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Just How Many Muslims Support Terrosism

  1. Jul 18, 2005 #1

    russ_watters

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    A few weeks ago, I and a few others were called "racist" for expressing our perception that a disturbingly significant fraction of Muslims support terrorism and the related perception that very little open criticism of terrorism or terrorist groups goes on in Muslim countries. I freely acknowledge that that's a perception/stereotype - brought on, in large part, by reading the newspaper and debating people in forums such as this who either support or refuse to unequivocably condemn terrorism. Does that make it racism? Only if the perception is unwarranted and fuels generalized hate.

    Well, as it turns out, this is a perception that can relatively easily be measured against reality (the "hate" part can easily be answered with the mirror in the last paragraph of my post). All you have to do is ask Muslims if they support terrorism. Ask them if they have confidence that Osama Bin Laden is acting in the best interests of the Islamic world. And here's what Muslims have to say on the issue: http://pewglobal.org/reports/display.php?ReportID=248

    Percentage who often/sometimes support suicide bombings against civilians:
    Jordan 57
    Lebanon 39
    Pakistan 25
    Indonesia 15
    Turkey 14
    Morocco 13

    Percentage who think Bin Laden is "doing the right thing regarding world affairs"
    Jordan 60
    Pakistan 51
    Indonesia 35
    Morocco 26
    Turkey 7
    Lebanon 2

    Also of note is the discrepancy between Muslim's attitudes toward non-Muslims vs non-Muslim's attitudes toward Muslims. Ie, while virtually 100% of Jordanians have an "unfavorable" view of Jews, only 22% of Americans have an unfavorable view of Muslims.

    These numbers (which, btw, are down since 2002 in most countries, contrary to what the Democratic Party and many foreigners would have us believe) paint a distubing picture of widespread support for terrorism in Muslim nations (with emphasis on a few nations in specific problem areas).

    These attitudes also manifest in this forum. There is a disturbing tenancy for some to defend the concept of terrorism by arguing over its definition or equating intentional vs unintentional deaths, while refusing to unequivocably condemn specific acts under any name.

    Word-play also happens with words like "condone" vs "justify" vs "understand". Such hairs are not worth splitting: no matter how one chooses to defend terrorism, its still murder and still wrong. No, it is not ever even "understandable" (that one came up recently). Even for someone who recently lost a loved-one, temporary insanity can legally only last a matter of minutes. After that, a person is responsible for their actions and to act on rage and kill uninvolved people because of some weak association is murder, period. It is not understandable. It makes no more sense than killing the neighbors of someone who killed a family member of yours in a car accident.

    It may be noteworthy that they didn't ask Americans if they support suicide bombings. Anyone wonder why that is? Its because Americans never do such things. (caveat: Oaklahoma City is the only such incident I know of and was an attack on the government, not random civilians). It almost sounds absurd to even suggest it: Why haven't any family members of 9/11 victims flown to Saudia Arabia or Afghanistan to blow up busses and trains? Simple answer: we just don't do such things. That significant fractions of certain Muslim countries not only tolerate, but actually condone such actions is horrid.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2005
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  3. Jul 18, 2005 #2

    AKG

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    I think you're wrong about the "understandable" issue. Although some people will be quick to dismiss that it is understandable because they may feel that it, in some sense, condones the act, there is a difference between "understandable" and "condoned" and it can be argued that their actions are understandable. If a group feels that they are threatened and that their only possible recourse is terrorism, then it is understandable that they would commit terrorist acts. Whether they really are threatened and whether terrorism really is their only resort are irrelevant, because it is understandable that people might accidentally come to false conclusions regarding these matters. If they are largely uneducated and blasted with propoganda all the time, we can certainly understand why they would have these false impressions.

    Also, consider the following:

    Hindu Community Anticipates Opening of Their New Temple
    The Hamilton Spectator

    HAMILTON, ONTARIO, CANADA, November 2, 2004: It has been over three years since the Hamilton Hindu community was devastated when their temple was burned down after the 9/11 terrorist attacks (by attackers thinking the temple was connected to Islam). However the community pulled together and now in January of 2005 they are preparing to officially open their new place of worship in the same location but in a different structure. After consulting astrologers, the Hindu Samaj Temple board of directors decided that the opening ceremonies would take place in January 2005 as the time period from mid-January to mid-July is considered to be the most auspicious time for the temple. Dr. Mahendra Deonarain, religious secretary on the board, explains, "Temple leaders weren't willing to leave anything to fate after their Hamilton Mountain temple was burned down in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. So they enlisted the expertise of not one but two astrologers on the question of exactly where to position the new temple building and another two on when best to launch it." Many in the congregation would have liked to open the temple with Deepavali celebrations but instead they celebrated the Hindu New Year in the basement of the still-unfinished temple. The news release says, "Congregants are impatient to unveil the new building, made fireproof by a steel structure. But drywall dust must be replaced by tile, carpet and paint. They are even more anxious to have a look at brand new marble and granite deities freshly arrived from India."
    (Source)
     
  4. Jul 18, 2005 #3
    It may be that they are asking the wrong questions.

    Maybe if they asked, "Do you feel like you are a member of a nation with the most powerful military on earth?"

    "Do you feel you are represented on the world stage with Justice?"

    "Do you feel that the most powerful nation on earth is interfering with your country in a detrimental manner?"

    "Are you desperate enough to do anything to stop international injustice?"

    Russ, any questionnaire can be written to extract the information in the way you desire it.

    You talk of splitting hairs over the definition of words ... here is something you have failed to take into consideration ... all those words you mentioned ... They're a red herring. The questions were not written in English.

    The questions were written in America by the Pew Group and have about as much validity as the IQ tests given to African Americans that 'proved' they were of lower intelligence.

    Your assumptions as in the above paragraph?

    Americans don't need to support suicide bombings when they have an efficient military that can kill thousands of people from the comfort of jets, bradleys, humvees, tanks, battle cruisers, aircraft carriers and ultimately ... bunkers with a button that can launch nuclear devices. And all of this is done with minimal casualties on the side of the Americans.

    What you don't seem to 'get' are all the people who come out and support 'nuking China' ... Americans do things in a big way ... don't you think that 'nuking China' is the biggest suicide bombing that you could ever come up with?

    Remember, a statistician is a man who can have his head in an oven and his feet frozen into a block of ice and say, "On average, I feel okay".
     
  5. Jul 18, 2005 #4

    PerennialII

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    How can labeling something beyond comprehension be an approach to discussion, or anything for that matter? Me-good-you-bad - isn't a moral guideline, I'm surprised how it is so easy to immediately start questioning and undermining the 'character' and 'motifs' of persons who're trying to comprehend the situation and the root causes of terrorism. This sort of an approach essentially makes it a taboo, which is given a label and can't be addressed in any way, making the discussion intolerable and if let to prevail, nonexistent. The world isn't black and white, loss of a loved one hurts as much in all parts of the globe, one universal truth in this matter.

    Well put AKG.
     
  6. Jul 18, 2005 #5

    russ_watters

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    Well, that's different from the context in which it was used, but what you're saying has anther problem. Someone in another thread described that as "f'd up logic" - but its still wrong: logic requires a good starting premise to yield a correct answer. In the case of this "f'd up logic", the reason it is "f'd" up is the starting premise ("feels that...their only possible recourse is terrorism") is flawed. Terrorism is never a viable option, much less the only one.
     
  7. Jul 18, 2005 #6

    russ_watters

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    Quite frankly, the questions asked in the poll were straightforward and the ones you ask are not. It appears you desire obfuscation above all else on this issue.
    If you'll notice, the poll didn't use the word "terrorism", it described a type of act, thus alleviating the problem of the emotionally charged word.
    You are asserting the poll is flawed/invalid. Do you have any evidence to back up this assertion? Poll data from somewhere else that says something different?
    The US military has not attacked Saudia Arabia and Saudia Arabia was the source of most of the terrorists. Therefore, American citizens do (by the "f'd up logic" you prefer) need to start going over to Saudia Arabia and bombing busses.
    Um... you wish to present some poll data that indicates that a significant fraction of the US would favor "nuking China"? :confused: :confused:
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2005
  8. Jul 18, 2005 #7

    russ_watters

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    You honestly believe that people in here who are opinionated enough to argue these things are honestly trying to comprehend anything? To me it looks like there is an awful lot of purposeful evasion and obfuscation and very little attempt to understand and be consistent with the issue.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2005
  9. Jul 18, 2005 #8

    russ_watters

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    This needs to be emphasized:
    I agree with that, but that begs the question: Why don't American civilians fly to Saudia Arabia and bomb busses? [edited for a loophole that implied something different from what was meant] Clearly, there is something about that pain that is not universal.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2005
  10. Jul 18, 2005 #9
    how many americans support killing innocent civilians ?
    stupid discussion anyway, because if USA were bombed, invaded etc you would have resistance.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2005
  11. Jul 18, 2005 #10

    vanesch

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    This is just too nice an opportunity :tongue2:

    Because they fly to Iraq to bomb cities :rofl:
     
  12. Jul 18, 2005 #11
    Way too many. And most of the ones who don't actively support it, won't condemn it either. And most of the ones who condemn it are not willing to take decisive action against it.

    Also, isn't it funny how they act all indignant when one dares criticize them? They slam planes into our buildings, bomb our buses and trains full of civilians, and on top we end up apologizing to them? :mad:
     
  13. Jul 18, 2005 #12

    vanesch

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    Yes, did you only find that out now ? Europe (France in particular) has a slightly longer history of bearded Muslim zealots with bombs. So, given those data and the fact that many Muslims and Muslim states like terrorism in the West, do you still think it was a good idea to invade Iraq (one of the few Arab countries with NO significant link to terrorism) and that they would welcome you over there, and that the terrorism plague would be cured or vastly improved by doing so ? Or can you understand the (after the fact justified) fear of a lot of people that you would just open a Pandora Box ?

    Even better: what do you think "democracy" will do for you over there, given these data ?

    Or are you only discovering NOW at what point they hate us, our view of the world and our values ? And do you finally see the difference between Germany or Japan, and Arabs ? And why your little plan over there is doomed ?
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2005
  14. Jul 18, 2005 #13

    BobG

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    So your conclusion is that a significant portion of Muslims support terrorism or is it that a significant portion of Middle Eastern nations with a recent history of conflict support terrorism (although I don't know of Morocco being involved in any conflicts)?

    It may seem like a fine point, since Arab nations are mostly Muslim, but would you also draw the same conclusion about Catholic attitudes towards Protestants? How many Americans gave financial support to the IRA prior to 9/11 and what religion did most of the contributors belong to? (Note that the actual question used on the survey was the generic "Violence against civilian targets", not suicide bombers.)

    It would have been interesting to have had Kuwait, Qatar, and Yemen in the poll (they're the closest thing to democracy in the Middle East) and to have had Saudi Arabia, a country whose private citizens have contributed financially to Al Qaeda through charitable organizations. I don't know what the results would have been, but it would have provided some interesting contrasts.

    Edit: In other words, I think it's the idea that you categorized Muslims in general that caused the response. It's hard to deny that significant portions of the population of some Middle Eastern nations see jihadists as underdogs against the evil empire.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2005
  15. Jul 18, 2005 #14
    Here in the UK for instance:http://www.mcb.org.uk/home.php
    matches the American:http://www.cair-net.org/html/911statements.html

    Now interestingly if one clicks the link here:http://news.bbc.co.uk/#
    then at the 'New footage of bomber' link , one gets an insight to one of the London Bombers in 1998. The recent London Bombings shows that Muslim Youngsters are quite impressionable and influenced by Extremism:http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/talking_point/4692697.stm

    There has been an overwhelmin condemnation of terrorist attacks, by the Muslim Community in the UK, but what is 'fundemental' and what is 'Brainwashing'? a large propotion of the Muslim Community, close friends of the Bombers and their Families have come out in force, and have spoken at every opportunity to condem the London Bombing.

    Most Muslims have voiced the opinion that the Bombers have been 'Brainwashed', it now turns out that the Killers, have been murdered themselves (they were duped/brainwashed into thinking that they would have enough time to rendevouz before the Bombs went off), and the Bombers were somehow themselves victims!

    Ok..so the consensus is clear that Muslim's appear to be more vunerable to 'Brainwashing' than other ethnic people's. Is there Genetic Evidence to clarify if this is so, if so, then the Religion of Muslims, must tone down, the fundemental scripture to a level that does not cause young immpressionable Muslims to become obvious 'martyr fools'.

    Of course if Muslims to have tendancies to be easily brainwashed (and this is the overall concensus/judgement of most Muslims speaking out after 7/7), then this does not benefit their Religion in any way, the same 'brainwashing' techniques are used in Islamic Teaching/indoctrination?

    I have ventured into Islamic writings, but have always found it to be a peacefull and serene line of religious reasoning, but I am not a practicising religious person of any kind.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2005
  16. Jul 18, 2005 #15
    Russ. for experimental purpose only. i would like to ask you a question:

    How many terrorists is the us goverment suporting right now, and how many did it support in the past???

    for example:

    In the past:
    OBL
    Saddam hussein

    Rigth Now:
    President Karimov
    Luis Posada Carriles
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2005
  17. Jul 18, 2005 #16

    cronxeh

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    Americans dont suicide bomb? Well I can tell you why not - because it just sounds like a stupid idea.

    I know a lot of New Yorkers who signed up for the USMC or re-signed up for Reserves and National Guard and USAF and all the other branches, and let me tell you something - when the American military goes to war, the enemy body counts are in 10:1 ratios. Its not that the world hates us, its just that the scale of 'balance' is always tipped in our favor. Its not that they are brute animals who dont have any compassion or emotions - that is just plain false, its just that they dont want American troops and GI Joe boots on their soil, which is kinda understandable and yet somehow ununderstandable by most Americans.

    Some think of Iraqis as ingrates and wonder why dont they bend over and praise us instead of the Mecca, and cooperate with us - well most of them do, and most of them understand your point of view. However there will always be those who are used to the good 'ol times and dont want any change.

    Imagine tomorrow the Russian Air Force takes down most of the defense in US and has the tanks rolling across the Arizona border, into Texas and over G.W. Bush's property. Premise? You nuked Hiroshima - mass murder, etc etc. Justified? You say no way

    What do the rednecks do? They crawl out with guns and fight back.

    If you declared war, get ready for the body counts and never assume that it would just go down 'smoothly' and everything will be 'ok' - thats not the lesson. War always has casualty and is always pointless
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2005
  18. Jul 18, 2005 #17

    PerennialII

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    .... I do ... I sure don't presume otherwise generally or there wouldn't be anywhere to go in a discussion - it seems that lately in this respect there are two sets of arguments - one defending actions of a country or whatever, and another going against any violent/military action when discussing terrorism, foreign policies etc. And 95% of the time is used on knee jerk reactions when people (more or less blindly) defend agendas rather than engage in a discussion with any objectivity.
     
  19. Jul 18, 2005 #18

    Art

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    Regarding the source of this data;

    Madeleine K. Albright is the lady a U.S. general labelled insane for her comment to Colin Powell "What's the point of having this superb military if we don't use it."

    Hardly a credible source :rolleyes:
     
  20. Jul 18, 2005 #19

    russ_watters

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    Funny if it was meant to be, but that doesn't address the question. The way I had it in bold was a simplification of the earlier version. The full version is:

    Why do the civilian relatives of 9/11 victims not fly to Saudia Arabia to bomb busses? Ie, American civilians do not commit acts of terrorism. Why not?
     
  21. Jul 18, 2005 #20

    russ_watters

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    Please cite the medical evaluation of her mental state or retract this statement.
     
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