Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Tolerance has Limits

With the recent bombings in London and Egypt the fear of terrorist attacks has risen here in America. With the absence of any significant attacks here on American soil since 9/11 we had become complacent and confident in our security measures. That confidence has been severely shaken in recent weeks. We have seen how easy it is for some intent on killing innocent people to do so. The security of our transit systems are now being reevaluated and the New York police department has started random searches of train passengers and there are calls for video monitoring systems to be installed much like those in the London tunnels. The usual detractors of the war on terror are once again out in full force postulating that the bombings in London are proof that the war in Iraq has not made us safer from terrorist attacks here in America, or the war in Iraq is the cause of terrorist attacks.

If the war in Iraq is the cause of terrorist attacks, what was the cause of these attacks before the war? The fact is we are much safer here in America without Saddam Hussein, as is the volatile Middle East. This was a man that attacked his neighbors, killed his own people, paid the families of Palestinian homicide bombers, and would have gladly aided terrorists in inflicting as much carnage as possible here in the United States and abroad. However, it is also a fact that we are not immune from terrorist attacks here just because Saddam is gone. No one ever said that deposing Saddam Hussein would end terrorism. This is just one battle in a World War. Abandoning the war on terrorism in the hopes that it will all go away is not an option. We know from a history of nothing but strong words, economic sanctions, and token military strikes that terrorism will not just go away.

There is a larger battle looming in this war and it is not going to take place on a battlefield. It is going to be a battle to change the philosophy of the Islamic clerics and Muslim leaders of the world. The terrorist organizations and countries can blame their propensity to violence on Western friendship towards Israel or policies that they view imperialistic, but it is due more to a type of Fundamental Islamic fascism bent on the spread of Fundamentalism and a hatred of all infidels and other non-fundamental Muslims.

After the terrorist attacks in London Tony Blair called on the Islamic clerics in his country to denounce the attacks and denounce terrorism. Soon after this call some of the clerics in London did so. This is not the first time clerics have been asked to denounce terrorism and it is not the first time that they have issued statements against attacks on innocent people. It seems that the statements from the clerics have fallen on deaf ears as evident by the continued acts of terrorism. It could be that the clerics are telling the infidels one thing while preaching the merits of violence to their followers. The principle of Al-Takeyya allows Muslims to lie for the faith. This especially true in times of war as Muslims see war as deception.

The ACLU is already trying to rally against the random searches of train passengers in New York for fear of racial profiling of Arab-Americans. No one in this country should be discriminated against because of the color of their skin, sexual orientation, or ethnic background. The terrorists understand that we love our freedom in this country and they have seen our public outcry when someone or some groups liberties have been infringed upon. They will try to use this love of freedom against us. It will not be long before there is a law suit against the City of New York because a police officer stopped a person that looks Middle Eastern and searches their bag. Then the police officers will be relegated to stopping and searching little old ladies and letting Middle Eastern males in the 18 to 40 age range go for fear of further lawsuits. I know that not all Middle Eastern males in that age range are terrorists but almost all of the terrorists that have been caught, killed, or killed themselves are. Even with this knowledge, at present, most people in the United States and Europe are not in favor of the racial profiling of this group. This is because of the love of individual liberties and the willingness of inclusion of all peoples in our society. You have to ask yourself however, how long will this tolerance last? In our democratic societies the government turns on the will of the people. How many bombings will it take before the will of the people is to exclude the people of Islam from our countries?

Armed with the knowledge that Islamic clerics and other leaders may be lying for their faith words should no longer be sufficient, we should demand action. If Islam has truly been hijacked by terrorists and this is not the true nature of the religion then the people of this faith throughout the world need to abandon their ambivalence to the violence and join in the fight to defeat terrorism. It is especially imperative for Arab-Americans and Arab-Europeans that truly love the free countries in which they live to do this. They should know that while Americans and Europeans alike value the freedoms of their countries and with the exception of a few, are willing to include and accept people of all races and faiths, I am afraid that our tolerance will have its limits.
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