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January 11, 2015

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Dean

These kind of reactions and attitudes are reminiscent of the attitude to Jews in Nazi Germany, which were perceived wisdom at the time.

Murdoch's tweet in particular reminds me of Nazi anti Jewish propaganda.

Scary times.

Jim

@Dean: as far I recall, the Jewish population of 1930s Germany didn't contain a significant minority who were dedicated to the violent overthrow of the State they were living in.

Steve

The reason for targeting Islam is, of course, that there is much more Islam-justified acts of individual violence over the last few decades than by other ideologies.

Dean

Jim your comment really is a classic of lack of self awareness!

"Jewish population of 1930s Germany didn't contain a significant minority who were dedicated to the violent overthrow of the State they were living in."

Interesting you say this because according to Nazi propaganda that is exactly what they were intent on (they were even blamed for the Reichstag fire). The Nazi's linked Jews to Bolshevism , among other things, and the desire to overthrow the state via violent means. It was a staple of Nazi propaganda.

I would contend that your use of the words 'significant minority' is the sort of ridiculous hyperbole that I was on about, and was used by the Nazi's. So I put your comment in the same camp as Murdoch's tweet, and in the same camp as Nazi propaganda methods.

theOnlySanePersonOnPlanetEarth

"The reason for targeting Islam is, of course"

wait for it, we are about be hit with some world class piece of analysis that cannot possibly be refuted...

"that there is much more Islam-justified acts of individual violence over the last few decades than by other ideologies."

On dear, just another fucking idiot who is a waste of oxygen.

Jim

@Dean: so all the Islamic violence we have experienced in the West is just propaganda then? Not real at all?

As for significant minority, surveys have shown repeatedly that there is are significant minorities (sometimes majorities) of the Muslim population of the UK that support violence, are against freedom of expression, are against sexual and gender equality, and support the introduction of Sharia law. This survey by Channel 4 (http://ukpollingreport.co.uk/blog/archives/291) identified 9% of UK Muslims as 'hardcore Islamists'.

Is c. 10% of the Muslims in the UK actively supporting the overthrow of the UK state significant enough for you? How about adding the larger minorities who support the aims if not the methods?

From Arse To Elbow

@Jim,

There were plenty of Jews who were committed to the violent overthrow of the Nazi state after 1933, but they were mostly members of other political groups, like the SPD and KPD.

Herschel Grynzspan, a member of the Bund (Jewish Polish socialists), assassinated Ernst vom Rath, a German diplomat, in Paris on 7 November 1938. This provided the excuse for the Kristallnacht pogrom in Germany on 9-10 November. Far from being a non-issue, Jewish "terrorism" played a key role in the evolution of the Nazi state.

If you're ever in Berlin, I suggest a visit to the Memorial to the German Resistance, which puts Jewish "terror" into perspective (there's not so much Tom Cruise).

As regards our very own "fifth column", the percentage of UK citizens of Irish heritage who supported a united Ireland, and thus the physical diminution of the British state, during the height of the IRA mainland bombing campaigns in the 70s and 80s, significantly exceeded 10%. Which proves what, exactly? That we should have interned the lot of them?

And as regards people who "support violence, are against freedom of expression, are against sexual and gender equality, and support the introduction of Sharia law", just substitute "hanging and flogging" for the last of these are you are describing a large part of right-wing opinion in this country.

Stephen Herlihy

I see where you are coming from but every cyclist; man woman and child, rides their bikes through red lights

Phil Beesley

@Jim:" Is c. 10% of the Muslims in the UK actively supporting the overthrow of the UK state significant enough for you?"

I don't like Jim and I have never liked Jim. 'Cos he makes stuff up.


distant

Elliot Rodger was right wing? On what basis, that he hated woman?

Get down off your high horses.

distant

@From Arse To Elbow - are you going to provide any evidence for this opinion held by a large part of the right-wing population in this country?

Must be nice living your life dividing everybody up into two neat little boxes. The evil right-wing bogeymen are the cause of all that is wrong with the world. Have you every asked yourself if this might be lazy thinking?

Didn't think so.

A

I think the "this has nothing to do with Islam" argument might be more convincing if it came from the moderates themselves, rather than lily-white middle-class diversity warriors.

From Arse To Elbow

@distant, no I'm not going to provide any evidence for my outrageous slur, because there isn't any. This is what we evil lefties call "irony", deployed to highlight the ridiculous nature of Jim's rant.

The rest of my previous comment is backed by lengthy academic citations (too many to list) and was thoroughly fact-checked by the New York Times.

Jim

@Phil Beesley: as I provided a link to back up my assertion that c. 10% of UK Muslims are radical Islamists actively attempting to overthrow the State, perhaps you might care to attempt to refute my assertion by doing more than just making ad hom attacks on me.

Matt Moore

For a perfect example of how the Left misunderstand the Right, see:

http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/culturehousedaily/2014/11/is-theatre-more-left-wing-than-other-art-forms-yes-and-so-it-should-be/

Paraphrasing (I hope fairly:)

"they don't believe in society"
"they don't believe in the underlying goodness of people"
"they believe the world is only a marketplace"

Ralph Musgrave

About 90% of those in prison in the UK for terrorist offences are Muslim rather than Buddhist, Catholic, Athiest, etc etc. Given that Muslims make up about 5% of the population that is a HUGE over-representation. See “Operation of police powers under the Terrorism Act 2000 and subsequent legislation: Arrests, outcomes and stops and searches, Great Britain 2011/12” p.12.

Fred Fratter

@Jim - so, 10% of 2.7m (2011 Census) = 270,000 Muslims are "actively" working to overthrow the state? I live in east London, quite a few Muslims about but I've missed the flying columns on Wanstead Flats - maybe they're over at Hackney Marshes on parade? Or maybe you've come up with a very peculiar definition of "active"? Beware the man with one data point.

Fred Fratter

@Ralph - So "some" Muslims are idiots. If you'd looked at that data in the 70's you'd have found it was mainly Irish Catholics in gaol for those offenses (quite a few of whom turned out to be innocent - Birmingham 6, Guildford 4, the McGuires...). I remember the same tarring of a whole community then even though I was just a kid at school.

From Arse To Elbow

@Ralph, I recall you made the same point back in November (throwing in the Islamic tendency towards paedophilia and electoral fraud for good measure), so let me repeat:

"At the end of 2013, there were precisely 100 UK prisoners convicted of terrorism offences, of which 93 were Muslim. This reflects current conflicts and the legacy of the 'war on terror'. If you'd taken a snapshot 20 years ago, they'd have been predominantly Irish Republicans."

The disproportionate number of Muslim prisoners today no more reflects an intrinsic tendency towards terrorism in Islam than the disproportionate number of Irish prisoners in the past indicated a similar tendency in Catholicism.

Luis Enrique

the point in final para about distributions is spot on. What is the distribution of beliefs within Islam? A Pakistani friend of mine tells me lefty Westerns have a tendency to underestimate the popularity of hair-raising ideas within Islam. There are potential answers to this question (about the distribution) which might justify claims about there being “a deadly mutation in the middle of Islam” (as Rushdie has it) or at least justify more than portraying murderous nutters as outliers.


There might have been times when prominent voices within Marxism would have needed to loudly disassociate themselves from Stalinist things being done in the name of Marx and when we might have asked whether the Marxist movement contained a worrying tendency towards Stalinism, and if so to call on non-Stalinist Marxists to do something about that tendency. Similarly during the Spanish inquisition one might have had a few critical things to say about the state of Catholicism. If it is true that a large proportion of men were either rapists or had frightening views about rape, as opposed to these being outliers, then I reckon people could write things about how men have a "responsibility" (whatever that means*) to fight this tendency within them, with some justification.


So what if other groups have (had?) a tendency to violence? What matters is which groups we need to be worrying about now. There were times when we needed to worry about horrible tendencies within the left or the right (when both totalitarian communisms and fascism were stalking the earth), and at those moments in time, pointing out that these is a diversity of views within left or right would be ducking the issue. If there is worryingly pervasive tendency within contemporary Islam towards extremism, I don't think "so what?" is an adequate response.

* I am not sure what 'responsibility' means here. I'd take it to mean something like having a responsibility, in our every day lives, in small ways, to speak out accordingly, when occasion arises, and where appropriate vote/support/shun accordingly, and more so for prominent figures / organizations to have a responsibility to take more active steps against whatever needs combating

Donald

We need to distinguish between "apologise for" and "voice opposition to" or "try to do something about."

I think people that have done something bad done in "their" name, that they disagree with, have more power and, hence, responsibility to do something about it.

As someone from the UK, I feel responsibility to voice opposition to bad things that the UK government do in the name of protecting me. Iraq for example.

The same, I would say, applies to Muslims and terrorism.

I think this is the argument that lots of people are trying to make and end up coming across a bit (a lot?) racist. (Quite often they probably are racist, but that doesn't make the argument so..)

A final thought. If the reasonable and vast majority of Muslims aren't speaking out as much as they might do, why is that?

Here's my guess. In a world of lots of bad stuff happening and constant news, if we protest a lot about one thing, that implies something about how we place it relative to other tragedies.

In this context, it may be difficult for a Muslim (or anyone) to speak to loudly about relatively minor impact of Islamic terrorism in the west. While, at the same time, the west knowingly accepts collateral civilian damage in drone strikes which we would absolutely not accept if the civilians in question were western.

Jim

"The disproportionate number of Muslim prisoners today no more reflects an intrinsic tendency towards terrorism in Islam than the disproportionate number of Irish prisoners in the past indicated a similar tendency in Catholicism."

The two aren't comparable. The IRA weren't bombing the UK in order to introduce a Catholic hegemony, they wanted to bring about a certain political aim (perfectly legitimate if pursued non-violently). Thus their supporters were 99.9% nominally Catholics, but Catholicism wasn't the overall aim. It was perfectly possible to be Catholic and not support a united Ireland.

What we face today has no particular aim that we can negotiate about, just the entire destruction of Western social secular democracy and its replacement with an Islamic State. And Islam is inimical with secular social democracy. The attitudes of Muslims in the UK shown by survey after survey prove this.

Fred Fratter

@Jim - It's also perfectly possible to be a Muslim and not to support the destruction of western secular society. And even to be in support of secular society. Islam is "inimical" with secular social democracy? You seem to view all Muslims as the same and having a united opposition to secularism. And for there to be no variation in opinion across Muslims in the UK. You're either a very great Muslim scholar or a complete idiot.

gastro george

"If the reasonable and vast majority of Muslims aren't speaking out as much as they might do, why is that?"

Isn't there an agency problem as well? Despite what some people might think, the media is not overflowing with opinion from Muslims, and I doubt that many can pick up the phone to the editor of Newsnight to get placed on the programme. Unless there's been an outrage - and it's not a great incentive to be wheeled out every time for a condemnathon.

Donald

@Gastro George

I don't think so. I think Muslims wanting to get their condemnation voiced more loudly could do so easily. The media would put them front and centre if they asked. Even if it wouldn't, there's always social media and I've not seen any "Muslim's against terror" type things.

Personally, though, I'm not sure if there should be.

I'm quite sympathetic to the view that westerners are doing more to Muslims than vice-versa and, importantly, doing it from a position of elected authority. Hence, I think a response that quietly condemns Muslim terrorism against the West is quite reasonable.

My main point is that, contrary Dillow, I think you can make a reasonable non-prejudiced argument that Muslims should do more (so long as you don't ask them to apologise). But I don't necessarily agree with that argument.

Jim

For some reason my link wasn't working properly, though the page is still there on the UKpolling website. Google ukpollingreport.co.uk/blog/archives/291 and it comes up on top.

From Arse To Elbow

@Jim, you say "The IRA weren't bombing the UK in order to introduce a Catholic hegemony", but that is precisely what Unionists in Northern Ireland (which is part of the UK) maintained.

I can also assure you that there were plenty of innocent Irish in Britain who got lumps kicked out of them after the Birmingham pub bombing. The position of Muslims now and then Irish then is comparable because of the point of Chris's post: that we apply collective responsibility to the "other" but not to ourselves.

And yes, it was perfectly possible to be an Irish Catholic who didn't support a united Ireland, but given that this remains the avowed aim of all the main political parties, it should come as no surprise that the majority of Irish have always been in favour.

Both Christianity and Islam are proselytising religions, ostensibly committed to the goal of converting everyone on Earth, but to assume that the majority of Muslims are actively engaged in a Jihad that has been running since the 7th century is akin to believing that the Pope is the Antichrist or that Western secularism is a front for the Illuminati.

Trofim

Nice article by a Muslim here on the societal benefits of Islam:

http://www.guidedones.com/issues/regions/world/pakfacts.htm

Guano

So are you all in favour of free speech (even if offense is caused) or are you in favour of free speech (even of offense is caused to a group of people who contain a violent minority)?

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