Who Is Really Betraying Us And Who Really Are The Traitors

By: Herb Denenberg, The Bulletin

[..] We’re in the middle of the greatest threat to our safety and survival in history, and we have the Democratic Party, the mainstream media, and many of our universities and colleges in the forefront of anti-Americanism, advocating a policy in Iraq and elsewhere of retreat, appease, defeat and surrender and doing everything they can to smear not only Bush and the generals but America itself.

This anti-Americanism becomes more dangerous when there is a worldwide movement – especially in Western Europe, but even in the U.S. – to appease and slowly surrender to the threat of Islamic extremism and terrorism. This has been well documented by a great trilogy of books, which I have often mentioned in this column: Londonistan by Melanie Phillips, America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It by Mark Steyn and While Europe Slept: How Radical Islam is Destroying the West from Within by Bruce Bawer.

You would think the calls to violence and aggression and actual bombings brought on by the Islamic extremists and terrorists would have brought on a great awakening. But it has not. It has not in Europe and it has not in America, as the antics of the Democrats demonstrate. It is as though we are sleeping through a 21st-century Pearl Harbor.

The continuation of the world’s policy of appeasing and surrendering to Islamic extremism and terrorism, despite all the warnings, has been documented in a new edition of Bruce Bawer’s book. In a new afterword to the paperback edition, he argues that both the U.S. and Europe are still asleep in the face of the clear and present threat to our safety and survival: “Since this book appeared, European freedoms have faced a series of aggressive challenges by radical Muslims – challenges that have been met mostly with appeasement and apologies, censorship, and self-censorship. During this time efforts have intensified across Europe to ban ‘Islamophobia’ – a word that has been employed with increasing frequency in attempts to silence criticism of anything whatever relating to Islam.” Bawer sees the same trend of creeping appeasement and surrender in the U.S.

He gives chapter and verse of the slow surrender of Europe. When Paris suburbs were being terrorized nightly by Muslim rioters shouting, “Allahu Akbar,” most of the media portrayed that as just a response to poverty and oppression. Bawer notes that the Christian Science Monitor reported that in many European cities Muslims had already claimed jurisdiction over many neighborhoods. Bawer says the French police “have effectively ceded control of hundreds of neighborhoods to Muslim residents.” This, he writes, is the beginning of a continent-wide turf war.

Then there was the Danish cartoon incident, involving what Bawer calls “innocuous cartoons.” But the Muslims went ballistic, and as a result there were 100 murders in the Muslim world.
The prime minister of Denmark defended the cartoons as an expression of freedom of speech and the principles on which Danish society was based. What did he get for standing up to this attempt to deny basic freedom of speech in Denmark? He was greeted with a torrent of international criticism from such bodies as the U.N. and the European Union.

Bawer writes: “For many, the Jyllands-Posten cartoons represented the powerful mocking the faith of the weak. No: what was happening was that a gang of bullies – led by a country, Saudi Arabia, where Bibles are forbidden, Christians tortured, women oppressed, Jews labeled ‘apes and pigs’ in the state-controlled media, and apostasy from Islam punished by death – was trying to compel a tiny democracy to follow theocratic rules. To succumb to this pressure would simply be to invite further pressure, and would lead to further concessions – not just by Denmark but by the entire West. The list of democratic phenomena that offend the sensibilities of many Muslims is, after all, a long one – ranging from religious liberty, sexual equality and tolerance of gay people to music, alcohol, dogs, and pork. After a few cartoons, what would be next?”

This was not an isolated incident but part of a massive trend suffocating and transforming European society for the worse and reaching our shores as well. Almost no major newspapers even in the U.S. printed the cartoons (the Philadelphia Inquirer was one rare exception), and they were not defended but were in fact denounced by Bill Clinton. The media contribution is exemplified by a 60 Minutes report painting Danish Muslims as “frightened, innocent victims of a viciously racist majority” (Bawer’s words).

The surrender to Muslim violence relating to the cartoons or to any even mild criticism of Islam was the standard reaction all over Europe. Bawer recites the case of Ayan Hirsi Ali in Holland. She was under threat of death from terrorists for criticizing terrorism and Islamic extremism. So what did the Dutch do? Her neighbors claimed that, because she was under threat, she was a danger to the neighborhood and won a court case to make her move. Then the Dutch phonied up charges against her to try to have her deported and to try to rescind her citizenship. She finally resigned from the Dutch Parliament and moved to the U.S., where she works for the American Enterprise Institute.

Even the Pope came under attack, writes Bawer, “for quoting a fourteenth-century Byzantine Emperor’s criticism of Islam.” Immediately, the Muslims erupted with rage along with the New York Times and much of the academic, media and political elite of the West. The critics at the Times and elsewhere seemed to think, writes Bawer, that “it’s foolish and immoral not to let yourself be silenced by the possibility of violence.”

No one, including the Pope, is immune from the threat of violence from Muslims and their supporters in the media, the academic world, and the political elite.

Bawer goes on documenting the surrender of the West to threats of violence and intimidation for anyone who insists on exercising the right to free speech or any other rights that should be honored and guaranteed. You have to read Bawer’s book, along with those of Steyn and Phillips, to get the full flavor and appreciate the total dimensions of what is happening to the world as we know it and want it to continue.

Bawer concludes with these words: “It is true that in the last year or two, more and more Europeans seem to recognize that Europe is self-destructing. Some have spoken up. But not enough. The process continues. And the atmosphere is increasingly ominous. I’ve grown used to seeing the truth turned on its head – the vicious aggressors depicted as innocent victims, the defenders of freedom represented as hateful and inflammatory. I’ve long argued that if we don’t cherish our liberties as passionately as the jihadists treasure their faith, we’ll lose. Benjamin Franklin’s words seem more apropos than ever: ‘Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.’ Alas, in Europe today millions have been brought up to prize safety and appear never to have learned what liberty means.”

If you read Bawer’s book (or those of Steyn and Phillips), you will see that the U.S. is going the way of Europe, only more slowly. And if you study the pronouncements and actions of the Democratic Party, you will see that if it attains power, especially by capturing the White House, it will accelerate the same kind of surrender to violence, intimidation, terrorism and extremism that is already far advanced in Europe.

Herb Denenberg, a former Pennsylvania insurance commissioner and professor at the Wharton School, is a longtime Philadelphia journalist and consumer advocate. He is also a member of the The Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, advisers to the Nation on Science, Engineering and Medicine. His column appears daily in The Bulletin. You can reach him at advocate@thebulletin.us.

September 15, 2007 | 1 Comment »

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