Sometimes the best way to deal with a loudmouth (Martin Amis), nothwithstanding Terry Eagleton’s or Ronan Bennett’s valiant efforts, is to send him up. Chris Morris provides a masterclass here, noting striking similarities between Martin Amis and Abu Hamza. It really cheered me up: it will cheer you up too.
It’s sobering to note that the University of Manchester seems to cashing in on the whole thing by hosting Amis and Ed Husain on “Literature and Terrorism” next Monday. (Presumably the novel idea here is to get the protagonists to mostly agree with each other, for Amis’s “horrorism” to find confirmation in a Muslim echo chamber. I hope I am proved wrong.) Holding this event seems to isolate Eagleton (Amis’s departmental colleague) or anyone else at the University who has taken a stand against those who can’t control those little urges to voice thought experiments in “collective punishment”. Even the “good” Muslims, delusional children who contend that their primitive faith might approximate to true, rational, liberal values, can be condescended to as useful-enough idiots against the jihadis, even if one must put up with their “gobbledegook”. If some want to argue that the only really good Muslim is an ex-Muslim (i.e. only Ayaan Hirsi Ali has really got it right), then is it really any surprise that polling keeps showing that large numbers of Muslims think that the “war on terror” is “a war on Islam”?