Item: Almost all Western media published the three year old Abu Ghraib photos released this week, reasoning the public "has the right to know." Why the difference? Consider the NY Times: Mohammed cartoons no, Abu Ghraib pix yes. Fastidiously cautious about Islam, the Times occasionally prints Ted Rall's un-comic anti-Semitism and earnestly cheerleads anti-Christian images such as "Holy Virgin Mary" (a/k/a 'Hail Mary, full of elephant dung') and "Piss Christ":
To be sure, many citizens of conscience find parts of the Brooklyn exhibition repugnant, and it is understandable that many Roman Catholics would find Chris Ofili's image of the Virgin Mary offensive. Others would agree with our colleague William Safire that while the Brooklyn Museum has a right to show what it likes, the administrators have been clumsy or needlessly provocative. Yet a Daily News poll shows that the majority of New Yorkers support the museum over Mayor Giuliani by a ratio of two to one. Those numbers show a broad-based support for New York's role as the nation's cultural capital. The people understand intuitively what Mr. Giuliani ignores for political gain. A museum is obliged to challenge the public as well as to placate it, or else the museum becomes a chamber of attractive ghosts, an institution completely disconnected from art in our time.Dennis Prager agrees:
[T]he American press has routinely published cartoons and pictures that insult Christians and Jews. The Los Angeles Times published a cartoon depicting the stones of the Western Wall of the Jewish Temple, the holiest site to Jews, as spelling out the word "HATE" and showing a religious Jew bowing down before it. And what newspaper did not publish a photo of "Piss Christ," the Andres Serrano work of "art" depicting a crucifix in the artist's urine?And, of course, the American media never met a national security secret not fit to print--no matter the consequences. As Jay Tea concludes about the MSM, "And they wonder why we don't trust them anymore."
American newspapers "insult" every group whenever they feel like it, but no one riots, burns and kills because of it.
Item: The EU's considering outlawing "defamation of religion," censorship by another name. The Danish Lutheran Church agrees. Also, an Austrian court sentenced British historian David Irving to three years in prison for denying the Holocaust. The AP report called Irving "right-wing."
Item: A pro-terror rally in Rome chanted slogans such as "With the Palestinians, until victory over the Zionist imperialist oppressors." Meanwhile, in Pakistan:
(source: German TV)
And in the Philippines:
(source: Reuters via Yahoo)
Item: The new Hamas government took office:
The radical Islamic group Hamas took control of the Palestinian parliament Saturday during a somber swearing-in ceremony, and legislators from the new majority quickly made clear that they would not abide by signed agreements that recognize Israel's right to exist. . .Who's Who in the new legislature?:
[S]aid Naif Rajoub, a Hamas legislator from the West Bank City of Hebron[,] "Oslo has died."
"Jihad comes ahead of everything, including my feelings as a mother," said Mariam Farhat, 56, a new member of parliament from Gaza — and the mother of three sons who died on suicide missions against Israel.
Farhat, a gray-robed mother of 10, sent her 18-year old son to shoot up a settlement in the West Bank four years ago. The boy murdered five Israeli teens before he was killed. Farhat has boasted on TV that three of her six sons have died "martyrs."
Another incoming legislator, Mouhamad A-Tir, was once jailed for trying to poison Jerusalem's water supply. And Ahmed Sadat is still serving time for organizing the assassination of an Israeli Cabinet minister in 2001.
Item: Former President Goober, in a WaPo op-ed titled Don't Punish the Palestinians:
Israel moved yesterday to withhold funds (about $50 million per month) that the Palestinians earn from customs and tax revenue. Perhaps a greater aggravation by the Israelis is their decision to hinder movement of elected Hamas Palestinian Legislative Council members through any of more than a hundred Israeli checkpoints around and throughout the Palestinian territories. This will present significant obstacles to a government's functioning effectively. . .Says Wizbang's Jay Tea:
The election of Hamas candidates cannot adversely affect genuine peace talks, since such talks have been nonexistent for over five years. A negotiated agreement is the only path to a permanent two-state solution, providing peace for Israel and justice for the Palestinians.
There's been a bit of buzz about lately concerning the US and Israel's not-so-secret plans to destabilize and, hopefully, topple the Hamas-led new Palestinian government. The standard cries are that we are being hypocritical, that we asked the Palestinians to choose their government in a free and democratic election, and now that we don't like their choice, we're backsliding on our commitment to democracy.Iran and the Muslim Brotherhood vowed to offset Western funding cut-offs--which we should welcome.
This, quite frankly, is a load of codswallop.
The United States DID respect that election. We made no allegations of fraud, did not accuse Hamas of stealing the election, in no way undermined or devalued their win.
But that's irrelevant here. Because our grievance isn't with the Palestinian government per se, but Hamas itself. And now, just because the Palestinian government is a part of Hamas (and not vice versa), does not mean that our beefs with Hamas are all wiped clean. There might be an argument there, if Hamas had asked for such and foresworn the sort of things that had earned its place on our list of terrorist organizations, but they have not. In fact, they have boldly reasserted their beliefs: continued war with Israel, no negotiations, no compromises, and their ultimate goal remains the destruction of Israel.
Conclusion: The "Clash of Civilizations" is ever closer, says Charles Krauthammer:
What passes for moderation in the Islamic community -- "I share your rage but don't torch that embassy" -- is nothing of the sort. It is simply a cynical way to endorse the goals of the mob without endorsing its means. It is fraudulent because, while pretending to uphold the principle of religious sensitivity, it is only interested in this instance of religious insensitivity.During the Iranian hostage crisis, humor columnist Art Buchwald defined a "moderate" Iranian as one who ran out of bullets. Today, an Islamic Court issued a "fatwa" against the cartoonists. Plainly, whether abstract or atomic, Iran and Islam still have plenty of ammunition.
Have any of these 'moderates' ever protested the grotesque caricatures of Christians and, most especially, Jews that are broadcast throughout the Middle East on a daily basis? The sermons on Palestinian TV that refer to Jews as the sons of pigs and monkeys? The Syrian prime-time TV series that shows rabbis slaughtering a gentile boy in order to ritually consume his blood? The 41-part (!) series on Egyptian TV based on that anti-Semitic czarist forgery (and inspiration of the Nazis), "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion," showing the Jews to be engaged in a century-old conspiracy to control the world?
A true Muslim moderate is one who protests desecrations of all faiths. Those who don't are not moderates but hypocrites, opportunists and agents for the rioters, using merely different means to advance the same goal: to impose upon the West, with its traditions of freedom of speech, a set of taboos that is exclusive to the Islamic faith. These are not defenders of religion, but Muslim supremacists trying to force their dictates upon the liberal West.
(via TigerHawk, Moonbattery, Joe's Dartblog, Powerline, Brain Terminal, LGF, Michelle Malkin, JunkYardBlog)