middle east class

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    How about a class on the middle east and what brought them to hating us?


    I haven’t ruled this out, but I don’t know of anyone who is both an expert on the subject as well as someone I would trust to teach it.


    This interests me.


    Micheal Scheuer? (semi jokingly)
    edit: also interested.


    Not every individual in the Middle East hates us, but many do.

    Please do not take this writing as an endorsement of interventionism from me, because that is not my point at all. Secondly, my criticism of Islamic texts and teachings does not mean that every muslim is a terrorist. I get tired of seeing those two strawmen being setup whenever I discuss this.

    The best source would be to listen to the people who do “hate” us.

    One major problem I think the west has is that it always look to the english propaganda of the “hate” groups [Hamas, Hezbulloh, Al Qaeda, Al Shabaab, etc.] as “truth” while simultaneously ignoring the words they speak in their own language to their fellow Middle Easterners.

    One great example is Osama Bin Laden, shortly after 9/11, wrote in Arabic to the Saudi Arabian people [and the ummah]:

    “Our talks with the infidel West and our conflict with them ultimately revolve around one issue one that demands our total support, with power and determination, with one voice and it is: Does Islam, or does it not, force people by the power of the sword to submit to its authority corporeally if not spiritually? Yes. There are only three choices in Islam: [1] either willing submission [conversion]; [2] or payment of the jizya, through physical, though not spiritual, submission to the authority of Islam; [3] or the sword for it is not right to let him [a non-muslim] live. The matter is summed up for every person alive: Either submit [and become muslim], or live under the suzerainty of Islam[ic dhimmitude], or die.” -Osama Bin Laden

    I did add brackets for my additions not in the original source.

    The crux of the issue, in my opinion, is the lack of understanding of Middle Eastern history, and a politically correct narrative that stifles honest discussion.

    I submit that Islamic texts and teachings play a very large role in the current situations in the Middle East and worldwide where any Islamic population runs into non-muslim populations [North Africa, Thailand, the Balkans, Israel, Europe, America, India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Phillipines, et. al.]

    The problem is that Islamic texts and teachings mandate submission [i.e. Islam] to control the political, legal, and social context of society of not only muslims, but non-muslims as well.

    In a sense, Islam is a form of collective salvation.

    Many westerners fail to understand that Islamic texts and teachings advocate dishonesty, deception, and lying as sanctioned pious activity.

    Ibn Ishaq’s Life of Muhammad is probably the best way to get a solid understanding about Islam because it applies a chronological retelling of the quran, hadith, and Muhammad.

    Many actions we see today by “radical” muslims are in fact emulations of Muhammad [beheadings, lying, anti-semitism, pedophilia, rape, slavery, war, murder, totalitarianism, etc].

    I would argue that the obfuscation of Islamic texts and teachings, allows the government to base foreign policy on a false premise.

    The false premise is that Islamic terrorism is the result of “poverty” and a “lack of education,” which allows the state to go around nation building, engaging in foreign “aid,” and intervening where they should not be.

    This false premise also blinds the state to the intentions of these groups, and their goals.

    Since the state is blinded by the false premise, the only way the state can tell apart a “radical” and a “moderate” is by whether or not they use violence as a means to their end.

    This allows many “moderates” to have the exact same goals of the “radical” violent muslims, but use different means to achieve the same ends.

    The Muslim Brotherhood put out a document in 1991 that came forth in the Holy Land Foundation trial in Dallas, Texas.

    The Muslim Brotherhood plan outlines their means to destroy liberty and freedom within the US by implementing Islam:

    Enablement of Islam in North America, meaning: establishing an effective and stable Islamic Movement led by the Muslim Brotherhood which adopts Muslims’ causes domestically and globally, and which works to expand the observant Muslim base, aims at unifying and directing Muslims’ efforts, presents Islam as a civilization alternative, and supports the global Islamic state, wherever it is.

    In order for Islam and its Movement to become “a part of the homeland” in which it lives, “stable” in its land, “rooted” in the spirits and minds of its people, “enabled” in the live [sic] of its society and has firmly-established “organizations” on which the Islamic structure is built and with which the testimony of civilization is achieved, the Movement must plan and struggle to obtain “the keys” and the tools of this process in carry [sic] out this grand mission as a “Civilization Jihadist” responsibility which lies on the shoulders of Muslims and – on top of them – the Muslim Brotherhood in this country.

    The process of settlement is a “Civilization-Jihadist Process” with all the word means. The muslims must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and “sabotaging” its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions. Without this level of understanding, we are not up to this challenge and have not prepared ourselves for Jihad yet. It is a Muslim’s destiny to perform Jihad and work wherever he is and wherever he lands until the final hour comes, and there is no escape from that destiny except for those who chose to slack. But, would the slackers and the Mujahedeen [jihadist] be equal.

    And don’t forget, Obama is just one of many who have taken in the Muslim Brotherhood as “moderates.” Obama just helped them take over Egypt, while Obama now ignores the current secular and Coptic Christian protestors in the streets against sharia law being implemented in Egypt.

    I would also recommending reading some 20th century writings that compare 20th century statism [bolshevism, communism, etc.] to Islam and illustrate their similarities:

    Bertrand Russell, published already in 1920, which compared emerging Bolshevism to Islam. Russell had noted in his “The Practice and Theory of Bolshevism,” (London, 1920), pp. 5, 114-115:

    “Bolshevism combines the characteristics of the French Revolution with those of the rise of Islam… Those who accept Bolshevism become impervious to scientific evidence, and commit intellectual suicide. Even if all the doctrines of Bolshevism were true, this would still be the case, since no unbiased examination of them is tolerated…Among religions, Bolshevism is to be reckoned with Mohammedanism [Islam] rather than with Christianity and Buddhism. Christianity and Buddhism are primarily personal religions, with mystical doctrines and a love of contemplation. Mohammedanism and Bolshevism are practical, social, unspiritual, concerned to win the empire of this world.”

    [Jules Monnerot’s, 1949 “Sociologie du Communisme,” was translated into English and published as “Sociology and Psychology of Communism,”] Monnerot made very explicit connections between pre-modern Islamic and 20th century Communist totalitarianism. The title of his first chapter dubbed Communism as “The Twentieth Century Islam”. He elucidates these two primary shared characteristics of Islam and Communism: “conversion”—followed by subversion—from within, and the fusion of “religion” and state. But Monnerot’s brilliant, remarkably compendious analysis in chapter 1 also introduces the modern Western reader to apposite examples from Islam’s enduring Legacy of Jihad

    Bertrand Russell was no friend to Christianity considering he wrote “Why I am not a Christian,” yet he at least had the academic honesty to admit that Christianity values individualism and thinking, while Islam values collectivism and ignorance.


    Readers interested in this general topic might consider Ibn Warraq’s WHY I AM NOT A MUSLIM. Although shot through with secularist bias, the book is an apostate’s honest appraisal of Islam.

    That subjugation is central to Islam is the subject of Bat Ye’or’s THE DECLINE OF EASTERN CHRISTIANITY UNDER ISLAM: FROM JIHAD TO DHIMMITUDE, SEVENTH-TWENTIETH CENTURY. The overwhelming majority of Americans seem not to know either that the Middle East was once almost entirely Christian or that the Arabs forced conversion of the Christian population over a long period of time. Can’t it happen here? This is the program that bin Laden had in mind in the documents set out above.

    Also of interest is Anwar Hekmat’s WOMEN AND THE KORAN: THE STATUS OF WOMEN IN ISLAM. This book explores one of the most noxious features of Moslem civilization, showing how integral it is to Islam.

    Finally, those who wish to see what awaits Western civilization under Islam (which, if demography is destiny, will come to dominate much of Europe in the next century) should peruse the beautiful, disturbing FROM THE HOLY MOUNTAIN: A JOURNEY AMONG THE CHRISTIANS OF THE MIDDLE EAST by William Dalrymple. Here the famous travel writer sets out from the spiritual center of Eastern Orthodoxy, Mt. Athos, through the entire Middle East. What he sees is heart-breaking.


    Dr. Gutzman is correct. I had not heard of the last two books, and I will be taking a look at them. Thanks Dr. Gutzman!

    The most applicable book for today would be “Muslim Mafia” which exposes the infiltration of the USA. Robert Spencer’s “Stealth Jihad” is also applicable to America in today’s context because it exposes the non-violent “moderates” who have infiltrated the highest levels of the American government.

    Once again, I think the fact that there are non-violent and violent Islamic groups working towards the same end, needs to be researched and exposed.

    Six days after 9/11. George Bush was in a mosque with the founder of a Muslim Brotherhood front group proclaiming “Islam is peace.” The Muslim Brotherhood has infiltrated both sides of the aisle in American political discourse.

    Ibn Warraq’s “Defending the West: A Critique of Edward Said’s Orientalism” is also a great book, but not necessarily on this topic.

    Bat Ye’or’s “The Dhimmi: Jews and Christians Under Islam” is also a great read packed with primary sources.


    This guy’s work is pretty good; he studied Islam as an “outsider” by first becoming an “insider” of sorts, and then reading all the major works that Islamic scholars (of all stripes, not just the Salafists) base their reasoning on. He critiques Islam (which is distinct from critiquing Moslems-as-people).

    Also, to touch on one of my own hobbyhorses: I recommend books like Zoe Oldenbourg’s The Crusades, one of the better pre-PCera histories, one that doesn’t whitewash things but also does not present the Islamic world as an innocent victim of aggression (the usual tack taken now, at least by general academics), and any book by Steven Runciman on either the Crusades or Byzantium. Indeed reading almost any good history of Byzantium will quickly and thoroughly disabuse one of the notion that Islam is “a religion of peace” that wanted/wants only friendly relations with “people of the book,” and the idea that the West (formerly known as “Christendom”) only has problems with the people of the Middle East now because of “backlash” against what “we did to them” (an inane simplification one often hears even from otherwise sound libertarian types; plausible because there is certainly an element of that, but one that treats “The Other” as mere automatons who only respond to whatever stimuli we input into them. Other people are actors too, and can be quite aggressive for reasons of their own).


    I agree entirely regarding Sir Steven Runciman. Volumes 1 & 2 of his history of the Crusades are outstanding, as is his BYZANTINE CIVILIZATION. His book THE FALL OF CONSTANTINOPLE, 1453 is depressing, but what else could it be?

    For many years he was head of The Friends of Mt. Athos, of which HRH the Prince of Wales was also a member. Their annual newsletter is quite interesting.


    I read his Byzantine Civilization years ago and it was excellent.

    By the time one gets to the fall period, everything is quite depressing. The only sort-of-edifying thing is they seem to have at had a decent man in charge at the end, and so their last stand had some dignity.

    I hadn’t known Runciman was head of the Friends of Mt. Athos.

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