The call for a crusade leads to a dangerous societal situation

    The problem with evil is that it doesn’t have a convenient frame of reference. Nevermind the 16th century European witch trials, where you were forced to pay for your own torture, or the modern-day example of overzealous preachers who exclaim loudly that ³God hates fags,² a convenient three-word phrase which provides the limit of their vocabulary. No, the modern conception of evil is a bit narrow-minded, whittled down to a single image: a diminutive fellow by the name of Adolf who tried and failed to systematically destroy a population of people during the 1940s.

    Interestingly enough, despite these incredibly narrow visions of evil, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has managed to hit them squarely on the nose and spark the maximum possible amount of controversy across the globe. Many want to kill him, and many want to kill for him.

    As the leaders of 57 nations listened at the Organization of Islamic Conference, Mahathir laced assertions of Jewish world dominance into a speech calling for Islamic forces to unite against their oppressors, even at one point stating that ³1.3 billion Muslims cannot be defeated by a few million Jews. There must be a way.² But Mahathir’s most surprising statement of the evening was a combination of cry for solidarity and an eerie recollection of evil incarnate, Hilter: ³1.3 billion people cannot be simply wiped out. The Europeans killed six million Jews out of 12 million. But today the Jews rule this world by proxy. They get others to fight and die for them.²

    This statement can be taken two ways. One interpretation is that like the Jews, Muslims can rise to power because of sheer numbers. But, when combined with his other anti-Jewish sentiments, Mahathir’s statement takes on a much more sinister tone: that despite Hitler’s best efforts, Jews still hold too much power.

    In the flurry of publicity that followed, Malathir was unrepentant, saying, ³Why is it that when people condemn Muslims, the European Union does not try to say anything?²

    He followed his question with an affirmation that the violent reaction to his speech proves that, in fact, Jews do rule the world.

    But even if he wasn’t misquoted, does recalling Hitler really constitute evil?

    Local succubus Bryan Barton takes every chance he can to name-drop the Fuhrer when there is a reporter around; does this mean that UCSD is home to the greatest evil in San Diego County? Of course not. For all of his posturing, the sniveling Barton has only used the Hitleresque ideal to add controversy to his arguments.

    Mahathir takes the macho posturing one step further by stating that Hitler’s efforts were noble, but they were not completed. This is not a small matter of accepting Hitler for his excellence in rallying and organization, a belief innocuously held by our governor-elect. No, this is the big one. The burning bodies and genocide one. This is the belief that has the capability, if mixed with a large dose of political power and a nuke or two, to bring on the Apocalypse (or any other religious term you choose to represent the Big Bleed).

    But why are we bothering Mahathir so much for his words? All leaders who are religiously affiliated are bound to feel some fervor and passion now and then.

    After all, look at passionate evangelists all over the world, trying their best to convert the heathens to their ³correct² form of thought. It only seems fair that if one of these well-meaning, holy-wishing fellows enters a place of power, that they will continue their good work for any God they deem appropriate. For example, one would be hard pressed to say that it was simply a slip of the tongue when President George W. Bush called the war on Iraq a ³crusade.²

    But this is the first time that anyone in such a position of power has publicly stated that the time has come for another of Adolf’s holy cleansings. No matter how much the leaders of any number of countries with disputed territory in the Middle East pray for complete annihilation of the enemy so that they can finally have their Holy Land back from the infidels, nobody so far has been quite desperate enough to come out and say it as explicitly as our friend Mahathir.

    Yet now that we have established Mahathir as a genuine threat, we must not completely demonize him. A statement, even an inflammatory one such as the utterance of Mahathir Mohamad, means nothing without the proper context. Not that the phrase was taken out of context in the speech, however. Anyone who reads the full text of Mahathir’s speech will see that his claims of being quoted out of context are nothing short of utter balderdash.

    No, the important context here lies in the entire point of the offending speech, that currently Muslims are facing hardship the likes of which have never been seen since the crusades of King Richard. The Islamic powers are entrenched in a bitter stalemate over Palestine, their countries are being invaded and singled out by ³European² powers, and their forces are being torn apart by internal squabbling between various sects. It’s a time of great desperation.

    When faced with similar circumstances at the end of World War I (or, as we labeled it in our idiocy, ³The War to End All Wars²), the German people were easily rallied by a loud leader who offered a convenient scapegoat to their problems. Well, now Mahathir has found not only a convenient scapegoat in the Jews again, but called them a genuine threat to their way of life. It’s Hitler squared. Mahathir may not be the one who will lead the great conflict, but his words have opened the door for the next powerful speaker who could. It is now the responsibility of the world community to defuse this bomb before it kills us all.

    Evil belongs to no race, no sex, no religion. Evil belongs to the acts that members of these races, sexes and religions take it upon themselves to commit.

    And Mahathir Mohamad, bless his heart, has made it that much easier for these acts to occur by vocalizing his desperations during such a high-profile conference. Brace yourself, children, one or two more speeches and we may have a Holy War.

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