Friday, March 9, 2007

Past few days-quiet. A welcome reprieve from the storm.

I've been spending my downtime reading The Crisis of Islam by Bernard Lewis. He mentions some interesting facts about Bid Laden's comments before 9/11. Muslims are, for the most part, acutely aware of their history more than Americans (this is a vague generality, of course). They rarely identify themselves by geographical location as we do, instead refering to geneology.
I mention this, because Osama Bin Laden declared a call to Jihad based on "what has taken place over 80 years ago." Asking any American at that time what the reference was would have resulted in an inability to answer. But Muslims are very aware of the events early in the 20th century: The downfall of the Ottoman Empire in Constantipole. In 1918, the British empire defeated the last Caliphate, leading to a de-centralized Islamic faith. And after three centuries of weakening Muslim influence and stongholds, Christdom and the Western World in general prevailed.
And now the Western World finds itself in what we would like to call a War on Terror. Undoubtedly, we stive to have Muslims on our side to fight a common enemy, the terrorist. But so far, we have been unsuccessful.....and have been losing ground the last few years instead of gaining.
We need to ask ourselves if the Muslim majority is really with us, or does the seemingly sympathetic view of the foreign fighters and Jihadists reflect their true feelings? I feel I am qualified to possibly add one informed comment on Iraq, and the Anbar Province in particular: The U.S. is struggling to police a sectarian civil war.......we are absolutely caught in a wedge that seems impossible to get out of. It wasn't our original intent, but is the paradox we currently find ourselves in.

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