Friday, September 23, 2011

I Hate Israel! I Hate America! I'm a Muslim! I've Got it All! Let Me Be Your Leader!

Scene: A nightclub in Morocco.
Abdul: "I’m sorry, sir, this is a private room."
German official [from the Nazi-controlled DeutschBank]:  "You dare not keep me out of here!"
Rick: "Your cash is good at the bar."
German official: "What! Do you know who I am?"
Rick: 'I do. You’re lucky the bar’s open to you."
--“Casablanca,” (1942)

 By Barry Rubin

 First it was Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and the Iranian revolution.

 Hey, he said in effect, Yes, I’m a Persian, Yes, I’m a Shia, but I hate Israel and want to destroy it! And besides we’re all Muslims. So let me lead the Middle East. I know the way to kick the Americans out of the Middle East, too. By force! And the blood spilled and behold, Iran was popular for a while. But the Arabs and Sunni eventually found other heroes, and some became frightened of Iran’s power.

 Then there was Saddam Hussein and his Iraqi dictatorship.

 Hey, he said in effect, I am an Arab, I am a Sunni. True, I am a Godless atheist who kills believers. But I not only hate the Americans and Israelis but I also hate the Shia and those Shia heretics. So let me lead the Middle East. I know how to defeat them! By force!  And the blood spilled and behold, Iraq was popular for a while. But then he led Iraq to disaster, and was defeated and then killed....
 There is something different this time, however, since there is still another savior of Islam in the field: Turkish President Recep Erdogan. He says: True, I’m not an Arab but I’m Sunni. And I hate the United States, though I don’t say so in public. And I know how to defeat them: by force! Let’s go and fight! And the Arab League leaders erupt in cheers and chant his name. Then the Muslim Brotherhood discovers he is too subtle for them, he wants to keep the Islamism secret until all power is seized and they disagree with that strategy.

 Read it all:

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