Good News from the Front

I wrote in my book Lessons From Fallen Civilizations,
For over a millennium, since the time when Muhammad’s seventh-century successors first rode out of the Arabian Peninsula; Islam waged constant war against the unbelievers and taken lands for Allah. By 1500, the Sunni branch of Islam, administered by the Ottomans, ruled lands from Syria and Iraq, across the Magreb (North Africa) to the Atlantic. And on the European mainland, it ruled all of Greece and the Balkans.

By 1529, the Ottomans began their first siege of the imperial Christian capital of Vienna and were not successful in taking the city. They lost that battle because the Sultan, Selim “the Grim,” was temporarily distracted from his conquest of Europe, feeling obliged to wage wars against his Islamic rivals both in Egypt and in Persia. Selim’s armies fought Persia to a stalemate. They were victorious against the Mamluks of Egypt, incorporating within the Turkish Empire the citadels of Mecca and Medina.

From 1500 onward “The Ottomans and the Persians continued to fight each other until the19th century. During the 180 years leading up to the battle of Vienna in 1683, various and successive Persian Shahs and ambassadors made overtures to the monarchs in the West—the Pope, the Dodge of Venice, the Holy Roman Emperor, and the Queen of England—seeking an alliance with them and against the Ottomans, but to no avail. The Western powers were too busy fighting wars among themselves. Fortunately for us moderns living in the West now, the Sunni Ottomans and the Shiite Persians were also at war with one another and not united in the conquest of Europe…

No_MubarakTwo years ago our neophyte president made what seemed to many of us a disastrous decision to support the overthrow Mubarak, a man who held autocratic control of Egypt, Islam’s most populous state, a man who was our ally, who had his price but could be counted on to keep the peace with Israel. In so doing, Mubarak had been an ally who could be counted on to keep the match from igniting the powder keg that is the Middle East.

Now that Obama has helped to bring to power in Egypt a man of the Muslim Brotherhood who is on the record as referring to Jews as “descendants of apes and pigs” and who cannot be depended upon to keep the peace with Israel, Lee Smith, at the Weekly Standard, writes, “The good news regarding Egypt is brief but noteworthy.” He reports in Egypt Against Itself – A society on the edge of chaos, there are multitudinous factions inside the country killing one another. Examples abound. In a macabre event, soccer fans from Port Said ambushed fans of the Cairo team, killing 74 people. When an Egyptian court handed out 21 death sentences to the 73 people accused, including police officers, riots ensued leaving 39 dead. Violence spread. In Cairo protesters fought with security forces and armed gangs who stormed hotels firing automatic weapons at tourists.

Desperately needed tourism revenues have evaporated. Egypt’s technocrats have all left the country or are in jail accused of corruption. Iranian president, Ahmadinejad, on a state visit to Egypt last week promised to extend a line of credit. But due to EU and American sanctions, Iran’s currency has declined even more that Egypt’s. Iran cannot provide desperately needed food stocks to Egypt because it also needs to support food prices in order to keep unrest at bay. Egypt now doesn’t even produce enough food to feed its people.

Last week, General Farrah al-Sisi, Egypt’s Defense Minister, told our outgoing Secretary of Defense, Leon Panetta, that Egypt would abide by the peace treaty with Israel. But he added, “…the struggle between political forces may lead to the collapse of the state.”

While Obama seems frozen in his support for Morsi, more clear-thinking politicians in the Congress such as Senator Rand Paul are attempting to block the sale of tanks and F-16’s to the failing state of Egypt.

In Smith’s analysis, contrary to the opinion of western academics who believed that the Muslim Brotherhood based in Egypt would leverage its legendary grassroots support into a Muslim ascendency that might even signal the reestablishment of a new supranational caliphate. This is not happening. And this is good news for the West. As Smith puts it, “Under Morsi’s stewardship, the Muslim Brotherhood model has shown to produce poverty, hunger, instability and violent internal conflict.”

Over the past half millennium, for the West, it has always been beneficial when Islam was at war with itself. While Muslims are killing one another, their anti-western war-making resources are limited and they are distracted from launching the next state-sponsored attack on Vienna or New York City.

By | 2017-02-28T07:31:12-08:00 February 18th, 2013|blogroll|Comments Off on Good News from the Front

About the Author:

Larry Kelley’s life was utterly changed by 9/11. On the day after the attacks, on his way to work, he was struck by the sudden realization that World War III had commenced. Like most Americans he desperately wanted to find out who were these people who attacked us, what could ordinary citizens do to join the battle and how can those plotting to kill us in future attacks be defeated. Mr. Kelley has written scores of columns on the dangers of western complacency.