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Freedom and way of life

  1. Aug 7, 2006 #1
    "freedom and way of life"

    I kept hearing this comment from bush and the republican party frequently:
    The terrorists attacked us (9/11, uss cole, etc) because they "hated our freedom and our way of life"

    I don't think "they" hated and attacked us because of our "freedom" and "way of life" unless it effected "their way of life". So what did we do to them that made them hated us so much? I think one of the reasons is our support for israel but what else?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 7, 2006 #2


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    was pure propaganda, although bin Laden and some fundamentalist disapprove of what they consider "Western decadence".

    bin Laden is opposed to the Saudi government and the control of the Saud family, which is supported by the US. bin Laden also objected to the presence of US troops in Saudi Arabia, i.e. he objected to the presence of infidels in his holy land. Of course, he objects to the US support of Israel.
  4. Aug 8, 2006 #3
    What some consider "our freedom" is our ability as a nation to conduct international affairs, inclusive of the fact that our collective might is often misused by a minority of opportunists for their benefit and at the expense of countless others around the globe. That expression of so-called "freedom" is quite simply a part of our way of life; although that holds true for some of us much less than others.
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2006
  5. Aug 8, 2006 #4


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    Bin Laden's open letter to America: http://observer.guardian.co.uk/worldview/story/0,11581,845725,00.html

    Bin Laden states as his reason for attacking us that we attacked Islam first:
    But then his demands start off far broader:
    So it would be correct to say he hates us primarily because of percieved attacks on Islam, but as you can clearly see, his goals are not merely to stop that, but to go much further: "destroying our way of life" is a paraphrase of his first 3 goals.
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2006
  6. Aug 8, 2006 #5
    Does Osamah Bin Laden state that he wants to destroy our way of life? can Islam and western philosophy mix, do you know any people who are Islamic and yet mix comfortably with western values and their own, I do I work with stacks of them every day. Even if Osamah does want to destroy our values and our way of life, he's right in one way we are lies and cheats to ourselves and others, and our political machinations are more transparent than they used to be, this something we should get used to before the government considers trying to lie to it's people again. Once bitten twice shy.

    We all know Osmah Bin laden is a nut and no one agrees with his methodology, at least no one who isn't radicalised, but if you have ever listened to his speeches, in some areas he has a point. Did the US not attack Libya in a time of peace between the countries, causing the deaths of many civillians, from a sneak attack? I distinctly remember Osamah citing this as an act of terror and demanding to know how this is different from using bombs to kill civillians? Whilst I can see that there is a difference of deliberately targetting civillians you can see why he's p'd off, or perhaps you can't, if you think Israels bombing runs are justified you probably wouldn't care about civillians that much. Again this is how these acts are percieved whether this is true or not, and where does this logic lead them? I'll leave it up to your imagination.

    PS: I don't think Osamah is stupid enough to believe he can destroy our way of life, his primary goals are to rid the Middle East of western influence, and frankly although I abhor his methods I don't consider that such a bad thing any more.
  7. Aug 8, 2006 #6
    here is a CBC report that not only shows how our influence effects people in the Middle East on a personal level, but also explains why we generally don't hear about such things:

    Last edited: Aug 8, 2006
  8. Aug 8, 2006 #7
    What in that video shows how our influence affects people in the Middle East? We don't command the Israeli military.
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2006
  9. Aug 8, 2006 #8
    We empower the Israeli military, and we do a lot more than that as well.
  10. Aug 9, 2006 #9
    I think a lot has to do with funding Israel and selling them weapons and jet fuel etc. I seem to recall seeing older videos where terrorists weren't angry so much at America itself, but wanted America to stay out of Israel and the middle east and let them deal with themselves. I think that is a good idea as since Americas been helping Israel and had any sort of diplomatic or military presence in Israel the situation has probably been worse off. The cold war seems to live on through Israel and the middle east. The arab nations gettin a lot of weaponry from Russian and Israel getting a lot of weaponry from America. Lives lost for nothing.
  11. Aug 9, 2006 #10


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    He doesn't explicitly state he wants to destroy it altogether, he just lists certain specific and general components of it he wants to destroy which add up to pretty much everything that western life is.
    Irrelevant question (yet ironically leading exactly to the point): I'm not Islamic, so to mix Islamic and western philosophy, I'd need to give up my christian-western way of life.
    I don' t know any personally, but in the US anyway, the Islam people practice bears little resemblance to what Bin Laden is talking about. So that's not relevant either.
    That's a pretty useless thing to say - you define Bin Laden as a radical and then say no one except radicals agree with him. Duh.

    Whatever you think about the popular opinions in the Middle East and whether the governing bodies such as the Hamas controlled PA would also be considered radical is also not relevant: this OP was about Bin Laden.
    Not everything Hitler said was completely off the wall either. So what?
    I'm not sure to what you are referring, but my guess would be to this:

    Libya at that time was openly hostile to the West and conducting state sponsored terrorist acts. No, I don't consider that a "time of peace between the countries".
    Everyone has reasons for being pissed-off. Hitler did. The kids at Columbine did. So what? They are still murderers and he's still a terrorist.
    That bears no resemblance to my actual opinion and you know it.
    The world understands perfectly well where Bin Laden gets his perceptions and how his logic works. So what? Are you suggesting we should make a serious effort to appease him or reason with him?
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2006
  12. Aug 9, 2006 #11
    You can respect where a person legitimately has a point, regardless of if you are able to reason with that person or not. Also, the relationship between Christians and Islamic teachings is relevant to this topic as such commonality can lead to mutual understanding.
  13. Aug 9, 2006 #12


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    So what? How is that helpful here?
    How so? Bin Laden does not want "mutual understanding".
  14. Aug 9, 2006 #13


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    Because if you acknowledge their good points, then you can work it into diminishing their bad points to come to a compromise. Just because we're already at war doesn't mean all chances of an agreement have been lost. Militairy Muscle can (and will be) used to help force an agreement. It's very plausible to defeat an enemy, still respect some of their views (and even honor them) while removing their hamrful intentions, even if they're reluctant, at least you're reducing the possibility of vengeance, in which case you've only paused the war.

    Unfortunately, our administration is just as stubborn as any middle eastern 'administration', and they don't want any of their supporters (us) getting any ideas that Osama 'may have a point in one aspect'. They want our total support in 'annihilating those bastard evil-doers that brought us 9/11".
  15. Aug 9, 2006 #14
    I think that in general Middle Easterners have a distrust for outsiders. Historically, like for the last two thousand years or so, They have gone through a series of invasions, and occupations. The last series of occupations only ended after WWII.

    The USA has supported a number of, kings, princes, potentates, dictators (have I missed any?), for the last sixty years. These leaders have often not been kind to their own citizens, especially the lower classes.

    When we throw their religion and theocratic governance and laws into this we really have a political/cultural difference. We say we want to spread democracy to the Middle east, but I doubt that the average Islamic has any idea what democracy even means.

    We have had thousands of Islamics, especially the wealthier ones, come here to recieve their education. They didn't return home and start expounding on the advantages of a democratic government. What makes us think we can accomplish democracy at gun point?

    Somehow we have to establish a relationship based on trust and not oil.
    Which brings another point to mind. In another thirty years or so when most of the oil from the middle east is gone, will we still be the great supporters of Israel that we are now?
  16. Aug 9, 2006 #15
    That doesn't mean we're responsible for an Israeli soldier's decisions on the ground.
  17. Aug 9, 2006 #16
    The problem is that we get the blame for in anyway in the eyes of the Islamics.
  18. Aug 9, 2006 #17
    First of all, a person who practices Islam is called a Muslim (read with a soft "s"), not an Islamic.

    Secondly, democracy has existed in Islam centuries before it appeared in the Modern European civilizations (and obviously before America even existed). Read about "shura" for example.

    Now, the problem isn't that Muslims do not understand democracy, nor is it that they do not want it. Quite the contrary in fact: a lot of Arabs would love to rid themselves of their current leaders and reconstruct their governments. This won't happen, however, if America keeps force its ideology on the Arab people, simply because the average folk do not trust it and in fact consider them an enemy. So, if you look at it from their perspective, what they see is an attempt to control the Arab world through a new series of puppet governments under false pretenses of new freedoms and whatnot -- just like their fellow British did a few decades ago.

    Just wanted to clarify.
  19. Aug 9, 2006 #18
    The Romans innovated republican governance over large territory which persisted even under imperator rule. How is Islamic feudalism a step or more towards democracy compared to that?

    If you believe that, then pity Islamic culture, for it is sick and delusional.
  20. Aug 9, 2006 #19


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    Culture and advances in the middle east appear to have come to a screeching halt with the introduction of the Islamic faith.
  21. Aug 9, 2006 #20
    They're credited with a number of inventions and advances in astronomy, mathematics, and medecine. But, yeah, there was a definite deterioration.
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2006
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