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No Sooner One Than Another… Writing About Terrorist Attacks Is Like Trying To Write On Waves

June 13, 2017 Frontpage No Comments


Writing about Islamist terror is like trying to write on rolling water. No sooner does one wave of murder smack against the beach than another red wave sweeps in, effacing yesterday’s writing.
Actually, it’s more like trying to write on flaming gasoline from the Mideast.
Paris, Berlin, Nice, Brussels, Istanbul, San Bernardino, Orlando, multiple German sites — soon the unusual city may not be one that was attacked by Islamists, but one that hasn’t been attacked yet.
In late May, Poland’s conservative prime minister, Beata Szydlo, warned against what isn’t a terrorist threat but a terrorist actuality, telling other European leaders to “rise from your knees and from your lethargy or you will be crying over your children every day.”
She was prompted by the Islamist bomb slaughter at a pop concert in Manchester, England, that killed 22 music fans and injured dozens more on May 22.
Two months earlier a terrorist sped over London’s Westminster Bridge, mowing down pedestrians, killing four and injuring dozens more, before he dashed toward Parliament with a large knife. He fatally slashed a police officer before another officer killed the Islamist.
Less than two weeks after the Manchester assault, three Islamists sped over London Bridge the night of Saturday, June 3, ploughing into pedestrians then jumping from their van to knife people out to enjoy the weekend at Borough Market.
Seven victims died, an eighth person was feared missing in the Thames River, and dozens more were injured. Police killed the three Islamist attackers.
The danger lies less in their weapons — although those are more than threatening — than in the warning of the late terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden menacing cowed Westerners: “We love death as you love life.”
Although one never knows when news will break, late Saturday evening in newsrooms is about as quiet as a person may hope for. Still, staffs were marshaled, and the front page of Britain’s June 4 Mail on Sunday with terror coverage noted on its upper right this was a 2 a.m. edition.
On June 6 a man identified as an Algerian student carrying knives hit a policeman with a hammer outside Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris while reportedly yelling, “It’s for Syria.” Police shot and wounded the attacker, while hundreds of people inside the cathedral were ordered to remain seated with their hands in the air as authorities investigated.
I think of a different newsroom back in the 1980s, a few miles from the waves of the Pacific Ocean, at Southern California’s Orange County Register, the Golden State’s third-largest daily when I worked there.
Unlike Clark Kent/Superman at the Daily Planet in the 1950s kids’ television series, most writers don’t have their own private offices. Even columnists hammer away out in the synergy of the newsroom. I remember Robert Ferrigno, who wrote a Register local-interest column, seated among the reporters. Ferrigno wanted to be a novelist.
In 1990 his first novel, the well-received The Horse Latitudes, appeared. A decade and a half and more books, then the first in Ferrigno’s “Muslim trilogy” was published, Prayers for the Assassin (Scribner, 2006), followed by Sins of the Assassin and Heart of the Assassin.
Open the cover of Prayers. There’s a map of the former United States, less than 25 years from today. Approximately the northern half is labeled “Islamic Republic.” In the southeast is the Bible Belt, which has resisted.
Chicago and Detroit are marked with the symbol for “city totally destroyed, abandoned,” while Pittsburgh is in “plague zone.”
Postcards will be looking different. In the Weekly Standard magazine back in 2008, reviewer Joel Schwartz noted changes in the City by the Bay:
“In an ironic reversal of today’s culture wars, Ferrigno goes out of his way to inform us that San Francisco — now known as New Fallujah — is perhaps the worst fundamentalist hotbed: ‘Harlots and homosexuals, witches and Jews dangled from the high beams’ of the Bridge of Skulls — formerly known as the Golden Gate.”
How did we fall so fast? Although some suitcase nuclear bombs packed a wallop, Schwartz wrote that a historian in Sins said:
“Western churches, rather than offering moral guidance, were weak and vacillating, unwilling to condemn even the most immoral behavior. Islam offered a bright light and a clear answer, and the faithful could not build mosques fast enough to satisfy the need. While no force of arms could defeat the armies of the West, it was their moral and spiritual void that ultimately vanquished them.”
The story has a Muslim hero, Rakkim Epps, a former fedayeen, Schwartz noted, who has a positive moral code: “I believe we have to act as if Paradise awaits the good and the brave, and that the hottest fires of Hell await those who do evil in God’s name.”
National conservative radio talk host Dennis Prager seemed to be on the same page on June 5, when he said imams have got to tell radicals who go to mosques that terrorism doesn’t earn them Paradise with 72 virgins, but Hell.
Also, Prager noted with amazement that New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman had posted, on May 31, that Germany has to consider how much it has to spend on Syrian refugees.
Friedman acknowledged Donald Trump’s recent point that NATO members, including Germany, should fulfill their alliance spending commitments, Prager said, but the radio host proceeded to quote with astonishment Friedman’s question, “But how much is Germany spending to absorb one million Syrian refugees so they won’t be joining ISIS?”
If the refugees are about to join ISIS otherwise, Prager exclaimed, why would Germany want to bring them in?
Fashionable left-wingers seem incapable of trying to protect their own survival, much less anyone else’s, if the threat comes from the politically correct.
If conservative Catholics or evangelicals were smashing through cities with vans, explosives, guns and knives, and insisting that women wear encompassing sacks for clothes while submitting themselves to men’s commands, even as homosexuals were rounded up to be tossed off high buildings, the left would go absolutely crazy with defiance.
But when Muslim terrorists do the same, leftists do a back flip and express indignation that anyone would ever dare think Muslims might necessarily be viewed with caution or distrust.
Indeed, it may be hard to profile Muslims. They don’t necessarily wave their black flag while preparing. The San Bernardino terrorists were a young married couple with a baby girl, but that didn’t prevent them from slaughtering acquaintances at a Christmas party then blasting off a shootout in a police chase. And one of the London Bridge attackers reportedly was father to a small girl.
However, when President Trump tries to exercise extra caution about who’s admitted to the U.S. from a few terrorist countries, left-wing judges baselessly call him a bigot and strap their suicide vests onto the nation. They’d rather see this country go the way of London than allow the slightest perceived offense to those who are coming for our throats.
No bigot, Trump had plunged right in among major Muslim political leaders during his May trip to Saudi Arabia, the way he deals with other executives. He didn’t back off or avoid them as undesirable.
In what might be a promising development, the left-wing UK Guardian posted June 5 that more than 130 imams and Muslim religious leaders said they would refuse funeral prayers for the June 3 London Bridge terrorists.
“In a highly unusual move, Muslim religious figures from across the country and from different schools of Islam said their pain at the suffering of the victims and their families led them to refuse to perform the traditional Islamic prayer — a ritual normally performed for every Muslim regardless of their actions. They called on others to do the same,” the Guardian said.
Like other historic religious faiths, Islam has observed a firm moral code. Also as in other faiths, various practitioners of Islam regard nonbelievers in different ways. Even in the 21st century, some Muslim governments cooperated with the Vatican over life and family issues at international conferences, while secularist European governments like France’s were on the opposing side.
A critical question today is how many of the world’s more than 1.6 billion Muslims intend to be tolerant of “infidel” non-Muslims if they’re within arm’s length. Or within the distance for throwing knives or bombs.
Zuhdi Jasser, MD, a Phoenix internist and pro-lifer, describes himself as a reform Muslim and is founder and president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (, dedicated to opposing Islamism and favoring the separation of mosque and state.
The website says “AIFD is actively confronting the ideology of political Islam and openly countering the common belief that the Muslim faith is inextricably rooted to the concept of the Islamic State (Islamism). We stand firmly for universal human rights — including gender equality, freedom of conscience, and freedom of speech and expression.
“Our programs focus on engaging Muslims — especially Muslim youth and young adults — and non-Muslim allies in identifying and implementing concrete solutions to Islamism,” the site says.
Jasser is the kind of neighbor any other U.S. citizen would be proud to have, and is the physician to conservative former Republican member of Congress J.D. Hayworth of Arizona, a foe of open borders.


It’s not unusual to have heard of Christians and Muslims who lived as neighbors in the Mideast. Indeed, a Muslim businessman erected the tallest Christmas tree in Baghdad last December, saying he was “joining our Christian brothers in their holiday celebrations and helping Iraqis forget their anguish, especially the war in Mosul,” according to an Associated Press report.
On the other hand, an Arizona author of two novels involving Mideast Christians, Joyce Coronel, told The Wanderer there’s danger to Christians in that area of the world.
“Over the years, various Chaldean women have told me that in Iraq, Muslims they knew admired the Christian faith and wished they could convert. Apostasy — at least the Muslim-converting-to-Christian kind — is not tolerated, however. It’s often a death sentence,” Coronel said.
“A Muslim woman I know from another Middle Eastern country converted to Catholicism when the family moved to the U.S. in the 1970s. They have never accepted her decision and consider it a deep betrayal. When she returned home for a visit some years ago, she was nearly killed when government officials discovered she was a convert,” said Coronel, also a journalist and speaker.
James Asher, a retired Arizona physician and student of Islam, told The Wanderer, “There are some really good and nice Muslim people,” but he added the recent attacks in Britain illustrate “that letting these people in wholesale may not be the best of ideas.
“History pretty well demonstrates, too, that even if they are peaceful — for now — it is their nature to eventually establish an Islamic government, which can mean Sharia, and subsequent reduction of all non-Muslims to dhimmi status, which means they are slightly higher than slaves, must pay a ‘jizyah’ or tax for being non-Muslim, and in every way subordinate themselves to Muslims,” Asher said, adding:
“Slavery (including sex slavery) can never be condemned by Islam, by the way, because it is authorized in the Koran (33:50, 23:5-6, 4:24, 8:69, 24:32, 2:178, 16:75), which is the unchanging, verbatim word of Allah. . . .
“The authentic teaching of any religion in the world can be discovered by looking at three things,” Asher said, proceeding to list them. “What does the book say? What did the founder do? What did the first followers do?
“1) The book espouses violent jihad. As a matter of interpretation, the violent verses are chronologically later in time, giving them precedence (Sura 2:106)…the earlier peaceful verses are ‘forgotten.’
“2) The founder practiced violent jihad. According to the earliest Muslim writings about him, Muhammad beheaded as many as 900 men, and violently conquered most of Arabia in his lifetime.
“3) His first followers followed suit and conquered much of the world in the succeeding first centuries.
“Whether or not ‘most Muslims’ practice jihad today is irrelevant. People of every religion have a habit of interpreting their way out of hard passages. That’s why the Koran tries to get around that by saying, ‘Fighting is prescribed for you, and ye dislike it. But it is possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing which is bad for you. But God knoweth, and ye know not’ (Sura 2:216),” Asher said.

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