Spare a thought for Islam. Islam is really suffering.

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Discussion (51)¬

  1. Trevor+M says:

    Yup, Islam is a poor ideology to teach the kids

  2. Someone says:

    Interesting conversation I had with a cab driver (who I presumed was of Middle Eastern origin) about this earlier. He was clearly upset about the Belgium attacks, but asked why there was no demand from the terrorists. As in, why are they not asking for money, for an exchange, just something in return as ransom; why are they just randomly killing people for no good reason?
    I must confess I was not expecting that kind of reaction and could only fall back on my rather simple position – we are a fundamentally insane species and trying to reason with (or find reason in) such fanatics is rather like trying to reason with a psychopathic murderer who also hears God telling them to kill.
    To put it another way, who the hell knows.

  3. IanB says:

    Someone says:[i]hy are they not asking for money, for an exchange, just something in return as ransom; why are they just randomly killing people for no good reason?[/i]

    I can only imagine that like their christian counterparts they’re hoping for the end of the world and the return of god to punish the unbelievers and to sort out the 72 virgins. Man are they going to be disappointed. They may engineer the end of the world but conjuring up god…

  4. Alastair says:

    It’s hard not to blame the whole of Islam for the actions of a few fanatics. Particularly when you see some Muslims in social media crowing about how Daesh is doing Allah’s work.

  5. Federico+R.+Bär says:

    +Someone: …we are a fundamentally insane species… I regret to say that you got that right! Only a merciful Yahweh, God or Allah could have created a better quality! 🙂

  6. Markus says:

    Why they are doing this? Easy. Just think for a bit.

    1) to demonstrate the “strength” of Daesh in order to recruit more idiots.
    2) to sow dissent, fear and mistrust between people (unfortunately many fall for this, just look at all the right-wing parties) so Muslims feel even more excluded and are easier to recruit.
    3) and finally the ultimate “sacrifice”, to be a “martyr” and go to “heaven”

    Unfortunately we have our own brand of fanatics who do not even realize that they are the European equivalent of Daesh … but they harass and prosecute the same people (the refugees) and think they are “doing their country proud”. Nationalism is just another religion, and has the same fanatics … except for the “blowing yourself up” bit …

  7. Canneloni says:

    Alastair said: “It’s hard not to blame the whole of Islam for the actions of a few fanatics. ”

    Particularly when everything they do and say is backed up by quotes from the Koran! But it has nothing to do with Islam, of course.

  8. Micky says:

    It would be more productive to ask why terrorist leaders view this as an effective strategy, rather than ponder why the deluded fuckwits blow themselves up. It will be uncomfortable for many to have to conclude that we will lose this war unless we start reacting to atrocities in ways the terrorists and their paymasters do not want, whatever that might mean for our liberal values.

  9. David+Amies says:

    I am afraid that some unknown line will be crossed in the near future: an attack on the British royal Family, the Wimbledon Tennis championships, the Cup Final, the Boat Race, the Queen’s 90th Birthday celebrations, your choice. After that it will be open season on everyone wearing Muslim dress, having a brown skin, ‘looking like a Muslim’, mosques, Pakistani shops, etc., etc.. British people may be tolerant up to a point but they can be roused to fury. Perhaps this is what the jihadis are after but they should be careful what they wish for.

    David Amies

  10. As David Amies and others have suggested, the reason they are not making demands is that the violence itself is a tactic, a strategy. It’s all clearly stated in the ISIS magazine. There are people, the mass of people both infidels and Muslim, who live in the grey area “between good and evil”, i.e. who are not committed to either fight against the Caliphate or fight for the Caliphate. So, in a nutshell, the savagery is a very conscious and orchestrated way to polarize the entire population. There can be no middle ground. You are with us or against us. Without that polarization, there can be no grand war.
    With this understanding, it’s clear that American Republicans are agents of ISIS. So is Sam Harris.

  11. Acolyte+of+Sagan says:

    To add to Darwin’s comment, part of the strategy is aimed at stirring up hatred towards Muslims in general because it makes them easier to radicalise. So to follow through on Micky’s suggestion of reacting in ways the terrorist leaders and paymasters don’t want, we should all be hugging Muslims at every opportunity.

    My tongue is only partially in cheek.

  12. Acolyte+of+Sagan says:

    Darwin, I don’t know if you’ve come across Anjuli Pandavar, one of the new FTB bloggers? An ex-Muslim who is remarkably honest about Islam (leading certain people from another FTB blog to do their duty and whitesplain Islam to her -and fail!), she has a post up which might interest you.


  13. smee says:

    Islam has the same stated aims as International Communism did!Total World Domination! In this case its not the USSR/China financing its nut job adherents with gazillions of pounds, its Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Iran! The only reason we don’t attack them or close the mosques in the west financed by them that spread their extremist Wahabbi Salafist poison, is because our politicians are in their pocket!

  14. DocAtheist says:

    1. We (the world) have stood back and watched strings of atrocities before, over several decades, such as when they happened over and over, again, in Israel. Then, numbness set in… At least, Israelis have studied and learned something about how to deal with living in such a mess and are setting the example for Belgium, France, etc.
    2. This week, I started learning about Wahabism. Apparently, this particularly twisted take-off of Islam is the psychopathic/sociopathic foundation of ISIS and its international cells — as if other sects of Islam weren’t bad enough in their prejudices and punishments. And, it comes straight out of Saudi Arabia’s ruling family’s historical tie in with Wahhab, the founder of Wahabism. Saudi Arabia, England and America’s great friend in the middle east.
    3. I’m with you, Author: Je suis sick of this shit, also.
    4. If there really were a god, he/she/it would kill off those terrorists and leave the rest of us in peace.

  15. hotrats says:

    If you want to do formatting, you have to use carets < > not square brackets []

  16. csjm says:

    I may have said this before. I really don’t understand the 72 virgins thing. Women are 51% of the population, so we aren’t disproportional in numbers. Where are all these virgins coming from? Are they golems (manufactured by the god in question just for these guys)? Are they little girls and boys? What if you don’t like little children? Or teenagers? What if you don’t like boys? Or girls? Are the girls and women (boys and men) remade virgins whenever they are deflowered? What woman would go for that sh!t??????? What healthy adult person would want a virgin anyway? A nice, mature partner (male or female – dealer’s choice) who is well educated in the erotic arts would be my pick.

  17. DocAtheist says:

    Hotrats, that explains why the “grimace” I put after the line about Saudi friendship didn’t come through: I used carrots instead of brackets. I was grimacing very badly, when I wrote that part.

  18. csjm says:

    Back to the more serious topic of killing people in the name of religion. It does not further their cause, it only makes people angry with them. Instead of changing minds and hearts and gaining sympathy, it pisses people off. How deluded does a person have to be to think pissing people off is a good thing? It is senseless, pointless, and tragic. My sympathy/empathy for those injured and those who have lost friends and loved ones wherever in the world they may be. And hopefully, somebody, somewhere will be able to convince the deluded ones they are working against their own interests. Or, as is commonly said around here, they are shooting themselves in their own foot.

  19. CBinTH says:

    CSJM: I am under the impression that the 72 virgins are not actual women, who have lived on earth – rather, they are houris, purely adoring physically perfect creatures who enjoy the provision of indefinite physical pleasure.

    In Christianity this would raise the question of whether they have a “soul” and in humanism the question of whether they are truly alive. What questions it raises in Islam I don’t know.

    As to terrorism – I don’t believe it’s part of a strategy to undermine our society and incite a civil war. I think that’s a projection by us. An overly complicated projection. The more obvious reason for the violence is the visceral need to lash out and hurt the people we hate – and the jihadi’s tell one another that their targets are the enemies of Islam and the persecutors of Muslims. And the whole thing is ultimately a meme that has caught on, as were previous waves of terrorism, which involved kidnapping and hijacking, or assassination and bomb throwing, or the systematic elimination of security forces, or grenades in the market place, depending on the time and the place.

    In the 90’s, suicide bombing became popular. It was a strategy with many imitators. Today, the semi-random shooting or stabbing is now the latest trendy way to make a statement and become a hero. This may or may not turn out to be an improvement on the present situation. Sooner or later, the whole trend of Islamic terrorism will fall out of fashion, although the harmful ideology and us-them world view will no doubt remain, hidden like herpes within the otherwise healthy body of mainstream Islam, destined to occasionally erupt in ugly bubbles in inconvenient places before once again receding out of sight and out of mind.

    If Islamic terrorist leaders have a rationale behind their terrorism, then it is two-fold – within Muslim societies, the aim is to eliminate and to intimidate opponents. Abroad, in non-Muslim lands, those aims exist as a long term undertone but the short term benefits are the prestige earned by the attacks. Prestige translates into funding and recruits.

    By the way, I am of course a non-expert.

  20. Acolyte+of+Sagan says:

    csjm, you’re missing the point about pissing people off. That is exactly what they want. Angry Westerners turn against Muslims, Muslims feel increasingly under attack and hated. People who feel under attack will eventually want to fight back making them easier to radicalise.
    If only 10 Muslims join the extremists as a result of the Belgian bombings, that’s still a profit to ISIL of eight future jihadists, but should anti-Muslim sentiments turn to violence then that 8 becomes 80 or 800. The stronger the backlash against Muslims, the greater the numbers of those radicalised.
    That’s why cool heads are needed at a time like this. Of course a response is required, but it has to be directed at the right people. If somebody hurts you, taking it out on his cousin thrice removed just because he lives closer won’t give you justice, but it will most likely get more of his family on your back.

  21. AussieRob says:

    What interests me about the latest atrocities in Belgium is that at least some of the suicide bombers have a long criminal history. This doesn’t track with the assumption that they are all Muslim extremists. I understand that a bunch of the perpetrators of the Paris attacks as well as the Brussels attacks, have a history of alcohol and drug consumption. How is this Islamic? How is a criminal history Islamic?

  22. Ivan says:

    I have to disagree with the notion that suicide bombers are a 90s phenom. Certainly if you look backward toward the 72 Olympics and afterward (just a demarcation point), Northern Ireland and bombings in London by IRA/SF, Lebanon – US & French barracks (which sent Reagan running home despite enough firepower on 4 Med carriers and the Task Groups for each CVN, to incinerate the planet at least twice).

    In addition – there is the youth, stupidity, amphetamine addict to consider, and the genuine difficulty of penetrating any group (same as the Mafia, gangs, warlord types in remote regions like Africa) without committing atrocities to prove loyalty – in order to prevent greater ones. Can you imagine the ethical position that must put undercover ops in??

  23. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    AussieRob, visit any prison and you will find an Imam bringing the wayward back to the armpit of Allah, and in the U.K. at least there has long been concern over the radicalisation of Muslim prisoners. A criminal record is certainly no bar to Islam. In fact, just as born again Christians thank God at every opportunity, what better way to thank Allah for saving you from the life of a criminal and atone for your transgressions than jihad?
    Also, the laws they broke were Western laws, not Islamic, but even Islamic laws can be broken if done to further the fight against the enemies of Islam, and it may yet turn out that one or more of the attackers had been in Belgium for years awaiting the call to act, and in the meantime acting as un-Islamic as possible.

  24. pink squirrel says:

    I may have said this before. I really don’t understand the 72 virgins thing. Women are 51% of the population, so we aren’t disproportional in numbers. Where are all these virgins coming from?

    They are all made up fantasy so they come out of thin air- the same place as all other imaginary entities

  25. pink squirrel says:

    re -That’s why cool heads are needed at a time like this.

    Sadly though – those who can will – those who can’t; won’t
    and it is those that can’t that are most vocal and do the most damage

  26. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    In the last thread I made a comment comparing radical liberalism to religious fundamentalism. Somebody else thinks so too, and it takes them just one picture and eleven words to make their point in a style I can only label ‘Author-esque’.
    If you’re one of those uber liberals be warned, it’s gonna sting!

  27. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    In other news: Donald Trump has announced today that when he becomes president he will outlaw pre-shredded cheese, saying “I am going to make America grate again”.

  28. plainsuch says:

    Shock and Awe, baby, Shock And Awe!

    Because some men aren’t looking for anything logical, like money. They can’t be bought, bullied, reasoned or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn.
    The Dark Knight

    The criminals that need to be stopped are the recruiter, the explosives expert and the media event planner. The expendable twit that delivers the package is just the zealot’s cruise missile. The proximate cause for that also seems obvious, they have no fleet of drones.

  29. extro24 says:

    The Final Battle between the Muslims and the Crusaders will be at Dabiq, a town in Syria. ISIS is trying to trigger the end times by provoking a war with the West. They WANT to be bombed. All of this is explained in their literature – http://www.clarionproject.org/news/islamic-state-isis-isil-propaganda-magazine-dabiq.
    It is very important that everybody read up as much about Islam and Islamic fundamentalism, otherwise we will completely misunderstand why they are killing everybody. It doesn’t matter how friendly you are to them – they want the whole world under Islam and the Sharia.

  30. dr John de Wipper says:

    Where are all these virgins coming from? Are they golems (manufactured by the god in question just for these guys)? Are they little girls and boys? What if you don’t like little children? Or teenagers? What if you don’t like boys? Or girls? Are the girls and women (boys and men) remade virgins whenever they are deflowered?
    I think I may have said it before, but I have seen this “solution”:
    In many prisons there are “bulls” and “sissies”. The Bulls have there way with the Sissies, but real Bulls never do “sissie-duty”; so anally they stay virgins.
    And there are 72 of those to dayly sissify each martyrs.

  31. dr John de Wipper says:

    Oh my, you STUPID
    there way should of course be their way !!

  32. JoJo says:

    CSJM : I think you’ll find that The Big Yin himself has put the matter of suicide bombings and virgins to bed. So to speak.

    He also provides a great antidote for the week’s events.


  33. Someone says:

    All we really need now is for Donald Drumpf to be Supreme Leader, Kim Jong-un to pull his thumb out and press the button, a few more coordinated ISIS attacks and World War III can commence.
    I mean, it’s that or the aliens can arrive and intervene. Either way, we humans don’t stand a chance against annihilation, no matter how many times we try to warn or convince ourselves otherwise.

  34. Grumpy says:

    AoS: thanks for the link, it should start http not httrp. I am not surprised at the mentality of these extremists, history has shown how easy it is to manipulate people to carry out abhorrent acts. For example the slaughter and abuse carried out in the concentration camps of WW2. The victims were regarded as sub-human, expendable and the root cause of all the problems affecting, in this instance, Germany.
    All governments are guilty of this type of manipulation so why should ISIS be different, they are after all acting as the government in the areas they control.
    I remember that in the days before the Falklands war the UK government banned all sorts of things from the media, the red top newspapers had dehumanised the Argentinian forces by just calling them Argies so for Joe public it was ok if Argies got killed even though most were terrified conscripts. As a member of HM Forces at the time I was pretty disgusted with the mind games that were being played on the British public.

  35. Art.25 says:

    It’s time atheists all over the world rise and speak up, reclaiming Western secular society, and denouncing ALL religions for what they are : childish fairy tails that have brought little or no advantage to mankind, and obscured the scientific way of thinking for centuries.
    BTW, Darwin Harmless : normally I agree 100% with your comments, but I think you’re wrong about Sam Harris. I know he’s depicted as a frantic right winger, but if you actually read what he writes, he has a well-balanced view on things. Well, that’s my 2 cents.
    As a Belgian, I want to express my deepest feelings with all the victims and families, Belgian and foreign, atheist or religious.

  36. Three-tigers says:

    JoJo thanks for the link. Really funny. A bit like the ‘Old Harry’s Game’ episode where the bloke who fits the suicide vests is suprised to turn up in hell, after a fitee says “and what does this button do…..”

  37. oldebabe says:

    Sad (maybe) but true, so get it thru your head. No one will `know’ anything about anything when one has died… There will be no `I told you so’ by anyone, living, imagined, or dead.

    One doesn’t need to be an atheist to understand this.

  38. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    “One doesn’t need to be an atheist to understand this”, but it helps.

    On a similar note, I have heard the following ‘proof’ of God argument a few times, and one doesn’t need be an atheist to see the inherent flaw. Cutting through the religious waffle, the argument is that “God does not exist. Despite the obvious handicap of non-existence, God has had a greater impact, more influence, and more control over Mankind than any other factor. Therefore, ain’t God great!

    There’s a nagging feeling in the deep and dark recesses of my mind that this ‘proof’ is a fairly recent addition to the list of logic-dodging arguments, and that it might even have initially been intended as a satire or maybe an invention to use as an example of a poor argument (like there aren’t enough genuine fallacious arguments for God to pick from).
    Has anybody else come across it in any of the above contexts?

  39. smee says:

    A large part of our inability to defend western enlightenment values can be squarely laid at the door of the fruitloop element of American academe. Political Correctness, Feminism, new age nonsense! that has now infected and so damaged UK universities. A problem so eloquently laid out by this chap!https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YK3BahMxH4M&lc=EgWZCA5kDApFwVxRIto8QLCMxooutC9WfiH7z6Kxo_8

  40. Jezzabelle says:

    “Hard not to blame the Muslims….” What about blaming Christians for the White Aryans or KKK? You wouldn’t do that, nor do you want them representing you if you are Christian. Who hates ISIS? The MUSLIMS who are forced to live under their rule! Many immigrants are FLEEING them in particular.
    As for 72 virgins, that is an aberrant, lurid interpretation and Westerners just keep coming back to it. Do you plan on wings and a harp in the afterlife, and walking on clouds? It’s the equivalent to the 72 virgins.
    When you see Muslims, make a point of reassuring them that most Americans do not judge people by their affiliate group, because they are becoming scared.
    Lastly, do you want Trump representing you as an American? People around the world are beginning to wonder. So what’s unfair is unfair.

  41. oocares says:

    Ahh, The good old days when #Islam used to make bucket loads of money from mayhem. 20% of USA GDP anyone? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NhK1TipXNso

  42. two cents' worth says:

    This is OT, bur I just finished reading The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man by John Perkins, and I’m wondering how much Islamist terrorism today is due to people who are justifiably angry at what the corporatocracy has done to them and their countries, and are using religion as a cover and/or as a shortcut to inciting some Muslims to commit acts of terror as a way of retaliating against the corporatocracy and convincing it to leave them and their countries alone. If that’s true, it’s counterproductive–terrorism has merely given the corporatocracy a new justification of its own (fighting terrorism) and broader avenues for accumulating even more wealth (through arms sales, etc.). The corporatocracy isn’t anti-Islam; it’s pro-0.1%ers. It happily exploits not only Muslims in the Middle East but Christians and indigenous peoples in South America, and even the 0.1%ers’ fellow countrymen.

  43. two cents' worth says:

    Despite my effort to proofread my post, “bur” (for “but”) slipped past me. @%*&^% progressive lenses!

  44. Art25. Ah, nobody understands Sam Harris. Here’s a very interesting discussion of this idea.. Check this out.

    Nice to have a professional making my arguments for me.

    Acolyte, thanks for that link. It answered quite a few of my questions about Muslims and pigs. Specifically, how would a reformed Muslim react to bacon. Delightful.

  45. pink squirrel says:

    the door of the fruitloop element of American academe.
    eloquently laid out by this chap
    Yes indeed the guy is Terrence Mc Kenna
    who if I recall right has stated that magic mushrooms are aliens or something along those lines

  46. Art.25 says:

    Darwin, I don’t think Cenk Uygur is the best person to represent Sam Harris’ ideas. It’s like a creationist explaining your famous namesake’s evolution-theory.

  47. pink squirrel says:

    who then would you nominate Art 25 – or is it only possible for Sam Harris

  48. pink squirrel says:

    is it only Mo who pities islam or is it more common ?

  49. two cents' worth says:

    Hey, is this ‘toon making use of product placement? I can’t read the labels on the cans on the armrests, so I don’t know if I’m missing a joke or if the Author has found another source of revenue to help keep the pub in business.

  50. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    Although the brand name is obscured, there is no mistaking a can of Guinness. It’s also the boy’s pint of choice in the C&B.
    Which makes me wonder at Author’s preferred tipple.

  51. two cents' worth says:

    Thanks, AoS! I’m impressed by your ability to recognize the jizz* of a can of Guinness. (I’m not a drinker of stout, so one brand’s can looks much like another to me.) It would be great if Diageo would make a donation to help keep J&M online, as a way of thanking the Author for endorsing (having J & Mo endorse?) Guinness 🙂 .

    * https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jizz_%28birding%29


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