The Global War On You Know Who

"The West is facing a concerted effort by Islamic jihadists, the motives and goals of whom are largely ignored by the Western media, to destroy the West and bring it forcibly into the Islamic world -- and to commit violence to that end even while their overall goal remains out of reach. That effort goes under the general rubric of jihad."
-- Robert Spencer

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Iran's Continued Psyops

When he's not dismissing the Holocaust as a myth, Ahmadinejad accepts its truth -- and prepares Europeans to blame themselves when he "wipes Israel off the map."
In a new attack on the existence of Israel, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has challenged Europe to take back the Jews who emigrated to Israel, adding that no Jews would remain in Israel if Europe were to open its doors.

Ahmadinejad delivered the challenge after arriving in Syria for a two-day visit on Thursday. Addressing Europe, he asked: "Would you open the doors of your own countries to these (Jewish) immigrants so that they could travel to any part of Europe they chose?"

"Would you offer the necessary guarantees that you would provide for their security when they came to your countries and not allow another anti-Semitic wave in Europe?" he added in an apparent reference to recent attacks on Jewish cemeteries and properties in European states.

He said Europe should welcome Jewish people to prove its sincerity in supporting people's freedoms. He added he was confident that no Jews would remain in Israel if European countries allowed them to immigrate.
The MMs seem to have an even clearer grasp of the West's achilles heel than Saddam: suggest to them that everything bad in the world is their fault, and the half that believes it will scream and howl and cripple the half who sees it for the propaganda it is. Besides tapping into Europe's impotent guilt over the Holocaust, European foreign policy has been sacrificing Israel for three decades now -- so there's just enough truth to it to scramble the minds of people with no sense of right and wrong. It's frankly a brilliant strategy.

Victor Davis Hanson puts it much more eloquently:
[Ahmadinejad] has studied the recent Western postmodern mind, nursed on its holy trinity of multiculturalism, moral equivalence and relativism. As a third-world populist, [he] expects that his own fascism will escape scrutiny if he just recites enough the past sins of the West. He also understands victimology. So he also knows that to destroy the Israelis, he -- not they -- must become the victim, and the Europeans the ones who forced his hand. Ahmadinejad also grasps that there are millions of highly educated but cynical Westerners who see nothing much exceptional about their own culture. So if democratic America has nuclear weapons, why not theocratic Iran? Moreover, he knows how Western relativism works. So who is to say what are "facts" or what is "true" -- given the tendency of the powerful to "construct" their own narratives and call the result "history."
So what's the West's brilliant counter-strategy? Finding a way to impose sanctions without depriving ordinary Iranians of oranges and bananas.
As Western governments debate how to punish Iran for its nuclear activities, Bush administration and European officials said Thursday that they wanted to avoid causing hardship or more anti-Western resentment in the Iranian public.
Fair enough. Something like 70% of Iranians like the U.S.
Iran's leverage over the West because of its oil exports and trade agreements are a fact of life that American and European officials said made sanctions in that area impractical. But these officials also argue the importance of not alienating Iranians who might support the West, causing them to rally around their leaders.

"A heavy-handed sanctions approach is going to hurt an awful lot of Iranians that we don't want to alienate," said a State Department official who is working on the issue. "We're going to have to be more surgical."

President Bush and Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany discussed the need for "smart sanctions" in a meeting last week, according to a German diplomatic official, with Mrs. Merkel in particular pushing for care in not angering the Iranian public.

. . . In their discussions last week, Mrs. Merkel gave Mr. Bush a personal example of how such sanctions affected her fellow East Germans during the Communist years, the German diplomatic official said Thursday. She recalled that she and other Germans sympathetic to the West had no problem with Western actions that punished Communist leaders but that "if we ran out of oranges or bananas, then we didn't like it."

. . . "The focus on smart sanctions makes sense because they work the best," said Patrick Clawson, deputy director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. "Big economic sanctions would not only be difficult to get, but Iran has vast foreign reserves from its oil revenues, so they can ride out what gets thrown at them."
Just to keep things in perspective, we could end the nuclear threat tomorrow. It's strictly a question of will.


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