Do Root Causes Require Laying An Axe To The Root?

Cal Thomas: Terrorism’s root causes

“Terrorism’s root causes” is Cal Thomas’ analysis of terrorism having its source in religiously based morality. This is more apparent as time advances: that the battleground for our modern world rests on the religious differences. More and more thinkers are coming to see this connection.

Strange throwback, and yet with a twist: it is broader and more general than the conflicts of old. It is ideological in its most basic sense rather than the specific doctrinal stands.

There are some who argue that this is an internal conflict within Islam. I think that is part of it, but I am going to say something very controversial here. Those who approve of jihad do so because they recognize it as a basic part of their religion. The more moderate Muslims have pushed that part of their religion to the background, as many Mormons pushed their polygamy to the background. It might be obscured, but it doesn’t erase those tenets from their religions.

I think this is why you do not see a strong move on the part of “moderate” Islam to criticise terrorism. They tend to obscure and excuse it, but they do not confront and reject it. The moderate Muslims have found peace and safety for themselves within Western countries with ideals of diverse tolerance of religion, they have prospered in the havens of secular government with its Christian morality base. But they do not want to be found defending it.

I feel sorry for such, to a degree, because they are caught in between a rock and a hard place. Literally. The pressure is going to become great for them. And they will increasingly find no foundation to stand upon. They know in their heart that their fundamentalist compatriots will not modify in any way whatsoever. They know this. How do I know? Because this is something that religious people can recognize if they open their eyes. I understand whole hearted conviction, and I also understand that such can be manipulated and abused.

Cal Thomas says here:”This is a religious war. The terrorists understand it as such.”.

Let me tell you something about this, the nature of religious war is very black and white. There are no gray areas in such a conflict.

This is all I will say here…. this is enough to think about for now.

5 thoughts on “Do Root Causes Require Laying An Axe To The Root?”

  1. Very well said. There’s a reason why they are in that rock/hard place position, and it will require (for the person who is honest with themselves) re-thinking everything they believe.

  2. I think you have a point. But I read a blog in the last few days in which muslims were discussing reforming Islam and parts of the Qur’an. SOme do actually think the jihad idea needs revising and that Mohammed was not infallible.
    Also muslims I know do not all believe jihad is offensive – they disagree with making offensive attacks but agree with defending if attacked.
    I’ve read the Qur’an and agree it’s in there – and many muslims do know that. But some actually want to revise the Qur’an and some as you say ignore those parts.
    Interesting post.

  3. As the activity of jihadists moves more out of the confinements of Islamic countries into the rest of the world, Muslims will find themselves faced with having to deal with these theological issues.

    There is more than one way for this to work out, but one thing that I believe is happening spiritually is that God is answering years of prayer that the Gospel will reach many of these people.

    I just am not sure how that is playing out, but one thing is clear: pressures are there for the moderate Muslim, and that can only increase.

  4. Deeply unimpressed with Mr Thomas’s piece. But you knew I was going to say that, right?

    For a start it’s the usual blog-hawk stuff about how we have to “get tough” “strike at the root” of this problem, how we musn’t let our secular wimpishness stand in the way and must face facts, etc etc. The problem there, of course, is he hasn’t come right out and said what the problem is (although one can guess from a reading of the text) or what we should do about it, apart from being tough, facing reality, standing firm, etc. I can do all that from my bedroom, and Tony B probably does it standing in front of a mirror. Let us hear some real plans.

    Is “the answer” to ban the practice of Islam? Deport Muslims? Jail Muslim clerics? Send vigilante groups against Muslims? Force all Muslims to repent and change religion? Something like the PM and cabinet make a speech on TV saying Islam has become the biggest threat facing our country and henceforth all known Muslims will be rounded up and put into Guantanamo-style holding camps?

    From all his talk about “dealing with the root cause”, it’s evident that he has something rather full-on in mind. But he hasn’t the balls to come out and say it, and rattles off some more of the hawkish nonsense which some conservative commentators seem to be able to do in their sleep, blaming everyone else for being all secular and icky and wimpy, when he is not even able to say what he thinks they SHOULD be doing instead. That seems rather hypocritical.

  5. Secondly, he is making little sense with his main argument.

    “They think they can explain it using Western standards.”

    The Western standard presumably being “people do things for a reason”. Of course, we all know that the benighted heathens of foreign parts are nothing but a cauldron of savage hatred and nihilism, and we have to use force on them as it’s all they understand *sigh*

    Anyway, even if one thought that way, these men were British. Are we not to use “Western standards” to judge the British, even? 😉

    “Having abandoned a sense of personal responsibility for one’s actions, the explainers and excusers of evil and illegal acts in America 40 years ago have been reincarnated in Britain.”

    I feel sorry for anyone who thinks “an explanation” and “an excuse” are the same thing. The reason for trying to find out why this happened is not to let terrorists off or kid on they’re all great guys who took a slightly wrong path, it’s to prevent further acts of terrorism happening. You would think Thomas would regard this as a good thing, but instead he’s busy babbling on about “tough solutions” which he’s strangely too shy to name.

    ” Netanyahu recalled the numerous terror attacks before the Iraq war and prior to 9/11, noting there was Islamic terrorism before 1948 when Israel became a modern state. If recent Israeli, American and British policies cause terrorism, how does one explain earlier terrorism?”

    Mr Netanyahu has managed to forget the history of his own country a bit here…

    “Why must America and Britain be held accountable for every perceived and actual slight against Muslims, but beheadings of Westerners receive little more than pro forma condemnation and are soon forgotten?”

    Now it’s Thomas’s turn to forget history. People aren’t angry because “we aren’t helping them enough, even though we help them loads” as he disingenously implies. The real reason is that there are people in the Muslim world who have suffered and died as a direct result of US/UK policies.

    It’s those hooks with which the dangerous men catch naive and idealistic young students and turn them into bombers. You couldn’t turn someone into a suicide bomber by pointing out he doesn’t have a BMW.

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