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Radical Islam Apologist at Northeastern U

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Shahid Alam, professor of economics at Northeastern University, says that Mohammed Atta and the other September 11 mass murderers were just like the American colonists fighting against the British in the Revolutionary War: America and Islam - Seeking Parallels. (Hat tip: mhayes.)

On April 19, 1775, 700 British troops reached Concord, Massachusetts, to disarm the American colonists who were preparing to start an insurrection. When the British ordered them to disperse, the colonists fired back at the British soldiers. This “shot heard ‘round the world” heralded the start of an insurrection against Britain, the greatest Western power of its time. And when it ended, victorious, in 1783, the colonists had gained their objective. They had established a sovereign but slave-holding republic, the United States of America.

The colonists broke away because this was economically advantageous to their commercial and landed classes. As colonists, they were ruled by a parliament in which they were not represented, and which did not represent their interests. The colonies were not free to protect and develop their own commerce and industries. Their bid for independence was made all the more attractive because it was pressed under the banner of liberty. The colonial elites had imbibed well the lessons of the Enlightenment, and here in the new world, they had an opportunity to harness liberty in the service of their economic interests. Backed by the self interest of their landed and commercial elites, and inspired by revolutionary ideas, the colonists had a dream worth pursuing. They were prepared to die for this dream - and to kill. They did: and they won.

On September 11, 2001, nineteen Arab hijackers too demonstrated their willingness to die - and to kill - for their dream. They died so that their people might live, free and in dignity. The manner of their death - and the destruction it wreaked - is not merely a testament to the vulnerabilities that modern technology has created to clandestine attacks. After all, skyscrapers and airplanes have co-existed peacefully for many decades. The attacks of 9-11 were in many ways a work of daring and imagination too; if one can think objectively of such horrors. They were a cataclysmic summation of the history of Western depredations in the Middle East: the history of a unity dismembered, of societies manipulated by surrogates, of development derailed and disrupted, of a people dispossessed. The explosion of 9-11 was indeed a “shot heard ‘round the world.”

UPDATE at 12/30/04 10:30:27 am:

An LGF reader emailed the following to Professor Alam:

You are a disgrace to your position. How dare you state the those people killed that their people “might live, free and in dignity”? Where is your sense of justice and pride in the country that allows real freedom? You tell me what freedom and dignity the women in Afghanistan lived with! I await your reply.

I am a South African living in the US and I witnessed the transition from a one party dictatorship to a free democracy in SA and no children and civilians were slaughtered like bugs to do it. The South African people had nothing to lose yet they lived and died for freedom with real honour and dignity. There is no justifications for terrorism and by doing so, you make yourself complicit in murder. Learn from South African history that one need not use terrorist tactics to achieve goals and then educate yourself professor that one need not justify murder.

Dean Levitt

…and received the following reply:

Why is it that the only hateful mail I have received is signed by Levitt,
Hoch or Freedman?

UPDATE at 12/30/04 1:13:29 pm:

If you decide to contact the professor or his university, please remember that the best way to make your points heard is to be polite.

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Drop out of school, before your mind rots from exposure to our mediocre educational system. Go to the library and educate yourself if you've got any guts... -- Quoted from an article on FZ in the June 1995 issue of "SLUG" magazine. Article titled "Zappa behind the Sneer. I think the magazine may be a local (Salt Lake City) publication.