First, an apology about my piece yesterday. I wrote “I believe we are at war with Islam”. That, of course, should have read “fundamentalist Islam”. I’m not backing away from anything else. The feedback (see today’s comments section) encourages me not to.

A fellow Martin Amis fan was taken by his article on September 11 in The Observer:

Reading Amis makes me wonder if Islamic fundamentalism, particularly the Shiite Iranian variety, is the Islamic equivalent of the Calvinist Reformation in the 16th century.

Calvin. Calvin chasing nukes. Think about it. Any comments on that idea?

Then there was this remark: “Anti-semitism has a long history, but I’m struck by the memory of that Jewish kid who suffered terrible treatment after being kidnapped in France. The Paris riots might qualify as well – rioting is a proud French tradition but it was a different demographic this time.” And they reminded us of Madrid. Of Beslan. And shoe-bomber Richard Reid.

Another correspondent asked why I just followed Christopher Hitchens’ lead and only asked for attacks since September 11 2001. They pointed to:

  • The bombing the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires in 1992 by Islamic Jihad, killing 29 people.
  • The World Trade centre bombing in 1993, killing 6 people.
  • The bombing of the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association (AMIA) building in Buenos Aires in 1994, killing 85 people; and the
  • Bombing of Alas Chiricanas Flight 00901 over Panama in 1994, killing 21 people, including 12 Jews (who were the target)

“This is just a sample of incidents between 1992-94. It’s going to be a long list.”

I’ve got to agree. We’re at war. Agree? Disagree? Write to [email protected]

Peter Fray

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