NOTE: By all means, scroll to the end of the article for an update and a wonderful new Ramirez cartoon.
In Quick Points for 01-20-15, I included a short article on Obama State Department Spokesperson Marie Harf. Consider this from an interview current at the time:
Public trust in government is at a dismal low. How do you go about regaining lost trust?
‘I think it’s powerful to have someone stand up at the State Department every day and tell the country what their government is doing on their behalf around the world. The only way you overcome mistrust is transparency and openness and dialogue. That’s certainly my goal as a spokesperson—not to stand up there and read talking points off a piece of paper. If I’m doing a good job, I explain to people why we care—or should care—about different parts of the world; why we’re doing what we’re doing; what we’re trying to achieve; what kind of global power the United States wants to be in the 21st century.’
At a recent appearance on MSNBC’s Hardball with Chris Matthews, Harf’s view of our Islamist enemy, an enemy that just conducted a mass beheading of 21 Coptic Christians in Libya, and burned alive 45 in Iraq arguably did not do much to “regain lost trust.” Powerline reports:
MATTHEWS: Are we killing enough of them [jihadist terrorist murderers]?
HARF: We’re killing a lot of them and we’re going to keep killing more of them. So are the Egyptians, so are the Jordanians. They’re in this fight with us. But we cannot win this war by killing them. We cannot kill our way out of this war. We need in the medium to longer term to go after the root causes that leads people to join these groups, whether it’s lack of opportunity for jobs, whether…
MATTHEWS: We’re not going to be able to stop that in our lifetime or fifty lifetimes. There’s always going to be poor people. There’s always going to be poor muslims, and as long as there are poor Muslims, the trumpet’s blowing and they’ll join. We can’t stop that, can we?
HARF: We can work with countries around the world to help improve their governance. We can help them build their economies so they can have job opportunities for these people…
Much has been written—I’ve contributed to it—about President Obama’s utter lack of understanding–or recognition–of the existential threat we face from Islamists. The various spokespeople in the White House, Department of State and elsewhere, to a greater degree than perhaps any time in history, accurately reflect Mr. Obama’s delusions and willful ignorance, and Harf is a prime example. Underlying her comments are decades of stereotypical leftist thinking about “root causes,” and our supposed inability to win wars by killing the enemy. Harf’s comment about helping to improve the governance of essentially medieval, tribal societies is also revealing of the statist’s reliance on government to solve all problems, even those that do not actually exist.
Harf is accidently, barely correct in that wars are not won exclusively through killing. One wins by destroying the enemy’s will and capability to wage war, which is done primarily by destroying their infrastructure and by destroying their military forces, all of which, regretfully, takes quite a bit of killing. Because our enemy does not have sophisticated western military forces or indeed, manufacturing abilities—though they may soon have many nuclear weapons—our primary means of stopping this particular global conflict is killing every last one of them. Wars also don’t end simply because Barack Obama declares it.
Harf’s utter lack of understanding of international affairs is also revealed by the idea that forcing other cultures to adopt a millimeter-thin veneer of western leftist governance will materially improve the lives of their citizens. Such witless gestures will surely not cause religious zealots bent on world domination to stop crucifying children, burning alive prisoners of war, beheading captives, and committing other acts of depraved inhumanity. Once those lines are crossed, introducing diversity, social justice and a leftist’s idea of utopian government—even if such barbarians were so cynical, clever and manipulative they’d pretend to buy into it—would only encourage them. They’d know they had real suckers on their hands, and not only that, suckers who lacked the will to actually oppose them. Of course, they know that even now.
The most jaw-dropping and disgusting part of Harf’s blathering is her suggestion that we can stop the global jihad with some sort of bizarre jobs program. More than anything, this reveals her complete lack of understanding of the ideology and motivation that drives our deadly enemies.
Graeme Wood has a worthwhile article in The Atlantic that explains the motivations and goals of ISIS. Little or nothing in it will be surprising to those that have been paying attention of late, but it is well written and worth your time. It might also be worth your time to visit “It’s Them Or Us,” and “Arab Civilization Disintegrates And No Idea Why,” articles I’ve written that help to explain our enemy.
While the economies in many Muslim nations are, due to Islam, indeed a mess, it takes a special kind of willful blindness and/or stupidity to think that people willing to commit mass murder in the most vile and despicable ways imaginable, people who desire to be part of a ravening, demonic army sworn to genocide, and working to conquer and enslave the world, would gladly give that up if they could find a full time job back home. The leaders of jihadist movements, virtually to a man, are well educated and had productive, even lucrative careers before taking the path of Islamist slaughter. Many are well off. Jihadist motivation consists of weighing “open a small business” or “slaughter millions as bloodily as possible in the name of Allah,” only in the empty minds of leftist western sympathizers. I’m sure Harf would be supportive if, as part of a grand deal with Iran, jihadists were given jobs in Iran’s nuclear program, which according to Iran, doesn’t exist.
As I noted in my Quick Points article on Harf, prior to taking her State Department job, she was a CIA analyst. If the CIA has many more like her, that would go a long way toward explaining why we are so often clueless about jihadist intentions and attacks.
There is no question that the Obama Administration is full of thinkers like Harf. We—and our allies–will be fortunate to survive the remaining years of Obama. Some, like Yemen, have already gone under. Yemen won’t be the last.
UPDATE, 02-18-15 1630 CST: Marie Harf appeared on CNN’s “The Situation Room” yesterday afternoon. Addressing her jobs gaffe, she doubled down, displaying all the arrogance and smug and utterly unjustified superiority that is the hallmark of the Obama Administration. It’s not that Harf’s suggestion that jobs for jihadists will fix the war against civilization is incredibly stupid, no. The problem is that Harf is so nuanced we’re just not smart enough to understand her insightful brilliance. Then she blamed George W. Bush. Powerline has a video if your stomach is particularly strong.
Of course, this is to be expected. Her Boss, John Kerry, is the virtual definition of nuance, so long as the definition includes narcissism, arrogance, treason and idiocy.
One major problem is definitions.
To the western sensibilities, there is a Radical Islamist and some sort of Moderate Islamist. And that some become radical.
In all actuality, the Radical is the Norm and the Moderate is the Radical. It cannot be emphasized enough. Islam when fully in place is a beheading, burning, destructive force in the world. The few inside Islam who want to change it to a peace-loving religion are considered the radical extremists and are punished when found.
Also there is a duality involved in Islam. The average Muslim is practicing the Meccan part of the Koran (The so-called Religion of Peace). It is allowed and encouraged by the Koran when they are living in Foreign lands. Once that foreign land gets enough Muslims they “magically” transform into the Medinan part of the Koran(The Religion of Jihad).
A lot of the transformation is the adoption of Sharia Law. This implementation of this Islamic law is the nose of the camel entering the bottom of tent. Unless it is shunned it will take over all laws in time.
The amount of oil money flowing into ME economies over the last 50 years has only exacerbated the problem.
I have no specific reference for this, but I believe that most there find the thought of working for someone else to be beneath them. They prefer their independence as traders and would refuse being an employee. The “jobs” are being done by foreign workers (and slaves, some indentured, some not) brought in to cater to luxury lifestyles of the oil rich, and the rest of the rabble just continue to drag their knuckles around the desert.
F’em. Reduce reliance on ME oil and let them go back to being nomadic traders who occupy their time picking sand fleas out of each other’s crotches.
Atrocities committed in the name of religion is hardly an unknown or new phenomenon. It’s the actual mechanism and structure of atrocity creation which is seldom mentioned and often purposely ignored – by all parties!
As Voltaire pointed out in the 1700s: Anyone who can convince you of absurdities can (also) convince you to commit atrocities. He WAS referring to religions and he was/is 100% correct about that..
The Jihadists are actually crusaders, it does no good for another group of crusaders to talk about “peaceful coexistence.” All religions promote monopoly of belief systems for themselves. This, historically, has always involved FIRST getting a monopoly of force in order to enforce the monopoly of belief system. All religions depend on a system of mystical beliefs. When you believe in “the super natural” – you believe in an absurdity. Notice the specific here: religions do this – God never enters into it despite all the heated insistence that God is involved. Belief in God does not mean belief in a religion.
Similarly, the “strategy” coming from Ms. Harf is useless because, as Mike points out, the Moslems are and always have been committed to a more violent strategy – “out of a belief in their religion.” Same as us: which is why the only answer is to kill every damned Moslem (and members of any other competing religion). But that’s just the first step because there will be quite a few other religious groups to kill off. It’s worrisome because then the religio-monopolistic Christians would finish the job by killing all the people like me who don’t depend on religion to know how to behave.
Atheism is responsible for more deaths this last century than all the Christian Crusades including the Inquisition combined.
How many people have been killed specifically in the name of atheism?
I’m curious. Like, straight up, “There is no God, and for that, you die”, no other motive sort of thing?
Joel, it would be more accurate to say, “Atheists are responsible for more deaths…, ” instead of, “Atheism is responsible for more deaths… ”
RuleofOrder, anyone may claim any of their actions are in the name of any religion, or political belief, or nation, or whatever. That does not mean that those actions are in accord with the entity in whose name they claim to act. Then again, sometimes their actions may be a consequence of a belief, even if not directly part of that belief – sometimes even when the action seems contrary to that belief.
For example, the actions of the Crusaders goes against the teachings and principles of Christianity. But, a case could be made that Cristian faith, combined with rampant illiteracy, and a corrupt and corrupting Church hierarchy, created the conditions that allowed the corruption of Christianity and made the Crusades possible.
A case could also be made that Atheism, through the belief in no god and therefore no punishment/reward in an afterlife, created the conditions that made the mass genocides of the 20th Century possible. Some Atheists might easily conclude that if this life is all there is, then nothing really matters – or at least nothing beyond their own momentary pleasure and survival.
OTOH, many – not all, but many – of the atrocities committed in the Islam are not a corruption of Islamic teachings, but are a faithful following of those teachings.
The last paragraph should read: “…in the name of Islam…”
” That does not mean that those actions are in accord with the entity in whose name they claim to act. Then again, sometimes their actions may be a consequence of a belief, even if not directly part of that belief – sometimes even when the action seems contrary to that belief.” —
I am leveraging my question off the direct relation to religion that the Crusades and the Inquisition have. Clearly, those acts were done -specifically- in the name of a chosen deity.
“A case could also be made that Atheism, through the belief in no god and therefore no punishment/reward in an afterlife, created the conditions that made the mass genocides of the 20th Century possible. Some Atheists might easily conclude that if this life is all there is, then nothing really matters – or at least nothing beyond their own momentary pleasure and survival.” — Thats an awful lot of assumption for a case to be made. ‘created conditions that…’ ‘some atheists might conclude that…’ and then further more, act in such a fashion. Where as with the counter (Crusades and Inquisition), its a -direct correlation-. It was the driving force, not a 2 steps removed conditional.
Well, whatever helps you sleep at night.
Says the committed lover of the super natural.
I understand some of your confusion. To you it is supernatural, to me it is natural.
BTW: How is it coming with the revelation that evolution and the big bang theory (not to be confused with the television show) are being disproved? Are you having heart palpitations? Do you need nitro?
Mike McDaniel said:
I’m afraid a bit of a correction is in order. Christianity absolutely does not teach violence, nor the enslavement or domination of the world and the slaughter of nonbelievers. Left alone, Christians kill no one, nor do they force anyone to accept Christianity. That too is a central belief of any Christian faith. The same is true of Jews. If Muslims laid down their arms, there would be peace. If Christians and Jews laid down theirs–genocide.
This is why the attempts of the buffoonish Marie Harf and the rest of the Obamite clown circus to drudge up supposed “Christian” violence as a means of demonstrating that Christians are as violent as Muslims is so pathetic. There is nothing in the New Testament that justifies any sort of violence. On the other hand, Jihadists are fully aligned with the teaching of the Koran.
Dear Mike: Well, then there’s no need for you or anyone to defend Christianity then, is there? You can be right about one thing and off-track about another. I won’t even bother to point out the bombings by anti-abortion Christians, the threats of violence against gays or the continual campaigning by Christians to re-instate (Christian) prayers in public schools (and before football games and for those standing in line at hot dog stands, etc, etc.) Oops! I am a theist, after the pattern of people like Jefferson and Franklin. As such I see sufficient evidence to declare the named religions are just brand names, with some followers of any of the brand names readily able to commit violence, even atrocious violence. And they all invariably use their brand name as justification for the violence they commit. Lets not forget: at one time in England, being a Catholic (brand name for a branch of Christianity) got some people imprisoned and “executed.” And the Rev. Jim Jones purposely and with forethought made 800 of his followers kill themselves (backed by his armed guards).
That’s as despicable as the atrocities being committed by the cold blooded, inhuman monsters calling themselves “loyal Moslems.”
Mike McDaniel said:
The difference is that none of those “Christians” can point to scripture to justify their insanity. Muslims can.
It seems that every time Obama or one of his flunkies says something stupid, the official explanation for it afterward is that they really said something else, and that we (gun-clinging, religion-clinging yokels in flyover country) misunderstood it, because we are too unsophisticated to appreciate the nuance.
Maybe Bush never mispronounced “subliminal,” and Quayle did not misspell “potato.” They were just so nuanced that we couldn’t understand their brilliance.
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