discarded lies: friday, july 28, 2017 9:42 pm zst
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daily archive: 08/23/2004
zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
Battle of ideas
In a striking admission, George Bush said the other day: "We actually misnamed the war on terror. It ought to be [called] the struggle against ideological extremists who do not believe in free societies and who happen to use terror as a weapon to try to shake the conscience of the free world."



This important concession follows growing criticism of the misleading term "war on terror" (how can one fight a tactic?) and replaces it with the more accurate "war on ideological extremists." With this change, the battle of ideas can begin.



The terrorist acts of the past two decades, Mr. Bush noted in April 2004, are the work of fanatical, political ideologues who "seek tyranny in the Middle East and beyond. They seek to oppress and persecute women. They seek the death of Jews and Christians, and every Muslim who desires peace over theocratic terror."



Last month, Bush for the first time used the phrase "Islamic militants," perhaps his most explicit reference until now to the Islamist threat, saying that until he closed a so-called Islamic charity based in Illinois, the Benevolence International Foundation, it "channel[ed] money to Islamic militants."



Rolling these comments into a single summary statement establishes how Mr. Bush – and by extension the whole of the U.S. government – sees the enemy: A false doctrine of Islamic purity inspires a totalitarian ideology of power and domination. In its ruthlessness, murderousness, and global ambition, it resembles the Nazi and communist ideologies. The extremists who advocate this doctrine see America as the chief obstacle to achieving their goals. To defeat America, they initially seek Washington's retreat from the outside world. Ultimately, they hope to bring about a collapse of America as it now exists. Toward this end, they are prepared to murder any number of Americans.



This is a fine description of Islamism, its mentality, methods, and means. It also shows that Mr. Bush draws the subtle distinction between the personal faith of Islam and the political ideology of Islamism (or militant Islam).



Naming the Enemy

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zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
The Silent Exodus
Phyllis Chesler is hosting the recent films of Algerian born Jew, Pierre Rehov. "Silent Exodus" is about the approximately one million Jews who had to flee Arab countries and about what their lives were like under Islam before Israel became a sovereign entity.



The Silent Exodus - Part 1



The Silent Exodus - Part 2



Real Player required

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zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
Human Dignity
The heads of the main churches in Israel released a statement Sunday strongly backing the hunger strike of the Palestinian security prisoners.



The Jerusalem Inter-Church Committee – representing the heads of the local Greek Orthodox, Coptic, Lutheran, Armenian, Anglican, and Catholic churches – declared that Palestinian prisoners are protesting "the inhuman treatment they are receiving in their prisons." The statement added that "the human dignity of the political prisoners must be recognized and respected."



Local Churches Back Prison Strike



Human dignity, eh? Let's look at human dignity in the neighbourhood:



Religious Discrimination in Egypt:



An 1856 Ottoman decree still in force requires non-Muslims to obtain what is now a presidential decree to build a place of worship. The Ottoman decree also requires the President to approve permits for the repair of church facilities. As a result of these restrictions, some communities use private buildings and apartments for religious services.



Discrimination against Christians exists. There are no Christians serving as governors, university presidents, or deans. There are few Christians in the upper ranks of the security services and armed forces. Government discriminatory practices include:



Suspected statistical under-representation of the size of the Christian population



Bias against Christianity and Coptic history in the educational curriculums



Limited coverage of Christian subjects in the media



Failure to admit Christians into public university training programs for Arabic language teachers (because the curriculum involves study of the Koran)



Discrimination against Christians in the public sector



Discrimination against Christians in staff appointments to public universities.





Oh, and human rights too, let's look at human rights in Egypt:



Prisons. Prison conditions remain poor. Government authorities reported the renovation or construction of 14 prisons during the past 6 years. Nonetheless, human rights groups report that overcrowding and unhealthy conditions continue. Cells are poorly ventilated, food is inadequate in quantity and nutritional value, drinking water often is polluted, and medical services are insufficient. Such conditions contribute to the spread of disease and epidemics. The use of torture and mistreatment in prisons continues to be common.



Freedom of speech. The Constitution provides for freedom of speech and of the press; however, the Government partially restricts these rights. Citizens openly speak their views on a wide range of political and social issues, including vigorous criticism of Government officials and policies, but generally avoid certain topics, such as direct criticism of the President.



Egypt



Ok, now let's go back to criticizing Israel.



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