Tuesday, January 1, 2008
Non-violent Da‘wa needs violent Jihad
I keep noticing on Jihad Watch an implication that Islam can come to dominate the West in the absence of violence, principally through the spread of the Islamic version of propaganda/proselytization called Da’wa.
With Hugh Fitzgerald, this implication is framed as a near-certain fact; and indeed, he has at times positively reversed the equation—that, in effect, the non-violent spread of Islam, disconnected from violence, is more of a danger than attempts at the violent propagation of Islam. With Robert Spencer, it is not so strongly put, yet still seems to be one underlying prong of the raison d’être of his Jihad Watch / Dhimmi Watch mission, insofar as jihad itself is the threat, not merely terrorism.
More recently, Fitzgerald conceded that terrorism is one instrument of jihad, but not its most effective instrument:
. . . it is a duty for Muslims to participate in the “struggle” or Jihad to spread Islam, and to insure that it everywhere dominates, a “struggle” of which terrorism is only one instrument (and hardly the most effective).
As I have argued before, I find this to be not only a strangely naive notion, but also one that can jeopardize our ongoing counter-jihad movement.
1) First of all, Islam’s historical record completely contradicts Fitzgerald’s theory. As I wrote in the above-linked essay:
Although Islam might have been able to insinuate domination by more or less “peaceful” means over simplex island cultures [e.g., Indonesia in the 10th century—though that could be something of a myth propagated by revisionist historians], it nowhere, in all its 1,400-year career of expansion, was able to come to dominate over more sophisticated polities. . . without violence—and not merely violent terrorist attacks (formerly known as razzias) here and there, as the modern West has sustained over the last few decades, but massive military assaults, repeatedly waged in successive waves for centuries.
2) While superficially and simplistically, it makes sense to conclude that terrorist attacks would undermine a more sinister plan of subversion that would depend for its success upon the unheeding myopia of the societies it plans to subvert, what we see to be the actual case all around us in the West is, perversely, the exact opposite: Not only are the terrorist attacks (both the successful ones and the foiled plots) not waking up the West to connect the dots from them to Islam itself—they seem to be having the precise effect of actually strengthening the stubborn resistance to connecting those dots. I.e., with each terror attack, with each foiled terrorist plot, and with each instance of outrageous Muslim behavior (the cartoon riots, the teddy bear bloodlust, the murderous torture of Christians and Jews, the honor killings, etc.), the mainstream majority of PC MC Westerners only digs in its heels further to defend Islam and protect the vast majority of Muslims from our everpresent potential for “bigotry” and “Islamophobia”.
The reason, of course, for this perverse effect of terrorism on our collective lack of wits, is the mainstream dominance of PC MC: and the particular myopia which Fitzgerald and Spencer have about this mainstream dominance probably explains their related myopia they have about the necessary and central linkage of violent Jihad to apparently non-violent Da’wa.
Naturally, this perverse effect of terrorism on the West could not be pressed too much by Muslims employing terrorism willy-nilly, before it would begin to have diminishing returns and trigger a backlash. Nevertheless, so far, Muslims have been able to literally get away with murder.
3) Aside from Western PC MC, which tends to encourage the aforementioned perverse effect of terrorism, there is of course terrorism’s logical effect of instilling fear and intimidation. When Westerners are not PC MC idiots gladly and willingly enabling the dhimmification of the West, they are more or less consciously simply afraid—terrified—of Muslims, and for that reason as well, they kowtow in one way or another to the various demands of Muslims. And this particular effect, needless to say, depends upon violence and the threat of violence.
The Jihad Watch article in which Fitzgerald wrote the comment we quoted, in fact, contains the self-contradictory attitude that any such de-linkage of Islamic Da’wa and violent Jihad cannot avoid—specifically in the following comment by the author, Paul Stenhouse:
Through da’wa it [radical Islam] hopes to achieve by sleight of hand what will ultimately prove to be unattainable by brute force.
Stenhouse then proceeds to undermine his own statement, by criticizing certain “Western politicians, academics, clergy and media” who “appear unfazed by the often reciprocal relationship between various Islamist da’wist NGOs and terrorist organizations. . .” and who refuse to wake up to the “irrefutable proof of links between Islamic da’wist charities and suicide-bombers, terrorist cells, revolutionary agendas and the enlisting and training of mujahidun. . .”
The way to save Stenhouse’s initial statement we quoted is to insert a very pointed “alone” at the crucial juncture of his sentence:
Through da’wa it [radical Islam] hopes to achieve by sleight of hand what will ultimately prove to be unattainable by brute force ALONE.
Still, Stenhouse is conveying the impression—whether out of ignorance to the very important nuance of the necessary nexus between non-violent da’wism and violence, or whether out of a misguided belief that no such necessary nexus pertains—that violence is incidental, rather than central, to the overarching goal of Islamic expansionist supremacism.