September 11, 2007

"It is your duty to join the caravan (of martyrs) until the sufficiency is complete and the march to aid the High and Omnipotent continues."

Osama bin Laden is giving more advice to the "young men among the youth of Islam."

Why not live instead? It's a rather wonderful alternative to death. The caravan of life includes music:

39 comments:

MadisonMan said...

Why isn't OBL first in line in this caravan of martyrs?

Trooper York said...

You have the wrong caravan:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BxYV1jGuj5U

Simon said...

But remember, folks: Bush is the enemy.

Trooper York said...

Or perhaps this one:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6BZiFBws3I

Maxine Weiss said...

Barbara Olsen

Trooper York said...

With your family ties I think one might be to the point:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfJMhxHUGsQ

Hoosier Daddy said...

Why not live instead? It's a rather wonderful alternative to death. The caravan of life includes music:

Well it doesn’t seem like the Islamofascists are fond of music as it was pretty much a death sentence under the Taliban.
Al-Qaida traditionally issues a video every year on the anniversary, with the last testament of one of the 19 hijackers involved in the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
I find it remarkable that many who decry Bush for failing to pursue Osama are many of the same ones who don’t seem to think it is a crazed notion that Bush was somehow behind 9/11. Then again logical disconnect is not just a fault of the left. The Islamic world suffers much it in the same respect as on one hand they still say Israel was behind 9/11 at the same time praising it as a terrific blow against the Great Satan.

These have to be the most dysfunctional group of people since the Thuggees and the sooner they follow the same end, the better.

Trooper York said...

John from Cincinnati called and suggested this one:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qeUan4As5wM

Ron said...

Oh to be alive AND High and Omnipotent! That's my career goal, right there!

SGT Ted said...

It's a call to join the Islamic Death Cult.

Ron said...

Run, don't walk...away from Islamic fundamentalism...OBL...don't Venture too far outta that cave...good to see the Just for Men beard shoepolish is working out for ya...America puts radar-absorbing materials in that stuff you know...

Paddy O. said...

This highlights the different paths a form of religion can take. For many religion is a way of hope, of life, of renewal, of inner sustenance.

For others religion is a path to power and control and domination.

Those in the former celebrate life and offer life, often in contrast to the state. They help those hwo need help and increase life and bounty. Even in death they honor life. The notable early Christian martyrs who died under Rome exemplify this. Polycarp's martyrdom is especially potent.
Such a form of religion is a source of music, of dance, of art, of joy. L'Chaim!

The other side is always willing to sacrifice those who are the lowest and most needy. Using words of religion they secure their own ego, making themselves into the form of a god, as the spokesman for their god.

This is so the case with Osama, but also in varying ways throughout the religious world. Anyone who has attended church has seen the politics and plays for power that often highlight the preacher over the nameless person in the pew. Mega-churches excel at burning people out for the greater cause.

This type of religion can gain great power because that is its goal, and it is always poisonous.

The other type stays in the background and brings renewed life to a society often boldly addressing major societal problems and emphasizing the needs of those most in need.

The power kind always brings death, for only one or a few people really count and are allowed freedom to live. The life affirming kind emphasizes resurrection and hope is always at the forefront, hope for everyone to not only live but to live with more fullness than they've ever experienced.

The power kind seeks to extinguish people. The life affirming seeks to help people become who they were meant to be.

Having seen both worlds it strikes me not that Osama so emphasizes death, but rather how much of Osama I've seen in ministries or pastors or other religious leaders. Fortunately they've been restrained. Maybe enough to let the life-affirming spirituality quietly become the dominant expression again.

Paddy O. said...

Oh, and it also occurs to me that maybe Osama is just an old ape pretending to be a man.

Trooper York said...

Maybe this would be the best caravan to join today:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ARl3dUyAyc

jane said...

Perhaps something is lost (or, worse, gained) through translation, but the moral and Freudian perversion Osama preaches in the name of Allah and Caliphate is striking:

“the [young men’s] lot is to destroy themselves for Allah's Word to be Supreme"-- perversion of faith, individuality, and the human survival instinct

“We shall come at you from your front and back, your right and left”-- almost gang rape imagery

"we are not competing with you for this world, because it does not equal in Allah's eyes the wing of a mosquito"-- perversion of gift of life to that of gift of death

"The condition of Islam at the present time makes one cry ... in view of the weakness, humiliation, scorn and enslavement it is suffering…"-- sheer perversity of personifying religion as if its manhood were insulted

I think Bush's homeland security adviser Frances Townsend got it right when he responded by saying Osama was "virtually impotent." That kind of talk speaks to them, apparently, although he could have added a flourish like “George Bush’s America will erect towers taller than your, um, ‘beard’ and more powerful than your undersized Cube, and our virile youth will date your comely Arab women when they come shopping at Barneys for the fruits of western superior design largely done by gays.”

ricpic said...

Life: sufficient but incomplete.
Death: completes life yet insufficient.

Justin said...

Is it just me, or does that quote in the title sound like something from one of those random text generators that fills my inbox with spam?

Maybe it's just the translation.

Drew W said...

Hmmm. The Caravan Of Martyrs.

If I remember correctly, it was originally called "Chesterfield Presents Your Caravan Of Martyrs," and it was broadcast on the DuMont Network. (Rumors that the legs of its famous Dancing Koran belonged to former Miss America Bess Myerson were found to be an urban legend, however.)

Eli Blake said...

why not live instead?

The answer comes if you look at where many (though not all) of the recruits to al-Qaeda in Islamic countries come from-- they come from either monarchies in which the sheikhs who run the country keep both the power and the wealth to themselves (i.e. Saudi Arabia) therefore condemning many young people to a life with little to offer in the future, or they come from pseudo-democracies (i.e. Egypt) in which corruption and an inadequate social system again have many people living in squalor (though I will admit that a number of their higher profile Egyptian recruits, i.e. Mohammad Atta and al-Zawahri do not come from backgrounds that include squalor-- but most of their 'foot soldiers' do.)

The real problem is that the repressive governments of the middle east breed discontent, Islamicist organizations often fill the gap (ever wonder why Hamas is so popular in Gaza? It's because they have a social service arm which provides bread and services to people when no one else does) and in so doing guarantee an endless supply of recruits.

I believe that eventually there will be a revolution in Saudi Arabia that will depose the monarchy (which is about as popular with most of their citizens as, well, Osama is in the U.S.) The question is, will the U.S. be seen as propping up the old regime or will we be in a position to deal constructively with whoever replaces the monarchy?

SteveR said...

Just comes to mind

If life seems jolly rotten
There's something you've forgotten
And that's to laugh and smile and dance and sing.
When you're feeling in the dumps
Don't be silly chumps
Just purse your lips and whistle - that's the thing.

And...always look on the bright side of life...
Always look on the light side of life...

Simon said...

Eli, to nothing short of my complete astonishment, you just rattled off verbatim the foreign policy view most closely identified with neoconservatism, and explicitly urged by Perle & Frumm in An End to Evil.

Simon said...

Jane - Fran Townsend is a she, not a he. ;)

Hoosier Daddy said...

The real problem is that the repressive governments of the middle east breed discontent, Islamicist organizations often fill the gap

I don't disagree with you in that respect. On the other hand, when one looks at Iraq and our removal of a brutal and corrupt dicator, all I have heard is that we have created more terrorists. That seems at odds considering that the Iraqis have been provided an opportunity to embrace a free and democratic state.

The problem I see in the Middle East in particular is that you either have Saddam/Mubarak/King Saud types or Islamic nutballs. There doesn't seem to be a moderate element that is capable of rallying the masses. If in fact there is a revolution in Saudi Arabia, probably the only difference we'll see is a openly hostile government versus one which at least goes through the pretense of being on our side.

There is poverty and squalor and repressive nations all over the world yet it seems that only those nations which are Muslim seem to not only resort to destruction but want to export it to others as well.

Ann Althouse said...

Simon said..."Eli, to nothing short of my complete astonishment, you just rattled off verbatim the foreign policy view most closely identified with neoconservatism, and explicitly urged by Perle & Frumm in An End to Evil."

Yeah, really. By the way, did you know that I was in the middle of listening to an NPR interview with Perle and Frum about "An End to Evil" when I decided to start this blog and, turning off the radio, started this blog? Read the first 3 posts in the oldest archive.

jane said...

He's a she? Even better, Simon. I never watch TV news nor read for pronouns. I'm just lucky to understand most basic nouns and verbs :)

For Eli and all of us, here’s an excellent article on the problem of supporting theocratic reactionarism (Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas, al Qaeda, et.) in dissent of current governance in the ME : link

Possible antidotes to the Caravan of Martyrs: Christianity, ethical secularism, Mormon missionaries, war, and the Caravan of Love.

Simon said...

Ann - maybe that explains the vortex: the blog was born under a bad [i.e. neocon] sign! ;)

Pogo said...

I prefer Patton to Osama: "Now I want you to remember that no bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country."


And of the ones who wish to be martyred for Islam, well, we aim to please.

PatCA said...

a 2004 AQ tape, which claimed the Madrid bombings in honor of 9/11, stated: "You love life, and we love death."

That about says it all. However, 3 years later, all the coward Osama can do is hide in a cave with dopes like Azzam the American and exhort other people to die. What a loser.

Tim said...

"Eli, to nothing short of my complete astonishment, you just rattled off verbatim the foreign policy view most closely identified with neoconservatism, and explicitly urged by Perle & Frumm in An End to Evil."

Indeed. We've an Administration with the most Wilsonian foreign policy since Wilson, and the Wilsonian Democrats hate it more than they do our enemies. How's that for irony?

Foose said...

Away, for we are ready to a man!
Our camels sniff the evening and are glad.
Lead on, O Master of the Caravan:
Lead on the Merchant-Princes of Bagdad.


We gnaw the nail of hurry. Master, away!...


from The Golden Journey to Samarkand, by James Elroy Flecker

igbalonigbanlo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Seven Machos said...

If it's true, as Osama says, that this life doesn't matter compared to the next one, then how can it possibly matter what the political, social, and economic structuers are in this life?

Very odd.

Revenant said...

If it's true, as Osama says, that this life doesn't matter compared to the next one, then how can it possibly matter what the political, social, and economic structuers are in this life?

I've been trying to get Christian theologians to give me a straight answer on that one for many, many years.

If a good person spends an eternity in everlasting bliss after death, what does it matter if he spends 80 years in torment? 0/infinity = 0% of his existence spent in torment. Why worry about how a person spends 0% of their existence?

Paddy O. said...

already

not yet

The Kingdom of God is already among us. The Kingdom of God is still to come.

So we, as Christians, are called to be now who we are to be through eternity, sustained in the pursuit of justice, and peace, and fullness with the hope of the victory already won.

Obviously, there's been a misunderstanding about what the Kingdom means through the last 1500 years. Think of it not as political, but as relational, where we enter increasingly into relationship with God, or as the Orthodox call it: theosis.

Which means that as we become closer to God, more god-like, we will naturally reflect in all our interactions and relationships the qualities of God, exemplified in love--which has all sorts of practical applications in life.

That's what some folks think about it at least.

Seven Machos said...

Rev -- It's a good question. The most brilliant thing that Jesus ever said was, of course, "Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s."

John Stodder said...

Duke Ellington -- featuring the wonderful Juan Tizol on trombone, and the stylish Ray Nance on violin -- Van Morrison and The Band. Hell yes.

Back before Bush Derangement Syndrome singed his fringe jacket, Neil Young had a great line that he directed at the Ayatollah (one of the only classic rockers to pay any attention to the jihad) --

Got people here down on their knees and prayin'
Hawks and doves are circlin' in the rain
Got rock and roll, got country music playin'
If you hate us, you just don't know what you're sayin'.

Ready to go, willin' to stay and pay
U.S.A., U.S.A.
So my sweet love can dance another free day
U.S.A., U.S.A.

AlphaLiberal said...

I remember uniting behind Bush for the invasion of Afghanistan. That was difficult, but we did it.

Then he insisted on invading Iraq, which was not involved in the attacks on us.

Since then, Bush's major work on al Qaeda has been to inflate their strength, their worth, and their numbers. Bush is al qaeda's best publicist.

As far as OBL, he does not represent the vast majority of Muslims and they don't deserve to be slimed for his religion anymore than Christians deserve to be painted with the same brush as Fred Phelps.

Jeff said...

So, Alphie, you do support murdering innocent Afghans by dropping thousand pound bombs on them? Nice morality.

People like you keep saying that Bush has made Al Q stronger, but never seem to have any facts to back it up. It's like saying, "Shh, leave that Mussolini guy alone and people will eventually stop being fascists..."

You know what's a great recruiting tool? Winning. Blowing up American ships and embassies while US troops run away scared. What's a bad recruiting tool? Having 9/10 of your recruits get killed by pissed off Americans right after they join.

And as for OBL not representing Muslims, when the question "Do you approve of suicide bombings?" gets a ~30% "Yes!" answer amongst european muslims, it seems like he's at least got some influence.

Revenant said...

I remember uniting behind Bush for the invasion of Afghanistan. That was difficult, but we did it.

That you found it "difficult" to support a war against a declared enemy of the United States immediately after that enemy launched a massive sneak attack on us really says it all.

I guess we're supposed to take heart from the fact that the desire to do what's best for your country can, in fact, win out over your personal political interests... with difficulty.