In the west I think we need to understand that, despite the anti-west rhetoric spewed by spokesmen from ISIS, Islamism has so far proven to be more of danger to middle-eastern Moslems than to us.
For every American or European journalist and aid-worker butchered by ISIS, tens of thousands of Moslems (as well as Christians) in Syria and Iraq have also been brutally killed. So the apparant lack of condemnation of ISIS from western Moslems seems significant. [On the other hand, is the western media reporting when Moslems are condemning them?*]
Last Saturday I saw an interesting interview with Dr Qanta Ahmed, a Moslem woman who IS speaking out about the dangers of “Islamism”.
It was refreshing to hear a Moslem willing to speak against the atrocities being committed in the name of Islam and the danger that Islamism presents not only to western interests but to Moslems as well.
During the interview I think she politely put Andrew O’Keefe, the Aussie interviewer, “in his place” (though I’m sure he didn’t realise it) when he tried to compare/equate Islamic extremism (ISIS, Hamas etc) to other religious extremism in the world – also inferring that extremists in the US Bible Belt are no less dangerous than ISIS.
Andrew O’Keefe: I think the debate here in Australia is centred around Islam but meanwhile, in Burma, we have Buddhists running riot against Muslims trying to attempt a genocide there.
We have Hindu nationalism going crazy in parts of India.
The southern states of America, even now, there is an extreme fundamentalist Christianity that has sought to stamp out Judaism and other forms of religious, it’s any religious tradition.
Qanta Ahmed: Your point is well taken, any belief system can be galvanised into grounds for persecution but Islamism is extraordinary.
It’s over 100 years old that steals and borrows language from one of the world’s most populated religion, 1.62 billion Moslems.
So that has a power and scale that few ideologies can lend themselves.
There are Islamist governments that are in power and Iran, also in other countries which have wielded enormous influence.
So it’s much bigger than some of those things you’ve mentioned.
I have previously heard O’Keefe trying to minimise the dangers of Islamists by refering to the dangers presented by all religions. And it seems at times that some media sources can go the extra mile to downplay any Islamic responsibility regarding the rise of Islamism*. A trend not gone unnoticed by Dr Ahmed, who wrote last year:
Expressing concern, executive editor Chris Fields of The Blaze recent wrote “American journalists bend over backward to treat Muslims in a positive way, even to ludicrous extremes. As a result, terrorists are often called “militants”—even when they are on U.S. government terror watch lists. And any open criticism of radical Islam has typically been treated as “Islamophobia.”
He later draws a contrast with the much more critical portrayal of Christians in the media. His argument is long overdue, though most members of the press are too uncomfortable to consider engaging in this debate.
(It’s nice to see her make reference to claims of the all too common negative portrayal of Christians in the media.)
It is also refreshing to hear a Moslem speaking of Israel’s right to exist, especially when so many other voices, even “Christian” opinion has been so opposed to Israel, especially in recent months when Israel responded militarily to Hamas rocket attacks.
Dr Ahmed had this to say in an article from early 2013 (showing the persistency of the Hamas campaign against Israel, and the little value Hamas continues to place on the lives of the Palestinian people in Gaza).
Hamas is never sated – each year it devours ever more Palestinians, regardless of age or gender. If Israelis lose fewer citizens than the Palestinians in these conflicts it is for the same reason Israel exchanges more prisoners for each captive soldier: quite simply Israel values human life more than does Hamas, which relishes ground operations taking place among densely populate civilian areas.
Full article here:
I want to draw attention the the two statments above marked with *. Why does the media seem to have this attitude?