Old skool Islam
This is a discussion on Old skool Islam within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; This topic came up on another board I'm on and it reminded me of something I read from a fellow aviator. Thought I might share ...
February 3rd, 2007 10:30 AM
Old skool Islam
This topic came up on another board I'm on and it reminded me of something I read from a fellow aviator. Thought I might share it here because I found it insightful.
Monday, January 03, 2005
Selling Ancient Iraq
I'm having a hard time reconciling what I know of Iraq with what I see on Fox News. Probably comes from being an overeducated sort, but when I think of Iraq what comes to mind is Babylon, the great Islamic scholars who preserved the treasure of Greek thought during the Dark Ages of Europe, and of course all the stars that begin with Al-something-or-other. Every time I look at the night sky I remember that the men who named most of these stars, and first charted their course across the heavens, lived in the Middle East. They gave the world good mathematics, good food (especially if you like eggplant) and a treasure trove of knowledge. The library at Alexandria was, of course, nearby in Alexandria and is rumored to have contained the sum total of what we knew as a species to that point. Hey, guys, I'm impressed as hell, OK?
Fast forward to the present day, and we have a steaming social disaster fueled by a near-overdose of modern religious fanaticism. The three great religions of the West all come from the sands of the Middle East, and I've experienced quite enough of our local variant of fire-bombing fundamentalism to know these guys are dangerous enough to maybe crash our civilization if we let them.. Suffice it to say that irrespective of the banner they wave, fanatics are just that -- fanatics -- and are best given a wide berth, preferably a continent or so. With enough money and technology a fanatic can make his dreams come true, which is not what the rest of us have in mind.
The current approach of trying to make ersatz Americans of our Iraqi friends is not working as well as we'd like, and is in fact not working at all that I can see. Any gardener knows not to expect Brussels Sprouts where Tomatoes and Peppers grow best but we, technologically advanced folks that we are, are trying to plant Americans in the desert. I'm not sure they'll grow there. What will? Is there a middle path that leads to a peaceful coexistence?
Better minds than mine have thought this over and come up empty, so I don't expect to do any better but I will offer this: does it make sense for a person to mold another to his view of what is right just because it's his? Most Americans would say no, and further say that's what we're trying to stop. Well, trying to stop it by doing the same thing, really. Maybe that's what we really hope for? More people like us?
I have great respect for our Military and assume the folks who make the hard decisions there have better information that an idly interested reader-of-the-news, but I wonder: an army can fight another army, but how do you wage war against a set of ideas? Can we use another set of ideas? If propaganda can steer minds, can it steer minds to think for themselves? The French are horrified by the Americanization of their culture; maybe we can make this work for us. Perhaps recall the army and send in Madison Avenue to pitch 'em the glories of Ancient Iraq. We won't make Americans out of them, but we might help them to become themselves again.
It's a thought.
February 3rd, 2007 11:25 PM
Wow, Pax. What a breath of nice, fresh springtime air you put up. My idea from the git-go was rather than send innocent young men and women over there in the employ of those with motives foreign to modern Western thought, instead we select 25,000 of their citizens and bring them back here and send them to Johns Hopkins, Harvard (maybe not Yale, though), Stanford, Carnegie-Mellon, Wharton and other schools renowned for the arts and sciences and send them back through Oxford and the Sorbonne and Heidelberg with masters degrees and PhD's and let them rediscover the glories of their past and apply these lessons to their future and our eternal benefit.
February 3rd, 2007 11:40 PM
Yeah, right. All that will happen, right after we re-educate the anti-gun, narrow minded, freedom despising polititions we have in our own Country.
All of that doesn't smell like springtime air to me, rather it smells like..............
Never mind. Maybe I need a cage too.
February 4th, 2007 12:13 AM
A Note To All Members
If you read this thread by WorldPax and you want to allow other forum members the chance to read it also then please keep your comments within the boundaries of the forum rules and regs.
Very Good so far ...please continue to keep it chilled because should the thread become a moderator babysitting headache it will go away.
February 4th, 2007 12:31 AM
Yes please, I definitely did not post this looking to start anything. The nice thing I have found about this forum is the restraint and open-mindedness of it's members.
Originally Posted by QKShooter
February 4th, 2007 12:45 AM
Concur, WorldPax. My opinion wasn't meant to insult, just my lowly opinion. Keep this going so others may read, because if two people agree on everything, only one is thinking.
February 4th, 2007 12:48 AM
February 4th, 2007 12:53 AM
I didn't take it that way at all. And you had a fair point, it can be difficult to change minds.
Originally Posted by Chorizo
February 4th, 2007 01:25 PM
Much of the advancement during the “Islamic golden age” was the result of Greeks and Persians who had been encouraged to come there by a wise ruler. However his work was turned into dust by radical leaders somewhere in the 16th century if I remember correctly. Thousands of Middle Eastern types do come to the West for education, to bad it doesn’t seem to help certain countries. Talking to US military types that has trained Arab and African Officers and stated a preference for the Africans as being more motivated, willing to get their hands dirty and actually care about their jobs. I read the Arab times and other web based Arab news forums. It’s interesting to hear people complain in Saudi about sewer pipes laying on the ground for 20 years and never being installed and about the total lack of infrastructure being built. Some of the smaller states like Dubai and Brahmin are getting their act together quite well.
February 4th, 2007 03:45 PM
Radical Islam began emerging even sooner than the 16th Century. Spain began the "reconquista" in the 15th century as a result of some harsh treatment of Christians by what had been a previously enlightened and tolerant rule of the "Moros" (Moors) for several centuries.
Having served in the region, as well as with the Serbs, who cannot get beyond the poor treatment by the Muslums in the 16th Century some 500 years ago, radicalism has an especially vicious and intolerant face when in the name of religion, no matter what the style of worship (by the way I am a devout Catholic, so I am not anti-religion. And I do recall the Inquisition).
My point above was that the proposition as presented is a great feel good approach, but so far from realistic because of the ingrained intolerance driven by the radicalism as to be almost laughable.
Oh, were it only that simple. I am just afraid that way too much blood will be shed by our own non-combatant citizens if we take a kinder and gentler approach. As professional soldiers, as we all are in an all volunteer force, it is our calling to shed our blood so those who contribute in other ways or even those who care not to contribute in any way will not have to shed theirs. And I am NOT glorifying or sanctifiying military service, because as I have said previously, it is our calling to serve and by choice to suffer the costs.
I pray every night before I go to bed that not one more drop of blood will be shed by anyone, right after I have cleaned and recharged my weapon.
February 4th, 2007 05:37 PM
They are gonna be more horrified by the Islamitization of their culture. Remember the riots?? Whose values and culture are the real threat; America or the other guys???
Originally Posted by WorldPax
When you've got 'em by the balls, their hearts & minds will follow. Semper Fi.
February 4th, 2007 11:08 PM
All Of Europe Is About To Go Under...
May we wake up before we too, follow!
Proverbs 27:12 says: “The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it.”
Certified Glock Armorer
NRA Life Member
February 5th, 2007 10:07 AM
When my grandparents emigrated to the USA from Eastern Europe, they did so for the purpose of becoming Americans. Although they spoke only Yiddish when they arrived, they learned English as best they could, and sent my father and uncle to public schools. They came here to escape persecution and valued the freedoms America offered. They did not demand that America accomodate their Eastern European Yiddish culture, but rather did everything possible to successfully integrate themselves and their children into the American culture. And I believe that was true for most of the other groups that emigrated during that same period. Enough said!
February 5th, 2007 03:34 PM
but we're not talking about this country, we're talking about another country, that we invaded, and is now our responsibility to fix. We're trying to do there, exactly what you're talking about people trying to do here.
Originally Posted by Ron
Frankly, I think we just need to bail out, it's fubar. Give the south to the Saudis, give the north to Turkey, the west to Syria, and the east to Iran. Let their own sort it out, they don't want us there.
February 5th, 2007 03:55 PM
Now WorldPax, I am with you, except for the division of who gets what. We need to bail as soon as we can get the ships and planes over and back. I am for giving the north to the Kurds and let the Sunnis have their strong holds, the Shiites theirs and let them deal with each other and let Allah sort it out what they can't agree upon as they come to collect their virgins.
What we are doing there is like ******* on a forest fire. All we are going to accomplish by doing that is get burned!
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