Saturday, May 10, 2008
Like his colleague and President, Hugh Fitzgerald of Jihad Watch is not above weaselling out of tight spots he himself has created.
A reader of Jihad Watch posted the following comment in the comments field of a recent Dhimmi Watch article:
I’m also still reeling from Hugh’s suggestion a while back that establish procedures for Muslim expulsion.
Rather than avowing and addressing the central import of this statement, Fitzgerald chose in his response to zero in on peripheral imprecisions in locution which he could exploit in order to weasel out of the commenter’s main point:
Could you kindly produce the evidence on which this assertion rests—that I suggest certain “procedures” be established “for Muslim expulsion”? You have misunderstood, or misconstrued, what I wrote, possibly innocently, possibly deliberately. In any case, one needs to have the textual evidence for such an assertion presented. Please do so, on this very thread.
Notice how Fitzgerald chose to latch onto the commenter’s ill-chosen word for tactical reasons, “procedures”. Okay, so Fitzgerald never stipulated the precisely concrete methods we should use to expel Muslims—planes, trains or automobiles—and he has never actually put the words “Muslim” and “expulsion” side by side in a sentence explicitly affirming the denotation of that pairing; however, he has written the following:
. . . ideas that have frequently been mentioned, and thought openlly about, right here at JW -- to wit, a Benes Decree that would deal with Muslims as the same kind of security threat that Benes and Masaryk and all Czechs in 1946, and since, regarded the Sudeten Germans, whom they overnight expelled, all 3.5 million of them.
It can happen. And short of that, all sorts of ways can be thought of to make countries Muslim-hostile rather than Muslim-friendly. Little by little by little, this can be accomplished.
As well as this:
. . . Were some of those Sudeten Germans (but only some) innocent? Yes. And so were some of those killed in Allied bombing raids over Tokyo or Berlin or Hiroshima or Nagasaki or Dresden. That is what happens, and has to happen, in modern warfare.
I have dealt more fully with Fitzgerald’s analogical and anagogical use of the Benes Decree in a previous essay here, Hugh Fitzgerald finally goes official with the Benes Decree—where the weaselling in question revolved around Fitzgerald’s persistent ambiguity regarding the pivotal issue of expelling citizens, as opposed to limiting the expulsion to non-citizens (since the whole point of the Benes Decree was to expel German citizens—and, furthermore, it involved not merely the kinds of recent citizens which America and Europe must accommodate in their Muslim populations, but citizens of German extraction who had laid down in Czechoslovakia centuries of familial descent!).
Now, Fitzgerald never spells out in clear, straightforward and responsibly bold language the concrete realization that his analogy and anagogy are supposed to indicate—Heaven forfend he or Spencer should ever talk straight about the actual consequences of their words! For those, however, who are not blithering idiots—as Fitzgerald apparently takes his readers to be—the implicit meaning is there, bereft of a conscientious writer who would explicate it, thereby leaving it up to his readers to do so. And then he scolds them when they thus read what is between his lines.
I do not fault Fitzgerald for bringing up the Benetian Analogy—for in fact, I support taking it to its logical conclusion and expelling all Muslims from the West. Rather, I fault him for trying to weasel out of the tough, clear and ruthless stand it intends.