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Thursday, August 12, 2010

The anti-Semitic Economist

The Economist is notoriously anti-Israel. Now they prove that - like so many other anti-Israel critics - they are also anti-Semites. For if they were not anti-Semites, they could not have done this:
[Sayyid] Qutb was hanged in 1966 by the Egyptian government of Gamal Abdel Nasser after the customary torture. He had been the intellectual leader of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood and a man of copious literary output. One of his efforts was called "Our Struggle with the Jews." It is a work of unabashed, breathtakingly stupid anti-Semitism, one of the reasons the New York Review of Books recently characterized Qutb's views "as extreme as Hitler's." About all this, the Economist is oddly, ominously and unforgivably silent.

This is both puzzling and troublesome. After all, it's not as if Qutb was some minor figure. He is, as a secondary headline on the Economist review says, "the father of Islamic fundamentalism," and it is impossible to read anything about him that does not attest to his immense contemporary importance. Nor was Qutb's anti-Semitism some sort of juvenile madness, expressed in the hormonal certainty of youth and later recanted as both certainty and hairline receded. It was, instead, the creation of his middle age and was published in the early 1950s. In other words, his essay is a post-Holocaust work, written in full knowledge of what anti-Semitism had just accomplished. The mass murder of Europe's Jews didn't give him the slightest pause. Qutb was undaunted.

But so, apparently, are some others who write about him. In his recent and well-received book, "The Arabs," Eugene Rogan of Oxford University gives Qutb his due "as one of the most influential Islamic reformers of the [20th] century" but does not mention his anti-Semitism or, for that matter, his raging hatred of America. Like the Sept. 11 terrorists, Qutb spent some time in America -- Greeley, Colo.; Washington, D.C.; and Palo Alto, Calif. -- learning to loathe Americans. He was particularly revolted by its overly sexualized women. Imagine if he had been to New York!

The Economist's review is stunning in its omission. Can it be that a mere 65 years after the fires of Auschwitz were banked, anti-Semitism has been relegated to a trivial, personal matter, like a preference for blondes -- something not worth mentioning? Yet, Qutb is not like Richard Wagner, whose anti-Semitism was repellent but did not in the least affect his music. Qutb's Jew-hatred was not incidental to his work. While not quite central, it has nevertheless proved important, having been adopted along with his other ideas by Hamas. Qutb blames Jews for almost everything: "atheistic materialism," "animalistic sexuality," "the destruction of the family" and, of course, an incessant war against Islam itself.
Read the whole thing. Richard Cohen seems to be awakening to reality.


At 12:58 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

The West and its elites are in denial about Islam. They may wake up - when its almost too late.

What could go wrong indeed

At 4:26 PM, Blogger R-MEW Editors said...


This has little to do with denial and much to do with economics. The Economist is simply taking its cue from Rogan who is a lecturer in Oriental Studies at Oxford, an institution that has been the recipient of hundreds of millions of dollars from the Saudis and other Islamic sources. By systematically and massively investing in the West's higher education system, these sources are successfully revising and Arabizing history.


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