November 18, 2016

"Surprisingly, some Iraqis seem less offended by Mr. Trump’s comments linking terrorism to Islam than American liberals."

That's the grudging observation in paragraph 5 of this NYT article, and look where it goes from there:
Iraqis have endured years of Islam being used to justify mass killing, and some see Mr. Trump as a truth-teller in calling out Islam — or a certain brand of it — as the problem.

Iraqi Shiites, in particular, say they believe Mr. Trump will take a harder line on Saudi Arabia, the regional Sunni power that many see as the incubator of the extreme form of Islam, known as Wahhabism, that forms a basis of the Islamic State’s ideology.

“The victory of Trump is the beginning of the end of extremist Islam and Wahhabism,” said Mouwafak al-Rubaie, an Iraqi lawmaker and the country’s former national security adviser.

In Mr. Trump’s vow to defeat terrorism many Iraqis say they have hope that decisive American power will be marshaled to eradicate the Islamic State, the extremist group also known as ISIS, which has occupied parts of Iraq and Syria for the past two years.

“We have no concerns about the policy of Trump because he is against extremism,” said Saad al-Hadithi, the spokesman for Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi. “We think we are facing one enemy, and that is fighting ISIS. Therefore, I do not think there are fears or concerns about a new American policy.”
ADDED: "Surprisingly..." — actually, why is this surprising to the NYT? 

61 comments:

chickelit said...

Iraqi Shiites, in particular, say they believe Mr. Trump will take a harder line on Saudi Arabia, the regional Sunni power that many see as the incubator of the extreme form of Islam, known as Wahhabism, that forms a basis of the Islamic State’s ideology.

This is precisely what irks the Bush family, to a man.

mccullough said...

The NYT is often surprised. The Shiites don't like the Sunnis, particularly the Salafists and Wahhabists. Most Iraqis, like most Iranians, are Shiites. But only 10% of Muslims worldwide are Shiites.

Over the last 40 years, Saudi Arabia has created the biggest threat to the US. They've exported their vile Wahhabism throughou Muslim countries and among Muslims in non Muslim countries. They need to answer for this

James Pawlak said...


After all, Islam is NOT a religion, but a criminal-terrorist ideology with a very thin veneer of pseudo-religion---Like the KKK and the Nazi's neo-paganism.

Bay Area Guy said...

The NY Times is surprised that folks in the real world like Trump, you say? What a surprise.

Administrator said...


Ummm....Because it pops their little bubble of artificial reality?

khesanh0802 said...

I am with McCullough. Saudi Arabia needs to be pulled up by its short hairs. You have to be willfully blind not to understand that Wahhabism is a leading cause, if not the leading cause, of the development of radical Islam. Energy dependence for the US will be a big help in relieving us of the Saudis. If we could find a way to set the Iranians and Saudis to fighting each other it would be another Iraq/Iran where we could wish they both lose.

khesanh0802 said...

As to the NYT: Thank you once again, Ann, for reading it so I won't have to.

Luke Lea said...

Islam, if you take it seriously, demands submission and prescribes death for apostates. You can see why people living in an Islamic state might, like people in the old Soviet Union, secretly wish it would just disappear.

Sebastian said...

""Surprisingly..." — actually, why is this surprising to the NYT?" Actually, why is this a question?

Terry said...

The problem with Saudi Arabia is that the Saud dynasty is hopelessly linked to Wahabism. For centuries, the Saudi's fortunes have risen when they sponsored the Wahabis, and fallen when they did not. There is usually one high up royal with a foot in both camps.
The NY Times covers Christianity as though it were a religion. It covers Islam as though it were an ethnicity.

n.n said...

Islam is a universal religion coupled with a left-wing ideology and an aggressive mandate. Still, offering the benefit of the doubt to another Westerner, suggests that they have not normalized [class] diversity, and that should earn them some credit. Perhaps we can close the wound that was reopened and allowed to fester under the current administration.

Drago said...

VOX headline tomorrow: "Actually, Iraqis know less about Islam and the effects of Islamic jihad than effete, caucasian writers at Vox; Here's 10 reasons why:"

tcrosse said...

Do-Gooders have a way of being offended on behalf of others, who may or may not be offended themselves. It's what my Dad used to call Borrowing Trouble.

khesanh0802 said...

Ann, you question the use of "surprisingly" and rightfully so. The NYT has lost it's ability to identify words that are editorial in nature and those that are factual in nature. Would it have been that difficult to headline the column "Some Iraqis, etc.? Pinch Sulzberger has a long way to go on his new promise to report news as news not opinion.

buwaya puti said...

Because all of this is a propaganda frame to use for the purpose of US politics.
The rest of the world might as well not exist, realities are irrelevant to propaganda.
Thats why the interesting stuff is in par 5 (and its surprising its even there) and why the best journalists in the Middle East are independents that dont publish in the MSM.

JPS said...

Interesting, and like others I find this not all that surprising.

I was thinking about the Afghans I got to know - people who'd taken their lives in their hands to stand with us - and what they would think about this proposition: That many Muslims are fine people, but a small yet crucially significant fraction are willing to commit murder on behalf of their interpretation of Islam; and that it's very hard to know who you're talking to unless you know them well.

I haven't discussed Trump with them. I think if they ever got past the certainty that he's hostile to them and theirs, they'd say: "You're telling me this?" They've lived it, and some had to flee for their lives after helping us.

Hagar said...

The Shia state of Iran and the Wahhabis, etc., both are enemies to all not of their own.

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

Next week: scholarly article evincing surprise that effete white persons are more offended than the average black person by rappers' use of the term "nigga" in reference to melanin endowed low lifes.

Hagar said...

President Trump and his administration is going to have an interesting time sorting this mess out and dvising a rational (from a U.S. point of view) foreign policy that they can explain to us in words we can understand.

rhhardin said...

Italians don't love the mafia, for the same reason. You just don't want to be the one speaking up about it.

rhhardin said...

Easy policy: no immigrants from Muslim majority nations.

Big Mike said...

I guess the Times is surprised that most real people don't think the way the writers at the Times think they're supposed to think.

Unknown said...

Heh. The nytimes world just continues to crumble around them. They are despised because they are lying hacks, they have lost all of their brand credibility and are hemmoragging money and customers. "Oh Nytimes you are sinking? Here's a brick".

Michael K said...

"Pinch Sulzberger" is a 60s hippie who inherited an asset he has no idea how to run. Maybe he should ask Jared Kushner.

Rhythm and Balls said...

ADDED: "Surprisingly..." — actually, why is this surprising to the NYT?

Probably because they're used to dealing with Christianists like much of the authorship and commentariat here who presume to get offended any time anything critical is said of religion.

Muslim secularism, atheism and communism was actually pretty in vogue decades ago. But America's political elite have always put Christianity and usually religion in general in an off-limits perimeter. As they might as well have done. Most of our rights can be defended without resorting to an attack on a Christianity that was defanged long ago by our British heirs. Save for our friends who deny evolution, believe a fertilized egg has a soul in it, or that a certain promise made after the Great Flood means that there is no relationship between atmosphere and climate - no matter how much humans do to change the former.

clint said...

"Iraqi Shiites, in particular, say they believe Mr. Trump will take a harder line on Saudi Arabia, the regional Sunni power that many see as the incubator of the extreme form of Islam, known as Wahhabism, that forms a basis of the Islamic State’s ideology."

That right there is what's wrong. Is there anything remotely controversial about that claim? The Saudi government spends millions funding Wahhabi schools all around the globe. And yet the New York Times can't even report that basic fact without weaseling it into an opinion they might not share.

tim maguire said...

When does the soul enter the body R&B?

Rhythm and Balls said...

Re: soul enter.. - Probably not before the prerequisites for sentient interaction w/the environment. Consciousness itself is a still a bit of a mystery. But I'd at least be willing to take a pro-lifer at face value in good faith if they admitted that the capacity for feeling pleasure or pain are a more reasonable starting consideration.

Those processes require nerve cells. Which don't even start until sometime after neurulation completes - around day 24. But as for a brain that can actually do those things? I'm not sure. Unlike death - or the vegetative states that can substitute for clinical "death", it's a more gradual thing. We probably won't get a definite answer soon. And some "reactions" will just be reflexes. A brain that can perceive pain in the conscious way that ethical animals comprehend? Who knows when that happens.

narciso said...

seriously, the attack on Christianity, was pivotal in 'fundamentally transforming' this country, it is the m.o of the attack on the family and the church, through the media and the educational establishment

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
n.n said...

When does the soul enter the body

Ensoulment is a matter of faith. While consciousness is assumed, asserted to be correlated with neural activity, the distinction between origin and expression cannot be determined in the scientific domain. Some religions reconcile moral, natural, and personal imperatives and err on the side of human life, while others avoid the hard questions and choose what is personally or politically convenient. What can be observed and reproduced in the scientific domain is that human life evolves (i.e. chaotic process) from conception until a natural, accidental, or elective death (i.e. progressive loss of coherence).

Rhythm and Balls said...

seriously, the attack on Christianity, was pivotal in 'fundamentally transforming' this country,

It was fundamental in founding this country. If Henry Tudor hadn't broken with the church (which was the definition of "Christianity") then his daughter Elizabeth wouldn't have developed the power to defeat the Spanish Armada. And you'd all be speaking Mexican about now. Ponder that.

It was also the growth of British commerce in the 17th and 18th c. Made possible by a civil war fueled by the further power struggles (and even a regicide!) that was paved by, you guessed it, the original devolution of power back to the British monarch from the imperial church.

Rhythm and Balls said...

When does the soul enter the body..

First off, a "body" requires something known as a "body plan" - which an embryo doesn't yet have.

Second, to determine what a soul does and where it goes, you first have to prove that a soul exists.

In the absence of any evidence for a soul, we make do by reverting to the proxy that inspired it - human consciousness, sentience and empathetic connection with those things in others.

Find out when a fetus develops those things and then you're on your way to developing an ethical, morally defensible answer - and not just a cheap "shout-out" to His Holiness Pope Francis.

exiledonmainstreet said...

We probably won't get a definite answer soon. And some "reactions" will just be reflexes. A brain that can perceive pain in the conscious way that ethical animals comprehend? Who knows when that happens."

Since we can't say with any certainty, wouldn't it be a good idea to err on the side of caution then? Most European countries have a 12 week limit. Cyprus, at 28 weeks, is the big outlier:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/6235557.stm

Yet the 20 week limit in Texas was considered outrageous and reactionary by feminists here.

Terry said...

Where does this 'soul' go if you are under deep anaesthetic, R&B? Where is the consciousness of a comatose patient?
They don't have consciousness, but they have potential consciousness. That doesn't make them things instead of persons.
It's always the marginal cases that are declared lebensunwertes leben.

Joe said...

Obama was right that there was a distinction between ISIS and ISIL, but wrong in not understanding that ISIL took over ISIS. ISIS was supported by al qaeda in Iraq. ISIL was started much more recently as an offshoot of ISIS in Syria. ISIL then consumed ISIS. This new ISIL/ISIS is so extreme, even former [traditional] ISIS officials want nothing to do with them.

The point about Saudi Arabia being a major source of these problems cannot be overstated. As oil money dries up over there, it's going to get worse for the simple reason that the Saudi elite is scared shitless of their people. That said, if there is an uprising in Saudi Arabia, which side do you back? Hell if I know. Probably none.

retail lawyer said...

It requires, among other things, a really soft life to be a liberal. Thats why you never find liberalism outside of North America and Europe.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Since we can't say with any certainty, wouldn't it be a good idea to err on the side of caution then?

No. Because doing so leads to deaths.

Here are the U.S. stats on abortion by gestational age.

And here are the common reasons for why that miniscule percentage still exist, and can't be prevented.

But they are still just a minority of a minority. Over 70% of 420 American women who aborted after week 16 cited lack of available healthcare, partner or parental agreement or even knowing that they were pregnant. Which sound like good reasons to stop cutting the availability of reproductive health services to these women.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Where does this 'soul' go if you are under deep anaesthetic, R&B?

That's as dumb a question as asking where my arm's ability to move goes when it's in a plaster cast.

You never fail to disappoint, Terry.

narciso said...

shia know about the ikwan raiders which twice ravaged southern Iraq, once in 1807, then in the 1920s, after the brits redeployed from there, young captain bagott glubb wrote about in 'war in the desert'

narciso said...

well if you've seen 'the kingdom' that film by peter berg, one would say the people, or more specifically the tribes that comprise the ikwan

Chris Lopes said...

"Surprisingly"
They keep using that word. I don't think it means what they think it means.

narciso said...

by that I mean, they would be worse than the current anezi-sub tribe that comprise the sauds, the Christopher reich novel 'devil's banker' made me aware of this,

walter said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
walter said...

Apparently many Iraqis have a better command of the English language than the journ-o-lists at the (new and improved!) NYT.

narciso said...

No the Catholic Church is not the definition of Christianity, I'm speaking of the founding principles, which allow for social justice, but insist on a strong moral code,

buwaya puti said...

The works of JB Glubb are all long out of print unfortunately, and none seem to be available in Kindle. There are used editions of his numerous works on Amazon though.
"War in the Desert" is indeed very worthwhile and gives lots of perspective on the recent ME situation - the Ikhwan/Wahabbi vs Shia et al business, i.e., this is nothing new and they are all a pack of horrible bastards, by a fellow who actually rather liked them.
His other works are also useful, "A Soldier with the Arabs", etc.

narciso said...

probably true, but the brits in their short time, there favored the sunni, the first prime minister post occupation was the elder Rashid Ghailani, if that name sounds familiar, he was the Nazi puppet, imposed in 1941, in the interim period, the Golden Square, like the Baath, proceeded to disenfranchise, the shia and kurd majority, taking their concessions in the north and south, driving them out of the professions,

A to the C said...

"It was also the growth of British commerce in the 17th and 18th c. Made possible by a civil war fueled by the further power struggles (and even a regicide!)that was paved by, you guessed it, Frank Stallone."

FIFY

Terry said...

Blogger Rhythm and Balls said...
Where does this 'soul' go if you are under deep anaesthetic, R&B?

That's as dumb a question as asking where my arm's ability to move goes when it's in a plaster cast.

You never fail to disappoint, Terry.

11/18/16, 8:20 PM

So it is your idea that a brain produces consciousness the way an arm produces movement?

Achilles said...

Please stop trying to have a rational discussion about abortion. The edges of my paradigm are sliding.

If the federal government just said this is a state issue like it should because the tenth amendment is crystal fucking clear we could have more rational discussions on this topic. Roe vs. wade has to be the worst decision ever written by a court.

Matthew Sablan said...

"ADDED: "Surprisingly..." — actually, why is this surprising to the NYT?"

-- Because they are not very smart people.

Doug said...

Achilles said, "Roe vs. wade has to be the worst decision ever written by a court."
Amen, amen, amen, and the president who has the courage to nominate justices who will overturn it will go down in history for saving and protecting the values of a great nation.

jaydub said...

R&B at 7:51 - "And you'd all be speaking Mexican about now. Ponder that."

Or maybe Austrian.

Rhythm and Balls said...

No the Catholic Church is not the definition of Christianity, I'm speaking of the founding principles, which allow for social justice, but insist on a strong moral code,

Not for long. With a universalist message aimed at superceding the state religion of the Roman empire, it quickly became the new empire's religion in the West. And the Byzantine empire's religion in the East. Christianity might now be claimed by "small government" Evangelicals, Protestants, etc. But that was a development that took at least a thousand years. Messages aimed at uniting people in a common theme (of salvation, or whatever) tend to be appropriated by unifying projects - and the empires of the day had great need of unifying all the people they ruled.

Micha Elyi said...

"Most of our rights can be defended without resorting to an attack on... Christianity..."--Rhythm and Balls

I disagree. Your rights are only recognized because American culture is Christian in origin. Do away with Christianity and you will eventually be watching all respect for your rights go away too.

You can see a similar process already underway in the empirical materialist sciences (what you probably call 'science' as if there's only one science). Christians, mostly the Catholic ones, invented them. Now as the West slouches into a post-Christian era we see more careless science, fraudulent science, political agenda-serving 'science', and outright rejection of science by cultural relativists.

Richard said...

It's remarkable how scarce Wahhabism is mentioned by the NYT and it ducklings. They blink the fact that it is the Reformation of Islam, to suppress the thought that what is needed is a Counter-Reformation. Tamping the exposure of of Wahhabism have been the blithe Christians — Protestants and Catholics. And, the Big Lie that Islam is kin to Judaism and Christianity, as so-called "Abrahamic Faiths." When it is twisted in its promotion of jihad and murder for "Allah." If "God Is Dead," why isn't Allah dead?

Jack Sherman said...

To paraphrase WFB 'Liberals are open minded until they find out other opinions exist'

Bob Loblaw said...

actually, why is this surprising to the NYT?

Reality is surprising to he NYT.

Gahrie said...

Roe vs. wade has to be the worst decision ever written by a court.

It is certainly the most absurd. The worst? Dred Scott was worse. But Roe is definitely in the top 5.

Rhythm and Balls said...

I disagree. Your rights are only recognized because American culture is Christian in origin. Do away with Christianity and you will eventually be watching all respect for your rights go away too.

You can see a similar process already underway in the empirical materialist sciences (what you probably call 'science' as if there's only one science). Christians, mostly the Catholic ones, invented them.


This is the dumbest bit of bullshit I've ever read. Not worth responding to, as you have no evidence for it - and even go so far as to attack science.

For the other readers, or anyone who cares, there's a reason why Protestant countries devolved rights back to the people sooner than countries to the South that flirted as often as they did with fascism. Trial by jury was Roman - and Greek before that, payment of damages instead of blood feud - an ancient Germanic custom. The ten commandments and a rejection of earthly authority was not invented by Catholics. You are just pulling things out of your ass.