September 28, 2004

Left-wing Fascism Watch (Updated)

I thought about fisking Arundhati Roy's comments in her latest interview at Outlook India. But what's the point? She is self-evidently an unhinged crazy person who managed to turn left-wing pablum into outright fascism. Her books are prominently displayed at the bookstore down the street from my house. Pardon me for finding that creepy.

Here's a taste from her latest. And there's plenty more where this came from.

Personally I’m not prepared to pick up arms now. But maybe I can afford not to, at whatever place I am in now. I think violence really marginalizes and brutalizes women. It depoliticizes things. It’s undemocratic in so many ways. But at the same time, when you look at the massive amount of violence that America is perpetrating in Iraq, I don’t know that I’m in a position to tell Iraqis that you must fight a pristine, feminist, democratic, secular, non-violent war. I can’t say. I just feel that that resistance in Iraq is our battle too and we have to support it. And we can’t be looking for pristine struggles in which to invest our purity.
The fact that she wishes the likes of Al Qaeda's Abu Musab al-Zarqawi is even remotely capable in any alternate universe of fighting a "pristine, feminist, democratic, secular" war is mind-boggling enough. What's even more astonishing is that a person who supposedly believes in the values of feminism, secularism, and democracy can get a warm fuzzy feeling by cheerleading Islamofascists who would cut off her own infidel head and dump her body into a ditch. And hasn't she ever bothered to notice that the Iraqis who are democratic, secular, and feminist are pro-American?

Ugh. Fisking her point by point is a waste of my time. Her books sell well in my neighborhood, though, so I can't let this pass without some kind of comment.

Hat tip: Marc Cooper.

UPDATE: On reflection this reminds of me an essay Nelson Ascher wrote a few weeks ago about people like Roy. It really stuck with me. Read the whole thing, but here's the pertinent part:

They think they have outgrown and discarded religion. They don’t think of themselves as religious, but rather as post-religious people. But they are not. And I’m not talking here about their attachment to what are sometimes called “secular religions” (communism, Nazism etc.). What I’m saying is that they, though unaware of this, are still, in a certain way, conventionally religious. Actually, they’ve discarded only half of religion, its theology, but kept more or less intact the other half, its demonology. The demonology of the secular Left and that of radical Islam, despite many terminological differences, coincide, if just for the time being. The leftists do not believe in God, but they doubtlessly believe in the Devil or Devils and their Devils happen to be Khomeini’s Satans, both the big and the little one.

What makes the secular western Left so naïve is the fact that its members truly believe that a common demonology is more than enough to cement a long term alliance. It is not. To be wholly accepted by the fundamentalist (and, likely, the other) Muslims, you have to share both their demonology and their theology. If you don’t accept the latter, you’ll eventually become part of the first. Or, to translate it into more political terms, while the leftists have allied themselves strategically with the radical Islamists, these have only allied themselves tactically with them. Interestingly, the results of such an incongruent alliance could have already been clearly seen (where else?) in Iran, that is, Persia, when Khomeini himself, after being helped in his revolution by secular leftists, turned against them and exterminated them as soon as he got hold of power.

In short, there has been a pact made with the devil, but it wasn’t the secular Left that made it, but the radical Islamists. When the secular leftists discover that, in the eyes of their soon-to-be former allies, they are devils too, I wouldn’t like to be in their skins.

Posted by Michael J. Totten at September 28, 2004 6:00 PM
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Winner, The 2008 Weblog Awards, Best Middle East or Africa Blog

Winner, The 2007 Weblog Awards, Best Middle East or Africa Blog

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