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The Middle East and Beyond:
Dynamite vs. Disneyland
During the past century we have gone a long way towards sobering up. In
the 1920s, when the New World Order blueprints were already on public
display, poets, writers and philosophers were still wallowing in pipe-dreams
about the destiny of mankind and the quickest road to the Golden Age of
Humanism. One hundred years later those folks are either shivering with
unmitigated horror, or busy working on a do-it-yourself reinforced concrete
shelter project in the backyard.
when we watch, read or listen to the news lines, when we think about the
plexus of the Middle East conflict, more often than not, we look at the
world through our great-great-granddads' glasses: we tend to seek such
things as 'equitable solution', 'workable agreement', 'mutual benefit'
Once I knew an elderly Muscovite who, having moved to his daughter in
New Hampshire, was appraising the reality which thus far he had known
only from Voice of America broadcasts. I remember his excitement, his
wide-open eyes: 'That's impossible!... Where is the public? Where is
the media? The Congress will surely sort it out!...'. I sent him a
gift subscription to The New American magazine (http://www.jbs.org:
something is better than nothing); for a while he was still batting his
eyes, but soon stopped, and thence discussed with me only abstract sciences
or local weather.
our world is an abundant source of evidence, of the most precious food
for thought and emotions, of those 'signs of the times' which we
are called to know and discern. A modicum of humility is needed, though:
rather than assuming the role of Him Who is writing the Textbook of Life,
we should carefully overview the whole course and then take the particular
lessons prescribed for each one of us.
XXI century was born under the sign of war. The Middle East, Kosovo, Chechnia,
Iraq are war zones. Why do people fight wars? 200 years ago von Clausewitz
answered this question by observing that war is a continuation of politics
carried out by violent means. And today it is even truer than ever. Politics
is an exercise of the will to power; today people fight not for land or
sea, not for gold, diamonds or oil; they fight for power over one
Dynamite and Disneyland are merely symbols of the combating forces. How
accurate are they? Terrorism has always been around, in one form or another;
only very recently it seems to have been wrapped into Islamic colors -
and no one knows, of course, for how long. In other words, Dynamite (or
any of its numerous substitutes in the business of killing and destruction)
is a long-established combatant.
Opposing it, however, is a relatively fresh contender - though much older
than the cartoon artist whose name it has acquired. Careful observers
saw it rising and moving towards the battle lines back in the XIX century.
Disneyland means everything fake and phoney, mindless, petty and superficial,
which blocks human heart and reason, which dumbs man down and turns him
into an animal or a gadget. Unlike Dynamite, Disneyland might be unfamiliar
to some folks, especially in "backward" countries; some could
even claim that it is unreal. To convince the reader, let me offer just
one example: advertising. Advertising is Disneyland at its highest. Consider
the place and role of the media in the modern world, remember how it is
paid for, think how much is charged for showing underwear with the right
label on the TV screen - and admit the reality of Disneyland.
It seems that one of the first to connect this reality with the name of
the well-known amusement park was priest-monk Seraphim Rose. Back in the
70s he compared American Disneyland with the Soviet Gulag: both were made
to purge man of God's image, both claimed total power over the human soul
(see, for instance, The Orthodox World View, http://IvanovoConvent.ivnet.ru/_text/orthWVe.htm).
Even though Disney cartoons at that time were quite innocuous, Fr. Seraphim
looked far ahead: a generation later, in the 90s, American Christians
led by Southern Baptists would boycott Disney for its propaganda of godlessness,
blasphemy and sexual perversions.
Since then Disneyland has made a strategic leap: from American it became
Global, having contracted its services to the New World Order. Which is
a quite natural thing to happen: contrary to a popular misconception,
the New World Order is not about dominating one nation by another (as
Imperialism was); it is about eliminating nations altogether. Wherever
there is a national spirit alive, - no matter which nation, - the New
World Order cannot keep power. Disneyland is employed as the strike force
to extinguish the national spirit in the global scramble for power. Dynamite
After the 9/11 attack intelligent people in the US took pains to explain
why America is so greatly hated all over the world. Enumerated were the
Marines, the Air Force, the Navy, the CIA diplomacy, and less palpable
factors, such as the World Bank, GATT and currency exchange rates - while
the most crucial cause remained largely in the shadow. Global Disneyland
effusing from screens and speakers, from billboards and magazines, from
cigarette boxes and candy wraps, at work, at school, at home, is hardly
conducive to warm feelings towards America. And all the arguments like
'American computers are the best', or 'Don't like it - don't
watch it' are missing the point: hate is born not from the reasoning
of the mind but from the pain of the heart.
I remember a remarkable conversation in the town of Nazareth a few years
ago. Someone asked an American visitor whether he felt homesick seeing
a MacDonald's restaurant (yes, there is such a restaurant in the town
of Nazareth). 'Not homesick, he said, just plain sick'.
To be sure, that healthy feeling has nothing to do with food or service:
it stems from the very idea of the standardized fast food chains now chaining
the entire Globe. No one forces people to bring their sustenance - shekels,
dinars, drachmas or rubles - to MacDonald's; ostensibly they remain free
- yet they do what Disneyland tells them. Disneyland asserts its power
over human will.
No wonder, then, that Dynamite is so successful in recruiting partisans
among those who would not submit to Disneyland. And it doesn't really
matter whom and where to kill: Russians in Chechnia, Serbs in Kosovo,
Jews in Tel-Aviv or Americans all over the place. An explosive charge
went off inside: where once there was a human heart - Arab, Afghani, Albanian,
Chechen, - today there is nothing but evil.
does this war spell for the rest of us? Who is better - Dynamite or Disneyland?
The answer is quite clear: both are worse. In fact, both are so
bad that their direct subordination to Satan is beyond any doubt. Fighting
one another, they launch deadly attacks against us on both sides.
We loath Disneyland, we speak about it boldly - and we get accused of
complicity with murderers. We prosecute terrorists - and we get portrayed
as minions of the New World Order, while Disneyland is sneaking in through
every crack. Dynamite vows to blow up the Christian civilization as the
'Satanic Empire', while Disneyland inculcates in our children the root
cause of the evil: 'Savage fanatics are willing to give up their lives'.
The conclusion is simple: no easy road ahead. But if we follow the Apostles'
word and 'hold fast what we have', we can survive without falling
prey of either enemy.
Heeding to demands of human inquisitiveness, we can try to find more knowledge
of the events to come. They are, of course, in God's hand, but current
circumstances afford us enough evidence to produce a reasonable scenario
for the future - chiefly for the better understanding of the present.
By its very nature, Dynamite will never be vanquished by Disneyland -
no matter how many MacDonald's restaurants, Marine battalions or $100
bills are placed at its disposal. Yet the nature of Dynamite is the same
as that of Disneyland, and their master is also the same. Hence, it is
reasonable to assume that they will soon come to terms: solve their differences,
unite their forces, and charge us with tenfold ferocity.
Those who would argue that one cannot come to terms with Dynamite, particularly
in its modern Islamic form, tend to forget that Disneyland goes much deeper
than fast food chains and underwear advertising. Like timber rot, Disneyland
has already infected the very core of the Western mentality - the ideas
of God, truth and fidelity. Thus, it is not exactly Richard the LionHeart
with whom the Muslims have to negotiate a 'reasonable solution'.
Of particular interest here is Ecumenism, or a wider, modern, 'inclusive'
( = vague, ambivalent, irresponsible, - or dumbed-down) way of thinking.
Even as we speak, such thinkers in once-Christian churches and reformed
synagogues preach that 'old controversies ought to be cast aside: Christianity,
Judaism and Islam are essentially the same', and the like.
Take for instance the basic creed of Islam: 'There is no god but Allah,
and Mohammed is His prophet'. The first clause is hard to argue about
(whether or not Allah can be identified with the True God), but the second
clause is much easier, and, of course, any conscious Christian or Jew
will unconditionally deny it. But watch out! Given all the efforts which
President Clinton, Disneyland's Commander-en-Chief, once put into the
re-definition of the verb 'to be' while being interrogated under oath,
some progressive theologian will announce before long ex cathedra
that Mohammed, after all, might be the prophet of the Most High.
At first, there will surely be chuckles of the unprogressive reporters;
then public opinion architects will step in with thoughtful comments,
followed by resolutions of Ecumenical assemblies. And then some octogenarian
Rebe whose portraits adorn every other utility pole in Brooklyn, will
suddenly get a new revelation from on high: yes, for the sake of preserving
Jewish lives, it is permissible to count Mohammed among the prophets.
What's next? It remains to convince the Muslim populace of the great and
glorious victory over the infidels who have bent their necks to the Prophet
(in a sense, that will be true). Then Dynamite will switch from terrorism
to festive fireworks, Disneyland will solemnly shut down ham and beer
advertisement, such trifles as state boundaries and control over oil fields
will take care of themselves, and the forces of the World Community will
turn against those who, for one reason or another, would not bend their
'Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you:
and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake
But he that
shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.'