Sunday, August 31, 2003

The Shadow in the Corner

The truth is often disturbing but lies are immensely comforting. Today, the 'progressive' forces can rest assured that all their cherished beliefs are intact: the bombing of Iraq's Najaf shrine was America's fault. 

The UK Independent intones "Even Iraq's highest Shia authority, Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, who has tried to stay out of politics, spoke against the Americans for the first time. 'The Americans bear responsibility for the bombing and for security in Iraq,' he said."

Come to that, who else? The Egyptian government daily Al-Ahram headline declares "The U.S. is Behind the Najaf Bombing". "The popular demonstrations seen in the Iraqi streets following this criminal act were all in agreement that the occupation forces were responsible for this incident, as part of their effort to provoke conflict among the Shiites and between the Shiites and the Sunnis."

The Iranian MEHR News Agency disagrees. The Americans are innocent. The Jews did it, although perhaps that is no distinction. "traces of Mossad agents were found at the Najaf blast site where Ayatollah Seyed Mohammad Baqer al-Hakim, the leader of the Supreme Assembly for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SAIRI), and more than 80 others were martyred on Friday. The analyst, who requested anonymity, told the Mehr News Agency that Zionist intelligence agents have made great efforts to infiltrate Iraqi groups in order to thwart efforts to create national unity."

The American motive for perpetrating this outrage? Cannibalism. Everyone knows that Americans, as well as Jews, have a taste for hotdogs made from human flesh and matzoh made from Palestinian babies' blood. Egyptian columnist Fatma Abdallah Mahmoud, who occasionally writes for Egyptian government newspapers, pulled no punches. In an article titled "May the Cannibals be Cursed", he says:

"In every country trampled by the feet of the American military forces, we see ghastly pictures of the remains of innocent civilian victims: eyes gouged out, noses cut off, limbs intentionally amputated with the flesh that covered them stripped off. I implore you to look at the pictures of Uday and Qusay, Saddam Hussein's two sons, who were horribly mutilated."

"The fight against America will be continued, Allah willing, by the peoples waging Jihad against the original pirates and criminals [i.e. the Americans] – or, to be more precise, against the cannibals and the human corpse-disembowelers!!"

That is today's newspaper fare for sophisticated European intellectuals and Islamists the world over. If anyone objects that none of it is true, what of it? Should anyone complain that the actual perpetrators identified by the Iraqi police are Saudi Al-Qaeda agents rather than Jews, how is that relevant? It is comforting and convenient. It is as reassuring as the fantasy press releases that the Nazi and Japanese militarist governments churned out in the final days of the war. For the truth is disturbing in proportion to guilt. And that judgment is coming.