February 18, 2007

Blood Feud

From Blood Feud:

The Shia holiday of Ashura, which celebrates the martyrdom of the Imam Hussein at Karbala in 680 CE, generates an endless supply of gruesome images: thousands of enraged young men slicing their foreheads with swords, beating themselves with chains, and screaming their allegiance to Allah in the streets of Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Pakistan, and across the Muslim world - scenes that perfectly encapsulate Western fears of militant Islam. While you won't see
any self-flagellation at Hizbullah's Ashura ceremonies, the movement has appropriated the ancient rite for its own political ends, and it is actually promoting a more dangerous form of violence. In the southern suburbs of Beirut, Hizbullah supporters marched and chanted "Death to America!" and "Death to Israel!" and adorned the streets with revolutionary quotes from Ayatollah Khomeini.