One to zero for al-Qaeda


[Dar al-Hayat, Saudi Arabia]



Financial Times Deutschland, Germany

West Must Halt Downward Slide Since 9-11


"Is this country, once established as a refuge for protecting those fleeing religious persecution, really still 'the land of the free'? Many people in the developing world no longer see the Western way of life as a model. And why should they, when we doubt our own basic principles?"


By Claus Hecking


Translated By Carol Goetzky


September 11, 2010


Germany - Financial Times Deutschland - Original Article (German)

Geert Wilders has his big appearance at Ground Zero on Saturday. The Dutch right-wing populist and hater of Islam is a guest star at the September 11th demonstrations against the mosque, planned for two blocks from the attack site [video below]. Thousands will cheer Wilders, when he once again calls for a ban of the Quran, calls the Prophet Mohammed a child molester and equates Islam with fascism. Many U.S. citizens agree with the maker of the anti-Islamic film Fitna. Sixty eight percent want to ban the building of mosques in New York, and 49 percent, just in principle, have a negative opinion about Islam.



So its hardly surprising that on Friday, out of fear, many U.S. Muslims put off celebrations for the end of the fasting month of Ramadan. Is this country, once established as a refuge for protecting those fleeing religious persecution, really still the "land of the free"?


In the United States and throughout the Western world, freedom has gone to ruin in the nine years since 9/11. This will delight the string-pullers behind the brutal attacks on the World Trade Center. They have managed to destabilize their enemies in the West. Yes, we are playing along in the clash of cultures they instigated. And even worse: For sheer fear of terror, we are dismantling the foundations of our liberal society.


Terrorists are terrorists because they're too weak to seize power directly. Instead, they carry out attacks: a calculated move to frighten and provoke people to panic, setting in motion events that will bring them closer to their goal. Prime examples are the assassination in 1914 of Austrias heir to the throne, Franz Ferdinand, by Serbian nationalist Gavrilo Princip. After it triggered World War I, this led to a sovereign, Serbian-dominated Yugoslavia. Or the murder of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin by a Jewish extremist in 1995: it was the beginning of the end of the Middle East peace process.




The mastermind of September 11th has been remarkably successful. The West has responded according to expectations: panicked, rash and in a blind rage. The United States and its allies have become entangled in two costly and bloody wars. The officially-ended Iraq deployment cost the U.S. at least $1 trillion, the lives of 4,400 soldiers and above all, its image as a good-natured hedgemon - thanks to Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo. The Afghanistan war is now shaking the foundations of NATO, as original allies The Netherlands and Canada jump ship. Others remain in line only to avoid a further strain on transatlantic ties already shattered by the Iraq War. For them, all that matters is a face-saving exit strategy. The alliance wont soon engage in another such military action.


September 11th inflicted even deeper wounds on our civil society. We feel threatened by this other culture and regard it as the enemy. Three out of four Germans are more-or-less worried about the spread of Islam, as has been conjured up by Thilo Sarrazin. And all of that distorts and mixed with the very necessary debate on integration.


[International Herald Tribune, France]



Sotal Iraq: Muslim Clerics Must 'Render Unto Caesar What is Caesar's'

Les Dernieres Nouvelles d'Alsace, France: September 11: 'The Endless Day'

Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Russia: WW III Postponed: But for How Long?

Granma, Cuba: Castro Warns Against Iran Attack By U.S. and Israel

The Star, South Africa: South African Muslims Prevent a 'Bible Bonfire'

Die Tageszeitung, Germany: Let's Punish Pastor Jones By Looking Away

Folha, Brazil: Pastor Jones Takes Journalists for a Ride

Der Spiegel, Germany: Daughter of Terry Jones Asks Dad: 'Papa, Don't Do It'

Der Spiegel, Germany: Jones Condemned By His Ex-Church in Germany

Telegraph, U.K.: Can One Idiot Really 'Threaten World Peace'?

Telegraph, U.K.: 9/11 Quran Burning: What U.S Law Says

Daily Star, Lebanon: Quran Burning a Threat to America and the World

Rheinischer Merkur, Germany: Cordoba House: Let it Be a Triumph of Tolerance

ABC, Spain: Cordoba House: The 'Impossible Mosque'

ABC, Spain: The Mosque Near Ground Zero: A Case of Insensitivity

La Opinion de Zemora, Spain: Cordoba House and 'Hussein of Yankeeland'

Guardian Unlimited, U.K.: The Poison Behind the Ground Zero Mosque Furore

The Telegraph, U.K.: The Depressing Debacle of 'Ground Zero Mosque'

BBC News, U.K.: Mosque Dispute Exposes Obama on Two Sides


Bookmark and Share


In and of themselves, some of these measures may be justified. But together, they attack the core of the basic law of freedom as determined by the Federal Constitutional Court. At best, they provide only the illusion of security. Even politicians are guided primarily by fear - of being accused of not having done everything in their power after an attack.


There are still myriad opportunities for attacks. Clearly, al-Qaeda has been weakened and (hopefully) is no longer capable of a mass murder la New York. But their twisted ideas live on. And a homemade bomb in a subway or at a festival can hardly be prevented - even with the most aggressive snooping.



Osama bin Laden is an idol for tens of thousands of angry young Muslim men, especially in countries like Pakistan, Indonesia, Egypt, or Saudi Arabia - all old allies of the United States. Many people in the developing world no longer see the Western way of life as a model. And why should they, when we doubt our own basic principles?


For nine long years now, the West has been dominated by the dark threat of al-Qaeda. Now its time to pause, and ponder what constitutes the essence of what it means to live together.



blog comments powered by Disqus






























[Posted by WORLDMEETS.US, September 19, 12:09am]



Bookmark and Share