Between Allah & Jesus- No To Jihad, No to Crusade

I would like to recommend a few good reads to help one navigate the situation of how to regard Islam and Muslims as both Christians and Americans.  First of all – the suggestion that America is or should be engaged in a Holy War Crusade against all Muslim majority nations is one that has to be confronted- there is nothing more dangerous than to try to match the extremism of Bin Laden-style Islam with some kind of Bin Laden-style Christianity.

To get to some higher ground I recommend some good historical reads which are not so far back in time as to seem ancient and irrelevant to current geopolitical conditions.  I keep re-reading and re-recommending David Fromkin’s A Peace to End All Peace:  The Fall of the Ottoman Empire and the Creation of the Modern Middle East.  This book painstakingly lays out the facts of Great Britain’s intensive role after WWI in taking charge of trying to get imperial advantage throughout the Middle East- and using political Islam as one of the big tools to at once unify and pacify the majorities of Arab peoples.  The British set up shop with their Arab Bureau in Cairo to become “a center of British policy-making for the Middle East”. The British were fond of Kingdoms and Islamic movements like the Muslim Brotherhood- all of whom were put in part on Great Britain’s payroll. They sponsored the Hashemite Kings- Hussein of Mecca and his sons to be the leaders of the postwar Arab Middle East, and they supported a rival (House of Saud) Ibn Saud- Hussein’s sons Feisal and  Abdullah were put in charge of Iraq and Transjordan, and in 1922 with the strong Christian Zionism of Lloyd George, the British accepted a League of Nations Mandate to carry out a Zionist program. Britain placed King Fuad I on the throne of Egypt in 1922 as well.  Independence for the Kurds was put off the agenda- setting up more trouble for the future.  Britain also imposed frontier agreements upon Ibn Saud that established the boundaries between Saudi Arabia, Iraq, and Kuwait- which as we know came back to haunt when Iraq invaded Kuwait (Gulf War I).

“Thus Britain- like France in her sphere of the Middle East, and Russia in hers- established states, appointed persons to govern them, and drew frontiers between them..the European powers had taken the political destinies of the Middle Eastern peoples in their hands- and they did so by the terms of what I have called the settlement of 1922.”

Now any Arab/Persian person with any knowledge of this history is not going to be delighted by U.S. and Western power politics that continue to dominate their lives. We tend to forget or simply ignore this fact- lost in the propaganda that we are the deliverers of “liberty” to foreign lands.

More facts can be found for the role the U.S. has played after the diminishing of Great Britain as the Middle East’s power broker. In Robert Dreyfuss’s book- Devil’s Game: How the United States Helped Unleash Fundamentalist Islam- he explores the roots of how the political Islamists were helped to develop and specifically to become militant and dangerous by those who saw an imperial pan-Islam as the perfect wedge for Communist/Socialist/Nationalist movements in the Middle East.  And if you read 2005 Pulitzer Prize winner- Steve Coll’s book Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, From the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001-  you will learn about how tight our American leadership was with the extremist Islamic jihadist fighter groupings, starting with using them to make the Soviet Union “bleed”, and later to try to keep them as a controlled entity- which resulted in the ‘Blowback’ situation of a popularized movement of Islamic fighters/terrorists that may still be growing as everyone panics and acts like it is somehow proof that Islam itself is a Faith that has only one intent- to kill us all.

To counter the religious claims that Islam is simply an attack dog faith with no redeeming value- I recommend orthodox Catholic philosopher/writer Peter Kreeft’s book – Between Allah & Jesus: What Christians Can Learn from Muslims-. This book will help those who have that Pavlov dog reaction to the word “Islam” to immediately think  “Bin Laden”.  It is for thoughtful people who are serious about being peacemakers in this life.

My own views go along with Kreefts, and I am also searching for the way forward in relating to Muslims. I am critical of the way many Islamic dominant nations refuse to recognize the rights of all religious believers to worship freely, and to have the right of speech to engage all people to the truths of their faith.  This lack of  reciprocity in the rights to religious liberty, is a major stumbling block in the future co-existence and friendship between Christians and Muslims inside of nations and between nations. We should begin honest dialogues on the political question of how we can acknowledge the abuse of solidarity by way of Western power relationships with the peoples of the Middle East- putting them under the thumb of our leaders (behind the scenes) ever since the end of the Ottoman Empire. We should admit that our idealism has been in large measure- self-serving- not with the interests of the majority of people living in the Middle East at the front of our policy considerations. ” ..Even as the Son of man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mt.20:28).  This admission should open new doors of dialogue which could lead to more openness on the part of Muslims to look at expanding the rights of all to worship and evangelize their faith in countries like Saudi Arabia which has had a very close relationship with the United States- yet does not respect the rights of Christians inside her borders.

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57 Responses to Between Allah & Jesus- No To Jihad, No to Crusade

  1. Tito Edwards says:

    I differ with you on some minor points, but I wholeheartedly agree about reciprocity.

    If the largest mosque in Europe can be built in walking distance from Saint Peter’s Square, then we also can build a beautiful church in Mecca and Medina.

  2. Joe Hargrave says:

    To be honest, I’m less concerned with what Muslims do in their own countries than I am with what they do in the West through mass immigration.

    I think Geert Wilder’s basic argument is one that I agree with – Muslim immigrants need to adapt to the West, and not vice-versa. Europe and eventually America must firmly put our foot down and draw a hard line – no Sharia law in the West, no honor killings, no female genital mutilations, no more fatwas and threats of violence against critics of Islam or Mohammed, no more “protests” in which Muslims call for the death of Westerners, praise jihad, or any of the rest of this nonsense.

    As for this,

    “there is nothing more dangerous than to try to match the extremism of Bin Laden-style Islam with some kind of Bin Laden-style Christianity”

    I don’t know what “Bin Laden-style” is supposed to mean, exactly, but all Christians and all people who value the integrity and survival of Western civilization absolutely must stand firm against the violence and belligerence of Islam.

    I don’t disagree with the thesis that Western interloping in the Middle East is largely responsible for the Islamic revival. But we can’t undo what was done.

    Europe has now gone too far in the way of masochistic atonement, and Obama isn’t far behind. Muslims do have a mandate to convert the world, as Christians do – only the are explicitly authorized to use force in the attainment of that goal, and they have since the very beginning. The Middle East and North Africa used to be Christian. And the Crusades were JUST WARS to check Islamic aggression.

    If you want to go back in history, we can see who the aggressor was since the 8th century. One and a half centuries of Western imperialism versus a 1000 years of Islamic aggression.

    The eventual weakness and decline of the Ottoman Empire put the breaks on Islamic expansionism but now it is back in full force.

  3. Donald R. McClarey says:

    An excellent history of Islamic Imperialism has been written by Efraim Karsh.

    http://www.amazon.com/Islamic-Imperialism-History-Efraim-Karsh/dp/0300106033

    Current pathologies in the Arab world which have led to jihadism, have almost nothing to do with the west and almost everything to do with an inability of the Arab world to come to terms with modernity. An excellent look at this problem is David Pryce Jones’ The Closed Circle.

    http://www.amazon.com/Closed-Circle-Interpretation-Edward-Burlingame/dp/1566638267/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1278368585&sr=1-1

  4. Tito Edwards says:

    I agree with Joe on many things he said and with everything that Don said.

    Most of the problems now in the Middle East are caused by them themselves.

    So long they rule by Sharia and use the Koran as their prism in life, they will continue to fall behind the West, Russia, India, and the Far East.

    Bernard Lewis “What Went Wrong” is an excellent read on the problems and how it got their.

    http://www.amazon.com/What-Went-Wrong-Between-Modernity/dp/0060516054

    The minor points I disagree with Chris are that the problems that were western caused are why they are in trouble now.

    I can cry and moan about how my family suffered after losing the Civil War, but in the end, it’s what you do with your circumstances that matter.

    Pick yourself up and make a better life for yourselves.

    You won’t ever see me strap on explosives and run into a school building to kill nursery school Jewish kids.

  5. Tim Shipe says:

    Joe- in this piece I am not going back to the time period of the original Crusades- I think Dinesh D’Souza did a good job with his book- What’s So Great About Christianity- by the way Dinesh writes with high praise for Kreeft’s book on the Between Allah and Jesus book jacket.

    I do see politics as the primary difficulty- just like with the Caths and Protestants in Ireland and Israelis and Palestinians- it is the politics not the religious differences that are the key- take your side on the political question but it is still the politics that are the primary problem. Now with Islam and Christianity you have two main political problems- first one being the plank in our eye- the last century of naked imperialism which many here will simply not take ownership of- castigating “liberals” instead of dealing with the facts- sometimes the facts are on the liberal side- unless one supposes that the liberal is wrong everytime everywhere and the mythical conservative is the pure and true representative of God on earth- never wrong- just like Hannity’s America:}

    The second major problem politically is the Sharia Law as is well documented here- I agree that that is a huge thing especially when it comes down to the reciprocity of religious liberty issue- that is huge and has to be dealt with- and my way of dealing with it is to be open about both major issues that get everyone on both sides all fired up- the short and modern era of Western interventions in the Middle East slicing and dicing up peoples, lands, nations- AND the fact that political Islam is all geared up and spoiling for a big fight and the majority of people in the Middle East are finding their courage in their Islamic faith- if we meet the majority with open minds and hearts, I do believe that the minority of the violently-inclined will lose the hearts and minds battle – most people everywhere are family-oriented and want stable peaceable conditions of life for their kids- I am certainly a part of that crowd and we are the world- the childless, macho men who are spoiling for the ugly and unhealthy risks of life are really a tiny minority- they only become “heroes” when the war is on and they are the ones willing to lose their lives since they are living for ideals and not children they don’t have yet. I make my appeal to Christians and Muslim family men- I believe there is great hope in this appeal because I am not taking the Hannity-style bury my head in the patriotic sand approach and calling out the other guy’s sins without acknowledging my own. Humility is the beginning of a fresh start- if that doesn’t work then we know we are dealing with really, really, bad guys and then we can say that we did everything we could to remove the root causes of a war. It is my call that until more conservatives take up the Ron Paul foreign policy line, we won’t be able to do this thing right because the liberals go too far and throw out any criticism of the other side too often- and that isn’t the balance needed to be strong, humble and honest. Not easy to be all three simultaneously to be sure-

  6. American Knight says:

    It may be nice to read these books. I’ve read some of them. You will learn quite a bit, but you still won’t get it.

    The Middle-East isn’t really a place, it is a disordered state of mind (paraphrase Ronald Reagan). He got it. You will have a tough time understanding the Arab/Muslim mind unless you can get immersed and to do that you can’t be a Westerner.

    Has the West screwed up in the mid-east? Of course, what part of the world haven’t we screwed up? Think about it, we just celebrated the independence of the American Colonies from Great Britain and we live in a country run by a government that has turned its back on those principles and rules us to be indebted to the global-banking elite – why should foreigners be spared?

    You must remember that the Ottomans chose to side with the loser in WWI and again in WWI. Can it be they made the same mistake twice? Or is it more likely that Islam has much more in common with absolutism than authentic liberalism?

    A secular Muslim is just as bad as any other pagan, even a ‘Christian’ pagan; however, a committed Muslim is a committed imperialist. Mohammad was a megalomaniac, possibly a demoniac and certainly a plundering imperialist. His followers are the same and when they have not the means they will lie and wait until they do. Modern secular Western liberals have much in common with these morons. You cannot understand that kind of pathology fully. We can learn certain characteristics and find ways to manage it, or treat it, but we cannot know it because to know it, is to embrace it and be just as insane.

    The only chance for the people of the Middle-East is the only solution for all of our problems. Ironically, that solution manifested in the Middle-East – Jesus the Christ and His Gospel.

    Any sort of namby-pamby detente with Islam is a fool’s errand. Take a note from Los Reyes Catholicos of Spain after the 770-year Reconquista. Evict the infidels. We must get our house in order, the right order – under God. With a strong military defense, free market economic power and a moral and religious (Judeo-Christian) people Muslims will be leaving the Middle-East like East Berliners ran to West Berlin.

    If we want to free the poor people of the Middle-East, we need to right our ship first. Frankly, the liberals and their Muslin allies (who will devour liberals as soon as they become useless to them) are going to capsize the ship. Send the Muslims and the liberals to the Middle-East – problem solved. 🙂

  7. T. Shaw says:

    Oh, dear.

    What can we do to get them to stop hating us little Eichmann’s?

    Oh, my!

  8. T. Shaw says:

    Because the tyrants and imams that rule the Islamic hell holes you call nations use hatred of America, Christianity, and Israel to misdirect the negative energies of their slaves away from anything to better their lots.

  9. Tim Shipe says:

    Well- I will still urge the folks who are actually persons of goodwill to read the Kreeft book- it’s really good stuff and doesn’t fuel the fires of hatred- hatred of others is hardly limited to the Muslim community.

  10. n4nadmin says:

    Until Islam ceases to consider Christians as filth unworthy to be in Mecca, there will be no permanent peace. We can do much to ameliorate problems – and, sorry about this guys, we can also impose freedom a bit at the point of a bayonet, from time to time as seems useful – but they have to cease in large measure being what they have been for 15 centuries. Co-existence is only possible with mutual respect, and they have never respected us.

    Mark Noonan

  11. T. Shaw says:

    11 September 1941: FDR said, “When You See a Rattlesnake Poised to Strike, You Do Not Wait Until He Has Struck Before You Crush Him.”

  12. Robert says:

    I am partial to Robert Spencer and his book the Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam and the Crusades. Agree 100% with what Joe said above – My grand parents immigrated here and three of thier son’s fought in WWII (one died). The point is that they believed the pledge of oath they took when they became Americans. This was thier country and they were proud to be Americans.

    My point is that the “West” needs to understand the concept of Dar-Ilsam and Dar-Haram. Everyone is born Islamic and if you say you are Christian – you are an apostate and need to be correct. First through Darwa – then force…

    Ilsam need to reject this notion if they want to be accepted in any non-Islamic state. In other words they need a reformation. It has to be done – unfortunately the “West” wants to seek forgiveness for the Crusades – What Rousseauian non-sense! Wake up America! It’s time to know your enemy…

  13. American Knight says:

    Tim,

    Having goodwill presupposes the Good. We all know that every Muslim is made good, yes, even Mohammad; however, we are also to know them by their fruits and the fruits of Islam are unholy.

    To be clear this is not an indictment of Muslims. The problem isn’t the Muslim people, the problem is Islam itself, which is an imperial, fascistic political ideology masquerading as religion. Often, we, Christians are accused of being intolerant of other religions. Well to some extent we have to be, especially Catholics – there is no salvation outside the Church, “No one gets to the Father but by Me (Jesus).” Logic would indicate that we have a certain fraternity with our forebearers, the Hebrews, although that is very difficulty to translate toward modern Jewry in some of its forms and certainly to Jews overall since most are secular agnostic/atheists. However, Islam was fabricated after ALL revelation from God ceased and that makes it an illegitimate religion, as far as revealed religion goes. I know this is not what Muslims believe; however, we are talking about objective truth here.

    Islam is nothing but a totalitarian command-control structure built upon pride, fear and plunder. Note that after Pentecost when the Apostles preached the Good News and everyone heard them in his own tongue – Arabs were present, even though the Levant was not populated by Arabs but other Semites at the time. The Gospel came to the Arabs as much as the Jews and the Greeks. It is only pride that pulls Arabs to need their own non-Western religion.

    Like I said, Tim, if you are not Arab or Muslim, you cannot know this. The darkness that is Islam has fallen over many people and that includes many dhimmmi’s too. My family had to flee a civil war from the country with the largest Christian population in the Arab/Muslim world. Did the colonial powers have a hand in the conflict? Yes. Did Israel agitate that conflict? Yes. But, at its core it is a conflict born of Islam.

    Dar Al-Islam, the House of Peace, was quite peaceful during the Ottoman Empire for the same reasons Iraq was more peaceful during Saddam – totalitarian control fosters ‘peace’, is that really the ‘peace’ we hope for? Is that truly Pax? Sadly, the leftist-impulse in the West thinks this is so, so long as vice can be free. For that reason it is quite logical to understand why Leftists feel a kindred spirit with Islam – both ideologies favor totalitarianism and stand against authentic human freedom.

    Dhimmitude is forced upon the Christians residing in Muslim lands. It begins to affect the mind. After all that is exactly the point. Thank God some of our trapped brethren are so filled with the Holy Spirit they can resist this impulse, but most have fallen for it. It is a twisted mentality, it is deceitful, selfish, destructive, dangerous and violent. You can describe left-wing groups the same way. They are cut from the same cloth and frankly, I think we have enough lefties here to deal with that we do not have any need or desire to import lefty/Muslims to our lands.

    How do we get along with Muslims? Uncomfortably, so long as they remain in their lands and do not cause us or our friends problems. I am not against liberating the Muslim people, God knows they need it – but, we have to get our house in order first. Dar al-Massehe, the House of Christ and the Dar al-Harb, the West in general. That means we need to expunge ourselves of Muslim infiltrators and be militarily superior to all Muslim forces – with conventional forces, special forces and intelligence.

    You can read about the mentality of Islam, but unless you experience it in unmasked and unintended honesty, you will never get it. So listen to those who have that insight. Charity can easily become hubris when dealing with a deceptive subject – tread carefully. Sure, you have to keep Charity in your hear, but you must also exercise prudence. The only sure way to free Muslims and dhimmis is through the Gospel.

  14. American Knight says:

    Thanks Robert, I merely call it as I see it.

  15. stmichaeltraveler says:

    “Allah and Jesus”:
    Under Christian doctrine, Jesus is the son of God and Jesus is God.
    “Allah” or “al-lah” means the God of the Bible, the same as Eloah (Hebrew), al (the) Eloah.
    Association of al-lah as a separate God than the God of Judo-Christian-Moslem is a political ploy to divide and tarnish followers of Islamic religion. If there is a God, then this God is a universal and common to all religions. A rose is a rose, irrespective of what it is called in any language.

    Moslems believe in the virgin birth of Jesus, God being the father, the same as Christians.

  16. American Knight says:

    Allah has come to be simply the Arab word for God. Arab speaking Christians and Jews call on Allah when they worship; however, all Muslims, Arab-speakers and not alike call on Al-Lah. Muslims do acknowledge the Virgin birth but do not consider Jesus the Son of God. Most Christian influence in Islam was taught to Mohammad by heretics, most notably Gnostics and Nestorians, mixed in with Zoraoastrianism. A far cry from orthodoxy.

    Muslims do not know God as Trinity. In fact, Muslims think God is so transcendent that we cannot begin to understand him, so they essentially follow Mohammad as the Messenger, meaning he is essentially God to them. This is basically a denial of the concept of revelation and certainly a refutation of True Revelation.

    Al-Lah as understood by Muslims is NOT the God of Issac and Jacob and certainly not Christ Jesus.

  17. stmichaeltraveler says:

    What are the central differences between Christianity and Islam?

    Although Moslems believe the Old Testament is a holy book and accept the Old Testament prophets, they believe the last of the Prophets is Mohammad. They believe Mohammad is a prophet like Moses.
    Although they believe Jesus is the Son of God, but they do not believe that Jesus is also the God. Moslems accept the New Testament as a holy book.
    The Islamic doctrine is closer to Christianity than Judaism. Jewish religion does not accept either Christ or the New Testament.

  18. c matt says:

    Moslems believe in the virgin birth of Jesus, God being the father, the same as Christians

    But they don’t believe in the triune God with whom Jesus is cosubstantial, which is the point.

  19. c matt says:

    Mormons accept the NT and the OT as holy books, except where it differs from theirs. The Dali Lama and Moonies accept them as holy books except where they differ with their holy books. Muslims do the same. So what? That is no different in substance than saying I do not accept them as holy books where they differ from mine – in short, I do not accept them.

    These other beliefs are closer or farther from Catholicism in varying degrees, but they are still a chasm apart because they miss the most critical point – Jesus is God and died for our sins.

  20. Gabriel Austin says:

    It seems to me that most of the commenters have gone off the track by not acknowledging that Islam is a religion. A false religion, a heresy [see Belloc], but a religion nonetheless. The West has lost the habit of dying for one’s religion. The Muslims have not.

    And they have kept the habit of increasing and multiplying. Just as the West has given up that practice.

  21. Donald R. McClarey says:

    “And they have kept the habit of increasing and multiplying. Just as the West has given up that practice.”

    Actually fertility rates in most of the Islamic world are crashing through the floor.
    http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/04/03/un-sees-big-drop-in-middle-east-fertility-rates/

    As for them dying for their faith, that would be commendable except they seem dead set on taking a lot of us with them.

  22. American Knight says:

    Muslims believe that Jesus is a son of God (not The Son of God), and so is everyone else. Jesus is simply a very powerful prophet, but not the most important prophet. That honor belongs to the last messenger of God, Mohammad. While Jews deny that Jesus is the Son of God, they do it in anticipation of the Messiah – Muslims, deny the Messiah, although they do believe that the prophet Jesus will return on the Day of Judgment – they deny that He will be the Judge. It is as much heretical nonsense, mixed with Judaism and other Eastern philosophies and religions for the convenience of justifying plunder, imperialism and the lust for power. For that matter Muslims are basically idolaters of the extraterrestrial – by circumambulating around the Ka’aba, an extraterrestrial rock, they are worshiping dead matter, alien dead matter at that. That borders on Neo-pagan, New Age/New Thought garbage.

    Their only hope is the reverence they pay to Our Lady. Through her intercession millions of Muslims can be saved, but we cannot fail to do our part – speak the truth and tolerate no expansion of Dar al-Islam.

  23. stmichaeltraveler says:

    The position of the triune: God, Son and the Holy Spirit is unique the selected branches of Christianity. The central concept that the three are the same or the three legs of a common divinity has been debated for centuries. The Nestorians position, as I understand it, is that Jesus is a man, in flash and born out of flash. The central position of St. Marry as the mother of God could be an essential position of Catholicism. Whereas in some branches of Christianity, Saint Mary is the mother of a man called Jesus.
    Many concepts have changed during the course of Christian religion evolution. Many concepts not akin to Judaism has been incorporated from other religions, among them are concepts of Satan and Heaven. Judaism has borrowed from Zoroastrianism. Christianity has borrowed heavily from Mazdaism (related to Zoroastrianism), a dominant religion during the early Christianity.
    We understand Jesus through teachings of his disciples, not Jesus writings. We understand the Old Testament from a book modified and sections added or deleted to fit the political era.
    These arguments are non-essential if we accept that the God is a universal-unique concept and common to all religions.
    We must stop arguing over the differences and celebrate the commonality of religions. We must remove the politics out of this human experience, called religion.

  24. American Knight says:

    Donald,

    People get confused because the Muslim fertility rate is declining faster than the rate in the West; however, it is still higher than ours. The Muslim plan is to defeat Martel and the Holy League through breeding and lax immigration policies added to leftist ‘tolerance’ of all things as relativistic. Islam plans to be popularly and democratically elected to dominate (the same strategy as Chavez in Venezuela and the Nazis in Germany).

    Gabriel,

    We die for our Lord when our truthful witness demands it. Christian martyrs do not go looking for death, we simply accept it as God’s Will when it comes and are willing to do so, not seeking to die. Additionally, unless in a state of war, we sacrifice our own life, not that of others.

    Muslim shaheed are not witnesses, they are glory seekers. They seek glory through murder of as many of the the House of War and apostate Muslims as they can while also murdering themselves – this is nothing but murder and final impenitence – the unforgivable sin against the Holy Spirit.

    It is imprudent to confuse the two.

  25. American Knight says:

    stmichaeltraveler,

    Are you Catholic?

  26. Donald R. McClarey says:

    “People get confused because the Muslim fertility rate is declining faster than the rate in the West; however, it is still higher than ours.”

    For the moment, but long term I doubt if it will differ much from ours. The Islamic states also have to worry long term about immigration to the West. Will muslim immigrants maintain their faith over the generations, or will they become merely part of the West through assimilation over time?

  27. American Knight says:

    God willing we’ll convert them – the only question is to what? The faith of Christ or the dictatorship of relativism?

  28. stmichaeltraveler says:

    To American Knight:
    If your love of God and his Son Jesus Christ leads you, then I suggest joining or supporting the Missionaries of Charity, Roman Catholic religious order established in 1950. Follow the path of Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, a true Saint, and support Missionaries of Charity in Kolkata.
    We have millions of souls suffering in our own hemisphere, start with Haiti. Do the Jesus work and follow his example, help those in need.
    Thank you.

  29. American Knight says:

    stmichaeltraveler,

    I appreciate your encouragement to follow Christ and I know that must be in Charity and Truth, not merely sentimental benevolence.

    I asked you a question about whether or not you were Catholic simply because I was trying to make sense of your post. I don’t have the proper context. Your post was full of bad Catholic doctrine, but if, you are not Catholic then the correct explanation of Catholic doctrine would take a different tone and context. That’s all.

    In brief, doing good can only be called good if it is done in Charity (Caritas, God’s Love in us) and Truth (The Word, God). Otherwise good works are merely human benevolence and are not efficacious for the salvation of souls. While it is important to feed the poor with food and basic needs, it is far more important to feed them the Truth. Rich and poor, Muslim and Christian alike will all die, it is incumbent upon us who have the revelation of Truth to witness to it above all else because what happens when men die is more important than whether or not they starve in this world.

  30. Dale Price says:

    “The Islamic doctrine is closer to Christianity than Judaism.”

    There’s ambiguity here. If you mean that Islam is closer to Christianity than it is to Judaism, maybe. But very sorta-kinda, and only to the extent it accords a (limited) prophetic place to Christ.

    However, if you mean that Islam is closer to Christianity than Judaism is, that’s pretty much dead wrong. Both Christianity and Judaism venerate the OT as the inspired word of God, full stop. Islam cherry-picks from both the OT and NT, and that’s only where it doesn’t dismiss both as hopelessly corrupt. And that’s just the Koran–you toss in the ahadith, and Islam’s divergence from Judaism and Christianity becomes painfully evident.

    Let me close with an example–Moses Maimonides, the greatest figure of medieval Judaism, was no fan of Christianity or Islam. But he stated that it was acceptable for Jews to teach the OT to Christians because the Christians held the books in comparable esteem (regardless of how they misinterpreted it from a Jewish point of view, let alone how often Christians had abused the people of Israel throughout history). However, he said the same could not be done with Muslims because there was no shared belief in the authority or integrity of the text.

  31. Tim Shipe says:

    For an extended fictional dialogue with some prototypical characters dealing with Islam and various stripes of Christian believers- I will point again to the Peter Kreeft book- he is a solid orthodox Catholic philosopher and he offers views that aren’t really represented here on this thread- he does the “impossible” by offering the possibility of dialogue between Catholics and Muslims that doesn’t cave in to the demands of those who want to oversimplify things.

    I would challenge those who are claiming to be Catholic and to be of goodwill and who feel they are not doing harm by expressing their views on this subject in a public setting- to please read the book and see if there is a good reason for Dinesh D’Souza to praise Kreeft’s book as an important read. We are not just dealing with my own personal take- Kreeft and D’Souza are extremely credible voices by any conservative or orthodox Catholic standard- Yes?

    I’m not keen to buy into the quick sell that there is an inevitable global holy war to be had with 1 billion individuals who happen to be Muslim- and it seems that what is being said here is that that will be the case unless the Muslims do all the changing and make a full scale conversion to conservative American Catholicism- which is a self-filled argument with predictable conclusions- conclusion 1- A good Muslim would find only hostility if he were to turn up here on this blog and – there is no attempt made to find common ground, to find places of agreement with him- which is similar to the historical anti-Semitic view which held that because the Jews rejected and continue to reject Jesus Christ and the Blessed Trinity- they are not worthy companions for dialogue/friendship/sympathy. Now we all look at that as Catholics today and cringe- but there is a very familiar ring in the way Muslims and Islam is caricatured in American conservative circles. Maybe I’m being too harsh, but Dinesh D’Souza mentions that the reaction against Islam here in the U.S. while understandable, is not a good or accurate read on the situation.

    Again don’t shoot me- I’m the messenger- read Kreeft’s book and take him on if you still feel the need- I simply believe after reading his book that there is a hopeful approach to be made in Catholic-Islam relations and I have already started the process by contacting the local Imam I know, and he has agreed to read the book along with some of his co-religionists, and we will have a discussion afterwards. Maybe something good will come from it- all I know is that Christ compells us to be peacemakers, not to be throw- in- the- towel types who see only the darkness in other religions. Pope JPII praised the religiousity of Muslims, even with the obvious theological differences- the work of examining political differences is also a place where I believe there can be much fruitful territory- I may be nearly alone in my cautious optimism on this blog, but I believe I am going in a direction that is closer to the directions given by the Holy See- which is my always my guiding light through the dark ways of the religio-political landscape.

  32. American Knight says:

    Tim,

    I applaud your desire and yes we are supposed to be peacemakers; however, that has to be tempered with prudence and we have to believe that the dialogue will result in peace. Of course, what is impossible for us is always possible for God. If it is His desire for us to have peace with Islam, we shall; however, judging from His past actions, it is more likely that God is using Islam to chastise us for our lack of faith and failure to keep His commandments out of love for Him. Of course, I don’t speak for God and I really don’t know what He’s thinking.

    What I do know is that the Muslim mind is duplicitous, angry and violent. Does that mean all Muslims are that way? No, of course not, but Islam surely is. Can we appreciate and even applaud their virtue of natural religion? Of course, but that doesn’t mean they have any supernatural faith – a gift of the Holy Spirit.

    As for the attitude of the West toward Muslims today being the same as the attitude toward Jews in the past. There are certainly comparisons to be made; however, the Hebrew faith is a pre-cursor to our faith in Christ, so it is not a heresy or an error. The only error some Jews have made is that they reject Christ as the Messiah. The fundamental morals are the same. We share the moral commandments with the Jews, we interpret them through the fullness of Christ and they have their Rabinical teaching.

    Muslims, have a loose relationship with the OT and the NT, they pick and choose, so for them Scripture is not the inerrant word of God. It is the word of God corrupted by Jews and Christians and corrected by Mohammad and the Hadith — the discussion of various Muslim scholars who always adapt the interpretation to the current climate – always with an eye on imperial world conquest. Being wary of Islam is prudent, being wary of Judaism is silly since we believe the same things they do, only more perfectly.

    I am sure that many Muslims are well intentioned, not violent and truly desire truth and peace; however, their religion doesn’t. Furthermore, the perversion of a Muslim culture, which is political fascism with a religious veneer, makes it near impossible for any Muslim to break free. In fact, Islam calls for the death of any apostate. That is not a philosophy open to honest peace. Peace in the Muslim lexicon is a cessation of hostilities until sufficient resources and opportunity can be mustered to subjugate Jews and Christians and kill everyone else. Where is our responsibility in possibly allowing that to happen. Don’t we owe Buddhists, Hindus, etc. the same respect as you and Kreeft propose we give Islam?

    Furthermore, we, and faithful Hebrews have a commandment to not bear false witness. Muslims are not under any such obligation. In fact, they are encouraged to use deceit in order to gain the upper hand. How exactly do you have an honest dialogue with a mentality like that?

    I am not suggesting another Crusade, at least not when the post-Christian West is in the shape its in. I am simply calling for containment, let them do what they want in the lands they have already conquered. Keep them out of our lands. Be prepared to thwart their ability to wage war and spread their heresy. Should we be kind to Iran as they develop a nuclear arsenal, missile capability and possibly access to a space-platform from which to rain nuclear fire on us? I don’t think so. We, or better yet, the IDF, should destroy any and all possibility of a bunch of jihadists hell-bent on ushering the chaos of their version of the Last Judgment with nuclear war. We all want Christ to return and we know that will happen in tribulation, but we aren’t supposed to make the tribulation – that is not how many Muslims think. They want to make the tribulation.

    I am not saying we shouldn’t have outreach to them. It would be great if we could bring them to the Truth. I am confident Our Lady will, when her Son decides He wants to. We should be faithful witnesses until then. But it is not wise to be naive about the intentions of this imperialist religious heresy. We can love our Muslim brothers while we thwart their political and military aspirations.

    Just to give my perspective, and I claim no authority or full knowledge of truth, simply a humble attempt at doing the right thing and looking out for my brethren – I know Muslims, they have been candid around me, I have Muslims in my extended family. They are kind and good people – their ‘religion’ is a nightmare – a very difficult nightmare to penetrate. Like I said before, unless you experience it, it is hard to understand. Much like most of us are in shock when we see the cold, calculating callousness of a sociopath – assuming we can spot it.

    Keep working for peace and even a dialogue, but don’t be fooled. Pray for discernment. Tread carefully. If Christians are not willing to live under Islam, the Qu’ran calls for our necks to be cut – severing the head from the body. Many Muslims take that commandment very seriously – those who don’t, are considered apostates, or spies. Just something to think about.

    King Saint Louis IX, ora pro nobis.

  33. T. Shaw says:

    I’m not suggesting we slaughter all the filthy pagans. Only after many persecutions, subtlties, and massacres it may become necessary to save innocent lives and Christianity.

    Appeasers like Kreeft, Tim (the pro-life dem – barf!) and st. mike make arch-Hitler-enabler Nev. Chamberlain look stout.

    Here’s the TRUTH about Muhammed dreaming (it was Satan not any archangel) up this mass brigandage cult which makes Murder, Inc. look like angels.

    Look it up, from J. Q. Adams:

    “In the seventh century of the Christian era, a wandering Arab of the lineage of Hagar [i.e., Muhammad], the Egyptian, […..] Adopting from the new Revelation of Jesus, the faith and hope of immortal life, and of future retribution, he humbled it to the dust by adapting all the rewards and sanctions of his religion to the gratification of the sexual passion. He poisoned the sources of human felicity at the fountain, by degrading the condition of the female sex, and the allowance of polygamy; and he declared undistinguishing and exterminating war, as a part of his religion, against all the rest of mankind. THE ESSENCE OF HIS DOCTRINE WAS VIOLENCE AND LUST.- TO EXALT THE BRUTAL OVER THE SPIRITUAL PART OF HUMAN NATURE…. Between these two religions, thus contrasted in their characters, a war of twelve hundred years has already raged. The war is yet flagrant … While the merciless and dissolute dogmas of the false prophet shall furnish motives to human action, there can never be peace upon earth, and good will towards men.”

    Kreeft and Shipe and the rest of you PC agnostics and philosophistical, bull$#!t artists omit what doesn’t advance your bull narrative (big lie).

    How many people need to be murdered????

    I know muslims. Zazi Najibullah sold us coffee from a cart on Wall Street for a few years after 9/11. Look him up, morons. The foul $cumb@g that sells papers at the RR sta. told me (he thinks I’m like a Kreeft or a Stipe) that the Hindus, etc. are going to hell. Because when they die Allah will tell them to pray to whatever idol or animal to save them and he’ll pitch them right into hell. You can’t make up his stuff.

  34. American Knight says:

    Actually you can make this stuff up – Mohammad did, perhaps under the influence of a demon, but preternatural creatures are generally uncreative so they rely on the human imagination. Mohammad’s false religion is nothing but theological perversion and the codification of what St. Augustine called Libido Dominandi, the Lust for Power. Other than being theistic, how is Islam’s Libido Dominandi different than Nietzsche’s der Wille zur Macht (Will to Power)? Is it really a wonder that leftist collectivists and Muslims share so much in common and often join in common cause against truth and authentic freedom? Notice how much Jimmy Carter squared panders to Muslims? Wake up – vigilance is not necessarily violent, but sometimes, violence is unavoidable. We should, of course, excercise all prudence and caution to avoid violence, but in peace it is always wise to prepare for war. Muslims always do.

    The deceit that this is a religion, and a true monotheistic one at that, is what dupes so many innocent people into the Muslim faith. It preys on their natural virtue of religion to drag them into the abyss. Demons always come as angels of light because their master is a liar and a murderer from the beginning and so was Mohammad (except the from the beginning part because like the rest of us sinners, he was made good).

  35. T. Shaw says:

    AK – You’re aces.

    I’m mildly surprised I haven’t been banished from commenting . . . yet.

  36. American Knight says:

    I don’t think any of our comments are out of line. We aren’t being hostile, we are simply trying to state the truth. I think I am doing a decent job, there is always room for improvement and I am open to correction. Cogent correction, not some namby-pamby politically correct sentimentality.

    Jesus cut to the truth and often what He said was not received well, even by His closest friends. We are called to love all His children, even our enemies; however, that doesn’t mean we give them a politically correct pass and sit back and pat ourselves on the back for being magnanimous. We have to call it as we see it, keep our eyes on the Lord and love everyone. Sometimes you have to love them while you slay them – it sucks, but that is the way it is. The Church has offered indulgences for brave and pious heroes who were willing to lay it all on the line to contain and rollback the Muslim heresy. Sometimes we forget who we are and who are supposed to be.

  37. Tim Shipe says:

    I’m not sure that I would be inclined to find AK to be more of an authority on Islam than Peter Kreeft or the Holy See which is following through with a positive dialogue with leaders of Islam- given that there is no pope of Islam there is going to be trouble trying to find any one real and true authority interpreting Islam for most Muslims- similar problem with protestant Christianity and modern-day Judaism. It seems that my advice to read Kreeft’s book is falling on deaf ears- since the same individuals continue to fire back their views without having time to even find a copy of the book- that’s the shame of it for me.

    As for “T.Shaw”, my skin is thick, I’m not sure if you are a clinically dangerous person or not, I’ll let you have your stage for your words only serve to repulse any person of goodwill- I’m not into censorship- but profanity is out for me- so the only submissions of yours I will delete out-of-hand will be those which include profane language- if you want to call me names- ok- so what- just let me know if you are an actually violent sort- I’m not interested in provoking you- so we can just part ways- no problem. I will consult the other editors to seek their opinion on your status- I’m not sure if I am your only target since I don’t have much reading time these days.

  38. American Knight says:

    Tim,

    I don’t consider myself an authority on Islam. I do know Muslims and I know that they are more likely to be unintentionally honest around me than you or Kreeft. I also know that many pious Muslims and even more secular Muslims have no jihadist intentions; however, that merely means they are relying on the natural virtue of religion, justice to God, or secular modernity than on Islam per se.

    The code of Islam calls for global dominance by force and jihad is incumbent on all Muslims. You are correct that like most Christians (sadly, Catholics included) Muslims do not follow their faith. The difference is in not following their faith, Muslims have a better chance of finding God than if they did. In many ways that is a sadder commentary on us than on them. As I said before, God is more likely to use Islam as a chastisement for infidelity than anything else. I suppose that puts us in a position of higher responsibility. Laus Deus!

    As for the book, I have not read this one and I intend to due to your post. Please keep in mind, Amazon, even with a Prime account takes two days to deliver a book (I don’t have a Kindle and I don’t particularly like reading books that way anyway). Additionally, and I suspect this is true for must of us on this site, I have an eighteen inch stack of books to get through before I would even reach a new book. So I pray thee to have patience, your recommendation has not fallen on deaf ears. My ears may just have some information unavailable to you to contend with.

    I think it is a good idea for the Vatican to have a dialogue with Muslims, but, as you stated, which Muslim represents Islam? I for one am very glad that we do not have a Supreme Muslim Caliph to have dialogue with. One of the reasons that Muslims have resorted to terrorism and suicide/homicide jihad is precisely because they have no central authority. Remember that Islam is a political ideology masquerading as a religion. Even if you don’t subscribe to that view – Islam cannot separate politics and religion and not in the sense that religion informs politics, as it should, but that they are the same thing.

    Last time Islam had a supreme Caliph, they aligned their entire empire with the Prussian fascist-collectivists. Don’t forget what Suleiman led Islam to siege Christendom as deep in as Vienna. Also the Battle of Poitiers (Tours) in the eighth century led by Abdul Rahman something or the other, had the Muslims in France (they seem to be have more success this time). What would have happened had our Lady not interceded at Curzolaris (Lepanto) and the Holy League had been defeated by the superior Muslim navy? This is not merely the distant past – Nasser, Arafat, Laden, et al. employ the same fierce mentality – the difference is due to limiting economic growth, totalitarian impulse and a general disdain for science, they have not been able to keep up with the might of the West. They are willing to adapt and they are patient. Go to any school in a ‘diverse’ metropolitan area – how many Muslims are being trained in our schools with the know-how and technology to cause global damage? Why are the anglo-irish-german kids taking ‘communications’ and underwater basket weaving, while the Muslims study engineering, tech, biology and chemistry?

    Civilizations fail from the inside, but the final blow is always a barbarian horde that surreptitiously enters the gates and then tears down the walls. We are rotting from the inside and the Muslim barbarians are laying in wait, some inside the gates and over a billion outside. If you don’t think this is a war now, you will agree with me later – that is if your Muslim masters still allow us to assemble in public or worse, assist at Mass.

  39. Elaine Krewer says:

    This may be kind of a simplistic take on the whole thing, but I’ll mention it anyway. Islam is about 600 years younger than Christianity; the flight of Mohammed from Mecca to Medina in 622 A.D., marks Year One in the Muslim calendar. So, its social and theological development would be about 600 years behind that of Christianity, meaning, they are about at the same level of (for lack of a better term) “maturity” that we were back in the 1400s, or where Judaism was around the time of Christ (using the approximate date of the Exodus from Egypt as its starting point).

    If I’m not mistaken, there were a lot of messed up things going on in Christendom back in the 1400s, what with two or even three popes competing for the Chair of St. Peter, rampant clerical corruption, persecution of Jews, proliferation of various heresies, and all the other things that eventually provoked the Protestant Reformation.

    On top of all that, there really was no such thing as separation of Church and State in Christianity back then either; that is why religious heresy was punishable by death and treated as justification for waging war, because civil governments and not just the church regarded it as a threat to the body politic, akin to treason or sedition.

    Fortunately, Christianity progressed beyond that stage; whether Islam can or ever will is another matter. I suppose it is possible that as time goes on — I’m talking centuries, not within our lifetimes — Islam COULD become a less aggressive religion, although since Muslims do not possess the full Truth of Christ’s revelation, they probably will never reach the kind of understanding that we have, of course.

  40. Tim Shipe says:

    AK- appreciate that lengthy feedback- my mission is accomplished because all I asked is for you to find time at some point to read the Kreeft book- this has been my Kreeft summer- I’m reading my 4th such book at present- Jesus Shock, Philosophy of Jesus, the Islam book, and now the older Socrates talks to Jesus dialogue. With my time constraints, his short, punch-filled approach is really suited for me this summer. I am going to squeeze in CS Lewis’ Miracles when I can as well- the two of them have been most influential for me over the years.

    With Islam, I am really just trying to take up the Holy See’s example of negotiating with truth but also with respect- now I don’t believe the Church has declared Islam to be a religion created by the devil, so I don’t take that line myself. If the Church feels there is an opportunity to push forward with contacts and dialogue, that’s my way as well- Pope JPII praised the religiousity of Muslims without saying their theology is more correct than ours- we should realize that the interpretation of the Qu’ran is not a fixed deal, it, like protestantism can change depending on the conditions and the people who emerge as influential. If we can cultivate Muslims who are willing to listen on topics of reciprocity of religious liberty rights for all, and they can be heard on issues we are uncomfortable with- like the immediate say imperial age where we have been neck-deep in the political affairs of nearly everywhere in the Middle East- this I feel is the place where some hope of shared interests and humanity can be addressed- if the Pope felt that reciprocity with Muslims was impossible then he wouldn’t keep bringing it up- he apparently see’s that principle as being key- and for Muslims unless we talk about the treatment of the Middle East as “The Great Game”, we aren’t going to have the credibility needed because it would be like talking to Americans and how silly they were to be scandalized by a foreign King of England with standing armies of Brits all around- why on earth should the Americans have complained- the King and those soldiers were only there to keep them safe from vicious Indians and to provide a better life than they could do so for themselves as a primitive subject colonial people. Don’t you see that most of the educated Middle Eastern people really, really object to the role that “the West” has played in determining just about everything for the masses of people- from the boundaries of nations, to the rulers, and not shrinking from direct military intervention/occupation if covert aid and actions don’t do the trick. This has to be maddening business if one were a native of the Middle East and speaking with a native of the West who basically wipes that part of history which is ongoing away with a casual stroke- as if to say- “so what- who cares- we have only been trying to help a backwards people” Can you not see how offensive and wrong that is- even if we do have something we can share that can be of use in poorer, undeveloped regions of the world- it shouldn’t be conducted in a way that breeds resentment, corruption, and a loss of indigenous identity- when the Church inculturates it is not to destroy the culture of old, it is to raise it up to new levels of consideration and achievement in building civilizations of Love ultimately. This is the way forward that must be respected even by the political order- lest the political way of forceful submission and utilitarian exploitation of under developed lands/peoples causes all kinds of ill effects- from revolutionary violence to rejection of our beautiful Christ because of the crosses worn by the political agents of self-interest.

  41. American Knight says:

    Tim,

    You display a somewhat distorted view of reality, probably because you have believed some of the Muslim and leftist propaganda that you’ve been spoon-fed.

    TS: “Don’t you see that most of the educated Middle Eastern people really, really object to the role that “the West” has played in determining just about everything for the masses of people”

    Of course, I see that they say that, I’ve had to live with some of them. They’re lying and they are wrong. Of course that also depends on what you mean by educated.

    TS: “from the boundaries of nations, to the rulers, and not shrinking from direct military intervention/occupation if covert aid and actions don’t do the trick.”

    Most of this is performed for the benefit of the money power, and they do the same to us, so I don’t buy it. Did the victors of WWI ‘draw’ the map of the Middle-Easter nation-states? Did they set up governments that benefited their interests? Were those governments run by scoundrels? Yes. The Middle-East never had organic nation-states, the Ottoman Empire controlled regions that were essentially city-states and imperial provinces. They were defeated in WWI, so who else was going to draw boundaries? Who else was going to set up governments? Why were the rulers despots? The rulers in the Middle-East have always been despots – that is not a Western invention.

    TS: “This has to be maddening business if one were a native of the Middle East and speaking with a native of the West who basically wipes that part of history which is ongoing away with a casual stroke- as if to say- “so what- who cares- we have only been trying to help a backwards people” Can you not see how offensive and wrong that is”

    I am a native of the Middle-East! Your tone seems to be a condescension toward me with a veneer of concern – I think that is often referred to as liberal guilt and it is really just hubris. The entire point of the Gospel is to ‘help backwards people” – Jesus came to save us from ourselves because we are all backwards, we backslide into sin.

    TS: “even if we do have something we can share that can be of use in poorer, undeveloped regions of the world- it shouldn’t be conducted in a way that breeds resentment, corruption, and a loss of indigenous identity- when the Church inculturates it is not to destroy the culture of old, it is to raise it up to new levels of consideration and achievement in building civilizations of Love ultimately.”

    Of course we have something to share – we have the Good News, we have science, we have natural free market economics, we have representative republican government and a host of other benefits. As for destroying the culture of old – hubris again – Christianity was born in the Middle-East – Islam was not. Islam was born in the pagan Arabian desert. Jerusalem, Antioch, all the places St.Paul preached, most of the places in the OT and the NT, the lands that Jesus walked are IN THE MIDDLE-EAST! Islam is foreign to the Middle-East, our faith is not. To suggest that the Gospel is ruining the ‘old culture’ is a lie. The Gospel restores the old culture that Islam has ruined. Rome was not the first See, Jerusalem was and it was not in the modern nation-state of Israel, it was in the Roman province of Palestine. Jesus was a Palestinian Jew. Muslims have no right to these lands, they conquered them by force.

    Tim, I agree with your intentions; however, you needs a serious dose of authentic realism. The Middle-East is a mess, it has been a Mess since the 7th century when the plague of Islam came storming out of the desert with the sword, hell-bent on conquering the world by force and eradicating everything else, most especially the Faith of Christ. We are obligated to restore the faith to the land God chose to give to Abraham and his children forever – that would be the Jews of the OT, and the perfected fulfillment of the Hebrew faith as revealed by the Word made flesh.

    Maybe if we stopped being so politically correct and ‘tolerant’ we could actually save the poor people of the Middle-East, instead of confirming them in their error. Most Muslims seek truth, they think they can find it in the lie of Islam – shouldn’t we teach them the Truth?

  42. Tim Shipe says:

    Here’s another example of how the U.S. is “helping” the Muslims of Egypt to overcome their homophobia- http://www.c-fam.org/publications/id.1661/pub_detail.asp

  43. Joe Hargrave says:

    Hey Tim,

    You wrote,

    “We are not just dealing with my own personal take- Kreeft and D’Souza are extremely credible voices by any conservative or orthodox Catholic standard- Yes?”

    Sure. But it is also possible for them to either a) be wrong, or b) for whatever they are saying to NOT be mutually exclusive with a vigilant posture towards the Islamification of the West.

    When it comes down to it, I do not want Muslim values replacing Christian values. I do not want North African/Middle Eastern/Central Asian values to replace Western values. I say this as the descendant of Lebanese Maronite Christians, who owe their continued survival (contra all other Middle Eastern Christians, who have been reduced to pitiful non-percentages in their historic homelands) to a) the impenetrability of the mountains of Lebanon, but more importantly b) the entire history of Western “intervention” in the Holy Land dating back to the Crusades, and finally c) their own determination to resist Islam, to organize and affirm their Christian identity in the face of constant threats against both secular Arab socialism and Islam.

    And all that isn’t even enough in the end. The Christian population of Lebanon continues to shrink. It’s still at around 1/3, but who knows where it will be in 50 years or even 10 years.

    “I don’t believe the Church has declared Islam to be a religion created by the devil, so I don’t take that line myself.”

    No, but it is, at best, a heresy. And a dangerous one at that.

    Finally on this,

    “Don’t you see that most of the educated Middle Eastern people really, really object to the role that “the West” has played in determining just about everything for the masses of people”

    Again, 100 or so years of Western imperialism versus 1300 years of Islamic aggression. If they’re so “educated”, let them acknowledge and atone for their relentless jihad against the West, from the Battle of Tours down to 9/11, and everything in between. Of course they never will.

    I agree with you on foreign policy, Tim, but I really am not sure that it is going to make a difference. Muslims aren’t migrating to Europe as part of revenge for Iraqi Freedom. They aren’t declaring fatwahs because the West steals their oil. They don’t slice of the genitals of their daughters because we support the Saudi monarchy. Take away the worst elements of US foreign policy, and you’d still have a billion backwards people who think it is ok to rape women when they walk in public without a veil.

    I don’t give a damn what the West has done to them – I don’t want that in my country. In Canada, in Australia, where “liberals” (self-hating socialist cowards) really do run the show, they’ve actually entertained IN COURTS the notion that honor killings and rapes of unveiled women can be defended due to “cultural origins” or whatever they call it.

    It is evident that neither political reforms or financial wealth has a serious impact on Islam. Many currently “radicalized” countries were at one point secular. Islam had all but died as a political force for some time, but as a cultural ballast it lived on until it was needed again. Secularism didn’t “reform” Islam. And then, all of the oil wealth in the world hasn’t liberalized Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and other wealthy oil producers. Well, I shouldn’t say that – I think in Saudi Arabia there’s now a university that women can attend, provided they never come within the sight of a man.

    As for the Popes, I understand their role as diplomats these days, sure. I’m not suggesting we conquer the Muslim world, kill their leaders, and convert them to Christianity, as Ann Coulter once joked (or maybe she was serious?). But I am suggesting that perhaps you are being a little TOO tolerant of Islam, a little TOO dismissive of its own incredibly violent, imperialistic, and aggressive history towards the Christian West (and indeed all the non-Islamic world), perhaps a little TOO naive about the social and cultural problems – as well as the guiding motivations – of mass Muslim immigration to the West.

    I’d recommend this article by John Zmirak.

    http://insidecatholic.com/Joomla/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=8419&Itemid=48

  44. Joe Hargrave says:

    Oh, and Tim, what about this?

    http://www.novinite.com/view_news.php?id=117445

    It isn’t limited to Islam – as you see here, the same perverts in the government took the same line against the Orthodox Christians in Bulgaria.

    This government is overrun with secularists and perverts who hate all religions. Against them, on any number of issues, I’d stand with some Muslims.

  45. American Knight says:

    Tim,

    I’m not sure I understand what that link had to do with our discussion. Our present international affairs program and Islam have much more in common than not. Conservative thought and Church teaching are far more in opposition of both Islam and modern liberalism. I doubt you are going to find anyone on here who thinks our government should be attacking anyone because of their concerns about homosexualist agitation.

    Oddly enough, pederasty is one of the most common practices in recruiting jihadists and shaheed.

  46. American Knight says:

    Joe,

    You lousy westernized Levantine, those were extreme posts. Eurabia, the Battle of Tours, come on! – Islam is the religion of peace, bro.

    😉

  47. Tim Shipe says:

    The link was really just a throw-away line- not meant to add to the particulars we were speaking of- just a reminder that on non-negotiables like homosexual practices and abortion/population control issues- the Vatican usually finds the Muslim nations as her only allies in international circles- that has to count for something if we are going to go on the Non-Negotiable basis- if wars are the domain of subjective opinion then one could argue whether the wars directed at the West are just from a Muslim opinion versus the view from the West- but since this is not a Non-Negotiable type of issue then all we can really object to with the full confidence of our Catholic faith is the resort to terrorism or targeting of civilians via collateral damage- which is something both West and Muslim radicals are guilty of. So- if abortion and legalization of gay marriage is our only true meeting ground for orthodox Catholics in the political realm, then Muslims would seem to be closer allies to us than the liberal and conservative secularists/libertarians who seem to have the upper hand in our society these days.

  48. American Knight says:

    Tim, there is an old Trojan proverb, “Beware of Greeks bearing gifts.”

  49. Joe Hargrave says:

    Tim, aside from the repugnant notion that Islamic wars of aggression against Christians could some how fall under the rubric of a just war, I will admit that the other argument is seductive – that Muslims are our allies against atheists.

    To a certain extent it is true and I already admitted it. But in many respects, atheists and secularists are are our allies against Islam. And that alliance works better, in my view. Why?

    For one, I don’t believe secularism will ever have the complete upper hand. Secularism promotes, and consists of, people who are averse to exercising their reproductive rights in a healthy way – many are homosexuals, abortionists, hedonists of the worst kind, and they live off the inheritance of previous generations who did not have, and who created for them, the comforts of life that allow them to be deviants and perverts without immediate consequences.

    If the world were comprised of nothing but wavering Christians and militant secularists, wavering Christians would win by default.

    But Islam is different. Yes, Islam will ally with us against atheism to a certain extent. But Muslims, for various reasons, breed. They have at present a healthy life drive unknown since well before the Ottoman Empire became the “sick man of Europe.” I certainly admire that.

    When the Muslims reach parity with, and eventually outnumber, the Christians and the atheists, they will oppress the former and slaughter the latter.

    So let me recap – for strong Christians, secularism is a paper tiger, a movement of degenerates protected by a state they inherited from Christian civilization. It could be confronted and defeated, I believe. But Islam is a different story altogether. It is not a paper tiger – it is a real, vicious, angry tiger that is taking a bite out of us right now.

    So, I’d say Christians have more reason to ally with SOME secularists at this time than Muslims. Combined we can check them, and once checked, settle our own scores. Of course MANY secularists of the left are cultural and political masochists who AID AND ABET their own extinction at the hands of immigrants. So we obviously cannot be allies with secular leftists who fully acquiesce – insanely, irrationally, to their own doom – to the Islamification of their societies. They’ve gone rabid and rancid.

    But we ought to stand with Geert Wilders.

  50. American Knight says:

    If God is for you, who can be against you.

    Do we really need allies of either the Muslim, secular-materialist, or pagan? I think the only ally we need is the Truth (a couple of legions of angels would be nice though). We need to seek virtue, starting with ourselves and spreading it from there. Our battle is not with flesh and blood. So long as we are fighting the darkness we are on the right track. Of course, some flesh and blood will be contacted in that battle, and with regret, broken.

    I recently read a story about an Iraqi martyr, who stood between the jihadist bombers and a bus full of students in Mosul. Brave and wonderful – he saved many lives and he lost his, which means he gained it.

    If I have the option of killing a jihadist or watching him kill innocents – he’s dead and my conscience will be clear. May God have Mercy on them, and I pray I can share in His mercy, but prudence dictates making no allowance for evil and Islam can be summed up as exactly that – evil.

  51. Joe Hargrave says:

    “Do we really need allies of either the Muslim, secular-materialist, or pagan?”

    Not permanently, but tactically yes, at times.

  52. American Knight says:

    Joe,

    I agree, tactics are important. My concern here is that we cannot ally with others simply because we’ve identified the same problem. The real concern is do we advocate the same solution, or at least the same framework for the solution.

    Despite jihadists’ use of pederasty as a recruitment, indoctrination and violent passion releasing conduit, Islam stands against Sodomy. So do we. Islam proposes to kill Sodomites, we propose to help them seek sanctity through chastity (in the case of homosexualists – celibacy). The identified problem is the same; however, one solution proposes to help the afflicted soul get to heaven, the other is simply murder.

    Islam has appropriately, at least the stated analysis, identified the problems of the West – lack of reverence and secular materialism; however, the proposed solutions Islam puts forth are more dangerous than the problem. I don’t trust Islam – it is a lie. I think you agree.

  53. […] alliance against secularism. I think he was being rather tongue-in-cheek, though, when he wrote, if abortion and legalization of gay marriage is our only true meeting ground for orthodox […]

  54. […] alliance against secularism. I think he was being rather tongue-in-cheek, though, when he wrote, if abortion and legalization of gay marriage is our only true meeting ground for orthodox […]

  55. Sina says:

    You guys need some refreshment. Could it be possible that Islam and Christianity both be true? Or is this not possible? After all, Islam did come after Christianity. Is it possible to accept Jesus and Muhammad as manifestations? Think about it. All the skeptics and atheists of the world just see religion as one big source of warfare. Maybe we should be exemplars so these souls don’t get lost amongst all the dogma. The world doesn’t need religious traditions, dogma, etc (my religion is more true than your religion); it needs God. This can only be truely found through religion. Once we try to claim which religions are true and which are false, we fail to do any good. All that will become evident once we inspect those institutions at a whole rather than single out these “jihadists”. Im certain none of you have ever been near the middle east. These “jihadists” use religion as a cloak to rise to power; they’re not religious in any shape or form. Oh, the naivety of the common American who has never seen the other side of the world.

  56. American Knight says:

    Sina,

    Nice try, but your indifferentism is shining through. Just because it is true that God exists and that religion is the search for God does not equate all religions. The natural religious impulse in every human’s heart draws us to seek God (or in the case of atheism, to seek to negate God), but not all paths to God are true. If you are a Christian, then you know that Jesus told us that He was the ONLY way to the Father.

    As for the ignorance of Americans, why do you feel it necessary to indict the entire populace or culture? One could argue that the rest of the world is more ignorant about what an American is than Americans are about the rest of the world.

    As a proud Virginian-American, I can tell you that I know the Middle-East, I was born there, and the fact is that the mid-east is not so much a geographic location as it is a state of mind, a disordered one at that.

    So NO!, it is not possible for Christianity and Islam to both be true, although some things within Islam are and many Muslims are true to their search for God; however, as a body of doctrine, Islam is a lie.

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