Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Regarding "The grim ordeal of France's hostages", IHT, November 27-28, 2004:
It remains fascinating to see how people such as Charles Lambroschini are still bending backwards to understand and explain the motives and trains of thought of Islamist terrorist by Western ratio and values. Men like Zarqawi don't care two bits whether brave and honorable journalists, intellectuals and humanitarians show solidarity or fascination with this or that Muslim nation or cause, or try to achieve objectivity. Poor men and women like Margaret Hassan, Michel Seurat and the two French journalists still being held by their kidnappers are perfect tools for Islamist fanatics to achieve their goals: sowing disorder and deadly terror, and trying to force Western societies into an existential war with Islam as such, even with its many, many moderate believers. Maybe the fact that they are so much seen as representatives of 'the West with a human face' makes people like Georges Malbrunot and Christian Chesnot even more attractive targets for the terrorists. Of course we in the West' have to change many of our ways - settling debts in the Third World, ending Israel's occupation of the Westbank and Gaza, limiting our dependence on MidEast oil and ending our support for repressive and undemocratic regimes in the Muslim world, to name just some of them - but believing that fanatics like Bin Laden can be pacified by showing solidarity with the causes which they pretend to support is naive. In the end such a belief serves no one but the kidnappers and murderers themselves.

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