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Telling the Truth but with one problem

Reader comment on item: The Roots of Iraq's Rebellion

Submitted by Seth J. Frantzman (United States), Apr 13, 2004 at 19:21

As always Mr. Pipes gives us a handful of honesty. As the European Powers expanded, with their advanced military technology they came to dominate the entire globe by the 1890s. But where were the Europeans not ascendant? Everywhere the Islam existed Europe had trouble. And it wasn't just trouble it was the incessant fight against rebellion and harassment, as Gordon found out all to sadly at Khartoum. The only way the Europeans found to deal with Islamic intolerance was to put Muslim rulers over them. The French magistrate in Egypt was but the first of many Muslim loving Europeans, right down to Lawrence of Arabia and Glubb Pasha.

In North Africa the truth be told the Italian, French and Spanish administrations never got beyond the coast and insipient tribal rebellions never ceased. In the Sudan the same was true of English rule. In Egypt it was the maintenance of King Farook and native Muslim royalty that kept the British from being attacked. In Palestine the British also employed native rulers like Haj Amin Al Husayni, and even so they suffered the Arab revolt in 1936. In Syria the French also employed native officials. Turkey refused to be dominated by the Europeans and Ataturk immediately broke the treaty of Sevres, forcing out the Greeks and Italians. In India England also employed native officials and preferences for Muslims in order to keep the Muslims from Jihad. And England was, of course, defeated in Afghanistan(1840) and at Kut in Iraq(1915?).

Let us complete our survey of Colonialism and Muslims society by analyzing the FACT that European rule was never extended to 'holy' Mecca. That in fact the English quickly handed over Saudi Arabia to the House of Saud and handed over Jordan and Iraq to King Faisal and his brother. Iran was never controlled by Europeans either, with the exception of spheres of influence granted to Russians and English during the 'great Game'(see Hopkirks marvelous study of the period). The Europeans also turned to Sheiks and other minor nobility to carve out Kuwait, Bahrain and Oman. Perhaps Aden/Yemen was the exception. In Africa we find that Ethiopia was never dominated(except briefly in the 1930s). Somali tribesmen were never defeated. The Sahara was never truly penetrated. The only true exception to this, and we must marvel at it, was the Russians. The Russians, probably due to their willingness to fight barbarism with barbarism quickly cleansed the Muslims of the caucuses(although even Stalin was not successful in Chechnya despite the deportation). The Russians also were quite effective in crushing and subjugating and then settling Kazakhstan and the other 'stans' of central Asia.

So why the European failure to take over Muslims lands? Despite what we learn of the terrible colonization of 'native peoples' we actually find the European sensibilities in the 1800s were not so different then today. They wanted to spread civilization and in most cases they weren't willing to resort to barbarism and tyranny to do so. We find the English in particular were not willing to confront force with force, rather they loved using native troops. In ding so they frequently found that alliances with Muslim potentates was easier then subjugation. Is this because Hindus and pagans loved to be subjugated in Africa and India? No. The truth was simply that the Hindus and Pagans had no tradition of intolerance, and hence they were not all willing to die for their beliefs. Yet in Islam we see the obsession with not being ruled by non-Muslims. And we find in the European mindset a flaw that meant they didn't dare to confront Muslim terror.

How do I draw this conclusion? Well let us view the example, recently explained in 'Jefferson's War', of the Barbary Pirates. These savage slave traders enslaved Europeans for hundreds of years and although European countries maintained larger and more modern arsenals the countries being preyed upon like Spain, France and England REFUSED to confront the terrorism. We pretend that terror is a modern Muslim phenomenon but this is not the case. Terror is THE way that Islam deals with non-Muslims, it is through enslavement, rape and genocide that Islam has always dealt with its enemies, hence the reason no religious minorities exist in Muslim lands.

And how does the European react? The European preaches tolerance and diversity, even in 1800, in the face of an enemy who only seeks intolerance and enslavement. This is the reason that it took the only nations to ever confront Islam have been the Mongolians and their slightly Asiatic descendants the Russians. It was the Mongol mindset that led the Russians to sweep down upon the Khiva and subjugate it. But even the Russians suffered from an inability to confront barbarism. The Russians refused for hundreds of years to stop the Khivans from enslaving and raping thousands of Russians a year from 1500-1800. Why? Because of the typical European aversion to use the hammer against the enemy. Had it been Poles or Bulgarians invading Russia every year and enslaving young girls the tsar would have been quick to fight. And the same goes for the French merchant ships. had it been Spaniards enslaving the French rather the Barbary pirates the French would have fought to the death for their famed 'pride'. But Europeans have a sickness, a psychological inability to fight terror with terror, to fight enslavement with enslavement. The last Europeans who were willing to fight with tenacity against barbarism were the Romans. It was the Romans who sowed salt into the sands of Carthage. And why did the French not respond to Tripoli tan pirates in the same way? Obviously the French had the military ability to deal with them. But the psychology of defeat, the taste of subjugation was in the French mouth, just as it was in the Spanish and English mouth, an inability, a knee-jerk inability to confront militant Islam as it existed in 1800 and as it exists today.

So how does this relate to the article on Iraq. Because Mr. Pipes summed up what I have explained by showing the natural abhorrence of Islam for non-Muslim government. America's invasion and 'occupation' of Iraq is a first. It is a FIRST for a European country. It is the first time we have been willing to use take over a Muslim country and govern it. For 1500 years, since the birth of Islam, Muslims have been subjugating, enslaving and governing non-Muslims, raping and enslaving young women, stealing young boys from mothers in eastern Europe(the Janissaries) and so on. And yet although Europeans whether in Spain or Serbia seem to have had a penchant for allowing themselves to be taken over by Muslims they have never been willing to do the same to their enemies. Probably it is a deep memory of being enslaved and subjugated that has kept Europe from its willingness to extend rule over Muslims, as if Europe has already bowed down to Allah. So we see finally it took Americans, just like it took Americans in 1800 to beat down the Barbary Pirates and it took America to crush Fascism and it took America to crush communism, once again the ENTIRE WORLD must watch as America shows everyone how it is done, how Islam must be confronted, how Islam also can be subjugated and ruled and occupied, and how Islam can be reformed. Every 20 years in the 20th century the World has turned to America for guidance...nay saving...and once again America is giving the world the proper medicine.

So when Mr. Pipes says:
"I therefore counsel the occupying forces quickly to leave Iraqi cities and then, when feasible, to leave Iraq as a whole. They should seek out what I have been calling for since a year ago: a democratically-minded Iraqi strongman, someone who will work with the coalition forces, provide decent government, and move eventually toward a more open political system."

I disagree. I say its time to show Muslims that we aren't afraid to rule them. I say its time we show Muslims that we are willing to do to them what they did to us for 1500 years. I say its time to show the world that Islam can be beaten, subjugated and then rolled back. I say its time to use the Iraqis but use them correctly. We should employee the Kurds against Fallujah, the Sunnis against the Shiias and the Shiias we should just expel. And as we let them fight each other, we can meanwhile begin bringing in Christian missionaries to convert the Iraqis. We should study how Islam was able to convert the Albanians to the Hindus or how they are converting Philippines today and we should use their tactics in Iraq. Once Iraq can be made a Christian country then we even start settling Palestinians in Iraq to solve that problem as well. After all the Palestinians allied themselves with Hussein in 1991. That would be my recipe.

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Daniel Pipes replies:

Interesting analysis, but Britain surely did not "hand" Arabia to the Wahhabis.


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Reader comments (91) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
Peace among all the people [125 words]Ashley Ansara, DVM, PhDOct 12, 2005 00:2326833
missing facts... [270 words]linzApr 27, 2004 22:1214910
What Strongman. [64 words]Sheldon LazarowtzApr 27, 2004 16:4314899
The Roots of Iraq's Rebellion [8 words]emil steinberger, m.d.Apr 25, 2004 23:2014867
New Romans Bearing Gifts [160 words]Toby PetzoldApr 24, 2004 23:3714859
2The American 'weakness' [248 words]Raymond T. KyleApr 23, 2004 19:0314849
British rule in Egypt [62 words]Paul SavitzApr 22, 2004 15:5214839
Yes, but... [177 words]BrianApr 20, 2004 22:4714810
Excellent, and the implications for Israel? [91 words]Y Brandstetter MDApr 20, 2004 05:5014783
Rebellion? [297 words]TomApr 19, 2004 11:4014773
What about Iran? [58 words]JoeApr 18, 2004 15:5314770
It won't work [181 words]Darwin BarrettApr 18, 2004 13:5614769
Isn't this different? [202 words]DavidApr 18, 2004 12:5014768
we need to use more force [53 words]G singhApr 18, 2004 03:4314761
I disagree with Mr Pipes [77 words]Raminder GillApr 17, 2004 20:1914755
The US Obstacles in Iraq [867 words]Shimon Z. KleinApr 17, 2004 12:5514752
Iraq's Rebellion [274 words]Lisette MuradApr 17, 2004 09:2214748
1Islam [104 words]Dr. Ashley AnsaraApr 16, 2004 22:5914746
Iraqi enterprise [132 words]Ilya ZwiebackApr 16, 2004 21:4414745
1There was an American strongman in Iraq... [3 words]Ahmed AliApr 16, 2004 19:5214744
To Val Shkolnikov... [61 words]gjsApr 16, 2004 19:2214741
Find a "Democratically minded Iraqi" [167 words]Tom LoperApr 16, 2004 16:1414739
Regarding Muslim rule by Muslims only. [64 words]Arthur S. GoldbergApr 16, 2004 16:0514738
Much Debatable History Lesson [93 words]Matthew ScribnerApr 16, 2004 12:1014732
The RootsofIraqi Rebellion art.1723 [37 words]S.C.PandaApr 16, 2004 06:3414729
Aesop and Daniel [59 words]Reality CheckApr 15, 2004 15:4814727
clearing some points of view [72 words]E. DarwishApr 15, 2004 14:1314725
Interpretation of the patterns of colonialism [104 words]PeteApr 15, 2004 12:4214724
The Roots of Iraq's Rebellion [138 words]Moin Ansari: American Jewish Muslim AllianceApr 15, 2004 12:3114723
It's only a clash of perceptions, not of cultures [274 words]Michael ElvinApr 15, 2004 12:1814722
Declare Victory and bring back our kids: Not be scared of "shariyaa" [1031 words]Moin Ansari: AMERICAN JEWISH MUSLIM ALLIANCEApr 15, 2004 11:4114721
On Muslim Theology [211 words]Fay VoshellApr 15, 2004 08:4714720
MUCH NEEDED HISTORY LESSON [86 words]Tova MatteroApr 15, 2004 02:2514716
Your solution to bringing peace to Iraq [226 words]Yolanda CanfieldApr 15, 2004 02:1114715
The Growth of Democracy [251 words]Val ShkolnikovApr 15, 2004 00:3114713
Complete agreement [19 words]JacquiApr 15, 2004 00:1514710
Freedom Not Intuitive [117 words]Rick HellerApr 14, 2004 23:2614709
"Democratically-minded"? [63 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Melvin A. FechterApr 14, 2004 22:5614708
A Combination of Roots of Rebellion [28 words]Timothy B. RobertsApr 14, 2004 22:0314707
Agreement [48 words]Roger DavisApr 14, 2004 21:0114706
Sistani=Strongman? [14 words]FredApr 14, 2004 19:3014704
Who? [33 words]Ann Charney ColmoApr 14, 2004 14:2614700
Islam and democracy, like oil and water. [159 words]Bill SweeneyApr 14, 2004 12:4214696
But then there are the Utopians..... [326 words]Diane AldenApr 14, 2004 12:3514695
I agree mostly: [127 words]William OliverApr 14, 2004 12:2114693
Brilliant as usual! [6 words]Walter D'UllApr 14, 2004 11:1114692
recipe unworkable for lack of key ingredient [72 words]H.C. KlingmanApr 14, 2004 10:3514691
Two Questions [98 words]JGApr 14, 2004 10:3414690
Superb article [29 words]Charles DICKINSONApr 14, 2004 10:0514688
How can Muslim ambitions be confined to their own? [356 words]Chana GivonApr 14, 2004 10:0114687
Sure this plan will work? [35 words]John PhilipsApr 14, 2004 06:4514685
Deadline is for Iran, not Iraq [117 words]BarryApr 14, 2004 05:2714682
Idealism [343 words]Robert VaughnApr 14, 2004 01:4214681
Highly Imformative [259 words]AvrahamApr 14, 2004 01:3614680
Hope springs eternal [187 words]gjsApr 14, 2004 00:1414676
I agree [47 words]Joanne PostelmansApr 13, 2004 23:5114675
disagree on failure [128 words]George TomkinApr 13, 2004 23:3214674
Rule by non-Muslims is an abomination [208 words]Jonathan UsherApr 13, 2004 22:5214672
I Have a question [149 words]Arthur BayApr 13, 2004 21:4614670
There are Muslims and there are Muslims. [288 words]MalvinaApr 13, 2004 21:2714669
Excellent [14 words]Peter KellyApr 13, 2004 20:2214667
This last article-about pulling out and leaving behind a strongman [163 words]Gary (2nd generation American/ Indiana-born)Apr 13, 2004 20:1514666
Ah, history! [197 words]Peter J. HerzApr 13, 2004 20:0314665
roots of conflict in Iraq [166 words]donvanApr 13, 2004 19:4714664
Telling the Truth but with one problem [1487 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Seth J. FrantzmanApr 13, 2004 19:2114663
Question [234 words]Dan ReidApr 13, 2004 18:3514661
Another Ataturk or regional wars [168 words]Ilona MelstradsApr 13, 2004 17:4914659
Additional Actions we can Take [228 words]Gary kardonApr 13, 2004 17:4414658
There are two fallacies in Pipes' analysis: [432 words]TanruApr 13, 2004 17:4314657
Agreed, but ... [15 words]Ira WeinerApr 13, 2004 17:3914656
Roots of Iraq's Rebellion [46 words]NENETTE GRUNBERGApr 13, 2004 17:2014655
Did the Bush Administration know? [62 words]Edward Goodman, MDApr 13, 2004 17:0214654
Iraq religion will not accept the West [27 words]Robert KeatsApr 13, 2004 16:4314653
Can Muslims ever secularize? [153 words]Pat KunzApr 13, 2004 15:4814652
At last somebody with intellectual cred speaks the obvious [32 words]Howard VeitApr 13, 2004 15:2314651
The Root's of Iraq's Rebellion [96 words]Bill TrebingApr 13, 2004 15:1914650
On the other hand.. [280 words]ScottApr 13, 2004 15:1314649
Tantamount to re-establishing Hussein. [448 words]Kirk BertinoApr 13, 2004 14:4814646
History not always a good teacher [83 words]Fan of Dr. PipesApr 13, 2004 14:4414645
on "The Roots of Iraq's Rebellion" [146 words]VladApr 13, 2004 14:3814644
A new and more terrible future Iraqi uprising. [152 words]Thomas C. Nixon--Ph. D.Apr 13, 2004 14:3214643
Send this Article to the President [63 words]Rae SpenglerApr 13, 2004 14:2414642
Finding a strong-man to rule Iraq - come on! [309 words]Lloyd Lionel KleinApr 13, 2004 14:1614641
"The Roots of Iraq's Rebellion" What about turkey? [105 words]Rich McMahonApr 13, 2004 14:0614640
Missing the point [106 words]JoaquimApr 13, 2004 13:3814638
Quite insighful [327 words]Barak QueijaApr 13, 2004 13:3714637
is hope disappearing [228 words]john W. mcginleyApr 13, 2004 13:2614636
Which strong man? [120 words]Howard MirkinApr 13, 2004 13:2014635
How about Britain in Iraq and transJordan and etc etc?? [27 words]Henry KriegerApr 13, 2004 13:0814634
Missing the Point [19 words]Bob GreenbergApr 13, 2004 12:5214633
Iraq was never united as a country, it was coerced [112 words]Ken BesigApr 13, 2004 12:4514632

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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