A terrorist was killed in Somalia on 5/1/08 by an U.S. air strike. Some discussion was being made on a board that I monitor and comments were positive. A poster thought that the commentators were gloating about killing a "freedom fighter". Accusations can reveal just as much, if not more about the accuser than the accused. I did not see any of the comments made as gloating. I do remember the films of people in the streets; waving and shooting weapons in the air after hearing the news about the 9/11 attacks. I consider this to be gloating. This has occurred on many other occasions as well. It would be considered improper to do anything like this in the United States. (Not to mention illegal)
Does it seem that the Arab world is easily insulted? Riots occur for things that we in the West consider being minor insults. The Danish cartoons come to mind. The penalty for insulting the profit Mohammed is death. The Muslim world takes this VERY seriously. Is it really proper to take violent action after being insulted? After all, if someone gives us the finger, or calls us the "F" word do any of us riot, or pull out a weapon? What about the insulting things that Reverend Wright has said? Has anyone issued a death FATWA against him? The point is that the Muslim world needs to learn a little anger management and in the process to learn how to take insults like a man. I suspect that these are really only excuses.
Part of the cause of the Muslim world being so sensitive to insult springs from a feeling of superiority. (Yes, superiority, NOT inferiority) If you listen to many Muslim conversations about the West, you will notice how decadent, weak and superficial we all are. They like our economic prowess, but feel that we are morally weak. Many Japanese had this same view of the U.S. prior to World War II. And for the first time in all of recorded history, they produced organized, mass suicide attackers. Many Japanese had believed that their willingness to die and our unwillingness to die would allow them to ultimately prevail. Even given tremendous inferiority in numbers and/or equipment. "The highest honor he could hope for was to die for the Emperor". (The code of Bushido) This sounds familiar. The really scary part is that it took nuclear weapons to end the entire affair the first time.
My personal hope is that a reformation of Islam occurs that is based upon commonly accepted human rights (Not Muslim rights) and is universally accepted by the Muslim world. This is asking a lot, because we are talking about a culture of more than 1 billion people. Cultural change has been responsible for many, many wars throughout mankind’s history.