Published 20 March 06
By Abigail R. Esman
World Defense Review columnist
Part I - The Islamization of America
So they've cancelled the Dubai Ports World deal.
Feel better now? Safer?
Because the problem is not just Dubai Ports World. It isn't even the recent reports that indicate the National Guard has been stretched too thin by the loss of both manpower and equipment to Iraq, or the upcoming release of two "Virginia Jihad" members, or the enrolment at Yale University of a former Taliban spokesman.
It isn't the recent relaxation of security rules on airplanes (knives, scissors and knitting needles allowed on board and fewer bag searches at airports), and the continuing lack of security measures at major train stations throughout the country. It's not even the fact that Dubai pulled out of the deal only when faced with an in-depth investigation and at the request of the President (from whom, one can be certain, alternative promises were made in exchange).
This is something much, much bigger.
In February, I attended a conference in the Netherlands featuring experts on the concepts of dhimmitude, a word based on the Arabic word "dhimmi," or "protected," and Eurabia, a word created by scholar Bat Ye'or to describe a Euro-Arab solidarity that is leading gradually (though ever faster) to the Islamization of our European friends and allies.
In essence, Europeans, says Ye'or, have acquiesced to the powers and demands of the Arab world, cooperating and collaborating in areas of foreign policy, economy, and culture, in return for which Europe will be in principle safe from the violent conquest by Islam.
If this sounds like crazy conspiracy theory, in fact, it isn't really all that different from the politics we're used to in America. Countries that behave according to Western, Euro-American standards can count on Euro-American investment and military support; those who do not can expect repercussions. The difference here is simply one of a marriage between church and state: for Islamic nations, they are one and the same. Follow their religion, submit to their socio-economic demands, and their governments will not persecute or attack.
Consider, too, the central premise of Bat Ye'or's argument: that according to the principles of jihad, non-Muslims must be brought to convert preferably through peaceable means, but if necessary, through violence.
In an interview with John W. Whitehead of the Rutherford Institute, the Egyptian born Bat Ye'or explains:
"According to the jihadic doctrine, the world is divided into two parts: Muslims and Infidels, the latter living in the dar al-harb, the land of war, because their land must be Islamized by peaceful means, or by war if they resist. Before attacking the Infidels, Muslims must first call them to convert; if they refuse, they are asked to pay a ransom; if they refuse again, Muslims have the duty to wage war on them. Truce is accepted on condition that the Infidels pay a regular ransom and put no obstacle to the spread of Islam in their own countries. There are other conditions also, like sending soldiers to fight for Islamic interests. A truce should not last more than 10 years, and it is allowed only when the Muslim ruler is weak. Otherwise, war against the Infidels is mandatory."
The words "put no obstacle to the spread of Islam in their countries" explain, for instance, the establishment of Saudi-run mosques throughout Europe (the largest of which is based in Rotterdam home to Europe's major port) and of Saudi-owned schools and bookstores where anti-Western texts are taught and sold, where one finds books like The Muslim Way, a bestseller in the Dutch Muslim community that advises its readers that it is often necessary to beat women, that women are obliged to submit to their husbands' sexual desires on demand, and that homosexuals should be burned, stoned, or thrown from the highest available building, head first.
In exchange for this openness, Europe receives Arab oil, Arab investment, and a "truce" of sorts by which, as Muslims become the majority in many countries (which some believe could take place within decades), Jews and Christians will be safe to practice their religions, just as they were permitted to do as dhimmis in the 7th century, when, writes Bat Ye'or, "the infidel population had to recognize Islamic ownership on their land, submit to Islamic (i.e. Sharia) law, and accept payment of the poll tax. In return they were granted the effective protection of Islamic law, which gave them security, limited religious rights, and self administration in religious and civil law." On her web site (dhimmitude.org) she further notes, "Peace and security for non-Muslims are recognized only after their submission. Protection status is provided through the Islamization of conquered lands."
So what has this to do with American security today?
Just this: Influence and investment in the USA by Muslim nations particularly Saudi Arabia and the UAE not only continues, but is escalating, invading our institutions with the $20 million grant to Harvard University by Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal for the establishment of an Islamic Studies program (which can surely be expected to teach the kinds of things that similarly-sponsored schools teach in Europe); with the purchase last fall by Dubai's crown prince Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum of 230 Park Avenue, the building above New York's Grand Central Station; with the takeover by another Dubai firm, Dubai Holdings, of the Doncasters Group, a UK-based manufacturer of parts for military aircraft, tanks, and petrochemical markets with plants throughout the US and Europe.
Doncasters' now Dubai Holding's biggest clients? Boeing, Honeywell, Siemens, and General Electric. (It is perhaps worth noting that, as with the Dubai Ports World transactions, many of those companies agreeing to be purchased are not only European, but that of our closest European ally: Great Britain. And to quote a piece in Al Bayan, a government run UAE newspaper as cited by the Anti-Defamation League: " But who planted the biggest and the most dangerous virus in the region? Isn't it Britain and Europe who planted the Israeli virus? Isn't America protecting and injecting this virus in every aspect of life so it can penetrate and become monstrous?"). Yet when questioned on these transactions, their defenders are quick to pull the "racism" card, arguing that we don't want to anger our "friends" in the United Arab Emirates, who have, they argue, supported and assisted some of America's anti-terror efforts. (That they have supported and assisted some of political Islam's most vicious terrorists in their own effort is, apparently, not the point.)
In other words, the deal is struck: they'll be nice to us as long as we let them take over our ports, our real estate, our train stations (the ones lacking security systems), our institutions. If we refuse them, they may so the argument goes get angry, pack up their toys and go home, and then come back to bomb us in the morning.
These, we call our friends.
This, I call succumbing to terror.
This, I call dhimmitude.
Ye'or defines the term, in fact, in exactly this way, noting in her interview with Whitehead that the concept "represents a behavior dictated by fear (terrorism), pacifism when aggressed, rather than resistance, servility because of cowardice and vulnerability."
Isn't that what this is?
THE SELLING OF THE MILITARY
If you haven't heard of Dubai Holdings, the company that just purchased Doncasters while you weren't looking, you might want to find out more. They also have a $1 billion share of Daimler/Chrysler, makers of such commonly used US and European military equipment as ground transport vehicles and of such vital military weapons as missiles. (And of course, if it is true that, as some have suggested, the UAE maintains friendly relations with the USA in part because of its need to purchase our arms, well, they seem to be doing away with that necessity quite handily.) Moreover, Doncasters - now Dubai Holding maintains close connections with General Electric the company that not only produces turbine engines for Boeing (among others) but, as it announces proudly on its web site, "Whether you're with a federal, state or local government agency, GE offers innovative technologies to help make your world safer. GE can integrate the latest advancements with your existing equipment and IT systems so you can increase security at embassies, borders, military installations, water treatment plants and other critical public infrastructure. Plus these integrated systems capture valuable data you can use to improve procedures, investigate events and prevent others from happening at all."
In the face of all this, the cancellation of the Dubai Ports World deal (which now seems possibly not to have been cancelled after all) doesn't seem to me to mean that much.
Okay, I know that some people do not see this as a threat. They argue that the UAE has been an ally to the US. They maintain that in a globalized economy, international exchanges of businesses are not only likely but desirable, that there should be no difference between selling a company to the UK and selling the same business to the Arab world - even to countries which have taken a pronounced, militant stance against Israel, whose anti-Semitic leanings and support of Hamas and of the Taliban are well-documented, countries that have served as financial centers for terrorists, countries that have, in fact, harbored the very terrorists who killed thousands on our own shores.
Even, it seems, in the face of history.
(Whether the connections between some of these companies and friends, members, and family of the Bush Administration are relevant here is another question; stay tuned for Part Two of this investigation.)
Some defense contractors have told me global war by Islamic extremists is becoming a business. Tactics and procedures are being tested in Sri Lanka, bombs are tested in Indonesia, and suddenly they turn up in Afghanistan and Iraq. And the UAE, they say, knows that military defense is a growth business in the United States these days.
How do they know? Why do they know?
Speaking not of the UAE, but of their Saudi neighbors, Ibn Warraq, the esteemed author of Leaving Islam and Why I Am Not A Muslim pointed out at the Hague conference, "In August, 2002, the Rand Corporation published a report that described Saudi Arabia as ' the kernel of evil, the prime mover, the most dangerous opponent."
The report went on explain that "Saudi Arabia supports our enemies and attacks our allies. The Saudis are active at every level of the terror chain, from planners to financiers, from cadre to foot-soldier, from ideologist to cheerleader'. And yet little seems to have changed in the West's behavior towards a regime that has financed terrorism, funnelled millions into madrassas that preach more anti-Western hatred, has corrupted institutions of higher education like Harvard and Georgetown University, has bought the favours of Western politicians and seeks to destroy Western civilisation at every turn. We know the reason: oil. But until we address the question of Saudi Arabia and its influence on life in the West we shall have no progress, no rest."
Is the UAE really all that different? Is that a chance we want to take with our military equipment, our clean water systems, our embassies, our railways, our ports?
Author and scholar Robert Spencer may make you wonder. Asked to define dhimmitude in his own words, he replied in an e-mail: It is the status that Islamic law, the Sharia, mandates for non-Muslims, primarily Jews and Christians. Dhimmis, "protected people," are free to practice their religion in a Sharia regime, but are made subject to a number of humiliating regulations designed to enforce the Koran's command that they "feel themselves subdued." (Sura 9:29). This denial of equality of rights and dignity remains part of the Sharia, and, as such, are part of the law that global jihadists are laboring to impose everywhere, ultimately on the entire human race."
Yes. I am afraid.
Abigail R. Esman is an award-winning author-journalist who divides her time between New York and The Netherlands. In addition to her column in World Defense Review, her work has appeared in Foreign Policy, Salon.com, Esquire, Vogue, Glamour, Town & Country, The Christian Science Monitor, The New Republic and many others. She is currently working on a book about Muslim extremism and democracy in the West.
Visit Esman on the web at abigailesman.com.
© 2006 Abigail R. Esman
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