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Why the West is Best: A Muslim Apostate's Defense of Liberal Democracy Hardcover – December 13, 2011
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Top Customer Reviews
But this may be his best book yet.
I have to say, right off the bat, that it is biased. It seems to have been created as a document to refute anti-American (and anti-Western) leftists. It is quite definitely a reply to the "wets," who can find nothing wrong in the world except for "Western racism, imperialism, and genocide." And Warraq's reply is not antagonistic, in any way. It could be summed up as, "You don't know nothing yet."
The book begins with a surprising, but delightful, hymn to New York City. Warraq has previously written about "how he became an Englishman," but by now he is clearly an Englishman in love with New York. He takes two separate tracks in praising the city: the first is (again, surprisingly) his love affair with Tin Pan Alley and the best of the American musicals, and the second is his visit to a place that might be called "Little India," where every imaginable Indian product is for sale to the crowds which appear every day -- delicious curries and the ingredients which go into them, Indian silks and saris -- and so on: the complete list would consume this entire review!
But Ibn Warraq is most informative on subjects like slavery and imperialism. On slavery, he dispassionately points out the worst offenders in the matter of slavery (the Arabs, and perhaps the Africans themselves) and points out that the end of slavery came from the West.Read more ›
The book opens with a long panegyric to New York City, and especially the music spawned there in the early part of the century as an encapsulation of what is great about the West. This part was interesting, but did not accomplish what I think it was intended to -- it came off as more of an excurses at times than it did a metonym. The pay off, however, comes in the second half of the book, when he gets to his home territory. His expose on Islamic slavery is an absolute embarrassment to the Western elite. He brings together material on Islamic and African slavery that is devastating, as it should be common knowledge instead of obscuranta. He then proceeds into self-criticism and religious freedom.
The subtitle is misleading however. This is not a defense of liberal democracy, it is a defense of Western values as a whole and an appeal for us to believe in them again. It's a full frontal assault on multiculturalism and the Marxist historiography that supports it. In particular he recognizes throughout that human rights are unique to the Western tradition and the building block for everything else.Read more ›
As a person educated in the Eastern US, and an avid reader of the NYT, I have been amazed several times by the historical facts Mr Warraq documents that were heretofore unknown to me. There are very interesting expositions of Islamic, African, Indian, Japanese and Chinese culture and history, that one seldom reads about.
(I choose not to mention them specifically here because I fear this would lead to an endless steam of comments, defenses and accusations.)
I would also recommend this to anyone who has read "Guns Germs and Steel" because Mr Warraq raises some very interesting counterpoints to Mr Diamond's arguments.
This is a very important work which i'm sure will grow to become a best seller. It will open your eyes to much history that has been sanitized, or overlooked by the American educational system and media.
I highly recommend reading this book - although many may find the facts uncomfortable, and its likely to become controversial, its written in a very thoughtful rational tone and merits serious consideration and debate.
Unfortunately he's probably preaching to the choir, since in this day and age political correctness precludes open and honest discussion of facts such as the Arab and African role in the slave trade, for example, or the lack of basic freedoms in what the British euphemistically call "Asian" countries. The Western nations have done enough breast-beating and it's about time this stopped; if we denigrate our own history because of ignorance or false information we will never be in a position to defend our culture, which despite its failings, is worthy of defense. Here this book is invaluable, being very readable (I haven't always cared for Warraq's style in some of his past writings) and well-documented, as always.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I was not aware when I purchased “Why the West is Best - A Muslim Apostate's Defense of Liberal Democracy” that Ibn Warraq is the author’s pen name. Read morePublished 2 months ago by VeritasSemper
The world needs to read this book. High time to stop feeling ashamed of ourselves, high time to stop feeling "all cultures are equal", high time to stop allowing false... Read morePublished 14 months ago by Hela Viola
Great read, Ibn Warraq assessment is awesome, and right we (the west) have become better by acknowledging our faults and weaknesses, by our principles of equality before the law,... Read morePublished 16 months ago by John
One should never underestimate the bravery it takes to write books like this. Especially considering the fact that in this instance it amounts to apostasy. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Gregory
Lucky people are born in a Western Culture, and the luckiest of all are born into an English language culture. Read morePublished on July 29, 2013 by beau loots
Interesting views that go against the politically correct vein. Well written and thought provoking.
Highly recommend for good reading and information.
Many interesting topics appeared in the book , from New York which Symbolized the western spirit to the roots and causes of this great civilization , the challenges and problems... Read morePublished on July 27, 2012 by Caliph al Ma'mun
A very informative read by a reformed Muslim. We do have the best form of government. We ARE the last, best nation.Published on July 3, 2012 by Al
Very interesting and easy to read. Very well researched. 60 pages of bibliography. He draws information from sources as varied as Plato, Martin Luther, the Apostle Paul, Gandi,... Read morePublished on April 29, 2012 by dmsutto