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Moderate: A direct definition and a new theology are needed. Won't happen.

Reader comment on item: Bolstering Moderate Muslims

Submitted by MelM (United States), Apr 17, 2007 at 20:23

I'd rather see a direct definition of "moderate Muslim" rather than just "anti-Islamist". I would not be politically worried about Muslims who:

1. want secular government (seperation of state and religion)

2. reject the imposition of Islamic law

2. reject weaving religious superstitions into the regulatory structure

3. accept "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness"

But, can any of this be achieved over the long term without what could be called an "Islamic Enlightenment Theology?" A moderate theology would give a different answer to being a "good Muslim" than what's available now. Recall the recent 60 Minutes segment about how the Islamists are recruiting by pointing out that a Muslim isn't really a "good Muslim." Then there is the Ayaan Hirsi Ali comment about how Islamists win the argument by showing up with all the holy books; those who can support a claim by finding a reference in a holy book are going to win an argument where both sides accept the same holy book. I think it would take a new theology to infuse Islam with some Enlightenment views. It's not going to happen now or perhaps ever. (And, by the way, how is "Enlightenment Theology" doing in the U.S.? Not well, because it's an oxymoronic idea anyway.)

Meanwhile, while we're engineering some kind of Islamic Enlightenment, the Islamsts will win converts to their ideas at a 100 to 1 ratio and we'll get blown to pieces and/or our secular government will become rotted from indulging a bunch of irrational superstitions. (If peoples' feelings are hurt because of their superstitions, it's their own fault and certainly not mine; don't indulge them. )

This scheme looks like it could be part of the Pentagon's "generational war" idea (50 to 100 years for a "win".) Really, there's something like "the Forward Strategy of Freedom" in this plan; we spend years and risk our lives leading Islam to a new theology. And, don't forget the recruiting poster--usable for a 1000 years-- that the catastrophic failures in Iraq and Afghanistan will provide. (If the Islamists believe now that they can win, just wait 'till the Iraq and Afghan fiascoes are understood. We aint seen nothin' yet!))

This plan does nothing to convince the Islamists that the U.S. will not allow their fantasy Islamic state to exist.

So, I'm sticking with John Lewis on this. Then, let them work out a more secular Islamic culture that will allow them to live with the rest of the world.

Submitting....

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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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