The Vicious Cycle of Western Apologies and Muslim Violence


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It is a preposterous, demeaning, and uncivilized spectacle, and it makes a mockery of the whole business of giving offense (whether intentionally or unintentionally, by word or by deed) and expressing earnest contrition, and of taking genuine offense and sincerely accepting an apology.  These are real and meaningful and important ethical concepts.  They have to do with the acknowledgment of moral lapses and the restoration of decent and proper relations between responsible people living in free communities.  They play a fundamental role in the healthy give and take of civilized society – which is to say, society founded not on threats, bullying, vendettas, and the despotism of religious fanatics but on a shared reverence for individual liberty and a fully reciprocal tolerance for differences that do not imperil that liberty.

But what we have been witnessing in recent days, and what we have, in fact, been witnessing with what seems like increasing frequency ever since the fatwa against Salman Rushdie, has nothing whatsoever to do with civilized human relations.  In one incident after another, there has been an increasingly grotesque disproportion between the scale of apology and the scale of the action precipitating the apology.  It is an unsettling and unworthy development.  In allowing ourselves to be dragged down this path, we have left far behind us the realm of normal, rational human interaction and descended into the abyss of appeasement, into a situation that is not truly about offense and apology in any civilized sense but, rather, about the barbaric exploitation of those civilized concepts – an exploitation whose objective is nothing other than manipulation and, in turn, the steady accrual of power.  It is, simply put, a form of jihad.

What’s next?  I’m reminded of the “Two Minutes Hate” in 1984 – a daily ritual whereby the psychologically tyrannized people of Oceania are shown a brief film designed to whip them up into a ritualistic frenzy of hatred for Oceania’s enemies, foreign and domestic.  Why not take this concept and flip it around to fit the actual circumstances of the present day – in other words, compel everyone in the West to watch a two-minute film every day that encourages them to cringe with guilt and cower in self-loathing over every possible statement or action by any Westerner, anywhere, at which any Muslim, anywhere, might conceivably take umbrage?  A film that would inspire viewers to seek to outdo one another in the intensity and tearfulness of their expressions of regret and pleas for forgiveness? In other words, a “Two-Minute Grovel.” I’m sure there are plenty of filmmakers in Hollywood who’d be glad to take on the job, and who could do a bang-up job of it.

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  • Larry

    Do not apologise to Muslims, they just think you are weak. What you need to do is kick them in the nuts, hard and often. Then they understand that you are stronger than them, and they will grovel to you.

    Western forces should pull out of Afghanistan now, and level the place behind them as they go. Nothing left standing larger than a goat shed, thus leaving them so busy trying to survive that they don't have any time or energy for anything else.

    • Whatsinaname

      Finally, someone is speaking some sense! I cannot believe we are still deluding ourselves into thinking the world somehow needs this assylum of criminally insane sadistic savages.

  • SHmuel HaLevi

    I am a former Senior-Fellow Engineer, US DoD and IMoD Mil Avionics Programs and a Professor to this day, after retirement.
    We live in an area near four Moslem villages in the Middle East.
    Several years ago while shopping in the open air market, AKA SHUK, somehow one of the stalls assitants, a Moslem from M el Kurum, felt the need to prove to himself something and came after me totally w/o provocation. That is a standard procedure by that people.
    I trained and fought as an amateur boxing heavy weight fighter and in the military and proceeded to explain to the fellow the disadvantages of making errors of judgement. I understand that they reconstructed his jaw and bought dentures and after a while his ribs and forearm returned to almost normal state.
    The following week after the exchange of ideas, I returned to do my buying and I can assure you that the reception was terrific….
    It is the only way to deal with them.

    • Whatsinaname

      Love it! Although I would not have advised spending money on reconstructing anything or supplying him w/dentures. After all, how is he going to learn the value of these body parts if he cannot experience lacking them.

  • David M

    Apologizing to Muslims is considered a sign of weakness. When they want your apology you must ridicule and beat them by your utmost power, namely, carpet bomb or even better nuke them. The West must get rid of their oil, impose total trade, banking and communications sanctions against the Islamic countries. All immigrants to the West who adhere to Islam and defend this cult of violence and barbarity must be deported to their Islamic hell hole. I'm myself from that part of the world and I wholeheartedly despise Islam as the cause of misery, violence, hatred and genocide.

    • randy

      All christians should be kicked out of north america and the land goes back to the natives.

      • Ghostwriter

        Please,stop with your idiocy,randy. You're not helping yourself.

      • pagegl

        How about all the leftists just go to France. They could sit around and do the cheese and whine thing and be self important. I'm not sure how much it would help France, but it would do wonders to getting back to the dream of the Founders.

  • Whatsinaname

    If we want to see a change in Islam and Muslims, we must stop rescuing them. That means: no food aid, no medical aid, none of this "nation building" nonsense and no visas to the West under any conditions. We must use our own oil and other natural resources and sit back and watch the show when they engage in their tribal wars.

  • guest

    Politically correct destroys national identity. Multiculturalism is the same destructive evil. Apologizing to Muslims is suicide. They are coffin nails to the west.

  • MikeWood

    Was there ever a civilisation more committed to its own damnation than ours?

  • StephenD

    So now all our representatives, from the President and Secretary of State to the Generals and Secretary of Defense say they "will hold the responsible parties [for the burned books] accountable."
    Meaning of course, they will impose Sharia. It MUST mean this. Since in America you can burn anything you want as we practice freedom of expression. The burning of a book is in no way illegal. So for OUR officials to suggest they will hold our soldiers "accountable" I ask…Accountable to what law?
    By even suggesting such action indicates their willingness to incorporate Sharia into their thought pattern… This is a victory for our enemies before our officials do anything else…we’ve already lost on this one.

    • Ron Carnine

      Stephen, I agree, our service men acted innocently, and if they are prosecuted for this "offense" it will be a great miscarriage of justice. From killing our military officers to rioting and murder in the streets, these people are a perfect picture of lawlessness. Our history holds the method of dealing with them, like the Barbary pirates (Muslims) we tried paying them off. When that didn't work Jefferson ordered the navy to take care of the problem. They did, the use of force brought an end to kidnapping Americans and demanding ransom. The same will work today. Leave our service people alone and let the Muslims kill each other. Its the only thing that will work Tell them to go to hell, this was done innocently and if you don't like it you can go straight to h-ll.

  • ObamaYoMoma

    Actually, the murders of US servicemen wasn't about the disposal of the desecrated Korans. That's a BS excuse used to justify the cold-blooded murders of Americans and the violent riots. The proper way to dispose of Korans that have been desecrated is to burn them or bury them. Hence, this entire event is calculated and being coordinated.

    Meanwhile, Muslims readily desecrate Bibles and burn down churches all the time, at the same time that all Christians and other non-Muslim unbelievers living in their draconian Islamic totalitarian hellholes are violently oppressed and systematically persecuted when not outright slaughtered altogether with impunity, and that impunity – along with idiotic apologies – only fuels and emboldens that sort of behavior. Thus, these ever increasing riots we are seeing occur on a more and more frequent basis are the inevitable result.

    Hence, unless the West collectively counters this behavior, violent Islamic riots will only grow in frequency, aggressiveness, and violence, while more and more Bibles and churches will be burned in the Islamic world. In addition, the violent oppression and systematic persecution of Christians and all other non-Muslim unbelievers living in those draconian Islamic totalitarian hellholes as less than second-class dhimmi citizens will also only grow in violence and frequency as well.

    Nevertheless, we have no business being in Afghanistan, as lifting up Muslims is as counterproductive and insane as lifting up Hitler and the Nazis after WWII. Thus, that is the far greater mistake we are making and for that I blame both Republican and Dhimmicrat politicians. We need to get out of Afghanistan ASAP and then transition to a new strategy of containment in order to contain the spread , growth, and expansion of Islam.

    Of course, such a strategy would also entail banning and reversing mass Muslim immigration with all of its excess baggage ASAP, since mass Muslim immigration to the West is in reality deceptive and covert non-violent jihad for the purpose of infiltration and stealth demographic conquest.

    The truth is the Republican Party morphed into the second coming of the Dhimmicrat Party under Bush and because the Republican Party is virtually indistinguishable from the Dhimmicrat Party, both parties today are 100 percent incompetent when it comes to protecting and defending America from the threat of jihad and the scourge of Islam. Indeed, in effect the Left has managed to hijack and co-opt our federal government and both political parties.

    • Guest

      I agree that trying to "lift up" Muslims who insist on living in the 7th century is counterproductive.
      However, your history is incorrect. We did indeed rebuild Germany and Japan after World War II, and that worked out quite well, don't you think?

      • ObamaYoMoma

        However, your history is incorrect. We did indeed rebuild Germany and Japan after World War II, and that worked out quite well, don't you think?

        My history is incorrect? What history? I didn't write anything about history. All I did was state the obvious, that lifting up Muslims is about as counterproductive and insane as lifting up Hitler and the Nazis after WWII, as like Hitler and the Nazis, Muslims are the eternal mortal enemies of all non-Muslim unbelievers in the world. I never said we didn't help Germany and Japan to rebuild after WWII. Where did you get that from?

        • NorthStar

          Come on now.

          Don't expect Obama Yo to know anything about history. Facts aren't his strong suit. Making up stuff is.

          • NorthStar

            I didn't call you an Islamophobe.

            So you're a liar, a coward, and a spamming troll.

      • Jake in Jerusalem

        Both Germany and Japan were productive societies before WW II. Their cultures are very different from Arab/Islamic culture. In the early 20th century, the Germans and Japanese were building aircraft. Can the Arabs, even today, a century later, even build a lawnmower??? Helping rebuild Germany and Japan was a reasonably policy, as we can now see. Islam, though, needs to become tolerant of others. Until then, it will fester in hatred and destruction, instead of production. There is no point to helping them if they won't help themselves.

  • Sam Deakins

    Let's face it the muslim world is like Jurassic Park. No matter how many goats you feed to them; the dinosaurs are still gonna eat you.

  • kblink45

    As a Hillary supporter, I blame republicans for violence in Afghanistan. Clearly, Ms. Clinton and her middle-eastern lover have their fingers well, among other places, on the pulse of rational anti-American dissent in the ME. I think if Rick gets the nomination the Arabs are going to be very upset and that makes me very upset. Clearly, having a muslim in the WH has kept the lid on the ME. Apologize. Apologize. And apologize some more.

    • Sage on the Stage

      "Clearly, having a muslim in the WH has kept the lid on the ME." Country after country in the ME has come under the sway of either Al-Qaeda and/or the Muslim Brotherhood–Egypt, Libya, and Tunisia. And Syria is in danger of this as well. And Iran is threatening to shut down the strait of Hormuz; and threatening to fire on the US Navy. The world has been brought to the brink of a nuclear war; and Israel is now surrounded by enemies, that grow stronger every day; because the Muslim in the WH won't tell Iran to back off, or offer to defend the Suez Canal. And YOU say, "Clearly, having a muslim in the WH has kept the lid on the ME." That lid is very,. very close to blowing off. WHERE is your HEAD?

      • kblink45

        I was being sarcastic, Sage. I despise Billary. And Obama has done nothing but make things worse.

        • kblink45

          And further: I find it a little disturbing that one of Hillary's top aides has family ties to Islamic terrorists. And by 'little' I am, once again, being sarcastic.

  • sedoanman

    "…compel everyone in the West to watch a two-minute film every day that encourages them to cringe with guilt and cower in self-loathing…"

    I don't think this is necessary; they already know how. obama must be trying to outdo Clinton who apologized even to the South Pole: http://texnews.com/1998/opinion/will0331.html .

  • LindaRivera

    Please get this info into articles!

    Violent Muslims went into a murderous rage killing and wounding many innocents over Americans disposing of Korans that had messages written in them by Muslim terrorists.
    How strange, because Pakistani Muslims DELIBERATELY defile their own Korans. Will distraught and outraged Obama, Clinton and U.S. military leaders wring their hands in horror and demand Muslims apologize and demand Muslims be brought to account for defiling Korans?

    Why are Pakistanis throwing away 100s of Korans into sewage filled canal?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=69VIER7nzz8&fe

  • yang

    In the muslim world the person who cries loudest gets the respect.
    The only way is close all boarders and send them all back!No more Western Armys in Afghnistan so they can be happy with their Arab Taliban who destroy everything of the Afghan culture.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZPF43_FcmFc

  • John Amend-all

    Just for fun?
    Everyone takes an 8-1/2 × 11 sheet of paper and writes “Quran” on it with a magic marker.
    Sets fire to it. Film it without your face (or wearing a mask).
    Pick a date not too far in the future (April 1?).
    Everyone post their own video to YouTube simultaneously.
    The 10 countries with the worst riots get absolutely no aid ever again: no foreign aid, no matching funds,
    no grants, no training, no advisers, no Red Cross, no Unicef, no Unesco,.
    Let them eat sand.

  • maturin20

    As we learned from Ptolemy's mistake, cycles do not always accurately explain various anomalies of celestial motion.

  • mrbean
  • kblink45

    Excellent article Mr. Bawer. Imagine if the LA police department identified innercity crime as "cultural expression" and then proceeded to appease gangs as legitimate protest organizations. Islam is a giant criminal organization. It has been from its inception a smokescreen for mysogyny and pedophilia. We should afford it only the respect it deserves: None!

  • Jaladhi

    This has happened because of the left and liberals who can't see any evil and won't describe it as evil. A case in point is Islam and Muslims and their hate manual Quran. Even though almost 100% of the terrorist acts are committed by Muslims because what they learn in Quran, "kill all non-Muslim who do not believe in Mo/allah" etc, and yet our PC MC media dominated by liberals can never say that. They will always say, oh it's only a tiny minority of "extremists" who commit these acts . In other words, these extremists are not even Muslims and the rest of the Muslims are just like us. Yeah right. All this tiny minority of extremists comes out of the regular Muslim masses. One day a regular Muslim and next day a part of tiny minority. How brain dead these liberals can be!!

    In other words when you start lying and don't tell the truth so as not offend them, you and your culture takes a down ward dive and that is what has happened to the us and the rest of the West. We are apologizing endlessly and the " tiny minority of morons" just continues killing.

    We keep doing this and Muslims all over the world keep laughing at us!!

    • JoJoJams

      I disagree only with your first sentence. The left definitely sees evil…..in all that has been good and holy in our own western culture…. I hear their venom all the time. What's amazing is the hypocrisy they spout. I've argued regarding the pastor in Florida who was buring the koran – my lefty "friends" were screaming how terrible/evil/bigoted the pastor was. When I asked them what they felt about "Piss Christ" (the upside-down crucifix in a jar of urine), well – that's ART!~ and we shouldn't be offended! How they can believe two opposite beliefs regarding two similar "desecrations" of religious icons is, well, borderline insane!!

      • Jaladhi

        That's why I call them brain dead just like the Muslims!!

  • WilliamJamesWard

    How about a two minute film of the bowing Obama being sworn in for a second term and with the magic of Hollywood
    every man see the swearing in judge as his ex-wife. Oh what howling ourtage, oh the horror of it all, gag on maggots,
    jump from the highest building (if I ever jump it will be from the basement window) scream the scream of no, not me.
    William

  • Fred Dawes

    If the real people of Europe do not act against muslim evil that people will disappear into evil, the same thing will happen here in the same way.

    by the way jews will be the frist ones to get the AX.

  • Terry

    I suggest that for every western soldier that has been murdered in Afghanistan, we burn 10 korans. Right now. Next time they kill one of ours, burn 20. And so on, doubling each time.

    I'd even issue koran ass paper to our troops every time one gets wounded.

    I am sickened by the leader of the western world apologising to these nazi scumbags. Burn baby burn.

    The reaction would be violent and mindless. Just the excuse the west needs to clean up these people and expel them from western civilised countries to islamonazi states where they can celebrate spring.

  • Amused

    Speaking of apologies : [BTW -I dont think either instance required an apology ]

    President Bush has apologized to Iraq's prime minister for an American sniper's shooting of a Quran, and the Iraqi government called on U.S. military commanders to educate their soldiers to respect local religious beliefs.

    Bush's spokeswoman said Tuesday that the president apologized during a videoconference Monday with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who told the president that the shooting of Islam's holy book had disappointed and angered both the Iraqi people and their leaders.

    "He apologized for that in the sense that he said that we take it very seriously," White House press secretary Dana Perino said. "We are concerned about the reaction. We wanted them to know that the president knew that this was wrong."

  • Jake in Jerusalem

    The most offensive symbol of Occupation for me is the Islamic gold Dome of the Rock atop the Jewish Holy Temple Mount in Jerusalem. Not satisifed with taking control of the most holy and important site in all of Judaism, The Islamic Waqf together with the Palestinian Authority have been buldozing away archeological artifacts that prove a Jewish presence there since long before Mohammed. Both Arafat and Abbas denied that there ever was a Jewish Temple there. Should Jews be outraged? Of course. Are they? Most are concerned with "maintaining relations" with Muslim societies that deny the very existence and right to exist of Jews. Islam has done the same at the Sikh temple at Ayoddyah, India, at churches in the Middle East, against the Bahai and others. When will people wake up?

    • Jake in Jerusalem

      Incidentally, the Islamic Waqf refuses to apply for building permits on the Temple Mount and has violated many local laws, including those applying to antiquities and archeological preservation, so from now on, the proper term for the mosques on the Temple Mount is "the illegal Islamic mosques". I wouldn't be surprised if the same would apply in other locations, as well.

  • Jaladhi

    >"The most offensive symbol of Occupation for me is the Islamic gold Dome of the Rock atop the Jewish Holy Temple Mount in Jerusalem."<

    This is what Muslims have done all over the world where they have invaded such as in Turkey, Egypt,India, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Malaysia Indonesia etc. This is their modus operandi from day one whem Mo/allah destroyed all the idols of god that Meccans worshipped. After doing this they write revisionist history totally removing any reference pre-Islamic history of that country. Ask any Iranian what does he know about the religion practiced in Iran before the hoards of Arab Muslims invaded Iran . The present day Malaysians and Pakistanis who try not to teach Indian history of the region before Pakistan became Pakistan. Such is Islam . Destroyer and occupier of everything in the world.

    A slight correction to your post , the temple in Ayodhya, india was a Hindu God Lord Rama's temple over which Babar, Mogul invader, built a mosque known as Babri masjid. This was demolished by Hindus in 1992 after almost 5 centuries but the Government of India is preventing Hindus from building the Rama temple even todate. Such is the travesty of "secular" India where Muslim minority(abou 15%) enjoys more rights than the majority Hindus!!

    When is Israel going to take over the Temple Mount – its about time!!

    • Jake in Jerusalem

      Thank you for your correction.

      One problem in Israel is that the modern Zionist movement has been godless and militantly secular. This relates to the early Zionists wanting to invent a new Jew without Judaism. Therefore, they have no pride in their traditions and background, wanting to invent everything anew. This is why Moshe Dayan immediately relinquished control of the Temple Mount in 1967; he didn't want a religious revival. The Muslims understand this. It's the same in secular Europe. They will first move in, then demand rights and after that claim that it was theirs all along, anyways. When Israelis again recognize that their heritage is worth saving, and that there is no future without a past, when they regain pride in being Jews and not just Israelis, then the Temple Mount may again be at center of Jewish concerns.

  • Amused

    Jake , it will be this way till the end . However Jerusalem will remain the capitol of ISRAEL . And the palestinians will never prevail .

  • Ahmed

    @amused;Waiting for the summer , 1939 r. in Poland you remeber ?!
    .

  • AntiMuslim2000

    Dear Mr. Bawer,

    It is imperative politically that the "radicalized Muslim" myth persist, so that fruitless military actions can continue while Sharia is allowed to grow in our home nations. To confront the Muslims politically with harsh rebuke for their mob violence would mean relinquishing this myth, and more Muslim violence would ensue. Since we of the West currently lack the courage to deal with this violence, the only political option for dealing with Muslim violence is appeasement (as not doing so would require the will to use violence on Muslims in the home nations).