Alwaleed bin Talal
Sadly enough, the world’s wealthiest Wahhabi Hillbilly did not become famous for this too-sexy-for-my-mustache shot.
His fame (or rather, his infamy) came immediately after the Saudi-financed 9/11 attacks, when Rudy Giuliani eloquently told the prince to take his $10 million check and shove it.
Rudy said: “There is no moral equivalent for this attack. The people who did it lost any right to ask for justification when they slaughtered . . . innocent people”
Rudy Giuliani will probably go down in history as the only human being who has ever turned down blood money..umm..a..bribe..a..donation from a Saud.
However, in the fabulous circles that the Prince travels in, he’s still worshipped by all the right people.
If there’s ever a film of his life, it would be called “The Magic Muslim” and it would be modeled on the Peter Sellers’ The Magic Christian. If you’re not a fan of old British satires, here’s a review.
Sir Guy Grand (Peter Sellers) is an eccentric billionaire who, together with his newly adopted heir (formerly a homeless derelict), Youngman Grand (Ringo Starr), start playing elaborate practical jokes on people. A big spender, Grand doesn’t mind handing out large sums of money to various people, bribing them to fulfill his whims, or shocking them by bringing down what they hold dear…
…In the final scene of the movie, Guy Grand wanting to find out how far people can go for money, fills up a huge vat with urine, blood and animal excerments and sprinkles it avidly with paper money. In a choreorgraphic way, a crowd of gents approaches the vat and after some indecision starts stepping in to grab the cash. Having forgotten all sense of disgust many even start taking dives in it.
Participants in recent orgies of Magic Muslim-inspired excrement-diving include Bill Clinton, realists like James Baker, most governments worldwide, most universities, corporations and, most recently, Georgetown University.
Georgetown gets $20 million from prince promoting Islam. Just months later, university ejects evangelical Christians from campus
The Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown University has been renamed after Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal donated $20 million to its projects. And while that may be just the tail, the dog appears to be moving away from its historic Catholic and Jesuit teaching philosophy too.
The Center’s leaders say it now will be used to put on workshops regarding Islam, fostering exchanges with the Muslim world, addressing U.S. policy towards the Muslim world, working on the relationship of Islam and Arab culture, addressing Muslim citizenship and civil liberties, and developing exchange programs for students from the Muslim world.
The “Christian” part of the center’s projects at the university that has a history of 200 years of higher education following its Christian founding, is conspicuous by its absence in its website plans for its 10-year future.
But that won’t be a surprise to leaders of a number of Christian evangelical groups whose leaders recently were told to leave the campus and not list Georgetown University as a site for operations in the future.
Phyllis Chesler also provided Georgetown University’s contact info, if you’d like to complain:
President John J. DeGioia
Office of the President
204 Healy Hall
37th & O Streets, NW
Washington, DC 20057
Of course if we’re going to complain about this latest exercise in greed orgies and excrement diving, well have to complain to everyone who accepts blood money..umm..bribery..umm…generosity from Magic Mulsims like Talal.
A lot of letters, but not such a bad idea….
What is Islamophobia?
According to this disputed Wiki page, Islamophobia is:
defined as the phenomenon of a prejudice against or demonization of Muslims which manifests itself in general negative attitudes, violence, harassment, discrimination, and stereotyping (and particularly being vilified in the media).
As a concept, Islamophobia follows in the hallowed footsteps of concepts like speciesism, womynhood and McCarthyism; consciousness-raising attempts to stifle criticism instead of debating it; political correctness that uses feelings of victimization instead of reason as a weapon in an attempt to force people to stop saying words or phrases that frighten, offend or annoy.
The concept of Islamophobia (and the related issue of Islamophobia watching) hasn’t made as much progress here as it has in in Britain and Europe. This is probably due to the protection offered by our constitution. It may also be due to our somewhat uniquely pragmatic, American attitudes. (bullsh*t is a word that is difficult to translate into many European languages). Most of us instinctively shy away from participating in efforts to blacklist Americans for Un-Muslim activities.
However, recent right-wing efforts to rewrite the history of McCarthyism, to prove that Tailgunner Joe “got a bad rap” may have opened the door to the emergence of right-wing PC.
According to Ann Coulter, McCarthy succeeded because he “made it a disgrace to be a Communist. Domestic Communism could never recover.” She echoes the primary goals of political correctness – don’t fight your enemies using reason – instead, disgrace them, blacklist them, shout them down.
PC for right wingers conveniently ignores political correctness’s Leninst roots, an ideological struggle from Lenin to Mao to McCarthy to Coulter and CAIR.
Johann Hari, a British writer who has suffered from various forms of political correctness and McCarthyism wrote a scathing condemnation of recent right-wing efforts to polish McCarthy’s image:
The corpse of Joe McCarthy is being paraded before us. The more extreme wing of the US right believe he offers us a model for how to fight a war against Islamic fundamentalism. They’re right – and it’s a model that leads straight to liquidated democracy and defeat.
Hari also wrote this about Islamophobia watchers:
Do you believe a religious leader who fights to save Section 28 and says gay people spread disease is a fulminating bigot? Do you believe a “leading cleric” who advocates stoning gay people to death should be denounced? Do you believe sharia law – which requires gay people to be lashed or stoned – is always and forever unacceptable? Then, according to an energetic and aggressive group of white straight boys who surreally consider themselves to be on the left, you are an “Islamophobe” and “objectively pro-Nazi”
He was refrerring to this British website, Islamophobia Watch:
The real racism comes from Islamophobia Watch itself, and the people who parrot their claims. Where Tatchell [the accused gay Islamophobe] treats Muslims as the equal citizens of a democracy, people with open minds and a free intelligence, they treat Muslims as feeble children who cannot cope with the scorn we routinely (and rightly) pour on Catholics and Protestants. They argue that Muslims are so sensitive and uncurious that their ideas must be ring-fenced from criticism, with the police arresting anybody who vehemently criticises their beliefs.
Fortunately, we have a constitution here, so Islamophobia watchers can’t summon the police to stifle debate. Despite recent civilian efforts to enforce political correctness, our government hasn’t raised any criticism of “Islamophobia”. In fact, they enthusiastically welcome Europeans like Hirsi Ali who have been blacklisted as Islamophobes into the USA.
Still, the Islamophobia Watchers have their crusade…umm…jihad or..hmm..which word is more or less of a thoughtcrime?
One of these sites, the Islamic Human Rights Commission, has nominated the bloggers at Harry’s Place (a former home for Johann Hari’s posts), along with King Mohammed VI of Morocco, Bruce Willis, George Bush, blogger Robert Spencer and the Organisers of Toronto Supports Denmark Rally for their Islamophobe of the Year award.
The Islamic Human Rights Commission defines Islamophobia as “intolerance”. Here are photos of a protest they sponsored, including a table full of the usual Hezbollah tchotchkes.
The site that posted these pictures is linked to from “Islamophobic” Harry’s Place. Which may be one reason why they’re nominated for this ‘award’.
The biggest problem with Islamophobia and the related blacklisting (other than the attempts to ignore the constitution and stifle free speech) is what escapes our attention while we’re so busy watching each other; if we’re fighting a war against terrorism, who is paying attention to the terrorists?
Who is the ‘enemy’, Republicans, Democrats or the “Community of the Impoverished”? Islamophobia Watch or the “International Quranic Open University Inc”. Robert Spencer or Jamaat ul-Fuqra. Any guesses?
Well, it was a trick question. The Community of the Impoverished, Jamaat ul-Fuqra and “International Quranic Open University Inc” are all part of the the same group, a Pakistan-based armed and violent militia that is recognized as a terrorist organization by the US government and that may have bases near your town.
In the USA.
I wouldn’t have known about this group if I hadn’t been reading a site that is often maligned as being “Islamophobic”, Gates of Vienna.
How many readers out there knew about this group? How many people know where Al Furqra’s home base is located? How many people know about the Muslim Brotherhood’s activities in Minnesota? How many know about al Qaeda’s efforts to find recruits in Queens, NY?
Okay, I’m not seeing many hands. Now, how many of us have gone nutpicking in LGFs comment section? How many think that Democrats/Republicans/Islamophobes/appeasers are doing al Qaeda’s work for them? How many think that Democrats/Republicans/Islamophobes/appeasers are the ‘enemy’? How many people avoid reading or linking to sites that have been blacklisted as Islamophobic, despite the fact that these sites contain hard-to-find information about real, often local terrorist groups?
Maybe we have been looking for hate in all the wrong places.
Ralph Peters criticizes right wing PC
Whether the cry is “Free Mumia!” or “Close Guantanamo!” or “Bring the Troops Home Now!” the consistent purpose is to rescue killers from justice – no matter the cost to law-abiding citizens here or to the millions of Iraqis who truly desire peace.
This situation was bad enough when save-the-cop-killers/pity-the-terrorists ideology only infected the left. But political correctness has insinuated itself so deeply into our collective thinking that even the chest-thumping Bush administration refused to take on Iraq’s fanatical killers – with the result that Iraq is now frankly ungovernable.
The administration ignored an ironclad rule of conflict in failed societies: A fraction of 1 percent of the population, armed and determined, can destroy a fragile state. If you are not willing to kill that fraction of a percent, the remaining 99-plus percent will suffer terror, massacre and chaos.
Our weakness of will and wishful thinking made Iraq safe for our enemies. They can walk the streets unarmed. We can’t…
…I wish the world were as innocent as intellectuals pretend. But we’re far from the Peaceable Kingdom. If we’re unwilling to behave ferociously toward terrorists and thugs, they’ll behave with greater ferocity toward the innocent. That’s a consistent equation in humanity’s moral algebra.
The core problem of the political correctness crippling our policies is that both the left’s on-line commissars and Bush’s brain trust (such as it is) are guilty of the same error: Safe in America, they insist that the world is as they wish it to be, rather than as it is. Such self-deception paves the paths to Auschwitz, Srebrenica and Balad.
There are few platitudes more cringe-inducing than hearing yet another American political leader or general claim that “the only answer in Iraq is a political solution.” That’s just plain nonsense – it’s reality-avoidance as a strategy. It may be too late for any good solution in Iraq, but political dialogue doesn’t have a prayer.
Steven Vincent, the journalist who was murdered in Iraq a short time after publishing this piece is to be honored posthumously by the Institute for War and Peace Reporting in London, receiving the Kurt Schork Award:
The Kurt Schork Awards in International Journalism were set up to recognize the best in local and freelance reporters who make such a critical contribution to international understanding, but whose work is often overlooked. An international panel of judges comprising Isobel Hilton of OpenDemocracy.net; Saira Shah, writer and broadcaster; Lionel Barber, editor of the Financial Times; Roger Cohen of the International Herald Tribune and Peter Maas of the New York Times Magazine will shortly be announcing the two joint winners of this year’s award established in memory of Kurt Schork, the widely-admired journalist who was killed in Sierra Leone while on assignment for Reuters.
My “related posts” date seems to have gone screwy, and I haven’t been receiving notification of comments posted to the blog for a while now.
Sorry if I haven’t responded to specific questions..
I’ll be busy trying to fix this, working, etc.
Of her trip to Paris, she says:
I’m off to the Palais de Justice, and I’m not just sightseeing.
Today is the occasion of the second al Durah/France2 defamation trial, that of defendant Pierre Lurçat :
Lurçat, 39, a Jerusalem resident and president of an association called Liberty, Democracy and Judaism, was sued because he is the leader of an organization listed as the legal operator of a Web site, http://www.liguededefensejuive.com, that urged readers to attend a planned demonstration against France2 in 2002: “Come demonstrate against the lies of France2,” it said, “and the gross manipulation with an award for disinformation to France2 and Charles Enderlin.”
Those of you who are used to the free-for-all that is the internet are probably more than a bit perplexed as to what the big deal is here. That this sort of statement could be a cause of action in any court in a country that considers itself to be a modern, developed, progressive nation–not to mention a bastion of liberty–is ludicrous.
Let’s put aside for the moment the question of whether the accusations this defendant made against France2 and Enderlin are true, as blogger and historian Richard Landes (and, in the interests of full disclosure, acquaintance and friend of mine) has suggested at his website Second Draft and his blog Augean Stables.
As I said on her site, I’m totally jealous. This is Neo and Richard’s Zola moment, a very important, must-read story.