We need once and for all to lay this enigma to rest. Is “Moderate Islam” an illusion? Moderate Islam is a wedge that will jam open the door to jihad, and “evil will triumph when good Muslims do nothing.” The great majority of Muslims are not adherents of the radical line. Yet because jihadists wage their war under the name of Islam, they receive immense direct and indirect support from rank-and-file ordinary Muslims. It is this support of moderate Muslims that keeps the jihadists alive.
Perhaps it is wishful thinking on the part of non-Muslims to believe that one can be a moderate Muslim who does not participate in any shape or form the crimes of the jihadist. Good-hearted Americans, rightfully weary of wars, are voicing their opposition for the use of force in combating Islamic ideology.
“I am already against the next war,” read the bumper sticker on a car ahead of me. I wish I could tell the driver that the next war is already here; jihadists are waging it in every corner of the globe, and “moderate Muslims” are, knowingly or not, supporting them. In our conflict with jihadists, moderate Muslims either fault the West or simply look the other way. Islam strives to wipe out everything free people cherish, including the right to freedom of expression.
But Islam is a religion of peace and the great majority of Muslims are not a party to any plans or actions of radicals — so claim academic pundits, leftist journalists, and hired Islamic apologists. The incantation of these “authorities” is the lullaby that puts the people into a sleep of complacency. For an average free human being, busy with all manner of demands on his time and resources, hardly wants to worry about the threat of Islam when those he believes “in the know” emphatically claim that there is nothing to see here. Some of these advocates of Islam go even further by accusing those who sound the alarm as racist, bigoted, hatemongers and much more.
But where are all the peace-loving moderate Muslims who supposedly are in the great majority? Muslims who are neither jihadist themselves nor support them? I and others, time and again, have been calling upon them to stand up and show the world they oppose fanatical jihadists. It is small comfort, even if most Muslims are not fanatic radicals, when they do nothing to demonstrate their proclaimed non-violent stance. It is instructive to recall that it is invariably a minority, and more often than not, a very small minority, that launches a campaign of death and destruction with great success.
It seems wishful thinking on the part of non-Muslims to believe that one can be a moderate Muslim, given that Islam is radical at its very core. To be a moderate Muslim demands that the person explicitly renounce much of the violent, exclusionary, and radical teachings of the Quran. By so doing, the individual issues his own death warrant in Islamic countries and is condemned as apostate. And if he lives in a non-Islamic land, he may even earn a fatwa on his head.
It is deadly, in any confrontation, to assess the adversary through one’s own mental template, because both templates can be vastly different from each other. People in the West are accustomed to relativistic rather than absolutist thinking. To Westerners, just about all matters range from black to white with an array of gray shades in between the two poles. To Muslims, by contrast, nearly everything is in black and white, with virtually no shades of gray. The former type of thinking is typical of more mature minds, while the latter is that of young children and the less enlightened.
This absolutist thinking is enshrined in the Quran itself. When the starting point for a Muslim is the explicit fanatical words of Allah in the Quran, then the faithful are left with no choice other than to literally obey its dictates or even take it to the next level of fanaticism. Good Muslims, for instance, do not shake hands with women, even though the Quran does not explicitly forbid it. Although the Quran stipulates that men rule over women, good Muslim men take it upon themselves to treat women not much better than they treat their domesticated animals.
All extreme systems operate outside of the constraints of checks-and-balances and according to the principle of the negative feedback loop. That is, once it starts, the extreme becomes more and more extreme until it self-destructs and takes the larger system down with it. Cancer is a case in point. It begins with only a few cells. Left unchecked, the few cells continue expanding and stop only with the death of the host.
Fanatical Islam may indeed be a minority. Yet it has spread throughout the world. Urgent confrontation is imperative to stave it off.
Dozens of jihads are presently raging in the world, aided and abetted by a “moderate Muslim” majority. The so called moderate Muslims, even if they do exist, are complicit in the crimes of the radicals, either by providing them with funds, logistics, and new recruits, or by simply failing to actively confront and unequivocally renounce them.
It is the malignant minority that is death-bearing.
In the Germany of the 1930s, for instance, very few people were Nazis, and most Germans dismissed them as a bunch of hot-headed louts. Before long, the hot-headed few cowed the dismissive masses, and as a result, millions lost their lives.
The tentacles of the Islamic hydra have deeply penetrated the world. The Egyptian-based Muslim Brotherhood poses a clear threat in Egypt. The Muslim Brotherhood also wages its deadly campaign through its dozens of well-established and functioning branches all over the world.
The Wahhabis finance thousands of madrassahs throughout the world, where young boys are brainwashed into becoming fanatical foot-soldiers for the petrodollar-flush Saudis and other emirs of the Persian Gulf.
The end-of-the-world believers of the bomb-aspiring Iran’s Khomeinism are busy establishing Shi’a hegemony in an arc extending from the Gulf of Oman to the Mediterranean Sea.
Al Qaeda and dozens of its like-minded jihadists relentlessly carry on their barbaric campaigns in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Kashmir, the Philippines, the former Soviet republics, the Russian Federation, Somalia, North Africa and parts of Europe, as well as other lands.
I keep hoping those purportedly peace-loving moderate Muslims are indeed the great majority who will arise and demonstrate their peacefulness and moderation in action. Thus far, only a faint murmur of equivocation is all that I hear from these people.
Is “moderate Muslim” an illusion? The only viable alternative for peaceful people of an Islamic background, therefore, is to leave the bondage of violent Islam altogether and join ranks with humanity’s free people.
I hope and pray that the force of freedom also abandons its reverse gear and stops retreating in the face of Islam’s surge. It is this hope that sustains me in my efforts to continue sounding the clarion.
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