Friday, August 26, 2016
The "New Normal" (the Two Mainstreams, cont.)
As a longtime regular contributor of articles to the pinnacle of the Counter-Jihad Mainstream (CJM), Jihad Watch, and as having become well-known in CJM circles years ago when he published his important book, The Al Qaeda Reader, the Egyptian-American Christian Raymond Ibrahim can be said to be solidly CJM.
In a recent article he published at Jihad Watch titled "Are Nonstop Muslim Atrocities the 'New Norm'?" Ibrahim examines that question. What's interesting is not so much where he differs from the broader Western Mainstream, but where he lines up with it.
As I wrote last month in an essay titled, This is the "New Normal" is a defeatist phrase, some in the Counter-Jihad Mainstream seem to agree with, for example, the Prime Minister of France, who said in the wake of the horrific Islamic massacre in Nice, France, that “...France is going to have to live with terrorism....”
Now along comes Raymond Ibrahim whose entire essay is on one level an acceptance of this New Normal. Ibrahim himself quotes the Prime Mininster of France, as well as other Western Mainstream politicians saying basically the same thing. And of course Ibrahim chides them; but what is conspicuous in his essay is the absence of the most important reason why the broader Western Mainstream is wrong: The phrase "New Normal" implies that Muslims in their pursuit of a global revival of Jihad are not forcing our future onto a trajectory leading to our destruction; that, rather, the West will just keep chugging along as the West, with the only difference being an increase in randomly exploding and stabbing Muslims popping up with a regularity and frequency that may be getting incrementally worse, but not worse in a game-changing, metastatic way that threatens to destroy our societies.
Thus, two opposing sides examining this problem of terrorism could both agree that it's the "New Normal", but they would only differ in how they respond to it as such. The CJM, in its oh-so robust and no-nonsense way tough on Jihad, advocates stiffer wrist-slapping. As Ibrahim himself puts it in this article:
A ban on or serious vetting of Muslim immigration—which a majority of Americans support—and close monitoring of already existing mosques and Islamic centers would virtually eliminate Islamic terror from America.
Sure, this is more than what the broader Western Mainstream wants to do. But that doesn't mean the CJM model is adequately responding to the actual nature of the problem of Muslims.
This lack of a sense of the urgency of the metastatic dimension of the problem seems to be shared by both Mainstreams, the broader Western one, and the Counter-Jihad microcosm of it. Nowhere in his essay does Ibrahim show the slightest hint of the metastatic dimension to this problem and how its analytical absence is the crux of the whole deficiency of the PC MC paradigm which dominates throughout the broader Western Mainstream. His last sentence may seem to be a hint of it --
For the fact remains: unlike natural disasters—earthquakes, tsunamis, tornadoes, and the like—we actually do not need to “live with” Islam
-- but since nowhere else in his essay does he advert to it, one may reasonably assume what he means by “not living with Islam” does not involve an actual extrication of all Muslims from the West.
Thus, somehow, incoherently, the West for an indefinite future will be able to -- will have to -- continue living with millions of Muslims even though (hopefully) we will have ceased to “live with” Islam after the West finally agrees, a few decades from now, to inch further along to put the seemingly robust but actually timid and half-assed measures of the CJM into place. Meanwhile, during those coming decades, we can be assured that millions more Muslims will move into and be born in the West (along with a growing number of psychologically marginal Western converts to Islam).
Thus yet again we see the odd disconnection in the CJM between the problem of Islam, and the problem of Muslims -- where it is really only the former we must grapple with, and not the latter in any significant way, as though one can do the one and not the other.