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I wrote a couple of days ago about Imanutjob’s demand that the US apologise to Muslims everywhere as a condition of better relationships with the Islamic world and with Iran in particular.

To apologise is to acknowledge that something is your fault. Untruthful apologies – apologies for things that are not your fault – may be convenient, they may even make you feel better. But they bring no long term benefit either to the person who apologises, or to the person to whom the apology is given.

An apology from the US would be taken as acknowledgement of responsibility, not just by the US, but by the West as a whole, for the sorry state of many Islamic societies. The response would not be ‘Gee, thanks. That’s OK, apology accepted.’ It would be continued and renewed blame of the West, accompanied by further demands for withdrawal, compensation, etc.

Instead, the responsible thing to do is quietly and patiently and repeatedly point out, as Charles Krauthammer does in this article, the many ways the US and its allies have helped Muslim communities around the world, often at considerable cost and no obvious benefit to themselves.

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