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A worthwhile clash between Mayor Livingstone, Councillor Salma Yaqoob, Daniel Pipes, and Douglas Murray

Via PowerLine, British commentator David Pryce-Jones and writer Sharon Chadha describe the public debate clash that took place in London between Mayor Ken Livingston and Councillor Salma Yaqoob of Birmingham and conservative Daniel Pipes of Philadelphia and Douglas Murray, a brilliant young British thinker.

According to Pryce-Jones, “the large hall and two overflow halls were filled. Many in the audience were Muslims.”

According to Chadha, Mayor Ken Livingstone was in full flood, blaming the Cold War entirely on the West and ascribing Western success to slavery and the discovery of America rather than, say, the Enlightenment or the inventions of the Industrial Revolution. However,

Dr. Pipes rejected the notion of a clash of civilizations and said that what he saw taking place was a battle between civilization and barbarism. He went on to say that in his mind, civilization was the place where freedom and the rule of law prevail, and that it was not the exclusive province of any culture, religion, or race.

Although Dr. Pipes refused to vilify Islam, even citing a verse from the Koran to support his argument that civilization was well within the purview of Muslims, he did say that he thinks that today's barbaric enemy is radical Islamism, or the ideology that would impose Islamic law on everyone, including non-Muslims.

Pryce-Jones reports that Councillor Salma Yaqoob seconded Livingstone, repeating that the real terrorists were America and Britain. However,

Douglas Murray made the point that moderate Muslims had to be supported against extremist Islamists. And suddenly their arguments began to shift the audience away from Livingstone, and to attract a lot of applause.