Destroying Orientalist fantasies by playing with their suggested meanings

Catch the subtlety in this sentence:

“The radical Islamic groups’ practices mutilate the true image of Islam,” said Naim Qassem [deputy secretary general of Hizbullah]. “They don’t recognize other religions except theirs, as if God gave them keys to heaven and they are the ones who pick who goes there or not.”

What is Qassem doing here?
1- He is differentiating between the “other” who is radical, implicitly saying that Hibullah is moderate.
2- He is borrowing from the conceptual framework of the dominant ideological rhetoric in order to counter it more efficiently. He is strategically accepting the fact that there are such things as “radical Islamic groups” and what have you in order for him to place his party outside of it.

The last point is very important. This is how any group rises against a prevailing hegemony: By using to their benefit the semiotics propagated by the dominant intellectual/power networks. Now you know why Gramsci thanks to his thoughts on the concept of culture and hegemony may be one of the greatest thinker of the last century.

But what am I saying? You don’t need my pedantic explanations just listen to the guy:

“Let us stand together against hegemony and injustice,” he said. “Get to know us and the resistance through our work and stands, not through what you hear from the US and its agents.” [emphasis added]

Look at the practices I beg you. Only the practices may reflect the worldview of a party. There are no worldviews, ideologies or what have you that just hangs in air.

Do you know why al Qaeda is jealous of Hizbullah? Because it now knows that it will never be championing Arab’s hearts and minds. But watch the big fish my friends. Dar el Shaytan has still tricks hidden in his pockets.


One Reply to “Destroying Orientalist fantasies by playing with their suggested meanings”

  1. who’s Dar El Shaytan?

    I can’t wait to hear Hezbollah’s agenda for women rights (granted they’re not that great in Lebanon right now anyway, so mootish point, except for the wear-your-curtains fashion statements) and for civic institutions.
    Ohhh I can’t wait.

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