Slander, Blasphemy & Censorship

Another Islamic Dissenter Silenced

Kamel Daoud of Algeria is the latest to provoke the wrath of Left-leaning Western intellectuals.

BY CounterJihad · @CounterjihadUS | March 22, 2016

Kamel Daoud is an Algerian writer whose fictional work, celebrated in Europe, made a smash in the New York literary scene.  That drew him an invitation to write in major global newspapers.  When what he wrote included strident criticisms of Islam, he came under intense attack from the literary and academic Left.  He was so dispirited that he promised to fall into silence.

Now two leading figures from the academic world have come to his aid.   They are Michael Walzer, the political philosopher, and Paul Berman, editor of Tablet magazine.  Walzer’s Just & Unjust Wars aimed at restoring the Just War tradition born in Medieval thought, and has at times been required reading at West Point.  They stand together against the trend of Western academics to try to silence Islam’s critics, naming Daoud as the latest in a string starting with Salman Rushdie and including Ayaan Hirsi Ali.

The silencing reminds them of something ugly.

The two of us who are writing this commentary call attention to a second pattern in these condemnations, which dates to the days of Soviet Communism. Everyone who remembers the history of the 20th century will recall that, during the entire period from the 1920s to the 1980s, one brave and articulate dissident after another in the Soviet bloc succeeded in communicating a message to the Western public about the nature of Communist oppression—valuable messages because the dissidents could describe with first-hand accuracy the Soviet regime and its satellite states.

And, time after time, a significant slice of Western intellectuals responded by crying: “Oh, you mustn’t say such things! You will encourage the reactionaries!” … Too many progressive intellectuals today are falling into the pattern of those fallacies of long ago.

Silencing critics of Islam from the Muslim world prolongs the suffering of the millions who languish under a system much in need of change.  That these critics use harsh language only proves that they are greatly offended by the reality of their lives.  Consider Sultan Shaheen, an Islamic thinker we quoted just the other day.  Here is how he describes the theology not of ISIS but of the whole Islamic world for the last thousand years:

For hundreds of years now, major Muslim theologians have been engaged in creating a coherent theology of intolerance and violence in order to expand the Islamic reach. They have conclusively made the lower form of Jihad, i.e., warfare, compulsory for all able-bodied Muslims.

Luminaries of Islam have established a theology which primarily says that Islam must conquer the world and it is the religious duty of all Muslims to strive towards that goal and contribute to it in whatever way they can. Clearly this is no longer just a Muslim concern. The world must come together to defeat extremism in Islamic theology.

The only thing left to say is that these progressive, Left-leaning intellectuals are not acting alone.  Their predecessors were being influenced by the Soviets’ careful attention to Western academia.  The Muslim Brotherhood in America and Europe has also taken coordinated steps to shape the boundaries of thought and speech.  In silencing Islam’s native critics, Western academics are once again playing the puppet for a hostile, ideological power.


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