Christianity: Pros and Cons

The Fjordman Report

The noted blogger Fjordman is filing this report via Gates of Vienna.
For a complete Fjordman blogography, see The Fjordman Files. There is also a multi-index listing here.

The blogger Vanishing American continues what is gradually becoming one of the most important discussions of our age: What role does, or should, Christianity play in Western civilization? Is it the bedrock of our culture, as Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch thinks, and is our decline associated with abandoning it? Or is Christianity, as Derbyshire puts it, a religion for once and future slaves, an ideology that is now fueling globalist ideals and undermining our borders through mass immigration?

The Christian/Non-Christian divide is perhaps the most difficult divide to overcome within the West today. I’m struggling with this myself. Some of the criticism of Christianity, or at least the way many Western Christians are behaving now, is legitimate. I have heard Catholics claim that Multiculturalism and Political Correctness are tied to Protestant culture. I’m willing to consider that possibility. There are significant doctrinal differences between Catholics and Protestants regarding redemption and the sinful nature of man. Maybe some of this is tied to the Protestant concept of “salvation through Faith alone.” However, when it comes to just plain old-fashioned dhimmitude and abandoning national borders, Catholics are at least as bad as Protestants.

The Second Vatican Council from the 1960s was good for reaching out to Christians of other denominations, Protestant and Orthodox, and for reaching out to Jews. The problematic aspect is in relations to Islam. The big Achilles’ heel of Christians in general, and of Jews, when confronted with Islam is the idea of a “shared community of monotheists worshiping the God of Abraham.” As long as this myth is maintained, Christianity can actually in certain situations be a bridge for Islam to enter the West, rather than a bulwark against it. I have seen more than once Christians making common cause with Muslims as “men of faith” against the godless forces of secularism. I notice, however, that Christians hardly ever do the same with, say, Hindus, so it must have something to do with a shared sense of monotheism.

Christianity is growing fast in South Korea. It is interesting to see how newly converted Christians react in non-Western nations. I’ve been critical of Christianity sometimes because it is one of the impulses behind the Western inability to protect our borders, and it is. But it is Christianity within a specific cultural-ideological context that reacts like this. Koreans don’t have the same problem, as far as I know. Nor did we, until the 1960s and 70s. So what changed? It can’t all be related to Christianity, can it?
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Which Christianity? Part II

These days we hear so many arguments against Christianity, such as from the ‘proselytizing atheists’ like Dawkins and Hitchens, and then we hear the arguments from the secular right which attack Christianity for being too pacifistic. The atheists claim that Christianity fomented violence, and that it is as militant and bloodthirsty as Islam, or in fact worse, and on the other side, we hear that Christianity is a religion of slaves, which weakens and emasculates the West. So Christianity gets it from both sides; it’s too militant, it causes wars and persecutions, and at the same time, it’s a religion that turns men into milquetoast pacifists. Does this make any sense?

Christianity contains elements of both militancy and pacifism, but it is not one or the other.


We know that our forefathers did not believe Christianity commanded them to be pacifists, or to erase borders and nations. To assert that they, for centuries, were wrong and that we are the first generation to really understand Christianity and the Bible is arrogant in the extreme. If anything, we today, on the average, are far more ignorant than our ancestors where the Bible and the faith are concerned. If anybody is wrongly handling the word of God, it is likely to be us, not our forefathers. Their brains were at least not addled by nonsense and Political Correctness, and I trust the consensus of our forefathers through the centuries rather than the consensus among today’s compromised generation.

Which Christianity? blog comment

I used to be a devout, practicing Christian. Today, I cannot recognize myself in any brand of Christianity currently available. Nor am I alone. Many of my friends tell me: “I can’t enter any church now without having to leave my brain at the door.”

In this regard, the evangelist, fundamentalist churches are no better than the liberal ones. I once attended a presentation at a nearby Pentecostal church about Third World poverty. The cause? Lack of infrastructure. All we had to do was dig deeper into our pockets and the problem would be solved.

I’m sorry to say this but the cause is deeply rooted and largely intractable, at least in the short term. We will not help the world’s poor by welcoming them to our shores. We will simply destroy ourselves in the process.

John Derbyshire is more right than wrong. Yes, medieval Christianity had no qualms about resisting invaders, but medieval Christians (as Protestants love to point out) had adulterated their faith with pagan beliefs. Over the past few centuries, Christianity has stripped itself of its pagan accretions. In the process, it has become as much a threat to ourselves and our loved ones as Marxism used to be, if not more so.

That sounds like a harsh judgment. It is.

You Want Justice? Speak French!

SIOE 9-11As has been widely noted, the mayor of Brussels, Mr. Freddy Thielemans, has denied a permit for the 9-11 demonstration in his city.

The demonstrators are gathering to Stop the Islamization of Europe, and, as a result, Mayor Thielemans cannot guarantee their safety from violence at the hands of the city’s Muslims.

Kind of proves their point, doesn’t it?

SIOE, the organizer of the demonstration, filed an appeal against the mayor’s decision with the Belgian Council of State. The organizers expected delay and obstruction, and they were not surprised. Here’s the latest from Paul Belien at Brussels Journal:

Belgium’s highest administrative court, the Council of State, is not expected to rule soon in the case of the anti-Islamization demonstration planned for 11 September. Two weeks ago Freddy Thielemans, the Socialist mayor of Brussels, banned the demonstration because, as he said, “the organizers have chosen the symbolic date of 9/11. The intention is obviously to confound the terrorist activities of Muslim extremists on the one hand and Islam as a religion and all Muslims on the other hand. […] Such incitement to discrimination and hatred, which we usually call racism and xenophobia, is forbidden by a considerable number of international treaties and is punished by our penal laws and by the European legislation.”

The organizers decided to appeal against the ban before the Council of State. Today, the Council of State decided to postpone its verdict until it has decided whether or not the appeal, which was presented in Dutch, one of Belgium’s two official languages, should have been presented in French, Belgium’s other official language.

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When Udo Ulfkotte, the German organizer of the demonstration, filed his initial request for the demo he was told by the mayor’s office that he had to do so in French, which he did. Ulfkotte told us that, being a foreigner, he was not aware that he could also opt for a Dutch-language procedure. Now the Brussels authorities demand that he should stick to French and that the case should be brought before French-speaking judges of the Council of State. Dutch-speaking (Flemish) judges are more favourably inclined towards defending political freedoms than French-speaking (Walloon) judges. The Council of State judges are political appointees. Flanders, the Dutch-speaking north of Belgium, is free-market oriented while Wallonia, the French-speaking south of the country, is Socialist-dominated.

Now the official strategy becomes clear: route the appeal into the socialist French-speaking part of the state apparatus, where sneering contempt of the Flemish-speaking majority is the norm.

Go over to Brussels Journal to read the rest. Mr. Belien speculates that the authorities may decide the case as late as September 10th, leaving the organizers just one day to prepare for event.

However, the word through the grapevine is that people all over Europe are not waiting for the official decision; they’re already making their arrangements.

Paul Belien’s conclusion:

However, whether or not the demonstration will be permitted, Europeans who oppose the islamization of their continent will convene on Tuesday 11 September at 12 am (noon) at the Schuman Square (Rond-Point Schuman), in front of the Berlaymont building, the headquarters of the European Commission, to hold one minute of silence for the victims of 9/11/2001.

And, as Exile says:

Those of us that are intent on being in Brussels will be there anyway. They will not stop us and they will not hinder us in our protest. We will have the final word on the day. Whether they like it, or not.

We don’t need no stinkin’ Council of State!

A Letter to CNN

A reader forwarded us a copy of this letter he recently sent to CNN, concerning Christiane Amanpour’s recent series of features called “God’s Warriors”:

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A Letter to CNN
by D.L. Perry

From the onset, it was obvious that no serious analysis had been undertaken with Amanpour’s ‘God’s Warriors’, broadcast this week on CNN. Conveniently packaged into a consumer-friendly trilogy, the politically-correct presentation of morally-equivalent religious fundamentalism — in Judaism, Islam and Christianity — only served to obfuscate the greatest geopolitical danger the world faces.

The threat comes not from some abstract form of victim-driven terrorism, which might arise from any one of the “Abrahamic faiths”. It comes from within the global Islamic umma, from a revival of aspirations for an Islamic empire under sharia law. Central to this is jihad: holy war against the unbelievers for the ultimate purpose of reinstalling the caliphate. This is exclusively Islamic; there is simply no comparable threat to civilisation from Judaism or Christianity.

Jihad is not a modern phenomenon — it dates from Muhammad’s lifetime. Jihad is the sixth pillar of Islam. Did Amanpour mention this? Of course not. She failed to inform viewers that jihad is the only theologically-sanctioned form of violence from within the three so-called Abrahamic faiths. It is not a perversion of Islam — it is clearly sanctioned in the Qur’an, and the Hadith (the “traditions of Mohammad”). It is not comparable with the Crusades or any other historical wave of imperialism — it is Islam’s internal motor, not a historical contingency. And is not a product of recent American or Israeli policy — it is thirteen centuries old.

Jihad is central to the hugely influential writings of Qutb and Maududi, the modern Jihadist writers of the early 20th Century. They call for a jihad as a return to the fundamentals of Islam, not as a deviation from it. And these are often quoted, along with verses from the Qur’an and Hadith, by Jihadists today to support acts of terror.
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So to whitewash, in the way Amanpour did, the current spate of killings, insurgencies, and religious persecution against non-Muslims across the surface of the planet, and perpetuate the myth that Islamic terror is all a backlash against the actions of the West (and Israel), is not only wrong, it is truly disgraceful. Amanpour clearly demonstrates that she knows nothing about Islam, and by distorting the history of the Middle East conflict with such moral equivalence, she only serves to perpetuate the prevalent anti-Israel climate and our blindness to the rising tide of Jihadism. God’s Warriors cannot be considered as authoritative reporting or counted on to add anything to the debate on the “Clash of Civilisations” or the “War on Terror’.

Even if you ignore Islam’s 1300 year history of conquering and subjugating non-Muslims, including Jews, the anti-Semitism embedded in the Qur’an and Hadith, and the fact that the “Palestinians” (a people fabricated after the 1967 war for Arab political ends) have rejected numerous chances to create a state in co-existence with Israel — the comparison of “radical” settlers (“Jewish God’s Warriors”) and jihadi groups such as al Qaeda (“Muslim God’s Warriors”) is truly abominable.

A cursory glance beneath the headlines across the globe is enough to suggest that terrorism is not some abstract evil that is unleashed in retaliation to the grievances caused by the West, but is in fact a problem of Islamic origin. I say “beneath” the headlines since we just cannot trust the mainstream media, including CNN, to even explore this as a possibility. It is deemed too politically incorrect. But with Western media like this, we do not even need to worry about the lies and anti-infidel hatred being pumped out through media outlets in the Islamic world.

CNN ought to pioneer a proper investigation of the emerging World War with Jihadists. CNN owes it to its Western audience to confront the uncomfortable reality, beyond the soundbite analysis, that faces the civilised world.

Such an investigation is unlikely any time soon.

Sicko in Denmark

Michael MooreMichael Moore has been in Denmark promoting his new movie Sicko, and Steen has very kindly sent me photos of his appearance on DR2 (Danish public television).

The first two subtitles say, if my translation is correct, “But the last thing we should do is what the Americans do, and privatize the public system —”

But the third subtitle has me stymied, and I’m hoping a Dane will help put it back into English for us.

Update: Exile has translated the third subtitle for me: “It has got the whole country talking about what should be done.”

Michael Moore seems to be all the rage in Scandinavia — as I reported last night, he was recently made an honorary citizen of Ladonia (which ordinary folk like me consider to be part of southern Sweden).

I say, let’s send him to Scandinavia to stay. Don’t you think he’d make a great Viking?

Pull that Rutgers cap off his head, put a helmet on him, have him grow out his stubble a bit, and put a big tankard of øl in his fist.

I can see him now…


Viking Fest
Further update: Reader SD sends this photo of Michael Moore in his future incarnation.He will, of course, have to be taught to love røget sild.

[Nothing follows]

Now We Know Who’s Behind the Modoggies

We should have known. Who else could it have been?

Ahmadinejad claims ‘Zionists’ behind Swedish cartoon

The Prophet as an Obedient RetrieverIranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said that “Zionists” were behind a cartoon in Swedish newspaper Nerikes Allehanda, which depicted the head of the Prophet Mohammed on a dog’s body. The drawing sparked an official protest by Tehran to Stockholm.

“They do not want the Swedish government to be a friend of other nations. I strongly believe they are behind it (the cartoon). They thrive on conflict and war,” he said.

The claim came during a tirade against Israel, in which Ahmadinejad accused Zionists of sowing conflict, publishing offensive cartoons and “lying about being Jewish.”

I imagine Lars Vilks was quite surprised this morning when he woke up and found out he was Jewish. Why hadn’t he been notified of this sooner?
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Or perhaps the Israeli embassy in Stockholm has been controlling his mind via tight-beam radio transmissions aimed at Ladonia. Stranger things have happened…

If Mr. Vilks responds in his customary manner, he will start drawing Mahmoud Ahmedinejad’s head on a Rondellhund. Or maybe even the Ayatollah Khomeini. A new series of specifically Shiite Modoggies would be welcome.

Coming up next: The Protocols of the Elders of the Roundabout.

Hat tip: CG.

Previous posts on this topic:

The Swedes Narrowly Avert Their Own Motoon Crisis
Modoggie #2
The Prophet as an Obedient Retriever
That Doggone Mohammed
Swedish Muslims Will Exhibit the Modoggies
Lars Vilks Dogged by Death Threats
Modoggies Make it into the Swedish MSM, But…
Oh, No! It’s Happening Again!
Sweden Gets Sent to the Woodshed
An Ironic Rondellhund

The Madrassas of Thailand’s South

Bangkok Reporting

This post is the latest in a series from our Bangkok correspondent, H. Numan.

An Islamic school in Pakistan is called a madrassa, but in the deep south of Thailand, it’s a pondok.

Here’s an article on the topic from today’s Bangkok Post:

Thailand takes battle to deep-South’s Islamic schools

Analysis by Abdullah Wangni and Peter Janssen, dpa

After almost four years of battling a deadly separatist struggle against a seemingly nameless foe in Thailand’s deep South, the Thai military have learned a thing or two.

Firstly, they are now convinced that the main organizer behind the violence, which has claimed more than 2,500 lives since early 2004, is the BRN-Coordinate, the political arm of the Barisan Revolusi Nasional or National Revolutionary Front.

BRN-Cordinate is blamed for the January 4, 2004, raid by Muslim militants on an army arms depot in Narathiwat that made away with 300 war weapons and is now seen as the watershed for the region’s transition from a long-simmering separatist struggle into a nasty conflict with daily shootings, bombings and beheadings.

Secondly, Thai military intelligence is convinced that the BRN-Coordinate has used the deep South’s Islamic schools (‘pondoks’) and religious teachers (‘ustas’) to recruit and instruct a new generation of Muslim youths dedicated to the Pattani separatist cause and a more militant form of Islam.

The deep South, comprising Narathiwat, Pattani and Yala provinces, was an independent Islamic sultanate known as Pattani for hundreds of years before being conquered by Bangkok in 1786.

The area came under direct rule of the Bangkok bureaucracy in 1902, and was subject to a military-led assimilation campaign in the late 1940s that sparked a separatist struggle that has sputtered on and off for the past six decades.

Although the deep South has remained an essentially separatist fight, it has taken on a new al-Qaeda flavour in recent years, complete with beheadings and terrorizing civilians, partly due to the influx of a new generation of ustas to the traditional pondok school system, analysts say.

The Thai military is convinced that these foreign-trained ustas, especially those from Indonesia, are at the heart of the problem.

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“The BRN-Coordinate has been recruiting followers from the Thai Students Association of Indonesia,” claimed Colonel Shinawat Maendej, Commander of the Army Infantry Unit 1 in Narathiwat.

Shinawat told a recent press briefing that the BRN-Coordinate has for years been recruiting Thai graduates from Indonesian universities in Bandung, Jakarta and Yogyakarta, and then providing them with ideological and military training with help from the Indonesia’s Free Aceh Movement (GAM) and Jemaah Islamiah (JI) — the radical Java-based Islamic group blamed for the 2002 Bali bombing.

When these graduates return to Thailand many of them find jobs at pondoks, where they recruit and radicalize youths, said Shinawat.

Most southern specialists agree that there is an element of truth to the hypothesis.

There have been many arrests in the deep South and many of the suspected insurgents have fingered their ustas as ringleaders.

“The evidence is mounting against the pondoks and some of the radical teachers, forcing many of them to run away,” said Panitan Wattanayagorn, a political science professor at Chulalongkorn University and a leading expert on the southern conflict.

Mahamu Mama, 48, alias Pador Mamu, is one such former usta now on the lam. Mahamu is believed to be the mastermind behind the January 4, 2004 incident. He fled to Indonesia last year, sources said.

While it is believable that some ustas are involved in the conflict, the military’s campaign to denounce religious teachers as prime suspects is a risky business that can easily backfire.

“Most of us went to Indonesia to study religion, not bomb-making,” said Nuradin, a ustas in Pattani. “The government should not accuse us without proof.”

False accusations against religious teacher by the military can lead to yet more violence.

“Some military officers make accusations against us just to impress their bosses,” said Rusdee, another Pattani ustas. “This ruins many careers and means innocent teachers have to flee abroad. Others have taken up arms against the government.”

Nearly 80 per cent of the current students in the deep South attend Islamic religious schools, which are subsidized by the state on a per capita basis.

Worawit Baru, a community development expert at Prince Songkhla Univserity in Pattani, has long advised the government to improve the curriculum, teaching standards and learning equipment of the pondoks rather than trying to force Muslim children to go to Thai public schools — the traditional incubus for Thai nationalism.

While the government is starting to heed the advice (for instance Thailand recently agreed to cooperate with Malaysia in improving the quality of its southern pondoks) it must tread carefully.

“It’s a very sensitive issue for local people,” said Panitan. “It’s a major battle because the Muslim community leaders see the pondoks as their sphere of influence.”

This was Bangkok reporting,
H. Numan.

Essential Corruption

Over the weekend, concerning the ongoing Islamization of the West, I posed the question “Cui bono?” That is, who stands to gain from what’s happening now?

This question is especially perplexing when one considers the process of mass Muslim immigration, which effectively strives to replace the existing populations of low-birthrate Western countries with Third World immigrants. The losers in this deal are obvious — but who are the winners? Except for the Islamists themselves, the beneficiaries of Islamization stand well back in the murky shadows.

BrianFH left us this excellent comment on the post, in which he describes the role that generalized corruption plays in distributing benefits within a political system. It’s worth reproducing here in its entirety:

Check out de Mesquita’s podcasts; he presents and applies the lessons from research which shows the decisions of politicians and rulers, throughout history and currently, are explained by the size of the Selectorate and the “ruling coalition”, which may be a few generals, a nomenklatura, an aristocracy, property-owning males, or a large chunk of the voting public. Idealism and statesmanship are rewarded only when there is a large pool benefiting from Public Goods, whose support is necessary. Fake elections without freedom of information and association don’t count as democratic rule.

PayolaThe World Bank and foreign aid ministries in general have been drawn into a system in which loans, grants, and aid funneled through corrupt governments actively suppress growth and freedom.

In this system of analysis, corruption is the essential method of distributing spoils to the “ruling coalition”; it ceases to pay off when the coalition gets large enough that general societal improvement results in prolonged power for the “rulers” — it’s the only win-win formula. But even democratic rulers have the welfare of their closest associates and coalition at heart; lame-duck presidents are famously profligate in passing out goodies to friends and relatives.

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In the case of dictators, once they get past the first eighteen months or so and get the payola rolling, they stay in power for life — or until they are diagnosed with a fatal condition, like cancer. Then the wolves gather, deposition follows, and a new regime arises. (The Shah, for example, fell only when he was diagnosed with incurable cancer.) The gravy-train coalition suddenly sees the end of the guaranteed payoffs, and everything goes up for grabs.

The system, whether in autocracy or democracy, efficiently filters out genuinely ethical and altruistic leaders: they simply would not be able to assemble a sufficient inner support coalition to compete with those who hand out keys to the vault. In unusual emergencies, a power structure desperate for legitimacy might pluck someone like Vaclav Havel from outside the power pipeline to lead, but this is rare.

As an aside, I note that we all want power, in the fundamental sense of capacity to make stuff happen. It happens that political power depends on agreement and cooperation and compliance from others, so the tools used fit the context.

The podcasts by Bruce Bueno de Mesquita on Econ Talk are part of the Library of Economics and Liberty, which looks to be a fascinating and informative site. Here’s a blurb for an article, plucked at random from their main page:

Think Globally, Act Irrationally: Recycling
by Michael Munger

In this month’s feature essay, Duke University professor of economics and political science Mike Munger looks at the economics and politics of recycling. He examines when recycling makes sense as a way to save resources, and when it appears to be more of a religious act. Along the way, he looks at some of the strange things local politicians have required or encouraged citizens to do when it comes to recycling.

If you’re intrigued by this, as I was, you’ll want to pay a visit to the Library of Economics and Liberty and read the whole article.

An Ironic Rondellhund

Lars Vilks has evidenced a true Scandinavian grit in the face of attempted intimidation during the Modoggie crisis. The attempts to cow him into submission only stimulate him to produce more Modoggies, which he then posts on his blog. He shows every sign of continuing in this manner until his own government arrests him for hets mot folkgrupp.

Ironically, Mr. Vilks does not recognize the authority of the Swedish government, for he has declared himself the leader of a sovereign state known as Ladonia. In a further irony, his politics seem to be quite traditionally left-socialist, as Conservative Swede points out:

Wow, this is the first time, in this millennium, that I can remember that I started feeling proud of my country. The media is actually publishing the modoggy. Neat. Credits mainly to Lars Vilks, the Theo van Gogh of Sweden.

Vilks is provocative rather than clever. Which is demonstrated by the fact that he’s a fan of Michael Moore, to the degree that Vilks granted Moore honorary citizenship of his country Ladonia.

There’s nothing more hated by the left by an apostate from Socialism, so Lars Vilks would be well-advised to watch his back.
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A Swede disguised as a ModoggieMr. Vilks has produced his own ironic Modoggie drawing, only this one is not really a Modoggie. Our Swedish correspondent LN has helpfully translated the explanation of the latest Rondellhund, posted today on Mr. Vilks’ blog and shown at right in a smaller version.

Vilks writes: Dagens teckning visar för omväxlings skulle en svensk. Denne har tagit på sig lösskägg och turban med tofs samt maskerat sig till profeten Muhammed som rondellhund.

LN’s translation: “For the sake of variety, today’s drawing shows a Swede. He has put on a false beard and a turban with a tassel and has laid on makeup and disguised himself to look like the Prophet Mohammed being a rondell-doggie.”

As a follow-up, will there be Mohammed disguised as a Swede disguised as a Rondellhund? Another kind of animal disguised as a dog with the head of Mohammed? Mohammed disguised as Christ disguised as a pig?

The possibilities for overwrought postmodern irony abound.

Previous posts on this topic:

The Swedes Narrowly Avert Their Own Motoon Crisis
Modoggie #2
The Prophet as an Obedient Retriever
That Doggone Mohammed
Swedish Muslims Will Exhibit the Modoggies
Lars Vilks Dogged by Death Threats
Modoggies Make it into the Swedish MSM, But…
Oh, No! It’s Happening Again!
Sweden Gets Sent to the Woodshed

Sweden Gets Sent to the Woodshed

It seems that the excrement has impacted the circulation device in Sweden.

The dog excrement, that is.

The Modoggies, Lars Vilks’ blasphemous drawings of the Prophet as a Rondellhund, were too much for Iran, and the mullahs have summoned Sweden’s chargé d’affaires to answer for his country’s crimes.

The Local tells the story:

A ModoggieIran summoned a Swedish diplomat to its foreign ministry on Monday to protest against a cartoon in a Swedish newspaper depicting the head of Prophet Muhammad on a dog’s body, Sweden’s foreign ministry said.

“Gunilla von Bahr, Sweden’s charge d’affaires, was summoned to the Iranian foreign ministry today where she received a protest from the Iranian government,” foreign ministry spokeswoman Anna Björkander told AFP.

The Iranian government told Von Bahr the cartoon was “offensive to Prophet Muhammad,” Björkander said, refusing to disclose any further details of the meeting.

The cartoon was drawn by Swedish artist Lars Vilks, whose series of drawings of the prophet as a dog have sparked a controversy in Sweden. Several art galleries refused to display the sketches amid fears of angry reactions from Muslims.

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The Örebro local newspaper Nerikes Allehanda published one of the drawings on August 18 to illustrate an editorial on self-censorship and freedom of religion.

“The editorial was critical of the fact that so many had turned down Vilks’s drawings for fear of the reactions they would provoke,” Nerikes Allehanda’s chief editor Ulf Johansson told AFP.

Mr. Vilks, of course, has remained unrepentant and defiant. Fatwa or not, the more threats he receives, the more Modoggies emerge from his pen.

As regular readers know, we’ve been following the Modoggie caper since day one. The whole ridiculous process is unfolding as expected:

1.   A long, slow circulation of news on the internet.
2.   An appearance in the Danish MSM
3.   A single appearance in the Swedish MSM
4.   Multiple appearances in the Swedish MSM.
5.   A protest by Swedish Muslims.
6.   A protest by Iran.

I assume that the next steps will be something like this:

7.   Protests by other Muslim governments.
8.   Narrowly-focused rioting in selected cities of the Middle East and South Asia.
9.   Sweden caves in, suppresses Vilks, and apologizes to 785 quadrillion Muslims.
9.   Sweden refuses to cave, and the conflict escalates further.

What happens after that depends a lot on which fork Sweden takes at #9. If it were Denmark, there would be no doubt, because there would be no fork. But Sweden has a long history of dhimmitude, so we’ll just have to wait and see.

Hat tip: LGF.

Previous posts on this topic:

The Swedes Narrowly Avert Their Own Motoon Crisis
Modoggie #2
The Prophet as an Obedient Retriever
That Doggone Mohammed
Swedish Muslims Will Exhibit the Modoggies
Lars Vilks Dogged by Death Threats
Modoggies Make it into the Swedish MSM, But…
Oh, No! It’s Happening Again!

Could the Ancient Greeks Have Created the Scientific Revolution?

The Fjordman Report

The noted blogger Fjordman is filing this report via Gates of Vienna.
For a complete Fjordman blogography, see The Fjordman Files. There is also a multi-index listing here.

A note from Fjordman: This essay was written as a response to Conservative Swede’s claim that the Scientific Revolution was a result of Greek logic, not Christianity. My claim would be that it would have been impossible without the new cultural synthesis created during the Middle Ages, which very much included Christianity.

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The term “medieval” has, somewhat unfairly, come to carry decisively negative connotations. There was indeed unrest and social upheavals for a prolonged period of time following the collapse of Roman authority, which triggered substantial population movements across the continent. However, even during these turbulent and troubled times there were exceptions. The Carolingians managed to halt the Islamic invasion in France in the 8th century and for some time rebuilt a stronger state.

Christianity spread among the barbarians, and especially from the 11th century onwards, Europe witnessed the rise of stronger states and more political stability. This was the period during which the first European universities were founded, and crucial improvements were made in the fields of agriculture and commerce, paving the way for a rapid rise in Europe’s population.
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In some important ways, especially regarding the accumulation of wealth and scientific knowledge and the willingness to invest in the practical application of technology for long-term gains, the Middle Ages not only caught up with, but greatly surpassed the achievements of the Classical Age. The Renaissance was an important event in Western history, but on balance, the modern West probably owes more to the Middle Ages than to the Renaissance.

Neither the Nordic lands nor most of Germany or many of the Celtic or Slavic nations of Northern and Eastern Europe were ever a part of the Roman Empire, yet we still talk about our shared “Greco-Roman heritage.” The Classical heritage came to us on the back of Christianity.

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Read the rest at the Brussels Journal.

Action and Reaction in Italy

Update: Vera has pointed out in the comments that it is UNRWA that is the pal of the Palestinians, and not UNHCR. I stand corrected.

D’oh! Stupid acronyms!

Here are two unconnected stories from Italy that illustrate the different ways that Islam affects the Italian people.

The first is a Reuters story about a recent firebomb attack on a mosque in Milan. Notice that it was “vandals” who did the attacking. If Muslims firebombed a church or a synagogue, What would they be? “Activists”? Or maybe “militants”? How about “separatists”? Or even “insurgents”?

Vandals burn imam’s car outside Milan mosque

Centro Islamico di MilanoVandals set fire to a Muslim cleric’s car outside a Milan mosque in what appears to be a religiously-motivated attack following months of threats.

The overnight car fire shattered some of the building’s windows and blacked its outer wall, but no one was injured, said Moroccan-born Hamid Zariate, the acting deputy director of the Islamic centre in Segrate, east of Milan’s city centre.

The building houses the larger cultural centre and mosque where about 700 people gather for prayers, he said.

Zariate told Reuters that he saw one of the vandals at about midnight, hurling what could have been a petrol bomb. The vandal sped away in a vehicle driven by another person, he said.

“At midnight I heard the first blast, and looked out of the window and saw my car on fire … The car exploded, there was nothing left of it,” Zariate, 24, said.

Police declined comment. Italian media reported that police had not ruled out any possibilities yet — including that the blast may have been accidental.

Zariate said he did not believe vandals targeted him specifically since he had only arrived at the centre several weeks ago.

“There’s no reason for anyone to be against me specifically because I’m new. I don’t know anybody,” he said.

“So, it’s not against me. It’s against the mosque, and I think it’s due to forms of xenophobia, forms of ideological-religious racism.”

And here’s an interesting idea:
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Three politicians are pushing a bill that would create a national registry for imams with no criminal records, in an attempt to weed out fundamentalists.

Some politicians have called on police to keep a closer eye on imams practising in Italy.

Wouldn’t this law be unconstititutional, a racist hate-law, under the European Union? Why, it’s obviously the same as the Nuremberg laws!

AFAAs a matter of interest, the Milan chapter of Antifa has taken notice of the firebombing of the mosque. Yes, it’s the same Antifa, an Italian branch of Antifascist Action, the AFA. The same logo, the same red-and-black themed paintings, posters, and decorative merchandise spread throughout the site.

How likely would it be for Antifa to march on behalf of a firebombed church?

Religion is the opiate of the masses, except, of course, when that religion is Islam. Then it’s the friend of the international proletariat.

The second story concerns a Nigerian Christian who is trying to avoid deportation to his homeland, where he would face death by stoning:

Italy: Nigerian Christian facing stoning prays he can stay

A young Nigerian Christian man, Felix Eugenne is anxiously awaiting a decision on 3 September from the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) on whether he can remain in Italy. He is facing deportation to Nigeria and death by stoning for having sex outside wedlock with a Muslim woman.

Magistrates in Nigeria sentenced Eugenne, 27, to death by stoning preceeded by public flogging. His crime was to have had sex with his girlfriend Fatimah, who is a Muslim: a double offence in Niger state, where Islamic law is in force.

Nigeria’s constitution upholds the secularism of the state and its legal system. But in Niger state and 11 other states, mainly in the Muslim majority north, Islamic law is applied.


Eugenne was imprisoned and given 21 public lashes for several days. He had been sentenced to 21 public lashes for 21 days before death by stoning, but says he managed to escape when his mullah-jailer left his cell unlocked one day.

The mullah had his throat slit in a public square as an “exemplary” punishment, Eugenne said. He managed to flee Nigeria and reach Italy aboard a container ship in April 1994.

If Mr. Eugenne’s only hope is the UNHCR — which exists almost entirely to give aid and comfort to Hamas in the Palestinian “refugee camps” — then his fate hangs on a slender thread indeed. Perhaps the Italian office of the UNHCR is not so slavishly devoted to the Islamist cause.

Italy, like most other European countries, has no difficulty importing and sustaining massive numbers of Muslim refugees. Yet when confronted with a single Christian refugee escaping from the murderous blandishments of the mullahs, why, it’s… deportation time!

Don’t make no sense.

Hat tips: Steen and insubria.

Cui Bono?

Der GeltnarrThe venerable phrase Homo economicus refers to the theory that all human actions are determined by a rational calculation of personal gain. Drawing on Adam Smith’s famous description of the behavior of the market as an “invisible hand”, Homo economicus moves a step further into an all-encompassing determinism. For post-Christian academics, perhaps it’s compensation for the melancholy, long, withdrawing roar of their ancestors’ Calvinism.

But for anyone who’s not a diehard determinist, human behavior, both individually and collectively, cannot be entirely explained by rational economic motivations. Hitler’s invasion of the Soviet Union, for example, with all its destructive consequences for millions of people, was neither rational nor economically motivated. The most consequential behavior in human history can only be explained ideologically, not economically, and certainly not rationally.

Economics, however, does provide significant constraints on human agency. No matter how fierce and pure are the beliefs of the religious zealot or the Communist revolutionary, the operation of markets will eventually bring them to heel. Economic laws may be ignored, but they cannot be avoided.

However, the fact that human behavior is not totally determined by rational economic calculation does not mean that it is not explicable. When plain old-fashioned self-interest falls short as an explanation, forget Homo economicus, and look for ideology to take up the slack.

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When attempting to make sense of the affairs of men, it’s important to ask the venerable question: Cui bono?

Uncle ScroogeWho benefits?

This is often, of course, a question of simple economics. Who gets the most lucrative deal? Which public official stands to line his pockets the most under this particular policy?

Follow the money!

When any political economy is enjoying a period of relative stability, economic motives become paramount, and the calculus of self-interest is the best slide rule to employ. Whether legal or illegal — a normal business deal or kickbacks, extortion, and bribes — the money trail is the surest guide.

But human societies are prone to waves of extravagantly irrational mass behavior, whether overtly religious, or in pseudo-rational creeds like Communism. Economics takes a back seat while the violent and ruthless ideologues hold sway.

But even then we can ask, Cui bono? Only this time the benefit comes to those who seek power, the intangible coin of influence and control. Osama bin Laden’s behavior cannot be explained economically, but he is still acting quite rationally in a calculation of what will benefit him the most.

These two strands of cui bono converge in the power politics of the Middle East. The traditional economic incentives are at work among the princes and sheikhs who control the flow of black gold, and the resulting lucre frees up the likes of bin Laden to pursue the other type of self-interest, the lust for power of the ruthless ideologue.

Here in the West we are mesmerized by those barrels of viscous hydrocarbons, and the relentless upward creep of their price. Last month, in response to some of my usual rhetorical excess on the topic, Unaha-closp had this to say:
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Baron, If you were to make “Iran, Iraq, and the Arabian peninsula” into a “smoking wasteland” it would seriously damage oil supply. Lead to large increase of gas price and have a negative impact on the American economy. Perhaps this economic cost plays a large part in reducing the political will to act.

Any military action against Iran and/or Saudi jeopardises a lot of oil production, bad news for those importing oil.

Kowtow to the pump!I have no argument with this logic. And, for each of the players in the geopolitical petroleum game, from the oil companies to our political leaders, a rational economic calculus of benefit is what keeps the system in stasis. We are in thrall to the price of oil, and as a result can make no serious move to subdue our real enemies.

But there are other non-economic costs. These are ideological, but not from mad ideologies like Scientology or Communism. These ideological costs involve liberty, the rule of law, the right of free expression, and various other time-hallowed tenets of the American creed.

If we decide that economic calculations require that we surrender this or that small piece of our ideological heritage, will we do so? And if we do so, then cui bono?

In the long run, our ideological self-interest and our economic self-interest converge, because only our traditional liberties are capable of maintaining our economic well-being.

But put that aside for the time being. What happens in the long run, if we give in to this ongoing Wahhabist extortion? Lower prices, now, perhaps… but not forever.

If we took action now, there would be costs — serious costs — but the costs in the long run will be even more severe.

Because make no mistake, we will pay the cost, one way or another, and the cost will be higher later. The cost of the oil will eventually be nothing less than full submission.

Act prudently now, and pay $10 a gallon for a while.

Or wait until later, and say La illaha ila Allah, wa Muhammadun rasul Allah.

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There are many people among the elite in the West who seem only too eager to say the shahada and begin their perfunctory attendance at the mosque for Friday prayers. This readiness to cave, to submit, to roll over in the face of the threat from the Great Jihad — it can’t be explained entirely by economic self-interest. Something else must be at work.

I’ve often said that mass insanity is the only possible explanation for some of the bizarre suicidal dhimmi behavior exhibited by various prominent figures in the Western world. When one looks at these incidents and asks cui bono, an answer is not always easy to find.

As an example, take the deliberate policy of facilitating mass immigration into the countries of Western Europe to replace the original population. It doesn’t make any sense. Some businesses stand to make quite a bit of money, but not enough to motivate the whole enterprise. Socialists will gain more votes, but not indefinitely. The traditional rulers — members of the permanent bureaucracy, the managers of state enterprises, the lords of the media — get to maintain and increase their influence, but only for a while.

In the long run, what about the wine and the lager, the nude beaches on the Costa del Sol, bacon and ham, and Frau Schmidt’s pet poodle? What happens when it’s time to say “goodbye to all that”?

Other people are grappling with these same issues. In the comments on a recent post Phanarath, our regular Danish correspondent, had this to say (several comments have been concatenated and edited slightly to make this quote):

Why would anyone want to replace the original populations?

The only logical answer is: to create chaos, and out of that chaos to create a new fascist regime in Europe. But not only in Europe. The same forces are at work in America.

The average European or American is not going to stand for Fascism; it cannot be introduced with the populations we have now. So by introducing more and more and hostile aliens, two things are created. The hostile aliens are used to fascism and are not going to make a big problem out of it, and the original population are made fearful and thereby more easy to handle.

The European Union is clearly heading for a fascist state, and so is the American Union to be.

And most us already know in our hearts where this is all heading. What we don’t know is who wants it to happen. We keep thinking that the “left” are acting out of stupidity or just general dislike of all things western or the “leukophobia” or whatever. We mostly can’t make any sense out of what the motives could be for what is going on, and so we generally think that it’s a sort of accident of different thoughts crashing together in an unlucky way.

You want evidence for a conspiracy? That’s easy.

No population in Europe ever had a majority that wanted huge a immigration of Arab Muslims, but it happened anyway. Not just in one or two countries, but in all countries. And in all countries this fact was kept out of democratic debate.

You talk about PC, as if it was a law of nature. It isn’t. Someone wants it to exist and therefore it exists. To these people right and left is nothing but a joke to keep people occupied.

They want to break down democracy as we know it and take away any real freedom we have. And they will do this while trying to keep us in the illusion that all the adjustments that are to come are being put in place to make us free and/or safe.

It is completely ignorant to believe that all the things that are happening are just happening more or less by accident. The pattern is constant, and therefore it is logical that someone wants that very pattern to be.

Well, I agree with you that it doesn’t make much sense. And the only real argument for a secret agenda I can come up with, is that there really isn’t any other way that things could unfold the way they do.

How can all western nations who are supposed to be free and democratic all the make the exact same mistakes and have the exact same lack of public debate about it, where anyone who speaks against this project is demonized, in the exact same way?

It shouldn’t be possible that many different democratic countries all at the same time decided to eradicate their own populations. At least it’s highly unlikely.

International pressure groups could explain some of it. But its strange that many of them seem more concerned if an imprisoned Muslim doesn’t get his halal food in England than they are about gays being hung from a crane in Iran.

And the EU could be an explanation for what’s going on in Europe. But it doesn’t explain why The US, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia are making the exact same mistakes. The US is only about 2% Muslim so far, but they more then make up for this. The US debate about illegal immigrants might very well be one of the world’s most serious cases of mass insanity. I mean, how can you grant a drivers license to someone who is illegally in the country and who is still considered illegal after he gets it? But now he can drive legally? That’s one of the weirdest things I have heard in my life.

Some countries are further along on this path of destruction then others. And here comes another strange thing: The countries that are not so far along seem to learn nothing from the problems the countries further along in the process are having. Every mainstream politician and media outlet seems to be in agreement to ignore all signs of trouble and faithfully continue towards our own demise following the exact footprints of those who went before us.

I know that there are small differences in how things are handled in the different countries. But those differences only seems to be about how fast they are going and how far along they have come. No one takes another path or seeks a different destination.

We have politicians who claim they want to do things differently. But they never do it. They may at best slow the process down for a little while, but basically they stay on track and in line with the other lemmings.

Phanarath has highlighted the essential problem: all these things happening simultaneously across the West can’t be a coincidence. So what’s going on?

Cui bono?

I’m reluctant to credit any theories that involve a grand conspiracy. Outside of a totalitarian dictatorship, secrets, even among the powerful, are too hard to keep. Nixon couldn’t do it. Even Bill Clinton couldn’t do it.

But that doesn’t mean that there are no connections.

What I see is a grand convergence of interests, a disparate group of fellow-travelers who benefit in their own different ways from the Islamization of the West. Some are the ideologues, like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Hugo Chavez, and some are the amoral capitalists who sell them the rope.

Some are the Socialists who stand to gain votes and retain their power and perks for a little while longer. Others are the owners of agribusinesses and factories who stand to gain from cheap illiterate imported labor.

Some are the ideologues of the old order, the apologists for the liberal establishment that vanquished Hitler and brought the sexual revolution to the magnificently narcissistic veterans of ’68. Anything that validates their moth-eaten worldview serves their interests.

And all too many are the guilt-ridden knee-jerk progressives who will go gladly to their own doom, singing “We Shall Overcome” as they open the door to the grinning man who wears a turban and carries a scimitar.

And every single one of them is marching into the same hole, each triumphantly carrying his own banner. Soldiers of Allah, defenders of the Proletariat, right-thinking Vegans, progressives of all stripes…

When they finally get into that hole, they will have to duke it out for supremacy.

Who do you think will win?