Sunday, January 28, 2007

D'Souza Plays Defense

Dinesh D'Souza, author of the appalling "Enemy at Home," is forced to play some defense in the Washington Post. For those of you who don't know, D'Souza's book blames the American Left for 9/11, saying that our liberal policies on abortion and homosexuality are what offends the Muslim world, and that we should thus make common cause with traditional Muslims on these issues to drive a wedge between them and the radicals. In other words, if the problem is that we have too much freedom, the answer is capitulation.

It's worth noting that he seems intent on pinning the whole controversy on the usual liberal suspects, when my impression is that even some conservatives have piped up to say D'Souza crossed the line. Even still, what's noteworthy is that he really can't escape the upshot of his argument: that we're being attacked because we actually respect freedom and the civil liberties of our citizens:
Contrary to the common liberal view, I don't believe that the 9/11 attacks were payback for U.S. foreign policy. Bin Laden isn't upset because there are U.S. troops in Mecca, as liberals are fond of saying. (There are no U.S. troops in Mecca.) [And liberals don't say their are--what drugs is he on here? --ed] He isn't upset because Washington is allied with despotic regimes in the region. Israel aside, what other regimes are there in the Middle East? It isn't all about Israel. (Why hasn't al-Qaeda launched a single attack against Israel?) The thrust of the radical Muslim critique of America is that Islam is under attack from the global forces of atheism and immorality -- and that the United States is leading that attack.

Contrary to President Bush's view, they don't hate us for our freedom, either. Rather, they hate us for how we use our freedom. When Planned Parenthood International opens clinics in non-Western countries and dispenses contraceptives to unmarried girls, many see it as an assault on prevailing religious and traditional values. When human rights groups use their interpretation of international law to pressure non-Western countries to overturn laws against abortion or to liberalize laws regarding homosexuality, the traditional sensibilities of many of the world's people are violated.

So....yes. Problem: When the US tries to act like the beacon of liberty we were founded to be, there is a backlash. Solution: Stop supporting liberty. D'Souza can twist and turn all he wants, but that is the nut of his thesis.
Even as the cultural left accuses Bush of imperialism in invading Iraq, it deflects attention from its own cultural imperialism aimed at secularizing Muslim society and undermining its patriarchal and traditional values.

Undermining patriarchy? Say it ain't so! Again, the argument from D'Souza is clear: America's conception of liberty (including, we now know, opposition to patriarchy) is exported around the world. Traditional Muslims don't like this. Hence, the US needs to reassert patriarchal values here. I.e., capitulate.

When D'Souza says that Muslims don't hate us for our freedoms, he may be right. But one thing is clear: D'Souza does hate us for our freedoms. And his book is a not-so-subtle call for eliminating them.

1 comment:

seamus said...

It’s official: D’Souza is a cultural appeaser.

Also, all those tapes of Osama blasting US foreign and military policy were fakes.