Carey: good dhimmi! (BBC)
George Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury who spoke so courageously about various aspects of Islam and terrorism recently, has struck a very different posture in a new speech. From the BBC, with thanks to Susan:
“Those who took the trouble to read my lecture will have noted that I was as critical of the West, of Christianity and, for that matter, also sharply critical of Israel’s policy with respect to Palestine,” he said.
‘Clash of civilisations’
Lord Carey, who retired in 2002, said his earlier concerns came from an increasing frustration over the lack of dialogue between different faiths and cultures and ill-founded talk of a “clash of civilisations”.
“Our world is in great peril. I am talking rather about a sharp ideological tension that separates the West from another world, that we call Islamic and yet does not reflect the true values of Islam,” he said.
What qualifies Carey to declare that the “true values of Islam” are not those held by the radicals? They themselves claim to be true Muslims. Who is Carey to say that they are not and cannot be what they claim to be? In fact, Islam is not monolithic, and that means that no one, Muslim or non-Muslim, can declare that something is “true Islam” and something else isn’t, and have his decision accepted by the Islamic world. It is not enough for moderate Muslims to say that Osama and Co. don’t represent “true Islam.” They need to convince their fellow Muslims of that fact. But instead, the radicals wear the mantle of Islamic purity virtually unchallenged.
“The association of Islam with terrorism is an issue that concerns not only Muslims but us all.
“A seriously disturbing feature is the assumption that the clash [of civilisations] will arise not from extremists but from the very being, the heart of Islam.
“Once that assumption is believed then no dialogue is possible; a state of war exists between two quite different civilisations. We cannot be content with this assumption.”
That’s absurd, and Carey should know it. If terrorism really does come from “the heart of Islam,” whatever Carey means by that, it will do no good to anyone — and in fact will do serious harm — to ignore or sugarcoat that fact. In other words, if Islam really does have a broad tradition sanctioning violence against unbelievers, which is obvious to anyone who peruses the Qur’an and Sunnah impartially, that fact needs to be addressed by all those, Muslim and non-Muslim, who claim to oppose terrorist activity. Only that will lead to concrete measures to deal with the situation. It’s breathtaking to think that Carey really believes that assuming or pretending that this isn’t so is the only thing that makes dialogue possible.
The West and Muslims had to think deeply about mutual suspicions, said the former archbishop.
“A good number of letters I have received since my [Rome] lecture reveal a worrying ignorance of Muslim people and suspicion of their presence in the United Kingdom,” he said.
“It is assumed by many that Muslims wish to take over ‘our’ country and if we allow them to enter Britain in significant numbers they will in time make the country Islamic.”
Gee, your Lordship, that’s crazy! Where did these benighted Brits get an idea like that? Hmmm. Could it be from Sheikh Omar Bakri, who has said that he wants to see “the Black Flag of Islam” flying over #10 Downing Street? I guess the British non-Muslims who have noticed that Bakri and his ilk say such things are just racists, eh, Lord Carey?
Israeli policies condemned
Lord Carey said simply dismissing these fears would not prevent people believing them – in the same way that you could not brush aside Muslims’ fears that Western dominance would lead to the destruction of their societies and cultures.
At the same time, he added, he recognised how Muslims were angered over the treatment of the Palestinians and, more recently, the war in Iraq.
“The policy of the present government in Israel towards Palestine is indefensible and America’s bias in favour of Israel outrages millions of people throughout the world.
“I say this as someone who firmly believes in the right of Israel to exist. But the Palestinian people have become humiliated and downtrodden.
“Let us make no mistake about it, the plight of the Palestinian people is the emotional epicentre of our current troubles and healing this deep wound will go a substantial way to creating a more peaceful world.”
But he added that nothing could justify suicide bombings.
Well, there’s your problem right there, uh, your Lordship, Sir.
“I remain unapologetic about appealing to Muslim leaders to condemn outright such actions and to go on condemning.
“If Islamic leaders [in the Middle East] give support to a theology that suicide bombers are in actual fact ‘martyrs’, this not only lends strong theological endorsement to such military tactics but also discredits Islam world-wide.”
Yep. It sure does. And in Onward Muslim Soldiers I explain that the moderates who condemn suicide bombing have never refuted the Islamic arguments used by radicals to justify that practice. But I suppose we’re not supposed to notice that.
Issue Lord Carey his dhimmi badge; he’s rejoined the ever-growing fellowship.