Ilana Mercer writes forcefully about the successes and failures of the film Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West. I tend to share her views. I think Obsession is a terrific film, and have twice spoken after screenings of it, along with the courageous Nonie Darwish, here in Los Angeles. It is a superb introduction to the challenge we are facing from the jihadists.
At the same time, I agree with Mercer that it doesn’t go far enough in identifying the source of that challenge — which I think must be done if anything is ultimately going to be done to meet the challenge effectively. So along with, but not instead of, Obsession, I recommend the less flashy but more informative Islam: What the West Needs to Know.
Now, I am in Islam: What the West Needs to Know, but not in Obsession, as Mercer points out, but that is not why I am recommeding the other film along with Obsession: while I appreciate Mercer’s kind words, certainly the Obsession producers could have told the full truth about the jihad ideology without featuring my mug in their movie. If they had told those truths, however, they almost certainly would not have gotten their film onto Fox News. So it’s a trade-off. A lot of people are waking up to what we’re up against because of Obsession, and so my hat is off to Wayne Kopping and Rafael Shore.
From Ilana Mercer’s excellent column:
…Viewers of “Obsession” are treated to terrifying, flesh-creeping scenes common in the Arab media: death-adulating, Quran-quoting kids and clerics in madrasas and mosques across the Muslim world, all calling for the killing of Jews and gentiles and for the subjugation of the West to Islam. Nevertheless, these spectacles are then punctuated by pieties about Islam being a peaceful religion, hijacked by extremists — a hell of a lot of them.
To be fair, “Obsession” does dispel the fiction that jihad is an inner struggle, but then even an A-list Islam apologist like professor John Esposito has admitted as much: “Jihad means to fight to spread Islam, not just to defend it, and to wage war against [Jews and Christians] who refuse Muslim rule,” Esposito has conceded.
“Radical Islam”: now there’s another redundancy that ought not to have marred the message of this important documentary. If one cares to delve into the Quran, the hadith, and the Sira, or read the scholars who’ve done so for us, then it becomes abundantly clear: Islam is radical.
“Obsession” features the brilliant Daniel Pipes…However, conspicuously absent from the impressive lineup is the indefatigable Robert Spencer, whose detailed exegeses have exploded the myth of a peaceful Islam.
On the other hand, since the directors of “Obsession” appear intent on upholding this Scheherazade-worthy charade, it is perfectly understandable why they would exclude the author of “The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades),” and “The Truth about Muhammad: Founder of the World’s Most Intolerant Religion.”
Thank you, Ilana.
Read it all. And watch both films.