Whitewashing the Thai Jihad
story Wednesday on a jihadist attack on a wedding party and other jihad
AFP’s concluding paragraph blandly placed all the blame for the conflict on the non-Muslim Thai government:
More than 3,000 people have been killed since separatist unrest broke out in January 2004 in the south, which was an autonomous Malay Muslim sultanate until mainly Buddhist Thailand annexed it in 1902, provoking decades of tension.
All was well, you see, until the Buddhists of Thailand, motivated apparently only by rapacious imperialism, annexed the poor autonomous Malay Muslim Sultanate. AFP does not mention, of course, that the Malay Sultanate at that time was making war against the Siamese during the war between Siam and Burma, and Thailand conquered it in that context -- making it Thai by a right of conquest that has been universally recognized throughout human history (except, of course, when it comes to Israel and to any Muslim land that is conquered by non-Muslims).
Along with this come the media’s
allergy to the word “jihad,” and its frequent recourse to the passive voice when
discussing what the jihadists did. Sometimes inanimate objects act, apparently
of their own accord. For example, in
story on bombings in southern
The story continues in this vein. Its second paragraph tells us that a bomb was hidden in the car, but with no hint as to by whom. In paragraph 5 we learn that in the three southern provinces, “2,500 people have been killed in gun and bomb attacks since a separatist insurgency erupted in January 2004.” The separatist insurgency just erupted, you see, like a volcano. It was an act of God, a force of nature. Here again Reuters gives the reader no hint as to who the separatist insurgents are, or who killed the overwhelming majority of those 2,500 people. In paragraph 6, we learn how the “suspected militants” set off another bomb, but once again are given no hint as to who these militants are.
Same thing in paragraph 7:
unidentified “insurgents” ambush the security forces. In paragraph 8, it’s
simply a “bomb,” a random, accidental object, that unaccountably wounded four
people. But also in that paragraph we learn that this is all taking place in
“the three far south provinces which formed an independent sultanate until
Only in paragraph 10 of the Reuters story are we finally told that “Buddhist monks” are among the chief targets of the still-unidentified “militants” -- which should lead the informed reader to identify them as Islamic jihadists and Sharia supremacists. But they come to that identification with no help from Reuters.
In reality, the Thai jihadists
are uniquely brutal even by the standards of their jihadist brethren, and are
fighting to correct the outrage, as they see it, of non-Muslim rule over a
Muslim population in southern
The price we will have to pay for these fantasies could be very high.
Robert Spencer is a scholar of Islamic history, theology, and law and the director of Jihad Watch. He is the author of seven books, eight monographs, and hundreds of articles about jihad and Islamic terrorism, including the New York Times Bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His next book, Stealth Jihad: How Radical Islam is Subverting America without Guns or Bombs, is coming this November from Regnery Publishing.