Whispering the (partial) truth behind closed doors

Concerning Pope Benedict’s important remarks about Islam, Daniel Pipes writes:

Father Fessio’s striking account prompts two reactions. First, these comments were made at a private seminar with former students, not in public. As “Spengler“ of Asia Times points out, even the pope “must whisper” when discussing Islam. It’s a sign of the times.

I was so exciting about the pope’s statement that I didn’t focus sufficiently on this point. What is the use of his saying that Islam is not reformable, and thus presumably not assimilable into Europe, if he only says it in private? Unless he states this publicly, it will have no real effect.

What is needed is that the pope rally the Christian and Western world against jihadism, which really means against Islam. Just as John Paul II rallied the West against Communism. Would JPII have limited himself to private criticisms of Communism? Of course, Communism was an easier target, since it wasn’t a religion. But the pre-Vatican II Church would have had no trouble condemning it.

And why must the pope limit himself to the criticism that Islam is not “reformable,” as though the most important thing about a religion is whether it can be adapted for post-modern conditions? Isn’t the real point that Islam is a false and wicked faith?

Posted by Lawrence Auster at January 26, 2006 02:04 AM | Send

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