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Countering Extremism In The Age Of Identity Politics

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By Reverend Fr. Marcus M. Ramsey, Macau Interfaith Network, 15.4.2019.

Do we understand the driving forces behind what we term as radicalization or is this so fractured that we cannot even join any of the dots up at all? Young people tend to join violent extremist organizations more than any other age groups. However, this is no more a reliable indicator of vulnerability to recruitment than being male, Muslim, Christian, a petty criminal or suffering mental health problems.

Violent radicalization occurs in the nexus between ideology, religious zealotry and recruiters.

To tackle it each of these must be challenged as part of a full spectrum approach. There is also a new pattern emerging of radical white nationalist terrorism because of increased Muslim immigration and refugee influx into Europe, USA and other predominantly white historically Christian nations. The white extremists blame Jews, blacks, Hispanics for ‘’White Genocide or “White Replacement” and that there is some kind of global planned and funded Jewish plot, to inject non-Europeans such as Pakistanis, Arabs and Eastern European Jews and Gypsies into USA, Canada Europe, Australia, New Zealand for the express purpose of destroying white culture and religion, diluting the European race. People who follow this concept of “White Replacement” believe that through such Jewish engineered mass immigration, “people of white ethnic European background will become a minority group, outnumbered and replaced” ― in countries where once they were a majority of the population. They point to the NGO activities of Barbara Spectre, George Soros and many others who seem to have an ‘’open society’’ and “pro refugee agenda.” They complain that diversity and multiculturalism provide a fertile field for Identity Politics which they claim has succeeded in turning everything white into racism. Indeed, they say the word “white” is now a code word for racist" or extremist. Western Civilization and science are examples of white domination.

They note that there are no quotas for whites in university admissions, hiring, and promotion. It is the allegedly victimized “preferred minorities” who get to go to the front of the line and that there are “no hate speech or hate crime protections for whites.” Whites can be called every hurtful and offensive name in the book and have no right or power to demand apologies or the firing of the offender. They also believe that white DNA has been declared to be “an abomination,” and white people “shouldn’t exist.” In America today, they lament that the way to get ahead is to claim victim-hood. Jews are apparently experts at this, and blacks, women, and illegal immigrants have learned the same trick. This will become a theme of Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren’s campaigns, bringing up the reparation’s payment carrot for black votes with no mention of the extensive Jewish involvement in the slave trade back in that terrible era.

In dealing with, understanding and attempting to counter extremism and terrorism, we should realize that our fate and destiny is interconnected in ways we are increasingly coming to understand. Our reactions are important and should not be misguided or inappropriate. Following terrorist attacks against Christians, Muslims, Hindus or other religious groups, individuals or the general public, we should call upon interfaith dialogue between religious leaders in order to avoid adding insult to injury. Governments should defer to the wisdom of religious leaders in such cases. If a group of Christians were shot during worship in a Church in a Muslim country, what would be the appropriate response? Would it be appropriate for the Government to insist that a Christian prayer and gospel reading over loud speakers in downtown Kuala Lumpur or Jakarta? Would it be appropriate for Muslim Political leaders to wear a cross or for a politician to wear Muslim symbols or clothing accessories as New Zealand Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern decided to display recently. This has clearly now proved to be a knew jerk reaction which has offended many groups. How do you reconcile that while Iranian lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh is sentenced to 38 years in prison and 148 whip lashes for defending women who refuse to wear a veil, New Zealanders should now participate in normalizing the repressive practice of women’s Islamic veil even though the Quran does not require that?

We should also look back in shame at the chilling narrative of self-serving caution and flaccid will with which the global community ignored the murder of some 800,000 Tutsi and Hutu in Rwanda. On 11 September 2001, the world was awakened as one, but then we forget that the equivalent of 20 fully-laden 747s crashing per day is the number of children’s lives taken by impure water. In a world awash with alarm over terrorist attacks there is little action on addressing access to potable water and the staples of life and the plight of so many refugees who came to the west because they faced wholesale shootings and bombings of their homes, villages and cities. There have been no prosecutions for war crimes of the perpetrators of those crimes. Julian Assange, however, has been persecuted for exposing them and leaking evidence of random senseless murder of civilians by US and other allied soldiers. Therefore, we have Iraqis, Afghanis and Syrians fleeing to the west. They have faced people like the Christchurch terrorist many times over before even arriving in Christchurch. People who disgrace the military by committing war crimes on innocent civilians, including women and children, with callous impunity.

What does it mean when Americans fall all over themselves to apologize for using some word or term that someone finds “offensive” when they don’t apologize to Libyans, Somalis, Iraqis, Syrians, Afghans, Yemeni for destroying the lives of hundreds of thousands of them? The disconnect here is extreme. Words hurt but not bombs? In the U.S. many groups that specialize in teaching hatred of whites by claiming to fight “white supremacy.” The latest one is the Centre for Jewish Civilization at Georgetown University. Georgetown is supposedly a Catholic university. You might think there would be a Catholic Civilization Centre or, as Georgetown is in the U.S.A, a Centre for American Civilization. But instead you find Centre for Jewish Civilization. Who finances it? Why is it focused on “the far right”? Why is it at Georgetown University?

On April 10, 2019, the Centre for Jewish Civilization at Georgetown University hosted an all-day propaganda session at the National Press Club to work up opposition to whites who are allegedly using Nazi methods to attack Jews and blacks. In other words, the Centre for Jewish Civilization is doing to white gentiles what the centre claims white anti-Semites are doing to Jews and blacks. The “conference” was focused on “How Do We Deal with a New Ecosystem of Hate and Anti-Semitism on the Far Right?” In point of fact the State of South Carolina recently passed a law which included this provision “ accusing Jews as a people of being responsible for real or imagined wrongdoing committed by a single Jewish person or group, the state of Israel, or even for acts committed by non-Jews” would this mean the acceptance of the Killings by this one man in New Zealand by its government and holding memorial services would actually be a criminal offence if this law was applied to the protection of whites?

Today, the “far right” is—white people, which as a group are being recast as “white supremacists.” Far right is not a term ever applied to others.

Imagine a Centre for Palestinian Civilization at Georgetown University that was hosting a National Press Club all day event to combat an “Ecosystem of Hate and Anti-Palestinianism in Israel.” The centre would be lumped in with the Alt-Right and accused of promoting hate and anti-Semitism. Identity politics, forced censorship, jailing of teenagers without bail, criminalization of information sharing, thought crime laws and public displays of Islamic prayer with loud speakers blaring Allah is the only true God, is the enforced misguided policy in New Zealand now. An agnostic’’ Prime Minister who supports gay rights and abortion rights and wears a Muslim scarf in public should not be allowed to dictate how people choose to deal with countering, studying, sharing information regarding the Christchurch terrorist extremist lunatic, Brenton Tarrant. She should have consulted Christian, Muslim and other religious leaders about the sensitivities of all groups in the process of mourning the terrible Christchurch attacks. One of the most important ways to counter extremism is through education. Tarrant’s manifesto should be used as a study tool in schools. The manifestos of the Unabomber and the Norwegian white nationalist terrorist Anders Breivik did not lead to a single copycat attack. Interfaith dialogue is also a very important device for counter extremism and counter terrorism work. We at the Macau Interfaith Network have been working closely with Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Shamans, Taoists, Moonies, Mormons and others for well over a decade now and have developed a comprehensive counter extremist curriculum which is available free of charge to any school, institution or individual and includes studies of the Unabomber, Anders Breivik and even Brenton Tarrant’s manifestos, which should be uncensored and used to dissect and counter extremism.

For further information please contact Reverend Marcus M. Ramsey, Macau Interfaith Network by email: amandfm@mail.com