Rome, 21 August (AKI) – Italy’s Foreign Ministry has instructed the country’s embassy in Cairo to monitor closely the plight of an Egyptian man, Mohammed Hegazi, who has received death threats following his conversion from Islam to Christianity. — from this article
This is thanks to a handful of people — to Oriana Fallaci, and more recently, to the writings and appearances on the RAI of the fearless Magdi Allam. Allam was born and raised in Egypt by parents who called themselves Muslims, were quietly pious, and sent him to Christian schools. Then he left Egypt for Italy, where he received his higher — in all senses — education, in and out of university, married an Italian girl, and now is a vice-director, I believe, of the Corriere della Sera. He appears frequently on the RAI (the state-owned television, of which there are three variants, Rai Uno, Rai Due, Rai Tre).
Magdi Allam has written several important books. Two are directly about Islam. The first is “Vincere La Paura” (Conquering Fear), a book which includes a “Lettera aperta a Oriana Fallaci” (in which Allam takes issue with her sweeping dismissal of Islam — I think he does so wrongly) and a more convincing “Lettera aperta a Tariq Ramadan.” Magdi Allam knows Ramadan, and from what he comes, perfectly, and dismembers him before your very eyes.
The second, shorter book is “Kamikaze Made in Europe (Riuscira l’Occidente a Sconfiggere i Terroristi Islamici?)” (Will the West Manage to Defeat Islamic Terrorists?).
Most recently, Magdi Allam published “Viva Israele” –“Long Live Israel.” This is a paean of well-deserved praise, and expression of affection — one which comes naturally to the apostates or near-apostates of Islam, for it is they who know best how terribly Israel has been maligned, and they who know best the dangers it has passed through, and the dangers it permanently faces. They know all this far better than any Infidel supporters of Israel possibly could.
All of Magdi Allam’s books should be translated, at once, by professionals, into two dozen major languages. If the C.I.A. had its wits about it, it would pay for the publication itself, as during the Cold War it set up publishing houses — “Editions de la Seine” and so on — to publish Russian-emigre literature, which was then handed out to Soviet tourists, who would read those books on the spot, or smuggle them back into the Soviet Union. What dimwits are running things now? Or is it that the Saudi agents, willing or unwitting, are preventing even the most modest efforts at a counter-Jihad of spreading simply the intelligent views of those who know Islam best?
And it is also due to others, especially to the Pope, when as Cardinal Ratzinger he exchanged letters with the learned Massimo Pera (a Senator — in Italy, not quite the same thing as here, being a non-elected post, but still a very influential one). Those exchanges, on the subject of Islam and the West, and the West’s inability to recognize the nature of Islam and the danger it poses, permanently, to the institutions, political and legal, and to the very civilization of the West, are set out in a book of a handy size similar to that of Magdi Allam’s three books noted above: “Senza Radici.” It has been put into English, as part of the translating-the-Pope effort, and is well worth finding and reading.
Italy will be, because of such people, the least likely to succumb among the European states. After all, the Italians are surrounded by two-thirds of the entire production of Western art, and can only with great difficulty avoid appreciating the legacy of the West. They have retained a historic memory of the Ottomans, or the general Islamic threat: “Mamma, li Turchi!” is a phrase that has entered the language as a way to express sudden fear of something — Muslim raiders, say, on the coast. (“Turks” means not only “Turks” but also all the various Muslims who raided up and down the Italian coasts, pillaging, looting, killing men, seizing women.) And there is another verbal phrase in Italian — “fare salamalecchi” — “to perform salaam-aleikums.” That means to “bow and scrape” with the emphasis on “oily bowing and scraping” in order to curry favor, a phrase obviously constructed from close observation of the observable behavior of Muslims, and not unlike the oleaginous and wily ways of those who, in the British phrase, “are either at your feet or at your throat.”
This historical memory, of course, is not present in these United States. And what we get are ignorant but seemingly hard-headed (in truth, because of their ignorance, they are sentimentalists) “military analysts” at think-tank sinecures, solemnly pontificating about Iraq without a clue as to what Islam is, what its texts, tenets, attitudes, atmospherics are, and what its goals, based on those immutable texts, are. Certainly, being remarkably limited people, they have no conception beyond the military of the means by which those goals can be achieved, and for which Iraq is of passing significance. For Islam has in the past few decades leapfrogged over the Mediterranean, and is now present all over the historic heart of the West, that is, the countries of Western Europe. Those countries need to be awakened. Bringing “freedom” to “ordinary moms and dads” in Iraq and then to the greater Middle East will have no effect, none, even were it to be achieved. (And achievement is, because of Islam, impossible.)
The sentimentalists masquerading as tough-minded realists, whether they are loyalists clinging to the idea of “winning” in Tarbaby Iraq, or “critics of the Administration” who ponderously tell us (think of the comical Cordesman, who keeps telling us we have “ethically and morally” a duty to rescue millions of “Iraqis” — what utter nonsense) that the war cannot be “won” but never take issue with the Administration’s definition of “winning,” should be ignored. Stick with Oriana Fallaci. Stick with Magdi Allam. Stick with Massimo Pera and Pope Benedict. Something is going right in Italy — and that is despite that eurocratic Prodi, who wants to “open a dialogue” with Hamas.
Learn from Italy.