Terrorism Facts, Part 1: How does a Society first abhor, then embrace Terrorism?
Why Are So Many in Our Society Going Over to the Dark Side?
We need to recognize that people have been conditioned for years in the public school system by multi-culturalism and political correctness. Consequently, we are seeing those products of our education system promote suicidal appeasement as a matter of policy.
You’ve heard of people volunteering to be the “devil’s advocate,” no doubt thinking themselves clever in doing so. Well, this is no longer a mere intellectual maneuver. What of the growing numbers of people who are being drawn to, even converted to, radical Islam?
I have been asking myself how some in our society seem to accept and even justify the barbaric behavior of Islamic terrorism. Here, in these excerpts adapted from David Kupelian’s insightful book, How Evil Works, we can begin to understand what is happening. And it is my prayerful desire that we can heed this warning so that we not only do not fall prey to this hideous evil, but stand strong against it, and prevail. ~C.D.
P.S. This doesn’t explain why people defend the documented evil barbarism of Planned Parenthood, but I suggest a reason for that in my January newsletter.
Behold, thou art not only guilty of priestcraft, but hast endeavored to enforce it by the sword; and were priestcraft to be enforced among this people it would prove their entire destruction. ~Alma 1:12
Of Terror and Courage
How Western liberals have fallen prey to the ultimate Stockholm syndrome
The ultimate goal of terrorism is to capture our hearts and minds—to convert as many of us as possible. For centuries militant Muslims have converted “infidels” to their religion by threat of death (just as Islam’s legal system, Sharia, to this day prescribes death as the penalty for leaving Islam). This forced conversion and retention process—so alien and repugnant to us in the West where religious liberty is enshrined—really does work, and not just on individuals, but on entire societies. The problem is, extreme emotion like this throws our minds into “program mode,” so to speak. That’s the state of mind and emotion in which we are vulnerable to being converted “at the point of a sword.”
Sympathy for the devil
ON ONE LEVEL, TERRORISM WORKS BY SIMPLY CAUSING US SO MUCH PAIN, suffering, emotional turmoil and fear of future attacks that we give in to the terrorists’ demands. This much we all understand.
But the ultimate goal of terrorism is to capture our hearts and minds—to convert as many of us as possible.
What? How can terrorizing us transform our attitudes in favor of the terrorists’ viewpoint? Wouldn’t we recoil in horror and, if anything, move farther away from empathy for the perpetrators? Not necessarily.
Remember, for centuries militant Muslims have converted “infidels” to their religion by threat of death (just as Islam’s legal system, Sharia, to this day prescribes death as the penalty for leaving Islam). This forced conversion and retention process—so alien and repugnant to us in the West where religious liberty is enshrined—really does work, and not just on individuals, but on entire societies.
Stop and consider what happens when we’re powerfully intimidated and frightened by anything, including terrorism. Wonder of wonders, some of us start to side with the intimidator/terrorist. Of course, part of this is the survival instinct of siding with our enemy so he won’t hurt us. But there’s much more to it: When we’re confronted with serious intimidation, most of us become very upset emotionally, angry, fearful, confused.
The problem is, extreme emotion like this throws our minds into “program mode,” so to speak. That’s the state of mind and emotion in which we are vulnerable to being converted “at the point of a sword.”
Let’s take a quick trip back in time to 1973. On August 23 of that year, at 10:15 a.m., a submachine-gun-toting escaped convict named Jan-Erik Olsson attempted to rob a bank in Stockholm, Sweden, and in the process took four hostages.
During their five-and-a-half day captivity, the hostages—three women and one man—were locked in a bank vault, threatened repeatedly at gunpoint, strapped with dynamite, and had nooses attached to their necks so they’d be strangled to death if police attempted to rescue them by means of a gas attack.
Yet, incredibly, while they were thus held captive, the hostages developed a strong and lasting emotional bond with Olsson and another ex-con who had joined him. They came to sympathize with and support the criminals holding them hostage and threatening their lives, while fearing and disparaging the police who were risking their own lives trying to save them! In fact, some of the captives later testified in court on behalf of their captors, refusing to give evidence against them—and even raised money for their tormentors’ legal defense.
This phenomenon of actives bonding emotionally and siding with their captors, dubbed the “Stockholm syndrome” after the bank hostage case, has been observed in similar hostage situations over the years, and has aloes shed light on other seemingly inexplicable behaviors.
Indeed, as clinical psychologist Joseph M. Carver points out, “law enforcement personnel have long recognized this syndrome, with battered women who fail to press charges, bail their battering husband/boyfriend out of jail, and even physically attack police officers when they arrive to rescue them from a violent assault.”
All those unfortunate enough to be caught up in a powerfully intimidating relationship—hostages, abused women or children, cult members, prisoners of war, concentration camp inmates, victims of incest—are considered vulnerable to the Stockholm Syndrome, whose clinical characteristics include the following:
- The captives start to identify with their captors, at first as a means of survival, calculating that the captor won’t hurt them if they are cooperative and supportive.
- The captives realize a rescue attempt is dangerous and could result in their being hurt or even killed, and so they come to fear and oppose efforts to rescue them.
- Longer-term captivity (here’s where it gets really weird) fosters an emotional attachment to the captor, as the victims learn of the captor’s problems and grievances, as well as his hopes and aspirations. In some cases, the captives come to identify with and believe in the justness of the captor’s “cause,” effectively joining his side.
Here’s a key principle of how evil works: Hate can easily morph into “love.” Not real love, of course, but rather an emotional identification and bonding many of us mistakenly think of as love.
This is the operative mechanism of the Stockholm syndrome: It isn’t just being close to hostage takers and learning about their problems and aspirations that causes conversion to their viewpoint. What causes the “mind meld” to occur is the intense emotion—the terror the hostages feel when their very lives are being threatened, and the rage that underlies the fear.
That emotional climate has a way of wiping their mind’s hard drive clean and allowing for new programming. This is brainwashing at its most elemental level.
Europe is already well in the syndrome’s grip. Although Britain has exploded with more extremist Islamist activity and active terror cells than almost anywhere else in the Western world, most Brits express a chipper view of the Muslims in their midst, according to a poll by the Pew Research Center. Almost two out of three Britons—63 percent—claim a favorable opinion of Muslims.
But this love is unrequited. The level of raw hatred British Muslims have for non-Muslim Brits is higher than anywhere on the continent.
And the “most comprehensive survey ever undertaken of Muslim student opinion in the UK” showed an astonishing “60 percent of active members of campus Islamic societies said killing in the name of religion can be justified.”
Is it just possible that the extreme “tolerance” Brits display toward the militant jihadists in their midst is nothing more than weakness—a timid, smiling attempt to pacify the bully in the vain hope he won’t hurt them anymore?
Many people are so intimidated by radical Islam, so fearful of becoming victims themselves, that their fear is unconsciously transformed into a strange sympathy and support for the terrorists, or at least for their worldview. The key word here is “unconsciously.” We’re not talking about merely “playing along” as a survival strategy; we’re talking about actual change, conversion, paradigm shift.
But then, isn’t his exactly how forced conversion to Islam “at the point of a sword” has always worded throughout the centuries?
And isn’t this what’s really behind the absurd bending-over-backwards political correctness we see in America and Europe today with regard to Islam? Just consider:
- A British government-backed awards event banned “The Three Little Pigs” from consideration because the presence of pigs in the classic children’s story might offend Muslims.
- Muslims convicts incarcerated in Britain’s high-security Leeds Prison were outraged that the prison mistakenly posted a menu offering ham sandwiches as one of three Ramadan food choices, and a few claimed they were actually served ham. Indignant Muslim prisoners sued the prison for $20 million.
- The U.S. government, not wanting to offend Muslim sensitivities, rarely mentions “Muslim” or “Islamic” when describing Islamic terrorism. For instance, when a massive jihad plot to blow up 10 airliners over the Atlantic and kill thousands was foiled back in 2006, then-homeland Security chief Micahel Chertoff briefed his agency using only the word “extremists” to describe the plotters—no mention of Islam. All of the two dozen would-be terrorists were Muslims. Little has changed since.
As long as the West becomes continually weaker and more contemptible in it attempts to placate Islam, the conflict will just intensify. In fact, believe it or not, it is our weakness that is actually fueling the growth of Islamo-fascism. That’s right: When you behold the ever-increasing radicalization, arrogance and fury of today’s jihadists, realize that we are literally feeding it. We’re nurturing it. We’re rocking the cradle.
Terrorism Facts Part 2: How did the Greatest Generation conquer 20th Century Terrorism?