Donald Trump goes to Saudi Arabia and the world awaits his much-trailed Islam speech. And what a mighty fine speech it was. The President of the United States
boldly reiterated his notorious “Islam hates us” line and rebuked the House of Saud for spawning Wahhabism, fostering terrorism and abusing the human rights of thousands of its own citizens. called Islam one of the world’s great faiths, lauded King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud for his decency and shared values, and rebuked Iran for murdering its own people and fuelling the fires of sectarian conflict and terror. In the long history of great theo-political analyses of good and evil, this speech missed the mark on so many levels that it scarcely merits any analysis. But President Trump did leave Riyadh with arms and defence contracts worth $350bn, which is good for jobs in the United States of America, if evil for the poor starving people of Yemen, not to mention the wider world increasingly infiltrated and infected by the murderous Salafist ideology.
“If we do not stand in uniform condemnation of this killing – then not only will we be judged by our people, not only will we be judged by history, but we will be judged by God,” the President said, as he conveniently omitted to condemn the root cause of “this killing”, of which historian Tom Holland reminded us in his Channel 4 documentary ‘ISIS: The Origins of Violence‘:
There are things in the past that are like unexploded bombs that just lie in wait in the rubble, and then something happens to trigger them. And there are clearly verses in the Quran and stories that are told about Mohammed that are very like mines waiting to go off – Improvised Explosive Devices. And they can lie there maybe for centuries and then something happens to trigger them and you get this.
‘This’, of course, being the mass slaughter, murder, torture and the unimaginable barbarism which accompanies the Wahhabi quest to eradicate all decadence, heresy and idolatry. But President Trump pussyfoots around this fons et origo: “This is not a battle between different faiths, different sects, or different civilizations,” he (now) says. “This is a battle between barbaric criminals who seek to obliterate human life, and decent people of all religions who seek to protect it. This is a battle between Good and Evil.”
And while he’s dancing with a sword and participating in some strange occultic orb seance with the Saudi King, he does not utter a word against the Wahhabi sect, whose view of the Islamic faith and human civilization is the key to understanding this evil. Nor does he mention Saudi human rights abuses – you know, those men and women (and sometimes children) who are imprisoned, tortured, beheaded or flogged for blogging. Yet the President does identify this:
But no discussion of stamping out this threat would be complete without mentioning the government that gives terrorists all three – safe harbor, financial backing, and the social standing needed for recruitment. It is a regime that is responsible for so much instability in the region.
He then discloses:
I am speaking of course of Iran.
Seriously, the leader of the free world visits Saudi Arabia – which not only harbours thousands of ‘Allahu Akbar’ jihadists but founds and finances extremist mosques all over the world for the greater glory of Allah – and he castigates Iran. How bold, principled and righteous of him. Saudi Arabia may not be united in its appreciation of Muhammed ibn Abd al-Wahhab, the founder of Saudi-Salafist Wahhabism, but there is no denying that Saudi Arabia leads the world on the export of terrorism, and that many Saudis applaud the fact that ISIS is fighting Iranian Shiite fire with Sunni fire.
Saudi Arabia manifests a certain theo-political schizophrenia: there is the 18th-century radical, extremist strand of Saudi identity which inclines toward Wahhabi takfir puritanism (which not only excommunicates the infidel, but chops of men’s hands, hangs raped women and throws gays of tall buildings), and then there is the 20th-century diplomatic, moderate Saudi identity, dripping in black gold and drowning in petrodollars (which is the one which successive US presidents [if not the whole Western world] believes to be progressive and ascendant). This is the one with which President Trump has just signed the biggest arms deal in history. Unfortunately, he appears not to understand (or is afraid to articulate) that theological jihad and takfiri purification have been syncretised into a global movement of conservative Saudi Islamic devotion, the objective of which is world domination – a global caliphate.
You don’t usher in an era of world peace and religious harmony by helping to finance an ideology which believes Mohammed in 7th-century Medina was the best of times. And you can’t educate Muslims on the nature of good and evil when so many of the words which come out of your own mouth are base, ignorant, divisive and offensive. The medium is the message.