In the wake of the massed Muslim threat display that was conducted in Sydney on September 15 - sternly dealt with by NSW police, who are now busily investigating, arresting and charging - various 'leaders' and spokespersons of the Ummah, or Mohammedan Mob, in Australia, are now trying hard to frame themselves and Saturday's mobsters as victims.
The video cllp you should see when you click on this link (the ABC tends to leave these things up for a while)
is a classic of its kind. In a longish interview done two days after the riot two Muslims resident in Australia, Waleed Aly (author of a whining little book called 'People Like Us', which is comprehensively taken to pieces by Vickie Janson's response, 'Ideological Jihad') and 'author' Randa Abdul-Fattah, interviewed by Emma Alberici, try hard to push the 'victim' narrative. The ABC headline says it all, "Sydney protest a symptom of deeper Muslim frustrations".
From the transcript:
PRESENTER - "To discuss the local and international reaction to the film 'The Innocence of Muslims' I was joined earlier in Sydney by author and lawyer Randa Abdul-Fattah and in Melbourne by lectuerer in politics at Monash University and host of Radio National Drive, Waleed Aly.
Randa Abdul-Fattah, how did you first learn about the protest on Saturday?
ABDUL-FATTAH: Through Facebook. I had a friend who was at the protest (I wonder how many other sleek, apparently westernised, elegant, smiling Muslims also had 'a friend who was at the protest'? most of the women at the protest were in full Slave Garb - CM) and it was before it took an ugly turn and she was commenting that it was a peaceful day and it was a nice day to protest about the film. (Let's just forget that this 'friend' is demonstrating in favour of suppression of freedom of speech and expresion, shall we? - CM).
"And then as I checked in to Facebook throughout the day, I started to receive more posts on my wall and on other friends' walls about what was happening and on Twitter as well.
ALBERICI: What in your mind were those people doing there, given the film was made by a US director and they were protesting at a US embassy, a government facility, an American government facility in Australia?ABDUL-FATTAH: I think they - a lot of them felt that the film was a trigger for some deep-seated sentiments and collective anger about a whole host of issues - foreign policy (how dare those Aussie Infidels do anything abroad without asking every Muslim thug in Western Sydney what we ought to do, first - CM), what's happening in Afghanistan, Iraq, Israeli occupation of Palestine (i.e. the continued existence of the Jewish state of Israel, full of uppity non-dhimmi Jews who insist on defending themselves against Muslim attack - CM) - and the film was a sort of a diversion I think for - and an excuse to get out there onto the streets and basically vent anger about a whole host of issues. But I don't think that for most of the people there it was just about the film.
Except, of course, that they want the film-maker beheaded and they want the USA to rescind the First Amendment and forbid people from uttering a word in criticism, questioning or mockery of anything at all to do with Islam and Muslims. And that desire to silence the 'blasphemers' is part and parcel of Islam's desire and intention to rule the whole world. - CM
WALEED ALY, POLITICS LECTURER, MONASH UNIVERSITY - I'd probably go further than Randa and say I don't think it was about the film at all. (That's true enough: the film was merely the manufactured grievance du jour - CM). I think there were people there who were angry about the film, but one of the most revealing aspects of it to me was that no-one, it seems, who was there had actually seen it. And protestor after protestor was being interviewed...and when asked whether or not they'd seen the film, admitted, no. And one of them, quite extraordinarily, was asked, "Have you seen the film?", then said, "No, I would never watch something like that".
"So if you've never watched it, what exactly is the source of the offence? Is this a decision you've made on your own, a sort of a sober, reflective decision to protest after a film that you've seen that you've found offensive? Or is this really about a protest for its own sake, because everyone's angry about this film, let's jump on the bandwagon? And to me, clearly the latter, I don't think it was really about the film at all. That was just an excuse. And you can see that in the placards that were being used. When people start saying, "Obama, Obama, we love Osama", that has absolutely nothing to do with this film given that the Obama administration condemned it immediately.
But if, instead of capitulating shamelessly, the Obama administration had stood up for and restated America's commitment to freedom of speech? What then, Mr Aly? - CM
ABDUL-FATTAH - That's very interesting, because when I speak to some people about it, they don't mention the film. They say Muslims are being humiliated around the world, and this is the sentiment.
Muslims are being humiliated? Wait a minute, milady, shall I mention, say, Asia Bibi and Rimsha Masih and the terrified, defenceless Christians of Pakistan who are being robbed, raped, killed, and burnt out of their homes? Or the Copts? Or the Christians of Iraq and Syria? Or the murdered Buddhist monks of Southern Thailand? Or the Christians of northern Nigeria, gunned down in their churches...by Muslims? - CM
ALBERICI - But is this any way to respond?
ABDUL-FATTAH - I think people have the right to protest, but I personally don't feel that this did - that this served any purpose except to validate the stereotypes that most people hold about Muslims.
Well? the rioters were Muslims, and behaved exactly as we have seen Muslim mobs behave, in any amount of news footage from all over the world, anytime in the past forty years or so. - CM
'And I personally feel that there are more constructive ways to go about drawing attention to human rights abuses overseas. (Somehow I suspect that she's not very interested in human rights abuses inflicted by Muslims upon non-Muslims - CM). If that really was the genuine concern of most of those people, then I feel that they have tragically missed an opportunity to, for example, highlight the anniversary of the massacres of Sabra and Shatila yesterday, the 30th year anniversary.
In Jacques Ellul's 'Un Chretien Pour Israel' there is a critical examination of that much ballyhooed 'massacre of Sabra and Shatila', in which Lebanese non-Muslims attacked a 'Palestinian' Arab Muslim 'camp' that was full of PLO jihadists. He also mentions a town called Damour, full of Lebanese Maronite civilians, that was simply obliterated by Muslim forces, with a far greater death toll. - CM
'That's been completely overshadowed by these protests. So I just feel that you really need to question the motives and the logic of people who use these protests as a means to draw attention to human rights issues (really? - I didn't get the impression, looking at that seething mob, nor at their slogans and posters, and the ominous black flag of jihad that has waved gleefully atop many a mountain of corpses of raped and murdered non-Muslim civilians, that they were trying to 'draw attention to human rights issues' - CM) because I feel that it doesn't work and they - in the end they do a huge disservice to their intentions.
ALBERICI - Waleed Aly, what sort of person gives their child a placard to hold at a protest that reads, "Behead those who insult the prophet"?
Good question, Ms Alberici. But if you'd done some research on Islam, you might have related to Mr Aly the story of Asma bint Marwan, and asked him: do you regard this incident in Mohammed's life as admirable and as a permanent model for other Muslims to emulate? - CM
ALY - A pretty stupid one and probably one who is so overwhelmed and overcome with a desire to strike back at something, probably anything, that they think this is actually going to be in any way constructive.
Observe that he does not condemn the demand that 'blasphemers' of Islam should be killed. He merely claims that publicly making that demand, in that place, at that time, was 'stupid' - which may be read as, 'tactically unwise'. And then note that he attempts to frame the parent as a frustrated victim, 'lashing out' at their tormentor/s, rather than as a bully issuing a threat. - CM
"Actually, no, I'm not convinced they actually do think it's going to be constructive. They might think it's going to be destructive (that it will inspire another Muslim or Muslims to go out and kill the film-makers? Just as a Muslim in the Netherlands murdered Theo Van Gogh? - CM), but more to the point, they just want to shout at something, they just want to be heard. And it doesn't - in some way, it doesn't even matter what they're being heard about.
He's babbling. He's throwing sand. He doesn't want Emma Alberici or any of the TV viewers to think about the meaning of the words on the placard, 'Behead those who insult the prophet', or about the possibility that there are people out there who will heed that command. He doesn't want us to remember those words, or think about them, or go investigating what Muslim law says about 'blasphemers'. - CM
This was for me a classic case of a group of people - and this doesn't necessarily apply to all protestors - but a group of people who just feel so disempowered, so far removed from any prospect of social standing or social power, that the only way they can find to make themselves feel empowered, to make themselves feel like someone will listen to them, pay them attention and hear their cry (Mr Aly, don't you think you're overdoing this just a teensy bit? - CM) is to take the most extreme position that they can possibly articulate.
'And the more extreme that position, the more the attention will be, and the greater the sense of power.
'This is actually a very common human trait. The idea of humiliation that Randa mentioned is actually central to this. And yet you make the point that if everyone who was humiliated responded in this way, then we'd be in trouble.
'Well, the reality is actually that just about any community that is humiliated or feels humiliated, justified or not, over a long period of time, does behave in this way.
Actually, no, Mr Aly. This obsession with 'humiliation' is a peculiarly Muslim obsession. - CM
'We've seen migrant group after migrant group go to the UK for example, and then about 30 years after that, their kids, who might grow up in socially, economically disadvantaged areas or feel a sense of social stigma that's just not going anywhere, they end up erupting in riots. We saw riots in London last year precisely out of that kind of dynamic.
'We've seen riots in Macquarie Field. We saw riots in Cronulla, which I think also had a similar sort of dynamic at work. It's not just brown people who can feel humiliated and want to strike back.
The worst of the rioting in Sydney's Eastern suburbs was not conducted by non-Muslim Aussies infuriated by years of Muslim bullying and harassment on their beaches; it was conducted by very large mobs of Muslim men enraged by the Aussies having had the temerity to hold a protest against Muslim bullying. Most of the bashings, burning and property damage was caused by Muslims, not non-Muslims. It was Muslims who fired with rifles at a church full of people. - CM
ALBERICI - But what is - what's the genesis of the anger? Where is it coming from that makes them feel in your words powerless?
The short answer, Ms Alberici, is this: that Muslims feel themselves to be the allah-ordained rulers of the entire world; but they are not the rulers of all the world, and in quite a few parts of the world, the pesky non-Muslims simply refuse to acknowledge them (the Muslims) as their (the non-Muslims') lords and masters. And this is terribly, terribly frustrating and humiliating...For more, see Daniel Greenfield's brilliant and scathing essay, 'The dangers of legitimising Muslim grievances':
'Well, it's a complex of factors. This is actually the most interesting part of this story, it seems to me, is that what you have is people who feel a local sense of social exclusion. And that could come from anywhere, that could come from experiences they might have at school (such as the 'experiences' of the Muslim boys who bullied a little Greek schoolboy because he was eating a salami sandwich in front of them, during Ramadan? - or the two Muslim schoolboys who went up to a young teenage apprentice on his way to work and nearly stabbed him to death? - CM) it could come from the rhetoric that they hear when they listen to politicians speak or turn on the radio or whatever it is. (Notice that he's babbling again? - CM) But that's not the key. They take that and then they can knit it together with global phenomena, global events. And social media, the internet, global media allows them to do that. And so they can put together this narrative that's actually quite self - well quite humiliating of yourself , and that is to say that, "Everywhere you look, people like me are having their rights taken away and being disrespected because Switzerland is banning minarets and France is banning face veiling (and, meanwhile, Muslim mobs are burning down Christian villages in Egypt and Pakistan and Nigeria and Christians are being arrested and imprisoned in Iran and Muslims in Syria are threatening to drive every last Christian out of the country...kinda makes a minaret ban and a niqab ban look pretty trivial, eh, Mr Aly? You want to talk about persecution, let's talk about real persecution. The persecution that every single Muslim land dishes out to its resident non-Muslim minorities. - CM) and Iraq's being invaded (why? - CM) and Afghanistan's being invaded (and they didn't do one single thing to provoke it, did they, poor wee gambolling innocent lambs? they wanted to get on with stoning women to death, in peace - CM) and depending on what they thought of the intervention in Libya, "Libya's being invaded and in the meantime, Syria's in turmoil (because the Sunnis want to destroy the Alawites and drive out the Christians and crush the Shiites and become Top Dogs themselves - CM) and the West doesn't care" (why should it, if all those previous adventures in the Muslim world are viewed by Muslims in the worst possible light? best to stay out of the hell-pits and quit trying to mediate between the Aliens and the Predators - CM) and all this sort of stuff. I'm not saying this is a reasonable way of interpreting world events, but I think it's a very real one, and if we don't grapple with that, we're just never going to understand what we saw on the weekend.
Oh, I understand very well, Mr Aly. It was a massive and ugly Muslim threat display, by a very large mob of Muslim men of military age who thought they were strong enough to riot in central Sydney and get away with it; but they got slapped down good and hard by the Infidel police, as they richly deserved to be. You want me to pity these would-be rulers of the world...and of Australia? Sorry, no can do. - CM
ALBERICI: What do you say, Randa Abdul-Fattah, to the fact that we have to grapple with this? How do you grapple with it?
Here's how we grapple with it. 1/ Stop importing Muslims. 2/ Deport non-citizen Muslims; when their visas or residency permits expire, out they go (or sooner, if they have broken Australian law). 3/ Enforce Australian law, no-nonsense. 4/ Deport all Muslims who incite to or attempt Jihad, in the military sense. Also deport all Muslims who advocate, practise or attempt to practise any one or more of all those numerous aspects of sharia law (such as FGM, forced/ child marriage, polygyny, and the killing of apostates and 'blasphemers') that, under Australia's civil and criminal code, are both immoral and illegal. That would be a start. - CM
ABDUL-FATTAH - I think one of the problems that the wider community has with the response of Muslims to the film, for example - taking it back to the film - is the whole issue of freedom of speech. So that's come up time and time again on talkback radio, that Muslims can't handle any criticism of their religion. And I think we need to address that. How do we in a democratic society deal with the fact that criticism of religion is treated differently legally to criticism of race?
It is treated differently, in our society, because we perceive a difference between 'race' and 'religion': one did not choose one's parents, one's skin colour, eye shape, etc, but one's belief system, religious or political or religio-political, is not inborn, it can be chosen, it can be changed. - CM.
'And it's going to be a topic that we need to deal with because being Muslim is very much linked to identity. Need to understand that the context of a post-September 11 world (that is, a world that saw Muslims carry out a mass-murderous attack upon the centre of peaceful New York City, killing some 3000 innocent civilians, nearly all of them non-Muslim; and a world that saw many Muslims, all around the world, hysterically celebrating that spectacular mass-murder - CM) is that Muslims are the racialised folk devil, they are the other, and criticisms of religion, of Islam, have been very much inextricably linked to criticisms of Muslims as a group.
'Racialised'. Ms Abdul-Fattah is trying to erase the distinction between 'race' and 'religion' in order to be able to classify as 'racism' all critique of Islam, or of Muslims, and therefore, to make it illegal. - CM
ALBERICI - But you say there we have to understand, but the thing is, we don't understand that in Islam there are these constraints on freedom of speech.
ABDUL-FATTAH - I would disagree. (And now she simply lies through her teeth, to protect Islam - CM). I think there is a long and vast tradition of freedom of speech within the islamic world. When you look at the history of Islamic jurisprudence , it had the capacity to allow a very vibrant and robust debate. (I don't think there was ever any debate over what should be done to an apostate, or over what should be done to a dhimmi, or to an impertinent non-Muslim neighbour over the border, who dared to question, complain about, criticise or mock Islam... CM) What we're seeing now is certainly not an example of that. And as a Muslim I admit that it feels like we've regressed in terms of accepting that diversity, that rich diversity of opinions.
What diversity? To see what that diversity amounts to in practice, try looking up the 'diversity' of opinion on the subject of FGM, within the 4 different Sunni schools of sharia. Shafiites say it is obligatory, Hanbalis and Hanifis say it is desirable, Malikis say nothing - but don't condemn or forbid it. And if one reads ex-Muslim Patrick Sookhdeo's book, 'Freedom to Believe: Challenging Islam's Apostasy Law', one discovers that there are various ways of punishing an apostate from Islam, and that a female apostate receives somewhat different treatment from a male; but that there is no contemplation of the possibility that an apostate should simply be allowed to leave the Ummah, and publicly identify as an apostate, without fear of suffering any punishment at all. - CM
ALY - If you did a tour of all the mosques in Australia on a Friday that are giving sermons, and you listened to what they were about, it's not about the stuff that's radical or whatever. (Hmmm - me, I have my doubts. And...define 'radical', Mr Aly. - CM) There's very little of that, and that doesn't happen in the mosques. But it's more subtle than that. How many of those sermons are directed ultimately to convincing Muslims that their religion is not terrible? That their religion is actually something they should be proud of? And if that's the main theme, what does that tell you about the state of thinking, the level of self-esteem that exists among Muslim communities? Because I don't think that's happening in churches. I don't think churches are filled with sermons about why Christianity is great and why you should be proud to be a Christian. For Muslims, that's exactly what it is.
What are you getting at, Mr Aly? That Muslims have low self-esteem, so they have to spend all their time in mosque being flattered and bigged up? But isn't there an awful lot of boasting and ego-stroking in the Islamic core texts, themselves? "You are the best of people, commanding right and forbidding wrong"...that sort of thing? And an awful lot of cursing and rubbishing of non-Muslims..."the vilest of creatures"...? What about that, Mr Aly? Shall we remind you of that? - CM
ALBERICI - But isn't that because - but isn't that also because we don't hear the term fundamentalist Christian, but we do hear fundamentalist Islamists. We do see a lot of violent reactions across the world from members of the Islamic community, rather than from...
ALY: Yeah, but the point I'm making is about the way that Islam is communicated, that Islamic identity and Muslim identity is communicated in Muslim communities. And my point is at every level, from the level of teaching basic things right through to the level of social and political analysis, it is from a position of inferiority. It is from a - and this is the discourse that occurs within the community.
ALBERICI - If people are being taught to respect their open (sic: 'own', I think she must have said - CM) religion, isn't that because so many others are out there causing disrepute to the religion through these violent outbursts?
Emma Alberici might find it very enlightening to read Nicolai Sennels' discussion of the difference between the psychology of Muslims and of persons raised within Western culture. One of the things he stresses is that in Muslim 'culture', outbursts of rage are not viewed as shameful, but are admired; it's about display sof dominance. And in that light, the riot in Sydney was an attempt to project power, to frighten, to dominate; it was a massive threat display and show of strength, aimed at Aussie infidels. - CM
ALY - No - no, no, I don't think it's as linear as that. I think what they're responding to are the feeling that their kids are not going to want to be Muslims because they got to school and they get picked on for it or they go to school and they get teased or abused because perhaps the things that have happened on the news that people have seen. I don't think it's about trying to pick apart the linear causalityof this. I'm trying to describe a dynamic, and that dynamic is one where to be Muslim is to start from behind, and so the Muslim community's so busy trying to convince all the members that are within it that they're not inferior, which is what you do when you feel weak and disempowered, that you now build up an identity that is really about just proving that you're not inferior.
He's Bullshitting. - CM
ALBERICI - Why is there this negative view of the Muslim community in your view?
ABDUL-FATTAH - Well, I think its' very true that it's [an] identity that's defined in terms of resistance and defence and we're always in damage control (and whose fault, pray, is that? - CM) and that creates a siege mentality and you are on the back foot. And that's why I think when people do feel frustrated and humiliated, their reaction is to do something that - it's not constructive.
ALBERICI - But are you feeling frustrated and humiliated over what happened on the weekend?
ABDUL-FATTAH - I am, yes, I certainly am. But...
ALBERICI - It's self-inflicted, then, isn't it?
ABDUL-FATTAH - No, not necessarily. Because, unfortunately, we need to go into damage control. When abortion clinics are bombed (when was the last time that happened? years ago - CM), we don't get every Christian in the country having to go into damage control. (No, my dear: because Christianity doesn't teach that kind of thing, in the first place. And Christians publicly condemn individual vigilante violence, unreservedly; they don't make excuses or use psycho-babble about the perpetrators. - CM) After the terrorist attacks in Norway, you didn't have to get people to come out and go into damage control. (Because the guy didn't belong to any clearly identifiable ideology; he was, indeed, most readily identifiable as a classic paranoid schizophrenic - a loose cannon, who might have selected any target at all, but just happened to select the target that he did. - CM) But this is the beast that we're dealing with. This is the society that we're dealing with.
"When a minority of Muslims respond (note that she does not say - 'act' or 'attack' - CM) in this way, we all have to go back into that mode of resistance, and it becomes self-perpetuating, and that's the problem, because you can't find, you can't articulate a constructive way to deal with it - with the majority population, that's what's happening, so when they [the Muslims] feel disenfranchised (nonsense: Muslims possessing Australian citizenship, and over the age of 18, have the vote, just like every other Aussie citizen over 18 - CM) or they feel disempowered because of what's happening overseas and these issues hurt them and they're concerned about them, their only sort of means of articulating a response is to go out and take to the streets. I think it's the weakest form of protesting something. It's not a constructive way forward and it feels like that's the only way they can mobilise themselves, to take that step only.
ALBERICI - But when we talk about self-infliction, Waleed Aly, then you have the likes of Taji Mustafa coming into the country with the kinds of messages he brings. That's not constructive, is it?
ALY - No, it's not at all, but the reason that it will find any kind of audience is because, as I say, it makes people who feel like no-one else respects them (and why must non-Muslim Australians 'respect' them, Mr Aly? What form should that 'respect' take, pray? would you like to be specific? - CM) feel strong. And it doesn't; it actually demonstrates a profound weakness.
ABDUL-FATTAH, No I don't think so. I think if we're going to defend freedom of speech, then we should apply it to people. As long as there's no incitement of violence or hatred , and I don't think there has been (well, except for the teaching of an attitude of total contempt for and rejection of everything non-Muslim, qua non-Muslim..- CM), then why not?
ALBERICI - Tony Abbott says he's been a preacher of hate.
ABDUL-FATTAH - Well I don't think there's been any evidence of that, and if there isn't, we can take that as, you know, an empirical study of that, a case by case basis. (She's babbling. Both she and Aly have done a great deal of that, in this 'interview'. I would have liked to see Rev Mark Durie conducting the interview, rather than Ms Alberici; I think it would have been a great deal more interesting. - CM). But I certainly don't think that we should start censoring people. (Well then, if it were proposed that the 'Innocence of Muslims' film be shown at the Sydney Film Festival, with the maker/s of the film attending the screening to take part in discussion, I would expect to see you, Ms Abdul-Fattah, raising no objections to this, exactly as you expect Australian non-Muslims to raise no objections to the visit by Mr Taji Mustafa or to his perfervid vision of the creation, by Muslims, of a world-wide Empire of Islam within which all surviving non-Muslims would eke out their lives as barely-tolerated, exploited and abused dhimmi near-slaves...- CM) And like Waleed said, when you do that, you make a martyr of them. (Which is exactly what Theo van Gogh, and Taslima Nasreen, and Geert Wilders, and the maker of 'Innocence of Muslims' now are in the eyes of decent and intelligent non-Muslims: martyrs in the cause of freedom of speech, because of the way in which Muslims attacked them. - CM). And so I think it's counter-productive anyway.
ALBERICI - Thank you both so much. We'll have to leave it there.
ALY - No worries. Thanks."