Our western progressives are slightly more cunning than Basil Fawlty. Not a high bar you will agree, but an important one – it enables them to rewrite reality.
We remember the episode of Fawlty Towers where the hotel has a group of German guests. Basil is so terrified of giving offence that he warns all the staff, ‘Don’t mention the war’. Naturally he concentrates so much on this warning that he is soon goose-stepping around the dining room.
Western progressives are so much better. They warn us never to mention Islam in connection with any wrongdoing whatsoever, and they actually manage to do it, despite the reality.
September’s issue of Life and Work, the increasingly feeble denominational magazine of the fast shrinking Church of Scotland, has an article concerning persecuted Christians in Nigeria. Whilst glad that the magazine finds space to mention our suffering brethren the article is disturbing, and not just for what it says about events in Nigeria.
According to Life and Work those who burned houses and churches and killed Christians were ‘militants’.
Militants are trade unionists who call wildcat strikes for better pay and conditions. Militants are environmentalists who destroy GM crops. Militants are animal rights protesters who raid experimental medical laboratories. Murderous gangs who perpetrate atrocities are not ‘militants’ they are bloodthirsty terrorists bent on imposing a vile ideology by the most extreme violence imaginable.
Life and Work never mentions the source of the ‘militancy’ behind these atrocities. Perhaps they were militant vegetarians. Maybe militant aromatherapists. As far as Life and Work is willing to admit those who slaughtered Christians in Nigeria could have been militant morris dancers.
Are the editorial staff of Life and Work afraid that if they admit that these atrocities were committed by Islamic terrorists then the good burghers of Brechin, Bathgate and Broxburn will be so inflamed they will immediately start setting fire to the Pakistani convenience store on the corner? Given the demographic of the CofS the members would probably be afraid their zimmer frames would melt in the heat.
Not only do well-meaning politically correct Christians insist on self-censorship. We have theological scholars amongst our leading politicians repeatedly assuring us that the murderous Islamic terrorist group ISIS is not Islamic. The reaction of most of us is simply, ‘The clue is in the name’.
Yvette Cooper, from the Labour front bench, has described ISIS as, ‘a perverted, oppressive ideology that bears no relation to Islam.’
Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond assures us: ‘Isil’s so-called caliphate has no moral legitimacy; it is a regime of torture, arbitrary punishment and murder that goes against the most basic beliefs of Islam.’
David Cameron, has explained: ’What we are witnessing is actually a battle between Islam on the one hand and extremists who want to abuse Islam on the other. These extremists, often funded by fanatics living far away from the battlefields, pervert the Islamic faith as a way of justifying their warped and barbaric ideology.’
Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, disagrees with our home grown Islamic experts. Speaking of the Obama administration’s refusal to recognise the Islamic nature of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria he says:
“Please, if anybody in this administration is listening, stop telling us Muslims what is Islamic. I mean, so he’s saying this is compounding the sin? How about when he shakes and hugs the king of Saudi Arabia for their being custodians of the Holy Mosque and yet they have imprisoned apostates, liberal Muslims. They’re a mysogynistic nation that treats their women as third class citizens. Or the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, or the Islamic Republican of Iran. Hundreds of millions of Muslims running governments all over the world that line their prisons and torture Christians and Jews and Muslims, that’s Islamic? And ISIS came out of thin air? ISIS is a by-product of those ideologies. And to deny it and dismiss it, they’re trying to bury us reformers from having a seat at the table.”
The Reformation of the Christian church came from within, well-meaning Islamic, Buddhist or Zoroastrian political figures didn’t assure Luther, Calvin and the others that they were right and that those stuck in the past weren’t really Christian. If Islam is ever going to be reformed, and it won’t be without massive political dislocation and bloodshed, then their reformation must come from within.
Our progressive elites imagine that if we say nice things about Islam and refuse to mention Islamic intolerance of other religions then Muslims will roll over and become adorable puppies whose tummies we can tickle and take for a romp in the garden. In enabling Islamic theocrats and by not condemning the Wahhabi ideology that underpins the terror groups, western progressives undermine peaceful reform-minded Muslims and delay reformation.
We in the West devoutly hope that Islam will reform, for our own safety if nothing else. But we cannot expect Islam to reform whilst we support and sell arms to regimes like Saudi Arabia which exports the Wahhabi ideology underpinning groups like ISIS and Al Qaida. If we actively support misogynistic, bigoted and sectarian Islamic regimes then we cannot expect Muslims who wish to reform Islam to make any headway. We cannot hope to see reformation in Islam if we in the West refuse to challenge the source of the atrocities being committed daily throughout the world in the name of Allah.
By refusing to confront the vile ideology and those who fund and export it we find ourselves working against the very people who might reform Islam. If we wish to see a separation of mosque and state, if we wish to combat the oppression of women, if we wish to see a peaceable Islam, then we must name and crush the ideology which is the foundation of such evils. The ideology must be undermined, not ignored.