Once upon a time, I was under the belief that Islam was a rational faith, and that those that carried out violent attacks in the name of Islam misunderstood their own faith. It was both presumptuous and ignorant for me to make that assumption, as I see it now reflected in response to a call for reason from a man of God.
The violent acts carried out by Islamists—and the near-total silence from what we like to think is a majority of moderate Muslims—has ended the last illusions about Islam for many around the world. Our eyes are opening to see that Muslims seek not dialogue, but domination. Pope Benedict seeks reciprocity and respect between faiths, and Muslims are responding with attempts at intimidation. We see now that these calls for violence are not a minority viewpoint, but a sincere and troubling part of their core beliefs.
Islam means "submission," and one billion people who practice the faith seem intent on making the other five billion people on this plant submit to their views. Their desire for domination of the world by their increasingly irrational faith shows that it is they, not the West, that seeks to engage in a Holy War. They would be wise to reconsider their views.
The original Crusades saw Christian and Muslim armies that were technologically equals. That equality no longer exists today, and the military superiority of the West over the Islamic world is pronounced. To date, Western reason shaped by Judeo-Christian compassion has prevented us from using our military supremacy to forcefully thwart Islamist plans for world domination with our full might, but our decision to hold that power in check is not without limits.
If practitioners of the Muslim faith think that they can exert their will unchecked through the most violent of means without facing an earthly reckoning beyond their comprehension, they are sadly mistaken. Our rational beliefs have had us regarding Islam as a possible threat to be dealt with surgically, but not one yet worth acting against generally with our full military might.
One act of sufficient scope and horror would change the calculus of the equation. Islamists seem to sincerely believe that nations shaped by Judeo-Christian beliefs are soft, and that we will fall quickly if they act with sufficient aggression and callousness against those they see as infidels.
Islamic leaders should reconsider the ramifications of the widespread Jihad they call for against the West. If they provoke us sufficiently, the same reason that has had us hold ourselves in check to date will dictate that that restraint we have practiced is counterproductive to our continued existence, and Islam will not see another century.
We are not weak, but reasoned, and the Muslims of the world crying for violent Jihad against would be wise to note the difference.
Monday, September 18, 2006
The Previous Crusades Ultimately Failed. The Next One Won't.
Confederate Yankee (H/T Anchoress):