Suicide Technique in Islamic Warfare
The Glory of Islam
We have all heard of the soldier, who, to save his comrades-in-arms, falls on a live grenade, blowing himself up, but saving the platoon. It is something altogether different from driving a vehicle packed with explosives into a barracks, insuring one's own death, while taking with a number of enemy combatants. Or, an innocent-looking woman strapping on a hidden vest containing explosives to kill and maim passengers on a bus -- this, too, is an instance of the same, though there is a difference between targeting men and women in uniform and civilians taking public transportation. History shows, however, that military commanders have sometimes instructed soldiers to attack or hold their ground, heedless of the fact that it will guarantee their deaths. For example, Stalin ordered Russians not to retreat when they had nothing with which to fight the invading German Army. It is unusual, to say the least, to force enemies to merely expend bullets, but suicide attack has lately been perfected by Islamic militants. Hindsight shows that the Islamic have put suicidal actions to deadly use going back to at least the 15th century.
I think this is not just academic fluff, but relevant facts that might shed light on what happened in Brussels, and, not so long ago, in Paris. Many of the men and women who committed these outrages were eventually apprehended. Some escaped. But by and large, it was not essential that they survive. They were expendable. Their superiors could have cared less. True, they held important information. But my guess is that it was limited, and its telling not fatal to the machinery of churning out terrorist attacks, originating in the Middle East, and aimed at European sites. These last two were awful humiliations for the West and Western technology. European manpower, too, was thwarted. Only a few, rag-taggle youngsters brought about enormous destruction. Did they bring glory to Islam? To their minds, yes. To ours, no. Their deeds were hardly religious. They were, instead, pure lunacy. The perpetrators are like Kamikazes, only they do not destroy battleships. Instead, they mean to bring an end to human life on earth, except under their own conditions, the most dismal imaginable.
Wrong Place Right Time or Right Place Wrong Time?
This is something to contemplate. If the hostilities drag on it will become imperative to not only fight people bent on harming other people, but their ideologies and religious beliefs as well. You know what they say about war. The same as they say about love. We try to maintain the higher moral ground, but radical Islam is making genuine Islam more and more fair game, tempting us. If distorted conceptions of Allah and Mohammad are fueling the fires in which innocents are burnt, then by all means, let us call the sacred beliefs of our murderers into question. That is to say, if it ever comes to this, let us pour it on, and consign whatever our enemies hold close to their hearts to the flames of hell. It has happened before. The Islamic have taken Christian land and lives. During periods of relative peaceful coexistence, moreover, the former, in ruling positions, have also taken Christian noses and ears as well, according to clerical interpretations of Sharia. No, the young might be susceptible to the influences of radical Islam. But mature minds, unless already darkened by extremism, will resist to the bitter end.
In the battle for Constantinople (1453), Mehmet II first sent soldiers called irregulars, who were undisciplined. They had been assembled from several nations and ethnic backgrounds. They had no chance to succeed and were not meant to. Nevertheless, Mehmet forced Christians to exert themselves, fight, and, in most instances, kill their attackers. Inhabitants could neither rest nor relax, to put it mildly. My contention is that these actions exemplify the deployment of the deliberate, not accidental, technique of suicide in warfare. Perhaps Islam did not invent it, probably not, but it had and has no qualms about using it. Thus, although suicide bombings and deadly missions have unnerved the West for some time now, they should only be considered the beginning of a much broader assault in the making. I think I speak for almost everyone when I suggest that Brussels has become a pivotal point in the ongoing struggle against radical Islam. From here on, either it gradually triumphs, or we miraculously find a way to once again live in peace.
Mehmet II's Sword of Islamic Conquest
Guarding Against Radical Islamic Terror
Can We Realistically Defend Ourselves Against Terrorists?See results without voting
So Far, Trump is more Right than Wrong
I also share with the general public a sense of distrust for anyone, not just Trump, who mounts a podium, and speaks to literally millions of people. Years ago, I cannot remember the name of the movie, there was a parody of Fiorello LaGuardia, speaking differently to various crowds, depending upon who his listeners were, while running for mayor of NYC. Either there really was a nicer time, or moviemakers made nicer movies -- or both! Today, it is an onerous task to find the absolute middle opinion, acceptable to all American citizenship, so that one can actually speak out of one side of one's mouth. But when it comes to being skeptical of admitting more Muslims, no matter what the situation -- how dire, how justified -- who among us would want to take responsibility later if something should happen?
Again, I am also amazed that thus far Trump is the only credible candidate. So early in the race, I would rather there were not just a choice, singular, but choices, plural. We do not vote until November. By then, God willing, there will not have been another incident. For if this is not the case, a serious event will force the election of the toughest candidate available. There are other measurements and tests of presidential metal, as should be the case, but they will likely fall by the wayside. Survival comes first. It has not yet come to this, but it just might. If so, I believe America will rise to the occasion. It is not a bloodthirsty nation, but it will take the right course.
The Charge of the Light Brigade
A Lesson From the Crimean War
It is not often that a doomed military maneuver, in which so many riders rode in, not back, yet were immortalized by a Poet Laureate of Great Britain and Ireland, takes place. Such was the case on December 2, 1854. It was a terrible massacre, and fits, in retrospect, the definition of a suicidal order. Yet, books and movies suggest the fateful attack by the Light Brigade was largely due to a miscommunication. Still, England, along with her allies, eventually won the Crimean War. Incidentally, I am not a student of war. It is only that current events have driven me in such a direction. I have no background in war, nor any ambition to be part of one. But the punishments we take, if not physically, then psychologically, have made me more passionate about something I would greatly prefer to ignore. It is entirely possible that the much maligned George W. Bush administration went too far, but the pendulum swing to the other extreme, complete and utter stasis, has not fixed the problem. A happy medium? I do not think so. There is no happiness in either direction, only what works and what does not. It is also a shared matter of deep concern. Hence, though casualties are mounting in the free world, with battles lost that may not have been quickly enough perceived as such, it may yet triumph. There is still time.
The Charge of the Light Brigade by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
- The Charge of the Light Brigade by Alfred, Lord Tennyson : The Poetry Foundation
I / Half a league, half a league, / Half a league onward, / All in the valley of Death
ISIS after the USSR
Islam and Communism
It might seem as if the Islamic, only relatively recently freed from Communist oppression, especially in the Balkans, would have set their militant aims more on revenge than the conquest of new territory in the anti-Communist West. It appears that enough time has passed to heal the wounds, if there were any, caused by Communism's official ridicule of religion, any religion, including that of Islam. To the Communist elite, fasting, pilgrimages, and celebrations were only so much superstition. Democracies never adopted this attitude, yet they are under attack, while former atheists live without the same amount of fear. It is as though it were a contradiction, yet it is not, probably because now that terrorists can do pretty much as they please in Central Asia and Southeastern Europe, radical Islam has chosen the West and Western values to incarnate the Devil. It wants an enemy. Perhaps it needs an enemy, if only to assert itself on the world stage. Christianity, moreover, especially its Western strains, are softer targets. It has no longstanding enmity againt Islam, outside historical crusades, and thus is paralyzed with inertia when it comes to these initial clashes.
It is slow to get going. But changes will occur in accordance with the waves of unprovoked assaults. Religious wars are always a tangled mess. There are conscientious objectors who refuse to fight no matter what the damage. For the most part, however, as in World War II and after, Christian soldiers have reconciled religion with reality. As a general rule, it is never in anyone's best interest to kill. It is only when one's hand is forced that the battle is joined. There are books, too, that depict Islam as the new Communism. How this works requires burning the midnight oil. It is not readily apparent. Putin has been photographed inside churches. He crosses himself. Now, all of a sudden, religion matters. The whole business only gets murkier the more one realizes that we fight because we, too, are believers. We find ourselves under siege without a clear idea why. After all, we chose to talk to Iran, not annihilate it. At the moment, our military presence in Islamic lands is exceedingly limited. Our retaliatory drone and airstrikes will never bring them to total ruin. In other words, despite protestations, radical Islam irrationally resorts to terror. It is so habituated to terror that all rationality is absent. In fact, it would be in its best interest to cease and desist.
More by this Author
Foreign policy problems should take history into account. From 1923 to 2016, from Hitler to Baghdadi, shocking similarities serve as a warning.
These afterthoughts about the Balkans and surrounding areas, about which I only just wrote, come mostly from foreign magazine articles.
Southwestern history holds its own. This is merely a single chapter to consider, written by Henry J. Tobias.
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