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Western assumptions may be false.

Reader comment on item: Does Israel Need a [Peace] Plan?

Submitted by A.F. (United States), Feb 3, 2003 at 00:09

Thanks again Dr. Pipes for again taking us beyond simplistic media or academic inspired opinions to more reality-based conclusions. It's always a rewarding, if not sobering experience, to read your analysis. Answering questions like "Does Israel Need a Plan?" should rely on irrefutable premises instead of common but unproven assumptions that many in the West take for granted. Your essay points out many of those errors, but there are a few more basic premises worth looking at to make sure the West isn't wasting its time:

1. Muslims prefer democracy over despotism. We assume they do but where is the evidence? Where are the national role models, past or present? Where are the voices among the one billion plus Muslims who speak out in support of democratic values? Can any true Muslim face Mecca while also thinking about Athens?

2. Muslims prefer peace over war. The liberal West assumes they do but the maps show otherwise. In all directions leading out from Mecca the Muslims are expanding their religion and dominance over their neighbors: Pakistan and India to the east; Indonesia and Malaysia to the south-east; Sudan to the south; Algeria and Israel to the West; Chechnya and Bosnia to the North; and many more such examples of expansionism surround the outer limits on the Islamic map.

And within the Muslim world, unstoppable religious strife and warfare between Muslim factions both across and within national borders.

3. The Koran is a doctrine of brotherhood, not a "declaration of war." If a doctrine of brotherhood, where is the evidence? Yet there is a virtual deluge of hatemongering and warlike behavior from Islamists and so-called "fundamentalists" who rely on Koranic teachings for a barbarian philosophy.

4. Muslims prefer economic welfare over jihad. To the contrary, the evidence shows they will choose jihad over anything else, whether personal comfort or even life itself, when given the choice. The concepts of free market economies and national wealth seem to be alien concepts – the carrots the West holds in front of their nose to behave. While visions of dismembered bodies of Jews, Christians, or their own martyred children, brings them more ecstasy than material well-being.

5. Muslims will prefer wealth over poverty. The concepts of wealth and poverty are western creations arising out of a free market democratic system. Excluding religious indoctrination, literacy is low and a recent phenomenon brought about by oil money. The media is still tightly controlled. It's possible that "poverty" is a meaningless concept to a Muslim world that until recently had only a simple agrarian lifestyle.

The west relies on the bait of "reduced poverty, improved health, better education, and other such symbols of westernization to lure the Muslim world to proper behavior.

6. Muslim nations will accept the division of church and state. We know that without this division the Muslim states will only remain theocracies and the "rule of law" will always be a sham. And without "rules of law" democracy can never exist. If we look back over the last 1400 years or so of Islam, is there suddenly hope for such a political evolution or does the growth of fundamentalism point to the opposite conclusion?

7. Islam desires progress over a return to primitivism. The growth of fundamentalism in the Islamic countries and increasingly within Western states points to the opposite conclusion - raw power over progress. The most striking examples of Muslim success in advancing its use of science and technology has not been for the betterment of humanity but for its ultimate destruction. These include terrorists using the internet, engineers producing more effective body explosives, students majoring in guerrilla warfare, and the medical and scientific community focusing on producing more potent nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons.

Those are just some of the more basic assumptions that political leaders in the West seem to rely on but may in fact be flawed.
Submitting....

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Reader comments (67) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
"the right road to peace" [383 words]shukiJul 5, 2007 18:53103051
I agree with the ONLY DEFINITION of "GENOCIDE BOMBERS" [212 words]ADec 18, 2005 10:2330138
Two Nations, Two Walls [705 words]Karel SykoraJun 4, 2005 11:5722556
A Plan [171 words]Murray SmithMar 6, 2004 13:2614104
Close, but no cigar [449 words]Ray ExleyFeb 3, 2004 05:5013674
Stated as it is [78 words]RenirobertsFeb 2, 2004 20:1513671
whos side is England on? [80 words]Benjamin Curd {14 year old}Jan 21, 2004 16:5013474
God bless Daniel Pipes [24 words]Albert PintoDec 29, 2003 16:2212987
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Thank God for Daniel Pipes. [5 words]Christina FoltzJun 5, 2003 20:529406
Transfer is still the only way [217 words]RayMay 30, 2003 03:479293
Aren't we forgetting Islam [377 words]Y Brandstetter MDApr 24, 2003 08:218650
What the left demands [209 words]JonathanMar 4, 2003 17:167070
Thank You [271 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Paula KirbyMar 4, 2003 11:157051
difficult problem [175 words]joyceFeb 19, 2003 10:066771
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Your advocacy of "total victory" is misguided. [202 words]Luke TakeuchiFeb 8, 2003 04:596493
Why not another idea? [240 words]V. ThogersenFeb 4, 2003 17:356394
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Does Israel Need a Plan [61 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
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The Arabs' mentality in a nut shell [190 words]Jonathan LipshutzFeb 4, 2003 06:516347
Does Israel has a plan? [56 words]Muhammad SiddiquiFeb 4, 2003 00:546343
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Winning the Peace [101 words]Ken GoldsteinFeb 3, 2003 15:346332
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Anti- Zionism in Western Euope [57 words]M. NadlerFeb 3, 2003 14:036329
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Train of thought ran off the Track [273 words]Isaiah520Feb 3, 2003 13:396327
plan !!! [60 words]plainolcitizenFeb 3, 2003 12:286320
no cloudy, smokey apparitions here [24 words]Bruce A. BirnbergFeb 3, 2003 12:166319
The Best Review, Yet [371 words]Don SkupskyFeb 3, 2003 12:046318
Response to "Does Israel Need a Plan" [427 words]robert goldsteinFeb 3, 2003 11:256317
Who in the U.S. govt will move on this? [113 words]Mel KusinFeb 3, 2003 11:216316
Clarity at last [60 words]Rivka MuskatFeb 3, 2003 11:006314
Victory [6 words]Glenn KlotzFeb 3, 2003 09:556313
Plans are not the answer! [46 words]Robert AbramsFeb 3, 2003 09:056312
Truths are recognizable... [49 words]Kerry AndersonFeb 3, 2003 05:416309
Ignoring complicity. [279 words]Timothy P. BrownFeb 3, 2003 01:516307
Dr. Pipes clearly defined the "problem" and the solution is obvious! [91 words]Ivan BarnaFeb 3, 2003 01:496306
Pipes = Genius [89 words]steve frederickFeb 3, 2003 00:146305
Western assumptions may be false. [644 words]A.F.Feb 3, 2003 00:096304
discussion on chatboard [84 words]Joe KeysorFeb 2, 2003 23:196302
What's wrong with Jordan? [585 words]ShaharFeb 2, 2003 22:576300
"Speak soft but carry a big stick"(T. Roosevelt) [293 words]alexFeb 2, 2003 22:466299
Defining Motivation [219 words]E. J. BlumbergFeb 2, 2003 22:256297
a question about Oslo [309 words]Susan KriegerFeb 2, 2003 22:186295
Other Arab Nations?? [66 words]A. J.Feb 2, 2003 22:176294
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peace in the middle east [45 words]robert mandreshFeb 2, 2003 20:106289
Should Israel be invited to join NATO? [739 words]Sam LewisFeb 2, 2003 16:536284
Does Israel Need a Plan [39 words]Yale RichmoindFeb 2, 2003 16:436283
For how long can TRUTH be ignored? [88 words]Salomon BenzimraFeb 2, 2003 16:216281
Brilliant! [75 words]Mort ReichekFeb 2, 2003 15:206280
The Iron Fist is Not the Answer [471 words]Ralph WinstanleyFeb 2, 2003 14:076278
Religious fanaticism [185 words]Glenn KlotzFeb 2, 2003 13:386277
excellent analysis [199 words]Alfred DukeszFeb 2, 2003 13:376276
Excellent analysis [131 words]martin kesslerFeb 2, 2003 13:186274
Query [57 words]David FawcettFeb 2, 2003 13:056272
Kahanne was too late and too early [44 words]Norman WandFeb 2, 2003 12:486271
well-conceived analysis [108 words]Michelle TuchmanFeb 2, 2003 12:026268
Israel's "plan" [150 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
David SchechterFeb 2, 2003 11:436266
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A Clear Vision [40 words]Thea (Tzippi) RiiseFeb 2, 2003 11:126262
Thanks for posting it! [31 words]CookitFeb 2, 2003 11:096260
Tough problems require tough solutions! [109 words]Kevin HandleyFeb 2, 2003 10:496259

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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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