10 years have passed since the greatest terrorist atrocity in history. A decade is a long time. In a decade our kids look different, they pass from one stage of life to another.
Or George Galloway who is nothing more than the 21 Century version of Oswald Mosley, being the propaganda agent of a hostile regime, one, like the one Mosley promoted, planning another (or as they would say the first and only) final solution to the Jewish problem.
I stumbled upon a post in CIF by Edward Said which appeared on Sept 16th 2001. Edward Said is the guru of the so called progressive left when it comes to dealing with the affairs of the Middle East, Islam and the supposedly American / Western/ Zionist inspired clash of civilizations.
Said was a great influence on Barack Obama and he embodies the Guardian World View where Israel, its lobbies and American capitalism are the causes of terrorism emanating from an “oppressed” Muslim street which is a victim of imperialism, Zionism and American capitalism.
Obama removed references to terrorism and radical Islam from the 911 ceremonies.
Said wrote in 2001:
You’d think that ‘America’ was a sleeping giant rather than a superpower almost constantly at war, or in some sort of conflict, all over the Islamic domains. Osama bin Laden’s name and face have become so numbingly familiar to Americans as in effect to obliterate any his tory he and his shadowy followers might have had before they became stock symbols of everything loathsome and hateful to the collective imagination. Inevitably, then, collective passions are being funnelled into a drive for war that uncannily resembles Captain Ahab in pursuit of Moby Dick, rather than what is going on, an imperial power injured at home for the first time, pursuing its interests systematically in what has become a suddenly reconfigured geography of conflict, without clear borders, or visible actors. Manichaean symbols and apocalyptic scenarios are bandied about with future consequences and rhetorical restraint thrown to the winds.
Rational understanding of the situation is what is needed now, not more drum-beating. George Bush and his team clearly want the latter, not the former. Yet to most people in the Islamic and Arab worlds the official US is synonymous with arrogant power, known for its sanctimoniously munificent support not only of Israel but of numerous repressive Arab regimes, and its inattentiveness even to the possibility of dialogue with secular movements and people who have real grievances. Anti-Americanism in this context is not based on a hatred of modernity or technology-envy: it is based on a narrative of concrete interventions, specific depredations and, in the cases of the Iraqi people’s suffering under US-imposed sanctions and US support for the 34-year-old Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories. Israel is now cynically exploiting the American catastrophe by intensifying its military occupation and oppression of the Palestinians. Political rhetoric in the US has overridden these things by flinging about words like ‘terrorism’ and ‘freedom’ whereas, of course, such large abstractions have mostly hidden sordid material interests, the influence of the oil, defence and Zionist lobbies now consolidating their hold on the entire Middle East, and an age-old religious hostility to (and ignorance of) ‘Islam’ that takes new forms every day.
These paragraphs say it all. As if no other creative writer ever existed at the Guardian. Said is the prophet and the rest of the contributors must only repeat versions of his visions.
Most writings on this conflict are, in one way or another versions of this narrative. This is the Hadith the Guardinistas quote day after day. Like Pakistani children sitting on the floors of Madrassas, they chant these passages only changing the order by which lines follow each other.
America, arrogant, Zionism, lobbies, oil, Palestine, children of Iraq, children of Afghanistan (no mention of these children under Saddam and the Taliban), imperialism, colonialism, capitalism. The next day its Israel, America, imperialism, arrogant, Palestine, lobbies, Iraq, Afghanistan….you get the idea…
As if in a trance or in some Pavlovian experiment, these ideas and theories persist despite the world turning over to new chapters of history.
A decade has passed, yet no maturity, no self reflection, no remorse, no rethinking. The text and its dogma are sacred. Like the Koran which cannot be amended, re-interpreted as that would be sacrilege. The Guardian is like the Muslim street. Never would it re-assess its views or its mistakes or see things even in a slightly different light. It merely re-asserts its demands and view which blame everything on the civilization under attack by its co-religionists.
In this decade we saw more terror attacks. London, Madrid, Bali, Fort Hood, the attacks on Synagogues in Turkey, the attempts at more mayhem in the skies using liquid bombs and plots against the NY subway and the Frankfurt airport. We saw more “militants” in their videos calling for the world wide caliphate, sharia and the re-conquest of Spain and Palestine under the Ummah. Yet at the Guardian the attackers are us. We are the colonizers, we are the zionists and oppressors. No facts, no history will change that.
A religious dogma is defined as an unchangeable set of ideas transcending the tracks of time. They survive despite and not because of the changes in time. At the Guardian we are dealing with a religious dogma. A dogma which infused the Saidian version of history with the sour grapes hatred of capitalism in light of the fall of the communist block. The total rejection of the totalitarian imposed righteousness was the year 1989. The Guardian still didn’t acknowledge that. It still tries to depict the yearning for freedom by Eastern Europeans as a result of imperialist plots drawn up in the back rooms of MI5 or the CIA. In Islamism they found another righteous totalitarianism. Another totalitarianism which claims to fight for the oppressed. Though just like the USSR in its days, it is the most imperialist of ideologies around today. The Guardian is the place where atheists can become Islamists.