Tom Friedman is a Moron; plain and simple. If you’ve ever read anything he has written and you have a 5th grade education and/or a basic grasp of how the world actually works can see that he lives in a fantasy world one vampire short of copyright infringement; take the his most recent “article” for example titled “We Need Another Giant Protest”.
In commenting on the march this week in France he bypasses the fact that Obama couldn’t be bothered to attend or at least send a representative saying that this would not be the end of Islamic violence and extremism anyway; his prescription instead was:“a million-person march against the jihadists across the Arab-Muslim world, organized by Arabs and Muslims for Arabs and Muslims, without anyone in the West asking for it — not just because of what happened in Paris but because of the scores of Muslims recently murdered by jihadists in Pakistan, Yemen, Iraq, Libya, Nigeria and Syria”
Good thing you were here Tom; he might as well have prescribed “more cowbell” for all the good that it would do. In what universe is he living in that he thinks this is even a remote possibility (forget helpful)? Look at the countries he listed: Pakistan? really? Islamists are deeply embedded at every level of government and the military as well as the use of radical groups by Pakistan in the tribal regions as a sort of proxy against Afghanistan and India; Pakistan was given a choice in 2001 by the US: With us or against us and the best they could come up with was with you…sort of…when it suits us Of course the US accepted that as enough because of their strategic interests in neighboring Afghanistan. and Nigeria? They just had their bloodiest week yet with 2000 dead at the hands of Boko Haram; i’m sure there are those there that hate Boko Haram..now if only there was something that they could do about it. The fact that Syria made this list made my head hurt; Even at the depths of my loathing for Friedman I can’t imagine that he is seriously counting Asssad’s vigorous “protest” against radical groups in his category of eligible states; Syria is just one of many countries that are so far away from anything resembling spontaneous anti-radical Islamic protests.
He continues on by quoting Abdul Rahman al-Rashed, a respected Arab journalist, who wrote Monday in his column in Al-Sharq Al-Awsat:
“The story of extremism begins in Muslim societies, and it is with their support and silence that extremism has grown into terrorism that is harming people. It is of no value that the French people, who are the victims here, take to the streets. … What is required here is for Muslim communities to disown the Paris crime and Islamic extremism in general.”
How does he expect the Arab/Muslim community to disown these terrorists when the Western World won’t even admit that Islam is the problem? The amount of people trying to foist this problem onto anyone else other than radical extremists. Future dead president Jimmy Carter said on the daily show: “One of the origins for it is the Palestinian problem, and this affects people who are affiliated in any way with the Arab people who live in the West Bank and Gaza – what they’re doing now, what’s being done to them”. How in the hell does anyone expect the global Muslim population to stand up to this issue when we won’t even acknowledge that it’s the source of the problem!
And then he continues pointing out something that everyone has known from the start: That the US doesn’t confront the radical tendencies of allies like Saudi Arabia because of our oil addiction.
“Ambivalence runs through Washington’s ties with Saudi Arabia. (Wait, didn’t we say that it didn’t matter that Obama was ambivalent about attending the rally this week?) This Saudi right turn — combined with oil revenues used to build Wahhabi-inspired mosues, websites and madrassas across the Muslim world — has tilted the entire Sunni community to the right. Look at a picture of female graduates of Cairo University in 1950. Few are wearing veils. Look at them today. Many are wearing veils.” …But U.S. presidents never confront Saudi Arabia about this because of our oil addiction. As I’ve said, addicts never tell the truth to their pushers. The Saudi government opposes the jihadists.”
He has either the balls or the crushing stupidity to contradict himself in his own damn article! It’s not ambivalence that has the US not pushing the Saudis harder on radical Islamic groups, it’s the oil (ok he mentioned that) but also the strategic interests.
“In short, jihadist zeal is easy to condemn, (you mean like you do regularly?) but will require multiple revolutions to stem — revolutions that will require a lot of people in the Arab-Muslim world and West to shed their ambivalence and stop playing double games.” It’s almost as if a sort of Spring for the Arab world is needed. If only that hadn’t already happened in 2011 and failed to liberalize the Arab world in any meaningful way. Double games are how the Middle East has run since the end of the Cold War, Why? Because of individual strategic interests.
It’s a typical Tom Friedman solution: Everyone will just kind of spontaneosuly wake up and realize what is best for the world…and then do it. It’s something that would get a student kicked out of International relations 101 course…or, apparently, published in the NY Times Op-Ed Section.