Sunday, 28 May 2017

Religious Dark Ages

Janice Turner writing in The Times argues that religious fanatics and supporters of the Islamic State (IS) are motivated by misogyny and a culture where women's lives are controlled by men.

Blaming UK foreign policy for the behaviour of murderous fundamentalists who would like to drag their religion back to the dark ages is a complete cop-out, if you ask me.  

"Islam has many diverse strands: joyful, liberal, tolerant, scholarly, even licentious. Salafism — a political credo — uses shame, threats and even violence to extinguish them all. You see its influence in every veiled woman in Tower Hamlets, or every Brummie girl shoved into a hijab aged five. Women from countries that never covered now feel compelled to hide.

"For men, conservative Islam has huge attractions: it enshrines male dominance, at home or in the world, as God’s will. Jihad, its most extreme manifestation, is an exaltation of twisted, toxic, violent hyper-masculinity, like those too-frequent cases of divorced fathers who kill themselves with all their kids."

Read the full article via the link below to The Times chichis behind the newspaper's paywall.

Why do Islamists fear women who are free?

By Janice Turner - The Times

Corbyn’s blinkered belief that foreign policy motivates terrorists ignores the ugly strain of misogyny in modern Islam

‘Don’t need permission,” sings Ariana Grande. “Made my decision, to test my limits.” It is her spiritedness, as much as pussycat ears and glittery basques, that draws her young fans. Grande’s tour is called Dangerous Woman. No wonder flicking through What’s On in Manchester it caught Salman Abedi’s eye: to Islamists there is nothing more dangerous than a liberated girl.

For Jeremy Corbyn, as outlined in his speech yesterday, terrorism and this particular atrocity, which targeted women — 17 out of the 22 dead — are products only of Britain’s foreign policy, its irresponsible wars. In the barren, blinkered thinking of the unreconstructed left, Islam is blameless: fault can only lie with the West. Conveniently Corbyn forgets an ideological movement predating the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Salafism began in the 18th century but in the past 70 years has spread through Muslim populations, via mosques and madrassas funded by Saudi Arabia, crushing tolerance and diversity, proclaiming itself the one pure iteration of faith. Control of women is not a side issue, an unfortunate by-product, but the very heart of its mission.

Sayyid Qutb, the al-Qaeda philosopher, was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood who travelled the US in the 1950s to work out how the Arab world could rebuild after suffering colonial defeats. He noted female carnality at church dances: “The American girl is well acquainted with her body’s seductive capacity. She knows it lies in the round breasts, the full buttocks, and in the shapely thighs, sleek legs. She knows all this and does not hide it.”

Sexuality, he concluded, was western, ergo unIslamic. Women’s freedom, both in the bedroom and to work beyond the home, was a sign of society’s degradation. Islam must rebuild itself upon the family; women must return to codes of obedience, piety and (above all) modesty, rooted in the age of the Prophet. When Isis or the Taliban roll into a town, shrouding women is their first act.

Girls Just Want To Have Fun (23/05/17)

Here's a message for the cowardly extremists behind the terror attack on Manchester - western secular democracies may have their faults, but they are infinitely preferable to the intolerance, barbarism and fanaticism of groups like the Islamic State (IS).