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Islam as fascism

Dear Editors,

Is it possible that by equating the doctrine and practice of Islam with the acts of a radicalized few we’re stereotyping? Not according to Daniel Pipes, of the Middle East Forum. Indeed, how many times have we heard Islam referred to as the religion of peace? So, is our fight against terrorism or against Islamic fascism, is Islam peaceful, or intrinsically fascist?

The answers couldn’t be clearer. Terrorism is not an enemy; it’s a tactic. Terrorist tactics have been adopted by groups as varied as Northern Ireland’s IRA, Colombia’s FARC, the Shining Path of Peru, West Germany’s Baader-Meinhof Gang, Italy’s Brigate Rosse, Spain’s Basque ETA, and our own Symbionese Liberation Army. Mostly separatists and leftists, none of these groups viewed terrorism as an end in itself, but as a means to another, political end.

Islam however is an ideology bent on territorial expansion and political domination. These traits, along with stern socioeconomic controls, are the essential characteristics of fascism. When this expansion requires violence, Islam turns to jihad, and within jihad, terrorism is an acceptable tactic. According to Pipes, “Islam is a political religion in a way that none other is … that suggests there is a dynamic of conquest ... There is something inherently expansionist about Islam. Jihad is expansionist warfare.”

Stephen Schwartz, of the Center for Islamic Pluralism, coined the term “Islamofascism” and compares it to other forms of fascism: “Islamofascism similarly pursues its aims through the willful, arbitrary and gratuitous disruption of global society, either by terrorist conspiracies or by violation of peace between states … These are not acts of protest, but calculated strategies for political advantage through undiluted violence … Fascism was totalitarian … that separated its followers from normal society. Islamofascism parallels fascism by imposing a strict division between Muslims and unbelievers.”

Islam was founded in the early 7th century. At that time, increased trade created unprecedented wealth, resulting in the rise of new urban centers that directly challenged traditional tribal structures and loyalties. These urban centers quickly came to represent different interests from the tribal communities, and a period of internecine conflict and social upheaval ensued. In this context Mohammed created Islam as an alternative with the oma, the community professing the exclusive divinity of Allah and Mohammed as Allah’s prophetic voice. In creating the oma, Mohammed forged an inextricable merger of politics and religion. There has never been a separation of church and state in Islam due to the nature of oma, which must not only be defended militarily, politically and economically—but also expanded. Mohammed’s efforts to reconstitute the basis of authority and organization in Arabia—from polytheism to a political monotheism, from cities and tribes to the oma—made Islam’s expansionism a certainty.

Like other forms of fascism, Islam’s expansionist impulse would involve violence, subjugation to the state, and conformity to the ideology of the system. Or as the Koran states: “Fight those who do not believe in Allah … what Allah and His Messenger have prohibited … the religion of truth … until they pay the tax in acknowledgment of superiority and they are in a state of subjection.” Al Bukhari records Mohammed saying: “I have been ordered to fight with the people till they say, ‘None has the right to be worshipped but Allah.’”

If this is what Islam is all about—fascist expansionism and totalitarianism—where do moderate Muslims come from? In short, they come from the same place that modern Christians and Jews come from, influenced by the ideas and ideals of the modern world. As Muslims integrated with the West, Islam experienced the same synthesis. Consequently, most modern Christians, Muslims, Jews have the same essential creed: The intrinsic equality of human beings, a basic commitment to man’s reason, the supremacy of the individual, and man’s innate goodness in the state of nature. Thus moderate Islam isn’t Islam at all; it’s an entirely different religion.

In the end, any realistic assessment of Islam must accept “fascism” as a term that is far more descriptive than pejorative.

“To articulate who the enemy is clearly and unambiguously is a huge step forward. You cannot diagnose and treat a disease without first identifying and (understanding) it … a strategist cannot defeat an enemy without first identifying it and naming it.” —Daniel Pipes.

“We should not be apologetic or defensive in defining the problems of terrorism.” — British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

– Kim Rogalin, Durango

Thanks for climate protection

Dear Editors,

On behalf of the Southwest Colorado Renewable Energy Society, Sustainability Alliance of Southwest Colorado, and more than 650 citizens of Durango and La Plata County who signed petitions, I thank the Durango City Council and the La Plata County commissioners for endorsing the Mayors Climate Protection Initiative.

Through their votes, our community has joined more than 330 others around the country – homes to more than 53 million Americans – pledging to take responsibility for our own contribution to the increase in heat-trapping gases that threaten the economic and physical health of communities and ecosystems around the world.

We look forward to the completion of an inventory of local emissions of heat-trapping gases and to working with the city and county to develop an action plan for reducing emissions in the coming years.

– Richard E. (Dick) White, Durango

The usual tree hugger mantra

Dear Eds, According to Poppy Harshman, Teddy Roosevelt’s decisions 100 years ago, “does not make those decisions correct for today.” I would remind Ms. Harshman that 18 months prior to signing off on Patented Mining Claims in La Plata Canyon, he signed the bill creating the U.S. Forest Service.

After checking several resources, I could not find a single instance where Ms. Harshman protested ongoing mining operations in La Plata Canyon. I’m referring to the Incas which is currently an ongoing gold mining operation and the Farmer Boy which was operated within the last 12 years. Too, even though La Plata Canyon is riddled with abandoned mining operations, it is the single most popular public land destination in La Plata County.

I spent over $3,000 for an Environmental Impact Statement on a 1,300-foot, two-track road across USFS land for a 10-year lease to access my inholdings. Because the La Plata River is subject to special water quality requirements, my federal lease was held up until the river crossing I use was inspected by state officials. There are stiff environmental standards in place in spite of Ms. Harshman’s rhetoric.

Ms. Harshman is lacking in knowledge on the subject of the 1872 Mining Law and spouts the usual tree hugger mantra, including misinformation. While Ms. Harshman goes on about damages and bonds, she still hasn’t addressed my question as to who will compensate owners of mining claims when their property rights are usurped by banning historical land use. Finally, I’m fast coming to the conclusion that the opposition to Wildcat Mining Corp. is based on festering neighborhood feuds rather than practical environmental reasons.

– Dennis Pierce, Durango

From one home to another

Dear Editors,

Habitat for Humanity of La Plata County is deeply grateful to the Homebuilders Association of Southwest Colorado for its generous donation of $7,500. These monies came directly from the proceeds of the group’s annual Parade of Homes, a popular event showcasing area homes to the public. We feel fortunate to be chosen as a recipient.

The Homebuilders Association works closely with us, often involving their membership in helping with the construction of Habitat homes. This year, the current building project on Florida Road was included in the Parade of Homes tour bringing increased exposure to the work that Habitat does toward bringing quality, affordable housing to La Plata County through the hard work of many hands. We at Habitat, along with the families who will be taking ownership of their homes very soon, thank the Homebuilders Association of Southwest Colorado for its part in making dreams come true by offering “a hand up, not a hand out.”

– Habitat for Humanity of La Plata County Board of Directors and Staff

In this week's issue...

July 21, 2022
Wildlife success or deal with the devil?

Land swap approved in Southwest Colorado, but not without detractors

July 21, 2022
Tapping out

The latest strategy to save the San Luis Valley's shrinking aquifer: paying farmers not to farm

July 14, 2022
Hey, good environmental news

Despite SCOTUS ruling, San Juan Generating Station plans to shut down