Fanatical Few Not America’s Only Enemy
by Edward Blum and Marc Levin
Americans should look with skepticism on what may be crocodile tears of
our new best friends and “allies” in the Middle East. Even though the
totalitarian nations of the Arab world have sent condolences and general
pledges of support following the butchering of over 5,000 Americans, the
recent record of some of these “moderate” nations reveals a disturbing
history of promoting anti-American, as well as anti-Israel sentiment.
For nearly 50 years, there has been a ceaseless chorus of death chants for Israel and its Jewish citizens from virtually every “legitimate” Arab government in the world. We should know by now that governments such as these that sanction terror and bloodshed against the Jews of Israel may do the same for any nation that supports Israel. If history is clear on anything, it is that countries clamoring for a war of extinction against a friend will eventually turn on us.
The Nazis didn’t want just the Sudetenland; they wanted all of Europe. While many Moslems genuinely seek peace, it is hardly just a fanatical few who view the destruction of Israel as merely the first step in their lust for religious and cultural hegemony.
Although we would like to believe Egypt is grief-stricken over the murder of our citizens, less than 60 days ago, a columnist for the Egyptian state-sponsored daily newspaper Al-Akhbar wrote, "(t)he conflict that we call the Arab-Israeli conflict is, in truth, an Arab conflict with Western, and particularly American, colonialism. The US treats the [Arabs] as it treated the slaves inside the American continent. To this end, it is helped by the smaller enemy, and I mean Israel. The issue no longer concerns the Israeli-Arab conflict. The real issue is the Arab-American conflict.... Arabs must understand that the US is not 'the American friend'... and its task, past, present, and future, is [to impose] hegemony on the world, primarily on the Middle East and the Arab world...."
The same Egyptian newspaper has repeatedly stated that Israel has spread poisoned chewing gum and candy among the population, with the intention of killing Egyptian children. Such venomous claptrap casts doubt on the Egyptian government's commitment to peace.
In another article from the same publication, a popular Arab author writes, "(t)he Statue of Liberty, in New York Harbor, must be destroyed because of following the idiotic American policy that goes from disgrace to disgrace in the swamp of bias and blind fanaticism…. The US, including the American people and the Israeli people, has rightly become Enemy No. 1 of the nations."
Another story in Al-Akhbar expressed “thanks to Hitler, of blessed memory, who on behalf of the Palestinians took revenge in advance on the most vile criminals on the face of the earth. Still, we do have a complaint against [Hitler], for his revenge on them was not enough.” Mahmoud Muhammad Khadhr, a cleric from Al-Azhar University, penned a similar diatribe entitled "In Defense of Hitler" in the May 27, 2001
edition of Al-Akhbar.
The official Egyptian press is far from the only example of a purportedly moderate Islamic regime spewing violent rhetoric. Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to the UK, Ghazi Al-Quseibi, wrote a June 9, 2001 article entitled “To Consider What We Dare Not Consider" in the London daily Al-Hayat all but urging war against Israel. He questioned, “Why are we afraid of a comprehensive war with Israel? Why has the mere talk
of comprehensive war with Israel turned into forbidden territory? Why do we believe that the thought, the mere thought of this option, is dangerous and irresponsible?”
Al-Quseibi concluded, “What could be better than a repetition of what happened in 1973? What we need is Egyptian-Syrian cooperation, with the back up of the oil states with their oil, and the rest of the Arab states, each according to its ability. Such a military confrontation, especially while the Intifada is going on, and at a time when the possibility of the Arab community within Israel to take action, will turn all the tables and all of the facts upside down."
Terrorism doesn’t exist in a public opinion vacuum: it achieves its greatest success with the direct or indirect help of governments actively promoting hatred among the population. Just as most experts have concluded the recent hijackings likely had some state-sponsorship, the promotion of hatred among the Islamic population has succeeded with the blessings and help of governments.
It is dangerous for Americans to think the hatred directed at them from much of the Middle East comes only from a small group of Islamic extremists. This loathing -- and the commitment to attack America and her allies -- is pervasive throughout this region and extinguishing it will take far more than assassinating one man in the mountains of Afghanistan.
Edward Blum and Marc Levin are Senior Fellows at the American Freedom Center (www.americanfreedom.org), a public policy research institute, and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com respectively.
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