“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Islam Just Fine With Islamists. Ask the Turks.

Happy Islamist, Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan.

One of the enduring myths and beliefs of the Bush Administration is that the Islamist movement is a representation of a militant minority and given the democratic choice of free elections, a new modernist model will appear and revolutionize the Muslim world. Well the Turks just voted and it appears they are just fine with the Islamists. Imagine that, Muslims are just fine being Muslims.

Ruling party retains power in Turkey with landslide

Gulf News Report
Published: July 23, 2007, 00:13

Dubai: Turkey's ruling AK Party captured 48.1 per cent of the vote in a national election yesterday after two thirds of votes had been counted, CNN Turk television reported.

Two other parties crossed the country's high national threshold of 10 per cent to enter parliament.

The centre-left Republican People's Party (CHP) won 19.4 per cent and the far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) took 14.7 per cent, said the private broadcaster quoting partial returns.

"It is clear that we will be in power alone and that Turkey's stability will continue," a senior official of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, Salih Kapusuz, told Reuters.

Seventeen people were hurt yesterday in poll-related violence in Turkey as the country held legislative elections, pitting the Islamist-rooted government against the secular opposition.

Voting mandatory

Opinion polls show the Islamist-rooted AK Party winning a fresh five-year mandate but strong gains by the nationalist and secularist opposition parties could slash its majority and result in slower economic and political reforms.

"Our democracy will emerge from this election strengthened," Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said as he and his wife Emine cast ballots in Uskudar constituency in Istanbul.

Many Turks postponed their holidays or returned home early to vote. Voting is compulsory in Turkey.


  1. Certainly no ground swell of secularism growing in the mussulman world.

    The secularists are consistently handed their hats in free elections.

    The same fellows that denied US access to a northern invasion route, through Turkey to Baghdad, reelected.

    The Palistinians, voted for Hamas, not for 20th century Socialists.

    In Iran, Abracadbra.

    In Pakistan, the Government does not allow free elections, maintaining a military despotism. If there were free and fair elections, who knows what the outcome could be. The General President plays US against our fears of Islamic gains, to the point we support the despot, rather than the democrats. Though the secularists, even a woman, has won in Pakistan in the past.

    In Pakistan the secularists are not permitted to particpate in free andd fair elections, based upon fear of the Islamists, that are supported by the Army.

    If the Pakistani Supreme Court rules that the General President cannot run again, in a fixed election, ah well ...

    There goes the neighborhood.

    In Eygpt, the concept of free and fair elections is not even discussed, as the Muslim Brotherhood could well win.
    Or so goes the spin.

    But the shining example of democracy at work in the mussulman world, that would have to be Iraq. Iraq, where the Supreme Ayatollah Sistani and the Shia Imams control the government through elected proxies. Elected in a process that was designed and approved by US.
    A process we are now not at all happy with. The democraticly elected Iraqi choosing to persue their own priorities, not ours.

    Those dirty dogs, how dare they not do the things we demand. But what did we expect, an ally in the War on Terror?
    A war the Prime Minister of our premier democratic ally, the United Kingdom, says does not exist.

    In both Afghanistan and Iraq the US established Islamic Republics, so hermanos mio, Islam is not the enemy, oh no, just the evil doers.

    The purple fingered Islamists are our friends and even allies.

    Because, as we all know, Islam is the Religion of Peace, or as President Bush said:

    "Islam is a faith that brings comfort to people. It inspires them to lead lives based on honesty, and justice, and compassion."

    Who could rightfully disagree?

  2. The last series of EB posts and comments have inspired a post about the rise of Islamic fundamentalism and the decline of Christianity in the west.

    Deuce's keen eye for the story and DR's astute observations dovetail with exactly what I am seeing but by the time all the EB chimes in, my post may be redundant in which case, no big deal, the post isn't groundbreaking anyway.

  3. It remains to be seen if the mandate will quickly dissolve the air of crisis that has enveloped Turkey in recent months.

    The possible threat of a coup, deadlock between government and opposition over a new head of state, pressure for a military invasion of northern Iraq to crack down on Turkish Kurdish guerrillas sheltering there, poor relations with the US over Iraq, and near-paralysis in Turkey's efforts to negotiate membership of the EU - all these are issues piling up in the in-tray.

    The multiple challenges have produced an outpouring of extreme nationalism, resulting in the parliamentary presence of the MHP, widely viewed as neo-fascist, with a paramilitary wing. Its leader campaigned with a hangman's noose, his preferred solution to the Kurdish insurgency in the south-east.

    Historic Landslide

  4. "But the shining example of democracy at work in the mussulman world, that would have to be Iraq. Iraq, where the Supreme Ayatollah Sistani and the Shia Imams control the government through elected proxies."

    And that proxy government is itself thoroughly infiltrated.

    My dad helped conduct a 1970 Pentagon study of North Vietnamese infiltration of official, quasi-official, and sensitive South Vietnamese positions by agents (operatives to sympathizers). The number, leaked along with the study itself to the Times, was estimated to be 30,000.

    Pat Lang last year put the number of such Iranian agents working in Iraq at 30 - 50,000. A lot of sharp incredulity there was. Thing is, apparently, Pat's in the ballpark. These aren't direct action guys (the small number the admin likes to focus on) but pushers and pullers.

    And God knows, you don't just undo a problem like that.

  5. Sounds like not enough war and too much occupation.

  6. Repost:

    Michael Smith:
    Bush promised to retaliate and destroy the terrorists. But what kind of retaliation did we inflict?

    Bush’s first act was to began an immediate campaign of appeasement by praising the enemy’s ideology. Bush hailed Islam as a “great religion” and invited prominent Muslim clerics to break the fast of Ramadan at the White House.

    We declared that this great religion had been hijacked by a tiny minority who were misrepresenting the “true meaning” of Islam. We declared that we accepted the claim that the vast majority of Muslims simply want to live in peaceful coexistence with the rest of the world.

    We properly named our initial military action, “Operation Infinite Justice”, but that was quickly dropped because we agreed with the Muslim claim that “only Allah can dispense justice”, thereby legitimizing the notion that religious claims take precedence over our own decisions.

    We declared the entire population of the middle east off limits to attack. Thus, the millions that openly celebrated the 9/11 slaughter, the vast collection of Islamic authority figures and imams who for decades had been praying for such destruction on American soil, all of these people were declared off-limits and immediately granted safety.

    We agreed that we, the United States, would bear the moral responsibility for any civilian deaths that might occur during our retaliation -- when in fact, and in justice, such moral responsibility must rest with the aggressors that make the retaliation necessary. Here we handed the terrorists a great victory, a victory they could never have achieved on their own: We granted them the right to use human shields -- the right to hide in and among the hordes of Muslims that populate the middle east -- the right to hide safe and secure from our military forces.
    Then, out of all the nations known to be complicit in supporting terrorism, including the king of all state supporters, Iran, a nation that is racing to acquire a nuclear weapon to make good on the “Death to America” chant spoken by huge crowds of Iranians at government rallies -- out of all the nations, including Saudi Arabia, who is funding the wahabists and establishing madrassas all over the mid-east to spread Islamic propaganda -- out of all these potential targets we chose to go after the absolute pipsqueak of them all: Afghanistan and the Taliban.

    Furthermore, we chose not to attack this pipsqueak directly and with all the weapons we have at our disposal. Instead we used only a tiny fraction of our power and fought through local warlords, who were allowed to make whatever deals they wanted to with the Taliban and Al Qaeda, deals to allow them to slip over the border into Pakistan and escape the few forces we had in country.

    We didn’t even dare to drop bombs without also dropping food and medical supplies at the same time, supplies some of which doubtless ended up in enemy hands.

  7. Having turned against a war that some of them supported, the left is now turning against the troops they claim still to support. They sense that history is progressing away from them--that these soldiers, fighting courageously in a just cause, could still win the war, that they are proud of their service, and that they will be future leaders of this country.

    They are not "Shock Troops." They are our best and bravest, fighting for all of us against a brutal enemy in a difficult and frustrating war.

    They are the 9/11 generation. The left slanders them.

    Don't Support

  8. Out of all the nations mentioned here, the only two that possibly don't have Islamic majorities are Iran and Pakistan!
    ...but in 5 years this admin has not figured out a way to free the people from their oppressive governments.

    Maybe that's a good thing!
    (since everything they meddle with ends up in a hopeless muddle)

    Bush should have run on being a Compassionate Warrior.
    Warfare with a "New Tone" tm

  9. I think it's too early to say RIP to Christianity in Europe. I know the figures on church going and so forth are miserable, but I think there may be more to the story than that. They went through a heck of a lot in the twentieth century. Maybe they are just 'taking a breather' right now. They know what doesn't work--all those 'isms'--give them some time. Material-'ism'--doesn't satisfy either. I wouldn't count Christianity down and out in Europe, just yet.

  10. It is hard to take, listening to Bush blab about 'the religion of peace'.
    But, he is the President of the United
    States, and we have relations with all the countries. If he said, Islam is insane, and a murderous cult, which is the truth, it would be a kind of declaration of war, and we seem to be not quite there yet.
    The day is coming however, is what I think will happen. A grown up human being, in all seriousness, could not subscribe to pure non-sense, which is what it is.

  11. My wife surprised me today. She was reading the Sunday paper. "Bob, if that bitch(yes, she used that word) Hillary gets elected, I'm moving to Canada, to Vancouver."

    Good grief, my domestic arrangements are dependent on the outcome of an election.

    I fear she means it. Last week I sent to Boise for a copy of my birth certificate. Just looking ahead.

    But really, I'm not leaving America, land of my birth, over a bitch like Hillary.

  12. "My dad helped conduct a 1970 Pentagon study of North Vietnamese infiltration of official, quasi-official, and sensitive South Vietnamese positions by agents (operatives to sympathizers). The number, leaked along with the study itself to the Times, was estimated to be 30,000."

    That's where the, since demonized, Pheonix Program came in.