Two topics have been preeminent in my thoughts this week: Islamophobia and Climate change. As with many of man’s problems, the solutions are quite clear, but likely unenforceable because of deeply entrenched vested interests.
I’ll take the easy one first!
Much has been made of widespread protests throughout the Muslim world, both in the Western media as well as those suppurating dens of iniquity, namely, Washington, Westminster, Tel Aviv and Brussels, with a slight nod of the head in the direction of Canberra (the capital of Australia for all you well informed graduate students out there). What’s it really about? A movie that exists only in trailer form? I think not!
The simple truth about Islam is not that it wishes to remain stuck in medieval times but that, because of constant meddling on the part of countless foreign powers over the past two centuries, it has never had the opportunity to evolve as has Christianity. Ah, I hear you say, what about the fundamentalist Christian sects, with their in your face insistence that you ‘come to Jesus or be damned’? What about the Book of Revelation fanatics and their desire to bring about Armageddon and the Rapture? Are they any different? No, they are not, but there is within the Christian orthodoxy a wide divergence of the interpretation of the Bible which provides a counterbalance to the more extreme proponents of its message. This does not exist within the Islamic world, because it has been and still is under the malevolent influence of the West.
Britain deserves much of the blame for the travails of the modern Muslim world and is still busy setting Muslim against Muslim today, though, to be honest, these days, in the capacity of principle supporter and coat holder to the Americans. One can, however, if one is quiet enough, still hear ‘Westminster’ whispering encouragements in the ear of this or that American President to keep prodding the ‘fuzzy wuzzies’. Space does not permit a full history of Britain’s nefarious undertakings in the Middle East, but some events are worth noting:
1) The British invasion of Afghanistan, December, 1838, the premise of which was: “in order to ensure the welfare of India, the British must have a trustworthy ally on India’s western frontier”. It was also to provide a bulwark against Russin influence. In that respect, the Cold War truly began in the nineteenth century! The British were roundly defeated by the Afghan tribesmen, though most of the soldiers killed in that skirmish were Indian. Naturally! Later, on November 12, 1893, Amir Abdul Rahman Khan of Afghanistan and Sir Mortimer Durand, the foreign secretary of the British Indian government both agreed and signed the Durand Line Treaty, setting up the border between Afghanistan and then British India/present-day Pakistan. The boundary was established in the Hindu Kush in 1893 running through the tribal lands between Afghanistan and British India, marking their respective spheres of influence and effectively cutting the Pashtun nation in half.
2) Britain’s involvement in Sudan, where they came up against a popular Arab uprising lead by the Mahdi.
3) The Balfour Declaration of 2 November 1917, which stated, “His Majesty’s government view with favor the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.” Palestine was a British Mandate carved out of the former Ottoman Empire, post WW I, at that time. To be fair, the British Government offered the Jews a homeland in British East Africa. The Jews, understandably, declined!
4) Another spoil of WW I was Iraq, where Britain found itself holding the bag, so to speak. Britain redrew the map of Iraq, jamming Kurds, Sunni and Shia together in an administrative abortion called Iraq. Iraq was tough to administer during that time. A million British troops were unable to quell the constant rebellion, even with chemical weapons. It might seem a little odd that the administration of George W. Bush would be ignorant of the religious and ethnic tensions present in that land, even under the iron rule of Washington’s man, Saddam Hussein. I’ll be charitable and put it down to Attention Deficit Disorder! Of course, after the Iraq war (the second one, that is), the moment Western troops left, the Iraqi government drew closer to Iran. But, that’s not the worst of it! During the build up to that war, sanctions imposed by Blair, Clinton and Bush Junior were the direct cause of the deaths of half a million Iraqi children, and the best that Madeleine Albright, Secretary of State in the Clinton administration, could come up with when asked about this appalling fact was, ‘that it was a price worth paying’. And the West is now applying those same sanctions to Iran. And, for what? Oil! Not to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. Oil! Think about that next time you fill up your gas tank.
5) Britain’s long involvement in Saudi Arabia, a nation rich in oil, ruled by a despotic royal family, who espouse an extremist form of Islam, Wahhabism, and having a significant Shia population who favor closer relations with Iran.
6) In Egypt, Britain’s involvement with the Muslim Brotherhood, see here, and here. The West is once again uneasy over the ascendency of the Muslim Brotherhood, in particular its clear intention to make Eqypt the leader of the Arab world (a desire it has always had) and its recently declared objective of overthrowing Abdullah bin Al-Hussein, the present King of Jordan.
7) Britain and America conspired to overthrow the democratically elected Prime Minister of Iran in 1953, with the intention of installing Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi as Shar (King) of Iran in order to gain Western dominance over Iran’s large oil reserves. The Shar was the first Arab leader to recognize Israel. And the list goes on!
We now have the British once more in Afghanistan, up to their tricks in Iraq and the Horn of Africa, and pushing for war against Iran.
Britain thrived, technologically and commercially once Henry VIII expelled the Church of Rome from the body politic and relegated religion to the role of instructor and social conscience. Over time, Europe followed suit. Now, imagine the Islamic world, freed of Western interference, freed of being ruled by Western puppets who govern by military force, whose weaponry is paid for by the West (foreign aid), who provide the people with no national identity other than through their religious connections, one with the other, and across national boundaries, so desperate for real leadership that they will embrace any charismatic leader, religious or not, who might step forward to resist Western tyranny. Do Muslims as a whole support terrorism? No! Is Islam itself a religion steeped in violence? Of course not! Terrorism gives justification for the West’s continued involvement in the Muslim world. That’s why Western governments fund so many terrorist groups: it’s good for business! I firmly believe that given the freedom to elect their own leaders and to follow their own path for growth that over time, we would see the reemergence of the real Middle East which gave us Mathematics, Astronomy and Legal Jurisprudence. The Islamic religion would still be a central part of Muslim life, but it would take on the role of instructor, guide and conscience – just like Christianity.
And, now to Climate Change. There’s not a lot to say, really. After all, do you, do any of you, intend to give up driving your truck to work, engaging in tractor pulls, mud racing, going to the mall, traveling by plane to the furthest reaches of the planet, running your A.C. at 70 degrees, rain or shine? Do any of you intend to give up eating non-seasonal produce, flown from the other side of the world? Will you ever stop purchasing stuff made in China, brought to your local Walmart by container ships and 18 wheelers? Will any of you protest the massive pollution caused by wars and the energy consumption required to power them? Will you insist the energy companies clean up their act, that gas drilling which causes earthquakes and pollution of the fresh water table (even the drying up of the Mississippi River, it’s been suggested) be more closely regulated? I doubt it! So, climate change and its effects on humans and the natural world is here to stay.
Oh, I know, people are talking about it. There’s Solar Power and Wind Turbines and Wave Power and all that awesome stuff, but it’s true impact on America’s C02 emissions is negligible. The Germans get it and have proven it can be done and done effectively, but in the Land of the Free, it’s nothing more than a socialist plot!
Don’t look to the politicians to fix this! They’re owned by Wall Street and the Energy Companies. Any solution offered by these intellectual midgets will be skewed to making them and their cronies even richer. Like a Carbon Tax for instance. It’s a scam, designed to sell carbon emission quotas to countries which do not currently produce such emissions in exchange for money so WE can keep spewing the stuff into the atmosphere with a clear conscience. It’s bullshit and it won’t work! Watch any TV program on the subject and you’ll hear the same old arguments: it’ll require a reset of our quality of life to a pre-industrial level. Yada! Yada! What they won’t tell you, other than in a throw away statement as the credits are rolling, is that humans have destroyed half of the world’s rainforests, mostly under the auspices of the IMF and World Bank, who hand out loans to impoverished governments in exchange for their planting vast forests of Pine Nuts, or Soya, or beef for hamburgers which further enrich Western Corporations and the banks who own the IMF and the World Bank.
Want to help fix climate change? It’s simple. Buy only what you need for yourself and your family. Teach your kids the old-fashioned concept of saving up for what they want. Grow your own food. Quit using credit! And, become an Eco-anarchist by planting trees, anywhere and everywhere. Trees consume CO2. I know this because, in Belize, the increased level of CO2 in the Earth’s atmosphere is making our rainforests and coconut palms grow at a tremendous rate. Belize has planted more than two million trees over the past decade. Mexico has planted one point two billion trees during that same period and is close to reducing its deforestation rate to zero. Even Guatemala has joined the club, working with Belize to plant aerial pathways for migrating animals. Trees are not difficult to propagate. They require no loans from the IMF and the World Bank to pay for them, and anyone can plant them – even children. The best part is: those crooks on Wall Street won’t make a penny from it, which is why they never mention it!