Bill Bennett on the Lessons from Mumbai
The world, I hope, is still reeling from what true religious fanatics are and do, like we saw in India last week. Yesterday, Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg and his wife, Rivka, were buried in Israel. We are focusing on these two victims not only because they were Americans and Israelis but because their assassinations give to terrorism (which has been so far off the public conscience) a local habitation and a name, they reveal its true horridness.
The NYT reports on what Shimon Peres, Israel's president, said at the funeral yesterday:
"'For several days now, the whole world has had to answer the question of a small child, Moshe, who is asking, Where is my mother?" Mr. Peres said in his eulogy. "The world must answer why a wonderful woman like Rivka was killed, why a holy man like Gavriel was killed and why Moshe is left an orphan. We will not rest and we will not relax until an answer is found."
"In his eulogy, Rabbi Moshe Kotlarsky, the chairman of Chabad's education arm, said of the orphaned boy: 'You will be the child of the entire nation of Israel. You are an emissary, and an emissary you shall remain.'"
In a sense, we do know the answer already. It had nothing to do with Kashmir. It had nothing to do with India-Pakistan relations. It had nothing to do with troops in Iraq or anything the Pope might have said. It had, instead, everything to do with a noxious ideology instilled in too many Muslim youth. It had everything to do with a teaching system that offers lies about the world and the west and the rest of the religions that exist in the world other than Islam. It had to do with a philosophy that elevates death and denigrates life. It had to do with hatred and not love; and with war and not peace as an organizing principle of human affairs. And, I cannot help to think it also has to do with a hatred of happiness and success in other faiths and political principles (like Judaism, Christianity and Democracy) that does not exist, that simply does not exist in, say, a worldview frozen in centuries past and unadopted to the modern age. The distinction between a rational worldview and an irrational one could not be more stark.
And finally, as Dennis Prager put it so well in a recent column: "For the Islamists, as for the Nazis, the destruction of the Jews — and since 1948, the Jewish state — is central to their worldview. If anyone has a better explanation for why Pakistani terrorists, preoccupied with destabilizing India, would expend so much effort at finding the one Jewish center in a country that is essentially devoid of Jews, I would like to hear it. With all the Pakistani Islamists hatred of Hindus, they did not attack one Hindu temple in Indias major city."
Adolf Hitler may have been one of the modern world's first martyrs, eating his own gun as he realized he could not scorch the earth any longer. But his ideology lives on in too many places in the Middle East and in the Madrassahs of Pakistan. Anyone wanting to know why we sometimes refer to this ideology of Islamo-fascism now knows why.