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Home > Politics

WAWIBF... Manuel Paleologus

24 September 2006

So what exactly did the Pope say that proved so damned upsetting? Well, he was talking about religion, as usual, about God and how we must all believe in him. He made reference to Byzantine Emperor Manuel II Paleologus and the fact that he, in the late 14th century, said the following:

'Show me just what Mohammad brought that was new and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached.'

What he didn't mention was that times have changed considerably since then and Paleologus' words are painfully out of date. Despite Mohammed's dictates, few Muslims these days stoop to use of the sword to spread their word. No point. Why use a cumbersome, slow-killing blade when a simple bomb can do the job of a thousand swords? The Pope continued with Paleologus' words:

'Faith is born of the soul, not the body. Whoever would lead someone to faith needs the ability to speak well and to reason properly, without violence and threats... To convince a reasonable soul, one does not need a strong arm, or weapons of any kind, or any other means of threatening a person with death.'

Yeah, fine, hold on a minute though. Did you call my prophet a cunt?

Hearing what they wanted to hear, ignoring the clarion call to non-violence, fundamentalist Muslims proved to the world that Islam is a religion of peace by burning an effigy of the Pope, shooting a nun in the back and, throughout the week, issuing various death threats. If it wasn't so depressing, it would be nothing more than a rather infantile joke.

POPE: Well, you're a bunch of violent motherfuckers, aren't you?

FUNDAMENTALIST MUSLIMS: What? Violent? Us? How dare you! For this remark alone, we will break down your door, kick you to death and blow up your remains.

It could of course be argued that the Pope shouldn't have used the words 'Mohammed' and 'evil and inhuman' in the same sentence, even if it wasn't his sentence, simply because, you know, we all know how incredibly over-sensitive these fools are when it comes to the sacred Mo. But then you think, well hold on a minute. Let the doddering old fuck say what he wants. We've never been a fan of the Pope, still less of Catholicism in general, but suddenly this week we found ourselves leaping to their defence. Crusades, inquisition, child abuse and all.

We liked his apology too. It was less 'I'm sorry I said those words' and more 'I'm sorry you're so mentally ill as to have taken those words and used them as an excuse to react as you did, you cocks'.

Good for you, you old Nazi.

Comment on this article: letters@thefridaything.co.uk

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