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Re: Daniel Pipe's Comments on The failure of the Oslo accord.

Reader comment on item: Why Oslo's Hopes Turned to Dust

Submitted by Reuben Horne (United States), Sep 9, 2003 at 23:17

I just wanted to take the time to say that I wholeheartedly concur with Mr Pipes point by point proposal as the beginning at least of a solution to the Palestinian Israeli conflict. It embodies a more realistic way of seeing the conflict amongst other things. I have a few small things to add. Our perception of the Palestinian Israeli conflict in the west is heavily skewed (and in this case I am dealing particularly with the Australian Context) by a liberally biased media. I use the term liberal rather loosely because the interests that the media is representing with it's liberal bias are anything but liberal in nature. Our media has tended to report firstly the Israeli response to actions on the part of the Palestinian's and then either not report the actions of the Palestinians that the Israelis are responding to -- or report the Palestinian aggression as some kind of after thought. As a result of this the tendency in Australia has been to view the conflict in one of two ways: the most prevalent opinion in Australia is one laced with exasperation as though the Middle East is a hopeless case and both parties are to blame, increasingly however the media has been more and more successful in engendering tremendous yet utterly illogical hostility towards the Jewish people in Israel.

Strangely the media takes a very different view of precisely the same activities that the Palestinians are undertaking when they appear on our shores. The terrorist actions at Bali and more recently outside a major international hotel in Indonesia were the actions of a group of Al Queda affiliated paramilitaries known as Jama Islamia whose mission statement includes the formation of an Islamic superstate in the southern pacific including Australia -- one assumes that a necessary antecedant to the formation of this state is the destruction of my home country (that being Australia). As a result of this when the Hamas flag is waved at anti Israeli rallies and when the Australian Coucil of Arts funds a cable TV station that disseminates Jihadist propaganda it is an immense scandal and the Islamic community within Australia is subject to intense scrutiny which they do not appreciate. So there is a great hypocracy in the way that these issues are both seen and dealt with when you compare the attitudes of Australian's to what goes on in their country and what goes on overseas. I sympathise entirely with the Israelis when in exasperation they make statements like -- if this is not acceptable anywhere else why should it be acceptable within Israel.

On another issue whilst the Palestinian perspective on the conflict can be regarded as a fantasy in one sense (i.e. the whole institution of Islamic Martyrdom) in focusing singularly on this particular fantasy we fail to address a number of far more elaborate fantasies that we have come to hold as inalienable truths in the west. By this I mean much more than just the idea that the Palestinian's as a body of people had all of a sudden come to recognize the state of Israel. Primarily we have a conception of religion in our post reformation world that does not in any way apply to the Islamic one. Our idea of the seperation between state and church -- our secularized society -- all of these things we have somehow grown so accustomed to that we have fallen into the fantasy of believing are universal -- spanning the breadth of humanity. Thus when idiot's write editorials addressed to major newspapers in Australia suggesting that we all see the terror operations in Israel within the context of Palestinian nationalism (presumably a purile leftist attempt to decrease the impact of these atrocities by trying to make them less alien to whoever wastes their time in reading the editorials) I shudder, because this is exactly the way such things should not be seen, it plays into the hands of the terrorists themselves -- and it is disgraceful that they have been able to manipulate our media so. I see the suicide bombings for what they are -- the latest set of atrocities in Islam's perpetual aggressive expansion and it's rage at the backward steps it took when the state of Israel was formed.

Militant Islam is more than a religion -- it is a political party and it would be more appropriate to see it within /this/ context rather than any other in the west. Its adherents come into other countries for the greater part with prepackaged immovable opinions in relation to many contentious topics. Invariably they tend to favor perspectives on womens rights, democracy, freedom of speech, freedom of religion and sexuality (lets not forget that). Contrary to one of the central propositions of this website Islam has declared war on us we cannot simply deny this fact and hope that through some process of osmosis the conflict will be resolved in our favor. Presently the evidence of this war this is all around us even if the attacks upon us are ad hoc in nature and not made by overt military invasion. The current danger of biological warfare has made the need for us to acknowledge the reality of our situation particularly urgent.

In concluding I would like to quote the religious leader of Hamas I do not have his words translated in front of me verbatim for me to put down so I write from memory. He said that one could not form a nation out of victims. When I heard them these words struck me as especially profound as in the west this is what evidently we have been attempting to do for the last thirty years at least. Again at this point I must make reference to the phenomenon of Political correctness, which I have come to see as essentially a perversion of our capacity for critical thinking and constructive self criticism -- it involves a degree of self examination that is both self defeating and neurotic on a national scale. Political correctness ascribes great status to victimhood -- so thusly the habit whether consciously or unconsciously is to pursue the state of victimhood -- to define the degree to which oneself is a victim and then seek recognition of this. Unintentionally then Hamas' religious leader had exposed what I believe to be our greatest weakness. The Islamic world is not unaware of this frailty indeed prominant Academics in Pakistan have written extensively on how the new political correctness could be used to infiltrate and destroy the west with the aim of converting it to Islam. If we were not our own greatest enemy then Islam would be much less of a threat.

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