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Playing both sides - the Western Jihadi...Mark Steyn
Steyn On Line ^ | 19 July 2003 | Mark Steyn

Posted on 07/24/2003 7:51:06 AM PDT by Rummyfan

PLAYING BOTH SIDES: THE WESTERN JIHADI

Tony Blair must have loved his speech to Congress. It will be a long while before he gets a reception like that in his own Parliament. Of course, his position is much worse than Bush’s: the dissenters are in his own party not the opposition, and they’ve fused with a broader dissatisfaction among his poor subjects. I would say the heat Blair’s taking on Iraq is what the psychologists would call displacement: whether or not he’s a fraud and a failure re Saddam, it doesn’t begin to compare to the scale of his fraudulence and failure on education, health, transport, etc, which is what most Britons are really bugged about.

Nonetheless, I regret his decision to toss his snarling party a bone by intervening on behalf of the British subjects indefinitely detained at Don Rumsfeld’s pleasure at Guantanamo. I defended the arrangements at Gitmo last year, when most of Fleet Street was up in arms over malarial mosquitoes and other fictions. It was, in fact, the US Army which eliminated malaria from Cuba after the Spanish-American War. The detainees’ “cages” are cool, balmy, disease-free - and single-occupancy, so how good a night’s sleep you get doesn’t depend on whether Butch is in a romantic mood. A year and a half later, the brutal torture of the Rumsfeldian death camps is so severe that most of the inmates have put on weight. True, the guards have had to prevent a few suicide attempts from prisoners depressed at being unable to become suicide bombers, and one could make the case that stopping them is disrespectful of their cultural tradition. But London’s complaint seems to be no more or less than that, simply because they travel on passports issued in the name of Her Britannic Majesty, certain jihadi should be treated differently than others.

London is right. The British jihadi should certainly be treated differently: they should be subjected to much lengthier and more detailed interrogation. The mighty Pashtun warrior from Kandahar is an impressive figure, but in the grand scheme of things he’s unimportant. I doubt he knows much and I’m happy for him to be returned to his herd in the foothills of the Hindu Kush. But, with the British and French and Australian and Canadian al-Qa'eda volunteers, even the small fry are comparatively big fish. For a start, they’re a much larger threat to US interests: they know far more than the Afghan warlord’s idiot cousin about the weak points of the system – they know what papers you need to slip across the border from Montreal to Plattsburgh, who you need to hook up with in Virginia to get fake ID, etc. It’s the jihad networks in the west that give the movement its global reach. Shut them down and what’s left is just a bunch of losers frolicking in their own decrepit backyard.

The British government is not alone in failing to grasp this. A few weeks ago, the night before I went to Iraq, the missus called me at my hotel in Jordan and said, “Er, I was just wondering whether you should, um, notify the Canadian Embassy of where you’re planning to go. As you’re a Canadian citizen and so forth. I mean, just so I’d have someone to call if you went, ah, missing…” She must have rung up about 20 bucks in long-distance charges while I lay on the bed howling with laughter at that one.

A couple of weeks later, a Montreal photo journalist, Zahra Kazemi, was arrested by police in Iran [CORRECT] and wound up getting questioned to death. She had done what my wife recommended – contacted the Canadian Embassy in Tehran – and a lot of good it did her when she was arrested for photographing a student demo and beaten into a coma. By the time her son, frustrated by his government’s unruffleable equanimity in the matter, got the story out to the media, it was too late. On hearing of her death, the Canadian Foreign Minister expressed his “sadness” and “regret”.

Would it have killed him to express a little anger and disgust? After all, the mullahs will be lucky to be in business by year’s end: this is a terminal regime even Canadians should have figured isn’t worth kissing up to. But what he mainly regretted was that one of his compatriots should have had the poor taste to get tortured and beaten onto the front pages. With a straight face, he passed on to reporters the official Iranian line that it could be just an “accident”. According to Reuters, the unfortunate accident has “marred previously harmonious relations between Iran and Canada”.

Looked at from Washington’s point of view, that may be the real problem: its closest neighbour, whose citizens enjoy greater and easier access to the US than those of any other country, has “harmonious relations” with the axis of evil’s prototype Islamist terrorism-exporting theocracy.

Don’t blame the poor boob who serves as Canada’s Foreign Minister. His staff may have done nothing for that murdered photographer, but they’ve been tireless in their efforts on behalf of Omar Khadr, a Canadian teenager captured in Afghanistan after a battle in which a US soldier was killed. Khadr’s father was arrested in Pakistan in 1995 for his part in the bombing of the Egyptian Embassy in Islamabad, but released after the personal intervention of the Canadian Prime Minister.

That’s the story in a nutshell: for whatever complex psychological reasons, western governments go to bat for the likes of Omar Khadr but not for Zahra Kazemi. Unlike Ms Kazemi, these boys know how to work the system. Zac Moussaoui, the so-called “20th hijacker” is a French national who became an Islamic radical while living on welfare in London. Ahmed Ressam, arrested at the US border en route to blow up Los Angeles International Airport, trained for his mission while living on welfare in Montreal. Metin Kaplan ran a multi-million dollar radical Islamist sect while living on welfare in Cologne. It’s the point at which eastern fundamentalism meets western benefit cheques that transforms the scale of the problem.

Tony Blair’s right. Too many people are being held at Guantanamo. Free the Afghans. But keep the Brits.


TOPICS: News/Current Events; United Kingdom; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: blairvisit; detainees; gitmo; marksteyn; marksteynlist; uk; warlist

1 posted on 07/24/2003 7:51:07 AM PDT by Rummyfan
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To: Rummyfan
Wow... I am in awe of Steyn's clear thinking and clear writing. This one is a classic...
2 posted on 07/24/2003 8:01:08 AM PDT by The Electrician
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Comment #3 Removed by Moderator

To: Pokey78
PING
4 posted on 07/24/2003 8:21:52 AM PDT by rudypoot (99% of the lawyers make the rest look bad.)
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To: cold_duck
Canada to impose economic sanctions? LOL. And I thought we were dealing with the Iranians too softly.
5 posted on 07/24/2003 8:44:37 AM PDT by Rodney King (No, we can't all just get along.)
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To: cold_duck
Translation: "It's made the front pages; we'd better make a few symbolic gestures."
6 posted on 07/24/2003 9:29:10 AM PDT by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: Rummyfan; *war_list
Great post. Thank you. Steyn and Hitchens in one day...following our weapon of mass gravitas, the honorable VP Cheney...what a day!

*Hitchens: "Morale is very high" among both troops and Iraqi citizens.
pagesix ^ | 07/24/03 | pagesix

7 posted on 07/24/2003 9:35:25 AM PDT by Ragtime Cowgirl ("I don't find myself in any quandry. I'm a soldier." Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez *CENTCOM* July 23)
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To: Pokey78
This appears to be a first posting of this article, pokey. Pinglist?
8 posted on 07/24/2003 2:04:23 PM PDT by gcruse (http://gcruse.blogspot.com/)
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To: gcruse; rudypoot; Howlin; riley1992; Miss Marple; deport; Dane; sinkspur; steve; kattracks; ...
Thanks!


9 posted on 07/24/2003 6:35:27 PM PDT by Pokey78
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To: Pokey78

10 posted on 07/24/2003 6:45:50 PM PDT by MeekOneGOP (Bu-bye Dixie Chimps! / Coming Soon !: Freeper site on Comcast. Found the URL. Gotta fix it now.)
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To: The Electrician
I am in awe of Steyn's clear thinking and clear writing.

Yeah, I think we should put him in charge of some of this stuff!

11 posted on 07/24/2003 6:59:00 PM PDT by Amelia (It's better to light a single candle than to curse the darkness)
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To: Rummyfan
for whatever complex psychological reasons, western governments go to bat for the likes of Omar Khadr but not for Zahra Kazemi.

He's right. This is a total mystery to me, too. It must be a very deep, dark psychological reason indeed.

12 posted on 07/24/2003 7:02:41 PM PDT by livius
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To: Rummyfan
"That’s the story in a nutshell: for whatever complex psychological reasons, [Jean Chretien's Canada goes] to bat for the likes of Omar Khadr but not for Zahra Kazemi."

I could ask how one country could produce both Mark Steyn and Jean Chretien.

But, then, I'd have to ask how another country could produce Ann Coulter and Bill Clinton...

13 posted on 07/24/2003 7:02:59 PM PDT by okie01 (The Mainstream Media: IGNORANCE ON PARADE.)
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To: All

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14 posted on 07/24/2003 7:03:11 PM PDT by Bob J (Freerepublic.net...where it's always a happening....)
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To: cold_duck
the Iranian regime doesn't take Canada seriously

Does ANYBODY take Canada seriously???

15 posted on 07/24/2003 7:23:11 PM PDT by sd-joe
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To: Pokey78
Hooray! A thread that's NOT about Kobe Bryant!
16 posted on 07/24/2003 8:46:40 PM PDT by Constitution Day
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To: Pokey78
Thanks for the ping, my friend :-)
17 posted on 07/24/2003 10:22:35 PM PDT by JohnHuang2
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To: Pokey78; xm177e2; mercy; Wait4Truth; hole_n_one; GretchenEE; Clinton's a rapist; buffyt; ...

Mark Steyn MEGA PING!!


18 posted on 07/24/2003 10:23:07 PM PDT by JohnHuang2
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To: JohnHuang2; Rummyfan
What a mixed up world.
19 posted on 07/25/2003 12:01:26 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Rummyfan
http://groups.google.com/groups?q=%22Metin+Kaplan%22+jewish&hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&selm=3C4E3E18.122%40abSp.ZOO&rnum=16


As for Barbara Amiel's EU ambassador, fretting that shitty little Israel, those people , are plunging the world into war, let me propose an alternative theory: it's all his fault. The other day, Mickey Kaus, an iconoclastic neoliberal, noticed that Zacarias Moussaoui, the French national now charged with conspiracy in connection with 11 September, became an Islamic radical while living in London drawing welfare benefits ; also, Ahmed Ressam, arrested on the eve of Y2K while en route to blow up Los Angeles International Airport, had been living in Montreal where he survived on welfare payments ; likewise, Metin Kaplan, who heads a radical Islamic sect, claimed social benefits in Cologne for many years until two million deutschmarks in cash was found in his flat
20 posted on 07/25/2003 12:14:42 AM PDT by dennisw (G-d is at war with Amalek for all generations)
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To: cold_duck
"I'm very unhappy that they would take a journalist and kill a journalist," Chretien said Wednesday after a cabinet meeting.

Yes, it’s uncivilized to kill people of substance. The French/Canadian sense of elitism and snobbery is quite revealing.

21 posted on 07/25/2003 5:06:01 AM PDT by usurper
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To: scholar; Bullish; linear
Ping
22 posted on 07/25/2003 5:17:30 AM PDT by knighthawk (We all want to touch a rainbow, but singers and songs will never change it alone. We are calling you)
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To: JohnHuang2
Good Stuff, John ... Thanks!
23 posted on 07/25/2003 8:03:05 AM PDT by blackie
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To: Rummyfan
for whatever complex psychological reasons, western governments go to bat for the likes of Omar Khadr (a known terrorist) but not for Zahra Kazemi (a Canadian photographer beaten to death by the Iranian police)

Canada isn't the only country with this problem.

Sen. Kennedy denounces Mideast scholar; Muslim groups declare victory, Pipes nomination vote delayed

24 posted on 07/25/2003 8:36:38 AM PDT by Gritty
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To: Pokey78
Bump! As always, thanks for the ping.
25 posted on 07/25/2003 8:44:25 AM PDT by dead
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To: JohnHuang2
Thanks for the heads up!
26 posted on 07/25/2003 10:14:48 AM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: The Electrician
I too am in awe of Steyn. May his influence be magnified.
27 posted on 07/25/2003 4:29:24 PM PDT by WarrenC
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To: WarrenC
Steyn bump
28 posted on 07/25/2003 4:54:05 PM PDT by sarasmom (Hey France...tick tick to.. (I am the new oracle..See Afghanistan and Iraq in my resume))
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