Augusta Chronicle

It’s not about Israel. It’s not about the Palestinians. It’s not even about George W. Bush.

Muslim violence is about itself, and nothing else. It’s about a violent, virulent strain of Islam as bent on world domination as the communists ever were.

It’s not restricted to the Mideast and the maddening politics there. It’s in the Philippines and Thailand — and Indonesia, where yet another bombing on Bali has left 22 dead and more than 100 injured.

In October, three suicide bombers targeted crowded popular restaurants in coordinated attacks that had all the earmarks of Jemaah Islamiah, the al-Qaida-linked Muslim extremist group responsible for other attacks, including the 2002 Bali bombing that killed more than 200.

So what is behind it all, if not the oft-cited Palestinian “cause”?

“If they refuse to be under Islam, it will be chaos. Full stop,” said Muslim cleric Abu Bakar Bashir, in prison for the 2002 Bali bombing. “If (Westerners) want to have peace, they have to accept to be governed by Islam.”

Some well-intentioned souls in the West, particularly in Hollywood, want to sell the idea of Muslim violence as a freedom fight by the Palestinians and — what, sympathy pains by other Muslims?

Bali belies all that. The truth, as the radical Indonesian cleric so candidly admits, is that this is a war for the soul of the planet. It’s an attempt by radical Muslims to drive out the unbelievers — one resort, one restaurant, one innocent diner at a time, if need be.