‘Qafir’ is a rough Arabic translation of infidel, interpreted as ‘one who denies the blessings of God.’ It’s an epithet sometimes used by Islamist militants and fundamentalists against Westerners, and it’s a term that some American servicemen have taken as a badge of honor.
This Arabic inscription has been incorporated into countless (officially prohibited) morale patches in ‘The Sandbox,’ and now it’s being etched into the blades of custom knives in the hands of some U.S. Marines. Their anti-Muslim sensibility goes farther than this single word, however.
Bryan Bates is a mustered-out Marine who sells custom knives like this one, primarily to active-duty service members. Most of them are hand-folded Damascus blades, engraved with ‘Qafir’, and most of them are quenched in water or oil that he’s mixed with pig blood.
This unique quench isn’t done for the carbon content of the pig blood; he uses pig blood because it is considered unclean by Muslims. Bates claims that this isn’t intended as an insult to all Muslims, just a highly-offensive f-you to any of them that his brother Marines might meet on the battlefield.
Bates’ knives remind me of the infamous ‘Jihawg‘ bullets that are laced with pork fat, and all of this strikes me as…
Wait, this is the Question Of The Day. How does all this strike YOU? Is it an edgy insult to some of the most vile and violent scum on the planet (Islamist terrorists) or is it an unnecessarily provocative insult to all adherents of the Muslim faith?
Do knives and bullets like these give our enemies all the propaganda they need to recruit more Jihadists, or are they simply a morale force multiplier for our soldiers who carry them?
Were you offended by Robert Mapplethorpe’s also-infamous ‘Piss Christ’ photos, or do you think that all religions (not just Islam) should lighten up and learn to laugh at themselves a bit more?
h/t to the Marine Corps Times for their coverage.