Then and Now
Ah, can it be that a decade has passed already? Yes, it can: a decade and a lifetime.
Septembers have come and gone since then, all of them containing at least one day so like that soft late summer morning we all continue to recall. Seeing a fathomless September sky leads me back and back to the moment. That moment…
Those who witnessed it all remarked later on the contrast between the beauty of that day and the extraordinarily swift destruction as two tiny specks darted from the deep blue September sky to glide along the Hudson River before veering deliberately, swiftly, unbelievably into the hearts of the Twin Towers.
For many years to come we will carry on with our memorials of that day. Our annual observations and commemorations will ring with the names of those who died, families will continue to grieve as long as there are kin left to remember the loss. How long will that be, do you think? Some tragedies are never forgotten, yet others fade. This one brought in its wake a great economic loss and a turning of our public discourse into two polarized camps. So 9/11 may be one of those not soon abandoned.
The Jews say of Hitler’s crazed hatred and mass killings, “Never Forget” — even as others would tell us the Holocaust never happened. “Never Forget” morphs into “Don’t Think About It”. And in like fashion, September 11th is called an inside job, or an evil plan by the Mossad, or anything but what it was: the culmination of a long series of jihadist destruction aimed specifically at that evil Satan, the United States of America.
Let’s not go over again all the prodromal signs leading up to that doubled-down Inferno in New York City. Though we continue to disagree on its causes, its cures or even the ‘real’ narrative, the story has been long memorized, despite the consensus media’s attempts to bury the national remembrance of our loss. They have succeeded in muting it, but they haven’t erased those images as fully as they’d intended.
So instead of rehashing all the warnings we-should-have-seen, consider this: the colossal destruction at Ground Zero was actually a fluke. Not even bin Laden expected those skyscrapers to crumble so totally, so quickly. At best, he hoped for enough damage to keep the buildings unusable for a long time, just as the plane flown into the Pentagon managed to do.
The phenomenon of that total ruin at Ground Zero was a destruction of biblical proportions. It is the eerie lack of the Towers’ familiar silhouettes in the New York City skyline that has cast an immense pall of continuing destruction of wealth and productivity across the globe. There are a number of incomprehensibles in this much-recounted yet totally strange and abrupt in-breaking of absolute evil into world history. That its true impact is actually a fluke is surely one of the strangest of them.
Attempts at Definitions
Comparisons to other acts of war don’t work. This was no Pearl Harbor with a hostile state behind its actions. 9/11 was planned by a stateless man hidden in a cave in a place we’d never heard of.
Nor can we define the borders of this war; the lines drawn in the sand are restrictively theological in nature. The “borders” of Islam’s combat against all that is not Islam create an existential, endless struggle encompassing religious practices, political stances, public demeanor, and even the bowel movements of believers. Thus, the global is the local and vice versa.
The practical nature of Islamic jurisprudence (which is what Islam boils down to — Here Comes the Judge) takes into account all behaviors of everyone at all times: from state leader down to street cleaner, one’s behaviors are of monumental importance, at least in terms of your continued existence in their proposed Ummah.
There are no neutrals or bystanders. Unborn babies are not innocent, they are simply part of the price paid to Allah in order to bring the world to a total ‘peace’ via Dar al Islam. There are no victims either: a homicide bomber who takes other Muslims with him in his own final jihad is simply letting them into Paradise a little earlier than they’d planned. The dead infidels are offerings to Allah, who can enjoy watching them burn in Hell.
There is no cognitive dissonance for Islamic leaders between the laws they promulgate and the days of their lives. They don’t appear to have a problem living in obscene wealth while flouting the hadith regarding music and women and wine. Nor is this new behavior. Wherever Islam and penetrated and captured, the leadership has lived lives apart and entirely separate from the tenets of the Koran. This is the same as all totalitarian polities. Each has its own nomenklatura.
The Nature of Islam
Islam’s inherently parasitic nature is a top-down phenomenon in all countries where Sharia is in force.
This top-down parasitic nature is not a bug, it’s a feature.
It is also a historical phenomenon dating back to the inception of Islam by its founder. Mohammed was a bandit who made his living robbing caravans. Thus his conversion experience via his visitations from the angel Gabriel didn’t result in much change in his daily life. He did perhaps refine his vocation based on the things he heard — perhaps auditory hallucinations brought on by a temporal lobe lesion? — so that what had been highway robbery became Attacks for Allah. Hypersensitive to the ridicule of the Jews who laughed at his syncretism of Judaism and Arab Christianity, Mohammed eventually had his revenge against those who scorned the result of his mystical revelations and his misunderstandings of the Jews’ Holy Book. As his anger grew, so did his abrogations against those initial “peace, love and understanding” utterances in the earlier parts of the Koran.
Islam retains much of its founder’s characterological traits: overly-sensitive, easily humiliated, determined on revenge. And still bent on conquest. It remains caught in the amber of a tribal system with primitive marriage laws and rituals that border on the obsessive-compulsive. Head-banging as a sign of sanctity does not bode well for the future intelligence of its followers. Neither does repeated first-cousin marriages.
The modern rise of Islam is a geo-political accident. A fluke. Or rather, yet another fluke.
Had the internal combustion engine not been invented and had much of the globe’s petroleum resources not been found under Arab lands, Islam would have remained in its inert state, the one it assumed as it was defeated and began the long contraction back to its origins. But — and that is a “but” upon which hinged much of 20th century history and even more of our immediate future — the internal combustion engine running on petroleum actuated in the resurgence of Islam, a primitive, pre-modern Islam; a political world view untouched by modern thought or practices. And it ran smack dab into a godless modernity stripped of meaning or coherence, but a modernity chock full of technological toys, especially martial toys. Literature? Art? Music? Trash! But the bombs, the cell phones, the fast cars. They ordered by the gross and sneered at the culture which has produced their toys.
Why Islam’s problems belong to us
Added to Islam’s sense of victimhood, we have the dominant Western nanny-state socialist world view, one which never met a victim it couldn’t love — except for the Jews. Everyone knows the Jooos are too cunning and smart to be real victims. One has only to compare the plight of the PoorPalis living in destitution right next to the luxurious freedoms enjoyed by Israel to know who the real victims are. The fact that their Islamic neighbors don’t see fit to help the PoorPalis move beyond its parasitic, murderous anarchy provides us with a clue about some of the inherent problems in Islam.
You would think that given the immense wealth of the petrol-gushing Islamic countries, the paradigmatic filter through which Western elites view the world would have forced them to see Islam as a problem: all that wealth and yet all those poor immigrants. Why is this situation a blind spot for Western socialist democracies, especially given the totalitarian nature of Islam’s theology? Obviously, multi-culti political correctness trumps any other belief system. Except for Islam, of course.
You see, the question can’t even be posed in such a fashion because to do so would be inherently politically incorrect in and of itself. The rules about what may be said — perhaps about what may even be thought — are every bit as rigid and orthodox as any Salafist imam’s rulings. In this strange demonic convergence, the media and academic gatekeepers will not permit their chosen martyrs to be portrayed as the parasites they are. Instead, in paroxysms of self-flagellation, the Western elites pour out their purses upon the welfare altars of an immigrant population that despises them.
The fact that the elitist world view is neither congruent or logical is of no importance. What matters is how they feel about a situation and how much tolerance they can display in their orgies of self-abasement. Islamic jurisprudence, were it to ever take over, would put these Western elite supporters at the top of their list of those to be killed. Gays? Lesbians? Slutty-dressed-feminists-unite-against-mean-men? All of those groups would soon be as dead as the Christers praying in the next cell and the atheists with their hands over their ears.
What We’ve Learned About What to Do Till Then
Islam is a complexity of resentful tribes with a long memory for slights. Were the Ummah ever to be realized, then the real lethally internecine turf wars would begin in earnest.
If the world were to continue in its present course, we’d be in deep doo-doo vis-à-vis Islam. By that I mean if the conquest of our culture and our rule of law were subsumed by sharia before Things Changed, the possibility of the Islamic utopian fantasy might be within talking distance. However, there are several course corrections ahead which will rule out the Ummah as our future form of governance.
First (though not necessarily chronologically first) oil is a finite resource. When it’s gone, what will the Middle East do? While they’ve had the money to make ready a garden in their desert — as the Israelis did — they did none of that. They import their technicians, their craftsmen, their laborers. Much like the planter class in the United States who depended on slavery till the bitter end, Islam does not have the requisite resilience every culture needs in order to adapt to change.
Second, the coming economic collapse will spare no one. While the oil magnates will continue to rake it in, their safety in the midst of starving others will become more parlous. The ability to drum up new cadres in the West will weaken perceptibly as the institutions in the West on which they depended for their forays and proselytizing will atrophy.
As the nanny democracies move toward more totalitarian measures to keep down the disaffected, and as their treasuries dwindle, thus preventing the upkeep of the ever-burgeoning immigrant class, there will be discord and disharmony. Those at the bottom will become more restive.
Third, look for political clashes and change. I can only speak for what is happening in the United States, but I see a squaring off of two basic groups: the conservative Tea Party “types” (not limited to simply those who are members) and the public sector socialist unions and their supporters on the Left, especially the consensus media. We will see how this plays out in 2012, but at the moment, the winds are shifting against the Democrats so the political class realignments will be striking.
As the conservative class rises, look for more push-back against Shariah. It took a long time to learn to pinpoint the problem: it is shariah.
Fourth, and most important to many of us personally, is the coming destruction of our public and personal wealth. Houses and real estate are still losing value, inflation in food and fuel is increasing at a worrisome clip. Unemployment — the real rate — is inching upwards.
The more worried people are, the less they will spend. The less they spend, the more moribund becomes the economy. Governmental intervention in the form of “help” via the bureaucrats will only worsen and lengthen our slide to the bottom. No one can say where that “bottom” will be.
At the moment, social disorder is making its appearance among the chronically unemployed urban black males. That disorder could spread to other groups. Unemployed groups.
In the final analysis, the global “unrest”, part of which Islam helped to create, will most likely end in the retreat of Islam from the modern world. Unless it can adapt and change, it cannot make enough inroads into the culture of the US to achieve its goal.
Ten years out from that Dies Irae, we are still standing. Osama bin Laden is not, and he did not die of natural causes. American SEALS killed him, which is as it should be.
They found pornographic videos in bin Laden’s home. Such was the true nature of one of Islam’s spiritual leaders.
We have been through a great deal since September 11, 2001 but we have an even longer road ahead. We will not come out at some point in the distance where “things are like they were”. That never happens, and this is a good thing, despite what we’ve lost.
When I get discouraged, the Baron reminds me of this exchange:
Frodo: “I wish it need not have happened in my time.” Gandalf: “So do I, and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
What will you decide to do with the time that you’ve been given?