Is Separationism too defensive?

Alan Levine writes:

Re your recent comment that we should not allow any sharia-based regime to have nuclear weapons, doesn’t this point, which is eminently sane, suggest that separationism is impractical? If we must forbid Islamic regimes nuclear weapons, then policing them and interfering in the Muslim world is unavoidable. This brings to a head a problem I have always had with separationism: it is too defensive.

LA replies:

I don’t understand how anyone could think that Separationism is defensive. The only thing that could be more aggressive than Separationism would be (1) to invade and conquer some or all Muslim countries and then either (a) rebuild their cultures over a period of a generation and impose democracy on them (Norman Podhoretz), or (b) kill their leaders and convert them all to Christianity (Ann Coulter); or (2) launch devastating bombing attacks on much of the Islamic world aimed at killing hundreds of thousands or millions of people, as a way to crippling and destroying the Muslim world.

These options are unworkable, insane, or evil. If I’m missing an option which is both more aggressive than Separationism and not unworkable, insane, or evil, please tell me what it is. Yes, there is the idea of destroying just the worst Muslims regimes, along the lines of Angelo Codevilla’s article some years ago. But that idea is already more or less included within the separationist strategy (see below).

Separationism is hardly defensive. Separationism involves removing most Muslims from the West (and from other non-Muslim countries to the extent possible). basically locking up Muslims within the Muslim world, and ending most relationships and connections with the Muslim world. It means keeping military bases at the periphery of the Muslim world for the purpose of destroying any elements or regimes (without our getting involved in internal Muslim affairs) that may from time to time threaten us. To prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, I favor the use of force against Iran to destroy their nuclear program, and perhaps destroy their regime. If nuclear-armed Pakistan fell under the sway of jihadists, I would favor the use of force to destroy their nuclear capability and perhaps destroy the regime. If we must for a temporary period seize oil assets in the Persian Gulf, then so be it. But this occupation zone would be kept separate from the societies of the nearby Muslim countries. It would be an American- and Western-controlled bubble located physically within the borders of the Muslim world, but having no contact with it.

I don’t see how the permanent quarantine, the permanent ghetto-ization of a fifth of humanity, punctuated by regime-destroying enforcement measures when necessary, is a defensive policy.

Some may say that Separationism is not the word for such an aggressive posture as I have described. But I think it’s still the right term, because the central idea is to separate the Islamic world from the rest of the world, and to take away Muslims’ ability to have any effect on the rest of the world, without waging total war against the Muslim world or seeking to destroy it.

Now, if we found, after carrying out the separationist policy in full, that the Islamic world was not pacified and still posed a mortal threat to us, then at that point we would have to consider more aggressive and destructive steps, as horrible as they would be. But in my view it is crazy and absurd to consider such aggressive steps now, when there is so much that we have to do first, starting with the policy of reverse Muslim immigration.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at November 07, 2007 12:57 PM | Send

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