Last week, the New York Times ran a story on Iraq with the premise that the religious ideas of Islam are being tested and rejected. The author, Sabrina Tavernese, used the phrase, “the American liberation”, which is only remarkable because the reputation of the NYT is that of promoting the idea of the war as a failure. While the war has a definite strategic purpose for the USA, I cannot think of a better achievement of the Iraqi people than for them to move past the outdated ideas of religion.
Here are a people who truly are liberated from a religious or military dictator, finally able to decide for themselves what to think. The laws of Islam have been dramatically exercised in Iraq. To a free man, the idea of screaming “God is great” as you chop off someone’s head is not appealing. In fact, the ideas of the clerics lead only to your own destruction.
When Bush talks about a forward strategy of freedom, I’m not sure he totally understands it. But a disillusionment of religion is exactly the kind of freedom I was hoping for.