The West is betrayed by its own children. Since October 7, what we have seen in our streets and on campuses—the pro-Palestinian zealotry—is betrayal by those who are themselves the products of Western civilization. And have been schooled in its morbid addiction to cultural guilt.
No one comes to Studio Matters for political discussion. There are mountains of that elsewhere. It is not my forte. But what we are witnessing in Israel today—and by portent here at home— looms larger than politics. We face an existential divide between Western civilization and a culture that celebrates death, and glorifies terrorists, in order to subjugate all mankind to Allah.
The fundamental nature of Islam overwhelms the horse-trading over real estate that hides within that term “Israeli-Palestinian conflict.” Conflicts are the stuff of politics. They can be managed. They are amenable to methods of mediation and conciliation. Rational solutions can be found for them. But the ideology and strategies of conflict resolution do not apply to religiously mandated hatreds. Barbarism does not yield to reason.
Race hatred cannot be conjured away with anodyne prayers for peace devoid of any will for Western man to win. Too few of our shepherds have the spine to declare—or the wit to decide—which side they are on. They take shelter in prayers for a mirage called peace—a hazy, undefined illusion that shifts with atmospheric conditions in the media of the moment.
Prayer is not a strategy.
If your Sunday homilist croons about peace in the Middle East but shrinks from naming the enemy consider getting up and walking out. And take your tithe with you.
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Confusing pretexts with causes, our betters wring their hands trying to get to the bottom of root causes of Islamist terror. Daniel Greenfield cut through the theatrical bafflement with “It’s Islam, Stupid”:
In 1929, Muslim mobs in the Jewish city of Safed burst into an orphange and “smashed the children’s heads and cut off their hands.” During the Hebron Massacre that same year, a British policeman described how, “on hearing screams in a room I went up a sort of tunnel passage and saw an Arab in the act of cutting off a child’s head with a sword. He had already hit him and was having another cut, but on seeing me he tried to aim the stroke at me, but missed; he was practically on the muzzle of my rifle. I shot him low in the groin.”
Israel had not even come into existence yet. What were Muslims protesting then: Jews?
During the first siege of Vienna in 1529, when the invading Muslim horde decided that “children were cut out of their mothers’ wombs and stuck on pikes”, was that a protest against colonialism or capitalism? When a Muslim chronicle boasted that during the genocide against the Sikhs in the 18th century, “the shrieks of the women captives who were being raped, deafened the ears of the people”, was this a response to globalism or Zionism? Or was this just Islam.
Everything Hamas did during the bloody High Holy Days massacres has been done by Muslims throughout history and is still being practiced today. There is nothing new here whatsoever. Medieval barbarism never went away because Islam kept those grisly practices alive. It endures side by side with the modern world of smartphones, electric cars and AI because its worst crimes are an object of religious law and faith.
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Nothing better illustrates the lethal sentimentality of a morally and intellectually bankrupt pope than this photo below. It is a flawless image of papal sanctimony asserting moral equivalence between Palestinian Jew hatred and Israel’s desperate defense against a relentless, and remorseless, enemy. Two flags side by side place an indecent emphasis on Francis’ reported words to Israeli President Isaac Herzog in October: “It is forbidden to respond to terror with terror.”
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In 2022, a Dominican priest in a local parish strode across the sanctuary and bellowed, “Putin is a war criminal.” No such denunciation of Hamas has been uttered. The name is never mentioned. Petitionary prayers at Mass specify the Middle East or Palestine, but never Hamas. Never Islam. This counts as a sin of omission. It is, in effect, a lie. It denies what Daniel Greenfield states plainly:
Islamic violence is over 1,000 years old. It predates most modern countries and it is not caused by anything we do. The only thing we are guilty of is our failure to smash the Jihad.
Nothing that we or anyone else does will appease the terrorists. Islam is not Northern Ireland: peace negotiations have never accomplished and will never accomplish anything. It cannot be reasoned or co-existed with. Its violence is a religious duty written into its scripture and its laws, its atrocities, murder, torture, mutilation and rape, are acts of sacred religious devotion. The Islamic kingdom of heaven can only be achieved when the entire world submits to Islam.
At the same time, the lie encourages the delusion that if we ignore Islam’s internal dynamic and placate Islamic sensitivities all will be well. We dream of sugar plums and call it politics. Ben Domenech responded to the escapist mindset by summoning up the classic Norm MacDonald joke: “What terrifies me is if ISIS were to detonate a nuclear device and kill 50 million Americans. Imagine the backlash against peaceful Muslims.”
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First, a judenrein Middle East. Next, a West cleansed of you and me.
Martin Niemöller, an influential Lutheran pastor in Germany in the Weimar era, spent from 1937 to 1945 in Nazi prisons and concentration camps. His postwar statement, once well known, deserves remembering:
First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a socialist.
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.