Wednesday, August 03, 2005

More wise words of Steven Vincent's.

It is a tragedy that this guy got such a bad end for being so sensible and willing to call thugs thugs. Next time you hear the lying MSM weasels yapping about the evils of America and the rest of their eyewash, remember what can be found in this lengthy, but rewarding, FrontPage interview from last December. Vincent knew what time it was and it's a crying shame that so many fascist liberals bury these truths in their jihad to destroy Dubya for vengence and power.

Go read it all, but here are some important bits:

FP: Tell us one story that leaves you with a happy memory and another one that leaves you haunted.

Vincent: I’ll start with “haunted.” As I describe in the book, last March, I disguised myself as Shia pilgrim and attended the religious commemoration of Ashura, held in the south-central Iraqi city of Karbala. (The “holy” city of Karbala, as the media never fails to remind us.) The festival of Ashura is the veritable heart of Shia Islam; it memorializes the martyrdom of Imam Hussain, Mohammad’s grandson, who perished in battle near the city in 680 AD. Four million pilgrims packed Karbala that day. Everywhere you looked, you saw rituals and images reflecting the Shia’s fascination with death and martyrdom—men slicing their heads with swords; processions of hundreds of male worshippers flagellating themselves with metal chains; a fountain spewing red liquid meant to resemble blood; pictures of severed hands, severed heads; Arabic banners inscribed with words that appeared to drip blood.

At the height of the festivities, Al Qaeda attacked—six bombs detonated among the pilgrims, killing over one hundred people. Confusion, panic, terrified pilgrims, Iraqi police and black-shirted religious militiamen shouting at people not to enter the city center, chaos everywhere. I saw streams of ambulances screaming toward the Karbala hospital, followed by flatbed trucks piled high with bleeding and broken bodies, and a taxi cab filled with corpses. The sight was terrible, as you might imagine—but the thought that a festival commemorating a 1,400 year-old martyrdom had created real martyrs—that the ritualistic blood had become real blood shed by real people whose only crime was to pursue their faith—was too much for me. Shaken and horrified, I cried nearly all the way back to Baghdad.

FP: You discuss how crucial words are in describing the war in Iraq and how the liberal media has damaged the cause of freedom by manipulating them.

For instance, you stress how important it is that we refer to the American “liberation” rather than “occupation,” since “occupation” infers certain meanings that do not apply to anything the Americans are doing in Iraq.

What startles me is how the media refers to the terrorists as “insurgents.” This is simply incredible. We have foreign fighters coming in from Saudi Arabia, Iran, Libya, Pakistan and other nations to fight a holy war against the West in an effort to impose Islamo-fascism on the Iraqi people. And yet, somehow, the media is informing us that this is some kind of domestic “resistance.”

Can you talk a bit about this -- how the Left shapes the boundaries of debate and dialogue by controlling our language?

Vincent: Words matter. Words convey moral clarity. Without moral clarity, we will not succeed in Iraq. That is why the terms the press uses to cover this conflict are so vital. For example, take the word “guerillas.” As you noted, mainstream media sources like the New York Times often use the terms “insurgents” or “guerillas” to describe the Sunni Triangle gunmen, as if these murderous thugs represented a traditional national liberation movement. But when the Times reports on similar groups of masked reactionary killers operating in Latin American countries, they utilize the phrase “paramilitary death squads.” Same murderers, different designations. Yet of the two, “insurgents”—and especially “guerillas”—has a claim on our sympathies that “paramilitaries” lacks. This is not semantics: imagine if the media routinely called the Sunni Triangle gunmen “right wing paramilitary death squads.” Not only would the description be more accurate, but it would offer the American public a clear idea of the enemy in Iraq. And that, in turn, would bolster public attitudes toward the war.

Supporters of the conflict in Iraq bear much blame for allowing the terminology—and, by extension, the narrative—of events to slip from our grasp and into the hands of the anti-war camp. Words and ideas matter. Instead of saying that the Coalition “invaded” Iraq and “occupies” it today, we could more precisely claim that the allies liberated the country and are currently reconstructing it. More than cosmetic changes, these definitions reflect the nobility of our effort in Iraq, and steal rhetorical ammunition from the left.

The most despicable misuse of terminology, however, occurs when Leftists call the Saddamites and foreign jihadists “the resistance.” What an example of moral inversion! For the fact is, paramilitary death squads are attacking the Iraqi people. And those who oppose the killers--the Iraqi police and National Guardsmen, members of the Allawi government, people like Nour—they are the “resistance.” They are preventing Islamofascists from seizing Iraq, they are resisting evil men from turning the entire nation into a mass slaughterhouse like we saw in re-liberated Falluja. Anyone who cares about success in our struggle against Islamofascism—or upholds principles of moral clarity and lucid thought—should combat such Orwellian distortions of our language.

Gotta break in with a hearty HELL YEAH!!! over that last bit. Remember Michael Moore and his idiocy about how the jihadist killing our boys were "the Minutemen"? Now do you agree that that fat f*cker needs to die of a heart attack while Bette Davis stands over his body, holding the Lipator bottle? Yep, he does. Back to Vincent...

Unfortunately, the trend seems headed the opposite direction: Islam in Iraq (and elsewhere) is becoming more tribal, more insular, more sunk in a backwards mindset of misogyny, obsession with honor and a kind of bi-polar oscillation between self-loathing and self-importance. We see the effects of this dysfunctionality north and west of Baghdad where Sunni Arabs, disgraced by their fall from power, attempt to kill American soldiers in order to reclaim their “honor” rather than negotiate a future for their children in a democratic Iraq. Islam has long been aware of the corruptions of tribalism—Wahhabism and other Salafist movements are attempts to return the religion to its “pure” state. But as we see with Al Qaeda and Zarqawi, the results are just as intolerant, misogynistic and bloodthirsty—in a word, fascistic.

Take THAT, Gloria Steinem!!! She needs to also take this:

FP: One dark phenomenon you encountered in Iraq was the barbaric treatment of women by a culture controlled by tribal Islam. Tell us a bit about the suffering of women that you witnessed.

Vincent: My experiences in Iraq, together with what I witnessed in Iran in 2000, led me to wonder why the civilized world doesn’t rise up en masse and say Enough! We will no longer tolerate the way that Muslim nations in the Middle East treat women! Alas, in today’s multicultural world, such outrage is impossible.

Meanwhile, in Iraq the compass of women’s lives—their legal and social rights, hopes and dreams and image of themselves—slowly constricts. Criminals prey on females, forcing them to remain indoors after dark. Islamic clerics pressure them to don black abiyas—even when the heat tops 140 degrees. Tribal leaders and Shia imams agitate for shari’a—misogynistic Islamic law—to regulate every aspect of a woman’s existence. Polygamy, honor killings, divorce by repudiation, temporary marriages (essentially religiously-sanctioned adultery) have returned, at least as matters of serious discussion.

What I learned from Nour—and what I discuss in much of In the Red Zone--is the psychic claustrophobia of Iraqi society. Reputation and virginity are everything—should a woman lose the first, she is ostracized from “good” society; lose the second before marriage and she risks being murdered by her “shamed” family.


As I’ve noted here and elsewhere, suppression of the feminine—whether it be feminine sexuality, freedom or laughter—is the foundation upon which the death-cult of Islamofascism rests. Undermine that foundation, and the entire edifice, from al-Sadr to Zarqawi to bin Laden will collapse.

But for the West to encourage such an event, we must overcome our own fears of liberated women. By that I mean, the Left must discard a multicultural mindset that refuses to use Western standards to criticize other cultures, even when Western values—such as feminism--are clearly more beneficial to those cultures. As I describe in my book, one afternoon in Baghdad I listened to a group of Western anti-war activists complain that the American invasion of Iraq was an imperialistic attempt to crush the country’s native culture. When I suggested that some aspect of this “native culture” should be crushed—like forcing women to wear black sacks in blistering summer weather—one of the activists looked at me with a shocked expression. “But feminism has brought such destruction to the American family, do we want to wish that on Iraq?” And she was no post-feminist youngster, but a woman from the anti-Vietnam War days!

This—along with an unwillingness to support the Bush Administration in anything—explains in large part the silence of the Left as Islamofascists repeatedly violate their core beliefs of secularism, human rights and creative freedom (where are the outcries about the murder of Theo van Gogh? They come mostly from the Right). I remember my Iraqi friend Naseer telling me how impressed his mother was to see American women soldiers. His mom didn’t realize such gender equality was possible, or that women could interact so easily with their male counterparts—and millions of other women across Iraq are learning similar feminist lessons.

I know I copied quite a bit here, but there's even more at the linked site. Please read it all and take a moment to say a prayer for a man who clearly had things right and paid the ultimate price for being brave enough to speak Truth to fascism.

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