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Mumbai Massacre: Everyone’s Fault? By: Phyllis Chesler
Pajamas Media | Tuesday, December 02, 2008


The Islamic terrorists keep telling us that their barbaric massacres and homicide bombings are being done in the name of Islam. Muslim organizations keep insisting that Islam is a religion of peace. Even as civilian blood cries out for justice, or for security, the intelligentsia warn us that Muslims and Islam are not the problem, that American foreign policy and Zionism are the real problem. The Western mainstream media refuse to take the barbarians at their word lest they be accused of “racism” or “Islamophobia.”

For example, in a recent issue of the New York Times‘ front page coverage of the Mumbai massacre, the reporters do not describe the terrorists as “Islamic terrorists.” Instead, they refer to them as “Pakistani-based militants,” “militants,” “gunmen, (five or six times)” “attackers,” and “suspects.” They quote President Bush who referred to them as “killers.” They quote the head of India’s National Security Guards who called them “terrorists.” Once or twice they mention India’s “vulnerability to terrorism” but they do not join Islam, Islamism, or fundamentalist Islam to terrorism.

This mis-use of language, even for an ostensibly noble purpose, will only further confuse us and slow down a collective response to the Islamic terrorist attacks against civilians.

Martha Nussbaum, in the Los Angeles Times, writes that Hindus also massacre Muslims and refers to the awful carnage of Muslims in Gujarat.

Dorothy Rabinowitz, in the Wall Street Journal, notes that, in a television interview, Deepak Chopra (!) quickly blamed United States foreign policy, not Islamic fundamentalism and terrorism, for the Mumbai massacre; when challenged, he genially conceded that the massacre was really “everyone’s” fault.

Everyone’s fault; Muslim fundamentalist terrorists excluded.

According to today’s Wall Street Journal, the ten well-prepared terrorists, when asked by several of their captives why they were doing this, answered: “Remember Babri Masjid?” (a sixteenth century mosque built by India’s first Mughal Muslim emperor and destroyed by Hindu radicals in 1992.) And “Remember Godhra?” (a town in the Indian state of Gujarat where religious rioting evolved into an anti-Muslim pogram in 2002.

Alright. If this is strictly a Hindu-Muslim fight–then why execute the Jews? Why ask for American and British citizens? And why send young men who are so naive that they actually expect to get out alive and had the sea route pre-mapped for their return voyage?

I appreciate the desire to de-escalate what is already a fierce religious war between India and Pakistan and Bangladesh, between Hindus and Muslims. It is true: The majority of India’s Muslim citizens are not terrorists and should not be treated as such; most of Pakistan’s Muslim citizens are not terrorists either. I am sure that many are quite charming, soft-spoken, and personally peaceful. No doubt, they, too, are intimidated by or even held hostage, economically, socially, and psychologically by Islamic terrorist militant attackers and killers who are also gunmen in Pakistan.

The problem: If the good Muslims do not stand up to Islamic fundamentalist terrorism, they further endanger not only themselves but the rest of us too. Standing up to it is risky and might include….leaving Islam until it becomes more peaceful, or until all the leading mullahs issue fatwas against Islamic militant attackers who terrify their neighborhood and the rest of the planet.

If these savage acts are against historical Islam and against the Qu’ran, then why don’t the mullahs condemn it–and in the name of Islam? Let them demand: No more attacks against Jews and other infidels, no more attacks against Muslims of another sect. If the mullahs of Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Iran, and Afghanistan do not do so, we had better draw the necessary conclusions and act to defend ourselves and to eradicate the Islamic terrorist much more effectively.

NEWSFLASH! The great counter-terrorism expert, Steve Emerson, also published a blog today (”They are Winning,”) at The Daily Beast which is quite on the same wave-length. I urge you to read it. 

God! I hope that the New Security Team considers what we are saying. Our lives depend upon that.


Dr. Phyllis Chesler is the well known author of classic works, including the bestseller Women and Madness (1972) The New Anti-Semitism (2003) and The Death of Feminism: What’s Next in the Struggle for Women’s Freedom (2005). She has just published a new edition of Woman's Inhumanity to Woman (2009). She is an Emerita Professor of psychology and women's studies, the co-founder of the Association for Women in Psychology (1969) and the National Women's Health Network (1976). Her website is www.phyllis-chesler.com.


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