Thursday, November 16, 2006

Trudeau Foundation gives floor to marriage of Islamists and Leftists

Updating my previous post: The Trudeau Foundation, a Montreal-based academic organization seemingly devoted to the dictum that in today's universities "it's not what you know, but who you know" that counts, are in our fair city for a conference on "Muslims in Western Societies". According to their programme the Trudeau Foundation intends:
To ensure balance in the moderated discussions to take place during plenary and working group sessions, some of the best creative minds on this topic from Canada and the world have been invited to share their views. The dialogue will acknowledge the international and historical contexts, but will centre mostly on themes that relate specifically to the relationships between Muslims and other citizens within Western societies.
So guess who they have as their keynote speakers to ensure balance and creative minds at this public opening plenary session (but first read this abysmal introduction to the speakers that implies orthodox Christians and Jews are as much a threat to the West as are Muslim fundamentalists)?
The secularism of Europe and North America is increasingly being challenged by adherents to orthodox forms of religion, including Christianity, Islam and Judaism. Fundamentalists try to ban books from public libraries and school curricula. Fatwas have been issued demanding punishment, even death, for some writers who are said to
defame Islam or The Prophet himself. Many Jewish writers have described the tensions of traditional communities – in Israel and in the Diaspora – surrounded by the temptations of the secular world. How do writers who care about these issues navigate the shoals of secularism and orthodoxy?

Welcome: Dr. Frederick H. Lowy, Interim President
Dr. Pierre-Gerlier Forest, President
Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation
Chair: Ms. Eleanor Wachtel, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC)
Keynote Speakers: Mr. Tariq Ali, London, UK
Author, filmmaker and historian
Dr. Mohamed Elmasry, Chair and National
President of The Canadian Islamic Congress
That's right, Mohammed Elmasry, Canada's leading Islamist, the chap who said (before he eventually was forced to apologize) that every adult in Israel is a legitimate target of terrorist murder, and who, in a recent victimary rant, told the "Marxism-2006" conference in Toronto:
Now, for the first time in history, the political left is working with conservative Muslims on issues of social justice, with the long-term goal of building a world that lives by peace, through justice. Communists, Marxists, socialists, and nationalists are working with civil libertarians, liberals, and conservatives to achieve this urgent goal together.
And then there is Tariq Ali, the anti-Western writer for Britain's leftist Guardian newspaper, famous for his declarations that Britons were to blame for the murders of their fellow nationals in the London train bombings because of Britain's role in the toppling of Saddam Hussein.

Anyway, this pathetic attempt by the Trudeau Foundation at implying moral equivalence among religions and fundamentalisms (but where are the Orthodox Jew and fundamentalist Christian speakers?) reminds me of a recent statement by ex-PLO terrorist, Walid Shoebat, in a BBC interview:
“Christian fundamentalists give the world a headache, I confess, but Muslim fundamentalists will whack your head right off your shoulders, sir” I was quickly thanked and escorted out of the BBC.
No doubt , the Chair for this session, the CBC's Eleanor Wachtel (token Jew) also knows how to control such outbursts.

The growing alliance between the (anti-)Western left and totalitarian Islam is a development we need seriously to start thinking about. The sundry left-liberal academics who will hobnob with Elmasry and Ali, under the banner of that charismatic multiculturalist friend of dictators, and nation-bankrupting expander of the welfare state, Pierre Trudeau, are living off the endowments of the taxpayers and earlier generations of Canadians whose liberalism was not intended to support apologists for Islamic fascism, Marxism, and imperialism. We need again to put nation-respecting adults in charge of our institutions. Shame on the Trudeau foundation.

By the way, the programme for this weekend's conference begins with a silly quote:
There is no “Islam” and there is no “West,” - at least if these terms are understood to represent single ideas or homogeneous societies. Rather, there are numerous “Islams” – religious, political and geographic, just as there are numerous “Wests.”
There's a typical expression of postmodern nihilism for you, founded in an ignorance of the generative or historical relationship among singular events, the texts or language that events generate, and the ensuing human realities framed by this language. In other words, the Trudeau foundation is ignorant of the anthropology by which cultures originate and generate differences. A principle of unity must always precede any human diversity. Thus there is but one Islam and one West - because all Islamic or all Western "cultures" or varieties share common origins in singular founding events - though there are indeed many ways to re-present these shared origins. In other words, when judging "Islam" it is of central importance to reflect, as do Muslims, on the life and revelation of its founder, that great warrior, murderer, and imperialist, Mohammed.


Anonymous said...

I rather enjoy the useless banalities. For example:

There is no “Canada” and there is no “America,” - at least if these terms are understood to represent single ideas or homogeneous societies. Rather, there are numerous “Canadas” – religious, political and geographic, just as there are numerous “Americas.”

When you can play switcheroo with the nouns and somehow manage to lose absolutely none of the insight of the original statement then I would suggest the original statement was without insight.

truepeers said...

That's right. The logic or our metaphysical or philosophical tradition tends to remove nouns or concepts from the historical context of their emergence, rendering them abstract "ideas" in and of themselves, dropping reference to their formative events. But as your thought experiment shows, meaninglessness can ensue when we forget our shared national or cultural "nouns" depend for their meaning on distinct events of origin. To point to "Canada" or "America" is necessarily to point to something specific in place and time however many things have since evolved in its train that we can also point towards.

I don't know if you saw it or not, but last night I re-wrote my criticism, in the post above, of that quotation, hopefully to make it a little clearer.