Monday, February 05, 2007

Islam Tops List

I reported that communism was responsible for the deaths of 148 million people. Now Bill Warner of the Center for the Study of Political Islam says "Approximately 270 million nonbelievers died over the last 1400 years for the glory of political Islam." Hitler comes in third.


Blogger Allen Weingarten said...

I cannot agree with Bill Warner that “No dualistic system may be measured by one answer.” Duality and more specifically ‘dichotomy’ is handled by showing the role of both components. Thus, there is Yin/ Yang, mind/ body, wave/ particle, subjective/objective, theory/practice, etc. To deal with these matters statistically, would be to say that the Holocaust did occur 90%, and did not occur 10%, or as Warner writes “the statistical answer is that jihad is 97% war and 3% inner struggle. Is jihad war? Yes—97%. Is jihad inner struggle? Yes—3%.”

It is one thing to say that “Islamic logic is dualistic; two things can contradict each other and both are true” and another to say that *our reasoning* should be that “A single right answer does not exist…Both sides of the duality are right.”

I hold with Objectivism that there is a single correct answer (which is not to insist that we possess it). Western logic acknowledges that a process is comprised of the components of a dichotomy, and does not handle such matters statistically.

With regard to Islam, at issue is not conflicting statements (often made for political objectives) but its vision and method. The vision is that of Dar al Islam, and the method is spreading that faith by the sword. The fact that it also operates by non-lethal means is no more a contradiction than is a murderer who also deals with people without killing them. I would not say that because a murder spends 90% of his endeavors (shopping, car pooling, bowling,…) without killing people that he is 10% murderer, and 90% peaceful.

2/5/07, 9:40 AM  
Blogger Always On Watch said...

270 million? Lord!

"Political Islam"? Is there any other kind?

2/5/07, 9:52 AM  
Blogger Jason Pappas said...

Weingarten is right. A person who spent one hour of his life committing a murder is a murderer -- not a partial murderer. Islam is indeed an imperialist ideology of conquest and subjugation. That fact that some Muslims ignore (or lie about) the dominant aspect of Mohammad’s example doesn’t change the fact. Islam is a foundation for a totalitarian warrior ideology. The writer’s addition of the modifier ‘political’ is redundant as AOW points out.

OK, Ducky, if you disagree with 270 million, what’s your figure? Shall we divide it by a factor of two to be conservative? Or are you anti-anti-Islam just as you are anti-anti-communism?

2/5/07, 11:18 AM  
Blogger Jason Pappas said...

I wasn’t aware of the legend about cutting the hands of the masons who built the Taj, but Salmon Rushie was. What difference does this minor anecdotal story make to the lives of the 270 million who where slaughtered (and their families?)

Now I’m willing to consider the 270 million an inflated number on the grounds that warriors tend to exaggerate their prowess. Unlike most religions, Islam tends to boast about its violent conquests which they always blame on the victim. But give me another number!

2/5/07, 11:35 AM  
Blogger Jason Pappas said...

I’ve actually faulted other religions … Weingarten and I are going back and forth on the history of Christianity in this post.

However, Islam is quite unique in that it is a central component of the doctrine and purpose of Islam. Islam readily underwrites, sanctions, and fuels aggressive acts and atrocities. I have some qualms with religion in general but Islam is in a class by itself. It’s a warrior religion founded by a political and military leader who slaughtered, plundered, conquered, and oppressed. With Islam the problem is congenital – it is part of the birth of the religion. Can Islam be Islam without this element?

2/5/07, 11:43 AM  
Blogger Jason Pappas said...

I admit I’d leave out minor stories of that nature just to avoid having the credibility issue hinge on unimportant details. But the problem is that we are trying to understand history when we often have little to deal with except mythology or hagiography.

If I remember correctly it was the British 200-300 years ago that helped to re-establish Indian history. I don’t quite remember the details but often information came from Persian and Mogul documents. Thus, some ‘boasting’ may well be part of the history. The vanquished can no longer speak.

I once asked a Professor of East Asian studies (Japan mostly) if he had any references to the Hindus slaughtered by Islam (said to total 80 million.) He only responded that the 80 million was Hindutva propaganda. But he gave me no references or alternative numbers. This suggested that the whole issue is highly politically charged, which I gather from talking to many Indian-Americans. The ‘happy past’ may be PC mythology in an effort to create a multi-cultural state. I’d like to know more. Mythology seems to trump genuine history in this area.

2/5/07, 1:15 PM  
Blogger (((Thought Criminal))) said...

There are significant Hindu records and historical scholarship that suggest that the Taj Mahal was a temple of Shiva before Muslims descrated it and converted it to a mausoleum. Muslim records tell of making "repairs" to the Taj Mahal, but are rather sketchy on actually building it.

Conquering other people's holy sites and making them their own is the Muslim modus operandi, so I believe the origins of the Taj Mahal to be debatable.

2/5/07, 6:24 PM  
Blogger Always On Watch said...

Islam codifies the murder of infidels. I believe that Islam is unique in that application of theological law in the 21st Century. They are stuck in their tribal, desert mentality.

2/6/07, 6:52 PM  
Blogger Cubed © said...

I have been awake for the last 36 hours, so I'm not really crisp right now. I hope I'm right when I see Weingarten say that he holds with Objectivism that there is a single correct answer (I agree that just because there is one does not mean that we yet know it).

Since I am not crisp, I will present for your amusement the following (it goes way back so it's pretty old and you may already have seen it - it's not too far off topic, since percentages have been mentioned!):

"If you settle for 99.9% in quality, you get:

1) One hour per month unsafe drinking water.

2) Two unsafe landings pe day at O'Hare.

3) 16,000 pieces of lost mail per hour.

4) 20,000 wrong prescriptions per year.

5) 500 inorrect surgial procedures per week.

6) 50 newborns per day dropped by the doctor.

7) 22,000 checks deducted from the wrong account per hour.

8) 32,000 'missed heartbeats' per person per year."

I'm outta here!

2/7/07, 3:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In your count of most bloody institutions in the human history you should mention christianity somewhere in your list as well...

Between all the crusades, burning of heretics, witch hunting and wars inspired by different christian sects there would be over 200 million deaths during last 2000 years as well.

There were quite a few bloody atrocities humans inflicted on themselves, you should mention also the Mongol invasions and related Chinese wars (about 100 million victims over 500 years) or annihilation of American Indians (another 20 million casualties).

Some summary and casualties estimates in history worst atrocities is available here

It is true that Islam is spreading their faith by sword, but they are not unique in that respect -- the same is true about other religions as well.

2/28/07, 3:36 AM  
Blogger Jason Pappas said...

That’s an interesting website with a wealth of information – or more exactly – a large number of claims. Let’s consider one: annihilation of 20 million American Indians. One needs to separate the deaths due to disease from deliberate killing by non-Indians. In the later one has to separate defense from offense. The above 20 million, of course, is a guess but one of the references listed is someone whose work I respect. Here’s the quote:

“R.J. Rummel estimates that 13,778,000 American Indians died of democide in the 16th through 19th Centuries:

* Total dead among native Americans in colonial era: 49.5M out of pre-contact population of 55M
* Democides in this: 5M
* Democides among Indians, post-colonial era: 8,763,000
* Democides in US: 15,000”

I'd like to see the details on Christianity and Islam, as well. But even without the details, I can agree with the main point.

I agree that the record of death and oppression by Christians has been high over the centuries. How religion fits into the picture is important but it’s worth keeping in mind the similarities as well as the differences with other religions. It may, at first, seem odd that a religion centered on an essentially pacifist prophet should leave such a bloody historical record. However, when reason ceases to be the common coin of human intercourse, force prevails.

From Aquinas to the Enlightenment, the rebirth of reason and respect for its importance in individual human lives, brought Western Civilization (especially in the Anlgo-sphere) to achieve a broad-based respect for individual rights. Islam has been unable to make this transformation and has greater hurtles to surmount on the road to modernity. It isn’t only dogmatic and illiberal, but it is essentially an imperialist warrior ideology in origin. I’ve talked about it here.

One other point: Islam doesn’t “spread the faith by the sword” but spreads the domain of its domination. As a supremacist ideology it is most concerned to rule over others than covert others to Islam.

2/28/07, 11:17 AM  

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