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Some Background

These people are insane, but without some information you can’t judge how insane.

Let’s start with a definition from Wikipedia: Wahhabism “is an Islamic movement, named after Muhammad ibn Abd al Wahhab (1703-1792). It is the dominant form of Islam in Saudi Arabia and Qatar.”

The Saudis don’t like people using the term “Wahhabi”, preferring the more general “Salafi”, because the Sauds came to power by allying with the Wahhabi followers, and people might remember that these religious fundamentalists are a keystone of the Saud regime.

The Taliban are not Wahhabi, but they, like the Muslim Brotherhood are Salafi, ultra-conservative Sunnis. We are talking about the same level of differences that exist among Jerry Falwell, James Dobson, and Pat Robertson.

There are ultra-orthodox Shi’ia, with the main difference being the belief that the Twelfth Imam, the Mahdi, will return and bring “justice” to the world. The belief is similar to “the Second Coming of Christ” among some Christian groups.

Sunni belief is affected by the Arabic culture, just as Shi’ia is affected by the Persian culture. Many of the features of Islam that westerners react to, like the Burqa, are not actually Islamic, but go back to the underlying cultures. The Burqa was probably originally worn as protection from sand storms by a nomadic culture that lived in tents.

When a winger complains about madrasah, they usually mean the schools established throughout the world by Saudis to spread Wahhabism. Madrashah is the generic Arabic term for school, and most are non-religious. Some Islamic, but non-Arabic cultures use the term to mean a religious school, but that is not what it means in Arabic.

Now that we have the basics, we can look at what these fools are seemingly doing.

The word is that the US has agreed to ignore the Saudis funding Salafi rebel groups in other countries, like Lebanon, to counter the effect of Shi’ia groups, like Hezbollah. They apparently don’t make the connection that many of these groups are allied with al Qaeda, or are also engaged in fighting against the Shi’ia majority in Iraq.

Saudis control these groups the same way they control al Qaeda, with funding, and they don’t use the Western banking system, so the US has no way of knowing when or if they are cutting off funding from groups that are working against America’s interests.

For those that have forgotten, the Iran-Contra Scandal started with reports in the Lebanese media. Are we going to start reading articles about the US and Saudis supporting al Qaeda groups in Lebanon? How can you have a War on Terror™ when you are supporting terrorists?

For those, like this administration, who have forgotten: the US spent decades ensuring that neither Iran nor Iraq was strong enough to take the other out. That strategy maintained the balance of power in the Persian Gulf and promoted stability. We have taken Iraq out, and Iran is relieved of its biggest enemy. Why didn’t our allies in the Persian Gulf stop the Iraq War? Didn’t they realize what would happen? Why is anyone listening to these “geniuses” now?

What “expert” thinks that Sunni terrorists can operate with impunity in Lebanon? Who believes they won’t take the opportunity to attack Israel?

I would advise people who have and use two vehicles to be sure that their license plates don’t both have odd or even numbers, because the last time oil stopped flowing from the Middle East that is how you knew which days you could buy gas. If you have a long commute, you might want to see about getting a room near where you work. If you are in the trucking or other transportation industry, you might want to start looking for a new career.

Have you checked the health of the US economy lately?


1 ellroon { 02.27.07 at 6:35 pm }

After the Dow drop today, I’d say planting a garden would be a good idea, too. Maybe some chickens….

2 Bryan { 02.27.07 at 7:42 pm }

Go with goats – they can mow the lawn, provide wool and milk. Just remember to keep the billy goat away from the house, because billy goats do stink.