Muslim vs Western Attitudes
Spot the differences. This first article in the Age by Waleed Aly titled 'Ignorance breeds distrust' paints a very different picture to Daniel Pipes article on 'How Muslims Think'.
Waleed seems to think it is just stereotyped nonsense that keeps us from recognising our Muslim brothers as friends.
Western respondents tended to see Muslims as fanatical, violent, intolerant, and disrespectful towards women. This, frankly, is hardly a shock. What might surprise Western readers is that Muslim populations tend to think of them in precisely the same way - though they add that Westerners are selfish, immoral and greedy for good measure.Yep...apparently we are so alike in this. It seems terrorism is just a cliche and equivalent to pornography (those darn fanatical pornographers...they are just like terrorists... well except for the killing and the blowing stuff up part)
We should pause for reflection here. If Westerners immediately, and correctly, recognise that these Muslim perceptions of them are stereotyped nonsense, they may also be inclined to reconsider the accuracy of their own stereotyped view of Muslims. True, Westerners can point to cliches in support of their caricatures (terrorism, honour killings), but so can Muslims (military invasion, pornography). Each has some factual basis, but the result is a false, essentialised typecast of countless astonishingly diverse, complex societies.
Daniel's article highlights some general mulsim attitudes
In not one Muslim population polled does a majority believe that Arabs carried out the 9/11 attacks on the United States. In other words, in every one of these ten Muslim communities, a majority views 9/11 as a hoax perpetrated by the U.S. government, Israel, or some other agency.I guess this is up there with Iran's leader saying the holocaust didn't happen.
All the Muslim populations polled display a solid majority of support for Osama bin Laden. Asked whether they have confidence in him, Muslims replied positively, ranging between 8 percent (in Turkey) to 72 percent (in Nigeria). Likewise, suicide bombing is popular. Muslims who call it justified range from 13 percent (in Germany) to 69 percent (in Nigeria). These appalling numbers suggest that terrorism by Muslims has deep roots and will remain a danger for years to come.What people like Waleed seem to forget is that in the West we have freedom of information and the press. In Muslim countries all they get is the muslim line (hence the support for Osama Bin Laden and suicide bombing.
It isn't ignorance that has bred distrust, it is the threat. If the mulsim world supports Osama Bin Laden then laments the US and it's allies getting involved in the middle east, they only have themselves to blame.