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Main problem is a 'lack of respect and understanding'...

Reader comment on item: Cartoons and Islamic Imperialism

Submitted by M Saleem Akhtar (United States), Feb 12, 2006 at 23:46

Every society has its important symbols of reverence. In the United States it is the Constitution, the founding fathers and the flag. In France it is the republic. Britain reveres the institution of parliament and the country's war heroes. For the Jewish people it is the Torah, Israel and the Holocaust.

'Most' muslims revere God (popularly called Allah in muslim countries), Quran and the prophets (not only Muhammad but also Moses, Christ, etc). For Hindus its the Bhagvadgita, Mahabharata and gods. There is a deep-rooted passion and strong emotional attachment to these symbols in each community. Intelligent people of all civilizations usually understand this and are sensitive to these feelings, even when they disagree with the substance these symbols represent.

Its simply a case of egos (on both sides) and gross over-reactions.. with some hypocrisy by arab muslims as Dr. Pipes mentions. The 'enraged muslims' saw the re-printing of the cartoons by various newspapers as a deliberate attempt/conspiracy to insult/humiliate muslims and islam. However the arab countries and iran should also give due respect to the symbols revered by the people of the Jewish faith (and other faiths) as well... only then will they be justified for their 'reaction'.
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