Cheat-Seeking Missles

Friday, September 08, 2006

A Coalition Of The Decent

Newsweek has an interview this week with Judea and Ruth Pearl, the parents of Daniel Pearl, the WSJ reporter viciously beheaded (is there any other way?) by Islamist dogs. Daniel's last words were “My father is Jewish, my mother is Jewish, I am Jewish.”

Neither Daniel nor his parents are/were religious; none believe/believed in God. But all three identify/identified strongly with their Jewish heritage. (Sorry for the clumsy sentence structure -- blame the dogs.)

After Pearl's death, Conservatives have looked with curiousity and even anger at some of Judea Pearl's comments, but this interview will clarify your view of the Pearls. Their work today seems Quixotic at best -- bringing Jews and Muslims closer together -- but their strategy is sound: They get visiting Muslim journalists positions on Jewish newspapers. How creative is that?

I encourage you to read the whole piece and offer this Q&A with Judea Pearl as a tantalizer:
Aren’t you angry?
Angry? I can’t afford to be angry, it’s diversionary. It’s something I learned in the Israeli Army: when a soldier gets angry, he can’t aim right. I’m a soldier, and I have to aim right.

A soldier of what?
Of decency, and I’m building an army, an empowered army to fight the war we all have in mind, Christians, Jews and Muslims. I don’t call it a war against terrorism because then it becomes political. I call it a coalition of the decent, understanding that there is good and evil. This is axiom No. 1: there is absolute good and evil, and the decent is on the good side. Moral relativism is dead. It died in Karachi with my son in 2002. The illusive notion that there’s always a justifiable motivation for one’s action, and that one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter is now dead. There comes a point where civilized society posts red lines that you do not cross. And he who boasts of killing an innocent journalist has crossed that line.
My only disagreement is that moral relativism was already dead before Daniel Pearl's death.

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