave be accepted as a proposal and argumented with the same respect that other proposals are given? Why when “Islamâ€? is mentioned it is automatically tagged as some strange but stupid idea?

    I am sorry if I give the impression that I hate Americans, I do not! I hate that the Americans do not respect MY beliefs and MY morals!

  16. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Rather than going around hating people for a perceived lack of respect for your beliefs and morals, you might be better off adopting a more tolerant outlook towards those who disagree with you. Who knows you might have something to learn from them?

    I’d be more inclined to accept your argument about the hijab and religious freedom if you were to call for the same rights for non-Muslims in Muslim countries. So for instance if you came out in support of religious freedom in Saudi – currently run on your Sharia lines – then I might give your views some credence. How about agreeing for synagogues or hindu temples there for the expats? Otherwise I’m going to have to conclude that you’re a typical double standard bullshitter, who’s only using the issue of religious freedom to feed his own sense of victimhood.

  17. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    I’d like to comment that any foreigner that comes into the US (with a visa of course) can purchase a house of his own and live the American Dream. Bahrain is the most ‘tolerant’ of muslim countries, but I don’t see the same tolerance. Can a westerner walk down a sidewalk drinking water on a hot day during Ramadan? Of course not! There are zero bahrainis laying hot asphalt for wealthy drivers, but when the poor labourer from the sub-continent tries to take a drink, he is fined BD20.

    It’s time to wake up and realize that the muslim world isn’t any different than the rest of the planet. Simply by covering up women, censoring the press and covering up your ears and ululating will not drown out freedom in the world.

    What are you afraid of, being raped? Heavens, the Saudis have been doing this to you for years.

  18. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    While you make a broad statement(s) concerning what you see as right and wrong in America, but by what standards is this basis formed? Murder, theft, rape? O and let me bet these things don’t happen in Egypt. News flash. They do. Human rights abuses? Egypt isn’t known for it’s clean record. Have you ever been to the US? Or are you claims based on watching TV and the movies?

    Last year the US gave over 2 BILLION in direct aide to Egypt. That was US TAXPAYER MONEY. I have no idea what your government did with this money but I bet not a lot was spent on public eduction about the US. If it was I am sure the propoganda was not on the positive side. (I ‘ve read Egyptian Newspapers) It seems you feel that Americans don’t respect your beliefs. Sorry to break the news to you but we do respect your beliefs. If you took the time to do a little research you would discover that America was founded on FREEDOM of ones beliefs to worship whatever GOD they choose. I see women every day in the US wearing a “hijab”. SO WHAT? Who cares? I don’t and no one I know does either. To make a blanket statement that Americans don’t respect YOUR MORALS and BELIEFS is not only wrong but improper.

    What we won’t tolerate and no one should, is religous nut cases flying planes into buildings killing innocent Muslims, Christians, Hindus, Jews, Druids etc. The world shouldn’t tolerate these same religous nuts planting bombs on trains in Spain, suppressing the rights of womern etc etc etc. The list goes on and on. I suppose you might feel this is all the fault of the US? This is not just an American/Muslim/Arab issue, it is a world wide issue.

  19. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    I think we should add to that list of intolerance, America bombing Iraq, America giving Aid to Israel so they can kill old men, small children and wipe out whole towns while at the same time preventing any help in the form of weapons ever reaching the Palestinians.

    and I just want to say that your answer is baised and proves some of what I said as you attributed all choas to “religous nuts” which I think is not right!

  20. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    I am going to forget about the “bullshitter� part that you so kindly called me and try to write something rational!

    Tell me how do you perceive the “anti-hijab� act in France? Do you think the French have the right to make whatever rules they like? It is after all their country. or do you think that the rules they make should be to our satisfaction? should the Arabs proclaim France a country without human rights and pressure France to stand down from their point of view.

    I live in Egypt and we have churches by the hundreds we even have Jewish temples! I don’t know if we have enough budhists to build them a temple, but Islam doesn’t mind any of this!! There is nothing in sharia law that says thats says everyone in the country has to be a Muslim. What is does mind is semi-nude beaches, alcohol and the rest of things that are forbidden in the Quran and old/new Testament, things that in our view destroy the community and are forbidden by God! But still if you visit sharm elshiek or Hurgada you will find topless beaches! You will find alcohol! If the majority of the Egyptian people believe this is wrong! Why does it continue? Because to do so is political suicide as they call it! Think of the headlines: “extremists in Egypt harass touristâ€? “Extremists in Egypt forgo human rightsâ€? In western countries the headline will be: “I have the right to wear whatever I want and what is happening in Egypt is horribleâ€?

    So if there exists a community who believe that Islam is the word of God should or should they not be allowed to create their Islamic community with shariaa law. Just like France imposes her own laws. Like every country does. Why is that so bad, so criticized?

    I would like to remind you that thought history Islam has been quite nice to people of other religions, The other side however has not been so kind (the crusaders massacred 70,000 in Jerusalem, the Jews are getting rid of the Palestinians by killing them all off, etc etc) yet anyone who has any idea based on Islam is not even given a chance! It is automatically something bad. Nobody reads or trying to understand Islamic view. It is just bad!!!

    Now tell me whether I have reason to be pissed with the Anti -Islamic view or not!

  21. anonymous says:

    Sharia law will provide a reality check

    Stop blaming everyone else for the Islamic world’s problems, and that includes your problem with topless beaches in Sharm El Sheikh. No one in the West has the slightest interest one way or the other, rather its your fellow Egyptians who consent to the beaches because they want western tourists’ cash. Egyptians need jobs, and since your mullahs aren’t providing any they’re going to have to rely on western tourists instead. Until you throw off Egypt’s stiffling conservatism you’re economy’s going to be up the creek.

    But you know in some ways I’d agree with you about Sharia Law, because a few years under the mullahs would provide a reality check to some of your bizarre notions and lead to the fast secularisation of Egyptian society. If you don’t believe me take a look at Iran to see what I mean (by the way please don’t tell me its because they’re Shias as I’ll just see it as another example of your intolerance of other cultures). Although I’d admit the price would be very high, considering the human rights abuses, intolerance, crash de-industrialisation, and reliance of western food aid that are all part of the Sharia experience.

    So instead of feeling angry, you might be better looking at living in Egypt this way: you can condemn everyone else for not living up to your standards, but you don’t have to take any responsibility for power or offer a vision of a society that isn’t based on an airy fairy utopianism. Cheer up, you’re on to a winner.

  22. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Dear Anonymous,

    I am an American who works as a contractor in a US government organization here in Washington, DC. There are Muslim women who work here in my building who wear Muslim dress. Nobody bothers them. Nobody demands they take off their veils and wear bikinis. Nobody pays them any more special attention than any other woman walking down the street. It’s their choice to wear whatever they want. Criticizing somebody’s dress is considered rude here. Attacking somebody’s religion is considered ruder. It’s not done in polite company. I’ve never seen anybody do it in public.

    My government office is eight hundred yards from the impact site of the Sep 11 suicide jet at the Pentagon. People here had to evacuate this building in a panic that day as the smoke from Pentagon blew through. Some people lost friends they commuted with to work. Yet there is no animus toward Muslims here.

    There are Muslims all over the DC area. There are mosques. There is an Islamic study center complete with minarets right on Embassy Row. Muslims sometimes sit outside and pray. Nobody bothers them. They are free to pursue their religion, just like everyone else in America. They don’t need to hire guards or have a police car patrol their place of worship. No Americans will be forming mobs to storm the mosques. We’d rather go home and watch TV. Nobody cares if you’re Muslim or Christian or Hindu or worship the moon.

    People in America don’t care what religion Egyptians worship. Americans don’t care how Egyptians dress. It’s doubtful that most Americans could find Egypt on the map. Most Americans don’t know anything about Egypt except that they have pyramids and mummies there. Most Americans don’t really care much about anything beyond their own doorstep. Basically, most Americans just want to have a nice job with a future, have a nice family and a home to house them, and have a little fun every weekend. We’re not staying up late nights trying to figure out how to impose Americanism on Egyptians. If you don’t buy American ways, that’s your choice. We’ll look for other buyers.

    After I get off work today, I will ride the Metro home. For the last week, there has been an announcement in the station as we board the train referencing “the events in Madrid” and cautioning us to watch for unattended backpacks. That is a reminder every day that Muslims are trying to kill me, me who has done them no harm nor wishes them any harm, just because I’m not Muslim. That just seems crazy to me.

    Steve

  23. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Anonymous,

    Do you really expect Americans to defend France? France is run by knuckleheads. The anti-hijab law is foolish. However foolish the French bureaucrats may be, they are even-handedly foolish in that they have also probihited the wearing of the symbols of other religions as well. The school kids can’t wear a yarmulke or a cross either.

    Topless beaches are a rarity in America. Most Americans think people who go to a topless beach are weird. If you visit a topless beach, it’s mostly full of young guys hoping cute young girls will show up topless. They don’t.

    There are also many counties and states (Utah) in America, mostly down South, that prohibit the sale of hard alcohol, though you can usually buy beer at grocery stores. I understand the Egyptians are fond of their beer as well and have been for several thousand years. The fundamentalist Christians, such as Southern Baptists, are probably not that much different in their dim views of alcohol and pornography than most Muslims. The difference is that laws that prohibit alcohol or pornography in local counties in the US are passed by elected officials who answer to the people. The Islamic officials who impose sharia on populations are not accountable to the people and tend to use sharia as moral justification for despotism, such as you see in Iran.

    I would guess that a better reason why Egypt turns a blind eye to some of the more offensive Western customs is that tourism is the major industry there. Western tourists bring Western money by the billions, money Egypt can ill afford to do without. Alcohol and topless beaches do not offend Egyptian sensibilities as much as doing without food and shelter paid for by tourist bucks.

    To an American such as myself, it seems foolish to be angry about wars that occurred seven centuries ago. However, to enter your frame of reference and use your logic, if you are against the Crusades, which were undeniably brutal religious campaigns of conquest by the West, do you equally condemn the brutal Moslem campaigns of conquest in Europe which preceded them?

    Your assertion that the Jews are attempting to kill off all the Palestinians doesn’t pass a reality check. The Israelis have tanks, aircraft, and nukes. Had the Israelis had the inclination, the Palestinians would be history.

    It is also true that in the golden age of Islam, the Muslim empire was a fountain of learning and wealth. That benevolent and tolerant Islam is a thing of the past. Its present radical variant is a much degraded version of that faith.

    The problem is not that we in the West, here in America, are not getting the Islamic view. We are. There are Korans in every bookstore. Books on Islam and the Middle East are featured at the front doors of the same bookstores. You can walk up to a mosque in most big cities and enquire about the Muslim faith.

    The problem is that the Islamic view we receive is almost entirely that of the most radical Muslims, who appear to be endlessly talkative, whose message is mostly threats against our lives. There’s hardly a week that goes by that a new tape from Bin Laden or his buddies doesn’t appear with the promise to produce rivers of blood in our streets and clouds of black death in our skies. As you might expect, that soils the Muslim faith in our view. We don’t see any Muslims publicly rejecting that view unless reluctantly shamed into it. It looks like most Muslims passively support Muslim terror. I would be happy to be convinced otherwise.

    Steve

  24. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    We don’t see any Muslims publicly rejecting that view unless reluctantly shamed into it. It looks like most Muslims passively support Muslim terror. I would be happy to be convinced otherwise.

    Be convinced Steve, I am a Muslim and support your view. I completely and unequivocally detest and oppose terror in all its forms, be they thought or heinous act. Islam is a religion of peace, alas, some interpretations muddies it so much that it might as well be just another law of a jungle, rather than an enlightened way of life and worship.

    Your words and feelings are well said and well received. Thank you for expressing them Steve.

  25. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    There is no doubt in any thinking man’s mind that America is biased to Israel. But stop and think about it a little: the overwhelming response of an American administration as to being so is that Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East and hence should be protected. Now you might say that this is yet another western conspiracy and the Jewish lobby’s influence on an administration. But the fact is they (the Americans) ARE right in the basic premise that Israel IS the only democracy in the Middle East. Would you in Egypt rise up and create a real democracy to balance the act? I don’t know of an Israeli Prime Minister being elected by over 99% of the vote, while I believe that your own exalted leader has – even Saddam in the height of his power didn’t achieve that number!

    So is it a conspiracy for America to support Israel because it is the only democratic country in the Middle East? Maybe.

    If we do want to throw Israel out of Palestine how should we do that? Use your implied method of supplying Palestinians with weapons to kill Isrealies? To what end my friend? To propagate hate and intolerance? To really fatten up Arafat’s numerous bank accounts? To increase the numbers of Ali Babas in the Arab world?

    No. Let’s be factual and join the very Palestinians you support and say that Israel – no matter how we feel about it – is here to stay, the State of Israel has been recognised by the very Palestinians you seem to want to defend. So don’t give me that the US is preventing weapons reaching the Palestinians. I say thank God it is, because if it did allow weapons to go through to the Palestinians they won’t use those same weapons to fight the (hated) Israelis, but to kill each other in street fights so huge just so they can extort more money and fatten Palestinian individual bank accounts!

    America bombing Iraq? As previously said, it really applies here as well. What would you prefer? Saddam bombing Iraq and running biological and chemical warfare “experimentsâ€? on Iraqi people? The coalition forces are bombing selected enclaves of terrorists like that thug Sadder’s strongholds and they are acting purely to rout out terrorists who kill more Iraqis than coalition forces, they could just as well stand aside and see 23 million people kill each other on the behest and encouragement of a turbaned person claiming affinity and special route to the Prophet.

    So please wake up and smell the hummous man. The Americans in this case are inadvertently HELPING the Arab populace to understand that there is light at the end of the tunnel. Democracy IS in the Arab’s power. But what do we choose to do as Arabs? Ignore genuine – even if inadvertent invitations – to embrace political change so much so that an Arab summit is dissolved because our enlightened leaders refuse to have “democracy imposedâ€? on them!

    Hello, anybody home? Guess not. So we now have an ignoramous President teaching us what Mohammed and Allah did 1,400 years ago! And you object to that? If you don’t your illustrious leader His Majesty Hosney Mubarak certainly does! He after all doesn’t want democracy “dictatedâ€? to him by the very major benefactor he kowtows to! He should know after all… what was the percentage he was elected with the last time? 99.9%? Yeah right brother, you really do live in a democracy and you (Egypt – the leader of the Arab world) will single-handedly chase the heathen despicable Jews out of Jerusalem!

    Ahhh what a nice dream….

  26. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Well, Mahmood, I’m glad to hear it. My TV is full of angry Arabs burning American flags. I guess normal people aren’t newsworthy. It’s refreshing to read a sane normal voice from the Middle East. It helps remind me that there are good people providing some moral ballast to events there.

    I very much enjoy this blog and your view of your life and current events. Please keep it up.

    Steve

  27. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    “My TV is full of angry Arabs burning American flags. I guess normal people aren’t newsworthy.”

    It’s like that with local news. If there’s a new school opening and a bankrobbery happening on the same day, which do you think your local news will spend more time covering? A slogan among newscasters (not just American I bet) is “if it bleeds, it leads”

  28. anonymous says:

    Re(2): I wonder…

    Janne,

    Were it not for the US, Sweden right now would most likely be a colony of the Nazi empire celebrating Hitler’s birthday as a state holiday. The smokestacks of the death camps would still belching out the ashes of its victims. You might well be a slave laborer in a Nazi labor camp.

    May I also point out that the US did not become the government of Western Europe, as the Soviet Union became the government of Eastern Europe. Did they point out any difference in freedom, prosperity, and human rights between Western Europe and Eastern Europe in the last fifty years? Being in Sweden, you should be able to see the difference very clearly, one would think.

    May I also point out that the racist tyrannies that the US and its allies defeated in WWII became democracies and economic superpowers. Name an equivalent precedent in history of the vanquished benefitting so greatly from the generosity of the victor. Compare that with the fate of those countries which fell under Soviet domination.

    You must ignore a lot of gargantuan good deeds America has done to find something to protest.

    Steve

  29. anonymous says:

    Re(4): I wonder…

    [quote]Democracy in the Middle East? No, I don’t think US realize the consequences and impact it would have. I mean, from what I have seen on CNN news, they were expecting people to throw flowers, not grenades, at them in Iraq. What a surprise… it’s kind of naive, I guess. Don’t get me wrong, I really like the States and I know a lot of nice people living there. [/quote]

    As a matter of fact, if you watched CNN you would have seen our troops greeted as liberators. If you read the Iraqi blogs, you will see them still regarded as liberators. I suspect the news you receive in Sweden is rather heavily filtered and distorted to omit that.

    And we do know what democracy in the Middle East means and the impact it will have. That’s why we will make it happen. It’s only marginally more difficult than bring democracy to central Europe.

    [quote]It’s a pity they have to have so poor leaders, though – the guy they have right now reminds me of Homer Simpson and the Clown College episode. [/quote]

    Typical uninformed European prejudice, the condescension of an effete snob from a country that has contributed little to world peace or civilization.

    President Bush is the best leader we’ve had since Reagan, making the hard calls now instead of storing up trouble for the future like the feckless Clinton, darling of the foolish and indecisive Europeans who prefer Quisling-style leadership.

    Steve

  30. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Hi Mahmood :). I just discovered your site today, and am enjoying it immensely. I just couldn’t let this comment pass, though!

    Mahmood: “So please wake up and smell the hummous man. The Americans in this case are inadvertently HELPING the Arab populace to understand that there is light at the end of the tunnel. Democracy IS in the Arab’s power. But what do we choose to do as Arabs? Ignore genuine – even if inadvertent invitations – to embrace political change so much so that an Arab summit is dissolved because our enlightened leaders refuse to have “democracy imposedâ€? on them!”

    I certainly agree with these sentiments, but the fact is that the possible spread of democracy is NOT inadvertent! President Bush has been talking about the “domino effect” vis a vis democracy for more than a year ;). He’d be delighted to hear that the idea is starting to catch on! 😀

    And, contrary to what many in the news media are saying, Americans do NOT view the Iraqis bucking the US and the UN and choosing their OWN candidate for interim president as a defeat… we regard it as proof that they’re really starting to get it! They’re thinking for themselves, which was what most of us had hoped for in the first place. Only they can decide what is best for Iraq.

    Have you read the Iraqi Interim Constitution? It’s a thing of great beauty, written by Iraqis for Iraqis :). For those who haven’t seen it, even just the first paragraph of the Preamble speaks loudly and clearly:

    “The people of Iraq, striving to reclaim their freedom, which was usurped by the previous tyrannical regime, rejecting violence and coercion in all their forms, and particularly when used as instruments of governance, have determined that they shall hereafter remain a free people governed under the rule of law.”

    If this is just the warm-up act, I can’t wait to see the real thing when they’ve finished writing it! 😀

    MamaSW, Florida, US

  31. anonymous says:

    Re(3): I wonder…

    Just a point Steve, Sweden and Switzerland were the only two countries not invade by Nazis.
    LF

  32. anonymous says:

    Re(4): I wonder…

    Yes LF you are correct about Sweden and Switzerland. However we now know that Switzerland was not as “neutral” as they claimed, (ie NAZI Gold) and the Swedish royal family was among Hitler’s supporters. Sweden had no problem exporting Iron Ore to Germany via Norway if memory serves me correct. So now in hindsight we see some clear and fuzzy reasons why certian Nations avoided the war machine of Hitler. Why invade if they will rollover for you? No one is immune from the path a war may or may not take. The point Steve was making is valid and has plenty of merit.

    Just some food for thought.

    J. Mark Doenitz

  33. anonymous says:

    Re(4): I wonder…

    Do you really think that had Germany won the war they would have restrained themselves from taking the rest of Europe? Why?

    Steve

  34. anonymous says:

    Re(6): I wonder…

    For the same reason Hitler invaded Alsace-Lorraine, which gave up without a fight from the French.

    Occupations are not costly if you are squeezing the occupied countries dry and turning their citizens into slave labor, as the Germans did.

    However, your assumption that a Nazi Europe might be a good thing is hardly persuasive. My original point that the Swedes benefitted from the American liberation remains valid.

    Steve

  35. anonymous says:

    Re: Judge not lest ye be judged

    [quote]What most people in other countries do not understand is that what is portrayed by the American media is by no means a true representation of American culture, ideals, or morals.[/quote]

    Speak for yourself. There is hardly a day that goes by that I am not involved in a spectacular car chase as I evade evil terrorists, evil corporate chieftains, or evil drug lords. It takes some pretty tricky wheel work to throw them off, let me tell you. Just yesterday I had to spread an oil slick behind my car to make the bad guys chasing me spin out of control and eject a hit man sitting in my passenger seat through the roof. Fortunately, I was still able to make it to the grocery store.

    I’ll never forget the time they switched my briefcase by mistake at the airport and I opened it to find a million dollars inside. Russian gangsters shot up my office with Uzis trying to get it back. Luckily, I was able to break a window and clamber down the skyscraper face like Spiderman, while returning fire with the 45 pistol I always carry in a hidden holster.

    Beautiful women throw themselves at me, like most Americans. It’s hard to keep track of them. A lot of the time they turn out to be spies trying to trick me into revealing top secret information about nuclear weapons or diamond smuggling or scandalous information that I know about politicians. Once my girlfriend turned out to be a space alien in human form hiding out on Earth. Boy, was that freaky!

    I can state absolutely that there is nothing that represents my everyday life so accurately as Hollywood movies. To say that they represent some wild and distorted view of America just to sell tickets to people looking for a fantasy completely outside their experience, well, that’s just crazy talk.

    I hope this clears everything up.

    Steve

  36. anonymous says:

    Re(7): I wonder…

    Steve

    I do not know how you can assume I might even begin to think that a Nazi Europe might be a good thing. HELL NO. Lets get that fucking point clear and don’t ever equate that logic with me again.

    ciao!
    M

  37. anonymous says:

    Re(5): I wonder…

    Steve,

    I have no crystal ball to look back into to time to see what might have happend. We do know WHAT happend and the fact is Germany did not invade Sweden and Switzerland. Neither would have put up much of fight anyway, so why waste the time conquering lands that are ready to roll over and or provide backdoor aid for you in the first place. Occupations are costly in terms of $$$$$ and manpower. You can only stretch your military so much.

    Who knows what the German war machine would have done had the “won”. Good question.

  38. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Judge not lest ye be judged

    Amply Steve. Amply. Thank you for clearing that perception. I stand corrected.

  39. anonymous says:

    Re: I wonder…

    The movies are not reality, this we teach our children at a very young age. That’s not to say we don’t have some real jerks in America but when it comes to family we are no different than the rest of the world.

  40. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    hi

  41. anonymous says:

    Re(3): I wonder…

    [p][img]

  42. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Here is one reason why arabs think the US is biased. Here is a partial list of US vetoes of UN resoultions against israel from 1957 to 1990. I will post the second list ie from 1991 to date at a later date.

    The following are the resolutions vetoed by the United States during the period of September, 1972, to May, 1990 to protect Israel from council criticism:

    …condemned Israel’s attack against southern Lebanon and Syria…”
    ….affirmed the rights of the Palestinian people to self-determination, statehood and equal protections…”.
    …condemned Israel’s air strikes and attacks in southern Lebanon and its murder of innocent civilians…”
    ….called for self-determination of Palestinian people…”
    ….deplored Israel’s altering of the status of Jerusalem, which is recognized as an international city by most world nations and the United Nations…”
    ….affirmed the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people…”
    ….endorsed self-determination for the Palestinian people…”
    ….demanded Israel’s withdrawal from the Golan Heights…”
    ….condemned Israel’s mistreatment of Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip and its refusal to abide by the Geneva convention protocols of civilized nations…”
    ….condemned an Israeli soldier who shot eleven Moslem worshippers at the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount near Al-Aqsa Mosque in the Old City of Jerusalem…”
    . ….urged sanctions against Israel if it did not withdraw from its invasion of Lebanon…”
    ….urged sanctions against Israel if it did not withdraw from its invasion of Beirut…”
    ….urged cutoff of economic aid to Israel if it refused to withdraw from its occupation of Lebanon…”
    ….condemned continued Israeli settlements in occupied territories in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, denouncing them as an obstacle to peace…”
    ….deplores Israel’s brutal massacre of Arabs in Lebanon and urges its withdrawal…”
    ….condemned Israeli brutality in southern Lebanon and denounced the Israeli ‘Iron Fist’ policy of repression….”
    ….denounced Israel’s violation of human rights in the occupied territories…”
    ….deplored Israel’s violence in southern Lebanon…”
    ….deplored Israel’s activities in occupied Arab East Jerusalem that threatened the sanctity of Muslim holy sites…”
    ….condemned Israel’s hijacking of a Libyan passenger airplane…”
    ….deplored Israel’s attacks against Lebanon and its measures and practices against the civilian population of Lebanon…”
    ….called on Israel to abandon its policies against the Palestinian intifada that violated the rights of occupied Palestinians, to abide by the Fourth Geneva Conventions, and to formalize a leading role for the United Nations in future peace negotiations…”
    ….urged Israel to accept back deported Palestinians, condemned Israel’s shooting of civilians, called on Israel to uphold the Fourth Geneva Convention, and called for a peace settlement under UN auspices…”
    ….condemned Israel’s… incursion into Lebanon…”
    ….deplored Israel’s… commando raids on Lebanon…”
    ….deplored Israel’s repression of the Palestinian intifada and called on Israel to respect the human rights of the Palestinians…”
    ….deplored Israel’s violation of the human rights of the Palestinians…”
    ….demanded that Israel return property confiscated from Palestinians during a tax protest and allow a fact-finding mission to observe Israel’s crackdown on the Palestinian intifada…”
    …called for a fact-finding mission on abuses against Palestinians in Israeli-occupied lands…”-

    All resolutions against Israel (none complied) with..and yet we did not see anything but more aid to israel..more food for thought why arabs think that the US is not so friendly to arabs

    Resolution 106: “… ‘condemns’ Israel for Gaza raid”
    Resolution 111: “…’condemns’ Israel for raid on Syria that killed fifty-six people”
    Resolution 127: “…’recommends’ Israel suspend its ‘no-man’s zone’ in Jerusalem”
    Resolution 162: “…’urges’ Israel to comply with UN decisions”
    Resolution 171: “…determines flagrant violations’ by Israel in its attack on Syria”
    Resolution 228: “…’censures’ Israel for its attack on Samu in the West Bank, then under Jordanian control”
    Resolution 237: “…’urges’ Israel to allow return of new 1967 Palestinian refugees”
    Resolution 248: “… ‘condemns’ Israel for its massive attack on Karameh in Jordan”
    Resolution 250: “… ‘calls’ on Israel to refrain from holding military parade in Jerusalem”
    Resolution 251: “… ‘deeply deplores’ Israeli military parade in Jerusalem in defiance of Resolution 250”
    Resolution 252: “…’declares invalid’ Israel’s acts to unify Jerusalem as Jewish capital”
    Resolution 256: “… ‘condemns’ Israeli raids on Jordan as ‘flagrant violation””
    Resolution 259: “…’deplores’ Israel’s refusal to accept UN mission to probe occupation”
    Resolution 262: “…’condemns’ Israel for attack on Beirut airport”
    Resolution 265: “… ‘condemns’ Israel for air attacks for Salt in Jordan”
    Resolution 267: “…’censures’ Israel for administrative acts to change the status of Jerusalem”
    Resolution 270: “…’condemns’ Israel for air attacks on villages in southern Lebanon”
    Resolution 271: “…’condemns’ Israel’s failure to obey UN resolutions on Jerusalem”
    Resolution 279: “…’demands’ withdrawal of Israeli forces from Lebanon”
    Resolution 280: “….’condemns’ Israeli’s attacks against Lebanon”
    Resolution 285: “…’demands’ immediate Israeli withdrawal form Lebanon”
    Resolution 298: “…’deplores’ Israel’s changing of the status of Jerusalem”
    Resolution 313: “…’demands’ that Israel stop attacks against Lebanon”
    Resolution 316: “…’condemns’ Israel for repeated attacks on Lebanon”
    Resolution 317: “…’deplores’ Israel’s refusal to release Arabs abducted in Lebanon”
    Resolution 332: “…’condemns’ Israel’s repeated attacks against Lebanon”
    Resolution 337: “…’condemns’ Israel for violating Lebanon’s sovereignty”
    Resolution 347: “…’condemns’ Israeli attacks on Lebanon”
    Resolution 425: “…’calls’ on Israel to withdraw its forces from Lebanon”
    Resolution 427: “…’calls’ on Israel to complete its withdrawal from Lebanon’
    Resolution 444: “…’deplores’ Israel’s lack of cooperation with UN peacekeeping forces”
    Resolution 446: “…’determines’ that Israeli settlements are a ‘serious obstruction’ to peace and calls on Israel to abide by the Fourth Geneva Convention”
    Resolution 450: “…’calls’ on Israel to stop attacking Lebanon”
    Resolution 452: “…’calls’ on Israel to cease building settlements in occupied territories”
    Resolution 465: “…’deplores’ Israel’s settlements and asks all member states not to assist Israel’s settlements program”
    Resolution 467: “…’strongly deplores’ Israel’s military intervention in Lebanon”
    Resolution 468: “…’calls’ on Israel to rescind illegal expulsions of two Palestinian mayors and a judge and to facilitate their return”
    Resolution 469: “…’strongly deplores’ Israel’s failure to observe the council’s order not to deport Palestinians”
    Resolution 471: “… ‘expresses deep concern’ at Israel’s failure to abide by the Fourth Geneva Convention”
    Resolution 476: “… ‘reiterates’ that Israel’s claims to Jerusalem are ‘null and void'”
    Resolution 478: “…’censures (Israel) in the strongest terms’ for its claim to Jerusalem in its ‘Basic Law'”
    Resolution 484: “…’declares it imperative’ that Israel re-admit two deported Palestinian mayors”
    Resolution 487: “…’strongly condemns’ Israel for its attack on Iraq’s nuclear facility”
    Resolution 497: “…’decides’ that Israel’s annexation of Syria’s Golan Heights is ‘null and void’ and demands that Israel rescind its decision forthwith”
    Resolution 498: “…’calls’ on Israel to withdraw from Lebanon”
    Resolution 501: “…’calls’ on Israel to stop attacks against Lebanon and withdraw its troops”
    Resolution 509: “…’demands’ that Israel withdraw its forces forthwith and unconditionally from Lebanon”
    Resolution 515: “…’demands’ that Israel lift its siege of Beirut and allow food supplies to be brought in”
    Resolution 517: “…’censures’ Israel for failing to obey UN resolutions and demands that Israel withdraw its forces from Lebanon”
    Resolution 518: “…’demands’ that Israel cooperate fully with UN forces in Lebanon”
    Resolution 520: “…’condemns’ Israel’s attack into West Beirut”
    Resolution 573: “…’condemns’ Israel ‘vigorously’ for bombing Tunisia in attack on PLO headquarters
    Resolution 587: “…’takes note’ of previous calls on Israel to withdraw its forces from Lebanon and urges all parties to withdraw”
    Resolution 592: “…’strongly deplores’ the killing of Palestinian students at Bir Zeit University by Israeli troops”
    Resolution 605: “…’strongly deplores’ Israel’s policies and practices denying the human rights of Palestinians
    Resolution 607: “…’calls’ on Israel not to deport Palestinians and strongly requests it to abide by the Fourth Geneva Convention
    Resolution 608: “…’deeply regrets’ that Israel has defied the United Nations and deported Palestinian civilians”
    Resolution 636: “…’deeply regrets’ Israeli deportation of Palestinian civilians
    Resolution 641: “…’deplores’ Israel’s continuing deportation of Palestinians
    Resolution 672: “…’condemns’ Israel for violence against Palestinians at the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount
    Resolution 673: “…’deplores’ Israel’s refusal to cooperate with the United Nations
    Resolution 681: “…’deplores’ Israel’s resumption of the deportation of Palestinians
    Resolution 694: “…’deplores’ Israel’s deportation of Palestinians and calls on it to ensure their safe and immediate return
    Resolution 726: “…’strongly condemns’ Israel’s deportation of Palestinians
    Resolution 799: “…’strongly condemns’ Israel’s deportation of 413 Palestinians and calls for their immediate return.

    Would you call the US to be the “Honest Broker”?

  43. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    It is nice to see that Steve thinks Mahmood is okay, it must just be the other 300 Million Arabs that he despises.

  44. anonymous says:

    Re(5): I wonder…

    Writen “And we do know what democracy in the Middle East means and the impact it will have. That’s why we will make it happen. It’s only marginally more difficult than bring democracy to central Europe.”

    US actions and history do not bear this out. When Islamic parties won a democratic election in Algeria the military staged a coup and denied the right of the parties to form a government. The US supported this move. A clear case of “we want democracy as long as you vote for who we want.” If the US was serious about democracy in the Islamic world it would have accepted the elections in Algeria and called on the military to stop their coup and let the democratically elected parties take power.

    [Modified by: Malik (celticview) on February 18, 2005 09:42 AM]

  45. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Mahmood, Israel is NOT a democracy in the American sense of the word. It is a state based on and built for the exclusive advancement of one group of people. Such a government cannot ever be truely democratic because its very nature is exclusive and devisive. All people not Jewish will always be second class citizens because they live in a “Jewish state”. I view Israel as more of a quasi theocratic apartheid state. Religious leaders in Israel have a very large role in many aspects of daily life, including even deciding who becomes Israeli. Laws are based on religious teachings, you can be fined for opening on the Sabbath.

    Israel will not be a democracy in the real sense of the word until they drop the idea that the state is there only for the advancement of one people and give equal treatment to all of its citizens.

    Malik

  46. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Mahmood,

    Why didnt the US have a problem with Iraq doing this in the 1980s? Can you point out to me the sanctions and threats to invade Iraq when he was gassing his own people? Why did the threats only start with the invasion of Kuwait? The US was in bed with Saddam during his worst years, why should anyone now believe that the US cares anything about the Iraqi people? The US does not, it just figures into its current agenda and its goals. The US was more than happy to overlook Saddams worst excesses when he was then fighting what we used to think was the greater threat of the Shi’a Islamic Revolution in Iran.

    If the US was interested in the Iraqi people why not help them with their uprising like the first Bush had promised? Why did the US allow them to be slaughtered?

    America will drop the Iraqi people into a hole the first chance they think it is in their best interests.

  47. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “Do you really expect Americans to defend France? France is run by knuckleheads. The anti-hijab law is foolish. However foolish the French bureaucrats may be, they are even-handedly foolish in that they have also probihited the wearing of the symbols of other religions as well. The school kids can’t wear a yarmulke or a cross either. ”

    It is agreed that the law was specifically enacted to target Muslims. Funny, this move to try and secularise the Muslim community will have the opposite effect. Some Muslim girls who once attended public schools have dropped out and now attend Islamic schools, further isolating them and sending them into the arms of the extremist elements.

  48. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Mahmood writes “We don’t see any Muslims publicly rejecting that view unless reluctantly shamed into it. It looks like most Muslims passively support Muslim terror. I would be happy to be convinced otherwise.

    Be convinced Steve, I am a Muslim and support your view. I completely and unequivocally detest and oppose terror in all its forms, be they thought or heinous act. Islam is a religion of peace, alas, some interpretations muddies it so much that it might as well be just another law of a jungle, rather than an enlightened way of life and worship.

    Your words and feelings are well said and well received. Thank you for expressing them Steve. ”

    Steve is full of it and I cannot believe you buy his nonsense. Muslims across the board and across the world condemn terror on a daily basis. We, as a group, do not support terror. Islam is a religion of peace, why cant you see that Steve will never belive this? If Steve had it his way he would wipe out all Muslims, extinguish Islam. Most Muslims do not passively support terrorism, you believe this Mahmood? I oppose terrorism, I also oppose the hatred and bigotry and outright ignorance than Steve promotes. Why not some comments on that Mahmood?

    Steve has this idea that if he doesnt know about it that it must not exist. There are Muslim groups all throughout the world that are working in interfaith groups to try and bring peace and dialogue about. Steve cannot accept this because it would challenge his heart felt belief that Islam and Muslims are bad and that certains nations, whole nations and peoples, need to be wiped out from the face of the earth.

    Steve is just as much of a radical as bin Laden, just on the opposite extreme. Steve doesnt speak for America, he speaks for no one except the looney right. Mahmood, anyone who advocates the extermination of whole nation states and their people are not sane. What is wrong with you for not point this out? I agree with Steve on some items, but on the whole he is a nutter, an extremist, and an advocate for murder and violence.

  49. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “The problem is that the Islamic view we receive is almost entirely that of the most radical Muslims, who appear to be endlessly talkative, whose message is mostly threats against our lives. There’s hardly a week that goes by that a new tape from Bin Laden or his buddies doesn’t appear with the promise to produce rivers of blood in our streets and clouds of black death in our skies. As you might expect, that soils the Muslim faith in our view. We don’t see any Muslims publicly rejecting that view unless reluctantly shamed into it. It looks like most Muslims passively support Muslim terror. I would be happy to be convinced otherwise.

    Steve ”

    Hardly surprising when the US media is geared towards the sensational. It is up to you try then try to look for the hundreds, even thousands, of positive things Muslims are doing on a daily basis to build understanding and peace. Just because you do not know about it doesnt mean it isnt happening.

    Of course a new bin Laden tape makes the news, why doesnt the inter-faith work being done by mosques all over the US and Europe? I know this happens because I have been a part of it here and in Europe. Jews and Christians meeting at mosques for meals and meetings. Jews, Christians and Muslims meeting and having seminars on shared religious values and history. This happens all of the time. What needs to be addressed is the US media that will only cover items that have shock value, and then for only 30 seconds.

    Again, open your eyes Steve, take a look around, you might learn something.

  50. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: Hardly surprising when the US media is geared towards the sensational.[/quote]

    If only the US media would lose its taste for the sensational like Al Jazeera and the Arab media.

    [quote]Malik: It is up to you try then try to look for the hundreds, even thousands, of positive things Muslims are doing on a daily basis to build understanding and peace. Just because you do not know about it doesnt mean it isnt happening.[/quote]

    Actually, the burden is on Muslims to demonstrate their good faith, not me. I have not declared a jihad on Muslims because of their religion nor have I published any fatwas declaring them monkeys and pigs nor saying it’s okey dokey to kill them, steal their stuff, and take their women as sex slaves.

    You have quite a job ahead of you if you intend to convince anybody that Muslims are trying to build understanding and peace. At this point, your argument is a joke.

    [quote]Malik: Of course a new bin Laden tape makes the news, why doesnt the inter-faith work being done by mosques all over the US and Europe? I know this happens because I have been a part of it here and in Europe. Jews and Christians meeting at mosques for meals and meetings. Jews, Christians and Muslims meeting and having seminars on shared religious values and history. This happens all of the time. What needs to be addressed is the US media that will only cover items that have shock value, and then for only 30 seconds. [/quote]

    Well, just to take a wild stab at it, I would suppose that Americans are keenly interested in the latest threats from the Muslim madmen are, especially one who has killed Americans by the thousands and threatens to kill thousands more. Threats from murderers do tend to focus your attention.

    It’s fabulous that Muslims are joining Christians and Jews in America and Europe to get to know each other through seminars in mosques. That’s the way it should be. How much of that goes on in the Muslim world?

    [quote]Malik: Again, open your eyes Steve, take a look around, you might learn something. [/quote]

    Every time I open my eyes after the smoke from Sep 11 cleared, I see new signs of hostility from the Muslim world, threats to make our skies black with poison and our streets run with blood. You see only peaceful Muslims on interreligious exchanges. What I’ve learned is that you lack the courage to face the reality of Islamic hostility to the world. Until you acknowledge that reality, those problems can not be resolved.

    Steve

  51. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “Actually, the burden is on Muslims to demonstrate their good faith, not me. I have not declared a jihad on Muslims because of their religion nor have I published any fatwas declaring them monkeys and pigs nor saying it’s okey dokey to kill them, steal their stuff, and take their women as sex slaves.

    You have quite a job ahead of you if you intend to convince anybody that Muslims are trying to build understanding and peace. At this point, your argument is a joke. ”

    Your bigotry and hatred is the shameful joke here Steve. The burden is on EVERYONE who wants a peaceful life. Muslims are doing their part. There are cross faith initiatives going on all over the Islamic world. You need to ask yourself why your government and media does make you aware of this! Muslims are doing a lot, but you would never ever know it by watching US media.

    Steve writes “Every time I open my eyes after the smoke from Sep 11 cleared, I see new signs of hostility from the Muslim world, threats to make our skies black with poison and our streets run with blood. You see only peaceful Muslims on interreligious exchanges. What I’ve learned is that you lack the courage to face the reality of Islamic hostility to the world. Until you acknowledge that reality, those problems can not be resolved.”

    Steve, your hostility is overwhelming. I seriously doubt that your issue with Islam, Arabs, Muslims and a whole host of things just popped into existance on 9/11. Bigotries like yours arent shaped by one event, rather years of ignorance.

    Steve writes “It’s fabulous that Muslims are joining Christians and Jews in America and Europe to get to know each other through seminars in mosques. That’s the way it should be. How much of that goes on in the Muslim world? ”

    A lot of it actually, but of course anything I could say or show you would not change your mind. In your mind Islam and Muslims are evil, many if not most need to be murdered along with their nations. Sick

  52. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    He’s obsessed and unappeasable.

    It’s a shame but there it is.

  53. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: Steve is full of it and I cannot believe you buy his nonsense. Muslims across the board and across the world condemn terror on a daily basis. We, as a group, do not support terror. Islam is a religion of peace, why cant you see that Steve will never belive this? [/quote]

    Malik, you have reached a near total denial of reality here. If you Muslims want to convince Americans that you condemn terror and embrace peace, the necessary first step is to not launch massive terror attacks that butcher thousands of Americans. Knocking down the twin towers knocks the legs out of your argument that Islam promotes peace.

    Some of the things the Muslim world could do to convince Americans of its peaceful intentions is to stop making snuff videos of infidels being beheaded, to stop leaving disemboweled infidel aid workers lying in the streets of Iraq as warnings, to stop dragging infidels behind cars in Saudi Arabia, to stop casing targets in America and Europe for attack, to stop sending recce teams on our airliners to test security, to stop making plans to ship ricin and sarin into American cities, to stop making videos threatening more Sep 11-like attacks, to stop spreading anti-infidel propaganda around America, to stop bombing discos in Bali, to stop shooting and bombing churches around the Muslim world, to stop bombing commuter trains in Spain, to stop planning chemical attacks in Britain, and to stop threatening America and the West with violence.

    [quote]Malik: If Steve had it his way he would wipe out all Muslims, extinguish Islam. Most Muslims do not passively support terrorism, you believe this Mahmood? I oppose terrorism, I also oppose the hatred and bigotry and outright ignorance than Steve promotes. Why not some comments on that Mahmood? [/quote]

    If Malik had his way, I would be the mirror image of the Muslim world, hating them like they hate infidels. But I don’t. I want a normal relationship with everyone in the world as customers and vendors and tourists and so on, including the Muslim world. To do that, Muslims must give up expressing their religion through violence and crime. Muslims must reject barbarism.

    I am particularly unimpressed that a Muslim like Malik attempts to shift the blame for Muslim bigotry to its objects, such as myself. The Sep 11 attacks were the greatest expression of religious bigotry in modern times. It also lifted the lid on an entire feverish world of Muslim hatred for infidels, stoked by the Saudis.

    Attempting to distract from the central core of Muslim intolerance for other religions expressed through terrorist campaigns is a form of support for that terror. You are simply trying to provide cover for the terrorists and to legitimize their crimes indirectly.

    [quote]Malik: Steve has this idea that if he doesnt know about it that it must not exist. There are Muslim groups all throughout the world that are working in interfaith groups to try and bring peace and dialogue about. Steve cannot accept this because it would challenge his heart felt belief that Islam and Muslims are bad and that certains nations, whole nations and peoples, need to be wiped out from the face of the earth. [/quote]

    If Muslims are embarked on a worldwide effort to bring about peace, they are being quiet as mice about it. The terrorists don’t have any trouble publicizing their calls for violence. Why do these invisible Muslim peace activists have such trouble publicizing their calls for peace?

    [quote]Malik: Steve is just as much of a radical as bin Laden, just on the opposite extreme. Steve doesnt speak for America, he speaks for no one except the looney right. Mahmood, anyone who advocates the extermination of whole nation states and their people are not sane. What is wrong with you for not point this out? I agree with Steve on some items, but on the whole he is a nutter, an extremist, and an advocate for murder and violence. [/quote]

    OK, bottom’s up! Malik called somebody a Bin Laden! Every time Malik calls somebody a Bin Laden you have to drain a shot of your favorite beverage.

    As long as Saudi Arabia makes religious war on the United States, we should return that war to them with interest. The Saudis are very enthusiastic about prosecuting their jihad against the world when it involves killing infidels in faraway lands but they don’t much like it when their jihad kills Saudis in Saudi Arabia. Killing Saudis in Saudi Arabia is what it is going to take to break the will of the murdering Wahhabi bastards. The Saudis will lose their enthusiasm for bloody jihad when it is their blood that is shed in their land rather than American blood in America. Americans will not be safe in their offices, trains, and schools until the Saudis lose their taste for infidel blood.

    The Saudis started this jihad. America should finish it.

    Steve

  54. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    Why is it America’s problem to protect anyone but its own citizens? If 25 million people in Iraq didn’t rise up and throw Saddam off his stool after he had his fun with Halbcha, why the hell should America do that Malik?

    OF COURSE AMERICA WILL LOOK AFTER ITS INTEREST! How else would you expect it to behave for God’s sake? It’s good of America, through another administration OR public pressure chose to do something about Iraq when it did. I for one am grateful for that. If you aren’t and you see error in this, then you’re entitled to your opinion.

    Me LIVING in this area am happy that they did, when they did, and how they did it.

    End of bloody story. Litterally.

    Did some soldiers and commanders transgress their commission? Probably. Did the US benefit from the war so far? I don’t think so. Will they ever benefit financially and otherwise? I think and hope so. They deserve whatever Iraq can give them at a fair price.

    Malik, it’s indeed strange for an Arab to tell you this: Thank you lucky stars that you are an American.

    And stop thinking that everything is a conspiracy against Islam and Muslims. If Islam and Muslims cannot fix themselves by themselves, they certainly don’t need you to defend them.

  55. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    I think what Steve is trying to say is that Muslims need to be just as loud in their insistence that Islam is a religion of peace as the extremists in that Islam is a religion of war. A large and well attended demonstation against extremism by Muslims (at least in the West) would certainly make the point. I haven’t seen that. Plenty of Western Muslims demonstrated against the Iraq war so it’s not for lack of ability in organizing a demonstration. As for the rest of the middle-east, the general Muslim population does bear some of the blame for extremism. Extremist speech has been coming out of a lot of the mosques for years, including the ones in Mecca and Al-Azhar, and the ‘moderate majority’ did nothing about it. They either didn’t care, agreed with the message, or weren’t interested in what the radicals were doing with their religion. Muslims must police their own. Secondly, elements in the Saudi religious establishment and the Saudi government ARE funding terrorism and extremism. It was only when the chickens came home to roost that Saudi Arabia woke up and saw the monsters they created. It only became a problem when their own started getting killed. Aljazeera also needs to stop playing snuff videos of infidels begging for their lives and getting beheaded. Media outlets tend to give their viewers what they want and it’s creating a terribly poor impression of middle-eastern audiences.

    -Aliandra

  56. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Mahmood writes “Why is it America’s problem to protect anyone but its own citizens? If 25 million people in Iraq didn’t rise up and throw Saddam off his stool after he had his fun with Halbcha, why the hell should America do that Malik? ”

    The first president Bush told the Iraqi people if they rose up America would support them. When they did, America did not support them. America does not have to protect anyone, but if the president of the USA tells people to risk their lives and rise up and he will support them then he fails to do so, he is the in wrong. Dont play with people’s lives. If he had no intention to help the people, why get them to risk their lives by making the offer?

    Mahmood writes “Malik, it’s indeed strange for an Arab to tell you this: Thank you lucky stars that you are an American.

    And stop thinking that everything is a conspiracy against Islam and Muslims. If Islam and Muslims cannot fix themselves by themselves, they certainly don’t need you to defend them. ”

    Not everything is a conspiracy and I never claimed it was. I am happy I am an American, but I do not think America has everything right and always does the right thing. As a Muslim and an American I can see things both way. It might sound strange for an American to tell you this, but dont not be ashamed to be an Arab or a Muslim. It would seem you share a lot of the self hate and loathing than many Arabs and Muslims do. What do you do to deflect this? By doing this like celebrating Christmas and going out of your way to prove how “modern” of an Arab and a Muslim you are. You need to accept the fact that no matter what Steve says he will never completely accept you or your religion it doesnt matter how westernised you try to present yourself. You can talk about “pit babes” and your christmas tree all you want, to Steve you are just another wog rag head, simple fact. It is sad.

    So instead of pandering to him and others like him, be proud in who you are and where you come from, protect and practice your own traditions, and do your best to change your society to better it and help it retain its own uniqueness. You do not do your own people a favour when you try to import the worst of western culture and use it to prove how modern you are.

    You CAN be modern and Arab and Muslim and do it without taking on all of the western nonsense.

  57. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “Malik, you have reached a near total denial of reality here. If you Muslims want to convince Americans that you condemn terror and embrace peace, the necessary first step is to not launch massive terror attacks that butcher thousands of Americans. Knocking down the twin towers knocks the legs out of your argument that Islam promotes peace. ”

    I guess I can say the same thing. If America wants the world to believe it wants peace it should not have attacked over 2 dozen countries since the end of WW2 right? If America claims to want to support democracy they should support the worst tyrants right? Everything in your post can be 100% turned around and asked of you as an American.

    Double standards, take a look in the mirror Steve. Everything you ask of me is the same thing others ask about America.

    Steve writes “OK, bottom’s up! Malik called somebody a Bin Laden! Every time Malik calls somebody a Bin Laden you have to drain a shot of your favorite beverage. ”

    It is clear you both share the same hatred of “the other”. You want to destroy whole groups of peoples and nations. You are so similiar it is outrageous. Funny how you have become to mirror the person you hate the most.

  58. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    Malik writes “The US was more than happy to overlook Saddams worst excesses when he was then fighting what we used to think was the greater threat of the Shi’a Islamic Revolution in Iran. ”

    The Arab League or the Arab street didn’t care much about Saddam’s atrocities. King Fahd greeted Saddam as a friend and fellow Sunni. When the US decided to remove Saddam for good, pretty much everyone in middle-east was against it. Arafat was quite vocal about his support for Saddam. Apparently most folks in the region saw nothing wrong with Saddam’s leadership.

  59. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Written “Malik,

    I think what Steve is trying to say is that Muslims need to be just as loud in their insistence that Islam is a religion of peace as the extremists in that Islam is a religion of war. A large and well attended demonstation against extremism by Muslims (at least in the West) would certainly make the point. I haven’t seen that. Plenty of Western Muslims demonstrated against the Iraq war so it’s not for lack of ability in organizing a demonstration. ”

    What I am saying is that Muslims, on the whole, are much LOUDER than the extremists, hte question is, why isnt western media covering it? Just because you dont hear about it doesnt mean it isnt so.

  60. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    I just haven’t seen any Muslims who have been loud in condemnation of Islamic terror. I have seen plenty of Muslims praising it and urging it on.

    Please provide links to the secret public demonstrations against Al Qaeda, the secret public broadcasts of Islamic leaders denouncing Al Qaeda, or the secret widescale organizations which forcefully reject Islamic violence against the West.

    Steve

  61. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Steve writes “Malik, you have reached a near total denial of reality here. If you Muslims want to convince Americans that you condemn terror and embrace peace, the necessary first step is to not launch massive terror attacks that butcher thousands of Americans. Knocking down the twin towers knocks the legs out of your argument that Islam promotes peace. ”

    I guess I can say the same thing. If America wants the world to believe it wants peace it should not have attacked over 2 dozen countries since the end of WW2 right? If America claims to want to support democracy they should support the worst tyrants right? Everything in your post can be 100% turned around and asked of you as an American.

    Double standards, take a look in the mirror Steve. Everything you ask of me is the same thing others ask about America. [/quote]

    Non sequitur. First, all your anti-American mud-flinging does not address the issue of the Islamic terror attacks of Sep 11. Second, Bin Laden did not send his jihadis to butcher American families on their way to Disneyworld because America fought wars with countries since WWII or because he thought we didn’t really support democracy, et cetera. He sent them because, like an murderous idiot, he thought one big blow would topple America and allow him to conquer it for Islam.

    Not a single part of your answer defends your indefensible position that Muslims condemn terror and embrace peace. You attempt, instead, to divert attention from that position with a cloud of anti-American rhetoric. In essence, you are attempting to legitimize the terror attacks.

    Thank goodness I do not subscribe to a faith which I am forced to defend with oily evasions.

    Steve

  62. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Mahmood: Did some soldiers and commanders transgress their commission? Probably.[/quote]

    Probably. It’s unavoidable in war.

    [quote]Mahmood: Did the US benefit from the war so far? I don’t think so. Will they ever benefit financially and otherwise? I think and hope so. They deserve whatever Iraq can give them at a fair price.[/quote]

    I doubt we’ll ever benefit financially, Mahmood. The immediate benefit we receive is that Wahhabi jihad has been directed inward in the Middle East to Iraq rather than outward. Our troops in Iraq are quite effectively killing the jihadis who come to Iraq to bag an American. In the long term, it changes the dynamics of the Middle East to inject democracy into the mix. With luck, the region will calm down and start creating wealth for themselves instead of wasting their energy, assets, and lives on a damned fool jihad.

    [quote]Mahmood: Malik, it’s indeed strange for an Arab to tell you this: Thank you lucky stars that you are an American. [/quote]

    That is the fact, Jack. Damned if you don’t deserve the best drink in the house for that remark, Mahmood.

    Steve

  63. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “Thank goodness I do not subscribe to a faith which I am forced to defend with oily evasions.”

    Are you going to stand by this opinion of Steve’s as well Mahmood? Do you “stand by him” now? This is the real Steve, this is his agenda. It is one of hate, of bigotry and prejudice. He hates Islam, it is clear, he hates Muslims, it is clear. The above statement is an attack on all Muslims, including YOU Mahmood. Dont think that these types of people will care for one minute that you take pictures of women and post them or that you put up a Christmas tree. They have an agenda that includes erasing all Muslims and Arabs from the earth.

    Time to wake up. People like Steve and bin Laden are a threat to the entire world. You and people like you need to realise that a stand must be taken against people like this. You talk about bin Laden and bang on about his type, it is time for a bit on comment on people like Steve. They are as much of a threat as bin Laden.

    Malik

  64. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “I just haven’t seen any Muslims who have been loud in condemnation of Islamic terror. I have seen plenty of Muslims praising it and urging it on.

    Please provide links to the secret public demonstrations against Al Qaeda, the secret public broadcasts of Islamic leaders denouncing Al Qaeda, or the secret widescale organizations which forcefully reject Islamic violence against the West. ”

    I have posted links to perhaps hundreds of such condemnations here in the forums site under the title “Muslims Condemn Terror”. But I am sure your hatred your hatred will force you to find some way to explain that whilst Muslim condemn terror openly, they support it on the sly. There is nothing that anyone could say or do to make you respect Islam, Muslims or Arabs.

    Your type of hate is beyond rationality.

    Malik

  65. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Here is the link to my post here proving that many Muslim groups condemn violence. There are perhaps hundreds of such condemnations on this post and this just in the short period after 9/11. Muslim groups across the world are working day and night trying to build bridges and relationships with other communities.

    I am sure Steve will doubt it, but if God himself appeared to Steve and told him it was so Steve would still deny it. Steve’s hatred knows no bounds.

    http://www.mahmood.tv/index.php/xarbb/topic/33

    Malik

  66. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Steve writes “It’s fabulous that Muslims are joining Christians and Jews in America and Europe to get to know each other through seminars in mosques. That’s the way it should be. How much of that goes on in the Muslim world? ”

    A lot of it actually, but of course anything I could say or show you would not change your mind. In your mind Islam and Muslims are evil, many if not most need to be murdered along with their nations. Sick[/quote]

    Saudi Arabia and the Muslim world are not equivalent. Retaliating against Saudi Arabia for its war by proxy via Bin Laden on the US is not a retaliation against the Muslim world. You are attempting to confuse the issue by mixing these two populations to defend the odious Saudis. When Saudi Arabia calls for war against America, indoctrinates its young to make war on America, recruits them to do so, equips them, trains them, finances them, and sends them to kill Americans by the thousands, then yes, it’s high time we struck back at them. More than just the right thing to do, it is our duty to strike the home of the Wahhabi aggressors to preempt the loss of American lives at home.

    So tell me, Malik, how many of these interfaith exchanges are occurring in Saudi Arabia? Please tell me when the local mosques in Riyadh are scheduling their next interfaith exchange with the local churches and synagogues in Riyadh. Would the answer be something other than: NEVER!

    Steve

  67. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “Saudi Arabia and the Muslim world are not equivalent. Retaliating against Saudi Arabia for its war by proxy via Bin Laden on the US is not a retaliation against the Muslim world. ”

    Funny, why do you always site Saudi examples then for why you hate Muslims and Islam? You are trying to have it both ways. You have consistantly pointed to Saudi to explain your hatred of Islam and Muslims, now you want to say you cannot do that?

    Steve writes “So tell me, Malik, how many of these interfaith exchanges are occurring in Saudi Arabia? Please tell me when the local mosques in Riyadh are scheduling their next interfaith exchange with the local churches and synagogues in Riyadh. Would the answer be something other than: NEVER!”

    But wait, you just told me that Saudi is not all of Islam, backtracking again? Not all Saudis feel this way, that is a gross generalisation on your part. Also, Saudis dont even make up 2% of the percentage of Muslims in the world, so why point at them to make points about Islam?

    My point is that the overwhelming majority of Muslims are completely non violent. There are very few Saudis in the world. I would venture to say there are more Americans that espouse your brand of hatred then there are Saudis that espouse theirs.

    Malik

  68. anonymous says:

    Malik

    Salaam Alaikum.

    I don’t know how long you have been on this site — perhaps you arrived after I had a health sabbatical. I do agree with you that the Bush family has set Arab-American relations back, and that “Deddy” did do wrong by the Iraqi people after the Gulf War. However, at the same time I agree with Mahmood in that ultimately it is not the United States’ place to straighten out everything in the world and would just love for our current administration to ascribe to this position, as well. Let them do everything they need to do to protect Americans but let’s set some limits as to how much messing around in other’s affairs to feel secure.

    I must also say most emphatically that you have Mahmood completely wrong if you think he has any self-hate or is pandering to ANYBODY. The reality is that Mahmood is one of the few of us Muslims who is unflinchingly self-aware and knows the advantages of a people being able to practice self-critique in order to improve their lives.

    You are an American and I am, too. I don’t know if you have ever visited or lived in the Middle East but I have had the good fortune to live here for the past 6 years. Insha’Allah my final day on this earth will come in my home here in the Gulf. What I have discovered that has amazed me more than anything else is how out of touch many of our Muslim brothers and sisters are with “real” Arabs. By “real” I mean normal folks, not those high-profile figures who use Islam to promote their political agenda.

    American and Western Muslims seem unusually susceptible to these troublemakers and I have often wondered why. Is it because you feel so removed from the birthplace of Islam that you grasp at any connection available? Then when Arabs disagree with the extreme ideas promoted by some Western Muslims, the West Coast gang always try to deflect the criticism by saying the Arabs are a sell-out…. Well you couldn’t be more wrong regarding this Arab (Mahmood) or this Muslim (me).

    The reality is that Arabs are like any other group and reflect a broad spectrum of political and religious ideas, as well as social practices. Maybe they don’t always tally with the books you read on Arabian Muslims, but take my word for it, they are just like people everywhere. In other words, Mahmood’s perspective is not a one/off and that doesn’t make him a “sell-out”.

    As a Muslim American you do have a great advantage in being able to see things from several sides. That means that you, like me, can be a bridge builder. Please don’t start burning bridges before they are built, brother Malik.

    Salaam Alaikum,
    PM, a fellow Anti-Bush American; not because I am a Muslim, but because I am a liberal American
    😀

    BTW, Mahmood celebrates Christmas and does what he does because he is part of a blended family and because he is free to do so. Remember that Allah made it clear to us that there is no compulsion in Islam.

  69. anonymous says:

    Aliandra!

    Here! Here!

    This is one Muslimah who agrees with you 1000% 😉

    Are you my twin sister separated at birth? 😀

    Salaam,
    PM

  70. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: Are you going to stand by this opinion of Steve’s as well Mahmood? Do you “stand by him” now? This is the real Steve, this is his agenda. It is one of hate, of bigotry and prejudice. He hates Islam, it is clear, he hates Muslims, it is clear. The above statement is an attack on all Muslims, including YOU Mahmood. Dont think that these types of people will care for one minute that you take pictures of women and post them or that you put up a Christmas tree. They have an agenda that includes erasing all Muslims and Arabs from the earth. [/quote]

    Bottom’s up! Malik called me Bin Laden again. I certainly do appreciate the irony that while calling me Bin Laden he parrots Bin Laden’s propaganda line about America wanting to eradicate all Muslims. Will the real Bin Laden please stand up?

    Of course, the difference between Mahmood and you is that you subscribe to two different faiths. Mahmood is no more likely to join the jihad than I am to dance with the Rockettes. He’s busy playing with his new Mac as any sensible man would be doing with a Big Fun New Toy. I don’t see him making excuses for Muslim terrorists either. You, on the other hand, simply refuse to acknowledge that Muslims have done evil on Sep 11 and many, many other occassions and seek to do more. This ain’t rocket science, pal. I despise those who slaughter Americans. It’s just that simple. Slaughtering Americans for your evil religious beliefs earns you a special place in my contempt.

    I couldn’t care less what Muslims worship. They can pray to turnips for all I care. But if their Turnip God commands them to butcher Americans, then I start caring in a big way. And I hold in small regard those who would defend their Turnip God with venomous tu quoque accusations, oily evasions, smoke blowing, fact spinning, and alibi building. Were some naive dupe to believe your view of events, he’d think that America catapulted the World Trade Center at passing airliners because there were Muslims flying in them.

    Steve

    [Modified by: Steve The American (Steve) on February 18, 2005 02:05 PM]

  71. anonymous says:

    Re: Aliandra!

    PM,

    Agreeing with Aliandra implies that you agree with me which implies that you are Bin Laden, too!

    Bottom’s Up!

    Steve

  72. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    We all know Steve quite well. We have been dealing with him (and occasionally learning a few things from him) for some time before you came here. Most of us don’t waste too much energy on this kind of personal jousting you two are doing.

    Steve can attack us Muslims all he wants and nothing he says actually affects our destinies. The best way to combat the Steves of the world is to be a good Muslim, peaceful, kind and reflecting Allah’s mercy.

    Salaam Alaikum,
    PM

  73. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Aliandra!

    Mine will have to be juice 🙂

    But did you have to point it out, Steve??? You know I don’t like to be seen in your company 😉

    Actually, I am trying to convince Malik not to take you so personally… LOL!

    Salaam,
    PM

  74. anonymous says:

    Re: Malik

    Peaceful writes ” I do agree with you that the Bush family has set Arab-American relations back, and that “Deddy” did do wrong by the Iraqi people after the Gulf War. However, at the same time I agree with Mahmood in that ultimately it is not the United States’ place to straighten out everything in the world and would just love for our current administration to ascribe to this position, as well. Let them do everything they need to do to protect Americans but let’s set some limits as to how much messing around in other’s affairs to feel secure. ”

    See that is the problem, you are others are ascribing to me beliefs I do not hold. I have never said it is up to the USA to fix anyone’s problems, just stay out of the countries and cease and desist from supporting the problems or making them worse. I do not think the USA was trying to fix anything by support Saddam Hussein, the Shah, the Saudi royal family, King Abd’Allah. Did they make these problems? Of course not, are they wrong to support these countries and leaders? Of course. What I call for is for the US to let its actions match its words. If you want democracy in the Middle East stopp supporting those forces that directly keep this from happening. I do not think American created the problems, but I think they have been a big block to keeping them from being fixed.

    Written “I must also say most emphatically that you have Mahmood completely wrong if you think he has any self-hate or is pandering to ANYBODY. The reality is that Mahmood is one of the few of us Muslims who is unflinchingly self-aware and knows the advantages of a people being able to practice self-critique in order to improve their lives. ”

    It seems like to me that Mahmood has taken on some of the worst bits of American and western culture. Why? I dont know really. He seems to consistantly harp on about the negative issues about Islam and Arabs and even likes to make light of the religion himself. He is fooling himself if he thinks he can deal with or be accepted by people like Steve. Steve has a lasting and abiding hatred of Muslims and Arabs and nothing will change this. He needs to accept this and the fact that there are tens of millions of Americans just like this.

    Written “You are an American and I am, too. I don’t know if you have ever visited or lived in the Middle East but I have had the good fortune to live here for the past 6 years. Insha’Allah my final day on this earth will come in my home here in the Gulf. What I have discovered that has amazed me more than anything else is how out of touch many of our Muslim brothers and sisters are with “real” Arabs. By “real” I mean normal folks, not those high-profile figures who use Islam to promote their political agenda. ”

    I have been all over the Middle East for the last decade or so for months at a time.

    Written ” Is it because you feel so removed from the birthplace of Islam that you grasp at any connection available? Then when Arabs disagree with the extreme ideas promoted by some Western Muslims, the West Coast gang always try to deflect the criticism by saying the Arabs are a sell-out…. Well you couldn’t be more wrong regarding this Arab (Mahmood) or this Muslim (me).”

    I dont know what you are driving at here. Grasp at any connection? I have been all over the Middle East, I travel there a couple of times a year, I dont see how this applies to me. Maybe you have been gone so long you are not aware of who or what I am. I am an American Muslim married to the daughter of a former Saudi diplomat. I have lived in the Middle East and have traveled there extensively. Your post was written to someone else because it doesnt apply to me. As to you or Mahmood, all I see is a stream of comments from Mahmood negative about Islam and Arabs. I dont mind the comments if he was equally as vocal about the good things in Islam and with Arabs. I am fully aware of the differences within the Arab world and Islam. I am the one here who has been getting on Steve’s case for generalisation and talking about “all arabs think this” or “all Muslims do this.”

    Written “As a Muslim American you do have a great advantage in being able to see things from several sides. That means that you, like me, can be a bridge builder. Please don’t start burning bridges before they are built, brother Malik.”

    I am not burning anything. I state what I think. I think Mahmood is far too quick to jump on Islamic extremists but seems to take far more nonsense from American extremists like Steve. I have no time for either one.

    Written “BTW, Mahmood celebrates Christmas and does what he does because he is part of a blended family and because he is free to do so. Remember that Allah made it clear to us that there is no compulsion in Islam. ”

    Christmas, first of all, is based on a pagan holiday, so has no real basis in Christianity anyway. As to celebrating it, no matter what the reason, it is certainly wrong to take part in any celebration where people are celebrating the birth of “God’s son”. The tree itself is a pagan concept coming from pagan tree worshippers. Christians shouldnt put up a tree let alone a Muslim. It has no basis in Christianity, certainly non in Islam.

    Just wondering, Bahrain cannot be so bab, seeing that he chooses to live there instead of the west. If anyone spent more time in the US post 9/11 you’ll see there are a lot more Steves out there than people might want to admit

  75. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Aliandra!

    Not take Steve personally? To him you and I are traitors. He views Islam and Arabs as trash. He would wipe you out if he could! He spreads the same vile hate as bin Laden, yet we should taken him seriously? I beg to differ! Hate must be confronted whenever and wherever it is found. Doesnt matter if it is the guys with the beards and the short pants or red necks like Steve.

  76. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Malik

    My apologies. I seem to have jumped to some incorrect conclusions regarding your knowledge of Arabs. However, I vociferously disagree with your assessment that Mahmood is a self-hating Arab or would ever even be desirous of acceptance by the Steves of the world. You simply don’t know him well enough and are jumping to some extreme conclusions.

    As for the Christmas issue, let people do what they want Malik. You have expressed your opinion and now it is they who will have to stand in front of Allah. To come on his website and belittle his practices does not make you a better Muslim, brother. My family (who are not Muslims) put up a tree and celebrate Christmas with absolutely no intention of pagan worship. And after all, isn’t INTENTION what matters?

    I have been in the US since 9/11. I did not have the misfortune of running into any “Steves” on my visits there, but I run into them all the time online. I try to waste as little time as possible on them — especially when it results in negativity.

    I believe we have had some contact via email in the past. If I am right, I hope you have resolved the issue you were struggling with.

    Salaam Alaikum,
    PM

  77. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Malik

    Malik

    [quote]As to celebrating it, no matter what the reason, it is certainly wrong to take part in any celebration where people are celebrating the birth of “God’s son” The tree itself is a pagan concept coming from pagan tree worshippers. Christians shouldnt put up a tree let alone a Muslim. [/quote]

    Says who? You? Concerning people’s religious practices, how about we let God decide what does or does not offend him? God has enough people claiming to speak for him. Malik, please don’t add to that.

    [quote] It has no basis in Christianity, certainly non in Islam. [/quote]

    The origin of the Christmas trees came from Christian missionaries who went to convert the Scandinavians. The Scandinavians decorated oak trees in honor of Odin. The missionaries convinced them to decorate fir trees in honor of Christ. So it has both a pagan and Christian origin. Pagans are also children of god, no?

    -Aliandra

  78. anonymous says:

    Re: Aliandra!

    PM,

    [quote]Are you my twin sister separated at birth? [/quote]

    I am an only child as far as my parents have told me ! 🙂

  79. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Malik

    Malik,

    [quote]I have never said it is up to the USA to fix anyone’s problems, just stay out of the countries and cease and desist from supporting the problems or making them worse. [/quote]

    Revel’s Rule. Blame the US for doing something while also blaming it for doing the opposite. The US gets condemned for NOT stopping the genocide in Rwanda and gets condemned for removing a genocidal tyrant like Saddam. When that genocide in the Balkans was going on, I was asked by some Europeans when the Americans were going to do something about it.

    The US is damned if it does and damned if it doesn’t. This American is frankly getting tired of it. Better for us to do nothing and save the cash. If folks want to slaughter each other by the thousands, maybe we should just let them.

    -Aliandra

  80. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Americans are immoral

    Hundreds of condemnations by Muslims? Obviously I have missed them. Why don’t you post a link to the link on this site where those hundreds of condemnations reside? Let’s all see them and examine them closely.

    Or then again, maybe you are playing your old trick of evading a response by claiming you have responded elsewhere in some ambiguously declared and fuzzy corner of Mahmood’s Den that time forgot.

    Steve

  81. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Malik

    [quote]It seems like to me that Mahmood has taken on some of the worst bits of American and western culture. Why? I dont know really. He seems to consistantly harp on about the negative issues about Islam and Arabs and even likes to make light of the religion himself.[/quote]

    Only one who is comfortable in their belief/society can make light of it.

    Those who defend the belief most stridently and refuse to brook dissent are the ones who secretly question it, or know of the problems, but ignore them.

    …Malik.

    Mahmood is honest – having lived in the ME all of his life, he can see the imprefections quite clearly. You’re only a visitor: An Arabophile. Like Otaku, you see only good in your chosen society, and refuse to see the dark side. Stop being pigheaded and listen.

  82. anonymous says:

    Re(10): Americans are immoral

    When Muslims burn the flag of Hamas and Al-Quaeda as fervently as they burn the US Flag.

    When there are mass demonstrations that call on all Muslims to stop fighting in the name of God.

    When Jihadis are rounded up by neighbors and brought to justice en masse.

    THEN

    There will be condemnation of terror.

    Words of ‘gives Islam a bad name’

    Words of ‘Not part of Islam’

    Words of ‘Religion of Peace’

    Mean a load of, pardon my French, Medre

  83. anonymous says:

    Re(6): I wonder…

    And now the US-sponsored elections in Iraq have produced a Shia slate of candidates. That’s not exactly the preference of the US but we stand behind the election results. So it would appear Malik that US actions do bear out a preference for free elections in Iraq.

    Steve

  84. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Malik

    [quote]Malik: Christmas, first of all, is based on a pagan holiday, …[/quote]

    Malik,

    Would you say that Christmas trees have their origin in pagan beliefs just like that big black rock in the Kaaba? The Meccans were worshipping that meteorite long before Mohammed showed up. If you are casting the first stone at pagan traditions, shouldn’t that black stone be the first one you throw away?

    Steve

  85. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Steve writes “So tell me, Malik, how many of these interfaith exchanges are occurring in Saudi Arabia? Please tell me when the local mosques in Riyadh are scheduling their next interfaith exchange with the local churches and synagogues in Riyadh. Would the answer be something other than: NEVER!”

    But wait, you just told me that Saudi is not all of Islam, backtracking again? Not all Saudis feel this way, that is a gross generalisation on your part. Also, Saudis dont even make up 2% of the percentage of Muslims in the world, so why point at them to make points about Islam? [/quote]

    Why are you dodging the question? Let me ask it again:

    When is the next interfaith exhange in Saudi Arabia between a local mosque and a local church and/or synagogue? This week sometime? This month? This year?

    Steve

  86. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    Once again, Mahmood shows why he is the voice of reason. Thank you!

  87. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    So far no one has convinced me that americans are immoral but im sure convinced that both Steve and Malik are great examples of how not to win an argument. I can just picture it, pistols or swords. Now that would make great reality tv which by the way I wish you europeans had never come up with.

    billT

  88. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Malik, my friend, you are showing your fundimentalist islam here. Islam doesn’t need that. The world has already proven that the Wahabi way of doing things is less than ideal, why do you want to ascribe your thoughts and actions to that? I would have thought that a person who has seen and lived liberty of thought and enjoyed personal freedoms you would have appreciated that. Sadly, that does not seem to be the case here.

    I disagree with your views of Steve as well. Through your various recent comments you have gone on the defensive because you started to get personal, like you have done with me, but failed to unequivocally answer the very valid questions posed, and degenerated the situation to name calling.

    As to pride, tell me Malik, what other trait has isolated Arabs and Muslims through millenia? That would be ignorance and the complete rejection of any alternate thought. You, unfrotunately are demonstrating all three.

    So please, as advice from a friend, re-evaluate your Islam. Because you can. Don’t subscribe to extreme interpretations, as it is something that you will not be able to live with nor adhere to.

    Finally, I can see that you have no love lost to America, why not do the right thing then and come and live in Arabia? Choose any one of the 22 countries, I’m sure you’ll fit in quite nicely anywhere you choose. I’m not sure however how long you would last.

  89. anonymous says:

    Moslems are immoral

    Sorry. I just wanted to see how people would respond to the title. The post was Americans are immoral – and there were a lot of Americans who participated. I just wanted to do an acid test on whether the Moslems and Arabs writing on this post would be as able to accept criticism as the Americans ..

    Malik. I am going to take issue with one of your points. And Steve, that does NOT mean that I agree with you. i find you somewhat sensationalist at times, and a bit extreme when it comes to Islam and the Saudis. But my point is directed to Malik.

    What is wrong with taking Islam lightly? Why do you get upset with Mahmood for him saying what he does in the manner that he does? Are you going to say that there is only one way to interpret Islam in its liberal form? And if Mahmood doesnt use those words and views, it means that he is being disrepsectful? Arent you employing the same scare tactics that the wahabbi moslems are using against the intelligentsia moslems? implicityl veering towards the concept of takfir?

    For the record, I stand by Mahmood. I thnk there is absolutely nothing wrong with the US being motivated in acting in its own self interest. For God’s sake, the most powerful instinct in man is the instinct to survive. And the US wants to maintain its role as super power. Yes, it interferes in other countries .. but so what? Name me one country/superpower that has not done that??

    And for the record, I do think that the Moslems were in denial pre 9-11. We became so scared of being ostracized or being called ‘kuffar’ or not Moslem enough, we allowed the extremists to take over the stage. We gave up inch by inch .. and we supported them because they made us beleive that they were the only true political opposition to the status quo. Because we didnt want to take responsability into our own hands and think for ourselves and come to our own judgeemnts – easier to blame others. Lets blame the Americans. Lets blame the extremists. lets blame history. Lets blame islam. But – for heavens sake – lets not ever look at the mirror and really acknowledge what our own apathy is doing to controbute to the situation.

    We need a reformation in Islam. And we need to start with the Moslems. And we need to start at home. We actually need a reformation in our social construct. Malik – whether u agree with Mahmood or not, hats off to him for living his life openly and without trying to hide – and bringing up his kids to be multi cultural and honest and open. As opposed to the hundreds of other Arabs and moslems who live in hiding in our parts of the world. Who drink, but not publicly. Who smoke, but in private. Who screw around, but keep their daughters covered. And the women, who accept the status quo, and then become the biggest upholders and obstacles to change – because how else can they justify their own choices that they have made with their own lives?

    Our problems are deep rooted. They are in the cultural frameowrk. Which governs how we deal with religion. And its about time we took off the friggin rose colored glasses and learned to call a spade a spade. By looking in the mirror first. Before we point fingers at others.

    Jasra Jedi

  90. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Malik

    [quote]Malik: Mahmood has taken on some of the worst bits of American and western culture. Why? I dont know really. He seems to consistantly harp on about the negative issues about Islam and Arabs and even likes to make light of the religion himself. [/quote]

    Malik, you constantly castigate America and consider yourself a fine American and your grievances proof of your patriotism. Yet, if Mahmood makes a criticism of Islam or Muslims you consider him a traitor to his religion and race. Using your logic, why wouldn’t his criticism make him a better Muslim just like your criticism supposedly makes you a better American? How do you justify this double standard of yours in that critism of America makes you a wonderful person but criticism of Islam and Arabs makes you a terrible person? What kind of pretzel logic do you use to reconcile those contradictory positions?

    [quote]Malik: He is fooling himself if he thinks he can deal with or be accepted by people like Steve. Steve has a lasting and abiding hatred of Muslims and Arabs and nothing will change this. He needs to accept this and the fact that there are tens of millions of Americans just like this. [/quote]

    Too late, Malik. Mahmood can certainly deal with me and I already accept him. We may disagree on some things but Mahmood is basically an OK guy, a completely understandable type of guy I’ve seen in lots of cities in America and in different professions. My guess is that if Mahmood ever showed up in DC, we could have a fine time talking and seeing the sights.

    It’s easier for you to think that anyone who has an issue with Islam or Arabs is fueled by racism and hate and bigotry and what have you. Maybe it’s just a rhetorical pose. It certainly is easier to shout bigot than to have to actually deal with valid criticism.

    You do have a kernel of truth in your wild accusations: There are a lot of Americans who have a negative view of Islam and Arabs since Sep 11 and rightfully so. Mass murder and death threats make a poor impression. Day after day, week after week, come new revelations of the depth of the plots against America, the volume of venomous rhetoric from the mosques directed at America, and new and ghastly crimes of violence done by pious Muslims in service of Islam. This hasn’t won Islam any admirers here. The fundamentalist Muslims have brought shame on their religion with their bloody jihad and the normal Muslims have shamed it by turning a blind eye to the evil among them.

    Steve

  91. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Aliandra!

    Malik, Malik, Malik,

    I certainly don’t see PM as a traitor, just you. And I certainly wouldn’t want to wipe out either you nor PM, no matter how much you savor the idea of a reciprocal hate. PM is far too nice to wipe out. I’m far more likely to buy her dinner than wipe her out. Even you, obnoxious as you are, don’t deserve to be wiped out. Dunking in cold water should suffice in your case.

    I’m particularly entertained that you, who profess to be against racism, hurl the racist taunt of “redneck” at me. It appears that you only pose as an anti-racist in public but are quite fond of racism when it suits you, aren’t you?

    Steve

  92. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Congratulations, Malik. You have marshalled factual evidence to support your position. I am persuaded that some Muslim leaders publicly denounced the Sep 11 attacks.

    Now the question is whether this is a majority position or a minority position.

    Steve

  93. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: You need to accept the fact that no matter what Steve says he will never completely accept you or your religion it doesnt matter how westernised you try to present yourself. You can talk about “pit babes” and your christmas tree all you want, to Steve you are just another wog rag head, simple fact. It is sad. [/quote]

    May I point out that you are the only one tossing out racist epithets? Please don’t include my name in your race-baiting. I recommend you attach your own name to your racist remarks.

    I have no grievance with Mahmood, who is kind enough to host this forum and patient enough to put up with me. My grievance is not with race, but behavior. The Sep 11 skyjackers are not bad because they were Arabs but because they were mass murderers just as Timothy McVeigh is not good because he was white but bad because he was a mass murderer. It’s that simple. It seems you never want to talk about the murderous behavior which inspires my grievance with Islamic fundamentalists, only about straw man grievances against Islam like racism and bigotry.

    I like Mahmood because he’s a good guy, not because he puts a Christmas tree up in his house. I couldn’t care less if he puts one up or not. I’m not interested in what cultural baggage he carries. I only care how he acts with respect to me. He’s been a courteous host.

    It’s not about Westernization. If you don’t want to accept the way the West or America lives or does things, who’s making you? Not me. If you are rejecting some American thing that would improve your life out of pure pigheadedness, I’ll have a good laugh at your expense but leave you to suffer the consequences. Sooner or later, you’ll figure it out and come slinking to the American solution if it’s right for you.

    Malik, your arguments seem to be sinking lower and lower. You were wallowing around in reflexive anti-Americanism but now you’ve descended to sleazy race-baiting. Maybe you should splash some cold water on your face and break out of this flat spin you’re in.

    Steve

  94. anonymous says:

    Re: Malik

    [quote] PM: I do agree with you that the Bush family has set Arab-American relations back, …[/quote]

    Nothing set Arab-American relations back so far as the Sep 11 attacks.

    Steve

  95. anonymous says:

    Re: Moslems are immoral

    Jasra,

    I’m a little hurt that you shrink from agreeing with me but I’m generous enough to say that I agree with you. I leave it to you to decide if that makes me sensible or you a dangerous extremist.

    Genuinely Puzzled,

    Steve

  96. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Malik

    Muslimah writes “My apologies. I seem to have jumped to some incorrect conclusions regarding your knowledge of Arabs. However, I vociferously disagree with your assessment that Mahmood is a self-hating Arab or would ever even be desirous of acceptance by the Steves of the world. You simply don’t know him well enough and are jumping to some extreme conclusions ”

    You are right, I do not know him, so I can only judge him by his comments here. I have seen him go off on four letter tirades when some Islamic nutter spouts off, but seems willing to ignore or politely comment on extremism from people like Steve. What is the difference between an Islamic extremist advocting murder here and Steve doing the same? Why the differing responses?

    Writen “As for the Christmas issue, let people do what they want Malik. You have expressed your opinion and now it is they who will have to stand in front of Allah. To come on his website and belittle his practices does not make you a better Muslim, brother. My family (who are not Muslims) put up a tree and celebrate Christmas with absolutely no intention of pagan worship. And after all, isn’t INTENTION what matters? ”

    I really do not see that I have belittled anyone or anything. I just wonder why a Muslim would entertain a pagan based religious practice. Of course there is no mention of pagan worship, but the practice itself is deeply rooted in pagan belief. Besides, Christmas has pretty much all religious value of any sort, it is all about materialism. Let people who put Christmas trees up ask themselves one question, did you spend as much time in religious contemplation as you did in buying the tree, decorating it, or spending the hundreds of dollars to put the presents underneath it? If not, it is clear what the tree and the holiday really means.

    Muslimah writes “I believe we have had some contact via email in the past. If I am right, I hope you have resolved the issue you were struggling with. ”

    No, we have gotten nowhere. That is how I found this site in the first place. I, of almost anyone, should be a position to hate all Saudis. But, as a Muslim, I refuse to do what Steve has an condemn a whole people for the actions of their government and a few ruling elite.

    Insha’Allah, we will find redress, if not, God will make things just in the end. Thank you for asking.

  97. anonymous says:

    Re(7): I wonder…

    Steve writes “And now the US-sponsored elections in Iraq have produced a Shia slate of candidates. That’s not exactly the preference of the US but we stand behind the election results. So it would appear Malik that US actions do bear out a preference for free elections in Iraq.

    Steve”

    And what happens if these same elected leaders demand a US withdrawl in 6 months? What then? The reason the US has little issue now is that these Shi’a owe them the election and these same Shi’a know that they will need the US forces to impliment their policies. If the US was serious about supporting democratic elections in the area they would not have supported a military coup in Algeria to overthrow the democratic elections there.

  98. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Malik

    Written “Mahmood is honest – having lived in the ME all of his life, he can see the imprefections quite clearly. You’re only a visitor: An Arabophile. Like Otaku, you see only good in your chosen society, and refuse to see the dark side. Stop being pigheaded and listen. ”

    Nonsense. Both PeacefulMuslimah and Mahmood can attest to the fact that I found this website looking for help in my battle with a Middle Eastern government over serious family issues. I am far from one that sees only the light in the Middle East. What I have an issue with is people like Steve who want to slaughter the whole Middle East and all Muslims, and people like Mahmood who somehow seem to think such people are any different than Islamic extremists. They are not, they are the same and deserve to be treated with the same scorn.

    Mahmood wastes no four letter words on the extremist Muslim elements, why no similar repsonse to the extremists like Steve?

  99. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Malik

    Written “Malik, you constantly castigate America and consider yourself a fine American and your grievances proof of your patriotism. Yet, if Mahmood makes a criticism of Islam or Muslims you consider him a traitor to his religion and race. Using your logic, why wouldn’t his criticism make him a better Muslim just like your criticism supposedly makes you a better American? How do you justify this double standard of yours in that critism of America makes you a wonderful person but criticism of Islam and Arabs makes you a terrible person? What kind of pretzel logic do you use to reconcile those contradictory positions? ”

    The difference here is that I treat the extremists, Islamic and people like Steve the same way. I recognise them for the filth that they are and treat them equally. Mahmood fails to do so. I have no problem with expressing issues within Islam and Muslim governments, I have serious issues with both myself. My issue is the way that the two subjects are treated. It seems that Steve and his ilk can have a free go here with little or no comment, but let an Islamic extremist come and he is greeted with four letter curse words. This is the double standard.

    Steve writes “It’s easier for you to think that anyone who has an issue with Islam or Arabs is fueled by racism and hate and bigotry and what have you. Maybe it’s just a rhetorical pose. It certainly is easier to shout bigot than to have to actually deal with valid criticism. ”

    When you openly claim to support the murder and destruction of whole civilisations, of course you are a bigot.

    Steve writes “Mass murder and death threats make a poor impression”

    Then I suggest you stop them then.

  100. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    Mahmood “Malik, my friend, you are showing your fundimentalist islam here. Islam doesn’t need that. The world has already proven that the Wahabi way of doing things is less than ideal, why do you want to ascribe your thoughts and actions to that? I would have thought that a person who has seen and lived liberty of thought and enjoyed personal freedoms you would have appreciated that. Sadly, that does not seem to be the case here. ”

    If “Fundamentalist Islam” means that I support the fundamentals of Islam, then you are correct. I do not believe in partaking in religious events besides my own. I will not drink or do other such nonsense. I do not believe this makes me an extremist. I think I am right square in the middle, in the middle of extremists, and people like yourself for whom their religion means very little. I am very far from being a Wahabi. Just because I still want to practice my religion does not make me an extremist. You are an example of a Muslim who has gone too far the opposite direction. You seem unable to recognise the fact that you CAN be a moderate Muslim and still respect your freedom and liberty without forgetting your religion. It is the middle of the road Mahmood, and you seem to have veered too far off to the left. But do not think your left turn means that I have made a right one, I am in the middle of the road, the safest place to be.

    Mahmood writes “I disagree with your views of Steve as well. Through your various recent comments you have gone on the defensive because you started to get personal, like you have done with me, but failed to unequivocally answer the very valid questions posed, and degenerated the situation to name calling. ”

    I have seen no real valid questions from Steve, from Ethan I have, and Ethan and I have dealt well together. All I have seen from Steve is hatemongering and his calls for violence, murder and destruction of civilisations. My question to you Mahmood is why do you not respond to his calls to violence in the same manner that you would and have responded to similiar comments from Islamic extremists?

    Mahmood writes “As to pride, tell me Malik, what other trait has isolated Arabs and Muslims through millenia? That would be ignorance and the complete rejection of any alternate thought. You, unfrotunately are demonstrating all three. ”

    Once again you fail to see that the middle of the road is the place to be. Do not reject your religion, do not reject your culture, rather find a healthy and appropriate way to keep both. You and the extremists have it all wrong. You drop your religion and culture for whatever reasons, the extremists hold onto it too hard and corrupt it. Neither of you have the answer, the answer is in the middle ground, do not forget it or deny it, but do not become extreme either. You are two sides of the same coin.

    Mahmood writes “So please, as advice from a friend, re-evaluate your Islam. Because you can. Don’t subscribe to extreme interpretations, as it is something that you will not be able to live with nor adhere to. ”

    I am hardly extreme. Because I do not think you should drink I am extreme? That is a basic part of Islam. I am not extreme because I would not force this on your or anyone else. Do not practice portions of other people’s religion. I say that because I am a Muslim, but I am not extremist and would not force it on you. You see you are falling into the old trap, calling me an extremist because I disgree with some of the things you do. I am not an extremist, because I disagree with you doesnt mean I would force you to follow my way.

    I would tell you to reevaluate your Islam. We have enough extremists and we have enough people for whom the religion is nothing more than a cultural moniker. Both are wrong, once again the middle of the road is the way, you have veered way too far off one direction. Telling you to come back to the middle is not extremism, it is the exact opposite. You have bought into the nonsense being sold that if one practices Islam they must be an extremist, a hold back. You think that if you practice your deen you cannot be modern, you cannot interact in the modern world. You have been sold a false bill of goods. You can be entirely modern and be 100% Muslim, without being an extremist.

    Mahmood writes “Finally, I can see that you have no love lost to America, why not do the right thing then and come and live in Arabia? Choose any one of the 22 countries, I’m sure you’ll fit in quite nicely anywhere you choose. I’m not sure however how long you would last.”

    Mahmood finally subcomes to the worst cliche. Because I have issues with American foriegn policy I must hate America! Wow, if we use this same logic, then you hate Islam right? It would seem that you and Steve have more in common than I thought. I work everyday for this country and I love it. I love it that is why I point out the issues with it, unlike yourself, I am fierce to extremists on both sides. That is all I asked, treat Steve, when he calls for the destruction of whole nations of people, in the same way you would treat an Islamic extremist here calling for the deaths of all Americans.

  101. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Written “Malik writes “The US was more than happy to overlook Saddams worst excesses when he was then fighting what we used to think was the greater threat of the Shi’a Islamic Revolution in Iran. ”

    The Arab League or the Arab street didn’t care much about Saddam’s atrocities. King Fahd greeted Saddam as a friend and fellow Sunni. When the US decided to remove Saddam for good, pretty much everyone in middle-east was against it. Arafat was quite vocal about his support for Saddam. Apparently most folks in the region saw nothing wrong with Saddam’s leadership.”

    Indeed, but none of them claimed to want to free the people of the area either, and have of them are in our pocket anyways.

  102. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Written “Malik writes “The US was more than happy to overlook Saddams worst excesses when he was then fighting what we used to think was the greater threat of the Shi’a Islamic Revolution in Iran. ”

    The Arab League or the Arab street didn’t care much about Saddam’s atrocities. King Fahd greeted Saddam as a friend and fellow Sunni. When the US decided to remove Saddam for good, pretty much everyone in middle-east was against it. Arafat was quite vocal about his support for Saddam. Apparently most folks in the region saw nothing wrong with Saddam’s leadership.”

    Indeed, but none of them claimed to want to free the people of the area either, and half of them are in our pocket anyways.

  103. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Written “Malik writes “The US was more than happy to overlook Saddams worst excesses when he was then fighting what we used to think was the greater threat of the Shi’a Islamic Revolution in Iran. ”

    The Arab League or the Arab street didn’t care much about Saddam’s atrocities. King Fahd greeted Saddam as a friend and fellow Sunni. When the US decided to remove Saddam for good, pretty much everyone in middle-east was against it. Arafat was quite vocal about his support for Saddam. Apparently most folks in the region saw nothing wrong with Saddam’s leadership.”

    Indeed, but none of them claimed to want to free the people of the area either, and half of them are in our pocket anyways.

  104. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “Why are you dodging the question? Let me ask it again:

    When is the next interfaith exhange in Saudi Arabia between a local mosque and a local church and/or synagogue? This week sometime? This month? This year? ”

    I am not dodging the question at all. I am pointing out to you that once again your are using Saudi Arabia to try and make a point about Islam and Muslims. There will be no interfaith meeting in Saudi Arabia because this US backed dictatorship does not practice Islam. Time for the US to stop supporting it eh? Maybe time for us US Muslims to go to Saudi and show them how it is done?

    I suspect there will be an interfaith meeting in Saudi about the same time Pat Robertson stops going to the White House.

  105. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote]Indeed, but none of them claimed to want to free the people of the area either, and have of them are in our pocket anyways. [/quote]

    The US and UK went into Iraq because of WMD, not to free the people of Iraq. The US attacked Afghanistan to get bin Ladin, not to free the people of Afghanistan. Freeing people from dictators isn’t a substantial reason to go to war.

    All that talk about freedom and democracy came afterward.

    -Aliandra

  106. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    Written “The US and UK went into Iraq because of WMD, not to free the people of Iraq. The US attacked Afghanistan to get bin Ladin, not to free the people of Afghanistan. Freeing people from dictators isn’t a substantial reason to go to war.

    All that talk about freedom and democracy came afterward.

    -Aliandra”

    My point exactly, I hate the hypocrisy. Dont say you went there to free the people when you sat and watched them being slaughtered and in some cases support the governments doing the killing. The war had everything to do with oil and Israel and very little to do with freedom.

  107. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote]The war had everything to do with oil and Israel and very little to do with freedom. [/quote]

    A rather common (T)urban legend in that part of the world. Everything the US does is about Israel or oil yada yada yada …

    Had the US wanted oil, it could have:

    1 – had it in 1991
    2- taken over Kuwait
    3 – taken over Venezuela (there’s a Bad Guy running that country too and no religious nuts to deal with either)
    4 – Cut a deal with Saddam who was desperate to remain in power.

    You’ll have to defend the “doing it for Israel” argument. It’s too outlandish to counter.

    [quote]My point exactly, I hate the hypocrisy. Dont say you went there to free the people when you sat and watched them being slaughtered [/quote]

    We never said freedom for the people was our reason for war. No hypocrisy here. When you knock out a government, you can’t leave a power vacuum. You have to put something in its place. It might as well be something that respects freedom and democracy.

    We never sat and watched anyone being slaughtered. That’s more to the taste of the Al Jazeera audience, not us.

    -Aliandra

  108. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Americans are immoral

    Written “You’ll have to defend the “doing it for Israel” argument. It’s too outlandish to counter.”

    Not at all, Iraq was the largest threat to Israel before the US invaded. That threat is now gone. Israeli intelligence had at one point drawn up a plan to promote the destruction of Iraqi into three different entities, thus destroying any future threat from this state.

    Written “We never sat and watched anyone being slaughtered. That’s more to the taste of the Al Jazeera audience, not us”

    False. I remember being in both Europe and the US and seeing images on the news of the victims of Saddams gass attacks on the Kurds. We watched and did nothing.

  109. anonymous says:

    Re(10): Americans are immoral

    Malik.

    [quote]False. I remember being in both Europe and the US and seeing images on the news of the victims of Saddams gass attacks on the Kurds. We watched and did nothing. [/quote]

    Neither did Micronesia. Neither did Sweden. Neither did Paraguay. Millions of people were killed by Mao, by Pol Pot, thousands by the Syrian government and by the Sudanese government. Everyone saw the images of dead people and did nothing. It’s not feasible to expect other countries to stop each and every atrocity on the planet. Countries don’t risk solving other people’s problems unless those problems threaten them too.

    [quote]Iraq was the largest threat to Israel before the US invaded. That threat is now gone.[/quote]

    Had the US done it for Israel, it would not have waited 12 years. Saddam was throwing SCUDS at Israel during Gulf War 1.

    -Aliandra

  110. anonymous says:

    Re(11): Americans are immoral

    Written “Neither did Micronesia. Neither did Sweden. Neither did Paraguay. Millions of people were killed by Mao, by Pol Pot, thousands by the Syrian government and by the Sudanese government. Everyone saw the images of dead people and did nothing. It’s not feasible to expect other countries to stop each and every atrocity on the planet. Countries don’t risk solving other people’s problems unless those problems threaten them too. ”

    I am talking about what our nominal “allies” did whilst we were still friendly with them. I care about what other nations do, but as I am an American, the actions of my country matter the most to me. The fact is the US supported Saddam Hussein before, during and after his WMD attacks against his own people.

    Posted “Had the US done it for Israel, it would not have waited 12 years. Saddam was throwing SCUDS at Israel during Gulf War 1.”

    The first Bush didnt share the radical world views that Bush the 2nd and his advisers do. As a matter of fact, the first Bush didnt support this war either. There are a ton of places we could have gone to try and right things. We went into Iraqi for two reasons, to control their oil and install military bases and to protect Israel. The Israelis have even admitted that if the US didnt take care of Iraqi they would have had to do it themselves eventual. Trying reading some Israeli papers.

  111. anonymous says:

    Re(12): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    Malik,

    [quote] We went into Iraqi for two reasons, to control their oil [/quote]

    And I re-iterate:

    Had the US wanted oil, it could have:

    1 – had it in 1991
    2- taken over Kuwait
    3 – taken over Venezuela (there’s a Bad Guy running that country too and no religious nuts to deal with either)
    4 – Cut a deal with Saddam who was desperate to remain in power.

    Dispute these points, all of which were a lot easier than war with Iraq.

    [quote]and install military bases and to protect Israel. [/quote]

    And I re-iterate – If it was Israel’s security we were worried about, we would not have waited 12 years to dispatch Saddam. It was our own security we wanted to protect and 9-11 made that all too urgent.

    [quote]The first Bush didnt share the radical world views that Bush the 2nd and his advisers do.[/quote]

    It was Clinton that first talked about a new Iraqi government that would live in peace with its neighbors and respect the rights of its people.

    http://www.cnn.com/ALLPOLITICS/stories/1998/12/16/transcripts/clinton.html

    -Aliandra

  112. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    You are trying falsely to make moral equivalence between Islamic terrorists and Christian fundamentalists. Islamic terrorists, supported by their governments, focus on the West and call for its downfall. Christian fundamentalists don’t give a hoot about the Middle East other than the Bible happenned there. And Christian fundamentalists don’t go on suicide missions in the Middle East where they crash airliners into skyscrapers. They don’t make snuff videos of themselves proudly beheading Muslims for Jesus. They don’t blow up mosques or take sniper positions in church towers. The differences are vast.

    At worst, Christian fundamentalists are painful bores. At worst, Islamic fundamentalists are mass murderers.

    Steve

  113. anonymous says:

    Re(13): Americans are immoral

    Written “And I re-iterate:

    Had the US wanted oil, it could have:

    1 – had it in 1991
    2- taken over Kuwait
    3 – taken over Venezuela (there’s a Bad Guy running that country too and no religious nuts to deal with either)
    4 – Cut a deal with Saddam who was desperate to remain in power.

    Dispute these points, all of which were a lot easier than war with Iraq. ”

    The people who wanted the oil and the control in the area were not in power at that time. They are now. From the first minute the younger Bush was elected the “attack Iraq” campaign was in full swing. We have meddled seriously in Venezuela’s politics because of the oil. We havent invaded them, no, but we supported an attempted coup there. We didnt cut a deal with Saddam because that was in the plans. The people who lead the younger Bush to war in Iraq had been planning this war since the first one ended. If you are unfamiliar with the white paper and others written by current members of the US government about the issue in the 1990s I would be happy to supply you with it.

    Written “And I re-iterate – If it was Israel’s security we were worried about, we would not have waited 12 years to dispatch Saddam. It was our own security we wanted to protect and 9-11 made that all too urgent. ”

    9/11 was nothing more than a pre-text. An attack on Saudi Arabia was more justified as a result of 9/11 than one on Iraq. Those in power played on the lack of knowledge of Middle Eastern politics to support an attack on Iraq. In the days, hours and weeks after 9/11 the administration was more worried about finding a link to the attacks and Iraq than it was about finding the people who really did the attack. The fact that bin Laden is still free is a direct result of this.

    Written “It was Clinton that first talked about a new Iraqi government that would live in peace with its neighbors and respect the rights of its people. ”

    Clinton was actually rather late on board. Perle, Rumsfeld, Cheney and others had been planning a regime change in Iraq since the early 90’s as a part of their overall plan to remake the Middle East.

    Back to Israel, Israeli intelligence had years ago outlined a plan that break up Iraq into three different countries. It would, of course, be in their long term best interest to see this happen. Three weakened Sunni, Shia and Kurdish states would be no threat. Not my idea, it is theirs. The fact that a report was issued by the Israel intelligence outlining this idea has played into the hands of those who claim that the sectarian attacks in Iraq have Israeli hands, as a way of dividing the country as their plan called for.

  114. anonymous says:

    Saud

    Malik,

    [quote]this US backed dictatorship does not practice Islam. Time for the US to stop supporting it eh? [/quote]

    The US doesn’t give the House of Saud a dime. They’ve got millions of their own.

    -Aliandra

  115. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “You are trying falsely to make moral equivalence between Islamic terrorists and Christian fundamentalists. Islamic terrorists, supported by their governments, focus on the West and call for its downfall. Christian fundamentalists don’t give a hoot about the Middle East other than the Bible happenned there.”

    Never watch the 700 Club and Pat Robertson do you? They care A LOT about the Middle East. They send tens of millions of dollars to Israeli groups and radical groups advocating Israel settlements and even some groups that advocate the demolition of the Dome of the Rock and replacing it with another temple. Why? Because it fits into their end time beliefs where all Jews will go back to Israel, Jesus will come and everyone will convert to Christianity and be sent to hell. Keep in mind this is a man, Robertson, who has the ear of the US President.

    Steve writes “And Christian fundamentalists don’t go on suicide missions in the Middle East where they crash airliners into skyscrapers. They don’t make snuff videos of themselves proudly beheading Muslims for Jesus. They don’t blow up mosques or take sniper positions in church towers. The differences are vast. ”

    No, they have the ear of the US President and are VERY influential in his policy making choices. It is the pressure of these people that have help formed Bush’s hardline stance on Middle Eastern politics and Palestine, even making him out to be an idiot by calling Ariel Sharon a man of peace. I would say their influence is far more dangerous than bin Ladens. Bin Laden doesnt control the greatest militry man has known, nor does he control a stock pile of nuclear weapons. If you fail to see the influence of the radical religious right in the USA it is because you do not want to see it.

    Steve writes “At worst, Christian fundamentalists are painful bores. At worst, Islamic fundamentalists are mass murderers.”

    This ignores history. More people have been murdered by Christian extremists in Uganda than Islamic extremists ever thought about murdering. But this isnt what scares me. What scares me is the growth of religious fundamentalism in the USA. It is growing, their influence is growing, and its impact on US policy is dangerous.

  116. anonymous says:

    Re(14): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote] We have meddled seriously in Venezuela’s politics because of the oil. We havent invaded them, no, but we supported an attempted coup there. [/quote]

    We did not “meddle� at all. We expressed approval of the coup because the majority of the Venezuelans wanted Chavez out. We did not support it with weapons or otherwise.

    To get back to your original argument, if it was oil we wanted, the invasion of Venezula would have been a far easier undertaking. But we didn’t do it.

    [quote] We didnt cut a deal with Saddam because that was in the plans. . [/quote]

    Then it wasn’t oil we were after, since we could have gotten that very easily by cutting a deal.

    [quote] 9/11 was nothing more than a pre-text. An attack on Saudi Arabia was more justified as a result of 9/11 than one on Iraq. . [/quote]

    Al-qaeda attacked on 9-11 because they wanted the US out of the Gulf and out of Saudi Arabia. Al Qaeda attacked the African embassies, the Cole, and the Dhobar Towers for the same reason. These attacks were going on throughout the 90s. The US was in Saudi Arabia because of Saddam. The only way to get out was to remove our reason for being there and that meant going into Iraq. When combat operations were annnounced to be over, the troops were pulled out the following week..

    [quote] Clinton was actually rather late on board. Perle, Rumsfeld, Cheney and others had been planning a regime change in Iraq since the early 90’s as a part of their overall plan to remake the Middle East. . [/quote]

    So the plan was to re-make the middle-east, not to grab Iraq’s oil. Given that 12 years of “diplomacy� with Iraq was failing, the no-fly zones weren’t working, embassies were being bombed, sanctions were failing, UN was making money on the oil-for-food program, and our presence in Saudi Arabia was being resented, I don’t see this as an issue.

    [quote] Back to Israel, Israeli intelligence had years ago outlined a plan that break up Iraq into three different countries. It would, of course, be in their long term best interest to see this happen. Three weakened Sunni, Shia and Kurdish states would be no threat. Not my idea, it is theirs. [/quote]

    That only proves Israel had their own plans for Iraq, not that the US went to Iraq for Israel.

    -Aliandra

  117. anonymous says:

    Christian Fundies

    Malik,

    [quote]No, they have the ear of the US President and are VERY influential in his policy making choices. It is the pressure of these people that have help formed Bush’s hardline stance on Middle Eastern politics and Palestine, [/quote]

    It was Pat Robertson that made Bush call for an independent Palestinian state? Somehow I doubt that. It is contrary to your claim that “They care A LOT about the Middle East. They send tens of millions of dollars to Israeli groups and radical groups advocating Israel settlements and even some groups that advocate the demolition of the Dome of the Rock and replacing it with another temple. ”

    It was Bush who called Islam a religion of peace, not Mr. Robertson.

    The Robertson fundies have a lot less influence than you think, Malik.

    -Aliandra

  118. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Malik

    Then why does it -act- like a new religion? Why is the Koran drastically different from the Torah? Why does the Koran read like the Book of Leviticus alone? Why are the teachings of Mohammed in diametric opposition to the teachings of Jesus? Why do Muslims pray more often than the Pharisees? Why is Islam so concerned with the here and now rather than the hereafter?

    Why is a pilgrimage to Mecca required as a fundamental pillar of the religion? Why is Mecca so central? Does God live in Mecca? Is God a funny little black rock?
    Anthropologically speaking, pre-Islamic tribes in the Hijaz were rock-worshippers.

    The Ka’aba was a house for many pagan gods, and was not a home for Jewish worship.

    Islam is less of a continuation from Christianity and Judaism than even Mormonism is. The Koran is a drastic re-writing of the Abrahmic theology that only -claims- to follow in the lineage. Where is the proof?

  119. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    [quote]This ignores history. More people have been murdered by Christian extremists in Uganda than Islamic extremists ever thought about murdering. But this isnt what scares me. What scares me is the growth of religious fundamentalism in the USA. It is growing, their influence is growing, and its impact on US policy is dangerous.[/quote]

    I -must- disagree, and it is you who are ignoring history.

    Muslim extremists killed many Jewish tribes in Arabia. Muslim extremists killed many Persians, especially Zoroastrians, Christians and Jews. This continues today. Muslim extremists raped and killed thousands in Constantinople for being Christian. Muslim extremists killed many during the more violent occupation of Spain before they were ejected. Muslim extremists -want- to kill, if not physically, than spiritually and intellectually, every person on the globe.

    Now, Christians have had their crusades, and their inquisition. They are not blameless historically.

    However, I call on you, Malik, to be -honest- in your assessment. Christians today do not lead vast pogroms against ‘unbelievers’ with whole television channels dedicated to spreading the word of physical warfare. Pat Robertson is a moron, but never once has he quoted the Bible and lent support for suicide bombs. The charter of the 700 Club doesn’t include the exhortation that Jews and Christians are the descendents of Pigs and monkeys, as the Hamas charter does. The bible does not contain the phrase ‘make a wide slaughter’. The Koran does.

    Moral equivalence is a disgusting concept, and it is a logical fallacy. It is akin to equating a mass murder with a vehicular homicide. In both cases there are dead. However; and this is where the equivalency falls apart – it’s a question of -scale-.

    Is exhorting people to fight, and die, and behead people on camera equivalent to a statement of ‘We support Israel’?

    A person who gives money to Hamas is not equivalent to being Shiek of the day with super fatwa power over the sheep.

    A person who gives money to Israel is not equivalent to being a ‘kill them all’ Zionist.

  120. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Moslems are immoral

    In any revealed religion that is resistant to change (not interpretave differences – actual change), the ‘middle ground’ is an unstable equilibrium. Teeter in any one direction and you will fall toward loosing your religion’s grip on you, or tightening it like a noose.

    Only through secular, or self-revealed religions is the middle ground a stable equilibrium.

  121. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: Never watch the 700 Club and Pat Robertson do you? They care A LOT about the Middle East. They send tens of millions of dollars to Israeli groups and radical groups advocating Israel settlements and even some groups that advocate the demolition of the Dome of the Rock and replacing it with another temple. Why? Because it fits into their end time beliefs where all Jews will go back to Israel, Jesus will come and everyone will convert to Christianity and be sent to hell. Keep in mind this is a man, Robertson, who has the ear of the US President. [/quote]

    I’ve only watched the 700 Club by accident and long ago, Malik. Pat Robertson lost any credibility he had with me when he claimed to have turned a hurricane out to sea away from America by talking to God.

    I don’t recall goofy Pat advocating war on the unbelievers, as they do on Saudi TV. It’s kinduva stretch to say the Christian fundamentalists are trying to blow up the Dome of the Rock. While I’m sure that Dubya loves the support he gets from the born again crowd like Robertson, there’s a limit to his patience with their nonsense. The release of the private tapes made of Bush reveals him giving the Rev Dobson the heave ho when he tries to pressure him to promote a particular fundamentalist view. He’s not particularly sympathetic about doing it either. By contrast, the crown prince of Saudi Arabia is entirely sympathetic to Muslim terrorists, turning a blind eye to their belligerent activities, refusing to cooperate in American investigations of terrorist attacks, and even trying to blame their crimes on the Zionists.

    Also, let me point out the painfully obvious: Pat Robertson and the Christian fundamentalists do not send hate literature to Muslim countries urging Christians to make war on the Muslims, to lie to them, to hurt them, to kill them, to steal their stuff, and to take their women as their sex slaves. They do not set up terror cells in churches in foreign lands. They do not fire on Muslims from their churches. They do not make snuff videos of Muslims they kidnapped. They do not demand that Muslim countries submit to church law or face mass murder. They don’t skyjack Saudia flights and kill everyone on board. They don’t detonate themselves in crowds of Muslims. They don’t invade their schools and shoot their children in the back.

    For all your talk of Christian fundamentalists being equivalent to Islamic fundamentalists, I have yet to learn of one event where Christian fundamentalists have shed a single drop of Muslim blood. By contrast, the Muslim fundamentalists have shed lakes of infidel blood and are baying for more.

    Steve

  122. anonymous says:

    Re: Moslems are immoral

    Written “We need a reformation in Islam. And we need to start with the Moslems. And we need to start at home. We actually need a reformation in our social construct. Malik – whether u agree with Mahmood or not, hats off to him for living his life openly and without trying to hide – and bringing up his kids to be multi cultural and honest and open. As opposed to the hundreds of other Arabs and moslems who live in hiding in our parts of the world. Who drink, but not publicly. Who smoke, but in private. Who screw around, but keep their daughters covered. And the women, who accept the status quo, and then become the biggest upholders and obstacles to change – because how else can they justify their own choices that they have made with their own lives? ”

    One can be true to their Islamic faith and still be multi-cultural and open. My wife is Saudi with a Yemeni background, I am an American with a German background. We are open and honest. We live our lives as good as we can, we uphold the values of Islam in our life, and we are 100% American. We so no contradiction in the two, we do not feel the need to do things that violate our religion to prove that we are one thing, or that we are not another.

    As to keeping your sins private, that is actually an Islamic mandate. No one is perfect, but this doesnt mean that you advertise your sins to the world or that you actually glory in them. As to fixing our own house first, I agree, it is actually a part of Islam, this belief. This is actually part of bin Laden’s message, that he would like to fix the issues in the Muslim world, he feels that the US, through its support of tyrants in the area, is preventing this. There is some truth to this, but I believe it dodges a lot of bullets.

  123. anonymous says:

    Re: Moslems are immoral

    Writen “What is wrong with taking Islam lightly? Why do you get upset with Mahmood for him saying what he does in the manner that he does? Are you going to say that there is only one way to interpret Islam in its liberal form? And if Mahmood doesnt use those words and views, it means that he is being disrepsectful? Arent you employing the same scare tactics that the wahabbi moslems are using against the intelligentsia moslems? implicityl veering towards the concept of takfir? ”

    Not at all. I think you can completely follow the religion of Islam without having to go too far one way or the other. Islam is a religion that is all about balance, that is what the extremists, both religious extremists and their opposites, always get wrong.

    You do not have to force women to wear Hijab to follow Islam, at the same time you do not have to break the basic rules of Islam to show that you are moderate. I feel that I am right in the middle. I am not an extremist, at the same time I refuse to deny my religion or to change it for those who demand that I need to be “liberal”.

    Like I have always said, this is a conflict between extremisms, Islamic and Western Christian/Secular. You do not win the battle when you support one side or the other. The battle is won when those of us in the middle, the majority, stand up against those on either side.

    Written “And for the record, I do think that the Moslems were in denial pre 9-11. We became so scared of being ostracized or being called ‘kuffar’ or not Moslem enough, we allowed the extremists to take over the stage. ”

    Now some of us are doing our best to prove that we are “modern” enough or not “extremists”. Both ways are wrong and both ways will fuel the issue not help it. Middle ground is what is needed.

  124. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes ” Congratulations, Malik. You have marshalled factual evidence to support your position. I am persuaded that some Muslim leaders publicly denounced the Sep 11 attacks.

    Now the question is whether this is a majority position or a minority position. ”

    Can you now provide me with similiar proof about Christian denounciations concerning US policy in the Middle East and their support of dictators? Can you show me hundreds of news articles where Christian leaders denounce US arms sales to Israel, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan and other homes of murder and despotism? I will be waiting patiently….

  125. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Malik

    Steve writes “Malik,

    Would you say that Christmas trees have their origin in pagan beliefs just like that big black rock in the Kaaba? The Meccans were worshipping that meteorite long before Mohammed showed up. If you are casting the first stone at pagan traditions, shouldn’t that black stone be the first one you throw away? ”

    This shows a basic misunderstanding of Islam. Of course the Meccans worshipped the rock at the Kabbah, it was there before they were. They got the house and the tradition of worship there from the Jews before them. Besides, Muslims do not worship the thing anyway. All Mohammed (SAW) did was to reclaim the Kabbah, the first house of worship, for its rightfull owners.

    You type always get it wrong. Islam does not claim to be a new religion, rather a continuation of Christianity and Judaism before it.

  126. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Christian Fundies

    Malik,

    [quote]Amusing. You really think Bush supports a real Palestinian state? No way. This is nothing more than lip service. His actions speak much louder than his nonsense words.[/quote]

    Actions? Ok. He just sent Condi Rice there to go work it out. He promised millions of dollars in aid to the Palies to help them along. Charon has been “leaned on� and told he must make concessions. Why do you think he is pulling out of Gaza and releasing all those Pali prisoners?

    [quote]he has done nothing in 4 years to promote a Palestinian state. [/quote]

    Bush spoke publicly of a Palestinian state just before 9/11. The rest of those 4 years were spent trying to deal with Al Qaeda. Priorities changed, understandably.

    [quote]Nothing you have stated refutes the fact that American Christian groups support Israel to the tune of tens of millions of dollars a year. Do you dispute that? [/quote]

    The only Christians forking over money to Israeli settlers are Millenials, and there’s less of them than there are Jews in this country. As to tens of millions of dollars, show me proof of that amount.

    -Aliandra

  127. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote] He most certainly does! He talks about how Islam is evil, its people are evil, it needs to be stopped. [/quote]

    He doesn’t like Islam and he doesn’t like its followers. So what? That’s an opinion which everyone is entitled to have in the US, including the morons. Robertson can like or dislike whatever he wants as long as he isn’t provoking anyone to violence. He isn’t telling his followers to harass Muslims. He’s not telling them to harm or kill Muslims. The same can’t be said for Islamic extremists.

    [quote]No, it isnt. Why is it always a “stretch” for you to admit that the USA has a lot of home grown extremists, [/quote]

    American “extremists�, as you define them, don’t go around comitting terrorist acts. There’s a difference between having a stupid opinion and advocating physical harm to those you don’t like.

    Robertson once claimed control over the weather. He has proved himself an idiot. He has hardly any credibility.

    [quote]200,000 Muslims killed in Bosnia by Christian extremists. [/quote]

    And NATO went in to stop it. Muslims did nothing for the 100,000 Christians killed in East Timor by their co-religionists.

    -Aliandra

  128. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Christian Fundies

    Posted “Actions? Ok. He just sent Condi Rice there to go work it out. He promised millions of dollars in aid to the Palies to help them along. Charon has been “leaned onâ€? and told he must make concessions. Why do you think he is pulling out of Gaza and releasing all those Pali prisoners? ”

    Sent the ultra neo con Condi Rice to work it out with the Palestinians eh? Really? Excuse me if I dont hold my breath. Sharon has not been “leaned on” at all. as we speak he is violating the Road Map for Peace and the agreement he made not to build more settlements. he is simply taking the settlers from Gaza and moving them to new settlements outside of Jeruselum in areas that are later expected to be unilaterally annexed. A Sharon advisor himself recently said the Gaza pull out was nothing more than a way to consolidate the hold on the West Bank. Pali prisoners? They released 500 out of almost 8,000 prisoners. Most of the released prisoners were common criminals, not political prisoners. Meanwhile Israel holds scores of Palestinians children, kids under 18, without trial or charge.

    Posted “The only Christians forking over money to Israeli settlers are Millenials, and there’s less of them than there are Jews in this country. As to tens of millions of dollars, show me proof of that amount. ”

    It would be funny if it wasnt so sad. There are more Christian radicals in this country than Muslim extremists in Saudi Arabia. Below from ONE US Christian group. Just one.

    “$60 MILLION IN DONATIONS

    Eckstein, who as head of the Jerusalem Friendship Fund for the past eight years claims to have collected some $60 million in donations from the evangelical community to assist Jewish immigration, has joined forces with former Christian Coalition head Ralph Reed, now a leading GOP consultant, as part of the effort. Their plans include an Internet site for supporters of Israel to write their congressional representatives. ”

    They are supporting the settlers…….

    “We’ve seen financial support . . . to the settlements double during the past 21 months,” said Sondra Oster Baras, an Orthodox Jew and director of the Israel office of the Colorado-based Christian Friends of Israeli Communities, which runs an “Adopt-a-Settlement Program.”

    They are close to the hawks in Israel:

    “U.S. evangelical leaders have frequently met with Likud members, including Sharon, Jerusalem Mayor Ehud Olmert and ex-Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who told an evangelical audience in Washington in 1998 that “we have no greater friends and allies than the people sitting in this room.”

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2002/07/10/MN17001.DTL

    If you look online there are dozens and dozens of such groups raising money for Israel. If one group alone has raised over 60 million, what is the total amount going there? How much of these funds are going to support radical religious groups in the settlements?

    More…….

    Militant Coalition Of Christian Fundamentalist And Jewish Orthodox Cults Plots Destruction Of Al Aqsa Mosque

    By Grace Halsell

    “The Washington Report On Middle Eastern Affairs”, March/00- Vol. XIX, No.2, Pages 16-17

    For three decades, Gershon Solomon, a militant Israeli who heads an organization dedicated to the destruction of Jerusalem’s most holy Islamic shrine, has led Zionist zealots in armed assaults on the Muslim grounds of Haram al-Sharif, or Noble Sanctuary, that encloses both the Dome of the Rock and Al Aqsa mosque.

    No Israeli political leader has spoken out against the assaults on the Mosque, holy to a billion Muslims around the world. Moreover, no Israeli rabbi has condemned them. Indeed, beginning in 1967, many of the assaults were led by Jewish rabbis.

    I first heard about the Israeli militants’ intent to destroy the mosque in 1979 when I went to Jerusalem. I talked at length with Bobby Brown, and third-generation American from Brooklyn, flying to the Jewish state and instantly became a new citizen, confiscated land from Palestinians to help build an illegal Jewish settlement. “The mosque,” he told me, “has got to go. It is a blot in our land.”

    Militant Jews such as brown and Solomon want a Jerusalem that is pure Jewish – without evidence of inhabitants of the other monotheistic faiths and their shrines. Surprisingly, millions of U.S. evangelical Christians endorse and financially support this Jewish plan.

    Although united in the immediate goal of destroying the mosque, the Israeli militants and Christian zealots have different long-range agendas.

    Secular Jews, such as Stanley Goldfoot, one of the perpetrators of the dynamiting in 1946 of the King David Hotel which killed some 100 Christian, Muslim and Jewish civilians, want the mosque destroyed for political reasons. Other Jews believe that the building of the temple on the Muslim grounds will usher in the Jewish Messiah.

    A growing number of Christians embrace the idea that in all history, Israel is on the center stage. They say God has planned epochs of time (“dispensations”) such as the “in-gathering of the Jews in the ancient land of Canaan. One epoch, they say, includes the present time when Jews are obligated to build a Jewish temple and re-institute animal sacrifice, Such epochs or “dispensations” are necessary, they say before Christ can return. Ironically, while Christian dispensationalists place Israel as the most important nation in all the world, they do respect or even like Jews- as Jews. Yet, because they believe Christ can only land in a “safe” area near Jerusalem, they make a cult of the land. They thus give total, unquestioned support to Israel.

    Goldfoot and Solomon are welcome in countless U.S. pulpits, where Christian Zionists give generous donations of money, as well as their gold wedding rings and gold earrings to finance the mosque’s destruction. They know its destruction might well trigger wars culminating in Armageddon, but the welcome this. They push Armageddon along, saying they, as “Born Again Christians,” will be spared any suffering, because they will be “Raptured,” wafted up into heaven to view the slaughter below. “I am not worried,” Lynchburg, Virginia televangelist Jerry Falwell shouts. “You know why? I ain’t gonna be here!”

    This dispensationalist doctrine, less then 200 years old, pervades Assemblies Of God, Pentecostal and other charismatic churches, as well as the 16 million-member Southern Baptist Convention and countless so-called Bible churches and mega-churches. It’s estimated that at least one out of every 10 Americans is a devotee of this cult.

    In both Israel and the U.S., a conspiracy of silence reigns as militants lay siege to the Jerusalem mosque. No political leader – or religious leader- in Israel or the U.S. has addressed this issue. In the case of Israeli rabbis, if they themselves have not aided and abetted planned assaults on the mosque, they have kept silent. In the case of all major U.S. Christian church leaders – the voices that are heard throughout the land- if they themselves are not raising money to destroy the mosque, they keep silent about the conspiracy.

    “I don’t favor it,” one Christian told me. “But if it happens” – the destruction of the mosque-“it doesn’t mean I won’t support.”

    ASSAULTS ON THE MOSQUE

    TWO GROUPS IN PARTICULAR are dedicated to the destruction of Jerusalem’s most sacred Islamic shrine: the Militant Bloc of the Faithful or Gush Emunim, led by rabbis such as Moshe Levinger; Ateret Cohanim, a Jewish yeshiva composed of militant Jewish students and their rabbis. Fundamentalist, militant Christians, who also want the mosque destroyed, give support and financial aid to both of these Israeli organizations, as do wealthy American Jews.

    Beginning in 1967, when Israel militarily seized Arab East Jerusalem, Jewish terrorists on more than 100 occasions have laid siege to the Muslim Mosque. Here are a few of the assaults:

    August 1967. Chief Chaplain of the Armed Forces Shlomo Goren – later Israel’s chief rabbi – leads 50 armed extremists onto Haram al-Sharif. “It is a holy commandment,” Goren said, for Jews to go to the Muslim grounds, which Jews call the Temple Mount.” Writing in an Israeli publication, Eti Ronel reports: “Many rabbis, including members of the Council of the Chief Rabbinate, support…..Jewish sovereignty” over Haram al-Sharif.

    August 21, 1969. Jewish extremists set fire to Al Aqsa, destroying a priceless wood and ivory pulpit sent from Aleppo by the Muslim ruler Saladin. The arson prompts the United Nations Security Council to condemn Israel’s failure to curb terrorist attacks on Islam’s shrine. Four months later (12/19/69) a group of militant Jews storm their way to Haram al-Sahrif, in order, they claim, “conduct Hanukkah prayers.”

    March 3, 1971. Gershon Solomon leads Temple Mount Faithful followers onto Haram al-Sharif. After struggling with Palestinian guards, they are expelled. Three years later (3/3/74) Solomon again, with followers, storms the Mosque. Again (7/14/78) Solomon leads militant Jews onto the Islamic holy grounds. Palestinians stage protests. Israeli troops hurl tear gas to quell the rioting.

    August 10, 1980. Three hundred Gush Emunim fanatics, heavily armed, overcome Palestinian police and storm the grounds, but are later dispersed. A month later (9/15/80) armed Gush Emunim settlers associated with Stanley Goldfoot and the Temple Mount Faithful again force their way onto the Mosque grounds. After scuffling with police they are evicted.

    April 11, 1982. Alan Goodman, an Israeli citizen with a U.S. passport, marches into al Aqsa with an M-16 rifle and opens fire on worshippers, killing two Palestinians and wounding others. In November 1997, the Israeli government releases Goodman. Unrepentant, Goodman boasts, “I fulfilled my mission.”

    July 25, 1982. Yoel Lerner, a member of the militant Meir Kahane Kach movement, storms the mosque grounds with plans to dynamite and destroy the Dome of The Rock.

    March 10, 1983. Armed Gush Emunim fanatics climb walls onto Haram al-Sharif, attempting to overcome security guards and take the mosque by storm. They have in their possession large quantities of explosives, automatic rifles and pistols. Twenty-nine are charged and held for trial.

    September 21, 1983. An Israeli court acquits the 29 Jewish terrorists who six months earlier had laid siege on the mosque.

    January 27, 1984. In the most ambitious plot to dynamite and destroy the mosque, Jewish terrorists, armed with 250 pounds of explosives, including dozens of grenades, boxes of dynamite and 12 rounds of mortar, attempt to dynamite and destroy the mosque. They are led by Rabbi Moshe Levinger, one of the most militant of Jewish extremists.

    1994. The Israelis appoint Meir Davidson, a senior official of Ateret Cohanim, as municipal adviser on Palestinian properties. This signals the Israeli government will work closely with an organization whose aim is destruction of the mosque.

    September 1996. Ateret Cohanim, funded largely through tax-exempt dollars donated by rich American Jews, including Miami millionaire Irving Moskowitz, opened a tunnel – excavated in secret night-time operations – that runs the length of the Al Aqsa complex. The controversial tunnel sparked intense fighting which claimed the lives of 60 Palestinians and 15 Israeli soldiers. Israeli Prime Minister Binyiman Netanyahu proudly visited the tunnel, as have fundamentalist Christian leaders.

    October 18, 1998. Gershon Solomon, with followers waving Israeli flags and blowing rams’ horns, mounts a ramp to the mosque grounds. “The time has come to rebuild the Jewish Temple,” said Solomon. To underscore this point, Solomon parked near an Old City gate a flatbed truck carrying a 4 ½ ton marble “cornerstone” for that new temple. __G.H.

    —————————-

    IAP Note: Grace Halsell is the author of the book “Forcing God’s Hand” which exposes the strange alliance between millions of U.S. Christians who make a cult worship of the land of Israel. The book explores the danger of this alliance: how it influences and often controls political decisions made in the White House and Congress. You can order the book by calling the American Educational Trust at: 1 800 368 5788.

  129. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Christian Fundies

    Malik,

    [quote]Sent the ultra neo con Condi Rice to work it out with the Palestinians eh? Really? Excuse me if I dont hold my breath. [/quote]

    Ok, Malik, you’re never going to be convinced that the US wants an end to this ongoing headache that’s screwing up our relations with the middle-east. Nothing I say, no proof I post, will convince you that we want a Palestinian state because it is in our interests too.

    [quote]It would be funny if it wasnt so sad. There are more Christian radicals in this country than Muslim extremists in Saudi Arabia. [/quote]

    Ok, you’ve shown me that these Millenial groups claim to have collected millions of dollars. However, I stand by by statement that they are a miniscule minority. There is more support for extremism in Saudi Arabia than there is support for Millenial Christianity in the US.

    -Aliandra

  130. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote]Why hasnt the mainstream media covered Robertson’s call for the ethnic cleansing of the entire Palestinian territories? [/quote]

    Because Robertson is a goofball who claimed power over hurricanes. His opinions on the Palestinian conflict are taken as seriously as his alleged control over the weather. No media outlet is going to be made fun of by giving time to him.

    If you’re worried about “Christian extremists” in the US, you’ll have to name someone the public actually respects. Robertson is tabloid material and everyone knows it.

    -Aliandra

  131. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Show me Pat Robertson using Scripture to support the bombing of people.

    Then, show me the scripture.

    Then, I’ll show you Random Shiek quoting scripture to support the bombing of infidels.

    And I’ll provide scripture.

    And then we can compare.

    Robertson is one voice that speaks to a few million at most. Islam has ten thousand that speak to well over a billion. Question of scale. Compared to the influence of the extremist clerics in the Middle East, Robertson’s influence is miniscule.

  132. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Malik

    [quote]I wish the US was really serious about democracy in the Middle East so they could fund groups like these. [/quote]

    The US is a little more crafty than you think.

    BUT, democracy in Saudi will take a sea change of opinion and rejection of the cultural hogwash that passes for religion there.

    The best hopes for true democracy in the Middle East is actually Iran. I’ve joined and donated to many Iranian dissident groups on the off chance that Persia will toss off the shackles of the past 1400 years and return to the Persia of the Zoroastrians: The true scientific wonder of the Middle East.

  133. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Christian Fundies

    Posted “Ok, Malik, you’re never going to be convinced that the US wants an end to this ongoing headache that’s screwing up our relations with the middle-east. Nothing I say, no proof I post, will convince you that we want a Palestinian state because it is in our interests too. ”

    Yes, I remember what everyone was saying when Arafat turned down the last “Palestinian state”. Yes, no control over your own boarders, over your own airpsace, over your own natural resources. That is NOT a state. Only a recipe for continued war. They wanted subjugation, not a state. A Bantustan, a Palestinian reservation.

    Posted “Ok, you’ve shown me that these Millenial groups claim to have collected millions of dollars. However, I stand by by statement that they are a miniscule minority. There is more support for extremism in Saudi Arabia than there is support for Millenial Christianity in the US. ”

    I have shown you that OTHERS claim that these groups have raised tens of millions. As to the numbers of these groups, as the US is so big, if only a small percentage of Christians support them their numbers would excede the total number of people in Saudi Arabia. I do not think the numbers are so small. I think, to a certain extent, all fundamentalist Christianity in the US has some of this in it. Certainly did with the people I grew up with and does with many Christians I know.

  134. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    Posted “Because Robertson is a goofball who claimed power over hurricanes. His opinions on the Palestinian conflict are taken as seriously as his alleged control over the weather. No media outlet is going to be made fun of by giving time to him.”

    Why is it when an Islamic extremist says or does something it is a big deal, but when a Christian extremist in the USA with millions of devotees says something he is a “goofball”. I disagree with you, there are millions of people who take this man’s words to heart. He has the ear of the president! It just isnt him, it is a hole host of them. The Souther Baptist Conference, whose leader has repeatedly attacked Islam, has a membership of almost 20 million people.

    Posted “If you’re worried about “Christian extremists” in the US, you’ll have to name someone the public actually respects. Robertson is tabloid material and everyone knows it. ”

    The president doesnt. But lets look at the anti-Islamic statements made by Falwell and the leader of the Southern Baptist Conference, both claiming tens of millions of followers. Incidently, this far excedes the population of Saudi Arabia.

  135. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    Posted “Robertson is one voice that speaks to a few million at most. Islam has ten thousand that speak to well over a billion. Question of scale. Compared to the influence of the extremist clerics in the Middle East, Robertson’s influence is miniscule. ”

    When you make the claim that over one billion Muslims listen to radical teachers your message instantly lost all credibility.

  136. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Malik

    Posted “The best hopes for true democracy in the Middle East is actually Iran. I’ve joined and donated to many Iranian dissident groups on the off chance that Persia will toss off the shackles of the past 1400 years and return to the Persia of the Zoroastrians: The true scientific wonder of the Middle East. ”

    Yes, a movement back to the caves and fireworship is something that should be encouraged. LOL!

  137. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Americans are immoral

    Or a good Christian or a good Budist or Hindu or even an old hippy. Denial is the word of the day it seems. Both Steve and Malik tend to focus on 1 point the other says and ignore the rest. Sad thing is they both make good points and each could learn from the other if they would just try.

    billT

  138. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    From the Israeli paper Haaretz. Doesnt seem I am alone in worrying about the link between Christian extremists here in the USA and Jewish extremists in Israel.

    A pernicious, dangerous alliance

    By Avshalom Vilan

    There has been an upsurge of late in reports about the alliance forged between the extreme right in Israel and the Evangelist Christians in the United States. A bizarre coalition of settlers from the hilly area of Israel and fundamentalist Christians from the American heartland – and not the East or West coasts – is fighting in unison against territorial concessions of any sort in the Holy Land.

    The apex of this odd alliance is the new book by former cabinet minister Benny Elon, which was written in English and explains in plain language why we are entitled to the entire land and why we cannot agree to give back a single square inch of the Holy Land.

    In addition, the Israeli right led by MK Yuri Stern of the National Union party has been pursuing a prolonged dialogue with the Evangelist leadership, which has an influential lobby in Washington. The effort has yielded fecund results. The American dollars flow through the ocean, reaching the settlements and greasing the wheels of the struggle against disengagement that is waged by the Yesha Council.

    Even the fact that the Evangelists believe that after the land is redeemed the messiah will then return, and that all of us will then accept Christianity and the land will be restored to its true owners, the Christians, seems not to throw up any obstacle to the cooperative effort. The working assumption of the Jewish messianists is that since this scenario is not about to be realized in the near future, there is nothing wrong with collaborating with those who threaten to supplant us when the time comes.

    Nevertheless, this ideological coalition presents a genuine danger to Israel-U.S. relations. The vast majority of American Jews support the Democratic Party, although there have been recent indications of a gradual transition to support for the Republicans. Jews, who constitute only 2.5 percent of American citizens but whose contributions to political parties are much higher than their percentage of the general population would suggest, are one of the most powerful sources of influence in American politics. The link with the new Christians shuffles the deck and creates a new situation of reliance on a chance conjecture that may be no more than shifting sands. This is liable to lead to a break in the historic link between American Jews and the Democratic Party, and even weaken the link between them and the mainstream Republican Party. This would do heavy political damage.

    I recently spent a few days in Washington as part of a Knesset delegation. We met with dozens of senators, congressmen and members of the administration, and heard comprehensive rundowns on American political interests. We also took part in a breakfast with the U.S. president, along with many other participants. These meetings pointed up that without a doubt the clash between America’s pragmatic political interests in the Middle East – its desire to exit Iraq within two years and achieve some sort of stability in the region, on the one hand, and the new Evangelist messianism on the other – will be decided by a knockout victory in favor of the political interests.

    It is clear, as well, that even the great freedom given to the Sharon government during President Bush’s first term has ended. The current administration will be much more firm and brutal in its attitude toward us. The need to placate the Arab world in order to maintain interests is stronger than any religious balderdash. Therefore, the formation of a coalition with the Evangelists will supply the current administration with another reason for a head-on collision with us.

    The Republican administration also has economic interests it must uphold – for instance, those related to oil. In the prospective collision between economic interests and religious prattle, it is utterly clear who will pay the full political price for being on the wrong side, particularly as oil is found in the fields of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, and not Israel.

    There is no escaping the conclusion that the unholy alliance between the Jewish and Christian extreme right wings is short-term, and absolutely runs counter to Israel’s long-term interests. Thanks to painstaking work of many years, the State of Israel has succeeded in reaching far-ranging understandings with the American administration that have enabled the transfer of weapons and freedom of diplomatic maneuvering. The hyper-activity of Israeli extremist right-wing groups is liable to harm these good relations. Destroying is much easier than building.

    The writer is a member of Knesset representing the Yahad party.

  139. anonymous says:

    Goofballs

    Malik,

    [quote]Why is it when an Islamic extremist says or does something it is a big deal, but when a Christian extremist in the USA with millions of devotees says something he is a “goofball”. I disagree with you, there are millions of people who take this man’s words to heart. [/quote]

    Malik, ANYONE who claims to control the weather is a goofball. If these millions of people are taking Robertson’s words to heart, shouldn’t there be reports of SOME of them attacking Muslims? There aren’t because they’re not. You’re taking Robertson far more seriously than they are.

    [quote]It just isnt him, it is a hole host of them. The Souther Baptist Conference, whose leader has repeatedly attacked Islam, has a membership of almost 20 million people. [/quote]

    There are 300 million people in the US. 20 million is 6%. That is MINISCULE.
    Has the Baptist leader told Baptists to attack Muslims? Nope. To behead them in the name of Jesus? Nope. Are Baptists commiting violence against Muslims? Are they hijacking airliners to topple skyscrapers in Medina or Cairo? Nope.

    Until they are, you don’t have a case.

    [quote]. But lets look at the anti-Islamic statements made by Falwell and the leader of the Southern Baptist Conference, both claiming tens of millions of followers. Incidently, this far excedes the population of Saudi Arabia. [/quote]

    The population of the UNITED STATES far exceeds the population of Saudi Arabia. There are about 300 million people in the US. There are about 26 million in SA. I stand by my statement that there are more extremists per capita in SA than in the US.

    Secondly, millions of Muslims from all over the world make the trip to Mecca. Up until last year the Kaaba mosque was pouring out plenty of anti-infidel crap. Millions of Muslims from across the planet go there, have gone there, and have listened to it for years. That’s far far more than Robertson’s followers.

    -Aliandra

  140. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: The Souther Baptist Conference, whose leader has repeatedly attacked Islam, has a membership of almost 20 million people.[/quote]

    Repeatedly attacked Muslims, huh? With what? How many were wounded, how many were killed? How many did his twenty million followers kill and wound?

    Steve

  141. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Malik

    [quote]Malik: When you openly claim to support the murder and destruction of whole civilisations, of course you are a bigot. [/quote]

    When you make such claims, you are a liar.

    [quote]Steve writes “Mass murder and death threats make a poor impression”

    Malik: Then I suggest you stop them then. [/quote]

    Malik, you hopeless dope, when exactly have I committed mass murder?

    However, you are quite right that I advocate death to the Saudis who make war on America.

    Steve

  142. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    [quote]The vast majority of American Jews support the Democratic Party, although there have been recent indications of a gradual transition to support for the Republicans. Jews, who constitute only 2.5 percent of American citizens but whose contributions to political parties are much higher than their percentage of the general population would suggest, are one of the most powerful sources of influence in American politics.[/quote]

    If Jews are one of the most powerful sources of influence in American politics and the vast majority of them support the Democratic Party, why did the Democrats lose?

    Steve

  143. anonymous says:

    Re: Goofballs

    Posted “Malik, ANYONE who claims to control the weather is a goofball. If these millions of people are taking Robertson’s words to heart, shouldn’t there be reports of SOME of them attacking Muslims? There aren’t because they’re not. You’re taking Robertson far more seriously than they are. ”

    Like I said before, why do they need to personally attack Muslims when they have a president doing it for them?

    Posted “There are 300 million people in the US. 20 million is 6%. That is MINISCULE. ”

    Still more than the whole population of Saudi Arabia.

    Posted “Has the Baptist leader told Baptists to attack Muslims? Nope. To behead them in the name of Jesus? Nope. Are Baptists commiting violence against Muslims? Are they hijacking airliners to topple skyscrapers in Medina or Cairo? Nope. ”

    Like I have said before, suicide attacks are the weapons of the poor. Might interest you to know that the most prolific suicide bombers pre Iraq were not even Muslims. But, back to the subject, no need for personal attacks on Muslims when you have the worlds greatest army being lead by one of your own doing all of the attacking.

    Posted “The population of the UNITED STATES far exceeds the population of Saudi Arabia. There are about 300 million people in the US. There are about 26 million in SA. I stand by my statement that there are more extremists per capita in SA than in the US. ”

    Based on what study? Or is this speculation?

    Posted “Secondly, millions of Muslims from all over the world make the trip to Mecca. Up until last year the Kaaba mosque was pouring out plenty of anti-infidel crap. Millions of Muslims from across the planet go there, have gone there, and have listened to it for years. That’s far far more than Robertson’s followers. ”

    Oh, I get it, because Muslims from all over the world go to Mecca they are all automatically tainted? I guess when the Pope called gays a sickness today that all Catholics who go to Rome are automatically believers of this as well? Interesting logic of yours.

  144. anonymous says:

    Re(8): I wonder…

    Yes, that’s right Malik: Anything bad that happens anywhere in the world is America’s fault. If Algeria has a military coup, then automatically it’s America’s fault, right?

    I note also that being at a loss at finding things wrong with the Iraqi election, you are forced into the future to invent bad things that maybe might could possibly happen, and blame them on America. You are becoming quite desperate.

    Steve

  145. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    If you hate Israel for not being a democracy and favoring one group of people, wait until you take a look at its neighbors and measure them by the same standards. I imagine you’ll hate them even worse, right?

    Steve

  146. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “Malik,

    If you hate Israel for not being a democracy and favoring one group of people, wait until you take a look at its neighbors and measure them by the same standards. I imagine you’ll hate them even worse, right?

    Steve”

    Of course, which is why I want MY country to stop funding them or supporting them in ANY WAY! Stop all support for Israel and all other governments in the Middle East, full stop.

    Malik

  147. anonymous says:

    Re(9): I wonder…

    Steve writes Yes, that’s right Malik: Anything bad that happens anywhere in the world is America’s fault. If Algeria has a military coup, then automatically it’s America’s fault, right?”

    Your hysterics, not mine. The US has made a claim, that it wants democracy in the Muslim world. In one of the few cases where this actually and happened and free and open elections took place, America did not support the elected parties, rather sided with a brutal military dictatorship. It doesnt mean this is America’s fault, but it certainly makes the idea that the US wants democracy in the Muslim world a lie.

    Steve writes “I note also that being at a loss at finding things wrong with the Iraqi election, you are forced into the future to invent bad things that maybe might could possibly happen, and blame them on America. You are becoming quite desperate.”

    I do not think that US support for a military coup to overturn democratic elections in Algeria is an invention. Are you claiming that this didnt happen? As to the elections in Iraq, I am glad they went off fine. It still remains to be seen what the future holds, a large portion of the country did not participate.

    Malik

  148. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Malik

    Posted “Revel’s Rule. Blame the US for doing something while also blaming it for doing the opposite. The US gets condemned for NOT stopping the genocide in Rwanda and gets condemned for removing a genocidal tyrant like Saddam. When that genocide in the Balkans was going on, I was asked by some Europeans when the Americans were going to do something about it. ”

    Nonsense, the world rightly sees the double standards involved. The US did not go into Rwanda because there was no oil or strategic interest there. The US only went into Bosnia after the Muslim armies had some suprising victories in the field and were considering an attack into Serbia that might have sparked a wider conflict involving NATO allies. There was no contemplation of US intervention as 200,000 Muslims were slaughtered.

    Consistancy. If America is all about selfish interest, fine, say it. But dont talk about great ideas but have your actions speak only of personal thought. Honesty.

    Malik

  149. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “I don’t recall goofy Pat advocating war on the unbelievers, as they do on Saudi TV.”

    LOL! He most certainly does! He talks about how Islam is evil, its people are evil, it needs to be stopped. I guess he isnt as up front as some. Back to Saudi TV, you watch it? I wasnt aware you speak Arabic? Or are you taking this information from some place else?

    Steve writes “It’s kinduva stretch to say the Christian fundamentalists are trying to blow up the Dome of the Rock.”

    No, it isnt. Why is it always a “stretch” for you to admit that the USA has a lot of home grown extremists, but you dont have the same problem with others? Christian extremists are funding radical groups in Israel and funding settler groups whose aim is to destroy the peace talks there and comit ethnic cleansing of the Christian and Muslim Arab communities there.

    Steve writes “Also, let me point out the painfully obvious: Pat Robertson and the Christian fundamentalists do not send hate literature to Muslim countries urging Christians to make war on the Muslims, to lie to them, to hurt them, to kill them, to steal their stuff, and to take their women as their sex slaves.”

    No, they send their missionaries, in the colonial style, hard on the heels of their invading troops.

    Steve writes “By contrast, the crown prince of Saudi Arabia is entirely sympathetic to Muslim terrorists, turning a blind eye to their belligerent activities, refusing to cooperate in American investigations of terrorist attacks, and even trying to blame their crimes on the Zionists”

    Actually the Saudi royal family has now become an important partner in the “war” on terror. the same enemies that want to attack the US want to overthrow the royal family as well. My question to you, if you hate the royal family so much why are you so mute about US government ties to them?

    Steve writes “For all your talk of Christian fundamentalists being equivalent to Islamic fundamentalists, I have yet to learn of one event where Christian fundamentalists have shed a single drop of Muslim blood. By contrast, the Muslim fundamentalists have shed lakes of infidel blood and are baying for more. ”

    200,000 Muslims killed in Bosnia by Christian extremists. You elude to the school massacre in Russia, but you fail to mention that 10,000 Muslim school children have been killed in Chechnya. Why your outrage about the 300 Christian children and silence about 10,000 Muslim children? Enough said.

  150. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Ethan writes “However, I call on you, Malik, to be -honest- in your assessment. Christians today do not lead vast pogroms against ‘unbelievers’ with whole television channels dedicated to spreading the word of physical warfare. Pat Robertson is a moron, but never once has he quoted the Bible and lent support for suicide bombs. ”

    He doesnt have to. Suicide bombs are the weapons of the poor. Pat Robertson using scripture to support the bombing of Muslim countries, the attack of Muslim countries, and his support for the failed oppressive policies of Israel. Why would he support suicide bombings when he can support cluster bombs and 10,000 pound “Daisy Cutter” bombs?

    Ethan writes “Is exhorting people to fight, and die, and behead people on camera equivalent to a statement of ‘We support Israel’? ”

    Supporting the calls for ethnic cleansing in the Palestinian territories certainly is. Why hasnt the mainstream media covered Robertson’s call for the ethnic cleansing of the entire Palestinian territories?

  151. anonymous says:

    Malik

    Sorry to hear that the struggle continues. Hard headed bureaucracy is so frustrating and some Arab governments have elevated it to an artform. At least your perspective is good and you are not one to stereotype an entire nation of people because of the actions of their government. Allah knows I would not want to be blamed for the actions of George Bush. I voted against him and beyond that (and speaking out) there is little else I can do.

    Take care & regards to your family.

    Salaam Alaikum,
    PM

  152. anonymous says:

    Re: Christian Fundies

    Written “It was Pat Robertson that made Bush call for an independent Palestinian state? Somehow I doubt that. It is contrary to your claim that “They care A LOT about the Middle East. They send tens of millions of dollars to Israeli groups and radical groups advocating Israel settlements and even some groups that advocate the demolition of the Dome of the Rock and replacing it with another temple.”

    Amusing. You really think Bush supports a real Palestinian state? No way. This is nothing more than lip service. His actions speak much louder than his nonsense words. he has done nothing in 4 years to promote a Palestinian state. He has done nothing more than heap praise upon Ariel Sharon, the man he proclaimed “a man of peace”.

    Nothing you have stated refutes the fact that American Christian groups support Israel to the tune of tens of millions of dollars a year. Do you dispute that? If so I will be happy to provide links to sites where the Christian groups openly brag about it.

    Posted “It was Bush who called Islam a religion of peace, not Mr. Robertson.”

    Again, more nonsense words. Bush and his supporters do not like Islam, but they do not have the guts to openly admit it. Bush gave us his real feelings right after 9/11 when he talked about his new crusade.

    Malik

  153. anonymous says:

    Re: Saud

    Posted “The US doesn’t give the House of Saud a dime. They’ve got millions of their own.

    -Aliandra ”

    You are not purposely being obtuse are you? Support comes in many ways. The US supports the Saudi government in many ways, politically and militarily being the two main ways. If the US is serious about democracy in the Middle East they MUST stop this support now.

  154. anonymous says:

    Re: Malik

    PM writes “Sorry to hear that the struggle continues. Hard headed bureaucracy is so frustrating and some Arab governments have elevated it to an artform. At least your perspective is good and you are not one to stereotype an entire nation of people because of the actions of their government. Allah knows I would not want to be blamed for the actions of George Bush. I voted against him and beyond that (and speaking out) there is little else I can do.

    Take care & regards to your family.

    Salaam Alaikum”

    Indeed, I have much more reason to hate the Saudis than most, but of course to hate the whole people for the actions of a few is a stupid idea and goes against my beliefs as a Muslim. As a believer it gives me faith to know that even if I do not get justice against Prince Bandar and the Saudi government, that God will dispense the justice for me. I actually feel a bit sad for them. Once again, as a believer, I would much rather make things right in this dunya than to have to pay for it on the Last Day. But the choice is theirs.

    It is important if you have strongly held ideas to do something about it. I have joined and have become active in several pro Democracy Saudi dissident groups here. I wish the US was really serious about democracy in the Middle East so they could fund groups like these.

    Malik

  155. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    [quote]When you make the claim that over one billion Muslims listen to radical teachers your message instantly lost all credibility.[/quote]

    One billion Muslims read a book that exhorts them not to take Christians and Jews as friends, and to fight the nonbelievers until all religion is for Allah.

    I don’t need an extremist teacher to draw my own conclusions. 🙂

  156. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Malik

    Malik –

    You just displayed a profound lack of knowledge of Zoroastrianism.

    Zoroastrians do not worship flame. The fire is a symbol of the light of God.
    Persians did not live in caves.
    The Zoroastrian motto is: “Good thoughts, good words, good deeds.”
    Fat lot of good it did them. in 650, the Muslim horde stormed in and crushed the empire, forcing conversions, slaughtering thousands, and repressing the -original- monotheistic religion, the teachings of which influenced every other ‘prophet’ from David to Mohammed.

    Today, Zoroastrians aren’t very populous, and they have been violently repressed over the past 1400 years. But they still live, the teachings of Zoroaster still survive. That attests to the power of the message far more than, in truth, any other religion. No other religious group has suffered more than Zoroastrians.

    Persia, in the pre-Islamic times was one of the most advanced civilizations in the world. They had science, archetecture, a bill of human rights written centuries before anyone even thought of it. That ‘Golden Age of Islam’? It was built on stolen Persian science and learning. Look at ‘classical arab archetecture’; its actually based on Persian archetectural styles. If Iran were to toss off the mullahs and return to their true cultural roots, they would be a dynamic force in the world; rather than a hate-spewing exporter of terror.

    Ethan – perseophile

  157. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Saud

    [quote]The US supports the Saudi government in many ways, politically and militarily being the two main ways. If the US is serious about democracy in the Middle East they MUST stop this support now. [/quote]

    FINALLY.

    You, Steve and I agree on something wholeheartedly.

  158. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    When do countries like Algeria take responsibility for their own affairs in your view? Why is everything that happens in them America’s fault and never their own? Why are such countries always children waiting for Uncle Sam’s direction?

    What happens in Algeria is Algeria’s responsibility, for better or worse, despite your anti-American ravings that seek to blame every burned out lightbulb around the world on the USA.

    Steve

  159. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Steve writes “I don’t recall goofy Pat advocating war on the unbelievers, as they do on Saudi TV.”

    LOL! He most certainly does! He talks about how Islam is evil, its people are evil, it needs to be stopped. I guess he isnt as up front as some. Back to Saudi TV, you watch it? I wasnt aware you speak Arabic? Or are you taking this information from some place else? [/quote]

    You’ll have to show me some proof that Pat is fomenting a religious war against the Muslims. You are not exactly a reliable source.

    Translations of Saudi TV are available on MEMRI and elsewhere. The Saudi double game of telling lies about their peaceful intentions while preaching bloody jihad in Arabic is coming unravelled as their media is examined and revealed.

    Just last week, PBS broadcast an episode of Frontline called “House of Saud” where a Saudi kid’s show was shown with helpful translation as the fun young commentator had a cute little Saudi kid recite a passage from a piece of paper about how the Jews were pigs and monkeys who would be killed. It’s no wonder Saudi Arabia is so screwed up when they pour venom like this into their kids heads from the time they can toddle.

    Here are links to the program for purchase on DVD and a summary of the program:
    http://www.shoppbs.org/product/index.jsp?productId=1932080&clickid=body_bestsellers_txt
    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/saud/cron/

    If you indeed are so well acquainted with Saudi Arabia how is it that all this venom broadcast in their media is invisible to you?

    Steve

  160. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Steve writes “It’s kinduva stretch to say the Christian fundamentalists are trying to blow up the Dome of the Rock.”

    No, it isnt. Why is it always a “stretch” for you to admit that the USA has a lot of home grown extremists, but you dont have the same problem with others? Christian extremists are funding radical groups in Israel and funding settler groups whose aim is to destroy the peace talks there and comit ethnic cleansing of the Christian and Muslim Arab communities there. [/quote]

    What extremists we have operate on their own and are actively hunted down by our government. Tim McVeigh was not indoctrinated in hate by our government, as Wahhabi extremists in Saudi Arabia are. McVeigh was not trained and equipped and financed by the USA. Saudi terrorists are financed by Saudi Arabia. McVeigh was caught, tried, and executed by the USA. Saudi terrorists are concealed by the Saudi government and protected. That is quite a difference.

    Your attempt to invent equivalent hatred in the non-Muslim world is hardly persuasive. It comes across as projection.

    [quote]Steve writes “Also, let me point out the painfully obvious: Pat Robertson and the Christian fundamentalists do not send hate literature to Muslim countries urging Christians to make war on the Muslims, to lie to them, to hurt them, to kill them, to steal their stuff, and to take their women as their sex slaves.”

    No, they send their missionaries, in the colonial style, hard on the heels of their invading troops. [/quote]

    Name some missionaries in Afghanistan and Iraq sponsored by the US. What a crock.

    And your defense of the despicable religious war by the Saudis on the West and America is weak. You simply ignore the facts of the case, that Saudis are actively promoting the most hateful and venomous hate for other religions. And acting on it.

    Steve

  161. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Jersey City Joan,

    You’re quite right. On the question of attacks on America I am completely obsessive and unappeasable. There are a lot more guys like me in the military who are even more obsessive and unappeasable in their defense of America. Those are the guys who make it possible for you to live a soft and safe life and heap scorn on those who make it possible for ingrates like you to sleep undisturbed at night, secure in your life, liberty, and possessions.

    Steve

  162. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Steve writes “By contrast, the crown prince of Saudi Arabia is entirely sympathetic to Muslim terrorists, turning a blind eye to their belligerent activities, refusing to cooperate in American investigations of terrorist attacks, and even trying to blame their crimes on the Zionists”

    Actually the Saudi royal family has now become an important partner in the “war” on terror. the same enemies that want to attack the US want to overthrow the royal family as well. My question to you, if you hate the royal family so much why are you so mute about US government ties to them? [/quote]

    This is the most contemptible lie of them all. The Saudis are the originator of this Wahhabi war on the world, their financiers, logisticians, and supporters. They enthusiastically endorse terror for Islam in other countries, don’t particularly mind it in their own country as long as only infidels are being killed, but draw the line when their own terror claims Saudis in Saudi Arabia. And they are still advocating bloody jihad in America in mosques and schools sponsored by their embassy here.

    I am hardly mute about the US ties to Saudi Arabia. I have straightforwardly advocated abandoning this pretence of an alliance and retaliating directly against the Saudis. You have repeatedly commented on this. How is that you have now forgotten the long trail of my posts advocating the US return the jihad to Saudi Arabia with interest? I can’t make it any clearer: Saudi Arabia must be destroyed.

    [quote]Steve writes “For all your talk of Christian fundamentalists being equivalent to Islamic fundamentalists, I have yet to learn of one event where Christian fundamentalists have shed a single drop of Muslim blood. By contrast, the Muslim fundamentalists have shed lakes of infidel blood and are baying for more. ”

    200,000 Muslims killed in Bosnia by Christian extremists. You elude to the school massacre in Russia, but you fail to mention that 10,000 Muslim school children have been killed in Chechnya. Why your outrage about the 300 Christian children and silence about 10,000 Muslim children? Enough said. [/quote]

    What a slippery eel you are. You are claiming in your argument that American Christian fundamentalists are equivalent to Islamic fundamentalists in their lust for blood. When I demand proof, you cite some Christian group in the Balkans. Are those American Christian fundamentalists in the Balkans? Is Pat Robertson masquerading as Slobodan Milosevic? You wouldn’t need this rhetorical slight of hand to prove your case if the facts were on your side. The fact is that your case against Christian fundamentalists in the US is hot air, blown by you in a desperate attempt to dilute the hatred and bloodlust of the Islamic fundamentalists.

    I am also not convinced that religion was the prime motivator for struggle in the Balkans or Chechnya. It looks more like a classic war of conquest by one tribe against another. Religion was a contributing factor but not a decisive one. Milosevic was happy to kill Christians and whoever else got in his way.

    Steve

  163. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Malik

    [quote]Malik: This shows a basic misunderstanding of Islam. Of course the Meccans worshipped the rock at the Kabbah, it was there before they were. They got the house and the tradition of worship there from the Jews before them. Besides, Muslims do not worship the thing anyway. All Mohammed (SAW) did was to reclaim the Kabbah, the first house of worship, for its rightfull owners.

    You type always get it wrong. Islam does not claim to be a new religion, rather a continuation of Christianity and Judaism before it. [/quote]

    So you admit that the Meccans were worshipping the rock at Mecca before Mohammed came along. Does that make it a pagan tradition or were the Meccans Muslim before Mohammed, in which case Mohammed was not the authoritative prophet from God? If it is a pagan tradition, why are you castigating the pagan traditions of other faiths? Hypocricy?

    To the casual observer, it sure looks like the Muslims are worshipping that black rock. To be a good Muslim, you have to make a pilgrimmage to Mecca, where the Kaaba is the center of the faith, where the black rock is the focus of the Kaaba. The whole point of the pilgrimmage appears to touch that black rock. It looks very much like Catholic pilgrims worshipping splinters of the cross or relics of the saints. Except it’s a rock.

    If Islam is not a new religion, is simply a continuation of Judaism and Christianity, why do the Wahhabis want to exterminate the Jews and Christians? Why do they call the Jews pigs and apes who will be slaughtered by Muslims on the Last Day? If what you claim is true, shouldn’t the Wahhabis bond with the Jews and Christians in one big happy family based on the same religious traditions? Accepting your view, wouldn’t that mean that the Wahhabis want to kill their own?

    Steve

  164. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Americans are immoral

    Once again you dodge the question because the answer is too embarassing: There will never be an interfaith meeting in Saudi Arabia because all other faiths are illegal. Why don’t you have the courage to tell the truth?

    Typical of your brand of anti-Americanism, you dishonestly seek to shift the blame for Saudi / Wahhabi religious intolerance to America, of all places. Do you think anyone believes your nonsense? How transparent can your desperate defense of Saudi Arabia become? Let me put it to you straight: Saudi Arabia is to blame for its noxious religious practices. Not America. Not the West. Not the history of Western colonialism. Not the non-Muslim world. Not Martians. Saudi Arabia and Saudi Arabia alone is responsible for its religion. It’s that freaking simple.

    I am particularly impressed by your assertion that you are not dodging the point before you dodge the point. Why is it so difficult for you to be honest? Is dishonesty the only way you can defend your religion?

    Pat Robertson visiting the White House has nothing to do with Saudi intolerance of other religions in Saudi Arabia. It’s a goofy non sequitur. It certainly looks to me like being a Muslim for you means you can’t support America.

    Steve

  165. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Aliandra: All that talk about freedom and democracy came afterward. [/quote]

    Actually, Bush explicitly mentioned freedom and democracy as reasons for invading Iraq before the fact. The Bush administration listed a couple dozen reasons for invading Iraq. The stockpiles of WMD were the only reason that wasn’t fully realized, so now those hostile to America falsely claim it was the only reason.

    However, may I point out that the WMD labs for sarin and anthrax were indeed discovered with documented plans for shipping those poisons covertly to the US and Europe in perfume bottles, also found. The US invasion stopped that plan from proceeding and vindicates the WMD casus belli.

    Steve

  166. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Just an interesting follow up on Ahura Mazda and Zoroastrianism:

    http://www.zarathushtra.com/

    The overview section has an excellent description of the basic tenets of the faith. It seems like a good example of an internally revealed religious philosophy.

  167. anonymous says:

    Extremists

    Malik,

    [quote]Aliandra: Posted “There are 300 million people in the US. 20 million is 6%. That is MINISCULE. ”

    Malik: Still more than the whole population of Saudi Arabia. [/quote]

    15 of the 19 9-11 hijackers were Saudis. How many of those 20 million American Baptists have terrorized Muslims?

    {quote]Aliandra: â€? Posted “Has the Baptist leader told Baptists to attack Muslims? Nope. To behead them in the name of Jesus? Nope. Are Baptists commiting violence against Muslims? Are they hijacking airliners to topple skyscrapers in Medina or Cairo? Nope. ”

    Malik: Like I have said before, suicide attacks are the weapons of the poor. Might interest you to know that the most prolific suicide bombers pre Iraq were not even Muslims. [/quote]

    You are avoiding my argument by changing the subject.

    [quote]Malik: no need for personal attacks on Muslims when you have the worlds greatest army being lead by one of your own doing all of the attacking. [/quote]

    Before you claimed that the US attacked Iraq for oil and Israel. Now you are claiming the US attacked Iraq because its people are Muslims. Which is it?

    [quote] Aliandra: There are about 300 million people in the US. There are about 26 million in SA. I stand by my statement that there are more extremists per capita in SA than in the US. ”

    Malik: Based on what study? Or is this speculation? [/quote]

    Based on the fact that 15 of the 19 hijackers on 9-11 were Saudis. Based on the fact that Americans are not committing terrorist acts against Muslims in the name of Jesus. Based on the fact that Wahabis are putting hate-filled literature in the mosques they fund. Based on the fact that no other religion may practice openly in Saudi Arabia. Based on the fact that Christians may not bring Bibles or other such literature into SA. Based on the fact that if you change your religion from Islam to something else, you will get into serious trouble. Based on the fact that no infidels are allowed into the city of Mecca. Should I go on?

    [quote]Oh, I get it, because Muslims from all over the world go to Mecca they are all automatically tainted? [/quote]

    I’m applying your very own logic here, Malik. If all Muslims who go to Mecca are not automatically tainted, why should 20 million Baptists be?

    -Aliandra

  168. anonymous says:

    Re: Extremists

    Quote not working – trying again …

    Malik,

    [quote]Aliandra: Posted “There are 300 million people in the US. 20 million is 6%. That is MINISCULE. ”

    Malik: Still more than the whole population of Saudi Arabia. [/quote]

    15 of the 19 9-11 hijackers were Saudis. How many of those 20 million American Baptists have terrorized Muslims?

    [quote]Aliandra: â€? Posted “Has the Baptist leader told Baptists to attack Muslims? Nope. To behead them in the name of Jesus? Nope. Are Baptists commiting violence against Muslims? Are they hijacking airliners to topple skyscrapers in Medina or Cairo? Nope. ”

    Malik: Like I have said before, suicide attacks are the weapons of the poor. Might interest you to know that the most prolific suicide bombers pre Iraq were not even Muslims. [/quote]

    You are avoiding my argument by changing the subject.

    [quote]Malik: no need for personal attacks on Muslims when you have the worlds greatest army being lead by one of your own doing all of the attacking. [/quote]

    Before you claimed that the US attacked Iraq for oil and Israel. Now you are claiming the US attacked Iraq because its people are Muslims. Which is it?

    [quote] Aliandra: There are about 300 million people in the US. There are about 26 million in SA. I stand by my statement that there are more extremists per capita in SA than in the US. ”

    Malik: Based on what study? Or is this speculation? [/quote]

    Based on the fact that 15 of the 19 hijackers on 9-11 were Saudis. Based on the fact that Americans are not committing terrorist acts against Muslims in the name of Jesus. Based on the fact that Wahabis are putting hate-filled literature in the mosques they fund. Based on the fact that no other religion may practice openly in Saudi Arabia. Based on the fact that Christians may not bring Bibles or other such literature into SA. Based on the fact that if you change your religion from Islam to something else, you will get into serious trouble. Based on the fact that no infidels are allowed into the city of Mecca. Should I go on?

    [quote]Oh, I get it, because Muslims from all over the world go to Mecca they are all automatically tainted? [/quote]

    I’m applying your very own logic here, Malik. If all Muslims who go to Mecca are not automatically tainted, why should 20 million Baptists be?

    Aliandra

  169. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Extremists

    Written “15 of the 19 9-11 hijackers were Saudis. How many of those 20 million American Baptists have terrorized Muslims? ”

    Personally? None, but the policies of the US terrorise Muslim populations.

    Written “Before you claimed that the US attacked Iraq for oil and Israel. Now you are claiming the US attacked Iraq because its people are Muslims. Which is it? ”

    It can and is both. America wants to control the oil and establish permenate bases in the Middle East. It is no wonder that the US Baghdad embassy will be the biggest in the world. As for Iraq being Muslim, I would contend the US wouldnt have been so quick to attack had Iraqs population been white Christians.

    Written “Based on the fact that 15 of the 19 hijackers on 9-11 were Saudis. Based on the fact that Americans are not committing terrorist acts against Muslims in the name of Jesus.”

    I argue that current US foreign policy is being pushed by those with a religious agenda. Christian missionaries were hard on the heels of Americans troops in Iraq. This created a large pool of resentment amoungst the Muslims there, taken out by radicals on the local Christian community. I argue that many sections of the US Christian community are using the US military as a way to expand their missionary activities. I argue that segments of the US Christian right advocates a radical policy in the Middle East that the current administration is following.

    Written “Based on the fact that Wahabis are putting hate-filled literature in the mosques they fund. Based on the fact that no other religion may practice openly in Saudi Arabia. Based on the fact that Christians may not bring Bibles or other such literature into SA”

    How many Saudis are there in the world? What percentage of the total number of Muslims do they comprise? Very little you will find.

    Written “Based on the fact that if you change your religion from Islam to something else, you will get into serious trouble.”

    It is a crime to convert religions in many states in India. What, exactly, has the US had to say about this? The problem is many Hindus, born into lower castes and kept there for life by their religion wish to change, many to Islam or Christianity. It has been BANNED by law in many Indian states, yet the US has said nothing. Why is that?

    Written “I’m applying your very own logic here, Malik. If all Muslims who go to Mecca are not automatically tainted, why should 20 million Baptists be? ”

    Their thelogical teachings and their leader make them tainted. These baptists can reject their leader if they dont follow or buy his beliefs. They choose to endorse his beliefs. As to non Muslims going into Mecca, there are portions of Vatican City non Catholics cannot enter, do you suppose we ban this as well? There are areas forbidden in the Jewish religion from non Jews, even forbidden to Jewish women, your comments? I have no issue with this, it is their belief, and making Mecca a Muslim city hardly is the same as a leader of 20 million Baptists calling the founder of the religion of over 1 billion people awful and disgusting names.

    If it was a Sheik saying the same thing you would be screaming in outrage trying to say that it proves all Muslims are bad, but when a Baptist does it you work your hardest to excuse it. See your hypocrisy for what it is!

  170. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Extremists

    [quote]As to non Muslims going into Mecca, there are portions of Vatican City non Catholics cannot enter, do you suppose we ban this as well? There are areas forbidden in the Jewish religion from non Jews, even forbidden to Jewish women, your comments? [/quote]

    Where? All are free to enter the Vatican. As far as I know, there are no spaces designated ‘catholic only’. Even if there are, contrast with Mecca being a whole city. Question of scale, Malik.

    The day that I can build a cathedral in sight of the Haram Mosque (as the largest Mosque in Rome is in sight of the Vatican) will be the best day Humanity has ever seen.

    [quote]I have no issue with this, it is their belief, and making Mecca a Muslim city hardly is the same as a leader of 20 million Baptists calling the founder of the religion of over 1 billion people awful and disgusting names. [/quote]

    How about the holy book of 1 billion plus people calling [b]all[/b] Christians and Jews disgusting names, even if they do not deserve them. There can be a very strong case for Mohammed being called a few of the names that have been applied to him. Check you Hadith, Malik.

    Double standards, double standards, overgeneralization. Don’t you fight against that, Malik? Or is that only when your own beliefs are not threatened?

  171. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Extremists

    Malik,

    [quote]Personally? None, but the policies of the US terrorise Muslim populations. [/quote]

    The biggest terrorizers of Muslims have been other Muslims. The 300,000 in mass graves in Iraq. The thousands of Kuwaitis Saddam sent to their maker. The 20,000 people of Hama murdered by the Syrian government. The 30,000 Sudanese killed by the Sudanese janjaweed. If you want to talk about Muslims being terrozined by policies, shouldn’t you start with Muslims themselves?

    [quote] As for Iraq being Muslim, I would contend the US wouldnt have been so quick to attack had Iraqs population been white Christians. [/quote]

    The US attacked white Christian Serbians for killing thousands of Yugoslavian Muslims. Milosevic, a mass murderer of Islamic Kosovars, was brought to trial for his crimes. Your point?

    [quote] Christian missionaries were hard on the heels of Americans troops in Iraq. This created a large pool of resentment amoungst the Muslims there, taken out by radicals on the local Christian community.[/quote]
    So now it’s the fault of Christian missionaries, who “allegedly� came with American GIs, that Iraqi Christians are being harrassed? It’s the fault of missionaries that Christian liquor stores are being trashed and Christian women are being told to wear hijab? Iraqi Christians already suffered plenty of disabilities under Saddam. They were permitted to worship but not to publicly express their views or proselytize. It was forbidden to give children Christian names. Discrimination against Iraqi Christians didn’t start with the Iraq war. It was already embedded in segments of the population.
    [quote] I argue that many sections of the US Christian community are using the US military as a way to expand their missionary activities.[/quote]

    Well, you do astound me with these bipoloar swings of logic. First you said that the US went to Iraq for oil and Israel. Then you that the US sent its army to Iraq because they wanted to make over the middle-east, courtesy of the neo-cons. NOW you argue that the US army is in Iraq as a means of converting Muslims to Christianity! Like our GIs don’t have enough with the insurgents, they have to be agents of the US Christian community as well?

    Now, which is it, again?

    [quote]How many Saudis are there in the world? What percentage of the total number of Muslims do they comprise? Very little you will find. [/quote]

    The small number of extremist Saudi Muslims are giving the world a hell of a lot of grief.

    [quote]It is a crime to convert religions in many states in India. What, exactly, has the US had to say about this? the US has said nothing. Why is that? [/quote]

    The US did indeed condemn it. “The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom urged the State Department to add India – along with five other countries – to its list of “countries of particular concern” because of religious freedom problems involving Hindus, Muslims and Christians.â€? See http://www.crosswalk.com/news/religiontoday/1192434.html.

    A law in a few Indian states is not the same as the whole country. You can bring Bibles into India and dissiminate them. You can openly practice other religions besides Hinduism. You can build churches or Buddhist or Sikh temples in India. Mother Teresa, a Catholic nun and humanitarian, got a state funeral.

    Saudi Arabia cannnot be compared to India.

    [quote]Their thelogical teachings and their leader make them tainted. These baptists can reject their leader if they dont follow or buy his beliefs. They choose to endorse his beliefs. [/quote]

    But hearing hate speech in the Kaaba mosque, the holiest of all Muslim places, or in the Al-Azhar mosque, does not taint Muslims in the least, eh? Only Baptist Christians are tainted when they hear attacks against Islam but Muslims are not when their leaders preach nastiness?

    [quote] As to non Muslims going into Mecca, there are portions of Vatican City non Catholics cannot enter, do you suppose we ban this as well? [/quote]

    Those portions are closed to the general public, and that includes Catholic tourists. Non-Catholics may stroll through St Peter’s Cathedral and sit in on the religiois services. Contrast that with Mecca, an entire city with residential areas and shops and plazas that are not explicitely sacred. Yet, no infidel may step foot anywhere in Mecca.

    [quote] a leader of 20 million Baptists calling the founder of the religion of over 1 billion people awful and disgusting names. If it was a Sheik saying the same thing you would be screaming in outrage trying to say that it proves all Muslims are bad, but when a Baptist does it you work your hardest to excuse it. See your hypocrisy for what it is! [/quote]

    I never excused it. I never said all Muslims were bad because of the words of a few sheiks. The Baptists may have a poor opinion of Prophet Mohammad but they are not calling on their members to harm his followers. Contrast that with extremist sheiks and their fellow travelers. That was the essence of my argument.

    -Aliandra

  172. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Extremists

    Malik,

    When Steve makes a comment like that, it’s important to read the post. He backed up his statements with fact – quoting articles to prove his point. Whether it was fair to paint with such a broad brush can be up for debate, but apparently since Satan (A rock? wtf?) was labeled with ‘Death to America’ it is something to be concerned about. An entire [b]religous festival[/b] to decry the USA? Sounds like Khomeini.

    Oh yeah. He wrote that wonderful screed on the forums too. Does he know something you don’t, Malik?

  173. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Extremists

    Ethan writes “Malik, When Steve makes a comment like that, it’s important to read the post. He backed up his statements with fact – quoting articles to prove his point.”

    He did no such thing. He made a broad and gross generalisation by posting rantings by an extremist. If you think that this can then paint all Muslims you are just as insane as he is.

    Ethen writes “Does he know something you don’t, Malik? ”

    Maybe the KKK motto. Steve doesnt come up with anything that hasnt been said a million times by more well known bigots than himself. The first time Steve comes up with something new I will be surprised. You can read his nonsense on hate sites all over the internet.

  174. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    [quote]I do not believe Israel is a democracy. One cannot have a state dedicated to the sole advancement of one race or religion and call it democratic. Israel is not much more democratic than Saudi Arabia. Until Israel is a nation that is a nation for ALL people it will not be a democratic state. Period. Israel is no more a democratic state than apartheid era South Africa was. [/quote]

    Saudi Arabia is not even remotely a democracy, it is a true apartheid state – Muslims here, Infidels there.

    In Israel there are -no- such distinctions. Arab Israelis live in peace with their neighbors, and can even vote, or hold office. Israeli citizenship is not stratified, no matter what the propaganda says. Judaism -is- the state religion, but Israel does not forbid the display of other religions within its borders (like a certain number of other neighboring countries)

  175. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Americans are immoral

    Ethan writes “Saudi Arabia is not even remotely a democracy, it is a true apartheid state – Muslims here, Infidels there.

    In Israel there are -no- such distinctions. Arab Israelis live in peace with their neighbors, and can even vote, or hold office. Israeli citizenship is not stratified, no matter what the propaganda says. Judaism -is- the state religion, but Israel does not forbid the display of other religions within its borders (like a certain number of other neighboring countries) ”

    In Israel and Saudi Arabia the states are designed for the advancement of one religious group. That is NOT democracy, I dont care how many times people can vote, when a state is based on the advancement of one group of people over another it is not a democracy. Arabs, Christians and Muslims, receive much lower funding for everything in life, based on what? Based on the fact that they are not Jews. That is not democracy. Israel has a very antogonistic relationship with Christians and Muslims in their country. They regularly forbid entry of Muslims into certain mosques, they make it very hard for Christian missionaries and workers to gain visa, a sore sport with certain religious groups at the moment.

    It is about about extent. Israel is just a lessor version of Saudi Arabia. Again, no nation with its sole purpose of promoting a race or a religion can be a democracy. Unless, you are going to tell me that if full and open elections were held in Saudi Arabia tommarrow that you would consider it a democracy? No way.

  176. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Extremists

    Ok, let me propose this example.

    Tomorrow, the Archbishop of Canterbury paints the words ‘Khatami Sucks’ on a pillar outside the Cathedral, and exhorts his flock to toss stones at it as part of Sunday services, an action that they take with gusto.

    Would you find that petty?
    Would you find that strange?
    Would you feel that there was something -wrong-?

    To mix a religious festival with politics?

    Now, let’s look back at the Hajj. It’s more than a Sunday service. IT”S THE F’ING PILGRAMAGE TO MECCA.

    And they are using it to rail against political issues rather than spiritual ones? (Of course, this being Islam, is there that much difference, given the Hadith, and Sura 9?)

    We already have a documented Haji killing his innocent daughter. Nothing like being on a faith-high and using it for nefarious purposes.

  177. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Extremists

    [quote]You are right, there are more people in Mumbai than in the whole of Saudi Arabia. I guess you can build a mosque in India if the mobs dont kill you first. [/quote]

    As if this happens every day, Malik. Try again – the riots were localized to one specific area, and were caused by Muslims wanting to build a holy place at a spot that was directly blasphemous to the local population.

    It’s like building a synagogue over the Shrine of Imam Ali. (Which, if we were really such a nasty country, and not simply indifferent, we would have done).

    On another note:

    [quote]I believe this is, at the least, misleading. Saudi Arabia is just a miniscule portion of the Muslim world and has very little affect on what Muslims in Indonesia, Africa or South America think. [/quote]

    Except for the fact that of the trillions of petrodollars given to Saudi in the past 50 years, a significant portion has been given over to mosque building and madrassa dissemination of Saudi ideals. I point to the recently captured would-be presidential assassin.

    Again, Malik, you have a rose-colored view of the world like Steve. You’re willing to sweep things under the rug and ignore them. This gives the best indication of your views:

    [b]Difference here is Saudis cannot choose who they hear from the pulpit, the [i]US backed state[/i] of Saudi Arabia puts them there. [/b]

    The US supports Saudi because Saudi has a valuable commodity. We buy oil and keep the status quo so we can keep buying oil. IN NO WAY does the US choose the Imams in Saudi as this statement implies.

    If the US did, I’d want to be first on the plane to go preach in Mecca. I’m sure I could whip up some relgious fervor. 😀

  178. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Extremists

    Ethan writes “Ok, let me propose this example.

    Tomorrow, the Archbishop of Canterbury paints the words ‘Khatami Sucks’ on a pillar outside the Cathedral, and exhorts his flock to toss stones at it as part of Sunday services, an action that they take with gusto.

    Would you find that petty?
    Would you find that strange?
    Would you feel that there was something -wrong-? ”

    Sure, but I wouldnt think that this makes all Anglicans “petty, strange or wrong”. Besides, point doesnt have a parallel in Islam, there is no “Pope” or Archbishop.

    Ethan writes “To mix a religious festival with politics?”

    Funny coming from an American, where religion is always mixed with politics, and a supporter of Israel, where religion IS politics.

    Ethan writes “Now, let’s look back at the Hajj. It’s more than a Sunday service. IT”S THE F’ING PILGRAMAGE TO MECCA.

    And they are using it to rail against political issues rather than spiritual ones? (Of course, this being Islam, is there that much difference, given the Hadith, and Sura 9?) ”

    No, there is no difference in Islam. Religious services and rites are often used for political purposes, from the Pope to the Hindu festivals in India, religion and politics mix all of the time, why the concentration on Muslims?

    Ethan writes “We already have a documented Haji killing his innocent daughter. Nothing like being on a faith-high and using it for nefarious purposes. ”

    So 2 million people go on Hajj and you point to one outrageous case to indict all Muslims? You are grasping at straws. I guess you didnt hear the case in North America where a Hindi mother arranged to have her daughter and her new husband killed. Why? Because they shared the same last name and people might think it looked bad. Does that indict all Hindus?

  179. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Extremists

    Ethan writes “As if this happens every day, Malik. Try again – the riots were localized to one specific area, and were caused by Muslims wanting to build a holy place at a spot that was directly blasphemous to the local population.

    It’s like building a synagogue over the Shrine of Imam Ali. (Which, if we were really such a nasty country, and not simply indifferent, we would have done). ”

    Religious violence is a daily occurance in India. The mosque I was talking about was the rebuilding of a mosque that had stood there for 500 years before the mobs tore it down. There is scant archeological proof there was ever a Hindu shrine there. It was a lie fostered by Hindi extremists to gain power. It worked.

    Ethan writes “It’s like building a synagogue over the Shrine of Imam Ali. (Which, if we were really such a nasty country, and not simply indifferent, we would have done).”

    Huh? Have you taken to the drink today? What does the shrine of Ali have to do with Hindu mobs killing thousands of Muslims? How many Jews would ever attend such a place? Was there a synagogue there before the Mosque went up?

    Ethan writes “Except for the fact that of the trillions of petrodollars given to Saudi in the past 50 years, a significant portion has been given over to mosque building and madrassa dissemination of Saudi ideals. I point to the recently captured would-be presidential assassin. ”

    People have taken Saudi money, sure, doesnt mean it has had a huge impact in the local communities. As to the “would be” assassin, the US authorities were so sure about that case they let the Saudis torture the man for two years and only requested him after a federal court demanded they charge him or ask for him to be released. The only witness the US had died sometime ago. Interesting eh?

    Ethan writes “Difference here is Saudis cannot choose who they hear from the pulpit, the US backed state of Saudi Arabia puts them there.

    The US supports Saudi because Saudi has a valuable commodity. We buy oil and keep the status quo so we can keep buying oil. IN NO WAY does the US choose the Imams in Saudi as this statement implies”

    What does that say about the morality of US policy if we support people, no matter how evil, to get what we want?

  180. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Extremists

    Muslims also revile America and President Bush as part of their religion. For example, during the last haj, the pilgrimmage to Mecca, Muslims stoned the three pillars at Mina, which represent the devil. The Saudis, our “allies in the war against terror,” painted those pillars with graffitti denouncing President Bush. “Death to America” is one of the slogans painted on the pillars. In this way, Muslims have literally made hatred of America a pillar of their religion and the duty of every pilgrim to Mecca.

    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1325733/posts

    Can you ever imagine the Vatican writing “Death to Saudi Arabia” on its walls or the Buddhists writing the same on one of their Buddhas or the Shintos enscribing the same on a shrine? It’s shameful and petty, foolish and hateful.

    Here is a translated passage from a sermon by Saudi sheikh Abd Al-Rahman Al-Sudayyis at the Al-Haraam mosque, who called Jews “the scum of the human race, the rats of the world, the violators of pacts and agreements, the murderers of the prophets, and the offspring of apes and pigs.”

    In another sermon, the respected Saudi sheikh helpfully explained, “Read history and you will understand that the Jews of yesterday are the evil fathers of the Jews of today, who are evil offspring, infidels, distorters of [others’] words, calf-worshippers, prophet-murderers, prophecy-deniers… the scum of the human race ‘whom Allah cursed and turned into apes and pigs…’ These are the Jews, an ongoing continuum of deceit, obstinacy, licentiousness, evil, and corruption…”

    http://www.memri.org/bin/articles.cgi?Page=archives&Area=sr&ID=SR01102

    There’s plenty more of this hate speech to be found coming from the leading Islamic clerics which makes Islam’s claim of being a religion of peace and tolerance a sick joke. There is nothing that has been said in the West that can hold a candle to the dishonest and contemptuous manner in which Muslims speak of the non-Muslim world.

    Steve

  181. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    So you concede that Israel’s neighbors are worse with respect to your standards of democracy but you want to change the subject to blaming America. Why do you measure Israel and its neighbors by different standards of democracy? If you are taking a principled stand for democracy, why doesn’t your criticism fall first on its neighbors, who reject democracy?

    To be blunt, it appears your real agenda is religious intolerance for a non-Muslim state.

    Steve

  182. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Extremists

    Malik,

    [quote]I think the US is being pushed by a group of neo con Christian extremists who have a clear agenda. They want to control the world, to make sure the US never has any political or military rival. [/quote]

    The US wants to control the whole world, huh? Put down the Turner Diaries and quit the John Birch society. There are better ways of spending your time.

    [quote]We are supporting the worst dictators in the world, in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, Uzbekistan, to just name a few. [/quote]

    When are you going to stop blaming the US for all of the failings of the Middle-East? When do you think Muslim countries should claim responsibility for their own messes?

    [quote]You are right, there are more people in Mumbai than in the whole of Saudi Arabia. I guess you can build a mosque in India if the mobs dont kill you first. [/quote]

    And maybe you can build a Hindu temple if the Muslim mobs don’t kill you first. It goes both ways over there. Indian religious extremists, unlike Saudi extremists, are not sending out holy warriors to attack the world.

    [quote]You’ll find the speeches in Saudi have been pretty tempered as of late. [/quote]

    That’s only because after 9-11, they were quite embarrassed that 15 of their own actually took seriously what they had heard all their lives. Had 9-11 and subsequent attacks on the world never happened, the extremist preaching would have continued.

    [quote]Difference here is Saudis cannot choose who they hear from the pulpit, the US backed state of Saudi Arabia puts them there. [/quote]

    The US, which you claim is run by Christian extemists, backs the Saudi government which appoints imams to preach against Christians? How does that compute?

    Saudis can indeed choose what they hear from the pulpit. They can avoid going to mosques which preach extremism. They can write letters of complaint, anonymously if they want.

    [quote]The baptists in America have made a choice to pick a bigot to lead them. [/quote]

    But it’s not bigoted when millions of Muslims, far more than the number of American baptists, go to Mecca and choose to hear extremist speech in the grand mosque, right? It’s not bigoted when the Al-Azhar mosque, an important Islamic center, preaches against infidels and its Muslim members choose to do nothing about it, right? That’s not bigoted at all, right?

    And writing ‘death to America’ on a Mina pillar, that’s not bigoted, right? The spiritually enlightened shouldn’t stand such a thing at their holiest sites.

    9-11-2001 may have caused some Baptists to say some unpleasant things about Muslims. It’s not excusable, however, anti-infidel speech in the middle-east goes back decades. Extremist Muslims, not baptists, are doing terrorism in the name of God, a glaringly obvious difference.

    Whatever the baptists are saying, no way can it can compare to the sheer hatred coming out of the mouths of your extremists and permitted to express itself at your most sacred places.

    [quote]Saudi Arabia is just a miniscule portion of the Muslim world and has very little affect on what Muslims in Indonesia, Africa or South America think. [/quote]

    Of course it does. The Saudis are swimming in money and that money funds mosques all over the place, a good many of which preach hatred against infidels. A number of the 9-11 hijackers were radicalized in European mosques funded by Saudi extremists. It has already been reported that extremist listerature was found in a number of American mosques funded by Saudis. And Saudi Arabia supports and administers Mecca, the most important center of gravity in the Islamic world.

    Aliandra

  183. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Extremists

    Posted “The US wants to control the whole world, huh? Put down the Turner Diaries and quit the John Birch society. There are better ways of spending your time.”

    Every heard of the Committee for a New American Century? Their members include some ranking members of the current US government and their goal is to eliminate all rivals to US military and political power.

    Posted “When are you going to stop blaming the US for all of the failings of the Middle-East? When do you think Muslim countries should claim responsibility for their own messes? ”

    As an American I do not think it is moral for our country to support these dictators. I am not claiming be caused all of the mess, but we have our hands in it. It is immoral.

    Posted “And maybe you can build a Hindu temple if the Muslim mobs don’t kill you first. It goes both ways over there. Indian religious extremists, unlike Saudi extremists, are not sending out holy warriors to attack the world. ”

    No, they are content to murder their own religious minorities.

    Posted “The US, which you claim is run by Christian extemists, backs the Saudi government which appoints imams to preach against Christians? How does that compute?

    Saudis can indeed choose what they hear from the pulpit. They can avoid going to mosques which preach extremism. They can write letters of complaint, anonymously if they want. ”

    Writes letters of complaint huh? You dont have a clue how things in Saudi work do you? As to Christian extremists, they will support anyone they think they have to to achieve their ultimate goals.

    Posted “But it’s not bigoted when millions of Muslims, far more than the number of American baptists, go to Mecca and choose to hear extremist speech in the grand mosque, right? It’s not bigoted when the Al-Azhar mosque, an important Islamic center, preaches against infidels and its Muslim members choose to do nothing about it, right? That’s not bigoted at all, right? ”

    Again, these people have no choice who speaks to them. And, describe what it bigoted? I dont think railing against Bush and US policy is bigotry! As a matter of fact, on the last day of the Hajj this year the speech was about condemning extremism. Didnt know that did you?

    Posted “It has already been reported that extremist listerature was found in a number of American mosques funded by Saudis. And Saudi Arabia supports and administers Mecca, the most important center of gravity in the Islamic world. ”

    Give me a break, some people find a few small tracks amoungst millions of pages of material and that proves something? I remember reading materials that were clearly extremist when I was a child going to church. Rantings against gays, abortionists, Muslims, Jews, you name it.

  184. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Extremists

    If you want to read a few articles about the number and influence of Christian extremists go to the forum. http://www.mahmood.tv/index.php/xarbb/topic/43

  185. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Extremists

    Malik,

    [quote]Again, these people have no choice who speaks to them. [/quote]

    They have a choice as to which mosque they attend. They have a choice whether to go to Mecca or not. They have a choice as to which imam they listen to. They have a choice to turn off the channel when the extremism gets too offensive.

    [quote]As a matter of fact, on the last day of the Hajj this year the speech was about condemning extremism. Didnt know that did you? [/quote]

    Oh yeah I knew it. One year condemning extremism and over 20 preaching it. Too late, the damage is done, the monsters are loose.

    [quote]Give me a break, some people find a few small tracks amoungst millions of pages of material and that proves something? [/quote]

    It proves where it came from.

    -Aliandra

  186. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Extremists

    Posted “They have a choice as to which mosque they attend. They have a choice whether to go to Mecca or not. They have a choice as to which imam they listen to. They have a choice to turn off the channel when the extremism gets too offensive. ”

    As a Muslim you have no choice on whether or not to go to Mecca, you must go if you have the money and are in good health. Do you know so little about Islam so as to make such a statement? As to listening to the Imam, must people go to the local mosque. Besides, Saudi Arabia has removed over 1,000 Imams in the last year and sent back those they could re-train, fired the rest.

    Posted “Oh yeah I knew it. One year condemning extremism and over 20 preaching it. Too late, the damage is done, the monsters are loose. ”

    Oh, so I see, if wrong was done in the past dont bother trying to fix it, it is too late? I guess you arent African are you? As to monsters, we have them on both sides of the divide.

    Posted “It proves where it came from. ”

    I am sure some of it came from Pakistan as well, another US “ally.” I am glad that American has enough homegrown terrorists and extremists that we feel no need to import it.

    Do you have anything positive to say about Muslims or Islam?

  187. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Extremists

    Malik:

    Quote: I am not claiming be caused all of the mess, but we have our hands in it. It is immoral.

    The US doesn’t have a single finger in the mismanaged economies, the widespread illiteracy, the severe poverty, the high unemployment, the oppression of women, the intellectual backwardness, the ethnic hatreds, and the whole litany of social and economic problems that plague that part of the world.

    The mess was created by the Middle-East and must be solved by the Middle-East.

  188. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Extremists

    [quote]Do you have anything positive to say about Muslims or Islam? [/quote]

    The question should be Malik do you have anything positive to say about the West or Christians? Looks like from your various and constant posts you don’t have much positive to say about either.

    Have you thought about starting your own blog for your rants?

  189. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Extremists

    Posted “The US doesn’t have a single finger in the mismanaged economies, the widespread illiteracy, the severe poverty, the high unemployment, the oppression of women, the intellectual backwardness, the ethnic hatreds, and the whole litany of social and economic problems that plague that part of the world.
    The mess was created by the Middle-East and must be solved by the Middle-East. ”

    The US has a hand in a bunch of this. The US has proped up or installed many of the governments in the region. The US has supported the autocratic regimes who refuse to use their money for anything but self indulgence. The US has sold billions of dollars in arms to these countries and loaned them money to the point to bankruptcy, again for the crooked leaders that they support. Why does the US do these things? Because they like dealing with client dictators as long as their wishes are followed, ie Saddam Husssein. The mess was created by the Middle East and the US has had a large role in stiring the pot. To say anything different is to deny history.

  190. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Extremists

    Posted “The question should be Malik do you have anything positive to say about the West or Christians? Looks like from your various and constant posts you don’t have much positive to say about either.

    Have you thought about starting your own blog for your rants? ”

    I have all sorts of positive stuff to say. I have said it here many times, I love the freedoms we have here and the people who take them for granted upset me. The people who want to reject our laws, Constitution and Bill of Rights. People like Steve who find torture amusing and want to give up the right to due process and the fact that we are innocent until proving guilty. In his mind this makes me a terrorist sympathiser, in my mind it makes me a patriotic American.

    As to the West and Christianity, I could go on for days, weeks, about what I love. I was born in Germany and love German culture, music and literature. My favourite poet is Goethe, who incidently was a huge fan of Islam! I am a Mozart and Beethoven fanatic. My idea of fun is reading Goethe, Schopenhauer, Hegel, listening to classical music. I love Christian poetry, mostly expressed through classical music. My favourite pastime when I am in Europe is touring old churches and monistaries.

    But that isnt what is being discussed here. I dont fit into anyone’s picture about how they imagine me to be. I am a big white guy, blond hair and blue eyes. I have tattoos and come from a conservative military background. I worked for the US Department of Defense and I love European history and culture.

    I guess it makes it easier for you to think that I must hate all of this, but I dont. Having issues with American policy doesnt mean you have to reject Western society or culture. There is a reason why America gets lower opinion ratings in some European countries than Muslim countries.

    Your turn……what do you love about Islam and Arab culture?

  191. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Extremists

    Malik,

    [quote]As a Muslim you have no choice on whether or not to go to Mecca, Do you know so little about Islam so as to make such a statement? [/quote]

    I stand corrected. I thought there was no religious compulsion in Islam. However, isn’t it a higher religious requirement to say I will not go until the extremism stops? To demand that the religion remain true to its original message? To boycott the trip until the crap stops? Certainly, Muslims living in freer countries could have protested to the Saudi Embassy. And since there are a lot more Muslims living outside Saudi Arabia than inside, there was plenty of opportunity.

    [quote]As to listening to the Imam, must people go to the local mosque. [/quote]

    Isn’t there more than one local mosque? And more than one imam in attendance? And more than one prayer session? And are people forced to go? Are they forced to believe what is being said?

    [quote]Oh, so I see, if wrong was done in the past dont bother trying to fix it, it is too late? [/quote]

    After decades of extremism and thousands of dead infidels, it is kinda late. But it’s good to try.

    [quote] I am glad that American has enough homegrown terrorists and extremists that we feel no need to import it. [/quote]

    Other than Timosthy McVeigh and the IRS, I can’t name a single one. And I would not loose the IRS on my worse enemy.

    [quote]Do you have anything positive to say about Muslims or Islam? [/quote]

    All my comments have been directed against extremist Muslims. Read them again, please.

    -Aliandra

  192. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Extremists

    Malik:

    [quote]The mess was created by the Middle East and the US has had a large role in stiring the pot. To say anything different is to deny history. [/quote]

    Explain how the US had a large role in the following;

    1-mismanaged economies,
    2-widespread illiteracy
    3-widespread poverty
    4-high unemployment,
    5-oppression of women
    6- intellectual backwardness
    7- ethnic hatreds

    There are about 14 countries in the middle-east, about 20 if you count North Africa. Propping up a few goverments as you state isn’t to blame for the overall condition of the region. And it’s a crock to blame the US for middle-eastern governments choosing to piss away their money. To say otherwise is to deny reality.

  193. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: Your turn……what do you love about Islam and Arab culture? [/quote]

    I’d say I like the calligraphy and Saudi food. I like those big platters of rice with meat and sauce on top. The Saudis are far ahead of England in the food department.

    I like the history: the Pyramids, Petra, the ancient Mesopotamian civilizations, the step by step construction of civilization in the great river systems of the Nile and the Tigris/Euphrates. I’d like to see all that someday.

    Steve

  194. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “So you concede that Israel’s neighbors are worse with respect to your standards of democracy but you want to change the subject to blaming America.”

    Of course. You see, I am not a Syrian, Jordanian or Egyptian. I am an American. So whilst I see major issues in those countries, I, as an American, can most easily affect change in my own country. So I target the US policies that support the dictators and anti democratic elements in these areas.

    Steve writes “Why do you measure Israel and its neighbors by different standards of democracy? If you are taking a principled stand for democracy, why doesn’t your criticism fall first on its neighbors, who reject democracy? ”

    I do not believe Israel is a democracy. One cannot have a state dedicated to the sole advancement of one race or religion and call it democratic. Israel is not much more democratic than Saudi Arabia. Until Israel is a nation that is a nation for ALL people it will not be a democratic state. Period. Israel is no more a democratic state than apartheid era South Africa was.

    Steve writes “To be blunt, it appears your real agenda is religious intolerance for a non-Muslim state.”

    Not at all. It is the discriminatory nature of the Israeli state that bothers me, just like the discrimatory nature of the Saudi government bothers me. I would contend that I am far more open and tolerant in my agenda as I can point out the worst excesses in western and Arab/Muslim countries. It is your far right nationalism and hatred of Islam that keeps you from doing the same.

  195. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Extremists

    Steve writes “Muslims also revile America and President Bush as part of their religion.”

    This is such a gross lie and generalisation that I didnt even read the rest of the post. Mahmood, you recently attacked another poster for nonsense such as this. Any response for Steve?

  196. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Extremists

    Writen “The biggest terrorizers of Muslims have been other Muslims. The 300,000 in mass graves in Iraq. ”

    I am an American Muslim so I do what I can to address the problems in our community and address the US support for many of the governments that do these things. I am not Iraqi so I could do nothing to address Hussein’s issues, but I am an American so I can do something to address US support for these people.

    Writen “The US attacked white Christian Serbians for killing thousands of Yugoslavian Muslims. Milosevic, a mass murderer of Islamic Kosovars, was brought to trial for his crimes. Your point?”

    The US didnt attack the Serbs to save Muslims. Nonsense. I was there, I was in the country with the US forces after we waited for 200,000 Muslims to be slaughtered. We went in only AFTER the Muslim armies made ground against the Serbs. We went in to prevent a wider war involving NATO allies. If we cared about the Muslims we wouldnt have waited for years to do anything, we wouldnt have waited for 200,000 people to die.

    Writen “Well, you do astound me with these bipoloar swings of logic. First you said that the US went to Iraq for oil and Israel. Then you that the US sent its army to Iraq because they wanted to make over the middle-east, courtesy of the neo-cons. NOW you argue that the US army is in Iraq as a means of converting Muslims to Christianity! Like our GIs don’t have enough with the insurgents, they have to be agents of the US Christian community as well?

    Now, which is it, again? ”

    Wow, such black and white thinking. Do you always pigeon hole yourself thus? I think the US is being pushed by a group of neo con Christian extremists who have a clear agenda. They want to control the world, to make sure the US never has any political or military rival. Their policies are clear, support for Israel, control of oil and natural resources. They have a clear religious agenda. If you read their publications it is clear and their actions back these publications. Easy enough to see for yourself. I suggest that an agenda can have more than one goal.

    Written “The small number of extremist Saudi Muslims are giving the world a hell of a lot of grief.”

    Actually, I believe they are an issue, but as an American I am far more worried about the negative policies of my own country. We are supporting the worst dictators in the world, in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, Uzbekistan, to just name a few. I am doing what I can to help deal with the Saudi issue, but as an American I can do much more to affect change on our policies in regards to these nations. These policies are the real threat to the American future, not Saudi Arabia.

    Written “The US did indeed condemn it. “The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom urged the State Department to add India – along with five other countries – to its list of “countries of particular concern” because of religious freedom problems involving Hindus, Muslims and Christians.â€? See http://www.crosswalk.com/news/religiontoday/1192434.html.

    A law in a few Indian states is not the same as the whole country. You can bring Bibles into India and dissiminate them. You can openly practice other religions besides Hinduism. You can build churches or Buddhist or Sikh temples in India. Mother Teresa, a Catholic nun and humanitarian, got a state funeral.

    Saudi Arabia cannnot be compared to India. ”

    You are right, there are more people in Mumbai than in the whole of Saudi Arabia. I guess you can build a mosque in India if the mobs dont kill you first.

    Written “But hearing hate speech in the Kaaba mosque, the holiest of all Muslim places, or in the Al-Azhar mosque, does not taint Muslims in the least, eh? Only Baptist Christians are tainted when they hear attacks against Islam but Muslims are not when their leaders preach nastiness? ”

    You’ll find the speeches in Saudi have been pretty tempered as of late. Difference here is Saudis cannot choose who they hear from the pulpit, the US backed state of Saudi Arabia puts them there. The baptists in America have made a choice to pick a bigot to lead them.

    Written “Those portions are closed to the general public, and that includes Catholic tourists. Non-Catholics may stroll through St Peter’s Cathedral and sit in on the religiois services. Contrast that with Mecca, an entire city with residential areas and shops and plazas that are not explicitely sacred. Yet, no infidel may step foot anywhere in Mecca.”

    I have no issue with this, just as I have no issue with the fact that as a Muslim I am forbidden from places holy to Jewish worship and forbidden from places in Mormon worship. Do you next contend that we invade Salt Lake City because, as a non Mormon, I cannot enter the main temple? This is just a pretext for hatred against Muslims.

    Written “I never excused it. I never said all Muslims were bad because of the words of a few sheiks. The Baptists may have a poor opinion of Prophet Mohammad but they are not calling on their members to harm his followers. Contrast that with extremist sheiks and their fellow travelers. That was the essence of my argument.”

    You consistantly, like Steve, point to Saudi Arabia as an example of what Muslims think. I believe this is, at the least, misleading. Saudi Arabia is just a miniscule portion of the Muslim world and has very little affect on what Muslims in Indonesia, Africa or South America think.

  197. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Extremists

    [quote]Writen “The US attacked white Christian Serbians for killing thousands of Yugoslavian Muslims. Milosevic, a mass murderer of Islamic Kosovars, was brought to trial for his crimes. Your point?”

    Malik: The US didnt attack the Serbs to save Muslims. Nonsense. I was there, I was in the country with the US forces after we waited for 200,000 Muslims to be slaughtered. We went in only AFTER the Muslim armies made ground against the Serbs. We went in to prevent a wider war involving NATO allies. If we cared about the Muslims we wouldnt have waited for years to do anything, we wouldnt have waited for 200,000 people to die. [/quote]

    Muslim armies, my ass. What a load of crap. The main reason Milosevic folded was a 78 day air campaign by NATO forces, which is to say, mostly the US Air Force. You can read about it in this RAND study:

    http://www.rand.org/publications/MR/MR1365/MR1365.ch4.pdf

    The culmination of this air offensive was Operation Deliberate Force in which the USAF contributed 69% of the aircraft, 127 tactical aircraft, which flew 3535 sorties in three weeks to launch 1026 munitions (708 of them guided) to hit 97% of 338 targets consisting of Bosnian Serb heavy weapons, ammunition depots, command-and-control bunkers, and other targets over three weeks.

    Milosevic and the Serbs folded under the air assault after three weeks, then scurried to sign the Dayton Accords to end the war two months after that.

    President Clinton said that the US “led NATO’s heavy and continuous air strikes, many of them flown by skilled and brave American pilots. Those air strikes, together with the renewed determination of our European partners and the Bosnian [Muslim] and Croat gains on the battlefield, convinced the Serbs, finally, to start thinking about making peace.”

    http://www.afa.org/magazine/oct1997/1097deli.asp

    Muslim armies did nothing to end the war. The US military did just about everything that actually brought it to a close.

    Steve

  198. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    [quote]For Ethan…..seems he wants to put a religious motive to a set of murders that police havent been able to… [/quote]

    Sadly, the Coptic Christians as well as other groups who specialize in Islamic ritual murders see things the other way:
    http://worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=43093

    Family members who viewed the bodies say they suspect the brutal slayings were a warning not to proselytize to Muslims. They say that the body of Sylvia Armanious was clearly the most viciously attacked in the killings, causing them to wonder if it was because she was too vocal in sharing her faith.

    “Sylvia talked about Jesus to everyone,” her uncle Ayman Garas said. “She was extremely religious.”

    On Jan. 14, the bodies of Amal Garas, 37, her husband, Hossam Armanious, 47, and their daughters, Sylvia, 15, and Monica, 8, were found in their home bound and gagged, with puncture wounds to their throats. The unsolved murders were thrust into the spotlight again earlier this month, when the relatives of the victims went to Washington, D.C., to meet with lawmakers and hold a press conference on their concerns about the case.

    “We aren’t looking for trouble, we are just looking for the facts,” Emil Garas, an uncle of one of the victims, said….

    [b]A number of Sylvia’s friends, who attend the Mid East Evangelical church, say a problem ensued after Sylvia befriended the Muslim daughter of a Halal butcher she encouraged to convert to Christianity. They say that they fear Sylvia’s Christian influence on this girl may have provoked the harsh retribution that followed[/b]

    […]

    Mohamed Saleh (who changed his name for this article for fear of retribution) is a former Muslim from Egypt who says he fled to America in 1992, [b]after he was severely beaten for converting to Christianity.[/b] He says he was threatened in 2001 when he began discussing his faith with Muslims on PalTalk, a New York City-based internet chat service. Though Saleh admits that his debates were often too fervent on the Net, he was shocked to find photos of himself and family members, along with all of his contact information, on a radical Islamic website called Gegadeath.com. Below Saleh’s picture was a statement of warning. After he appeared on Gegadeath, Saleh says he received numerous death threats on the phone and quickly moved to another state.

    […]

    According to information obtained by Robert Spencer, the director of Jihad Watch, from sources close to the murders, the Halal butcher had planned the killing for months and several of his accomplices are still in the country. Spencer says police are investigating these allegations.

    If there is no compulsion in religion, why are Apostates from Islam treated like pariahs and threatened with death? This happens all across the Middle East. Are all Muslims wrong in this belief, or does Allah order the physical death of those who find a different faith?

    (2:217) They question thee (O Muhammad) with regard to warfare in the sacred month. Say: Warfare therein is a great (transgression), but to turn (men) from the way of Allah, and to disbelieve in Him and in the Inviolable Place of Worship, and to expel His people thence, is a greater with Allah; for persecution is worse than killing. And they will not cease from fighting against you till they have made you renegades from your religion, if they can. [b]And whoso becometh a renegade and dieth in his disbelief: such are they whose works have fallen both in the world and the Hereafter. Such are rightful owners of the Fire: they will abide therein.[/b]

  199. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Ethan writes “Sadly, the Coptic Christians as well as other groups who specialize in Islamic ritual murders see things the other way:
    http://worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=43093

    Worldnet is well known for its xenophobia and Islamophobia. I will respect others requests here and not get into the repetitive arguing about a subject in which neither of us will see the others viewpoint.

  200. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Extremists

    But Malik lives in the US takes the money and enjoys the prosperity. If Malik had a set of balls to match his mouth hed be in the middle east somewhere trying to change things. Mahmood does more good for Islam than Malik will ever do.

  201. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Extremists

    [quote]Muslim armies, my ass. What a load of crap.[/quote]

    Wait a second.

    What Muslim armies? I don’t remember any of the Muslim-majority nations sending peacekeepers or to support NATO militarily.

    Oh wait. You mean the paramilitary Jihadis? Not exactly an ‘army’ Malik. More like a bunch of ‘redneck Muslims’ with guns and a grudge.

    Makes one wonder…

  202. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    [quote]I like the history: the Pyramids, Petra, the ancient Mesopotamian civilizations, the step by step construction of civilization in the great river systems of the Nile and the Tigris/Euphrates. I’d like to see all that someday. [/quote]

    Sadly, Steve. This isn’t Islam or Arab Culture.

    Muslims ripped the facing of the Pyramids off to build Mosques. Muslims wiped out/assimilated the Persians who ruled Mesopotamia, who were heirs to the Sumerians. and Muslim armies wiped out/assimilated the Christians who built Petra.

    All of what you think about in the historical middle east is stuff from Jahiliya (sp?) The ‘pre-Islam ignorance’. Since then, all you have is a lot of mosques, and a lot of destroyed/desecrated historical/archaological sites (especially in Saudi, where destruction of history is apparently a state goal).

  203. anonymous says:

    Re(10): Extremists

    Malik,

    [quote]There are obligations one must fulfill in Islam. Sorry if you dont like it. [/quote]

    Your holiest place was preaching intolerance and hatred of others, a blasphemy according to your definition of islam. I find it hard to believe God still wants you to go to Mecca when Mecca is preaching blasphemy. It’s the spirit of the obligation that should be followed, not the letter, no?

    [quote]I hope you arent Protestant. I guess after hundreds of years and hundreds of thousands of dead in the Catholic Inquistition, reform shouldnt have been given a go eh? [/quote]

    We’re not in the 15th century anymore. Most of current extremism started with the Islamic revival in the 1970s. Not only did its followers reject Western political systems but they propagated nasty screeds about Christianity. Vile tirades against the infidel weren’t a big part of the landscape before then.

    Secondly, it’s rather sad the keepers of Mecca learned nothing from the horrors of Christian intolerance but chose instead to propagate their own.

    [quote]Wow, time to catch up on American history. We have terrorist who have bombed abortion clinics, the olympics. [/quote]

    Lone kooks who get no funding from organizations and no public approval can scarcely be called terrorists. No one went around wearing Unibomber T-shirts like they do with bin laden. It’s a question of scale. People like Theodore Kaczyinski and clinic bombers are called criminals, not terrorists.

    [quote]Recent a band of extremists, white power Christian Identity members were caught with hundreds of gallons of poison with which they planned to attack food and water supplies in the USA. Curious question, why didnt that get wider news? If their names were “Ahmed” I bet it would have [/quote]

    To answer your first question: The incident made news in Texas, but did not make the wider broadcast because no attack was carried out. If it bleeds, it leads, and nobody bled.

    Second question: Because people with names like Ahmed and Mohammad have proved their talent at quite spectacular and successful attacks before. Skinheads haven’t.

    It’s a matter of what draws the audience.

    [quote] I will concede that point if for nothing else than to get you to answer the question. What do you think are the positive points within Islam and about Arabs? [/quote]

    Response further down on the thread along with the others.

    Aliandra

  204. anonymous says:

    Islamic Culture

    [quote]Malik: Your turn……what do you love about Islam and Arab culture? [/quote]

    The architecture. I think it’s the most splendid in the world. The mosques, the palaces, the minarets, and other historical buildings. The mosaic art is also gorgeous. I also love the way all the minarets call their song at the same time, and the way it echoes all around the city.

    -Aliandra

  205. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    More gratuitous nonsense from Malik.

    As a point of fact, the limestone blocks that faced the pyramids were not directly used to build mosques but rather burned down into ash to make the cement used to erect all manner of buildings in Cairo.

    Steve

  206. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    That’s interesting. So there was a financial motive involved in the killings. Using the cards for days after the murders implies that the perpetrators were amateurs. Pros would have cleaned out the cards the same day and disposed of them. It’s just too damning to be caught with the credit cards on you.

    Still, the overkill implies that the killer(s) had an emotional investment in the victims.

    Steve

  207. anonymous says:

    Re: Islamic Culture

    [quote]The architecture. I think it’s the most splendid in the world. The mosques, the palaces, the minarets, and other historical buildings. The mosaic art is also gorgeous. [/quote]

    Much of the archetecture that you see in the Arab world is Persian in design, assimilated along with much of Persia’s science and mathematics after the Muslim invasion in the 600’s AD.

  208. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Extremists

    Posted “I stand corrected. I thought there was no religious compulsion in Islam.”

    There are obligations one must fulfill in Islam. Sorry if you dont like it.

    Posted “However, isn’t it a higher religious requirement to say I will not go until the extremism stops? ”

    You are trying to say the Hajj is dominated by extremism, I do not think so.

    Posted “After decades of extremism and thousands of dead infidels, it is kinda late. But it’s good to try. ”

    I hope you arent Protestant. I guess after hundreds of years and hundreds of thousands of dead in the Catholic Inquistition, reform shouldnt have been given a go eh?

    Posted “Other than Timosthy McVeigh and the IRS, I can’t name a single one. And I would not loose the IRS on my worse enemy. ”

    Wow, time to catch up on American history. We have terrorist who have bombed abortion clinics, the olympics. Recent a band of extremists, white power Christian Identity members were caught with hundreds of gallons of poison with which they planned to attack food and water supplies in the USA. Curious question, why didnt that get wider news? If their names were “Ahmed” I bet it would have……

    Posted “All my comments have been directed against extremist Muslims. Read them again, please.

    -Aliandra ”

    I will concede that point if for nothing else than to get you to answer the question. What do you think are the positive points within Islam and about Arabs?

  209. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Ethan writes “Sadly, Steve. This isn’t Islam or Arab Culture.

    Muslims ripped the facing of the Pyramids off to build Mosques. Muslims wiped out/assimilated the Persians who ruled Mesopotamia, who were heirs to the Sumerians. and Muslim armies wiped out/assimilated the Christians who built Petra.

    All of what you think about in the historical middle east is stuff from Jahiliya (sp?) The ‘pre-Islam ignorance’. Since then, all you have is a lot of mosques, and a lot of destroyed/desecrated historical/archaological sites (especially in Saudi, where destruction of history is apparently a state goal). ”

    Steve doesnt have a clue about the history of the area so he wouldnt be aware of this. There is loads to see and do in the Middle East, both involving pre-Islamic and in the Islamic era. There is much to offer from the Muslim and arab world, refuse it and you are the looser. This is what the modern world is about, give and take.

  210. anonymous says:

    Re(10): Extremists

    Bill writes “But Malik lives in the US takes the money and enjoys the prosperity. If Malik had a set of balls to match his mouth hed be in the middle east somewhere trying to change things. Mahmood does more good for Islam than Malik will ever do.”

    Yes, the good ole “love it or leave it” arguement. Got to like that one. I live in the USA because I love my country. Period. I am an American, why would I want to go to the Middle East to change someone else’s country? I am an American so I try to make changes in MY country that I feel are best for our future.

    Mahmood knows that I am dealing with serious issues with the Saudi government and I am doing what I can here in the US with little to no help from anyone, including our own government.

    As for Mahmood trying to do good for Islam, I dont think that is his goal, I dont think those are his intentions, correct me if I an wrong. He just got done telling us today how he was drinking wine in Germany, not the actions of a practicing Muslim, but that is his choice, there is no compulsion in religion. I think you pressing goals unto Mahmood that he never has claimed to aspire to.

  211. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Extremists

    [quote]Huh? Have you taken to the drink today? What does the shrine of Ali have to do with Hindu mobs killing thousands of Muslims? How many Jews would ever attend such a place? Was there a synagogue there before the Mosque went up?[/quote]

    It’s called analogy.

    As for the number of Jews? I don’t know. Maybe a lot, maybe a little. But I can say that a lot of Muslims worship at the Hagia Sophia, which was desecrated by the Turks during the fall of Constantinople, complete with raping of nuns on the altar and the blood of Christian martyrs running in the nave.

    Also, religious violence plays out every day in Iraq too, only it’s Sunni vs. Shi’ite. There’s a lot of religious violence in Pakistan, when a Christian gets arrested on a trumped up ‘blasphemy’ charge (most recent: Christian arrested for doing ‘witchcraft’ with the pages of the Koran to help other Christians’ maladies – quite possibly the most moronic charge I have ever heard) What about kidnapping and forced conversion against the Copts of Egypt? What about the religious violence perpetrated by China against religious minorities?

    [quote]What does that say about the morality of US policy if we support people, no matter how evil, to get what we want? [/quote]

    US policy is amoral. Look at those countries that support Iran or Sudan’s government? Their policies are amoral too! All nations are inherently -amoral-, because they must do what is best for themselves before anyone else. People are not like that. People are not nations.

  212. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    For Ethan…..seems he wants to put a religious motive to a set of murders that police havent been able to…

    INVESTIGATORS FOCUS ON USE OF SLAIN FAMILY’S A.T.M. CARD
    Tina Kelley, New York Times, 3/1/05
    http://www.nytimes.com/2005/03/01/nyregion/01jersey.html

    Hudson County investigators are studying video surveillance tapes made at
    automated teller machines where money was withdrawn from the account of a
    Jersey City man after the man and his family were stabbed to death in their
    home, the Hudson County prosecutor said yesterday.

    The prosecutor, Edward J. De Fazio, said withdrawals were made numerous
    times over five or six days from the account of Hossam Armanious, 47, after
    he, his wife, Amal Garas, 37, and their daughters, Sylvia, 15, and Monica,
    8, were killed. They were found dead on Jan. 14, after worried relatives
    called the police. The police said the four were each bound and stabbed to
    death.

    ”The A.T.M. card of Mr. Armanious was used fraudulently on a number of
    occasions after the murders took place,” said Mr. De Fazio. ”We believe
    the fraudulent use began the day after the murders.”

    The withdrawals have bolstered a possible robbery motive for the killings,
    which have sent shock waves through the Egyptian community in the region
    and raised allegations about a possible religious feud.

    The family belonged to the Coptic Orthodox Church, the principal Christian
    church in Egypt, and Mr. Armanious was said to have been threatened with
    death by someone in an Internet chat room during an argument about
    Christianity and Islam.

    ”Nothing has been discounted,” Mr. De Fazio said of the possibility of a
    religious feud. But, he added, ”We have found no substantial corroboration
    of the chat room Internet angle.”

    Investigators had previously said that drawers in the house had been
    rifled, that Mr. Armonious’s wallet was empty and that essentially no money
    was found in the home.

    ”Certainly we believe that the financial motivation exists, that’s fact,”
    he said.

    Mr. De Fazio said the card was used, with Mr. Armanious’s personal
    identification number, to take out thousands of dollars from a number of
    locations in the Heights section of Jersey City and in Midtown Manhattan.
    He would not say how many times it had been used, or exactly how much money
    had been taken from the combined checking, equity and savings account, nor
    would he say which bank had held the money.

  213. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Even though I was insulted at the begining of the post, I would have to say this person’s analysis, although crude, is correct. Stick around! LOL!

  214. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Islamic Culture

    Truthfully, Malik, post Islam Arab culture is pretty much a haphazard mish-mash of cultures assimilated through conquest. I guess if you want purity of culture, you’d have to look at the Hijazi nomad tribes who have been relatively unchanging for the past 14 centuries.

    With that said, the tribes that put flowers in their hair are a colorful touch on the sea of black abayas that symbolize everything wrong with Saudi.

    Also – Every arab I have ever known has been eminently hospitable until you bring up politics or religion; then, except for one friend in partciular, they usually change the subject.

    And, finally, the food is quite good.

    However, from what I know of purely Arab Hijazi culture, there’s not much to like. Honor killings have been part of it for millennia, as has tribal warfare, xenophobia, bigotry and banditry. For all of its good intentions, Islam hasn’t made a -dent- in that. It simply replaced tribal warfare with internecine warfare: Sunni vs. Shi’ite, Shi’ite vs. Sufi. Suf vs. Everyone. Sunni vs. Druze. Everyone vs. Kurds.

    Someone on another board said it best:
    “Mohammed’s ideal was to make the whole world into one Arab tribe. Unfortunately, he’d forgotten that unity through cult of personality only lasts as long as the person is alive.”

    A cursory look at the governments in the Middle East today will show that this old adage is more true than it seems.

  215. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Islamic Culture

    Posted “Truthfully, Malik, post Islam Arab culture is pretty much a haphazard mish-mash of cultures assimilated through conquest. I guess if you want purity of culture, you’d have to look at the Hijazi nomad tribes who have been relatively unchanging for the past 14 centuries. ”

    Well, I guess that disqualifies the vasy majority of cultures around the world as being described as unique as we all have gained through invasion, assimilation, conquest ect. I never by those who talk about a pure “culture” or “ethnicity” there is no such thing and the idea should have gone down into the same historical rubbish bin as Hitlerism.

    Posted “Also – Every arab I have ever known has been eminently hospitable until you bring up politics or religion; then, except for one friend in partciular, they usually change the subject. ”

    Every Arab? So you have known a quantity of Arabs, from Morrocco to Yemen to make such a gross generalisation? I know Arabs from every country in the Middle East and North Africa and it is my experience that they love to talk politics and often know a lot more than you might expect. I found it great to have once had a two hour debate in a Cairo cafe with about half a dozen men who knew more about American politics than most Americans.

    Your post is just cluttered with generalisations. It is clear you have no detailed knowledge of Arabic history or culture. It would be nice if one of the Arabs who post here might chime in. There are negative areas of Arabic culture, as there are in any culture, but there are positive areas as well. Your refusal to see this speaks volumes. Interesting that you bring up Haji culture as a way to discredit Arabic culture as a whole. No one familiar with the history of the Hijaz or it’s culture would point out that as a model of Arabic culture. The people there are often refered to as “PLO” or Pilgrim Left Overs, and the effect of 1,500 years of pilgramige from every corner of the world is heavily felt there. As a matter of fact, I couldnt think of a worse place to point at to try and prove a point about native Arabic culture, with the exception of maybe Beirut.

    I dont really care for the food in the Gulf, with a few exceptions, what is good about Arabic food I find comes mainly from the Shams, Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan, Syria, ect. My favourite dish, first eaten when made by my “PLO” Hijazi mother in law from Mekkah, is “din-din” an Indonesian dish. The Hijaz is anything but a great example of Arabic culture. It is a great example of how people come together, mix, and create something new and better than the local culture.

  216. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    It looks like you have found your long lost twin, separated from you at birth.

    Steve

  217. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “Malik,

    It looks like you have found your long lost twin, separated from you at birth.

    Steve ”

    It is not lost on me, or anyone else for that matter, that you decided to have a swipe at me rather than address the original poster. As a former soldier who put his life on the line, he deserves a bit of respect. I guess the fact that he cannot so easily be dismissed as “anti-American” makes it hard for you.

  218. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    [quote]As a former soldier who put his life on the line, he deserves a bit of respect.[/quote]

    Isn’t Steve a former soldier too? Or am I confused?

    In any case, It wasn’t called for to yell at Malik, considering that the parent post called him a buffoon as well (in not so blunt terms!)

    Personally I find the baiting between the two of you endearing. At least no one’s strapped a bomb to themselves and killed the other yet. That’s gotta be worth something. 😀

  219. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Oops. That post was from me.

    –Ethan

  220. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Posted “Isn’t Steve a former soldier too? Or am I confused?”

    Steve was in the Air Force, the anonymous poster was involved in ground combat in the US Army. Two different ball games.

    Posted “Personally I find the baiting between the two of you endearing. At least no one’s strapped a bomb to themselves and killed the other yet. That’s gotta be worth something. ”

    LOL! No way! It is against my religion to kill myself.

  221. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    I have work to do at the moment so I don’t have time to respond in full to the original poster.

    However, he says he was in a squadron, which means he’s not a grunt infantryman pounding the ground in combat. I’d be interested to know why exactly you present him as a combat infantryman putting his life on the line, Malik. I see no claim of that.

    I also don’t see any claim by the original poster to actually fighting anywhere. Would you mind pointing out where exactly he said that? Take all the time you need.

    Steve

    [Modified by: Steve The American (Steve) on March 03, 2005 12:27 PM]

  222. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Steve, you are right, he seems to have been in the Air Force himself. Although, I must say, having worked hand in hand with the Air Force abroad for several years, I can attest to the fact that some of the Air Force Special Ops guys are really good. As a matter of fact I was friends with a member of the team that rescued the down stealth fighter/bomber pilot behind Serbian lines. He was subsequently voted Airman of the year for the base.

    On the whole the Air Force and its members lack the military bearing and the Esprit de Corps that the Army and Marines have. I used to know when we had marines on the base on the way to the Middle East because of the way they carried themselves. The marines, even without uniform, were distinct from the airmen. They carried themselves different, they were always in better shape, and certain had more respect. A good chunk of people who join the air force today do so looking at it as another 9-5 job. I have many friends still in the air foirce, many of whom are in Iraq or who have been there, so I do not say this as an insult, it is just a different culture.

    The original poster says that over 3,000 Americans will die by the end of the Iraqi debacle, today reports from CNN and BBC have put the current number at over 1,500 now. May God rest all of their souls and look out for their familes.

  223. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    [quote]The original poster says that over 3,000 Americans will die by the end of the Iraqi debacle[/quote]

    I’d rather not prognosticate on the total number killed. The original poster can’t know the future, neither can I.

    However, for 3000 soldiers killed, I’d say the outcome looks a whole hell of a lot less bleak than some would have wanted it to be. Iraq just had the first free election since the 50’s. Even if they end up hating America and americans for some incalcuably stupid cultural reason, I will at least feel good that we allowed them the freedom to do what they wished for as a group.

  224. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    How many Americans do you think would have died had Saddam been free to progress on his plan to ship ricin to the US in perfume bottles and that poison was released during a Rockettes show in Radio City Hall or in the Biology 101 classes held in a big auditorium on a few campuses or in a few cineplexes or a few shopping malls after Thanksgiving?

    Steve

  225. anonymous says:

    Re: This must be where the world’s idiots hang out.

    [quote]Real Hawk: First off, Steve you’re the top idiot of the thread with Malik a close second. You don’t know the first thing about the liberation of Kosovo except what you google search. I was in that Op and served under General Clarke who ran that campaign fucking brilliantly. Three weeks? Our squadron’s air raids weren’t called off until 62 days into the campaign when Slobo caved. All in all it took 84 days for us to be done with the campaign altogether.[/quote]

    If you read my post you will see me plainly state in the first paragraph: “The main reason Milosevic folded was a 78 day air campaign by NATO forces, which is to say, mostly the US Air Force.” You weirdly claim I said three weeks. Two sentences later I wrote: “The culmination of this air offensive was Operation Deliberate Force in which the USAF … flew 3535 sorties in three weeks …. ” Apparently, you have misread the duration of Deliberate Force as the duration of the entire air campaign and then flown off the handle in a fit of goofy rage a la Emily Litella ranting about endangered feces or busting schoolchildren or making Puerto Rico a steak or the burning tissues of the day. Let me give you some advice, kid. If you’re going to go around calling people idiots, you should take care not to act like one while doing it.

    Setting aside the reading problems, you are also not talking about the same subject. I am talking about the air campaign in fall of 1995 to stop Milosevic from repeating the slaughter of Muslims at Srebrenica. You are talking about the air campaign against Milosevic in Kosovo in March 1999, you bonehead. Those are not only two different campaigns, but two different wars.

    [quote]Real Hawk: Nothing says carnage like the before and after spy sat feeds in the intel debriefs when we were shown the aftermath of what our ordinance accomplished. We’d have kept dropping clusters had the antiwar crowd not bitched about the collateral damage, aka kids picking up the cute parachutes. That said, that was a real liberation with zero US casualties. That’s how you win a war.[/quote]

    So after all that ranting, you agree with me it was the air campaign which won the battle, whichever war or campaign you happen to be talking about. If you don’t think I know anything about these wars, that my opinion on them is that of an idiot, why do you agree with my opinion on those wars? Wouldn’t that make you an idiot in your view?

    [quote]Real Hawk: Compare that to these morons running this quagmire in Iraq where we’re going to lose 3000+ by the time we’re done there years from now. While you’re swinging from the nuts of our jackass president who got Congress to approve a war that was never about liberation to begin with, think about that for a change. Our Commander in Chimp managed to completely mismanage this fool’s errand in Iraq and now our armed forces are in tatters. [/quote]

    I hate to point out the obvious to you but we’re winning in Iraq. Cleaning out the rat’s nest of insurgents in Fallujah has put a serious crimp in the insurgents’ bombmaking, arsenal, snuff video making, logistical support, money distribution, and morale, not to mention we killed an awful lot of them. The elections knocked out whatever moral authority the insurgents pretended to have and demonstrated clear Iraqi support for the new government.

    The competence of the insurgents themselves has declined precipitously as their numbers are whittled away. Something on the order of 97% of their attacks inflicts no damage whatsoever, not even a dent on a Humvee. As many as a hundred insurgents per day are caught, mostly from tips from Iraqis who are sick of them. That demonstrates their loss of popular support. Even some Sunnis are ratting them out. When an insurgent bomb killed 125 Iraqis outside a clinic in Hilla last Monday, 2000 Iraqis returned on Tuesday to protest the insurgents, shouting “No to Baathism and Wahhabism!” The insurgents have turned the Iraqi people against them.

    Fighting the Iraqi insurgency is about as big a quagmire as liberal defeatists called the original Iraqi invasion and the invasion of Afghanistan. The only real quagmire evident here is the ideological quagmire in your head that doesn’t allow you to deal with this reality.

    [quote]Real Hawk: In fact, I was so disgusted I separated the military and now work in civ govt. I’d be damned if I’m made to pay the price for these chickenhawks sending off our troops to die in order to fulfill some crackpot Wilsonian liberal idealist vision of bringing McDonalds and Coke to every corner of the earth. [/quote]

    Perhaps you leaving helped our effort to win in Iraq.

    [quote]Real Hawk: To everyone reading this thread, Steve is the perfect example of your typical sofa-warrior, grabbing fistfuls of doritos while scratching his fat ass, while watching the war from the safety of his trailer home on Fox News, greedily slurping up the propaganda drip-fed to him by our corporate whoring mainstream media sellouts. Unfortunately, in the environment of fear that exists post-9/11 in America, people like Steve are more numerous than cockroaches and just as pathetic. On he cheers and waves the pom-poms as veterans like myself are thrown into the meat grinder, convenient walking targets hand-delivered into the shooting gallery of terrorists…why come to the US to kill Americans when you can do it a few short blocks from your own home! [/quote]

    I’m sitting in a quite comfortable armchair now, but long before that I sat in the cockpit of an F-4E. That makes me a veteran, spud. I don’t think there are all that many like me at all who spent a good chunk of their life practicing dogfighting, dropping bombs, and rehearsing nuclear deliveries. Certainly not you.

    To be blunt, part of the reason for the US to be in Iraq is to fight the terrorists in their home rather than ours. The whole point of being in uniform is to protect the lives of the civilians at home with our own. If you can’t handle that, you shouldn’t have joined.

    You don’t seem to know the difference between an air campaign and the discreet operations, like Deliberate Force, which make one up. Had you been an aircrew you most certainly would have been briefed in detail on the mission and would never have placed Operation Deliberate Force in the wrong war. That leads me to believe that you never participated directly in the operations, but rather pushed paper in some back office and now pose as a combat veteran.

    [quote]Real Hawk: The army’s hiring Steve. Do your part you coward. You support this shit, so step up and grab a rifle. I know some GIs who’ll have a bullet waiting for you. — A real hawk, not a chickenhawk [/quote]

    Been there, done that. I’ve already spent eight years in the Air Force, including some 700+ hours flying fighters. It’s hard for me to take seriously taunts from some shoe clerk pushing papers on the ground. I’ve been up where the hawks flew, and I don’t recall seeing you there.

    Steve

  226. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Islamic Culture

    Ethan writes “Much of the archetecture that you see in the Arab world is Persian in design, assimilated along with much of Persia’s science and mathematics after the Muslim invasion in the 600’s AD. ”

    Okay, all you have done is point out that everything people think is Islamic or Arab culture is not. Instead of people completely negative, care to tell us what you think is Islamic and Arab culture and what you like about it?

  227. anonymous says:

    This must be where the world’s idiots hang out.

    First off, Steve you’re the top idiot of the thread with Malik a close second. You don’t know the first thing about the liberation of Kosovo except what you google search. I was in that Op and served under General Clarke who ran that campaign fucking brilliantly. Three weeks? Our squadron’s air raids weren’t called off until 62 days into the campaign when Slobo caved. All in all it took 84 days for us to be done with the campaign altogether. Nothing says carnage like the before and after spy sat feeds in the intel debriefs when we were shown the aftermath of what our ordinance accomplished. We’d have kept dropping clusters had the antiwar crowd not bitched about the collateral damage, aka kids picking up the cute parachutes.

    That said, that was a real liberation with zero US casualties. That’s how you win a war. Compare that to these morons running this quagmire in Iraq where we’re going to lose 3000+ by the time we’re done there years from now. While you’re swinging from the nuts of our jackass president who got Congress to approve a war that was never about liberation to begin with, think about that for a change. Our Commander in Chimp managed to completely mismanage this fool’s errand in Iraq and now our armed forces are in tatters. In fact, I was so disgusted I separated the military and now work in civ govt. I’d be damned if I’m made to pay the price for these chickenhawks sending off our troops to die in order to fulfill some crackpot Wilsonian liberal idealist vision of bringing McDonalds and Coke to every corner of the earth.

    To everyone reading this thread, Steve is the perfect example of your typical sofa-warrior, grabbing fistfuls of doritos while scratching his fat ass, while watching the war from the safety of his trailer home on Fox News, greedily slurping up the propaganda drip-fed to him by our corporate whoring mainstream media sellouts. Unfortunately, in the environment of fear that exists post-9/11 in America, people like Steve are more numerous than cockroaches and just as pathetic. On he cheers and waves the pom-poms as veterans like myself are thrown into the meat grinder, convenient walking targets hand-delivered into the shooting gallery of terrorists…why come to the US to kill Americans when you can do it a few short blocks from your own home!

    The army’s hiring Steve. Do your part you coward. You support this shit, so step up and grab a rifle. I know some GIs who’ll have a bullet waiting for you.

    — A real hawk, not a chickenhawk

  228. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: …are the people of Iraq more real than other people in other horrible places around the world? Over 2 million people have been killed in Congo over the last decade, and the killing is still going on. This far excedes what Saddam did in the same period of time. Why is there no upswell of opinion to help these people? [/quote]

    I would imagine the primary reasons are that the Congo was not shooting at our aircraft, trying to assassinate our ex-presidents, not in league with Al Qaeda, and not trying to ship poisons into our cities.

    [quote]Malik: Is this “hate by omission”? What about the fighting in Uganda, over 1 million dead the last decade. If we are going to make this a crusade about saving people shouldnt we help the people in the most need first? [/quote]

    Malik, this is a really foolish argument. If you don’t contribute to the Muscular Dystrophy Fund, is that hate by omission in your view? Does it mean you want muscular dystrophy to kill people? If you haven’t done every good deed possible, does it mean you are evil in Malik’s world?

    [quote]Malik: Saddam was a bad guy, but the situation in Iraq was not nearly as desperate as it is in some other places on the globe, why Iraq? Why no call for saving the hundreds of thousands dying all around the globe in conflicts much more brutal than what was happening in Iraq? I contend that this had nothing to do with freeing the Iraqi people, I think the Iraqi people only really came into the picture when the WMD were not found. Bush and Blair had to justify their attacks somehow.[/quote]

    Malik, this war was not undertaken for one reason but for about two dozen reasons. Bush declared freeing the Iraqi people and spreading democracy as reasons before the fact. They are not inventions after the fact. The only reason the Bush haters thresh up the WMD issue is that it is the only issue that was not fully realized.

    [quote]Malik: If the US has become the self appointed savior of people I suggest we draw up a list of the worst places in the world, most of them in Africa, start the draft, and get going. If this is not the case, why dont we at least be honest about our motives? No one buys the humanitarian arguement about the invasion of Iraq. I am happy for the people of Iraq, they have a real chance, but it had nothing to do with us wanting to help them, it was a by product of our other interests. [/quote]

    Actually, plenty of people buy the humanitarian argument for freeing Iraq. I’m one of them. It’s part of a bundle of good reasons for invading Iraq. The only people who think America is being dishonest about its motives are folks like you who are opposed to America.

    You know, Malik, you might want to sit back and think about the coherence of your argument. You admit the people of Iraq now have a real chance but claim that America had bad intentions. Think about that, Malik. How many times in history has a country invaded another with the worst intent and freed it by accident? The argument that America did good in Iraq for bad reasons doesn’t hold up under close inspection.

    Steve

  229. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Hang on to that Democratic Party card, Malik. I’ll let you know when I want it. The signal will be pigs flying past the treetops.

    From what I read in this article, it appears the woman responsible for the Iraq dossier was especially dilligent in her job and did valuable work which will be used to try Saddam. Reading an article about an organization does not imply endorsement, Malik. I read your stuff all the time yet I don’t endorse your position. Perhaps you should abandon your assumption that any contact with other ideas implies support for those ideas. That’s the way the fundamentalists think.

    Steve

  230. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “You know, Malik, you might want to sit back and think about the coherence of your argument. You admit the people of Iraq now have a real chance but claim that America had bad intentions. Think about that, Malik. How many times in history has a country invaded another with the worst intent and freed it by accident? The argument that America did good in Iraq for bad reasons doesn’t hold up under close inspection.”

    I do not think that the Iraqi people entered into the equation. I think the vote and the elections are a by product of Americas invasion, an invasion that was solely done to promote American interests, not to help the Iraqi people. If the Iraqi people mattered, explain the complete and utter indifference of the American government to the Iraqi people during the decades they support Saddam Hussein? What, suddenly, made the US government care about the Iraqi people? Where was this care when Saddam was gassing his own people?

    The Iraqi people have a great opportunity, but I do not think the freeing of the Iraqi people was ever a priority. America has invaded many countries in the last 100 years, often with reasonings other than spreading democracy, yet that is exactly what happened. Japan and Germany being the perfect example. Both countries were invaded to stop the countries from waging offensive war, yet as a by product they ended up democracies.

    If there is no other alterior motive Steve, why is the US building its biggest Embassy in Baghdad? The US plans to use Iraq as a major intelligence and military staging ground in the Middle East.

    [Modified by: Malik (celticview) on March 04, 2005 10:31 AM]

  231. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    That, at least, would have been a more tractable reason to go kick Saddam’s ass.

    I have to admit – I was against the War. I thought it was stupid. I thought it was Dubya’s ‘revenge for Daddy’ war. I thought it was for Oil. I thought a lot of things.

    Until I read a post by Zeyad at ‘Healing Iraq’ http://healingiraq.blogspot.com

    It was one of his first posts. I don’t remember which one, but I do remember that it touched me deeply. The Iraqis became ‘human’ in that instant, and in that instant I realized that I was a selfish little prick I was a selfish little prick for not thinking that the Iraqis were human. To think that Saddam was a punchline for South Park and not a true monster. I realized that I’d been duped. I’d been looking for answers post-9/11 by looking at it from a western Liberal perspective. They hate us because they are poor, or that we’re rich, or whatever. It’s the gubmin’t and industry’s fault.

    Zeyad reminded me that there were humans there. People. REAL people, with feelings – not just paperboard cutouts and numbers; the ‘third world

  232. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “From what I read in this article, it appears the woman responsible for the Iraq dossier was especially dilligent in her job and did valuable work which will be used to try Saddam. Reading an article about an organization does not imply endorsement, Malik. I read your stuff all the time yet I don’t endorse your position. Perhaps you should abandon your assumption that any contact with other ideas implies support for those ideas. That’s the way the fundamentalists think.

    Steve ”

    So are you claiming that in issues outside Iraq, especially involving America, that Amnesty International is not “especially dilligent”? Do you view Amnesty International as a partisan organisation? What are your views of their numerous condemnations of American policy and actions?

  233. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    As long as the leaders are elected, Iraq is not a theocracy like Iran. Last I heard, random people from Sistani’s office are not defining the Iraqi constitution, which is the task of the elected legislative body. From what I read, the Iraqis want no part of an Iranian-style theocracy any more than the Iranians do.

    Steve

  234. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Extremists

    [quote]Sure, but I wouldnt think that this makes all Anglicans “petty, strange or wrong”. Besides, point doesnt have a parallel in Islam, there is no “Pope” or Archbishop. [/quote]

    Tell that to the Shi’a. An Ayatollah may just as well be an archbishop.

    And a fatwa can have adherents as well. religious scholars may not command the respect of all Muslims, but enough do respect them that they are ‘spiritual leaders’. Please do not propagate the myth that all Muslims are freethinkers. Some are. Many (as evidenced by the support for certain clerical schools/rulings) are content to let others think for them in matters of faith.

    [quote]Funny coming from an American, where religion is always mixed with politics, and a supporter of Israel, where religion IS politics. [/quote]

    Ironic coming from a Muslim, where religion and politics and personal habits are all part of the same rulebook.

  235. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Ah those must have beem the long lost WMD we went to war over…perfume bottles! That must be the “mushroom cloud” Condi Rice was warning us about. You know, the imminent threat of Saddam attacking America within 45 minutes…good thing those 1500 soldiers didn’t die in vain! Bwahaha!

    Free elections in Iraq? Oh yes, brilliant! We now have a shiite coalition hand picked by Ayatollah Sistani that won’t wipe its ass without the blessing of a cleric or two. Nothing like installing a religious theocracy posing as a “democracy”, soon to be modelled after their cousins in Iran. But then again, we did get rid of Saddam, and our boy had been misbehaving ever since he outlived his usefullness in the 1980s! We’ve got new strongmen now, and instead of anti-islamic secular despots, we now have a religious theocracy ruling Iraq…great going Bush you fucking moron! Meanwhile North Korea and Iran are happily building nukes and we don’t have the resources to do shit about it.

    Oh suuuure you were a pilot. I’ve known plenty of flyboys and though many were stupid, none were quite as ignorant and pathetically ill-informed as you steve. Gotta love how fatass Bush nutswingers like you come home after a hard days work plumbing peoples’ toilets, grab the remote, and start armchair managing world affairs while picking lint from your navel. Get a real job and quit trying to impersonate real vets who actually made sacrifices in their lives…like I said, call up the army and grab a rifle you coward! The army will take anyone today, even useless sacks like yourself. So might as well take part in the war you voted for. Hopefully some bombstrapped towelhead cripples you on your first night out so you know how our boys in Iraq feel!

    Better start googling some more on kosovo. Who the hell do you think called in targetted airstrikes on mobile SAMs so our bones could take them out? Here’s an acronym for you to google: tacp. Quit watching reruns of Top Gun and wishing you were a pilot before you went to plumbing school…pilots are bitches as any tacp, cc, or pj will tell you. But you wouldn’t know that sitting on your sofa-throne you sedentary sack of shit.

    — a real hawk not a chickenhawk bitch like steve

  236. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “As long as the leaders are elected, Iraq is not a theocracy like Iran. Last I heard, random people from Sistani’s office are not defining the Iraqi constitution, which is the task of the elected legislative body. From what I read, the Iraqis want no part of an Iranian-style theocracy any more than the Iranians do. ”

    Are you unaware of the fact that Iranians vote in elections? How do you think reformers were elected to the country’s government? Elected-key word. The issue in Iran is between the cleric judges and the elected government. There is a parliament in Iran, are you aware of this? They are elected! Again, the issue is between the elected government and the cleric judges who have a lot of power.

    We have yet to see what the Iraqi constitution will look like. It will certainly be an Islamic state, the question, just what form this will take. One can be “Islamic” yet not have “Islam” run the state. That is a point where fundamentalists and I would certainly disagree.

    As to the meaning of “theocracy”, the dictionary I consulted said “a political unit governed by a deity (or by officials thought to be divinely guided) ” I can guarantee you that Sistani, and members of the groups that follow him, feel “divinely guided”, the question is how will they exercise this in the day to day governance of the country. Representatives from the Shi’a slate have already said there will be nothing in the Constitution that runs contrary to The Qur’an or Islam.

  237. anonymous says:

    Malik is one dimensional and boring

    Coffee and cake in the den, help yourself.

    Discuss…

  238. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    There is hope for the academy after all. You’ve taken the first step into a larger world, Ethan. I’ll have a Republican Party membership card made up for you. You don’t have to tell anyone, just keep it tucked away in your wallet so that you can look at it when the world starts spinning way crazy during those faculty meetings. It will be our little secret. You can be our mole in the belly of the beast.

    Ethan, there is a very good article by William Langewiesche in the March edition of The Atlantic magazine called “The Accuser”, about a woman with Amnesty International who has been documenting Saddam’s atrocities: http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/prem/200503/langewiesche
    It’s a long piece I’ve been reading for the last two lunches but have not finished. I’ve just gotten to the account of a guy who had been taken by Saddam’s goons out in the desert to be killed along with a couple hundred others. They’ve killed everyone in the four buses ahead of him. His bus, the last one, decides to resist to the death. Read it.

    Just for fun, her is another article by Langewiesche, a fine writer, that you can read online about the cultural problems of dealing with relatively normal Arab countries like Egypt:
    The Crash of EgyptAir 990
    http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/prem/200111/langewiesche

    Enjoy,

    Steve

  239. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Posted “Coffee and cake in the den, help yourself.

    Discuss… ”

    Interesting you feel the need to change the thread name to target me. I am no more one dimensional than anyone else here. I have the ability to see things from many angles, as I am American, I am Muslim, and I am married to a Arab girl and have spent a lot of time in the region. All points of views should be appreciated.

  240. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    [quote]Hawk: Ah those must have beem the long lost WMD we went to war over…perfume bottles! That must be the “mushroom cloud” Condi Rice was warning us about. You know, the imminent threat of Saddam attacking America within 45 minutes…good thing those 1500 soldiers didn’t die in vain! Bwahaha![/quote]

    Actually, it’s documented in the Duelfer report, but it appears you are none too interested in the facts.

    [quote]Hawk: Free elections in Iraq? Oh yes, brilliant! We now have a shiite coalition hand picked by Ayatollah Sistani that won’t wipe its ass without the blessing of a cleric or two. Nothing like installing a religious theocracy posing as a “democracy”, soon to be modelled after their cousins in Iran. [/quote]

    Actually, Sistani is from the quietist school which believes clerics should not play politics. You seem to be ignorant of this as well.

    [quote]Hawk: But then again, we did get rid of Saddam, and our boy had been misbehaving ever since he outlived his usefullness in the 1980s! We’ve got new strongmen now, and instead of anti-islamic secular despots, we now have a religious theocracy ruling Iraq…great going Bush you fucking moron! [/quote]

    Actually, there is no theocracy in Iraq or anything remotely resembling one. The Iraqis are dead set against it. You seem to be ignorant of this too.

    [quote]Hawk: Oh suuuure you were a pilot. I’ve known plenty of flyboys and though many were stupid, none were quite as ignorant and pathetically ill-informed as you steve. [/quote]

    Navigator and weapons system officer, not pilot. I think the readers can compare our comments and come to a pretty good conclusion as to who is ignorant here.

    [quote]Hawk: Get a real job and quit trying to impersonate real vets who actually made sacrifices in their lives…like I said, call up the army and grab a rifle you coward! The army will take anyone today, even useless sacks like yourself. So might as well take part in the war you voted for. Hopefully some bombstrapped towelhead cripples you on your first night out so you know how our boys in Iraq feel! [/quote]

    Actually, I am already a vet.

    [quote]– a real hawk not a chickenhawk bitch like steve [/quote]

    My guess is that you are an imposter who has never served in the military at all, probably posting from your mom’s house. You sound like a kid and a rather immature one at that.

    Steve

  241. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Yes Mailk. WE KNOW your an American. WE KNOW your a MUSLIM Convert. WE KNOW you married a women from Saudi. WE KNOW you are of a European background. WE KNOW you have spent some time in the Middle East. WE KNOW you don’t drink. WE KNOW WE KNOW WE KNOW. YADDA YADDA YADDA.

    It is getting hard to appreciate your point of view when you seem do little but 1) criticize the host and visitors of this blog and 2) REPEAT OVER AND OVER AND OVER the SAME thing time and time again. Give us a bleeping break will you? You sound like a stuck record or are we all having deja vu?

    You make some great points at times but you don’t have to comment on nearly every single thing do you? BTW when did the Forums get renamed “MALIKS FORUMS”? So to answer your next question. YES this comment is directed at you. Not Steve, nor Ethan or Mahmood. YOU, Malik.

    Don’t you have a job and wife about to give birth to take care of?

    Now pardon me while I go and finish my SMOKING SOME RIBS and ICE DOWN some more BEER and CHOPIN VODKA. If you like you are more than welcome to come and join me.

  242. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote] think the Iraqi people only really came into the picture when the WMD were not found. Bush and Blair had to justify their attacks somehow. [/quote]

    Every major intelligence agency, including that of Egypt, believed Saddam had WMD. So did some of Saddam’s generals. That was the justification.

    [quote]If the US has become the self appointed savior of people I suggest we draw up a list of the worst places in the world, most of them in Africa, start the draft, and get going. If this is not the case, why dont we at least be honest about our motives? No one buys the humanitarian arguement about the invasion of Iraq. [/quote]

    Humanitarian motives were never given as the reason for the attack. WMD was.

    Aliandra

  243. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Posted “Yes Mailk. WE KNOW your an American. WE KNOW your a MUSLIM Convert. WE KNOW you married a women from Saudi. WE KNOW you are of a European background. WE KNOW you have spent some time in the Middle East. WE KNOW you don’t drink. WE KNOW WE KNOW WE KNOW. YADDA YADDA YADDA.

    It is getting hard to appreciate your point of view when you seem do little but 1) criticize the host and visitors of this blog and 2) REPEAT OVER AND OVER AND OVER the SAME thing time and time again. Give us a bleeping break will you? You sound like a stuck record or are we all having deja vu?

    You make some great points at times but you don’t have to comment on nearly every single thing do you? BTW when did the Forums get renamed “MALIKS FORUMS”? So to answer your next question. YES this comment is directed at you. Not Steve, nor Ethan or Mahmood. YOU, Malik.

    Don’t you have a job and wife about to give birth to take care of?

    Now pardon me while I go and finish my SMOKING SOME RIBS and ICE DOWN some more BEER and CHOPIN VODKA. If you like you are more than welcome to come and join me. ”

    I certainly have a job, which I do just fine at. I am not hourly, so all that counts is that I complete everything that I am supposed, which I do. I was out of line with Mahmood and I have admitted this. As to the debating with Steve, Ethan and a few others, I do not feel I have been out of line with them. I know I have taken a beating the last few days, some of it deserved, some of it not. As to the forums, I was under the impression they were there for people to further debates on subjects so that the material didnt clog the blog. I am simply trying to post stuff there that provides insite to some of the stuff that Ethan, Steve and myself have been talking about for the last couple of weeks.
    When people ask me the same questions over and over again of course I am going to give the same answers, unless of course you would prefer I give different answers to the same questions?
    You talk about drinking and eating pork like that would bug me. Seems you have a chip on YOUR shoulder. Do as you wish, doesnt mean a thing to me, and I am not bothered by your actions in the least, so dont throw them at me like you think they will serve some sort of punative action. They dont. BTW….my wife is almost 6 months pregnant, thanks for enquiring.

  244. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Posted “Every major intelligence agency, including that of Egypt, believed Saddam had WMD. So did some of Saddam’s generals. That was the justification. ”

    If this is so, why the attempt to fabricate evidence, as is well known with the claim about African uranium?

    Posted “Humanitarian motives were never given as the reason for the attack. WMD was. ”

    Indeed, which makes these current claims the farce that they are. But now that the claims for humanitarianism have been made, when we are going to spred those same humanitarian goals elsewhere? I think it would be much better if we just admitted there were no weapons of mass destruction and leave it at that. Why create new reasons that no one, besides Americans, buy?

    I, personally, think the outcome in Iraq, so far, is great. But lets be honest, this had nothing to do with freeing Iraqis, it never did. Sometimes in history unintended things happen that turn out for the best. Personally, I think the US should have supported the anti-Saddam uprising that the Shi’a tried back in the 1990s. We promised them help and dropped them and let them be slaughtered.

  245. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote]an invasion that was solely done to promote American interests, not to help the Iraqi people. If the Iraqi people mattered, explain the complete and utter indifference of the American government to the Iraqi people during the decades they support Saddam Hussein? What, suddenly, made the US government care about the Iraqi people? [/quote]

    ALL countries act in their own interests. Welcome to the real world. Osama’s gripe with the US was the presence of American troops in the holy land of Saudi Arabia and in the Gulf. Why were US troops there? Because of Saddam. After 9-11, the US realized it was time to get out of SA and the way to do that was to remove the reason for us being there. Did you notice how American troops were pulled out of SA the week after combat operations were announced to be over? There was also the issue of WMD, which every major intelligence agency in the world believed he had.

    Freedom for the Iraqi people was a consequence of all this, but while pursuing its own interest, the US did far more for their well-being than their Arab brethren, most of whom put up 1001 reasons why Saddam should remain in power.

    Aliandra

  246. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    [quote]sitting on your sofa-throne you sedentary sack of shit.

    — a real hawk not a chickenhawk bitch like steve [/quote]

    Whoever you are, please use reasoning to present your points instead of namecalling. You are deteriorating the level of discourse.

    Thank you
    Aliandra

  247. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    Posted “ALL countries act in their own interests. Welcome to the real world. Osama’s gripe with the US was the presence of American troops in the holy land of Saudi Arabia and in the Gulf. Why were US troops there? Because of Saddam. After 9-11, the US realized it was time to get out of SA and the way to do that was to remove the reason for us being there. Did you notice how American troops were pulled out of SA the week after combat operations were announced to be over? There was also the issue of WMD, which every major intelligence agency in the world believed he had. ”

    The problem here is that most of the American troops did not leave the Gulf, they just went to another country in the Gulf. Of course all countries act in their own interest, why dont we say it that way? Why try to sell it as anything but what it is? You fail to address the main point of my post, why didnt the US care about the Iraqi people when Saddam was gassing them? Why did they only start to “care” when Saddam step out of line? As to bin Laden, I believe his role in the whole Iraq issue to be very minimal. His issues are all still there, US troops are still all over the Gulf, the US is still supporting dictators in the area, and unconditional support for Israel has actually grown. Iraq has given bin Laden a new recruiting tool. Look at the explosion in growth of his movement after Afghanistan. I predict a new explosion in growth because of the Iraqi conflict. The real issues behind bin Laden have not been address, the US administration is actually trying to cloud them. All of this talk about “they hate our freedom” is nonsense. They have a real political agenda and keeping Americans from voting or drinking beer isnt on it.

    Posted “Freedom for the Iraqi people was a consequence of all this, but while pursuing its own interest, the US did far more for their well-being than their Arab brethren, most of whom put up 1001 reasons why Saddam should remain in power. ”
    All purely accidental. I believe America is a great nation, I also believe that we have a duty to try and help others move to their own form of democracy. But I believe this is best done in other ways. Why didnt the US really support opposition forces in Iraq? Bush Sr. promised support for an uprising, it came and the US let them be murdered by the tens of thousands. Why doesnt the US support homegrown opposition forces and movements in places like Jordan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia? Why has the US cultivated new relationships with the worst sorts of despots in Central Asia? In places like Uzbekistan violent Islamic movements have arisen where there was no history or tradition of such a thing. This is not the way we should go about things if we really want to encourage democracy in the area. We MUST realise that sometimes sort term economic and resource goals should be set aside in these countries to help them further their freedom. I contend in the long run the US would be better off on all counts if they did this.

  248. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote]I, personally, think the outcome in Iraq, so far, is great. But lets be honest, this had nothing to do with freeing Iraqis, it never did. ;/quote]

    I’m not disputing that. The casus belli was WMD and getting ourselves out of SA.

    [quote]Personally, I think the US should have supported the anti-Saddam uprising that the Shi’a tried back in the 1990s. We promised them help and dropped them and let them be slaughtered. [/quote]

    We listened to the UN, the international community, who did not want Saddam removed from power. And still did not.

    Aliandra

  249. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    Posted “I’m not disputing that. The casus belli was WMD and getting ourselves out of SA. ”
    We still have a fair amount of forces in Saudi Arabia. I know a person, whom I worked with whilst I was in the DoD, who just got back from a year tour. We toned down our presence there, that is all. As to the troops, they were just shifted to other places in the Gulf. Bin Laden is against US troops in the Gulf, not just specifically Saudi Arabia, so the reasoning is moot. Bin Laden has major issues with US supplying arms and other items to Saudi Arabia, as well as US political support for Saudia, none of that stopped either.

    Posted “We listened to the UN, the international community, who did not want Saddam removed from power. And still did not. ”
    The US listens to the UN when it is convenient. The US ignores the UN at will. One of the things that gets people worked up is how that the US used a couple of UN resolutions to attack Iraq. They ignore the fact that Israel has dozens of outstanding resolutions that the US ignores, and with funding, political and military support, it actually helps them to flout. The UN is irrelevent as far as the US is concerned. It is the double standards and hypocrisy that bugs people. How can you use UN resolutions to attack Iraq, and ignore them with Israel?

  250. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote]The problem here is that most of the American troops did not leave the Gulf, they just went to another country in the Gulf. [/quote]

    The US has no intention of remaining in Iraq for 12 years. As it was, we were staying in Saudi Arabia indefinitely, which was pissing off a whole lotta people. The end goal is to finish what should have been finished in 1991 and get the hell outta dodge.

    [quote]Of course all countries act in their own interest, why dont we say it that way? Why try to sell it as anything but what it is? [/quote]

    Because that’s politics. Sorry, but everyone does it. You’re going to have to wait for some more enlightened age for that to change.

    [quote]You fail to address the main point of my post, why didnt the US care about the Iraqi people when Saddam was gassing them? [/quote]

    Reagan did indeed condemn the gassing of the Kurds. At the time Iran was seen as the bigger threat, so Saddam was left to go on with his war. And by the way, those “Iraqi people� killed tens of thousands of Iranians.

    [quote]unconditional support for Israel has actually grown. [/quote]

    It’s actually diminished. Though most people aren’t fans of the Palestinians, they have really had it with the pro-israel lobby. It’s screwing up our relationships with the rest of the region. It was Bush who first spoke about a Palestinian state, before 9-11 changed priorities.

    [quote]The real issues behind bin Laden have not been address, the US administration is actually trying to cloud them. All of this talk about “they hate our freedom” is nonsense. [/quote]

    Bin ladin wants 20th century middle-eastern dictators replaced with eighth century Islamic theocracies. The US is standing in the way. For all he purports to hate the Saudi ruling family, it’s odd he didn’t ram a plane into one of their palaces.

    And yes, bin ladin hates our freedom. Read his Letter To America.

    [quote]In places like Uzbekistan violent Islamic movements have arisen where there was no history or tradition of such a thing. [/quote]

    Get real. The US isn’t to blame for violent religious movements in Uzbekistan. Neither is the US to blame for every clogged up toilet in the world.

    Islam is undergoing a civil war within itself. There are folks who want to go back to the tenth century and there are folks who want to at least make it to the twentieth. That’s why there’s so much unrest.

    [quote]We MUST realise that sometimes sort term economic and resource goals should be set aside in these countries to help them further their freedom. I contend in the long run the US would be better off on all counts if they did this. [/quote]

    I’ll concede that, but this cannot be solely the responsiilty of the US. We have plenty of our own problems to contend with.

    [quote] How can you use UN resolutions to attack Iraq, and ignore them with Israel? [/quote]

    Because Iraq was a threat to our self-interest and Israel is not. Most Americans don’t have much respect for the UN. It’s corrupt, it’s mismanaged, it gives dictators and abusive governments the same weight as democratic governments, and its delegates get excused from paying their parking tickets. Why are earth should we be funding it?

    Aliandra

  251. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Americans are immoral

    Posted “The US has no intention of remaining in Iraq for 12 years. As it was, we were staying in Saudi Arabia indefinitely, which was pissing off a whole lotta people. The end goal is to finish what should have been finished in 1991 and get the hell outta dodge.”
    Yes, but we are talking about the entire Gulf region. Are you telling me that the US has no intention of having any military assets in the Gulf region 12 years from now? If this is the case, why is the US building it’s biggest Embassy in the world in Baghdad?
    Posted “Because that’s politics. Sorry, but everyone does it. You’re going to have to wait for some more enlightened age for that to change. ”

    Dont you think it is stupid? Why blatantly lie to the world? It is things like this that the fundamentalists jump on. When the US lies so openly about obvious things, it makes it much easier to claim that it is lying about other more covert issues.

    Posted “Reagan did indeed condemn the gassing of the Kurds. At the time Iran was seen as the bigger threat, so Saddam was left to go on with his war. And by the way, those “Iraqi peopleâ€? killed tens of thousands of Iranians.

    He condemned it, and then kept on working and support the Iraqis and Hussein? Doesnt sound like much does it? If we really cared about the use of weapons of mass destructions against civilians wouldnt we have stopped the aid and the support for that regime? “At the time” is key in your statement, the US does not really base its foreign policy on long term plans, it is all about the here and now, which is why the US has had such a miserable foreign policy. Iran was the bigger threat because supporting the Shah was deemed important to US policy at the time. That back-fired, so supporting Iraq was deemed important to US policy, then that back-fired, so we invaded Iraq. Was is the conclusion of this act? No one knows, and I do not think anyone has thought about it rationally. Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz and their lot thought the US troops were going to be greeted with rose water and chai.

    Posted “It’s actually diminished. Though most people aren’t fans of the Palestinians, they have really had it with the pro-israel lobby. It’s screwing up our relationships with the rest of the region. It was Bush who first spoke about a Palestinian state, before 9-11 changed priorities. ”

    If this is so it sure hasnt affected US policy in the situation. Bush called Ariel Sharon, the butcher of Shabra and Chatilla, a “man of peace”. The US has basically dropped the Road Map for Peace. The US has had scant to say about recent choices by the Israeli government to build more settlements in an area likely to be annexed by Israel to Jeruselum. Almost 4,000 Palestinians have been killed in the last four years, the majoity of them civilians, almost 1,000 of them children. Bush and his backers are more firmly entrenched in their support of the Israelis than any president before them. The US still continuously blocks UN Resolutions condemning the military occupation of Palestine. The US still will not allow enforcement of existing UN Resolutions, dozens of them, but it certainly called for invasion of Iraqi based on Iraqi violation of a few resolutions. Hardly “diminished”. Calling for a Palestinian state is one thing, seeing a real and viable state is another thing. The state on offer during Clinton’s time, and even now, is nothing more than an American Indian reservation or a Bantustan. What “independent state” does not control its own borders, its own airspace, its own natural resources? What independent state has a neighbor who will reserve the right to enter their neighbors country and attack its population without a notice? That is what was offered Arafat, that is basically what is on offer now. That, and no right to return, and no Jeruselum as a captial of Palestine. All of that equals no peace.

    Posted “Bin ladin wants 20th century middle-eastern dictators replaced with eighth century Islamic theocracies. The US is standing in the way. For all he purports to hate the Saudi ruling family, it’s odd he didn’t ram a plane into one of their palaces.

    And yes, bin ladin hates our freedom. Read his Letter To America. ”

    Bin Laden waited until later to attack Saudi Arabia. The US is standing in a way of a lot of things in the area, including the democratic reformers I have worked with here in the DC area. There is NO way to justify US support for the Saudi royal family, none. Bin Laden does not get people to join al Queda or join the fight against American by pointing to the beer sales every year. He gets supporters and his following from point out the very real issues he has with US policy.

    Posted “Get real. The US isn’t to blame for violent religious movements in Uzbekistan. Neither is the US to blame for every clogged up toilet in the world. ”

    I never claimed the US was. What I did say is that the US is talking about wanting democracy in the Islamic world, but in its actions it is support people like the leader of Uzbekistan, whose MO is boiling political rivals alive. My point remains, the US cannot support these people then claim they want democracy. Actions speak louder than words. The leader we are supporting there is so violent to any opposition that he forced them to go underground and start a violent campaign where there had never been a history of one before.

    Posted “Islam is undergoing a civil war within itself. There are folks who want to go back to the tenth century and there are folks who want to at least make it to the twentieth. That’s why there’s so much unrest. ”

    Very simplistic. You see a microversion on this board. You get those who sometimes come along who want to take it back to the 7th century, you get those who basically want to castrate Islam itself, leave it an empty shell, and then you get those, like myself, who realise you can have a fully function moderate Islam in the 21st century and still remain true to your faith. If all that is sold out there is going back to the 7th century, or giving up Islam, there will never be peace. There needs to be something in the middle.

    Posted “I’ll concede that, but this cannot be solely the responsiilty of the US. We have plenty of our own problems to contend with. ”
    Sure, that is why the US must support the groups in these areas working toward democratic change, not work with the governments trying to stop it.

    Posted “Because Iraq was a threat to our self-interest and Israel is not. Most Americans don’t have much respect for the UN. It’s corrupt, it’s mismanaged, it gives dictators and abusive governments the same weight as democratic governments, and its delegates get excused from paying their parking tickets. Why are earth should we be funding it?”

    See, that again is hypocrisy. If we are interested in peace and democracy in the Middle East we must realise that our continuing support of Israel is a threat and is not in our best interest. It is a debate we need to have. There must be an open and honest debate about our support for Israel and its consequence, negative or positive.

  252. anonymous says:

    Re(10): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote]Yes, but we are talking about the entire Gulf region. Are you telling me that the US has no intention of having any military assets in the Gulf region 12 years from now? If this is the case, why is the US building it’s biggest Embassy in the world in Baghdad? [/quote]

    Considering that US military presence in the Gulf and SA is what got us into trouble in the first place, yes, that is what I am telling you. And what does the size of the emabssy have to do with anything? Maybe labor is cheap over there.

    [quote] the US does not really base its foreign policy on long term plans, it is all about the here and now, which is why the US has had such a miserable foreign policy. Iran was the bigger threat because supporting the Shah was deemed important to US policy at the time.[/quote]

    No country can see the future, Malik,. All countries act for their immediate security. Before the fall of the Berlin Wall, containing communism was the biggest priority. That’s changed.

    [quote]Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz and their lot thought the US troops were going to be greeted with rose water and chai. [/quote]

    They were. Well, I don’t know about the chai but they were greeted with cheers.

    [quote]Almost 4,000 Palestinians have been killed in the last four years, the majoity of them civilians, almost 1,000 of them children. [/quote]

    You illustrate something that has always perplexed me about middle-easterners. The biggest killers of middle-easterners have been other middle-easterners, not Israelis, yet almost all of the anger is directed at Israel. That goes for Muslims living in the West as well. Even to bin ladin, the atrocities of the Syrian government, of Saddam, of the invasion of Kuwait, of the Sudanese, were and are invisible. Why do middle-easterners care less when it’s one of their own doing the killing?

    [quote]Bush and his backers are more firmly entrenched in their support of the Israelis than any president before them. [/quote]

    If that were true, Bush would not have been the first president to call for a Palestinian state. The US government has finally realized that a Palestinian state is good for everyone and is willing to get serious about it. So do most Americans. If you don’t want to believe this, then I can’t help you.

    [quote]Calling for a Palestinian state is one thing, seeing a real and viable state is another thing. The state on offer during Clinton’s time, and even now, is nothing more than an American Indian reservation or a Bantustan. [/quote]

    Why didn’t they negotiate for something better?. Blowing up your young men and carving out the organs of freshly killed Israeli soldiers and running with them through the streets yelling and screaming are hardly good ways to get people on your side. All the intifada got them was the disgust of Americans and the conclusion that they are a bunch of loons. Arafat accomplished nothing but make himself rich. He should have gotten a second Nobel Peace Prize just for dying.

    [quote]Bin Laden does not get people to join al Queda or join the fight against American by pointing to the beer sales every year. He gets supporters and his following from point out the very real issues he has with US policy. [/quote]

    He also gets supporters by pointing out that secular governments base themselves on the law of man, not the law of God. Witness him telling the Iraqis not to vote because secular govenments are anti-islamic.

    [quote]Very simplistic. You see a microversion on this board. You get those who sometimes come along who want to take it back to the 7th century, you get those who basically want to castrate Islam itself, leave it an empty shell, [/quote]

    It’s not simplistic at all. Most of the terrorists in the world are doing their deeds in the name of Allah, not Buddha, not Vishnu, not the Great Pumpkin. Islam is very restless. There is friction with Christians, with Hindus, with Buddhists, with Catholics in the Phillippines. Who was it that said “islam has bloody borders?� The Islamic revival which started in the 1970s got a lot of this going. The Wahabi funding of mosques all over the place added to it, as well as the hordes of unemployed frustrated young men in the Mid-East.

    [quote] If we are interested in peace and democracy in the Middle East we must realise that our continuing support of Israel is a threat and is not in our best interest. It is a debate we need to have. [/quote]

    Malik, we do, We know that already. Give it some time, we’ve got Iraq and Afghanistan to deal with too. Also, demand the same of middle-eastern governments, who have never shown an iota of real concern for the Palestinians. They have used the Palestinians as a tool to irritate Israel, that’s all.

    Aliandra

  253. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Do you view Amnesty International as a partisan organisation?[/quote]

    Apparently you do, because you were going to offer Steve a Democratic member card for his use of their data 😛

    I’m proudly independent. The Republicans are controlled by the Christian Mullahs, and the Democrats are controlled by the Leftist Mullahs. *sigh*

    As for Amnesty? I like thier organization – though I have seen that some of their more publicized papers have been noticably political. Not truly surprising, but at least they do not fear to look at everyone’s bad side.

  254. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    [quote]I agree, but let me ask you a question, are the people of Iraq more real than other people in other horrible places around the world? Over 2 million people have been killed in Congo over the last decade, and the killing is still going on. This far excedes what Saddam did in the same period of time. Why is there no upswell of opinion to help these people? Is this “hate by omission”? What about the fighting in Uganda, over 1 million dead the last decade. If we are going to make this a crusade about saving people shouldnt we help the people in the most need first? [/quote]

    In a sense, yes. If you don’t think about it being a problem, then that’s hate by omission. If you figure ‘oh, they’re just Africans, fuck them

  255. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “Actually, there is no theocracy in Iraq or anything remotely resembling one. The Iraqis are dead set against it. You seem to be ignorant of this too. ”

    Acutally, this is not the case. All parties agree that the state will be based on Islam, just a question to what extent. A leader from Sistani’s office said on an NPR report I heard the other day that The Qur’an was the constitution of Iraq. Any nation in this area is going to have Islam be the state religion and will follow Islamic law to a certain extent.

  256. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “Ethan, there is a very good article by William Langewiesche in the March edition of The Atlantic magazine called “The Accuser”, about a woman with Amnesty International who has been documenting Saddam’s atrocities: http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/prem/200503/langewiesche
    It’s a long piece I’ve been reading for the last two lunches but have not finished. I’ve just gotten to the account of a guy who had been taken by Saddam’s goons out in the desert to be killed along with a couple hundred others. They’ve killed everyone in the four buses ahead of him. His bus, the last one, decides to resist to the death. Read it. ”

    You like Amnesty International Steve? I will get a Democratic Party card ready for you. Can ewe discuss the Amnesty reports about American actions? If Amnesty is to be taken as a source, do you feel it is reliable on all of its reports, or just the ones favourable to US interests?

  257. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Ethan writes “Zeyad reminded me that there were humans there. People. REAL people, with feelings – not just paperboard cutouts and numbers; the ‘third world

  258. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Ethan posts “I’d rather not prognosticate on the total number killed. The original poster can’t know the future, neither can I.

    However, for 3000 soldiers killed, I’d say the outcome looks a whole hell of a lot less bleak than some would have wanted it to be. Iraq just had the first free election since the 50’s. Even if they end up hating America and americans for some incalcuably stupid cultural reason, I will at least feel good that we allowed them the freedom to do what they wished for as a group. ”

    Good, then are, say 5,000 lives of American troops worth the hundreds of thousands, even millions, that might die in places like Congo? If it is good for Iraqi, why not Africa?

  259. anonymous says:

    Steve is a spineless plumber from ohio.

    Ha! Great rebuttal steve, looks like I just have far too many valid points for you to counter with anything of substance. Not surprising in the least, however…after all, I get my info from facts and firsthand experience, not from surfing websites all day on a couch. No one here believes for a moment your yellow cowardly ass ever served anything but fries out a Wendy’s drive-thru window, so it’s pretty pointless for you to carry on this charade that you ever made it past plumbing school. I bet you’re one of those faggots who wear camo pants as a civilian thinking it makes you look patriotic when no past or present servicemember would be caught dead in that shit while off duty.

    Oh gotta love steve’s arguments: “I read this, I read that, I read somewhere about…”. Get off your fucking couch you lazy cunt. The world isn’t seen through a Yahoo portal. Experience isn’t gained through Google.com. You sound like the stereotypical american that these arabs here love to hate, and I have to agree with them to a point that unfortunately there’s about 51% of the US population consisting of uninformed idiots like yourself. Listen to yourself if you can stand the stupidity, talking like you know more about arab affairs than the arabs themselves! This when you’ve never ventured more than 150 miles from your hometown in ohio. You sound like a goddamn moron spewing off all that garbage about Sistani and his shiite coalition.

    To all you camel jockeys, this idiot steve does not represent America. He represents your typical Fox news watching Bush nutswinger. He believes anything that comes out the ass of Hannity, O’Reilly, and Limbaugh, greedily slurping up the propaganda that all is well in Bush-chimp’s latest crusade. Of course he’s too much of a spineless little girl to go fight for a war he voted for. Hey webmaster give me steve’s IP so I can track him down and beat the shit out of him and any offspring unfortunate enough to be conceived by his ugly wife.

    And aliandra, kiss my ass.

    — a real hawk not a chickenhawk

  260. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Camel jockeys, give us a break. Youll be sure not to let your camel kneel in front of this guy or his sex life will take off.

  261. anonymous says:

    Re: Steve is a spineless plumber from ohio.

    and what did you offer other than personal attacks and slander? if you are who you claim to be – a veteran with first hand experience, share that.

    calling people by derogatory phrases won’t serve your cause.

    If Steve wants to give you his IP address then he’s welcome to. His choice. Mine is not to do so.

    now act like a gentleman and set your arguments out properly without insults.

    — mahmood

  262. anonymous says:

    Re: Steve is a spineless plumber from ohio.

    Everything you’ve said was speculative, but it was amusing.

    Camel Jockeys? We’re having NONE of that, thank you very much.

    And WE KNOW that when anyone wants Steve’s opinion that Karl Rove will give it to him. WE KNOW that he doesn’t all of represent America. What WE DIDN’T KNOW is that the alternative is a snappy loudmouth vigilante who’s going to be calling us names.

    Seems to me like a case of the Cure being just as bad as the Disease.

    If I were you, I’d be careful before Mahmood publishes YOUR IP address and gets you a GI shower.

    Play nice, maybe it’ll get you a couple of more days on this blog….

    [Modified by: Desert Island Boy (johnc) on March 05, 2005 01:40 AM]

    [Modified by: Desert Island Boy (johnc) on March 06, 2005 12:52 PM]

  263. anonymous says:

    Yo … Mr. Real Hawk …

    And, what, pray tell, would you do if you were running the Oval Office today? You have almost 4 years left running the White House. What would you be doing differently?

    And, could you use less pofanity and clearer syntax? Most of us camel jockey’s in this part of the world learned English language from the English … as such, our vocabulary is slightly more Oxford/Cambridge than gutter talk …

    Jasra Jedi

  264. anonymous says:

    Fake Hawk

    Yes, more abuse but no proof of your bona fides. You’re a fake. You can’t supply your branch of service, your military speciality, nor your training program because your entire pose is a lie. You don’t even know anybody who has served in the military who could feed you the necessary facts. The only thing you have to offer is a vast store of teenage punk abuse.

    You’ve never served in the military. You’ve never held a position of responsibility anywhere. You pose as a military vet because that’s what you’d like to be, that is if you had the manhood to leave mommy’s basement and do something with your life. You have never succeeded at anything anywhere, have you kid? Your only shot at respect is to pose as somebody else who has accomplished something, even a relatively modest accomplishment like joining the military. Of course, this pose only has a chance at working on the Internet because everyone pegs you as a loser at first sight in real life, don’t they? Now, you’ve even failed at faking it.

    When are you going to give up posing as somebody else on the Internet and go accomplish something with your life? You’re not any more competent at lying than you have been at anything else in your life. Stop bothering the adults with your nonsense and go do something worthwhile.

    Steve

  265. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Aliandra!

    [quote]PM: Mine will have to be juice [/quote]

    That’s fine. My beverage is Diet Coke. I’m not much of a drinker.

    Steve

  266. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Mahmood.

    I dont think he needs therapy. I think he rather likes the sound of his own voice! I think he likes the attention and is stirring things up for the hell of it. Much as they drive me nuts, neither Steve nor Malik have ever been really really offensive. This guy takes the cake, Best to treat him like you treat misbehaving children. Ignore.

    JJ

  267. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Extremists

    [quote]Malik: The US has proped up or installed many of the governments in the region. The US has supported the autocratic regimes who refuse to use their money for anything but self indulgence. The US has sold billions of dollars in arms to these countries and loaned them money to the point to bankruptcy, again for the crooked leaders that they support. Why does the US do these things? Because they like dealing with client dictators as long as their wishes are followed, ie Saddam Husssein. The mess was created by the Middle East and the US has had a large role in stiring the pot. To say anything different is to deny history.[/quote]

    Malik, the US is not some all powerful entity that can change every government in the world to suit itself. We have to deal with the world as it is. We can occassionally change big stuff when pressed, can change some stuff when opportunity presents itself, can change other stuff over the long term by degrees, and can not change most stuff at all.

    It’s kind of like work. You have some coworkers who are angels who you love to work with. You have others who are obnoxious jerks, who beat their wives and raise juvenile delinquents. You don’t have a choice of not working with them. They are there and you can’t avoid working with them. Working with them does not mean you endorse their lifestyle. About the only thing you can do is stop them from beating their wife at the company picnic or dispatch the police after their kids if they steal cars from the company parking lot.

    We can’t be overthrowing every obnoxious government in the world. We don’t have the capability to do that nor would that be advisable if we did. We are not responsible for every obnoxious government in the world. However, continuing to deal with obnoxious governments gives us some leverage over them, a kind of soft power, that we would not have should we break contact with them in a petulant fit.

    Opening our schools to students from the Middle East, making it easy for Middle Eastern businessmen to trade with us, training Middle Eastern militaries in American methods all have a tremendous corrosive effect on the established order. It gives the Middle East a vision of a better life and shames the existing governments by comparison. It is a very subversive thing which creates pressure for change from within. The obstacles to creating a free, democratic society with open markets and individual rights in the Middle East are all internal. It is up to the people of the Middle East to remove them, not America.

    It all reminds me of a story about US engineers trying to build a bridge for a village in Vietnam. The first bridge was blown up by the Viet Cong. The US built another. Blown up again. The third time, the US laid the materials out for the villagers and showed them how to build the bridge. That bridge remained intact. The villagers, having invested their own labor and feeling a sense of ownership, would not allow that bridge to be destroyed. It was their bridge, not the American bridge.

    The Arabs must build their own democracies and defend them themselves. The US can not and should not take over every Middle Eastern dictatorship and convert them into democracies. We can show them how a democracy works, how to build one, give some logistical help, but in the end it’s their job. The first step to making it happen is to stop blaming the moon, sun, and stars for their troubles and take ownership of the problem.

    Steve

  268. anonymous says:

    Re: Fake Hawk

    Steve, I don’t want to sound rude but in this case, ya gotta shut up.

    This ‘real hawk’ whoever he is is nothing but an internet Troll, the kind that pop up on messageboards and discussions, provide nothing but white noise and get their jollies off on people who try to argue reasonably with them.

    In a sense, they are forum nihilists; they hate everyone and try to destroy discussion for no other reason than because they can.

    -Ethan

  269. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    Jasra,

    It’s funny, but a lot of women tell me I drive them nuts. They’re all wrong, of course. All of them.

    Steve

  270. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Fake Hawk

    Ethan,

    Part of my reason for posting on the Internet is to develop strategies for dealing with rhetorical arguments, ie logically fallacious arguments. I can try different rebuttals out on the Internet where nothing is at stake to use later in real life. I find it pretty easy to rebut rational arguments but irrational arguments are much more slippery to rebut.

    The Fake Hawk here provides a wonderful lab rat with which to test different approaches to fallacious reasoning. The phony story is easy enough to deal with. When I taught interrogation resistance, I learned that the easiest way to break down a bogus story is to ask for more details. It’s impossible for a liar to keep track of a constellation of details that he has to make up ad hoc and make them consistent with each other. Eventually, the tissue of lies comes apart under close inspection.

    That seems to be working pretty well here. The Fake Hawk realizes he is trapped in his bogus story and is cunning enough not to not provide any more ensnaring details. He is damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t. If he provides more details, he’s providing me more rope to hang him with. If he doesn’t, I can effectively attack his credibility and honesty. That seems to complete the logic tree to defend against that form of attack.

    The harder part is effective rebuttal to the ad hominem arguments of Fake Hawk, ie the abuse. Most people recognize them as false, except for partisans. I’d like to come up with a pithy rebuttal to ad hominem arguments, something rational rather than a tu quoque response. So in that sense, Fake Hawk is splendid little poisonous bug for my purposes. This is like a case study in rhetoric for me.

    Steve

  271. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Steve you gotta do something about your wifes hair.

    billT

  272. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Don’t talk about the guy’s sister like that!

  273. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Hair like that is just a memory for me.

    Don’t insult my wife Lurleen. I made her put on shoes for this pitcher. Her sister Loraleen fixed up her hair just like she saw in them big city papers. I think it looks right purty. And my little girl Puddin Chop is just precious.

    Steve

    [Modified by: Steve The American (Steve) on March 06, 2005 01:37 PM]

  274. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Were you drunk when you wrote this post?

  275. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Oh save the proper web etiquette tripe for someone who cares mahmood! Take a good look at your blog. This is one of the longest running threads of stupidity and flames that can be found on the internet! You have dumbass ohio plumber steve representing the average Bush-chimp nutswinger, malik the wannabe ali baba, and other assorted shitheads trying to out-google each other about topics they know nothing about. You’re lucky I’m here to sort all this shit out.

    Blah, blah, blah…there steve goes again, having given up on debating topics about which he knows nothing about beyond reading the Fox News tape scrolling across the bottom of his screen, now he’s focused his liquor soaked turd for a brain on my superior ability to call him out for the cowardly faggot he is! Ha. It must be hard to concentrate enough through the haze that is your stink while trying to summon enough wit for a reply worthy of someone as well-spoken as myself. It’s a goddamn miracle stillborn mullet-headed rednecks like yourself managed to figure out which lever to pull at the polls last november. I’d almost pity your wife and kids if it wasn’t for the fact they’re no doubt as hopelessly stupid and pathetic as yourself. I recommend packing them up in a crate and shipping them off to the sunni triangle for quick disposal. Believe me, you’ll do us all a favor and humanity will thank you. You might even get a neat video to remember them by! Getting emotional steve? Try not to let it show so much in your posts, you make it much too easy for me. Look around steve, even the diaperheads feel sorry for your cowardly non-serving ass!

    — a real hawk not a chickenhawk

  276. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Here’s a family photo of steve and his disgusting family. See what I mean? I don’t think iraqi insurgents would bother beheading them but rather shoot them for being eyesores!

    [img]http://www.lilligren.com/Redneck/redneck_family_photo.jpg[/img]

  277. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    You’re a very angry person. Suggest therapy.

  278. anonymous says:

    Re: Fake Hawk

    Steve,

    I’d like to share an observation with you about the brave, courteous, anonymous, Fake Hawk. I’ve always been perplexed by the people I’ve encountered who claimed to have served but didn’t, and those who did serve but claim to have done things or had experiences they never had.

    Some years ago, as a trainer for a consulting company, I was teaching a network analysis class for the IT division of a large drug company in the midwest. It’s my custom to start by asking each student to introduce theselves, their technology background, and to say what they wanted to get out their 1 week, 40 hour course.

    One young man said that he had been an officer on a nuclear powered submarine. Delighted, I told him that I had worked in sonar as an enlisted man on attack submarines and asked him if he had done a rotation as weapons officer. He turned pale and muttered something incoherent. I confronted him, not angrily just curiously, in the parking lot later and (I _swear_) he blubbered a little, admitted he had made it up, and begged me not to tell anyone.

    I have more examples, but that’s the most dramatic. IMO, your assessment about him hanging out in mommy’s basement is spot-on.

    For the record, I do take issue with several of your positions, including the alleged connection between Iraq and Al-Qaeda, and the idea that Iraq was an immediate threat that deserved top military priority. So far, I think I agree with you about 65% of the time, though I must make an effort to ignore the occaisional partisan snipe that sometimes detracts from your point. I’m nearly always entertained by your wit and presentation, even when I don’t agree.

  279. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    Ow.

    Bad enough I have to live down here, I don’t wanna -hear- that kinda talk on the board, mister! 😀

  280. anonymous says:

    The Fake Hawk

    Fake Hawk,

    I don’t think that you have ever served in any military anywhere. You seem to be awfully vague about the details and what details you have provided could have been easily acquired from the media. However, you can prove your bona fides by telling us what branch of service you claim to be in in, the classification code of your job, and where you were trained. Let’s examine those in detail.

    You’ve been awfully short on details and awfully long on teenage kid abuse. I don’t think you’ve been anywhere, done anything, or been anyone. I doubt that you have ever accomplished anything in your life but are falsely claiming other people’s experience to escape your own miserably inferior life. You are an imposter, and not a very good one. I think everyone has figured you out for what you are. Each of your posts merely undermine your credibility more.

    Show us your bona fides or go soil your pants elsewhere, junior.

    Steve

  281. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Steve is a spineless plumber from ohio.

    DIB,

    Personally, I think I look pretty damned good by comparison with my opposition.

    And that “cure being worse than the disease” is my line. You’re plagiarizing it. However, I elect not to lambaste you for it. That’s the generous kind of guy I am.

    You’re Welcome,

    Steve

    [Modified by: Steve The American (Steve) on March 06, 2005 10:43 AM]

  282. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Jasra,

    Why, thanky there, Jasra, honey. All my life, people have told me that my teeth were my finest asset. Truth be told, that damned Lurleen ran herself off with a feed salesman from Kansas City. She’s living the big life in the big city now, damn it all to hell. Just to rub it in she sent me a pitcher of her new home. It’s a double wide. How can I compete with some Kansas City slicker and his big city ways? Puddin Chop went to live with her aunt Truleen. She’s got eleven kids so she don’t even notice one more. So now it’s just me and the TV, crying in my beer. LURLEEN, HOW COULD YEW DO THIS TO ME!? She broke my heart, Jasra, broke it right in two and stomped on it to itty bitty pieces.

    Talk of these Lamyas and Latifas is mighty temptin

  283. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    I knew you’d see it my way one day, Jasra, honey.

    Kiss, kiss,

    Steve

  284. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Fake Hawk

    Steve,

    I have not read Stephen Hayes’ book, but I did read the article you’ve referenced from the Weekly Standard. I think we can agree that there’s some disagreement about Iraq’s Qaeda connections. The 9-11 commission and the Senate Intelligence Committee both concluded that there was no link between Iraq and 9-11, and did not find evidence of substantial Qaeda contact.

    Although initially against the war, and still aghast at the human and financial costs incurred by aspects of it that we have mismanaged, I am encouraged by the elections. We have an intense obligation to do whatever is in our power to help Iraqi’s who want it to create a society based on the rule of law. This may take a lot more time, money, and blood before it’s over, but there’s no turning back.

    I still believe that Iraq was not an imminent threat and that our attentions and resources could have been better applied elsewhere. OTOH, Sadam was a monster who would certainly have murdered more of his own people and continued to encouraged suicide bombers by paying their families, so I acknowledge we would have had to deal with him.

    Well, enough of that. I’m going back my exciting, bravado filled re-imagining of my six years in an iron tube, fearlessly learning a little physics, listening to whale farts, and daringly altering CO2 scrubbers so that they can be used to make raisin jack. Maybe Stephen Segal can play me when I sell the movie rights.

    Jared

  285. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    ok I’ve had enough of this guy. he’s bumped off and his ip banned. For someone who claims to be in the military (he logs on from Japan – 220.104.12.14) he certainly needs to learn some manners and be a lot less abrasive. He’s a troll we can do without.

  286. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Fake Hawk

    [quote]Jared: I think we can agree that there’s some disagreement about Iraq’s Qaeda connections. The 9-11 commission and the Senate Intelligence Committee both concluded that there was no link between Iraq and 9-11, and did not find evidence of substantial Qaeda contact. [/quote]

    That’s not what my copy of the 9/11 Report says. On page 66, it lists quite a few contacts between Iraq and Al Qaeda.

    Although I can’t find it in the report, my understanding is that they did not find evidence of a link between Iraq and the Sep 11 attack, not that they had disproved any such link. There are inconsistencies in the accounts of the Prague meeting. I don’t know how they dismiss the Malaysia meeting.

    http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/05aug20041050/www.gpoaccess.gov/911/pdf/fullreport.pdf

    [quote]Jared: Although initially against the war, and still aghast at the human and financial costs incurred by aspects of it that we have mismanaged, I am encouraged by the elections. We have an intense obligation to do whatever is in our power to help Iraqi’s who want it to create a society based on the rule of law. This may take a lot more time, money, and blood before it’s over, but there’s no turning back. [/quote]

    I don’t see mismanagement so much as the reactions to the natural chaos of war as it took unpredictable turns. Some of the so-called mismanagement alleged is simply bogus, such as the supposed looting of the Baghdad museum.

    [quote]Jared: I still believe that Iraq was not an imminent threat and that our attentions and resources could have been better applied elsewhere. OTOH, Sadam was a monster who would certainly have murdered more of his own people and continued to encouraged suicide bombers by paying their families, so I acknowledge we would have had to deal with him.[/quote]

    Not even Bush called it an imminent threat. Saddam, as shown by captured documentation, would have restarted all his weapons programs after the UN turned down the heat. Then they would have made good on all the evil plans they had been cooking up. Iraq gave us plenty of casus belli. It was as good a place as any to start draining the swamp.

    Steve

  287. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Hmmm. Japan, huh? I don’t know that we’ve heard the last of him. Sounds like he’s posting from America and disguising his origin by using other servers.

    And where will I get more pictures of my darling Puddin Chop? All mine were gone with the wind when the last tornado tore through my trailer park.

    Steve

  288. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    tut tut. of course, dear. great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. specially when the mediocre minds are in the small heads of women. where would we be without you steve .. leading us forward using your shining light in all its full nuclear ww3 glory ….

    dazed and ditzy,
    JJ

  289. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    weeeellllll … truth be told, you do have yourself a nice smile there stevekins! good teeth too … u might want to conisder changing faith and becoming one of us. plenty women round here who would jump at the chance .. u can have 4 including ur precious Lurleen. We gots Leila, Lamya and Latifa all waiting for you … garlicy shawarmas in hand … no trailer parks per se, (although we do have our fair share of white trash), but i am sure that we can find something situable so you dont have too many acclimatization problems .. 😉

    JJ

  290. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Fake Hawk

    Jared,

    While I am delighted to find anyone in this forum who agrees with me two thirds of the time, I’m saddened to inform you that it demonstrates a radical nature. You are undoubtedly a Bin Laden, too. I’m just not sure that I should be associating with anyone who would associate with the likes of me.

    Your submarine officer example reminds me of a similar situation I had with a former boss, who claimed to be a former Navy intelligence officer who accompanied SEAL teams on missions in Vietnam. He told hair-raising stories of his adventures to gullible young guys at work but when I got him alone at lunch and quizzed him about it there was a long silence and he said that he had signed a paper saying he could never divulge what he had done. Hmmmm. I figured him for a fake but didn’t make an issue of it.

    In “Stolen Valor”, B.G. Burkett says something like two thirds of the vets you see boasting in public in the media are phonies. Many never even served in the military. However, it doesn’t take much to fool journalists, or most people on the Internet. I remember one guy telling me about a Vietnam vet who had all kinds of stories of himself in combat. He found out later that he’d been a lifeguard at the pool at the officer’s club in Saigon.

    Generally, what I find is that the vets who really were in combat and had intense experiences just do not talk about it. When they get older they start to worry that their stories will be lost when they die and then often agree to tell their story in private to people they trust. There are vets like me who never fought anyone who are happy to talk about a generally positive experience in the military. However, the loudest of all are the guys who did nothing but acquired a lot of stories second hand and claim them as their own experiences.

    Jared, the Atta meeting in Prague and the Malaysian meeting of the skyjackers facilitated by an Iraqi agent tie Iraq to the Sep 11 skyjackers. The depth of that involvement is the question. However, it is unquestionable that Iraq had informal ties to Al Qaeda. Saddam sent an envoy to Bin Laden when he was camped out in the Sudan, a meeting that was published at the time in Arab and Western media. There are plenty of other documented meetings. The entire case is laid out in Stephen F. Hayes book, “The Connection : How al Qaeda’s Collaboration with Saddam Hussein Has Endangered America.”

    Amazon link: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0060746734/102-5374140-8378544

    Here is an article by the author giving the gist of his case: http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/004/152lndzv.asp

    The problem in this case is that the US media has not been reporting the facts in this issue but have been advocating a position, attempting to undermine the case for war which they, as liberals, oppose.

    Steve

  291. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Fake Hawk

    [quote]Yes, and the Iraqi army did much of this whilst the Iraqi government enjoyed American support. Why was there no outrage from the US government at the time? Why did these atrocities only start to matter AFTER Saddam was not our ally? [/quote]

    Why do these atrocities not seem to matter to anyone in the Arab world at all? Hundreds of lawyers signed up to defend Saddam. Europe also! European companies and governments supported Saddam even through illegal methods. (See: Oil for Food scandal)

    [quote]What I thought was criminal was Cheney’s claim that if you vote for Kerry you will be more likely to have a nuclear attack in the USA. Pure and unadulterated scare tactics. [/quote]

    Not any more criminal than the ‘if you vote for Bush you’ll die’ MoveOn.org party line.

    The 2004 elections were a prime example of the kind of anti-intellectualism that has dominated American politics. Partisan white noise and desperate media bias on both sides. I was disgusted.

    [quote]I dont think it drains anything. The worst states in the area, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, they all hated Saddam Hussein and his government. If anything, a strong Iraq was a check for all of these states. This idea is actually the bedrock idea that drove US support of Saddam Hussein for decades. [/quote]

    I don’t think that’s all too true. Iraq was the US’s ally against Iran, not Syria (which also shared a Baathist government) or Saudi (which was not a ‘threat’ until very recently, when the breadth of their ideological hate was explosively displayed.)

  292. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Fake Hawk

    Posted “Why do these atrocities not seem to matter to anyone in the Arab world at all? Hundreds of lawyers signed up to defend Saddam. Europe also! European companies and governments supported Saddam even through illegal methods. (See: Oil for Food scandal) ”
    Some cared, some didnt. The difference here is that I am not Arab, I am not European, and it is not their army that invaded Iraq and is currently occupying it. It is MY country that invaded this country, it is MY country that is occupying it. I will not allow the inaction of other countries to justify the actions of my country. Saying “they didnt do anything, so it is okay if we supported a mass murderer and then invaded when he was no longer useful”, wont work for me.

    Posted “The 2004 elections were a prime example of the kind of anti-intellectualism that has dominated American politics. Partisan white noise and desperate media bias on both sides. I was disgusted. ”
    Agreed. I had to hold my nose to vote for anyone. Democracy doesnt work if you do not have an active and informed electorate.

    Posted “I don’t think that’s all too true. Iraq was the US’s ally against Iran, not Syria (which also shared a Baathist government) or Saudi (which was not a ‘threat’ until very recently, when the breadth of their ideological hate was explosively displayed.).

    I would suggest reading Middle Eastern history if you do not know about the issues between the Syrians, Saudi Arabia and Iraq. Even though they shared similiar types of governments, Syria and Iraq had long standing differences. These differences really seemed to have ended only with the US invasion of Iraq. As for the Saudi relationship with the Iraqis, do you not remember that US troops went to Saudi after the invasion to protect Saudi Arabia from a possible Iraqi attack? The issues between Iraq and Saudi Arabia were long standing. I suggest you read the book about Saudi Arabia by As`ad AbuKhalil (owner of AngryArab blog). It details many things, amoungst them the long standing issues between Iraq and Saudi Arabia.

  293. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Fake Hawk

    [quote]Steve: That’s not what my copy of the 9/11 Report says. On page 66, it lists quite a few contacts between Iraq and Al Qaeda.[/quote]
    You’re right that the report lists contact initiated by Bin Laden and the Hussein regime, but it concludes, on that same page: “But to date we have seen no evidence that these or the earlier contacts ever developed into a collaborative operational relationship”. The Senate Intelligence committe concluded the same thing in similar language.

    [quote]I don’t see mismanagement so much as the reactions to the natural chaos of war as it took unpredictable turns. Some of the so-called mismanagement alleged is simply bogus, such as the supposed looting of the Baghdad museum.[/quote]
    I somewhat agree with your allusion to Clausewitz, but think it would be an error not to examine the larger mistakes.

    Dismissing many thousands of armed young men from the Iraqi army was one of these. Prior to the war, experienced people from the military and State Department voiced concern about resources to prevent civil unrest, and the lack of planning for it. One result is that much of Iraq’s infrastructure was hacked off and carted away by thieves, vastly complicating reconstruction. If we unflinchingly aknowledge and learn from our mistakes we’ll be more effective and fewer lives will be lost.

    Your statement that Bush did not characterize Iraq as an imminent threat is one that I strongly disagree with. VP Cheney, Secretary Powell, and NSA Rice went on a massive public relations campaign to convince us of an immediate tactical threat. I’m especially recalling the “smoking gun turning into a mushroom cloud” comment.

    It’s my opinion that the Bush Administration went to war with Iraq because they believed they could turn that country into a democracy of sorts and thereby affect wider change in the ME. The cause for war, in their philosophy, was justified strategically, not tactically, because they believed that this was the best way to protect the United States.

    It’s the biggest gamble ever.

    If it works, it will make life better for many millions of people and it will have been well worth it. The many possible downsides are complex and hard to understand. I certainly hope a lot of people smarter than me are thinking carefully about it.

    Jared

  294. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Fake Hawk

    [quote]Jared: You’re right that the report lists contact initiated by Bin Laden and the Hussein regime, but it concludes, on that same page: “But to date we have seen no evidence that these or the earlier contacts ever developed into a collaborative operational relationship”. The Senate Intelligence committe concluded the same thing in similar language. [/quote]

    It’s legal language that’s factually correct. There is no class picture of the Sep 11 skyjackers being congratulated by Saddam in Baghdad. However, the meeting in Malaysia which places an agent of Saddam’s regime in the same room as two of the skyjackers make plans with other terrorists suggests involvement.

    [quote]Jared: Dismissing many thousands of armed young men from the Iraqi army was one of these. Prior to the war, experienced people from the military and State Department voiced concern about resources to prevent civil unrest, and the lack of planning for it. One result is that much of Iraq’s infrastructure was hacked off and carted away by thieves, vastly complicating reconstruction. If we unflinchingly aknowledge and learn from our mistakes we’ll be more effective and fewer lives will be lost.[/quote]

    The Iraqi army had participated in many of the greatest atrocities and was an instrument of oppression in Saddam’s regime. I think it would have been a big mistake to preserve it intact and it certainly would have sent the wrong message to the Iraqi people, that it was going to be the same old, same old under new management. It would be like occupying Germany and preserving the Waffen SS.

    [quote]Jared: Your statement that Bush did not characterize Iraq as an imminent threat is one that I strongly disagree with. VP Cheney, Secretary Powell, and NSA Rice went on a massive public relations campaign to convince us of an immediate tactical threat. I’m especially recalling the “smoking gun turning into a mushroom cloud” comment.[/quote]

    There’s nothing that cries immediate about the mushroom cloud comment. While the media has made much of claiming the Bush administration claimed an immediate threat from Iraq, a sober look at what they actually said doesn’t support that, aside from a few occassions where they misspoke. The supposed perception of Bush of Iraq as an immediate threat is a willful misinterpretation by the media, an attempt to build a straw man position by the Bush administration they could beat up.

    [quote]Jared: It’s my opinion that the Bush Administration went to war with Iraq because they believed they could turn that country into a democracy of sorts and thereby affect wider change in the ME. The cause for war, in their philosophy, was justified strategically, not tactically, because they believed that this was the best way to protect the United States. It’s the biggest gamble ever. If it works, it will make life better for many millions of people and it will have been well worth it. The many possible downsides are complex and hard to understand. I certainly hope a lot of people smarter than me are thinking carefully about it. [/quote]

    I believe those reasons played a part in the decision as strategic reasons but the proximate reason for the invasion was the threat of Iraq supplying WMD to a terrorist group for an attack on the US homeland. It takes little imagination to see that the arc of events, if left undisturbed, would have brought greater attacks on the US. Certainly more suicide attacks, probably a WMD attack. Invading Iraq preempted those plans in place in Iraq, the plans that would have been made by Saddam, and suppressed the enthusiasm for such plans in other hostile nations.

    Even so, I think we have only pushed that attack further forward into the future. There is a bottomless well of religious hate in the Muslim world for America. Sooner or later, it will find a way to America. There are millions who mean to do us harm and eventually they will make good on it.

    Taking over Iraq helps begin to drain the swamp in the Middle East. That by itself jump starts change for the better. It’s also good to be occupying countries on either end of Iran, the most dangerous country in the Middle East. That gives the mad mullahs of Teheran a lot to think about and hopefully will temper and contain their belligerence.

    There are a lot of bad things that could happen in Iraq but doing nothing would have been more dangerous.

    Steve

  295. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Fake Hawk

    Steve writes “The Iraqi army had participated in many of the greatest atrocities and was an instrument of oppression in Saddam’s regime. I think it would have been a big mistake to preserve it intact and it certainly would have sent the wrong message to the Iraqi people, that it was going to be the same old, same old under new management. It would be like occupying Germany and preserving the Waffen SS. ”

    Yes, and the Iraqi army did much of this whilst the Iraqi government enjoyed American support. Why was there no outrage from the US government at the time? Why did these atrocities only start to matter AFTER Saddam was not our ally?

    Steve writes “There’s nothing that cries immediate about the mushroom cloud comment. While the media has made much of claiming the Bush administration claimed an immediate threat from Iraq, a sober look at what they actually said doesn’t support that, aside from a few occassions where they misspoke. The supposed perception of Bush of Iraq as an immediate threat is a willful misinterpretation by the media, an attempt to build a straw man position by the Bush administration they could beat up. ”

    I agree with you. What I thought was criminal was Cheney’s claim that if you vote for Kerry you will be more likely to have a nuclear attack in the USA. Pure and unadulterated scare tactics.

    Steve writes “I believe those reasons played a part in the decision as strategic reasons but the proximate reason for the invasion was the threat of Iraq supplying WMD to a terrorist group for an attack on the US homeland. It takes little imagination to see that the arc of events, if left undisturbed, would have brought greater attacks on the US. Certainly more suicide attacks, probably a WMD attack. Invading Iraq preempted those plans in place in Iraq, the plans that would have been made by Saddam, and suppressed the enthusiasm for such plans in other hostile nations. ”

    Well, it now turns out the Iraqis didnt have any WMD to turn over to anyone, let alone terrorists. I think the US is far more at danger from Pakistan, and American ally, than Iraq. Pakistan has the bomb, they supported, funded and trained the Taliban, and a significant amount of their military and intelligence community stills supports radical forces in the area.

    Steve writes “Taking over Iraq helps begin to drain the swamp in the Middle East. That by itself jump starts change for the better. It’s also good to be occupying countries on either end of Iran, the most dangerous country in the Middle East. That gives the mad mullahs of Teheran a lot to think about and hopefully will temper and contain their belligerence. ”

    I dont think it drains anything. The worst states in the area, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, they all hated Saddam Hussein and his government. If anything, a strong Iraq was a check for all of these states. This idea is actually the bedrock idea that drove US support of Saddam Hussein for decades.

  296. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    The paragraph quoted by Steve above from the original (or at least one of the early Malik posts) really troubled me. So that you know, and are better able to listen to or to ignore my opinion, let me say that I voted for Bush, both of them, all four times, not including primaries, where I even voted for Bush senior over Reagan (sorry, I was 18 then). On many issues, I am conservative, while on others, I suppose that my views would be considered liberal, even flaming. One of my partners, and a close friend, was flabbergasted to learn that I was not a democrat, given the views we share on a number of issues.

    This kernel drawn from Malik’s post is, in my humble opinion, the seed of division. Whether directed on a personal level, or on a community/culture wide basis, it is divisive and simply cannot be completly digested. It must be spat out, and rejected by anyone who would hope to build a community where different views are truly accepted and respected. You are nothing to them, deep down they despise you. It is us verses them. Let us identify what is most important to you and to me; now look and see that you must think and do this or that, as anything else is inconsistent with what we have identified as most important to us, which these others do not share and seek to destroy. Isn’t that at the heart of why there is so much hate in American politics? Think about it, with your great minds, as my mind is unable to explain it in any greater detail.

    On a personal level, and this my come as a surpirse to Malik, but if there was an issue with which I was grappeling, and I could not decide for myself and needed to rely upon the judgment and wisdom of another, I would take Mahmood’s counsel, with or without the rag, over either Malik or Steve, assuming there to have been disagreement.

  297. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    Posted “You are nothing to them, deep down they despise you.It is us verses them”

    Sad you think “it is us verses them”. I reject this type of thinking. Funny you call me devisvie, never have I advocated the “us verses them” mentality that you are doing.

  298. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    AGA,

    Don’t feel bad about voting for Bush the Elder over Reagan in the primaries. I voted for Carter over Reagan. Sheesh! Just think how dumb I feel now. I got it right the second time around though.

    From my perspective, what hate exists in American politics flows mainly from the Left. I’ve never heard any conservative call a Democratic leader Hitler. I’ve never seen conservatives mob the White House by the thousands cursing a Democratic president in a spitting frenzy, as I have seen lefties do with Bush. I’ve never heard conservatives advocate harming or killing their liberal political rivals, as the Left sometimes does. Furious liberals in droves mobbed and heckled the Republican representatives to the convention in New York City. No such conservative mobs harassed the Democratic convention. I’ve never seen Republicans engage in a campaign of disrupting Democratic campaign rallies, as Democrats did to Bush. You don’t see liberal speakers shouted down on campus by conservatives nor routinely attacked with pies, as lefty thugs do as a matter of course. There is but a small step left to attacks with deadly weapons.

    What conservative reaction there is to the extreme emotions of the Left is but a poor reflection, the conservative moon reflecting the burning sun-like hate of the Left.

    It is not the differences between cultures that is causing the rift between the Middle East and West. It is the willingness of the Islamists to kill indiscriminately and massively for religious differences which necessarily polarizes and amplifies the conflict. With such intolerant religious maniacs, talk is worthless, negotiations futile, good intentions of no value. You must crush them like bugs.

    Steve

  299. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Americans are immoral

    Posted “It is not the differences between cultures that is causing the rift between the Middle East and West. It is the willingness of the Islamists to kill indiscriminately and massively for religious differences which necessarily polarizes and amplifies the conflict. With such intolerant religious maniacs, talk is worthless, negotiations futile, good intentions of no value. You must crush them like bugs. ”

    American policies in the area have nothing to do with it? I would suggest that one of the main reasons the US is hated in the area is directly BECAUSE its policies treated the people of the area like “bugs”. How else do you explain US support for mass murderers like the Shah, Saddam Hussein, the Saudi royal family, ect? It is directly BECAUSE of American disdain for the people of the area that they have now become hated.

    You can crush people all you want Steve, as you advocate this violence sitting in a nice plush chair here in the Metro DC area, others are dying everyday. “Crushing people” will not do anything to stop the hatred of America, only Americans addressing their immoral foreign policy will. America, for your information, isnt just hated in the Muslim world, it is hated almost everywhere in the world. You cannot blame that fact on Arabs or Islam. Explain to me why in Australia, supposedly one of our greatest allies, the US gets approval ratings lower than communist China? Are you going to blame that on Islam or backwards Arabs?

    You Steve have your head in the sand. There are real and valid reasons people have for disliking American policy. Until Americans accept this there will be no end to the bloodshed. Americans must change their foreign policy and Muslims must confront the extremism in their population. This is not a one way street Steve. Get your head out of the sand, although I understand it is always much easier for you to blame the “other” rather than to take a look in the mirror.

  300. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    Your reading of AGA’s post is questionable. Note that after the statement you quote, he went on to write ” Isn’t that at the heart of why there is so much hate in American politics?” In other words he was calling into question the “us vs. them” mentality that you brought up regarding Steve’s attitude toward Arabs or Muslims (particularly Mahmood in this case). I suspect it is just a matter of miscommunication.

    Salaam Alaikum,
    PM

  301. anonymous says:

    Crushing people

    Malik,

    [quote] would suggest that one of the main reasons the US is hated in the area is directly BECAUSE its policies treated the people of the area like “bugs”. How else do you explain US support for mass murderers like the Shah, Saddam Hussein, the Saudi royal family, ect? It is directly BECAUSE of American disdain for the people of the area that they have now become hated.[/quote]

    The biggest disdain for the people of the area comes from their own crowd. The Syrian government killed 20,000 civilians, not the US. The Arab government in the Sudan killed up to 40,000. Saddam killed 300,000. Let me repeat that Malik. Saddam killed 300,000 people, not the US. The Shah and the ayotollacracy that replaced him killed hundreds of Iranians, not the US. The Algerian civil war was over 40,000 – algerians against algerians, no americans involved.

    If people want to complain about being treated like bugs, they should stop denying who’s holding the can of Raid. Denial is not a river in Egypt.

    Aliandra

  302. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    The reason that the Islamists hate America is that we are not Muslim. More precisely, we are not Wahhabi. It’s that simple. They do not judge us on the rightness of our policies. They hate us no matter what our policies are, good or bad. When we support Israel, they hate us. When we rescue Muslims in Bosnia from mass murder, they hate us. When we invade Iraq, they hate us. When we provide support to Muslim tsunami victims, they hate us. Hate, hate, hate. For them, it’s all about hating infidels.

    However, when ordinary Muslims get the chance to come to America, they don’t think twice. They pack their bags and board the jet for Amrika. They know they will have a better life here, free to say what they please, worship as they please, prosper as they please. Muslims talk a lot of crap about America but when the opportunity comes to move here they vote with their feet for America decisively.

    And yes, the Islamists who wish to destroy America must be crushed like bugs. You can not reason with them. You can not inspire any human sympathy in them. They are far too deeply indoctrinated in hateful Islamic fundamentalism to ever make peace with the non-Muslim world. It is disingenuous to argue that you can cut a deal with headcutters.

    Steve

  303. anonymous says:

    Re(10): Americans are immoral

    My point, so inartfully made, was as you construed it, PM.

  304. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Fake Hawk

    [quote]Steve writes “The Iraqi army had participated in many of the greatest atrocities and was an instrument of oppression in Saddam’s regime. I think it would have been a big mistake to preserve it intact and it certainly would have sent the wrong message to the Iraqi people, that it was going to be the same old, same old under new management. It would be like occupying Germany and preserving the Waffen SS. ”

    Yes, and the Iraqi army did much of this whilst the Iraqi government enjoyed American support. Why was there no outrage from the US government at the time? Why did these atrocities only start to matter AFTER Saddam was not our ally? [/quote]

    Since you changed the subject I take it you concede that it would have been a mistake to preserve Saddam’s army. You always abandon a subject when it gets too hot and jump to another line of attack. You never stay and defend your positions, Malik.

    As I have told you many times before, we supported Iraq just enough to beat up on Iran in their foolish war. They were both evil regimes. It was wonderful that they decided to decimate each other rather than turn their wicked energies against the greater world. Supporting Iraq against Iran is no different than supporting the Soviet Union against Nazi Germany.

    [quote]I agree with you. What I thought was criminal was Cheney’s claim that if you vote for Kerry you will be more likely to have a nuclear attack in the USA. Pure and unadulterated scare tactics. [/quote]

    I disagree. It’s a fair comment. It is especially astute now that we know that Pakistan was selling nuclear bomb secrets to Libya and any bellligerent nation that could pay cash. Our pressure on Afghanistan and Iraq forced Pakistan to put a halt to that. Kerry would have eased the pressure off and scampered back to our borders, waiting to accept delivery of a hostile nuke.

    [quote]Steve writes “I believe those reasons played a part in the decision as strategic reasons but the proximate reason for the invasion was the threat of Iraq supplying WMD to a terrorist group for an attack on the US homeland. It takes little imagination to see that the arc of events, if left undisturbed, would have brought greater attacks on the US. Certainly more suicide attacks, probably a WMD attack. Invading Iraq preempted those plans in place in Iraq, the plans that would have been made by Saddam, and suppressed the enthusiasm for such plans in other hostile nations. ”

    Well, it now turns out the Iraqis didnt have any WMD to turn over to anyone, let alone terrorists. I think the US is far more at danger from Pakistan, and American ally, than Iraq. Pakistan has the bomb, they supported, funded and trained the Taliban, and a significant amount of their military and intelligence community stills supports radical forces in the area. [/quote]

    False. There were a smattering of WMDs left. Our troops were attacked with a binary artillery shell containing nearly a gallon of sarin nerve agent. Explain how that did not exist, Malik.

    The Duelfer report says that they discovered a network of covert chemical and biological weapons labs and plans to ship ricin and other poisons to the West and America in perfume bottles. Interrogation of Saddam’s leadership revealed that he planned to resume production of WMDs when the pressure eased off him.

    However, I do agree that Pakistan is about as much an ally as Saudi Arabia. They both contain considerable Islamist elements which mean to do evil.

    [quote]Steve writes “Taking over Iraq helps begin to drain the swamp in the Middle East. That by itself jump starts change for the better. It’s also good to be occupying countries on either end of Iran, the most dangerous country in the Middle East. That gives the mad mullahs of Teheran a lot to think about and hopefully will temper and contain their belligerence. ”

    I dont think it drains anything. The worst states in the area, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, they all hated Saddam Hussein and his government. If anything, a strong Iraq was a check for all of these states. This idea is actually the bedrock idea that drove US support of Saddam Hussein for decades. [/quote]

    In that case, why have the insurgent attacks in Iraq dropped off so sharply since the elections? The reason is that we have killed an awful lot of Baathists and jihadis over the last two years, disrupted their funding, captured their leaders, and jailed tens of thousands of them. That’s what you call draining the swamp. And now the Iraqi people are turning decisively against the insurgents.

    Allowing the contemptible Middle Eastern states to check each other’s power was an acceptable strategy before Sep 11. It’s not acceptable since the rise of the Wahhabi terror and the increasing ease of acquiring WMDs.

    Steve

  305. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Posted “99% of the time the problems are caused by the countries themselves. The US wasn’t pulling the trigger on the Kurds, the Shiites, the Syrian population of Hama, or the Iranians. The sooner countries stop blaming the US for their mistakes, the sooner they will solve them. ”

    So you dont see the problem with the US supporting, funding and arming people like Saddam Hussein, the Shah or the Saudi royal family? That is okay? I suggest the US needs to stop supporting dictators and death squads. The US needs to stop funding and arming these types of people. Is the US the root cause of all of these conflicts? No. Has the US often made the situations worse by funding and arming the worst sorts of peoples and governments? Yes.

  306. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: What about the conflicts where the US either started the conflict or funded one side or the other? [/quote]

    Would you like to name some of these phantom conflicts of yours where the US started it all?

    [quote]Malik: What responsibility does the US have to clean up the mess when it has funded some very bad people and movements? What role does the US have in Iran considering it supported a murderous dictator there? [/quote]

    Most of the Third World is run by murdering thieves or thieving murderers. We have to deal with one or the other. That does not mean we endorse them.

    As for Iran, the Shah was relatively benign compared to the other regimes in the area. His replacement was hardly an improvement but rather quite an enthusiastic murderer. How do you respond to the majority of Iranians who wish the mullahs had never taken over and want them overthrown in favor of a pro-US government?

    [quote]Malik: What role does the US have in Iraq when it supported a dictator there, before during and after he used weapons of mass destruction on his own people? What role does the US have in Central and South America after having support right wing death squads there that were responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people? [/quote]

    Malik, you keep rolling out this same old propaganda line about the US supporting Saddam. It’s childish nonsense. Saddam murdered his own way to the top in Iraq. Saddam is responsible for Saddam, not America. The fact that we used him to beat up on Iran is not support for his dictatorship but rather a successful attempt to weaken both the evil dictatorships in Iraq and Iran. I note that you never respond to this rather transparent truth but retreat always into simple-minded propaganda sound bites.

    As for the death squads south of the border, those countries are responsible for their own murderous behavior. The US does not have a magic wand that can make these squalid little banana dictatorships behave. They are responsible for their own crimes, not America. Your pathetic attempt to blame America for every crime committed in faraway lands demonstrates a rather feverish hatred for your own country.

    [quote]Malik: Quite often what people think of as “US help” is nothing more than the US trying to clean up mistakes it had made in these countries. [/quote]

    Pure nonsense. The US is not all-powerful. It is not working overtime in every country around the world to screw each one up. The locals are perfectly capable at screwing their own countries up and do so with relentless determination.

    Steve

  307. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Posted “Malik: What about the conflicts where the US either started the conflict or funded one side or the other?

    Would you like to name some of these phantom conflicts of yours where the US started it all?”

    Are you unaware of the several coups that the CIA has orchestrated? Is your grasp of history that bad?

    Posted “Most of the Third World is run by murdering thieves or thieving murderers. We have to deal with one or the other. That does not mean we endorse them. ”

    No, I guess we just send them arms to continue their murdering and send them funds to prop them up. What is the difference?

    Posted “As for Iran, the Shah was relatively benign compared to the other regimes in the area. His replacement was hardly an improvement but rather quite an enthusiastic murderer.”

    Benign eh? He was responsible for the torture and deaths of tens of thousands of his own people. Is this a man we should have supported? As for his replacement, even think that if the US hadnt supported the Shah it might not have taken an “Islamic Revolution” to topple him?

    Posted “Saddam murdered his own way to the top in Iraq. Saddam is responsible for Saddam, not America”

    The CIA supported his rise to the top. We supported him before during and after his war with Iran and before during and after he gassed his own people. How can you sit there and defend the war against Iraq to find WMD destruction when he was our ALLY and he used them?

    Posted “As for the death squads south of the border, those countries are responsible for their own murderous behavior. The US does not have a magic wand that can make these squalid little banana dictatorships behave. They are responsible for their own crimes, not America.”

    So America has no responsibility for sending arms down there? We have no responsibility for training these murderers? I would accept what you say if we didnt suppor arm and fund these people. We did, hence we had a role in the brutality.

    Posted “Your pathetic attempt to blame America for every crime committed in faraway lands demonstrates a rather feverish hatred for your own country. ”

    You inability to accept the fact that I can love my country but hate its foreign policy demonstrates a lack of intelligence on your part. Do you love every part of America? I know you dont, I have seen you rail on certain issues yourself. Does this mean you hate America? I would never claim so. I love America, I want to see American foreign policy properly represent what, we as a nation, are all about. Current US policy is murderous and immoral, not to mention unamerican.

    Posted “Pure nonsense. The US is not all-powerful. It is not working overtime in every country around the world to screw each one up. The locals are perfectly capable at screwing their own countries up and do so with relentless determination.”

    Indeed, so why does the US feel the need to add fuel to the fire by sending arms and cash to the worst of the lot? If this stuff is happening, why does the US take sides and then add to the violence?

  308. anonymous says:

    Iranians

    [quote]Malik:As for his replacement, even think that if the US hadnt supported the Shah it might not have taken an “Islamic Revolution” to topple him? [/quote]

    The Iranians could have chosen a democracy to replace the Shah. They chose a murdering theocracy. How is the US to blame for that?

    Aliandra

  309. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Posted “The Iranians could have chosen a democracy to replace the Shah. They chose a murdering theocracy. How is the US to blame for that?

    Aliandra”

    You seem to be unaware how the politics of dissent often work in the Middle East. The government, often US backed, suppresses all democratic dissent. We see that today in places like Jordan and Saudi Arabia. The only places where the people can feel sem-free are the mosques. This is why you see almost all dissent in the Middle East coming from the mosques. They are the one place where corrupt leaders are less likely crack down. Hence, when regime change happens it is often at the hands of the only organised opposition, the religious extremists.

    This isnt always the case, Egypt has been cracking down on the Muslim Brotherhood again, their crime? Calling for democratic elections.

    Saudi Arabia is the perfect example. The allow no democratic or moderate opposition to form. Hence the only opposition, in any real terms, are extremists. So when the west calls for reforms the Saudis can rightly say the only reformers are Islamic extremists and terrorists. What they dont tell you is that they have puposely crushed all moderate and democratic dissent for this very reason.

    If the US was really interested in democracy in the Middle East it would pressure these countries to allow a valid moderate opposition. The US has placed precious little pressure on any kind on Saudi Arabia. Back to the original topic, had the US pressured the Shah to allow a democratic and moderate opposition they would have taken power. Anyone who knows the Iranian people can tell you, that as a whole, they do not want a religious government, they never did. They were not given the choice. The way the country was ran by the Shah meant the only power aside from the government was the clerics.

    This is what worries me about Saudi Arabia. The royal family will, Insha’Allah, one day fall. If, as it currently stands, the only organised opposition is the extremists, the government that comes next will be worse than the one they have now.

  310. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    [quote] The government, often US backed, suppresses all democratic dissent. We see that today in places like Jordan and Saudi Arabia.[/quote]

    Often? The US has no troops standing in the way of reform in these countries. There are 14 countries in the mid-east, about 20 if you count North Africa. If the US is poltically or financially supporting 3 or 4 of these countries, who’s to blame for the exact same conditions in the other 16? The Jews?

    [quote] If the US was really interested in democracy in the Middle East it would pressure these countries to allow a valid moderate opposition. The US has placed precious little pressure on any kind on Saudi Arabia. [/quote]

    No pressure will force these countries to reform if they don’t want to. US disapproval won’t turn these places into Switzerland. The US has been screaming about Sudan for close to a year now. Not having much of an effect.

    [quote] the only organised opposition is the extremists, the government that comes next will be worse than the one they have now.[/quote]

    If extemists get in, it’s because they have substantial popular support. I’d say let the extremism burn itself out. Once a majority of people realize that extremism sucks, they will dispense with it forever.

    Aliandra

  311. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Posted “Often? The US has no troops standing in the way of reform in these countries. There are 14 countries in the mid-east, about 20 if you count North Africa. If the US is poltically or financially supporting 3 or 4 of these countries, who’s to blame for the exact same conditions in the other 16? The Jews?”

    Nice try, using the anti-semitism arguement. You brought that up, not me. The US supports, with arms, funds, and politically, most of the Arab nations. Some more than others, of course.

    Posted “No pressure will force these countries to reform if they don’t want to. US disapproval won’t turn these places into Switzerland. The US has been screaming about Sudan for close to a year now. Not having much of an effect.”
    The US could do much more than they are, that is for sure. Link Egyptian and Jordanian aid with concrete steps in reforming their governments. Many of these countries know that the US will do nothing. Look at Saudi Arabia, Prince Bandar here in DC owns most of the politicians here as well as the media.

    Posted “If extemists get in, it’s because they have substantial popular support. I’d say let the extremism burn itself out. Once a majority of people realize that extremism sucks, they will dispense with it forever.”

    Once again, you dont seem to know how these things work. Do you honestly think that the religious extremists had a majority of support when the Shah fell? No way, but they were the only organised force out there. In a power vacuum that is enough.

  312. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    [quote] Once again, you dont seem to know how these things work. Do you honestly think that the religious extremists had a majority of support when the Shah fell? No way, but they were the only organised force out there. In a power vacuum that is enough.[/quote]

    You’re half-right, Malik. The Ayatollah had no plurality of support himself. However, the religious groups allied themselves with the Leftists and the Communists, and that gave them a plurality of support.

    Then, as is true with every rebellion, the more motivated and well-armed rebels purged the rebellion of the ‘less desirable allies’ i.e. the Leftists and the Communists, and took over the government.

    I do agree with Aliandra, however. Extremism is cyclical. As much as it would harm the US, I think that letting the extremists turn Saudi into Afghanistan for even a few years would so damage their cause that they would collapse inward and implode. A similar thing must happen to Europe as well, to remind them that their brand of Liberalism is equtable with cultural suicide. As we can see in France right now, where young immigrant gangs are attacking protestors (protesting for minority rights, even!) in Paris, you know that some people are completely missing the point of World War II.

  313. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    You never seem to address my point that our limited support of Saddam during the Iran-Iraq war was intended to render both parties weaker. Your rather simple-minded argument is that such support made him stronger. The reality is different. Our support for both Iraq and Iran made them both weaker by keeping their belligerence focused on each other. If two evil nations want to duke it out to the death, that’s exactly the kind of thing we should be supporting.

    As for the contemptible Saudis, this is a fairly transparent heads I win, tails you lose argument by you. Our treatment of the Saudis has been enlightened. We respected their culture, their sovereignty, and their religion and helped them get enormously wealthy. The fact that they remained murderous barbarians is not America’s fault but theirs for not embracing the larger world.

    You are simply a broken record as far as the baseless accusations of the US being responsible for South American death squads. It’s pure crap.

    As for the US funding bad guys in foreign countries, very often there are no good guys to support in a Third World country. There are just various degrees of bad guys. You gotta pick one group of bad guys over the other group and hope for the best if you intend to have any influence there. For example, who are the good guys in Pakistan? In Yemen? In Saudi Arabia? You’re not going to find any Boy Scouts leading governments or the opposition there.

    Steve

  314. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    [quote] Malik: Look at Saudi Arabia, Prince Bandar here in DC owns most of the politicians here as well as the media.[/quote]

    435 members in the House (plus Samoan, Puerto Rican, Virgin Islands, and Guam observers), 100 senators, and most of these critters are owned by the oily Bandar? Well, that’s a new one, especially after you keep telling us that it’s the US propping up the Saudi government, not the other way around.

    Jumpin’ Jehosephat. And I thought it was domestic lobbyists running DC.

    [quote] Nice try, using the anti-semitism arguement. You brought that up, not me. [/quote]

    Sorry if you missed the sarcasm. I merely re-iterated a common sentiment in that part of the world, the same part that sprung the notion of 4000 Jews not showing up at the WTC on 9-11. I am still waiting to hear that 4000 Jews didn’t go to the beach the day of the tsunami, but perhaps some sense is dawning over there.

    [quote]The US supports, with arms, funds, and politically, most of the Arab nations.[/quote]

    Most, huh? Name all the Arab countries the US calls an ally or supports with funds and arms.

    Aliandra

  315. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Current US policy is murderous and immoral, not to mention unamerican. [/quote]

    All that tsunami aid, all that AIDS aid, all that cash given to the IMF, Food Aid, and World Bank are murderous and immoral, not to mention unamerican, huh?

  316. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    I feel that the US has a responsibility like that of a “big brother.” I mean, doesn’t the big brother in a home interfere when his younger brethern when they start quarrelling, and settle the issue? He has the responsibility to do so — and the power.

    If he looks away then his brothers are fighting, the entire house house will go the rocks.

    If the world is our home, we have brother countries here, some of who developed and some of who are developing. We need a monitor to take care that the world is not destroyed by meaningless infighting. The US has the military strength, the financial resouces and technical sophistication to try and maintain peace in the world.

    This is how I view US interaction in other countries.

    PS: And just as the elder brother’s efforts in settling a dispute are not always appreciated, I think the US views too are not being judged in the right spirit.

    [Modified by: Ravi (Ravi) on April 05, 2005 09:32 AM]

  317. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Ravi,

    It is the quarelling countries themselves who are responsible for solving their own problems, not the US. There are perhaps sixty wars in progress around the world at any given moment. We can not intervene in every single such dispute even if we were so inclined. We must pick and choose those which make sense for us to intervene. In most cases, that restricts our intervention to those which affect the security of the US.

    I am also constantly amazed at how casually foreigners want to spend American lives and money. To be blunt, you have to give me a really good reason to put the young boys in my neighborhood at risk of their lives to solve your problems. I also don’t see why some factory worker in Chicago should chip in part of his paycheck to solve foreign problems, which in most cases could be solved by simple measures by the foreigners themselves. Also, most of that money sent abroad is wasted, ending up in the pockets of thug dictators.

    And in the end, any good the US does will hardly be appreciated. Take a long look at Saudi Arabia, which America built and made rich beyond belief. In gratitude, the Saudis reply with mass murder and religious hate for their American benefactors. There is no country Saudis hate more than the one that lifted them up out of poverty and ignorance. France would not exist were it not for the sacrifice of thousands of American lives, yet all that is forgotten in favor of small-minded jealousy of the US. Two members of my family risked their lives in the military freeing France. Quite frankly, France was not worth it.

    Steve

  318. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Posted “It is the quarelling countries themselves who are responsible for solving their own problems, not the US. There are perhaps sixty wars in progress around the world at any given moment.”

    What about the conflicts where the US either started the conflict or funded one side or the other? What responsibility does the US have to clean up the mess when it has funded some very bad people and movements? What role does the US have in Iran considering it supported a murderous dictator there? What role does the US have in Iraq when it supported a dictator there, before during and after he used weapons of mass destruction on his own people? What role does the US have in Central and South America after having support right wing death squads there that were responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people?

    Quite often what people think of as “US help” is nothing more than the US trying to clean up mistakes it had made in these countries.

  319. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    [/quote]Quite often what people think of as “US help” is nothing more than the US trying to clean up mistakes it had made in these countries. [/quote]

    99% of the time the problems are caused by the countries themselves. The US wasn’t pulling the trigger on the Kurds, the Shiites, the Syrian population of Hama, or the Iranians. The sooner countries stop blaming the US for their mistakes, the sooner they will solve them.

  320. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Posted “Tell that to the French!

    With their insistance that all things are well in La Zone, yet increasingly pressured by immigrants over acceptance of non-French (and in fact anti-French in some cases) culture, there’s a pressure cooker there ready to explode.

    Read http://no-pasaran.blogspot.com. It’s a fairly good blog detailing France from the critical perspective of a Frenchman.”

    I would suggest much of the anti-French “culture” is a reaction to the extreme amount of racism in French society. Having spent some time in France and knowing some French of Arabic descent, I can tell you that the racism and bigotry they face there is second to none. When non whites are accepted as eqaully French much of this “anti-French” stuff will disappear. The French themselves must realise that things are going to change, like it or not. The old empire is coming back to haunt you!

    Interesting to note, in Quebec Arabic is set to become the second language of children in school. This year Arabic will eclipse all other languages, besides French, spoken at home. Here in the Washington DC area some high schools have begun to offer Arabic along side the traditional Spanish, German and French.

  321. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Iranians

    [quote]If the US was serious about democratic reform…[/quote]

    It would take out the threats first and then work on the allies later. Your methodology would tie hands to diplomacy while the actual dangers are there pushing the other way.

    I cannot deny that there are some states, such as Saudi, that seem inviolate. This is a base stupidity in US policy. Period. However, Neutering Iraq created representative Government there, and now with this June Revolution threat in Iran (http://regimechangeiran.blogspot.com) Iran -may- be overthrown as well.

    And I have great respect for the Iranian people and their dreams.

  322. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Iranians

    Posted “It would take out the threats first and then work on the allies later. Your methodology would tie hands to diplomacy while the actual dangers are there pushing the other way.”

    No, just the opposite. My plan would actually pull the rug out from underneath those who hate us the most. Their greatest recruiting tool is US support for these regimes. A three pronged approach would work wonders. 1. Stop all aid to non democractic states in the Middle East or tie the aid directly to democractic reform. 2. Stop all aid of any sort with Israel unless they pull back to the 1967 borders as demanded by international law and dozens of UN resolutions. 3. Pull all US forces out of the Gulf, completely. No US Navy in Bahrain, no US troops in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Yemen.

    In three steps you would remove any basis with which these groups have for recruiting terrorists.

    Posted “However, Neutering Iraq created representative Government there.”

    Iraq is still a work in progress. There is no way to tell if it will work or not. Three years from now might see the country in a full civil war with three entities, a Sunni and Shia state topped off by a Kurdish state. It is still much too early to claim victory in Iraq. Besides, any democratically elected government in the area, including Iraq, will be anti-American until Americans change their foreign policy.

    Posted “And I have great respect for the Iranian people and their dreams.”

    The Iranian people are hardly united in what they want. The current government in Iran is a direct result of US support for the Shah. Remember the US helped instigate a coup which overthrew the elected leader of Iran. As to the Iranian people and their dreams, one would wonder if you know any Iranians in real life. Again you are substituting the internet for real life. With all of your talk about a Zorastorian reawakening of Iran it would seem you are WAY off base.

    [Modified by: Malik (celticview) on April 06, 2005 08:19 AM]

  323. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Iranians

    Posted “(http://regimechangeiran.blogspot.com) Iran -may- be overthrown as well.”

    Anyone think of telling this guy if you plan to overthrow a government you dont give a time line for the events on line? With these types of people planning it I wouldnt hold your breath. June will come and go without anything happening. I suspect this guy is about as credible as the Iraqi dissidents were here in the US and Europe.

  324. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Iranians

    [quote]The current government in Iran is a direct result of US support for the Shah. Remember the US helped instigate a coup which overthrew the elected leader of Iran[/quote]

    The current government in Iran is a direct result of Iranian inclination. They chose to replace the Shah with a rigid theocracy, not a liberal democracy.

  325. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Posted “The current government in Iran is a direct result of Iranian inclination. They chose to replace the Shah with a rigid theocracy, not a liberal democracy.”

    They had little choice. The Shah did not allow any democratic or moderate opposition. The only group that had the power and strength to fill the pwoer vaccum were the extremists. Hd the US backed Shah allowed a democratic opposition this might not have been the case.

  326. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Iranians

    [quote]In three steps you would remove any basis with which these groups have for recruiting terrorists. [/quote]

    Except for the fact that Israel would still exist – the destruction of which is enshrined in Hamas’ charter. There’s also that pesky ‘Jihad’ thing. No matter how many ‘concessions’ the US makes to pull troops out, it will be seen as a sign of weakness. Look at the 1979 Iran revolution. Carter -apologized- to Khomeini, and Khomeini responded by taking hostages and declaring trumphantly “The Americans will do nothing”. That phrase reverberates through the extremists today – show Beheadings on video, start lawsuits, claim torture, it’s all in the same Al-Quaeda playbook – the point is to use free societies to paralyze free societies and force these kinds of concessions.

    In this one case, I prefer Steve’s option. Keep the troops there, and when the extremists come, take them out. Radicalize the population? No. Malik has already said that 99% of Muslims scorn extremism, so all we have to worry about is the 1%, right? 1% of a billion may seem like a lot, but 10,000,000 people, most untrained with weapons and willing to strap bombs to themselves for freebie virgins and little boys do not an army make. Right?

    [quote]
    Three years from now might see the country in a full civil war with three entities, a Sunni and Shia state topped off by a Kurdish state. It is still much too early to claim victory in Iraq. Besides, any democratically elected government in the area, including Iraq, will be anti-American until Americans change their foreign policy.[/quote]

    There’s the civil war canard again. Keep dreaming about it, Malik. I’m sure that your support makes Iraqis (Who have suffered, unlike you, in a totalitarian regime) proud.
    Also, anti-americanism is not stoked by some overwhelming sense of ‘injustice’ Malik. The common person really doesn’t give a fig about the Palestinians.

    But they do watch a lot of propaganda. Goebbles would be proud.

    [quote]one would wonder if you know any Iranians in real life. Again you are substituting the internet for real life. With all of your talk about a Zorastorian reawakening of Iran it would seem you are WAY off base.[/quote]

    And your support for this is?

    Every Iranian I have talked to [b]IN REAL LIFE[/b] or met online has said a similar thing, wether they are republican or royalist: They want a government based on the Charter of Human Rights.

    And please, Malik, do tell the poor Iranians they need more Islam. Tell the group of students that were tossing the Koran and pictures of Mullahs into the Norooz flames. Tell Ali Sina and his followers about that. You’ll be smacked down hard.

  327. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Iranians

    Posted “There’s also that pesky ‘Jihad’ thing. No matter how many ‘concessions’ the US makes to pull troops out, it will be seen as a sign of weakness.”

    You only hold onto that if you misunderstand what these people are fighting about. I suggest you read the book “Imperial Hubris, Why the West is Loosing the War on Terror.” By Michael Scheuer. He was the head of the Bin Laden desk at the CIA. Bin Laden being the only person to ever have their own department at the CIA. It is his expert opinion that if you get rid of the valid reasons these people have for fighting us, ie support for Israel and client dictators in the Islamic world, that we could and would win the war on terror because they would not be able to find enough recruits to fight. These people, for the most part, on not fighting us because we are democratic, because they “hate our freedoms” or because girls in mini-skirts can buy beer at the corner shop. They have a real list of valid and recognisable political goals. If you read the text of any bin Laden speech you will see this quickly. These people are not fighting and dying to start an Islamic caliphate no matter what anyone says.

    Posted “Look at the 1979 Iran revolution. Carter -apologized- to Khomeini, and Khomeini responded by taking hostages and declaring trumphantly “The Americans will do nothing”. That phrase reverberates through the extremists today – show Beheadings on video, start lawsuits, claim torture, it’s all in the same Al-Quaeda playbook – the point is to use free societies to paralyze free societies and force these kinds of concessions. ”

    You do not seem to have a grasp on why things happen or what the goals of any insurgency is. The goal of any insurgency is to commit acts that cause the powers that they are fighting to overreact and thus alienate the community and get them to support the insurgency. This has worked well in Iraq as a recent British government report noted that US soldiers are “trigger happy” have have killed countless innocent Iraqis, fueling the insurgency.

    Posted “In this one case, I prefer Steve’s option. Keep the troops there, and when the extremists come, take them out. Radicalize the population?”

    Religious extremism is one thing, fighting a foreign occupation is another. US troops in Iraq will indeed fuel popular anti-US sentiment in the region just as US troops in Saudi Arabia has.

    Posted “No. Malik has already said that 99% of Muslims scorn extremism, so all we have to worry about is the 1%, right? 1% of a billion may seem like a lot, but 10,000,000 people, most untrained with weapons and willing to strap bombs to themselves for freebie virgins and little boys do not an army make. Right?”

    Nice way to be insulting. Do you really think that helps you make your argument? Resisting an occupation is actually a right guaranteed under international law. Religious extremism has nothing to do with it.

    Posted “There’s the civil war canard again. Keep dreaming about it, Malik.”

    I dont dream about it, it is a nightmare. All I am saying is that it is far too early to cry victory.

    Posted ” I’m sure that your support makes Iraqis (Who have suffered, unlike you, in a totalitarian regime) proud.”

    Yes, and I am sure that you have suffered as well? If not, you have no right to your ideas and opinions. Take a look, the arugment you use to try and discredit my opinion discredits yours as well.

    Posted “Also, anti-americanism is not stoked by some overwhelming sense of ‘injustice’ Malik. The common person really doesn’t give a fig about the Palestinians.”

    What does one have to do with the other? Anti-Americanism is fueled by outrage over American policies. As to Palestinians, you’ll find that outside the US and Israel they are generally support by most people.

    Posted “But they do watch a lot of propaganda. Goebbles would be proud. ”

    As opposed to the Israelis who want to ethnically cleanse Palestine and the settlements where signs proudly pronounce “Arab Free Zone,” just like ones in Nazi Germany proudly declared “Juden Frei.”(Jewish Free)

    Posted “one would wonder if you know any Iranians in real life. Again you are substituting the internet for real life. With all of your talk about a Zorastorian reawakening of Iran it would seem you are WAY off base.

    And your support for this is?

    Every Iranian I have talked to IN REAL LIFE or met online has said a similar thing, wether they are republican or royalist: They want a government based on the Charter of Human Rights. ”

    We have a couple of Iranian familys that we have been friends with for over a decade. They all want democracy, I never stated anything different. Their version of it and the rule they want the clerics to play in the future is different. I can also vouch that there will be no run of converts wanting to convert to Zoastarism.

    Posted “And please, Malik, do tell the poor Iranians they need more Islam. Tell the group of students that were tossing the Koran and pictures of Mullahs into the Norooz flames. Tell Ali Sina and his followers about that. You’ll be smacked down hard.”

    Ah yes, tough talk from a guy who posts anonymously. Iranians need to be able to make free choices. I never supported cleric rule in the first place, as a Sunni I do not think there is a need for it let alone a religious basis for it. People naturally rebel against things shoved down their throat. I would think that when the clerics fall, and they will, Iran will go to the way it was before, a secular Muslim country. If you think they are all going to start lighting fires and throwing religious texts in it you are wrong. If you think all Iranians will turn into apostates like Sina you are wrong as well. It is time for YOU to keep on dreaming. I would think, just like anything else, that when Iranians are given a chance to make a choice they will stick with Islam as how they knew it before the Islamic Revolution. I think the clerics have actually done a disservice to Islam and will certainly pay the price for driving people away from the faith. It would be better for Islam and Iran if they went.

  328. anonymous says:

    Iranians again

    [quote]They had little choice. {/quote]

    No. The majority of the population backed Khomeinei, who had no problem dispatching all the moderate elements. You can blame the US for supporting the Shah, but you can’t say it’s all the US fault because they backed the Shah.

    Aliandra

  329. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Posted “No. The majority of the population backed Khomeinei, who had no problem dispatching all the moderate elements. You can blame the US for supporting the Shah, but you can’t say it’s all the US fault because they backed the Shah.”

    I do not believe this. Do you have sources that support this? You are saying that the Iranian people, long known to be a secular people, suddenly decided to support Khomeinei in mass? I contend, and I have run this idea pass Iranian friends who agree, that the only reason Khomeinei came to power is because there was no one else with the power base and organisation to do so. Had their been a democratic movement they easily would have won more support than the Islamists. The Shah did not allow such a movement to take root.

    As to the US, I never stated it was America’s fault. You lot cannot seem to grasp this. I am not stating that the US created these situations, I am saying very often they made it worse. The CIA instigated the coup which brought the Shah to power. The US support the murderous rule of the Shah. Hence it didnt create the problem, but sure made the situation a lot worse. So, with us support for the fallen Shah, the US decides to back Iraq and Saddam Hussein to try and clean up the mess they helped to create in Iran. Thus, in trying to clean up one mess they go a long way to creating another mess.

  330. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    [quote]I would suggest much of the anti-French “culture” is a reaction to the extreme amount of racism in French society. Having spent some time in France and knowing some French of Arabic descent, I can tell you that the racism and bigotry they face there is second to none. When non whites are accepted as eqaully French much of this “anti-French” stuff will disappear.[/quote]

    I would add only that France is far more two-faced than a Taqiyya-spouting Ayatollah. At least with the Ayatollah, you can look and see their true beliefs in their Arabic writings. The French mask their bigotry and cultural superiority behind a facade of ‘peace and diplomacy

  331. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Posted “I would add only that France is far more two-faced than a Taqiyya-spouting Ayatollah. At least with the Ayatollah, you can look and see their true beliefs in their Arabic writings. The French mask their bigotry and cultural superiority behind a facade of ‘peace and diplomacy

  332. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote] Do you have sources that support this? You are saying that the Iranian people, long known to be a secular people, suddenly decided to support Khomeinei in mass?[/quote]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iranian_revolution; Quote: “The Shah agreed to introduce a more moderate constitution, but it was too late for compromise. The majority of the population was loyal to Khomeini,�

    http://www.fsmitha.com/h2/ch29ir.html Quote: “Shariati’s death left Khomeini was the overwhelmingly popular leader against the Shah, riding a wave of discontent among common Iraniansâ€?

    Malik, I do not believe the Iranians were secular en masse. There was a small elite of wealthy and secularized Iranians, but the masses were poor and very traditional. As for the westernization, it looks to be a case of too much, too fast, and the greater part of the population, which was religious, couldn’t deal with it.

    [quote] The US support the murderous rule of the Shah. Hence it didnt create the problem, but sure made the situation a lot worse US decides to back Iraq and Saddam Hussein to try and clean up the mess they helped to create in Iran..[/quote]

    And http://www.fsmitha.com/h2/ch29ir.html Quote “In early 1977, Jimmy Carter became President of the United States, and he put human rights into his foreign policy agenda. The Carter administration suggested to Iran that without improving its human rights, aid, including military assistance, might be terminated. The Shah acted on Carter’s wishes.â€?

    The US cannot be blamed for what happened after the Shah’s removal. The majority of Iranians wanted a more traditional and religious society, not a democratic and more secular one. The mess was exclusively the fault of the Iranians, the US did not help them in the least.

    Aliandra

  333. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Posted “The Shah agreed to introduce a more moderate constitution, but it was too late for compromise. The majority of the population was loyal to Khomeini,�

    Sure, I have never doubted this. What I do say is that this support is because he was the ONLY person available! The Iranians had enough of the US backed Shah, so it is no suprise that they didnt want to compromise with this murderer. There was no moderate opposition allowed to form by the Shah, hence Khomeini was the only outlet. You have posted nothing that has disproved what I have said.

    Posted “Shariati’s death left Khomeini was the overwhelmingly popular leader against the Shah, riding a wave of discontent among common Iraniansâ€?

    Again, this does not disprove what I was saying. Iran had been one of the more secular states in the Middle East for years. To think they would suddenly turn extremist over night is nonsense. They turned to Khoneini because they had no other choice, no other options. The same thing is happening all over the Middle East because the US backed dictators do not allow a moderate opposition to form. They crush them immidiately.

    Posted “Malik, I do not believe the Iranians were secular en masse. There was a small elite of wealthy and secularized Iranians, but the masses were poor and very traditional. As for the westernization, it looks to be a case of too much, too fast, and the greater part of the population, which was religious, couldn’t deal with it.”

    Sure, and it was those poor Iranians that held the power? In Iran, like most everywhere else, it is the middle class that actually foments revolution. You’ll find revolutionaries come from the middle or upper class. A good example are the 9/11 hijackers themselves. Most of them came from well off backgrounds and were highly educated. Bin Laden is a prime example………Che Guevera, another prime example.

    Posted “In early 1977, Jimmy Carter became President of the United States, and he put human rights into his foreign policy agenda. The Carter administration suggested to Iran that without improving its human rights, aid, including military assistance, might be terminated. The Shah acted on Carter’s wishes.â€?

    So you are stating that Iran, in early 1977, became a free and open society? The abuses stopped after the Presidents request? Carters “human rights agenda” was nonsense and nothing more than a smoke screen. Here is just one link that shows that the Carter administration completely ignored grave human rights abuses just south of our border. http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB89/ Some human rights policy.

    Posted “The US cannot be blamed for what happened after the Shah’s removal. The majority of Iranians wanted a more traditional and religious society, not a democratic and more secular one. The mess was exclusively the fault of the Iranians, the US did not help them in the least.”

    Nonsense. Iranians had no choice. They had the Shah and his known murderous reign and Khomeinei, there was no choice. They did not have a choice to pick a moderate leadership because the US backed Shah crushed any such movement. You cannot choose a movement that doesnt exist. The US helped overthrow the democratically elected leader of Iran and helped install a dictator, hence it shares some blame for anything that came about because of that.

  334. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    I am very weary of arguing with you, especially since you always drag the dispute down into the mud with personal abuse. When you decide to make your case respectfully, I’ll consider a conversation with you. Until then, I’m not getting down in your mud wallow to wrestle with you.

    Adios,

    Steve

  335. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    Malik,

    [quote]Nonsense. Iranians had no choice. They had the Shah and his known murderous reign and Khomeinei, there was no choice. [/quote]

    Nonsense. This is like saying the Iranians are a bunch of dumb sheep who couldn’t figure out an alternative. Give them more credit than that. They supported him because they really liked him, not because they thought he was the lesser of two evils.

    [quote]The US helped overthrow the democratically elected leader of Iran and helped install a dictator, hence it shares some blame for anything that came about because of that. [/quote]

    C’mon Malik. Even Africa has stopped blaming Daddy Britain and Mommy France for not giving them the cookies when they were younger. Maybe we should just fault the original Muslim invaders of Persia, who share some blame by force-converting the original Parsees to Islam. Had that not happened, Khomeini would never have gotten into power. It’s just as logical.

    Aliandra

  336. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Americans are immoral

    Posted “Nonsense. This is like saying the Iranians are a bunch of dumb sheep who couldn’t figure out an alternative. Give them more credit than that. They supported him because they really liked him, not because they thought he was the lesser of two evils. ”

    You just dont understand history in Iran do you? I am not saying the Iranians couldnt make a choice because they were “dumb sheep”. I am saying that the democratic/moderate opposition in Iran had been CRUSHED! What part of that dont you get. Like many places in the Middle East, the Shah crushed such dissent ruthlessly. Because of the special role of religion in these states the Mosques are often left alone, hence that is where the opposition comes from. The Iranians couled pick a moderate opposition because the Shah had destroyed it. How do you follow a movment that is non-existant because its members and leaders have been killed or imprisoned? The picked Khomeinei picks there was no one else to choose.

    Posted “C’mon Malik. Even Africa has stopped blaming Daddy Britain and Mommy France for not giving them the cookies when they were younger. Maybe we should just fault the original Muslim invaders of Persia, who share some blame by force-converting the original Parsees to Islam. Had that not happened, Khomeini would never have gotten into power. It’s just as logical.”

    You are way off base here. It would seem you are unable to admit the West’s active role in these places. We are not talking about the Islamic invasion of Iran some 1,000 years ago, we are talking about an event that took place in our life time that is still having an great impact today. If you cannot see how the US, orchestrating the coup of a democratically elected government in Iran places us in the middle of things I do not know what to tell you. The US planned and excuted an overthrow of a democratically elected government and installed and supported a murderous tyrant. You are simptomatic of what is what n America today. You are unwilling, or unable to realise and accept that our country has done some really awful stuff, and is still doing it.

  337. anonymous says:

    Re: Iranians

    The Iranians could have chosen a democracy to replace the Shah. They chose a murdering theocracy. How is the US to blame for that?

    Agreed, we can’t really blame the US for the current theocracy in place in Iran today. However you can understand why some people in Iran and everywhere are not impressed by the USs track record on promoting democracy around the world.

    Recall that the CIA lead a campaign (“Operation Ajax” I think it was called) to overthrow the elected Prime Minister of Iran, Mohammed Mossaddegh, and restore the power of the Shah, Reza Pahlavi (who had no democratic mandate). The reasons for this campaign had absolutely nothing to do with promoting democracy, and everything to do with Mossaddegh’s socialist policies towards Iranian oil and his relations with the Tudeh party.

    It seems that today, after the tragedy of Sept 11, the US policy makers might actually be serious about promoting democracy in the Middle East. But you can’t fault people around the world for not having confidence in American intentions. The history just isn’t in their favour.

  338. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Posted “All that tsunami aid, all that AIDS aid, all that cash given to the IMF, Food Aid, and World Bank are murderous and immoral, not to mention unamerican, huh? ”

    If that was the only aid that the US gave, I would agree. Support for dictators who boil their rivals alive(Uzbekistan) is immoral and unAmerican. Support for murderous dictators like Saddam Hussein, King Abd’Allah of Jordan, the Saudi royal family is murderous, immoral and unAmerican. Support for right win death squads, with both arms and cash, who are know to massacre whole villages, slaughter whole buses of peasants, is murderous, immoral and unAmerican.

  339. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Posted “All that tsunami aid, all that AIDS aid, all that cash given to the IMF, Food Aid, and World Bank are murderous and immoral, not to mention unamerican, huh? ”

    If that was the only aid that the US gave, I would agree. Support for dictators who boil their rivals alive(Uzbekistan) is immoral and unAmerican. Support for murderous dictators like Saddam Hussein, King Abd’Allah of Jordan, the Saudi royal family is murderous, immoral and unAmerican. Support for right wing death squads, with both arms and cash, who are know to massacre whole villages, slaughter whole buses of peasants, is murderous, immoral and unAmerican.

  340. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Posted “All that tsunami aid, all that AIDS aid, all that cash given to the IMF, Food Aid, and World Bank are murderous and immoral, not to mention unamerican, huh? ”

    If that was the only aid that the US gave, I would agree. Support for dictators who boil their rivals alive(Uzbekistan) is immoral and unAmerican. Support for murderous dictators like Saddam Hussein, King Abd’Allah of Jordan, the Saudi royal family is murderous, immoral and unAmerican. Support for right wing death squads, with both arms and cash, who are known to massacre whole villages, slaughter whole buses of peasants, is murderous, immoral and unAmerican.

  341. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Posted “You’re half-right, Malik. The Ayatollah had no plurality of support himself. However, the religious groups allied themselves with the Leftists and the Communists, and that gave them a plurality of support.”

    Had the US backed Shah allowed a moderate opposition it is these forces that would have taken over, not any coalition of extremists.

    Posted ” A similar thing must happen to Europe as well, to remind them that their brand of Liberalism is equtable with cultural suicide. As we can see in France right now, where young immigrant gangs are attacking protestors (protesting for minority rights, even!) in Paris, you know that some people are completely missing the point of World War II.”

    Nonsense. History shows us that cultures are not stagnant. You think modern French culture is an eternal event unchanging? Cultures are made and slowly evolve and change. France is set to have a very large African and Middle Eastern tint on its culture, there is nothing they can do about it. It is a done deal. The immigrants in France are having the same problems that large immigrant groups anywhere have. The cultural purity you espouse was never there in the first place.

    I look at the issues that the UK and France are having with immigrants as a bit amusing anyways. Kind of a historical rebuke for their follies of empire.

  342. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Posted “435 members in the House (plus Samoan, Puerto Rican, Virgin Islands, and Guam observers), 100 senators, and most of these critters are owned by the oily Bandar? Well, that’s a new one, especially after you keep telling us that it’s the US propping up the Saudi government, not the other way around. ”

    It is clear you have no clue about the Saudi influence here in the USA. Being that my wife’s father was a long standing Saudi diplomat here at the Embassy in DC, I know a bit about it. Yes, the Saudis, through Prince Bandar, have spread so much money in DC that it is next to impossible to get anywhere with them. They have very close ties with the Bush family, and right before Clinton was elected Bandar gave a million dollar “gift” to Clinton’s old university. You might buy the idea that Bandar had a vested reason to give money to a university in Arkansas, but I sure dont. When Colin Powell resigned Bandar threw him a massive party. As one person reported “the copious amounts of caviar on each table were worth more than my vehicle.”

    I have tons of dirty laundry on the Saudi Embassy, including local businessmen delivering envelopes full of cash to locals from Prince Bandar. The newspapers wont touch it. The Saudis moved all of their banking business out of the US a little over a year ago to avoid the post 9/11 rules regarding foreign money in the USA. The Saudi Embassy now writes their checks drawn on a bank out of Canada. Dont you think that should have made a big news here in the USA, considering the funds that went to the 9/11 terrorists from the wife of Prince Bandar? My family knows personally of a sum of 3 million Saudi Riyals($750,000) that went missing from the Saudi embassy. The assumption was that someone high up there took it because there was no investigation of it. But who is to say that money didnt disappear and go right into the coffers of terrorists here in the USA? None of this does the media even bother to take a look at.

    Posted “Sorry if you missed the sarcasm. I merely re-iterated a common sentiment in that part of the world, the same part that sprung the notion of 4000 Jews not showing up at the WTC on 9-11. I am still waiting to hear that 4000 Jews didn’t go to the beach the day of the tsunami, but perhaps some sense is dawning over there. ”

    You dont know many Arabs if you think that this is common belief amoungst them. Some believe it, sure, but not the majority.

    Posted “Most, huh? Name all the Arab countries the US calls an ally or supports with funds and arms.”

    In the past 10 years the US has supplied the following countries with military, cash or political support: Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Yemen, Palestine, Morrocco, Tunisia, Palestine,and the UAE. The only one of these that has had open elections, the rest are dictators, tyrants and monarchs.

  343. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Posted “435 members in the House (plus Samoan, Puerto Rican, Virgin Islands, and Guam observers), 100 senators, and most of these critters are owned by the oily Bandar? Well, that’s a new one, especially after you keep telling us that it’s the US propping up the Saudi government, not the other way around. ”

    It is clear you have no clue about the Saudi influence here in the USA. Being that my wife’s father was a long standing Saudi diplomat here at the Embassy in DC, I know a bit about it. Yes, the Saudis, through Prince Bandar, have spread so much money in DC that it is next to impossible to get anywhere with them. They have very close ties with the Bush family, and right before Clinton was elected Bandar gave a million dollar “gift” to Clinton’s old university. You might buy the idea that Bandar had a vested reason to give money to a university in Arkansas, but I sure dont. When Colin Powell resigned Bandar threw him a massive party. As one person reported “the copious amounts of caviar on each table were worth more than my vehicle.”

    I have tons of dirty laundry on the Saudi Embassy, including local businessmen delivering envelopes full of cash to locals from Prince Bandar. The newspapers wont touch it. The Saudis moved all of their banking business out of the US a little over a year ago to avoid the post 9/11 rules regarding foreign money in the USA. The Saudi Embassy now writes their checks drawn on a bank out of Canada. Dont you think that should have made a big news here in the USA, considering the funds that went to the 9/11 terrorists from the wife of Prince Bandar? My family knows personally of a sum of 3 million Saudi Riyals($750,000) that went missing from the Saudi embassy. The assumption was that someone high up there took it because there was no investigation of it. But who is to say that money didnt disappear and go right into the coffers of terrorists here in the USA? None of this does the media even bother to take a look at.

    Posted “Sorry if you missed the sarcasm. I merely re-iterated a common sentiment in that part of the world, the same part that sprung the notion of 4000 Jews not showing up at the WTC on 9-11. I am still waiting to hear that 4000 Jews didn’t go to the beach the day of the tsunami, but perhaps some sense is dawning over there. ”

    You dont know many Arabs if you think that this is common belief amoungst them. Some believe it, sure, but not the majority.

    Posted “Most, huh? Name all the Arab countries the US calls an ally or supports with funds and arms.”

    In the past 10 years the US has supplied the following countries with military, cash or political support: Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Yemen, Palestine, Morrocco, Tunisia, Palestine,and the UAE. Only one of these that has had open elections, the rest are dictators, tyrants and monarchs.

  344. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Posted “435 members in the House (plus Samoan, Puerto Rican, Virgin Islands, and Guam observers), 100 senators, and most of these critters are owned by the oily Bandar? Well, that’s a new one, especially after you keep telling us that it’s the US propping up the Saudi government, not the other way around. ”

    It is clear you have no clue about the Saudi influence here in the USA. Being that my wife’s father was a long standing Saudi diplomat here at the Embassy in DC, I know a bit about it. Yes, the Saudis, through Prince Bandar, have spread so much money in DC that it is next to impossible to get anywhere with them. They have very close ties with the Bush family, and right before Clinton was elected Bandar gave a million dollar “gift” to Clinton’s old university. You might buy the idea that Bandar had a vested reason to give money to a university in Arkansas, but I sure dont. When Colin Powell resigned Bandar threw him a massive party. As one person reported “the copious amounts of caviar on each table were worth more than my vehicle.”

    I have tons of dirty laundry on the Saudi Embassy, including local businessmen delivering envelopes full of cash to locals from Prince Bandar. The newspapers wont touch it. The Saudis moved all of their banking business out of the US a little over a year ago to avoid the post 9/11 rules regarding foreign money in the USA. The Saudi Embassy now writes their checks drawn on a bank out of Canada. Dont you think that should have made a big news here in the USA, considering the funds that went to the 9/11 terrorists from the wife of Prince Bandar? My family knows personally of a sum of 3 million Saudi Riyals($750,000) that went missing from the Saudi embassy. The assumption was that someone high up there took it because there was no investigation of it. But who is to say that money didnt disappear and go right into the coffers of terrorists here in the USA? None of this does the media even bother to take a look at.

    Posted “Sorry if you missed the sarcasm. I merely re-iterated a common sentiment in that part of the world, the same part that sprung the notion of 4000 Jews not showing up at the WTC on 9-11. I am still waiting to hear that 4000 Jews didn’t go to the beach the day of the tsunami, but perhaps some sense is dawning over there. ”

    You dont know many Arabs if you think that this is common belief amoungst them. Some believe it, sure, but not the majority.

    Posted “Most, huh? Name all the Arab countries the US calls an ally or supports with funds and arms.”

    In the past 10 years the US has supplied the following countries with military, cash or political support: Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Yemen, Palestine, Morrocco, Tunisia, Palestine,and the UAE. Only one of these has had open elections, the rest are dictators, tyrants and monarchs.

  345. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Iranians

    Posted “Agreed, we can’t really blame the US for the current theocracy in place in Iran today. However you can understand why some people in Iran and everywhere are not impressed by the USs track record on promoting democracy around the world.

    Recall that the CIA lead a campaign (“Operation Ajax” I think it was called) to overthrow the elected Prime Minister of Iran, Mohammed Mossaddegh, and restore the power of the Shah, Reza Pahlavi (who had no democratic mandate). The reasons for this campaign had absolutely nothing to do with promoting democracy, and everything to do with Mossaddegh’s socialist policies towards Iranian oil and his relations with the Tudeh party. ”

    Becareful, posting historical facts will get you branded as anti-American.

    Posted “It seems that today, after the tragedy of Sept 11, the US policy makers might actually be serious about promoting democracy in the Middle East. But you can’t fault people around the world for not having confidence in American intentions. The history just isn’t in their favour.”

    I dont buy it. Actions speak louder than words. If they were serious about democracy in the Middle East they would start with their own “allies” first. Why not link political and human rights reform to the money the US gives to Egypt? Why not question why countries in the area, like Jordan for example, have cracked down on their already dismal human rights and base that on the US “war on terror” and the laws passed here? If the US was serious about democratic reform we would hear much more here in DC about Saudi Arabia, but we dont. If the US was serious about democratic reform in the Muslim world they wouldnt have taken the leader of Uzbekistan and their latest and great friend. You know, the guy who is known for boiling his political rivals alive? Why have we done this? Because there are natural resources there we want and he is an “ally” in the “war on terror”. Never mind his brutal policies have forced a peaceful opposition to take up arms to defend itself. This leader, and our support for him, has created another Islamic insurgency in an area awash with them.

    The US not serious about peace in the Middle East. It is serious about using client dictators in the area to push its own agenda however.

  346. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Posted “I am very weary of arguing with you, especially since you always drag the dispute down into the mud with personal abuse. When you decide to make your case respectfully, I’ll consider a conversation with you. Until then, I’m not getting down in your mud wallow to wrestle with you. ”

    This from the person who cannot take anything critical of the US without chants and cries of “anti-American” and telling me that I hate America. Physician, heal thyself.

  347. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    [quote]Nonsense. History shows us that cultures are not stagnant. You think modern French culture is an eternal event unchanging? Cultures are made and slowly evolve and change. France is set to have a very large African and Middle Eastern tint on its culture, there is nothing they can do about it.[/quote]

    Tell that to the French!

    With their insistance that all things are well in La Zone, yet increasingly pressured by immigrants over acceptance of non-French (and in fact anti-French in some cases) culture, there’s a pressure cooker there ready to explode.

    Read http://no-pasaran.blogspot.com. It’s a fairly good blog detailing France from the critical perspective of a Frenchman.

  348. anonymous says:

    Re(4): Americans are immoral

    What an abusive little turd you are, Malik. You argue like a street corner punk: full of insult and opinion and attitude but with a slippery grip on facts. If you were more intelligent, you would not need to argue in such an unintelligent way.

    Steve

  349. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Steve,

    It is useless to point that out to him. He believes the omnipotent hand of the US is behind every clogged-up toilet in the world, even when the toilets know otherwise.

    Aliandra

  350. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    I say it is even more useless to engage Malik in any form of conversation. I say IGNORE him for the TROLL that he is.

  351. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “What an abusive little turd you are, Malik. You argue like a street corner punk: full of insult and opinion and attitude but with a slippery grip on facts. If you were more intelligent, you would not need to argue in such an unintelligent way.”

    The above post displays for all to see what a hypocrite you are. You say I cannot debate in a proper manner yet you met any negative talk with knee jerk reactionary statement of “anti-Americanism” or “you hate America.” You never ever address the facts. YOU Steve have no idea what being an American is. Your attitude is very totalitarian. You can not accept any wrong doing by our country. I have never seen you admit that our country can do anything but wonderous miracles.

    Your attitude will only bring about decades more suffering and bloodshed. I start to wonder if this isnt what you really want. Your bloodlust and calls for mass murder and carpet bombing of civilian areas sure make it seem like the case.

  352. anonymous says:

    Re(5): Americans are immoral

    Steve writes “What an abusive little turd you are, Malik. You argue like a street corner punk: full of insult and opinion and attitude but with a slippery grip on facts. If you were more intelligent, you would not need to argue in such an unintelligent way.”

    The above post displays for all to see what a hypocrite you are. You say I cannot debate in a proper manner yet you meet any negative talk with knee jerk reactionary statement of “anti-Americanism” or “you hate America.” You never ever address the facts. YOU Steve have no idea what being an American is. Your attitude is very totalitarian. You can not accept any wrong doing by our country. I have never seen you admit that our country can do anything but wonderous miracles.

    Your attitude will only bring about decades more suffering and bloodshed. I start to wonder if this isnt what you really want. Your bloodlust and calls for mass murder and carpet bombing of civilian areas sure make it seem like the case.

  353. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    Posted “It is useless to point that out to him. He believes the omnipotent hand of the US is behind every clogged-up toilet in the world, even when the toilets know otherwise. ”

    You cannot seem to admit it, whether you believe it or not, that a very large chunk of the world despises the US for its actions internationally. We do not evenhave to agree on the facts to accept that this is what a large percentage of the global community thinks.

    As to your opinions, you seem unable to accept the American role and responsibility in many places around the world. You seem to think that American foreign policy is completely benevolant and that whatever mistakes we have made have been small and were not really our fault. What does it matter that we supplied guns and cash to right wing death squads in the jungles of Hunduras……..the Russians had nukes right?

  354. anonymous says:

    Re(7): Americans are immoral

    [quote] Malik: You cannot seem to admit it, whether you believe it or not, that a very large chunk of the world despises the US for its actions internationally.[/quote]

    A very large chunk despises the US for a number of reasons, from globalization, capitalism, American culture overrunning their own, to being the guy with the power and the money, to just being. However, when it comes to getting cash, everyone loves the US.

    [quote]You seem to think that American foreign policy is completely benevolant and that whatever mistakes we have made have been small and were not really our fault. [/quote]

    I never said it was completely benevolent. I have always said that it was a mixture of good and bad. I never once defended US support of the Shah. I criticized what the Iranians did to themselves afterward. They are not blaming America in the least for what their revolution did. They are blaming the turbans they put in power.

    [quote]What does it matter that we supplied guns and cash to right wing death squads in the jungles of Hunduras……..the Russians had nukes right?[/quote]

    The US’ first priority is to protect itself and the nuclear threat was no ghost. Yes, it used conflicts that were already in progress. No, it did not start them, nor was one side much better than the other. Had these sides made peace, there wouldn’t have been a thing we could do about it.

    On the other thread, you were defending Prophet Mohammad for warring, killing, looting, and raiding to protect his interests. Seems you have a liking for contradiction.

    Well, I think this thread has gone as far as it could go. I am signing out of it.

    Over and out
    Aliandra

  355. anonymous says:

    Re(8): Americans are immoral

    Posted “The US’ first priority is to protect itself and the nuclear threat was no ghost. Yes, it used conflicts that were already in progress. No, it did not start them, nor was one side much better than the other. Had these sides made peace, there wouldn’t have been a thing we could do about it. ”

    I find the fact that you are jusfying American support for mass murder and right wing death squads sick and disguisting. History will always repeat itself unless people realise what is being done in THEIR name. I reject your idea that supporting murder gangs in Honduras, or training mass murderers at US government schools here in the USA had anything to do with protecting us from Russian nuclear weapons. It is clear you bought the scare tactics 100%

    Posted “On the other thread, you were defending Prophet Mohammad for warring, killing, looting, and raiding to protect his interests. Seems you have a liking for contradiction. ”

    It seems you have an inability for critical thinking. I hardly think that a religious leader fighting wars in lands he lived in has any comparison to the USA supporting right wing death squads that murder nuns and innocent villagers 2,000 miles away for its border.

    Posted “Well, I think this thread has gone as far as it could go. I am signing out of it.”

    You werent really in it in the first place. Do you see how you have taken a rather extreme position? No, of course you dont. I have said before, and I will state it again, that I love America and I think we do some great things in the world. At the same time I accept that our government also has its hands coated in blood because of some immoral policy choices we have made. I am walking the middle ground willing to see both aspects. You and Steve seem to think America have no responsiblity for the chaos it has either started or supported around the world.

    I hope, for this country’s sake and the rest of the world, that other Americans will be more receptive to the changes we need to make in our foreign policy. If not, the world is consigned to decades of blood and death.

  356. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    We could have pulled back after the end of WWII and let the Russians play their little game of domination but we didn’t Malik. Sure we slept with some sleazy people, sure we did some things we shouldn’t have done but the world would be a worse place than it is now by far if we hadn’t opposed the Russians. If you want to put blame on someone for the way the world is now you should put it where the biggest percentage of it belongs on the Russians. Im not defending nor deflecting criticism of what we have done as a country just pointing out facts.

    billT

  357. anonymous says:

    Re(9): Americans are immoral

    Posted: ” I hardly think that a religious leader fighting wars in lands he lived in in has any comparison to the USA supporting right wing death squads that murder nuns and innocent villagers 2,000 miles away for its border.”

    It’s acceptable for a religious leader to kill thousands of innocent villagers in lands he DOES live in?

  358. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    Posted “We could have pulled back after the end of WWII and let the Russians play their little game of domination but we didn’t Malik. Sure we slept with some sleazy people, sure we did some things we shouldn’t have done but the world would be a worse place than it is now by far if we hadn’t opposed the Russians. If you want to put blame on someone for the way the world is now you should put it where the biggest percentage of it belongs on the Russians. Im not defending nor deflecting criticism of what we have done as a country just pointing out facts. ”

    Again, I do not see what Russians have to do with giving guns and ammo to people who murder whole villages of people, women, children and nuns, in places like Honduras. I know Russia has nothing to do with the fact that US Special Forces are training right wing paramilitaries right now in Columbia to protect the oil lines there. You cannot put off everything we have done in the last 50 years to “fighting the Russians”. That is a way to ignore our responsibility.

    [Modified by: Malik (celticview) on April 07, 2005 01:12 PM]

  359. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Posted “Posted: ” I hardly think that a religious leader fighting wars in lands he lived in in has any comparison to the USA supporting right wing death squads that murder nuns and innocent villagers 2,000 miles away for its border.”

    It’s acceptable for a religious leader to kill thousands of innocent villagers in lands he DOES live in? ”

    Stop deflecting the issue. I have never said anything of the sort was okay. We are talking about American policy and what responsibility it should carry for the choice it made. You loose the case instantly when, to defend America, you must point at religious extremists to justify American actions.

    America is a democratic nation. We should do out best to have and maintain a moral and democratic based foreign policy. We have not. As an American it is MY duty to do whatever I can, no matter how small, to make a change here. Pointing at another country is nothing more than admitting you cannot justify these actions.

  360. anonymous says:

    Re(6): Americans are immoral

    More foolish lies from Malik, and the same ones over and over. How many times have I pointed out that not only have I never called for carpet bombing anything, but that carpet bombing is an obsolete tactic. It’s like accusing me of wanting to pour boiling oil on people. Yet you repeat this lie, and others, endlessly. That’s what makes you an abusive little turd.

    Pointing out that you hate America is hardly an insult but a straightforward observation. I can predict your answer to any topic. It will be a criticism of America, usually based on some radical distortion and sometimes a flat out lie. If you are hard-pressed to criticize America on some topic, then you hijack the topic to another one where you have a cache of ready-made propaganda lines to use to disparage your own country. For Pete’s sake, you were even bitching about America when we went in with massive aid for the tsunami victims. That’s nearly a parody of being anti-American.

    Malik, I think if any group of Americans ever lined us up side by side and asked us twenty questions, they’d be able to figure out pretty fast who was for America and who was against it, who hated it and who loved it, who was willing to defend it and who was willing to sell it out.

    It’s pretty obvious that you believe that being Muslim requires you to be against America, which just may be true. The range of Muslim positions in this forum seem to range from being virulently opposed to America to being mildly against America. You have a creepy Lee Harvey Oswald feel to you, like you gain self esteem and attention by rejecting everything about America and adopting alien beliefs and values. My guess is, just like Oswald, when you get to your promised land you flip your beliefs to play the same game with your fellow Muslims, telling them how it’s all done better in America.

    And by the way, America has performed quite a few wondrous miracles in the world. Writing on this Internet is one of many that the world takes for granted. You might consider them and what a better world it is with America in charge.

    Steve

  361. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Your right Im sure the Russians never gave guns to anyone so they could murder whole villages. Cocaine Malik not oil and those same groups they are fighting were once upon a time armed and financed by the Russians and Cuba.

    billT

  362. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    ” “Posted: ” I hardly think that a religious leader fighting wars in lands he lived in in has any comparison to the USA supporting right wing death squads that murder nuns and innocent villagers 2,000 miles away for its border.”

    It’s acceptable for a religious leader to kill thousands of innocent villagers in lands he DOES live in? ”

    Stop deflecting the issue. I have never said anything of the sort was okay. We are talking about American policy and what responsibility it should carry for the choice it made. You loose the case instantly when, to defend America, you must point at religious extremists to justify American actions. ”

    Mohammad was a religious extremist? Hmmm …

  363. anonymous says:

    Re: Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: Stop deflecting the issue. I have never said anything of the sort was okay. We are talking about American policy and what responsibility it should carry for the choice it made. You loose the case instantly when, to defend America, you must point at religious extremists to justify American actions. [/quote]

    Steve’s Primer on Malik’s Tactics:

    1. Control The Topic.
    In Malik’s World, America = Bad. If you talk about other countries being bad or especially Islam being bad, then you are committing the error of not talking about how bad America is. You must then steer the topic back to “America Is Bad.” For good measure, insult the other poster for not talking about how bad America is. You might also add a dollop of phony patriotism, telling everyone that unrelenting criticism of America is patriotic, while support of America is not.

    Steve

  364. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Posted “Steve’s Primer on Malik’s Tactics:

    1. Control The Topic.
    In Malik’s World, America = Bad. If you talk about other countries being bad or especially Islam being bad, then you are committing the error of not talking about how bad America is. You must then steer the topic back to “America Is Bad.” For good measure, insult the other poster for not talking about how bad America is. You might also add a dollop of phony patriotism, telling everyone that unrelenting criticism of America is patriotic, while support of America is not.”

    Steves motto is “America Uber Alles”. To him the word “America” is a holy word and concept. His nationalism is sickening. I will state this again, as I have before, American is a great country. We have opportunities here that most dont not, in quantities no one has. This has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that our foreign policy is immoral and brutal. Steve cannot contemplate this concept because for him America is something to be worshiped. Anyone who dares think about talking about American faults is a heretic. I support America. It is completely possible to be 100% patriotic and realise that America needs to make changes. I would argue that Steve’s “America Uber Alles” mentality is far from healthy for America. It is not, it is detrimental. This attitude of “my country, do or die” is what has led to some of the worst abuses in human history.

    Steve is a blind nationalist who can stand nothing that stands in the way of his almost religious obession with the “righteouness of America.” I, on the other hand, am able to see it from both directions. I have praised America and I have slammed America. Steve, in his religious zeal, cannot bring himself to even admit America might have issues it needs to deal with. Make you choice up as to who is the real extremist here.

  365. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Americans are immoral

    Posted “Mohammad was a religious extremist? Hmmm …”

    Mohammad(SAW) did not killed thousands of innocents. I think you have him confused with US carpet bombing of civilians in Cambodia and Laos.

  366. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Posted: “Malik: This has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that our foreign policy is immoral and brutal. ”

    Addenda Steve’s Primer on Malik’s Tactics:

    1.America’s foriegn policy is always immoral and brutal. Nothing good can be said about it. This includes humanitarian aid, money for AIDS, and tsunami aid. If Malik acknowledges this part of foriegn policy, then .. a) US is still bad because it’s not giving enough money b) It doesn’t matter because people are being boiled alive in Tajikestan with American approval.

    2. It’s wrong for America to protect itself by violent methods or dubious alliances. The founder of Islam is excused from the same behavior because he did it in his own land.

    3. The conditions of the middle-east are due to the US. Illiteracy, female oppression, intellectual backwardness, religious extremism and high unemployment ultimately have the US behind them because the US supports Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan.

  367. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: To him the word “America” is a holy word and concept.[/quote]

    Finally, Malik, you have spoken the truth. I guess it’s something like setting a monkey down at a typewriter and letting him pound away. Eventually, he’ll type something that makes sense. YEEEHAWWWWWW! Yabetcherass America is a holy thing.

    [quote]Malik: Steves motto is “America Uber Alles”. [/quote]

    I could do worse, motto-wise. It is certainly better than Islam Uber Alles. All the countries that think like that are grim little dictatorships busy crushing the life out of their subjects. When that America Uber Alles mojo rolls into your town, you can start super-sizing your life with the unrestrained pursuit of happiness as a free citizen. You know you are going to get as many newspapers as you can read, shop in free markets full of stuff you want to buy, go to school without needing connections to get in, wave goodbye to the religious police while telling them to kiss your big fat ass, and a hundred channels of cable TV with “Baywatch” marathons. America Uber Alles means everyone gets to control their own future.

    [quote]Malik: His nationalism is sickening.[/quote]

    Coming from an America-basher like you, Malik, this is high praise. Thank you. We certainly could never accuse you of American nationalism, could we? My only hope is that my America-loving makes you even sicker.

    Steve

  368. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Americans are immoral

    [quote]Malik: Steve, in his religious zeal, cannot bring himself to even admit America might have issues it needs to deal with. Make you choice up as to who is the real extremist here. [/quote]

    Steve’s Primer On Malik’s Tactics

    2. Everyone who disagrees with Malik, the soul of moderation, is by definition an extremist. They might be a fascist, a Nazi, or even a Bin Laden. If you can’t tell which, they might be all three!

    Steve

    [Modified by: Steve The American (Steve) on April 07, 2005 02:48 PM]

  369. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Steve is a spineless plumber from ohio.

    Wow guy, what a way to win friends & influence people….. just call them “camel jockeys”. How persuasive & totally liberal of you!

  370. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    This has got to be the longest running thread I’ve ever seen! Steve & Malike are both in DC, and by now should probably just meet @ the Starbuck’s at lunch everyday & continue the debate.

    I think I have to agree w/ Steve about 65-70% of the time as well, the biggest problem being that he uses language that paints w/ too broad a brush, especially seeming to implicate all Muslims w/ terrorism, etc. Qualify those kinds of statements, and you’ve gone a long way towards improving your arguments.

    Malik on the other hand seems to get all his opinions on US foreign policy from his wifes father. Were you previously uninterested/oblivious to Islam & did her parents make you convert as a condition to marrying her? If you didn’t would they have not consented? The answer to all those questions are probably yes. My wife’s Muslim, but I didn’t convert, & her family are good people & didn’t have a problem with it, although they tried. Go figure, a guy who voted for Bush marrying a Muslim. What’s the world coming to, and after 9/11 no less?
    If I may point out an instance of religious tolerance & inclusiveness based on personal experience, we would have been able to get married in a Catholic Church(hey, and they’re the strict ones!) w/out her converting, but we couldn’t even get an Imam to even talk to us. Gee, thanks a lot! (married in neutral place, if you have to know, & yes, life is great. )

    An observation I must state to those who are defensive about the image of Islam. When a group has a name such as “Islamic Jihad” & the only time you ever hear these two words is when they’ve claimed responsibility for a car or suicide bombing, it tends to create a bad word association. I’m just saying. It’s important to hear vocal opposition to this sort of thing, such as the recent fatwa from the group in Spain. Websites like this one where “bridgebuilders” can build bridges is important too. Talking crap at each other all the time isn’t going to do the trick. Ain’t the internet grand?

    Keep up the great blog Mahmood! You rule!

  371. anonymous says:

    Re(2): Fake Hawk

    did somebody just call somebody a bin laden? bottoms up! hey, i’m getting pretty messed up here!

  372. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    I have been reading and enjoying Mahmood’s blog for some time now, and am working to spread Mahmood’s fan base through the States! As an American who has studied and spent time in the Middle East, I find Steve’s commentary embarrassing, extremely limited, and horrendously naive. He appears to be one of millions of Americans that, seemingly, choose to have the same blind faith in government that the pious have towards God. So, after years of reading the blog, I just can’t take it anymore and finally have to respond to at least show that not all Americans are as close minded and blind as Steve appears to be.

    The American invasion of Iraq has absolutely nothing to do with the establishment of a free and fair Iraq, and even less to do with the “liberation” of the Iraqi people. It is all about perpetuating the modern American form of colonization through mercantilism–something that is very clear to many outside the US, but still remains obscured and disbelieved within America. Despite how transparent I find it, the US government’s propoganda machine is apparently quite effective and widely accepted as is not only shown by Steve’s commetary, but by the appalling ignorance of the general American public.

    Since the close of WWII, the United States has institituted policies of colonialization, although instead of following path of say, the British or the French, America has instituted it’s hold over other nations through economics. For example, a common policy of the US, with the assistance of such institutions as the IMF and the World Bank lend various countries money to improve infrastructure, etc., with the knowledge that these countries will never be able to repay the debt and therefore have to default on the loan. Once a country defaults on such a loan, they become a pawn of the US. The US also attempts to install governments that are friendly towards their resource needs. The CIA/British plot against Mossadegh of Iran in 1953 was the first of what would become many US sponsered government coups whose sole aim is to perpetuate US economic domination, and not to improve the lives of the less fortunate.

    When the Saudis sought to punish the US for their support of Israel in the 1970’s OPEC instituted the oil embargo which threw America into chaos. As Saudi Arabia had just recently discoverd oil and the King sought to quickly modernize his country, the US struck a deal with the royal family. In exchange for petrodollars, and with promises that they would never again cut the US off from their precious oil, the United States agreed to modernize the Saudi infrastructure — only the Saudis had to agree to hire US companies to do the work (Halliburton, Bechtel, etc.) thereby keeping massive amounts of money pumping through the US economy.

    What happened in Iraq was quite similiar. Rumored to have as much or even more oil beneath its soil than Saudi Arabia, the US worked for decades to strike such a deal with Saddam, except Saddam would not cooperate. The first Gulf War was simply a warning to Saddam to cooperate “or else” (which is why Baghdad was not invaded) and not based on the “liberation of Kuwait.” The invasion of Kuwait was just a wonderful excuse – and not the fact that it’s sovereignty was at stake, as the United States violated the sovereign of Panama just a year earlier when American troops launched a massive invasion of the peaceful nation and removed Noreiga ( a former CIA agent installed after the assassination of Torijos – neither of whom ultimately cooperated with American interests in the Canal Zone).

    It is very clear what the American foreign policy has become, and although I strongly disagree with it I can extend an understanding towards those who feel as though they are protecting their interests. My frustrations comes not only with such destructive and self-centered policies, but with those who support it with the bullshit claims of “democracy in the Middle East,” or “freedom.”

    America’s foreign policy is immoral as it is not based upon virtues of goodness, it is based upon the promotion of an economic policy that benefits the weathy and encourages the rise of an already too powerful corporatocracy. If one is going to support the policies of the Bush administration, be honest about what it is that you are supporting and don’t hide behind a holier-than-thou, self-righteous attitude. Be frank and open that is it your money you want to protect and not your children.

    You have created a fantastic forum, Mahmood! Keep it going!

    Tereza

  373. anonymous says:

    Americans are immoral

    Came up here by chance. Totally surprised that weird Steve has had the opportunity to remain uncorrected for so long. WTG Tereza !

    A european

  374. Anonymous says:

    America as seen by the rest of the world through the eyes of Hollywood.

    As an American I knew this subject would come up eventually.

    Hollywood is not America and America is certainly not Hollywood. I am not rich nor am I poor, like most people in the world I go to work every day to provide food and shelter for my family.

    I’ve been married for over 30 years to the same woman who has tolerated me so well during all this time despite my many flaws. We have had four wonderful children who have grown to be responsible adults and now that they are getting married and beginning to bring grandchildren into our lives.

    We’ve always gone to church, we have cared for our neighbors in times of crisis and non of us have ever broken any laws other then perhaps a minor traffic ticket.

    So when Saudi teenagers view American television what do they think of me? Do they even realize there are millions of Americans just like me?

  375. docspencer says:

    I have a couple of serious questions:

    1. Newspapers in Denmark and Norway publish cartoons depicting The Prophet Mohammad. Non-Muslims in Europe or anywhere else do not understand why this is such a huge problem for Muslims. I am more educated about Islam than most Westerners and I was unaware that the depiction of the Prophet in a cartoon is so serious that it would call for a fatwa (an order) to kill the author of the cartoon. Again, such a fatwa makes Islam look barbaric in the eyes of the rest of the world. BUT…FOUR-FIVE MONTHS LATER, instead of educating the Europeans about the problem, all of a sudden Muslims are outraged and destroy many properties and INNOCENT lives in some Muslim countries protesting the Danish cartoons. Not one week later. Four-five months later. Clearly this was organized, purposeful action, without any thought about how it will reflect on Islam in the world. I am sorry, but to me this is not rational and peace-loving action, and it makes Islam look bad to the rest of the world. It is NOT what I read in the Koran. It is criminal behavior.
    Could someone who is Muslim shed light on this for me?

    Question 2:
    In more than twelve different instances since 2001, violent Muslim groups take hostage foreign civilians in Iraq, brutally behead them IN THE NAME OF ISLAM AND ALLAH, quite contrary to what the Koran teaches, and broadcast such gruesome beheadings on the Internet all over the world with Al Jazeera’s help. The great majority of Muslims have not seen these beheadings perhaps. You should see these beheadings. I must warn you that it is horrible to see a person’s neck being hacked at when he is alive. Such acts depict Islam and Muslims in the worst possible barbaric way to the rest of the world. If you are a Muslim, you should see at least one of these so that you can see first hand what such “Muslims” did to Islam — NOT TO ANYONE ELSE, BUT TO ISLAM’S REPUTATION IN THE WORLD. We felt horrible seeing such views, but we were not intimidated by them. It made us angry. And I know that the great majority of Muslims and the Koran are against such acts based on what I found. But most non-Muslims don’t know that. They think that this is how Islam is. That is really tragic. Most Muslims in the Middle East have no idea how much such barbaric acts and violent property-destroying demonstrations by Muslims in the name of Allah damaged Islam’s reputation and Muslims everywhere in the world. On a somewhat positive note Al Jazeera has become more well balanced since 2004. That does not mean that its comments are pro-Western. But they seem to be more fair. But it is difficult to understand why Al-Jazeera’s management allows itself to be the mouth peace of Al Qaida with every video tape that Al Qaida releases. Why does the press give any time anywhere in the world to video tapes prepared by any terrorist organization? It does not make any logical sense.
    Could a Muslim person explain this to me also?

    I realize that I may be looking at this with Western biased eyes, and would love to read a rational Muslim explanation of how your side sees these events.

    Thanks and best regards,

    Vic

  376. can we talk says:

    “Could someone who is Muslim shed light on this for me?”

    now, imagine me asking “someone who is christian” to answer a question and tell me that i’m going to be taken seriously.

    “The great majority of Muslims have not seen these beheadings perhaps. You should see these beheadings. I must warn you that it is horrible to see a person’s neck being hacked at when he is alive”….”If you are a Muslim, you should see at least one of these so that you can see first hand ”

    Why do I hear a note of condescension? and why should i be responsible for what some idiots have done who happen to share the same faith, in name, with me?

    “We felt horrible seeing such views, but we were not intimidated by them. It made us angry.”
    who is this “we” and they? why do you presume that people will feel/react a certain way because of their religion? these acts transcend religion and nationality and i hope that many of us (humans) would react as human beings. it is our humanity that makes us feel angry when someone’s head is hacked off and also when we see human beings being treated like animals in near countries by more powerful countries. even support for palestinians is not necessarily religious, the christian palestinians have suffered just as badly and they enlisit the same sympathetic response from most people i know, a human response.

    “But most non-Muslims don’t know that. They think that this is how Islam is. That is really tragic. Most Muslims in the Middle East have no idea how… ”
    you are speaking from an american perspective. because the american public is not exposed to unbiased news. go to Europe and speak to ordinary people (students, cab drivers, shopkeepers, the person sitting across from you in a cafe, tom dick and harriette on the street) and you will get a very different much more enlightened reaction, believe me. in the states, you have to take the trouble to educate yourself by yourself if you want to know what is really going on. the rest of the world is generally a lot more informed.

    “But it is difficult to understand why Al-Jazeera’s management allows itself to be the mouth peace of Al Qaida with every video tape that Al Qaida releases. Why does the press give any time anywhere in the world to video tapes prepared by any terrorist organization? It does not make any logical sense.
    Could a Muslim person explain this to me also?”

    there you go again, with the funny questions. would i ask you to explain why NBC behaves in an illogical manner? write to aljazeera and ask them, or do some research.

    “I realize that I may be looking at this with Western biased eyes, and would love to read a rational Muslim explanation of how your side sees these events.”

    again. there are no SIDES. we are not playing footie. when you talk politics or religion, there will be as many different points of view in a room as there are people. you cannot tell me that all americans are the same. as a general profile, Newyorkers are different from Washingtonians who are different from Texans and from Californians and even beyond those stereotypes, individuals will be different. you have republicans and democrats, WASPs and aetheists, jews and agnostics, people who believe in the death penalty and others who believe in human rights, KKK, women’s emancipators and Warren Jeff supporters, city lovers and country folk, serial peadophiles, homosexual priests and missionaries who dedicate their lives for others. what makes you think that you can understand a kaleidescope of countries that when combined is larger than your own how many times over, and then stereotype them into one mould? as a human being who happens to be muslim, i have more in common with many americans than with other muslims from afghanistan or the Philippines. but at the end of the day, we are all individual human beings!

  377. mahmood says:

    CWT, could you start using <blockquote> and </blockquote> to demarcate your quotes? Just highlight the passage you want to appear as a quote and click the “B-Quote” Quicktag button.

    That will make your responses much more readable.

  378. docspencer says:

    now, imagine me asking “someone who is christian” to answer a question and tell me that i’m going to be taken seriously.

    CWT, I am taking your or anyone elses response seriously.

    “The great majority of Muslims have not seen these beheadings perhaps. You should see these beheadings. I must warn you that it is horrible to see a person’s neck being hacked at when he is alive”….”If you are a Muslim, you should see at least one of these so that you can see first hand ”

    Why do I hear a note of condescension? and why should i be responsible for what some idiots have done who happen to share the same faith, in name, with me?

    I don’t see where I sound condescending, and I do not mean to be CWT. You are not responsible for what other Muslims do. I am just trying to find out why the “bad ones” can do what they do in the name of Allah, without many Imams and government leaders jumping up and denouncing it.

    “But most non-Muslims don’t know that. They think that this is how Islam is. That is really tragic. Most Muslims in the Middle East have no idea how… ”
    you are speaking from an american perspective.

    Of course. That is why I am looking for other perspectives from the area where the action is. From the Middle East. I hope that you guys do not see that as a bad thing. And, you will find that news is biased everywhere, not just in the USA, and it tends to present bad news, because THAT sells.

    again. there are no SIDES. we are not playing footie. when you talk politics or religion, there will be as many different points of view in a room as there are people.

    CWT, of course there are sides. And as you pointed out about the USA there are many sides and many different opinions. Yet we can work together and play together, even if on different sides of a question. What I would like to understand is why some Muslims are killing others in brutal ways, and each other. It seems to me that there must be great differences between the Shia and Sunni if they resort to such brutal violence IN THE NAME OF ALLAH against each other. Based on the same Qur’an, the same words, that I find pretty clear on the subject of killing innocent people and suice, and suicide bombing.

    But I did learn something very important from your answer. And please don’t believe that I am critical of you or Islam. What I learnt from you is that obviously all Sunni and all Shia are not the same. It seems to me that they each, in some parts of the Middle East, selectively ignore the Qur’an, just like we Christians ignore the Bible. But, we are not killing each other in the mostly Christian countries, because one is Catholic and one is Protestant, and certainly not in God’s name.

    I am just trying to understand why such things are happening and done in the name of God (Allah). Can you accept that without blaming us or me or our media? I am just trying to understand.

    Thanks and best regards,

    Vic

  379. can we talk says:

    Mahmood,
    sorry about that but i cant use them because they dont work for me on this computer. my apologies.

    DS,
    actually, the Sunnis and the Shiaas aren’t killing or even hating each other in our country(s) either. they áren’t in bahrain. some of them are families, they intermarry and produce kids that are neither. in Iraq they used to do that as well. half of my iraqi friend’s siblings used to be sunni and half shia, (i’m not even going to explain that).

    protestants and catholics were fighting each other in northern ireland, but that doesn’t mean that they are in all the other countries where they live. religion is a very powerful unitor and also a very powerful divider when in the hands of someone with an agenda. it can be used to reach people’s emotions and activate them in whatever direction. its advantage over other weapons is that you cannot debate with its believers, or you will be committing blasphemy. this is true of all religions.

    i believe it loses some of its power when people are generally satisfied with their lives and their rights and are occupied with performing their duties. the masses are more susceptible to it when they feel aggreived and they believe it acknowledges their grievances and offers them the esteem they are not receiving.

    on the other hand, selectively ignoring parts of religion happens even in other religions. in islam’s case, i think it is more a case of convenient interpretation and blind following by people who are happy to let someone else take the blame for any mistakes in this interpretation.
    in other religions, you find gay marriages which are clearly against the written word of their holy book, and what is more of an enigma is gay priests, an oxymoron if ever there was one.

    i get the impression from your post that you think Sunnis and Shiaas are separate in our world. they aren’t. we go to school together, we socialize with each other, we work together, we live together. some more than others. some of us live in areas where there have traditionally been very few of the other and therefore their schools may be more of one and hardly any of the other, while there are some of us who have no awareness of being either and raise our kids that way.

    in our country, we are very fortunate to be able to interact and make friends with people from any part of the world, because they live among us. once you have befriended people from literally any and every country, it seems very trivial to define yourself by your sect. the only time you then remember is when you feel aggrieved (for yourself or others like you, it could be people of your religion, your sect, your educational background, your profession, anything you identify with, even on some unconscious level). take the cause of the grievance out of the equation and they can go back to being human beings going about their daily life. simplistic, i know, but true, nevertheless…

    p.s. i was not blaming 1)you (plural) whoever that means, or 2)you (the singular) except for attempting to stereotype everyone here which would in theory make it easier for you to understand but actually tell you nothing about any of us as people, or 3)the media. what i stated was a fact, i have lived in the US and in Europe and in the Middle East and have watched closely how news is reported everywhere, and how much people know in those places. i mentioned the media to explain why so many americans are not aware of what is going on outside of their boundaries, not to blame.

    at the end of the day, we are not different really..

  380. docspencer says:

    CWT, these were excellent comments, and with your permission, I want to incorporate them in my Web site’s (www.bahraindubai.info) conclusions on the Islam page.

    It all makes excellent sense to me. Thank you very much. Is it a fair conclusion for me to say that in Bahrain, a place with a good living standard, this is the case. But in a place like Palestine or Iraq today, with too much poverty and armed conflict, Imams who have a tendency to preach violence (such as M. Al Sadr vs. Sistani) have a fertile ground for recruiting people for violence – or something along those lines.

    You mind if I use your words?

    Thanks and best regards,

    Vic

    Vic

  381. can we talk says:

    DS
    not everyone here lives well. some of us are unemployed and some of us have children that go to bed hungry every night. some of us have satellite connections and some of us don’t have electricity. there are many people who have grievances, and that is always dangerous because it means there is the opportunity to be used to serve an agenda.

    anywhere, support for the cause to improve the lives of the unfortunate does not only come from them but from anyone who feels that these grievances exist. if discrimination is sensed against a group or a sect, people of that sect will rally, even the more fortunate ones as well as decent human beings from other sects/groups.

    think back to how recently you had slaves in your country, and even though slavery is abolished, racism is not completely eradicated. your laws maybe just, but even when lawyers are hired and jurors are selected, race is often the winning card.. there are still many families who will not celebrate inter-racial marriage when it comes to their own children and white neighbourhoods do look better than black neighbourhoods. you still haven’t had a black president and there are many who would not vote for one in your country. it may be illegal to be racist, but it does happen.

    in the UK, the big brother hoohaa going on now has brought racism to the top of the agenda and thankfully, it has produced outrage among many because that is not what they believe they are about.

    I am not straying from the subject here, my point is that people do identify with others like them especially when they believe they are being mistreated.

    your interpretation of my previous post is correct, except that it can happen in any country in the world, even mine and even yours..

    for religion to be disarmed, you need to ensure that people have a decent living, that they are respected, and that they are not being discriminated against.
    and when country A is seen to be the cause of the grievance, whether within its own borders or in other countries, it shouldn’t be surprised if love is lost, and it becomes a pariah. people have long memories, and when that happens, no amount of PR will erase history..

    we reap what we sow..

  382. docspencer says:

    CWT, that came from the heart. You seem to be a good man, and your comment I find very fair and true.

    I was born in Europe, and spent a lot of time in Europe, the Far East and in the US of course. Perfection simply doesn’t exist anywhere – until we get to heaven. But taking even small steps in the right direction to improve your country is a very good thing. I had this very idealistic impression of Bahrain and the Emirates, and I appreciate the reasonable calibration.

    Although we Americans have plenty of warts that are highly visible, most of us love our country. It is a pretty good place to live after having spent enough time in many other countries. And many people I know here, including myself, we are vocal with our government members to make some specific areas better. And sometimes they do.

    Anyway, I enjoy hearing from you and JJ. And I like Mahmood’s thinking and posts. But I don’t want to abuse his blog, so if you and JJ would like to correspond via email, mine is vicspencer@charter.net. I would like to keep in touch with the two of you.

    Thanks and best regards,

    Vic

  383. can we talk says:

    DS,
    “You seem to be a good man”

    wrong gender!

  384. docspencer says:

    Sorry CWT. But this makes no difference to me. I would like to correspond with you if you are willing.

    I posted this answer or something similar before, but somehow it disappeared.

    Best regards,

    Vic

  385. Lets get one thing straight … heavan does not exist. Please make the best here on this earth here and now.

    Arabs are not against the USA and USA is not against Arabs.

    It is not in the political interest for the USA to have solution in the Middle East as far as Israel and Palestine is concerned.

    This problem can be easily solved if the Arabs work together, stand up and take resposibility and contribute to the world order, instead of taking.

    The Arabs are full of their own greed and prestige, one building bigger than the next is going on in the Middle East for a few of the populations glory and one up manship. The Arabs do not have a good word to say about one another – continually distrusting each other playing lip service to solutions.

    The Arabs do not want a solution, and even the Palestians cant unite. Religion, petty feuds and small mindedness will keep the Arabs dividend and jealous of each other.

    It is time to stop blaming the Americans for everything wrong in the Middle East. The USA is ruled by Jews, no way will they allow a solution in the Middle East between Israel and Palestine.

    The Arabs themselves need to take control, responsibility and come with a solution. This does not mean to rise up and be warlike, but rather be responsible and negotiate at the table properly like adults and proper citizens of the world instead of always blaming others… until this happens nothing will happen in the Middle East. Since most are autonomous and they act like selfish spoilt children always destroying instead of contributing..

    We have been trying for the last 50 years for a solution, and the Arabs were never at the table. Now change things and come to table and negotiate, like adults.

    Only then will things change for the better.

    Then heavan will have arrived here and now rather than living a life putting it off accepting all the strife because it will be ok when we get to heavan?

    Please lets all wake up…

  386. Shiraz says:

    The ways of men…….

    Aren’t we all immoral?

    Just because one is American or Muslim or
    Christian or Saudi or whatever, can anyone
    stand up and say they are without sin?

    One of my favorite quotes:

    “Oh, Allah, if I worship Thee out of desire of Heaven, then, deny me Heaven, and if I worship Thee out of fear of Hell, then, throw me into Hell, but if I worship Thee for Thee and Thee alone, then, grant me Thy vision”.

    – Ra’bia of Basra

  387. voic says:

    Everyone has there own say and own mind. No matter what the Americans will never admit their wrongs or that bush lied to go after Iraq for its mineral rights, but the US Goverment and British Goverment never tell the truth anyway, do they!!

    http://www.socialistworker.co.uk/article.php?article_id=11057

    And murder, taking counteries that dont belong to them is some thing they have always done, and with out the other side starting a war, just to prove they can.

    http://www.robert-fisk.com/robert_elias_25sept2001.htm

    it is to hard to admite when you have been had by your own goverment and other top officals or even your own religous figures.

    Native American Eradication: 53,500

    Civilians Killed Slave Trade To America: 13,667,000

    Civilians Killed Hiroshima Bombing: 140,000

    Civilians Killed Nagasaki Bombing: 74,000

    Civilians Killed Vietnam War: 355,000

    Civilians Killed Iraq War: 650,000

    So keep your blind folds on, you’ll need it in the future when it all falls apart, and the global warming is only a part of the big picture. Inmoral men and women living lies, murdering and raping ther own childern and others but go into other counteries and say ill save you and do it to them also. pitiful.

  388. Got a hair cut.. looking for a Job says:

    Americans are not immoral…excuse me
    I Lived there Long enough

    Unfortunally
    1) They Belive in everything they are told.
    2) News propaganda…CNN BBC and Al Jazzerah BS.
    3) They Blindly Trust the People in the Goverment.(No one Should …anywhere in the globe)

    Look at this
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7E3oIbO0AWE

    Media Every Where

  389. mahmood says:

    If you’re really interested in a job, I’ve got 3 for you to choose from. Check http://gbps.tv for details.

  390. victoria says:

    Shiraz

    Oh, Allah, if I worship Thee out of desire of Heaven, then, deny me Heaven, and if I worship Thee out of fear of Hell, then, throw me into Hell, but if I worship Thee for Thee and Thee alone, then, grant me Thy vision”.

    where does this quote come from ??

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