Wednesday, February 08, 2006


How can you not notice this story? Feels like rubbernecking on the freeway. What a mess.

Gotta love Fafner's take on it.

But if you want some sober, informed analysis, check out Abu Aardvark's Cartoon StupidStorm
Just a quick note on the Danish cartoons and the seemingly spiraling 'clash of civilizations' (a term much in vogue on Arab op-ed pages and talk shows these days). Briefly: this is what the word 'StupidStorm' was invented for.

If the Danish cartoons hadn't existed, al-Qaeda would have paid good money to create them. The cartoons are the ideal mobilizational issue for radical Islamists, tailor made to stoke up passions and to silence moderate voices and to cut off the possibility of dialogue. What al-Qaeda wants more than anything else is to heighten the salience of Islamic identity among the Muslims of the world and to sharpen the contradictions between that Islamic identity and 'the West.' Nothing could have served al-Qaeda's cause better, and I'm sure that bin Laden has already sent the various European publishers multiple mash notes, along with anonymous letters urging more papers to publish the cartoons. And all the Western commentators fanning the flames... well, to quote Angel, 'they fall for it every time.'
I've read a lot of blathering on this subject. Some of it appeals on a gut level. But after reading Abu Aardvark, I think he nails it.

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