News articles from the international press that leave questions.

 Reuel Marc Gerecht

This is a journalist who is almost a news story in himself. According to Wikipedia, Mr Gerecht "is a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, focusing primarily on the Middle East, Islamic militancy, counterterrorism, and intelligence. He is a former director of the Project for the New American Century's Middle East Initiative and a former resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. Mr. Gerecht also served as a case officer at the CIA, primarily working on Middle Eastern targets."

Mr Gerecht has said in an interview that ""The Iranians [...] have terrorism in their DNA." A very poor reflection on the quality of thinking at the CIA.

The opinion piece he wrote in the Wall Street Journal on April 23, 2012 is a parody of clumsy propaganda.

 Here are excerpts from the article.

"For many on the American left and right, the "Arab Spring" has become the "Arab Winter" of triumphant fundamentalists."          HUH?  The Arabs are largely rebelling against corrupt tyrants that we sponsored. What do you honestly expect of them? What was the attitude in the colonies when early America rebelled against England? Should early Americans be framed as extremists?

"But Westerners should resist nostalgia and depression. Given the awfulness of post-World War II Arab lands, where even the most benign regimes had sophisticated, torture-happy security services, Islamists who braved the wrath of rulers"       Wait. Sophisticated, torture-happy security services? Mr Gerecht has a scarcely hidden boner for torture in numerous online articles. Hypocrisy doesn't sell well anywhere.

 The article goes on to state that fundamentalists are key to moving Muslim countries into the future. This insight falls into the "common sense" category which is a big step up from the propaganda category. Unfortunately, the obvious purpose of the insight is to give credibility to the propaganda around it.

 "Islam hasn't seen the sustained barbarism that plagued European Christian and post-Christian—communist and fascist—societies. Reform-minded Muslims have usually critiqued their faith with an eye to the West, to the secrets of European power, without appreciating both the highs and lows of Occidental history." The irony of the last ten words. Mr Gerecht is judging Islamic societies as a clear outsider with no interest in common ground. It's a losing mentality, lots of heat and smoke but quickly forgotten. First part, likewise nonsense.

 "As the imported Western ideologies ended in tyranny, Islam became a haven, a repository of virtue and memories, both real and imagined, of better times, when rulers and the ruled abided by the same religious law. The all-purpose fundamentalist cry, "Islam is the answer," is as much a critique of what had been tried and failed as it is a tendentious reading of history." Very clever. But utter bullshit. Oversimplifying western influences, playing stupid, is a bad answer.

 "Slavery is de facto no longer permitted in Islam—even though it's authorized by the Quran—because Muslims successfully grafted European ethics onto Islamic mores." It was less than 150 years ago that slavery was abolished in the U.S. Quite a few countries, including some Muslim ones, abolished slavery before the U.S. Also, see Leviticus before talking about Islamic mores.

 "If a secular, semi-democratic Turkey guided by Europeanized generals constantly mistreated its religious and ethnic minorities, we can be certain that much less Westernized Arab lands are unlikely to be notably more tolerant."     The western sources of influence on those "Europeanized generals", with regard to mistreatment of certain groups, is well documented. Fighting facts with propaganda is a bad battle.

 Summary. The article is blatant propaganda, meant ultimately to sabotage, not to be constructive. Mr Gerecht starts with an agenda and tries to fit everything into that agenda. This kind of nonsense is leading America straight into catastrophe.

Mr Gerecht does not want any peace with any Muslim countries. His agenda is not really that well hidden. War is a catastrophic choice for America, and propagandists, even clever ones like Mr Gerecht, must be ignored. The state of Israel must make a long term deal with the Palestinians that will remove the pressure toward war.