Democrats and Their Al Qaeda "Problem"
"Being in the U.S. Congress is like trying to get yourself heard in a pre-school where nobody's had a nap." (Karen Tumulty)
One of the big stories on cable news this weekend after the election is the celebration by Jihadists of the Democratic victory. That doesn't mean the Islamo-fascists have embraced democracy, which of course they despise, but they do see the Democratic Party as more compatible with their worldview.
Here's the way one international news outlet reported the terrorists' comments:
"The leader of Iraq's Al Qaeda wing on Friday gloated over forcing outgoing U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to flee the Iraqi battlefield and said his group would not rest until it blew up the White House."
"Abu Hamza al-Muhajir, also known as Abu Ayyub al-Masri, said in a purported audio recording posted on the Internet that the group has 12,000 armed fighters and 10,000 others waiting to be equipped to fight U.S. troops in Iraq. 'I swear by God we shall not rest from jihad until we ... blow up the filthiest house known as the White House,' he said."
The Democrats' victory at U.S. Congressional elections on Tuesday were a step in the right direction, the speaker said. 'I tell the lame duck (U.S. administration) do not rush to escape as did your defence minister ... stay on the battleground,' the speaker said. "
"[He added] 'The American people have taken a step in the right path to come out of their predicament ... they voted for a level of reason.'"
Somehow, I don't think Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Majority Leader Harry Reid are going to send thank-you notes to Mr. al-Masri. Postal delivery is so unreliable in Al Qaeda strongholds.
No less an authority than President Bush tells us that Democrats like Pelosi are just as patriotic as Republicans. To be charitable, I'd say the Democrats' problem is one more of perception than of patriotism.
I've seen no evidence that Democrats generally (with occasional exceptions, like Joe Lieberman) comprehend the nature of terrorism or terrorists. As the recent election rhetoric demonstrated, a lot of Democrats of the liberal stripe think the greatest threat to the world comes not from bin Laden and the terrorists but rather from George W. Bush.
Terrorists aren't really "insurgents," or proponents of national liberation, or manifestations of some righteous grievance. Terrosists are people who like to kill people they believe stand in their way.
To understand terrorists, it helps to see them as like serial killers. They murder people they don't like -- men, women, and children, preferably unarmed civilians.
The brilliant scholar of Islam, Prof. Bernard Lewis (Islam and the West), has offered some explanations why some Muslims delight in killing infidels, that is, people like us. Lewis' argument goes like this:
Muslims, particulary in the Arab nations, see their countries as technologically backward and economically impoverished. Further, they see themselves as lacking the most basic kinds of personal autonomy, with the rulers having much and the people very little.
At the same time, they see themselves as adherents to the one true religion, Islam. Because of their faith, they play a special role in the eyes of Allah, the one true God.
However, if Allah loves them so much, then why are they so depressed economically, politically, and technologically? Well, it's not for nothing that they call the U.S. and the West generally "the devil."
They believe the bad condition of their nations and the failure of the world to adopt Islam are the fault of people like you, me, and George Bush. They regard the success of Western nations as a continuing assault on their faith.
"If Allah loves us so much, why are we so miserable?"
Is this view of Islam an extreme one? Consider the recent situation in Afghanistan, where a Muslim man had converted to Christianity.
For that act, Afghani courts sentenced him not to spiritual re-education but rather to death by hanging. In that country, one with 25 million people, converting from Islam to Christianity is a capital offense.
Did U. S. ally Hamid Karzai commute this draconian sentence? No, he "solved" the problem by exiling the man to Itay, where his life presumably continues to be in danger from Muslim militants.
Back to the Democrats in the U.S. Of course, a goodly number of liberal Democrats think religion of any sort is little more than superstition. They're grateful for the votes of evangelical Christians, but they don't want them living next door.
Unfortunately, the terrorists don't make exceptions for agnostics, atheists, Wiccans, nature worshippers, or Unitarians. Our religiously diverse society is an offense to Muslims and, they believe, to God (Allah).
Asking why terrorists want to kill us is like asking why Ted Bundy wanted to murder coeds -- or Jeffrey Dahmer wanted to do in homeless people. Essentially, they did so because it satisfied some twisted need.
I doubt many Democrats will grasp such motivations. I also doubt they have the spiritual resolve or political courage to confront the terrorists.
They'll find it much easier to go on blaming GWB. If "Bush" is not only a four-letter word but also the man responsible for all ills, then the solution is a simple one.
By the way, I'd take very seriously Al Qaeda's threat to torch the White House. That presumably was where Flight 93 was heading on September 11.
Al Qaeda may be a deceitful organization, but it tends not to make idle threats.