When Intellectuals Become Prophets

Walid Shoebat

Sandy Rios, a contributor to Fox News, sent me an email asking me for an interview about some intellectual-hack named Thomas Freidman who wrote an asinine article about his hope for the Arab Spring.

Friedman, after quoting a bunch of Middle Eastern intellectuals who complained about Islamic extremism, concluded:

“… this moderate backlash to the extremist backlash is worth hailing — and watching.”

While the liberals’ Arab Spring prophecy failed, they insist that we must still await until the Great Oracle hath spoken.

While I have no problems with intellectuals, I do object when they falsely predict the future.

A kindergartener has more common street sense than whomever champions Friedman’s dismal record. Now these whack jobs come out of their cubbyholes to point to specs of success, saying that we must expect an evolutionary process to take place, that we must wait just a little longer in order for their prophecies to come to pass.

They usually quote other intellectual failures that shared their hopeful aspirations. Friedman quotes the intellects crying out in fear of the Islamist rule as a sign of hope.

Khaled al-Hroub, a professor at Cambridge University who argued that the most…

“…frightening aspect of what we see today in the streets of Arab and Islamic cities is the disaster of extremism that is flooding our societies and cultures, as well as our behavior … This [represents] a total atrophy of thought among wide sectors [of society], as a result of the culture of religious zealotry that was imposed on people for over 50 years, and which brought forth what we witness today.

That’s quite the unlucky break for Friedman.

Khaled al-Hroub is at Cambridge, not in the Egyptian Parliament.

He is also wrong. How did “Arab autocrats” stifle debate? They did sow because they were only interested in their seats of power and could care less if secularists fought Muslim fundamentalists in a war of words.

Even a kindergartner can ask, how can one have “free speech” while they live under a theocratic tyranny and persecution?

Al-Hroub, like Friedman, makes a baldly false statement. Before the Arab Spring, people were not forced to obey “religious zealotry” as al-Hroub asserts. This was not true under Mubarak, Assad, Qaddafi and even under Saddam Hussein.

In fact, in Syria, it’s mostly the religiously zealous Salafists who want to remove Bashar al-Assad.

For years, we said: “Remove Saddam and you will bring in Shiite Iran.”

Today, if we remove Bashar al-Assad, that removal will usher in Salafist Islamist hardliners; it could even weaken Syria and make it ripe for the Neo-Ottomans, the Turks.

How is that for a prediction!

I got it all from the Bible.

“Bible?” You might ask? “O my gosh, the intellectuals will laugh at you now.”

But is Friedman wiser than Daniel?

Iraq (the lion of Babylon) was a mini-superpower in the region that kept Iran at bay. With it removed and humbled by the U.S., Persia, the bear of Iran, has arisen and has its eye on Iraq.
And with Iran’s rise, Turkey will not stand idly by. It is arising to eat much flesh—the entire Middle East.

The West took away power pegs to simply have them backfilled with other powers.

Freidman grasps for rare quotes of hope and his conclusions even contradict those of his buddy, the Cambridge professor:

This internal debate had long been stifled by Arab autocrats whose regimes traditionally suppressed extremist Islamist parties, but never really permitted their ideas to be countered with free speech— with independent, modernist, progressive interpretations of Islam or by truly legitimate, secular political parties and institutions.

Blah blah blah…

The argument presented by many of the pseudo-intellectuals is this: We need to allow equality for all, for if we allow democracy to take place – even if Islamists win – freedom will finally reign as a result of debate.

In Friedman’s view, a Muslim fundamentalist should have an equal opportunity to express his views, even if that view says, “kill the infidel” (Friedman is one).

Search the Bible for “the fool said …” and you will find Friedman.

But thank God, not all intellectuals are equal.

In fact, not all intellects believe in equality for all.

Roger Scruton argues that the only equality he believes in is “equality of opportunity” and “equality before the law”.

I fully agree.

Criminals and terrorists are not equal to law-abiding citizens.

Also, what opportunity does an Egyptian intellect have if the law of the land is Sharia and he has no opportunity to even express his/her views? How can he debate anything?

Even many so-called ‘conservative politicians’ are banking on the leftovers of the so-called Arab Spring. Libya is a crumb that they share with each other and insist we all must arise and eat with delight, proof that Democracy worked. During an interview with Sean Hannity, Republican Senator John McCain claimed he had been right about Libya and that Hannity had been wrong.

Taking a spec of “right” and ignoring the mountain of “wrongs” has become the standard for losers.

It’s like someone who is broke after gambling away the family savings in Las Vegas, then grabs his poor wife’s jewelry and runs to the nearest pawnshop.

These prefer to bank on leftovers. Libya is insignificant when we compare it with the big picture: Iran, Egypt and Turkey have all turned Islamist.

The last two are disguised as “moderates” and Friedman still has hope.

There are tons of moderates in Turkey and in Egypt.

But what difference can these make?

Answer: Nothing.

In 2011 interview, Victor Davis Hanson and Peter Berkowitz – both touted as professors at the Hoover Institution – also made bold, yet false prophecies:

Davis Hanson stated:

I’m a little bit more confident about Tunisia because it has elements of a secular society, its got a good tourist industry, its got closer ties with Europe, there’s an aspiring upper-middle class there, and it doesn’t have a history of violence as does places like Libya and Algeria.

Hanson’s prophecy was false about both Libya and Tunisia. He even had the two issues switched around; Libya’s government turned out moderate and Tunisia is not.

That said, Libya is not immune either. Egypt, next door, is an Islamist state.

Davis Hanson even compares the desire of a Caliphate to the desire of the European Union:

… about the Caliphate, I don’t see a monolithic Muslim nation appearing because its no more monolithic than the E.U., and the E.U. is shattering as we speak. …There’s so many fissures in the Arab world, Shia Sunni, Alawite, tribal, geographical, economic systems.

Hanson forgets that these same “fissures” existed several decades ago and they still had a Caliphate—The Ottomans. Sufi Turks have a lot in common with Shia and Iran is also ruled by Azeri Turks while the existence of Israel can temporarily unite all Sunni and Shia. We have seen it between Hezbollah and Hamas.

Moderator Peter Robinson added more false predictions:

Tanks are not going to role across the Sinai.

Robinson forgot that Islamist terror attacks increased between 2011 and 2012 on the Israeli / Egyptian border.

These intellectuals are ignorant about the Middle East.

I lived all my youth in the Middle East. Let me put it bluntly, in my Middle Eastern style.

No offense, but it’s like saying that a poor woman (moderates) who was prostituted by a pimp (Muslim extremists) to further an agenda and while the pimp has a gun to her head as she stands helpless, we argue and say that she is our friend and we must let her argue her views for her pimp to see the light.

While we embolden the pimp we argue for the poor victim.

The pimp just laughs and goes on about his business, thanking the peanut gallery for the opportunity.

The moderates have lost respect for the U.S. How is that a good thing?

These intellectuals want to defend their failed record, doubling down on a bad hand because pride prevents them from conceding defeat.

I remember the first time I read one of Friedman’s articles; it was just before the Palestinian elections when he stated that in order to moderate Palestinians, we must give them jobs. Give Palestinians jobs and they will become moderate, yet insisted that we remove Israel from “Palestine”.

He ignored that Israel was what created the jobs in the first place.

In other words, and to take our helpless woman scenario, there is only one job left for that poor woman to do, prostitute herself for the pimp.

I hate pimps.

The U.S. is allowing Iran to pimp out moderates who love America. Sure, there are moderates. Through our silence, we even squelched the pro-America revolution in Iran that would have hurt the pimps. These moderates got thrown under the bus and today, McCain wants to help more pimps in Syria.

Question: What difference did the moderates make in Egypt, Turkey, Iran and even during Nazi Germany?

Answer: Nothing.

Moderates become helpless under tyrannical ideologues.

Instead of helping true moderates, America chose to go to bed with the Wahhabists of Arabia and the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.

I stated to Sandy, “Now that I put it so bluntly, do you still want to interview me?”

Sandy responded: “Yes, I still want you to join me.”

I still have hope in the American people.

People like Sandy Rios.


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