In evidence amongst Islamic apologists lately is the panic of the cornered animal. One by one their lines of defence, all built on lies, intimidation and guilt-manipulation, have been breached and we are facing the citadel itself. In commenting on the recent Muslim terrorist attack in London, in a rare outbreak of truthfulness, Mehdi Hassan admitted that
[the] claim that “Islam is the problem” has now gone mainstream.
Indeed. The corresponding panic also means that Islam’s 50-cent army of “peaceful Muslims” will increasingly be pressed into service, such as we’ve just seen so obscenely done in Australia. It is interesting to see wide boy Mehdi Hassan starting to go through the same unravelling as had his “gentle” predecessor Tarik Ramadan, when people started seeing through his bullshit. Hassan, to his dubious credit, at least used to be slick and, in his own way, entertaining. As far is bullshit can be coherent, Hassan’s bullshit was coherent and delivered in quick-fire succession that left his opponent no time to respond to any of it. There are many who find confirmation of their prejudices in that kind of cheap showmanship (look at any Zakir Naik speech). Thus did Hassan dominate the rhetorical space. And like the programmed machine, it’s the only way he knows. He is unable to turn himself off, even in conversation with Irshad Manji, who’s supposed to be on the same side as him. She had to call him out for his behaviour.
Now that “the problem is Islam” has finally gone mainstream, Hassan’s bullshit isn’t coherent anymore. It’s even lost its edginess. It has all the signs of a drowning man casting around for anything that might save him. A straw, a straw! My kingdom for a straw! And yet Mehdi Hassan is not the worst. That distinction has to go to The Guardian‘s apologist extraordinaire David Shariatmadari, who, in the same narrative meltdown, makes the kind of admission that would get anyone else shot down for “Islamophobia”. Says Shariatmadani, “We cannot look simply to theology to explain recent Islam-inspired terrorism.” I had to read that twice. So now there is such a things as Islam-inspired terrorism. Will the “Islamophobia” witch-hunters now apologise to all those they have slandered and attacked for making this very point? I wouldn’t advise anyone to hold their breath.
But back to the point: if it can no longer be denied that Islam inspires terrorism, then the fallback position seems to be to spread the culpability. “Don’t look simply to theology,” says Shariatmadari. Mehdi Hassan’s equivalent to this is: “converts do it too.” The whole thrust of the piece in which he admits that the problem of Islam has gone mainstream, is to latch onto London Muslim terrorist Khalid Masood’s being a convert to Islam, and to bleed every once of bullshit that he could out of that fact. If it cannot be denied that the terrorist is a Muslim, then it might still be possible to exonerate Islam. It’s a rhetorical load under which no wagon can hold onto its wheels. Shariatmadari, in another sign of the apologetics meltdown, admits that people who want real answers are now converging on the Qur’an. He offers a typical example of those pesky, now mainstream, questions: “We do need to have a discussion about the Qur’an …how do we deal with those difficult suras [chapters] which are full of these tetchy pronouncements.” He even admits that these are, “the kind of people who think it’s not good to generalise, and that there are definitely lots of nice Muslims, but still…” In other words, people who want real answers are no longer the crazed rightwing bigots that the “Islamophobia” Inquisition has hitherto insisted that they are. That’s the second apology we won’t be getting any time soon. He even goes so far as to admit, “In fact, it’s not an unreasonable thought, if you’re unfamiliar with Islam,” (my emph.). Reasonable people want to have that discussion about the Qur’an, admits Shariatmadari. They want to know what those verses say. But Shariatmadari still has some kick in him, albeit feeble. “Who knows (or can be bothered to find out),” he asks, “what those verses say, and how they have been interpreted?” Does this mean he’s urging us to go ahead and read the Qur’an for ourselves? Not on your life. “The fact is, however,” says the man who is familiar with Islam, “that a proper explanation isn’t to be found here.” Sorry, David Shariatmadani. This is not a fucking madrassa. We will read whatever we like and we will make up our own minds for ourselves. The cowered liberals have given you a false understanding of how free people’s heads work.