Islamofascism: Why It Is Fascism and Why Hating It Isn’t RacistNicholas M. Guariglia
06 Dec 2007This is getting a bit tedious, but for as long as there are those who decry antifascists as something they are not, there must be those who forcefully defend the spirit of antifascism. A few weeks ago, student groups across some 200 universities aligned with commentator David Horowitz, amongst others, to declare Islamofascism Awareness Week. Such “cause-awareness” charades –– global warming/cooling awareness, the danger of giant man-eating squirrels/how to save endangered giant man-eating squirrels, etc. –– where do-gooders sit around a table and discuss how they “feel,” usually leave me with a feeling of exasperation. But for this, I will concede: defending liberal Western munificence against foreign clericalism is no small gig.
This task, however, seems to begin with two fallacies leveled against the democratic resistance. The first untruth being that Islamist fanaticism is an aberration, not commonplace abroad; a political equal to its religious counterparts, not authoritarian; its followers simply misguided distorters of actual Islamic instruction, not the enforcers and heeders of literal Islamic text. The second lie, perpetrated by relativists and multicultural therapists, would be that challenging this despotism, in all its forms, is somehow indicative of racism; that hating a belief is the equivalent to hating a people. These two falsities should be confronted at the very start, and at their very core.
Let’s start with the latter, and, I propose, the indisputable: Islam is not a race. Even its harshest critics, if they limit their criticism to doctrine and to those only who follow it, are not to be labeled bigoted or racist. Religion is an idea, a belief system not immune from mockery or even detestation, and abhorrence for it is perfectly ethical (and legal, at least in this country). Succumbing to political correctness would have me now declaring impartiality for all the monotheisms, claiming an equality for each theology. I am all for equal-time ridicule, but not today.
So let me be clear. There is very little about the Islamic faith, in particular, that I find believable or inspirational. The given-at-birth compulsory submission to a deity –– as its translation boasts –– is not my bag. An illiterate businessman-turned-general talking to angels and going on fantastical night journeys across the sky, taking six-year-olds as his wife, invading and converting large portions of planet, insisting his word alone is the final and unalterable directive of the divine… None of this makes me want to humble myself, get on my knees, and bow my head. I look at the life of Muhammad –– the pedophilia, the megalomania, the conquests –– and see John Mark Karr with an army.
But my contempt for this theological arrogance does not render a hatred for, or suspicion of, Muslims as individuals or as a people; nor will it, nor should it. I have a fair amount of Muslim friends, some of them very good friends, and, in the mold of Dr. King’s litmus test, I judge them, like everyone else, based upon the content of their character –– not their genetic makeup. This is not racism anymore than disdain for Marxism is racism; anymore than abstract anticommunism undermines the concreteness of a beautiful Cuban girl, or the sincerity of a Russian acquaintance, for instance.
Those on campus who were wearing green to protest the original protesting of fascism should at least forfeit to irony: the green they don takes us back the “green shirts” of Haj Amin al Husseini, the Palestinian mufti and long time Hitler companion and proxy, as well as the Nazi-admiring Hassan al Banna, brown-shirt wannabe and founder of the Muslim Brotherhood. The lack of study into the fascist origins of contemporary Middle Eastern movements is just another sad example of Western self-loathing and academic indifference, but thankfully we have colleagues like Ryan Mauro to shed some light for us.
How quickly we forget that Mussolini, for example, was admiringly called Musa Nili across the Arab world. Who remembers the Waffen SS hit-squads that armed the warriors of Grand Mufti Husseini –– plush with Third Reich subsidies –– to liquefy anti-Nazi citizens of the Baltic? Did your last professor point out that the predecessors of al Qaida –– who Hitler called his Gebirgsjäger Muslim killers –– slaughtered 100,000 innocents by 1943?
It continues: Nazi agent General Khairallah Tulfah would go on to raise and mentor his Tikriti village nephew, Saddam Hussein. Future Egyptian presidents Nasser and Sadat –– supposed secularists –– mingled with the Brotherhood, which in turn spawned Egyptian Islamic Jihad, cradle of al Qaida linchpin Dr. al Zawahiri. (Nasser would later rely on ex-Gestapo goon Joachim Daumling to craft his own secret police force.)
Hitler’s propagandist Johannes von Leers would flee postwar Germany, change his name to Omar Amin, and become a lead official in Egypt’s information ministry, just as Sami al Joundi of the Syrian Ba’ath would brag, “We admired the Nazis. We were immersed in Nazi literature… we were the first who thought of a translation of Mein Kempf.” (Eichmann aide Alois Brunner would also assist the Assads in Damascus.)
I could go on, but must I really?
When defending the label of fascist, however, none of this fascist-entrenched history really matters. The premise of subservience to a celestial dominion and the coerced obedience to the earthly holy men who implement this dominion is enough: it’s Islamic and it’s fascistic. It is a creed that seeks to control what you think, say, hear, read, eat and drink; who you talk to, who you befriend, and who you hold hands with. This is the root basis of totalitarianism and it’s all in your God-given Qur’an. Societies, cultures, and peoples can most certainly change, but self-described infallible doctrine cannot. It was not designed to reform. Its divinity and irreversibility is the reason for its existence.
There used to be a proud secular tradition of liberal antifascism, but the veneer of multiculturalism and relativism has prodded such thinkers into a state of fear. Many are afraid to come across as intolerant of intolerance, lest they seem as if they are asserting political supremacy or cultural superiority. This is why Western operas have been canceled, why cartoons have been taken out of circulation, why movies have been taken off air, and why journalists and authors with prices on their heads are in hiding all across Europe –– all products of a free and wonderfully crude culture under threat from book-burning mullahs.
But there is good news. You do not have to oblige yourself into justifying deplorable atrocities in the name of “understanding.” You do not have to defend the apocalyptic Haghani Circle of Iran, or the Salafist lecturers in Pakistan, or the Wahhabi royal family. You do not have to applaud the “transparency” of the Iranian committee entitled the “Council for Spreading Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s Thoughts.” When Hina Saleem’s father cuts her throat, buries her in the yard, and faces her head towards Mecca before rigamortis sets in –– for the sin of loving an Italian man –– and most of the Islamic organizations in Europe (from the Union of Islamic Communities in Italy to the Islamic Cultural Association in Brescia) defend the murderer, not the victim, you do not have to conscript yourself into appreciating or defending this insanity. You’re allowed to hate it.
Not all hate is improper. My hatred of the fascistic impulses of archaic shari’a law stems not from ignorance of “the other,” but from knowledge. The more I learn, the more that is revealed, the stiffer my backbone becomes and the more I come to despise. This hatred is fine, as its converse would be immoral indifference.
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