Which Side Will Win the Clash of Civilizations?

Barb Wire

Which side will win in a clash of civilizations? The side that never finds a reason for peace or the side that never finds a reason for war? Moreover, which side deserves victory? The side that passionately wants to win, or the side that says any passion you feel in response to being attacked is “playing into the hands” of the aggressors?

Islamic jihadists slaughtered a priest in France this past week. Compare how the West reacted to this attack with the way Muslims in Pakistan reacted to Hindus and burnt pages of the Koran.

Which civilization is passionate about its faith? Which civilization even believes in its faith any longer?

If you’re having trouble answering those questions, read, “Leave ‘Martyrdom’ to the Jihadists,” an opinion piece by Paul Vallely published in the New York Times on July 28 (HT: @ColossusRhodey). Vallely addresses the slaughter of the priest.

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Such calls to canonize the murdered priest are ill advised. They will only play into the hands of the extremists. …

Some will react to that threat by unwittingly accepting the terrorists’ agenda, as the archbishop of Rouen appeared to do when he described the killing of Father Hamel as an “assassination” — as though a provincial priest would be a target. But others reject the Islamic State narrative. “This is not a war of religions,” said a Parisian churchgoer. “It’s not a Muslim who killed a Catholic. It is simply evil.” …

Reciprocal talk of martyrdom is unhelpful. The impulse to canonize Father Hamel, however sincere and well intentioned, feeds the idea of retaliation — our martyr for yours — that gives the jihadists the war of religions they seek. As to sainthood, let history judge rather than us making it a proxy for a political response.

The West no longer just lectures us about not wanting retribution for Islamic attacks—it now demands that we have no anger or passion over being attacked.

So which side do you think will win in our clash of civilizations?

Muslims who are passionate about their beliefs and who are determined to destroy anyone who opposes them? Or the West, which has abandoned Christianity and wants you to be ashamed for feeling any anger or passion over being attacked?

On top of this, which side deserves to win?

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The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.

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