When I had finished reading today’s press on the actuality and threat from Islamic terrorism I wondered how seriously the threat would be taken or whether, like the oysters in Lewis Carroll’s poem on The Walrus and The Carpenter, we would succumb to the message that there is nothing to fear from the Muslim religion. Some may remember that, after the young oysters were enticed by the walrus and the carpenter to walk (sic) along the beach “for a chat”, they soon experienced serious trouble.
“The time has come,” the Walrus said,
“To talk of many things:
Of shoes–and ships–and sealing-wax–
Of cabbages–and kings–
And why the sea is boiling hot–
And whether pigs have wings.”
“I weep for you,” the Walrus said:
“I deeply sympathize.”
With sobs and tears he sorted out
Those of the largest size,
Holding his pocket-handkerchief
Before his streaming eyes.
“O Oysters,” said the Carpenter,
“You’ve had a pleasant run!
Shall we be trotting home again?’
But answer came there none–
And this was scarcely odd, because
They’d eaten every one.
In earlier commentaries I have suggested the need for Australia and other western countries to publicly acknowledge the threats to our lives and liberties emanating from the Muslim religion as interpreted by many of those who believe or preach it. Anglican Pastor, Mark Durie, has written and spoken publicly about the serious problems posed by this religion (see in particular his “The Third Choice, Islam, Dhimmitude and Freedom”, 2010).
But similar warnings by many others have, if anything, led to acceptance of the view that Muslims are basically peaceful and, while fighting amongst themselves, western countries do not need to do more than help them resume down the peaceful path. The most worrying example of this belief is the range of policies, both domestic and foreign, that have been pursued by the head of the country hitherto regarded as the defender of freedom, the USA.
There is now a wide range of existing policy positions adopted by political, religious and business leaders which must be regarded as potentially endangering our existence. One of those policy positions – freedom of religion – has become so entrenched in thinking in western countries that it now seems almost impossible to imagine that any major exceptions could be made to it. The result is that we are told about the peaceful version of the Muslim religion and that this makes it acceptable. But there are many imams preaching the violent version and our leaders must develop an assessment which declares that version unacceptable.
To divert slightly, that should be No1 on the agenda for the G20 meeting here in November.
The one slight hope that a start of reversal might be coming arises from the decision by Obama to conduct air strikes in North Iraq to try to stop what he describes as the threat of genocide by the extremist Islamic group ISIS of a group of Yazidis, which appear to be regarded as apostates by some in the Muslim religion. It is not clear from Obama’s statement that his decision took account of the many thousands of Christians in Northern Iraq who have reportedly also been forced to flee. But one would have thought that the US might also be prepared to help stop their genocide, even by bringing back some military.
An important development arising from Obama’s decision is that Abbott has strongly supported him. No doubt Abbott would regard the decision as helpful to his proposed increase in counter-terrorism powers. But his “they must be defeated” suggests he may be thinking beyond that too.