The most infamous examples come from World War II Nazi concentration camps, where some prisoners were placed in charge of others. According to witnesses like psychiatrist Viktor Frankl, these "Kapos" would wear discarded pieces of Nazi uniforms and often abuse their fellow victims. Unconsciously they were identifying with the aggressors, to ward off the awful awareness of their own vulnerability. People do things like that in extremis.The rest of the article linked to is an all too well-known summation of where people on the (extreme) left of the political spectrum are wrong. Infuriating as it is to read the mindless adoption of the paraphernalia of those that would destroy us, the article puts a finger on a sore spot, but neglects to rub it.
Now look at the behavior of the Left since 9/11, both in this country, Europe, and even Israel. Rather than feel righteously angered by the terrorist mass murder of 3,000 innocent people, large parts of the Left have adopted the aggressors' point of view. They keep telling us that the Islamic fascists were right to blow up innocent people who had done them no harm; some of them have taken on conspiracy theories, claiming that Bush or Israel really committed the atrocities. At the same time they are in deep denial about the danger of future terrorist attacks on American soil, and blindly refuse to see the rising threat of nuclear proliferation by stateless terror groups. Instead, they "displace" their fear and anger on George W. Bush. To the Left, once Bush is gone, the terror problem will simply and magically go away.
What could possibly possess intelligent people to identify so strongly with the very people that are responsible for such grief? A clue can be found in the preceding paragraphs:
Recently we saw the same human oddity when two Fox News reporters were kidnapped in Gaza, and forced to convert to Islam at the point of a gun. After his freedom was bought (at a reported cost of millions of dollars), reporter Steve Centanni told the world that:[Bold emphasis is mine - KV]"I hope that this never scares a single journalist away from coming to Gaza to cover the story because the Palestinian people are very beautiful and kind hearted. The world needs to know more about them. Don't be discouraged.""Kind-hearted" and "beautiful" are not the first words that come to mind to describe kidnappers who were quite ready to murder Steve Centanni only a day before. In psychiatric thinking the reporters "identified with the aggressors" --- the terrorist kidnappers --- in a mental flip that allowed them to push away their realistic fear of dying to a distant imaginary cause. They no longer thought of themselves as helpless victims, having adopted the kidnappers' point of view.
So, if the analogy holds, we may conclude that the prime motivator is fear. Indeed, the shrill demands of muslims for "respect" for Allah, Mohammed and islam seem to be directly targeted at Western fear of violence. In popular vernacular, both in an urban setting and in the way it is used by muslim activists in the West seem to have turned the word 'respect' to mean 'fear' in a most literal sense. We should not so much 'respect' islam, but we should fear it. When a niqaabed woman holds up a placard warning us to 'BE PREPARED FOR THE REAL HOLOCAUST' it is very hard to read a cry for some respect for religious convictions. In a very real sense it warns us that we do not fear Allah and muslims enough. And that a time will come when muslims will put the FEAR of Allah into us in a rather bloody massacre-style event.
While that particular prospect is not very attractive, just take a minute and contemplate a question: What is there to fear? No, really? The great majority of islamic nations are by no means shining examples of modernity. All of the technology of convenience is imported from the West and the Far East. Muslim Nobel prize winners are very, VERY few and far between. Moreover, in the hard sciences there are none that I am aware of.
The great islamic contribution to modern warfare consists of inaccurate, shabby katyusha rockets and suicide attacks on pizza parlours and market places. In Western Europe members of the muslim flock are overrepresented in both welfare statistics and crime statistics, indicating that great contributions to a countries economy, despite claims to the contrary, are doubtful at best.
Islam claims some 1.3 billion followers. But there are 2 billion Christians in the world. And that leaves another 2.7 billion Hindus, Buddhists, Jews, Shintoists, new-agers and atheists, all of whom are kufr and thus enemies of Allah. That is roughly a proportion of 1 muslim for every 4 infidels. With those numbers, why do we need fear? The only way islam will ever reach its objective is if we hand victory to them without a fight.
Aye, but there's the rub.
A couple of days ago we linked to an interview with the director of CSPI, Bill Warner. Going of on an interesting tangent, Warner compares the Wests attitude in the face if muslim threats and demands for 'respect' for islam with the attitude of battered women.
Indeed, the psychology of our intellectuals is exactly like the psychology of the abused wife, the sexually abused child or rape victim. Look at the parallels between the response of abuse victims and our intellectuals. See how violence has caused denial.Ayaan Hirsi Ali seems to be thinking along similar lines:
The victims deny that the abuse took place: Our media never reports the majority of jihad around the world. Our intellectuals don’t talk about how all of the violence is connected to a political doctrine.
The abuser uses fear to control the victim: What was the reason that newspapers would not publish the Mohammed cartoon? Salman Rushdie still has a death sentence for his novel. What “cutting edge” artist creates any artistic statement about Islam? Fear rules our intellectuals and artists.
The victims find ways to blame themselves: We are to blame for the attacks on September 11, 2001. If we try harder Muslims will act nicer. We have to accommodate their needs.
The victim is humiliated: White people will not talk about how their ancestors were enslaved by Islam. No one wants to claim the victims of jihad. Why won’t we claim the suffering of our ancestors? Why don’t we cry about the loss of cultures and peoples? We are too ashamed to care.
The victim feels helpless: “What are we going to do?” “We can’t kill 1.3 billion people.” No one has any understanding or optimism. No one has an idea of what to try. The only plan is to “be nicer.”
The victim turns the anger inward: What is the most divisive issue in today’s politics? Iraq. And what is Iraq really about? Political Islam. The Web has a video about how the CIA and Bush planned and executed September 11. Cultural self-loathing is the watchword of our intellectuals and artists.
We hate ourselves because we are mentally molested and abused. Our intellectuals and artists have responded to the abuse of jihad just as a sexually abused child or a rape victim would respond. We are quite intellectually ill and are failing at our job of clear thinking. We can’t look at our denial.
We are constantly apologizing, and we don't notice how much abuse we're takingClassic behavior of a battered woman, as far as I know. The question then of course is: Why? Why are we behaving like a lady with a black eye behind large sunglasses? I honestly do not know. On the face of it, there is no reason for such an attitude. Unless Warner is right and we carry in our collective subconscious the scars of battles past.
So, it is not only fear, but also shame. Shame of what? I guess this is where modern multi-cult gets and other forms of feminine marxism come in. We in the West get it constantly drilled into us that we are too rich. That we use too much, pollute too much. Global warming can not be a natural occurrence, it has to be man-made. Moreover, it has to be white-man-made. Basically, we are made ashamed of our well being.
But if that is the case, we should get over it. There is much to be proud of and much worth fighting for. Yesterday, EU Referendum made a fare stab at defining what exactly. Our well being and our wealth is not just luck of the draw. It is hard earned. It is the result of an ethic that values work for its own sake and puts man in control of his own destiny. It is the result of a metaphysical world view that allows man freedom. Freedom of will and freedom of choice.
And before anyone accuses me of claiming superiority of Western civilization, I'd like to point out that a roughly similar ethic exists in the Far East, with roughly the same result: Japan is one of the richest countries in the world, tiny Taiwan has always outperformed her big sister. But China, by introducing more economic freedom, allowing its citizens control over their own life, is catching up. The entire South American continent saw a huge increase in economic activity and subsequent rise of wealth when it shed it's dictatorial regimes (although Venezuela is taking a definite turn for the worse, right now).
The comeback to this type of reasoning from (crypto-)marxists is usually that this is all the result of exploitation and oppression of one kind or another. In it's most recent incarnation it blames climate change and pollution on the economic success of free nations. But, if I may quote Vaclav Klaus for a moment:
[T]here exists a huge correlation between the care we give to the environment on one side and the wealth and technological prowess on the other side. It’s clear that the poorer the society is, the more brutally it behaves with respect to Nature, and vice versa.And one only needs to remind the world of what happened to the Aral Sea to illustrate the point that Klaus is making.
It’s also true that there exist social systems that are damaging Nature - by eliminating private ownership and similar things - much more than the freer societies.
We should take care of our planet. We should care for the poor, the hungry, the thirsty and the sick. But not at the cost of losing ourselves in being ashamed of our own success. We worked, and are working, hard at earning our (and our governments) keep. We do care and we are working hard at that as well.
It is high time we threw off our shame and our fear. It is time we stand up and be counted. It is time we took pride in ourselves and our history. It is time we rekindle the courage with which we fought WW2 and the Cold War. It is time for nations and peoples to be men again.