by Burt Prelutsky | Los Angeles

Liberals like to lay the blame for Islamic terrorism on one of two causes; namely, the poverty in most Muslim nations or American foreign policy.  Sometimes, just for variety, they’ll mention both items.  And, as usual, they’re dead wrong on both counts.

If the cause was actually poverty, you wouldn’t find world-wide terrorism funded by Saudi Arabia, and waged by such wealthy individuals as Osama bin Laden and young Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab.  Nor should we forget the various Islamic doctors in London and Fort Hood’s Major Hasan, none of whom were charity cases.

Inasmuch as Islamic butchery has been directed at Russia, Iraq, Spain, France, Bali, England, Thailand, Israel, India, Pakistan and Holland, to name just a few of the non-American targets, our foreign policy can hardly be held accountable.  However, you may be my guest if you wish to place some of the blame on George W. Bush’s reluctance to acknowledge that Islam had declared war on us and that Barack Obama refuses to even acknowledge that Major Hasan’s religion had anything to do with his murderous rampage.

I know that even some of those folks who aren’t as unwilling as our presidents to call a spade a garden utensil like to point out that the majority of Muslims aren’t killers.  Well, duh.  The fact is, most Russians were not members of the Communist party and most Germans weren’t Nazis.  So what?  Between them, Stalin and Hitler, with the able assistance of their countrymen, murdered tens of millions of people.

After 9/11, when American Muslims were whining about being profiled, I suggested that if they’d pass the hat in their mosques and offer a reward for Osama bin Laden, dead or alive, it would go a long way towards proving that they felt a greater loyalty to America than to those acting in the name of their religion.  It never happened.

There is a reason that liberals like to believe that poverty is the cause of Islamic hatred of America.  Because these self-righteous baby boomers place so much importance on money, they assume that it is the motivation behind everyone else’s actions.  Because they, themselves, lack principles, patriotism and traditional values, they attribute their shallowness to others.  During the Vietnam War, they got to pretend that their refusal to fight was based on their pacifism.  That was a convenient lie promoted by the media.  Having been in college at the time, I can assure you that, in most cases, it had precious little to do with Gandhi’s philosophy and a great deal to do with their fear of being shot at or winding up as guests at the Hanoi Hilton.  These middleclass wienies who’d never even had to make their own beds, also didn’t like the idea of having to do what they were told by top sergeants from Georgia and Texas.  Even if those top sergeants happened to be black.

But they got away with their pretensions because no less an authority than Walter Cronkite assured them they were the conscience of America, when in fact they were the bright yellow streak of America.

Today, in Barack Obama, they have their ideal president.  He’s the man who, without knowing a single fact, announced that the Cambridge Police Department had acted stupidly in the way they dealt with his old chum, Prof. Gates.  But when it came to Major Hasan, Obama urged us not to jump to any hasty conclusions about his butchery having anything to do with his loony religious beliefs.

These baby boomers are the same people who spent seven long years condemning Bush for not leaping out of his chair and scaring the milk and graham crackers out of a bunch of little kids on 9/11, and instead took a few extra minutes to calmly finish reading them a story.  But they’re perfectly fine with Obama’s taking three days to even comment on the attempt by young Umar to celebrate Christmas by blowing 300 people out of the sky above Detroit.

But why would liberals fret about that little incident when the head of Homeland Security, Janet (“What, me worry?”) Napolitano was quick to assure us that the system worked?  What she neglected to mention was that the system “worked” only because Umar’s incendiary device didn’t.

But the airline industry took some of the heat off her with their own mind-boggling stupidity.  Henceforth, they announced, passengers would be deprived of pillows, blankets and bathroom privileges for one hour prior to landing.  That ought to show the terrorists we mean business.  You guys can blow up our planes, but you better not wait too long to do it!

Inasmuch as Umar concealed the device in his drawers, I’m surprised that the airlines didn’t take the logical next step of making planes undies-free zones.

All I know is that at my age, I can do without blankets, pillows and even honey-roasted peanuts.  But I think the airlines better rethink those bathroom restrictions.  The last thing they’re going to want is a planeload of seniors sounding like cranky four-year-olds, screaming for the last 500 miles of the flight, “Are we there yet?” CRO

copyright 2010 Burt Prelutsky

Television scriptwriter, former humor columnist for the L.A. Times and a movie critic for Los Angeles magazine.

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