Saturday, August 25, 2007

The Al Qaeda Reader: Our Enemies in Their Own Words

Raymond Ibrahim has published a book of the writings and speeches of major Jihadist leaders like Osama Bin Laden and Aymin al Zawahiri, allowing them to "speak in their own voices." The book, The Al Qaeda Reader, offers little comfort to Western pacifists and appeasers, as the Jihadi leaders make it clear that their unrelenting attacks on Israel and the West derive from their religious beliefs, i.e. Islam, and not from any resolvable grievances.

At Victor Davis Hanson's site, Bruce Thornton writes a review of the book. Thornton says that the Jihadis have long recognized the West's Achilles heel "as the appeasing proclivities of its elite intellectuals who, riddled with self-loathing guilt, are incapable of defending their way of life and its highest goods."

Thornton describes the book this way:
The Al Qaeda Reader, simply by letting our enemies speak in their own voices, explodes the popular delusion that Western crimes and policies are responsible for the “distortion” of Islam that al Qaeda represents. As Ibrahim writes, “This volume of translations, taken as whole, prove once and for all that, despite the propaganda of Al Qaeda and its sympathizers, Radical Islam’s war with the West is not finite and limited to political grievances — real or imagined — but is existential, transcending time and space and deeply rooted in faith.” This means that the fight will be long and hard, that leaving Iraq or creating a Palestinian state will not buy peace, and that the side that accurately understands its enemy and has confidence in its own beliefs will ultimately triumph.

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