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Christopher Hitchens: How did a nation move from cricket and fish-and-chips to burkas and shoe-bombers in a single generation?

In his most recent Vanity Fair piece, Christopher Hitchens returns to Finsbury Park, the neighborhood in which he grew up, and laments how much of it is no longer recognizable.

Returning to the old place after a long absence, I found that it was the scent of Algeria that now predominated along the main thoroughfare of Blackstock Road. This had had a good effect on the quality of the coffee and the spiciness of the grocery stores. But it felt odd, under the gray skies of London, to see women wearing the veil, and even swathed in the chador or the all-enveloping burka. Many of these Algerians, Bangladeshis, and others are also refugees from conflict in their own country. Indeed, they have often been the losers in battles against Middle Eastern and Asian regimes which they regard as insufficiently Islamic. Quite unlike the Irish and the Cypriots, they bring these far-off quarrels along with them. And they also bring a religion which is not ashamed to speak of conquest and violence.

It seems that Britain, London in particular, is slowly disappearing and an Islamic state is taking its place. If that sounds like an exaggeration, read Hitchens' last paragraph, which is particularly unsettling in what portends for Britain's future:

It's impossible to exaggerate how far and how fast this situation has deteriorated. Even at the time of the Satanic Verses affair, as long ago as 1989, Muslim demonstrations may have demanded Rushdie's death, but they did so, if you like, peacefully. And they confined their lurid rhetorical attacks to Muslims who had become apostate. But at least since the time of the Danish-cartoon furor, threats have been made against non-Muslims as well as ex-Muslims (see photograph), the killing of Shiite Muslim heretics has been applauded and justified, and the general resort to indiscriminate violence has been rationalized in the name of god. Traditional Islamic law says that Muslims who live in non-Muslim societies must obey the law of the majority. But this does not restrain those who now believe that they can proselytize Islam by force, and need not obey kuffar law in the meantime. I find myself haunted by a challenge that was offered on the BBC by a Muslim activist named Anjem Choudary: a man who has praised the 9/11 murders as "magnificent" and proclaimed that "Britain belongs to Allah." When asked if he might prefer to move to a country which practices Shari'a, he replied: "Who says you own Britain anyway?" A question that will have to be answered one way or another.

Update: Commenter Jeff Blogworthy remarks that Hitchens himself may be somewhat complicit in allowing radical Islam to grow because of his hostility toward Christianity. (To be fair, Hitchens thinks all religion is bad: see this article here.) However, what Hitchens doesn't realize is that in denouncing Christianity in the same manner as Islam, he's encouraging the growth of Islam. If Hitchens wants to thwart the growth of Islam, he should support Christianity because a healthy Christian population keeps radical Islam at bay. Rabbi Daniel Lapin, the president of Toward Tradition, understood this as well, which is why he said "America's Bible belt is Israel's safety belt." The reason why radical Islam and antisemitism as a whole doesn't thrive in the US is because a thriving Christian population works as a counter.

Ask yourself this: why is America the only country that takes fighting Islamofascism so seriously? Because America is a 95% Christian nation, and American Christians are not about to be threatened into rejecting their Christian faith at the threat of violence. This is why Britain, and Europe as a whole, are slowly morphing into Islamic states. Christianity in Europe is dead, allowing Islam to flourish without any push back whatsoever.


Comments (50)

Convenient Trotsyist while ... (Below threshold)
bryanD:

Convenient Trotsyist while of miltary age and now the Court Twit of the Manhattan Mama's Boyz at the neocon-ized National Review, who, like him, are All In for WW III (or is it WW IV?) because there's no draft law. His article is a low tom-tom between movements.

Warmongering puds.

PS: I noticed no coverage of the latest Gathering of Eagles contrivance here. Like I commented during the DC "event": It's all FAKE. Or 99 7/13% fake.

http://www.sadlyno.com/archives/6025.html

"Who says you own Britain a... (Below threshold)
Joe Morley:

"Who says you own Britain anyway?"

This is the Islamic mindset. The world is ours. The world will live under Islam. Those who resist will perish.
It may be too late for parts of Europe but the U.S. should be paying close attention to what is going on across the pond.

How long to some American b... (Below threshold)
Gianni:

How long to some American bastions of liberalism are described this way?

Cant wait to see how SanFran and its minions react to Islamic rule, when women, and maybe even all of those trannies, must wear a veil. I wonder if gays there will be kicked out of town, or just hung by organic hemp/rope from the nearest light pole?

But Joe, just like libs t... (Below threshold)
Gianni:

But Joe, just like libs think all they have to do is 'talk' to solve any crisis, islam is a religion of peace.

Trust them ;-)

bryanD,In the futu... (Below threshold)
Joe Morley:

bryanD,

In the future please ensure that all percentages are converted to decimal form.

Joe Morley, My mat... (Below threshold)
bryanD:

Joe Morley,

My math training ended at reading the Ivory soap label while sitting on the pot. As long as my fraction isn't reducible, I'm OK.

And screw the metric system!

Adoption of same is something Hitchens can use as a marker of Brittania's terminal dive.

Hitch makes his point, as e... (Below threshold)
Robert the Original:

Hitch makes his point, as ever, with a marksman's aim. How crazy is it to tolerate this kind of thing much less aid its development?

And make no mistake, the same is happening here with those who spring to the aid of CAIR, or defend the nonsense of the flying Imams, and rush to call it racism, or discrimination, or against all manner of PC.

While we worry about pitch counts and bad calls, the immigration barn door is wide open and soon we will be growing terrorists with equal success as London, or Peshawar.

I can't help thinking that Giuliani had it right when he sent the ten million back to the Saudi's and told them to pound sand.

While the same wild and crazy thinks are being said in American mosques.

Kim: I haven't boug... (Below threshold)

Kim: I haven't bought an issue of "Vanity Fair" since 2000. Graydon Carter (VF's editor) was so funny when he edited the 1980's satire mag "Spy", but that person disappeared around the time of the Bush vs. Gore Florida recounts, and hasn't been heard from since. I bought this one for the Hitchens essay, but also for the Bruce Willis piece: I think Carter must have blinked when he allowed an avowed Conservative to grace his mag's cover.

Back to London: In 1988, I lived there for four months as a 'semester abroad' student, and have been back about 15 times since. The change is remarkable. I could never live in Central London again. Not just because it is so over-crowded and expensive, but because it isn't British anymore. You have to go outside Central London, at least into what could be considered the suburbs, before you feel like you are in England.

I think a large part of Britain's declaine, and why the Islamists have had such an easy time 'breaking in' is because no one under 40 thinks they have something worth preserving. To be British used to mean wanting a quiet life, having enough food and drink, a roof over one's head, and a garden in which to putter around. No one had any grand designs on being aristocrats, and people were proud of who they were and where they came from. Nowadays, everyone wants to be a rock star, a socialite, a company director or a hedge fund manager (that means increased urbanization, and that doesn't bode well for village/country life).

As such, they really do disdain what it is that makes Britain "Britain". Gone (at least in London and the major cities) are social niceties, minding the queue, taking care of the less fortunate (in a direct rather than bureaucratic fashion), etc. As Britain's young people are busy chasing the financial dragon, they're oblivious to societal changes both subtle and significant. Add to this an indoctrinated belief in multiculturalism, and a 'white guilt' that goes far beyond how that is manifested in the U.S., and you have an environment that is rife for significant Islamist incursion.

Hitchens is one of those gu... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

Hitchens is one of those guys who thinks that the Judeo-Christian ethic is one of the most evil things to hit the planet and does his best to destroy it. Well guess what. Vacuums get filled. Amorality is a myth. Christianity and Judaism are the things that keep ideologies like Islamofacism and Communism at bay. To destroy one is to aid the other.

Hitchens is one of those... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Hitchens is one of those guys who thinks that the Judeo-Christian ethic is one of the most evil things to hit the planet and does his best to destroy it.

Actually, Hitchens thinks that religion in general is societal poison. An extremist view to be sure, but one not without a historical basis. Of course, the poison of communism has that too.

Hmmm, indeed I wonder how a... (Below threshold)
RG:

Hmmm, indeed I wonder how a nation moved from fish n chips to burkas?

Hmmm..... I think unrestricted immigration has something to do with it, naw, naw, that's just racist of me to say that.

Hmmm..... I wonder if the same thing is happening to the USA? Hey, pass me that breakfast burrito please!

Laws, rules - they don't matter; all that matters is the pursuit of cheaper and cheaper labor. Yes our lettuce is a dime cheaper but we end up losing our country.

Helluva bargain eh?

Hitchen's faith, or lack th... (Below threshold)
Robert the Original:

Hitchen's faith, or lack thereof, has no bearing on his point that radical Islam has a purchase in central London. His article contains proof and the obvious truth of it.

It is not a vacuum into which the Imams advance, it is everywhere through the open door of bad immigration policy.

And the relative strength of Christian's faith will not either matter to the incoming Muslims, unless one thinks that intrepid evangelicals will soon convert them like Geronimo. No, the Muslims have placed some rather large bulwarks to that.

And some will seek to replay the Crusades, either in macro form with the Iranian bomb or street by street in every city in the world.

Yet another religious war. And it is so easy for us to look at radical Muslims and conclude that it is the extreme nature of their fundamentalist belief that is the proximate cause of the problem, not the answer.

And they join Torquemada in their fervor, aims and methods - and that is food for thought.

Langtry is on to something ... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

Langtry is on to something but the changes in London and Hitchen, though eloquent about the threat posed by strands of militant Islam, is being very selective..If he had walked a short distance from Finsbury Park he could have been in Stamford Hill a bustling orthodox Jewish area, or a half mile the other way, he might have wandered into the the heavily Caribbean and African neigborhood around the Dalton market. Sure there have been waves of immigration into the London and UK, but just as importantly there have been waves of emigration from 'the old country. Hitchens recently a new American citizen, laments the former but not the latter.

The reason why radical I... (Below threshold)
mantis:

The reason why radical Islam and antisemitism as a whole doesn't thrive in the US is because a thriving Christian population works as a counter.

The thriving Christian population in this country was the source of antisemitism here for many, many years, and continues today, if on a much smaller scale (and one could easily argue that much of Christian support of Israel is just so much apocalyptic fantasy--Christians need the holy land to stay in the hands of the Jews so the rapture will come. Oh happy day!). Btw, the implication that radical Islam is antisemitic is also absurd, in that Arabs are semites (as are a number of Christians, btw).

Ask yourself this: why is America the only country that takes fighting Islamofascism so seriously?

Because Americans are the only ones who have grasped onto such an absurd term as "Islamofascism?" Anyway, assuming you're talking about violent Islamism, we are most certainly not the only country that takes it seriously. Only in your deluded mind is that true.

Because America is a 95% Christian nation,

Well, more like 77% Christian, but making up numbers is fun, so go with it.

and American Christians are not about to be threatened into rejecting their Christian faith at the threat of violence.

We will not be threatened by threats!

This is why Britain, and Europe as a whole, are slowly morphing into Islamic states.

With all that power that Muslims have in European states.

Christianity in Europe is dead, allowing Islam to flourish without any push back whatsoever.

Well, first of all, you ignore such faithless states as the Netherlands pushing back against extremists. But obviously you're not interested in extremists, you're interested in stopping Islam entirely ("allowing Islam to flourish without any push back"), with force, which of course makes you an extremist as well. You just want an army to do the work instead of strapping on a bomb. Ah, progress.

Despite the word being toss... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

Despite the word being tossed around at Westerners more than hello, whoever is the most "Xenophobic" will win the conversion race eventually.

Islamic Xenophobia makes Diehard Christians look like rampant multiculturalists.

Eventually Britian and the rest of Europe will see Islam make strides among the currently non-Muslim population. At some point not far off, life will be much smoother for you if you do convert. That will put a positive feedback on the conversion rate. The thing I fear is the Complete Islamitization of Europe will happen so rapidly even those of us who expect it will be shocked at its pace towards the end.

Have you been to the United... (Below threshold)
Machester United Fan:

Have you been to the United Kingdom which is a whole lot more than London? When you go beyond London, the "Kingdom" which is made up of the whole of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland is not very "multi-ethnic" and the Islamic population is no greater than in the United States as a percentage of population and far less than the United States in terms of raw numbers.

Neighborhoods always change, that is nothing new. There are neighborhoods in New York City that were once Irish, that became Italian and are now no doubt something else. The neighborhood that your President grew up in Midland Texas now looks like a Mexican Barrio. I am an IT Professional and have a friend who talks of his former home near Detroit where Mosques and Arabic Coffee Houses have replaced Catholic Churches and Polish Bakeries. I believe that is the largest location of Arabs outside the Middle East.

While France and Germany have a large Islamic population, they are two separate countries but the yanks call everything on the other side of the pond Europe and my friends back home at the chip shops call everything on your side of the pond the Americas. In a decade when the not very ethnic United Kingdom looks very much like it is today, the nations of the Americas will all look like Chile. To that I must credit the former Irishman, Edward Kennedy.

Have you been to the Uni... (Below threshold)
Taltos:

Have you been to the United Kingdom which is a whole lot more than London? When you go beyond London, the "Kingdom" which is made up of the whole of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland is not very "multi-ethnic" and the Islamic population is no greater than in the United States as a percentage of population and far less than the United States in terms of raw numbers.

My friend in Glasgow would vehemently disagree with you there. As for the percentage of muslims it's 1% in the US and 2.7% in the UK based on the latest numbers I could find(2001 and 2002 respectively).

While France and Germany have a large Islamic population, they are two separate countries but the yanks call everything on the other side of the pond Europe

Considering that France, Germany, Belgium, etc. are doing their damnedest to turn Europe into a single country it's often fair to refer to Europe as a single entity.

Oh, btw, before you hitch y... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Oh, btw, before you hitch your extremist wagon to Hitchens' star, Kim, read the interview linked from his column:


Is the British problem with terrorism different from ours?
Most of our [British] Muslim population is Pakistani. If that population was Indonesian or Tunisian the situation would not be the same. Pakistan has to export a lot of uneducated people, many of whom have become infected with the most barbaric reactionary ideas.

...

But incitement to violence?
One of the very few things on which all those texts are very firm is a continual incitement to violence and intolerance. That's consistent in the Bible and the Koran and the Torah, all of the supposed holy books of the desert monotheisms.

But only the Muslims have responded with violence in recent times.
No, I would certainly not say that was true. The armed settlers on the West Bank. The people who blow up abortion clinics in the U.S. They believe they don't just have divine permission. They believe they had divine mandate. And it's not possible to say holy books don't tell them that. It's not.

...

But they're not the ones I'm talking about. What about the fight against Hezbollah?
You could say the idea of the corrupt and fanatical theocracy in Iran acquiring a nuclear weapon is something that doesn't admit of any discrimination. It's a threat to everybody. Including the people of Iran. It would be petty to say it's a threat to Jews.

A significant concern for t... (Below threshold)
Metprof:

A significant concern for the Brits (and all of the EU) shopuldn't be the muslim "raw numbers" or % of the total population but rather the percentage of the population under the age of 20 that is Muslim. This group is exploding and will soon vote. I read it's around 30% for the UK and over 40% for the EU!! This is due to immigration but also from birthrates. UK's is currently 1.6, the US is 2.11, with 2.1 births per woman needed to sustain a population. In simple terms this means the UK's population is decreasing by approximately 25% per generation. Where will the people come from to fill this void (i.e. pick their lettuce, so to speak)? How about some of the
muslim countries? What's their birthrates? Afghanistan - 6.7. Mali - 7.4, Somalia - 6.8, Yemen - 6.6.

It doesn't take a PhD in social studies or demography to see where this is headed.

mantis, today, antichristia... (Below threshold)
kim:

mantis, today, antichristianism is a source of antisemitism. That particular evil roots where it will.
=====================================

"It is not a vacuum into... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

"It is not a vacuum into which the Imams advance, it is everywhere through the open door of bad immigration policy."

Well, that's just lazy. Where does bad immigration policy originate? There are many sources but it starts with an erosion of existing principles. Take the idea of multiculturalism for instance. Or constant accusations that our existing culture is itself inherently corrupt and evil and must be demolished. Who are we to claim exclusive dominion over our land and riches? It is all tied together.

Christianity is the origin of antisemitism.

Horse caca. This is no more true than to say Christianity is the source of the KKK. Many have perverted Christianity to suite their own ends. Taken objectively, the teachings of Christianity in no way endorse antisemitism. It is just the opposite.

Machester United Fan, I liv... (Below threshold)
RG:

Machester United Fan, I live in that area near Detroit - Dearborn, Michigan and yes it's the largest concentration of muslims outside the Middle East. I have seen over 40-some years how the muslim immigrant has changed, the last ten years or so has seen an increase in the number of "fundamentalist" muslims coming here (and probably everywhere).

The reason why so many Americans say "Europe" in stead of England, France, Germany, etc. is because we've listened to all of you! :)

It's because of that horrid thing the EU!!!! Believe me, many Americans would rather have France, Germany, Italy and yes England (or Great Britain) - not the UK!!

Believe me, most Americans are not against immigration, we just want it to be legal and in reasonable numbers. What's been going on with Mexico is not "normal" immigration - it's just business greed and the desire for cheap labor plus the ethnic grivance groups (mostly Latino), who want more and more of "their people" coming here in order to increase their political power.

Muslim immigration, well that's to discuss another day........ Their immigration can be dangerous to your health.... LOL

Christianity is the orig... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Christianity is the origin of antisemitism.

Horse caca.......

Who are you responding to? You just pulled that quote from thin air.

Culture matters.....the rea... (Below threshold)
Nessus:

Culture matters.....the reason why immigration was so successful 100 years ago in the USA was that the immigrants, whether Irish, English, Scotish, French, German, Italian, Swedish, Russian, Greek, etc. came from different countries, they were essentially ALL THE SAME CULTURE. European, caucasian, Christian, Western culture, that's why.

Thus, culture clash. Who will win? Short of armed conflict, I'd say the 3rd worlder will win due to their superior numbers and the US political elite's desire to pander to them.

Admit that the fear of righ... (Below threshold)
kim:

Admit that the fear of right wing Christians have driven many into Palestinian support, and thence into antisemitism.
===============================

(typo corrected)Culture mat... (Below threshold)
Nessus:

(typo corrected)Culture matters.....the reason why immigration was so successful 100 years ago in the USA was that the immigrants, whether Irish, English, Scotish, French, German, Italian, Swedish, Russian, Greek, etc. came from different countries, they were essentially ALL THE SAME CULTURE. European, caucasian, Christian, Western culture, that's why.

Today we don't have that. Thus, culture clash. Who will win? Short of armed conflict, I'd say the 3rd worlder will win due to their superior numbers and the US political elite's desire to pander to them.

You are being disingenuous,... (Below threshold)
kim:

You are being disingenuous, mantis. JB approximates your statement, only slightly distorting the meaning. My claim is the reverse, that fear of Christianity is now generating new antisemites.
==========================

I agree with you, though, c... (Below threshold)
kim:

I agree with you, though, classically Christians have been even more vicious antisemites than Muslims have been.

OK, out of my depth. Sorry Rambam.
=========================

What do you think of al-Mas... (Below threshold)
kim:

What do you think of al-Masri and Fatah Islam, mantis. What did Foley know?
===============

What I notice here is a div... (Below threshold)
Zelsdorf Ragshaft III:

What I notice here is a diversion from the message. Either by those on the left who attack the messenger or the otherside who validate their own experience by comparison with Hitchens. An exercise in discussing what shape and the spelling on a warning sign. As for myself, I am dipping all my bullets in pig fat (bacon grease). Muslims do not go to paradise if they are contaminiated with pork. I recommend, and hope we let it be widely known that all our bullets are lubricated with pork, our grenades are dipped in pig fat and our bombs and missles contain lard. That will kind of eliminate the 72 virgins deal.

The spread of Islam depends... (Below threshold)
RG:

The spread of Islam depends greatly on naive Westerners who think Islam is a wonderful, spiritual faith and simply don't know that Islam is really very, very political. It is an ideology - a world view that is mostly antithetical to Western thought.

Segregation of the sexes, foot washing sinks, toilets installed so they do not face Mecca, calls to prayer going out 5 times per day via loudspeakers - all this is coming to your neighborhood thanks to mass immigration.

How do I know this? Once again, I've lived with it for 40 years in Dearborn, Michigan.

Hey, Z; the Hell of it is t... (Below threshold)
kim:

Hey, Z; the Hell of it is that the virgins remain so for ever so long.
=================================

You are being disingenuo... (Below threshold)
mantis:

You are being disingenuous, mantis. JB approximates your statement, only slightly distorting the meaning.

He distorts, and I'm the disingenuous one? Does not compute.

My claim is the reverse, that fear of Christianity is now generating new antisemites.

And there's something to that, for sure. Though I would note that they are not antisemites in any traditional sense, they are more anti-Israel, and the two are not necessarily one and the same.

What do you think of al-Masri and Fatah Islam, mantis. What did Foley know?

al-Masri? I think he's a dead, not dead, dead, not dead terrorist. Fatah Islam? New kid on the block al-Qaeda franchise? Another refugee camp emergence, this time with Syrian ties. What did Foley know? Hell, I don't know much about it. Maybe nothing, maybe something.

Are you implying some closer connection between al-Masri and Fatah Islam? I don't know anything about that.

whether Irish, English, ... (Below threshold)
Taltos:

whether Irish, English, Scotish, French, German, Italian, Swedish, Russian, Greek, etc. came from different countries, they were essentially ALL THE SAME CULTURE. European, caucasian, Christian, Western culture, that's why.

Technically Russians are Asian. :)

Jeff,While we vary... (Below threshold)
Robert the Original:

Jeff,

While we vary the country quotas from time to time, and make other small changes, the few legal immigrants from this part of the policy are not the cause of the problem.

As a Detroit area resident for a long time, I know too well the Arab and Muslim immigration industry here with an army of lawyers and paralegals processing family, fiancée', and other visa requests as fast as the paperwork can go through Lincoln Nebraska. They work the system.

You start with one, then bring the family, then get a fiancée' visa or go with the birth of a child on US soil, then add another family and another. And so it goes. This is how one million can become two million far faster than normal reproduction, the lottery, or area quotas suggest. And yes, I think we agree this is bad policy.

Unfortunately for your argument, the principles of this policy were forged over fifty years ago, back at a time when it can be said that the country was far more Christian, and much more devout at that, than it is today. In 1952, almost everyone went to church every Sunday - I know I did.

So it simply cannot honestly be said that our immigration laws are the result of too few prayers.

Machester United Fan... (Below threshold)
James Cloninger:

Machester United Fan

F*ck Man. U.! You couldn't score in a brothel!

One-nil to the Arsenal...
One-nil to the Arsenal...

(just kidding.)

But only the Muslims hav... (Below threshold)
James Cloninger:

But only the Muslims have responded with violence in recent times.
No, I would certainly not say that was true. The armed settlers on the West Bank. The people who blow up abortion clinics in the U.S. They believe they don't just have divine permission. They believe they had divine mandate. And it's not possible to say holy books don't tell them that. It's not.

Yeah, when was the last abortion clinic bombing here? Now, when was the last suicide/jihadist bombing?

I think I have far less to worry about anti-abortionists than jihadists.

A person who clearly knows ... (Below threshold)
Beeblebrox:

A person who clearly knows nothing about the reasons for American Christian support of Israel stated:

"Much of Christian support of Israel is just so much apocalyptic fantasy--Christians need the holy land to stay in the hands of the Jews so the rapture will come. Oh happy day!).

Let me guess Mantis, you know this how, by watching Bill Maher?

The general basis for Christian support for Israel is found in the first book of the Bible, Genesis 12 to be exact:

1 The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you.
2 "I will make you into a great nation
and I will bless you;
I will make your name great,
and you will be a blessing.

3 I will bless those who bless you,
and whoever curses you I will curse
;
and all peoples on earth
will be blessed through you."

(emphasis mine)

Those who take the Bible seriously take this passage VERY seriously and thus, the reason for Evangelical Christian support of Israel (as opposed to mainstream liberal religious Christians who generally are not that supportive of Israel and are also generally the breeding grounds of "Christian" anti-Semitism).

Meanwhile, I defy you Mantis, to find a SINGLE Bible verse that even suggests obliquely (much less specifically) that Christians should support Israel because "they need the holy land to stay in the hands of the Jews so the rapture will come".

Waiting... Waiting...

Oh never mind, that was a rhetorical challenge anyway (given that THERE IS NO SUCH VERSE). In fact, here's something that neither you, Mantis, nor Bill Maher seem to realize:

1. The Rapture, as understood by "Pre-Millennial/pre-tribulationalists", has no strings attached to it except one; there is a number that God has determined is the "fullness of the Gentiles". That is, there is a finite number of people who will join the Church (capital "C"). When that last person accepts Christ God's specific number is reached, the Rapture will occur, and Israel will become the focus once again, of God's strategy. In fact, it is only AFTER the Rapture that Israel actually takes control of Jerusalem, NOT BEFORE.

Since no one except God the Father knows who the last person will be to join the Church it stands to reason that no one knows when the Rapture will occur nor can they do anything to speed its coming (except maybe work harder at witnessing to unbelievers). Certainly that last person's acceptance of Christ has NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with Israel holding the Holy Land.

2. What I think is confusing you Mantis, is the notion that support of Israel has something to do with ushering in the Tribulation (not the Rapture). If this is what is confusing you then let me help you understand so that you can sound better informed the next go 'round.

ALL nations will eventually abandon Israel (this prophesy is almost completely fulfilled) which will lead to the rise of the "AntiChrist" (not a Biblical term but rather a commonly accepted name for the prophesied coming world dictator).

Israel's LOSS of support from America (which will most certainly be the last nation to stand by her at the end) is predicted in numerous places in the Bible. On the day that America turns its back on Israel, THAT will be the day that ushers in the events leading to the Great Tribulation (or more accurately, "The Day of the Lord").

Let me connect the dots for you. In order to meet the prophetic terms that must take place before the Day of the Lord can come, America MUST ABANDON ISRAEL not support it.

Now which Americans are advocating this strategy? Who might that be, I wonder? It isn't me, it certainly isn't the Christian Right, it's not Bush. In fact, it is the Left! It turns out that people like John Kerry (who, as recently as the last presidential election season, was advocating turning our back on Israel) are the ones inadvertently fulfilling Biblical end time prophesy. Ironic isn't it?

Put another way, as long as America (Christian or otherwise) supports Israel, the Day of the Lord CANNOT occur. Do you fully understand this statement Mantis? The Bible is very clear, prophetically speaking. Every nation must, necessarily, abandon Israel in order for the End Time clock to begin ticking. I've talked to countless Christians in my lifetime and NONE of them advocated turning their backs on Israel just so the last days could be ushered in a little sooner. Instead, they supported Israel because of God's promise in Genesis 12:3. I guess their desire for God's blessing was stronger than their desire to usher in the End Times.

Yeah, when was the last ... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Yeah, when was the last abortion clinic bombing here?

Successful bombing? 2001. Deadly bombing? 1998, Eric Rudolph. Attempted? Unless something happened more recently, last month. Arson? Ten days ago. Plus there were 554 hoax anthrax letters sent to clinics in Nov. 2001, and of course there are hundreds of incidences and threats every year. But that doesn't really count as terrorism I guess, on account of, something or other.

Now, when was the last suicide/jihadist bombing?

2001. But to be fair, we don't have nearly as many jihadists as we do Christian terrorists. They're just bigger and better at it.

Mantis, next time you're on... (Below threshold)
TR19667:

Mantis, next time you're on a plane insure to look over your shoulder for a "christian terrorist". Never know when they'll rear their ugly heads to kill planeloads of innocents in the name of their religion!!! Pass that on to Rosie O'Donnell as well, please.

PS, we best notify the military to keep an eye on their chaplains.

Mantis, next time you're... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Mantis, next time you're on a plane insure to look over your shoulder for a "christian terrorist".

Well, I fly on planes all the time and never find myself "looking over my shoulder" at people I've decided may be terrorists. You know why? Because I'm not a terrified, paranoid reactionary. You have a much better chance of dying from food poisoning than a terrorist attack.

PS, we best notify the military to keep an eye on their chaplains.

See, I can recognize the violent tendencies of some religious people without assuming all people of that religion are violent. You obviously cannot.

Oh yeah, by the way:<... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Oh yeah, by the way:

Bomb Plot Thwarted at Falwell's Funeral

Muslims, right?

Mantis,typing Muslims must ... (Below threshold)
cicada:

Mantis,typing Muslims must have pained you so,when you know Christians are the real terrorists.

Kim to Mantis: "I agree wi... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Kim to Mantis: "I agree with you, though, classically Christians have been even more vicious antisemites than Muslims have been."

I utterly disagree with this.

The "worst" or most extreme incidence of antisemitism in our contemporary times was from the occult-advised Nazi Party (and not even from all it's members, and predominantly from it's horribly misguided top strata).

Muslim's consider Jews to be scum. Or something similarly wretched. Some Jews consider Christians to be "dogs." There's a lot of animosity throughout religious history that can and does a lot of the hesitation by many Christians to completely embrace either of these groups, but, in our Christian theology, neither Muslim nor Jew is declared to be subhuman, to be clear.

The issue is what a person's beliefs are. I believe there's ample evidence that the beliefs by many Muslims AND Jews AND "antiChristians" state in clear terms that Christians are of lesser-than standing, are lesser-than equals.

I don't see Christians cutting people's heads off when they disagree with Christian theology and reject Christ, nor blowing themselves up to harm anyone who rejects Christ, OR any geography populated mostly by Christians.

Antisemitism is a misapplied and misused term that I believe works mostly into the language of Liberals for purposes of avoiding personal examination and responsibility. It also is often used to disrespect Christians, in a socially acceptable method.

The message of Christ's human existence continues to be lost on many. Jews continue to blame Christians for "blaming Jews for killing Christ." Which is -- again -- Jews missing the message of Christ altogether, and that is that man killed Christ. Jew, not Jew, thief, not thief, Roman soldier, not soldier, Governor, not Governor, male, female or not, it was MAN who killed Christ.

But it was God who loved his Son and Man enough to resurrect Christ.

Christ's human existence and experience was not one that sponsors in any way "antisemitism." To minimize Christ and Christianity to that degree is to confirm that one is entirely closed to Christ's work.

"But to be fair, we don'... (Below threshold)
Beeblebrox:

"But to be fair, we don't have nearly as many jihadists as we do Christian terrorists. They're just bigger and better at it."

Classic trolling.

My guess is that Mantis is the stereotypical couldn't-finish-community-college-living-in-his-parents-basement type of guy and doesn't get out much. There are no Christian terrorists working today Mantis. Crimes committed by so-called "christians" do not count as "terrorism".

Take your bigotry and hate elsewhere troll.

Jews continue to blame C... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Jews continue to blame Christians for "blaming Jews for killing Christ."

Those darn Jews, how dare they! Where could they have possibly gotten that idea? Oh yeah, centuries upon centuries of death and persecution as subhuman christkillers. Can't they just ignore it?

Christ's human existence and experience was not one that sponsors in any way "antisemitism."

Since they emerged on the scene Christians have often had a decidedly different interpretation than you.

Mantis,typing Muslims mu... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Mantis,typing Muslims must have pained you so,when you know Christians are the real terrorists.

Terrorism is a tactic not specific to any particular religion.

There are no Christian t... (Below threshold)
mantis:

There are no Christian terrorists working today Mantis. Crimes committed by so-called "christians" do not count as "terrorism".

I see, it's not terrorism if you're a Christian. What are those Liberty kids who planned to bomb protesters at Falwell's funeral? Boy Scouts?

Oh, regarding your screed above that I'm all wrong about Christian support for Israel because in your interpretation the Rapture will happen before the temple is rebuilt, how do you expect that temple to be rebuilt if the Jews don't control the land? I never said it had to be built prior to the Rapture, I said they needed to control the holy land, which they do. In any case there are interpretations different from yours, and if you don't think Jewish control of the holy land is considered a harbinger of the second coming you're mistaken.

Israel's LOSS of support from America (which will most certainly be the last nation to stand by her at the end) is predicted in numerous places in the Bible.

Gee, I must have missed the part of the Bible where America is mentioned.

Anyway, my contention that Christians support Israel has less to do with theological semantic arguments and more to do with the fact that after establishing the state of Israel, certain types of Christians decided that the time had come and they better support the state lest they be forced to wait another millennium. What other explanation can there be for this about-face support of a group that had until that time been reviled as the killers of your god? Oh yeah, Genesis 12. Where was that during the Crusades, the Inquisition, 800 years of blood libel executions, etc.?

Mantis wrote:<blockqu... (Below threshold)
Beeblebrox:

Mantis wrote:

"Oh, regarding your screed...

I see, a summary of a position that you don't agree with (apparently out of ignorance) is now a "screed". I'll make a note after I finish the following screed.

...I'm all wrong about Christian support for Israel because in your interpretation the Rapture will happen before the temple is rebuilt, how do you expect that temple to be rebuilt if the Jews don't control the land?

I'm sorry Mantis, you don't get the luxury of changing your initial talking point from "Rapture" to "Temple rebuilt". Furthermore, I'm not letting you get away with promoting the assertion even if you meant to talk about the temple. Those who believe in literal end time Biblical prophesy do not believe that supporting Israel speeds up God's timetable.

Let me outline this for you so that you can better defend your position in the future:

1. Christians who believe in a pretribulational rapture need NOTHING more to happen for that event to occur. Read: they can do NOTHING to speed its coming.
2. Christians who believe in a posttribulational rapture (happening after the temple is rebuilt and then desecrated) might be able to advance the timeline if they pushed for the U.S. to drop its support of Israel.
3. Christians who take a non-literal view of scripture generally believe that either the tribulation is a metaphor or we already had the tribulation and are now living in the Millenium. This group might be advocating the dropping of support of Israel but I don't see such advocacy as being motivated by prophesy but maybe it is.

So Mantis, if you are looking for a boogieman who is trying to usher in the end times, be on the lookout for someone advocating abandoning support of Israel. Any group supporting Israel is forestalling the second coming (if one believes that man can do anything to change God's timetable).

I said they needed to control the holy land, which they do.

You may have said that but again it is an incorrect statement. They need to control the Temple Mount WHICH THEY DO NOT and will not until after America abandons them (which gives eventual rise to the Antichrist who then protects Israel from her enemies and allows her to build the temple.)

In any case there are interpretations different from yours,

Really? thanks for pointing that out to me Einstein.

Nevertheless, the Christians that appear to be the subject of your bigoted rants in this thread (the Christian Right) generally hold to my view. That being, that the rapture of the Church is the next event on the prophetic calendar and nothing has to happen in order for it to take place.

"if you don't think Jewish control of the holy land is considered a harbinger of the second coming you're mistaken.

In fact I DO BELIEVE that Jewish control of the Holy Land is a harbinger of the second coming. Never said otherwise. I only pointed out that support of Israel is not a requirement for the Rapture to happen.

Let me restate in screed form:

You are confusing the "Rapture" with the "Tribulation" (or maybe the "2nd coming".) Israel is central to the latter but not the former. This is not to say that prophesies related to Israel aren't important to those looking for the Rapture of the Church. Quite the contrary. Ezekiel prophesied that Israel would need to retake their lands before the Day of the Lord would come. This happened in 1948. Ezekiel also wrote that they would retake Jerusalem 19 years later, which they did. However, the Jews have been prevented from rebuilding the temple due to the Dome of the Rock problem. The Bible makes clear that the Antichrist will make this DOTR problem go away. The Antichrist can only arise after all nations (this includes America), abandon Israel.

Gee, I must have missed the part of the Bible where America is mentioned.

This is because it appears that you lack understanding of Biblical prophesy. This is normally nothing to be ashamed of unless one is ranting about Christian's actions regarding advancing God's prophetic timetable (as you are doing).

Regarding my reference to America needing to abandon Israel for prophesy to be fulfilled, allow me to make an analogy:

An economist by the name of William Ion-Air predicts in 1980 that China will be the #1 economic superpower by 2025 (even though multiple other countries are more powerful than China when this prediction is made.)

Along comes another economist in 2000 who says that it appears that Ion-air's prediction that America indeed will lose its economic superpower status by 2025 is correct. Along comes a guy like you who brilliantly points out that Ion-Air made no mention of America in his prediction and therefore he must be wrong.

Point being, if the Bible says that all nations abandon Israel leaving her to fend for herself, then I have no problem stating that America is predicted to abandon Israel. If you see another interpretation please enlighten me.

What other explanation can there be for this about-face support of a group that had until that time been reviled as the killers of your god? Oh yeah, Genesis 12. Where was that during the Crusades, the Inquisition, 800 years of blood libel executions, etc.

Boy is this tired old territory:

1. The evangelical movement is the subject of your bigoted claims and this movement is only a couple hundred years old.

2. The Crusades were a defensive war against Islam. They had nothing to do with Israel except that the Crusaders believed it to be holy ground.

3. The Inquisition also had nothing to do with Israel. It had to do with politics in Spain. I could list many more examples than just the Inquisition of evil men using their religious positions to subjugate the masses. So what? Religion has always been used for this purpose. This has nothing to do with modern Evangelical Christians.

3. Blood libel execution was a myth, the Catholic Church formally stated so as early as 1247 but people tended to believe it for many years. There is no way of knowing if these people were Bible believing Christians or not. More than likely not.

Beeblebrox...Do you ... (Below threshold)
nogo postal:

Beeblebrox...
Do you believe the daughter of our Vice President and her Lesbian partner can raise a wonderful baby...without this child becoming a homosexual?

Ya want the official position of the Catholic Church on this? ya want the Evangelical Movement position on this?....
Either you all support the decisions of the daughter of our Vice President..and her Lesbian Lover/Partner..or you reject them as unfit..perverts..(and of course as sexual preference is a result of a persons experience and not genetic...What Did Dick and his wife do to make her turn out this way?)




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