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Jihadist in Canada: "A genocide should be perpetrated against the Jewish populations
Jihadist in Canada:
"A genocide should be perpetrated against the Jewish populations of North America and Europe....
Their permanent extermination is the only solution"
"Strongest among men in enmity to the believers wilt thou find the Jews..." -- Qur'an 5:82
"Ontario police set to charge Muslim extremist," by Stewart Bell in the National Post, July 8:
Over the past three years, Salman Hossain has openly called for terrorist attacks in Canada, cheered the killing of Canadian troops in Afghanistan and urged fellow Muslims to "exterminate" Canada's Jewish population.
Farrakhan Demands Reparations from Jews
Farrakhan Demands Reparations from Jews
by Daniel Pipes
National Review Online
July 13, 2010
Louis Farrakhan recently sent a three-page letter along with two books to the heads of sixteen Jewish organizations.
Dated June 24, 2010, the letter is resplendent with a crescent-and-moon flag and Farrakhan's impressive-sounding title ("National Representative of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad and the Nation of Islam"). In it, he announces that the books (volume two of The Secret Relationship Between Blacks and Jews and Jews Selling Blacks: Slave Trade by American Jews) present
an undeniable record of Jewish anti-Black behavior, starting with the horror of the trans-Atlantic slave trade, plantation slavery, Jim Crow, sharecropping, the labor movement of the North and South, the unions and the misuse of our people that continues to this very moment.
Farrakhan challenges the recipients of his letter – who range politically from Jeremy Ben-Ami (of J-Street) to Lee Rosenberg (of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee) to Morton Klein (of the Zionist Organization of America) –
to find one act committed by me or those who follow me that has injured one Jewish person, stopped Jews from doing business, hindered their education, injured their families, sullied or desecrated their synagogues."You will not find one," declares Farrakhan, who then asks: "on what basis do you charge me and us as being 'anti-Semitic'?" Quite the contrary, Farrakhan avers, "we could now charge you with the most vehement anti-Black behavior in the annals of our history in America and the world. We could charge you with being the most deceitful so-called friend, while your history with us shows you have been our worst enemy." Farrakhan could also dwell on the fact that Jews are "sitting on top of the world in power, with riches and influence, while the masses of my people here in America, in the Caribbean, Central and South America and elsewhere in the world are in the worst condition of any member of the human family."
He could make these points, he notes, but he chooses not to: "I do not write this with vitriol, hatred, bitterness, or a spirit of vengeance." Instead, he hopes to establish ties with Jews: "I have pleaded with you over the years for a sensible, intelligent dialogue. You have rejected me." Despite prior failures, the publication of these two books inspires Farrakhan to try anew: "I again ask you for a dialogue."
For Farrakhan, dialogue equals reparations. Because Jews "are in a position to help me in the civilizing work that The Honorable Elijah Muhammad was given to do by Allah (God)." More specifically: "This is an offer asking you and the gentiles whom you influence to help me in the repair of my people from the damage that has been done by your ancestors to mine." In other words, after years of unsuccessfully demanding reparations for blacks from the U.S. government, he is now looking to Jews to make amends for their alleged past injustices.
Farrakhan presents this moment as both a unique opportunity for Jews ("This is a wonderful way of the present generation of Jews to escape the Judgment of Allah") and as an ultimatum:
you may either gather your forces for an all-out struggle against me, the Nation of Islam, and the truth that I and we speak and write, or as an intelligent and civilized people, we can sit down and carve out a way forward that can obliterate the stain of the past and render us, Jews and Blacks … in a new, honorable, and mutually respectful relationship.Should Jews spurn this offer, Farrakhan threatens "disgrace and ruin":
should you choose to make our struggle to our people more difficult, then I respectfully warn you … that the more you fight and oppose me rather than help me to lift my people from their degraded state, Allah (God) and His Messiah will bring you and your people to disgrace and ruin and destroy your power and influence here and throughout the world.He signs off with "Respectfully and Sincerely Submitted, The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan, Servant to the Lost-Found Nation of Islam in the West."
(1) In a major speech on June 26, Farrakhan announced having sent these books to more than the named Jewish leaders:
we have published Volume No. 2 of The Secret Relationship Between Blacks and Jews. … I sent this book, and another one that is printed called Jews Selling Blacks, to Mr. Abraham Foxman of B'nai B'rith [sic], and to all the leaders of the major Jewish organizations. I sent it to President Obama, to Rahm Emanuel, to David Axelrod, to Timothy Geithner, to Larry Summers, to Ben Bernanke.(2) According to Farrakhan's publication, The Final Call, none of the Jewish leaders responded to his letter other than to denounce it.
(3) The "Nation of Islam Historical Research Team" (note the absence of individuals' names) produced the first volume of The Secret Relationship Between Blacks and Jews in 1991. In brief, the first volume was akin to The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion, not a scholarly tome but an artifact of conspiracist propaganda intended solely to spawn hatred against Jews. Harold Brackman began to demolish its scholarly pretensions in Ministry of Lies: The Truth behind the Nation of Islam's "The Secret Relationship between Blacks and Jews" (Four Walls Eight Windows, 1994) and Saul S. Friedman finished the job in Jews and the American Slave Trade (Transaction, 1998).
(4) Attempts to blame the trans-Atlantic slave trade on Jews reminds one of conspiracy theories blaming 9/11 on Jews: in both cases, Jews are brought gratuitously into a story overwhelmingly about Muslims.
(5) Farrakhan relies on obvious but clever duplicity in his letter: "we could charge you" with a host a charges but will not do so. We are offering you a deal but if you turn it down, "disgrace and ruin" await you. The letter amounts to an unsubtle attempt at extortion.
(6) It also offers a perverse example of benign antisemitism, whereby a person hopes that Jews will use what he imagines to be their power to help him – in this case appealing for help with "the gentiles whom you influence."
(7) One might think that with Barack Obama in the White House and Africa enjoying high economic growth rates, Farrakhan would stop focusing on Jews to "lift my people from their degraded state."
(8) The letter fits a pattern of antisemitism on Farrakhan's part that goes back to his re-establishing the Nation of Islam in 1978. In contrast, under Elijah Muhammad, who died in 1975, Farrakhan and the NoI more generally evinced little interest in Jews.
(9) Klein of ZOA calls this letter "a veiled call for violence against Jews" and he is right: Farrakhan full well knows he would not get the reply he demands.
(10) Farrakhan has praised Obama as "the hope of the entire world," the "one who can lift America from her fall," and as one sent by "the Messiah." Obama's presidency has apparently emboldened him to renew his attacks on Jews.
(11) Where are the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the Islamic Society of North America, the Muslim American Society, and the Muslim Public Affairs Council? One awaits their condemnations of Farrakhan.
Mr. Pipes is director of the Middle East Forum and Taube distinguished visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution of Stanford University.
Egyptian Daily Publishes Antisemitic Dissertation by the Late Al-Azhar Sheikh Tantawi
The distinction between Islam and "Islamism," and that between the teachings of Islam
The distinction between Islam and "Islamism," and that between the teachings of Islam and Muslims as individuals
Here, from a lengthy and fascinating discussion featuring Paul Berman, Judith Miller, Fred Siegel, Lee Smith, Ibn Warraq, is my friend Ibn Warraq's take on a question that has been much discussed here and elsewhere, and is often obscured and confused: the distinction between Islam and "Islamism," and that between the teachings of Islam and Muslims as individuals. "Modernity and the Muslims: A transcript of a discussion at St. Francis College," at City Journal, July 15 (thanks to John):
QUESTIONER: You talk about the difference between Islam and Islamism. Mr. Smith, you said that you don't want to deal with it. We have the Islamic Conference, which Ibn Warraq mentioned, and 56 nations are promoting the so-called Cairo Declaration of 1992, which is basically an Islamic replacement for the United Nations' 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights. So is the Islamic version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights Islam or Islamism? What's the difference?
Fjordman: On the Illusion of a Moderate Islam
On the Illusion of a Moderate Islam
This essay overlaps to some extent with earlier essays of mine regarding the alleged existence of a "moderate Islam," including Do we want an Islamic Reformation? and Why We Cannot Rely on Moderate Muslims. In this discussion I take as my starting point the fact that the traditional Islamic religious texts -- the Koran supplemented by secondary sources such as the hadith literature -- through a straightforward reading encourage perpetual violence against non-Muslims around the world until the global supremacy of Islam and its followers has been firmly established. There are plenty of studies available confirming this. Muslim scholars themselves, including prominent ones such as al-Ghazali and Ibn Khaldun, have supported this view for well over one thousand years and continue to do so in the twenty-first century.
One complicating factor is that lying to or deceiving non-Muslims using techniques known as taqiyya and kitman are perfectly permissible in Islam and widely practiced by Shias and Sunnis alike. The claim that this strategy exists within Shia Islam alone is false; for example, the Palestinian Sunni Jihadist leader Yasser Arafat (1929-2004) at the same time as he was talking about "peace" to Westerners -- a game of deception which earned him a share in the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994 -- to Arabic-speaking audiences suggested that the Oslo peace negotiations with Israelis were merely temporary measures similar to the Treaty of Hudaybiyya between Muhammad's followers and the non-Muslim Qurayshi tribe of Mecca, which was promptly broken as soon as the Muslims felt strong enough to get away with it.
Many Muslims, for instance Tariq Ramadan, are known to put up a "moderate" face in front of an infidel audience but present a very different message when addressing Muslims in their own language. Generally speaking it is permissible for Muslims to lie, or withhold the truth, if they cannot yet force their will on their opponents by brute force, as long as they keep the "true Islam" alive within their hearts. This does of course not mean that all Muslims do this always, but it is a common strategy employed particularly where Muslims are a minority.
In plain words this means that if Western countries ever become serious about closing their borders to Muslim immigration and expelling sharia-sponsoring persons from their lands, we should expect to see an immediate, massive increase in the number of "kind" and "tolerant" Muslims in the West, but many of them would be lying and biding their time for better days.
The trouble with self-proclaimed "moderate Muslims" is that many of them, most likely the majority, use deception to confuse the infidels while infiltrating their societies. This implies that non-Muslims cannot know for sure whether Muslims are being honest with them or not and can never fully trust them. It does not mean that "moderate Muslims" don't exist in the form of individuals who genuinely desire to live in peace with their neighbors -- people aren't born Jihadists just because they have a Muslim name -- but it is extremely hard for infidels to distinguish between those who are genuine and those who are merely trying to deceive us.
A soft-spoken Muslim can potentially without warning turn militant and go on a killing spree, a phenomenon dubbed "Sudden Jihad Syndrome." Besides, well-meaning peaceful individuals with Muslim names can easily be sidelined, intimidated and silenced by their more violent and ruthless co-religionists. Finally, from a straightforward reading of Islamic scriptures and history, militant Jihadists frequently have a better scriptural and theological backing for their views than the so-called moderates. In short, the question isn't whether there are moderate Muslims but whether there is a moderate Islam. The likely answer to this is no.
There is talk about the prospects of an "Islamic Reformation." This primarily happens in the West, not in India, China or among Eastern Orthodox Christians because it reminds Westerners of the Protestant Reformation in sixteenth century Europe that split the Roman Catholic Church from Protestant reformers who refused to acknowledge the leadership of the Pope and criticized some of the doctrines and practices of the Catholic Church. The Protestant Reformation triggered generations of regional turbulence in Europe; a hypothetical Islamic Reformation would likely cause generations of international turbulence, which is not an altogether pleasant scenario in a nuclear-armed world connected by intercontinental travel.
Any comparison between Christianity and Islam only takes you so far. There is no centralized hierarchical structure in Islam to rebel against similar to the Vatican in the Roman Catholic Church, but that is not the most important difference. The question of whether or not Islam can be reformed hinges upon your definition of the term "reformation." Many Westerners implicitly envision something along the lines of "peaceful, non-sharia based with respect for individual choice and freedom of speech." In other words: "Reform" is vaguely taken to mean "less sharia and violent Jihad," although this is often implied and not explicitly spelled out.
Reformers such as Martin Luther and John Calvin called for a return to a Golden Age of pure, early Christianity. Although the Protestant Reformation was a turbulent period, it did pave the way for more religious freedom in Christian Europe in the long run. This was partly because Christians could return to the example, as contained in their Gospels, of an early age where the founder of their religion and his disciples led a largely peaceful movement separate from the state. Muslims, on the other hand, can find a similar example only in the Mecca period since in Medina, if you rely on traditional history, Muhammad became a ruler who wielded political as well as religious power and waged wars against those who disagreed with him.
As long as the writings from the violent Medina period remain in force, any return to the "Golden Age" of early Islam will imply a return to intolerance, militant Islamic supremacism and Jihad violence. Some observers look for a "Muslim Martin Luther" who is expected to end the resurgent Jihad. But one could argue that we already have such a person: He's called Osama bin Laden. If "reform" is taken to mean a return to the historical period of the religious founder and his followers then it will inevitably lead to an upsurge in Jihadist violence, since that was what Muhammad and his companions actually did according to Islamic scriptures.
Can there be such a thing as a reformed, moderate Islam in the sense of a creed whose followers and believers will: coexist peacefully and on equal terms with non-Muslims, without forcing their beliefs or rule on anybody; refrain from reacting violently to perceived criticisms or insults of their Prophet or Holy Book; accept that individual Muslims should be free to openly leave their Faith if they so desire; accept that religion is primarily a private matter that should not regulate all of society according to unequal and totalitarian sharia law?
My bet is that such a version of Islam is unlikely to materialize and even less likely to succeed. I will now take a look at a few hypothetical ways in which this religion might be reformed and show why they probably won't achieve much success in the long run. Some of them already have been tried, but with only moderate success or among very marginal groups.
One possible solution could be to restrain or cage Islam within a framework of rigidly enforced secularism. This kind of muscular secularism has been attempted under Mustafa Kemal Atatürk ("Father of Turks," 1881-1938), military officer and autocratic founder of the Republic of Turkey, serving as its first president after the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire following the First World War. An admirer of the European Enlightenment, he sought to modernize his country by turning it into a secular nation-state and reducing the influence of Islam in Turkish political life as much as practically possible through a far-reaching program of political, economic and cultural reforms whose principles are commonly referred to as Kemalism. In 1924 he abolished the institution of the Caliphate. Although it had existed in name only for over a thousand years and was devoid of real power, it nevertheless served as a formal link with the first Caliphs after Muhammad's death and a symbol of (largely imaginary) Islamic unity. For this reason, millions of Muslims would like to recreate the Caliphate and restore it as a symbol of and vehicle for achieving Islamic global supremacy.
These reforms were partly successful, but they came at a price. Since Muslims are accustomed to venerating a particular person, Atatürk created something of a cult surrounding his person that could have been considered "Fascist" in other times and places. Visitors to Turkey have described what might be called the competing personality cults of two individuals: Atatürk and Muhammad. In the end, it appears as if Muhammad won this contest.
Secular or not, Turkey has never been a beacon of tolerance. The rather few non-Muslims who have remained in the country face harassment, sometimes of a brutal nature. Serious riots broke out in Istanbul on September 6, 1955 which led to looting in Christian neighborhoods and the destruction of many of the city's churches and Jewish synagogues. More than 5,000 shops belonging to the Greek minority were looted by an emotional crowd of thousands of Turkish Muslim militants who carried out several "circumcisions" on the spot with knives.
The one thousand year long Turkish Jihad against Greek-speaking Christians continued when the allegedly secular Turkey invaded the island of Cyprus in 1974, ethnically cleansing nearly 200,000 Greek Cypriots from their homes and replacing them with Turks. During the last years of the Ottoman Empire in the late 1800s and early 1900s, Turkish Muslims repeatedly massacred Bulgarians, Serbs and other Christian subject peoples who were perceived to be disobedient dhimmis, culminating in the outright Jihad genocide of Armenian Christians. To this day, Turkish authorities flatly deny that there was any systematic effort at forcing Armenians out of eastern Anatolia. Turkey instead claims that hundreds of thousands of Turks were killed by Armenians. Talking about the Armenian Genocide is literally banned by law.
In his article Green Money, Islamist Politics in Turkey, Michael Rubin in the Middle East Quarterly in 2005 warned against an ongoing re-Islamization of Turkey. Recep Tayyip Erdogan's Justice and Reconciliation Party (Adalet ve Kalkinma Partisi, or AKP) swept to power in the parliamentary elections in 2002, aided by public disgust over corruption within long-feuding coalition parties but also by a substantial influx of Yesil Sermaye, "green money," from wealthy Arab businessmen and oil-rich Middle Eastern states. Erdogan was a popular mayor of Istanbul in 1994-98 and worked hard to avoid repeating former mistakes of speaking too overtly about his long-term goals of reestablishing the Islamic profile of Turkey.
Prior to AKP's election victory, Erdogan's ally Abdullah Gül, who in 2007 became President of the Republic of Turkey despite opposition from secular forces, between 1983 and 1991 worked as a specialist at the Islamic Development Bank in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Islamic banks, especially those sponsored by the Saudis, have channeled billions of dollars to enterprises in Turkey and elsewhere. "The growth of the Islamic business sector is apparent across Turkey and appears intricately linked to the AKP's rise. A decade ago, rural and conservative Turks tended to inhabit poorer sections of town and shop in mom-and-pop stores or outdoor markets while wealthier and secular Turks spent their money in modern shops and Western-style supermarkets. Green money investment has caused the pattern to blur."
According to a former member of the AKP, "Before the 2002 election, there were rumors that an AKP victory would lead to an infusion of $10-$20 billion, mostly from Saudi Arabia. It looks like the rumors came true." Wealthier countries such as Saudi Arabia and Malaysia have made their foreign aid to the AKP dependent on Turkey readjusting its position toward Israel. Turkey has since then become much more anti-Israeli, going from being something of a lukewarm ally to being a leader of Islamic hostility to the Jewish state. Turkish authorities have also taken a more active interest in the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC).
As writer Michael Rubin concluded back in 2005, "Today, in private conversations in teahouses and in the National Assembly, many Turkish officials discuss green money and AKP financial opacity as the new threat. Money buys the short-term popularity necessary to initiate long-term changes, be they in Turkey's foreign or domestic policy. Under apparent Saudi influence, such changes will likely further erode Turkish secularism. If the AKP is able to translate money into power and power into money, then the main loser will be Turkish secularism. As an executive with one of Istanbul's largest firms said, 'The AKP is like a cancer. You feel fine, but then one day you start coughing blood. By the time you realize there's a problem, it's too far-gone.'"
During their years in power, the AKP have systematically dismantled many key reforms dating back to Kemalism and have neutered dozens of generals and other officers of senior ranks within the Army, traditionally the guardians of Atatürk's legacy; the Army has intervened on a number of occasions in the past to uphold the secular nature of the state.
An ugly Turkish nationalism with barely concealed neo-Ottoman undertones is on the rise. In 2005, the Nazi leader Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf ("My Struggle") topped the bestseller list in Turkey, second only to a book about a Turkish national hero detonating a nuclear bomb in Washington D.C, the capital city of its NATO "ally," the USA. In return, both the Republican US President George W. Bush and his Democrat successor Barack Hussein Obama have openly pushed for full membership and access for nearly 80 million Turks to the European Union. So have several British Prime Ministers, including Tony Blair and David Cameron.
Millions of Turks already live within the EU in countries such as Belgium, the Netherlands and particularly Germany, which has a sizeable minority of Turkish descent. Turkish authorities are consciously trying to influence their behavior as well as voting patterns, thereby using them as a spearhead for Turkish Muslim influence in and colonization of Europe. The Turkish government in 2010 angered Turkish-German politicians by inviting them to an Istanbul conference and then urging them to resist social integration in their adopted homeland. Erdogan urged Turks living in foreign countries to take out citizenship of the new homelands -- not to integrate, but rather to become more politically active, according to the website of the Germany's Der Spiegel, Europe's largest weekly magazine. Ali Ertan Toprak, deputy chairman of the Alevi community in Germany, told the news magazine that government representatives had said: "We have to inject European culture with Turkish."
Participants told Spiegel that Erdogan repeated elements of his controversial speech in Germany in 2008 in which he said: "Assimilation is a crime against humanity." The invitation to politicians and religious leaders of Turkish descent included lunch in a five-star hotel in Istanbul and offered to cover their travel costs. The title of the meeting was: "Wherever one of our countrymen is, we are there too." It was organized by Erdogan's reigning AKP.
Prime Minister Erdogan has repeatedly suggested that "Islamophobia" is a crime against humanity and that there is no such thing as moderate Islam vs. radical Islam, there is only Islam. He has also stated that the goal of Turkish foreign policy is to "restore the might of the Ottoman Empire," something that will naturally cause concern among many Greeks, Serbs, Bulgarians, Romanians, Croats, Armenians and other abused former Ottoman subjects.
Srdja Trifkovic, the Serb American author of the excellent book Defeating Jihad: How the war on terror may yet be won, in spite of ourselves, warns against the rise of a neo-Ottoman Turkey. On March 9 2010, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia presented the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan with the Wahhabist kingdom's most prestigious prize for his "services to Islam." Erdogan earned the King Faisal Prize for having "rendered outstanding service to Islam by defending the causes of the Islamic nation." As Mr.Trifkovic notes:
"In August 2008 Ankara welcomed Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for a formal state visit, and last year  it announced that it would not join any sanctions aimed at preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. In the same spirit the AKP government repeatedly played host to Sudan's President Omer Hassan al-Bashir -- a nasty piece of jihadist work if there ever was one -- who stands accused of genocide against non-Muslims. Erdogan has barred Israel from annual military exercises on Turkey's soil, but his government signed a military pact with Syria last October and has been conducting joint military exercises with the regime of Bashir al-Assad. Turkey's strident apologia of Hamas is more vehement than anything coming out of Cairo or Amman. (Talking of terrorists, Erdogan has stated, repeatedly, 'I do not want to see the word 'Islam' or 'Islamist' in connection with the word 'terrorism'!') simultaneous pressure to conform to Islam at home has gathered pace over the past seven years, and is now relentless. . . . Ankara's continuing bid to join the European Union is running parallel with its openly neo-Ottoman policy of re-establishing an autonomous sphere of influence in the Balkans and in the former Soviet Central Asian republics."
There are currently serious cracks in the façade of Turkish secularism. We should remember that Iran, too, was perceived as being a moderate, modern country until a revolution brought the cleric and Jihadist terrorist sponsor Khomeini to power in 1979. The lesson we can draw from this is that Islam can lie dormant for generations, yet strike again with renewed vigor when the opportunity arises. Nearly a century after Atatürk implemented sweeping reforms to curtail Islamic influences in Turkey, Islam is making a roaring comeback in his country.
Kemalism never "cured" Islam; it could be likened to a drug treatment that held some symptoms of an illness temporarily in check, but as soon as the patient stopped taking the drugs the illness bounced back immediately. Kemalism kept Islam at bay for a while but never truly reformed it. If we stick with the analogy of caging a beast we can conclude that this strategy works only for as long as the beast is kept in chains and under close guard. Sooner or later, however, somebody like Erdogan may release it from its prison again.
A few observers claim that certain branches of Shia Islam are supposedly more tolerant than Sunni Islam. Shia is short for shiat Ali, the partisans of Ali. Its followers will be referred to as Shias here, but they are often called Shiites or Shi'ites in English. Fatimah (ca. AD 605-633), the daughter of Muhammad from his first marriage to Khadijah, married Ali ibn Abi Talib (ca. AD 600-661), Muhammad's cousin and son-in-law, the fourth Caliph of the Sunnis and the last of the Rashidun (the "rightly guided" Caliphs who knew Muhammad personally) as well as the first Imam of Shia Islam. Fatimah and Ali in turn became the parents of Hasan and Husayn, the male grandsons of Muhammad who, despite his many wives and concubines surprisingly didn't produce a single son who lived to adulthood. The Day of Ashura, the anniversary of Husayn ibn (son of) Ali's "martyrdom" at the Battle of Karbala in Iraq in AD 680, is a major and bloody festival and day of mourning for Shia Muslims around the world.
Ali was one of the caliphs, "successors" to Muhammad as political leaders and "Commander of the Faithful" (but not divine messengers bringing additional revelations) following his death. They were Abu Bakr (rule AD 632-634), an early convert to Muhammad's cause who married his daughter Aisha, then Omar or Umar Ibn al-Khattabduringwhose rule from 634-644 Arab armies went beyond the Arabian Peninsula to conquer Mesopotamia, Syria and parts of Iran and Egypt, followed by Uthman ibn Affan from 644-656 and thereafter Ali.
Shias believe that the Caliphate should pass down only through direct descendants of Muhammad via the marriage between Ali and Fatimah, the Ahl al-Bayt or "People of the House" [of the Prophet Muhammad]. The vast majority of modern Shias are "Twelvers" who recognize twelve spiritual leaders or Imams, the last of whom is currently believed to be in hiding but will eventually return. Iran is the stronghold of the Twelvers, but they also constitute the majority of the population in neighboring Iraq. There are sizeable Shia communities in the Yemen, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and India.
Yes, there are theological differences between Sunnis and Shias. These can be significant enough for Muslims themselves but for non-Muslims they are usually not important, apart from the possibility that ethnic and theological fissures between various groups of Muslims can be exploited by outsiders as a part of a "divide-and-rule" policy. Shias, too, want Islam to rule the world; advocate violent Jihad to achieve Islamic supremacy and have the same brutal discrimination of non-Muslims. To illustrate this we can think of the Ayatollah Khomeini (1900-1989), a senior Shia cleric who after the Iranian Revolution that saw the overthrow of the Shah of Iran in 1979 became the Supreme Leader of the newly established Islamic Republic of Iran. He was the ultimate political and religious authority in the country until his death. Since its inception, the IRI has been an extremely repressive state at home and a major sponsor of Jihad terrorism abroad. Shia Islam is not more peaceful than Sunni Islam, nor is it more tolerant, at least not if we're talking about Twelvers. The Ismailis are somewhat better.
Ismailism is generally considered a branch of Shia Islam, the second largest sect of Shiaism but much smaller than the Twelvers. Aga Khan is the hereditary title of the Imam of the largest contemporary branch of Ismaili followers. The Ismailis were most active in medieval times through the Fatimids and the Qarmatians. Al-Azhar in Cairo, Egypt, for centuries the highest center of religious learning for Sunnis worldwide, was ironically founded around AD 970 under the Shia Fatimid Dynasty. They ruled parts of North Africa and the Middle East from the tenth to twelfth centuries and claimed descent from Fatimah, hence the name.
Combined, the adherents of the various branches of Shia Islam amount to less than fifteen percent of Muslims globally, the remaining 85-90% being Sunnis. This makes followers of Ismailism a minority of a minority whose international influence peaked a thousand years ago. Perhaps they are slightly more peaceful than the others and as such preferable, but they are also numerically marginal and therefore largely irrelevant in the greater scheme of things.
Another community that is frequently put under the Shia label is the Alevi community in Turkey. They have several million followers, but their religious beliefs are so different from those of Sunnis and even mainstream Shias when it comes to prayer, pilgrimage, mosque attendance and other core Islamic practices that they are at the very fringes of the Islamic religion, perhaps outside of its boundaries according to some of their many Sunni critics. Alevis praise Ali beyond what mainstream Shias do, comparable to the Alawis or Alawitesin Syria who are viewed with hostility by many Sunni Muslims. The Alevis and the Alawis are most likely too numerically marginal to become a dominant force any time soon, if ever.
The Druze make up a small sect that historically began as an offshoot of Ismaili Islam and whose close-knit communities number a few hundred thousand followers, primarily in the Levant (Syria, Lebanon, Israel and Jordan). Yet their beliefs are so distinct from those of other Muslims that, while Arabic-speaking, they are often classified as a separate religious group. Uniquely, the Druze in Israel participate in active military service in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) alongside Jews, something which no Muslim community there has ever done.
My view is that as long as you start out with the texts used by orthodox Muslims -- the Koran, the hadith and the Sira -- it is more or less impossible to come up with a peaceful version of Islam. In principle it might be possible to change things by either adding more religious texts or by ignoring some of those that already exist. Both options are problematic, though.
There are the "Koran only" Muslims, who currently constitute an extremely small group of people. They advocate that Muslims should ignore the hadith and the Sira and rely solely on the Koran for guidance. Hadith might be translated as "narrative" or "report" (plural: ahadith, often simply called hadiths in English). They are narrations concerning the words and deeds of Muhammad and his companions, collectively creating a biography of his life. This is important as Muhammad is treated as the "living Koran" whose words and deeds, his Sunna, are considered authoritative and an important source of law for traditional schools of Islamic jurisprudence.
While a very large number of presumably fabricated hadith were in circulation by the year 800, something Muslims freely admit, Islamic legal scholars tried to sort out more reliable collections dubbed sahih ("true" or "valid"). The two most highly respected collections of the six primary ones used by Sunnis are those gathered by Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim. Both of them worked in the mid-800s AD, in other words more than two centuries after Muhammad is supposed to have died. Shias have their own hadith collections.
A major practical problem with the "Koran only" approach is that a great deal of information regarding traditional doctrines, including practices related to prayer, pilgrimage and the Five Pillars, are contained exclusively or primarily in extra-Koranic material such as the hadith and are not elaborated upon in any great detail in the Koran. The Koran itself refers to following the example of the Prophet, and that example is to a large extent explained in the hadith literature. Islam as we know it just wouldn't make sense theologically without the hadith.
Moreover, an anti-hadith program would be extremely hard to implement in practice. Traditional sharia law carries the death penalty for apostates, and those who formally choose to ignore the hadith literature can easily be classified and treated as such by orthodox Muslims. Besides, if you remove the hadith literature this will take away some of the most aggressive and violent texts and examples, but the Koran itself has dozens of verses containing hatred for infidels or advocating Jihad, including violent struggle, against non-Muslims to impose Islamic rule on them. It would therefore at best provide a partial solution.
As we have seen, the major hadith collections were gathered a long time after Muhammad and all those who knew him were dead, assuming here that Muhammad as he appears from Islamic sources was an historical person who lived in present-day Mecca and Medina. There are scholars who dispute this, too. We should remember that although it is perfectly possible to question the historical authenticity of many hadith, the same could be said about parts of the Koran as well. It is very difficult and artificial for an objective scholar to claim that "we cannot trust any of the hadith, but the Koran is perfect and can be relied upon." The Koran itself came into existence during a prolonged historical process taking many generations.
All things considered it is highly unlikely whether you could get the majority of the world's Muslims to permanently abandon the hadith literature. Even if you managed to achieve this it would merely remove some of the intolerant texts, not the dozens of Jihad verses found in the Koran itself. The Koran-only approach to Islamic reform is therefore fundamentally flawed.
An even more radical approach would be to ignore the chapters identified with the Medina period and focus on the chapters of the Koran allegedly revealed in Mecca. This would reverse the standard doctrine of abrogation, which stipulates that if there is a conflict between two different Koranic verses then the verse that was revealed last takes priority. This creates a massive headache for champions of a "moderate" Islam because nearly all of the somewhat more tolerant verses and chapters in the Koran are identified with the Mecca period or shortly after the Hijra, the flight or migration of Muhammad and his earliest followers from Mecca to the city of Yathrib (Medina) in AD 622, which is the year when the Islamic calendar begins.
As soon as he was established in Medina, Muhammad became the political leader of an expanding group of people who conducted raiding parties/armed robberies against their opponents. As a consequence, the revelations became progressively more aggressive and violent, cancelling out earlier ones. The traditional interpretation is that the tolerance of Mecca was only because Muhammad and his followers then lacked the strength to intimidate their opponents into submission by brute force. In other words: The Meccan revelations constitute a special case, the Medinan revelations the general case of Islamic behavior.
At least one person in the 1960s and 70s argued that this principle of abrogation should be reversed, that the Mecca period constitutes the general case of Islamic behavior and the "true Islam." This was the Sudanese Muslim writer Mahmud Muhammud Taha. Taha suggested that the violence of the Medina era was because their non-Muslim opponents at that point in time weren't "mature" enough to adopt Islam peacefully and therefore had to be forced to do so, for their own good. Yet in our time, people are supposedly mature enough to recognize Islam as the One True Faith and adopt it voluntarily, hence violence is no longer required.
This sounds fine on paper, until you analyze the details of his arguments and discover that he retained the option of using violence against those "immature" individuals and peoples who do not quietly submit to Islam, which amounts to a highly traditional view of Jihad. The sword should be used as a "surgical tool" to cut them off from the body of society. He supported the idea of slavery on a moral basis today, not just as an historical fact. "Freedom" is identical with sharia and being a slave of Allah. Taha also approved of many of the most appalling aspects of sharia law, such as stoning people to death for adultery and whipping those who enjoy a glass of wine. Yet although Taha's ideas fell far short of what is needed, he was nevertheless considered so controversial that he was executed in his native Sudan in 1985 as an apostate, an adult person who has willfully left the fold of Islam. His example perfectly illustrates the tremendous obstacles and dangers any potential Muslim reformer has to face.
Certain radical scholars such as the German linguist Christoph Luxenberg have suggested that parts of the Koran, especially some of the Meccan chapters, were originally based on pre-Islamic Christian texts written in Syriac or Syro-Aramaic, a Semitic language related to Classical Arabic. Not all critical scholars agree with this hypothesis, but if you take this line of thought seriously then it would fatally undermine the arguments presented by Mahmud Muhammud Taha because it would imply that the most peaceful and tolerant chapters of the Koran, the Meccan suras, are peaceful and tolerant in part because they are based on Christian texts. The much more violent Medinan chapters that were inspired by Muhammad and his companions, whoever they really were, are the most authentically Islamic, the "true Islam."
As these examples demonstrate, reforming Islam by removing or ignoring some of the established texts is very difficult to achieve. Could it be possible to do the reverse, and soften the traditional texts by adding new material to supplement and dilute older texts rather than removing them? In theory, this might be possible. It has already been tried in real life. However, any such attempts will immediately run into powerful opposition from orthodox Muslims who hold that Muhammad was the "Seal of the Prophets" who brought the final revelations from Allah for all eternity to mankind in the form of the Koran. This implies that those who claim to bring new teachings to supplement the Koran will be viewed as imposters.
One personal story illustrating this dilemma is provided by that of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (ca.1839-1908), who was born in Qadian in Punjab in northwest India. He founded the so-called Ahmadiyya movement in 1889 and professed to be a divinely guided reformer and the Mahdi, a messianic figure expected by many (but not all) Muslims to appear before the Day of Judgment, the end of the world as we know it, to rid the Earth of wrongdoing and injustice.
Ghulam Ahmad authored dozens of books and reinterpreted Islam in an entirely new fashion, with far less emphasis on violent Jihad. Yet because of the teachings he added and the divinely inspired mission he claimed for himself most Muslims viewed him as a false prophet. His followers are considered non-Muslims in countries such as Pakistan and Saudi Arabia and are relentlessly persecuted even in a "moderate" Muslim majority country such as Indonesia.
The physicist Mohammad Abdus Salam (1926-1996) was born in then British-ruled India, present-day Pakistan. He received part of his education at the University of Cambridge in England and was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1979 for contributions to the theory of unified weak and electromagnetic interaction between elementary particles, making him one of very few individuals from a Muslim background to win a science Nobel and the only one so far to win in arguably the most prestigious category, that of physics. Ahmadis don't count as "proper" Muslims, except if they do something great like winning a Nobel Prize, and barely even then. To make matters worse, he shared his Prize with two Jews, the physicists Sheldon Lee Glashow (born 1932) and Steven Weinberg (born 1933) from the USA.
He contributed to Pakistan's nuclear program, but members of the Ahmadiyya community have been physically and legally harassed in Pakistan and charged with being unbelievers "impersonating Muslims." The word "Muslim" has been erased from an epitaph engraved on the tomb of Abdus Salam, which used to read "the First Muslim Nobel Laureate."
The Bahá'í Faith is a monotheistic religion with several million believers. It was born in the nineteenth century and sees itself as the continuation of the world's major religions, not just Islam. Ali Muhammad Shirazi (1819-1850) from Shiraz, Iran at the age of 24 announced himself a messenger of God, rejected violence and holy war (Jihad), recognized the equality of women and took the title the Báb ("Gate"). He wrote numerous letters and books that combined constituted a new religious law. His followers were tortured and killed and he himself was executed in a public square in the city of Tabriz. His remains were eventually brought to a tomb on Mount Carmel in the city Haifa in present-day northern Israel.
Mirza Husayn Ali Nuri (1817-1892) from Iran, later known as Bahá'u'lláh ("Glory of God") to his followers, announced his claim to a divine mission to the followers of the Báb. Those who accepted this became the first members of the Bahá'í Faith. The Turkish Sultan banished him to Akko, where he lived for many years. His remains were buried in a small building there known as the Shrine of Bahá'u'lláh. The scenic Bahá'í Gardens in Haifa and Akko have become popular sites for visitors. Bahá'u'lláh claimed to be the latest in a series of religious messengers to mankind from an almighty and omnipresent God, the previous of whom included such figures as Abraham, the Buddha, Jesus and Muhammad. Yet this view cannot be reconciled with the Islamic doctrine of Muhammad being the final Messenger of Allah.
Bahá'ís are without question more peaceful than most Muslims, but can they be considered Muslims? From an outsiders point of view, it could be said with considerable justification that although it claims to have a connection with previous religions, among them Islam, the Bahá'í Faith amounted to a totally new religion, complete with a set of canonical texts: the writings of the Báb and Bahá'u'lláh. Whereas Ahmadis are treated with suspicion they consider themselves Muslims and are normally referred to as a rather unorthodox Muslim community.
By contrast, Bahá'ís are generally referred to as a separate faith by both themselves and others. They went as far as changing the direction of prayers from Mecca to the Shrine of Bahá'u'lláh in Israel where their Prophet-Founder was buried. They are therefore viewed as apostates by virtually all Muslims, Shias and Sunnis alike, and are ruthlessly persecuted nearly everywhere in the allegedly tolerant Islamic world while they can openly practice their religion undisturbed among the Jews in the supposedly evil, oppressive state of Israel.
You can find what might be termed lax Islam or diluted Islam, yet this is not quite the same as a "moderate Islam," despite what some observers like to think. "Lax Islam" is when its believers don't formally change anything in the core religious texts, but simply choose to deemphasize them and be relaxed in implementing their teachings in real life. Many Sufis could fit into this category since they focus more in the supposedly inner, spiritual side of religion and less on outwardly following its legalistic details. Yet precisely for this reason, Sufis are often treated with corresponding suspicion by stricter Islamic scholars. Sufism has existed for over a thousand years, but it still hasn't managed to create a tolerant Islamic world.
Besides, lax Islam will only provide non-Muslims with a temporary respite, not a lasting antidote to violent Jihad, since the core texts continue to exist. Sooner or later, somebody will come along who takes Islamic written texts seriously and decides to implement them. The Mughal Emperor Akbar the Great (1542-1605) in India was a relatively tolerant ruler for his time because he didn't follow Islamic teachings, but then he was succeeded by Aurangzeb (1618-1707), a pious and serious Muslim who followed Islamic teachings and for that reason was extremely brutal when dealing with Hindus and other non-Muslims within his Empire.
Diluted Islam could be defined as societies where Islam was recently established and is therefore extensively mixed up with preexisting, un-Islamic practices. This is often cited by those who profess their hope in a "regional" and supposedly more tolerant version of Islam somewhere in the Balkans, Africa, India or Southeast Asia. Those who support this hypothesis typically state that Islam is not monolithic, but this becomes less and less true year by year thanks to rapid global communications. Pakistan has virtually wiped out its non-Muslim communities through relentless persecution and is a major sponsor of Jihad terrorism abroad. "Pakistani" or "Indian" Islam appears strikingly similar to Middle Eastern Islam or "desert Islam," as the self-proclaimed reformist Irshad Manji has been known to talk about.
It is true that Muslims in parts of Indonesia have traditionally been less violent than Arab Muslims in the Middle East, but they are more recently converted peoples. The regional differences shrink continuously in our age of globalization as Islam becomes firmly established locally, as believers travel for pilgrimage to Mecca and as local groups get sponsored by Saudi Arabian oil money. If you look at Southeast Asia as a whole, Muslims kill thousands of non-Muslims in regions where they are a sizable minority, for instance in southern Thailand or the Philippines. In allegedly "moderate" Indonesia they have destroyed hundreds of Christian churches. Much the same goes for the Balkans in Southeast Europe.
In the city-state of Singapore, the Muslim minority benefits from the economic affluence generated by the predominately Chinese non-Muslim majority, but they can still cause problems and are kept under close control in a somewhat authoritarian society. Malaysia has been a moderate economic success story mainly because Muslims became a demographic majority not too long ago. Discrimination against non-Muslims is increasing there now.
All things considered, empirical evidence from different continents strongly suggests a common pattern wherein Muslims create repression where they constitute the majority and violent unrest where they constitute the minority. This happens regardless of the ethnic and racial composition of the local population. The only common factor is Islam and the violent supremacist teachings contained in the central texts of this religion. As long as these texts remain unchanged and in force, so will Muslim violence against non-Muslims everywhere.
This leaves another hypothetical possibility for significant change of Islam: That a major armed confrontation with groups of non-Muslims results in such a crushing defeat that it totally shatters the confidence Muslims have in the supremacy of their Faith and their Umma. A Jewish gentleman once pointed out to me that when Roman forces destroyed the Temple in Jerusalem, the earthly center of Judaism, Jewish scriptures didn't change per se but were reinterpreted to fit a new situation in the diaspora, as Jews were scattered in different corners of the world. An equivalent to this in Islam would be the destruction of the major mosques in Mecca and Medina. This analogy is imperfect because Judaism has never advocated world conquest and does not exist as a vehicle for achieving global military dominance. Islam does.
Given that Muslims are currently engaged in open conflicts with most of the global centers of power at the same time, and given that many non-Muslims from North America via Western Europe, Israel, Russia and India to China have nuclear weapons, the destruction of Mecca in the course of the twenty-first century should be treated as a real possibility. What kind of effect such an event would have on the Islamic psyche is hard to predict. Perhaps it would shatter Islam completely because the Islamic mentality is based on dominance and supremacy; perhaps it would create a tidal wave of Muslim anger and global Jihad. It is said that those who live by the sword will also die by it. Islam has certainly lived by the sword. Perhaps the creed will exit world history just as it entered: With a great burst of violence.
To sum up, it is very difficult to see how Islam, based on its existing texts, can be changed into something that is peaceful enough to be satisfactory from a non-Muslim point of view. It is a highly unpleasant thought that a religion with over a billion adherents worldwide is inherently violent and incompatible with a modern society. It is understandable that some observers dislike this idea so much that they create an illusory reality where this isn't the case, but an honest, straightforward reading of Islamic texts leaves us with few other conclusions.
What, then, is to be done? In the short run, damage control. Islam needs to be caged and restrained as much as practically possible and Muslim Jihadists must be deprived of the financial and technological resources to harm us. Wherever possible, non-Muslims should seek to physically separate themselves from Muslims. In the long run, one can only hope that Islam will be broken by its confrontation with modernity before it forces mankind into a massive confrontation that could cause tremendous human suffering before the dust settles.
Director Mueller, Say No to CAIR
Director Mueller, Say No to CAIR
CAIR is in no position to police the conversation about Islam and terrorism
by Andrew C. McCarthy
At this point, the question about CAIR should be: Why does anyone care? Care about anything CAIR officials say, that is.
The notorious Council on American-Islamic Relations is back up to its old tricks. CAIR officials figure our ten-minute attention span has lapsed, and that we’ve probably forgotten by now that, in the 2007–08 prosecution of the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) — a case in which several Islamists were convicted in a scheme that poured millions of dollars into the coffers of the terrorist organization Hamas — CAIR was named as, and shown to be, an unindicted co-conspirator. CAIR reckons that the heat is off, so it’s back on the “Islamophobia” soapbox, demanding an apology from FBI director Robert Mueller.
An apology for what? The FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Forces had the temerity to invite Robert Spencer — one of the nation’s leading experts on Islamist ideology — to lecture federal agents on Islamist ideology. Spencer’s lecture departed from the government’s “religion of peace” dogma, which holds that there is no Islamist aggression, that there is no civilizational jihad to destroy the West from within (never mind that CAIR’s progenitor, the Muslim Brotherhood, has bragged about its “sabotage” campaign), and that terrorism is not merely unconnected to Islam but, in fact, is anti-Islamic. According to this thinking, Islamist groups like CAIR have a monopoly on what Americans — including American law-enforcement and intelligence agents — are permitted to hear about Islam from academic, media, and government sources. No dissenting views are permitted, no matter how steeped the dissenters may be in Islamic doctrine and no matter how much these dissents accord with what your lyin’ eyes are seeing.
“When I speak with the American,” said Nihad Awad, “I speak with someone who doesn’t know anything.” Awad is now CAIR’s executive director. He made this statement at a Marriott Hotel in Philadelphia on Oct. 27, 1993, when he was the public-relations director for the Islamic Association of Palestine (IAP). He and about two dozen other Islamist activists were meeting to brainstorm about how they might be able to continue supporting Hamas and to derail the Oslo Accords — the Clinton administration’s effort to bring a peaceful, two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
For Hamas supporters, there can be no peaceful two-state solution, because they deny Israel’s right to exist. That is why, to this day, the charter of Hamas (which was established at the startof the intifada in the late Eighties) calls for the elimination of Israel by violent jihad. But in 1993, the United States was cracking down on Hamas. It would soon be designated a terrorist organization, and providing material support to it would be made a crime.
The Philadelphia conferees realized they were “marked” men, as one of them put it. Omar Ahmad, then the IAP president and Nihad Awad’s boss, openly worried about U.S. government surveillance, counseling his confederates to use the inversion “Samah” in their conversations to avoid uttering the word “Hamas.” As it happened, the FBI was secretly bugging the meeting. It was thus able to record Ahmad calling himself “Omar Yahya,” the better to conceal his identity from Bureau snoops.
When later compelled to testify about the meeting, Ahmed said he couldn’t recall being in Philadelphia, though the tape captured his calling the meeting to order. Awad, too, had a bout of amnesia when asked about the meeting during a 2003 deposition. But the tape showed him to have been a very active participant. When he gave his cohorts the aforementioned advice about American ignorance, his point was that we are easy for Islamists to deceive. Speaking with Americans was different, he posited, from communicating with “the Palestinian who has a martyr brother or something.” A “martyr,” of course, is one who gives his life (often by suicide bombing) in the terror campaign against Israel.
Elaborating on the communications point, Omar Ahmad observed, “There is a difference between you saying, ‘I want to restore the ’48 land,’ and when you say, ‘I want to destroy Israel.’” If you confined yourself to saying the former, Palestinians would understand that you meant the latter, while unwary Americans would figure you were just making a political statement. Similarly, Ahmad suggested saying, “Yasser Arafat doesn’t represent me, but Ahmed Yassin does.” Palestinians would understand that this meant one was a supporter of Hamas (which Yassin founded), while clueless Americans would be in the dark.
Shukri Abu Baker, the HLF leader and a friend of Awad and Ahmad, concurred in that sentiment. The Islamists were at war, he reminded his confederates, and the prophet Mohammed had counseled that “war is deception.”
Deception is CAIR’s métier. It was created precisely because the marked men at the Philadelphia meeting realized they needed a new vehicle: one that was not tainted by a prior history of Hamas support, one that had media savvy, and one that could set up shop in Washington and portray itself as a “civil rights” organization rather than just another Islamist mouthpiece. In America, when lobby groups complain that someone’s civil rights have been violated, opinion elites take notice.
At the Philadelphia meeting, Ahmad complained, “We don’t have influence over the Congress.” The organization he envisioned would accrue political influence “by infiltrating the American media outlets, universities, and research centers.”
CAIR was formed the following summer, with Omar Ahmad and Nihad Awad sliding over from IAP to run it.
There should have been no question, though, about where CAIR was coming from — even for unwary Americans. The IAP had been started by Mousa abu Marzook, the leading Muslim Brotherhood figure in the United States, and Sami al-Arian, a Brotherhood operative who went on to become a top leader of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, another terrorist organization. When Israel apprehended Yassin, Marzook succeeded him as the head of Hamas, running the organization from his Virginia home until he was deported in 1994. Meanwhile, al-Arian turned his teaching perch at the University of South Florida into a PIJ outpost; in 2006, he was finally convicted of conspiring to support a designated terrorist organization.
Under Marzook, the IAP anchored the Palestine Committee. This committee was established by the Muslim Brotherhood to “increase the financial and moral support for Hamas.” At the HLF trial, an internal Muslim Brotherhood report, dated July 30, 1994, identified CAIR, along with the IAP, the HLF, and another Marzook creation, the United Association for Studies and Research, as members of the Palestine Committee. Ghassan Elashi, one of the defendants convicted for using HLF to underwrite Hamas’s terror war, had run an IAP office in California before starting CAIR’s chapter in Texas.
Elashi is just one example of a CAIR figure either convicted or deported as a result of terrorism investigations. There have been several others.
To no one’s surprise, CAIR vigorously opposed al-Arian’s prosecution and Marzook’s deportation, calling the latter “anti-Islamic” and “un-American.” As Daniel Pipes recounts, CAIR also referred to the terrorism conviction of Omar Abdel Rahman (the “Blind Sheikh” behind the cell that bombed the World Trade Center in 1993) as a “hate crime.” When Osama bin Laden declared war on the United States in 1998 and then bombed U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, a Los Angeles billboard called him “the sworn enemy”; and CAIR demanded the billboard’s removal, calling it “offensive to Muslims” while denying bin Laden’s responsibility for the embassy attacks.
CAIR’s purpose is to further what the Muslim Brotherhood calls its “grand jihad” to destroy America from within. That is why it is consistently a cheerleader for Islamist terrorists and a thorn in the side of American national security, opposing every sensible measure to protect our homeland.
“Islam isn’t in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant,” Ahmad is quoted as saying in 1998. “The Koran, the Muslim book of scripture, should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on earth.”
A key tactic in carrying out this supremacist agenda is to suppress its critics. With their media acumen, CAIR operatives know there is nothing more debilitating for a public figure in America than to be portrayed as a racist or a bigot. Islamists have thus coined the phrase “Islamophobe” to stigmatize those who dare speak forthrightly about the extremely troubling aspects of Islamic scripture, particularly of sharia, Islam’s legal and political framework.
We are not, it bears emphasizing, speaking about people who lie about Islam or smear all Muslims as terrorists. Islamists are targeting the truth-tellers. If they can intimidate their critics into silence, they have inched yet closer to the goal of supplanting our First Amendment with their sharia, which condemns as “blasphemy” any speech or expression that casts Islam in a poor light. Blasphemy can be savagely punished — and, in contrast to the Western idea of defamation, truth is no defense.
Thus is CAIR trying to intimidate the FBI into ostracizing Robert Spencer. As he demonstrates daily at Jihad Watch, the invaluable site he founded, he is effective and immune to Islamist scare tactics. Because Spencer won’t quiet down, CAIR officials have concluded that it will be necessary to have the U.S. government silence him. They know the government, the FBI in particular, has a history of being overly solicitous toward Islamist apologists. They are banking on getting satisfaction out of Mueller, and they’ve brought out the big guns to turn up the heat. Their letter has now been signed by Grievance Industry eminence Jesse Jackson (who better to give sensitivity lessons than the guy who labeled New York City “Hymietown”?) and by such groups as the Islamic Society of North America (another unindicted co-conspirator in the Hamas case, but one for which Obama-administration majordomo Valerie Jarrett nonetheless gave the keynote address at its 2009 annual convention).
If any party is owed an apology or explanation from our government, it is the American people — over the government’s courtship of CAIR. For years, even though the Justice Department was in possession of information showing the key role CAIR officials played in the Muslim Brotherhood’s Hamas-support network, government agencies, including the FBI, continued turning to CAIR for “liaison” duties. Top brass forced our law-enforcement agents to endure CAIR-prescribed sensitivity training, and, in the case of the Department of Homeland Security, even published a CAIR press release on an agency’s taxpayer-funded website, enabling CAIR to pass itself off as a civil-rights organization. This went on until finally, following the convictions in the HLF case (to say nothing of the emerging indications that CAIR itself may be under investigation), the FBI cut off ties with the group in 2009, citing its Hamas connections. That was a stand for which Mueller won strong bipartisan praise on Capitol Hill. Here’s hoping he sticks to his guns.
— Andrew C. McCarthy, a senior fellow at the National Review Institute, is the author, most recently, of The Grand Jihad: How Islam and the Left Sabotage America.
Islamic cleric: "The Koranic verses that deal with fighting the infidels and conqueri
"The Koranic verses that deal with fighting the infidels and conquering their countries say that they should convert to Islam, pay the jizya poll tax, or be killed"
Muhammad Al-Arifi is an Islamic cleric. He has devoted his life to studying the Qur'an and Islam. And somehow he has gotten the crazy idea that the Qur'an says that Muslims should fight against unbelievers, subjugate them, and make them pay the jizya. Now, whenever non-Muslims point this out, they're called bigoted, hateful, and ignorant of Islam. So is Muhammad Al-Arifi a self-hating Muslim who Misunderstands Islam and just narrowly avoided flunking out of his seminary? Or could it be that the "bigotry," "hate" and "ignorance" charges are just smokescreens designed to bamboozle the unwary into not realizing that the truth is being told?
"Saudi Cleric Muhammad Al-Arifi: The Desire to Shed Blood, Smash Skulls, and Sever Limbs for the Sake of Allah Is an Honor for the Believer," from MEMRI TV, July 19 (thanks to Pamela Geller):
Following are excerpts from an address by Saudi cleric Muhammad Al-Arifi, which aired on Al-Rahma TV on July 19, 2010. Muhammad Al-Arifi: There is no doubt that a person whom Allah enables to sacrifice his soul, and to fight for the sake of Allah, has been graced with a great honor. The Prophet Muhammad said that the dust of battle for the sake of Allah and the smoke of Hell shall never meet in a man's nose.
Wafa Sultan invited scorn and death threats from Muslims around the world when she appeared on Al-Jazeera as the first Arab Muslim woman who dared to challenge Islam, the Prophet Muhammad, the Qur’an, and Allah.
At great risk to her life and her family, Sultan travels around the country trying to explain to Americans that Islam is not a religion but rather a political ideology that is using religion as a front. She also explains why there is no ‘radical’ Islam, only Islam.
CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations)
CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations)
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR)
*“I swear by Allah that war is deception,”...“We are fighting our enemy with a kind heart ... Deceive, camouflage, pretend that you’re leaving while you’re walking that way. Deceive your enemy ...”
*“In my opinion, we must form a new organization for activism which will be neutral because we are placed in a corner, we are place in a corner. It is known who we are, we are marked and I believe that there should be a new neutral organization which works on both sides"*"I mean, we don't really have available people whom we could dedicate for the work we want to hide..."
*"Registering an organization is easy. I can register 100 organizations in 100 cities in one day..."
*"Politics Is A Completion Of War"
Co-Founder of the Council on American-Islamic Relations
President and CEO of Silicon Expert Technologies.
Former Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP) Officer.
Omar Ahmad was captured on FBI surveillance tapes at Hamas meetings in the U.S.A. during 1993 explaining that the IAP could not, for political reasons, admit its support for Hamas, and then discussing how the Hamas agenda could be cloaked and advanced. Omar Ahmad's airfare and hotel bills for this meeting werepaid for by the Holy Land Foundation
"Those who stay in America should be open to society without melting, keeping Mosques open so anyone can come and learn about Islam. If you choose to live here, you have a responsibility to deliver the message of Islam ... Islam isn't in America to be equal to any other faiths, but to become dominant. The Koran, the Muslim book of scripture, should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth."
"Fighting for freedom, fighting for Islam, that is not suicide," ...
"They kill themselves for Islam."
(Ahmad Praising Suicide Bombers)
Co-Founder and CAIR Executive Director
Former Public Relations Director for the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP)
A Palestinian born in Jordan and now a U.S. citizen.
Identified participating at a 1993 Hamas meeting in the United States
"I am in support of the Hamas movement."
"Our administration has the burden of proving otherwise.”
(Awad's response to muslim accusations that federal raids were a War against Islam and Muslims)
"Address people according to their minds. When I speak with the American, I speak with someone who doesn't know anything."
"If you love Israel, you're OK ... If that is the litmus test, no American Muslim
and no freedom-loving person is going to pass that test."
Former Employee Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP)
"CAIR does not support these groups publicly." (Hooper comments on CAIR's record of supporting Hamas, Hezbullah and other official terrorist groups)
"I wouldn't want to create the impression that I wouldn't like the government of the United States to be Islamic sometime in the future...But I'm not going to do anything violent to promote that. I'm going to do it through education."
Mousa Abu Marzook
Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP) Founder
Parent organization of the Council on American-Islamic Relations
Officially Designated Terrorist and Fugitive from Justice.
(IAP was found Liable for aiding and abetting Hamas in the murder of a 17-year-old American)
"Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it" - Hamas Charter
Senior Hamas member Marzook conspired with Omar Ahmad, Nihad Awad, and others to establish what the United States government has termed “front organizations” to support and advance the interests of Hamas and radical Islam in the United States. IAP provided the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) with employees, funding, operational expertise, and ideological guidance.
" ... probable cause exists that Abu Marzook knew of Hamas's plan to carry out violent, murderous attacks, that he selected the leadership and supplied the money to enable the attacks to take place, and that such attacks were, therefore, a foreseeable consequence of the conspiracy." (Judge Kevin Duffyon Marzook)
Strategic Communications Director
"CAIR is not a front for Hamas, Hezbollah, or any other foreign group,
nor has it ever been. CAIR is an independent American institution,
established by Americans ..."
"Nihad Awad and Omar Ahmad have never been members of or associated with or tied to Hamas"
CAIR Director Of Government Affairs
"Some people try to hold us responsible for the actions of people that are associated with our organization. That’s absolutely ludicrous …
you don’t hold all of Enron responsible for what Ken Lay did."
(Former) CAIR-Florida Communications Director
"We are to the American Muslim community what the NAACP is to blacks
in America.If you attack us, you are attacking the Muslim community
and the religion of Islam in this country." (Mpls Star-Trib -10/24/06)
"Catholic priests pose more of a terrorismthreat by having sex with young altar boys than those who flew planes into the World Trade Center."
"Americans in general might be more supportive of targeted attacks on civilians,
as part of the war on terror, than U.S. Muslims"
"What has happened in Somalia, for the majority of Somalis inside and those who are abroad, is a positive change."
Randall "Ismail" Royer
CAIR-National Civil Rights Coordinator & Communications Specialist
Committed Terrorist Crimes while working for CAIR
Pled guilty to using and discharging a firearm during, and in relation to, a crime of violence; and with carrying an explosive during commission
of a felony ... admitted helping four people gain entry to a terrorist training camp in Pakistan operated by Lashkar-e-Taiba.
[United States Of America V. Randall Todd Royer (pdf)]
Founder Of CAIR-Texas
Chairman of Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development
Sentenced To 65 Years In Federal Prison
Committed Terrorist Crimes while working for CAIR
Tried on 21 counts of conspiracy, money laundering and dealing in property of a terrorist. Found guilty on all 21 counts.
[United States of America V. HLF (pdf)]
Last edited by Paparock; 08-22-2010 at 10:04 PM..
Writings About CAIR
Writings About CAIR
*CAIR Backs Down From Anti-CAIR
In brief, Whitehead won a sweet victory, while CAIR suffered a humiliating defeat ...In anticipation of a court hearing regarding discovery, Rubinstein filed papers in the Virginia Circuit Court in October 2005 and December 2005 alleging extensive links between CAIR’s organizers and control group with Hamas and other foreign and domestic Islamists. Among other things, these papers alleged: CAIR’s lineage goes back to a key Hamas leader (Musa Abu Marzook), and that CAIR has long been connected with, and “exploited” the 9/11 attacks to raise money for the Holy Land Foundation, a Hamas front group. CAIR is heavily supported, financially and otherwise, by suspect Saudi and UAE-based individuals and groups. CAIR states that the U.S. judicial system has been “kidnapped by Israeli interests,”... In March 2006, shortly before a scheduled court hearing to decide on several of Whitehead’s requests (compelling CAIR to disclose its financial data, to answer questions about its relationship with Hamas and other Islamists, and to provide information regarding its leaders’ activities and intentions), the case was settled and then dismissed with prejudice by stipulation (meaning, the plaintiff has agreed to forever drop all of the claims that were in, or could have been in, the complaint) ... According to CAIR’s own analysis of Whitehead’s initial statements, they “impute the commission of a criminal offense” by CAIR, in that these suggest CAIR “actively supports” terrorists, and advocates the “overthrow” of the U.S. Constitution in favor of Islamic law. It bears noting that none of these words were found to be false, they were not retracted, and they remain posted on Anti-CAIR’s website ...
*Anti-CAIR Report*CAIR CreatedFor Hamas
An FBI Investigation Reveals CAIR's Founder Omar Ahmad "A Leader Of The Palestinian Committee"
The Truth exposed by FBI investigations that snared CAIR founder and Chairman Emeritus Omar Ahmad -
a leader of the Muslim Brotherhood's clandestine "Palestine Committee" - and partner Nihad Awad, flies in the face of CAIR's denials...
*CAIR's View Of Journalists (Ibrahim Hooper Powerpoint Still)
"They Will Expect You To Do Their Work...Does Little Primary Research...Fears Charges Of Inaccuracy"
*CAIR: Fort Hood Co-Conspirator
Thanks to CAIR, 42 brave American Soldiers were gunned down by an Islamic nut in Texas. That’s right, thanks to CAIR...
*FBI's Miller Speaks On Breaking Ties With CAIR And CAIR Chapters
"I think there is something disingenuous about the idea of a representative of CAIR saying, 'We don't know what this is about.'"... "During the Holyland Foundation trial, evidence was brought to bear that two of the founding members of CAIR - who were still in those positions at the time - were related to Hamas organizers, and the question that was raised was, 'Is CAIR going to be an appropriate liaison partner for the FBI if the two founding members who are still in place are maintaining that relationship with Hamas, a designated terrorist group...'"
*FBI: CAIR Is A Front Group
FBI Special Agent Lara Burns was going over more transcripts from the Philadelphia meeting -- the 1993 gathering of Holy Land officials and Hamas sympathizers that the government contends was meant to brainstorm ways to downplay the Foundations extremist ties -- when talked turned to a passage from defendant Shukri Abu Baker. He is quoted on the wiretap transcript talking about how it would be beneficial to have more traditional, secular American organizations to help spread the Islamist message. He and others envisioned an "alternative" organization "which can benefit from a new atmosphere, one whose Islamic hue is not very conspicuous," according to the transcript. Prosecutor Barry Jonas asked Burns whether any groups formed after the Philadelphia gathering fit this mold. "CAIR," she said...
*Dept. Of Justice Confirms CAIR's Status Of "Unindicted Co-Conspirator" Is LegitShows relationship among CAIR, individual CAIR founders, Palestine Committee and HAMAS (DOJ Letter)
*CAIR Listed OnPalestine Committee Meeting Agenda (HLF Trial Evidence)
"Future Suggestions To Develop Work Of The Following Organizations: IAP HLF UASR CAIR"
*Rep. Sue Myrick Responds To Media Regarding CAIR Press Release
When you ask me to respond to CAIR, you are asking me to reply to the propaganda put out by the propaganda arm of Hamas in the United States. Let me do so, by publicly denouncing them for who they are – Hamas – and chiding the media outlets that do not know this for your failure to educate yourselves. I have a strong working relationship with true moderate Muslims and Muslim organizations of which I am proud. CAIR is NOT one of those groups”
*FBI Cuts Off CAIR Over Hamas Questions
The decision to end contacts with CAIR was made quietly last summer as federal prosecutors prepared for a second trial of the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF), an Islamic charity accused of providing money and political support to the terrorist group Hamas..."f CAIR wishes to pursue an outreach relationship with the FBI, certain issues must be addressed to the satisfaction of the FBI..."
*FBI Letter To Senators Schumer, Kyl, Coburn
"Until We Can Resolve Whether There Continues To Be A Connection Between CAIR Or It's Executives And Hamas, The FBI Does Not View CAIR As An Appropriate Liaison Partner..."
*Senators Schumer, Kyl, Coburn, Support FBI Severing CAIR Ties
"We Certainly Support That Action"
*Congressman Frank Wolf On The House Floor Asks - Who Is CAIR?
"Given CAIR’s genesis, its associations with known terrorist entities and individuals, and its tactics...their cries of victimization and accusations of religious bigotry appear disingenuous..."
*Congress Gets The Memo On CAIR - "Beware Of CAIR"
[A] "Dear Colleague" letter sent out to every House member warns lawmakers and their staffs to "think twice" about meeting with CAIR officials...
*Holy Land Foundation Defendants Guilty On All Counts
"By funneling millions of dollars to Hamas, this organization and its leaders believed that it could help those who resort to violence to support their cause," ... "All Americans should thank the Justice Department for their aggressive and tenacious pursuit of this group and its leaders."
*"CAIR Is A Hamas Entity...It Is Hamas" (Video): The Islamic Infiltration
PJTV's Bill Whittle Interview of Former FBI Agent: "CAIR Is A Hamas Entity... It Is Hamas"
*Muslim Woman On Northwest Flight 253
"I'm always standing up for rights and privacy concerns, but now I hope that body scans will be mandatory"... "Balanced against national security, it's worth the invasion of privacy. And I acknowledge the fact that there has to be attention paid to Muslims."
*Mosque Arson: CAIR Fascist Ibrahim Hooper Wipes Egg Off His Face
After Accusing -With No Evidence- Promoters Of "Anti-Muslim Bigotry" For Mosque Arson Committed By Muslim. "You have to use the information you have at the time"
*Ann Arbor Muslim Girl Was Aggressive Combatant In Fight With African American CAIR Continues To Push Charade Of "Hate Crime"
*CAIR's Nihad Awad & Convict Ismail Royer Attend '01 Anwar al-Awlaki Led Prayer
*Critics: Officials Should Bypass CAIR
State elected officials should not attend a faith-based group’s annual event...given the FBI’s disassociation with the group
*CAIR-Texas Founder and "Palestine Committee" Associate of CAIR's Omar Ahmad Ghassan Elashi Sentenced To 65 Years For Aiding Hamas Terrorists. "Your function in life was raising money to support Hamas,"..."You stated it was to help people, but the motive was to support Hamas," the judge said. "You state that you are innocent, but the evidence shows the opposite."
*Terrorist Supporting Front Group CAIR Wants Investigation Into FBI Shooting Of Pistol-Packing Cleric Who Fired On FBI Agents During Arrest
Investigate "Whether Abdullah shot the FBI canine as an act of self-defense..."
*CAIR Denies OmarAhmad's Departure Has Anything To Do With Hamas Ties
Evidence presented in October at a trial in Texas of the largest Islamic charity in the country, the Holy Land Foundation, suggested that Ahmad and Nihad Awad, the current executive director of CAIR, attended a meeting with supporters of Hamas in 1993 -- two years before Hamas was designated a terrorist group.
"These allegations are old. They have been around for almost two decades," said Ibrahim Hooper, a CAIR spokesman. "Fifteen years is a long time to be on the board of any organization, and this is just a natural transition."
*CAIR-OK Razi Hashmi: No American Muslims Who Want Sharia Law In U.S.
Yet Tulsa's Islamic School Head Says U.S. Muslims Want "Non-Criminal" Sharia Law
*Nihad Awad, Youth Exploiter
CAIR's Top Radical Terrorist Supporter & Shameless Exploiter Of Muslim Youth For Islamist Propaganda States: "Many of young people are vulnerable to being preyed on..." (See 1 & 2 )
*CAIR "Not Consulted" And Seething Over Tampa Mayor's CAIR Shut Out
Panting CAIR Stooge says Mayor Iorio made her decision in the matter without "consulting them", and the group will seek a meeting with her to discuss it...Mayor acted on evidence presented showing CAIR's direct ties to Hamas...
*CAIR Associate Salah Sultan Says America Behind Sept. 11 Attacks
“September 11 could not have been carried out entirely from outside [America] — by Muslims or others.… The entire thing was of a large scale and was planned within America in order to enable America to control and terrorize the entire world.”
*CAIR Attacks The Foreign Policy Research Institute
Remarks about authors’ names “that at the very least sound Jewish” and one that “sound almost Serbian/Romanian” give a sense of how CAIR staff think and write when they think they are not being watched...
*CAIR Islamic Supremacist Tells The Truth About Saudi Arabia & Women
"Just living in Saudi Arabia is not necessarily the most horrible thing," Dabdoub said. "I know people who lived there and liked it. I know people who lived there and hated it. The kinds of jobs that women can do are limited and where they can go is limited. If she's saying that her movement and rights would be restricted, yeah, absolutely."
*"CAIR Out! DoublespeakOut!"
Family & Friends Of Killed Somali Teen Protests CAIR For Hampering FBI Investigation Of Disappearances: "We don't want anyone to come into our community and tell us to shut up,"... "They are supporting the groups we suspect of recruiting our kids ... We refuse to be silent."
*What’s The Truth About CAIR?
Cindy Crenshaw, president of Oklahomans Against CAIR Hate, called for the condemnation of CAIR after a former CAIR leader was deported...she wants Oklahomans to know the truth about CAIR, that it is a hate group like the Ku Klux Klan. “I love America and don’t want to sit back and watch enemies destroy my country, both from the inside and out,”... she wants Americans to do their own research on CAIR and its alleged ties to terrorism.
*Seething CAIR Says Congressman's Remarks An "Attack On Islam"
"It is outrageous and very sad that a representative of the people would partake in an attack against a global faith," said Ahmed Rehab
*ABC News Reporter On CAIR Story Was CAIR Official
A new low in the blatant bias of mainstream media “journalism.”
*Another CAIR PR Fraud?
Brooklyn Paper Publishes "Threat" From A "Un-named Neighbor" Of Proposed Mosque, CAIR Fumes That Elected Officials "Silence" On Presented Threat Is "Tacit Approval Of Hatred"
*CAIR's Nihad Awad "Radioactive", Should Not Have Attended Obama Meeting
"A second meeting participant speaking on condition on anonymity said he was stunned to learn that [CAIR Executive Director Nihad] Awad and Bray had been invited to an event where Obama representatives would be present. The participant said Awad and Bray are considered politically 'radioactive.'
*Documents Detail Hamas SupportWithin U.S.
The 1991 bylaws of a group called the Palestine Committee say it was created to be the highest authority on "work for the Palestinian cause on the American front." The committee was led by Mousa Abu Marzook, ... The committee oversaw a number of past and current Muslim organizations in the United States. One was Holy Land, which was shut down in December 2001 and accused of being a fund-raising front for Hamas ... And a third was the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR,... For the first time, evidence in the case put CAIR’s founder, Nihad Awad, at a Philadelphia meeting of alleged Hamas supporters that was secretly watched and recorded by the FBI ...
*[CAIR] "Conspired ... To Support Terrorists"
In the instant case, striking CAIR's name from the attachment to the Trial Brief will not prevent its conspiratorial involvement with HLF, and others affiliated with Hamas, from becoming a matter of public record. That has already occurred as a consequence of the presentation of evidence at trial ... n their assessment of evidence, CAIR "conspired with other affiliates of the Muslim Brotherhood to support terrorists."...
[i]Read Much Much Much More here> http://www.anti-cair-net.org/
Last edited by Paparock; 08-22-2010 at 10:20 PM..
Anwar al-Awlaki: "I Pray that Allah Destroys America"
"I Pray that Allah Destroys America"
by Denis MacEoin
Middle East Quarterly
Spring 2010, pp. 13-19
"We will implement the rule of God on earth by the tip of the sword." These words are among many coming from the pen and tongue of one of Islamic terrorism's leading proponents. Anwar al-Awlaki (Anwar Nasser Abdullah al-'Awlaqi) is not as well known in the West as Osama bin Laden, but for growing numbers of radical and radicalizing Muslims, he is a beacon. Osama bin Laden does not speak fluent English, but Awlaki is American born of Yemeni parents in Las Cruces, New Mexico and is fluent in both English and Arabic. He is an inspiring, clever orator who speaks directly to the concerns of young Muslims in the West, be they converts or born-Muslims like himself. So powerful is his appeal that he has been described as the "bin Laden of the Internet." In more practical terms, he was given the rank of a regional commander of Al-Qaeda in Yemen in late 2009.
A Fort Hood Tie-in
With roots in Yemen, Awlaki is currently holed up in an obscure corner of that country. However, whatever cover he may have sought there came to an end late in 2009 following the massacre at Fort Hood when it was revealed that the gunman, Major Nidal Malik Hasan, had been in close contact with him. At least eighteen e-mails passed between the pair from December 2008 to June 2009. After the massacre, Awlaki justified Hasan's actions, saying, "Because the goal was targeted by him [Nidal Hasan], and it was a military target inside the United States, there is no dispute about it [being right]." He went on record praising Hasan at length:
Nidal Hassan is a hero. He is a man of conscience who could not bear living the contradiction of being a Muslim and serving in an army that is fighting against his own people. … Any decent Muslim cannot live, understanding properly his duties towards his Creator and his fellow Muslims, and yet serve as a US soldier. The US is leading the war against terrorism, which in reality is a war against Islam. Its army is directly invading two Muslim countries and indirectly occupying the rest through its stooges. …Awlaki Poses as a Muslim Scholar
Awlaki has a widespread reputation as a respected Muslim cleric. When Nidal Malik Hasan approached Awlaki by e-mail, it was ostensibly for "spiritual guidance" although it is reasonable to presume that Awlaki's counsel crossed the line into advice on jihad.
Introductions to Awlaki's talks regularly feature him as a man of learning. He is routinely given the title of "imam" and is described as "a Muslim scholar." On film, he sits in front of an Islamic text, a Qur'an, or a work by thirteenth-century Muslim scholar Ibn Taymiyya, reading from the Arabic text and translating into English. He has, indeed, served as an imam in Fort Collins, Colorado, at the Al-Ribat al-Islami mosque in San Diego (1996-2000), at the Dar al-Hijrah mosque in Washington, D.C. (from 2001), and as Muslim chaplain at George Washington University. His talks and sermons are available in books, on CDs, and as YouTube clips.
In the broadest sense, he stands in the first line of motivators for violent jihad of all kinds. His influence can be guessed at by the fact there have been almost three million viewings of these clips, perhaps as many auditions of online recordings, and a steady stream of glowing comments cheering on his exhortations to kill nonbelievers, especially U.S. troops or Israelis. As a result, he has been accused of being "a coordinator, even a facilitator, or talent recruiter if you will, for al Qaeda and all of its franchises" although in reality, his role may be less formal.
According to the New York-based NEFA Foundation (Nine Eleven Finding Answers Foundation), a terrorism research think tank, "There is no other comparable pro-Al-Qaida, American figure who has such tremendous access to audiences or who has such credibility." Reports New York Times writer Scott Shane, "In nearly a dozen recent terrorism cases in the United States, Britain, and Canada, investigators discovered the suspects had something in common: a devotion to the message of Anwar al-Awlaki." The groups and individuals involved have included three of the 9/11 hijackers; the "Toronto 18" (2006); Shain Duka, one of the Fort Dix plotters (2007); the Somali affiliate of Al-Qaeda, Al-Shabaab; Nidal Malik Hasan (2009); Mohammed Hamid arrested on charges of organizing British terrorist training camps; and most recently, the Nigerian would-be bomber, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab.
Yet, much like Al-Qaeda operatives and other Islamists, Awlaki in reality has insubstantial credentials as an Islamic scholar. By his own admission, his education in Islamic subjects amounted to only a matter of months here and there with different ulema. A few months would have been much too short a time in which to engage in serious study, particularly the number of classic texts he claims to have read. But Awlaki's veneer of learning combined with his lack of formality may be a secret of his success. He does not carry the baggage of a regular scholar but speaks in clear English well larded with quotations in Arabic that display an apparent knowledge of Qur'anic and other texts. In his celebrated lecture, "The Dust Will Never Settle Down," for example, he addresses the question of what to do with nonbelievers who insult the Prophet Muhammad in any way, illustrating his theme with lengthy accounts of cases where Muhammad ordered or permitted the assassination of poets and others who had offended him. In measured, fluent tones, he gives a powerful impression of erudition, of an awareness of source materials, of Arabic texts, and historical understanding. So convincing is all this that he succeeds in turning acts of open treachery and assassination into religious virtues, as he states in a February blog entry: "I pray that Allah destroys America and all its allies."
Awlaki's American Connection
Awlaki was born in Las Cruces in 1971 to parents who had immigrated some years earlier from Yemen. His father Nasser held a master's degree in agricultural economics from New Mexico State University, a Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska, and was a faculty member at the University of Minnesota (1975-77). He later became the Yemeni minister for agriculture and president of San'a University. While this says nothing about whether Awlaki, Sr. was a Muslim radical, it suggests a home background grounded in education and a positive attitude toward learning. The Awlakis returned to Yemen in 1978 when Anwar was seven. By the time he returned to the United States in 1991, he had received some eleven years of schooling in a secular high school in San'a, along with children from other elite families, improving his Arabic to a high degree while retaining and advancing his English.
He returned to the United States at eighteen and earned a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from Colorado State University (1994), followed by a master's of arts in education leadership from San Diego State University. He worked on but does not seem to have finished a Ph.D. in Human Resource Development at George Washington University (January-December 2001). It is worth remarking on the close links between Islamic radicals and the sciences and technology as large numbers of terrorists and terrorist backers have studied for degrees in science, engineering, or medicine and have worked in these fields. Like others, Awlaki seems to have transferred a literalist understanding of scientific texts to a blind acceptance of Islamic material. He presents the Qur'an and other texts to his audiences as unquestionable sources of truth that demand the obedience and the dutiful action of the believer.
Between June 1999 and March 2000, the FBI opened an investigation into Awlaki. He was already under suspicion as vice president of a San Diego-based Muslim charity, the Charitable Society for Social Welfare, considered to be "a front organization to funnel money to terrorists." He was now being investigated for fundraising for the Palestinian terror organization Hamas, for possible direct links to Al-Qaeda, and for a visit paid to him by a close associate of Omar Abdel Rahman, the blind sheikh behind the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. A Joint Terrorism Task Force in San Diego was eager to get enough on Awlaki in order to probe him thoroughly. A judge in Denver signed off on an arrest warrant on the grounds of passport fraud, but for reasons that are not known, the felony arrest warrant was rescinded by the Denver U.S. Attorney's Office in 2002. The following day, October 10, Awlaki returned to the United States from a visit to Yemen and was intercepted as a terror suspect at the JFK airport in New York (he was on a terror watch list), questioned but released on the grounds that there was no open warrant allowing security personnel to arrest him.
Awlaki left the United States again soon afterwards and settled in London. Here, he embarked on a series of lectures at the Al-Tawhid mosque, a well-known center for radical preaching. His reputation seems to have risen by leaps and bounds: In June 2003, a year or so after his arrival in England, he was a guest speaker at a meeting of the Muslim Association of Britain (MAB), the official arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in the U.K. Following this, the MAB organized a series of meetings with Awlaki as speaker.
In October of the same year, the Islamic Forum Europe (IFE), a major Islamist group with centers across Europe, invited him to speak at a major event, and two months later, Awlaki spoke at an event organized by the East London Mosque, a center linked to the IFE, with a reputation for Deobandi-style radicalism and an attachment to the teachings of the two great fundamentalists of the twentieth century, Abu'l-'Ala Mawdudi and Sayyid Qutb. Most worrying are his links to Islamic societies at several places of higher education, including City University, Westminster University, the University of London, and the Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS). Since then he has been actively promoted by "some of the United Kingdom's most prominent Islamist organizations."
More disturbingly, he made a positive impression on some individuals who should have known better than to take him at face value, including Osama Saeed, chief executive of the Scottish-Islamic Foundation and a parliamentary candidate in the 2010 election. Saeed proclaimed that Awlaki "preached nothing but peace." Azad Ali, president of the Civil Service Islamic Society, a council member of the rights group Liberty, and an advisor on Islamic extremism to a Whitehall counterterrorism panel that provides advice to the U.K.'s director of public prosecutions and most senior prosecutor, spoke of his love for Awlaki and described him as "one of my favourite speakers and scholars." Both men have dropped Awlaki since the revelations of late 2009.
Awlaki's links with Saeed and Ali came in for criticism, and in 2003, Louise Ellman, a member of the British parliament, raised the issue of his relationship with the Muslim Association of Britain in the House of Commons when speaking of the links between radical Islamic groups and anti-Semitism:
It is time that the spotlight fell on the Muslim Association of Britain, particularly the key figures, such as Azzam Tamimi, Kamal el Helbawy, Anas Al-Tikriti and Mohammed Sawalha. All of them are connected to the terrorist organisation Hamas. The Muslim Association of Britain itself is a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood … It is militantly anti-Semitic and always has been.That his notoriety had by now reached the British parliament may have intimated to Awlaki that he was close to overstaying his welcome in the U.K. and that he might well face scrutiny from the British security services as he had done in the United States. He abandoned the U.K. in early 2004, flying with his wife and five children to Yemen where he resumed residence in his ancestral home in a southern province called Shabwa. He began to lecture at San'a's Iman University, an institution founded and maintained by Abdul-Majid az-Zindani, designated a terrorist by the U.S. Treasury and a sanctioned affiliate of Al-Qaeda by the U.N. The university is an institution with some 6,000 students, and is, in effect, a madrasa or school for Islamic religious instruction.
Arrested in Yemen
Things took a new turn on August 31, 2006, when Awlaki was arrested by the Yemeni police. There has been dispute about the reason for this arrest, but one plausible explanation seems to be that Washington persuaded Yemen to take him into custody, providing an opportunity to interrogate him. In an interview for Cageprisoners carried out by former Guantánamo Bay inmate Moazzam Begg, Awlaki confirms that he was questioned by the FBI. The interrogation, he states, continued on and off for a year.
Whatever the outcome of those interviews, no charges were brought, and Awlaki was released on December 12, 2007. It may well be the case that political influence was brought to bear, a possibility suggested by the fact that his name was found on a list of one hundred prisoners whose release was demanded by Al-Qaeda-linked militants in Yemen where the Awlaki tribe carries considerable influence. It is understood that the Awlakis provide protection for Al-Qaeda militants against the government. Awlaki himself is thought to be living in his home province, enjoying the same level of protection.
An Advisor to Mass Murderers
Awlaki's role as a fomenter of violence was further publicized after the December 25, 2009 attempt to down an airliner on its descent to Detroit. The Nigerian Muslim responsible for the nearly successful bombing, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, is thought to have met Awlaki while studying at Iman University in San'a and appears to have been a fan of his talks. One report indicates that Abdulmutallab told the FBI that Awlaki had been one of his trainers at a remote Al-Qaeda camp in Yemen and that the two men had met during Abdulmutallab's final weeks of training and indoctrination.
For a time, it was thought Awlaki had been killed in a raid on December 24, 2009, when Yemeni jets hit a meeting of leading Al-Qaeda operatives. The attack killed some thirty militants, including Nasser al-Wuhayshi, the regional Al-Qaeda leader, and his deputy Saeed ash-Shihri. Two days later, however, the FBI stated that they did not believe Awlaki had been among the victims.
It would seem then that Anwar al-Awlaki is one of the most successful spokesmen for radical Islam, using a non-Islamic language and modern technology to spread his message on the widest basis possible. Muslims have exonerated him on the grounds that he has never done anything directly criminal, but it is clear that he achieves his results through the manipulation of others, men like Nidal Malik Hasan and Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab. When he preaches to radicals, the result is confirmation of their religious right to kill non-Muslims; and when moderate Muslims listen to his CDs and Internet broadcasts, his erudition, his conviction, and his rhetorical ability all combine to form an impression that it is godly to speak in this way and to carry out acts of violence. As Yemen acquires a reputation as a third base for Al-Qaeda, it is likely that Awlaki will resurface to play a leading role in the recruitment and motivation of yet more misguided young Muslims, not just in Yemen but worldwide.
Update from May 23, 2010: Anwar Al-Awlaki, in his first interview with Al-Qaeda media, calls on Muslim U.S. servicemen to kill fellow soldiers.
Denis MacEoin is editor of the Middle East Quarterly. The Dallas Morning News, Nov. 29, 2009.
 Right Side News (Richmond, Va.), Jan. 1, 2010.
 The Washington Post, Dec. 25, 2009.
 ABC News, Nov. 21, 2009.
 The Yemen Post (San'a), Jan. 6, 2010.
 Statement cited in "U.S.-Born Islamic Cleric: Nidal Hasan 'Did the Right Thing,'" Jihad Watch, Nov. 9, 2009.
 "Moazzam Begg Interviews Imam Anwar Al-Awlaki," Cageprisoners (London), Dec. 31, 2007.
 See, for example, "The Shuhada of Palestine—Iman Anwar al-Awlaki," YouTube, accessed Feb. 8, 2010; "Imam Anwar al-Awlaki—Jihad Fi Sabilillah," YouTube, accessed Feb. 8, 2010.
 Right Side News, Jan. 1, 2010.
 Harry Smith, "Al-Awlaki May Be Al-Qaeda Recruiter," interview, CBS News, Dec. 30, 2009.
 "Anwar al Awlaki, Pro Al-Qaeda Ideologue with Influence in the West," Backgrounder, Nine Eleven Finding Answers Foundation (NEFA), New York, Feb. 5, 2009, p. 8.
 The New York Times, Nov. 19, 2009.
 Charles Allen, U.S. undersecretary for intelligence and analysis, keynote address at GEOspatial INTelligence Conference, Nashville, Tenn., Oct. 28, 2008.
 Douglas J. Hagmann and Judi McLeod, "The Fort Hood Massacre and 'Toronto 18' Connection," Canada Free Press, posted on The NEIN Blog, Dec. 16, 2009.
 The New York Times, Nov. 18, 2009.
 "Anwar al-Awlaki: ' Salutations to al-Shabab of Somalia,'" Dec. 21, 2008.
 The Times (London), Nov. 10, 2009.
 The Guardian (London), Feb. 26, 2008; Yassin Musharbash, Volker Windfuhr, and Bernhard Zand, "How Influential Is Yemen's Mystery Man?" SpiegelOnline (Hamburg), Jan. 11, 2009.
 CBS News, Dec. 29, 2009.
 Anwar al-Awlaki, "A Question from a Reader on My Islamic Education," Islamic Blogspot, accessed Jan. 15, 2010.
 Anwar al-Awlaki, "The Dust Will Never Settle Down," Dar al Murabiteen Publications, accessed Jan. 15, 2010.
 The Dallas Morning News, Nov. 29, 2009.
 The Santa Fe New Mexican, Nov. 14, 2009.
 Scientific Training and Radical Islam: A Report by the Centre for Islamic Pluralism (Washington and London: Centre for Islamic Pluralism, 2008); Steven Schwartz, "Scientific Training and Radical Islam," Middle East Quarterly, Spring 2008, pp. 3-11; Malise Ruthven, A Fury for God (London: Granta Books, 2002), pp. 114-20; Declan Walsh, "The Mystery of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui," The Guardian, Nov. 24, 2009.
 Associated Press, Feb. 26, 2004.
 "Anwar al Awlaki, Pro Al-Qaeda Ideologue with Influence in the West," p. 5.
 ABC News, Nov. 30, 2009.
 On the mosque and its radicalism, see "Undercover Mosque," Channel 4 (U.K.), Jan. 15, 2007; Denis MacEoin, The Hijacking of British Islam (London: Policy Exchange, 2007), p. 95.
 Adrian Morgan, "Exclusive: Who Is Anwar al-Awlaki?" FamiySecurityMatters.org, Nov. 10, 2009.
 "Islamic Forum of Europe: Responding to the Call," accessed Jan. 26, 2010; Ed Husain, The Islamist: Why I Became an Islamic Fundamentalist, What I Saw Inside, and Why I Left (London: Penguin Penguin 2009), p. 23; Rebecca Taylor, "Islamic Extremists in the East End," Time Out (London), May 1, 2007.
 The National Post (Don Mills, Ont.), Jan. 18, 2010; The Daily Telegraph (London), Dec. 27, 2008, Jan. 2, 2010; The Times, Jan. 4, 2010.
 Faisal Gazi, "Anwar al-Awlaki and His British Friends," The Spittoon, Nov. 17, 2009.
 The Times, Nov. 12, 2009.
 The Times, Nov. 1, 2009.
 The Times, Nov. 12, 2009.
 Parliamentary Business, Hansard Debates, House of Commons, U.K., Dec. 18, 2003.
 See subjects taught, San'a's Iman University website, accessed Jan. 15, 2009.
 "Moazzam Begg Interviews Imam Anwar Al-Awlaki," Dec. 31, 2007.
 The Kansas City Star, Nov. 22, 2009.
 The New York Times, Jan. 2, 2010.
 The Times, Jan. 3, 2010.
 The Times, Dec. 28, 2009.
 CNN, Dec. 24, 2009.
 Fox News, Dec. 26, 2009.
Sharia for Dummies »
Sharia for Dummies
Imam Feisal Abdel Rauf claims that the U.S. Constitution is Sharia compliant. Oh, let us count the ways
by Nonie Darwish
1- Jihad, defined as “to war against non-Muslims to establish the religion,” is the duty of every Muslim and Muslim head of state (Caliph). Muslim Caliphs who refuse jihad are in violation of Sharia and unfit to rule.
2- A Caliph can hold office through seizure of power meaning through force.
3- A Caliph is exempt from being charged with serious crimes such as murder, adultery, robbery, theft, drinking and in some cases of rape.
4- A percentage of Zakat (charity money) must go towards jihad.
5- It is obligatory to obey the commands of the Caliph, even if he is unjust.
6- A caliph must be a Muslim, a non-slave and a male.
7- The Muslim public must remove the Caliph if he rejects Islam.
8- A Muslim who leaves Islam must be killed immediately.
9- A Muslim will be forgiven for murder of: 1) an apostate 2) an adulterer 3) a highway robber. Vigilante street justice and honor killing is acceptable.
10- A Muslim will not get the death penalty if he kills a non-Muslim, but will get it for killing a Muslim.
11- Sharia never abolished slavery, sexual slavery and highly regulates it. A master will not be punished for killing his slave.
12- Sharia dictates death by stoning, beheading, amputation of limbs, flogging even for crimes of sin such as adultery.
13- Non-Muslims are not equal to Muslims under the law. They must comply to Islamic law if they are to remain safe. They are forbidden to marry Muslim women, publicly display wine or pork, recite their scriptures or openly celebrate their religious holidays or funerals. They are forbidden from building new churches or building them higher than mosques. They may not enter a mosque without permission. A non-Muslim is no longer protected if he leads a Muslim away from Islam.
14- It is a crime for a non-Muslim to sell weapons to someone who will use them against Muslims. Non-Muslims cannot curse a Muslim, say anything derogatory about Allah, the Prophet, or Islam, or expose the weak points of Muslims. But Muslims can curse non-Muslims.
15- A non-Muslim cannot inherit from a Muslim.
16- Banks must be Sharia compliant and interest is not allowed.
17- No testimony in court is acceptable from people of low-level jobs, such as street sweepers or bathhouse attendants. Women in low level jobs such as professional funeral mourners cannot keep custody of their children in case of divorce.
18- A non-Muslim cannot rule — even over a non-Muslim minority.
19- Homosexuality is punishable by death.
20- There is no age limit for marriage of girls. The marriage contract can take place anytime after birth and can be consummated at age 8 or 9.
21- Rebelliousness on the part of the wife nullifies the husband’s obligation to support her, gives him permission to beat her and keep her from leaving the home.
22- Divorce is only in the hands of the husband and is as easy as saying: “I divorce you” and becomes effective even if the husband did not intend it.
23- There is no community property between husband and wife and the husband’s property does not automatically go to the wife after his death.
24- A woman inherits half what a man inherits.
25- A man has the right to have up to 4 wives and none of them have a right to divorce him — even if he is polygamous.
26- The dowry is given in exchange for the woman’s sexual organs.
27- A man is allowed to have sex with slave women and women captured in battle, and if the enslaved woman is married her marriage is annulled.
28- The testimony of a woman in court is half the value of a man.
29- A woman loses custody if she remarries.
30- To prove rape, a woman must have 4 male witnesses.
31- A rapist may only be required to pay the bride-money (dowry) without marrying the rape victim.
32- A Muslim woman must cover every inch of her body, which is considered “Awrah,” a sexual organ. Not all Sharia schools allow the face of a woman exposed.
33- A Muslim man is forgiven if he kills his wife at the time he caught her in the act of adultery. However, the opposite is not true for women, since the man “could be married to the woman he was caught with.”
34-It is obligatory for a Muslim to lie if the purpose is obligatory. That means that for the sake of abiding with Islam’s commandments, such as jihad, a Muslim is obliged to lie and should not have any feelings of guilt or shame associated with this kind of lying.
The above are clear-cut laws in Islam decided by great Imams after years of examination and interpretation of the Quran, Hadith and Mohammed’s life. Now let the learned Imam Rauf tell us: What part of the above is compliant with the U.S. Constitution?
What does it REALLY say in the Qur’an about non-believers?
Every single one of the verses in the Quran with a positive message for non-Muslims is abrogated, leaving nothing positive for non-Muslims. Not one verse.
YOU’VE probably heard someone quote “good” verses from the Quran.Bill Warner wanted to know exactly how many verses in the Quran are positive for non-Muslims, so he counted them. The answer is 245. That’s pretty good. That adds up to 4,018 words in the Quran, and comprises 2.6 percent of the total Quranic text.
But, says Warner,“in every case, the verse is followed by another verse that contradicts the ‘good’ verses.”Furthermore, except for seven verses, every “good verse” is abrogated laterin the same chapter (known as a “sura”). Those seven exceptions are abrogated in later chapters.
There’s more. Warner says, “The media emphasizes Islam’s positive verses about the People of the Book, the Jews and Christians. Even this turns out to be illusory.Christians and Jews receive the goodness of Islam only if they agree that their sacred texts are corrupt, the Koran is true, and that Mohammad is a prophet of the Christian and Jewish religion.” Ifthey do that, they will get the blessings of Islam. Of course, if they do that, they are no longer Christians or Jews; they’re Muslims.
So there is nothing positive in the Quran for non-Muslims. Period. And there are 527 verses in the Quran that are intolerant to non-Muslims, 109 verses calling on Muslims to make war on non-Muslims.
When non-Muslims read the Quran and don’t like it, sometimes they’re accused of “having an unfavorable view of Islam” or being an Islamophobe. Or they may be simply accused of “hatred.” But, really, what is there to like about any of this if you’re a non-Muslim?
What is moderate Islam? WSJ panelists mostly have no clue
What is moderate Islam? WSJ panelists mostly have no clue
The WSJ asked Anwar Ibrahim, Bernard Lewis, Ed Husain, Reuel Marc Gerecht, Tawfik Hamid and Akbar Ahmed to reflect on the nature that ever-elusive unicorn, moderate Islam."A Symposium: What Is Moderate Islam?," from the Wall Street Journal, September 1:
Anwar Ibrahim, Malaysia's opposition leader, makes this admission:
Skeptics and cynics alike have said that the quest for the moderate Muslim in the 21st century is akin to the search for the Holy Grail. It's not hard to understand why. Terrorist attacks, suicide bombings and the jihadist call for Muslims "to rise up against the oppression of the West" are widespread. The radical fringe carrying out such actions has sought to dominate the discourse between Islam and the West. In order to do so, they've set out to foment anti-Americanism and anti-Semitism. They've also advocated indiscriminate violence as a political strategy. To cap their victory, this abysmal lot uses the cataclysm of 9/11 as a lesson for the so-called enemies of Islam.Countering this, he invokes the undeniable existence of Muslims who are just trying to live ordinary lives:
These are the Muslims who go about their lives like ordinary people--earning their livings, raising their families, celebrating reunions and praying for security and peace. These are the Muslims who have never carried a pocketknife, let alone explosives intended to destroy buildings. These Muslims are there for us to see, if only we can lift the veil cast on them by the shadowy figures in bomb-laden jackets hell-bent on destruction.In the end he does not posit the existence of a Moderate Islam, but calls for its creation:
Yet Muslims must do more than just talk about their great intellectual and cultural heritage. We must be at the forefront of those who reject violence and terrorism. And our activism must not end there. The tyrants and oppressive regimes that have been the real impediment to peace and progress in the Muslim world must hear our unanimous condemnation. The ball is in our court.The renowned scholar Bernard Lewis makes a similar admission:
A form of moderation has been a central part of Islam from the very beginning. True, Muslims are nowhere commanded to love their neighbors, as in the Old Testament, still less their enemies, as in the New Testament. But they are commanded to accept diversity, and this commandment was usually obeyed. The Prophet Muhammad's statement that "difference within my community is part of God's mercy" expressed one of Islam's central ideas, and it is enshrined both in law and usage from the earliest times.However, he then trots out the familiar claim that historically Muslims were more tolerant than Christians:
This principle created a level of tolerance among Muslims and coexistence between Muslims and others that was unknown in Christendom until after the triumph of secularism. Diversity was legitimate and accepted. Different juristic schools coexisted, often with significant divergences.Even if this is true, and there is a lot of evidence that it isn't (why were 17 million Jews living in Europe and only one million in the Islamic world at the dawn of the twentieth century?), it establishes nothing. Laws of any kind can and will be relaxed, ignored, and broken. But if they remain on the books, they will likely be enforced again by someone with the will to do so. And so if Islam has no command to love one's neighbor, Muslims will generally not be loving to their neighbors, except when human nature gets the better of what they're taught.
Even after retailing this soothing nonsense, Lewis tells the truth:
For the moment, there does not seem to be much prospect of a moderate Islam in the Muslim world. This is partly because in the prevailing atmosphere the expression of moderate ideas can be dangerous--even life-threatening. Radical groups like al Qaeda and the Taliban, the likes of which in earlier times were at most minor and marginal, have acquired a powerful and even a dominant position.In that, Lewis contradicts his earlier statement. Practice, yes. Theory, no. As Lewis himself pointed out.
Then Ed Husain, who is just another deceiver, chimes in with a tissue of detours entitled "Don't Call Me Moderate, Call Me Normal":
[...] The Prophet Muhammad warned us against ghuluw, or extremism, in religion. The Quran reinforces the need for qist, or balance. For me, Islam at its essence is the middle way in all matters. This is normative Islam, adhered to by a billion normal Muslims across the globe.Nothing about dhimmitude. Nothing about the deprivations, discrimination and harassment suffered by non-Muslims in Islamic societies for centuries. For a corrective, complete with numerous primary source documents showing what actually went on behind the facade of Islam's history of "pluralism," see Bat Ye'or's Islam and Dhimmitude and The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam.
Reuel Marc Gerecht then explains that "moderate Islam is the faith practiced by the parents of my Pakistani British roommate at the University of Edinburgh--and, no doubt, by the great majority of Muslim immigrants to Europe and the United States." They were very nice to him, you see, and were "devout Muslims." He confuses, as do so many, the individual practitioner of the religion with the teachings of the religion itself. Yet people behave in all sorts of ways for all sorts of reasons; the behavior of any given Muslim no more changes the teachings of Islam than the behavior of a non-practicing Catholic means that the Catholic Church doesn't teach what it teaches.
Only Tawfik Hamid gets to the heart of the matter:
Moderate Islam should be defined as a form of Islam that rejects these violent and discriminatory edicts. Furthermore, it must provide a strong theological refutation for the mainstream Islamic teaching that the Muslim umma (nation) must declare wars against non-Muslim nations, spreading the religion and giving non-Muslims the following options: convert, pay a humiliating tax, or be killed. This violent concept fuels jihadists, who take the teaching literally and accept responsibility for applying it to the modern world.Ed Husain just above is an example of the tendency Hamid refers to here.
Akbar Ahmed, following Hamid, is smooth but empty. And so after all that, what is moderate Islam? None of these analysts seem to know, or to be able to point to it. One would think that would lead to some rather obvious conclusions for the WSJ, the nation, and the world. But it doesn't.
The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam
The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam
The Truth about Muhammad [Part 1 - 7]
The Truth about Muhammad
[Part 1 - 7]
Robert Spencer discusses his book on the figure of Muhammad and the morality attributable to his writings.
"Separation Of Church And State" by Dr. Ja`far Sheikh Idris
"Separation of religion and state is not an option for Muslims because it requires us to abandon Allah's decree for that of a man"
We're forced to accept it without question, on pain of charges of "Islamophobia": Islam is just like Christianity and Judaism in its ability to fit without difficulty into the Western societal framework of non-establishment of religion.
However, Sharia is an all-encompassing program for every aspect of life, including the governance of the state. In "Separation Of Church And State" at Islaam.com, Dr. Ja`far Sheikh Idris argues that the separation of religion and state is un-Islamic. And so once again, in the same words as I did before, I offer the invitation to Muslim "moderates": show where Dr. Ja`far Sheikh Idris is wrong on Islamic grounds. The world wants to see you refute the version of Islam of the "extremists." The "extremists," after all, aren't getting their ideas from me, but from the likes of Dr. Ja`far Sheikh Idris. So instead of spending all your time trying to prove me wrong, why not spend some time trying to prove them wrong -- if, that is, you really oppose what they're doing? Go ahead. We're watching, and waiting.
From "Separation Of Church And State" by Dr. Ja`far Sheikh Idris at Islaam.com:
[...] So how are Muslims to approach the modern trend of separation of religion and state? The basic belief in Islam is that the Qur'an is one hundred percent the word of Allah, and the Sunna was also as a result of the guidance of Allah to the Prophet sallallahu allayhe wasalam. Islam cannot be separated from the state because it guides us through every detail of running the state and our lives. Muslims have no choice but to reject secularism for it excludes the law of Allah.