Sunday, January 27, 2008

Oxford University—Still proud of the Oxford Union?

Oxford University, long the epitome of higher education in the United Kingdom and the world, was once able to claim proudly that its Oxford Union made leaders. Founded in 1823, is the Union still what it once was? That is the question being asked in the United Kingdom and around the world as the Union debated whether the State of Israel has a right to exist and struggles with a dispute surrounding a recent election.

It saddens me to think that the existence of a country that has formally existed for 60 years and whose people have existed for 4,000 years is subject to debate. Those sponsoring the debate are among the best in academia or at least that is what we want to believe.

Truth sometimes being stranger than fiction, here are articles from the Jerusalem Post and the Times Online that offer concise reports on the debate and the strength of the Oxford Union.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

How Are Jihadists Made? Tawfit Hamad has an Answer

What occupies the mind of a jihad-driven Muslim? How is such fervor planted in young and impressionable believers? Where does it originate? How did I - once an innocent child who grew up in a liberal, moderate and educated household - find myself a member of a radical Islamic group?

So begins Tawfit Hamad's essay on the creation of a jihadist that appears in the January 17, 2008 edition of The Jerusalem Post.

Mr. Hamad's story reminds me of the Rodgers and Hammerstein lyrics from "South Pacific," "You've got to be taught, to hate and fear; You've got to be taught, from year to year; It's got to be drummed, in your dear little ear; You've got to be carefully taught."

But Hamad is not singing from some fanciful isle; he's speaking about real life, and the threat that the world faces from an religious educational system that poisons Muslim youth from an early age.

It's a story well worth reading. Here's the link-- The Development of a Jihadist's Mind