Jeremy Corbyn is making the claim that it is British foreign policy that makes terrorist attacks inevitable. However he, and people like him, make the mistake of viewing Islam from their own ideological perspective and drawing his conclusions from there. Corbyn’s evident lack of understanding of Islam, either wilful or otherwise, makes his assumptions about what terrorists want dangerous.
Corbyn is a Marxist and as a result he sees all societal conflict as a result of the struggle between the oppressed and oppressors. Such thought suggests that by removing this inequality peace will be achieved. It’s easy for adherents to these thoughts to transfer their beliefs onto Islamic terrorists as Marxism itself sees violent means to achieve their utopia as acceptable, if not moral. Secondly, as a supporter of the IRA he, like so many others, is making the mistake that religions are ‘all the same’.
These thoughts lead him to conclude that should we give the terrorists what they want, in his view by stopping the airstrikes (which he appears to infer are purely aggressive acts by the West) the terrorist incidents will stop. No doubt he, again, sees the troubles in Northern Ireland as evidence for this thought process.
However, despite the fact that the members of the IRA were predominantly Catholic, the beliefs of the organisation were influenced more by Marxism. This is why the IRA had clear aims that could be negotiated towards, even though their methods of achieving them were reprehensible.
That doesn’t mean that the IRA members weren’t influenced by their Catholic culture, or the Loyalists by the similar Christian culture. When we are steeped in a prevailing culture we, naturally, imbibe the thought process subconsciously that are within it. Within a Christian culture that means an appreciation for the sanctity of life, that it is God’s to give and take away (or in a more secure sense that all life is sacred), as well as the theological discourse surrounding when it is right and proper for a state to use violent means in order to defend this.
As a result correctly applied Christian doctrine teaches that if it’s in order to defend life that a war may be waged, through just means, and it should end when life has been safeguarded. Of course, nations who profess to be Christian have waged wars of aggression in order to obtain monetary value. However a wealth of Christian heritage is a base we draw from in order to critique such wars.
In relation to the state and Christian believers (again, unfortunately, not always this in practise) is the belief that although there should be prayer for “Thy will be done”, and therefore Christian beliefs be reflected in the state, that this reflection must be voluntary. However, as the nature of man is not ‘good’ but ‘fallen’ even removing all the inequalities will not create a utopia here on earth; even when a Christian culture is evident.
I’m not seeking to dilute the evidently immorality of the IRAs actions, just seeking to unpack the thought processes behind it. The two ideologies, Marxism and Christianity, may allow the participant to engage in acts of terrible violence to bring about ‘justice’, however the underpinning belief of the sanctity of life may restrain that. Hence the difference between Islamic and IRS bombers; both committing despicable acts, the latter giving coded messages to minimise the casualties as a result of their actions.
In contrast the Islamic belief system believes that Allah wills a theocracy here on earth, and through the Qur’an and the actions of his prophet Muhammad has demonstrated that subjugating people to this through force is not only legitimate, but holy.
Those who try and avoid this point by inferring that either this is not the case are, like Corbyn, doing so because they are imposing their beliefs onto Islam. Those who try and claim, as I’ve heard so often, that ‘all Islam needs is there own Reformation, like the Christians and Jews’ are ignorant of the differences between these monotheistic religions.
The Qur’an and the Bible are different; the former is believed to be the very word of god, spoken directly to Muhammad as a consequence of the ‘errors’ in Judaism and Christianity. It is, if anything, the equivalent of Jesus – The Word of God. The Bible, or the books as the name infers, is a collection of writings, by different authors, from different classes and backgrounds, in different historical settings that communicate throughout The Old Testament Israel’s history, poems praising God, prophetical warnings and the coming of the Messiah. Such a diverse collection of works can and is open to interpretation; it always has been as the two creation stories demonstrate.
Therefore Judaism and Christianity are able to discuss and debate God’s meaning when it comes to our morality and His intentions for us. This is precisely why a Reformation could take place. Islam would, theoretically, be unable to do that as they would in essence be arguing with God himself.
The reason why this is important to consider is that, just as our society has had mores passed down from Christendom despite our evident rejection of its roots, Islamic societies have a similar, but more powerful, underpinning of their own moral thought processes. That would include the belief of a theocracy, which can be achieved by violent means, the subjugation of non-Muslims, the second class status of women, that homosexuality is a sin against God: I could go on. These are in effect non-debatable, because they are from the very word of god. So even if we withdraw from all conflicts within the Middle East it is unlikely that acts of terrorism will stop.
Again, it is a mistake to take the superficial comparison of Islam with other religions as our example. It is more beneficial, actually, to compare Islam to the Marxist thoughts of Jeremy Corbyn himself. They both are focused on a utopia after all and, as the recent culture wars have demonstrated, these are absolute belief systems and they demand absolute submission to the ideology in its entirety.
So, like gay people, women, black people etc, even if there is support for what is seen as a need to overcome ‘self-evident’ injustice, even if the means aren’t agreed with, what is ‘self-evident’ will quickly become less evident to the majority within those groups. However, as those not subscribing to the whole agenda will soon find out, the methods used to force the political goal will be used to ensure their silence too.
Whereas social justice demands more and more allegiance to demands that we can wildly imagine, we know the ultimate goal of Islam. Subjugation to this doctrine and all that entails.