Ibn Warraq is a Pakistani, ex-Muslim intellectual, author of at least seven books about the Koran, Muhammad, the Crusades, plus Defending the West: A Critique of Edward Said’s Orientalism (2007) and Why the West Is Best: A Muslim Apostate’s Defense of Liberal Democracy (2011).
Following the publication of the Danish cartoons, he wrote an article Democracy in a Cartoon, published in Der Spiegel Online on February 3, 2006. In this he gives this very sound advice to us in the West:
“BE PROUD, DO NOT APOLOGIZE. Do we have to go on apologizing for the sins of our fathers? Do we still have to apologize, for example, for the British Empire, when in fact the British presence in India led to the Indian Renaissance, resulted in famine relief, railways, roads, and irrigation schemes, eradication of cholera, the civil service, the establishment of a universal educational system where none existed before, the institution of elected parliamentary democracy and the rule of law?
What of the British architecture of Bombay and Calcutta? The British even gave back to the Indians their own past: It was European scholarship, archaeology and research that uncovered the greatness that was India; it was British government that did its best to save and conserve the monuments that were a witness to that past glory. British imperialism preserved where earlier Islamic imperialism destroyed thousands of Hindu temples.
“On the world stage, should we really apologize for Dante, Shakespeare, and Goethe? Mozart, Beethoven and Bach? Rembrandt, Vermeer, Van Gogh, Breughel, Ter Borch? Galileo, Huygens, Copernicus, Newton and Darwin? Penicillin and computers? The Olympic Games and football?
“THE WEST is the source of the liberating ideas of individual liberty, political democracy, the rule of law, human rights and cultural freedom. It is THE WEST that has raised the status of women, fought against slavery, defended freedom of inquiry, expression and conscience. No, the West needs no lectures on the superior virtues of societies that keep women in subjugation, cut off their clitorises, stone them to death for alleged adultery, throw acid on their faces, or deny the human right of those considered to belong to lower castes.”
We need to DEMAND that our politicians, our police, our national security organs, our administrators and our media act and write according to these non-negotiable principles. And YOU, readers of Freedom and Heritage’s website, need to take this very hard-headed attitude into all conversations you have about these issues.
There is no more critically important issue in our national and international politics than the survival of Western civilization.