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Name: Antony Loewenstein
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Thursday, November 03, 2005

Rational vs inflammatory

Two sides of Islam:

Tanveer Ahmed, The Age (disclosure: a friend):

"In our secular and material world, ritual can be lacking in daily life. From praying in a house of worship to participating in a family dinner, time-honoured rites have become less common. The demands of efficiency do not care for the intangible worth of ritual.

"Today marks the end of the month of fasting for Muslims worldwide, one of the great mass human rituals. Ramadan, as it is known, asks Muslims to abstain from eating or drinking from sunrise to sunset for a month. Its end is signalled by the sighting of the new moon, formalised in some Muslim communities in Sydney by the dispatching of the quaint but authoritative moon viewing committee."

The Australian:

"Muslim clerics in Sydney and Melbourne - led by radicals Sheik Mohammed Omran and Sheik Abdul Salam Mohammed Zoud - are still preaching hatred against the West, urging followers in Arabic to resist peace and support insurgents waging war against Australian soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"In open defiance of John Howard's proposed new terror laws and the Prime Minister's demand that Muslim leaders desist from inflammatory rhetoric, Lakemba cleric Sheik Zoud has used his Friday prayer meetings over the past month to praise Muslim fighters."

The Murdoch paper seems to believe that questioning Western aims in the Middle East is "resisting peace." The clerics comments are indeed worrying but the newspaper's portrayal of them is just as bad. Imagine a page-one article featuring radical rabbis or priests. It would never happen, of course. If anyone believes that banning such talk would increase societal harmony, they're barking up the wrong tree.

6 Comments:

Blogger Shabadoo said...

So blowing up car bombs and killing Iraqi supporters is somehow 'waging peace'? And you accuse the right of being Orwellian...

Thursday, November 03, 2005 1:41:00 pm  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

Sorry, supporters should be 'civilians'.

Thursday, November 03, 2005 2:24:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Shab, which part of this post are you commenting upon?

Thursday, November 03, 2005 2:28:00 pm  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

The bit about the Oz where they report clerics "urging followers in Arabic to resist peace and support insurgents waging war against Australian soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan", followed by Anty's declaration that 'The Murdoch paper seems to believe that questioning Western aims in the Middle East is "resisting peace."'

Thursday, November 03, 2005 3:07:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

I see.

How would you suggest that anyone wishing to resist foreign military action should act, Shab? Do you think a demo in the streets will end the military occupation? Is violence only acceptable if it's employed by those you agree with?

Pretty shaky logic, mate. If you want to say that anyone opposing the US invasion is guilty of condoning violence, then by extension we can say that anyone who supports the US drive to war (in Iraq and elsewhere soon, no doubt) is likewise supporting violence. How has the invasion "waged peace"? I would think that peace would be served by means other than MOABs and torture chambers, wouldn't you?

Thursday, November 03, 2005 5:44:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

It's amazing that the US demonized countries liek France and Turkey for listening tothe public and not sending peope off to the Iraq war. They suggeste those leaders listening to their constituents were NTO democratic, whil hailing the Blair and Howard governments (who ignored overwhelming opposition to the war as models of democracy.

Wolfowitz admonished Turkey's militarty for not ignoring their leaders and goign to war regardless. He even demanded they appologise.

Tens of thousands demonstrate in The Ukraine as part fo the US funded Orange revolution, and it is hailed as a democratic revoution. A million people demonstrate against he war in London, and it is entirely ignored.

Hubris has never known such extremes.

Friday, November 04, 2005 12:34:00 am  

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