Like everybody else, I have recently been confronted by the news of the gruesome terrorist attack in Christchurch, New Zealand. Someone shared a brief clip with me of the attack that the perpetrator had chosen to stream live on Internet. As I read further online to understand what I had just watched I felt more and more sickened by what was unraveling yet again in front of my eyes, but this story is in direct relation to our struggle here, with Ex-Muslims of Norway and around the world. So we have to look at it and pay special attention to it.
Whether it's after the attacks in Nice and Paris or whether it's after the attacks in Oslo or Christchurch, we always witness the same things happening :
When a Muslim asshole drives a truck into a crowd of families celebrating National Day in the south of France, the left side of the political spectrum will usually acknowledge the horror of the act however some will do whatever they can to minimize the actual motivations of the killer, it will be said that he had psychological problems, substance abuse problems etc... The right side in return, will do whatever they can to highlight the fact that the killer was muslim. In my opinion, they would be justified to insist on that particular point, however the extreme right would then take that chance to put forward the skin color of the perpetrator and that's where they lose someone like me.
When a Templar asshole enters a mosque armed to the teeth and shoots peaceful men in the peaceful
practice of their religion, the right side of the political spectrum will usually acknowledge the horror of the act but some will do whatever they can to minimize the actual motivations of the killer, it will be said he had psychological problems, substance abuse problems etc... The left side in return, will do whatever they can to highlight the fact that the victims were muslims. In my opinion, they would be justified to insist on that particular point, however the extreme left would then take that chance to put forward the skin color of the perpetrator and that's where they lose someone like me.
In both cases, Islam is part of the story and in both cases skin color is irrelevant. We are much more interested in what the victims represent, what the killers think they are accomplishing and why they think killing is the answer.
What everybody needs to realize is that what we are seeing is the confrontation of two different "extreme rights", if I may put it that way. The extreme-right we are too well accustomed to of our good old white supremacist idiots, and the extreme-right of the muslim supremacist idiots. Just to be absolutely clear, let me state here that none of them are good, that they are both actually bad in my eyes and that none of them ought to be defended, under no circumstances. To me they both represent the antithesis of what an ideal society should strive for, they are both ok with the use of violence to advance their agenda and I consider followers of either as my enemies. It is therefore very disturbing to see the western left letting the local right have the monopoly over the reasonable argument that Islam is indeed a problem that needs to be seriously considered on one side. And supporting, encouraging and defending the muslim-right by ignoring, silencing calling anyone who dares denouncing it, a racist. In doing so, they let Breivik and Tarrant own the reasonable parts of the criticism of Islam to justify their hopeless and frankly counter-productive actions. It shouldn't be like that. If the left wasn't so blind to the obvious shortcomings of the muslim ideology, maybe Breivik and Tarrant could have been comforted with the idea that at least, they weren´t the only ones to see it for what it actually is : Something to be critical about, at the very least. We will never know and lives are forever lost. All we have left is the lessons to learn from the losses so we might want to be respectful enough as to not mess it up.
What I want to see in the public discussion after such attacks and in general, is a unanimous acknowledgement that no matter who killed who, browns killed whites or whites killed browns or any possible combination of colors, in these instances, Islam was at the center of the motivations. Whether it was for the love, the hate or the fear of it, Islam is what we owe these tragic spectacles to. I am aware that this can sound like "victim blaming" but Islam is in no way a victim, muslims are. They are ironically, tragically and by far the first and biggest victims of that ideology... and everybody else follow with them.
What I want people to observe is that, while Anders Beiring Breivik targeted a political youth camp or Brenton Tarrant targeted a Muslim place of worship. The commando who attacked Paris in 2015 and the driver of the truck who ran over pedestrians in Nice, attacked random civilians. They didn't target anything or anyone specific, no extreme right nazi fascist meeting, they didn't attack a nazi skinheads concert. Who are the enemies of these killers? Who do they hate so much? Just random people, concert goers, pedestrians, kids... Actually, this is not completely accurate. When they choose to target something specific, djihadi terrorists seem to have a preference for targets associated with Jews, but this actually comes as no surprise to anyone in the know of what Islam actually stands for and that it is still not understood by the western left. It's an aberration.
When Breivik attacked a political camp he left behind a lengthy manifesto where he explained his motivations, his choices, his strategies and the reasons behind. He could also have bombed a mosque or shot muslim individuals, but he didn't, he explained why and if I remember correctly, he actually recommended against it. No, instead he chose to attack young political activists belonging to a specific party. Tarrant chose to attack Muslims directly in their place of worship, he streamed it live on Internet, he also left a manifesto, he refers to Breivik, Candice Owens and to Pew Die Pie (!)... All these choices have meanings that we ought to understand. They want to convince us that they were justified in their actions and they show us who they are blaming. Needless to say, my unalterable opinion is that there can be no justification for these monstrosities, but there are reasons and arguments that these men use to justify themselves. We have to identify, understand and neutralize these reasons and we have to be honest about it. We can't be satisfied by the "racist" argument, it's just not it. Don't get me wrong though, they might as well be racist, I'm just saying it's irrelevant in these cases.
After all that being said, I want to point out some interesting things that I've seen develop during the many years I've observed the conflicts involving Islam.
From the middle east and all around the world, the dissidents of Islam are called apostates and they are the ones I choose to stand with in this entire discussion. They are the Ex-Muslims. I have been a critic of Islam for many years, and I remember a time when I didn't know of any Ex-Muslims, I knew they must exist, I simply hadn´t ever met one or even heard of one but I was longing for the day they would come forth. The first one that comes to mind is now one of my biggest intellectual heroes, Ayaan Hirsi Ali and after her came many others until I met Ex-Muslims of Norway and I now know many of them.
I had hopes that the emergence of the voices from dissidents of Islam in the intellectual discourse would bring some fresh air to the discussion about the problematics of Islam. They would surely be perceived as reliable and objective voices but unfortunately, it didn't happen. I mean, we did in fact hear from Ex-Muslims exactly what I was expecting to hear. They do have coherent arguments about or even against Islam that fit my impression of it from my outsiders point of view, but they met a strange opposition. As far as I can tell, all the Ex-Muslims I have gotten to know could be described as left liberals, they certainly all embrace humanistic values, but to our despair, the entire left in the west have rejected all attempts from Ex-Muslims to connect with them, they have classified them as anti-muslim bigots, sometimes even calling them or their discourse, racist. Another aberration.
Not only does this reaction from the left leave an enormous question mark as to whether they are malevolent, preferring to take a stand for a reprehensible ideology which stands for just about everything it traditionally is against (mysoginy, homophobia, antisemitism...) instead of standing with its opposition. Or whether they are absolutely beyond stupid, not able to understand concepts such as religion, race, ethnicity, beliefs, motivation, psychology, culture, freedom of speech... therefore showing themselves not only useless in that discussion but also dangerous since they keep deliberately and actively obstructing the civil discussion others are trying to have, and thus creating Breivik like characters in the intellectual vaccum they leave behind. This, truly is a shame.
At this moment, the political actors who are the most welcoming to Ex-Muslims are from the right. In the United States, Ayaan Hirsi Ali was received by Republicans while being accused of being an "anti-muslim extremist" by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Here in Norway, Ex-Muslims have been welcomed and listened to by members of FrP a political party referred to as a party of "racists" and "right extremists". For various and unrelated reasons, I have my own reservations about EXMN having any associations with a party such as FrP but they clearly don't have a choice if they wish to enter the Norwegian political discourse, since who one would assume to be their natural political allies are purely and simply rejecting them and attacking them. All this under bad, simplistic, reductivist arguments. Where are Rødt and other Arbeiderpartiet?
Political activists on the left side of the spectrum have a huge part of responsibility for all these massacres. The crimes by both djihadis and so called templars.
- By calling `racist´ any of its critics, they allow the ethos of Islam's most extreme teachings to continue to spread to its followers virtually unchallenged.
- By silencing and demonizing critics of the ideology of Islam, they corner them and push some to have recourse to violence because they, logically, feel demonized.