Home
In this issue
December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 7, 2005 / 5 Mar-Cheshvan, 5766

A war of values, not religion

By Jeff Jacoby

Jeff Jacoby
Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | The Prince of Wales was at the White House last week, hoping, the Daily Telegraph reported, ''to convince President Bush of the merits of Islam . . . because he thinks the United States has been too intolerant of the religion since Sept. 11, 2001." This is a drum Prince Charles has been beating for years. In 1993, for example, he scolded those in the West who peddled ''unthinking prejudices" about Muslim culture — for example, ''that sharia law of the Islamic world is cruel, barbaric, and unjust." Two months after 9/11, he was lambasting the American attitude toward Islam as ''too confrontational."

More to Charles's liking, presumably, would be something more conciliatory and politically correct. Something like this:

''The killers who take the lives of innocent men, women, and children are followers of a violent ideology very different from the religion of Islam. These extremists distort the idea of jihad into a call for terrorist murder against anyone who does not share their radical vision. . . . Many Muslim scholars have already publicly condemned terrorism, often citing chapter 5, verse 32 of the Koran, which states that killing an innocent human being is like killing all of humanity."

If that's the way Charles thinks Bush ought to speak about Islam, I have good news for him: It is. Those were Bush's words. He spoke them on Oct. 17 at the fifth annual White House ''iftaar" dinner during the Muslim month of Ramadan. He praised the ''countless acts of kindness" that followed the recent earthquake in Kashmir. ''For the first time in our nation's history," he said to applause, ''we have added the Koran to the White House library."

Too intolerant? Considering that America is at war with the forces of Islamofascism, and that for 25 years Americans have been attacked or killed by radical Muslim terrorists, the president's words about Islam were remarkably benign and uncritical.

As indeed they have been since 9/11, when he went out of his way to proclaim the peacefulness of Islam — sometimes in the company of Muslim leaders whose history has been far from peaceful.

Of course, it goes without saying that most Muslims are not terrorists. Of course many people professing Islam are compassionate and generous. Of course Islam should not be gratuitously insulted. But neither should it be sugar-coated or kowtowed to. Yet too many Western elites are unwilling to speak plainly about the problems within Islam itself, or to hold Muslim culture to what should be universal standards of decency and justice. Far from being ''too confrontational" in their attitude toward Islam, they have been too indulgent and deferential, careful never to say anything that might be deemed insensitive. One result has been an increase in extremist behavior: Witness the ''Eurofada" raging in the streets of Paris.

We do Muslims no favors by excusing attitudes or practices that ought always to be deemed inexcusable. In Australia's Victoria state, the Herald Sun reported recently, police have been issued a ''religious diversity handbook" that advises them ''to treat Muslim domestic violence cases differently out of respect for Islamic traditions and habits." The Australian Police Multicultural Advisory Bureau's handbook provides guidelines for modifying police procedures to accommodate minority sensibilities.

Sikhs, for example, ''should not be disturbed" when reading their holy scriptures, a practice that normally takes 50 hours. Photographing Aborigines is discouraged, since it might raise fears of ''sorcery and spiritual mischief." And Muslim wife-beaters should be treated with kid gloves, in deference to Islamic norms. ''In incidents such as domestic violence," the handbook instructs, ''police need to have an understanding of the traditions, ways of life, and habits of Muslims."

Could anything more perfectly capture the moral bankruptcy of multicultural relativism? The Koran may tolerate wife-beating (Sura 4:34: ''As for those from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them and send them to bed apart and beat them"), but why on earth should Australia?

''All Muslim husbands are not wife-beaters," remarks Robert Spencer, a scholar of Islam, ''and it is condescending and irresponsible . . . to give those who are a free pass, instead of denouncing the practice unequivocally and calling upon Muslim men to heed the better angels of their nature." In much the same way, he says, the West's unwillingness to ''confront the elements of Islam that jihad terrorists use to justify violence, for fear of offending moderate Muslims, " ends up undercutting the ability of those very moderates to demand reform from within.

The war against radical Islam is above all a war of values — the values of liberty, equality, and human dignity against the values of jihad. The jihadis don't hesitate to proclaim their values. We must not be shy about defending ours.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Jeff Jacoby is a Boston Globe columnist. Comment by clicking here.

Jeff Jacoby Archives

© 2005, Boston Globe

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles