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      Op-Ed: The World is Upside Down

      Published: Wednesday, October 03, 2012 6:07 PM
      Curb criticism of Islam's violence as it leads to violence by Islamists? Say that again?


      The world is upside down, so dangerously upside down that we run the risk to see it falling on our heads.

      The United States Congress was just notified by the White House to get prepared and put its hand on its pocket: the US will provide new Egypt of Mohammed Morsi with $450 million in emergency aid.

      We need to consider that this pledge follows up a meeting that Hillary Clinton had with Morsi on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly. The State Secretary had then reaffirmed the commitment to donate one and a half billion dollars that Obama had promised the revolutionary government.


      Obama seems to live on another planet.
      But Texas representative Kay Granger,(that’s the power of democracy), chair of the appropriations subcommittee for foreign operations temporarily blocked the cash infusion, stating that she was not convinced of the urgent need considered that we are as she put it “at a point when the US-Egypt relationship has never been under more scrutiny”.

      But Obama seems to live on another planet. It is not by coincidence that he stated that the murder of his Ambassador to Libya Chris Steven was perpetrated by a small and savage group, whereas investigations are now proving, as everybody but the US administration had realized, that Al Qaeda had planned the attack in details, relying on the particularly favorable post-revolution environment.

      Meanwhile the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of 57 Islamic countries of OIC, after condemning the movie clip on Mohammed that triggered the frenzied reaction that caused dead and wounded, among them the Ambassador,-  instead of trying to stem the situation, stirred it up by attempting to control public opinion in the West.

      The document they came up with suggests in fact that you can basically only write or say what they approve of. OIC, which calls for “laws against incitement to religious hatred”, claims that “freedom of expression should be exercised with responsibility”. They called on us to “take all appropriate measures, including necessary legislation against these acts that lead to violence against Muslims as well as denigration of their religion” because "these Islamophobic acts stand in violation of the freedom of religion and belief”.

      That’s what they demand, at the same time as Islamic propaganda is loaded with all possible stereotypes Jews and Christians; as they apply frenzied and murderous violence against worshippers of other faiths or even to their own folks, deemed accomplice to their enemy; as attacks on Western embassies are launched, as Christians, during the Sunday mass, as well as Jews any time and all over the map, are assaulted.

      Obama unsuccessfully tried to ban the harmful movie clip from Google (let it be clear: the film presents shallow intellectual as well as expressive qualities, nowhere near the ones that Christians and Jews adopt when criticizing themselves), he apologized frenetically, while, on the same apologetic line, intellectuals and journalists all over the world criticized the Charlie Ebdo’s cartoons.

      It is a choice politically reflected in the attempt to seduce Morsi by giving him - without conditions - whatever he wants. Egypt’s president was slow and cautions in condemning the attacks on the embassies, whereas the website of his Muslim Brotherhood praised the avenged offended honor of Islam. At the UN he had the same tone as a religious preacher, same ambiguity, he displayed no sign of modernist flair.

      But Obama has always believed the right way to conquer the Islamic world is by admitting one’s guilt. Bush was wrong in thinking that dictators were the cause of anti-Western, anti-American hatred. Obama thinks it’s his fault, not the results of the islamic culture itself.

      Egypt has lately generated two preachings: then first by Yussuf Karadawi, the leader cleric of the Muslim Brotherhood (speaking from Qatar) asking that US and Europe block the freedom of expression concerning Islam, like OIC; the second by the head of Salafists Ahmed Fuad Ashush, calling  on young Muslims in the US and Europe to kill the offenders, so that “all those monkeys and pigs will understand”.

      No representative of the Egyptian leadership condemns violence, no one is willing to start a dialogue.

      Obama’s decision to infuse aid to Muslim Brotherhood’s Egypt can hardly be understood. Particularly at the very same time when the affair of the movie clip turned into a powerful tool of intimidation and pressure to curb freedom of expression, our most important democratic cultural treasure.