Brian McLaren recently observed Ramadan with his Muslim friends. He has obviously learned much, as he now understands his duty as a dhimmi. In a recent post he advices Pres. Obama, the Nobel Peace prize winner, on how to achieve peace in Afghanistan: Surrender and pay the jizya.
From Islam 101 at Jihad Watch we learn:
Islam’s persecution of non-Muslims is in no way limited to jihad, even though that is the basic relationship between the Muslim and non-Muslim world. After the jihad concludes in a given area with the conquest of infidel territory, the dhimma, or treaty of protection, may be granted to the conquered “People of the Book” — historically, Jews, Christians, and Zoroastrians. The dhimma provides that the life and property of the infidel are exempted from jihad for as long as the Muslim rulers permit, which has generally meant for as long as the subject non-Muslims — the dhimmi — prove economically useful to the Islamic state. The Quran spells out the payment of the jizya (poll- or head-tax; Sura 9:29), which is the most conspicuous means by which the Muslim overlords exploit the dhimmi. But the jizya is not merely economic in its function; it exists also to humiliate the dhimmi and impress on him the superiority of Islam.
Brian McLaren writes in an open letter to Pres. Barack Hussein Obama:
I’m writing to ask you to find another way ahead in Afghanistan. I wrote a similar letter to President Bush when he was preparing for war in Iraq.
I believe now, as you and I both did then, that war is not the answer. Violence breeds violence, and as Dr. King said, you can murder a murderer, but you can’t murder murder. As the apostle Paul said, evil must be overcome with good, which means that violence and hate must be overcome with justice and love, not more of the same.
Obviously, you know things the rest of us don’t know. And you have pressures and responsibilities the rest of us don’t have. But we have based our lives on the moral principles that guided leaders like Dr. King, Desmond Tutu, and Nelson Mandela. We share a profound faith in a loving, non-violent God. We share a commitment to live in the way of Jesus the peacemaker. That’s why escalation is not a change we can believe in.
I don’t argue for leaving Afghanistan high and dry as we’ve done too often in the past. Evil can’t be overcome by passivity or abdication, but only by positive good and creative action. In that spirit, I offer this humble proposal:
1. Take the 65 billion we would have spent there in the coming year and turn it into an aid and development fund. If you want to go farther, you could put a value on the cost of American lives that would be lost there (I have no idea how this inestimable cost could be calculated), and add that sum to the fund. 65 billion could build a lot of peace-oriented schools and hospitals in Afghanistan. It could serve as start-up capital for a lot of new businesses and it could pave a lot of roads. It could train a lot of police officers and it could enhance a lot of social infrastructure. It could give hope to a lot of women and girls who currently don’t have much hope, and it could provide a lot of constructive outlets for men and boys who right now don’t have many options besides picking up a machine gun and joining a warlord.
Pure Taqiyya, for surely McLaren understands the place of woman under Sharia law and the obligation on all Muslims to fight the jihad?
Mr. President, you have my respect and my prayers at this important time. I believe you have the intelligence and insight to find a creative way to use a new kind of force in the world … something far more powerful than bombs, guns, and bullets: the generative force of creativity, of justice, of collaboration, and yes, of hope. Can we find a new and better way to help Afghanistan rise out of chaos and complicity with Al Queda? You know the answer many of us will shout and chant: yes, we can.
With respect and hope,
Which god is McLaren talking about when he says:
We share a profound faith in a loving, non-violent God. We share a commitment to live in the way of Jesus the peacemaker.
The problem is that his non-violent god is not the God of the Bible. Has anybody counted how many people the God of the Bible destroyed because of their sin and their idolatary? The real Jesus Christ, God in human flesh, said: Do you think that I have come to give peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. (Luke 12:51)
In an article entitled “Saviour no more” on Frontpagemag.com, Mark D. Tooley discerns Brian McLaren’s letter. He concludes:
McLaren helpfully suggested that conservatives would like this Afghan trust fund approach because it emphasizes “personal choice.” And “progressives” will like it because it “changes the role of the U.S. in the global neighborhood – from reactive bully or intentional dominator to responsible neighbor and partner for the common good.” Presumably, McLaren, as a “progressive,” shares the U.S. as “bully” perspective. He implored Obama to consider this switch away from “bombs, guns, and bullets” towards “creativity, of justice, of collaboration.” How can Obama say no to such a generous suggestion from a man who sweepingly wrote a book called Everything Must Change: When the World’s Biggest Problems and Jesus’ Good News Collide?
In his pre-Iraq War missive to President Bush, McLaren carefully pronounced: “Someday, pacifism will be right for everyone, even if it isn’t now, and we should prepare our hearts for that day and long for it to come.” Actually, most churches tend to believe that world peace arrives only at the end of time, when God Himself rules the earth. Until such time, there are wars and rumors of war. But the largely pacifist Evangelical Left prefers not to wait. Instead, it hypothesizes that all the world’s trouble spots are similar to an academic debate, church controversy, or coffee house dispute. Good will and reasoned arguments, oiled by checks from the government, can appease all acrimony.
Traditional faith teaches that fallen humanity is not always so easily mollified. In times of conflict, whole peoples are often irrational, unreasonable, spiteful, and prone to self-destruction. The state “wields the sword” against looming evil when it will not otherwise recede. Brian McLaren and the evangelical Left are bound to be disappointed in any head of state, including even Obama, who confronts reality rather than self-generated illusions.
Now that we have heard from the perfect emergent dhimmi, here is a sobering article by Andrew C. McCarthy at.
Rarely has there been such a dramatic disconnect between rhetoric and reality. On Afghanistan, the national-security Right talks about “victory,” concerned Democrats talk about “success,” and Obama allies such as Sen. John Kerry talk about the “fulfillment of our mission.” They aren’t talking about the same thing. The somnolent press is content to court, rather than clarify, this confusion, but that’s no reason for the rest of us to go along for the ride.
What is “victory” or “success”? What is this “mission” of ours that must be fulfilled?
Staunch supporters of our military are seething as President Obama dithers over Gen. Stanley McChrystal’s request for an additional 40,000 troops. Their frustration would be justifiable if the main issue were Obama’s inconstancy. Months ago, the president endorsed the counterinsurgency strategy of McChrystal, his hand-picked commander. Now, he is balking. In what has become a habit for Obama, he changes the rationale for his temporizing almost daily: from the need to study further a situation he had purportedly studied plenty before backing McChrystal; to the notion that a counterterrorism strategy, rather than counterinsurgency, may be the way to go; to the latest excuse, floated this weekend by White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel, that the uncertainty hovering over Afghanistan’s fraud-ridden election makes a deployment decision premature.
Whatever the explanation on offer, the conservative reaction is always the same: “Isn’t this the war Obama said we had to win?” Nothing has changed, the national-security Right reasons: The Taliban are still our enemies; if they take over Afghanistan they will give safe haven to al-Qaeda, and we will be in grave danger of another 9/11. So why won’t Obama just give McChrystal what he needs to defeat the Taliban?
The issue is not Obama’s inconstancy; it is the dubious nature of the mission. And I don’t mean the “mission” implied by the Right’s rhetoric; I’m talking about the mission as it is conceived by the theater commander. In a lengthy essay for the magazine section of last Sunday’s New York Times, Dexter Filkins, who was granted extraordinary access to General McChrystal, states the matter succinctly:
“What McChrystal is proposing is not a temporary, Iraq-style surge — a rapid influx of American troops followed by a withdrawal. McChrystal’s plan is a blueprint for an extensive American commitment to build a modern state in Afghanistan, where one has never existed, and to bring order to a place famous for the empires it has exhausted.”…
… And here is the not-so-secret dirty little secret: Islamic militancy, whether in the form of the Taliban or its many other varieties, is “not finite.” That is because neither its source nor its center of gravity is confined to Afghanistan. Nevertheless, we have chosen not to address the source, which is Islamist ideology, and we have chosen to fight only in Afghanistan, as opposed to the many places where the enemy rolls new fighters off the assembly line. We have made these choices because we lack the will for a broader fight.
Unwilling to admit that, we miniaturize the challenge. Thus, the war is said only to be in Afghanistan. The “challenge” is framed as isolating a relative handful of aberrant Takfiris — the Muslims who claim the right to declare other Muslims apostates and kill them — rather than confronting the fact that tens of millions of Muslims despise the West. And the mission is portrayed as high-minded nation-building, not anything so jingoistic as pursuing America’s national interests, vanquishing the militants who’ve taken up arms against our country, and demonstrating to jihadist sympathizers the dire consequences of joining the militant ranks.
Here’s Filkins again: “At the heart of McChrystal’s strategy are three principles: protect the Afghan people, build an Afghan state, and make friends with whomever you can, including insurgents. Killing the Taliban is now among the least important things that are expected of NATO soldiers.”
…Our purpose is “this process” of ensuring Afghans’ security and government services — neither of which they have ever had; neither of which it ever ought to be thought our obligation to provide.
“This process” is the gargantuan burden of building, from scratch, an oxymoronic sharia-democracy in a backwards, corrupt, fundamentalist Islamic armpit. And as if we’d learned nothing from the ravages against us, the process absurdly assumes that Islam — rather than being a major part of the problem — is an asset that we can turn to our advantage. If such a process could work (it can’t), it would take decades, cost hundreds of billions of dollars, and cause an unknowable number of American casualties.
But that is the McChrystal plan. The idea is not to defeat the Taliban and al-Qaeda but to build a modern nation-state that will eventually be both competent to fight and interested in fighting the Taliban and al-Qaeda on its own.
Here is the irony. Those who favor McChrystal’s proposal argue, with great force, that a counterterrorism strategy — i.e., attacking terror nests from remote bases — cannot work. For that conclusion, they cite no less an authority than General McChrystal, who is the nation’s leading expert on military counterterrorism. But if “cannot work” is our criterion, then why would anyone favor a democracy-building effort in Afghanistan?
The real dirty little secret is that there is only one way to win the war, and that is to attack our militant enemies and their abettors globally. This being the case, our unwillingness to do that necessarily means anything else we try “cannot work.” We have taken real victory off the table. What is left is a series of “cannot work” options, and our burden is to pick the least bad one.