Following the attacks, a SWPLy crowd in the Place de la République
unleashed a barrage of warm hugs upon blindfolded Muslim men. NBC
Nightly News anchor Lester Holt praised this snugglefest as a means to “heal the tensions” brought on by the jihadist terror.
Meanwhile, nearby, at a makeshift memorial of flowers and candles, a
francophone Asian man explained the attack, and his strategy for
counter-attack, to his distraught son: “It’s ok. They might have guns,
but we have flowers.” This too, like the hug-a-Muslim rally, went straight to the international news desks. NBC’s Lester Holt, again, lavished praise on this peacenik response, claiming that this father had demonstrated “the perfect way to explain [terrorism] to his child.”
Then, Frenchman Antoine Leiris exacted his revenge on the jihadists
who killed his wife by publically assuring them, on Facebook, that he
would not give them “the Gift of Hate.” This retaliation went viral,
tantalizing the tender feels of SWPLs worldwide. Holt yet again praised such lovey-dovey sentiments as “a powerful message about refusing to give in to hate.”
While I view “hate” as a perfectly natural and justifiable response
to terror strikes, I also acknowledge that human psychology is complex.
Traumatized people sometimes give flowers or hugs to strangers to
comfort not the other, but themselves; sometimes Stockholm syndrome
takes effect and hostages start sympathizing with their captors. So it
is not my intention to mock the philo-Islamic gestures of so many
frazzled Parisians. Still, I feel we need an account of them that is
less overly celebratory than the one the major news outlets have been
providing. The reason I feel this way will soon be clear.
My more cynical side tells me that these gestures are nothing more
than instances of virtue signaling, of advertising moral rectitude to
peers via the camera or social media. But one might also say that such
sentiments are “genuine” in the sense that we have been conditioned to
behave this way; we have been reared on the logic of Hollywood films and
ABC After School Specials where the nice, misunderstood underdog trumps
the alpha-jock-bully. The Christian valorization of meekness also
likely plays its part here, genealogically. But it is not my intention
to give you another Nietzschean critique of these tendencies. I want to
focus, rather, on how these friendly gestures, these meek, tolerant hugs
work in the context of a counterterrorism strategy.
It seems strange that they should figure into such a strategy, but
that is precisely what the mainstream media and even officials at the
White House have been insisting all week: that our more reasonable,
charitable, and meek responses to the massacre do more than just signal
our inner virtue, they actively help us to fight ISIS. Conversely, the
media and government have been emphatically maintaining, any
less-than-tolerant responses to the Paris attacks — from, say, limiting
the migrations of Syrian refugees, to subjecting Muslims to stricter
security measures, to defacing a mosque — will play right into the
terrorists’ diabolical master plan.
Max (((Blumenthal))) at Salon makes precisely this claim.
Citing an article in Dabiq, the
official magazine of ISIS, Blumenthal explains how the terrorists’
strategy of conquest involves provoking, via their attacks, the
persecution of Muslims in general, which would in turn drive more of
them to align themselves with the caliphate.
Examples of responses to terror that would cause the ranks of ISIS to
swell, then, according to Blumenthal, are “Poland abruptly pull[ing]
out of the EU refugee resettlement plan” and “neo-fascists Geert Wilders
and Marine Le Pen [calling for an end to] all immigration to Europe.”
Vice President Joe Biden, in the most recent White House Weekly Address, describes ISIS’ strategy in identical terms.
After lavishing praise upon Parisians who, in response to the terror
attacks, kindly “open[ed] their doors to anyone trapped in the street,”
Biden strikes a different tone to chastise any who might “suggest that
the best way to keep America safe is to prevent any Syrian refugee from
gaining asylum in the United States.”
He continues: “To turn them away and say ‘there is no way you can ever get here’ would play right into the terrorists’ hands. We know what ISIS — we know what they hope to accomplish. They flat-out told us.”
Biden then refers to the same Dabiq article that Blumenthal
cites, which he falsely attributes to the leader of ISIS, Abu Bakr
al-Baghdadi (you know, so it sounds more authoritative), and makes the
same assertion that growing Islamophobia, the result of ISIS attacks,
would only create new recruits for them.
But it is totally dishonest for Biden and Blumenthal to say that
right-wing opposition to taking in Syrian “refugees” plays into this
grand strategy of the terrorists. For the Dabiq article makes
no mention of Western immigration policies. Rather, it imagines the
persecution of Muslims in the West in (far harsher) terms of a forced
conversion to Christianity — which sounds highly unlikely, even absurd,
to western ears (see Dabiq, issue 7, p. 66).
Indeed, it is Biden and Obama and Merkel, rather, who are playing
into ISIS’ narrative precisely by their facilitation of migrant flows.
For in ISIS’s dogma the West is actively crusading again to convert the
Muslims from the truth of Islam to their infidel ideologies of
secularism/democracy/feminism. By being so open to these migrants, by
taking them in and giving them money and a place to live, by turning a
blind eye to their rapes, by generally coddling them and encouraging
their degeneracy, our elites allow ISIS to turn to their followers and
say “See, I told you so!”
The writers of Dabiq would find it very inconvenient to tell
their readers that there are these people in the West, called
“right-wingers,” who want nothing whatsoever to do with Muslims, who
want neither to convert them, nor to corrupt them, nor to hug them, nor
to encourage them to migrate — people who want nothing more than for
them to stay in their caliphate and seek out a life that suits them
best. And if that includes stoning for adultery, that’s their
prerogative in their own lands.