A brazen totalitarian ideology

I’m not perturbed by people who hold different views from me, as long as these people are genuine in their beliefs. What I mean is, if someone is using religion or political views as a pretext to advancing their own sinister agendas and do so with haughtiness and arrogance; I become livid. I don’t care if it is extremist Muslims like ISIS ( and I’ve had very heated debates with people of their ilk in the past) or militant atheists – these are pretentious bullies who have no personal boundaries and feel the need to descend on people and drag them away from  ‘ignorance’ in shackles,if need be, to their view of enlightenment. Do you see how I described two opposing factions – religious extremist and militant atheists- in one vein? This is what I was getting at; it’s not their beliefs that irks me, it’s what lies beneath this. As an INFJ I can sniff out discrepancies miles away and this totalitarian ideology reeks of intense hatred. These people flock to whatever belief system of their choosing, propelled by a deep sense of insecurity and shame . Look at this chart below, and find the roots of narcissistic tendencies and rebelliousness.

 

This might make it clear that we define our stances, and not vice versa. Like Rumi quipped, “Words are a pretext. It is the inner bond that draws one person to another, not words.” Violence and intolerance arise from the deepest recesses of broken individuals, and when this happens, they might channel this in different avenues, but the results are always despotic and totalitarian.

In this respect, I hold al-Baghdadi (ISIS) and Dawkins,Harris,Hitchens and their ilk in the same regard; I do not say that they are alike in beliefs but rather in motivation. Tell me how this statement of Harris’ differs from those of ISIS  “Some beliefs are so dangerous that it may be ethical to kill people for believing them¹ ?

Watch below a quite telling debate with Richard Dawkins who is a notorious anti-theist on a mission to eradicate religion. It’s quite interesting to see his visceral and facile reaction when brought under the microscope.


¹Sam Harris, The End of Faith, pp.52-53.

 

Is Islamic Fundamentalism Fuelling Terrorism?

Robert Pape is a leading expert on terrorism and suicide-bombing. He specializes in international security affairs and is a Professor in Political Science, Co-Director of the Program for International Security Politics at the University of Chicago.

source


Pape claims to have compiled the world’s first “database of every suicide bombing and attack around the globe from 1980 through 2003 — 315 attacks in all” (3). “The data show that there is little connection between suicide terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism, or any one of the world’s religions. . . . Rather, what nearly all suicide terrorist attacks have in common is a specific secular and strategic goal: to compel modern democracies to withdraw military forces from territory that the terrorists consider to be their homeland” (4). It is important that Americans understand this growing phenomenon (4-7). ¹

“[T]he taproot of suicide terrorism is nationalism” not religion (79). It is “an extreme strategy for national liberation” (80). This explains how the local community can be persuaded to re-define acts of suicide and murder as acts of martyrdom on behalf of the community (81-83). Pape proposes a nationalist theory of suicide terrorism, seen from the point of view of terrorists. He analyzes the notions of occupation (83-84), homeland (84-85), identity (85-87), religious difference as a contributor to a sense of “alien” occupation (87-88), foreign occupation reverses the relative importance of religion and language (88-92), and the widespread perception of the method as a “last resort” (92-94). A statistical demonstration leads to the conclusion that a “linear” rather than “self-reinforcing spiral” explanation of suicide terrorism is best (94-100). However, different future developments of the phenomenon of suicide terrorism are very possible, and more study of the role of religion is needed (101). ²

Pape’s Cutting the Fuse: The Explosion of Global Suicide Terrorism and How to Stop It is co-authored with James K. Feldman, a defense policy analyst who formerly taught at the Air Force Institute of Technology. The book was published by the University of Chicago Press in early October 2010.

Cutting the Fuse adds substantially to Pape’s earlier work on terrorism, evaluating more than 2100 suicide attacks (6 times the number evaluated in Dying to Win), developing a new social logic of transnational suicide terrorists, identifying the key factors that explain the ebb and flow within suicide terrorist campaigns, conducting detailed case studies of the 8 largest campaigns (Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Al Qaeda, Lebanon, Israel and Palestine, Chechnya, and Sri Lanka), and offering expanded policy recommendations:

  • Avoid where feasible stationing troops where they will be perceived as occupiers threatening local culture and institutions or coercing the government of an occupied state to do things that would be perceived as benefiting the occupiers at the expense of the local population.
  • When occupation is necessary, minimize the threat to local culture by helping local officials to do things they might otherwise want to did but didn’t previously have the ability and by treating collateral damage with great sensitivity (pp. 330-333).
“Overall, foreign military occupation accounts for 98.5% — and the deployment of American combat forces for 92% — of all the 1,833 suicide terrorist attacks around the world in the past six years [2004-2009].” (p. 28)
“Have these actions … made America safe? In a narrow sense, America is safer. There has not been another attack on the scale of 9/11. … In a broader sense, however, America is not safer. Anti-American suicide terrorism is rapidly rising around the world.” (p. 318)
“[I]n both Iraq and Afghanistan … local communities that did not inherently share the terrorists’ political, social, and military agenda, eventually support[ed] the terrorists organization’s campaign … after local communities began to perceive the Western forces as an occupier … as foreign troops propping up and controlling their national government, changing their local culture, jeopardizing economic well-being, and conducting combat operations with high collateral damage … . But, we have also seen in Iraq that this perception of occupation can be changed … .” (p. 333) 
“For over a decade our enemies have been dying to win. By ending the perception that the United States and its allies are occupiers, we can cut the fuse to the suicide terrorism threat.” (p. 335)  ³

¹Pape, Robert. “Dying to Win.” Wikipedia.Ch. 1: The Growing Threat
²Pape, Robert. “Dying to Win.” Wikipedia. Part II: The Social Logic of Suicide Terrorism Ch. 6: Occupation and Religious Difference
³ “Robert Pape.” Wikipedia. Cutting the Fuse: The Explosion of Global Suicide Terrorism and How to Stop It

The new slavery

“Every war when it comes, or before it comes, is represented not as a war but as an act of self-defense against a homicidal maniac. In our time political speech and writing are largely the defense of the indefensible. But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought. All the war-propaganda, all the screaming and lies and hatred, comes invariably from people who are not fighting. Political language…is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidarity to pure wind. War against a foreign country only happens when the moneyed classes think they are going to profit from it. Nationalism is power hunger tempered by self-deception. War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength. (On the manipulation of language for political ends.) We have now sunk to a depth at which restatement of the obvious is the first duty of intelligent men. If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear. In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act.” 
George Orwell (1984)

Criminals & war heroes

“Why do we electrocute men for murdering an individual and then pin a purple heart on them for mass slaughter of someone arbitrarily labeled “enemy?”

Sylvia Plath

war hero

 

Terrorists need some therapy

Midnight Thoughts & Thunder

« Serial soliloquies»

mood:upbeat

weather: No clue. Curtains are still closed XD

time: Afternoon-ish


I was watching a VICE documentary on the ISIS (the only of its kind I believe) where reporter Medyan Dairieh spent three weeks with the ISIS and though I didn’t watch it in full, the aggressive demeanour and the obsessiveness with shedding blood made me realize what I always suspected about these extremist groups; that they are channelling deep seated frustration and a sense of inadequacy, emasculation even, through violence.

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