The horror that engulfed the Indian city of Mumbai has now ended...at least for the present moment.
Or perhaps I should say that the horror has just begun. For among other things, Mumbai signifies the beginning of a new phase in this war, something that should be obvious to anyone paying attention.
Here is what we know so far. A group of Islamist fighters engaged in a well planned and premeditated assault on India's commercial and cultural hub, with the expressed desire of causing the maximum carnage and loss of life possible. They were told to 'kill until their last breath', and they were told that their goal was the murder of 5,000 people. The number of men involved varies, with estimates of between ten and thirty well-armed participants because a number of them may have escaped, and there's no telling how many locals from Mumbai's Muslim community assisted them.
According to the one jihadi that was captured alive, Ajmal Amir Kamal, 21, the group was hand picked by Lashkar-e-Taiba, a Pakistani group that's affiliated with al-Qaeda and has been implicated in numerous attacks on India. Lashkar-e-Taiba also has a certain level of support in Pakistan, most notably among certain elements in Pakistan's ISI security service and among the more conservative Pakistani imams. Kamal told his Indian interrogators that the group trained openly in Muzaffarabad, Pakistan before heading to the nearby Mangala dam for lessons in marine commando techniques. They were trained by shadow units of Pakistan's ISI.
The group apparently chartered a Pakistani freighter in Karachi, but were concerned about Indian naval activity and decided to hijack a less conspicuous fishing boat. They shot dead four members of the crew immediately and forced the captain and the remaining crew member to take them to Mumbai - after which the captain was decapitated and the crew member had his throat slit.
Aside from what's been determined from interrogating Kamal, the Pakistani connection is further evidenced by a satellite telephone captured from the terrorists that revealed calls made to numbers in Pakistan during the attacks and by the fact that the email claiming responsibility for the Mumbai attack minutes after it started was generated on a computer based in Pakistan.
The terrorists' route and the location of the attacks had been carefully planned, recorded on GPS co-ordinates contained in the satellite phones.
Once in Mumbai, the jihadis killed without remorse and with no discrimination as to age or sex or anything else. The death toll stands today at around 200, with additional hundreds wounded and it would have undoubtedly been higher if the jihadi's plans to utilize the high explosives they brought with them had been realized. But they apparently enjoyed retail murder so much that they were unwilling to end the fun by planting and detonating the charges to commit wholesale slaughter.
In particular, the killers focused on people with American, British or Israeli passports and on Indian police, 11 of whom were murdered in various targeted ambushes throughout Mumbai.
One particular target that was singled out for special attention was the Chabad House in Mumbai, a Jewish community center serving Mumbai's 5,000 person Jewish community and a number of tourists who would come by for religious services, counseling, kind words and a kosher meal.
Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg, 29, and his wife Rivkah, 28, were murdered in the most brutal fashion imaginable, along with 38-year-old Leibish Teitelbaum, 50-year-old Norma Shvarzblat Rabinovich, Yocheved Orpaz, 60, who had been traveling in India with a daughter and grandchildren, and Bentzion Chroman, 28(HY"D). Rivka Holtzberg was six months pregnant.
Referring to them as hostages is an error...there was no attempt made to negotiate their fate.
The Jews in the Chabad House were tied up and brutally tortured before they were murdered:
Asked what was different about the victims of the incident, another doctor said: "It was very strange. I have seen so many dead bodies in my life, and was yet traumatised. A bomb blast victim's body might have been torn apart and could be a very disturbing sight. But the bodies of the victims in this attack bore such signs about the kind of violence of urban warfare that I am still unable to put my thoughts to words," he said.
Asked specifically if he was talking of torture marks, he said: "It was apparent that most of the dead were tortured. What shocked me were the telltale signs showing clearly how the hostages were executed in cold blood," one doctor said.
The other doctor, who had also conducted the post-mortem of the victims, said: "Of all the bodies, the Israeli victims bore the maximum torture marks. It was clear that they were killed on the 26th itself. It was obvious that they were tied up and tortured before they were killed. It was so bad that I do not want to go over the details even in my head again," he said.
The sole survivor was 2-year-old Moishe Holtzberg,pictured above screaming for his dead mother at his parent's funeral. He was rescued by his Indian babysitter who found him covered in blood and crying next to the bodies of his parents and ran out of the house with him, dodging machine gun fire to bring him to safety.
In a final obscenity, Moishe's parents and the other Jews murdered with them were referred to in the media as "ultra-Orthodox" (as if that somehow excused or explained everything) while their killers were merely labeled as "gunmen' or "militants" and the media went out of its way to ignore the Islamic connection. This was particularly true of the British press, especially the BBC, who've become almost comic in their efforts to bow down to what apparently are Britain's new Muslim overlords.
There are several important messages we need to take from what happened in Mumbai.
The assault on Mumbai is yet another atrocity carried out by adherents of the Religion Of Peace but that's hardly unique. One merely needs to remember occurrences like Beslan, Madrid, London, New York City, Jerusalem, Ma'alot and scores of others to see that. As a matter of fact, at the same time the infidels were being butchered in Mumbai, howling mobs of Muslims rioted in Nigeria and in Egypt, targeting Christians in those countries who had the audacity not to be Muslims in Dar Islam, Muslim land.
What's different here is that the jihadis have progressed from mere homicide bombing or picking a specific target for slaughter to using highly trained and organized commando tactics to to attack multiple targets in a city at the same time.
India was a ripe target for this kind of attack.
Historically, the brutal and genocidal Muslim jihad against India has never really ended.The mountainous northwestern passes into India are still called the Hindu Kush, "the Slaughter of the Hindu," a name given them during the days when Hindu slaves from Indian Subcontinent died in the harsh Afghan mountains while being transported to Muslim courts of Central Asia. Islamists still consider all of India the property of Dar Islam.
What India has, essentially, is a Muslim problem. Aside from having a failed Muslim state on its borders, it also has a population that is 12% Muslim..about 120 million people. Assuming that ten per cent of them (and frankly, I think the numbers are much higher) is willing to aid and abet attacks like the one in Mumbai, India is dealing with a fifth column of about 12 million people.
Even worse, the current Indian government has refused to acknowledge this and has instead constantly attempted to appease an increasingly radicalized Muslim population, with the result that India's civilian death toll of 4,000 in the War on Jihad is higher than any other nation.
Even though the attack didn't produce the kind of death toll in sheer numbers it's perpetrators hoped for, it was a major strategic success. Aside from the effect on Mumbai and India from an economic standpoint, especially when it comes to foreign visitors and investors, it was a success in terms of further detaching whole areas of Pakistan from government control.
In response to the brutal assault on Mumbai, India demanded that Pakistan hand over suspected terrorist leaders known to be in Pakistan, cooperate fully with a formal investigation of what happened, stop quasi-governmental tolerance of groups like Lashkar-e-Taiba and purge the rogue elements in Pakistan's military and the ISI. Pakistan's initial response was to warn India about 'blaming Pakistan ' and to move troops from the tribal areas in Waziristan and the North West Frontier Province along the Afghan border and shift them to positions facing the border with India - thus lessening even further the minimal control Pakistan has over these areas, which have essentially been ceded to the Taliban, al-Qaeda and their allies.
Finally, Mumbai should reveal some basic truths to the rest of us about the nature of the kind of existential war we're in, as well as what will be necessary to win it.
Aside from a number of incredibly brave individuals - Wafa Sultan, Zuhdi Jasser and Aijaz Zaka Syed come to mind - most of the Muslim world either supports attacks like Mumbai, Beslan and Ma'alot in varying degrees or is content to ignore it. Whatever they may say privately, Muslims, particularly in the West consistently have refused to go public and show that the Islamist killers who perpetrated these atrocities and a thousand others like them do not represent them.
And in doing so, at best they've become part of the problem rather than part of the solution.At worst, it's tacit approval.
I have always gone out of my way in these pages to emphasize that the vast majority of Muslims are peaceful in nature and that a moderate Islam that could coexist peacefully with non-Muslims in a free society was possible.
It's taken a while, but I no longer subscribe to that point of view, at least given the present circumstances.Frankly, it's no longer relevant. ..and for me to have to write this was extraordinarily difficult, simply because I ultimately always hoped for better.
If we're going to be honest about it, the majority of Muslims obviously show precious little interest in "reforming" Islam and seem perfectly fine with what's being done in Islam's name. Or at least unwilling to do anything much about stopping it. Spread a rumor that a Q'uran got desecrated,publish a few silly cartoons or simply criticize some of the manifestations of The Religion of Peace and there will be Muslims rioting all over the world. Turn a major city into a killing ground, torture and murder some Jews in the name of Allah....is there a problem saddhik?
Longtime members of Joshua's Army may recall my 20-60-20 formula, as applied to the Nazis, the Islamic fascists or most other totalitarian movements; twenty per cent who actively support the cause in varying degrees, sixty per cent who are largely apathetic in varying degrees but could be depended to hop on the train and go along depending on whether they perceive it's personally expedient and beneficial and twenty per cent who actively oppose it in varying degrees.
The Saudis and others have spent billions of dollars to radicalize mosques and madrassahs all over the world and purchase an army of Western hirelings to do their bidding and support their efforts. The result of this is that a whole generation of younger Muslims is being indoctrinated to support jihad and Islamic fascism and to be loyal to the Muslim umma first and to consider themselves Americans, British, Indian or French second. They are being trained to support and provide financial support and manpower for the efforts of Islam to subjugate the infidels of Dar Harb, literally 'the place of war.'
The number of attacks in the West carried out or aided and abetted by Muslims residing or born in those countries is a testimony as to exactly how successful that indoctrination has been. And because the jihad against the West appears to be winning, the swing votes, the sixty per cent in the middle is gradually shifting that way - and why not? After all, isn't that what it says in the Qu'ran?
While countries like Iran and Pakistan still support or at least tolerate jihad terrorism, official state support really isn't even necessary anymore. All it takes is a little finance out of the Islamic world, and a few organizers. They can then simply drop into a Saudi- funded radical mosque in Pakistan, California, Britain or just about anywhere, recruit a team of fanatics with the assistance of the local jihad-friendly imam, train and arm them in Waziristan or any other friendly environment and unleash them on an open city.This represents a new and more deadly phase in this war, and there's no question it will be repeated...perhaps even with Iran or Pakistan adding to the mix by providing nuclear or biological weapons.
There's no reason to suppose that what happened in Mumbai couldn't happen in Paris, Indianapolis, New York, Toronto or Barcelona. That is the basic nature of the war we face.
Nor can we prevent those attacks or win this war by attempting to quarantine radical Islam or turning the West into a jail with it's own citizens as inmates in the name of safety. Radical Islam is already alive and well inside the gates, and while better security measures are important ( like actually securing our borders, perhaps) they are not the key to winning this war.
That victory lies in offense, not defense - in confronting, militarily or otherwise, the nation-states that have become aiders and abettors of violent jihad against the West. And in unapologetically rooting radical Islam out of our own countries as unworthy of being part of free societies.
Two remarks made shortly after 9/11 that I commend to your attention.
The first was made by none other than Ann Coulter the day after, when she proclaimed that in order to win this war, we were going to have to 'invade their countries and convert them to Christianity.'
Well, I don't know about converting them to Christianity, but La Coulter was definitely on to something - some of the players are going to have to be defeated decisively, perhaps even colonized, occupied or destroyed, and the rest are going to have to have the fear of G-d put into them to the point where they never even remotely consider attacking the West again in any form.
And it will have to be done with the kind of single mindedness an honor/shame mindset like Islam understands. Germany and Japan are peaceful, democratic countries because the fascist myth they embraced was humiliated, defeated and destroyed beyond redemption, and they knew better than to push their luck by trying it again
The second remark came from Salam Al-Marayati, head of the Muslim Public Affairs council. Al- Marayati was on a radio talk show and as usual was attempting to finesse what happened on 9/11 ad nauseum by referring to Muslim grievance in Israel and elsewhere. In response to a question from an outraged caller who complained that this was not a legitimate excuse for 9/11 and that the West would retaliate, Al-Marayati replied, " What do you want? A holy war with a billion Muslims"?
To a great many Muslims, that holy war began fourteen hundred years ago, and they fully understand that this is just the latest round of the war between Islam and the West. Most western elites haven't even acknowledged that war yet.
Mumbai's message is that we begin taking them seriously and defend ourselves accordingly.