Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Islam’s Challenge to Israel and America Prof. Paul Eidelberg

Let us try to reformulate Islam’s challenge to Israel and America in psychological terms.  Bat Ye’or, an Egyptian-born scholar, called Islam a “culture of hate." This deeply engrained hatred, which poses an existential threat to Israel and America, gives Islam a psychological advantage over these two humanistic countries. Why? Ben Hecht offers an explanation. Every Muslim leader knows “that it is easier to win followers through their deep talent for hate than their capacity for love.â€�  He knows “that hatred is the magic for victory, if you can control it. Hatred strengthens people and solidifies them … When we hate someone we feel the courage necessary for their slaying.â€� By now it should be obvious that Islam celebrates murder and martyrdom. The Quran exalts the Muslim who “slays and is slain for Allahâ€� (Sura 9:11). This savagery is magnified and perpetuated by the hatred of infidels generated by Islamic theology. Leon Uris vividly portrays this hate in his 1985 novel The Haj. One of its characters, the famous Orde Wingate, says:  ... every last Arab is a total prisoner of his society.  The Jews will eventually have to face up to what you’re dealing with here. The Arabs will never love you for what good you’ve brought them. They don’t know how to really love. But hate!  Oh God, can they hate!  And they have a deep, deep, deep resentment because you [Jews] have jolted them from their delusion of grandeur and shown them for what they are—a decadent, savage people controlled by a religion that has stripped them of all human ambition ... except for the few cruel enough and arrogant enough to command them as one commands a mob of sheep.  You [Jews] are dealing with a mad society and you’d better learn how to control it. The novel’s central (but hardly typical) character, Haj Ibrahim, confides to a Jewish friend: During the summer heat my people become frazzled.... They are pent up. They must explode. Nothing directs their frustration like Islam.  Hatred is holy in this part of the world. It is also eternal.... You [Jews] do not know how to deal with us. For years, decades, we may seem to be at peace with you, but always in the back of our minds we keep up the hope of vengeance.  No dispute is ever really settled in our world. The Jews give us a special reason to continue warring.  Uris uses another such character, the cultured Dr. Mudhil, to elaborate: We [Muslims] do not have leave to love one another and we have long ago lost the ability.  It was so written twelve hundred years earlier.  Hate is our overpowering legacy and we have regenerated ourselves by hatred from decade to decade, generation to generation, century to century.  The return of the Jews has unleashed that hatred, exploding it wildly ...  In ten, twenty, thirty years the world of Islam will begin to consume itself in madness.  We cannot live with ourselves ... we never have.  We are incapable of change.   Later in the novel, Mudhil remarks: “Islam is unable to live at peace with anyone.... One day our oil will be gone, along with our ability to blackmail. We have contributed nothing to human betterment in centuries, unless you consider the assassin and the terrorist as human gifts.â€� Some pundits may call Uris a “racist.â€� They lack the novelist’s sensitive but clear-headed understanding of Arab-Islamic culture. Unlike apologists, Uris appreciates the tragedy of a few insightful Muslims who know they’re trapped in a savage culture of hate.Theologically animated hatred is the driving force of Islamic imperialism. In all the lands it conquered, Islam replaced the indigenous places of worship—Christian, Jewish, Persian, Zoroastrian, Buddhist, Hindu—with Mosques. This could not be done without enormous bloodshed. The notion that Islam is a religion of peace is cowardly nonsense. Consider what happens to a culture animated by hate? Hate has closed the Muslim mind. It breeds intolerance. It precludes self-criticism and undermines any incentive to understand and learn from non-Muslims. Contrast Judaism, in which kindness (Hesed) is a fundamental principle. Kindness prompts the Jew not only to help but also to understand and learn from non-Jews. (In the Babylonian Talmud, Rabbi Judah the Prince, compiler of the Mishna, unhesitatingly declares in favor of a Gentile astronomical theory over that of the wise men of Israel.) The kindliness of the Jew enlarges his mind and makes him tolerant toward others. Accordingly, whereas Jews speak of righteous Gentiles whose place in heaven is assured, Muslims designate as evil everything that is non-Muslim and consign all infidels to hell.  And yet, the kindliness of Jews can also be irrational. The inability of Jewish leaders to hate Israel’s Islamic enemies is symptomatic of a mental disorder. In the Kuzari, Judah Halevi quotes King David: “I hate them, O God, that hate youâ€� (Psalms 129:21). The haters of God, the Kuzari explains, refers to “those who hate God’s people, God’s covenant, or God’s Torah …â€� Hatred, however, is futile if it doesn’t issue in action. In Psalms 18:38-43, Israel’s greatest king writes: “I pursued my enemies and overtook them, and returned not until they were destroyed. I crushed them so that they are not able to rise; ... I pulverized them like dust in the face of the storm...â€� The Jewish Sages teach: “There is a time to kill, in the time of war, and a time to heal, in the time of peace.… There is a time to love, in the time of peace, and a time to hate, in the time of warâ€� (Kohelet Rabbah 3:1).  Consider the verse, “When you go forth to battle against your enemiesâ€� (Deut. 20:1). The Sages ask: “What is meant by ‘against your enemies’â€�? They answer: “God said, ‘Confront them as enemies. Just as they show you no mercy, so should you not show them any mercy’â€� (Tanchuma, Shoftim 15). Israel’s ruling elites have ignored this teaching, in consequence of which the Jew-hating Muslims of the Palestinian Authority have murdered or mutilated thousands of Jewish women, men, and children. Because Israel does not hate her Muslim enemies, she has been in retreat and will continue to retreat until retreat is no longer possible. Will America continue to ignore the challenge posed by Islamic hate? 

No comments:

Post a Comment