The sudden popularity of the Palestinian suicide bomber really is very puzzling. Apparently it is socially-approved behavior in many neighborhoods. That ought to appeal to the more extreme wings of the world population control movement. But that suicide bombing has roused so little heated controversy strikes me as odd. Saddam Hussein offers the family of suicide bombers $25,000. What would the world think if he offered the families money to have their children sent into slavery? I suppose there would be outrage if Arabs were paying families to enslave their children. There seems to be little outrage when Arabs pay families to send their children to death. Is this because the children are killing Israelis?
Frankly, I am crossing Islam off my list of tourist destinations. In Egypt, an extraordinary contest has been inspired by published pictures of those four Palestinian women who broke with Islam's strictures against female participation in public life to become suicide bombers. The contest, loosely translated as "Name the Prettiest Suicide Bomber," has apparently been won by Miss Wafa Indriss (deceased), who is described by a columnist in the Egyptian newspaper Al-Wafid as having had "dreamy eyes and a mysterious smile on her lips." Then unfortunately, he proceeded to compare Miss Indriss to the Mona Lisa, which will not endear him to local Mullahs, the subject of the Mona Lisa being a Neapolitan noblewoman who was completely unfamiliar with the Prophet's writings and had a well-known taste for Chianti Classico and short skirts. She lived a long and full life.
Oh, that above paragraph -- do you think the contest really took place? Surely it is possible. The beauty observations of the columnist from Al-Wafid certainly suggest that it is possible for his fellows to select favorites in the "Prettiest Suicide Bomber" pageant. And there are other cultures where the killing of children was admired. There were the Mayans and the Aztecs who would dispatch children heavenwards for the pleasure of one god or another. Doubtless the parents of the babes were seen as first-rate citizens.
Yet I wonder if the Aztec or Mayan parents felt they had been used? Did they feel sad at the loss of their babes? The Palestinian parents' sadness is, we are told, assuaged by the fact that their children in this last act on earth are killing people, often unarmed people. Maybe the ancient Aztecs and Mayans would feel better if their chiefs convinced them that their babes' deaths in some magical way caused death to their enemies. Possibly the chiefs might take a few of the babes and catapult them against the advance of an oncoming enemy army.
We have no evidence that the Aztecs and Mayans ever even contemplated using human sacrifice to kill others. Possibly their religious scruples would not allow it. And we call the Aztecs and Mayans primitive. There are regions in the Middle East where they might be considered advanced.