The Wall Street Zionist


Lady Gaga Versus Mideast Peace
by Bret Stephens
The Wall Street Journal Opinion, 2010-03-29

Are settlements more offensive than pop stars?

Pop quiz—What does more
to galvanize radical anti-American sentiment in the Muslim world:
(a) Israeli settlements on the West Bank; or
(b) a Lady Gaga music video?

If your answer is
(b) it means you probably have
a grasp of the historical roots of modern jihadism.
If, however, you answered (a), then congratulations:
You are perfectly in synch with the new Beltway conventional wisdom,
now jointly defined by Pat Buchanan
and his strange bedfellows within the Obama administration.

What is that wisdom?
In a March 26 column in Human Events
[“Netanyahu’s Hollow Victory”],
Mr. Buchanan put the case with his usual subtlety:

“Each new report of settlement expansion,” he wrote,
“each new seizure of Palestinian property,
each new West Bank clash between Palestinians and Israeli troops
inflames the Arab street,
humiliates our Arab allies,
exposes America as a weakling that cannot stand up to Israel, and
imperils our troops and their mission in Afghanistan and Iraq.”

Mr. Buchanan was playing off a story in the Israeli press
that Vice President Joe Biden
had warned Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
“what you’re doing here [in the West Bank]
undermines the security of our troops.”
Also in the mix was a story that Centcom commander David Petraeus had cited Arab-Israeli tensions as the key impediment to wider progress in the region.
Both reports were later denied—in Mr. Biden’s case, via Rahm Emanuel;
in Gen. Petraeus’s case, personally and forcefully—
but the important point is how eagerly they were believed.
If you’re of the view that
Israel is the root cause of everything that ails the Middle East—
think of it as global warming in Hebrew form—
then nothing so powerfully makes the case against the Jewish state
as a flag-draped American coffin.

Now consider Lady Gaga—or, if you prefer,
Madonna, Farrah Fawcett, Marilyn Monroe, Josephine Baker
or any other American woman
who has, at one time or another, personified
what the Egyptian Islamist writer Sayyid Qutb
once called “the American Temptress.”

Qutb, for those unfamiliar with the name,
is widely considered the intellectual godfather of al Qaeda;
his 30-volume exegesis “In the Shade of the Quran”
is canonical in jihadist circles.
But Qutb, who spent time as a student in Colorado in the late 1940s,
also decisively shaped jihadist views about the U.S.

In his 1951 essay “The America I Have Seen,”
Qutb gave his account of the U.S.
“in the scale of human values.”
“I fear,” he wrote, “that a balance may not exist
between America’s material greatness and the quality of her people.”
Qutb was particularly exercised by what he saw as
the “primitiveness” of American values,
not least in matters of sex.

“The American girl,” he noted, “knows seductiveness lies in
the round breasts, the full buttocks, and in the shapely thighs, sleek legs
and she shows all this and does not hide it.”
Nor did he approve of Jazz—
”this music the savage bushmen created to satisfy their primitive desires”—
or of American films, or clothes, or haircuts, or food.
It was all, in his eyes, equally wretched.

Qutb’s disdain for America’s supposedly libertine culture would not matter much
were it not wedded to a kind of theological Leninism
that emphasized the necessity of violently overthrowing
any political arrangement not based on Shariah law.
No less violent was Qutb’s attitude toward Jews:
“The war the Jews began to wage against Islam and Muslims
in those early days [of Islamic history],” he wrote in the 1950s,
“has raged to the present.
The form and appearance may have changed,
but the nature and the means remain the same.”

Needless to say, that passage was written long before
Israel had “occupied” a single inch of Arab territory,
unless one takes the view—
held to this day by Hezbollah, Hamas, al Qaeda, Jemaah Islamiyah
and every other jihadist group that owes an intellectual debt to Qutb,
including significant elements of the “moderate” Palestinian Fatah—
that Tel Aviv itself is occupied territory.

Bear in mind, too, that the America Qutb found so offensive
had yet to discover Elvis, Playboy, the pill, women’s lib, acid tabs,
gay rights, Studio 54, Jersey Shore and, of course, Lady Gaga.
In other words, even in some dystopic hypothetical world in which
hyper-conservatives were to seize power in the U.S.
and turn the cultural clock back to 1948,
America would still remain a swamp of degeneracy
in the eyes of Qutb’s latter-day disciples.

This, then, is the core complaint
that the Islamists from Waziristan to Tehran to Gaza
have lodged against the West.
It explains why jihadists remain aggrieved
even after the U.S. addressed their previous casus belli
by removing troops from Saudi Arabia,
and why they will continue to remain aggrieved
long after we’ve decamped from Iraq, Afghanistan and even the Persian Gulf.
As for Israel, its offenses are literally inextricable:
as a democracy, as a Jewish homeland,
as a country in which liberalism in all its forms, including cultural, prevails.

Which brings me back to the settlements.
There may well be good reasons for Israel to dismantle many of them,
assuming that such an act is met with
reciprocal and credible Palestinian commitments
to suppress terrorism and religious incitement,
and accept Israel’s legitimacy as a Jewish state.
But to imagine that the settlements account for even a fraction of the rage
that has inhabited the radical Muslim mind since the days of Qutb is fantasy:
The settlements are merely the latest politically convenient cover
behind which lies a universe of hatred.
If the administration’s aim is to appease our enemies,
it will get more mileage out of banning Lady Gaga
than by applying the screws on Israel.
It should go without saying that it ought to do neither.

[This is what those who would prevent change in American policy towards Israel
specialize in:
Deceiving Americans about the reasons
why [some] Muslims have launched campaigns of terrorism against America.

For a more accurate account of the roots of Muslim hostility,
you might start with an excerpt from a book published in 2001
by the distinguished historian (and great-grand-daughter of David Lloyd George) Margaret MacMillan,
namely, this statement.
You might go on to sample several posts
where I have tried to survey the reasons for that hostility, namely
Root causes of Islamic terrorism
Why they hate us
What “Islamic extremists” say
and this post quoting extensively from Imperial Hubris on this topic:
Imperial Hubris and its critics.

Patrick Buchanan published his reply to this column on 2010-05-11:
Is the War Coming Home?.”]

It's Not Our Movies, It's Our Way of Life
by Bertrand Horwitz
The Wall Street Journal Letter to the Editor, 2010-04-15

Bret Stephens’s mockery of the contention that
an agreement between the Arab states and Israel
would mollify Muslim hatred of the U.S.,
contending that it is really U.S. culture
which is the object of bitter dislike by radical Muslims,
overlooks the really serious problem
(“Lady Gaga Versus Mideast Peace,” Global View, March 30).

It’s not our television, movie and newspaper culture
that are the objects of derision by radical Muslims.
Their true purpose is
to undermine the bedrock on which our social organizations rest.
This goal was clearly expressed in a candid May 10, 2006 letter
from the president of the Islamic Republic of Iran to President George W. Bush:
“Liberalism and Western style democracy
have not been able to help realize the ideals of humanity.
Today these concepts have failed.
Those with insight can hear the sounds of the shattering and fall
of the ideology and thoughts of the liberal democratic systems.”

Beltway vigilance needs to be focused on the proper targets
in order to protect our and others’ hard-earned liberties.

Bertrand Horwitz
Asheville, N.C.

Holdering On
Wall Street Journal Editorial, 2010-04-15

[On the same day as they published the above letter to the editor, on the same page,
the WSJ ran this editorial, which contains the following:]

[Senator Charles E.] Schumer knows that
Democrats running for re-election this year don’t want to defend
the spectacle of a mass murderer
[referring to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed]
using such a trial as a propaganda exercise ....

[This is the double whammy that the Zionists are performing
on letting Americans have a clear picture of why the 9/11 attack occurred.

On the one hand, they publish the views of Jews on why that happened,
views which, not surprisingly, minimize the role
Israel’s war with the Palestinians has had on Muslim attitudes.

On the other hand, when Muslims try and tell the story
of why they feel the United States deserves to be attacked,
that is depicted, as in the words of this Wall Street Journal editorial,
as a “propaganda exercise.”

This is, frankly, sick.
The American people deserve to and need to know the reasons for that attack.
Who are the Jews to tell us why the Muslims carried out their attack?
Their self-interest should be blindingly obvious.]

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