Let The Sun Shine In And Other Insights Into The Arab World
Last week, Shrinkwrapped wrote Has Israel Lost The Will To Live?,in which he discusses the apparent lethargy and collective resignation of Israeli society. Shrink expresses his concern and fears for Israel and her people.
We responded to Shrinkwrapped's in Israel's Malaise And Resurrection, in which we address some of Shrinks' fears.
It is also true that we often forget exactly who Israel's enemies are, the kinds of cultures and societies from which they come and most importantly, the kind of culture and society they want for themselves.
Dr Sanity's Shame, The Arab Psyche And Islam is a necessary read for anyone who truly wants to understand the Arab world, the Middle East, the terror phenomena and Islam. As we engage in the 'dance,' we often forget that we are dealing with a peoples, cultures, religions and political expressions that have very different values than our own. We have noted many times that diplomacy works with like minded regimes and cultures. Diplomacy does not work with regimes and cultures that are very different than our own because those cultures and regimes have a very different set of values.
Another necessary read is Shrinkwrapped's series The Arab Mind. The earliest posts are at the bottom of the page. The insights are important and differ from Dr Sanity's efforts and insight into the culture and mindset of the Arab world. Shrink examines and addresses the 'front lines' of the Arab world, the family unit in the many ways a child is influenced. These child raising scenarios and practices are very different from our own. It should come as no surprise we don't even speak the same language.
It is with their efforts in mind that we are republishing selections from various posts that we have written on the subjects both Dr Sanity and Shrinkwrapped so ably, cogently and crisply address.
Our posts in their entirety can be linked from on our sidebar in the section labeled 'Pages' or from the links contained herein.
The creation of the State Of Israel could not be explained away, denied or hidden. As far the Arab world was concerned, the establishment of the Jewish state, in their neighborhood and on their watch, was indeed a catastrophic event. In fact, it was cataclysmic, because Israel was undeniable evidence that the rise and domination of the Islamic world, led by the Arabs was indeed over. Notwithstanding Arab failures for over a thousand years, the establishment of Israel was a truth that not even the Arab world could deny. That catastrophe worsened as Israel ascended into the first world and they fell even further behind. In the same way that Da Vinci and Galileo were to stun the church with scientific truths, Israel stunned the Arab world with the successes that could only serve to highlight a millennium of Arab failure and darkness. The divine law, given by God Himself, that gave Muslims dominion over all mankind was upended- and by Jews, no less. The magnitude of the event cannot be understated.
In a shame culture, the success of the other only deepens the sense of failure and humiliation. In most cultures, in order to overcome a sense of shame, huge efforts are expended to correct and then exceed and excel.
In the Arab world, pride can be regained not by excelling or achieving, but rather, by destroying. If the source of humiliation is no longer visible, then the humiliation no longer exists. No matter the cost to the society, culture, individual or community, destruction is preferable to achievement. Why? Because in order to achieve, you have to fail before you find the formula for success. That is the price of achievement- decades, and sometimes a lifetime of hard work. That is a formula that remains a mystery to most Arabs in the Middle East. They believe they are entitled to the successes that elude them.
From Temptations And Choices:
Israel not only reflects Arab failure, she also reflects the successes 0f western ideologies and western predicates for success. The Arabs would have you believe that the rejection of western successes are justified by saying they are rejecting the western culture and values that are anathema to Muslims. They cannot explain the successes of Muslim societies in Singapore and Malaysia. Those nations succeeded because they achieved their own successes on their own terms. They did not imitate or attempt to define themselves by western cultural expressions.
In any event, in the Arab world, any expression of western ideas, ideologies or beliefs are deemed ’satanic.’ The choice of imagery and words are no accident...
The Arabs are engaged in a schizophrenic battle of monumental proportions. Moderates recognize that the western ‘temptations’ can offer redemption and success on their own terms (by achieving and not imitating) . Fundamentalists are determined to destroy the ‘temptor,’ Satan, embodied by America, Israel, Jews and Christians.
The tempted cannot simply resist the temptations- they must destroy the temptor so that they might not succumb. hey do not see that resisting temptation is powerful than destroying that temptation. The justification of destroying temptation, as opposed to simply resisting comes from the elevation of the temptor. Christians are the agents of Satan, Jews are pigs, non Muslim women are ‘uncovered meat’ and whores that defile family and community. All non Muslims are fair game, as are all Muslims who are ‘not on the program.’
That is how we end up with indiscriminate murder and the justification and elevation of evil...
From The Poison:
There is something about Israel that enrages the left- and that something has to do with having to engage evil on a daily basis. The Israelis must deal with an evil that is real, evident and clearly defined. For the left, evil can not exist because the recognition of evil forces societies and cultures to set boundaries and limitations. Even more, evil helps to define culture and communal behavior. If there is no evil, the individual and the individual’s needs and wants are of paramount concern. If there is evil, then the community and the needs of the community are of concern. The needs of the individual are subjugated. For the narcissistic individual, this is a catastrophe of the highest order, and that is why for the narcissistic leftists, the only evil they can acknowledge is the evil that places the welfare pf the community or state over the welfare of the individual.
In the case of Israel, that must be done every single day. To not put the safety and well being of the community at the fore would result in disaster. This is not hard to understand. Promises of rape, slaughter and destruction are ingrained into a culture, reinforced daily.
The entire raison d’etre of Islamic fundamentalism is not only to reject and destroy the temptation, but to destroy Satan himself. The entire justification for the rabid ideology to remove American troops from the Gulf region, is to cleanse the region of Satan’s temptations. Western dress, attitudes towards women even western values are a threat. Even if the Americans are mostly invisible in the area, the fact that they are ‘tempters,’ poisons the holy land of the Arabs. Terror attacks against them and even civilians who work in region (forced to live in armed compounds for their own protection) can therefore be justified.
The idea that ‘tempters’ and Satan must be destroyed is played out every day in the Middle East. Westerners are targeted for violence and kidnapped in Egypt and elsewhere and Jews, the ever reliable standby, are targeted with regularity
All the while, men who deliberately go out and kill the tempters in a display of great piety, readily admit that the temptations of a heaven with 72 black eyed virgins as a motivator for their terrorist acts. The idea of limitless and boundless sex is now a good enough reason to kill...
In a religious, cultural and societal environment that advocates terror and violence, the personality of the terrorist becomes as broken and as fragmented as that of the society and culture that birthed him. The terrorist is merely the reflection of the world he knows.
From The Promise:
From an early age, Palestinians are taught that martyrdom is the ultimate expression of fidelity to the group and the ultimate expression of the elevated self. Terror and murder are the vehicles in which one can achieve fulfillment as a Muslim, Palestinian and as an individual. Terror and murder are celebrated..
Suicide bombers and terrorists are glorified. Parents are regaled as almost equal to the shahid, for having raised and encouraged a child to go off to his death, murdering as many non members of the group as possible. Those parents become elevated in status and morality, precisely because their child embraced the immorality of indiscriminate murder. The prestige bestowed (and thus the dysfunction) is so great that many other parents harbor wishes for the same recognition. They are willing to sacrifice their own children. It is not uncommon to hear the refrain that ‘we love death,’ not because of the finality of death but rather, because of the desperate belief that in death will come a kind of relief. The restrictive bonds of life under tyranny (Palestinians and the Arab world are well aware of who their leaders are) will be broken- a new, more pure ‘life’ awaits them on the other side. Even talk of sexual pleasures unavailable in conservative Arab societies, can be talked about within a religious context...
This highlights another reality. In Arab cultures, there is no real reward or recognition for loving the sanctity of life. Those who profess a desire for real peace, non violence, less corruption and less oppression are considered reformers.
In societies and cultures where violence is often seen after religious services (unique in the Abrahamic faiths). little emphasis is placed on self improvement, the betterment of society (the ‘real jihad,’ we are told) or humility. Rather, worshipers are whipped into a murderous frenzy directed at non members. Each week, the hate is elevated...
For American lawmakers of either party, tinkering with Social Security has long been considered the ‘third rail’ of American politics, a kind of kiss of death for any politician with higher aspirations.
Talk of renouncing violence is the ‘third rail’ of Palestinian lawmakers. For them, such talk is political suicide. Such talk is also considered traitorous and contrary to religious dogma...
The Palestinians, as a group and as a society, they have failed. Unlike other Arabs in the region, they live in close proximity to a vibrant and free society. They know and see the benefits of what living in a free society means. They also know to acknowledge Israel’s successes, they have to acknowledge their own failures. Culturally, that is too high a price to pay.
The cycle of violence is not simply destined to perpetuate itself- the cycle of violence is reinforced and ever escalating. Dysfunctional behaviors that were unknown or unheard before have become commonplace.The self destructive behavior of the Palestinians comes about as the result of the integration of exaggerated love and exaggerated hate into a fused single exaggerated emotion. What distinguishes the two becomes no more than a blurred idea. Thus, violence directed at each other is a appropriate as violence directed at the Israelis.
This kind diseased thinking is not just about violence. Even the wildest conspiracy theories, widely welcomed and accepted, become a reflection of a dysfunctional defense mechanism and absurdity. As Arab religious and political leaders whip crowds into a wild frenzy, warning of ‘Jewish plots’ to control the world, these same religious and political leaders have no trouble promising that ‘Muslims all over the world will work together to control the world’ and that the ‘flag of Islam will fly over the White House’ and the British Parliament. Those who resist will be destroyed...
There is a difference between backward societies and failed ones. Backward socities are unaware of the possibilities in front of them. Failed societies have squandered the opportunities that have been afforded them. Failed societies can recover, but only if they reject the ideologies that led them to fail in the first place...
The society that births terrorists or supporters of terror, is one that encourages the narcissism of the self as paramount- more important even, than adding the self to the fabric of the well being and elevation of the entire community...
The narcissistic self is never progressive. It fears the future (what it cannot control) and regressive, wanting and encouraging only it’s own ideologies, beliefs and value systems...