Reading Between the Lines on 9/11/2006

There are 1.3 billion Muslims. The fellow holding the sign, we are assured, is not typical. More likely, he illustrates the downside of encouraging cousins to marry for a few dozen generations. Polls suggest that only about 100 million Muslims are medieval fanatics. The remaining 1.2 billion are ordinary folks who want to live and let live— right?

They’ve been so quiet about the atrocities committed by their co-religionists because, well…they’re busy, you know? They’ve got lives. It’s not like they’ve just been standing on the sidelines waiting to see who wins, is it?If Catholic fanatics were blowing up innocent people we wouldn’t expect the average Catholic to protest, would we? It isn’t as if Catholics have reacted to Church leaders’ complicity in protecting pederasts with a significant drop in church attendance. Oh, wait…they have. Must be a cultural thing. Catholics get upset when innocent people are victimized. Muslims don’t, apparently, although groups like CAIR get terribly upset if anyone dares criticize Muslims for shrugging off evil. That’s a kind of empathy, I guess. They do have feelings, after all. God forbid that anyone should publish a cartoon featuring Mohammed. You’ll see some serious umbrage then.

Right-thinking folks are careful to remind us that not all Muslims are terrorists, even if nearly all terrorists are Muslim. But the hard reality is that the global jihad will end only when moderate Muslims become sufficiently inconvenienced. Pogroms. Mosque burnings. Daily Muslim-only flights — that sort of thing. Then they might be motivated to rein in their more impetuous brethren. Such a sea change would require a truly hideous provocation and an even more horrific response. Nobody (except perhaps the 100 million nutjobs) wants that.

After five years, it’s hard to find cause for optimism. The crazies still bomb and behead. The Islamic majority shrug. The few remaining defenders of Western civilization half-heartedly prosecute the Warn Terr without ever quite daring to name the real enemy (although President Bush has of late used the remarkably un-PC term “Islamic fascists”). The press barely mentions a terrorist attack in Seattle but spends days analyzing Mel Gibson’s drunken rantings, and utterly ignores the discovery of two improperly-assembled suitcase bombs on trains in Germany — a country one would think an unlikely object of Islamic ire. We’re maybe one more exploding shampoo scare away from having to fly everywhere in our skivvies.

And the Left sits up nights worrying about the weather and George Bush.

God help us. Or Allah. These days, one can’t be picky.

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