ADMINISTRATOR’S NOTE: Being October 2nd and a Day of Prayer in Israel, and with Yom Kippur arriving in less than a week, along with the apathy and misguided path the majority of Americans are taking I felt the following was necessary since I, and “A Crooked Path” stand solidly and firmly with God, Yeshua, the Word of God and Israel, and it sickens me as to what our nation, our people, our government have become.
October 1, 2011
Wash. Post whacks Israel during High Holidays — On the religion page no less
Lisa Miller, a Wash. Post religion writer and columnist, is a self-avowed Jew, who in her own words in the Oct. 1 edition confesses that “these days I’m not so crazy about Israel.” Born into a Jewish family but “without any formal religious education,” she recently joined a Reform synagogue. During High Holy Day services, when it comes to petitioning God to protect Israel, “I hesitate before I voice this plea.” (“In a season of introspection, coming to terms with Israel” page B2)
So why is she put off by Israel? Well, she doesn’t like that “on the eve of these holidays an at the moment when Mahmoud Abbas was making his bid at the United Nations for Palestinian statehood, Israel announced the approval of 1,300 new housing units in East Jerusalem.”
“I’m ashamed that Israel continues to draw criticism from human rights groups for the demolition of homes in the West Bank and, sharing the blame with the Palestinians, for waging a conflict over land with the lives of innocent people,” she writes.
Which makes one wonder how much she really knows about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and where she gets her information. At one point, she references leftist intellectuals “such as Peter Beinart and the late Tony Judt,” who have said that “Jews like me will abandon Judaism because of the dissonance” between today’s Israel and the historical-theological Israel.
In other words, Israel is no longer true to its biblical past. It has lost its way.
So, to relieve her angst, Miller consults several liberal rabbis who advise her to love all Jews, including even “Benjamin Netanyahu as well as Judt, who in 2005 called the state of Israel an ‘anachronism.”
Miller is clearly lost in a leftist fog. One can only wonder, how much — or how little — she really knows about Israel. In criticizing new housing units for Gilo, for example, she obviously hasn’t got a clue that this is a Jewish neighborhoods of 40,000 people with three dozen synagogues that, under any imaginable peace agreement, will remain on the Israeli side. She also seems to lack any real sense of Jerusalem demographics. Or else, she would know that Arab housing construction and population growth have far outpaced Jewish housing construction and population growth since 1967 in Israel’s capital
As for demolition of homes in the West Bank, Miller again misses the mark by a country mile. If she were to keep abreast of real news of Israel, she would know that, yes, Israel has been demolishing homes in the West Bank — but mainly Israeli ones in illegal outposts.
And as for drawing an equivalence between Israel and the Palestinians when it comes to “waging a conflict over land with the lives of innocent people,” she again shows a singular lack of elementary knowledge. How can one equate waging war with innocent people, when Palestinians in Gaza deliberately fire thousands of rockets against Israeli civilians, while Israel — in its conduct of anti-terrorism operations — goes to great lengths to avoid civilian casualties?
Would Miller also draw an equivalence between 9/11 and other attacks on civilians by Islamic extremists with the U.S. killing of Osama Bin Laden and other Al Qaeda kingpins?
My own guess is that Miller’s paucity of information about Israel and the reason she’s so eager to communicate to Post readers her “discomfort” with Israel is that she probably gets most of her twisted facts and erroneous impressions by relying on the Washington Post’s distorted “news” coverage. That in itself would lead anyone astray.
Miller really is in great need of a new — and more factual — reading list.
October 1, 2011
What one group in America really loves Obama?
Hint: it is not the African-American community.
In 2008, Barack Obama rode a tidal wave of support from blacks and Hispanics. But both elements of his base are having second thoughts according to pollsters, at least as refletced in their “approval” ratings. But there is one group that is holding firm: Muslim Americans. Investor’s Business Daily reports:
When Barack Hussein Obama first stepped into office in January 2009, he had 92% approval among blacks, 75% approval among Hispanics and 58% approval among whites, according to Gallup.
Since then, his monthly approval has dropped eight points among blacks, 27 points among Hispanics and 25 points among whites. (snip)
Last month, Pew Research Center released a survey of U.S. Muslims that was almost universally overlooked. It found that Muslims overwhelmingly approve of the way Obama is handling his job as president. Fully three-quarters (76%) favor him, compared with just 46% of the general public.
IBD provides a helpful chart:
Hat tip: Ed Lasky
October 1, 2011
DOJ’s Muslim Affirmation
When a Muslim is charged with terrorism, the Muslim “community” gets a warm and fuzzy affirmation from the U.S. Department of Justice. See here, here, and here. Other cultures, communities, and religions, not so much.
The U.S. Attorney’s office for Massachusetts announced Tuesday the arrest of a U.S. citizen for allegedly plotting with al Qaeda to blow up the U.S. Capitol and the Pentagon:
A 26-year-old Ashland man was arrested and charged today in connection with his plot to damage or destroy the Pentagon and U.S. Capitol, using large remote controlled aircraft filled with C-4 plastic explosives. Rezwan Ferdaus, a U.S. citizen, was also charged with attempting to provide material support and resources to a foreign terrorist organization, specifically to al Qaeda, in order to carry out attacks on U.S. soldiers stationed overseas.
U.S. Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz didn’t mention “Muslim” or “Islam” in her 1,515-word press release, so which “particular, culture, community or religion” is she affirming in her statement below? I’m guessing it isn’t al Qaeda:
“I want the public to understand that Mr. Ferdaus’ conduct, as alleged in the complaint, is not reflective of a particular culture, community or religion. In addition to protecting our citizens from the threats and violence alleged today, we also have an obligation to protect members of every community, race and religion against violence and other unlawful conduct.”
Richard DesLauriers, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Boston Division, added a warning to the rest of us about engaging in “unlawful behavior against others in the community”:
“It is important to remember that our system of justice is based on the notion of individual responsibility. Therefore, no one should cite Mr. Ferdaus’ actions as an excuse or reason to engage in any unlawful behavior against others in the community. We will work diligently to protect the civil rights of all Americans.”
Unlike Holder’s visit to the Muslim “community” in San Francisco last December and his Sept. 30 visit with them in Portland, Oregon, the Italian “community” didn’t get a reassuring visit from U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder when he announced last January the “biggest Mafia bust in New York history.” The Mafioso bust included 127 arrests involving charges of murder, loansharking, extortion and labor racketeering.>Not once did Holder affirm DOJ’s love of pasta and Sinatra or how an extremist segment has hijacked the culture of a great people. Holder’s videotaped statement sounded like a review of The Godfather trilogy as he mentioned Italy, Mafia, La Cosa Nostra, consigliore, Columbo, Gambino, Bonnano, Genovese, and Luchese.Italians didn’t get any amore when DOJ announced another Mafia bust on Sept. 23, 2011.
And there are more communities not feelin’ the lovin’ from DOJ. For instance:
Back in Massachusetts, Carmen Ortiz didn’t snuff any suspicions that might arise against the American exterminating community when she announced a bust on Sept. 1 with this headline: “Bedbug exterminator guilty of unlawful use of pesticides.” Ortiz said, “It is common knowledge that exposure to pesticides can have horrific effects on humans. To use them in such a reckless manner is unacceptable and will not be tolerated in this jurisdiction.”The perp is an illegal alien from Brazil.The DOJ didn’t blow a kiss to the NRA and law-abiding hunters, big surprise, when it announced the conviction of a Michigan grandfather, lawfully licensed to hunt in Canada, for “illegal importation of polar bear trophy from Canada.”
Fretting about Polar bear trophy smugglers has been keeping me up at night. I can rest now, knowing that the border has never been more secure, just like the feds have been telling us.
The Amish “community” didn’t get a blessing from DOJ after the FBI raided an Amish farmer for selling raw milk, an udderly heinous crime.
Not only did DOJ fail to affirm the honest trading “community” on Wall Street, DOJ put every trader under suspicion when it announced that Donald Johnson, a former Nasdaq managing director was convicted of insider trading. U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia Neil H. MacBride said that Johnson “learned what every other trader on Wall Street must now realize: We’re watching, and when you’re caught you’ll face serious time in prison.”You get the impression that Wall Street traders won’t be invited to feast on $16 muffins at DOJ.Holder needs to explain why the Muslim “community” gets an affirmative action validation when a Muslim is busted for terrorism. Expect a fast and furious response.
Jan LaRue is senior legal analyst with the American Civil Rights Union.
ADMINISTRATOR’S NOTE: Contrary to the popular misconception there is no such thing as “old news.” There is though the continuing thread woven in the fabric of history and EVERYTHING is history, everything is connected. Including the growing weakness within our society that shrugs everything of importance off as they dwell on the trivial and useless – such as who gets eliminated from “Dancing with the Stars,” or who wins the Oscar for best actor.
The press in America is an abomination. It is no longer journalism, or at least what the principles of journalism were for decades. Now the government and its institutions control, shape, mold, and manage the information. And the minions of the media, who now rub shoulders with the rich, famous, and powerful – something journalists never used to do – are eager to do nothing but recite verbatim the propaganda of our corrupted and perverse government.
This is all done under the pretense, the lie of “enlightenment.” Of creating a better world. Of progress and no longer following the “antiquated” principles and ethics of times past.
Why it really is taking place is because only very few have the testicles or spine to speak the truth all that is taking place is EVIL. Pure and simple. Which also sheds light on the truth how few have the faith and belief in God, God’s inerrant Word, and so few refuse to live that faith and Word. They concede to the world and evil rather than put on the armor of faith and do battle with the growing evil. Why many even vote the evil in and applaud it!
Islam is elevated. And Christians and Americans are now the “bad guys.” Especially conservative white Americans, or Americans of any ethnic background that happen to have ethics, morals, integrity, and patriotic Christian Americans.
Homosexuality is elevated. Killing unborn children is elevated. Supporting evil in the form of Fatah, Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood, communist China, Russia and Putin are all elevated.
Most of all though, do not speak the truth with regard to Islam! It’s only been 10 years since we were attacked and look at how far backwards we’ve gone. Look at what has become of us. Political correctness, which is the most incorrect and vile thing going, along with worship of self and the burgeoning growth of following New Age teachings which are connected to all of this will be our demise. It is already happening. There is no “old news.” Just blind, foolish, ignorant, uninformed, ill informed people who swallow every lie, ask no questions, refuse to study, refuse to make the least amount of effort, and who still wave their little red, white, and blue flags made in China on the 4th of July and pretend they are free Americans and this nation is great and getting better.
Unless the truth is spoken and written, unless this nation and its leaders and people turn from their current path and turn to God and Yeshua in earnestness and sincerity this nation will cease to exist, except in name only, within as little as 8 to 10 years. Our demise is now almost complete.
Islam is the enemy. Make no mistake. Do not believe the lie they are the “people of peace.” Currently in the world there are 7 billion people. There are OVER 1 billion Muslims.
If only 20% of those are “radicalized” as the media and government officials begrudgingly call murderous single-minded Muslims, that means there are a minimum of 200,000,000 Muslims that want nothing more than for you and your family to die. They want nothing more than for Israel and all Jews to be wiped off the face of this earth. They want nothing more than a world caliphate and Muslim domination and rule over the entire world. And guess what folk’s? More than 20% of the world’s Muslims want those very things. They are winning by sheer numbers and using our laws, and our misguided and corrupted government to achieve their goals. Evil is winning.
Yes, God is all-powerful and in control, but He allows people to make their choices and make their lives. And from those choices the world is shaped, and each individuals eternity decided. We all comprise the threads of ongoing uninterrupted history. What are you doing as a thread in American and world history? Do you stand up for God, Yeshua, the truth, and Scripture? Or do you bend to the will of evil? Do you ignore and shrug off what is going on and make excuses because you are just too lazy and to in love with this world serving the devil to do what must be done?
The Fort Hood Report: Why No Mention of Islam?
Washington Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2010
Accused Fort Hood gunman Major Nidal Malik Hasan
The U.S. military’s just-released report into the Fort Hood shootings spends 86 pages detailing various slipups by Army officers but not once mentions Major Nidal Hasan by name or even discusses whether the killings may have had anything to do with the suspect’s view of his Muslim faith. And as Congress opens two days of hearings on Wednesday into the Pentagon probe of the Nov. 5 attack that left 13 dead, lawmakers want explanations for that omission. (See TIME’s photo-essay “The Troubled Journey of Major Hasan.”)
John Lehman, a member of the 9/11 commission and Navy Secretary during the Reagan Administration, says a reluctance to cause offense by citing Hasan’s view of his Muslim faith and the U.S. military’s activities in Muslim countries as a possible trigger for his alleged rampage reflects a problem that has gotten worse in the 40 years that Lehman has spent in and around the U.S. military. The Pentagon report’s silence on Islamic extremism “shows you how deeply entrenched the values of political correctness have become,” he told TIME on Tuesday. “It’s definitely getting worse, and is now so ingrained that people no longer smirk when it happens.” (See pictures of Major Nidal Malik Hasan’s
The apparent lack of curiosity into what allegedly drove Hasan to kill isn’t in keeping with the military’s ethos; it’s a remarkable omission for the U.S. armed forces, whose young officers are often ordered to read Sun Tzu’s The Art of War with its command to know your enemy. In midcareer, they study the contrast between capabilities and intentions, which is why they aren’t afraid of a British nuclear weapon but do fear the prospect of Iran getting one.
Yet the leaders of the two-month Pentagon review, former Army Secretary Togo West and the Navy’s onetime top admiral, Vernon Clark, told reporters last week that they didn’t drill down into Hasan’s motives. “Our concern is with actions and effects, not necessarily with motivations,” West said. Added Clark: “We certainly do not cite a particular group.” Part of their reticence, they said, was to avoid running afoul of the criminal probe of Hasan that is now under way. Both are declining interview requests before their congressional testimony, a Pentagon spokesman said. (Read TIME’s cover story on the Fort Hood massacre.)
But without a motive, there would have been no murder. Hasan wore his radical Islamic faith and its jihadist tendencies in the same way he wore his Army uniform. He allegedly proselytized within the ranks, spoke out against the wars his Army was waging in Muslim countries and shouted “Allahu akbar” (God is great) as he gunned down his fellow soldiers. Those who served alongside Hasan find the Pentagon review wanting. “The report demonstrates that we are unwilling to identify and confront the real enemy of political Islam,” says a former military colleague of Hasan, speaking privately because he was ordered not to talk about the case. “Political correctness has brainwashed us to the point that we no longer understand our heritage and cannot admit who, or what, the enemy stands for.”
The Department of Defense Independent Review Related to Fort Hood, ordered by Defense Secretary Robert Gates, is limited in scope. Despite the title of its report — Protecting the Force: Lessons from Fort Hood — there is only a single page dedicated to the chapter called “Oversight of the Alleged Perpetrator.” Much more space is given to military personnel policies (11 pages), force protection (six pages) and the emergency response to the shootings (12 pages).
Senator Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut said he was “disappointed” because the inquiry “does not adequately recognize the specific threat posed by violent Islamist extremism to our military,” and added that the homeland-security panel he chairs will investigate. The Congressman whose district includes Fort Hood agrees. “The report ignores the elephant in the room — radical Islamic terrorism is the enemy,” says Republican Representative John Carter. “We should be able to speak honestly about good and bad without feeling like you’ve done something offensive to society.”
The report lumps in radical Islam with other fundamentalist religious beliefs, saying that “religious fundamentalism alone is not a risk factor” and that “religious-basedviolence is not confined to members of fundamentalist groups.” But to some, that sounds as if the lessons of 9/11, Afghanistan and Iraq, where jihadist extremism has driven deadly violence against Americans, are being not merely overlooked but studiously ignored.
October 2, 2011
Europe, Globalization and the Coming Caliphate
By Janet Levy
Europe, Globalization and the Coming Caliphate
By Bat Ye’or
Farleigh Dickinson University Press, 2011
224 pp., $24.95
This past week, French President Nicolas Sarkozy proposed an upgrade for the Arab-Palestinians’ U.N. status from “nonmember observer” to “nonmember observer state,” plus a one-year timetable for establishing a Palestinian state. In light of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s request for a unilateral declaration of statehood through the United Nations and a likely showdown at the Security Council with the United States promising to veto any Palestinian resolution, Sarkozy’s proposal allegedly attempted to lower the “risk of engendering a cycle of violence in the Middle East.”
In truth, there has been almost non-stop Islamic terrorism in Israel, a refusal by the Palestinian Authority to recognize the Jewish state and plentiful distribution of maps that turn the entire state of Israel into a state dubbed “Palestine.” Israeli attempts to negotiate a peaceful settlement have been thwarted on several occasions and the risibly named “land for peace” policy — the Jewish state’s withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000 and Gaza in 2005 — has resulted only in increasing attacks from Arab-Palestinians.
Yet, this nonsensical notion of rewarding terrorism with a state persists, when it would obviously simply enable more Islamic attacks against Israel. Elevation to “nonmember observer state” status would allow Palestinian membership on several U.N. panels which could lead to anti-Israel lawfare – creation or use of laws to harm Israel – at the International Criminal Court. Conveniently using the Rome Statute, the Palestinians could prosecute the Israel Defense Forces and Israeli politicians for war crimes.
Facing presidential elections in 2012 in a country where 82% of the public supports a Palestinian state and where Muslims outnumber Jews 10 to 1, Sarkozy appears to have used Arab-Palestinian statehood demands, not to create peace, but to appease French Muslims and appeal to the anti-Israel electorate. Further, the French government could also have viewed a pro-Palestinian proposal at the U.N. as a way to avert increasing Muslim violence throughout the country.
These recent events give even more relevancy to the recent book, Europe, Globalization, and the Coming Universal Caliphate, by Middle East historian and scholar Bat Ye’or in which the author explains how Europe, with France as the driving force, has been complicit in the Islamization of the continent and its evolution from a Judeo-Christian civilization to one of subservience to Islam, a civilization of dhimmitude, or Eurabia.
Central to this shift has been the adoption of multiculturalism, which advances the idea that all cultures are equal and deserve equal treatment and which makes it politically incorrect to critique other cultures or uphold European traditions and values. Multiculturalism has also resulted in rapprochement between Islam and Europe, a multilateral partnership between the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the U.N., and the Palestinianization of European policy to delegitimize Israel and cast it as the occupier/victimizer of Arab-Palestinians. The European Union has even done the bidding of the OIC – the representative body of the Muslim world – by allowing unchecked Muslim immigration into Europe, promoting Islamic and Arabic culture on the continent, funding Palestinian terrorist acts sanitized as resistance operations, sponsoring challenges to Israel’s security such as the Gaza flotillas, and spearheading boycotts, divestment and sanctions against Israel.
Bat Ye’or charts the development of the Eurabian movement to affect sweeping structural and cultural changes to Europe, beginning in the 1970s with the Euro-Arab Dialogue subterfuge, borne of the Arab oil embargo. She cites this cultural and economic partnership as a vehicle to import Islamic culture into Europe and recounts how Muslim immigrants were welcomed and permitted to maintain segregated enclaves, which have progressed to “no-go zones” for native Europeans. She observes that Muslims have not been pressured to integrate into European society and that Muslim immigrants have gradually supplanted European culture with their own, creating bastions of shariah in their communities. Under the banner of multiculturalism and the shortsighted strategic alliance with Arab-Muslim countries, Bat Ye’or says, Europe has effectively facilitated its own Islamization.
To pave the way for Eurabia, the EU legitimized multiculturalism, which undermined state nationalism and cultural identities, Bat Ye’or writes. Ironically, she adds, while multiculturalism postulated a cultural equivalency between the Western and Arab-Muslim world, Muslims always viewed themselves and Islam as superior. Multiculturalism thus enabled Muslims to retain their separate and distinct way of life under a protective umbrella and carry on as if they were in their native countries. Of course, Muslim states are openly hostile to multicultural values, ethnic and religious diversity and tolerance, as evidenced, Bat Ye’or says, by the rampant discrimination and violent attacks against non-Muslims and the execution of Islamic converts.
The revival of the barely dormant relationship between European supporters of the Third Reich ideology and their Arab-Muslim counterparts, represented by the OIC, formed the chrysalis of a united front against America and Israel. The EU attempted to weaken the U.S. by building a counterweight at the U.N., namely the OIC. The EU sought close ties with the OIC and wittingly facilitated OIC goals of Islamic cultural penetration of Europe. Official European policy has encouraged citizenship for Muslims, a liberal asylum policy, the fight against Islamophobia, better relations with Arab countries and the demand for cultural sensitivity. The EU goal was to use the clout afforded by their Arab-Muslim alliance to challenge the U.S. position of supremacy at the U.N. and in the Middle East. By recognizing the Palestine Liberation Organization, supporting PLO leader Yasser Arafat and siding with the Arab-Palestinians against the Israelis, the EU saw a way to establish Europe as the major player in the region, insure uninterrupted oil and gas supplies and guarantee protection from Islamic terrorism on European soil.
The OIC, founded in Saudi Arabia in 1969 and consisting of 56 member countries, plus the Palestinian territory, represents the collective voice of the global Muslim community. It is the second largest international organization in the world after the United Nations, wielding enough power to register the Cairo Declaration of Human Rights in Islam as a formal document at the U.N. even though its tenets conflict with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted in 1948 by the U.N. Further, while supporting Hamas and Iran’s nuclear program, the OIC was able to pass a 2007 resolution at the U.N. to combat blasphemy against Islam. Using the U.N., the OIC has declared that the crime of terrorism has been eclipsed by “crimes against humanity” – meaning crimes against Muslims.
The OIC’s primary goals are to destroy Israel and establish a worldwide caliphate under shariah. The OIC and its member states view the sacred Koranic duty of all Muslims as the Islamization of the planet and the destruction of Israel. The very existence of the Jewish state supports the biblical roots of Judaism and Christianity and represents a grave insult to the existence of Islam which maintains that nothing existed before Mohammed. The OIC endeavors to promote Islamic values, encourage worldwide solidarity among Muslims, support Palestinian statehood and outlaw all criticism of Islam and Muslims.
In Europe, Globalization, and the Coming Universal Caliphate, Bat Ye’or cites the irony that the Muslim world, through the OIC, blames the West for victimization of Arab-Palestinians, yet ignores the oppression of Middle East Christians and spews hatred against the Jews. Europeans – prompted by fear of Muslims in their midst, the need for Arab oil and their own sordid history of anti-Semitism – accept blame for transgressions against Muslims by which they are, in turn, victimized. They excuse jihadist terrorism by blaming U.S. imperialism, anti-Muslim foreign policy, America’s support of the State of Israel and counterterrorist measures. They thereby place themselves in the ludicrous position of sanctioning jihad as a valid response to alleged U.S. and Israeli oppression and labeling attempts to eradicate terrorism as anti-Muslim.
In summary, in Europe, Globalization and the Coming Caliphate, Bat Ye’or observes that the EU experience, which began as a bulwark for security and defense, a means to fuel its economy and a quest for global empowerment, has become a foolhardy enterprise that has led to Eurabia, the subjugated status of dhimmitude. Under Eurabia, Europe is now experiencing the gradual eradication of human rights, the legitimization of jihadist terrorism and the demise of the democratic values of freedom, justice, tolerance and equality. Bat Ye’or’s observations of Europe’s descent into Eurabia and dhimmitude are a caution for Americans facing the threat of Islamization. A clear and present danger is building in our midst that could take the same shape and direction of Eurabia if Americans fail to be vigilant.
October 2, 2011
CAIR’s silence on pastor’s apostasy death sentence is deafening
Andrew G. Bostom
Will Mainstream American Islam Condemn Pastor Nadarkhani’s “Apostasy” Death Sentence? Where is CAIR? Where is the Islamic Society of North America?
Almost 90 years ago, in his 1924 The Law of Apostasy in Islam, Samuel Zwemer made these observations, regarding the post World War I “Arab Spring” of that era:
The story is told that Damocles, at the court of Dionysius of Sicily, pronounced the latter the happiest man on earth. When, however, Damocles was permitted to sit on the royal throne, he perceived a sword hanging by a horse-hair over his head. The imagined felicity vanished, and he begged Dionysius to remove him from his seat of peril. Today [circa 1924] we read of new mandatories, of liberty, and of promised equality to minorities under Moslem rule; and newspapers assert that a new era has come to the Near East. Economic development, intellectual awakening, reforms, constitutions, parliaments and promises Does the sword of Damocles, however, still hang over the head of each convert from Islam to Christianity? Is the new Islam more tolerant than the old? [emphasis added] Will the lives and property of converts be protected, and the rights of minorities be respected? ….Again and again has European pressure, aided by a few educated Orientals, endeavored to secure equality before the law for all religions and races in the Near East. But as often as the attempt was made it proved a failure, each new failure more ghastly than the last. The reason is that the conscience and the faith of the most sincere and upright Moslems are bound up with the Koran and the Traditions. [emphasis added] Civilization cannot eradicate deep-seated convictions. Rifles and ironclads, the cafe, the theatre, written constitutions, representative parliaments; none of these reach far below the surface. A truer freedom…than the one supplied by their own faith, must come before Moslems can enter into the larger liberty which we enjoy.
Iranian Pastor Youcef Nadarkani’s chilling “apostasy” case illustrates, starkly, how Zwemer’s remarks remain depressingly relevant today: the scimitar of Damocles hovers over Nadarkhani for his “crime” of converting from Islam to Christianity. Thus far mainstream American Muslim advocacy groups-notably the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) have failed to condemn Pastor Nadarkhani’s heinous death sentence. This dereliction of basic moral duty by CAIR and ISNA, so vocal in highlighting the slightest perceived “violations” of Muslim rights here in the US, demonstrates that the continued failure of Islam to uphold basic freedom of conscience extends beyond the “Near East,” to Muslim communities across the entire world.
Notwithstanding transparent last minute Iranian efforts to recast the criminal proceedings against Pastor Nadarkhani with allegations of-what else-“Zionist conspiracism,” or other trumped up charges, a translated Iranian Supreme Court brief from 2010 (obtained by CNN from the American Center for Law and Justice, and translated from its original Farsi by the Confederation of Iranian Students in Washington) makes plain that apostasy is the sole charge.
Mr. Youcef Nadarkhani, son of Byrom, 32-years old, married, born in Rasht in the state of Gilan is convicted of turning his back on Islam, the greatest religion, the prophecy of Mohammad at the age of 19…He (Nadarkhani) has stated that he is a Christian and no longer Muslim…During many sessions in court with the presence of his attorney and a judge, he has been sentenced to execution by hanging according to article 8 of Tahrir Al- Wasilah (a book on Islamic Law, Sharia, authored by Ayatollah Khomeini as a guide for Muslims)
The quintessence of a contemporary Shiite pronouncement on apostasy in Islam (which cites Khomeini’s treatise extensively) appearing in Kayhan International, March 1986, stated openly
In Islam, apostasy is a flagrant sin and guilt for which certain punishments have been specified in Shari’a (Islamic law). Apostasy means, to renounce the religion or a religious principle after accepting it. In other words, one’s departure from Islam to atheism is called apostasy. A person who abandons Islam and adopts atheism is called an apostate . . …Apostasy is the escape from the pattern of creation and nature and that is why the word “voluntary” has been adopted for such an apostate…Can the penalty of escaping from the path and pattern of nature and creation be anything other than annihilation? This is the same thing that has been crystallized in the penal code of Islam. The anti-apostasy punishments of Islam are proper laws to rescue mankind from falling into the cesspool of treason, betrayal, and disloyalty and to remind the human being of his ideological commitments.
Iranian apostasy law is consistent with mainstream Islam’s rejection of freedom of conscience since the 7th century advent of the creed, through the clear modern dictates of the global Muslim umma’s religio-political hierarchy as put forth in the 1990 Cairo Declaration of Human Rights in Islam, signed by all 56 member nations of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (now the Organization of Islamic Cooperation).
- Koranic verses, such as 2:217 and 4:89 and their classical, mainstream exegeses by seminal Koranic commentators such as Baydawi (on 4:89: “Whosoever turns his back from his belief [irtada], openly or secretly, take him and kill him wheresoever ye find him, like any other infidel”) and Qurtubi (on 2:217: “Scholars disagree about whether or not apostates are asked to repent. One group say they are asked to repent and, if they do, they are not killed. Some say they are given an hour and others a month. Others say they are asked to repent three times, and that is the view of Malik [founder of the Maliki school of Islamic Law]..It is also said they are killed without being asked to repent.”)
- Muhammad is reported to have sanctioned lethal punishment for apsotates in the two most important canonical hadith collections, i.e., Bukhari and Muslim, and the Muwatta of Imam Malik:
Bukhari, volume 9, #17-Narrated Abdullah: Allah’s Messenger said, “The blood of a Muslim who confesses that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that I am His Messenger, cannot be shed except in three cases: in Qisas (equality in punishment) for murder, a married person who commits illegal sexual intercourse and the one who reverts from Islam (Apostate) and leaves the Muslims.”
Bukhari, volume 9, #57-Narrated Ikrima, “Some atheists were brought to Ali and he burnt them. The news of this event, reached Ibn Abbas who said, “If I had been in his place, I would not have burnt them, as Allah’s messenger forbade it, saying, “Do not punish anybody with Allah’s punishment (fire).” I would have killed them according to the statement of Allah’s Messenger, “Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him.”
Muslim-Chapter 6: WHEN IT IS PERMISSIBLE TO TAKE THE LIFE OF A MUSLIM, Book 016, Number 4152: Abdullah (b. Mas’ud) reported Allah’s Messenger as saying: It is not permissible to take the life of a Muslim who bears testimony (to the fact that there is no god but Allah, and I am the Messenger of Allah, but in one of the three cases: the married adulterer, a life for life, and the deserter of his Din (Islam), abandoning the community.
Muwatta of Imam Malik, #1410-“Zaid b. Aslam reported that the Apostle declared that the man who leaves the fold of Islam should be executed.”
- There is also a consensus by all four schools of Sunni Islamic jurisprudence (i.e., Maliki, Hanbali, Hanafi, and Shafii), as well as classical Shiite jurists, that apostates from Islam must be put to death. Averroes (d. 1198), the renowned philosopher and scholar of the natural sciences, who was also an important Maliki jurist, provided this typical Muslim legal opinion on the punishment for apostasy: “An apostate…is to be executed by agreement in the case of a man, because of the words of the Prophet, ‘Slay those who change their din [religion]’…Asking the apostate to repent was stipulated as a condition…prior to his execution.”
- The contemporary (i.e., 1991) Al-Azhar (Cairo) Islamic Research Academy endorsed manual of Islamic Law, Umdat al-Salik (pp. 595-96) states: “Leaving Islam is the ugliest form of unbelief (kufr) and the worst…. When a person who has reached puberty and is sane voluntarily apostasizes from Islam, he deserves to be killed. In such a case, it is obligatory…to ask him to repent and return to Islam. If he does it is accepted from him, but if he refuses, he is immediately killed.”
- The equivalent, gravely negative implications of the OIC’s Sharia-based Cairo Declaration are most apparent in its transparent rejection of freedom of conscience in Article 10, which proclaims: “Islam is the religion of unspoiled nature. It is prohibited to exercise any form of compulsion on man or to exploit his poverty or ignorance in order to convert him to another religion, or to atheism.” Ominously, articles 19 and 22 reiterate a principle stated elsewhere throughout the document, which clearly applies to the “punishment” of so-called “apostates” from Islam: “[19d] There shall be no crime or punishment except as provided for in the Sharia.; [22a] Everyone shall have the right to express his opinion freely in such manner as would not be contrary to the principles of the Sharia.; [22b] Everyone shall have the right to advocate what is right, and propagate what is good, and warn against what is wrong and evil according to the norms of Islamic Sharia.; [22c] Information is a vital necessity to society. It may not be exploited or misused in such a way as may violate sanctities and the dignity of Prophets, undermine moral and ethical values or disintegrate, corrupt or harm society or weaken its faith.”
The universality of these Islamic attitudes affects Muslim communities in the West, including North America. Syed Mumtaz Ali, the late architect of Canada’s Sharia (Islamic Law) tribunal, and law professor Ali Khan, for example both have openly advocated extending Islamic apostasy laws to the West. Mumtaz Ali, in a disturbing essay, affirmed the traditional Islamic legal viewpoint that apostates must “choose between Islam and the sword,” arguing further that if Canada were to act in accord with its own Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Canadian government must grant the country’s Islamic community authority to punish those Muslims who apostasize, or malign their faith.
Washburn (Topeka, Kansas) University Law Professor, Ali Khan, another practicing Muslim, provided a more original, but no less frightening rationale for Muslims in the West to violate, fatally, the basic freedom of conscience of their co-religionists. Khan argued in The Cumberland Law Review that apostasy from Islam is an “attack” upon “protected knowledge,” which if deemed (i.e., by some Islamic tribunal one must assume!) to be “open, hostile, and voiced contemptuously,” justified punishment by death. Ali Khan is convinced that traditional Islamic law precepts antipodean to freedom of conscience nevertheless trump this foundational Western freedom, because,
Islam is the truth beyond doubt. [And] [t]hese rules preserve the dignity of protected knowledge, discouraging an ‘easy in, easy out’ attitude toward Islam.
And in April, 2009 Harvard Muslim chaplain Taha Abdul-Basser explained approvingly to a Muslim student that the traditional Islamic practice of executing apostates from Islam, remained both venerable, and applicable:
There is great wisdom (hikma) associated with the established and preserved position (capital punishment), and so, even if it makes some uncomfortable in the face of the hegemonic modern human-rights discourse, one should not dismiss it out of hand.
The Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America (AMJA), consistent with modern fatwas published by Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, president of the International Union for Muslim Scholars (IUMS), and other prominent, mainstream Muslim clerics in Egypt (Al Azhar University), Lebanon, Iran, and Malaysia, has also mandated lethal punishment for apostates from Islam. AMJA’s mission statement maintains the organization was, “…founded to provide guidance for Muslims living in North America…AMJA is a religious organization that does not exploit religion to achieve any political ends, but instead provides practical solutions within the guidelines of Islam and the nation’s laws to the various challenges experienced by Muslim communities…” Moreover, AMJA was deemed a laudable, mainstream Muslim organization for North American imam training by the (US) Muslim Observer in October 2010, despite AMJA’s imams having issued the following public rulings on “apostasy” from Islam, in 2006 and 2009:
Dr. Hatem al-Haj 2006-04-17 As for the Sharia ruling, it is the punishment of killing for the man with the grand Four Fiqh Sharia scholars, and the same with the woman with the major Shari’ah scholars, and she is jailed with Al-Hanafiyyah scholars, as the prophet, prayers and peace of Allah be upon him, said: “Whoever a Muslim changes his/her religion, kill him/her”, and his saying: “A Muslim’s blood, who testifies that there is no god except Allah and that I am the Messenger of Allah, is not made permissible except by three reasons: the life for the life; the married adulterer and the that who abandons his/her religion”.
Dr. Main Khalid Al-Qudah 2009-01-02 Under the authority of the Muslim state, the People of the Book have the right to stay on their belief without being compelled to embrace Islam. But if one of them has embraced Islam, it would not be acceptable from him to go back to his original religion. The same rule applies to those who are born into Muslim families. According to the Islamic Law, they cannot commit apostasy.
Dr. Main Khalid Al-Qudah 2009-04-10 As for the second one, the “people” in this hadith means either the apostates who had become Muslim and then retreated to disbelief thereafter, or the polytheists who do not attribute themselves to any divine religion. This second possible meaning has been mentioned in Imam Al-Nasa’i’s narration: “I have been commanded to fight against the polytheists until they…” In Islam, neither of these categories of people is allowed to remain on their religion. The fact that there is no compulsion in religion does not negate the other fact that someone who has embraced Islam cannot change his mind afterward and embrace polytheism.
The eerie silence regarding Pastor Youcef Nadarkani’s looming death sentence for “apostasy” from typically shrill mainstream Muslim advocacy groups such as CAIR and ISNA can only be interpreted as meaning these organizations reject true freedom of conscience, and condone such Sharia-based punishment for the “crime” of “apostasizing” from Islam.
October 2, 2011
We Should Listen to What Abbas Is Really Saying
Serving his sixth year of a four-year term that expired on January 9, 2009, the unelected president of a people who first came into existence in 1964 appeared before the United Nations and demanded a homeland. Mahmoud Abbas, once again calling himself the President of the Palestinian Authority (PA), invoked a sense of legitimacy that could have made sense only in an organization that gave the world the biggest swindle in the history of humanity — oil for food.
In an organization where Gaddafi’s Libya chaired the Commission on Human Rights, where Saddam Hussein’s Iraq headed the Commission on Disarmament, and where Hezbollah’s Lebanon sits on the Security Council, Abbas’s presence as the voice of the Palestinian people was in keeping with the farce the U.N. has become. As Abbas’s grandfatherly image flashed across the TV screen in a Gaza restaurant, the Hamas-run General Investigative Services were busy showing Gaza’s inhabitants how much Abbas spoke for them by forcing them to turn off the TV. The restaurant’s owner was arrested.
Outside the U.N. office in Ramallah stood the authentic face of Palestine. Latifa Abu Hmeid was chosen to deliver the petition for Palestinian statehood. The mother of seven sons, five of whom are murderers of innocent civilians and four of whom (one is dead) sit in Israeli prisons under life sentences, Hmeid is appropriately the face of the true Palestine. After delivering the petition for Palestinian statehood, Hmeid was publicly honored by the PA for rearing five sons who killed innocent Jews. Hmeid personified Golda Meir’s aphorism that peace would come when Palestinian mothers loved their children more than they hated Jews. That time clearly has not arrived.
Abbas, taking a leaf from Jimmy Carter, resurrected the myth that Palestinians disseminate to the world. In Abbas’s speech, all the insurmountable problems in the negotiations stem from the presence of the settlements. All the hardships the Palestinians face are the result of the security barrier and the checkpoints.
Yet before there was a single settlement, there was terrorism. Before there was a single settlement, the Arabs meet at Khartoum, in 1967, and announced their position on the Jewish state, a position that should be applauded for its consistency as much as it should be denounced for its folly: no negotiations, no recognition, and no peace. The infamous three “nos” of Khartoum and the inability of the Arabs to accept a Palestinian state as long as it meant the recognition of a Jewish state have unnecessarily condemned three generations of Palestinians to lives of poverty and war.
At Camp David, Yasser Arafat was given over 95% of what he allegedly came to negotiate, and he said no. President Clinton was so enraged by Arafat’s lack of sincerity in negotiating that Clinton stormed out of the meeting. Months after Arafat’s death, Mahmoud Abbas was made a slightly bolder offer at Taba, and he too said no.
The state that Abbas proposed is one that, like most other Muslim states in the region, would be Judenrein (free of Jews). PA Ambassador to Lebanon Abdullah Abdullah said that even the refugees would not be resettled in Palestine or automatically be given Palestinian citizens. The PA is playing the gambit of getting a state and still seeking to unload three generations of refugees on Israel. The PA wants to keep the refugee issue alive as a means of destroying Israel.
As for the checkpoints and security barrier, Abbas noted the indignities they placed on the Palestinians, but he ignored that the checkpoints and the security barrier were built by terrorism. Terrorism built security responses, and ending terrorism will eliminate them.
Abbas claims that he comes to the U.N. with only the hope and courage of his people. But he also carries Grad missiles, Qassim rockets, and the murders of innocents. Just the other day, a group of stone-throwing Palestinians claimed the life of a twenty-nine-year-old Israeli motorist and his infant son.
Abbas also demands all of so-called “East Jerusalem” for his capital, including the Wailing Wall, the holiest place in Judaism, and even the Jewish Quarter itself. Throughout his speech Abbas championed a national identity that is a mere half-century old and denied a Jewish relationship of three thousand years to the land, one that preceded Islam itself by more than two millennia.
I do not blame Abbas for his grandstanding at the U.N. He will get a lot out of this. Not wanting to exercise a veto in the Security Council, the Obama administration will put enormous pressure on Israel to make further concessions, even those which threaten Israel’s security. In addition, despite Abbas’s jettisoning of decades of American-shepherded diplomacy, including the Oslo Accords, the Obama administration is pressuring Congress not to cut off aid to the Palestinians, some of which goes to provide monthly stipends to convicted terrorists in Israeli prisons.
If there is anyone to blame for this fiasco, it is successive Israeli governments that, like Neville Chamberlain, sought peace at any price — even trusting Yasser Arafat, the greatest murder of Jews since Adolph Hitler, after he conspicuously and repeatedly told the world he had no intention of adhering to the Oslo accords. Also to blame are progressive American Jews, who are incapable, in the light of overwhelming evidence, of changing their position that the settlements are the primary obstacle to peace and that all that is needed is to give more concessions to the avowed murders of Jews. There is the immature, naïve, and incompetent Barack Obama, who staked out positions for the Palestinians with regard to Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem that even Arafat never claimed. Obama emboldened Abbas to think he could make demands that were far outside the norms of previous discussions.
Abbas has torn up Oslo. Israel should follow his example. It is far better to face an intractable enemy from the vantage point of strategic depth and the high ground of the Judean hills than it is from a narrow isthmus of strategic vulnerability. Israel’s original boundaries — the Auschwitz borders — were conceived by the British to enable them to withdraw and make the Jews vulnerable to the Arabs, who intended to push them into the sea. Remember, on the vote for partition, Britain abstained and did not even recognize the Jewish state until it had beaten back the Arab armies.
Abbas, like Arafat before him, has revealed his true intentions — though they have long been well-known in the Arab world. As the PA Representative to Lebanon Abbas Zaki noted two years ago, the peace process is simply a different route to destroy the Jewish state. Jewish-American progressives and the Israeli left will still adhere to their mantra of making concessions to murderers as the way to peace. But those who understand that Abbas has no intention of creating a viable and lasting peace will see that as Arafat said immediately after Oslo, the only peace Israel will get is the Hudaibia with the Meccans: the faux peace Mohammed created to build up his forces to enable him to ultimately triumph over his enemies.
Abraham H. Miller is an emeritus professor of political science who specializes in the study of violence in politics.
October 2, 2011
Islam in Depth: The Genesis of the Ismailis
By Amil Imani
There is no such a thing as one Islam. There are hundreds of Islamic sects in the same way that there are hundreds of diseases. In the same way that there are no good diseases, there are no good Islamic sects. And in order to deal with an illness, correct diagnosis is essential to prescribe the right medication. Hence, dealing with various sects of Islam effectively demands correct understanding of what they are, what they aim to do, and their methods of spreading. Some Islamic sects are extremely virulent and deadly; others are less violent and work their agenda in more subtle ways. Even the latter types are far from harmless. Yet the various sects do have something in common: one and all keep to the Quran and pursue the same goal of dominating the world.
Take for example the Ismaili sect, an offshoot of Shi’ism. To shed more light on this branch of Islam — its beliefs and practices — we need to learn about the genesis of Shi’a Islam itself.
What is Shi’a Islam?
Examination of the vast Islamic literature shows that the present sect of Shi’a Islam has evolved from a mix of cultural, political, economic, and religious influences.
The Twelver or Imami Shi’a Islam or Twelve-Imamates (ithna ashariyya) is the largest branch of Shi’a Islam. Adherents of Twelver Shi’ism are commonly referred to as Twelvers, which is derived from their belief in twelve divinely ordained leaders and mediators between Allah and Man. These are Christ-like figures on earth, also known as the Twelve Imams. Twelvers’ pivotal belief is that the Mahdi is expected to appear and save the world when it has reached the depth of degradation and despair. Nearly 85% of Shi’ites are Twelvers, and the term Shi’a Muslim commonly refers to Twelver Shi’a Muslims only. (Ismailis sometimes called “Seveners” instead.)
Below is a brief chronological account of Shi’ism and the belief in the Mahdi as its pivotal figure, with further elaboration of the Ismaili sect.
* Muhammad ruled with an iron fist while alive, and no one contested his authority. He designated no heir; left no will, oral or written; and had no male issue from any of his wives and slave women to inherit the office. Some believers, however, felt that the prophet wished for Ali, his cousin and son-in-law, to assume the Ummah’s leadership, while a vast majority opted for the Arabs’ traditional patriarchal seniority-based practice, thus choosing Abu-Bakr as the caliph.
* Abu Bakr, Muhammad’s oldest high disciple and the father of Muhammad’s nine-year-old child-bride, Ayesha, assumed the position of the first caliph and died shortly thereafter. He was followed by Umar ibn al-Khattāb. Uthman ibn Affan became the third Caliph, to be succeeded by Ali ibn Abu Talib.
* Ali was considered by his admirers the greatest Muslim warrior and by his detractors a vicious killer. Two of Ali’s sons, Hassan and Hussein, were viewed similarly. Ali was murdered, according to one version, by one of his own followers who resented Ali’s capitulation to the caliphate hierarchy. That is, the assassin and his like-minded Muslims felt that Ali betrayed Muhammad by not fighting to be his immediate successor and by consenting to be the fourth Caliph. Another version of Ali’s death is that a Persian warrior by the name of Brahman Jazyyeh killed him, avenging the death of numberless Persians that Ali and his people had slaughtered.
* Ali reportedly killed untold numbers of Islam’s enemies, including Persians, with his much-feared sword that had its own name: Zulfiqar. He was addressed by his followers as Amir-ul-Momeneen (Commander of the Faithful).
* The death of Ali transformed the feuding among the various Muslim factions into open warfare. Some decided to follow Ali’s son Hassan, who was soon killed by contenders, whereupon the faction adopted Hussein as their Imam. To these people, Ali was the First Imam. Ali was considered sinless and pure (taher) and immune from error. Over time, eleven males from Ali’s line were taken in succession as Pure Imams.
Thus, the 12-Imamate Shi’a originated with Ali as the First, Hassan as the Second, and his brother Hussein as the Third Imam.
* Hussein was killed in a fierce lopsided battle with Muslim opponents of the Imamate (those who opposed the system of Imamate leadership which is based on the hereditary succession of leaders from the line of Ali.) The two major divisions in Islam diverged, with Sunnis opting for the elective caliphate and Shi’ites for the hereditary Imamate.
* After Hussein’s death, some of his followers claimed that he had not died and that he would return. Others took to his brother Muhammad, and then, later, many took to Hussein’s son Zayn al-Abidin as their Imam. When he died, many followed his son, Muhammad Al-Baqir.
Return of the Madhi, the Lord of the Age
* Starting with the death of Ali, a strong belief began to form among his grieving followers that he had not died and that he would return to assume his rule. This belief in the return continued and eventually metamorphosed into the notion of Mahdi, or the Sahib-ul- Zaman (the Lord of the Age).
* When al-Baqir died, there were once again elements from among the Shi’a who denied his death and claimed that he would return one day, while others settled on his son Ja’far al-Sadiq as their Imam.
* When Ja’far al-Sadiq died, there was mass splintering among the Shi’a. Each of his sons — Isma’il, Abdullah, Muhammad, Zakariyya, Ishaq, and Musa Al Kazemi — was claimed by various groups to be their Imam. Also a faction believed that Jaa’far did not die, but instead had simply disappeared from view, and that he would return one day. It is here that the Ismailis’ division takes place, and they get their name from their acceptance of Isma’il inb Ja’far as the appointed spiritual successor (Imam) to Jaʿfar aṣ-Ṣādiq. Here they differ from the Twelvers, who accept Musa Al Kazemi, younger brother of Isma’il, as the true Imam.
* The same splintering and confusion happened after the death of Musa. Some denied his death, believing that he will return, and some followed his son Ahmad as their Imam, while others chose his other son Ali al-Rida.
* After al-Rida, many took his son Muhammad al-Jawwad, also known as al-Taqi, and after him his son Ali al-Hadi, or an-Naqi. At the death of Ali al-Hadi, they adopted his son Hassan al-Askari as the Eleventh Imam.
The Coming (Twelfth) Imam
The above is a very brief synopsis of the tumultuous Shi’a adoption of the Imamate belief which climaxed in the year 254 AH: the time when a major section of the Shi’a accepted as their Imam the 22-year-old Hassan, son of Ali al-Hadi, and 10th lineal descendant of Ali and his wife Fatima (Muhammad’s daughter). Six years later, Hassan al-Askari is lying on his deathbed, but unlike any of his forefathers, he leaves no offspring — no one to whom the Shi’a might turn to as their new Imam.
The Shi’ites, who had been regarding Hassan al-Askari as their Imam, were thrown into mass disarray. Does this mean the end of the Imamate — the end of Shi’ism? They were not prepared for that.
The confusion that reigned among the Shi’a after the death of Hassan al-Askari is recorded by his contemporary Shi’a writer, Hassan ibn Moosa an-Nawbakhti, who reports the emergence of at least fourteen sects among the followers of Hassan al-Askari, each with a different view of the future of the Imamate and the identity of the next Imam. Another contemporary Shi’a writer, Sa’d ibn Abdullah al-Qummi, records fifteen sects, and a century later, the historian al-Mas’udi lists twenty separate sects.
At least four major divisions of belief emerged to deal with the crisis of not having a legitimate male from the line of Muhammad to turn to as Imam. One group accepted the death of Hassan al-Askari and the fact that he left no offspring. To them, the Imamate had ended. Yet some in even this group retained hope for the advent of a new Imam.
Another group refused to accept the death of Hassan al-Askari, and claimed that he would return in the future to establish justice upon earth. The refusal to accept the death of an Imam and retain the belief in his future return goes back to the very early days of the Imamate line.
Yet another group bestowed the mantle of Imamate to Hassan’s brother Jaa’far.
The Hidden Imam
The final major group, headed by Uthman ibn Sa’id al-‘Amri, claimed that Hassan al-Askari did in fact have a son, Muhammad, who had gone into hiding at the age of four for reasons of safety, and no one but al-‘Amri himself could have any contact with him. Uthman ibn Sa’id al-‘Amri further claimed that as Wakeel (representative) of the Imam, he was the one to collect money in the name of the Imams of the Ahl al-Bayt (descendents of Muhammad).
Hassan al-Askari’s own family denied the existence of any child of his, and divided his estate between his brother Jaa’far and his mother. Yet Uthman ibn Sa’id and his gang won the allegiance of the masses of the believers by denouncing Jaa’far as al-Kadhdhab (the Liar).
This school of thought ultimately became the dominant view in Shi’ism with a new Wakeel following the death of a previous one.
With the passage of time, infighting among the various claimants for being the Wakeel exposed the scheme for nothing more than a way of extracting money from the gullible faithful. Yet the Hidden Imam and his return remain fundamental in Shi’ite belief.
To this day, the ever-supplicated cry of the Shi’a faithful is “Ya Saheb-ul-Zaman (Lord of the Age Mahdi), hasten your return.” Who is the much-prayed-for Mahdi? The four-year-old who went into hiding in a well, as some Shi’ites believe to this day — the well in Iran’s Jamkaran, where president Ahmadinejad frequently visits, submits his written requests, and receives his marching orders from the Hidden Imam to whom he claims he is accountable?
Debunking the belief in the Hidden Imam and his return is pivotal to the dismantling of Shi’ism and helping the long-deluded Muslims in abandoning a fiction that has ruled and ruined their lives for far too long.
As stated earlier, the ideology that Muhammad started was immediately fractured after his death and kept on fracturing. A major problem with Islam is that there are as many different versions of it as there are Islamic pundits — and there are legions of pundits. Another reason why Islam is fractured is that it is all things to all people.
The fact that Islam is a splintered house complicates matters greatly. The faith itself is divided into Sunni and Shi’ite sects, with numerous sub-sects. The divisions and contentiousness are so profound that members of one sect consider the other Muslims apostates worthy of death.
With regard to the Ismaili sect, they somewhat share a line of belief with the Twelve-Imamates Shi’a, at least up to the Sixth Imam. A major split happened after that. The Ismailis believe that the institution of the Imamate continued by one Imam after another. (Aga Khan, these Imams are called.) These beliefs, that may or may not be totally true, are vastly different from other Sunni and Shi’a sects. Yet in a sense, they are just as Muslim as any other sect.
The Ismailis have had a long and eventful history, stretching over more than twelve centuries, during which they became subdivided into a number of major branches and minor groupings. They came into existence, as a separate Shi’a community, around the middle of the eighth century; and, in medieval times, they twice founded states of their own, the Fatimid caliphate and the Nizari state.
According to Dr. Farhad Daftary, an Iranian author and foremost Islamic scholar who is currently the head of the Department of Academic Research and Publications at the Institute of Ismaili Studies:
In Syria, now beyond Fatimid control, Nizar had followers who soon were organized by emissaries dispatched from Alamut, the headquarters of Hassan-i_Sabbah. The Ismailis of Central Asia seem to have remained uninvolved in the Nizari-Mustaʿli schism for quite some time. It was much later that the Ismailis of Badakhshan and adjacent regions accorded their allegiance to the Nizari line of Imams. The two factions of the Ismaili daʿwa henceforth became known as Nizari or Mustaʿlian, depending on whether they recognized Nizar or al-Mustaʿli as their rightful Imam after al-Mustansir. The Mustaʿlian Ismailis themselves split into the Hafizi and Taiyabi factions soon after the death of al-Mustaʿli’s son and successor on the Fatimid throne, al-Amir, in 1130. (For details, see F. Daftary, Ismaili Literature: A Bibliography of Sources and Studies [London, 2004], pp. 84-103, and his The Ismailis, pp. 1-33.)
Dr. Farhad Daftari concludes:
The modern progress in Ismaili studies, initiated in the 1940s, has shed valuable light on many aspects of Ismaili history and traditions in the medieval era. As a result, we now possess a much better understanding of the formative and early periods in Ismailism. It is within such a context that many of the policies of Aga Khan I and his grandson Aga Khan I’II can be fully understood. A second theme that emerges from the policies of Aga Khan I’II and his grandson and successor, the present and 49th Nizari Ismaili Imam H.H. Prince Karim Aga Khan IV, revolves around reform and modernization. The last two Imams responded to the challenges of their times and, as progressive Muslim leaders, introduced a coherent set of policies and institutional structures that ensured high standards of education, health and welfare for their followers. They have also been foremost amongst the modern Muslim leaders of the world in working for the emancipation of women and their participation in communal affairs. As a result of the concerted and progressive leadership of their last two Imams, the Nizari Ismailis have emerged in modern times as an exemplary Shi’a Muslim community with a distinct religious identity, while still enjoying a diversity of cultural and social traditions.
Are the Ismailis “Militant”?
How militant are the Ismailis, as compared to other sects of Islam? On balance, the Nizari sect seems to be a fairly non-jihadist and into making money rather than war. Keep in mind that Ismailis are persecuted and castigated by major Islamic sects such as the Sunnis, who rule Saudi Arabia, and the Twelve Imamates Shi’a, who run Iran.
While the mosque is the religious building most often associated with Muslim piety, a range of spaces for worship and practice can be found throughout the breadth of the Muslim world. For Nizari Ismailis, the primary space of religious and social gathering is the Jamatkhana. Here are a few images of “Jamatkhana” around the world.
The current Nizari Ismailis, numbering twelve to fifteen million in the world and accounting for the bulk of the Ismailis population, are now scattered over more than 25 countries. Their followers consider Prince Karim Aga Khan as their 49th Imam, or spiritual leader. So who is Karim Aga Khan? We can hear it from the man himself.
None of the numerous contending sects is indeed the Islam Muhammad launched. That original Islam died with Muhammad, and the belief immediately started splintering, with each splinter claiming to be the true Islam and renouncing and fighting every other splinter. Yet they still have the Quran, that allows and even prescribes violence to please Allah, in common. Disease is disease, irrespective of strain. Islam is Islam, irrespective of sect.
“Know thy enemy” is a perennial gem of wisdom. Knowing Islam’s numerous sects enables us to deal with them more effectively.
Amil Imani is the author of a new book: Operation Persian Gulf.
October 2, 2011
US officials meet with Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood
Reflecting a real politik approach to the new Egypt? Or a betrayal of Israel?
U.S. officials have met members of the Muslim Brotherhood’s political party, a U.S. diplomat said, after Washington announced it would have direct contacts with Egypt’s biggest Islamist group whose role has grown since U.S. ally Hosni Mubarak was ousted.
Washington announced the plans in June, portraying such contacts as the continuation of an earlier policy. But analysts said it reflected a new approach to the way it dealt with a group which Mubarak banned from politics.
The Brotherhood is one of Egypt’s most popular and organized groups, with a broad grassroots network built up partly through social work even in Mubarak’s era.
The contacts may unsettle Israel and its U.S. backers. The Brotherhood renounced violence as a means to achieve political change in Egypt years ago. But groups like Hamas, which have not disavowed violence, look to the Brotherhood as a spiritual guide.
Under the previous policy, U.S. diplomats were allowed to deal with the Brotherhood’s members of parliament who had won seats as “independents” to skirt the official ban. This offered a diplomatic cover to keep lines of communication open.
“We have had direct contacts with senior officials of the Freedom and Justice party,” the senior diplomat told Reuters, referring to the Brotherhood’s party that was founded after politics opened up following the ouster of Mubarak.
It doesn’t matter if you believe that the Brotherhood has renounced violence. They support terrorist groups like Hamas anyway so their proclamations carry little weight.
The problem is how they want to transform Egyptian society and the consequences the imposition of Sharia will have on the region. It will almost certainly boost the Brotherhood in countries like Syria, Yemen, and perhaps Jordan where King Abdullah has been struggling to satisfy Islamists with political reforms. And it will almost certainly mean that the peace treaty with Israel will be honored in the breach. The treaty will be “re-interpreted” in ways that could make it impossible for Israel to abide by its terms.
Are we encouraging the Brotherhood by meeting with them? I think it more reflects the acceptance of a new reality in Egypt and is probably better than ignoring them. But we have a great big club to weild with our billions in aid sent to Cairo every year. I would suggest we let the Brotherhood know in no uncertain terms the price of that aid; continued peace with Israel and no meddling in the internal affairs of other countries.
October 2, 2011
Wash. Post’s silly semantics against Israel’s rightful claims to Jerusalem
Just when readers of the Washington Post might think that its reporters have exhausted all available semantic distortions to blacken Israel, here comes a new contorted Israel-bashing label that descends into the far reaches of utter silliness.
It’s served up by Joel Greenberg, the Post’s Jerusalem correspondent, in an Oct.2 article about a senior Palestinian official complaining that the Quartet of international mediators — the U.S., the EU, the UN and Russia — are too easy on Israel in pushing for resumption of negotiations (“Abbas aide presses for strong action by Quartet — He portrays mediators’ response to settlement plans as slap on wrist” page A14).
While the Quartet is pushing for a new round of talks without pre-conditions, the Abbas aide first wants an Israeli settlement freeze and Greenberg clearly sympathizes with him. Greenberg also writes that the dispute about how to proceed to negotiations was aggravated when Israel advanced building plans on West Bank land annexed to Jerusalem,” — as he puts it in his lead paragraph.
Farther down in his piece, Greenberg more specifically reiterates that Israel has complicated matters with plans to build “1,100 homes in Gilo, a Jewish neighborhood built on West Bank land annexed to Jerusalem.” It takes Greenberg a while to recognize the Jewish character of Gilo.
However, in Greenberg’s view, it is not enough to simply label Gilo a Jewish neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem. No, as far as he’s concerned, Gilo doesn’t belong to Israel and to these Jewish residents because it sits on “West Bank land annexed to Jerusalem.” Such annexation, in his view, is Israel’s original sin
Consequently, Greenberg rejects any permissibility for Jerusalem, like many cities and capitals around the world, to grow by bursting its geographic boundaries — a natural phenomenon elsewhere around the globe.
Which is utterly silly, when you think of it.
Take for example, London, which originally consisted of an area known as the Square Mile, or what is referred to today as the “City of London.” But over the years, London, as a municipality, added 32 boroughs — a rather awesome series of expansions, or annexations, to use Greenberg’s term.
So would Greenberg, if he were assigned to the London bureau of the Post, write that Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II resides in “Buckingham Palace on land annexed to London?” I rather doubt it.
Or take as another example, Paris, which originally consisted of only two small islands in the Seine — Ile de la Cite and Ile St. Louis. By 1860, it had stretched to 30 square miles and, since the last annexations in 1929, now encompasses 41 square miles.
Would the Post, reporting from Paris, write that President Sarkozy resides in the “Elysee Palace, built on land annexed to Paris”?
Or closer to home, Sacramento, the capital of California, also has followed a similar trend of geographic growth and annexations since the Gold Rush.
Yet, only when it comes to Jerusalem, does Greenberg find it necessary, as part of his anti-Israel agenda, to declare a Jewish neighborhood in Jerusalem as “built on West Bank land annexed to Jerusalem.”
It’s not as if Israel grabbed this part or any other part of Jerusalem from the Palestinians. There never has been any Palestinian sovereign throughout history. The Palestinians never have had sovereign ownership of any Jerusalem neighborhood and that includes Gilo. The last sovereign to hold sway over the Holy Land was the Ottoman Empire and it disappeared after World War I. On the other hand, for one thousand years, Jews were the sovereign rulers of this land until the Roman conquest and Jews have been a continuous presence in this land for the last 3,000 years — with a brief interlude during the Babylonian exile.
After World War I, the “international community” — the British with the Balfour Declaration, the World War I victors at the San Remo conference, the League of Nations, the U.S. Congress all called for establishment of a Jewish national home in the Holy Land.
So, while today, there remains contention over setting sovereign boundaries around Jerusalem and in the West Bank, every conceivable peace plan that’s been floated in recent decades leaves Gilo and other Jewish neighborhoods of eastern Jerusalem on the Israeli side.
So why smear Gilo as somehow a non-kosher entity “built on West Bank land annexed to Jerusalem.” Gilo, by international consensus, is as much part of Israel as Tel Aviv.
How silly can Greenberg and the Post get in pursuit of their anti-Israel agenda?
Leo Rennert is a former Washington bureau chief and White House correspondent of McClatchy Newspapers.
October 2, 2011
Erdoğan and the Long Shadow of Lepanto
Sign of the times: on September 27, according to the McClatchey newspapers, Turkey took delivery of a spanking new warship, the TCG Heybeliada. The 300-foot corvette is the first in modern times built in Turkey’s own shipyards. A sister ship is reportedly undergoing sea trials.
In an unusual move, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Erdoğan attended the ceremony and delivered the principal address. Even more unusual (although, unfortunately, it’s becoming typical of the direction of Turkish foreign policy in the Age of Obama) was what the newly reelected PM said.
Erdoğan began by pointing out that the ceremony was taking place on the 473rd anniversary of the Battle of Preveza in northwestern Greece. There, in 1538, an Ottoman naval fleet defeated a Christian alliance put together by Pope Paul III. After routing the Holy League, the Turkish admiral, the fabulous Hayreddin Barbarossa (“Redbeard”) went on to besiege the Venetian stronghold of Corfu and to raid the Spanish-held Calabrian coast of Italy.
How very odd.
Hayreddin was the Sultan’s greatest admiral. His tomb, a public park, a statue (complete with a fine patriotic poem), and a major boulevard are all major destinations in modern Istanbul. The mausoleum stands next to the Turkish Naval Museum. Traditionally, Turkish warships salute Hayreddin’s tomb with a cannon shot when embarking from the former Sublime Porte.
Said the Turkish Prime Minister: “I recommend the international community take the necessary lessons from the Preveza victory. Turkey’s national interests in the seas reach from its surrounding waters to the Suez Canal and the Indian Ocean.” Turkish President Abdullah GUl then underlined Prime Minister Erdoğan’s message.
Notice, please, that Turkey’s newly announced zone of national interest runs right past Israel. That’s no coincidence. It was only this month when Prime Minister Erdoğan blasted Israel for defending its use of naval force to maintain a blockade of the Gaza Strip against the so-called peace flotilla last year. Erdoğan sent the Israeli ambassador to Turkey home and also tore up several military cooperation agreements between the two nations.
Erdoğan also threatened that the Turkish navy — Turkey’s a NATO member, be it noted — might escort any second Gaza peace flotilla to Gaza. That and the PM’s remarks this week are only part of a larger Turkish drive to establish a sphere of influence — both political and military — across the Near and Middle East. Turkey is also presently locked in confrontation with both Greece and Israel over oil drilling rights in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Once again, we see the return of history.
The Greeks and the Turks. The Turks, remembering the Ottoman past. The Kurds (Saladin’s people). The Jews. The Arabs. Not least, the Iranians, heirs to the Persians. Earlier this year, Iran sent its own warships through the Suez Canal and into the Eastern Med (specifically, to Syria). If President Obama’s and the Democrats’ planned scale-back of the U.S. military comes to fruition, we can expect more of this.
Meanwhile, the underreported pushing and shoving among the navies and air forces of China, the United States, Vietnam and the ASEAN nations in, under, and above the South China Sea continue apace. As in the Eastern Med, the issues are access to oil, domination of the potential battle space, and economic choke-points: the Straits of Malacca and the Suez Canal.
By the way, what are Turkey’s national interests in the Indian Ocean? Just asking.
For now, however, how very odd of Prime Minister Erdoğan to make his bellicose allusion to history on the very eve of the Christian naval victory over the greatest Ottoman fleet ever assembled. One must ask: who briefed the PM? Doesn’t he know about the Battle of Lepanto?
There, off the southwestern coast of Greece, on October 7, 1571, another Christian fleet, also assembled by a pope and commanded by Spain, decisively defeated an Ottoman fleet bent on invading the Western Med. It was intended to be a first step towards the Muslim conquest of Western Europe. Eastern Europe had already been taken. Lepanto was the first attempt at a Muslim drive into Western Europe since Martel defeated the Arab army at the Battle of Tours on October 10, 732.
It would not be the last.
Pope Pius V, as G.K. Chesterton tells in his poem, Lepanto, was no pacifist. The first pope to wear white (he was a Dominican monk; Pius V is the reason popes since then have worn white) called for “swords around the Cross” — and got them. A new Holy League formed.
Sultan Selim had told his men that if they cleared the Med of Christian warships, he would personally lead the Ottoman army to Rome. St. Peter’s, filled with the Renaissance art and architecture of Raphael, Michelangelo, and Bramante, would become a mosque. Its church bells — as had been done in 997 by the Muslim armies of the Caliph’s commander, Almansur, with the bells of Spain’s Santiago de Compostela above the tomb of St. James — would be upended and filled with oil, to burn in honor of Allah.
The issue was judged so important that Protestant fighters came from Lutheran Germany and Elizabethan England to join under the pope’s banner.
Catholics of the time attributed what happened at Lepanto to the intervention of the Virgin Mary. It is said that, at a certain moment, the direction of the wind changed. The result is captured in numerous paintings, including by Tintoretto, Veronese, and Vicintino in Venice and Titian in Madrid, among others.
Instead of a victory, the cream of the Ottoman fleet was destroyed (80 ships sunk and 130 captured, including the Sultana, the Ottoman flagship — grappled and carried by storm by the Christian flagship) and 30,000 of the Sultan’s men were killed, wounded, or captured by the Holy League. Some 12,000 Christian galley slaves were freed.
Because the pope had ordered that the Rosary be said continuously until the result of the Ottoman invasion was known, October is today the Month of the Rosary, with October 7 celebrated on the Catholic liturgical calendar as the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. Originally, it was the Feast of Our Lady of Victory, as numerous churches and works of art commemorate across Europe.
The Sultan’s banner, by the way, once hung in the Vatican. It’s since been, er, lost. The banner was made of green silk and supposedly bore the name of the Prophet some 28,000 times, in gold thread. The Battle of Lepanto is also the reason that “Our Lady, Help of Christians” is one of the Virgin Mother’s titles, so ordered by the Holy Father.
Why is this relevant? The 1500s were not, to put it mildly, a politically correct time. Why bring up all this unpleasant history now — in the 21st century?
Well, we didn’t. The Turkish prime minister just did. What in the world was he thinking?
October 2, 2011
Showing some spine, Congress blocks $200 million in aid to Palestinians
Why reward Abbas for refusing to negotiate and use the UN to end run the peace process?
The United States Congress has blocked nearly $200m in aid for the Palestinians, threatening projects such as food aid, health care, and support for efforts to build a functioning state.
The decision to delay the payments runs counter to the wishes of the Obama administration and reflects Congressional anger at Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s so far unrealised pursuit of Fatah-Hamas reconciliation and statehood recognition at the UN.
The freezing of the funds, which were to have been dispersed in the US fiscal year that ends today, is the most tangible sign yet of the seriousness of Congressional leaders’ threats of an even wider halt to funding in the coming year if Mr Abbas continues with his actions at the UN. It was strongly condemned yesterday by the Palestinian Authority.
There have been persistent demands in Congress to withhold up to $600m – the average amount given by the US in bilateral assistance to the West Bank and Gaza every year since 2008 – in the next financial year over the issue.
The administration remains, as does Congress, opposed to the Palestinians’ application for full UN membership, which Mr Abbas submitted last week. But it argues that assistance to the Palestinian people is what a US official described as “an essential part of the US commitment to a secure future and two-state solution for Palestinians”.
Nonsense. What will secure a future two state solution is Hamas and Fatah recognizing Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state within secure borders. Accepting anything short of that would be suicide for Israel. If the US Congress can pressure the Palestinians to recognize reality and negotiate in good faith on those terms, they would have advanced the peace process.
Also, the fact that the Palestinians passionately hate America makes it a little odd that they would object to the cut off. I would have thought they would be dancing in the streets – just like they did after the towers fell on 9/11.
The Victim’s View of Islam
by Bill Warner
September 20, 2011
Reprinted from Political Islam
Recently the McCormick Foundation financed a seminar about the print media reporting about Islam. The seminar was held under the auspices of the journalism school at MTSU, a state university in Murfreesboro, TN. It is part of the Establishment program of constructing the fine details of Establishment Islam.
The lectures and workshops were lead by Muslims and supporters/apologists/defenders of Islam. The apologists and Muslims contend that the only other view of Islam is that of contemptible bigots, who are driven by the usual demons of hate and prejudice. So all the “good” people, the Muslims and their defenders, gave lectures on the beautiful truth of Islam and how to deal with the “bad” people who oppose Islam. The “good” people have the view that there is there the truth of Islam and the rest of the world is morally corrupt.
This division of the world into good and evil has its benefits, but it is too broad a brush in this case. There is another view of Islam besides the “good” Muslims and their apologists. To see this, go back 1400 years to Medina. In Mecca Mohammed had “proven” his divine status by claiming to be in the same lineage of prophets such as Moses and Noah. There were no Jews in Mecca and the story played well enough. Mecca was the home of “Islam, the religion of peace”.
However, in Medina the town was half Jewish, consisting of three tribes. The Jews of Medina told Mohammed that he was not a prophet and this shattered his foundation as a prophet. Mohammed’s attitude about Jews went from being a spiritual brother to that of an archenemy.
Two years later the last of the Jewish children were kidnapped and adopted as Muslims, the Jewish women were sold into slavery and 800 Jewish males were beheaded. Medina was Judenrein, cleansed of Jews.
What are we to make of this well-documented event and the fact that it is only one of over 70 events of assassination, executions, raids, tortures, enslavements, battles and brutalization of the Kafir (non-Muslim) Arabs around Mohammed? All of this is recorded in the Sira (Mohammed’s biography).
The Muslim’s point-of-view is about this vast suffering is that it was a triumph for Islam, a victory and cause for celebration.
The apologist’s point-of-view of this violence is: that was then, this is now. Christians have done worse. Let’s not be judgmental.
Then there is the third view, that of the Kafir victims of Islam. Mohammed led a nine-year rage of jihad against them. There were pagan Kafirs, Jewish Kafirs and Christian Kafirs, but they were all Kafirs who were annihilated. The cause of all of this suffering was an intellectual idea—Mohammed is the prophet of Allah and every person must declare this “truth” or be subjected to violence. The Kafirs were the victims of Islam, then and now.
The story of the jihad against the Kafirs is told in the Sira and the Hadith (the Traditions of Mohammed). No one was allowed the luxury of avoiding Islam. If you were in the neighborhood of Mohammed, then you had to be for him or suffer violence. After Mohammed had conquered all of Arabia, he died while in the next phase of jihad, the conquest of the Christians to the north of Arabia.
This brutal story is told with great vehemence and force. Mohammed and Allah rejoice at the suffering of the Kafirs. And who cares? The apologist agrees that the violent triumph of Islam over all neighbors was a wonderful success for humanity. The Kafirs are human garbage to be put into the disposal of jihad. Who cares about dead Kafirs? Who cares about the annihilation of native cultures?
Why is it that the history of the Native Americans, Blacks and other minorities can be told, but not the Kafirs? Why can those victims have a place in history, but the suffering to the Kafirs is denied? Why do they have no history? Why can’t the victims of jihad and their history be given a valid seat in the marketplace of ideas?
This denial of the suffering of Kafirs can be seen in how our history books are written. The rise of Islam is glorious, but the suffering of the Christians in Turkey, North Africa, the Middle East, the suffering of the Hindus in Pakistan, the suffering of the Buddhists in Afghanistan are all denied. The victims do not exist in our history. If you die at the hands of Islam, you are invisible to history.
Notice that those who have no compassion for the Kafirs in the story of Mohammed’s martial triumph of Islam don’t care about Islam’s victims today. Islam and its apologists don’t give a damn about the suffering today of Christians in Africa, Pakistan, Iraq, Egypt, the Sudan and on and on. Jewish apologists for Islam do not see the 1400 year old annihilation of the Jews in Arabia being connected to the jihad to annihilate Israel today.
There is another thing about the apologists for Islam. They never refer to Islam’s doctrines of jihad, ethical dualism, subjugation of women and the rest of the Sharia. Instead, they constantly refer to the opinions of Muslim “experts”. But, those who support the victims of Islam talk about the foundational experts–Allah and Mohammed. Once you know Allah (the Koran) and Mohammed (the Sira and the Hadith) you do not need opinions of experts. Why? If the expert agrees with Allah and Mohammed, the expert is right, but redundant. If the expert disagrees with Allah and Mohammed, then the expert is wrong. So who needs the experts’ opinions if you know the facts of Allah and Mohammed?
Why is it when the foundations and the journalism schools meet to talk about how to report about Islam, the victims of Islam have no voice? Why is justice served by denying the deaths of 270 million Kafirs in the Tears of Jihad? Why is it that those who recognize the suffering of the victims of Islam today and 1400 years ago are called bigots and contemptible? Why is it that those who asks for the victims’ story be told along side of the apologists and Muslims are said to be Islamophobic and Muslim-bashers? Why is it that those who know the doctrine of Allah and Mohammed are told they are ignorant and despicable?
There are three views of Islam. The victims’ view is as valid as the oppressor’s view or the apologist’s view. The truth of victims of Islam’s suffering must be told and heard. It is too bad that the foundations do not have the will to finance the complete truth about Islam, instead of the soothing lies told by the Muslim “experts” and their sycophant apologists.
Bill Warner, Director, Center for the Study of Political Islam
copyright (c) CBSX, LLC, politicalislam.com
Robert Spencer & David Horowitz
September 30, 2011
A Rational Fear of Islamism: Not all fears are irrational,
In recent months, several reports have appeared to a generally uncritical reception in the press, which purport to expose alleged conspiracies organized by “Islamophobes” against American citizens who mean us no harm. These reports single out for condemnation a dozen prominent conservative figures (and mostly the same dozen) who have publicly criticized the misogyny, bigotry, and terrorism promoted by many (but not all) Islamic institutions and religious texts.
The term “Islamophobia” itself was invented by the Muslim Brotherhood, which is the political fountainhead of Islamic terror, having spawned al-Qaeda and created Hamas. Not coincidently, the reports themselves have been produced by Brotherhood fronts like CAIR, and jihadist apologists like the Southern Poverty Law Center. But the latest and most elaborate Islamophobia report, transparently derivative of its predecessors, has been issued by the Center for American Progress, which is a brain trust of the Democratic party. It thus marks a disturbing development in this ugly campaign.
On examination, the term “Islamophobia” is designed to create a modern-day thought crime, while the campaign to suppress it is an effort to abolish the First Amendment where Islam is concerned. The purpose of the suffix — phobia — is to identify any concern about troubling Islamic institutions and actions as irrational, or worse as a dangerous bigotry that should itself be feared.
Is fear of terrorists inspired by Islam irrational? There have been 17,800 terrorist attacks carried out by Muslims in the name of Allah since 9/11. Is it unreasonable to be concerned that 30,000 shoulder-ready surface-to-air missiles have recently gone missing in the Muslim nation of Libya, where both government and rebels support the Islamic jihad against America and the West?
Would not a reasonable person be concerned about the attacks plotted and carried out by Muslims in the United States who claim to be inspired by the Koran and who regard themselves as holy warriors in the jihad declared by Osama bin Laden and other Muslim fanatics? These Muslim attacks include the successful massacre of unarmed American soldiers at Fort Hood by Nidal Hassan, a self-declared Muslim warrior whose anti-infidel rantings were ignored by the military brass.
These Muslim terrorists include Naser Abdo, the would-be second Fort Hood jihad mass murderer; and Khalid Aldawsari, the would-be jihad mass murderer in Lubbock, Texas; and Muhammad Hussain, the would-be jihad bomber in Baltimore; and Mohamed Mohamud, the would-be jihad bomber in Portland; and Faisal Shahzad, the would-be Times Square jihad mass-murderer; and Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad, the Arkansas military recruiting station jihad murderer; and Naveed Haq, the jihad mass murderer at the Jewish Community Center in Seattle; and Mohammed Reza Taheri-Azar, the would-be jihad mass murderer in Chapel Hill, North Carolina; and Ahmed Ferhani and Mohamed Mamdouh, who hatched a jihad plot to blow up a Manhattan synagogue; and Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the would-be Christmas airplane jihad bomber; and many others.
If the FBI and law-enforcement agencies had not had serious fears of Muslim fanatics, had not been possessed by a species of “Islamophobia,” all those would-be terrorist attacks would be successful attacks and carry long lists of dead innocents — infidels — along with their names.
Should those of us who are infidels — and therefore targets — not be concerned by a religion whose followers regard this Koranic incitement as the word of God: “Slay the pagans wherever you find them.” (9:5)?
Should Jews not be concerned by the Jew-hatred that permeates the sacred texts of this religion, whose prophet has said: “The last hour would not come unless the Muslims will fight against the Jews and the Muslims would kill them, until the Jews would hide themselves behind a stone or a tree and a stone or a tree would say: O Muslim, there is a Jew behind me; come and kill him” (Sahih Muslim 6985)?
Should Jews not be concerned that this genocidal incitement is enshrined in the Hamas charter and defines the agenda of an armed force that is supported by dozens of Muslim states and many factions of the international left?
Should women not fear the expansion of a creed whose God likens a woman to a field men can till: “Your women are a field for you (to cultivate) so go to your field as ye will.” (Koran 2:223)? This God has decreed that a woman’s testimony is worth half that of a man (2:282), that men can marry up to four wives, and have sex with slave girls (4:3), that a son’s inheritance shall be twice the size of daughter’s (4:11), and that husbands can and should beat their disobedient wives: “Good women are obedient…. As for those from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them and send them to beds apart and beat them.” (4:34).This God sanctions marriage to pre-pubescent girls, stipulating that Islamic divorce procedures “shall apply to those who have not yet menstruated” (65:4). Islamic law codifies all this and adds from Islamic tradition justification for honor killing, female genital mutilation, and even the prohibition of women leaving their homes without permission from a male guardian.
Gays fare no better. As Sheikh Khalid Yasin, an Islamic preacher sponsored by the Muslim Students Association, said in 2005: “God is very straightforward about this — not we Muslims, not subjective, the Sharia is very clear about it, the punishment for homosexuality, bestiality or anything like that is death. We don’t make any excuses about that, it’s not our law — it’s the Koran.” Hossein Alizadeh of the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission has said that in Iran gays live with “constant fear of execution and persecution and also social stigma associated with homosexuality.” This is true not only in Iran, but in all too many areas of the Islamic world. Is gays’ fear of Islamic institutions and governments irrational? Phobic?
Finally, there is the failure of any Muslim state or authority to condemn the calls of Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah and Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for the extermination of America and Israel. The mainstream media constantly assumes that Muslims don’t take their words seriously, and that there exists a large population of moderate Muslims who reject the excesses of these violent leaders. Yet these moderates have maintained their silence in the face of the genocidal calls in the name of their God. They have failed to mount a campaign to condemn and counter the Jew-hatred expressed by their spiritual leaders, and broadcast by their government-sponsored media organizations, and taught in their schools.
What is truly irrational is not the fear of these very real threats, but the fear of those who point out these threats and whom the Muslim Brotherhood and its enablers have demonized as “Islamophobes.” What is irrational is the failure to recognize danger when it stares you in the face, and the attempt to silence those who have the temerity to attempt to warn you before it is too late.
— Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and author of the bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth about Muhammad. David Horowitz is the founder of the David Horowitz Freedom Center and author, most recently, of A Point in Time: The Search for Redemption in This Life and the Next.