Posted by Robert Spencer on Dec 13th, 2010
Why did Islamic jihadist Taimour Abdulwahab Al-Abdaly, the suicide bomber who killed himself on a major street in Stockholm on Saturday, decide to target Sweden, of all places — one of the most benign multiculturalist welfare states on a continent full of them?
For even though no one was killed, that was apparently only because al-Abdaly didn’t set off his bomb at the intended time or place. Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt said the bombing was a “most worrying attempt at terrorist attack in crowded part of central Stockholm,” and noted that it “failed — but could have been truly catastrophic.”
And certainly that seems to have been the intent. In an audio file in Arabic and Swedish that was sent to TT, the Swedish news agency, about ten minutes before Al-Abdaly detonated his bomb, the unidentified speaker exhorted “all Mujahadeen in Europe and Sweden” to act: “Now is the time to strike, don’t wait any longer. Step up with whatever you have, even if it is a knife, and I know you have more than a knife. Fear no one, fear not prison, fear not death.”
Why would an Islamic jihadist want to unleash catastrophic mass-murder upon mild, sclerotic, socialist old Stockholm? Reuters had a ready answer: the same audio file, it reported, “threatened retaliation for Sweden’s military presence in Afghanistan.”
Ah. So if Sweden withdrew its military personnel from Afghanistan, no more jihad would be waged against it, right? That is certainly an assumption often taken for granted by Western analysts on both the Left and the Right: Islamic jihadists are provoked by our presence in their countries, and if we just left them alone, they’d leave us alone.
It is a comforting notion, at least to those who are so supine and addicted to their comfort that they’ll sacrifice their freedom for it, but unfortunately for them, there was more in that audio file.
“Our acts will speak for themselves,” said the message, “as long as you do not end your war against Islam and humiliation of the Prophet and your stupid support for the pig Vilks.”
“The pig Vilks” is the Swedish cartoonist who drew the dog Muhammad: taking umbrage at the threats and murders of innocent people that followed the publication of cartoons of the Islamic prophet Muhammad in a Danish newspaper, Lars Vilks published his own cartoon of Muhammad as a dog with a human head. Islamic supremacists have put Vilks high on their hit list; last spring, he was attacked while he was giving a talk in Uppsala, and jihadists also tried to burn his house down.
So if they succeed one day in murdering Vilks, will Sweden then be safe?
Not likely. In speaking about Vilks and Sweden’s alleged “war on Islam,” Al-Abdaly was aligning himself with the efforts of the 57-government Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) to compel Western governments to outlaw “incitement to religious hatred” – that is, any honest discussion of the ways in which Islamic jihadists use the texts and teachings of Islam to justify violence and supremacism. That would render the West mute and hence defenseless in the face of the advancing jihad.
This effort has already been a smashing success. The Obama Administration and the Bush Administration before it have both been careful not to speak about Islam or jihad in connection with what the perpetrators consistently and universally refer to as acts of Islamic jihad – no matter what mental contortions they have to go through in order to ignore or obfuscate that fact. They have been so intent on showing that the U.S. is not at war with Islam that they have taken a sanguine and supportive attitude toward Islamic supremacist groups that are dedicated – in the words of a captured Muslim Brotherhood internal strategy document – to “eliminating and destroying Western civilization from within.”
So if this effort succeeds entirely, and it becomes illegal in Sweden to speak critically of Islam or Muhammad (if that isn’t functionally the case there now already), will there be no more acts of jihad against Sweden?
Again, this is unlikely. For behind all these shifting pretexts is an imperative that cannot be placated: the mandate, rooted in Islamic doctrine, to wage war against unbelievers until they either convert to Islam or submit as inferiors to the rule of Islamic law. The pretexts always shift, and are useful to stir up a righteous anger against Infidels that is useful for making recruits among peaceful Muslims, but if one cause of that anger is taken away, the anger itself will not dissipate. Instead, it will just find another object, and manufacture a grievance to use for that purpose if necessary. The anger itself, and the resultant jihad, are the only thing that is constant.
So while the audio file sent to the Swedish news agency spoke of Afghanistan, insults to Muhammad, and Lars Vilks, the biggest mistake embattled Swedish Infidels could make would be to think that if reasonable accommodation were made in Sweden’s military posture and attitude toward speech about Islam, a lasting peace with the Muslims in their midst would then ensue. A prediction: a period of calm may indeed come in that case, but it would only be the calm before a greater storm than ever, as Islamic supremacists newly emboldened by Sweden’s show of weakness in making these accommodations would press forward even more fiercely than before.
And one thing is certain: Western governments, possibly including Sweden itself, will amply prove the truth of that prediction by the policies they adopt and pursue in the next few years.