Thursday, February 5, 2015

The Anti-Winston Churchill

Churchill knew a thing or two about existential threats. He was not slow in sounding the alarm on the rise of Nazism, and was prompt in rousing the English to fight German aggression when Hitler commenced his war on Britain and its empire (to be precise, when the Germans attacked British ally, Poland).

Now, imagine if Churchill, instead of leading the charge against Hitler, had stood up in Parliament and started wallowing in moral equivalence. “Certainly Hitler is a bad egg, and his Nazi Party is repugnant, but other men and other forms of government have committed similar crimes. I would even say that Hitler’s National Socialism isn’t real socialism at all, but in reality a betrayal of socialism. And when it comes to Anti-Semitism, let us not forget that England expelled its own Jews in 1290.”

No, I can’t imagine Winston Churchill (or anybody else, for that matter) saying anything like that. Fast forward 75 years or so to the President of the United States. Islamic terrorists have attacked Americans on their own soil, jihadists are burning, looting, raping and killing their way through large swaths of the Middle East and Africa, and are undermining governments allied with the U.S. And what does the President of these United States have to say at a national prayer breakfast? Behold:
“Unless we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ,” Obama said. “In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ.”

Obama also denounced Islamic State terrorists for professing to stand up for Islam when they were actually “betraying it.”
This knee-jerk, instinctive, congenital impulse of Obama’s to (a) put religious violence in historical “context” in order to soften his criticisms of Islam-rooted savagery, and (b) somehow try to deny that the savagery is Islam-rooted altogether, is not surprising, but increasingly it does grate on the nerves.

And for the record, Barry, if you’d like some real context:

a) Based on modern scholarship, the number of executions carried out at the direction of the Spanish Inquisition are estimated, on the high end, to have been approximately 5,000 over the institution’s 350+ year history; the last execution occurred in 1826 (compare with 2,000 people murdered in Nigeria in one town by Boko Haram over a couple of days late last year, and the nearly 3,000 people who perished as a result of the terrorist attacks in the United States on 9/11/2001).

b) The Crusades at least began as an attempt by Christian Europe to recapture large sections of the Middle East that had been conquered by your peace-loving Muslims.

c) It can’t be said too often: Jim Crow laws were put in place and maintained for decades by your political party, and the motivation for these laws was not grounded primarily in religious belief but in pure racial bigotry.

Above all, Muslim radicals are killing thousands of people today, and are a clear and present danger. How many people have been slaughtered in the last year by hordes of Methodist marauders? How many heretics have Catholics burned since Vatican II? What’s the latest news on Baptist suicide bombers? For cryin’ out loud, have more than a dozen Unitarians even gotten a parking ticket since Obama’s re-election?

As usual, Obama is just propping up another straw man in his disingenuous search for moral equivalence.


Old Sailor Man said...

Not about Winston Churchill, but leadership news from Down Under. Two government backbenchers have moved and seconded a leadership spill motion, which will be voted on at the caucus meeting on Tuesday. As I write (Friday PM) there are no declared candidates. IMO the most likely result is defeat of the motion but there is a lot of dissatisfaction with Tony Abbott's leadership.

bruce said...

Did Obama have a point to his speech? Sounds more like a church sermon than a political appeal. High school valedictorian.

Protestant Whigs had this whole concocted idea of historical progress which unfortunately became much much too influential in America. As a result you'll never hear historical fact about the medieval world or Catholicism from some product of an average American education, and even Pulitzer prize winning books are just bollocks:

I'm a fan of James Hannam too:

Paco said...

OSM: Sorry to hear that Tony Abbott's having problems. I need to get up to speed on current Australian politics.

Bruce: Exactly like a sermon.

rinardman said...

Just as bad as Obo's flaky historical misrememberances, are the people who stand and applaud him for selling us out.

Isophorone said...

Well said!

HAL9000 said...

I think the jihadists' terrorism is a modern adaptation of a Medieval Muslim institution called a ribat. These were communities on the frontiers of Islam where the men lived who made constant raids into non-Muslim territory. They killed, burned, and kidnapped for slavery the people in the adjacent territories. Non-Muslim countries often established special settlements of men to defend against this threat. The Austrian Grenzers were given land on the frontier in exchange for fighting against the raiders. The Croats are their descendents. The Byzantines had their own borderers, akrites, for a similar task. A famous Byzantine poem is about one of them, Diogenes Akritas. In Spain there were "Brotherhoods" that specialized in fighting the Muslims and stopping the raiding. In Poland, Ukraine, and Russia Cossacks played this role.

The contemporary form is ideologically driven by a very narrow-minded form if Islamic faith suffused with modern nihilism. Military action is necessary but not sufficient for the West to win. We must respond ideologically.

The vision the Jihsdists spin for their recruits is an attractive one, where Muslims will swagger around lording it over the wretched dhimmis and they'll be rich from taking what the dhimmis work for. When Muslims get the actual life undeer the jihadists it is much less attractive to them than they expected. That's why Sunni groups turned against al-Qaida in 2007 and why some are turning against ISIS now. We have to offer an attractive alternative; liberty and prosperity in a modern world. That was part of the point of the Iraq campaign. No we'll have to start all over once we get a President who understands the problem, as Obumbler does not.

It would help if we cleaned up our own culture and economic state as well, but we ought to do that anyway, for our own good. It would make things much more effective in the ideological war if Western countries set a good example and cut down on the license our culture wallows in. Prosperous economies would also help, but would require massive cuts to government activity, massive deregulation, and drastically cutting back the welfare state.