Corrections to the blogosphere, the consensus, and the world

Monday, June 25, 2007

Age bin

Colin Rubenstein says we shouldn’t talk with Hamas because it’s committed to extending its religious grip over all the governments in the entire world, it doesn’t believe in toleration except as a temporary expedient, and it has a severe down on the Jews. All these things may indeed be true, but it’s only fair to remember that the exact same beliefs were held by the Catholic Church until the second Vatican council, only forty years ago, and by the eastern bloc until the fall of the Berlin Wall, only fifteen years ago. Religious fanaticism withers away when exposed to the temptations of the consumer society and the intellectual solvents of liberalism. It is reinforced and potentiated, on the other hand, by poverty, oppression, and national feeling, just the conditions the Israelis are fostering in the occupied territories. There are more ways of killing a cat than choking it with cream, but in the long run that’s the most effective alternative.

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