Ultima Thule

In ancient times the northernmost region of the habitable world - hence, any distant, unknown or mysterious land.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Islam versus the West

By Aussiegirl

Here is an excellent article on the history of the House of Islam and their never-ending attempts to relegate all the rest of humanity to the House of War, i.e. conversion, death, or dhimmitude. It isn't a pretty picture he paints of our situation, brought about by currying favor with Islam and outright appeasement, and he concludes with this sentence: Optimists who think that we are bound to muddle through the way we somehow always have, and still come out on top and smiling, are few and far between.

The New Criterion � Muslims: integration or separatism?

Down the many centuries, Muslims have seen themselves inhabiting the Dar al-Islam, and in this exclusive House of Islam they are to have their way in all matters great and small. Conquest delivered into their hands the unbelievers of many lands, and these were offered terms: death for the recalcitrant, and for the rest either conversion to Islam, or the status of dhimmi, that is to say, they were deprived of the rights of Muslims and subjected to special taxation, inferiority in law courts, restrictions on worship, residence and dress, and other social disadvantages.

Persians, Berbers, and Kurds were among those choosing to convert, so that today they are almost entirely Muslim while still retaining their national and cultural identity. Jews and Christian communities, such as the Chaldeans in Iraq or the Copts in Egypt, became dhimmis. Meanwhile, unbelievers in unconquered countries were said to be living in the Dar al-Harb, the House of War, a phrase indicating that one day they too would be obliged by force of arms to choose between death, conversion, and dhimmitude.

This mind-set—and the cultural assumptions that stem from it—goes a long way towards explaining the phenomenon of the loss of creative energy, of scholarship and inquiry, which afflicted the whole House of Islam, inducing an unrealistic self-perception that could only generate stagnation.

[...] In this phenomenon, apologists pretend that there is no connection between Islam and those who practice terror in its name, as though terror were incidental, a passing aberration; they also say that measures of self-defense are nothing but “state terrorism”—as bad as Islamist terror, or worse. Day after day, in one detail after another, European authorities and decision-makers, some of them at a high level and others local, degrade the values and practices of their societies by currying favour with Islam in politics, the media, cultural, and behavioral issues, and even the law—a British judge prohibited Hindus and Jews from sitting on the jury in the trial of a Muslim. Robin Cook, at the time British foreign secretary, told a Muslim audience, “Islam laid the intellectual foundations for large portions of Western civilization,” when in simple fact Muslim scholars were part of a chain transmitting knowledge from classical Greece and Rome, from Persia, and from the Judeo-Christian tradition.

[...] Just as Muslims in Europe are in the process of deciding between integration and separatism, so Europeans have to decide whether or not their historic identities fashioned their independence and if so, whether it is wise to abandon them. One whole range of pessimists thinks that the outcome of these different clashes of identity will be ethnic and inter-communal violence. Another whole range of pessimists believe that Europeans have lost confidence in their heritage. Too decadent to defend themselves, they will simply prefer to let the Islamists take over until, in the words of one of them, the Islamic flag floats over Downing Street, the British Prime Minister’s office. Muslims would neatly and ironically have reversed the meaning of the old French notion of “une puissance musulmane”—their reverse colonization resulting in the new entity of Eurabia. The historian Bat Ye’or used this coinage as the title of a book whose thesis is that Europeans, out of blindness or degeneracy, are preparing for dhimmitude, the surrender and abasement awaiting non-Muslims in the House of Islam. For the moment, the relationship between the House of Islam and the House of War hangs in the balance, depending on imponderables such as what happens in Iraq and Afghanistan, whether Islamists manage to recruit the rank and file, and what the Khomeinist ayatollahs really intend with their nuclear program. Optimists who think that we are bound to muddle through the way we somehow always have, and still come out on top and smiling, are few and far between.


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