Recently I was at a community function and seated next to a local beggar who usually hangs around the neighborhood with his hand out always asking for spare change. I can't say the food was particularly good but most people took it in stride, he however lashed out and began shouting that the soda was poison, the food was disgusting and the particular food that he wanted and had been promised wasn't available. Eventually after eating some more, he left angrily.
On a scale of civilizations, Islam is the beggar at the feast. The modern world has birthed an incredible wealth of technologies and products, economic prosperity, human rights and freedoms. Knowledge and communication have been expanded as never before and mankind has gone from the depths of the ocean to set foot on the surface of the moon and within a decade Mars.
Liberal dogma has it that this 'feast' is one that excludes the developing nations and takes place at their expense, but it is not. Israel and Singapore are radically different countries but they are examples of how even small countries can harness technological and commercial energies to become players in the arena. Japan rebuilt itself after the devastation of WW2, two atomic bombs and American occupation to become a technological and economic superpower. Even in the 50's when Israel was less than a decade old and poor, an Israeli university was already running a supercomputer.
Anyone can join the feast, any country genuinely committed to
1. Educating its citizens
(Note that I didn't even include freedom on the list, because Singapore manages to do without it. But even these two terms scare Arab Muslim countries badly enough because they make it difficult to control the population.)
When the 21st century dawned, the Arab Muslim world's response to it in 2001 was the most brutal terrorist attack on a major civilian target in history. A target specifically associated with commerce and prosperity. Since then Islam has brought a new wave of terrorism across the world from Bali to Istanbul to London to Madrid. The bloody tide is supposed to usher in a Caliphate but all it is ushering in is the growing awareness by millions of Americans and Europeans that Islam is incompatible with a 21st century civilization.
Why does the beggar get angry at the feast? It isn't because he doesn't have enough, it's because he chooses not to have enough. There are plenty of people who are deprived, but the professional beggar is an entirely separate category, he transforms his inadequacy into his identity. This is the nature of Islam.
The new Islamic identity celebrates the inadequacies of the Muslim world as virtues. Muslim men can't look at women dressed normally without wanting to rape them, this their Imams transform into a virtue and a reflection of the "immoral women". Muslims can't get along with Non-Muslims, this the Imams claims is proof that Muslims are oppressed. Muslims display intolerance for the everyday practices of the people they live among, including their wine and their pork products, their Imams claim this represents a lack of respect for Muslims rather than the other way around.
Arab Muslim tyrannies can't participate in the 21st century and rather than changing their countries, they funnel dissatisfaction into terrorism against America and Israel and blame the whole thing on "outside interference". The beggar at the feast strikes again.
Islam has made such a natural ally for the left because both reject the idea of progress as immoral. The left has chosen to embrace global warming's call for "Back to the Caves" and the Arab Muslim world is already living there. Both piggyback on 21st century technologies like the internet while furiously employing it to denounce technology and the civilization that generates it. If the left represents the disgruntled epicurean and the Islamic hordes are the barbarians at the gate, their commonality is based on a need to overturn the social, moral and political order of the nation.
The endless Western aid that pours into the Muslim world represents welfare. The Marshall Plan funded the ability of devastated nations to get back on their feet (perhaps excessively so) while the US and the UN's programs continue to pour money in to nations that cannot productively use it and that choose to remain backward. No matter what you give the beggar at the feast, he will stay angry because anger is his identity. It is in the end humiliating to be a beggar, even if one chooses it, and humiliation spawns anger. And that anger burns the keenest and must be directed outward when that humiliation is the product of your own choices.
Islam has chosen to be the beggar of the new millennium and engaged in an orgy of violence to overturn civilization and become its master, building a caliphate of ignorance on the ruins of the civilized world.