Transcript: Roy Mottahedeh and Barry Rubin | Nov 11, 2006

[Theme music plays]

The opening sequence rolls. The logo of "Big Ideas" featuring a lit lamp bulb appears against an animated blue slate.
Then, Andrew Moodie appears in the studio. The walls are decorated with screens featuring lit lamp bulbs, and two signs read "Big Ideas."
Andrew is in his early forties, clean-shaven, with short curly black hair. He's wearing a brown coat and a gray shirt.

He says HELLO, I'M ANDREW MOODIE,
AND THIS IS
BIG IDEAS.
IT HAS ALWAYS FASCINATED
ME THAT THERE ARE MORE
DIFFERENCES WITHIN A RACE
THAN BETWEEN THE RACES.
BEHIND THE VENEER OF RACIAL,
ETHNIC, OR RELIGIOUS
HOMOGENEITY, THERE ARE
DIFFERENT LANGUAGES,
CULTURE, AND
BELIEF SYSTEMS.
AND FREQUENTLY, THEY'RE IN
CONFLICT WITH EACH OTHER.
NOW, THE SAME CAN DEFINITELY
BE SAID ABOUT CHRISTIANITY,
BUT CAN THE SAME
BE SAID OF ISLAM?
AND MORE TO THE POINT, IS
IT POSSIBLE TO BE MODERN
WITHOUT AN INTERNAL SENSE
OF DIVISION... PLURALISM,
IN OTHER WORDS?
TODAY, WE HAVE TWO VERY
DIFFERENT CONTRIBUTIONS
TO THIS DISCUSSION.
FIRST, WE'LL BRING YOU A
LENGTHY EXCERPT FROM A
RECENT TALK AT CARLETON
UNIVERSITY BY ROY MOTTAHEDEH.
HE IS A PROFESSOR
AT HARVARD.
HE'S A HISTORIAN.
AND HE'S THE CHAIR OF THE
COMMITTEE ON ISLAMIC STUDIES.
AMONG HIS PUBLICATIONS, ONE
THAT SPEAKS MOST IMMEDIATELY
TO OUR CURRENT PREOCCUPATIONS
IS "THE MANTLE OF THE PROPHET:
RELIGION AND
POLITICS IN IRAN."
HERE IS Dr. ROY MOTTAHEDEH,
ON PLURALISM IN NON-WESTERN
TRADITIONS, THE
CASE OF ISLAM.

A clip plays in which Roy Mottahedeh stands behind a wooden lectern in a full university classroom. A banner behind him reads "Carleton University."
Roy is in his fifties, with short wavy gray hair and a moustache. He's wearing a gray suit, blue shirt, and spotted gray tie.

He says THE FIRST PART OF MY TALK
ANALYZES THE MOST COMMON
SYSTEM USED BY MUSLIM
WRITERS TO CATEGORIZE
SECTARIAN DIFFERENCES.
IN THIS PERIOD OF TRAGIC
CONFRONTATION BETWEEN
SHIITES AND SUNNIS, NOT
ONLY IN IRAQ, BUT ALSO IN
AFGHANISTAN AND PAKISTAN,
AND OTHER PLACES, THIS
SUBJECT IS MORE
RELEVANT THAN EVER.
THE SECOND HALF OF MY TALK
STUDIES THE USE OF THIS
TRADITION BY THE GREAT POET
AND MYSTIC JALAL AD-DIN RUMI,
AND TURNS TO THE
LARGER QUESTION OF
PLURALISM BETWEEN
SYSTEMS OF BELIEF.
THE CENTRAL ORGANIZING
SYSTEM FOR SECTARIAN
DIVISION AMONG MUSLIMS IS A
SCHEME THAT DIVIDES MUSLIMS
INTO 72 OR 73 SECTS.
THIS SCHEME IS NOT TOTALLY
UNFAMILIAR TO READERS OF
ENGLISH LITERATURE.
IN THE 1888 EDITION OF
EDWARD FITZGERALD'S VERY
POPULAR, AND CREATIVE
REIMAGINING OF OMAR KHAYYAM,
THE 43rd QUATRAIN READS,
"THE GRAPE THAT CAN WITH
LOGIC ABSOLUTE, THE TWO AND
70 SEX CONFUTE, THE SUBTLE
ALCHEMIST THAT IN A TRICE,
LIFE'S LEADEN METAL INTO
GOLD TRANSMUTE."
NOW, THIS LECTURE IS NOT
WRITTEN TO CELEBRATE THE
POWER OF WINE TO DISSOLVE
SECTARIAN DIFFERENCE,
ALTHOUGH SUCH A LECTURE
MIGHT BE MORE FUN THAN WHAT
I WILL SAY TONIGHT.
BUT I THINK WE SHOULD PAUSE
FOR A MOMENT AT THE NAME OF
OMAR KHAYYAM THE IRANIAN
MUSLIM MATHEMATICIAN AND
ASTRONOMER, WHO DIED IN THE
EARLY 12th CENTURY OF THE
COMMON ERA.
WE SHOULD PAUSE TO REMEMBER
THAT KHAYYAM'S SKEPTICISM
WAS AS THRILLING TO HIS
MEDIEVAL CONTEMPORARIES AS
IT WAS TO OUR VICTORIAN
FOREFATHERS WHO FIRST MADE
OMAR KHAYYAM A FIGURE OF
INTEREST IN THE WEST.
IN FACT, SOME OF YOU WILL
REMEMBER THAT MATTHEW
ARNOLD, THE GREAT CRITIC
AND POET OF THE VICTORIAN
PERIOD WAS SCANDALIZED BY
HOW MUCH HE FOUND OMAR
KHAYYAM'S SKEPTICISM BOTH
INTERESTING AND RESONANT.
IN FACT, IT IS BOTH ONE OF
THE VIRTUES AND GREAT SHORT
SIGHTS OF MODERN PEOPLE TO
BELIEVE IN A THOROUGH GOING
AND HOMOGENIZED
SYSTEM OF THOUGHT.
A TOTALLY HYPOCRYPHAL
STORY IS TOLD OF THE MOGUL
EMPEROR OF INDIA, AKBAR,
WHO IN 1581 FOUNDED HIS
OWN RELIGION, WHICH HE
NAMED THE DIN-I ILAHI,
THE DIVINE RELIGION,
WHICH HE AND HIS VAZIR
ABUL FAZAL FORMULATED
TO ACCOMMODATE WHAT
THEY CONSIDERED TO BE
THE MULTIPLE TRUTHS OF
EXISTING RELIGIONS.
WHEN THE EMPEROR AKBAR, WHO
HAD ALREADY PURCHASED FOUR
HOOVES OF THE DONKEY THAT
BORE JESUS INTO JERUSALEM,
AGREED TO BUY A FIFTH HOOF,
THE VAZIR ABUL FAZAL SAID,
BUT YOUR MAJESTY, NO
DONKEY HAS FIVE HOOVES.
TO THIS, THE EMPEROR
REPLIED, WHO KNOWS?
MAYBE ONE OF
THEM IS GENUINE.
[laughter]
THIS HOPEFUL, BUT NOT
ABSOLUTELY COMMITTED FORM
OF BELIEF HELPS US TO
UNDERSTAND THE CULTURE IN
WHICH A TEXT OF HEDONISM,
LIKE THAT OF OMAR KHAYYAM,
CAN EXIST ALONGSIDE THE MOST
RIGOROUS TEXT OF AESTHETIC
AND SELF-DENYING LIFE
WRITTEN BY HIS CONTEMPORARIES.
INCIDENTALLY, AKBAR'S
RELIGION, WHICH HAD ONLY
19 ADHERENTS, DISSOLVED
AT HIS DEATH.
MY TALK AT THIS POINT TURNS
TO THE DISCUSSION OF THE
MEANING OF THE TRADITIONAL
DIVISION INTO 70-ODD SECTS.
A DIVISION THAT, WHICH TO
MANY MUSLIM AUTHORS, SEEMS
FIRMLY ANCHORED IN SAYINGS
ATTRIBUTED TO THE
PROPHET MUHAMMAD.
THESE SAYINGS ARE
TRADITIONALLY CALLED HADITH,
A WORD WHICH MEANS
CONVERSATION OR TRADITION,
WHICH IF SEEN TO BE
SCRUPULOUSLY TRANSMITTED,
CAN HAVE NEARLY SCRIPTURAL
AUTHORITY FOR MOST MUSLIMS.
IN ONE FORM OR ANOTHER, THE
HADITH I'M ABOUT TO TELL
YOU, THE HADITH OR SAYING
ATTRIBUTED TO THE PROPHET
MUHAMMAD IS QUOTED BY ALMOST
EVERY AUTHOR ON RELIGIOUS
DIFFERENCE AMONG MUSLIMS,
AND OFTEN GIVES THE STRUCTURE
TO THE BOOKS THAT ARE
WRITTEN ON THIS SUBJECT.
THIS HADITH, THIS SAYING
ATTRIBUTED TO THE PROPHET, IS
OFTEN CALLED HADITH
AL-TAFRIQA IN ARABIC,
THE HADITH CONCERNING
DIVISIONS, AND IT OCCURS
IN ITS MOST FREQUENT
FORM AS, "THE JEWS DIVIDED
INTO 71 SECTS.
FIRQA IS THE WORD IN ARABIC.
THE CHRISTIANS INTO 72
SECTS, AND MY COMMUNITY,
OMMATI IN ARABIC, WILL
DIVIDE INTO 73 SECTS.
THIS FORM OF THE
HADITH IS FOUND IN
[speaking Arabic]

A caption appears on screen. It reads "Roy Mottahedeh. Center for Middle Eastern Studies. Harvard University. Carleton University. September 15, 2006."

Roy continues FOUR OF THE SIX SO-CALLED
CANONICAL SUNNI BOOKS
OF HADITH.
THIS HADITH ALSO FREQUENTLY
OCCURS IN A DIFFERENT VERSION.
THERE WILL BEFALL MY
NATION WHAT BEFELL THE
CHILDREN OF ISRAEL.
THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL
DIVIDED INTO 72 RELIGIOUS
GROUPS, AND HERE THE WORD
IS MILLA INSTEAD OF FIRQA.
AND MY COMMUNITY WILL DIVIDE
INTO 73 RELIGIOUS GROUPS,
ONE MORE THAN THEY.
NOW, SOMETIMES, IS ADDED AT
THE END OF THIS HADITH, ALL
OF THEM ARE IN HELL
FIRE EXCEPT ONE GROUP.
THE ADDITION ABOUT HELL FIRE
IS SOMETIMES FOLLOWED BY
THE ACCOUNT OF A QUESTION
ADDRESSED TO THE PROPHET,
AS TO WHO IS THE SAVED SECT?
AL-FIRQUAT UN NAAJIYAH OR
THE SAVED RELIGIOUS GROUP,
MILLA, WHO WILL NOT
GO TO HELL FIRE?
TO WHICH THE PROPHET
SUPPOSEDLY ANSWERS, THAT
GROUP OR SECT WHICH I AND
MY COMPANIONS BELIEVE IN.
AND A YET FURTHER VARIANT
OF THIS HADITH, EXCLUSIVELY
IDENTIFIES THE SAVED SECT AS
AHL AL-SUNNAH WA'L JAMA'AH,
THAT IS THE SUNNIS.
THE HADITH ALSO
EXISTS AMONG TWELVER
SHIITES, THAT IS ABOUT THE
SHIITES ABOUT WHOM YOU HEARD
MOST, IN IRAN, IN IRAQ,
AND IN OF COURSE LEBANON.
HOWEVER, WITHOUT THE CODA
SAYING THEY ARE THE SUNNIS.
IT BEING UNDERSTOOD THAT
THEY ARE, IN FACT, THE,
IMAMIYYAH OR TWELVER SHIITES.
THE ZAYDI SHIITES AND THE IBADI
KHARIJITES LIKEWISE HAVE A
VARIANT OF THIS HADITH.
NOW ANOTHER VERSION OF THIS
HADITH SAYS THAT THE
CHILDREN OF ISRAEL DIVIDED
INTO 72 SECTS, AND MY
COMMUNITY WILL ALSO
DIVIDE INTO 72.
THE PRINCIPLE OF PROGRESSION
IN NUMBERS... MY COMMUNITY
WILL DIVIDE INTO
73, EXCUSE ME.
THE PRINCIPLE IN PROGRESSION
OF NUMBERS IS PRESERVED HERE.
NOT THE LEAST CURIOUS
THING ABOUT THIS FAMILY OF
TRADITIONS IS THE CLAIM THAT
ISLAM WOULD BE SUPERIOR IN
NUMBER OF SECTARIAN
DIVISIONS, WHEREAS TO BE
SUPERIOR IN NUMBER OF
PEOPLE OF PIETY, OR ANTECEDENT
PROPHETS WOULD SEEM
TO BE A MORE REASSURING
FEATURE OF A
RELIGIOUS TRADITION.
PERHAPS THE CORRUPTION
WROUGHT BY TIME, CALLED
FASATA DISAN IN ARABIC,
IN ARABIC, A FREQUENT THEME
IN ISLAMIC PIETIST THOUGHT.
IT WAS UNDERSTOOD TO MAKE THE
WORLD MORE CORRUPT, AND TO
INCREASE THE NUMBER OF SECTARIAN
DIVISIONS AMONG MUSLIMS.
INTERESTINGLY, THE 10th CENTURY
GEOGRAPHER AL-MUQADDASI
SAYS THAT 72 SECTS ARE IN
HEAVEN, AND ONLY ONE IN
HELL, ACCORDING TO WHAT HE
CONSIDERS TO BE A MUCH MORE
SOUND LINE OF TRANSMISSION.
SIMILARLY, THE GREAT
THEOLOGIAN AL-GHAZALI
WHO DIED IN 1111 OF THE
COMMON ERA SUPPORTS A
READING THAT, "ALL ARE IN
HEAVEN EXCEPT THE ZINDIQS."
HE SAID.
THESE ARE OUTRAGEOUS
HERETICS.
THE OPINION THAT ALL BUT ONE
OF THE SECTS WAS SAVED WAS
NOT WIDELY HELD, AND
WAS NOT FOLLOWED BY THE
PREMODERN MUSLIM WRITERS
OF HERESIOGRAPHY.
THAT IS THE SCRIPTION
OF HERESIES.
SUCH SCHOLARS OF MUSLIM
HERESIES ALMOST INVARIABLY
HONOUR THE TRADITION OF THE
70-ODD, THAT IS 72 OR 73
SECTS IN THEIR BOOKS ON
HERESY, AND AS I SAID, A
LARGE NUMBER OF THEM WORKED
TO FIT THE HERESIES INTO
A SCHEME OF 72 OR 73.
THIS EFFORT FORCED THEM TO
MULTIPLY HERESIES, AND TO
COMBINE HERESIES AS EACH
CATEGORY MIGHT BE A SINGLE
HERESY, OR A
CATEGORY OF HERETICS.
OVER A CENTURY AGO, THE
ORIENTALIST IGNAZ GOLDZIHER
NOTICED THAT A FEW LATER
WRITERS FOUND THE 72 OR 73 FULL
DIVISION OF SECTS TO BE AN
ILL-FITTING SUIT OF CLOTHES.
HE QUOTES THE GREAT SCHOLAR
FAKHR AL-DIN AL-RAZI,
A MAN WHO DIED IN 1209 OF
THE COMMON ERA, WHO IN HIS
COMMENTARY ON THE QURAN
WRITES, "SOME HAVE ATTACKED
THE AUTHENTICITY
OF THIS TRADITION.
THEY SAY, IF BY 72 THEY
MEAN THE FUNDAMENTALS OF
RELIGIOUS BELIEF,
OSULA ADALAN,
THEN THEY DO NOT
REACH THIS NUMBER.
THERE IS NOT THAT MUCH
DIVISION AMONG PEOPLE.
AND IF THEY MEAN THE ACTUAL
PRACTICES OF RELIGION, FURUE,"
HE USED THE WORD FOR
BRANCHES, OR PRACTICES,
"THEN THE NUMBER FAR
SURPASSES THIS NUMBER BY
MANY MULTIPLES.
PEOPLE HAVE RELIGIOUS
PRACTICES MUCH GREATER
THAN 72 OR 73."
GOLDZIHER ALSO SUGGESTED THAT
THE FAMILY OF DIVISION OF
TRADITIONS OWE THEIR
INSPIRATION TO ANOTHER,
POSSIBLY OLDER, VERY
WELL-ATTESTED TRADITION,
THAT "FAITH HAS 70-ODD
BRANCHES, AND MODESTY IS
ONE OF THEM."
THE LEARNED CONTEMPORARY
SCHOLAR AHMED MAHDAVI DAMGHANI
HAS POINTED OUT THAT THIS
IS AN INDEPENDENT SENTIMENT
WITH ITS OWN LINE
OF TRANSMITTERS.
INDEED, AS GOLDZIHER HIMSELF
OBSERVED, HERE THE 70-ODD
BRANCHES ARE ALL PRAISE
WORTHY, AND THIS TRADITION
GIVES RISE TO AN INDEPENDENT
GENRE OF LITERATURE CALLED
SHAEB AL'IIMAN, OR
BRANCHES OF FAITH.
IT IS INTERESTING TO NOTICE
THAT UNLIKE THE TRADITIONS
BASED ON SECT OR RELIGIOUS
GROUP DISTINCTIONS, THESE
BRANCHES OF FAITH TRADITION
IS FOUND IN BOTH BOHARI
AND MUSLIM, WHO ARE
CONDITIONED BY SUNNIS TO
BE MORE AUTHORITATIVE.
THE INTEREST IN THE NUMBER
70-ODD IS A CONSISTENT
THEME, HOWEVER, IN BOTH
THESE TRADITIONS ABOUT
BRANCHES OF THE FAITH, AND
ABOUT SECTARIAN DIVISIONS,
AND DESERVE SOME ATTENTION.
THE LATE ANNEMARIE SCHIMMEL
HAS NOTED IN HER BOOKS
ON NUMBER SIGNIFICANCE IN
RELIGIONS, THAT THE ISLAMIC
TRADITIONS FOLLOW THE BIBLE IN
ITS FASCINATION WITH HEPTATS,
THAT'S THINGS BASED ON SEVEN AND
MULTIPLES OF SEVEN, FROM WHICH
THE INTEREST IN TEN TIMES
SEVEN, OF COURSE, SPRINGS.
THE 70 NATIONS, THE 70
JUDGES OF THE SANHEDRIN,
THE 70 YEARS OF
BABYLONIAN EXILE, ARE ONLY
A SMALL NUMBER OF THE
MANY BIBLICAL 70s.
ACCORDING TO ISLAMIC
TRADITION, THE PROPHET
RECITED THE QURAN 70 TIMES
DURING HIS JOURNEY TO THE
DIVINE PRESENCE, AND HE
ALSO ASKED FOR FORGIVENESS
70 TIMES A DAY.
JUST AS IMPORTANT AS 70 WAS
72 BECAUSE IT WAS LINKED
WITH THREE, SIX,
EIGHT, NINE AND 12.
ALREADY IN LATE ANTIQUITY,
ITS NUMEROLOGICAL SIGNIFICANCE,
AS FOR EXAMPLE THE NUMBER
OF DEGREES IN AN ARC
DIVIDED BY THE SACRED
PENTAGRAM, BEING 72,
WAS ADDED TO ITS
SIGNIFICANCE IN THE BIBLE.
ACCORDING TO A TRADITION,
THE TRANSLATION OF THE
BIBLE INTO GREEK WAS
ACCOMPLISHED BY 70 OR 72
SCHOLARS, EACH ISOLATED
FROM EACH OTHER, AND
MIRACULOUSLY, THE 72
TRANSLATIONS MATCHED.
OF COURSE, THIS IS
CALLED A SEPTUAGINT.
IN THE NEW TESTAMENT, 72
DISCIPLES WERE SENT OUT TO
PREACH THE GOSPEL IN THE
72 LANGUAGES OF THE WORLD.
IN THE ISLAMIC TRADITION,
70-ODDS ARE VERY FREQUENT.
72 WERE KILLED IN THE
MARTYRDOM OF THE PROPHET'S
GRANDSON, IMAM
HUSSAIN AT KARBALA.
IN A TRADITION OF MODEST
AUTHORITY, BUT IN A
RESPECTED COLLECTION, THE
PROPHET ASKS DO YOU KNOW
THE DISTANCE BETWEEN
HEAVEN AND EARTH?
THE COMPANIONS SAY
WE DO NOT KNOW.
HE SAID THE DISTANCE BETWEEN
THE TWO IS 71, OR 72,
OR 73 YEARS.
AND IT'S NOT CLEAR WHETHER
THESE ARE LIGHT YEARS OR
WHAT, AND THE SKY EXTENDS
FOR THE SAME DISTANCE.
IN A TRADITION CLOSER TO
FOLKLORE, THE DISTANCE TO
HELL IS DESCRIBED
IN A SIMILAR WAY.
"WE WERE WITH THE MESSENGER
OF GOD, AND HEARD THE SOUND
OF SOMETHING FALLING.
THE MESSENGER OF GOD SAID
THAT WAS A STONE THAT WAS
THROWN INTO HELL 70 YEARS
AGO, AND IT IS STILL
FALLING UNTIL JUST NOW WHEN IT
LANDED IN THE BOTTOM OF HELL."
INTERESTINGLY, A SHIITE
SOURCE SAYS THAT GOD'S GREATEST
NAME, AL-ISM AL-A'ZAM,
HAS 73 LETTERS, OF WHICH
IMAM MUHAMMAD AL-BAQIR
KNEW 72 LETTERS.
THE MEDIEVAL JEWISH
KABALISTS HELD THAT
YAHWEH'S NAME CONSISTED OF
72 LETTERS, OR THAT YAHWEH
HAD 72 NAMES.
BOTH THE MUSLIM AND THE
JEWISH ESOTERIC TRADITIONS
BELIEVE THAT GOD SAVES
THOSE WHO CALL UPON THE
GREATEST NAME.
THAT 70 MEANS A SIZABLE
NUMBER AND 72 OR 73 OR
70-ODD MEANS A SIZABLE
NUMBER AND THEN SOME, IS TO
ME FAIRLY CLEAR.
IN MANY, AND PERHAPS MOST
CASES, THE EXPRESSION WAS
MEANT TO BE A PICTORIAL
NUMBER, AND NOT AN EXACT
HEAD COUNT.
IN SURAH AT-TAUBAH, THE
NINTH SURAH OF THE QURAN,
MUHAMMAD IS ADDRESSED,
WHETHER MUHAMMAD YOU ASK
FORGIVENESS, OR DO NOT ASK
FORGIVENESS FOR THE
HYPOCRITES 70 TIMES,
GOD WILL NOT FORGIVE THEM
BECAUSE THEY DO NOT BELIEVE.
HERE, CLEARLY, 70 IS A
PICTORIAL NUMBER, AND
CURRENT ENGLISH USAGE WOULD
BE WELL SERVED IF ONE WERE
TO SAY WHETHER YOU ASK
FORGIVENESS A HUNDRED
TIMES, SINCE THIS IS NOT AN
EXACT NUMBER OF TIMES, AND
THE NUMBER IS ONLY
RHETORICALLY SIGNIFICANT.
THE COMMENTATORS I'VE
CONSULTED HAVE NO DOUBT
ABOUT THE PICTORIAL MEANING
OF THE NUMBER IN THIS VERSE.
THE SPECIALIST IN
RHETORIC, AL-ZAMAKHSHARI,
WHO DIED IN 1144 OF THE
COMMON ERA, FOR EXAMPLE,
WRITES ABOUT THIS VERSE
IN HIS QURAN COMMENTARY,
"70 ASSUME THE ROLE OF A
METAPHOR FOR NUMEROUSNESS
IN THEIR SPEECH."
MEANING THE SPEECH OF THE TIME,
THE REVELATION OF THE QURAN.
ONE OF THE MANY TRADITIONS
THAT USES 70 TO SIGNIFY
NUMEROUSNESS IS THE
FOLLOWING, THE PROPHET OF
GOD SAID, HE WHO HELPS A
BELIEVER IN HIS TIME OF
AFFLICTION, GOD ALMIGHTY
AND GLORIOUS WILL REMOVE
FROM HIM 73 AFFLICTIONS,
ONE OF WHICH IS IN THIS
WORLD, AND 72 OF THE
AFFLICTIONS THAT AFFECT
SOULS IN THE HEREAFTER.
A DEEPER THEOLOGICAL INSIGHT
INTO THE QUESTION OF
SECTARIAN DIVISIONS,
HOWEVER, COMES FROM THE
SUFI TRADITION.
HAFIZ, THE NEARLY
INCOMPARABLE POET OF THE
PERSIAN TRADITION WHO DIED
IN 1390 OF THE CHRISTIAN ERA,
EPITOMIZES THIS
TRADITION WHEN HE SAYS HEAVEN WAS TOO WEAK TO BEAR
THE BURDEN OF RESPONSIBILITY.
[speaking Arabic]
THIS IS, OF COURSE, IN
THE QURAN, EVERYBODY WAS
OFFERED, THE EARTH AND
SO FORTH, THE BURDEN OF
PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY
FOR GOODNESS AND VIRTUE,
AND ONLY MAN ACCEPTS IT.
HEAVEN WAS TOO WEAK TO BEAR
THE BURDEN OF RESPONSIBILITY.
THEY GAVE IT TO MY
POOR CRAZY SELF.
FORGIVE THE WAR OF THE 72
JARRING RELIGIONS, SINCE
THEY DID NOT SEE THE TRUTH,
THEY HAVE STRUCK OUT ON
THE ROAD OF FANCY.
[speaking Arabic]
YOU SHOULD ALL HEAR THE
BEAUTIFUL VERSION OF HAFIZ.
THIS LINE IS RENDERED IN A
SOMEWHAT MORE POETIC WAY BY
THE GREAT TRANSLATOR OF
HAFIZ, GERTRUDE BELL, WHO
SAYS, THOUGH THE SOFT
BREATH OF TRUTH READIES
MY EARS FOR TWO AND 70
JANGLING CREEDS HE HEARS
AND LOUD VOICED FABLE
CALLS HIM CEASELESSLY.
IN THE TWO HAFIZ
TRANSLATIONS, THE WORD FOR
FANCY IN THE FORMER AND
FABLE IN THE LATTER IS AFSOON
FOR HAFIZ, SECTARIAN
DIVISIONS ARE THE FANCIER
FABLE THAT PREOCCUPIES
THOSE WHO HAVE NOT STRUCK
OUT ON THE MYSTICAL PATH.
THE HIGHEST AND MOST
DEVELOPED REFLECTIONS OF
THE SUFI TRADITION ON THIS
SUBJECT ARE TO BE FOUND IN
THE MASNAVI OF JALALADDIN,
KNOWN IN THE WEST AS RUMI,
WHO DIED IN 1273.
JALALADDIN IS CALLED
IN TURKISH, MEVLANAN
IN PERSIAN, MAWLANA.
HIS MASNAVI IS IN SOME
WAYS, AFTER THE QURAN,
ONE OF THE MOST GREAT
SPIRITUAL CLASSICS OF
THE ISLAMIC TRADITION.
HE IS CALLED OUR MASTER
IN ALL THESE TRADITIONS.
RUMI DEPICTS THE
CONFRONTATION BETWEEN A
PARTISAN OF PREDESTINATION,
OR DIVINE COMPULSION,
AS HE CALLS IT, AND A
PARTISAN OF FREE WILL.
QUOTE, I'M SORRY THESE
QUOTES ARE A BIT LONG,
SO YOU HAVE TO BE PATIENT.
"IN THIS WAY, THERE IS
A DISPUTE BETWEEN THE
PARTISANS OF COMPULSION AND
THOSE OF FREE WILL 'TIL THE
RESURRECTION OF MANKIND.
IF THE DISPUTANT HAD
BEEN ABLE TO REFUTE HIS
ADVERSARY, THEIR SCHOOLS OF
THOUGHT WOULD HAVE FALLEN
OUT OF SIGHT.
SINCE PRESENTED WITH
ABSOLUTE UNQUESTIONABLE
TRUTH THESE DISPUTANTS
WOULD NOT BE ABLE TO ESCAPE
ADMITTING THE TRUTH IN
REPLY, AND THEY WOULD
RECOIL FROM THAT
ROAD TO PERDITION.
YET, IN SO MUCH AS THEIR
CONTINUATION ON THAT COURSE
OF DISPUTE WAS DIVINELY
ORDAINED, GOD FEEDS THEM
WITH ARGUMENTS, SO THAT
ONE DISPUTANT CANNOT BE
COMPELLED BY THE
DIFFICULTIES POSED BY
ANOTHER DISPUTANT, AND EACH
ONE MAY BE PREVENTED FROM
SEEING HIS OPPONENT'S
SUCCESS, ALL HAPPEN SO
THAT THESE 72 SECTS SHOULD
REMAIN IN THE WORLD 'TIL
THE DAY OF RESURRECTION.
SINCE THIS IS A WORLD OF
DARKNESS, AND THAT WHICH IS
HIDDEN, THE EARTH AND ITS
UNCERTAINTIES IS NECESSARY
FOR THE SHADOW TO EXIST.
UNTIL THE RESURRECTION,
THE 72 SECTS WILL REMAIN,
AND THE TALK OF THOSE WHO
INTRODUCE IDEAS WITHOUT
RELIGIOUS FOUNDATION
WILL NOT FAIL.
THE HIGH VALUE OF A
TREASURE IS SHOWN BY THE
CIRCUMSTANCE THAT THERE ARE
SO MANY LOCKS KEEPING IT AWAY."
AS NICHOLSON, THE GREAT
COMMENTATOR ON THE MASNAVI
RIGHTLY REMARKS, THE
ARGUMENT OF THE PASSAGE IS
THAT RELIGIOUS HERESIES
ARE NECESSARY,
AND EVEN PROVIDENTIAL.
THE WHOLE PASSAGE CAN BE
SEEN AS A COMMENTARY ON THE
FIRST PART OF A WELL KNOWN
QURANIC VERSE, THIS IS IN
SURAH 42 VERSE EIGHT, "AND
IF GOD WISHED HE WOULD HAVE
MADE THEM INTO A SINGLE
RELIGIOUS COMMUNITY."
[speaking Arabic]
GOD HAS NOT GIVEN
CERTAINTY TO MANKIND.
ON THIS EARTH, MAN MUST
PUZZLE OUT THE CORRECT
MEANING IN THE SHADOW, AND
NOT IN THE PLAIN SIGHT OF
CERTAIN TRUTH.
GOD EVEN NOURISHES, AS
RUMI SAYS, EVEN NOURISHES
THE OPPOSING SIDES
OF A DISPUTE.
AS EARTHLY CREATURES, WE
SEE ONLY THE HIGH VALUE,
AND NOT THE REAL NATURE OF
TRUTH BECAUSE IT IS LOCKED
AWAY, AND DIFFICULT
TO ACCESS.
RUMI HAS SOMEWHAT DIFFERENT
APPROACH TO THE 72 VARIETIES
OF MUSLIMS IN A PASSAGE
ON DOUBT AND FAITH.
TAKE CARE, OH, BELIEVERS,
WHERE THAT VEIN OF
PHILOSOPHIC DOUBT
IS WITHIN YOU.
WITHIN YOU IS MANY
AN INFINITE WORLD.
IN YOU ARE ALL THE 72 SECTS.
WOE TO YOU SHOULD THAT
PHILOSOPHICAL DOUBT EXTEND
ITS HAND FROM WITHIN."
WITHOUT QUESTION, THIS
PASSAGE URGES THE BELIEVER
TO MASTER HIS OR HER DOUBTS
IN THE NAME OF BELIEF, AND
YET, THIS PASSAGE REGARDS
THE INTERNAL WORLD, OR THE
INTERNAL FORUM, AS A PLACE
WHERE INEVITABLY ARE
ENCOUNTERS OF ALL
SORTS OF BELIEFS.
HERE SYMBOLIZED
BY THE 72 SECTS.
SUCH AN INTERNAL FORUM
EXISTS IS A CONSEQUENCE OF
THE MANY INFINITE WORLDS
INSIDE EACH HUMAN BEING.
THIS IS ALMOST A
PSYCHOANALYTIC INSIGHT.
IN YET ANOTHER PASSAGE,
RUMI ADDRESSES SECTARIAN
DIVISIONS WITHIN A MYSTICAL
VISION OF THE UNIVERSAL,
IF NOT FULLY CONSCIOUS
WORSHIPFULNESS OF ALL
OBJECTS IN CREATION.
"EACH GLORIFIES THEE IN A
DIFFERENT MANNER, AND THAT
ONE IS UNAWARE OF THE
STATE OF THIS ONE.
MAN DISBELIEVES IN THE
GLORIFICATION UTTERED BY THE
INANIMATE OBJECTS, BUT
THESE INANIMATE OBJECTS ARE
MASTERS IN
PERFORMING WORSHIP.
NAY, THE TWO AND 70 SECTS
ARE EVERYONE UNAWARE OF THE
REAL STATE OF EACH OTHER,
AND IN GREAT DOUBT.
SINCE TWO SPEAKERS HAVE NO
KNOWLEDGE OF EACH OTHER'S
STATE, HOW WILL IT BE
BETWEEN SUCH INANIMATE
OBJECTS AS A
WALL AND A DOOR?
SINCE I AM HEEDLESS OF THE
GLORIFICATION UTTERED BY ONE
WHO SPEAKS, HOW SHOULD MY
HEART KNOW THE GLORIFICATION
PERFORMED BY THAT
WHICH IS MUTE?
THE SUNNI IS UNAWARE OF
THE PREDESTINARIANS' MODE
OF GLORIFICATION.
THE SUNNI HAS A PARTICULAR
MODE OF GLORIFICATION, THE
PREDESTINARIAN HAS THE
OPPOSITE THEREOF, BOTH
TAKING REFUGE WITH GOD."
AGAIN, THE GREAT COMMENTATOR
NICHOLSON SUMMARIZES THE
PASSAGE WELL SAYING THAT
"EVERYTHING GLORIFIES GOD BY
DISPLAYING SOME OF HIS
ATTRIBUTES IN A SPECIAL WAY
KNOWN TO GOD ALONE, WHO
HAS THE INFINITE KNOWLEDGE
NECESSARY TO UNDERSTAND ALL
THE PARTICULARS OF THE WORLD."
ONLY THE DIVINE MIND KNOWS
ALL OF THE INANIMATE
OBJECTS AS WELL AS
THE ANIMATE OBJECTS.
THIS GLORIFICATION PERFORMED
BY EVERY OBJECT IN
CREATION IS AN ACT OF
WORSHIP, AND WILLING OR
NOT, EVERY OBJECT, ANIMATE
OR INANIMATE, GLORIFIES GOD.
BOTH THE SUNNI, AND RUMI WAS
A SUNNI, AND HIS OPPONENT,
THE PREDESTINARIAN, AND
OF COURSE SOME SUNNIS ARE
PREDESTINARIANS AND SOME ARE
FREE WILL BELIEVERS, BUT
HERE HE MAKES THIS
CONTRAST, GLORIFY GOD EVEN
THOUGH ONE MIGHT BE RIGHT,
AND ONE MIGHT BE WRONG
ABOUT A SPECIFIC ARTICLE
OF BELIEF IN SO FAR AS THE
BELIEF OF BOTH EXPRESS
DIVERSE ASPECTS OF
DIVINE SELF-MANIFESTATION.
FINALLY, RUMI EXPLODES THE
TWO AND 70 SECTS AS A MERE
EPI PHENOMENON OF LESSER
RELIGIOUS CONSCIOUSNESS.
IN AN ECSTATIC PASSAGE ON
THE LOVE OF THE DIVINE AND
THE DIVINE IS LOVE, RUMI
WRITES, "LOVE IS A STRANGER
TO THE TWO WORLDS.
IN IT ARE THE TWO
AND 70 MADNESSES.
IT IS EXCEEDINGLY HIDDEN,
AND ONLY ITS BEWILDERNESS
IS MANIFEST.
THE SOUL OF THE SPIRITUAL
SULTANS IS PINING FOR THIS LOVE.
ITS RELIGION, THE RELIGION
OF LOVE, IS OTHER THAN THAT
OF THE 72 SECTS.
BESIDE IT, THE THRONE OF THE
KINGS IS BUT A SPLIT BANDAGE.
THEN WHAT IS LOVE
THE SEA OF NOT BEING.
HERE THE FOOT OF THE
INTELLECT IS SHATTERED WHEN
IT TRIES TO SWIM.
WOULD THAT BEING HAD A
TONGUE THAT IT MIGHT REMOVE
THE VEILS FROM
EXISTENT THINGS.
OH, BREATH OF PHENOMENAL
EXISTENCE, WHATSOEVER THOU
MAYEST UTTER, KNOW THAT
THEREBY THOU HAST BOUND
ANOTHER VEIL UPON
THE MYSTERY."
WHILE THE INTELLECT MAY BE
DESTINED TO SPECULATE, THE
RELIGION OF LOVE PASSES
BEYOND SECTARIAN DIFFERENCES.
LOVE MANIFESTS ITSELF IN A
GREAT MANY VARIETIES, HERE
CALLED THE 72 MADNESSES.
AND ULTIMATELY, TAKES THE LOVER
BEYOND THE PHENOMENAL WORLD.
ULTIMATELY, BEYOND THE
BABBLE OF SECTARIAN
DIFFERENCE, THE SOUL SEEKS
A MYSTERY WHICH LANGUAGE
CANNOT EXPRESS.
RUMI HAS BROUGHT US TO
THE END OF HIS QUEST.
THE SCHEME OF 72 SECTS MAY
BE INSPIRED, AS I TRIED TO
SHOW ABOVE, BY AN EARLIER
TRADITION THAT 70-ODD
BRANCHES OF FAITH EXISTS.
70-ODD IS VERY LIKELY MEANT
TO CONVEY AN IDEA OF A
CONSIDERABLE NUMBER, THOUGH
NOT EXACTLY 72 OR 73.
WHETHER ONE AGREES WITH THE
USUAL INTERPRETATION THAT
ONLY ONE SECT IS SAVED, OR
THE MINORITY INTERPRETATION
THAT ONLY ONE IS LOST, IN
THESE SAYING ATTRIBUTED TO
THE PROPHET, THE ONLY
PUNISHMENT FOR WRONG BELIEF
MENTIONED IS OTHER WORLDLY,
THAT IS HEAVEN OR HELL.
THE SUFI TRADITION GOES
BEYOND THESE COMMONSENSICAL
UNDERSTANDINGS OF RELIGIOUS
PLURALISM AMONG MUSLIMS.
ARGUMENTS FROM PLURALISM
OFTEN DEPART FROM THE
SUPPOSITION THAT THERE ARE
GOOD IMPULSES IN ALL HUMAN
BEINGS, OR THAT MOST FORMS
OF BELIEFS ARE REFRACTIONS
OF A VISION OF GOD.
RUMI WOULD ACCEPT BOTH
SUPPOSITIONS AND TRANSCEND THEM.
FOR HIM, IT IS A LOGICAL
NECESSITY THAT PEOPLE
DISPUTE ABOUT RELIGION,
EVEN AMONG MUSLIMS.
GOD PUT THE ARGUMENTS
INSIDE EACH OF US.
EACH OF WHOM CONTINUES TO
HAVE A WIDE VARIETY OF
OPINIONS SYMBOLIZED BY
THE 72 SECTS, EVEN IN OUR
INTERNAL FORUM.
THIS PLURALITY ARISES FROM
FLAWS CREATED BY THE INTELLECT.
YET EACH OPINION IS IN ITS
WAY AN ATTEMPT TO WORSHIP GOD.
THE DEEPER RELIGION IS A
TRANSRELIGIOUS MYSTERY OF LOVE
OF GOD, WHICH THE INTELLECT
CAN NEVER FULLY UNDERSTAND.
THIS LOVE MANIFESTS ITSELF
IN MANY, THAT IS 72 OR 73
MADNESSES, AND TAKES THE SOUL
BEYOND THE WORLD OF BEING.
ULTIMATELY, WE NOT ONLY
ACCEPT PLURALISM AMONG MUSLIMS,
BUT AMONG ALL THE MYSTERIOUS
PATHS OF THE LOVE OF GOD.
THE MESSAGE OF
RUMI IS NOT SOME
MEALY-MOUTH MULTICULTURALISM.
RUMI IS A DEVOUT BELIEVER,
YET HE RECOGNIZES THAT
OTHERS ARE NOT ONLY FREE TO
DISAGREE WITH HIM, BUT THAT
GOD HAS SUPPLIED THE ARGUMENTS
FOR THESE DISAGREEMENTS.
CERTAINTY IS STRUCTURALLY
IMPOSSIBLE IN THE MUNDANE REALM.
AND AS THE GREAT
THEOLOGIAN RAZALI SAYS,
TRUE RELIGION IS NOT
WHAT MAN HAS, BUT MAN HAS
ONLY KNOWLEDGE OF RELIGION.
HE DISTINGUISHES BETWEEN
DIN AND MAHARIFADIN,
KNOWLEDGE OF RELIGION
IS WHAT WE HAVE, WHICH IS
NECESSARILY
HUMAN AND FLAWED.
YET WE ALL SEE THE HIGH
VALUE OF TRUTH AND RIGHT
BELIEF AND WOULD SURRENDER
TO IT IF ONLY IT WERE
SELF-EVIDENT,
YET IT IS NOT.
CORRECT BELIEF MAY BE ONE
PATH, BUT ALL IMAGINABLE
FORMS OF BELIEF LIVE INSIDE
OF US, AND THEIR PRESENCE IS
NOT TO BE DENIED.
THE 72 SECTS ARE NOT FULLY
AWARE OF EACH OTHER'S
EXISTENCE, ALTHOUGH THE
MEMBERS OF THESE SECTS,
LIKE EVEN THE INANIMATE OBJECTS,
KNOWINGLY OR UNKNOWINGLY
WORSHIP GOD.
AND LET NO ONE SAY THAT RUMI
IS IMPOSSIBLY FAR AWAY FROM
THE QURAN, THE PIVOTAL TEXT,
WHICH OF COURSE REMAINS
CENTRAL TO ALL MUSLIMS.
IN THE 5th SURAH, THE
SURAH AL-MA'IDAH,
OF THE TABLE, VERSE 48
READS, IT BEGINS...
[speaking Arabic]
TO YOU WE SENT DOWN THE
SCRIPTURE IN TRUTH,
CONFIRMING THE SCRIPTURES
THAT CAME BEFORE IT AND
GUARDING IT IN SAFETY.
SO JUDGE BETWEEN THEM BY
WHAT GOD HAS REVEALED, AND
FOLLOW NOT THEIR VAIN
DESIRES DIVERGING FROM THE
TRUTH THAT HAS COME TO YOU.
TO EACH AMONG YOU, WE
HAVE PRESCRIBED A LAW
AND AN OPEN WAY.
IF GOD HAD SO WILLED,
HE WOULD HAVE MADE YOU
A SINGLE PEOPLE.
BUT GOD'S PLAN IS TO TEST
YOU IN WHAT HE HAS GIVEN YOU.
SO STRIVE AS IN A
RACE IN ALL VIRTUES.
THE GOAL OF ALL OF YOU
IS TO HASTEN TOWARDS GOD,
[speaking Arabic]
THE GOAL OF ALL OF YOU
IS TO HASTEN TOWARDS GOD.
IT IS GOD WHO WILL SHOW
YOU THE TRUTH OF MATTERS
IN WHICH YOU DIFFER
IN THE NEXT LIFE.
FOR THE QURAN, TOO,
DIVERSITY OF BELIEF IS
DIVINELY INITIATED, AND
THE COMMON GOAL, KNOWN
OR UNKNOWN, IS GOD.
GOD URGES ALL COMMUNITIES OF
BELIEF TO STRIVE WITH EACH
OTHER, AS IN A RACE
IN ALL VIRTUES.
WE CAN SEE IN THIS PASSAGE
A DIRECT INSPIRATION FOR RUMI.
IN THIS AGE IN WHICH
RELIGIOUS PLURALISM IS
BECOMING A PRESSING
PROBLEM, BOTH
SOCIOLOGICALLY AND IN TERMS
OF HUMANS' UNDERSTANDING,
I SALUTE THE ENLIGHTENED
POLICIES OF CANADA.
THE IDEA OF COMMUNITY OF
COMMUNITIES, THOUGHTS OF
CHARLES TAYLOR HAVE BEEN
AN INSPIRATION TO ME.
I ALSO SALUTE CARLETON
COLLEGE FOR RECOGNIZING THAT
TEACHING THE VARIOUS RELIGIOUS
TRADITIONS AS PART OF ITS
HUMANITIES CURRICULUM IS AN
IMPORTANT INGREDIENT IN THE
CREATION OF AN
ETHIC OF PLURALISM.
THANK YOU.

[Applause]

The clip ends, and Andrew Moodie reappears in the studio.

He says THE MIDDLE EAST HAS BECOME
THE FULCRUM OF THE ONGOING
DEBATE ABOUT WHICH SIDES
SERVE THE CAUSE OF
PLURALISM AND
THEREFORE FREEDOM.
AND WHAT MEANS CAN BE USED
TO ACHIEVE SUCH GOALS?
HERE TO SPEAK TO THIS
ISSUE IS BARRY RUBIN.
HE'S THE DIRECTOR OF
THE GLOBAL RESEARCH IN
INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS
IN HERZLIYA, ISRAEL.

A new clip plays, in which Barry Rubin addresses an unseen audience in a large room. He stands behind a wooden lectern with a banner that reads "Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies."
Barry is in his late fifties, with receding gray hair and a full beard. He's wearing a gray suit, white shirt and green tie.

He says DURING THE RECENT WAR, I HAD
TO FIND A TAXI IN TEL AVIV,
AND TRAFFIC WAS VERY BAD.
SOMETHING I THINK PEOPLE IN
TORONTO WOULD APPRECIATE.
SO I FINALLY DID GET A TAXI,
AND THE TAXI DRIVER WAS,
OBVIOUSLY FROM HIS ACCENT,
SPEAKING HEBREW WAS AN
ISRAELI ARAB.
SO WE'RE RIDING ALONG,
AND HE GETS VERY LOST.
SO I SAID, I DON'T
UNDERSTAND, YOU KNOW,
YOU KNOW THE
STREETS, OF COURSE.
AND HE SAID, ACTUALLY, I'M
FROM HAIFA, AND I BROUGHT MY
TAXI DOWN HERE BECAUSE OF
THE ROCKET ATTACKS, SO I'M
GOING AROUND THE STREETS
OF TEL AVIV TAKING PEOPLE.
SO I SAID... BECAUSE YOU'RE
LISTENING TO THE RADIO
EVERY FEW MINUTES.
SO I SAID, WELL,
IS THERE ANY NEWS?
WHAT'S HAPPENED?
AND HE SAID, IT WAS JUST
REPORTED THAT A MOTHER AND
HER CHILD WERE KILLED BY A
ROCKET UP NORTH, AND FROM
WHERE THEY WERE, AND FROM
THEIR NAMES, HE TOLD ME
IT WAS OF THEY WERE ARAB
CITIZENS OF ISRAEL, AS WELL.
I THINK THIS GIVES A SENSE
OF SOME OF THE REALITIES
AND COMPLICATIONS OF WHAT
THE REGION IS REALLY LIKE,
AS OPPOSED TO THE WAY IT
IS OFTEN... WHAT ISRAEL IS
REALLY LIKE, AS OPPOSED TO THE
WAY IT'S REPORTED SO OFTEN.
AND I'LL COME BACK TO THAT.
QUESTION IS HOW DO WE
UNDERSTAND THE MIDDLE EAST,
A REGION OF SUCH
COMPLEXITY, SUCH
DIFFERENTNESS, AND YET
A REGION, FROM WHICH,
CERTAINLY FOR THE LAST 30
YEARS, FOR THE LAST 40 YEARS,
EVEN, MOST OF THE
WORLD'S CRISES HAVE COME?
MOST OF THE WARS, MOST OF
THE VIOLENCE, NOT ONLY
ARAB-ISRAELI CONFLICTS, IRAN,
IRAQ WAR, SEPTEMBER 11th,
AND MANY OTHER
THINGS BESIDES.
HOW DO WE UNDERSTAND THAT?
MANY PEOPLE DON'T KNOW
ANYTHING VERY MUCH ABOUT THE
MIDDLE EAST EXCEPT THAT
THERE'S AN ARAB-ISRAELI
CONFLICT THERE.
AND KNOWING ONLY THAT, IT'S
NOT SURPRISING THAT PEOPLE
THINK THAT'S THE ONLY ISSUE
OF IMPORTANCE, AND THAT'S
THE ISSUE AROUND WHICH
EVERYTHING REVOLVES.
BUT WHAT I WANT TO DO THIS
EVENING IS TRY TO EXPLAIN,
VERY BRIEFLY, HOW I SEE IT,
AND WHAT I THINK WE CAN
EXPLAIN ABOUT THE TURMOIL
AND THE IMPORTANCE AND THE
COMPLEXITY OF THE REGION.
AND IN A SENSE, THE EASIEST
WAY TO UNDERSTAND IT IS
BY REFERENCE WITH
WESTERN HISTORY.
BECAUSE EVEN THOUGH THERE
ARE MANY THINGS DIFFERENT,
AND EVEN THOUGH THE
TIMELINE IS DIFFERENT,
THERE ARE REMARKABLE
PARALLELS.
IN THE WEST, PARTICULARLY IN
EUROPE, BUT ALSO IN
NORTH AMERICA AND OTHER PLACES,
WE SAW A PERIOD OF ABOUT
300 OR 400 YEARS IN WHICH WHAT
WE CALL MODERN AGE DEVELOPED.
AND THE MODERN AGE HAS ALL
SORTS OF IMPLICATIONS.
IT HAS THE IMPLICATION
OF INDUSTRIALIZATION, OF
URBANIZATION, OF SYSTEMATIC
EDUCATION, OF THE DEVELOPMENT
OF THE MEDIA, OF EQUAL
RIGHTS FOR WOMEN, OF
THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE
NATION STATE, AND SO ON.
I MEAN, THERE ARE ABOUT TEN
OR 15 OR 20 THINGS THAT
WE CAN ASSOCIATE WITH THIS.
IT WAS A VERY
DIFFICULT PROCESS.
THE HISTORY OF THE WEST, THE
HISTORY OF EUROPE, FROM THE
1500s OR 1600s, DOWN TO THE
YEAR 2000 WAS FULL OF WARS,
WAS FULL OF CATASTROPHES,
WAS FULL OF SETBACKS,
AND MOST OF ALL, WAS
FULL OF STRUGGLES.
BECAUSE THERE WERE STRUGGLES
BETWEEN THE FORCES OF
MODERNIZATION AND THOSE
WHO OBJECTED TO THAT.
AND IN A SENSE, AT THE VERY
END OF PROCESS, THAT IS IN
THE 20th CENTURY, WHEN
PEOPLE FELT THINGS HAD GONE
SO FAR, AND MODERNIZATION
HAD DEVELOPED, AND PEOPLE
WERE SO CIVILIZED AND
EDUCATED, WE HAD THE TWO
GREATEST CHALLENGES OF ALL,
FASCISM AND COMMUNISM.
AND I THINK FROM HINDSIGHT,
WE CAN SEE THAT FASCISM AND
COMMUNISM WERE MOVEMENTS
WHICH FOR VARIOUS REASONS
REJECTED MODERNIZATION,
REJECTED MOST OF THE COMMON
FEATURES OF IT, AND THERE
ARE BAD FEATURES AS WELL AS
GOOD, AND REJECTED THE
POLITICAL SYSTEM THAT AROSE
OUT OF MODERNIZATION
WHICH WE CALL DEMOCRACY.
THESE TWO MOVEMENTS LED TO
THE DEATHS, NOT ONLY OF THE
MILLIONS OF PEOPLE, OF TENS
OF MILLIONS OF PEOPLE, OF
GREAT WARS, WORLD WAR I,
WORLD WAR II, THE KOREAN WAR,
THE COLD WAR.
AND THIS IS A PROCESS WHICH,
TO SOME EXTENT, HAS ENDED
ONLY IN RECENT MEMORY.
NOW, I SUGGEST THAT THE
HISTORY OF THE MIDDLE EAST
HAS A LOT OF PARALLELS WITH
THAT, ALBEIT EVENTS WHICH
TOOK PLACE EARLIER IN THE
WEST TOOK PLACE LATER IN
THE MIDDLE EAST.
IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD,
SOUTH AMERICA, AFRICA,
ASIA, THE TRANSITION, AT
LEAST THE ACCEPTANCE OF
MODERNIZATION HAS ACTUALLY
GONE FAIRLY SMOOTHLY.
THERE MAY BE GREAT
DIFFICULTIES IN IMPLEMENTING IT,
BUT THERE'S BASIC
AGREEMENT ON THE MAIN
PRINCIPLES OF MODERN WORLD.
DEMOCRACY,
INDUSTRIALIZATION,
INDIVIDUALISM, URBANIZATION,
MORE SECULARISM THAN THERE
WAS BEFORE, AND
VARIOUS OTHER THINGS.
THERE'S ONE AREA OF THE
WORLD WHERE THIS PROCESS
HAS NOT TAKEN PLACE, AND
WHICH IS RUNNING INTO A LOT
OF TROUBLE... NOT ONLY
TROUBLE IN IMPLEMENTATION,
BUT EVEN TROUBLE IN
DECIDING THAT THIS IS
WHAT PEOPLE WANT, AND
THAT'S THE MIDDLE EAST.
AT A TIME WHEN MOST OF THE
WORLD, THE GREAT MAJORITY OF
THE WORLD IS TRYING TO
EVOLVE TOWARD DEMOCRACY,
NOT ALWAYS SUCCESSFUL
TO HAVE ACCEPTED IT.
EVERY REGIME IN THE ARAB
WORLD, PLUS IRAN, BASICALLY
IS A DICTATORSHIP.
I SHOULD EXCEPT LEBANON AND
IRAQ THERE, BUT I CAN TALK
ABOUT THEM LATER
IN THIS RESPECT.
WHY IS THIS HAPPENING?
WHY IS THE MIDDLE EAST,
DESPITE THE BENEFIT OF OIL
MONEY, FALLING BEHIND THE
REST OF THE WORLD IN HUGE
NUMBERS OF CATEGORIES?
I WOULD SUGGEST THAT THE
REASON IS THAT IN THE MIDDLE
EAST, AS IN THE HISTORY OF
THE WEST, THAT THERE ARE
STRONG FORCES OPPOSED TO
MODERNIZATION, AND THAT
KIND OF CHANGE.
AND THAT THOSE FORCES HAVE
ALSO ALIGNED THEMSELVES IN
TWO VERY IMPORTANT AND
OFTEN OPPOSED AND SOMETIMES
COOPERATING MOVEMENTS.
IN THE WEST, THERE WAS
FASCISM AND COMMUNISM.
IN THE MIDDLE EAST, THERE'S
RADICAL ARAB NATIONALISM
AND RADICAL ISLAMISM.
THESE ARE COUNTERPARTS TO
THE TWO MOVEMENTS IN THE WEST.
WE TEND TO THINK OF THE ARAB
WORLD AS A PLACE OF GREAT
POLITICAL UNREST.
BUT IT'S A REMARKABLE FACT
TO REALIZE THAT NO MAJOR
ARAB REGIME HAS BEEN
OVERTHROWN SINCE 1970.
THAT'S 36 YEARS AGO.

A caption appears on screen. It reads "Barry Rubin. Director, Global Research in International Affairs. Toronto. September 13, 2006."

Barry continues NOT ONLY DO WE HAVE THE SAME
REGIMES IN PLACE, WE OFTEN
HAVE THE SAME PEOPLE
IN PLACE AS EXISTED
10, 20, 30 YEARS AGO.
WE USUALLY ASSUME THAT IF A
GOVERNMENT SURVIVES, IF A
STRUCTURE SURVIVES, THEN
IT HAS TO HAVE BEEN PRETTY
SUCCESSFUL BECAUSE IT'S
SUCCESS THAT USUALLY
PERSUADES PEOPLE TO
SUPPORT A GOVERNMENT.
IN THE WEST, IF A
GOVERNMENT DOESN'T FULFILL
ITS PROMISES, IF IT DOESN'T
DO A VERY GOOD JOB, IT'S
VOTED OUT OF OFFICE, OR
PERHAPS IT'S OVERTHROWN
IN A REVOLUTION OR A COUP.
THIS HAS NOT HAPPENED
IN THE MIDDLE EAST.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
THERE ARE, AND IF I HAD THE
TIME, AND IF YOU HAVE THE
INTEREST, I COULD GO
THROUGH A LIST OF HOW THE
DICTATORSHIPS IN THE
ARAB WORLD, AND NOW THE
DICTATORSHIP IN
IRAN, STAY IN POWER.
REPRESSION IS A FACTOR.
CORRUPTION IS A FACTOR, IF
CORRUPTION MEANS YOU HAVE
MONEY TO GIVE TO
PEOPLE WHO SUPPORT YOU.
THERE ARE A NUMBER OF
FACTORS, CONTROLLING THE
ECONOMY, LOTS OF THINGS
THAT WERE LEARNED,
ACTUALLY, FROM COMMUNIST
AND FASCIST STATES.
BUT ONE OF THE MOST CRITICAL
FACTORS, AND THE ONE I WANT
TO FOCUS ON IS AN OLD
FACTOR, AND THAT IS THE
ABILITY TO BLAME EVERYTHING
ON OUTSIDE FORCES.
THIS PHILOSOPHY HAS GOVERNED
THE ARAB WORLD SINCE THE
MID-1950s, AND IT'S
GOVERNED IRAN SINCE THE
IRANIAN REVOLUTION.
AND THE BASIC WORLD VIEW
GOES SOMETHING LIKE THIS.
WHY ARE WE
RELATIVELY BEHIND?
WHY DON'T WE HAVE BETTER
LIVES, HIGHER LIVING
STANDARDS, AND SO ON?
AND THE ANSWER GIVEN BY
THE IDEOLOGISTS AND BY THE
REGIME IS BECAUSE THERE ARE
THESE EVIL FORCES IN THE
WORLD... IMPERIALISM,
ZIONISM, THE JEWS AND THE
CHRISTIANS, THE AMERICANS
OF THE WEST... WHO ARE
STOPPING US FROM
GETTING THESE THINGS.
AND WHAT WE HAVE TO DO IS
TO PUT THE PRIORITY NOT ON
REFORMING OUR SOCIETIES,
NOT ON BUILDING A BETTER
EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM, NOT ON
DEVELOPING MORE DEMOCRACY,
NOT ON FIGHTING CORRUPTION,
BUT ON FIGHTING THE
EXTERNAL ENEMY.
THIS IS WHAT SYRIAN
PRESIDENT BASHAR ASSAD
CALLED, IN A VERY IMPORTANT
SPEECH A COUPLE OF WEEKS
AGO, THE CULTURE
OF RESISTANCE.
THE KEYWORD IS RESISTANCE,
AS OPPOSED TO WHAT I WOULD
CALL THE CULTURE
OF DEVELOPMENT.
NOW, THERE'S A PROBLEM WITH
THE CULTURE OF RESISTANCE.
THERE ARE SEVERAL PROBLEMS.
FIRST OF ALL, IT'S BASED ON
MISTAKEN ANALYSIS BECAUSE
THE PROBLEMS ARE NOT
PRIMARILY EXTERNAL, THE
PROBLEMS ARE PRIMARILY
INTERNAL, JUST AS THE
HISTORIC PROBLEMS OF EUROPE
WERE HISTORICALLY INTERNAL,
AND THOSE ISSUES HAD TO BE
FACED AND DEALT WITH BEFORE
PROGRESS COULD TAKE PLACE.
SO THAT'S THE FIRST PROBLEM,
IT'S A WRONG ANALYSIS.
THE SECOND PROBLEM IS THAT
IT'S A PROGRAM THAT WON'T WORK.
NOT ONLY WON'T IT WORK,
IT'S FAILED FOR 50 YEARS.
THE IDEA THAT THE MAIN
EMPHASIS SHOULD BE PUT ON
THE STRUGGLE THAT THE
ARABS, OR NOW THE MUSLIMS
SHOULD BE UNITED, THAT
ISRAEL SHOULD BE DESTROYED,
THAT AMERICA OR THE WEST
CAN BE DEFEATED BECAUSE
THEY APPEAR TO BE STRONG,
BUT THEY'RE REALLY WEAK,
THESE IDEAS DO NOT WORK,
AND THEY FAILED FOR AN
ENTIRE GENERATION.
THEY ARE DISASTERS.
AND THE MAIN VICTIMS OF
THESE ARE THE PEOPLE WHO
ARE GOVERNED BY
THESE SYSTEMS.
BUT THEY MAY BE DISASTERS
FOR THE SOCIETY, BUT
THEY'RE ABSOLUTELY TERRIFIC
SUCCESSES FOR THE REGIMES.
BECAUSE WE SEE REGIMES WHICH
DON'T PROVIDE FREEDOM,
WHICH DON'T PROVIDE
PROGRESS, WHICH DON'T
PROVIDE ECONOMIC BENEFITS,
WHICH DON'T PROVIDE CIVIC
RIGHTS, WHICH DON'T PROVIDE
JOBS AND HOUSING, AND YET
THEY SURVIVE BECAUSE THEY
PERSUADE THEIR PEOPLE THAT
THE MAIN ENEMY IS EXTERNAL.
AND SO THEY SHOULD FEEL
GOOD IF YOU'RE FIGHTING AND
HITTING THAT ENEMY UNDER
THE LEADERSHIP OF YOUR
RULER, SO THE MESSAGE IS
SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL DICTATOR.
DON'T BLAME ME, BLAME THESE
EVIL FORCES THAT ARE TRYING
TO DESTROY US.
IN 2001, THERE WAS A MEETING
OF MEMBERS OF THE RULING
PARTY AT THE UNIVERSITY
OF DAMASCUS AND SYRIA.
THE SPEAKER WAS THE VICE
PRESIDENT OF SYRIA.
AND THERE WAS A MOMENT WHEN
PEOPLE IN SYRIA THOUGHT
THINGS MIGHT OPEN UP.
SO HE WAS HECKLED
FROM THE AUDIENCE.
AND PEOPLE SAID WHY DO WE
HAVE SO MUCH CORRUPTION?
WHY DON'T WE
HAVE MORE RIGHTS?
WHY IS OUR
ECONOMY SO BAD?
AND HE SAID, AND I QUOTE
BECAUSE ISRAEL OCCUPIES
THE GOLAN HEIGHTS.
AND AS LONG AS WE
ARE IN THIS CONFLICT,
WE CAN'T CHANGE ANYTHING.
THE PROBLEM IS, HE
SAID THAT IN 2001.
ONE YEAR AFTER ISRAEL
OFFERED TO RETURN THE
ENTIRE GOLAN HEIGHTS
IN EXCHANGE FOR PEACE,
AND THE SYRIAN GOVERNMENT
REJECTED IT.
IT WAS AT THAT MOMENT, IN
THE YEAR 2000, THAT WE BEGAN
TO LEARN THAT THE PROBLEM
WITH THE ARAB-ISRAELI CONFLICT
WAS NOT IN THE DETAILS,
OR THE CREATION OF A
PALESTINIAN STATE, WHICH
WAS ALSO OFFERED AND
REJECTED, IT WAS THAT THE
CONFLICT WAS TOO VALUABLE
FOR THE REGIMES TO GIVE UP.
THE EGYPTIAN
PLAYWRIGHT ALI SALEM,
WHOSE PLAYS ARE BANNED
FROM EGYPT, PUT IT VERY WELL.
HE SAID, ANY TIME ANYONE
GETS UP AND MAKES A
CRITICISM, HE'S TOLD DON'T
YOU KNOW THERE'S A WAR ON,
GET BACK IN YOUR TRENCH.
AND THERE IS AN ARAB PROVERB
THAT GOES NO SOUND MAY RISE
ABOVE THE DIN OF BATTLE.
SO THE STRUGGLE EXISTS, THE
BATTLE EXISTS, THE EVIL
DEMONIC FORCES EXIST, YOU
HAVE TO FIGHT THEM, AND IF
THINGS AREN'T GOING WELL,
DON'T BLAME ME, BLAME THEM,
YOU JUST HAVE
TO FIGHT HARDER.
THIS HAS ECHOES
FROM HISTORY.
BECAUSE IT ALSO PARALLELS
CLASSICAL POLITICAL USE OF
ANTI-SEMITISM IN
EUROPEAN HISTORY.
TO FIND AN EXTERNAL ENEMY TO
BLAME, TO MOBILIZE SUPPORT
FOR LEADERS WHO OFTEN
DIDN'T DO A VERY GOOD JOB,
OR WHO WANTED TO
GET INTO POWER.
IT PLAYS A VERY PARALLEL
FUNCTION TODAY.
NOW, THIS SERIES OF
DISASTERS THAT BESET THE
ARAB WORLD FROM 1950s
ONWARD, I CAN LIST THEM.
THE LOSS OF THE SUEZ WAR
IN '56, '67, '73, '82, THE
FAILURE TO DESTROY ISRAEL,
THE FAILURE OF THE PLOs,
VARIOUS CAMPAIGNS
AGAINST ISRAEL,
THE FAILURE TO
UNITE THE ARABS,
THE FAILURE TO DELIVER RAPID
SOCIO-ECONOMIC PROGRESS,
THE FAILURE TO CATCH
UP WITH THE WEST,
THE FAILURE TO GET
RID OF THE WEST.
AND MANY MORE, MANY MORE I
COULD LIST, 20, 30, 40, 50.
THE LEBANESE CIVIL WAR,
THE YEMEN CIVIL WAR,
THE ALGERIAN CIVIL WAR,
THE INSURGENCY IN EGYPT
BY THE ISLAMISTS.
IT'S A VERY HARD AND
DIFFICULT AND BLOODY
AND UGLY HISTORY.
AND AFTER ABOUT 40 YEARS OF
THIS, PEOPLE STARTED TO GO
BACK, LOOK BACK IN THE EARLY
1990s AND SAY, HMM, THINGS
HAVEN'T BEEN GOING TOO WELL,
MAYBE WE SHOULD RETHINK
WHAT WE'VE BEEN DOING.
AND THAT HAPPENED IN THE
1990s, AND AFTER THE DEFEAT
OF SADDAM HUSSEIN, THERE
WAS AN ARAB-ISRAELI PEACE
PROCESS THAT TOOK PLACE.
THERE WAS A LOT
OF RETHINKING.
THERE WERE THE EMERGENCE OF
LIBERAL REFORMIST THINKERS.
BUT BY THE END OF THE 1990s,
IT WAS CLEAR THAT THIS PATH
WAS NOT GOING TO BE TAKEN,
THAT THE REGIMES WERE DOING
TOO WELL, THEY COULD DEFEAT
THIS CHALLENGE OF DEMOCRACY
AND LIBERALISM, THEY COULD
KEEP A HOLD ON THINGS, AND
THEY COULD KEEP THINGS
THE WAY THEY WERE.
SO AFTER THAT HOPEFUL SPARK
FROM ABOUT 1991 TO 2000,
WE BEGAN TO SEE THINGS MOVING
BACK IN THE OLD DIRECTION.
IN 2000, ISRAEL, THROUGH
PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON, CAMP
DAVID, CLINTON PLAN, OFFERED
A PEACE AGREEMENT WHICH WAS
BASED ON THE CREATION OF
AN INDEPENDENT PALESTINIAN
STATE WITH ITS CAPITAL IN
EAST JERUSALEM WITH ALL
THE GAZA STRIP, WITH THE
EQUIVALENT OF ALL THE
WEST BANK, IN OTHER WORDS, IT
WOULD HAVE THE SAME SIZE,
THERE MIGHT BE SOME
TERRITORIAL SWAPS, AND THE
OPENING OFFER FOR REFUGEE
COMPENSATION WAS 22 BILLION DOLLARS.
THE
OPENING
OFFER,
22 BILLION DOLLARS.
AND YASSER ARAFAT
REJECTED IT.
HE REJECTED IT AT CAMP
DAVID, HE REJECTED THE
CLINTON PLAN.
THE SYRIANS REJECTED PEACE
BASED ON THE RETURN OF THE
ENTIRE GOLAN HEIGHTS, ALL
SYRIA'S TERRITORY UP TO THE
INTERNATIONAL BORDER
IN EXCHANGE FOR PEACE.
AND THAT WAS THE BEGINNING
OF THIS TREND BACK.
SEPTEMBER 11th, WHICH
WE'VE JUST HAD THE 5th
ANNIVERSARY OF, I THINK WAS
ANOTHER STEP IN THIS PROCESS.
OSAMA BIN LADEN'S
ORGANIZATION CARRIED IT OUT
FOR VERY SPECIFIC
POLITICAL PURPOSES.
OSAMA BIN LADEN WAS, AND IS,
AN ISLAMIST REVOLUTIONARY.
HIS FIRST PRIORITY WAS TO
OVERTHROW THE SAUDI GOVERNMENT.
IF YOU LOOK AT OSAMA BIN
LADEN'S RHETORIC UP TO
SEPTEMBER 11th, 2001, AND I'VE
READ EVERYTHING HE SAID
PUBLICLY, AND I COUNTED,
ABOUT 60 TO 65 PERCENT
OF EVERYTHING HE SAID
CONCERNED SAUDI ARABIA, THE
NEED FOR REVOLUTION IN SAUDI
ARABIA, IRAQ, OPPOSITION
TO SANCTIONS ON IRAQ.
THE OTHER 35 PERCENT OR SO
WAS DIVIDED AMONG A WHOLE
RANGE OF CONFLICTS, RANGING
FROM BOSNIA TO CHECHNYA AND
THE PHILIPPINES, TO ISRAEL.
I WOULD ESTIMATE HE SPENT
ABOUT 5 PERCENT OF THE TIME
TALKING ABOUT ISRAEL
AND THE PALESTINIANS.
NOW, BIN LADEN'S IDEOLOGY
WAS REALLY PRETTY PARALLEL
TO WHAT HAD BEEN SAID
BEFORE IN A LOT OF WAYS.
IT'S WHAT AYATOLLAH
KHOMEINI, THE LEADER OF THE
IRANIAN REVOLUTION SAID,
IT'S WHAT NASSER SAID,
IT'S WHAT THE ASSAD SAID IN
SYRIA, IT'S WHAT SADDAM
HUSSEIN SAID, IT'S WHAT
YASSER ARAFAT SAID.
BUT HE REFINED IT IN SOME
WAYS AND MADE IT MORE POINTED.
BECAUSE FOR THE FIRST TIME,
HE REALLY STARTED, NOT JUST
TALKING ABOUT THE
WEST, BUT CHRISTIANS.
BECAUSE HIS LANGUAGE WAS
MORE RELIGIOUS IN NATURE.
AND HIS BASIC ARGUMENT
WAS THE ZIONISTS AND THE
CRUSADERS, THE JEWS AND THE
CHRISTIANS WANT TO DESTROY
ISLAM, AND DESTROY THE
MUSLIMS AND ENSLAVE THEM,
AND THE MUSLIMS MUST
FIGHT BACK EVERYWHERE.
THIS IS RESISTANCE.
THIS IS THE
TRADITIONAL ARGUMENT.
AND THAT IF THEY ALL UNITED,
THEY WOULD WIN BECAUSE, IN
FACT, THE WEST WAS WEAK, HE
DIDN'T TALK ABOUT ISRAEL.
THE WEST IS WEAK, AMERICA'S
WEAK, AND YOU KNOW WHAT,
I'M GOING TO SHOW YOU.
BECAUSE I'M GOING TO SEND
SOME BIG AIRPLANES INTO THE
PENTAGON, INTO THE WORLD
TRADE CENTER, AND THAT WILL
BE A GRAPHIC DEMONSTRATION
OF WHAT I'M SAYING.
THEY'RE WEAK,
WE CAN WIN.
AND HE DID IT.
NOW OSAMA BIN LADEN AS A LEADER
IN HIS ORGANIZATION FAILED.
HIS ORGANIZATION IS NOT VERY
IMPORTANT TODAY, IT PLAYS
AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN
SAUDI ARABIA, IT PLAYS AN
IMPORTANT ROLE IN IRAQ, AND
THEY HAVE SPORADIC ATTACKS
ELSEWHERE, BUT THEY'RE NOT
AT THE CENTRE OF THINGS
ANYMORE, SO THEY FAILED.
AND THE PRIORITY THAT THEY
PUT ON ATTACKING THE WEST
DIRECTLY HAS BECOME LESS
IMPORTANT FOR ISLAMISTS
IN THE MIDDLE EAST.
YOU HAVE ISLAMISTS IN CANADA
AND EUROPE WHO WANT TO STAGE
THESE ATTACKS, BUT FOR
THE PEOPLE BASED IN THE
MIDDLE EAST, IT'S
LESS IMPORTANT.
THEY'VE TURNED BACK TO THE
OLD THING ABOUT STAGING
A REVOLUTION THERE.
BUT THE IDEAS OF OSAMA
BIN LADEN HAVE BECOME THE
DOMINANT FORCE IN THE
MIDDLE EAST TODAY.
AND VARIOUS OTHER EVENTS,
THE INTIFADA, 2000, 2005,
AND FINALLY THE
WAR IN LEBANON.
ALL OF THESE ARE POINTING
TOWARD THE REVIVAL OF THE
HISTORIC IDEOLOGY THAT
THE FAULT IS EXTERNAL.
THE IMPORTANT THING IS NOT
TO BUILD, AT LEAST NOT TO
BUILD ANEW, YOU CAN
REBUILD, BUT IT'S TO FIGHT.
AND THAT MUST
BE THE PRIORITY.
AND IF IT TAKES 20 YEARS OR
30 YEARS OR 40 YEARS, NO
MATTER HOW MANY PEOPLE GET
KILLED, NO MATTER HOW MUCH
RESOURCES ARE WASTED,
THIS IS THE PRIORITY.
I THINK THIS IS THE ERA OF
THE REGION THAT WILL REMAIN
IN PROBABLY FOR
MY LIFETIME.
I THINK THAT THE CHANCES IN
THE SHORT RUN FOR DEMOCRACY
HAVE BEEN WIPED OUT.
I THIS THE CHANCES FOR
ARAB-ISRAELI PEACE IN THE
SHORT TO MEDIUM RUN,
HAVE BEEN WIPED OUT.
THESE THINGS ARE
NOT GOING TO HAPPEN.
AND SO THE DEBATE CONTINUES...
AND SO DOES THE STRUGGLE.

The clip ends.

Back in the studio, Andrew says
IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO RECEIVE
UPDATES ON WHAT'S COMING UP
ON OUR PROGRAM, PLEASE
SEND US AN e-mail AT
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YOU CAN ALSO LISTEN TO
PODCASTS OF THE VARIOUS
TALKS AND LECTURES.
For more information about that
Please go to our website at
www.tvo.org/bigideas
I'm Andrew Moodie and I'll see you next time.

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416-484-2746

Big Ideas. Producer, Wodek Szemberg.

Producers, Lara Hindle, Mike Miner, Gregg Thurlbeck.

Logos: Unifor, Canadian Media Guild.

A production of TVOntario. Copyright 2006, The Ontario Educational Communications Authority.

Watch: Roy Mottahedeh and Barry Rubin