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Jewish World Review Sept. 24, 2001/ 7 Tishrei, 5762

Jackie Mason & Raoul Felder

Jackie & Raul
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ALL OF US ARE THE ENEMY -- DURING the World War II, President Roosevelt's excuse for not bombing rail facilities connected with the concentration camps was that were he to, the American public might interpret the war as a "Jewish" war. Now, a half-century later, in some exercise of twisted logic there are the barely audible whisperings being bandied about that the bombings at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon are related to our special relationship with Israel.

This coupling of events is as ignorant and wrong-headed as was Roosevelt's reasoning.

Much overlooked is the fact that Germany declared war on us. The war against Germany into which we were forced was basically a continuation of a European civil war that did not end until 1994, with the collapse of Soviet influence in Europe.

Part of German national policy was the extermination of Jews (and, ultimately, Catholics, Free Masons, members of the Russian Orthodox church and gypsies as well), but this was not the reason the democracies went to war with Germany.

Given the world's history of anti-Semitism one can safely surmise that if this were the totality of Hitler's offensive behavior, America would have confined her belligerence to nasty diplomatic notes and letters to the editor. Historically, America has gone to a fully-committed war (at least at the times when it had a choice in the matter), only for geopolitical reasons --- not to protect any oppressed racial or ethnic group.

Although our relationship with Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East, cannot give pleasure to militant Muslims, the fact is, as far as Islamic fundamentalists are concerned, give or take Israel, it is America that is the Great Satan and Americans are simply considered as infidels.

If you are a militant Muslim, infidels are not people you invite to go bowling with you on a Saturday night. They are more likely the people you chop up and feed to the camels.

The militant Muslims' engagement with us is different from those which we have had with every other unfriendly society --- even the totalitarian regimes in Europe, Asia, and right off our shore, in Cuba. Cuban aircraft are not smashing into our buildings, nor are the Chinese high jacking our planes.

In our dealing with the Muslims after the World Trade Center bombings, we should not get involved in a tit-for-tat situation ---they bomb our buildings, we then retaliate by bombing theirs. This sort of thing will not dampen their spirit since, by engaging in this "that's-one-for-me-and- here's-one-for-you" we will have basically opened up a dialogue. A dialogue is not what's needed here.

To Muslims, bin Laden is the man of the year, but the year is 1453 when, in the last spasm of Muslim power, they captured Constantinople.

While the rest of the world looks ahead, Muslims look to the past. Unfortunately, this looking backwards does not reflect a nostalgic longing on their part but, rather, a religious goal.

Modernity itself is the enemy. It is a knife aimed at their traditional beliefs and customs. America is, in the Middle East, the purveyor of everything from Coca-Cola and rights of women to democracy itself, and is therefore the enemy.

Israel, whose very existence is certainly an irritant, is only a minor player in a drama played out between Western civilization and the world of Islam --- a situation that is more philosophically similar to the Crusades of the 15th Century than anything now happening in the Golan Heights.

The disconnect between Muslim violence and Israel's existence was demonstrated by the fact that when the Oslo Peace process was the flavor of the day, and the Israeli situation appeared to have been started on the road to resolution, Americans were still being attacked in their embassies. The unhappy truth is, wherever Islam militants are in control of an area or population, war has been raged against the less powerful, as witnessed by the persecutions of such diverse peoples as Coptic Christians, Catholics, Dinkas, and Hindustanis.

Jews make a business out of feeling guilty --- and this is one business where they don't buy "wholesale." Jews, if they have money feel guilty and look the other way when they see a person with less money coming down the street or they immediately start getting rid of their money by donating to charities. If they are healthy, they feel guilty. If they are too tall, they feel guilty. If they live in a better part of town, they feel guilty.

If a wife looks at a Jewish husband a little funny, he feels guilty about something he must have done but can't remember and he runs out and buys her a mink coat. Guilt is a way of life for Jews and so it is quite easy for Jews to immediately adopt such a posture when viewing Muslim violence.

Muslims are basically a primitive people. Primitive peoples are like children and respond in a Pavlovian manner. A delay in America's response to The World Trade Center attack would dilute its significance. The perpetrators have to understand that there is a direct, immediate connection with what they did and their punishment and not have a lot of dialogue and soul-searching in between the two events.

The destruction reigned upon them should be total to the point of obliteration. American intelligence sources (and apparently even the world media) knows the areas in which these terrorists train, live, hide, celebrate their crimes, etc. There would be civilian casualties, but the loss of these lives would squarely rest on the Muslims who began this cycle of violence against civilians.

The world would understand this, and of even more importance, the other Muslims who shelter these gangsters would also understand this.

JWR contributors Jackie Mason and Raoul Felder need no introduction. Comment on this column by clicking here.



© 2001, Jackie Mason & Raul Felder.