May 23, 2006


This time the crocodile won't wait: a review of Londonistan by Melanie Phillips (Spengler, 5/23/06, Asia Times)

Black and white Baptists made their peace in the US South a generation ago. Protestants and Catholics yet might make peace in Northern Ireland. But that is an entirely different matter, says Phillips: "True, the IRA [Irish Republican Army] were Catholics and their adversaries were Protestants. But their cause was not Catholicism. It was a united Ireland. They did not want to impose the authority of the pope upon Britain ... There is simply no comparison to the agenda of the Islamists who want to defeat the West in the name of Islam."

The institution that should understand this best, namely the Church of England, seems most eager to liquidate itself. Notes Phillips: "In America, the churches have been in the forefront of the defense of Western values. Some of the strongest support for Israel comes from evangelical Christians. In Britain, by contrast, the Church of England has been in the forefront of the retreat from the Judeo-Christian heritage."

The Archbishop of York, the black Ugandan Dr John Sentamu, praises the British Empire and the culture it spread around the world, whereas the present Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, apologizes for taking "cultural captives" through the export of English hymns and liturgy. Sadly, the "cultural captives", mainly black African converts, are all that is left of the C of E. Its evangelical wing, represented by former archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey - a vocal critic of Islam in the past two years - cannot compete with dissenting churches, and the High Anglican side barely breathes.

It is a bit late in time for a national church. The Roman Catholic Church can make a case that Benedict XVI has the right to head a universal church by virtue of his apostolic succession from St Peter, and thus can forgive sins in Jesus' own stead. But why should Queen Elizabeth II, much less the overtly Islamophile Prince Charles, enjoy this privilege? Perhaps the moment is ripe for the remnants of English Catholicism to join the Roman Church, and for British Protestants to find their way to more robust dissenting denominations.

In any case, Western liberalism, including the sexual habits of English curates, does not appeal to Muslims. On the contrary, Phillips says:

British Muslims are overwhelmingly horrified and disgusted by the louche and dissolute behavior of a Britain that has torn up the notion of respectability. They observe the alcoholism, drug abuse and pornography, the breakdown of family life and the encouragement of promiscuity, and find themselves there in opposition to their host society's guiding values. What they are recoiling from, of course, is the breakdown of Western values. After a visit to the United States in 1948, Sayed Qutb wrote: "Humanity today is living in a large brothel!"

Revulsion and contempt color Muslim attitudes toward the British leftists who most desire to appease them.

He and she tiptoe right up to the edge of insight there: just as the cause of the IRA wasn't Catholicism, neither is the cause of Islamicists Islam.

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 23, 2006 12:00 AM
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