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Why Do They Hate Us? Not Because of Iraq

robin

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Why Do They Hate Us? Not Because of Iraq

By OLIVIER ROY
Published: July 22, 2005

Paris

WHILE yesterday's explosions on London's subway and bus lines were thankfully far less serious than those of two weeks ago, they will lead many to raise a troubling question: has Britain (and Spain as well) been "punished" by Al Qaeda for participating in the American-led military interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan? While this is a reasonable line of thinking, it presupposes the answer to a broader and more pertinent question: Are the roots of Islamic terrorism in the Middle Eastern conflicts?

If the answer is yes, the solution is simple to formulate, although not to achieve: leave Afghanistan and Iraq, solve the Israel-Palestine conflict. But if the answer is no, as I suspect it is, we should look deeper into the radicalization of young, Westernized Muslims.

Conflicts in the Middle East have a tremendous impact on Muslim public opinion worldwide. In justifying its terrorist attacks by referring to Iraq, Al Qaeda is looking for popularity or at least legitimacy among Muslims. But many of the terrorist group's statements, actions and non-actions indicate that this is largely propaganda, and that Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine are hardly the motivating factors behind its global jihad.

First, let's consider the chronology. The Americans went to Iraq and Afghanistan after 9/11, not before. Mohamed Atta and the other pilots were not driven by Iraq or Afghanistan. Were they then driven by the plight of the Palestinians? It seems unlikely. After all, the attack was plotted well before the second intifada began in September 2000, at a time of relative optimism in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.

Another motivating factor, we are told, was the presence of "infidel" troops in Islam's holy lands. Yes, Osama Bin Laden was reported to be upset when the Saudi royal family allowed Western troops into the kingdom before the Persian Gulf war. But Mr. bin Laden was by that time a veteran fighter committed to global jihad.

He and the other members of the first generation of Al Qaeda left the Middle East to fight the Soviet Union in Afghanistan in the 1980's. Except for the smallish Egyptian faction led by Ayman al-Zawahiri, now Mr. bin Laden's chief deputy, these militants were not involved in Middle Eastern politics. Abdullah Azzam, Mr. bin Laden's mentor, gave up supporting the Palestinian Liberation Organization long before his death in 1989 because he felt that to fight for a localized political cause was to forsake the real jihad, which he felt should be international and religious in character.

From the beginning, Al Qaeda's fighters were global jihadists, and their favored battlegrounds have been outside the Middle East: Afghanistan, Bosnia, Chechnya and Kashmir. For them, every conflict is simply a part of the Western encroachment on the Muslim ummah, the worldwide community of believers.

Second, if the conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq and Palestine are at the core of the radicalization, why are there virtually no Afghans, Iraqis or Palestinians among the terrorists? Rather, the bombers are mostly from the Arabian Peninsula, North Africa, Egypt and Pakistan - or they are Western-born converts to Islam. Why would a Pakistani or a Spaniard be more angry than an Afghan about American troops in Afghanistan? It is precisely because they do not care about Afghanistan as such, but see the United States involvement there as part of a global phenomenon of cultural domination.

What was true for the first generation of Al Qaeda is also relevant for the present generation: even if these young men are from Middle Eastern or South Asian families, they are for the most part Westernized Muslims living or even born in Europe who turn to radical Islam. Moreover, converts are to be found in almost every Qaeda cell: they did not turn fundamentalist because of Iraq, but because they felt excluded from Western society (this is especially true of the many converts from the Caribbean islands, both in Britain and France). "Born again" or converts, they are rebels looking for a cause. They find it in the dream of a virtual, universal ummah, the same way the ultraleftists of the 1970's (the Baader-Meinhof Gang, the Italian Red Brigades) cast their terrorist actions in the name of the "world proletariat" and "Revolution" without really caring about what would happen after.

It is also interesting to note that none of the Islamic terrorists captured so far had been active in any legitimate antiwar movements or even in organized political support for the people they claim to be fighting for. They don't distribute leaflets or collect money for hospitals and schools. They do not have a rational strategy to push for the interests of the Iraqi or Palestinian people.

Even their calls for the withdrawal of the European troops from Iraq ring false. After all, the Spanish police have foiled terrorist attempts in Madrid even since the government withdrew its forces. Western-based radicals strike where they are living, not where they are instructed to or where it will have the greatest political effect on behalf of their nominal causes.

The Western-based Islamic terrorists are not the militant vanguard of the Muslim community; they are a lost generation, unmoored from traditional societies and cultures, frustrated by a Western society that does not meet their expectations. And their vision of a global ummah is both a mirror of and a form of revenge against the globalization that has made them what they are.

Olivier Roy, a professor at the School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences, is the author of "Globalized Islam."
 

FiremanRyan

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Second, if the conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq and Palestine are at the core of the radicalization, why are there virtually no Afghans, Iraqis or Palestinians among the terrorists? Rather, the bombers are mostly from the Arabian Peninsula, North Africa, Egypt and Pakistan - or they are Western-born converts to Islam. Why would a Pakistani or a Spaniard be more angry than an Afghan about American troops in Afghanistan? It is precisely because they do not care about Afghanistan as such, but see the United States involvement there as part of a global phenomenon of cultural domination.

he makes a good point by this, ive been saying that for a while now.

but im really missing the point, what is he getting at? he's telling us everything the terrorists arent but really nothing about what they are. the only explanation he gives for their attacks on the western world is that they feel like outcasts within their society. is this supposed to excuse what they've done? the two kids who walked into Columbine High School with assualt weapons and shot 13 students and teachers dead did it because they felt like outcasts too but that doesnt make it right. all this post does is reinforce the fact that islamic terrorists have the mentality of a child and are willing to take lives for no real reason. complete baligerence.
 

FiremanRyan

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how would an American saying this be any different:

"the millions of illegal immigrants crossing into the US from Mexico is becoming a cultural domination"

its the exact same argument. but if an American walked into a Mexican train station and blew himself up, i guarantee that you'd put the blame on him, not look for a reason to make his actions legitimate. do you think muslims are inferior? are they children who shouldnt be held to the same accountability and standards that us white folk are?
 

MasterDebater

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presonally i wouldnt care if we just nuked the hole dammed mid east. it would take away from the terrorism that is problem in todays world. of course that is too extreme, but we need to weed out terrorism wear it strats.
 

GarzaUK

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MasterDebater said:
presonally i wouldnt care if we just nuked the hole dammed mid east. it would take away from the terrorism that is problem in todays world. of course that is too extreme, but we need to weed out terrorism wear it strats.
Even nuking the middle east would not wipe out terrorism. The Bombings in London were done by British born muslims. They have cells in almost every country in the world.
 

robin

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FiremanRyan said:

but im really missing the point, what is he getting at? he's telling us everything the terrorists arent but really nothing about what they are. the only explanation he gives for their attacks on the western world is that they feel like outcasts within their society. is this supposed to excuse what they've done? the two kids who walked into Columbine High School with assualt weapons and shot 13 students and teachers dead did it because they felt like outcasts too but that doesnt make it right. all this post does is reinforce the fact that islamic terrorists have the mentality of a child and are willing to take lives for no real reason. complete baligerence.

To try & understand why these stupid young men become so brainwashed into evil acts is NOT to condone.
The British shoe bomber Richard Reed was just a loser who's father spent time in prison. Reed was just a failure, totally inept in life, so decided to be a an extremist, become part of a tribe instead of a total outcast & misfit in normal healthy society & then become a big hero for the misguided cause of Islamic extremism. It's instant fame for a Mr nobody. These terrorists are just pathetic losers.
 

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I don´t understand the way people are thinking. Q: Is it because Great Britain is involved in Iraq? 70% answers yes. Q2: Why did they hit Egypt? I don´t know, are they in Iraq too? Iraq has nothing to do with these suicidebombers. It´s a excuse to non-Blair politicians to get ahold. Was there terrorism in europe before Iraq? Yes. Will there be terrorism after Iraq? Yes. And it will never end. Terrorism is not caused by economic (if osama would have care about that, I know better things where he could have put his money than bombs), religious or any reason these stupid politicians are speaking of. If USA and whole western world leaves middle-east what would happen? Next week they start to cry for food. Same thing with Africa. F**K I hate those Live8s and LiveAids, they won´t change a thing! When do we understand that money is not the issue but EDUCATION. Give them teachers, and tools to survive, not food to enslave them. They are dependent on us, that´s why they hate us.And I am really really proud of Great Britain. I give them a 10! Only country in europe that does not fall on knees under extortion. See how pathetic Spain government is? What if every country does the same. What´s next. If You don´t give us 100000000 dollars we will.....
 

stsburns

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I have heard Marines that have been around countries that habor them, and most of them say "They fear that the Big Fat Pagan Americans are destorying their traditial way of life", but we can atleast try to prove them wrong! I mean we got 2 chances to prove to these countries we are not awful people! :cheers:
 

Billo_Really

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Originally posted by MasterDebater:
presonally i wouldnt care if we just nuked the hole dammed mid east. it would take away from the terrorism that is problem in todays world. of course that is too extreme, but we need to weed out terrorism wear it strats.
And the reason for this is because...

 

Deegan

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Billo_Really said:
And the reason for this is because...

That's a lot of hate, I hope you get help for that, really....before it's too late.;)
 

Billo_Really

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Originally posted by Deegan:
That's a lot of hate, I hope you get help for that, really....before it's too late
There is a miracle cure. Its called impeachment!
 

Deegan

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Billo_Really said:
There is a miracle cure. Its called impeachment!

That will happen when Bill is fired from FOX, Again, get help soon!;)
 

teacher

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Billo_Really said:
And the reason for this is because...

Deegan said:
That's a lot of hate, I hope you get help for that, really....before it's too late.;)
Good, jurys still out, good,hate him,good, so-so
who?,puss,the best,who?,rock solid
the best,who?,diplomat,(thompson?the best),who?
not bad,self rightous,jerk,the worst,good under Reagan,how the fuc*k did he get elected?
tight,finger in the wind-er,when ever I lok at him I think"likes little boys",good, good mayor thats all,(Scalia?good,),good with Reagan,media spinner,ok,cowboy

The best:Rumy
The worst: Tie Ashcroft/Fawell
 

Billo_Really

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Originally posted by Deegan:
That will happen when Bill is fired from FOX, Again, get help soon
Not if Americans start acting like Americans. I used to be a proud American, now I'm an ashamed one!
 

Deegan

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Billo_Really said:
Not if Americans start acting like Americans. I used to be a proud American, now I'm an ashamed one!

The freedom we enjoy, also allows you to leave!:2wave:
 

cnredd

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teacher said:
Good, jurys still out, good,hate him,good, so-so
who?,puss,the best,who?,rock solid
the best,who?,diplomat,(thompson?the best),who?
not bad,self rightous,jerk,the worst,good under Reagan,how the fuc*k did he get elected?
tight,finger in the wind-er,when ever I lok at him I think"likes little boys",good, good mayor thats all,(Scalia?good,),good with Reagan,media spinner,ok,cowboy

The best:Rumy
The worst: Tie Ashcroft/Fawell
Why Ashcroft?...Was there something about fire sprinkler thingies in the Patriot Act?...I know you hate Falwell cause he thinks you're top-tens suck.
 

stsburns

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Billo Still dodging the issues to replace them with his own ideas!
 

Billo_Really

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Originally posted by Deegan:
The freedom we enjoy, also allows you to leave
I'm not going anywhere. The only choice you have is to learn how to deal with me!
 

akyron

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teacher said:
They hate us because we support Israel and have troops in holy lands.

Well yeah. Thats straight out of the terrorist manual ie the Koran.

Kill the Unbelievers,Christians, and Jews.
I know its a hard read but if you want to understand this read the whole thing, the sunnah and the hadiths.
It is a real trip.
I have little interest in religion except to attempt to understand why the cult mentality is so prevalent on this globe.

The next person that successfully advocates 1 religion or no religion will win peace on earth.
 

anomaly

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akyron said:
Well yeah. Thats straight out of the terrorist manual ie the Koran.

Kill the Unbelievers,Christians, and Jews.
I know its a hard read but if you want to understand this read the whole thing, the sunnah and the hadiths.
It is a real trip.
I have little interest in religion except to attempt to understand why the cult mentality is so prevalent on this globe.

The next person that successfully advocates 1 religion or no religion will win peace on earth.
Cannot different interpretations of your beloved 'Bible' produce such terrorism as well? Or have you too much faith?
 
V

Von Clausewitz

Bestial_Pagan said:
When do we understand that money is not the issue but EDUCATION. Give them teachers, and tools to survive, not food to enslave them. They are dependent on us, that´s why they hate us.And I am really really proud of Great Britain. QUOTE]

:applaud very nice points...

I would like to add to the conversation that the west and Islam have been at odds well before the 2003 Iraq war started... We have forgotten what it is like to live in the medieval ages and the crusades because we have evolved. However, the Islamics remember it like it was just yesterday, they are still living it! For instance, we are still the hated "infidels". In the last 500 years we have developed the scientific method and modern democracy. They on the other hand have been stuck in a theocratic quagmire. Thankfully the west had people like Copernicus, Isaac Newton, or Thomas Paine (just to name a few) to push in the main stream fact from fiction.

To put a slight addition to what Bestial_Pagan wrote... I would like to say that education isn't always easy. I am perfectly fine if it takes blowing a few heads off by Barrett 0.50 cal sniper rifles, or flattening mudhouses with tanks for them to learn... if it's tough **** for them, **** 'em. It's time they get into the modern world.
 
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