Even after the Doctors’ Plot we hear that the jihadis are marginal figures in Muslim societies. Yet a recent book by Carmen bin Ladin makes clear that the family, far from being horrified by their famous scion, is quite proud of Bin Laden, who from an early age expressed his disapproval of all things judged to be un-Islamic. And the Bin Ladens are possibly, outside of the pillaging princelings of the House of al-Saud, possibly the most solvent family in all of Saudi Arabia. He, Bin Laden, was no marginal figure.
And this brings one to Ayman Al-Zawahiri, Doctor al-Zawahiri, the now much-more-visible Al-Qaeda leader. Ayman al-Zawahiri is the grand-nephew of Azzam Pasha, the Secretary-General of the Arab League, the same Secretary-General of the Arab League who, just as the five Arab armies attacked the nascent state of Israel, promised that it would be a “massacre” such as had not been seen since the time of the Mongols, and that the “booty” taken in this classic Jihad would be easily removed, once the Jews had been cast into the sea. For a lucid summary of what the Arabs at the time did, and said, see Battleground by Samuel Katz, pages 12-37. In other words, Ayman al-Zawahiri is Muslim Arab royalty: the reflected glory of one’s relatives is a significant feature of Arab, and Muslim, life.
These are not marginal figures. They are from two of the most important dynasties — political and economic — in Arab life. And that dynastic aspect perdures: from Tariq Ramadan heroically carrying on Da’wa in the same sinister spirit as his grandfather Hassan al-Banna (“Islam must dominate and is not to be dominated”), the founder in Egypt of the murderous Muslim Brotherhood, to Moqtada al-Sadr, scion of a family of famous Shiite clergy — the last, and least, of the line — that Gertrude Bell managed to note in her letters from Baghdad back in the 1920s.
So little in the Arab Muslim world changes. What has changed is the presence of money from oil, and the technology to spread Islam with its “full message” of Jihad and hatred of Infidels. And of course there has been the colossal folly of permitting, without the slightest consideration of what this would inevitably mean for the lives and wellbeing of the indigenous Infidels, huge numbers of Muslims to move, unhindered and even welcomed, to the Bilad al-kufr, the Lands of the Infidels, where they arrive not as grateful refugees, but as people who, from Ramadan to Dyab Abou Jahjah in Belgium to the German imam who, at the opening of the Grenada mosque, called for the destruction of the Infidel economies of Europe, see Europe as, by right, the lands to which the people of Allah, and only they, are entitled. And all that is there is booty. It belongs to them for the righteous taking.
No one is being asked to join the Resistance in France in 1942. No one is being asked to be a hero. But one owes it to oneself, to other Infidels, to one’s children, to at least fully inform oneself about Islam, its central tenets, and about the treatment of non-Muslims under Islamic rule, during the past 1350 years. That is an act of study, not of bravely being a courier, or hiding British airmen, or blowing up the oilfields of Rumania, or any such feat of derring-do.
This is the only feat of derring-do you are being asked to perform: study, study, study. Not all night, not all day. But enough so that you understand what Islam is all about, so that you cannot be fooled in conversation, and so that you may, through letters, through discussions, through phoning in to those PBS talk shows run by Lord Haw Haws and Tokyo Roses, get the truth through.
What should this duty be called? Let us say: the Duty of Due Diligence. We are being asked to accept a “merger” of our civilization with that of Islam, without knowing very much about Islam. And that “merger” is supposedly to take place through the unhindered, and supposedly irreversible, movement of Muslims to the Lands of the Infidels. Well, Due Diligence demands that we study this matter very carefully.
Go ahead. Perform that Due Diligence. It is the minimum that can be asked of you.