Friday, February 17, 2006

Why the Abu Ghraib Photos Produce Less Controversy than the Mohammad Cartoons

I was reading a post on Renegade Eye’s blog which dealt with the Abu Ghraib photos, and published them. I must admit, just looking at them made me queasy (thus I’m not posting them here). So the question that kept being brought up is, why the Muslim community isn’t protesting the torture depicted in these photos while they are protesting the cartoons of Mohammed. Well, I believe it is because these protests had little to do with the Mohammed Cartoons and a lot to do with Muslim leaders positioning themselves as capable of combating the West, and by doing so uniting the Muslim community behind one leader, who would create a super-power.

I have done quite a bit of writing on this point, and you can find it within the blog, especially in posts about Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who I believe to be the leader that could unite the Muslim world behind him. He certainly has the ground troops to combat any Western power, not only in the Iranian army and new-ally Syria’s army, but also in the form of massive protests from the general Muslim populace all over the world, which Ahmadinejad has now proven he can muster at any time, without a valid or urgent issue motivating those Muslims to protest.

In terms of medium-range weaponry, the West does have the edge. New the first feeling is that the West is vastly superior in air power. But is that 100% true? The second or third best air force in the world has belonged for a long time to Russia, who has become a recent ally of Iran. If Ahmadinejad can say that he will have backing from Russia’s Air force in a war, then the US has an advantage, but not a huge one. As far as medium range ballistic missiles, Ahmadinejad has recently purchased new missiles and developed others, so that he has excellent mid-range capability.

So what remains is the long-range capability. In some senses, Ahmadinejad has some long-range capability with the various supporters they have in Western countries. The willingness of terrorist organizations to use citizens like these as weapons means Ahmadinejad does have some long-range capability. But what he really needs, to prove to leaders around the Middle East that he can face off against the West, is a nuclear missile with long-range capability. And every day he gets one step closer. Some people predict that he will have some enriched Uranium, enough for a small weapon, within a year, though it will take longer to actually create the bomb.

To me, it is like a large chess match where one side has to create their own pieces. And by the way, I know there are people out there who think Muslims are not smart; you’re kidding yourselves, 100%. I’ve known many brilliant Muslims, and the consistent warfare in the region has trained military leaders in the region better than they might be trained in some other countries. Other people may portray the Muslim community as the black pieces, and the Western countries as the white pieces, the Middle East as the evil empire and the Western countries as the forces of good. Have no doubt about it, if the Abu Ghraib photos show anything, it’s that we’re both a shade of gray.

So let’s get back to the original question: why isn’t the Muslim community protesting over the Abu Ghraib photos when they are protesting over the Mohammad photos? It’s because the protests over the Mohammad cartoons had nothing to do with the Mohammad Cartoons; they were just an excuse to incite violence. It was the movement of a pawn which forks the Western countries, or forces them to lose a piece (basically, the movement of the pawn jeopardizes two opposing pieces, while the pawn is protected enough to force the opposition to sacrifice a piece). And like in the chess game, you don’t over-extend your pawn, or he’s in trouble.

Why is Israel such an issue in the mind of Ahmadinejad? Because it’s a protected piece in the middle of his board, a knight that do a great amount of damage and is protected from afar, making it impossible to take the piece. And why is there such an emphasis on developing nuclear weapons? Because this is Ahmadinejad’s queen, and without a queen he can spar with the opponent, but never can he really contend. Certainly not in the eyes of the Muslim community and not in a real war either. The threat of nuclear response will always be out there so long as Ahmadinejad can’t respond. That will change drastically if Iran is a nuclear power.

Are we happy with whom we have manning the chess board? Is it acceptable to have so many of our pieces dedicated to a side battle, while the other side is aligning their pieces for all-out attack? If the answer to either is no, we have a serious problem, because this is probably the biggest threat facing the Western world today.

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Posted by Scottage at 12:16 AM / | |