Friday, April 06, 2007


Good Morning Yakima Gulag!!!

Kosovo's Bosniak lawmaker a lonely naysayer to U.N. plan


I think this is a littld bit sensationalized, but just to point something out, there would have been NO Wahabbi threat if there had not been any war or oprresion in
BiH or in Kosovo. Certain types of events radicalize people. The British had to learn that the hard way with Northern Ireland, and the Indian sub-continent. The United States has had to learn this the hard way with Iraq.
The other thing to remark on is that the arms embargo during the war in BiH directly led to a Wahabbi presence. If someone is trying to kill you, you take help where you get it, even if the rescueing person is a gangster himself.
Another thing, about the picture with this article, the women you see in that photo are not excessivly strict looking. They look like very traditional but normal Bosniak women in normal winter dress for the region. The REALLY Wahabbi women wear white scarves tied in a particular way, and they wear very long rain coats. You can tell them by the way their scarves are done so as to hide not only the hair, but part of the upper forhead.
The other thing that has to be pointed out is that the Bosnian government is not rich, they don't have nearly the money they need to take the necessary steps to keep out Wahabbi influence. People DO need schools and if the money comes from Jordan, or Saudi Arabia, as long as the kids learn to read and write t here might not be a lot of questions asked. A stronger central authority could do something more about this problem. Brcko isn't really a normal situation even for BiH anyway, but normal curriculum for Bosnia Hercegovina, NOT other countries ought to be insisted upon as a condition of being allowed to render aid.

Islam doesn't have the kind of set up that can allow for this sort of story to happen...

not Balkans related but of interest just because...

Step out of line and the man comes to take you away...well your church anyway....

This is kind of funny:

Reports: Macedonia's minister rides Beckham's stolen car

It was a little cold last night, but today is sunny and looks like it will be nice out.

Good points on the Wahabis. I would also add that the problem of radicalization can be easily fiexed by addressing the underlying socio-economic problems that are leading some people to follow the extremists. As, you pointed out, the Bosnian government isn't wealthy, but I do hope that both NGO money, and money from the government can be focused on helping those on the margins of society, not only because it is the right thing to do, but because not doing so will cause more problems for all of Bosnia's people.
Yes you are right on the socio-economic problems that can be easily fixed, but you are wrong about people who have these problems being on the margins, these are people in fairly typical economic situations but some are reacting more extremely, and are therefore way easier to exploit.You are 100% correct that helping people get jobs, get an education and survive generally is the right thing to do, and that goes for other elements in society in BiH who still resort to extreme opinions, whether those folks are Croat, Serb or Muslim Bosnians. Everyone needs to be able to make it and if everyone can you have a peaceful society.
Long ago my mother explained to me that there are what are called 'The Matierial Conditions of Revolution' and the first one is poverty, the next one is no hope of a way to manage daily life. If people have some reasonable level of hope and comfort they tend not to rebel and they don't involve t hemselves with extreme ideologies or extreme religious doctrines either.
I think people in general need to face that in some ways an extreme ideology or an extreme religion even has a survival value in hard times. 1. You have 'certainty' 2. the rules organize your life for you. 3. if others follow the same ideology they are following the same rules, leading to some basic order in the midst of chaos, 4. your fellow members are like 'instant friends' and a 'replacement family' so you get to feel connected. 5. an extreme ideology or religion does all the things I mentioned more than a normal religious approach, because everything is a 'sign' and the members feel Divinely guided into the right direction.
The downside of such ideologies is that there is inevitably a 'crisis of faith', usually caused by events that are too much for the 'believer', and too much of such extreme ideology controls by external means, behaviors which ought to be controlled by the individual him or herself, so I believe ultimately such ideologies are detrimental to true faith, which is usually less extreme in it's manifestations.
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