In the Name of The Father, and of The Son and of The Holy Spirit, Amen.
ORBIS NON SUFFICIT
SOLUS DEUS SUFFICIT
STRAIGHT TALK AND PLAIN THOUGHT:
The Theological Component In The Announcement
Of National And Theatre Strategic War
To Annihilate ISIL And The Salafi Jihad
Some Jihadis are answered but not Jihad itself.
… told many times one is coming, still we have no announcement of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and the Salafi Jihad altogether. Jihadis who go kinetic we address with kinetics, more or less. But so far, after 16 years of gazing into the burning pit, so to speak, who has produced a comprehensive announcement that douses the fire and paves over the pit? Is there an announcement of strategic war that breaks the necks and knees of ISIL and poisons the root of Salafi Jihad altogether?
There is. Keep reading.
Table Of Contents
Who Are We And Why Do We Fight?
Appendix I: Counter-Narrative vice Counter-Proclamation
Appendix II: Text Criticism Of The Koran
Appendix III: Responsibility to Protect
Appendix IV: Paucity Of An NCO Corps
Appendix V: Order Of Battle
Suggested Reading And Ruminating
A Bibliography For Islam
Who Are We And Why Do We Fight?
We are sons and daughters of the United States of America
and we fight to protect our mother country.
We are Americans and we fight to defend our nature.
We govern ourselves and we fight to preserve that privilege.
We are a nation of refugees from holocausts conducted in the name of a religion, theistic or atheistic. Leftists, who are mother-haters, call us a nation of immigrants in order to trivialize us and sneer at our role in history.
Everyone, you see, is an immigrant at some time or another in their life. When we change locations of residence we are immigrants at the place to which we moved.
But not everyone is a refugee. Our ancestors were refugees, and specifically refugees from death and destruction reigned down in the name of a religion. No matter the religion we embrace today, our ancestors came to these shores to escape persecution in the name a religion.
They came for freedom to practice the religion to which they felt called. That is an absolutely unique etiology of a nation state during the last, say, five hundred years. Our ancestors made world-benefiting history. Even those brought here as slaves did not leave when they were freed. They stayed, as refugees, and for the same reason their former owners and their ancestors had come: freedom to practice the religion to which they felt called. Our former slave population came here as holocaust themselves, as human persons sacrificed — by their own leaders — to an idol known all-too-well and all-too-long: the God of Mammon.
Now, religions do not conduct holocausts. Religions persecute no one. Idolatries do that. And of course, idolatries always call themselves religions. So there is religion and there is idolatry posing as religion, and that nearly constant phenomenon of life requires of us constant discrimination between the true and the false, the genuine and the demonic.
Religions, par excellence, conduce to freedom in this world and the next. That is why people seek and practice a religion. Freedom is the dearest, most precious experience in this or any other world. Everyone knows that, everyone wants to experience it, but not everyone wants freedom for everyone. Enter irreligion, idolatry.
Idolatries — irreligions — conduct holocausts and persecute persons not loyal to them, and even those who are loyal to them. Idolatries are man-made. Just about anything man-made — physical, verbal, ideational, conceptual, past, present or future — can become an idol. Something becomes an idol when more ultimacy is attributed to it than it is. Idolatry is taking something finite as infinite. It makes for real trouble and destruction in human affairs. It is the bane of humanity.
Idolatries are made in endless profusion, like waves washing up on the shores of the seas. This gives history the tones and tints of holocausts. And it gives the United States of America’s protection of holocaust refugees its reputation for exceptionality. And so we deserve that reputation. We do not persecute persons in the name of a religion which is actually an idolatry and no religion at all. We practice freedom of religious practice so long as it does not infringe the practice of religious freedom.
In other words, we do not tolerate idolatry. This disposition in us, more than anything else, defines us. We tolerate freedom of religion but not freedom of idolatry. The distinction is abyssal and decisive. It also enables us with clarity to assess whether something claiming to be religion is religion or idolatry. If it does not claim sole legitimacy or engage in isolation and pogroms or demand obedience within a system of rewards and punishments, it is religion. If it does, it is idolatry. Very simple.
So, religion is the heart of America and Americans. Protection for religions and their expressions is exactly what America is and who Americans are. That is our raison d’être and our esse ipsum. And that, dear friends and vile enemies, is that.
* * * * * * * * *
Our nature to protect freedom of religion has been attacked steadily from earliest days through now by three idolatries claiming status as religions: Unitarians, Quakers/Friends and Asharite (now Salafi) Muslims.
Then, following the death of their Superior-General The Rev. Fr. (Count) Wlodimir Ledóchowski in 1942, the Society of Jesus zoomed fiercely left and attacked our freedom of religion from their new platform of Communism under a patina of Christianity. Since the 1950s, that platform is called Liberation Theology.
Then, in recent decades, Shi’a Muslims have joined the party.
So, our nature to protect freedom of religion is under attack by five idolatries: Communism (a Christian heresy), Unitarianism and Quakerism/Friends (Christian apostasies) and Salafi and Shi’a Jihads (Muslim apostasies).
That adds up to heavy fires directed at Americans’ freedom of religion and their historical role protecting that treasure. The fires aim to incinerate our Declaration of Independence, our US Constitution and our Bill of Rights. Idolatries cannot abide happiness.
Unitarians and Quakers/Friends opposed the formation of the United States by way of ratifying a Constitution. They still do. Unitarians and their Humanist descendants have controlled Harvard University since the early 18th Century. Quakers/Friends maintain primary, secondary and post-secondary schools, some of high repute and they operate NGOs for waging lawfare against USA sovereignty and security. Harvard began life as a seminary for Calvinist Clergy.
Howie Carr: Do you realize that every last one of the many disasters that has befallen this nation in the last half-century can be traced right back here to the banks of the Charles River?
Both Unitarianism and Quakerism/Friends root in Arianism and its iterations as Pelagianism, Catharism and Humanism. Arianism is to Christianity what Shi’a and Asharite Sunna are to Islam: intense attachment to the body (secularism) masked by pretentious affinity for God (puritanism), insistent good-deed-doing (militarism) and sententious spite (vindictive governance).
In US history, Unitarians and Quakers/Friends play the role of elites, of natural-born rulers allergic to government unless they are it. They know better than anyone else what everyone else needs to think and say and do.
Sidwell Friends School is a highly selective — their phrase — Quaker/Friends primary and secondary school indoctrination center in Washington D.C. and Bethesda, MD.
Two concepts held by Unitarians and Quakers/Friends make them permanently cross at American polity, permanently off-put by our Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights, and thus permanent trouble-makers, cooking up stuff, with respect to our freedom of religion:
1- Special Revelation: The knowledge of God is incomplete at any given moment of history and is dished out, so to speak, by God to individuals — Unitarians or Quakers/Friends — on a need to know basis. Thus, the Unitarian or Quaker/Friend lives in authority superior to that of other persons, fresh-filled with divine revelation, having sapiential authority directly from God and in excess of others’, entitling them to demand of and regulate others’ lives for them. And free of restraints Constitutional, legal, customary, moral or philosophical.
2- Moral Relativism: Neither Sin nor sins afflict a man’s condition in life and education must and will remove all difficulties and fulfill all wishes. Thus, no internal check on impulses need exist. No internal self-correction to compensate for delusion, shortcoming, propensity or frailty is required. Run ‘em through school, all will be well.
The attack of Unitarianism and Quakerism/Friends against American freedom of religion is indirect at the point of contact but direct from their base comprising those two theological concepts.
Instead of saying there should be no religious freedom, they say there should be no document protecting it. There should be no Constitution or Bill of Rights establishing a nation state to protect anything. Instead of saying Unitarianism or Quakerism/Friends is the only legitimate religion, they say the question of legitimacy is personal and then only among the well brought up, namely, Unitarians or Quakers/Friends.
God provides knowledge sufficient to the day at every time and clime, always fresh and contextual, relative to the need, and available to the adept, namely, a Unitarian or Quaker/Friend. Their sapiential authority is humanity’s sufficient wealth. Just do as they say. And besides, being pure and educated, nothing untoward can emerge from them and everything they think, say or do is both monitory and normative.
Jesuit attacks on American freedom of religion mount from classical Nominalism and proceed along corridors hacked — by Marx, Lenin, KGB and their votaries in the academe/media/entertainment complex — through Christian civilization and its political philosophy of self-governance. Liberation Theology, after all, is a KGB active measure for subverting Christian societies. From Nominalism to tyranny is a short step. It looks like this:
Declare that all is flux. Conclude that nothing is of fixed certainty. Propose that reality is what one declares it to be. Invite veneration of a charismatic personality because the reality they declare excites broad approval. Bingo, your tyrant is in.
By this logic — which depends on sense-based epistemology and shuns the witness of direct experience, and for which some support from St. Thomas Aquinas can be adduced, though not as much as Jesuits would like to have from him — and with a dash of malice, one can turn the grandeur of Christian Theology into the trivialities of Liberation Theology, aka Communism. And with that, attack Americans’ freedom of religion by subverting her founding documents. Communism (spoken of as if it is Christianity) is the only legitimate religion, and who needs another, and besides, those founding documents are obsolete, not modern, past their shelf-life.
Asharite/Salafi and Shi’a attacks on American freedom of religion are less devious. Here one hears the simple, straightforward screams of bumptious hegemony right out of the box’s mouth so to speak. No need to subvert American freedom of religion by breeding confusion regarding its documentary protections. Just burn the buggers and anyone who talks about them. Very simple.
Americans today fight to keep their country safe for refugees from persecution in the name of religion. Because they labor under heavy fires — in the name of religion — from titular Americans and foreigners … because, in other words, in their own country today Americans are refugees of persecution the name of religion … Americans today fight to re-found their country for its original and divinely sought purpose.
No one likes being persecuted by an idolatry posing as a religion. But, it turns out, not a few enjoy persecuting in the name of an idolatry posing as a religion. The conflict inhering in that phenomenology fabricates the history of civilizations.
* * * * * * * * *
The phenomena of freedom and religion link in three ways and to three purposes. There is freedom from religion. This is primary to human striving. There is freedom for religion. This is secondary to human striving. There is freedom of religion. This is tertiary to human striving. However, all are ineluctable facts of human striving.
These three linkages belong together. They comprise one system mutually supporting.
Freedom from religion means one may not be compelled to accept a religion. Freedom for religion means one may not be hindered from choosing a religion. Freedom of religion means one may not be forced regarding the practice of a religion.
These are negative freedoms, meaning, they do not say what one can do in the name of religion. Rather, they say what others cannot do to one in the name of religion. They constrain not oneself but others, which is the purpose of freedom and religion, both.
These negative freedoms belong together. In an absence of one or all, force will be present somewhere or everywhere, and in matters of religion, force is an oxymoron, pointedly foolish. We Americans fight to keep those negative freedoms, all three, all at once.
ISIL did not make itself. AQI, AQ, Moslem Brotherhood, Salafism and Asharite Islam made ISIL. AQ, AQAP, Boko Haram, Moslem Brotherhood/Hamas/CAIR, al-Shabaab, Abu Sayyaf, Jemaah Islamiyah and other groups fight in parallel with ISIL. These groups, and more, comprise the Salafi Jihad. They are neither extremist Islam, radical Islamic terrorism, work-place violence nor Islamofascism, all terms of befuddlement. Yet, for sixteen plus years of the same war on every continent we have neither seen nor heard an explanation, a strategic reason for defending ourselves much less counter-attacking, ISIL and its swarming siblings. Nor, even more sadly, have we heard a statement — an inspiring statement — defining us and our purpose.
Politics is downstream from culture. The theological component in the announcement of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and the Salafi Jihad communicates with Salafi culture, such as it is, not with its politics.
The objective is to annihilate ISIL and extirpate Salafi Jihad, which is ISIL’s nutrient medium. The assets available for achieving the objective are the three kinetics of statecraft: diplomacy, finance, war-fighting.
The announcement of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether necessarily includes a theological component inside the three kinetics of statecraft. That component attacks the justification for Jihad as faulty and deceptive religious thinking. We call it Reason. Reason, as described and deployed in classical philosophy and by von Clausewitz, is the power inside the announcement of strategic war to annihilate to ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether.
Reason is a very big club or a very contenting restorative, a weapon or a medicament, depending on the interlocutors of the announcement of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether.
The theological component inside the announcement of strategic
war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether is:
ISIL’s religious thinking is faulty because it rejects the real-world co-mingling of personal freedom and divine freedom. ISIL’s religious thinking is deceptive because it deploys seemingly religious concepts to veil political, sexual and financial ambitions. These are the theological morbidities of Salafi Jihad wherever and whenever it is found. Therefore, they are the exploitable target of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether.
Theology is culture. Politics, to include the kinetics of statecraft, is downstream from it.
Announcement of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad calls for, in effect, revolution in Islam. It proclaims personal freedom and sovereignty as the nutrient earth in which Muslim men and women cultivate their families and nations. It proclaims how Muslims communicate with non-Muslims, who also are free, sovereign personalities, families and nations. The announcement imparts that Muslims dive deep into their history and tradition, scrape away the ruins of Asharite/Salafi oppression and reacquire their substrate, Mutazilite Islam (Reason), as rallying point and base of operations.
This essay describes what to communicate with Muslims and non-Muslims but not exactly how to communicate it. We depict the content of the theological component inside the announcement of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether but not its exact details or vehicles of communication. Local personnel, to include their chains of command, should be authorized and expected to make the theological component in the announcement work for what they encounter.
The method of this announcement of strategic war is communication with five demographics, which are, in descending order of importance:
- Muslim women
- Muslim boys and girls, and maturing young persons
- Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists
- Muslim Jihadis, Shi’a as well as Salafi
Communication takes in hand dangers faced by and debilitating habits and recalls of experience among Muslim women and young persons. It offers Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists a choice of reading the Koran and preaching for independent reasoning or being attacked as Jihadis. It attacks the very persons of Jihadis. It admonishes and reassures Non-Muslims.
The theological component in the announcement contra ISIL and the Salafi Jihad is Reason as structure of reality, national policy and the human mind pushed through blood, sweat and tears. It is top-level and ground-level theology amplifying the three kinetics of statecraft.
Message action is of two types: prevention and intervention. Prevention action is for Muslim women and young persons. Intervention action is for Jihadis. A mixture of prevention and intervention actions is for Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists. Both types of communication are conducted at elevated and ground level, always rubbing elbows with interlocutors. We do not hurl prevention messages like rocks at Muslims’ heads. We do shoot intervention messages like bullets at Jihadis’ heads.
The Address With Demographics
Muslim women and young people are provided opportunities, where they are, to enjoy the thrill of self-confidence. They are encouraged to make their own larger opportunities. The natural progression in life is from self-confidence to self-satisfaction to self-sacrifice. This progression causes life to taste sweet and satisfying. It also cultivates sustainable culture.
Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists are reminded that the Koran is of two minds — peace and reason from Mecca, war and dogmatism from Medina — and given to understand that the first is legitimate and the second dubious if not spurious.
Jihadis are provided opportunity to verify their Mullahs’ promises.
Non-Muslims are provided admonishment and assurance.
In his 1920 Introduction to a reprinting of Charles Montagu Doughty’s pivotal and celebrated Travels In Arabia Deserta, Volume One, Volume Two, T. E. Lawrence notes of the Arabia Doughty visited in the 1880s as no European had before: Turkey was still strong there, and the Wahhabi movement had kept fanaticism vivid in the tribes.
The Wahhabi movement of 18th and 19th Century Arabia is the Salafi Jihad, to include ISIL, of the 20th and 21st Centuries. The movement is financed now by petrodollars and propagated by hysterical fanatics in every continent.
Terrorism and Counterterrorism are weasel words
for Salafi Jihad and Fruitless Kinetics.
That is, to mask killing without
strategic goal or accomplishment.
Islam: A religion of Arab origin created through and reflecting a literary engine (Koran) that is of two minds, both for Jihad: (1) required struggle (Jihad) to subdue a believer’s improper impulses with God’s transcendent mercy, and (2) required struggle (Jihad) to subject, with unrelenting violence, the lives and institutions of imperfect believers and unbelievers to Islamic political, military and religious hegemony.
Sunni Islam: The present Muslim majority, comprising several schools of jurisprudence, all Asharite or nearly so. In Sunni Asharite Islam, religion is government and jurisprudence is political science.
Shi’a Islam: Schismatic sect of Islam, arising from dynastic jealousies, forced to quit Arabia for Persia, where they were welcomed, married Persians then overwhelmed them, creating Iran. More secular than religious, more attached to this world’s pleasures than detached from them. Shi’a Islam is more an unhappy and uneasy secular oligarchy of bumptious clergy than a religion-as-political-science, as is Sunni Islam.
Koran: The founding and motivating literature of Islam, Sunni and Shi’a.
Sharia: Islamic jurisprudence, Sunni or Shi’a.
Mutazilite, Sufi and Asharite Islam: Basic opposing doctrines of Sunni Islam, reflecting the two interpretations of Jihad earlier mentioned (against one’s own errors vice against impure believers and unbelievers). Roughly comparable to Latin, Greek and Arian/Pelagian Christianity, respectively.
Mutazilite Islam was for submitting a believer’s impulses to the mercy of God, Who was recognized and discussed — in the terms of classical Greek Philosophy and Christian Theology — as Universal Reason (Being and the Logos of Being). Mutazilite Islam was devoted to individual thought, learning and arts, including classical Greek learning and arts.
There is a rallying point there. Mutazilite Muslims could converse with Christians and Greek Philosophy through shared appreciation of Reason writ large. Logos, the Greek word for Reason and Word — by which they meant what humanist philosophy means by phrases such as the structure of the mind — is the common nature of creation and creatures, their one, glorious place to meet.
Man can grasp reality and create nature because the structure of man’s intellect (human reason) is also the Structure of Reality (Divine Reason). This is why the laws of physics, for example, are demonstrable rather than mere storylines, tales. Pope Benedict XVI recalled this happy fact in a famous speech to the faculty of the University of Regensburg, Bavaria, Germany, in 2006.
Back in our own Dark Ages, Abbasid [Mutazilite] openness to science and philosophy
provided a bridge between ancient Greece and Renaissance Europe.
However, these advances were reversed as ijtihad, or independent reasoning,
gave way to taqlid, or emulation of authority. The razing of the Galata Observatory
in Istanbul in 1580 epitomized a waning intellectual curiosity.
— Andrew Lycett, The Spectator
Mutazilite Islam recognized this fact and in consequence could communicate normally with Christians. In Spain during the High Middle Ages, learned Muslims intermarried with Christians and Jews, as did Christians and Jews among themselves. The common ground was the doctrine of universal Reason, or as Christians call it, Logos Theology. To Spinoza, a Sephardic Jew, it was Geometrical Unity. Averroes and Avicenna, Andalusian and Persian polymaths, respectively — and both exceptional influences on Christian Theology, Historiography and Medicine of the High Middle Ages — represented the spirit and interests of Mutazilite Islam.
Sufi Islam originated in Sunni Islam with a Mutazilite-like interest in the purity of impulse. It became also a movement in Shi’a Islam. It commends allegiance to Sharia through personal devotion to the preceptor, and ultimately to Mohammed, as the door and path to ecstatic experience of the unity of God. It regards Mohammed as a morally perfect personality and therefore supremely close to God, an echo of Islam’s Christian heritage. In West Africa and the Maghreb, Sufi preceptors are known as Marabouts or Murshids. Around themselves they form Muslim Brotherhoods. Their general outlook on life and scripture is similar to that of Talmudic enthusiasts: Hasids. The great Polish-American Hasidic Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel admired Sufi Islam and was attracted by it.
Asharite Islam is for subjecting all persons to the awful conformity and penal authority of Sharia: universal hegemony of Islamic jurisprudence. Asharite Islam can converse only with Asharite Islam and then only on suspicion an interlocutor is insufficiently pure in their Asharite doctrine and practice. The Salafi Jihad — such as ISIL, AQ, Boko Haram, Muslim Brotherhood/Hamas/CAIR and others — is Asharite Islam’s extrusion, logical end and modern face.
Mutazilite Islam is all but extinct. It has two strong descendants but neither is recognized by Sunni or Shi’a Muslims as Muslim. These are Ahmadiyya and Bahá’í Faith. Ahmadiyya descends from Sunni Islam. Bahá’í Faith descends from Shi’a Islam. Both are 19th Century developments, both are Messianic in nature and both proclaim fresh Divine Revelation borne by their founders for the purpose of quietening world political, economic and familial affairs and making the earth sweet and beautiful as a lovely garden. They are not wrong. They are legitimate reforms of Islam, transcending the Asharite/Salafi terror, pointing away from imposed authority and towards independent reason and happiness. Bahá’í Faith also is a restoration and reform of the ancient Veda-inspired religion of Persia called Zoroastrianism after its founder Zoroaster.
Asharite Islam, with its product Salafism dominating its press, dominates Sunni Islam today and long has. The grim visage and dour fate of the Salafi Jihad today demonstrate that Asharite Islam and its Salafi Jihad are self-evident failures by their own terms of success. Their mission is impossible.
Muslims have in their tradition, however, a place of refuge and strength: Mutazilite Islam. Islamic self-confidence and respectability can spring from a reacquisition, rooting-in and propagation of Mutazilite Islam. Do that and Muslims can communicate one with another — and with non-Muslims — in a cheerful voice and not be taken as dangerous dogmatics. This is entirely possible. It can be done.
There is movement in this direction by such as President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in Egypt, King Hussein in Jordan, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi in Iraq and even, it appears, elements of the al-Saud family in Arabia. The palpable benefits of Mutazilite Islam are known. Asharite Islam and its Salafi iteration, by their very nature, have not enriched Muslim culture, language, government, jurisprudence, family life, economics, happiness or spirituality. They cannot.
An enriching treasure is in Islamic tradition and that is Mutazilite Islam. Muslims should reacquire it. It is their true patrimony.
You can’t kill your way to happiness.
The neighbors won’t allow it.
Salafism: Arabic for puritanism, AKA Wahhabism, an 18th Century Asharite revival stressing purity of Sunni doctrine and practice for one part of the Koran’s two minds, the disagreeable, absolutist one. Founders are Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab, 1703-1792, and Muhammad ibn Saud, ????-1765.
Salafism is Asharite Islam refinanced and rededicated to its mission of full-spectrum world conquest by all means at hand, currently to include kinetic, economic, psychological, juridical and diplomatic warfare, migration (immigration), seduction and subversion. Salafi Jihad by migration (immigration) works this way: flood an area, increase your birthrate, seal your area, repeat, claiming freedom of religion and cultural necessity.
But it is not a religion, it is a subjugation. And it is not a culture, it is a politics. Religion is freedom and culture is beauty.
For existing Islamic areas, the baseline method of Salafi Jihad is to create chaos, fear, insecurity to families, so that people turn to anyone — Salafis insert themselves here — who can provide security. This is SOP for ISIL, AQ and their siblings. It is how they can control a city of millions with mere thousands. Their rationale and technique are explicated in The Management of Savagery: The Most Critical Stage Through Which the Umma Will Pass.
National sovereignty — guaranteed by victorious national Armed Forces — and legitimate, proper government are the antidote to this SOP of the Salafi Jihad in existing Islamic areas.
Salafism’s spiritual engine is radical detachment from this world. This frees up a person’s faculties for radical commitment to the cause of universal Salafi hegemony.
Salafism and the USA began at the same time but with absolutely opposing missions. Conflict between them cannot cease until one surrenders to the other, admits its mission is impossible and renounces it unconditionally.
Salafi Jihad: An alliance for universal Salafi hegemony, continuing since 1744, between two families: al-Wahhab (aka Al ash-Sheikh) and al-Saud. The alliance propagated full-spectrum political/military/juridical Jihad very rapidly. Among al-Wahhab’s first acts of purification was stoning a women to death.
Combined with Arab predation on commercial shipping in the Mediterranean and adjacent Seas, the Wahhab-Saud alliance for Salafi Jihad compelled the attention of USA Founders, who, early in the 19th Century, mounted a punitive expedition into North Africa to demolish the pretension of Islamic hegemony and to enforce stoppage of tribute and ransom for American safe-passage and sailors, respectively.
Today, Salafi Jihad occurs in many places wearing many names. Renunciation of life is its core power and attraction. It is sadism masquerading as religion.
Jihad: Since Mutazilite Islam almost does not exist — and because neither Ahmadiyya nor Bahá’í Faith supports the Asharite/Salafi Jihad — today the word Jihad means Jihad as how Asharite Islam has always seen it: struggle, warring, truculence, to force imperfect believers and unbelievers to submit to puritanical Islamic jurisprudence.
The objective is to annihilate ISIL
and extirpate the Salafi Jihad.
Sovereignty is the power to maintain the independence of a family, a town, a state and/or a nation … and therefore freedom for that entity to self-govern and self-select a course for life. Sovereignty is the power of a person, a family or a jurisdiction successfully to maintain their integrity, their existence.
National sovereignty is successful deployment of the three kinetics of statecraft: diplomacy, finance, war-fighting. Sovereignty is protection of who you are and what you have.
Want to help a country get on her feet and remain friendly? Help her guarantee her own sovereignty. And when she can, step back and let her to it.
We can illustrate this point:
For existing Islamic areas, the baseline method of Salafi Jihad is to create chaos, fear, insecurity to families, so that people turn to anyone — Salafis insert themselves here — who can provide security.
This is SOP for ISIL, AQ and their siblings. It is how they can control a city of millions with mere thousands. Rationale and technique for this SOP are laid out and scrutinized in The Management of Savagery: The Most Critical Stage Through Which the Umma Will Pass.
National sovereignty and legitimate, proper governance are the antidote to this SOP of the Salafi Jihad in existing Islamic areas.
In 2014, citizens of Mosul gave in quickly in part because the Iraqi government and their own local leadership, and military, were so inept and corrupt. This is also why, and rightly, USA military efforts focus on competent security forces and USA diplomatic efforts focus on competent governance. Those assets can remove the growth medium for Salafi Jihad and keep it gone. This is why USA operations, in fits and starts, succeeded over the last 15 years: because this one line of effort — effective governance and security forces — can be so powerfully constructive.
Politics is downstream from culture. The theological component in the announcement of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether communicates with Salafi culture, such as it is, not with its politics.
No POTUS since Jefferson and Madison has taken
Salafi Jihad seriously, for what it is.
Perhaps the current one? We shall see.
Patriotism is the kinetic force of a spiritual impulse which demands sovereign independence for a multi-racial, multi-religious, E Pluribus Unum nation state. Patriotism is pride in and loyalty to three powers all at once: a Land, a Constitution and the Families conducting their affairs on that Land and under that Constitution.
Over time, these powers interact synergistically to expand their existence through ever-stronger resolves and manifestations. We call these products of interaction between Land, Constitution and Families institutions, infrastructures, contracts, agreements, deals, treaties, consumer goods, power stations, parks, recreation facilities, gardens, forests, potable water, agriculture, commodities, securities, sewer systems, hospitals, religious sanctuaries, food distribution, homes, neighborhoods, etc.
Products of the hubbub of human activity are the physical content of patriotism. They are what you believe in because you and people you know or respect made them and will fight to maintain them.
Said products are idiosyncratic of a bounded expanse of territory, a definite, defined geography. Italians become more Italian over time. Americans become more American. And their countries’ boundaries are borders controlled for the purpose of maintaining national sovereignty.
Time enriches patriotic spirit and character, and that improvement seeks to protect itself by establishing its sovereignty both spiritual and physical.
Patriotism is a given or not. Do not worry about it, do not try to encourage or discourage it. Patriotism is a local will or it is not, and locals will take care of it themselves, as well they should.
If they want nationhood and you want to help them, then help them achieve the ability to enforce their own national sovereignty with their own punitive authority, to guarantee safety for their own nation that they choose to be. That were a new chapter in world history, and one worthy of the USA and her nature and destiny as E Pluribus Unum.
Let freedom ring is about nation-protection, not nation-building. The difference is vast and marvelously consequential. The nation will build herself, or not. In her early years, if she resolves to build, she merits protection, like a sapling, from wild beasts and weather. There is a time-limited cause worthy of a self-sustaining benefactor nation.
If, however, there is insufficient show of will for nationhood among residents of a territory — and patriotism to support it — there is no justification for trying to generate it among them or pretending it is unnecessary. It is there or it is not. If not, you leave the place or take it.
Vast difference exists between patriotism and nationalism. Michael Ledeen puts it in this language:
There is no American nationalism — a 19th century European ideology that developed in countries with overwhelming majorities of a single religion and/or ethnicity. The classic examples are France, England and Germany, all of which had largely homogeneous populations. There is an American counterpart, but it’s very different. We have patriotism, pride of nation, and that nation is defined by a distinctly anti-nationalist idea, since Americans belong to myriad religions and come in many colors, accents, and traditions. American patriotism — aka American exceptionalism — rests on the Declaration and the Constitution, not a national church or ethnic group.
Reason supports patriotism, not nationalism. Great religions are multi-racial. Great nations are multi-racial and multi-religious. All of that flowers in free patriots protecting their national sovereignty.
Patriotism in a totalitarian country is demanded. Patriotism in a republican country is given. In the one, rulers speak for people. In the other, people speak for themselves.
Reason is a very big club and a very contenting
restorative. It is both a weapon and a medicament.
When we see two things operating in the same way, we posit, usually unawares, at least five truths:
- the things are intelligible
- they share a common source
- the common source is intelligible
- each thing contains something of the common source they share
- we verify these truths through direct experience
In classical philosophy, the common source of everything in the world is called Reason (Logos). Reason is unconditioned. It is also called The Unconditioned, Being or The Ground Of Being. Here we will indicate The Unconditioned or Being with the word Reason, using a capital R, and the word Logos using a capital L. This way we distinguish Reason and human intellect and logic, which we indicate by the word reason with a small r. When Reason is anthropomorphized, it is called God and given a name that is held in reverence for prayer and worship.
Reason and reason are related. This fact drives and populates
the theological component of the strategic counter-narrative
against ISIL and the Salafi Jihad.
The world acts in concert with its Source, Reason. If one does not see that, one admits not seeing Reason’s reasons for the hubbub of history. Nor can one be faulted for not seeing because Reason in persons is conditioned by their finitude. What is finite can see Infinity (Reason, Being) but cannot define or understand it. Finitude’s most accurate descriptions of Infinitude (Reason, Being) are negative, pointing out what it is not.
Because of their common source, Reason, things and persons, which are in this world, act in parallel with one another. And they communicate while in parallel action. This gives the world the nature of duality and conflict even though its Source is undivided and at rest.
Communication is conflict. It implies struggle, effort. Anything done or made in this world is done or made through friction, though not necessarily through hostility. Heraclitus’ formulation of this truth is famous: War is the father of all things. The Unconditioned has filled the world with conditions. And thereby, drama and creativity.
Man can make things because his mathematics and his world operate in parallel with and derive from Reason. Man can think effectively because his intellect and the order of the universe operate in parallel and share a common Source. Man can communicate because sounds he makes and emotions he has belong also to the universe. The chemistry and electronics of man are those of the universe. The nature and destiny of man are the nature and destiny of history, because of their common Source.
In classical Greek, Christian and Mutazilite Islamic philosophy, this reality, this fact of life, this parallelism, this truth is attributed to an undivided Source called Reason or Being. Man’s mind operates the way the universe operates because of a common Source and so he can make things in the universe and affect it. Because of their common Source, man’s nature is the nature of the universe. This truth classical philosophy attributes to the common source of all things and persons: Reason.
What we are calling Reason — The Unconditioned, Reason that is the Source of all — is also called Being or Being Itself (esse ipsum) while human reason and what we would call laws of nature are called thought and existence. Man’s reason and nature’s laws operate by a common playbook, so to speak, on account of their common Source. The playbook is called logic, which is reasoned ordering of words (logos) and images (eidea, eikona). This is the sole and sufficient reason nature and her laws, to include man himself, are intelligible to man.
The difference between Reason, on the one hand, and human reason and nature’s laws on the other, is that one is complete and independent while the other is incomplete and dependent. Otherwise, they are the same. And that is why things happen intelligibly for persons, more or less.
Where there is Being, there is the Structure of Being [Logos], says Parmenides. Put another way, also from classical philosophy, we can say that where there is Essence there is existence. Existence is what we call the world. Essence is what we call the Source of all: Reason, Being. Parmenides means that Reason or Essence sort of gives itself no choice and immediately, so to speak, throws itself into existence (Martin Heidegger’s language: Dasein ist geworfener Entwurf.). Reason surrounds itself with reason as if by inner necessity, a sort of compulsion.
Existence is a structure comprising myriad structures. Being does not be without becoming tangible, without putting something of itself into existence, without wrapping itself in structure. The essence of Essence, apparently, is to make itself exist. It is to produce structure, uncountable numbers and types of structure. We call all of that structure the world.
Classically, the Structure of Being (what we call the world) is called Logos (Word). From that observation — existence is words — and that word we get our word logic and our suffix ology. From this train of thought, classical philosophy develops the assertion that the structure of life and logic is essentially divine (Being, Essence, The Universal, Reason) and that the divine throws itself into existence (Geworfenheit) as the structure of life and logic. In this world, therefore, the sacred and the secular are aspects of the same phenomenology. Man’s mortal frame incorporates the divine flame.
This is an insoluble, universal and absolutely demonstrable paradox.
What has this to do with ISIL? Everything.
ISIL descends from the Asharite/Salafi strain of Islam. This strain denies:
- the immanence of Reason in reason and the universe;
- that the Structure of Being is the structure of life and history;
- freedom of thought at all, and
- the rationality and tenderness of human nature and yearning.
ISIL descends from a strain of Islam that denies a whole lot of truth. And life. Little wonder the name of ISIL’s partner Boko Haram means “Non-Salafi [i.e., Fake] Learning Is Forbidden.”
ISIL is a recrudescence of Salafi puritanism, which is a recrudescence of Asharite Islam. Like puritanical movements in any religion — theistic (Christianity, Hinduism) or atheistic (Progressivism, Socialism, Humanism, Nazism, Communism) — ISIL is brutal, anti-intellectual, aggressive, fanatical and sadistic. Its adherents enjoy their sadism. This is real denial of God.
How can this be, how can this happen, if human nature (reason) embodies divine nature (Reason)? Ultimately, it cannot be explained. The paradox cannot be understood. However, this side of ultimate, we have palpable insight into what has happened to let the likes of ISIL loose upon the planet. And what to do to annihilate it.
Somehow, probably through disturbance in the divine equanimity, man’s nature — along with creation in toto — has gone south, so to speak, acquired deformity — which is infirmity — at the transition between innocent, resting divine Essence (Eden) and culpable, bustling human existence (snake). At the point of creation, of coming into existence, or not long after that, so to speak, something has gone terribly wrong, or so it seems.
Something not original but affective is in man’s character now here on earth, in this world. Partly it is that his reason does not feel to man as though it is Reason, although he can see that they are related. Partly it is that the infirmity of deformity he bears as a burden obstructs his will and ability to self-correct. He cannot see ahead or behind very far and sometimes not at all, even using his estimable faculties and powers.
In any case, the deformed nature which afflicts man in the world can enable and even propel him to have horrible desires and do horrible things. Thus we come to ISIL and the Salafi Jihad.
Their program is deformed theology. Their undoing must include formed theology. Reason (Logos Theology, aka policy conducing to citizens’ sovereign interest) is the theological component in the war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether. It is axial to the deployment of the three kinetics of statecraft: diplomacy, finance, war-fighting.
Islam has within itself the antidote to ISIL, the Salafi Jihad and even the Bench of Shi’a Ayatollahs in Iran and their Praetorian Guard, which like all such in history is going independent, sovereign. The antidote is Reason as discussed above. It is embodied by King Hussein the Hashemite of Jordan, President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi of Egypt, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi in Iraq and even, perhaps, some royals of the family al-Saud. Historically, it is denominated as Mutazilite Islam.
We will explicate and illustrate as the essay proceeds.
Religion is freedom and culture is beauty.
For a little over half a millennium, Muslims have felt the pangs of five experiences:
- The Fall of Granada in 1492
- The Siege of Vienna in 1529
- The Battle of Vienna in 1683
- Napoleon Bonaparte in Egypt and The Levant, 1798 to 1801
- Horatio Nelson in Egypt in 1798
By their religious thinking, their theology, Muslims believe none of those experiences should have been theirs. Islam is the true religion. The Glory of God demands that the world submit to the hegemony of Islamic rule through Islamic conquest and jurisprudence. Arab lands, both original and conquered, are God’s Islamic lands, pure, unable to be contaminated by unbelievers. And God’s Muslim Army cannot be defeated any more than God can be resisted, fooled or obstructed. His will is singular and unitary in the direction of universal Muslim hegemony.
But God’s Muslim Army surrendered Granada in 1492, had to retreat from Vienna in 1529 and was defeated there in 1683, and all on Christian initiative. Then in the late 18th Century, the Century of al-Wahhab’s career, filth sets foot on Arab/Islamic land, fights there and defeats part of God’s Muslim Army. This should be impossible! No. No. No. No. No. The land is defiled, God is humiliated.
But Yes, all five events happened. So, Muslim leaders and intending-leaders devoted themselves to two questions: “Why?” and “What do we do now?”
Over the years, reasons were given and responses proposed. One of the more prescient, from the Ottoman Empire of the late 19th Century, was that Asharite jurisprudence ties the hands and suppresses the influence of half the Muslim population: women.
In consequence, by the 1960s women in several Moslem countries became not only literate but educated and dressed as European and American women dressed. This aroused Saudi Arabia’s long-standing commitment to Salafi Jihad.
One result was the Saudi Oil Embargo of 1973-1974. Another result was a march of Saudi Salafi petrodollars through European and American institutions: schools, governments and financial institutions and NGOs were financed for the purpose and given lofty but deceptive names so as to be thought benign. This is ongoing.
Another reason given for the five loses mentioned was the technological inferiority — especially in war-fighting doctrine, organization and equipment — of Islamic nations as compared to Christian ones. In consequence, during the 19th Century Ottomans imported German military instruction and European weapons manufacturing personnel and equipment. (Al-Saud appears to be doing the same in the 21st Century, adding American and European manufacturing assets to their RFPs.)
But the prevailing reason for and response to the five loses were those proposed by al-Wahhab in the 18th Century, even before Napoleon and Nelson polluted God’s land and water by their presence on and in it: insufficient penitence and pugnacity. We have not been pure enough Muslims, the argument went. We have entertained idolatrous pleasures, and so we must crack down on ourselves and on our enemies. We must get back to Koranic/Sharia basics and please God through self-denial so we can regain power to do God’s violence against imperfect Muslims and unbelievers. To regain God’s favor we must be perfect, submissive Muslims for our leaders and indefatigable, conquering Muslims over bad Muslims and unbelievers. Violence is the Glory of God. On went the niqāb.
Al-Wahhab understood the connection between spiritual practice and battle success: detachment brings happiness — euphoria — and happiness brings power. Renounce attachment to the body and all its conditions and attachments and you have an euphoric warrior of super-human strength, agility, skill and endurance. An apparent short-cut to that condition is chemical, but that way is short-lasting and self-diminishing, whereas, true detachment is long-lasting and self-replenishing, although difficult to achieve in the first place.
Understanding this phenomenon, St. Joan led her warriors into the confessional before she led them into battle.
Something altogether different also motivated al-Wahhab and al-Saud to create the Salafi Jihad: European and American Enlightenment movements. These movements were several, and unique by country. The Scottish Enlightenment became the most pregnant because the Presbyterian Kirk insisted, long since, that all children and teens be proficient in Greek, Latin and Mathematics. This curriculum necessarily brought Scottish children into contact with engineering, statecraft, pedagogical theory, philosophy and craftsmanship. Immanuel Kant declared 18th Century Scots the most educated people and country of Europe. They were. They invented the modern world.
Al-Wahhab and al-Saud saw that those movements threatened universal Salafi hegemony perhaps more than Christian churches and governments did. For, the Enlightenment movements were secular, which, to Salafi puritans, gave them two shades of horror: blasphemy and technological prowess.
Al-Wahhab and al-Saud were right. The 19th Century — product of 18th Century Enlightenment movements — put Europe and The Americas so far ahead of and above universal Muslim hegemony that the Ottomans were reduced to paying Europe and The Americas for help to achieve universal Muslim hegemony … Muslims begging Christians to help them convert, enslave or exterminate Christians!
The Great War proved the Ottomans did not learn very well and Kemal Ataturk dissolved the Ottoman Empire and the Muslim Caliphate. The end. Like priests at the Temple of Solomon, they and it are not coming back.
“Wars are won on the drill field [preparation],
not the battle field [execution].”
Salafi Jihad affected mostly the Middle East and North Africa until early in the 20th Century. Then three pivotal events gave al-Saud and al-Wahhab families cause to think they could accomplish their ultimate objective, the objective of Asharite Islam: universal Salafi hegemony.
Those events were:
- Woodrow Wilson and the British Foreign Office, at the instance of British intelligence officer and suspected traitor St John Philby, father of notorious MI6 double agent Kim Philby, betrayed The Hejaz, Hashemite patrimony, and handed most of the Arabian Peninsula below Iraq to the al-Saud/al-Wahhab alliance.
- In 1932, al-Saud declared the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
- In 1938, oil was discovered in eastern Arabia, al-Saud patrimony, following exploration financed in part by an American Arabist, Charles R. Crane, who also helped Standard Oil of California and Texaco gain the American oil concession in Saudi Arabia (what became ARAMCO).
Now al-Saud/al-Wahhab had money, sovereignty and US/British indulgence to push out universal Salafi hegemony across the globe. They got right to it, down as many channels as they could conceive. Their success inspired Iranian Shi’a to try their hand at it, and they first succeeded in 1979.
But whereas Shi’a Jihad stressed overt violence, Salafi Jihad stressed, temporarily, covert subversion. Specifically, Salafi Jihad saw religious freedom in Europe and The Americas as an opportunity to install and enforce universal Salafi hegemony and eliminate religious freedom on those continents. They exploited a flaw John Locke, savant of the English Enlightenment, saw in his own Doctrine of Tolerance: the intolerant could use toleration to institute intolerance.
By the mid-1990s, Salafi Jihad leaders (Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks, Scholars/Jurists) resolved that subversion succeeded sufficiently to justify moving to overt violence. Hello Khobar Towers and NYC Twin Towers. Then USS Cole, then NYC Twin Towers again. Shi’a Jihad was conducted against the USA in the mid-1980s in Lebanon and the Persian Gulf. Saddam Hussein, technically not a Jihadi but definitely an Arab-Socialist hegemon, attacked the USS Stark in 1987.
For the long-term, probably the most effective enterprise of the Salafi Jihad has been Saudi/Wahhabi petrodollar funding of schools/mosques to teach Salafi Jihad: madrassahs. These exist now in almost every estimable country and many less so. They have lofty but deceptive names — so as to be thought benign — especially those in American and European colleges and universities. Some American public school districts use curricula, financed by al-Saud/al-Wahhab, that commend as a pleasing shape what is in fact Salafi Jihad.
Salafi Jihad has now many names. Its proponents are not one for all and all for one. Salafi groups proclaim universal Salafi hegemony and compete with one another for the top spot ruling it. Jihadi infighting, of course, is a kind of minor blessing for non-Muslims facing the onslaught.
Finally, petrodollars remain the main funding for Salafi Jihad, although it may be that al-Saud/al-Wahhab and certain Gulf States, facing nuclear and ballistic Shi’a and their own inability to field credible war-fighting capacity, are having revelations — accurate ones — regarding the ultimate futility and stupidity of funding their precious Asharite/Salafi Jihad-On-The-World. And, unless they can do it by migration (immigration), which they purchase furiously, they still must purchase European and American equipment and access in order to impose Salafi/Sharia hegemony on Europe and America.
The Caliphate cannot be restored. And the Caliphate never was a Caliphate in any case. It never was a universal hegemon. The Caliphate always was a pretense. The Asharite/Salafi objective is and always has been a phantasm.
In addition, Muslim MENA has depended heavily on Jews and Christians to exist. They administered bureaucracies, discharged professional services and managed goods and monetary logistics. Even fought the wars. Christians and Jews kept the lights on. Muslim pogroms against Jews and Christians are a species of Muslim suicide. Even today, Saudi and Gulf State Muslims depend on non-Muslims or all-but-enslaved Muslims to build and operate their countries, even their war machines. Ditto ISIL. Salafi Jihad is an Intensive Care Ward, not a Caliphate.
See, Americans and others do not brutalize you,
they are fair, even generous, and that is why
they are happy and live in peace. Study
their ways, adapt them and you also
will be happy and live in peace.
The war to annihilate ISIL is about freedom and sovereignty. Freedom to expand one’s nature, personal and national. Sovereignty to expand protection of that freedom. Freedom is the base and the objective. Sovereignty is protection of the base and the means to the objective.
ISIL is a vector of the Salafi Jihad. To its practitioners, the Salafi Jihad is purely religious, which is to say, purely political. Politics and religion are one and the same to Salafi Jihadis. Islam, as they understand it, is the only legitimate politics. Their religious thinking (Koran) is their political kinetics (Sharia) and vice-versa. Their reading of the Koran gives religious leaders, so they say, punitive authorities and duties of jurists, politicians, spiritual guides, social engineers, and military officers. All in the same person: the Mullah, Imam, Sheik or Scholar/Jurist. So they say and so they mostly are believed to be, although they are widely resented by Muslims for their overbearing.
Allah is our objective.
The Prophet is our leader.
Qur’an is our law.
Jihad is our way.
Dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope.
— Creed of the Muslim Brotherhood
Distinctions between these roles which are assumed in Christian and Secular societies do not exist in Islam. Islamic schools are soldier basic training camps. Mosques and community centers are military outposts and armories. Friday sermons are troop morale-booster and operations orders. Imams, Mullahs, Sheiks, and Scholars/Jurists are the strategic and tactical battle commanders of the Salafi and Shi’a Jihads, to include ISIL.
This arrangement sounds crazy to Non-Muslims. And it is. But that is what passes for Islam today. ISIL is straight-up, unmitigated, in-your-face theocracy. Which is to say, tyranny. To communicate against it, one must communicate about it, where it is.
Religious thinking — good, bad or indifferent — is theology. The kinetic engine, the center of gravity of the Salafi Jihad — to include ISIL — is its religious thinking, its theology. Therefore, the theological component in strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether is to be recognized, announced and deployed. The announcement of strategic war to annihilate the religious thinking, the strategic theology driving ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether, must be theological in nature.
However, it must use language and experience that is common to all. It must eschew sectarian language from Islam and any other religion.
Previous thinking regarding ISIL chased so-called counter-narratives, especially tactical level ones. These were sourced in two sectarian populations: social scientists (mostly) and religious sectarians (to a lesser extent). One said Jihadis just need jobs. The other said Islam just stinks. Those so-called narratives were impotent because they are not true and everybody knew and knows they are not true. The theological component was left out of them, deliberately.
Those so-called counter-narratives accomplished nothing because behind them was no strategic-level political will to define, much less implement, a theological rejoinder to ISIL’s theological narrative, which by definition is its strategic thought and objective — aka its kinetic engine. Focus was on method of talking — distribution technology, social media — instead of on the nature and content of the threat to which talk must be addressed.
Salafi leaders were assassinated as standard procedure, but in the absence of strategic purpose, so what? Host countries and governments were accosted with tepid and sometimes grimly comical pleadings to provide strategic counter-narrative against ISIL. Even social science and religious sectarian counter-narratives were from think tanks and made it into official policy, if at all, as flaccid oration rather than resolute design that struck the actual target.
It was like sending an ant against an ocean, or a page of ballet directions against an armored division. At best, a counter-narrative is defensive posturing. At worst — and usual — it is community destruction.
In addition, those so-called counter-narratives accomplished nothing because it was not known how to counter Salafi’s moral preening, even when that was known to be ghastly. Phantasms of multiculturalism and moral relativism — correlates of Salafi Jihad’s dreadful barbarism — produced that incompetence. Call everything equal and nothing sums, multiplies or divides to anything but one. Flatland, which is wasteland for four-and five-dimensional creatures.
Westerners’ modern, proud moral and cultural relativism itself is called out by Salafis — and others, to include Russians — as evidence of their decline and decadence. As indeed it is. As one grits the teeth over the justice of the charge, how does one remove the charger’s standing without resorting to the impotency of moral equivalence?: pot, meet pan.
(Preview: by attacking the communications of Jihad itself. It’s supposed theology.)
The most subtle and therefore decisive reason previous so-called counter-narratives failed, however, is that the mind-set which achieved primacy among leader cadres over the past fifty years — call it Progressivism (aka Socialism) or Globalism — has inside itself no actual counter-narrative against ISIL or the Salafi Jihad. It cannot do what is not in it. Progressivism/Globalism, like ISIL/Salafi Jihad, is a my-way-or-the-highway mind-set. If it had a strategic counter-narrative against ISIL/Salafi Jihad, Progressivism/Globalism would be counter-narrating strategically against itself as well.
Fortunately, tactical counter-narrative — actually: kinetics, and mostly military — has produced significant success. Psyops/MISO kinetics have been creative and effective, short-term and long-term, at the tactical level. This has been a great achievement by those operators. Their methods and messages are known to work. They should be replicated and adapted as needed.
So-called strategic counter-narrative needs attention and solution. The solution is to get rid of it and use in its place announcement of the theological component of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether. Our objective here is to do that: move from bootless defense — aka cringing strategic nonsense — to victorious strategic and tactical offense. The asset already in place is Reason in the classical sense recounted earlier in this essay.
The announcement and kinetics of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether emphasize prevention over intervention — but include the latter. They address five demographics. In descending order of importance, these are:
- Muslim women
- Muslim boys and girls, and maturing young persons
- Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists
- Muslim Jihadis, Shi’a as well as Salafi
Prevention announcement and kinetics focus first on Muslim women and emphasize their freedom and safety. Prevention announcement and kinetics focus next on Muslim boys and girls, and maturing young persons, and emphasizes their personal safety, opportunity and directly experienced benefit.
Muslim women are the top-block interlocutors for prevention announcement and kinetics because as they get it they take care of the men, children and young persons. Mothers, more than fathers, tend to want improvement in their children’s conditions in life. Furthermore, women have the strongest yearning for protection of their families.
Muslim young persons are like any others in salient respects. They rely on their parents’ beliefs. Existential doubts soon bear down on them with force. Why am I here? Who am I? Where am I going? Why is this happening? Young persons experience bad things going on and good things, and things they do not understand. All of that contends with them. As years advance, less and less are they shielded by their parents from life’s vicissitudes. And all of that is as it should be.
But it also means that prevention announcement and kinetics for Muslim young persons must arrive in forms they want with contents they need. Words will not convince them. Nor gadgets. Experience will, experience which slakes the thirst for what they deeply want at their stage of life: safety, truth, reliability, self-confidence, eagerness for what is ahead. Freedom young persons want, yes, but also cheerfulness, technique, skill and a path they relish to get somewhere they want to be.
Benefits prevention announcement and kinetics communicate with young persons must be several. Not everyone wants a job, a family, a spouse, post-secondary education or a notable life. Some want spiritual more than material benefits. Others crave study more than commerce. And wants change, sometimes abruptly, over their duration, although for each there are also personal constants from cradle to grave. All these are important and precious.
Muslim mothers and young persons need direct experience of life they find agreeable, where they are. Not a hand-out. They must contribute, experience, have skin in the game. Pieces of agreeable life that they want, especially Muslim mothers for their children, and especially their daughters, must be within grasp early on during deployment of strategic announcement to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether.
Muslims mothers and young persons should hear that, in most cases, Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists speak for themselves and their wishes, not God and His wishes. Let them compare, even if only in silence, what their Imam says with what they see in life around them and hear about life elsewhere and with what they feel circulating inside them.
Words, images, apps, programs, gadgets do not constitute prevention announcement or kinetics. Prevention announcement and kinetics, which are the larger part of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether, must be communicated with rather than hurled at auditors and spectators. Example, not verbal stoning, is the best teacher.
Psyops/MISO operations, which already are successful at the tactical level with prevention announcement and kinetics, might comprise two components or teams: one announcing prevention, one illustrating its kinetics. In that case, prevention announcement becomes, effectively, also prevention kinetics because it is on the ground, which is desirable. Mingling strategic communication and tactical communication is like mixing job-training with apprenticeship: a good thing. Muslim young persons will get that.
Still, the strongest source of strategic announcement is senior command up to and including the Commander-in-Chief. They have the most authority and opportunity to communicate at strategic level. They have the first responsibility, therefore, for developing and deploying announcement of strategic war — with theological component — to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether. Civilian and military, both. The more rank, the more responsibility, in parallel for both civilian and military senior officers. Not needed is more cowbell.
Interlocutors must taste the experience of freedom, or safety, or learning something they want to learn early on and then they must see a path they can take, more and more on their own, to more direct experience of that enjoyment. What pulls each forward will be unique to them, from them. It will be something they find liberating, expansive and fun.
There will be intellectual and spiritual as well as material yearning. Prevention announcement and kinetics must rub elbows with the common array of human aspirations early on. This is a requirement of strategic communication against ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether.
Mixed prevention and intervention announcement and kinetics are communicated with Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists. Communication with these persons mixes a conditional promise of respect inside and outside their congregations — if they preach Islam from the Mecca period of the Koran — with an unconditional threat of losing everything — if they continue to preach Islam from the Medina period of the Koran — or, as is common, lie about what they preach. The offer is: embrace Mutazilite Islam and renounce Asharite Islam or be treated as a Jihadi. You cannot kill or lie your way to happiness. We, your neighbors, will not allow it.
Mixed prevention and intervention announcement and kinetics with Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists also communicates their condition of living now with Text Criticism of the Koran, about which there is discussion and bibliography in Appendix II.
Strategic prevention and intervention announcement and kinetics with Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists illustrates a salient truth regarding tolerance generally and freedom of religion in particular. Tolerance, a virtue, is a vice when it permits that which does not permit it. And freedom of religion, a blessing, is a curse when it permits a claim to religious hegemony.
Claiming protection by Christian compassion and generosity, ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether exploit Western technology, elections, war-fighting doctrine, law, system of education, political philosophy and religious institutions in order to subjugate those assets to themselves and destroy them. By their own doing and non-doing Western citizens transform their virtues into self-harming vices, their blessings into curses upon their own heads.
Turn him to any cause of policy,
The Gordian Knot of it he will unloose,
Familiar as his garter;
— Shakespeare, Henry V, Act 1 Scene 1. 45–47
This Gordian Knot is cut by a mixed prevention and intervention announcement and kinetics conducted with Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists. It comprises:
- Preach the first mind of the Koran, the Mecca mind, not the second mind of the Koran, the Medina mind. Preach intellect, freedom and reason, not authority, subjection and hysteria.
- Resign yourself to living with Text Criticism — scrutiny — of the Koran. (See Appendix II for discussion of Text Criticism and bibliography for Text Criticism of the Koran.)
- Or be treated as a Jihadi.
Intervention announcement and kinetics focus entirely on Jihadis, either kinetic or about to be, and emphasize:
- You cannot win, look around you. You live in a big world, it does not live in your world. (Appeal to the common sense and morale of operators who know the horror and futility of the cause they defend.)
- Your recruiters and commanders lied to you about prestige and booty, here and hereafter, to get you to ensure their enrichment rather than your welfare or the welfare of your parents and siblings. (Appeal to the self-interest of young persons brooding over their nature, origin and destiny, that they not let themselves be used as cannon-fodder for elders’ pleasure, self-aggrandizement.)
- Nothing is written unless you write it. You make your destiny, even by trying not to make it or thinking you do not. You think God is a determinist in your favor? No, God is determined to let you row your own boat or sink in it, so to speak. You are the architect of your own fate. (Appeal to their justifiable fear of doomsday adjudication.)
- Then, if they have not surrendered unconditionally, or have been captured, have no remaining intelligence value and still have not surrendered unconditionally, destroy them. Because they will not be peaceful and have no claim on life in prison, especially given their huge numbers and consequent cost of keeping. Reason forbids continued existence for such as these. From the start, every one of them is a war criminal and a traitor to their family and nation of birth and/or citizenship. (Appeal to the right of self-defense inhering reasonably in the reality of national sovereignty.)
Both channels of strategic announcement and kinetics — prevention and intervention — admonish and assure Non-Muslims.
There is another matter, and this is a warning order: successful war to annihilate ISIL and Salafist Jihad altogether will help restore Mutazilite Islam to most Sunnis. This will constitute a tectonic adjustment inside Muslim society worldwide. They will do it themselves. They are doing it themselves. They have to do it themselves.
War on Jihadis of any stripe by Muslims and Non-Muslims expresses the present global groundswell for freedom and sovereignty against [t]he accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many, and whether hereditary, self-appointed, or elective, [which] may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny. (Publius/James Madison, No. 47, The Federalist Papers).
Tho’ much is taken, much abides; and tho’
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are;
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.
— Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Along the way of this war, a Mutazilite ulema (Institution of Learning) will be created to push out the present Asharite ulema. This must happen. It must be urged, facilitated if possible, and not obstructed or disparaged.
Prevention narrative aims, in effect, to restore
Mutazilite Islam and push out Asharite Islam.
Politics is downstream from culture. The theological component in the announcement of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether communicates with Salafi culture, such as it is, not with its politics.
Think of a log or a piece of lumber. There are two ways to cut it:
- Parallel to the grain, called rip-cut.
- Perpendicular to the grain, called cross-cut.
Announcement — with theological component — of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether uses both types of cut, so to speak. Prevention announcement is rip-cut. Intervention announcement is cross-cut.
Prevention announcement aims to separate Muslim women, primarily, and Muslim young persons, secondarily, from habits of thought and some of the experience which tell them they have only what their husbands and/or parents tell them to live by and for.
Communicate with Muslim women in this vein: you are a fully human personality whom God has touched, your mind works the same way God’s creation works for you and your children. Use it. Experiment with it. Test it. Enjoy it. Have fun. Laugh, dance, sing. Be strong, be happy.
Prevention announcement communicates with Muslim women and young persons who they are truly: inherently strong and able, good and wholesome. Lead them to safe, direct experience of what they really can do. Lead them to what makes them feel expansive and search a path, on their own, for acquiring more of that experience. Let them experience life as opportunities rather than threats and to expect opportunity rather than security. There is no security in this world, only opportunity.
Because each of them is unique and self-driven — another reality to emphasize by example and precept — women and young persons can create families and associations out of their own volition and natural assets. Cultivate self-confidence in them. Let them hear and experience delightful consequences of their personal identity thrown against structures of reality with which they deal every day.
For example, keeping their hearts, homes and streets clean and rearing their children to speak the truth and educate themselves gives women more security in life and works against bad persons getting into a position to abuse them.
Engender in women enthusiasm for their own, their neighbors’ and their nation’s freedom and sovereignty and watch them increase in happiness as a result. They will pull and push themselves forward.
Muslim women are capable of finding their way to freedom through even the most threatening conditions. Provide such safety and encouragement as you can for them to do that. Do what you can to lead them to build up their self-confidence, their thirst for freedom and their enthusiasm for making happy things happen.
Let them taste freedom in safety and they will take the lead to guarantee they have all of it they can grasp. Then they will demand and create national sovereignty to protect their freedom. All to the good.
Prevention announcement does not tell Muslim women and young persons they are weak, miserable victims of this or that hateful creature or outrage which is beyond their control. They already know that. And they know they cannot rebel against Muslim men or Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists without incurring consequences lethal to themselves. Do not ask them to do that.
Invite them, instead, to think highly of themselves, to recall their inherent grandeur, to remember they are strong, not weak, God’s creations, and to use those strengths to strengthen themselves and their children, to include their sons.
When a Muslim woman’s son or male relative joins ISIL, that is a sign of weakness and fear, not of strength and courage. Muslim women know that. Get them to taste strength and courage. They will do the rest.
Muslim women and young persons who taste the freedom of self-confidence in direct experience, even in small measure, will find their own ways to deliver it forward, to cultivate it and make it decisive. First, they must have safe, direct experience of freedom in self-confidence. They will take it from there. Then step back and let them to it just as they themselves advise and devise.
Prevention announcement aims, in effect, to surface Mutazilite Islam and scrape away Asharite Islam.
Mixed prevention and intervention announcement with Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists aims for exactly that objective. These guys should be both ripped and crossed, so to speak, in the metaphor of lumber cuts.
Intervention announcement aims to deflate and diminish the Jihadi and his supports by direct action in his front and by pinching off communications in his rear, especially communications with his Imam, his family and state of birth, his financing and his drugs. Ultimately, annihilating ISIL and the Salafi Jihad means annihilating their trainers, leaders, propagandists, drug suppliers and financiers. This means annihilating their Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks, Scholars/Jurists and supporting Muslim and Non-Muslim NGOs.
Intervention announcement controverts ISIL and the Salafi Jihad. It is kinetic and does not rest until ISIL is extinct and the Salafi Jihad is a dead parrot, so to speak. Intervention announcement deploys classical, full-spectrum statecraft through that difficult art’s three kinetics: diplomacy, finance and war-fighting.
Through maneuver and fire at their front and flanks, the message to Salafi troops is: give it up, you are dead, go back to your family and build up the country of your birth because one way and another your brutal, looting ways are concluded. And you are getting no reward for dying. Your souls are condemned to Hell, Losers!
Through betrayal by their own troops, Psyops/MISO, cyberops and raids, the message to Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks, Scholars/Jurists and supporting Muslim and Non-Muslim NGOs is: unless you preach independent reason rather than submission to authority — or surrender, now, unconditionally, and forever hold your peace — you are not getting out alive. So choose your own destructor. And try to think of God when you do it. Out.
In conclusion, separate, so to speak, Muslim women and young persons from habits of despising or deprecating themselves. With Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists, set before them the choices of Mecca mind and reason and Medina mind and annihilation, so to speak. And crucify, so to speak, the egos of Jihadis by putting them in mind of their position and condition.
Politics is downstream from culture. The theological component in the announcement of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether communicates with Salafi culture, such as it is, not with its politics.
Long promised and still missing is the strategic announcement with theological component for defending against or even attacking ISIL, its progenitors and its siblings.
AQ, AQI, Moslem Brotherhood, Salafism and Asharite Islam made ISIL. AQ, AQAP, Boko Haram, Moslem Brotherhood/Hamas/CAIR, al-Shabaab, Abu Sayyaf, Jemaah Islamiyah and other groups fight in parallel with ISIL. Yet, for sixteen plus years of the same war on every continent we have seen not nor heard an explanation, a strategic announcement with theological component, for defending ourselves from, much less counter-attacking, ISIL and its swarming siblings.
There is one, in fact. It is called Reason. In classical philosophy and theology it is called Logos Theology, or, The Structure of Reality. It is philosophical and theological in nature, and it is shared by Christians, Muslims of a certain tradition, Hindus and every spiritual seeker worthy of the name.
We defend against and attack ISIL in its swarm because that is the nature of Reason. It is our nature — and their nature — and the nature of the planet and universe that we do so. Our nature is to support and defend our country because our country is and protects the structure of our freedom. Human nature and universal nature are the same nature. The way they are built (form) and the way they operate (function) are identical. Reason is the Structure of Reality. Our country supports that, thankfully.
An attack on us is an attack on Reason, on everyone. An attack on us is an attack on the universe in full. When attacked — and not otherwise — it is our responsibility, as the USA, to defend against the attack and attack back, full-spectrum, until the force attacking us surrenders to us unconditionally. That is the way, the only way, to prevent harm to ourselves and the universe. That is our strategic announcement — with theological component — to annihilate ISIL and its swarming siblings.
The end of the ways of God is corporeality.
— Friedrich Christoph Oetinger
Counter-Narrative vice Counter-Proclamation
Note: The original title of this essay was:
The Theological Component Of The
War To Annihilate ISIL And The Salafi Jihad
I wrote the essay using that articulation throughout. Appendix I I wrote to express my preference for the phrase counter-proclamation ahead of the phrase counter-narrative and to explain why I kept the phrase counter-narrative in the original version.
That Appendix shows after this note regarding it.
Following about a month of the essay’s circulation in that original form and title, and upon hearing feedback supporting my unease with the phrase counter-narrative, I determined to re-articulate the essay with a phrase other than counter-narrative, which is flaccid, like the people who use it.
I started with my first thought for a substitute — the phrase counter-proclamation — and turned to my old friend, St. Jerome, for enlightenment. I found The Sage using, consistently, forms of two words which virtually all English-speaking Second Millennium workers translate to proclaim. The two words are praedicate and adnuntiare.
Comparison of Jerome’s use of these words shows contextual consistency. When Jesus orders His Disciples to proclaim the Gospel to new auditors, Jerome uses a form of praedicate. When a Prophet or a Disciple orders the already-believing to teach one another as they have been taught, Jerome uses a form of adnuntiare.
Virtually all translators use forms of proclaim to translate both praedicate and adnuntiare. But these words have very different meanings between the three of them, and Jerome has translated with consistent exactitude between two of them. And nowhere does he use a form of proclamare where English translators use that word’s English form. This is vitally important.
Proclamare means to stand before and make a huge noise, a clamor. Such would be a street demonstration in modern usage. Neither Jesus, Prophets nor Disciples ordered much less desired such activity.
Praedicate means speaking something which is going to happen because it has been spoken. This type of speaking is not a threat. It is a notification of upcoming events set in train by the notification’s happening. Its English form is predict or prediction. The speaking of it starts the bringing of it into existence. This is not foretelling. It is not forecasting. This is kinetic speech initiating the existential power and presence of that of which it speaks. The prediction itself sets up the arrival of its subject.
Jerome consistently uses forms of praedicate to translate Jesus’ order to His Disciples to proclaim/preach the Gospel to the world. This puts a significant presence on the order. Jesus tells His Disciples to warn the world of the salvation or doom that is on its way to them — and is initiated by His Disciples’ pre-dicting it — and to advise the world to chose salvation over doom. He does not tell His Disciples to convert the world to a new religion. He does not warn or describe to the world, through His Disciples, how they should practice a new or an old religion.
Jesus is not talking about religion at all. He is talking about a Power of Being, a Divine, Transcendent yet Immanent Kinetics, a Structure of Salvation, a Ship of Refuge for crossing the sea of life safely, that is brand new, sturdy and reliable and that is now going to make its way through and across the world, drawing to Itself/Himself all who belong to it, on it, in it.
To pre-dict the Gospel is to set in motion, in existential kinetics as a nameable divine soteriological presence having power to transcend the condition of Sin (Latin Church) and lead the soul into eternal life (Greek Church), namely Jesus the Christ, Him Crucified, Dead and Living, and His embodiment The Spiritual Community or Church. The churches we see on streets more or less, through the years, represent The Spiritual Community or Church, where is the actual, active power of God in Christ.
Military personnel would call Jesus’ order to His Disciples — which Jerome translates with forms of praedicate — a Warning Order. A praedicator is a prime mover, a subtle and efficient cause, body, one by whose thoughts, words and deeds reality is made, thrown into existence, not merely shaped. These are the Great Ones. They speak, usually, to those not already in the circle of the power and the one of which and of whom they bring notice.
Adnuntiare means delivering a message to someone on behalf of a superior. The English word announce derives from adnuntiare. A nuncio is a messenger simply. The message they deliver may say, oh, any number of things. It instructs a knowledgeable audience, one already inside the circle of the announcer, the nuncio, rather than notifying an unknowledgeable audience, one outside that circle. Jerome uses forms of adnuntiare to indicate Prophets or Apostles speaking to the already or nominally believing.
Military personnel would call Prophets’ and Disciples’ announcements to believers — which Jerome translates with forms of adnuntiare — an Operations Order. A adnuntiator is a secondary mover, one who illuminates and may shape a reality already thrown into existence. These are far more plentiful than the Great Ones. They speak, usually, to those in the circle of the power and the one of which and of whom they expound.
Behind this usage, reflected in St. Jerome’s careful and contextually consistent use of forms of praedicate and adnuntiare, is a legal and moral practice used sometimes scrupulously by Romans of Jerome’s day and earlier, Jews of Jesus’ day, Talmudists sometimes since 70 AD and Muslims off and on through times and climes. It is this: before you annihilate an enemy, you give them a chance to be a friend.
Jerome uses forms of praedicate for Disciples acting as Apostles, that is, speaking to non-Jews, those outside the circle of the Mosaic Covenant. Jerome uses forms of adnuntiare for Prophets or Disciples speaking to Jews or new-found Christians, those inside the circle of the Mosaic Covenant before the Advent of Jesus the Christ and those inside the circle of the Christian Covenant after the Advent of Jesus the Christ. Thus the rules of engagement are scrupulously met by St. Jerome’s linguistic erudition.
Having rejected the phrase counter-narrative for use in this essay, and having realized that proclamation, even though promoted in the following Appendix I, does not suit the purpose — although it improves upon counter-narrative, which is both risible and reprehensible — I was obliged to choose between forms of praedicate and adnuntiare.
Classical Christian theology takes Islam as infidus — having heard (praedicate) and believed the Gospel then rejected it; having been once inside the Christian circle then leaving it — rather than as gentes — having not heard (praedicate) the Gospel and so deserving the chance to hear it and believe … before being declared outside the Christian circle (condemned, anathematized).
This essay follows that protocol. Muslims have heard the Gospel. They have had their chance. Soteriologically they are inside the Christian circle, like it or not. Communication with Muslims, therefore, takes the nature of adnuntiare.
We announce to them their status in the divine economy and deliver to them the consequences. We do not plead with them. We do not make them offers, nor haggle or argue with them. We do not cajole or implore them. We attack them with the truth of their position in life and keep attacking them until they surrender unconditionally their pretense of universal political and religious sovereignty.
We do put this nuance on the classical Christian approach to Islam: that if they appeal to Reason, and renounce Jihad for local and global political and religious hegemony, and practice Islam by the first part of the Koran and dismiss the second, and admit the divine origin and legitimacy of other religions — especially, but not only, Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism and Zoroastrianism — we will open our hearts and homes to them as fellow-religionists though never as co-religionists … so long as they afford us the same accommodation of grace.
Otherwise, we will conduct war for Moslems’ unconditional surrender to common sense, no matter what or how long it takes.
Appendix I as originally written follows:
Politics is downstream from culture. Strategic counter-narrative in the war to annihilate ISIL and the Salafi Jihad communicates with Salafi culture, such as it is, not with its politics.
We discuss here strategic counter-narrative in the war to annihilate ISIL and the Salafi Jihad. More accurate than the phrase counter-narrative is the phrase counter-proclamation. We leave it here at counter-narrative because that is familiar usage. However, we note that the usage is less than ideal and will explain why.
Narrative has two distinguishable and not necessarily separate functions. First, narrative is a storyline, a description. It can be fiction, non-fiction or some of both. Second, narrative is an articulation by personalities who, rather than face facts, want facts to be what they want them to be and also believe that by repeating what they want facts to be, facts will accede to their wishes. Narrative by such a personality is a demand that reality conform to their desires.
Narrative is a type of passive communication. Aggressive in one of its uses, yes, but still passive. It does not set in train anything. It comprises either a description or a demand. It creates no new reality, nor is it meant to. We see this in the fact that the threat implied in a narrative that is a demand against facts is never carried through. It cannot be. The demand has not accepted reality in the first place so the threat has no target. The narrative is vaporware. Ideology. No new reality. Wasteland.
Narrative demanding that facts conform to it is a work of cowardice (to evade responsibility) or subversion (to sow confusion) and sometimes both.
Proclamation, on the other hand, is a type of active communication. It creates what it articulates. Proclamation is a factsheet, a stipulation of facts present and/or about to be. With regard to the latter, the proclamation itself is meant to make them happen. Proclamation faces one reality and warns of another’s imminent arrival.
A proclamation, therefore, is an operations order that accepts and creates reality. This in contrast to a narrative, which describes reality (fictitiously, non-fictitiously or both) or, insanely, demands that reality be something it is not. Proclamation is used by builders. Demanding narrative is used by spoiled brats.
For war to annihilate ISIL and the Salafi Jihad where they are and as they are, proclamation is the answer, not narrative. Muslims hear proclamation. Narrative they brush out as one would lice.
Throughout this essay, therefore, please understand the phrase strategic counter-narrative to mean strategic counter-proclamation.
The assets already in place are
Reason and Freedom.
Text Criticism Of The Koran
Virtually all accounts of the early development of Islam take it as axiomatic that it is possible to elicit at least the outlines of the process from the Islamic sources. It is however well-known that these sources are not demonstrably early. There is no hard evidence for the existence of the Koran in any form before the last decade of the seventh century, and the tradition which places this rather opaque revelation in its historical context is not attested before the middle of the eighth. The historicity of the Islamic tradition is thus to some degree problematic: while there are no cogent internal grounds for rejecting it, there are equally no cogent external grounds for accepting it. In the circumstances it is not unreasonable to proceed in the usual fashion by presenting a sensibly edited version of the tradition as historical fact. But equally, it makes some sense to regard the tradition as without determinate historical content, and to insist that what purport to be accounts of religious events in the seventh century are utilizable only for the study of religious ideas in the eighth. The Islamic sources provide plenty of scope for the implementation of these different approaches, but offer little that can be used in any decisive way to arbitrate between them. The only way out of the dilemma is thus to step outside the Islamic tradition altogether and start again.
P. Crone and M. Cook, Hagarism: The Making Of The Islamic World, 1977, Cambridge University Press, p. 3.
Text Criticism is a set of conceptual tools, of proven utility, used to investigate the origin, history, structure and content of a piece of literature. Applied to sacred literature it started most famously, at least of recent memory, with Hermann Samuel Reimarus of the 18th Century German Enlightenment. Reimarus was a Deist, not a Christian, although Deists then were counted, usually, among Christians in Europe and The Americas.
Reimarus remarked contradictions in the Bible, both Testaments. He catalogued these. Prevailing opinion made it dangerous, at least economically, for him, a civil servant, to publish his findings. They were published in part posthumously by Gotthold Ephraim Lessing, the German playwright and philosopher of aesthetics — and Deist — during the 18th Century. This was the century of Enlightenment and its philosophical expression, Deism, in Europe and what became the USA.
Lessing, Reimarus, Al-Wahhab, Al-Saud and the USA Founders were contemporaries. This is a pregnant coincidence. World-historical forces were preparing for war against one another.
Deism affirmed the great powers of man as powers of being, created so by God and now independently disposed for heroic accomplishments and educating failures.
After Lessing published fragments of Reimarus’ findings, Text Criticism of the Bible gathered participants, tools and strength. The Pentateuch and the Gospels were the most scrutinized, but the other portions of the Bible were not ignored. Scholars, especially German, applied Text Critical scrutiny to literature from around the world and across history.
By the 1960s, Text Criticism of the Bible produced a view of it which, while mostly accurate as far as it went, ignored its transcendent bearing and appeared to impede, impair and impeach Christianity and its mundane presence: the churches. Text Criticism of the Bible flourished and church participation wilted. The Deist, anti-Christian element of Text Criticism predominated.
As mentioned earlier, Al-Wahhab and Al-Saud were anxious regarding the Enlightenment. Of Reimarus likely they were unaware. But of what the Enlightenment’s high view of man could mean to their plans for global Salafi hegemony they were aware. As their successors became aware of Texts Criticism of the Bible, they moved ever more resolutely to enforce a protocol forbidding anything even approximating Text Criticism from getting near the Koran. Reason: they knew, or suspected, that if the provenance of the Koran was subjected to Text Critical scrutiny, their expositions of the Koran would collapse, along with their authority in their communities and their livelihoods. They were right about that.
– – – – – – – – –
Text Criticism of the Bible has been the decisive power opposing clerical hegemony and religious establishment in Christian and Jewish orbits. It is a gut and head shot to clerical pretension and scriptural literalism (aka fundamentalism), all-in-one.
If the principle of correlation holds, Text Criticism of the Koran should have the same effect in Islam as it did in Christianity and Judaism. To change the previous metaphor slightly, Text Criticism of the Koran should cut clean through the knees of clerical hegemony and juridical authority, toppling the structures of Asharite and Shi’a Islam and exposing the Mutazilite, Reason-based substrate that is real, sociable and commendable Islam.
The preeminent textual critic of the Bible in both Hebrew and Greek, even to this day, is St. Jerome, who produced the Bible in Vulgar Latin in order to collate and stabilize the texts for everyone, high and low alike. Prior to St. Jerome, the New Testament Canon varied somewhat from place to place. Neither the Books of the Canon nor the texts of the Books were universally agreed. St. Jerome brought agreement and, moreover, universal access by translating the Hebrew and Greek texts into Vulgar (common) Latin. Everyone could read it and read the same thing. St. Jerome’s Vulgate Latin translation of the Bible had the universalizing effect of Tim Berners-Lee’s World Wide Web in HTML.
The seminal works, so far, in Text Criticism of the Koran ante-date the attacks on the USA of 11 September 2001. See the bibliography at the end of this Appendix.
Since 2003, fear of assassination seems to have gripped both Muslim and, as some oilingly put it, not-yet-Muslim scholars. In any case, it is no wonder Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists assert that the Koran cannot be understood unless one is [Asharite, or Shi’a] Muslim and cannot really be understood unless one is an accomplished Arabic speaker and linguist, that is, unless one is a Koran Scholar/Jurist. Letting common sense and Textual Criticism near the Koran cuts off its idolators’ legs.
– – – – – – – – –
Did God say, Oh well, I made a big booboo in Jesus and Jews, and now I have to fix that by creating Islam?
This is a salient question. The answer, of course, is that one God would not do these things, these turn-arounds, which are absurdities. The principle of consistency is of divine origin (Christian Logos Theology deftly makes this point) and not traduced by its source. The principle of consistency allows for paradox, surprise, that which is beyond ordinary expectation, but paradox is not contradiction and certainly not absurdity.
The contrast between Christian and Islamic descriptions of the divine life, as given in Bible and Koran, implies that the life of God is absurd.
Asharite Islam skirts the question by asserting that the Christian report of God’s activity, the Bible, has been falsified in numerous, consequential specifics by Christians and that the Koran alone gives the accurate report of God’s activity of a Christian designation. Christianity, in other words, is gone-off-the-road (heretical, infidelitous) Islam. In fact, Asharite/Salafi Islam asserts that all religions other than Islam are gone-off-the-road Islam. Islam, they say, is the original and only religion that has ever existed and ever will exist. Anything not Islam is condemned of God.
Asharite/Salafi Islam further asserts that all people want to accept Islam but are prevented from doing so by their civil and religious leaders. Islam therefore targets civil and religious leadership for extinction as a service to the people they have prevented from re-accepting Islam, their original religion.
This is a clever skirting of the question at the top of this section. It lacks tracks in history.
The classical Christian construction of Islam is that its Arab champions, starting with Mohammed
- were Christians or in the Christian orbit, which at the time included Levant, Asia Minor, Balkans, Intermarium, Europe, Russia, Middle East and North Africa (MENA), Africa, India and Central Asia;
- came under the influence of anti-Trinitarian confusions, which were very strong in MENA and Central Asia (Arius, Nestorius, Eutyches and others);
- and so broke with the churches, which had affirmed Logistical Trinitarian theology (Reason) first at Nicaea and then at Chalcedon, Councils occurring before the birth of Mohammed.
Mohammed’s rude origins do not preclude his reception of genuine revelation. Numerous examples exist in probably every religion — I can think of two, Christianity and Hinduism — of persons of rude origin receiving and being honored for their response to definite divine revelation and being personally elevated by that reception and their responses to it.
Nonetheless, a rude origin does not produce the enormous juridical structure presented today as Koran, Islam and ulema, the guild of Islamic scholars and jurists.
The claim is Mohammed is the efficient sole source of the Koran and Islam. Not so. Someone(s) has stepped in and done something with what Mohammed was about and did, making it into something he had not and had not meant to make. Someone put words and worlds into Mohammed’s mouth and probably into his biography as well. That is a charitable construction of the Koran’s origin, and Islam’s.
Christianity, in contrast, and in concert with Judaism, claims multiple authorship of the Bible over a good stretch of time. The Bible is a community project, not a one-man production. Ditto the churches.
This assessment of the Koran’s origin produces the underlying theme of classical Christian response to Asharite Islam: wait a minute boys, stop motor-mouthing and let’s examine what you are talking about. That, combined with the Christian impression that Islam arose from the Christian orbit, and went into defiance of it, is the reason Christians finally came to designate Asharite Muslims in-fides, infidel, a technical word meaning one who has espoused truth and then renounced and denounced it.
Asharite Islam calls Christians infidel for the same reason. But Asharite Islam also calls Christians apostate, a technical word meaning one who not only has forsworn their original allegiance, they have sworn a new one as well. It is logical, therefore, within their system, for Salafi Muslims to call Christians apostates because they see Islam as the original, sole and universal religion since Creation. Anyone not now Muslim once was and has left the truth for an alien, un-Godly lie.
It can be pointed out that St. Paul developed an ecclesial and theological structure, especially towards trinitarian theology, not contemplated by Jesus. I believe he did. But it can also be pointed out that his doing so was:
- not anachronistic, putting words and worlds into Jesus’ mouth, and
- not at variance with what God had in mind regarding His self-revelation in Jesus as the Christ.
Paul’s work is novel and developmental from the stirrings of the days of Jesus’ operations, but it was not at odds with those seminals. To the casual glance, the oak has scant resemblance to the acorn.
What we have as the Koran and Islam appears to be at odds with whatever self-revelation God made with Mohammed. That is the most charitable construction of the record. God does not act in the manner the Koran, as it stands, portrays him as acting. Today, no religion except Islam presents God as Islam does through the Asharite die.
Something essential appears to have been perverted between the revelation — charitably granting that there was one — and the response to it by Mohammed or, more likely, collators/editors/writers of the Koran, or both. Koran and Islam may or may not be at odds with Mohammed’s response to God’s self-revelation to him. On their face, Koran as it stands and Asharite and Shi’a Islam as they stand are at odds with the divine life.
For example, there is a huge difference between the Christian claim regarding the status of Jesus and Islam’s claim regarding the status of Mohammed in the divine economy. The claims are incompatible and so one of them is inaccurate and therefore dangerous, or, as secularists contend, both are.
The value of Text Criticism of the Koran is that it can expose the tracks that Mullahs, Imams, Sheiks and Scholars/Jurists have taken to assert that there have been no divine turn-arounds, that God is not absurd, non-Muslims are. In other words, Text Criticism of the Koran can expose fraud in that literature, if there is any, as well as legitimacy in it, if that is present.
The truth always serves the cause of freedom. We need Text Criticism of the Koran to expose the Koran’s origins and therefore the authority and legitimacy of its claims and its proponents’ expositions. This can harm neither divine authority nor human yearning. Scrutiny is a divine power divinely authorized.
– – – – – – – – –
Some Christians essay to use The Book of Revelation to dispute with the Koran and Islam, in effect to create from that Book the theological component in the announcement of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether.
Now, this essay explicitly states that the theological component in that announcement of war should comprise reasonable language, not sectarian language. We have reached back to enlist ancient formulations of classical philosophy regarding the correlation of Divine Reason and human reason. These inform both Christianity and Mutazilite Islam. They are the common ground of life.
Reason is the continuum between all the religions of man. It is the reason there is no such thing as religious war. War said to be fought over religion is fought for other reasons, never religion. Those reasons are three in number: wealth, dominion and women. Reason is the common ground shared by all religions and the point at which they can communicate quietly and meaningfully among one another.
Still, to answer those who argue for sectarian language, I offer as follows.
The Book of Revelation is a bridge, so to speak, that will not bear the weight of the forces that need to use it. Namely, the reason for war to annihilate ISIL and the Salafi Jihad altogether. Other crossings are required. The Revelation of St. John will not bear the weight of a maneuvering force, the theological component of strategic war to annihilate Caliphate pretenders, so to speak, because its codes — effectively, its fastenings — are lost.
Practically anything can be read into The Book of Revelation. Reading meaning into a document, meaning that is not there, is called eisegesis. Reading meaning out from a document, meaning that is there, is called exegesis. Eisegesis always ends in collapse.
Over millennia, practically everything has been read into The Revelation, and always the bridge, so to speak, has collapsed because its fasteners, its code books, are lost. Because its codes are lost, nothing can be read out of that Book. The Revelation of St. John cannot be deciphered. Its content and import, to us at least, are so conditioned by their period and intent of authorship — and our inability to decipher their coded language — as to make the Book bereft of meaning for us. The Book of the Prophet Ezekiel, also encoded, but not completely, is more accessible to us than The Book of Revelation.
With this in mind, Luther argued that Revelation should be excised from the New Testament Canon, along with the books of James and and Hebrews, although others those for different reasons.
Text Criticism of the Koran could assist discovery in courts and also academe, although I see no reason for confidence in academe in this regard. Academic faculties are burdened not only by philosophical relativism and moral equivalence but also by low performance standards, unethical and illegal processes, dishonest scholarship, unscientific methodologies, feeble and febrile pedagogy, fetid relationships and more.
Academic faculties are as the Prophet said of Egypt when Kings of Judah looked there for help against foreign invaders: “Egypt is a broken reed.” Meaning, put your hand out to lean on her and she will punch through it.
My idea is that the Koran is a kind of cocktail of texts that were not all
understood even at the time of Muhammad. Many of them may even
be a hundred years older than Islam itself. Even within the Islamic
traditions there is a huge body of contradictory information,
including a significant Christian substrate;
one can derive a whole Islamic anti-history
from them if one wants. — Gerd R. Puin
A Bibliography For Text Criticism Of The Koran
Quranic Studies: Sources and Methods of Scriptural Interpretation, John Wansbrough, 1977, Prometheus Books; 1St Edition edition (August 31, 2004, includes authors’ annotations).
Giving The Koran A History: Holy Book Under Scrutiny, Jim Quilty, 12 July 2003, The Daily Star. Related: Christoph Luxenberg. Also related. And here.
The Syro-Aramaic Reading Of The Koran: A Contribution To The Decoding Of The Language Of The Koran, Christoph Luxenberg, 2007, Hans Schiler, Berlin; (link goes to full text). And see also at Amazon and Wikipedia. A notable review by Robert R. .Phenix Jr. and Cornelia B. Horn.
Textual Variations Of The Koran, David Samuel Margoliouth, 1925, The Muslim World, Volume 15, pp. 334-44, Hartford Theological Seminary; link goes to a teaser with full text behind a Wiley paywall. Here is an excerpt.
The Origins Of The Koran: Classic Essays On Islam’s Holy Book, Ibn Warraq, 1998, Prometheus Books. Related: Ibn Warraq at Amazon.
The Virgins And The Grapes: The Christian Origins Of The Koran, Sandro Magister, 19 July 2008, Chiesa Express Online.
Oldest Koran Fragment Found In Birmingham, UK, Dating Controversy Ensues, Adam Withnall, 01 September 2015, The Independent. Also here.
Scholars Are Quietly Offering New Theories Of The Koran, Alexander Stille, 02 March 2002, The New York Times. Also here.
Challenging The Koran, Stefan Theil, 27 July 2003, Newsweek.
What Is The Koran?, Toby Lester, January 1999, The Atlantic.
Responsibility To Protect
Responsibility to Protect (R2P) is a rhetorical weapon — call it weaponized empathy — employed by the UN and other NGOs to induce transfer of assets from individuals, corporations and governments to themselves.
In the USA, R2P has no legal basis. It is a narrative demand merely. It tugs heart strings and subdues reason. It submits national diplomatic, financial and military assets to NGO control. It promises protection to select populations but cannot deliver it because its nature is conflict suppression rather that conflict resolution, and because no program can be permanent, especially one which cannot succeed.
Discrepancies exist between R2P promises and R2P results. A driver of discrepancies is conflicting, changing and evolving priorities and political conditions in and among UN/NGO member states.
First and greatest, R2P is narrative demand against the sense of the Parable of the Good Samaritan. R2P would make that parable justify narrative-driven, government-enforced compulsion in place of God-driven, government-facilitated volition. What the parable commends be done freely inside the protection of Divine Grace, R2P demands be done under compulsion inside the punitive force of rules-based systems (another narrative demand) devised by unaccountable NGO experts and practitioners.
Also, the Good Samaritan of the parable effectively heals the man waylaid by robbers. R2P envisions keeping robbers at bay, an objective humanity, so far, has failed to accomplish in any time or clime. Robbery is stopped by removing robbers from circulation, not by holding them at arm’s length.
Second, R2P is narrative demand against the sovereign authority of nation states and in particular that of the USA, because of its assets. R2P demands submission of USA diplomatic, financial and military assets to UN/NGO control in the name of helping the helpless. Nation states surrender their sovereignty when forced to it by defeat in war, not willingly for an alleged greater good or when virtue-shamed by weaponized empathy.
Third, R2P demands commitment by mainly USA, but also other wealthy nations, to permanent deployment of assets to UN/NGO-designated R2P projects. R2P is conflict suppression, not conflict resolution. Asset deployment for R2P has no end in sight, no achievement possible other than limitless expenditure of protector nations’ assets, a fact illustrated by the history of R2P projects and the USA’s current deployed asset positioning.
Fourth, R2P is an effort to bind the USA to a NATO-Article-5-type obligation to protect every UN/NGO-favored party on the planet. It is a corridor down which to enforce the UN/NGO aspiration for Global Governance (and here) as replacement for national sovereignties and especially USA national sovereignty.
Fifth, the inner goal of R2P is to commandeer national assets, especially those belonging to the USA, for private purposes. R2P is about wealth transfer to intending and invisible tyrants at NGOs.
The USA has two responsibilities:
- Fulfilling commitments made in duly ratified treaties so long as the other party or parties are fulfilling theirs.
The USA fights ISIL and the Salafi Jihad generally because they have attacked us and proclaim, believably, that they will attack us again. There is no other reason to fight ISIL and the Salafi Jihad that that one. There needs be no more.
The theological component in the announcement of strategic war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad generally is integral with the USA’s responsibility to self-preserve. It is not a responsibility or part of a responsibility to protect other groups, nations, NGOs, whatever. The justification for war to annihilate ISIL and Salafi Jihad altogether that we propose here is as stated here.
Responsibility to Protect contravenes Reason and reason. It is invita minerva, against the life of the mind. This means it contravenes USA grand national strategic and tactical goal and interest.
Jihadis are born faster than they can be killed.
Jihad grows heads faster than they can be lopped off.
Kinetics and decapitation merely wastes time, money and energy.
Jihad itself must be poisoned at the root.
Paucity Of An NCO Corps
A Nation builds up around Her successful Army, or in the modern world, Her successful Armed Forces. If Her Army is not successful, a Nation either is not independent or ceases to exist. As goes Her Army, so goes the Nation built around Her Army. It is that simple. Her victorious Armed Forces are the basis and core of a successful Nation.
The war-fighting component of statecraft — diplomacy, finance, war-fighting — is the last line of defense of a nation’s sovereignty and the first line of offense for obtaining it.
The backbone of a nation’s Armed Forces is their NCO Corps. You do not want to lose your NCO Corps. Lose that and you lose your Armed Forces. Lose your Armed Forces and you lose your sovereignty, and with that, your freedom, independence and nationhood. The same truth governs the career of individuals: lose ability to defend yourself — to maintain your sovereign freedom — and you lose your personhood. You are now a slave.
ISIL and the Salafi Jihad lack an NCO Corps worthy of the name. They also lack air cover and religious thinking worthy of the name. Their best execution has occurred under former Saddam Officers and NCOs, whose ranks are thinned by decapitation strikes and the fortunes of war, and whose military assets are not full-spectrum, by their enemies’ standards, in any case.
Wars are won by professional Armed Forces commanded by professional Officers who have cultivated professional NCO Corps. The Revolutionary War that gave the United States of America sovereign freedom and independence proved that maxim, as has every war thronging man’s contending, evocative history.
A retired NCO cadre in civilian life is a national treasure. They know how to mobilize, on short notice, a fighting force from civilian volunteers or conscripts.
ISIL and the Salafi Jihad generally are doomed by the paucity of their NCO Corps, as well as other causes. They must not be allowed time and experience to develop an NCO Corps, even though it is doubtful they could do given their religious thinking. In addition to SOP decapitation strikes, commanders should pursue backbone and belly strikes.
To him who has, more will be given.
To him who has not,
even that which he has will be taken away.
— Jesus The Christ
Order Of Battle
Brutality by ISIL is far more than a terror tactic, although it is that as well. Brutality by the Salafi Jihad is proclamation of the Glory of God. It is preaching. Brutality is Islamic evangelism. It convinces people of the Power of God. So goes Salafi thinking.
Asharite Islam and one mind of the Koran demand brutality as religious duty to convert, enslave or exterminate every human being on the planet. God demands brutality because it demonstrates His Majesty, His Sovereignty, His Unity. Brutality, therefore, is good and beneficial for all concerned, which is all who are. Brutality is missionary work on behalf of the Islamic triumph. It is religious, political, military and social virtue all wrapped together as one dramatic act.
Although it presents itself as the supreme actor for Salafi Jihad, as mentioned, ISIL is but one vector of that endeavor. Missing from the this list, which is dated to 2014 and from Wikipedia, are the Moslem Brotherhood, with its array of fronts such as Hamas, Muslim Student Association and CAIR, and the Taliban. The East Turkestan Islamic Movement, which is on the following list, is the Uyghur Salafi Jihad in China and other countries. Names have changed or appeared since 2014. The list remains useful, however, for drawing the taxonomy, the order of battle of the Salafi Jihad. The point is, ISIL is one of numerous vectors of Salafi Jihad … and they are hardly all BFFs. Also, they are on every continent.
Suggested Reading And Ruminating
Not For The Faint Of Heart, Andrew C. McCarthy, 2006, National Review, reviewing The Politically Incorrect Guide To Islam (And The Crusades), Robert Spencer, 2005, Regnery Publishing.
Quranic Studies: Sources and Methods of Scriptural Interpretation, John Wansbrough, 1977, Prometheus Books; 1St Edition edition (August 31, 2004, includes authors’ annotations).
The Seven Pillars Of Wisdom, T. E. Lawrence, 1937, Trustees of the Seven Pillars of Wisdom Trust, Wordsworth Editions, 1997, Ware, Hertfordshire, Great Britain.
The Islamic Enlightenment: The Struggle Between Faith and Reason, 1798 to Modern Times, Christopher de Bellaigue, 04 April 2017, Liveright/W. W. Norton, New York.
The Management of Savagery: The Most Critical Stage Through Which the Umma Will Pass, Abu Bakr Naji, 23 May 2006, Translated by William McCants, John M. Olin Institute for Strategic Studies, Harvard University, link goes to full text. Also here. Related here.
Stealing Al-Qa’ida’s Playbook, Jarrett M. Brachman and William F. McCants, February 2006, Combating Terrorism Center at West Point.
The Origins Of The Koran: Classic Essays On Islam’s Holy Book, Ibn Warraq, 1998, Prometheus Books. Related: Ibn Warraq at Amazon.
The Templars: Knights Of Christ, Regine Pernoud, original in French, University of Paris Press, Paris, 2009, Ignatius Press, San Francisco.
The Rage And The Pride, Oriana Fallaci, 2002, Rizzoli. Related, George Gurley, 27 January 2003, Observer. PDF of her 60-page essay, La Rabbia e l’Orgoglio, translated into English and captured, fortunately, before the domain which published it went sour.
Realism And Islam, James V. Schall, S.J., 17 April 2016, The Catholic World Report.
The Muslim Brotherhood “Project”, tr. Scott Burgess, 2005, The Daily Ablution; scroll way down, below the Arabic original, to reach the English translation.
Spotlight On Muslim Misconceptions, Website Of Keith Small
How The Scots Invented The Modern World, Arthur Herman, 2001, Three Rivers Press, New York.
Tip-Toe Through The Trinity: The Strange Persistence Of Trinitarian Warfare, Christopher Bassford, a blogging historian.
While The Storm Clouds Gather, Angelo M. Codevilla, Fall 2014, Claremont Review Of Books, Claremont; link goes to full text.
On The Plurality Of Civilizations, Feliks Koneczny, Introduction by Anton Hilckman, University of Mainz, Preface by Arnold Toynbee, 1962, Polonica Publications, London; link goes to full text.
The Geographical Pivot Of History, H. J. Mackinder, 1904, The Geographical Journal, Blackwell Publishing Limited/Wiley, London; link goes to full text.
National Strategy for Religious Leader Engagements: Interagency Challenges Supporting Combatant Commands, Chaplain (LTC) John L. Kallerson, U.S. Army, 2014, U.S. Army War College, Carlisle Barracks; link goes to full text.
The Rama Story: Stream Of Sacred Sweetness, Sri Sathya Sai Baba, Originally Translated by N. Kasturi, 1977, Sri Sathya Sai Books And Publications Trust, Prashanthi Nilayam, Puttaparthi, Andhra Pradesh, India.
Good Bye To Congress, GOA Douglas MacArthur, 19 April 1951.
Duty Honor Country, GOA Douglas MacArthur, West Point, 12 May 1962.
A History Of Christian Thought, Paul Tillich, 1972, Touchstone, New York.
Relativity And The Moral Base Line, 1997, David R. Graham, Theologian.
Ethics And Ethos, 2000, David R. Graham, Theologian.
Clerical Wars, Not Religious, Sectarian Or Civil Wars, 2007, David R. Graham, Theologian.
Ethics And War, Amplifications Of A Theme For Trinity Season, 2009, David R. Graham, Theologian.
Global Governance: We Already Have It, 2015, David R. Graham, Theologian.
National Sovereignty, 2016, David R. Graham, Theologian.
Grand National Strategic Objective, Strategy And Tactics, 2016, David R. Graham, Theologian.
Fixing Syria, 2017, David R. Graham, Theologian.
Syria – It Doesn’t Matter Who Used The Chemical Weapons, The Issue is Extremism and Stability .…, Sundance, 08 April, 2017, The Conservative Tree House.
Muslim Reform, Kamran Siddiqui, 06 April 2017, Dawn.
Combating Terrorism Center at West Point.
A Short View Of The Arab World, LtCol David B. Ratliff, 12 December 2001; link goes to full text.
How To Counter Political Islam, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, 22 March 2017, Hoover Institution.
Her title is misleading. She has no counter. Her analysis of the problem, however, is useful. Her Mecca Islam and Medina Islam are roughly comparable to the distinction in this essay between Mutazilite Islam and Asharite Islam, respectively. The distinction grounds in the two parts and minds of the Koran, one from Mecca and one from Medina. Asharites assert the Medina mind abrogates the Mecca mind. I suspect much of the Medina mind is not of Mohammed’s hand. I think Text Criticism of the Koran would show that. Text Criticism of the Koran, of course, is a summons for Salafi and Shi’a assassination squads to silence the critic. The fact that such a response is known to exist tells me Text Criticism of the Koran would find something lethal to Salafi/Asharite and Shi’a pretensions.
A Bibliography For Islam
Compiled by, and with permission to use from, Professor Dr. Marek Jan Chodakiewicz
The Koran (London and New York: Penguin Books, 1997)
ISBN: NOT AVAILABLE [so Penguin is preferable but any edition will do]
The Arabian Nights: Tales from a Thousand and One Nights, transl. Sir Richard F. Burton (New York: The Modern Library, 2004) ISBN: 0-8129-7214-7
Karen Armstrong, Islam: A Short History (New York: The Modern Library, 2002) ISBN: 0-8129-6618-X
Tamim Ansary, Destiny Disrupted: A History of the World Through Islamic Eyes (New York: Public Affairs, 2010) ISBN: 978-1-58648-813-0
Serge Trifkovic, The Sword of the Prophet: Islam – History, Theology, Impact on the World (Boston, MA: Regina Orthodox Press, 2002) ISBN: 1-928653-11-1
Douglas E. Streusand, Islamic Gunpowder Empires: Ottomans, Safavids, and Mughals (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 2011) ISBN: 978-0-8133-1359-7
Albert Hourani, A History of the Arab Peoples (New York: Warner Books, 1991) ISBN 0-466-39392-4
Lord Kinross, The Ottoman Centuries: The Rise and Fall of the Turkish Empire (New York: Perenial, Harper Collins, 2002) ISBN: 0-688-08093-6
Peter F. Sugar, Southeastern Europe under Ottoman Rule, 1354-1804 (Seattle, WA, and London: University of Washington Press, 1977) ISBN: 0-295-95443-4
W. Montgomery Watt and Pierre Cachia, A History of Islamic Spain (New Brunswick, NJ, and London: AldineTransaction, 2008) ISBN: 978-0-202-30936-1
If Watt and Cachia not available, then:
Hugh Kennedy, Muslim Spain and Portugal: Political History of Al-Andalus (London and New York: Routledge, 1996) ISBN: 978-0-582-49515-9
Howard M. Federspiel, Sultans, Shamans, and Saints: Islam and Muslims in Southeast Asia (Honolulu, HI: University of Hawai’i Press, 2007). ISBN-10: 0-8248-3052-0, ISBN-13: 978-0-8248-3052-6
David Robinson, Muslim Societies in African History (Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 2004) ISBN: 978-0-521-53366-9
Robert D. Crews, For Prophet and Tsar: Islam and Empire in Russia and Central Asia (Cambridge, MA, and London: Harvard University Press, 2006) ISBN: 0-674-02164-9
S.M. Ikram, Muslim Civilization in India (New York and London: Columbia University Press, 1964) ISBN: NOT AVAILABLE
J. Michael Waller, Fighting the War of Ideas Like a Real War (Washington, DC: The Institute of World Politics Press, 2007) ISBN-13: 970-0-9792236-2-4, ISBN-10: 0-9792236-2-8
If Waller not available, then:
Katherine Cornell Gorka and Patrick Sookhdeo, eds., Fighting the Ideological War: Winning Strategies from Communism to Islamism (McLean, VA: Isaac Publishing and The Westminster Institute, 2012) ISBN: 978-0-9853109-0-5
[Ibn Ishaq], The Life of Muhammad: A Translation of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah, trans. and ed. by A[lfred] Guillaume (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1955)
Ignaz Goldsiher, Mohammed and Islam (New Haven, CT, London, and Oxford: Yale University Press, Humphrey Millford, and Oxford University Press, 1917)
John L. Esposito, ed., The Oxford History of Islam (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1999)
John L. Esposito, Islam: The Straight Path (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2011)
Roberto de Mattei, Holy War, Just War: Islam and Christendom at War (Rockford, IL: Chronicles Press, 2007)
Hilaire Belloc, The Crusades: The World’s Debate (Rockford, IL: Tan Books and Publishers, Inc., 1992)
Joseph F. O’Callaghan, Reconquest and Crusade in Medieval Spain (Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2003)
Darío Fernández-Morera, The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise: Muslims, Christians, and Jews under Islamic Rule in Medieval Spain (Willmington, DE: ISI Press, 2016)
Robert R. Reilly, The Closing of the Muslim Mind: How Intellectual Suicide Created the Modern Islamist Crisis (Wilmington, DE: ISI Books, 2010)
Seyyed Hossein Nasr, An Introduction to Islamic Cosmological Doctrines (Boulder, CO: Shambhala, 1978)
Bat Ye’or, Understanding Dhimmitude (New York: RVP Publishers, 2013)
Richard M. Eaton, Islamic History as Global History (Washington, DC: American Historical Association, 1990)
Maria Rosa Menocal, The Ornament of the World: How Muslems, Jews, and Christians Created a Culture of Tolerance in Medieval Spain (New York: Little, Brown, and Company, 2002)
Chris Lowney, A Vanished World: Muslims, Christians, and Jews in Medieval Spain (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2005)
Hugh Kennedy, Muslim Spain and Portugal: Political History of Al-Andalus (London and New York: Routledge, 1996)
P.M. Holt, Ann K.S. Lambton, and Bernard Lewis, eds., The Cambridge History of Islam, vol. 2A: The Indian Sub-Continent, South-East Asia, Africa and the Muslim West (London and New York: Cambridge University Press, 1970)
Roman Loimeier, Muslim Societies in Africa: A Historical Anthropology (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2013)
Richard M. Eaton, India’s Islamic Traditions, 711-1750 (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2003)
S. Frederic Starr, Lost Enlightenment: Central Asia’s Golden Age from the Arab Conquest to Tamerlane (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2015)
Lesley Blanch, The Sabres of Paradise: Conquest and Vengeance in the Caucasus (London and New York: Tauris Parke Paperbacks, 2004)
Helene Carrere D’Ecausse, Islam and the Russian Empire: Reform and Revolution in Central Asia (London and New York: I.B. Tauris, 2009)
Jonathan P. Berkey, The Formation of Islam: Religion and Society in the Near East, 600-1800 (New York and Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002) ISBN-13: 978-0521588133, ISBN-10: 0521588138
Ira M. Lapidus, A History of Islamic Societies (New York and Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002) ISBN-13: 978-0521779333, ISBN-10: 0521779332
Marshall G. S. Hodgson, The Venture of Islam, Volume 1: The Classical Age of Islam (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1977) ISBN-10: 0226346838, ISBN-13: 978-0226346830
Marshall G. S. Hodgson, The Venture of Islam, Volume 2: The Expansion of Islam in the Middle Periods (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1977) ISBN-13: 978-0226346847, ISBN-10: 0226346846
Marshall G. S. Hodgson, The Venture of Islam, Volume 3: The Gunpowder Empires and Modern Times (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1977) ISBN-13: 978-0226346854, ISBN-10: 0226346854
Mary Habeck, Knowing the Enemy: Jihadist Ideology and the War on Terror (New Haven & London: Yale University Press, 2006)
Sebastian Gorka, Defeating Jihad: The Winnable War (Washington, DC: Regnery Publishing, 2016)
Daniel Pipes, Slave Soldiers and Islam: The Genesis of a Military System (London and New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1981)
Bernard Lewis, The Assassins: A Radical Sect in Islam (New York: Basic Books, 1968)
Bernard Lewis, Race and Slavery in the Middle East: An Historical Enquiry (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1990)
Bernard Lewis, The Middle East: A Brief History of the Last 2,000 Years (New York and London: Scribner, 1995)
Halil Inalcik and Donald Quataert, eds., An Economic and Social History of the Ottoman Empire (1300-1914) (Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 1994)
David Fromkin, A Peace to End All Peace: The Fall of the Ottoman Empire and the Creation of the Modern Middle East (New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1989)
Sam Solomon and E. Al Maqdisi, Modern Day Trojan Horse: The Islamic Doctrine of Immigration: Accepting Freedom or Imposing Islam? (Charlottesville, VA: ANM Publishers, 2009)
Daniel Akbari and Paul Tetreault, Honor Killing: A Professional’s Guide to Sexual Relations and Ghayra Violence from the Islamic Sources (Bloomington, IN: Authorhouse, 2014)
Update 1: Richard Butrick: It’s The Mullahs, Stupid
Update 3: What are the learned theorists in North America and Europe planning to do about this global epidemic of mental illness?
Update 4: Randy Barnett: What The Declaration of Independence Really Claimed
Update 5: Walt Whitman: Reflecting on the Civil War Between the States
Update 6: Randy Barnett: Happy 4th of July! The Drafting of the Declaration of Independence
Update 7: Looters want stability. Builders want opportunity.
Update 10: How The West Was Lost
Update 11: Michael Totten is getting it, gradually: Turkey Is Behaving Like An Enemy Now
Update 12: The biggest roll up of them all, if true, and I suspect it is: MBS has ordered text criticism of the Haditha. I learned of this from a commenter, James Dill, at a post by Steven Hayward at Power Line. Hayward has been following the Saudi internal cleansing for Team PL. Here are comments others made and to which I responded chasing this subject at Steven’s post:
Exegesis in Sunni Islam?
According to the Saudi Minister of Culture and Information Awwad Bin Saleh al-Awwad, a council of senior scholars will be established for the complex and will consist of prominent Hadith scholars in the world. They will, the UAE’s National tells us: … look to “eliminate fake and extremist texts and any texts that contradict the teachings of Islam and justify the committing of crimes, murders and terrorist acts.”
Why is this potentially such a big deal? Because the texts that they’re talking about potentially assessing as fake and eliminating are among the Ahadith (hadith).
David R, Graham:
Thank you, I had not seen this. And yes, this IS a VERY BIG deal. (Sorry, heuristic considerations drove me to the caps.)
For years I have mentioned that text criticism (of the several standard types) of Islamic literature, including Koran — and if they do Hadith, they will get to Koran, as Zafar implies, because of the logic of the effort — is the only sure way to defeat the Salafi and Shia Jihads (hegemonic puritanisms, which all puritanisms are, e.g., SJWs/Progressives/Lefties here today). So, some Sauds grasp that fact as well. This is indeed good news.
Luther’s 95 Theses rested on and invited text criticism of key Christian literature, to include the Bible. Text criticism was their engine and the engine of the Reformation. So yeah, Hayward is right, the Arabs had their Enlightenment before they had its precursor, Reformation. An irony there is that Wahhab commenced the Salafi Jihad specifically to counter the several (by country) Enlightenments in the orbit of the Latin Church.
The Bush/Obama/Brennan/Clinton/McCain/Deep State/Globalist New World Order delenda est, thanks to text criticism.
If only the British stood by their WWI allies the Hashemites.
David R. Graham:
Alan Saunders Indeed. Both Lawrence and Allenby argued for the Hashemites. The British FO (i.e., The East India Co., who needed coaling stations along the east and west coasts of Arabia), their suspected (and actual) traitor St. John Philby (Kim’s father) and the puritan stoner Woodrow Wilson flipped British/US policy to favor sheep stealer Ibn Saud, who had sat out the war, unlike Faisal the Hashemite, who fought the war and whom Lawrence and the British Army (Allenby) supported doing so.
It was a geo-political betrayal of the first water by Wilson and the British FO. Later, the American Charles Crane, representing Standard Oil, standardized US-Saudi relations by setting up ARAMCO after oil was discovered in eastern Arabia, al Saud lands and some not, but soon to be.
Hashemites left western Arabia, moved to Iraq and Jordan, but left in western Arabia the congeniality (Mutazilite Islam) with modernity MBS is now exploiting to draw tourism there. Basically, al Saud has decided to make an effort — historically, they shun labor, prefer theft and slaves — to become self-reliant.
I hope the new Saudi rulers stop their funding of mosques and charities across the world. This will defund the radicals all over the world.
Precisely. I’ll be looking for information about that in the coming months. It’s very high risk for the crown prince: it was the Shah’s modernizations in Iran in the 1970s that helped fuel the fundamentalist revolutions against him.
David R. Graham:
Steve Hayward modernizations were land ownership changes, deep ones, forced. White Revolution. Impacted ayatollahs, who led the counter-attack. Difference now, I think, is Saudi clergy-police also want modern world (facts), having been convinced (battlefield, al-Sisi, Trump) Salafism is a losing bet.
So, yes, key indicator will be whether or not Saudi funding of Salafi mosques/clerics around the world scales down or not. I am very glad you are on this one, probably, IMO, the single most important generative engine currently functioning. And POTUS Trump approves it.
Stuff is going on to which we, or at least I, have no access. I get the feeling things officially talked about as in the future are things about which decisions are already made and executions in train.
The world is sated with analysts.
It is desperate for craftsmen.
And by world I do not mean voters.
I mean the dimension of spirit, geist, pneuma.
If you lie, cheat or steal,
you have no prestige in this world or the next.
If you tolerate those who lie, cheat or steal,
you are condemned in this world and the next.
AUM NAMAH SHIVAYA