The Economist has shown little sign of comprehending the realities of Islamic terrorism in the past, so it was somewhat refreshing to see these paragraphs in the self-important old rag (thanks to Ali Dashti for the link):
Even so, the sheer nastiness of jihadist violence has begun to generate a powerful groundswell of angry Muslim opposition. The coincidence of the anniversary of September 11th 2001 with the horrific slaughter of schoolchildren at Beslan provoked a chorus of condemnation. This was not only against terrorism, but also against the clerics whose extremist interpretations support that terrorism.
Why, demands a former Kuwaiti minister writing in the Saudi daily Al Sharq al Awsat, have we not heard a single fatwa against Osama bin Laden, when Muslims fell over themselves to condemn Salman Rushdie for writing a “vapid” novel? Who has done more damage to Islam? Muslims must no longer remain silent, declares an editorial in the Egyptian weekly Rose al-Yusef; our fear of speaking out has become the terrorists’ fifth column.
But The Economist still cannot and probably will not answer its own question: why has there been no fatwa against Osama? That would lead it to a most un-PC consideration of Islamic theology, law, traditions, and history, and to the point I keep making that few, if any, want to admit: that Osama’s theology represents a broad tradition in Islam, and must be acknowledged as such before anything truly effective can be done to contain it. There can be no revisionism of the Qur’an and Sunnah until the need for such revisionism is acknowledged. Otherwise new terrorists will continue to stream out of mosques and madrassas, and the dhimmis and multiculturalists at The Economist will wring their hands in puzzlement.