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Truth on Trial By: Phyllis Chesler
FrontPageMagazine.com | Monday, October 31, 2005


Are we winning the war against terror or more precisely, against the death-cult ideology of extreme hate that employs terror as one of its weapons? America, Britain and Israel have all committed significant sums of money to fight back militarily and to ensure civilian safety. However, we must fight another very hot war, one which will ultimately decide whether Western Civilization lives or dies. This is a war we are not winning and some argue that it is a war we have not yet even begun to fight.

I am talking about The Culture War, the war that must be fought to oppose the campaign of lies and propaganda that Islamists and western Stalinists launched against the West, beginning with Israel, arguably anywhere from forty to seventy years ago.

The Culture War is a very hot war: no prisoners are taken, no mercy is shown. And there are now penalties for trying to tell the truth about the danger of jihad or about the barbaric and pathological nature of militant Islam today. Indeed, if you try to discuss the Islamic religious and gender apartheid and its dangerous proliferation into Europe and North America (i.e. there have been honor killings in Cincinnati, St. Louis, Chicago, Jersey City, Toronto, as well as all over Europe and in the Muslim world), this is what will happen to you:

 

If you tell these truths in the Arab and Muslim world, you’ll be beheaded, probably tortured, certainly jailed, exiled if you are lucky. Many Muslim and Christian dissidents have suffered precisely this fate. There are no more Jews there, the Islamist Caliphate has rendered the entire Middle East Judenrein long ago. Try to say this in Europe and you might be butchered, as Theo Von Gogh was, or simply imprisoned in purdah, veiled, or threatened, forced to go into hiding, or honor-murdered as so many Muslim girls and women are.

 

Try to tell the moral tragedy that the United Nations represents, or the even greater tragedy that the word “Palestine” has come to represent objectively, and therefore in a non-politically correct way, on European and on North American campuses, or on the increasingly left-dominated liberal media airwaves, and you may not be shot on the spot, but you will be slandered and called a “racist” and a “fascist.” I have been called both.

 

If you are a North American intellectual, you may not be imprisoned or be-headed but you will be heckled, mocked, and shunned. You might need security in order to speak. If you’re a feminist, you will no longer be taken seriously as an intellectual, nor will you be “heard.”

 

Expose the permanent Intifada against Western Civilization and against the Jews and you will be sued and driven into exile, as Oriana Fallaci has been, or sued and prevented from traveling to certain countries, as Rachel Ehrenfeld has been. You will be sued and silenced in all those places where you were once published, even lionized. Dare to say that the torturer and genocidal tyrant, Saddam Hussein, is on trial today only because of America and Iraq’s sacrifice and their bold vision of democracy and you will be called a reactionary, a liar, a fool, and the worse epithet of all: a conservative.

 

Both Western leftists and Islamists brandish many tools against America and Israel in this war. Their first weapon is the systematic misuse of language. Mainstream and liberal newspapers write about “insurgents,” not “terrorists,” whom they describe as “martyrs,” not “killers, and as “freedom fighters,” not as “well educated evil men.”

 

Anti-American and anti-Israel demonstrators, who are clearly and visibly filled with hate and rage, are described as “peace activists.” Anti-Semitism is legitimized, while the slightest criticism of Islam is banned because of the disallowance of “Islamophobia.” Telling the truth has become an offense which is unprotected by free speech doctrines, which instead protect the telling of lies.

 

I was once held captive in Kabul, Afghanistan. I experienced, first-hand, what life is like in a Muslim country, one that has never been colonized by the West.  I learned that it was both foolish and dangerous to romanticize Third World countries. And, I learned first-hand, that evil and barbarism exist a priori, and are not caused by western imperialism or colonialism or by the “Zionist entity.” It’s where I also learned to reject the doctrine of multiculturalism, that teaches that all cultures are equal, formerly colonized cultures even more so. This leads to isolationism and non-interventionism and condemns millions of civilians to Islamist torture, terror and genocide.

 

Although, to their credit, a handful of feminist activists and journalists have sounded the alarm, once America invaded Afghanistan, these very activists, all Democratic Party operatives, swiftly opposed the military routing of the Taliban. And why? Because the expedition had not been undertaken, apparently, with women in mind. It’s as if they did not think that bin Laden’s terrorism kills women too.

 

I hold the Western academy, including the feminist academy, which has been utterly Palestinianized, responsible for failing to expose and condemn the realities of Islamic gender apartheid. I know feminist graduate students who are busy “de-constructing” the veil, polygamy and arranged marriage as possible expressions of feminist or female power—no different than the bikini. None have congratulated President Bush on his excellent choice of Condoleeza Rice as Secretary of State and none have given her the slightest credit for her pro-woman, pro-human rights and pro-Israel speeches.

 

The number of lies being told in the Western academy and among western activists are literally beyond belief. Here’s one: Mohammed was really great to women, especially to one Safiya bint Huyay whom he married—even though she was Jewish. Yes. But first he beheaded her father and her husband and exterminated her entire village. And then he forced poor Safiya to convert to Islam before he married her. This disinformation campaign leaves me speechless.

  

Our own intelligentsia—our professors—are so politically correct and so multi-culturally relativist, that they refuse to call “barbaric” the act of stoning a woman to death because she was raped or because she refused to marry her first cousin. Nor will they denounce subjecting women to genital mutilation and public gang-rape as “barbaric.” Nor did American media commentators who showed the Palestinian lynching of two Israeli reservists in Ramallah in 2000 describe the event, which they played over and over again, as “barbaric.”

 

The intelligentsia did not describe what was done to us on 9/11 as “barbaric” either. Indeed, I know American and European intellectuals who are convinced that America and Israel are the greatest barbarians of all, and that we deserved 9/11. According to Islamists and Western academics and journalists, Bin Laden is not an “Islamo-fascist." To them, President George W. Bush and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon are the “Nazi fascists.”

 

And then there is that vast industry of Palestinian, Arab League and United Nations funded and distributed doctored footage and fake film massacres, fake gun battles, the faked death of Palestinian children at Jewish and Israeli hands. Our Islamist opponents have turned out this propaganda nonstop around the world.

 

As propagandists, they are far more sophisticated than Goebbels, and far more patient. We cannot afford to underestimate their skill at telling Big Lies. Islamists understood that if they funded madrassas in the East and Middle Eastern Institutes in the West, and if they funded the total Palestinianization of the United Nations and of every international human rights group, that in thirty to fifty years, they would have brainwashed generations to see things their way.

 

Islam is sacred -- it cannot be insulted. Imagined slights are as important as real slights. Lies have as much weight as the truth. Whether American military forces did or did not flush a Koran down the toilet does not matter. What matters is that Muslims thought they did. No penance is good enough to atone for this crime.

 

Millions of people have been systematically brainwashed against America, against Israel, against Jews, against women and against the western concept of truth, objectivity, truth-telling, and independent thinking. All are under siege.

 

We have a serious fifth column in our midst, one that has made common cause with Islamists against us, one that has been well funded by Arab oil billionaires for more than forty years. Now, George Soros too, a fifth column General who, for a variety of reasons, has actually been leading the cultural war against the West. They are fools—but they are dangerous fools. Do they think they will be spared because they are so politically correct? Do they think that they would enjoy the same freedom of speech in Mecca or Tehran that they enjoy in the West?

 

What must we do in the face of this tyrannical threat? We must rescue language. It must bear some relationship to the truth and morality. Everything is not relative. It is not all Rashomon. We must not allow our media or academics to continue to insist that Islam is not the problem, but that even if it is, that we cannot say so, lest we be deemed racist. We must teach the history of jihad against infidels, and the history of how infidels (Jews, Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Zoroastrians) were treated under Islam. We must insist that criticism of America and Israel be balanced, not pathological, obsessive and cult-like as it is now. We must insist on civility in public discourse. We must model it for the coming generations.

 

We must fund seriously a collective effort to combat vulgar lies and vilification, the propaganda against us which has brainwashed countless generations.

 

We need a War Room effort to counter the Big Lies. We need international radio and television channels to educate people. We need to teach people about intellectual diversity and tolerance.

 

This country has birthed two significant waves of feminism. We must now take that feminist vision global. We need our foreign policy to contain serious provisions about women’s rights abroad. Otherwise, democracy cannot and will not evolve or flourish in Muslim countries.

 

The way I see it, everything is at stake. This is a time when we must all be heroes. We must all stand up to evil in our lifetime. We must acknowledge that Islamist terrorism is evil and has no justification. We must teach this to our children. We must support Muslim and Arab dissidents in their fight against Islamic tyranny and gender apartheid. We can do this. We must do this. Otherwise, we will die, and our history and our values and our entire way of life will die with us. If we fail, we will betray all that we believe in as a free people.

 

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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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