Let's Think Together
Here .... In your face
Published on June 24, 2007 By ThinkAloud In International
Few days ago the British Government honored Salman Rushdie, the West-Celebrated Islam-Bashing Indian writer by making him a Knight.

Now, if Rushdie was a great novelist or even close to that one would understand honoring him with such a venerated title. But given that his only achievement was that he wrote a novel in which he insulted Islam and its prophet in such a way that even the most anti-Islamists would not think of, it is only logical to ask: why was this writer honored in that way?

Not only that, it is more interesting that the media and the JU blogosphere ignored the incident as if nothing happened.

The whole western media got up in arms when Iran arranged for a conference to discuss the "Validity" of the Holocaust. Iran was not insulting Judaism. They were holding a conference to discuss the validity of a terrible crime. Regardless of who is right and who is wrong, which one is more of a free speech: to discuss the validity of a crime or to insult a whole religion?

If both are, then why was the outrage against Iran?

Even if Rushdie's writings were free speech, does it deserve an award? a Knighthood?

I don’t think any literary critic even suggested that Rushdie's writings are considered anything more than ordinary. So why was he honored by a Knighthood?

We, in the west, may choose to ignore the whole question, as we did. However, Muslims will not and they are not.

Looking at the whole thing from here, it seems that our ally in the war on terror is undermining our efforts by giving our enemies more ammunition to flame the masses instead of supporting the moderate Muslim-majority.

Things seem to be going in a direction that Muslim extremists claimed to be their "Battle Cry" and that is: The west is out to destroy Islam. Is that what we really want to convey, let alone confirm, to Muslims allover the world?

First, the Cartoons insulting their Prophet, then the Pope insulting their Prophet and their religion and now the UK honors a writer for doing the same.

In any war, one would assume that we would support and encourage the moderates amongst our enemy who oppose the actions of the fanatics in order to undermine our enemy's base. But we are doing exactly the opposite as if we are looking for trouble and for more enemies. If we are, we are doing a fantastic job.

Comments (Page 1)
on Jun 24, 2007
Not only that, it is more interesting that the media and the JU blogosphere ignored the incident as if nothing happened.


It was not ignored, ThinkAloud. Other bloggers wrote on it, and I made my comments. Just because you didn't catch the article doesn't mean it wasn't mentioned.

I didn't write on it because...I...don't...CARE! I did not read the Satanic Verses, don't care to either (I have a whole library full of books on my "to be read" list already). And you know what? If they hadn't called for Rushdie's execution, we probably wouldn't be having this conversation.

You seem to be validating the actions of the extremists who act against offenses against Islam. Odd that someone who enjoys the shield and shelter of free speech is so quick to remove it from other people (Rushdie) because it's offensive to some. Much of your writing is offensive to me, TA (as I would imagine much of mine is to you)...should it be banned? I should hope not. I would hope you would afford me the privilege of free speech even in disagreement, as I would you.

Does Rushdie deserve a knighthood? Not if I were king. But I'm not king, and it's not even my country, so I really don't have a say. But while he doesn't deserve a knighthood, IMEABO, neither does he deserve the villainization he receives by those who would justify the philosophical position of his enemies.
on Jun 24, 2007
The article is realy isightful. There should be a single standard to evaluate religious and community matters particularly when the matter is highly critical. A writer may place an objective view about a religion rather than impartial comments/denigration. Crowining such acts is not appreciated and therefore I uphold the view expressed in this article.
on Jun 24, 2007
A writer may place an objective view about a religion rather than impartial comments/denigration.


Yeah, free speech is bad! We should execute people for writing religious opinions!

(rolls eyes)
on Jun 24, 2007
I don’t think any literary critic even suggested that Rushdie's writings are considered anything more than ordinary. So why was he honored by a Knighthood?


Well he did win the Booker Prize, and also the "Booker of Bookers" (ie his award winning novel was judged to have been the best of all the award winners in the first 25 years of the award's existence). His Knighthood wasn't for the Satanic Verses, it was for his contributions to literature over his whole career.
on Jun 24, 2007
You seem to be validating the actions of the extremists who act against offenses against Islam. Odd that someone who enjoys the shield and shelter of free speech is so quick to remove it from other people (Rushdie) because it's offensive to some.


Is that what I said Gid? I didnt care either when he wrote his book and rejected the idea of threatening him, what i objected to is the UK honoring him. He, or anyone for that matter, can write whatever they want. evaluating that writing is what supposed to be objective and unbiased. But to honor such a writer who offends so many people while his writings do not merit the honors is what makes the UK action stupid imo.

I say the UK action is stupid not to validate the extremists' actions but because it gives them ammunitions and confirms what they are saying. Still, that doesnt mean it is true it just gives them a false proof of what they are saying. The masses wont recognize that it is a false proof specially if it is combined with other offensive actions against Islam.

btw, you are right, others wrote about that. Sorry i didnt see that and i didnt check , for that i apologize.
on Jun 24, 2007
his fame is the fault of those complaining about his fame, very much like the way 'Passion of the Christ' won notoriety when various Jewish groups decried it as anti-Semetic


Not true by any stretch of the imagination. The Book and the Movie were both a big hit when they were issued. the media made a big deal of both and they were discussed endlessly.

Your article suggests that if something bad happens because of it, we deserve it. You're free to think that way, and free to express it here. By the same token, I'm free to tell you I find your intellect lacking, and your sympathies misplaced.


your clouded understanding of what you read is really amazing. is that what i suggested? take a slow breath and read these two paragraphs. Here they are again:

Looking at the whole thing from here, it seems that our ally in the war on terror is undermining our efforts by giving our enemies more ammunition to flame the masses instead of supporting the moderate Muslim-majority

In any war, one would assume that we would support and encourage the moderates amongst our enemy who oppose the actions of the fanatics in order to undermine our enemy's base. But we are doing exactly the opposite as if we are looking for trouble and for more enemies

does that suggest what you say it does????????

and i am the one who is "intellectually lacking"? ok if you say so.
on Jun 24, 2007
How 'bout this? ALLAH AND ALL WHO WORSHIP HIM CAN KISS MY FAT ASS


That is truly great intellect. Someone should give you a "Foolhood" for that.
on Jun 24, 2007
Much of your writing is offensive to me, TA (as I would imagine much of mine is to you)...should it be banned? I should hope not. I would hope you would afford me the privilege of free speech even in disagreement, as I would you


we both may disagree on what we write, but i never felt that what you say offends me, i just disagree with you. I dont know what offended you (personally , that is) in what i wrote. But i can assure you it was never intentional to offend, even remotely, anyone. These are views on general issues and should not be taken personally. Taking general issues personally removes, in effect, the objectivity that i suppose is behind what we all write regarding those issues. personal writings are different of course.

Why in the world, you and LW, jumped to the conclusion that i objected to Rushdie's freedom to write what he wants? nothing in the post suggested that. The whole point was that in any war we should undermine the base of our enemy by denying them the support of their masses. to aggravate their people is not the way to do that, is it?. it doesnt matter what we think, what matters is what those masses think and we should deal with them accordingly. isnt that what Military PR in a war is all about?
on Jun 24, 2007
There should be a single standard to evaluate religious and community matters


That is my point , besides there should be some thinking behind the official "evaluation". Governments' actions are critical particularly in a time of war.

And thanks for the compliment.
on Jun 24, 2007
His Knighthood wasn't for the Satanic Verses, it was for his contributions to literature over his whole career.


And what are these contributions? .......
on Jun 25, 2007

Is that what I said Gid? I

YOu did not state taht, you did imply that.  I agree totally with what Gideon said.  Why are you not up in arms over Agnes of God?  It sure as hell slams Catholics.

How about the Passion of Christ?  Maybe because no one decided to call for a death fatwa because of these?  It does make you sound as either an appologist for extremist, or one suffering from selective amnesia.

Cartoons?  Give me a break!  What about Piss Christ or Dung Mary?  How many death sentences were passed for those, much more tangible examples of disrespect, than some cartoons.

on Jun 25, 2007
Why are you not up in arms over Agnes of God? It sure as hell slams Catholics.


How about the Passion of Christ?


I certainly got offended by these as well. other people's religion should be respected regardless of our own opinions. To insult and make fun of the Icons of others' beliefs is not something i condone at all. You can discuss and criticize any belief or religion in a respectful way. You dont have to be disagreeable to disagree.

YOu did not state taht, you did imply that.


He said that i seem to be validating the extremists actions. and that is in no way what i said or implied. what i said was we should not give our enemies ammunition to support the false claims of the terrorists.

on Jun 25, 2007

I certainly got offended by these as well. other people's religion should be respected regardless of our own opinions.

But then you get into "what" is offensive.  And if you get right down to it, what is offensive to you, is not to me, and vice versa.  Starting down that slippery slope undermines the basis of the freedom of speech, and one I will not go down.  I did not like Agnes of God either, but I showed my displeasure by refusing to patronize it.  As much as I find the movie offensive, I will defend their right to air it as it is an issue of free speech.  And once we start blocking things we dont like, there is no end until we get to newspeak.

He said that i seem to be validating the extremists actions. and that is in no way what i said or implied. what i said was we should not give our enemies ammunition to support the false claims of the terrorists.

You just validated it.  You are blaming the messenger for the actions of the deranged.  I say that there is no ammunition as that is an excuse for them to use.  Once they have made sure that we can no longer express our opinions, why bother calling us free?  Someone else is controlling our thoughts and actions.

Ammunition would be when a Palestinian blows up a bus full of civilians.  That is reason to kill them before they do so again - ammunition (justification) for an action.

Saying "I hate Jews" is not ammunition.  It is an excuse.

on Jun 25, 2007
You've suggested that ENGLAND, a soveriegn nation and our most faithful ally, has no right to honor authors they feel have made significant contributions to literature. That's even worse.


Did i say that England doesnt have that right? i said their action is not helping in the war of terror. Having the right to do something doesnt mean you use it even if it hurts your own cause. Is that difficult for you to understand?

Mr Rushdie would be an obscure little writer of little fame or notoriety had it not been for the original fatwa


the most prominent novelist of the late 20th century, both for his literary achievements and for the controversy surrounding them.


Does "Volume" counts as an achievement? your first opinion, and Gid's, was correct, now you say he is a great writer? how convenient. of course, controversy makes people famous. In a war, should we or our allies participate in that knowing that it would help our enemy? that is the point.
on Jun 25, 2007
And if you get right down to it, what is offensive to you, is not to me, and vice versa


That is true. but shouldnt we consider how our enemy think and use that to our advantage? they didnt blame rushdie's writings on us, but for us to honor him offends their people, the people we want to get on our side. it dosnt matter what we think of their position, what matters is for us to use our actions in a way to undermine our enemies specially if that action is merely not offend the people we want to be on our side. how is that detracting from our freedom of actions and speech? In a war shouldnt you move in a way that helps you? or just go anywhere just because you can?

You dont consider offending the people who could be on our side ammunition to our enemy, but i do. that is not validating our enemy's actions. These people either on our side or on our enemy's side. they are not neutral. if we dont get them our enemy will. should we help our enemy get them?