Boonton,There's no jest at all. If millions of Muslims believe that terrorism against non-Muslims (and I presume those they consider hetrodox Muslims too) is good and is also ordered by God, then given how easy it is to pull off terrorism (see my story about propane tanks earlier) then there is a huge shortage of terrorism....
Allah orders the killing, not YHWH.
Chris addressed your "arguments" above very well. I will add a few of my thoughts.I'm not sure what western military power has been intimidated by the protests over the cartoons Did Denmark have thousands of troops in Iran that were driven out by cartoon protestors that I didn't hear about?
Western "leaders" denounced the cartoons. Western editors have been fired and major media have refused to print or air the cartoons (out of "respect" for Islam).A lot of it came from the simple fact that many of those countries have no freedom of speech. Pakistan, for example, does not generally permit protests against the gov't so the protests against the cartoon became anti-government protests & soon the cartoons were being used as a pretext for protesting the gov't.
Yes, all those oppressed European Muslims calling for death and terrorism over cartoons.According to you Jihad (meaning violence) against non-believers is an obvious requirement of Islamic texts yet you'll also excuse the lack of violence as due to ignorance. Yet if it's so obvious how could serious Muslims be ignorant of it?
Corrections to your comment above:1. According to Allah and his (false) prophet.2. Due to a number of factors, not just ignorance of the Qur'an and Hadith.3. Obvious when examining the texts, which is what I wrote.
Is your persistent misrepresentation of my comments intentional or unavoidable?Ignorance of the Koran is a bit like attributing ignorance of Moses to Jews or ignorance of Christ to Christians.
No, it is comparable to Christian ignorance of the Bible, a comparison I've made before.While Bin Laden has called for everyone to convert to Islam, I don't think he thought that would be the result of 9/11.
He "misunderestimated" our president and our people. I don't think he counted on America defending itself as vigorously as it has so far.Rather I think he and many like him are waging a puritanical war within Islam that is just as likely to target other Muslims as Western targets.
That is true.I didn't say Islam is peaceful, harmless etc. All religions are dangerous to one degree or another and only acceptance of the basic tenants of liberalism (not Liberalism as Sean Hannity would define it...but liberalism being acceptance of individual freedom, free speech, free religion etc.
Tu quoque. Christianity and Judaism are not inherently violent, since the Bible does not contain universal commands to fight against, subdue and humiliate, and kill "unbelievers." Islam does.In fact it does mean whatever they want it to mean. When we discussed Sura 9, for example, I delved into the varous commentaries and at least one of the more prominant ones viewed it as orders in the context of an upcoming historical battle.
You "delved into" commentaries in forty-five minutes? That's impressive!
Maududi's commentary does note there was a historical battle upcoming. It was upcoming because Allah was declaring war against the non-Muslim world.From what I've read about jihad it generally means 'struggle'. It can and sometimes does mean a military struggle but more often means a spirtual struggle. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jihad does a good job contrasting the term with crusade which is often used by Christians in a nonviolent peaceful context but often read only as a struggle by the sword by Muslim commentators.
Jihad has historically meant war. Ask Mohammed (see the texts I provided for you in my post above). It is commanded by Allah and his apostle throughout Qur'an and Hadith.
"Crusade" is not found in the Bible. When it was first used for actual warfare, it was in response to centuries of Jihad.Anyway there seems to be a diverse array of opinions by Muslims as to when (if ever) the type of Jihad we are talking about is required
The only opinion on Islam that matters in the end is Allah's.If this view was as obvious as you say it is it would be pretty stunning that Muslim scholars could publish in such complete ignorance of it.
Traditional Muslim scholars do not publish in ignorance of Jihad. They just don't advertise to Western infidels receiving "Religion of Peace" propaganda.Neither is it recognized in Christianity or Judism. Until about one and three quarters thousand years after Christ the idea that Church and state could or should be separate would have struck many as bizaar, probably dangerous and probably downright evil.
That is false. Christ taught of Two Kingdoms, the civil authority on one hand, God's spiritual realm on the other. Christ commands His people to "give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and give to God what is God's." The New Testament also commands Christians to obey the God-ordained authorities (unless they require us to sin).BTW....anyone else here notice the change in tone when the subject is Islam? It's like all in the sudden they pull out the ACLU membership cards and people like Chris start talking about "separation of Church and state". When the subject isn't Islam you'd just as likely find the phrase "separation of Church and state" joined with the word "myth" or "falsehood" on many political evangelical sites.
Whether or not some Christians are inconsistent (I've only seen Chris be consistent--you're attacking him unfairly, but that's typical of your "argumentation"), the "separation of Church and State" is completely appropriate when discussing both Islam and Christianity. The SoCaS was a phrase used by Jefferson assuring Christians that the Church would be protected from the State. If Islam were to rule, that protection would be gone just when Christians would need it the most.You're making it rather easy. You're trying to tell me that most Muslims are just waiting for the right time to start blowing us all up.
That is another misrepresentation of Chris's position, but then accuracy (or is it integrity?) is not one of your strengths.
Tuesday, February 28, 2006
Boonton,The data sits right in front of your face. Considering the millions of Muslims in the US and Europe the number of incidents of malevolence, mayhem and murder have been trivially small if what you describe is a central part of their belief system.
Not "if," but "even though."
You're confusing your ignorance of Islam's greatest work for its not existing.
Jihad is a central part of historic, Qur'anic Islam. Mohammed said no other work for Allah was like it and that those who are able to carry out Jihad but refuse when called are to expect "grievous" punishment from Allah:"O ye who believe! what is the matter with you, that, when ye are asked to go forth in the cause of Allah, ye cling heavily to the earth? Do ye prefer the life of this world to the Hereafter? But little is the comfort of this life, as compared with the Hereafter. Unless ye go forth, He will punish you with a grievous penalty..." (Qur'an 9:38, 39).
Will you tell Mohammed that he too is blind?
That many in the West do not engage in open violence against their neighbors is attributable to many things, not the least of which are Qur'anic-illiteracy, demographic, political, and martial weakness (compared to their host nations' majority populations), and the decency of most Western Muslims.
(I don't suppose you happened to notice European Muslims "peacefully" demanding "Death to those who insult Islam!" and warning Europe that their "9/11 will come"? Probably not.)
And I am confident that those acts you so easily dismiss are not "trivial" to those who must endure them and their consequences.Are you going to tell me that they are all more ignorant of their religion than you are?
Another ad hominem attack. Why don't you demonstrate from Islam's own "holy" texts that I have misrepresented them?
Instead, you should be asking, "Does Allah require the fighting against, subduing and humiliating, and killing of non-Muslims to make the world Islam?"
I have provided a number of passages from Qur'an and Hadith to demonstrate that not only does Allah require this, but Mohammed understood that he did and worked to make it happen.No serious text can be so nailed down to a single meaning. This is not the same as relativism but it is important.
That is irrational. If you are right, then what point is there in your making any comment at all, on any topic whatsoever?
Words have meaning. An author intends to convey a certain message by the words he or she uses. Intellectual honesty requires that you take a text the way the author intended.Language is complicated and imperfect because it is manmade. Most Muslims probably will not want to agree with me about reading 'sacred texts'. They would probably argue that the text is very clear and does not require what you say it requires.
That language is imperfect does not imply it is meaningless.
I allow Allah and his apostle to speak for themselves, but you speak for "most Muslims." Who should be believed, Allah and Mohammed, or you? He says:"...fight and slay the Pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war)..." (Qur’an 9:5)."Fight those who believe not...the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued" (Qur'an 9:29)....fight them on until there...prevail justice and faith in Allah altogether and everywhere..." (Qur'an 8:38, 39)."O ye who believe! fight the unbelievers who gird you about, and let them find firmness in you: and know that Allah is with those who fear Him" (Qur'an 9:123)."Fighting is prescribed for you, and ye dislike it. But it is possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing which is bad for you. But Allah knoweth, and ye know not" (Qur'an 2:216).“Muhammad said, ‘A single endeavor of fighting in Allah’s Cause is better than the world and whatever is in it’” (Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 50).“A man came to Allah’s Apostle and said, ‘Instruct me as to such a deed as equals Jihad in reward.’ He replied, ‘I do not find such a deed’” (Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 44)...."Ye shall be summoned (to fight) against a people given to vehement war: then shall ye fight, or they shall submit...if ye turn back as ye did before, He will punish you with a grievous Penalty....he who turns back, (Allah) will punish him with a grievous Penalty" (Qur'an 48:16, 17)."O ye who believe! what is the matter with you, that, when ye are asked to go forth in the cause of Allah, ye cling heavily to the earth? Do ye prefer the life of this world to the Hereafter? But little is the comfort of this life, as compared with the Hereafter. Unless ye go forth, He will punish you with a grievous penalty..." (Qur'an 9:38, 39)."Remember thy Lord inspired the angels (with the message): 'I am with you: give firmness to the Believers: I will instill terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers: smite ye above their necks and smite all their finger-tips off them'" (Qur'an 8:12).“Allah’s Apostle said, ‘I have been made victorious with terror. The treasures of the world were brought to me and put in my hand’” (Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 220)."Therefore, when ye meet the Unbelievers (in fight), smite at their necks......if it had been Allah's Will, He could certainly have exacted retribution from them (Himself); but (He lets you fight) in order to test you...But those who are slain in the Way of Allah,- He will never let their deeds be lost" (Qur'an 47:4)."I heard the Prophet saying...'Far removed (from mercy), far removed (from mercy), those who changed (the religion) after me!'" (Bukhari Volume 9, Book 88, Number 174)."War is deceit" (Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 268).
But no, you'd prefer to lie for Allah and his messenger.Whether they are right or wrong about it being clear is irrelevant unless you want Muslims to be more violenct because you think that is more 'true' to the Koran.
Never has this been about what I want. This is about what Allah wants. Either Qur'an, Hadith, and Sira say what I claim they do, or they don't.
If you want to argue that I have misrepresented Islam's "sacred" texts, demonstrate that. As you can see, I've provided citations from Qur'an and Hadith to support my statement that traditional Islam requires the fighting against, subduing and humiliating, and killing of non-Muslims until "all religion is for Allah."Indeed, the support for this statement was posted by Amillennialist himself as an English translation from Sura 9 of the Koran. Islam is not Scientology where only those at the highest levels are let in on the 'secret wisdom'.
Any Infidel with a computer can discover Allah's will for themselves (and it isn't pretty).Amillennialist wants to have it both ways. He would have us believe that killing unbelievers is a central tenant of any believing Muslim
(More argumentum ad hominem. When will you use Allah's revelations to expose my falsehood?)
Whether your statement above is the result of your imprecise use of language (you say language has no meaning anyway, so I guess I shouldn't be surprised) or an intentional mischaracterization of what I've stated, it is false.
Mohammed says that Jihad is a central tenet of Allah's religion, not me. Whether or not self-professed Muslims accept this is not the point. (Too many do. What will your denials do to change their minds?).and the evidence for this is so obvious and blatent that one doesn't have to read anything more about Islam than maybe a paragraph or two of translation from the Koran.
For the Infidel, a bit of reading is required to make sense of Qur'an.
But the following verse does have a special appellation ("the Verse of the Sword"): "...kill the unbelievers wherever you find them" (Qur'an 9:5). I wonder how it got its name?At the same time he would have us believe that millions of Muslims are ignorant of what is supposedly a central tenant of their faith. Is he telling us that Muslims in the West don't read the Koran in either Arabic or translated form? Then what do they read & do?
Probably the same thing you (apparently) do. Or would you have us believe that those "millions of Muslims" do know and are just hiding it from us? (How phobic of you!)
How many Christians do you know who are familiar with the Bible?
Is it so unrealistic to expect that many of the world's Muslims (most of whom are not Arabic) are unfamiliar with Qur'an, Hadith, and Sira? Why is it that when many Muslims do learn of their contents, they either "radicalize," apostatize, or allegorize (them away)?
You may not have to worry much longer about American Muslims being Qur'an-illiterate. I hear the more devout of their co-religionists have been working through Saudi-funded mosques here in the U.S. to disseminate the more "traditional" form of their faith.One reason why most Muslims do not believe violence is needed against non-believers is that Islam is a mature religion. Like any other mature religion it reaches a point where it becomes very diverse internally as well as encounters resistence externally to conversion by the sword.
There is diversity in Islam, but not on certain doctrines.-You can't cite a surah to save your soul, but you can speak authoritatively on what "most Muslims" secretly believe?-You deny the clear words of Allah and Mohammed, yet you speak for a billion Muslims using words like "probably."-You are apparently ignorant of (or indifferent to) the suffering of non-Muslims around the world,but still we should believe you. I heartily encourage you to do your own research.Last week the NY Times Magazine had a very fascinating article about radical Jordanians. It was interesting because Jordan has always been known as a somewhat sleepy 'moderate' Muslim country...
Were they "moderate" because they were "sleepy"? When they awake, to what will that be? The clear words of Allah and his apostle?
(How does citing the rise of "radicals" in a "moderate" Muslim country support your point?)...most became radicalized in prison where Islamist groups form and recruit....
Which is a good argument for disallowing clerics access to our prisons....had a running dispute between external versus internal jihad.
I know who's going to win that debate.The jist of it was that they believed violence was justified against any and all non-Muslims but non-Muslims include, to them, most Muslims as well.
What else can one who rejects the clear word of their god be called other than an "unbeliever," unless you're just so used to watered-down, weak-kneed, anything-goes, words don't mean anything, liberal "Christianity"?
The jihadists will appeal successfully to Qur'an, Hadith, and Sira for support of their position. To where will the "moderates" turn?
Gordon,You are doubtless aware that a great many muslims are better than what a full-bore radical reading of their texts would lead one to expect.
Doubtlessly, I am (which makes me wonder why you feel the need to mention it again).
How do you distinguish between those who are and always will be "better," and those who, under the proper circumstances, will take Allah's incitements to heart?
Neither is the jihadists' reading "radical;" rather it is traditional. Most importantly (for the Infidel), their literal reading is the way in which Qur'an should be taken, as Mohammed demonstrated with his own words and deeds.Otherewise there would be no major discussion here.
It seems at this point the argument is over whether or not Allah and his (false) prophet require offensive warfare to make the world Islam. They did, they do, and they will, since, as Mohammed declared, Islam cannot change (Bukhari Volume 9, Book 88, Number 174).
I would encourage those who doubt to examine the texts for themselves.
Boonton,Therefore one can learn something about a religion by looking at the behavior of its many adherents.
You can make no solid conclusions about a religion based only on the behavior of its people.
Or do you want the thousands around the world rioting, killing, raping, and destroying in the name of Allah to "tell us something" about Islam? Do you want the large majorities of Muslims around the world who support terrorism against America and Israel to represent the Religion of Peace? What are you, some kind of Islamophobic racist?
We can know what we should expect to see from the people of a particular religion by examining its Sources of Authority.
Whether or not a particular religionist is obeying or contradicting their god can only be known by comparing their words and actions to what their god has revealed. (And in understanding the true nature of a religion, it doesn't hurt to look also at its founder(s).)There is a huge 'shortage' of terrorism if the many millions of Muslims believe as he tells us they believe.
("Huge shortage"? He jests at scars that never felt a wound.)
That's a nice straw man. If it only had a brain!
First, I have not argued that all Muslims believe a certain way, I have argued that Islam's god and prophet require Jihad against the Infidel, which is obvious when you examine their texts.
Second, I would not characterize the world as experiencing "a huge shortage of terrorism," as if that meant Allah does not require war against the Infidel. He does. Every day around the world, countless numbers of people are suffering at the hands of Islam.
Terrorism is only one tactic used in waging Jihad. Look at how effective was the manipulation of some cartoons in silencing and intimidating a militarily superior West. (And there are many other ways to advance the cause of Allah, one of which is misleading ignorant Infidels into arguing against those pointing out simple matters of fact.)
As noted by myself and others here, the lack of widespread warfare by extremely large numbers of Muslims is attributable to many factors including, but not limited to: prudent restraint out of weakness until the time is right, fear, self-preservation, ignorance of Qur'an, apostasy, and an unwillingness to engage in obvious evil.
And the numbers of actual combatants is only the tip of the iceberg into which the West is sailing. Countless others provide financial (Allah takes checks), logistical, moral, and spiritual support to the effort to make the world Islam.
Monday, February 27, 2006
Excerpts of his comments on a new book about Islam presented as an endorsement of the author's statements are cited below. The errors noted are quite distressing.
Another round at EO:
Gordon,I find myself splitting a few differences, though. While for instance Amill is dead right that the Quran says what it says, the fact is that a lot of people are better than that.
If by this you are implying that I do not think "a lot of people are better than that," that would be a misrepresentation of what I've written. I have been making the point that if a god commands something, you should not be surprised when its people actually do that.The Koran invites Muslims to give their lives in exchange for assurances of paradise. The Hadith (accounts of Muhammad's actions and personal statements) elaborate on the Koran . . . Muslim jurisprudents then wove these precepts into a body of law.
Actually, Qur'an commands Muslims to fight against, subdue and humiliate, and kill the Infidel. The assurances of paradise (with its virgins and boys like pearls) are given to them.Islamist new thinking began in Egypt and India in the 1920s but jihad acquired its contemporary quality of radical offensive warfare only with the Egyptian thinker Sayyid Qutb (d. 1966). Qutb developed Ibn Taymiya's distinction between true and false Muslims to deem non-Islamists to be non-Muslims and then declare jihad on them.
In light of Pipes' statements regarding the history of Jihad, Islam's "new" thinking is not new, but a revival of original, Qur'anic Islam. Neither was the "contemporary quality of radical offensive warfare" new. It was a return to Mohammed's Islam:...the prophet engaged in an average of nine military campaigns a year......jihad help[ed] define Islam from its very dawn.Conquering and humiliating non-Muslims was a main feature of the prophet's jihad.During the first several centuries of Islam, "the interpretation of jihad was unabashedly aggressive and expansive."
If Allah commands offensive warfare against the Infidel to make the world Islam, and if Mohammed is considered the "ideal man" and carried out vigorously such commands, what can you reasonably expect from those who follow him? Who is more a "true Muslim" than Mohammed?The group that assassinated Anwar El-Sadat in 1981 then added the idea of jihad as the path to world domination.
Actually, that was Allah's idea....for the first time, jihadis assembled from around the world to fight on behalf of Islam....global jihad...[was given] an unheard-of central role, judging each Muslim exclusively by his contribution to jihad, and making jihad the salvation of Muslims and Islam.
And so was that. And it wasn't the first time Muslims "assembled [for a] global jihad."
And neither was this the first time a man was judged by his contribution to Jihad, since Allah had stated centuries earlier:"O ye who believe! what is the matter with you, that, when ye are asked to go forth in the cause of Allah, ye cling heavily to the earth? Do ye prefer the life of this world to the Hereafter? But little is the comfort of this life, as compared with the Hereafter. Unless ye go forth, He will punish you with a grievous penalty, and put others in your place; but Him ye would not harm in the least. For Allah hath power over all things" (Qur'an 9:38, 39).
By accurately describing the centrality of violent Jihad in the life of Mohammed and the birth and growth of Islam, Pipes/Cook contradict their claim that the current Global Jihad is something new.The current understanding of jihad is more extreme than at any prior time in Islamic history.
How can this be in light of Islam's early history cited above?This extremism suggests that the Muslim world is going through a phase, one that must be endured and overcome, comparable to analogously horrid periods in Germany, Russia, and China.
Again, from the early history cited above, it doesn't sound like a "phase" as much as it does a resurgence.Jihad having evolved steadily until now, doubtless will continue to do so in the future.
As long as one person believes Qur'an to be the perfect word of Allah, it seems reasonable to conclude Jihad will continue, not its evolution.The excessive form of jihad currently practiced by Al-Qaeda and others could, Mr. Cook semi-predicts, lead to its "decisive rejection" by a majority of Muslims. Jihad then could turn into a non-violent concept.
"Excessive"? What is moderate about Islam's "holy" texts and early history cited above? The only thing "excessive" about the current Jihad is that instead of swords, the faithful now have IED, RPG, and WMD in their arsenal.
This "semi-prediction" sounds like a fearful Infidel's wishful thinking, since in 1400 years, violent Jihad has not become non-violent. It has only rested, retooled, reloaded, and returned (to our knowledge; Jihad, Shari'a, and Dhimma have never left the daily lives of non-Muslims in Africa, Asia, and eastern Europe).The great challenge for moderate Muslims (and their non-Muslim allies) is to make that rejection come about, and with due haste.
In light of Allah's clear commands and Mohammed's example, how can this possibly occur?In short, there may indeed be resources for an inner reformation of Islam towards a more tolerant attitude.
How can one contradict Allah and his apostle and still be considered Muslim? The only chance for a change will be the mass rejection of Allah as a false god.
ucfengr,...Communism and nazism are ideologies, not religions.
On this point the difference between ideology and religion is moot, since both consist of a set of beliefs that will determine much of their adherents' behavior.
Islam is an ideology. It is unique among religions in that it defines all aspects of life. Islamic law (Shari'a) is the only law allowed. Men do not rule under Islam, Allah does. And it is not enough that only Muslims in Muslim lands are subject to it. For the conquered Infidel, there is only conversion (never "forced," but there aren't a lot of other good options under Allah), the oppression and humiliation of living as a "protected" people (Dhimma), or death.
The point of the analogy was that it is unwise to allow those who share (or who have a high likelihood of sharing, since their god commands it) the same goals as those trying to kill us into any position where they might do us harm.Being a Muslim is more like being a Catholic. Being a Catholic doesn't require more than a nominal belief in the teachings of the Catholic Church, only that you have Catholic parents and haven't actively embraced another religion.
You and I have different definitions of "Catholic." I prefer the term have some meaning to it.
Here again is an important difference between Christianity and Islam, a misunderstanding under which many decent, well-intentioned people operate.
A nominal Catholic who discovers the Bible will find Christ commands them to "Love your neighbor as yourself" and "Love your enemies." A nominal Muslim who discovers Qur'an and Hadith will find Allah commands them to "Fight...the People of the Book until they feel themselves subdued and pay the jizya," "...kill the unbelievers wherever you find them...," and "If anyone leaves his Islamic faith, then kill him."
As I've written previously, decent Muslims will be revulsed at Allah's commands for violence against innocents when they become aware of them. No Muslim of good will can read of Mohammed's crimes against humanity and feel anything other than disgust, shame, and anger. The trouble is that some Muslims who do become aware of Qur'an, Hadith, and Sira will seek to fulfill Allah's commands against the Unbeliever. Distinguishing between those who will never accept jihad and those who, under the right circumstances, will accept the call to "fight in the cause of Allah" is not easy (until it is too late).Jihad means different things to different Muslims. Not all agree (most probably don't) that there is a requirement to wage violent jihad to bring the world into submission to Allah. I've been to several Muslim countries, and while I don't like the fact that it is very difficult or impossible to get a beer or bacon cheeseburger, I have never had anybody try to convert me to Islam, forceably or otherwise.
"Probably?" That's beginning to sound like wishful thinking rather than a reasonable conclusion forged from the careful consideration of Islam's "holy" texts and history.
That some Muslims are ignorant of (or try to allegorize or otherwise dismiss) Allah's repeated calls for violence against the non-Muslim world does not mean that Islam's foundational "holy" texts do not require such violence. They do.
Other Muslims will not admit to a Westerner what their god's ultimate goal is. Oftentimes, supporters of Jihad in the West will say one thing to gullible, English-speaking Infidels, and say something quite different to their own.
You should also be aware of Mohammed's example: when weak, everything was cooperation and tolerance. When he finally had the military strength, it was submission or death.
(And one last note--technically-speaking, an Infidel will not be given a choice between conversion and death. They will be given the call to Islam; upon rejecting that comes Jihad. At that point, the alternatives are submission and humiliation for the "People of the Book" or death.)
Since their god does require Jihad against the Infidel, and since their prophet did practice it, the best that you can hope for from the faithful, devout Muslim is that they will reject Allah's command and his apostle's example. That means you'd be putting your hope in Muslims' disbelieving or compromising what their god clearly requires. That seems an insult to the integrity of those who profess Allah (and too much for the Infidel to expect).Who set you up as the authority for what Allah's commands are or aren't? There is a lot of disagreement in Islam about what the Koran commands, just like in Christianity or Judaism.
(Now you've gone from "probably" to definitely?)
Rather than resort to an ad hominem attack, examine for yourself Qur'an, Hadith, and Sira. Allah and his prophet are the authorities for what Allah commands, and according to Mohammed, Qur'an cannot change.
As to the false analogy, implying that because there are disagreements on some matters of doctrine in Christianity, there is also disagreement on Jihad within Islam is false. Among those who take the Bible as Christ intended, there is very strong agreement on most matters of doctrine. The same is true of Islam.
Where is the widespread "disagreement" on Jihad to which you appeal? What major school of traditional Islamic thought has rejected the doctrines of Jihad, Shari'a, and Dhimma? What Islamic groups have publicly renounced Jihad, Shari'a, and Dhimma? Which Muslims reject the timelessness of Allah's commands and Mohammed's example? What Muslims have publicly denounced bin Laden as an unbeliever and apostate?
I doubt you'll find any, because Allah's word is clear. This is why the "tiny minority of extremists" (the entire appellation is a falsehood since the supporters of Jihad are neither a "tiny" group nor "extremists") cite Qur'an, Hadith, and Sira in their justifying Jihad against the Infidel and Apostate. No Muslim can refute their claims based on Allah's revelations. This is also why we often see recent "reverts" to Islam so eager to wage war against the enemies of Allah.Let's shift gears a little, how do you distinguish between good-willed Christians, ignorant of Jehovah's commands and the devout Christians of the Tim McVeigh or Eric Rudolph stipe, who know Jehovah's will?
The question is non-sensical. Besides that, neither McVeigh nor Rudolph professed to be Christians.
But to the point, We know YHWH's will because it has been preserved for us in His Holy Scriptures. We know whether or not a person is speaking and acting in accord with God's will by comparing what they say and do to His clear Word.
Similarly, we know Allah's will because it has been preserved in the words of Qur'an, Hadith, and Sira. We know whether or not a person is speaking and acting in accord with it by comparing what they say and do to the clear words of Allah.What in any of my posts would indicate that I have blind faith in any ally, let alone UAE? I have pointed out real and tangible things that the UAE has done to help us in the War on Terror, while at the same time exposing themselves to Bin Laden's wrath. I would argue that the emirs of UAE are higher on Al Queda's hit list than George Bush, because, in OBL's mind, they are traitors to the "true faith", wheras Bush is just another infidel.
I do not deny that the UAE has helped us recently.
Do you not know their history of supporting bin Laden (an attack against him was called off several years ago because he was entertaining certain members of the UAE)? Why would you put such confidence in a group that just a few years ago was cavorting with and aiding financially (and otherwise) one of America's most vile enemies?
My comment about blind faith was a response to your statement that if we can't trust UAE, we can't trust anyone. This belief is historically short-sighted and naive since it fails to take into account the UAE's temporary self-interest. If they cooperate with us at this time, it is not because they share our values.What kind of guarantee do you want? Not to dwell too deeply into philosophy, but what guarantee do you have that your best friend isn't sleeping with your wife (hypothetically, of course)? What guarantee do you that some disgruntled ex-employee isn't going to shoot up your workplace, with you in it? Life is a risk, making friends involves taking a risk. UAE has taken a big risk by helping us in the War on Terror, they didn't have to. If we want to continue and improve this relationship and make other ones within the Muslim world, we are going to have to be willing to assume some risk as well.
Your definition of "some risk" is apparently quite different from mine.
What you're advocating is putting your best friend into bed with your wife, or handing the heavy artillery to the guy about to go postal.
You are implying there is no difference between trusting a friend you personally know and trusting someone who swears allegiance to a god that commands he subdue or kill you. Are you really so naive? So gullible? So ignorant of Islam's "sacred" texts and history?You seem to have an awful lot of insight into what Allah wants, does he speak to you often? There is a lot of disagreement among the various sects of Islam as to what Allah requires. Again, who set you up as arbiter of what Allah requires? There are a lot of Muslim scholars and religious leaders who disagree with you, what makes you right?
Your sarcasm betrays your ignorance of Islam.
I will ask again, what major schools of Islam reject as figurative Qur'an, Hadith, and Sira? Only "apostates" and "unbelievers" do. What traditional Islamic groups reject the doctrines of Jihad, Shari'a, and Dhimma? To what "Muslim scholars and religious leaders" do you appeal? How do you know they are not engaging in taqiyya or kitman?
I have presented from Islam's own authoritative texts support for my statements. Where's yours?
The will of Allah and the example of his (false) prophet are recorded in Qur'an, Hadith, and Sira. In the Age of the Internet, it is no great matter for even the lowliest of Infidels to find this material (from Islamic sites) and examine it for themselves.
That you would argue against those pointing out unpalatable truths about Islam's god and apostle without knowing what Islam itself actually says about them is irresponsible, at best.A lot of non-Muslim nations have very oppresive governments and many Muslim countries have relatively free ones. As I recall, Great Britain under Cromwell was pretty oppresive, as was Spain in the aftermath of the "reconquista". There are plenty of modern examples of extremely oppresive, non-Muslim governments as well. Freedom is a pretty recent development, it shouldn't be surprising that it's slow in spreading to the Muslim world. Why should we expect the Muslim world to be very different in that regard to the rest of the world?
That's a tu quoque apologists for Jihad like CAIR often use.
Do you realize the false reasoning you are here using? One government's oppression in no way relates to the question of whether or not traditional, historical, Qur'anic Islam oppresses non-Muslims. It always has, and it always will, as its strength allows, because Allah commands it.
Freedom (in the sense in which you are apparently using it) arose because of the religion of Christ. Freedom cannot arise under Islam because Allah requires that all religion be for him. Unbelievers are either dhimmis (subdued, oppressed, humiliated), slaves, or dead. There is no equality of Rights for all people. There is no freedom of religion or freedom of speech (Danish cartoons, anyone?). There is only Islam.
Sunday, February 26, 2006
In response to 249:
I agree with the Founding Fathers, that the Christian faith is the only solid moral and philosophical foundation upon which our Republic can endure and prosper.
In response to: "Can you cite any examples from Scripture where God's people revolted against the God-given authority over them without a specific command to do so (as in the case of Moses), and it received God's approval?" you wrote:First, the most direct case in point is David. Goliath was the one hour problem [mostly, to get permission and to sort out conditions under whaich he would have to challenge him], but his situation with Saul would dominate the next 20 years of his life, as he dealt with an increasingly tyrannical figure and fled him when he got tired of dodging the javelins Saul threw at him [literally]. From that he moved from being a general to being a guerilla leader of an alternative government in being [notice the stinging sarcastic comment by Abigail's husband], finally ending up as king of Judah, then through civil war, king of all Israel.During this process, most of the time he had no recorded special personal guidance from God, and occasionally slipped into some pretty sordid errors. However, all said and done, David was plainly approvced of God. [BTW: I think you need to distingusih force and violence, the latter being unjustifiable use or extent of force.]
David was chosen explicitly by God to be king over Israel. God Himself replaced the authority He had established over Israel (Saul), with David. Man did not make this decision.
Neither is God's approval of a man an approval of all of that man's words and deeds (except, obviously, in the case of Christ).
So then, it appears that you have not yet presented an example from Scripture where a people's rebellion against the authority over them received God's approval, apart from His commanding it.But in fact, the more troubling point is in your emphasis on a specific contextual "word from God" as the criterion for the resistance to tyranny. [And, who will validate such a "prophecy" as a true word from God, absent specific biblical context? THat is, we have to address the biblical framework in general.]
First, "resistance to tyranny" does not necessarily mean armed rebellion.
Second, I've not mentioned anything about a "word from God." Since He expressly commands His people to obey the authority over them that He has established, it seems prudent (not "troubling") to ask whether or not God in His word has allowed any exceptions to that command.In short, the issue comes down to general biblical context and sound hermeneutical principles. The biblical framework plainly gives examples and discusses the issue of tyranny and opposition to it....
Is it "sound hermeneutical principles" to advocate and defend the violation of God's clear command?
Again, does God in His Word allow armed rebellion against any authority, even a tyrant? If so, where?First, I have already noted the conditionality of the covenant of government as is indicated in Rom 13: governors are there to do us good, especially by restraining and punishing those who do evil. Should a governor fail of that duty and join in doing evil by rewarding evil and oppressing the good, s/he turns tyrant; whether by usurpation or invasion.
What specifically in the Romans passage makes the commandment conditional? Where does the text say "If..."?
The Biblical text does not say "Obey as long as...," it says, "Obey...."--> In that context, the issue of correction arises, which is resistance by words and perhaps by institutiona such as parliaments and courts. But note, these institutions are backed by means of force and depend ont he point that -- as the classical reformers long ago noted -- that ALL civil authorities are servants of God under the same charge of responsibility to do good and resist evil. Thus, we come tot he principle of interposition by existing or emerging civil authorities who speak in the name of the people who are the victims [actual or plainly intended] of the tyrants.
Speaking against evil and pointing out sin do not violate the command for obedience to the authority God has established.In the context where such correction is ignored, the tyrant has become a rebel against God, and there is a plain power of defence of the people from evil-doers, up to and including the use of the sword by the interposed magistates in full accordance with Rom 13. But notice, we are here speaking about actual or intended tyrannising of the community, so that leads to the point that this is not a justification for lone wolves or cells of extremeists to turn terrorist.
The Declaration of Independence states:In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred. to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.
Unless something specific in 18th century English law allows for rebellion against a tyrant, the need for self-defense brought on by the chain of events appears to be the only argument possibly applicable in justifying our rebellion against the king.Equally, there is a just war principle at work here: if the credible balance of forces at work is such that physical resistance to the tyrant is impossible, resort to force of arms in defence of liberty would be unjustifiable as all it would do is to cause a larger slaughter than otherwise. In such a situation, what is necessary is to preserve the principles of liberty through the continued teaching of the gospel, in the trust that God will one day raise up circumstances where reformation will be possible. [Notice, revolution is always the last resort, as the 2nd paragraph of the US DOI indicates.]
Are you here arguing that under a tyrant too powerful to overcome by force of arms we wait until strong enough to do so, and that this will not violate God's clear command?
Did God say , "Obey until you're strong enough to rebel," or, "Obey"?...The house of the Caesars was the alternative to mass destruction by civil war and barbarian invasion, so it was the lesser of evils. And, when the tyranny became unbearable, under Nero in his last years, there was a civil uprising that overthrew him and restored a more sensible government.
This in no way demonstrates any God-ordained exception to His command....the American Revolution showed the pathway to a better alternative.]
I completely agree....Jesus etc spoke to the general principles of Christian citizenship, the preservation and propagation of the message that would soften men's hearts [thus enabling reformation and recognition of rights and the priority of justice], and the duty to endure inthe face of suffereing and martyrdom.
There's nothing here either that allows for armed rebellion against the authority that God has established.
Christ taught of Two Kingdoms, the earthly kingdom (civil authority) and God's spiritual kingdom. If anything, Jesus demonstrated His obedience to the God-established authorities, except when they required Him to lie about God.Having said that, let us note how, several times, the APostle Paul used the principles of liberty that were recognised at certain critical points in his career
Recognizing the "principles of liberty" does not equate to "Obey if...." To argue that it does is to add to God's Word something that it does not say. In light of God's warnings against adding to or subtracting from His Word, that would seem unwise....This is of course the use of the power of the courts in light of their duty to uphold justice, which is backed by the power of the sword.
An appeal to the courts is not rebelling against the authority God has established. If anything, Paul's appeal to the government through its legal system is an endorsement of the God-ordained authority, not a rebellion against it.
So nothing here either from God's Word allows for armed rebellion against the authority that God has established....That major and forceful intervention was of course based on Paul's civil rights as a Roman Citizen. It is worth citing the letter....
Here again, Paul's actions are an endorsement of the authority God had established, not a rebellion against it.Thus, plainly, we can first make out a credible framework along the lines discussed, for the general patern ogf theology of democratic government as developed in the aftermath of the reformation and up to and beyond the American revolution.
I don't recall questioning whether or not the Christian faith is the foundation for our modern system of government.
My question was regarding whether or not the Founding Fathers violated God's commands for obedience to the authorities He has established.
Since you have not been able to present from the Scriptures God's exception to that particular command, it seems clear that they did.A, I forgot to note that not only does the US DOI four times appeal to God, but soon thereafter drafted Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, we may read [as is excerpted in my link on modern liberty's roots]
And every State Constitution names God also.
I agree that the principles regarding the equality of Man and his God-given, unalienable Rights articulated in the Declaration are derived from, and consistent with, the doctrine of Christ, but since His Word specifically states that His people are to obey the authorities He has established, I do not see our rebellion against the king as anything less than a violation of the command of God (except, perhaps, as a matter of self-defense).
In this matter it would be wise to keep in mind the words of the Apostle John:"I, John, solemnly warn everyone who hears the prophetic words of this book: if any add anything to them, God will add to their punishment the plagues described in this book. And if any take anything away from the prophetic words of this book, God will take away from them their share of the fruit of the tree of life and of the Holy City, which are described in this book. " (Revelation 22:18, 19).
for the West, bearer of civilizationBecause Christ is our Life and Liberty.
The Reasons Behind Our Mission
The West is in crisis. Attacked externally by fundamentalism and Islamic terrorism, it is not able to rise to the challenge. Undermined internally by a moral and spiritual crisis, it can't seem to find the courage to react. Our affluence makes us feel guilty and we are ashamed of our traditions. Terrorism is seen as a reaction to our errors, whereas it is nothing less than an act of aggression against our civilization and against all human kind.
Europe is at a standstill. Its foreign policy lacks unity, its birth rate is declining and so is its competitive edge in the world market. Europe hides and denies its own identity, and so fails to gain popular support when called to adopt a constitution. It hops on the anti-American bandwagon and drives a wedge between itself and the United States.
Our traditions are questioned. Our heritage, dating back thousands of years, is denied in the name of secularism and progressivism, thus impoverishing the values of life, of the person, of marriage and of the family. It is affirmed that all cultures are equally valid. The integration of immigrants has been left rudderless and without rules.
As Benedict XVI said, nowadays "The West doesn't love itself any longer". To overcome this crisis, we need to increase our commitment and show more courage when dealing with issues regarding our civilization.
We are committed, in the name of a shared historical and cultural tradition, to reaffirming the value of Western Civilization as a source of universal and inalienable principles, and to opposing any attempt to place Europe as alternative or antagonistic to the United States.
We are committed to founding anew a fresh European spirit that seeks inspiration from the founding fathers of European unity, wherein lies Europe's true identity and strength, enabling it to speak to the hearts of its citizens.
We are committed to dealing with terrorism anywhere, considering it a crime against humanity. We will undertake to deprive it of every justification and support, to isolate all organizations that threaten the life of civilians, and to counter all those who preach hatred. We are committed to give full support to our soldiers and to our security forces who safeguard us both at home and abroad.
We are committed to promoting the integration of immigrants in the name of shared values and the principles of our Constitution, without, in any way, accepting that the rights of any one group should prevail on those of its individuals.
We are committed to supporting the right to life, from conception to natural death, and to considering the unborn child as "someone" whose rights must be balanced against others, and never as "something" easily to be sacrificed to other goals.
We are committed to supporting the principle of "as much liberty as possible, as much State as is necessary". This underscore the Christian and liberal primacy of the person and of intermediate bodies of civil society, and highlights the role of political power as an instrument for assisting the free initiative of individuals, families, associations, businesses and volunteerism.
We are committed to affirming the value of the family as a natural partnership based on marriage, which needs to be protected as distinct from any other kind of union or bond.
We are committed to spreading liberty and democracy as universal values held to be true just as much as in the West, East, North or South. A privileged few may not live at the expense of the slavery of many.
We are committed to reaffirming the distinction between Church and State, without giving in to the secular temptation of relegating the religious dimension solely to the individual sphere.
We are committed to defending and promoting freedom of education without denying the public function of instruction. We therefore intend to establish full equality and recognition for both state and private schools, applying the general principle of subsidiarity in this sector as well.
We are committed to making our homeland even stronger and to highlighting the values of conservative liberalism so that the growth of public and individual freedom may develop at the same rate as the preservation of our common heritage. People who forget their roots can be neither free nor respected.
The West is life. The West is civilization. The West is freedom.
Saturday, February 25, 2006
Friday, February 24, 2006
And Carter's a hypocrite. In criticizing Ann Coulter for over-the-top, unnecessarily personal attacks, he uses graceful language like:
Finally Carter concludes his misguided tirade with:
Conservatism is dead and Ann Coulter is its corpse.
...though she possesses the same pallor and stench, Coulter isn’t exactly a corpse.
Coulter has been serving up such excrement for years....
...Coulter has the politically guaranteed freedom to spew her bile.
Perhaps if she possessed intelligence and a rapier wit, her cutting barbs might be endurable. But Coulter’s...remarks leave jagged gashs that grow infected and fester with pus, infecting all of us in the process.
Unfortunately, there are some conservatives who confuse a right with an obligation. They believe that since all speech must be protected it must also be defended...There is also no question, at least in my mind, that we conservatives should exercise our own freedom of speech by telling her to shut her yap.Carter doesn't mind criticizing and insulting Ann, but when it comes to identifying the West's actual enemy in our current armed conflict, he'll do all he can to bend over and excuse, justify, and obfuscate Islam's War Against the Infidel, as he did when participating recently in a roundtable discussion on Hugh Hewitt's program.
How 'bout serving up some of that condemnation and name-calling for those who execute (pun intended) Allah's commands to fight against, subdue and humiliate, and kill non-Muslims? You're right, it's a whole lot safer attacking a delicate blonde whose most threatening move is avoiding flying pie.
In her defense, Ann Coulter has traditionally used hyperbole to accentuate for the morally-blind on both sides of the ideological spectrum the obvious immorality and absurdity of the Left (and others who work for America's downfall) and the frequent impotence and slavish obedience to political correctness on the Right. I have always enjoyed her commentary, though she is sometimes overly sardonic.
Regrettably, in a recent column Ann did make a comment that was unnecessarily race-focused; it was inappropriate because it was false. The issue in the GWoT is not race (though I've heard some of the President's supporters--and Islam's defenders--claim that we who criticize either are at least closet racists), it is ideology, the death cult of Islam.
Wednesday, February 22, 2006
So do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.
My deep desire and hope is that I shall never fail in my duty, but that at all times, and especially right now, I shall be full of courage, so that with my whole being I shall bring honor to Christ, whether I live or die.
For what is life? To me, it is Christ. Death, then, will bring more.
But if by continuing to live I can do more worthwhile work, then I am not sure which I should choose.
I am pulled in two directions. I want very much to leave this life and be with Christ, which is a far better thing; but for your sake it is much more important that I remain alive.
I am sure of this, and so I know that I will stay. I will stay on with you all, to add to your progress and joy in the faith, so that when I am with you again, you will have even more reason to be proud of me in your life in union with Christ Jesus.
Now, the important thing is that your way of life should be as the gospel of Christ requires, so that, whether or not I am able to go and see you, I will hear that you are standing firm with one common purpose and that with only one desire you are fighting together for the faith of the gospel.
Don't be afraid of your enemies; always be courageous, and this will prove to them that they will lose and that you will win, because it is God who gives you the victory.
For you have been given the privilege of serving Christ, not only by believing in him, but also by suffering for him.
Now you can take part with me in the battle. It is the same battle you saw me fighting in the past, and as you hear, the one I am fighting still (Philippians 1:20-30).
Tuesday, February 21, 2006
That signal is not mixed, and it is exactly the message we want to send. Neither is there a "different" standard. The standard is: We will not let foreign agencies with a strong likelihood of employing individuals who want to kill us operate our ports.
...The UAE may be the most reliable ally the United States has ever had (and of course it isn't remotely that) and there would still be no way for it to ensure that Dubai Ports World hires no one with jihadist sentiments. The situation in the Islamic world, compounded by the Administration's inability or unwillingness to come to grips with the reality of the jihad ideology, indeed make it quite likely that Dubai Ports World will be sending at least a few mujahedin to work in these American ports, and that they will be able to work there unhindered. After all, no one in Washington is yet even asking the right questions of self-proclaimed moderates about where they really stand on jihad and Sharia issues.
Why would Bush want to be so obstinate on this? Doesn't he realize that it does immense damage to his position as being, for all his faults, at least tougher on Islamic terrorism than his opponents? If this deal goes through, will the United States have the luxury of undoing it before it undoes us?
UPDATE: Drudge has just added this:Bush called reports at about 2.30 aboard Air Force One to issue a very strong defense of port deal... MORE... He said he would veto any legislation to hold up deal and warned the United States was sending 'mixed signals' by going after a company from the Middle East when nothing was said when a British company was in charge... Lawmakers, he said, must 'step up and explain why a middle eastern company is held to a different standard.' Bush was very forceful when he delivered the statement... 'I don't view it as a political fight,' Bush said.... MORE... MORE...
I'll be happy to step up and explain why a middle eastern company is held to a different standard. It has to do with the prevalence of jihadists and jihad sympathizers in the population, the lack of any mechanism, on the government level or any other, to vet them properly, and the consequent likelihood that they will end up working in the American ports in question.
Apart from a slavish devotion to politically-correct multiculturalism/misguided "Christian decency," President Bush's position is completely inexplicable.
This is beginning to look like another "Miers Moment."
For the one who expressed doubt regarding danger from Muslim immigrants, here's the following from JihadWatch.org:TOLEDO -- A federal grand jury has indicted three Toledo-area men for terrorist activities. Prosecutors say the three conspired to wage a 'holy war' against the United States and coalition forces in the Middle East. The indictment was unsealed Monday....
According to the indictment from the US Attorney's office, the suspects are Mohammad Zaki Amawi, Marwan Othman El-Hindi, and Wassim Mazloum. The indictment says all three were living in the Toledo area. Amawi is a citizen of the US and also a citizen of Jordan. El-Hindi is a naturalized American citizen who was born in Jordan. Mazloum is a legal permanent resident of the US, who came here from Lebanon.
Mazloum also operated a car business in Toledo with his brother. The indictment accuses him of offering to use his dealership as a cover for traveling to and from Iraq so that he could learn how to build small explosives using household materials.
The indictment also names an unindicted co-conspiratory called 'The Trainer,' who has U.S. military backround in security, and bodyguard training.
In count 1 of the indictment, prosecutors say the three met together many times, going back as far as November 2004. The three reportedly conspired to recruit and train others for a violent jihad against United States forces and US allies in Iraq. They also reportedly put together the funding needed for the operation, and collected the equipment needed, and even travelled together to a local indoor shooting range for target practice."
Tuesday, February 14, 2006
Without a shot being fired (at them), many have cowered in silence, hoping to gain the approval of their new masters.
Even worse, many of these craven dhimmis aid the Jihad against their own civilization by employing the same false arguments used by the jihadists and their apologists to try to discredit the truth-tellers. One of those refusing to capitulate to the intimidation of the Not-So-Tiny Minority of Extremists, Robert Spencer again skillfully dissects a false attack by The Quardian (I mean, Guardian) at his site:
Since the cartoons were first published last year, all sorts of people with an axe to grind have muscled in on the row. A posting on the notoriously Islamophobic website, Jihadwatch, for instance, describes it portentously as "a struggle between exponents of a free society and organised thuggery". Meanwhile, several Arab governments - for their own political reasons - have busily fanned the flames in the opposite direction.
OK. So my observing that cartoon rage a struggle between the exponents of a free society and organized thuggery, which it most certainly is, is equivalent to Arab governments inciting their people to burn embassies, kill people, and issue murderous threats to just about every country in the West?
All right. Let's explore that question. How many Muslim cartoon ragers have been killed, or beaten up, or had their homes burned by angry Jihad Watchers?
"Notoriously Islamophobic"? Strictly speaking, "Islamophobia" would be defined as fear of Islam. Which is more fearful -- Jihad Watch, which published the Muhammad cartoons, or The Guardian, which succumbed to knee-knocking fear and didn't? Yes, that's right: I'm accusing the Guardian of Islamophobia.
What's that? Islamophobia doesn't mean fear of Islam, but hatred of Islam? Ill-chosen word, in that case. But anyway it's a false charge. To claim that those who oppose the ideology that led to 9/11, 7/7, 3/11, the Bali bombings, and hundreds of other terror attacks are just "haters" is to have the telescope the wrong way round; the real haters are those who are perpetrating such attacks, and planning new ones today, in the name of Islam. I am not going to be cowed by The Guardian or anyone else from exploring what motivates these attackers, and why they are doing what they are doing.
The resistance to jihad is a struggle to defend the human rights of those who would lose equality of rights under the kind of regime jihadists would like to establish -- particularly women, non-Muslims, and ex-Muslims. The Guardian wants to call that "Islamophobia"? More fool they.
Monday, February 13, 2006
Sadly, that is not a defamation of Qur'an, but a fulfillment.
I was born and raised as a Muslim in Cairo, Egypt and in the Gaza Strip. In the 1950s, my father was sent by Egypt's President, Gamal Abdel Nasser, to head the Egyptian military intelligence in Gaza and the Sinai where he founded the Palestinian Fedayeen, or "armed resistance". They made cross-border attacks into Israel, killing 400 Israelis and wounding more than 900 others.
My father was killed as a result of the Fedayeen operations when I was eight years old. He was hailed by Nasser as a national hero and was considered a shaheed, or martyr. In his speech announcing the nationalisation of the Suez Canal, Nasser vowed that all of Egypt would take revenge for my father's death. My siblings and I were asked by Nasser: "Which one of you will avenge your father's death by killing Jews?" We looked at each other speechless, unable to answer.
In school in Gaza, I learned hate, vengeance and retaliation. Peace was never an option, as it was considered a sign of defeat and weakness. At school we sang songs with verses calling Jews "dogs" (in Arab culture, dogs are considered unclean).
Criticism and questioning were forbidden. When I did either of these, I was told: "Muslims cannot love the enemies of God, and those who do will get no mercy in hell." As a young woman, I visited a Christian friend in Cairo during Friday prayers, and we both heard the verbal attacks on Christians and Jews from the loudspeakers outside the mosque. They said: "May God destroy the infidels and the Jews, the enemies of God. We are not to befriend them or make treaties with them." We heard worshippers respond "Amen".
My friend looked scared; I was ashamed. That was when I first realised that something was very wrong in the way my religion was taught and practised. Sadly, the way I was raised was not unique. Hundreds of millions of other Muslims also have been raised with the same hatred of the West and Israel as a way to distract from the failings of their leaders. Things have not changed since I was a little girl in the 1950s.
Palestinian television extols terrorists, and textbooks still deny the existence of Israel. More than 300 Palestinians schools are named after shaheeds, including my father. Roads in both Egypt and Gaza still bear his name - as they do of other "martyrs". What sort of message does that send about the role of terrorists? That they are heroes. Leaders who signed peace treaties, such as President Anwar Sadat, have been assassinated. Today, the Islamo-fascist president of Iran uses nuclear dreams, Holocaust denials and threats to "wipe Israel off the map" as a way to maintain control of his divided country.
Indeed, with Denmark set to assume the rotating presidency of the UN Security Council, the flames of the cartoon controversy have been fanned by Iran and Syria. This is critical since the International Atomic Energy Agency is expected to refer Iran to the Security Council and demand sanctions. At the same time, Syria is under scrutiny for its actions in Lebanon. Both Iran and Syria cynically want to embarrass the Danes to achieve their dangerous goals.
But the rallies and riots come from a public ripe with rage. From my childhood in Gaza until today, blaming Israel and the West has been an industry in the Muslim world. Whenever peace seemed attainable, Palestinian leaders found groups who would do everything to sabotage it. They allowed their people to be used as the front line of Arab jihad. Dictators in countries surrounding the Palestinians were only too happy to exploit the Palestinians as a diversion from problems in their own backyards. The only voice outside of government control in these areas has been the mosques, and these places of worship have been filled with talk of jihad.
Is it any surprise that after decades of indoctrination in a culture of hate, that people actually do hate? Arab society has created a system of relying on fear of a common enemy. It's a system that has brought them much-needed unity, cohesion and compliance in a region ravaged by tribal feuds, instability, violence, and selfish corruption. So Arab leaders blame Jews and Christians rather than provide good schools, roads, hospitals, housing, jobs, or hope to their people.
For 30 years I lived inside this war zone of oppressive dictatorships and police states. Citizens competed to appease and glorify their dictators, but they looked the other way when Muslims tortured and terrorised other Muslims. I witnessed honour killings of girls, oppression of women, female genital mutilation, polygamy and its devastating effect on family relations. All of this is destroying the Muslim faith from within.
It's time for Arabs and Muslims to stand up for their families. We must stop allowing our leaders to use the West and Israel as an excuse to distract from their own failed leadership and their citizens' lack of freedoms. It's time to stop allowing Arab leaders to complain about cartoons while turning a blind eye to people who defame Islam by holding Korans in one hand while murdering innocent people with the other.
Muslims need jobs - not jihad. Apologies about cartoons will not solve the problems. What is needed is hope and not hate. Unless we recognise that the culture of hate is the true root of the riots surrounding this cartoon controversy, this violent overreaction will only be the start of a clash of civilis-ations that the world cannot bear.
Saturday, February 11, 2006
We need to learn a new word: dhimmitude. I've written about dhimmitude periodically, lo, these many years since September 11, but it takes time to sink in. Dhimmitude is the coinage of a brilliant historian, Bat Ye'or, whose pioneering studies of the dhimmi, populations of Jews and Christians vanquished by Islamic jihad, have led her to conclude that a common culture has existed through the centuries among the varied dhimmi populations. From Egypt and Palestine to Iraq and Syria, from Morocco and Algeria to Spain, Sicily and Greece, from Armenia and the Balkans to the Caucasus: Wherever Islam conquered, surrendering dhimmi, known to Muslims as "people of the book [the Bible]," were tolerated, allowed to practice their religion, but at a dehumanizing cost.
There were literal taxes (jizya) to be paid; these bought the dhimmi the right to remain non-Muslim, the price not of religious freedom, but of religious identity. Freedom was lost, sorely circumscribed by a body of Islamic law (sharia) designed to subjugate, denigrate and humiliate the dhimmi. The resulting culture of self-abnegation, self-censorship and fear shared by far-flung dhimmi is the basis of dhimmitude. The extremely distressing but highly significant fact is, dhimmitude doesn't only exist in lands where Islamic law rules.
This is the lesson of Cartoon Rage 2006, a cultural nuke set off by an Islamic chain reaction to those 12 cartoons of Muhammad appearing in a Danish newspaper. We have watched the Muslim meltdown with shocked attention, but there is little recognition that its poisonous fallout is fear. Fear in the State Department, which, like Islam, called the cartoons unacceptable. Fear in Whitehall, which did the same. Fear in the Vatican, which did the same. And fear in the media, which have failed, with few, few exceptions, to reprint or show the images. With only a small roll of brave journals, mainly in Europe, to salute, we have seen the proud Western tradition of a free press bow its head and submit to an Islamic law against depictions of Muhammad. That's dhimmitude.
Not that we admit it: We dress up our capitulation in fancy talk of "tolerance," "responsibility" and "sensitivity." We even congratulate ourselves for having the "editorial judgment" to make "pluralism" possible. "Readers were well served... without publishing the cartoons," said a Wall Street Journal spokesman. "CNN has chosen to not show the cartoons in respect for Islam," reported the cable network. On behalf of the BBC, which did show some of the cartoons on the air, a news editor subsequently apologized, adding: "We've taken a decision not to go further... in order not to gratuitously offend the significant number" of Muslim viewers worldwide. Left unmentioned is the understanding (editorial judgement?) that "gratuitous offense" leads to gratuitous violence. Hence, fear — not the inspiration of tolerance but of capitulation — and a condition of dhimmitude.
How far does it go? Worth noting, for example, is that on the BBC Web site, a religion page about Islam presents the angels and revelations of Islamic belief as historical fact, rather than spiritual conjecture (as is the case with its Christianity Web page); plus, it follows every mention of Mohammed with "(pbuh)," which means "peace be upon him"—"as if," writes Will Wyatt, former BBC chief executive, in a letter to the Times of London, "the corporation itself were Muslim."
Is it? Are we? These questions may not seem so outlandish if we assess the extent to which encroaching sharia has already changed the Western way. Calling these cartoons "unacceptable," and censoring ourselves "in respect" to Islam brings the West into compliance with a central statute of sharia. As Jyllands-Posten's Flemming Rose has noted, that's not respect, that's submission. And if that's not dhimmitude, what is?
The publication of the Muhammad cartoons solicited by Denmark's Jyllands-Posten was an act of anti-dhimmitude. Since no Danish artist would dare illustrate a PC children's book about Muhammad for fear of Islamic law (and Islamic violence), the newspaper boldly set out to reassert the rule of (non-Islamic) Danish law. It's as simple as that. And as vital. The cartoons ran to establish — or re-establish — Denmark as bastion of Western-style liberty. But in trying to set up a force field against encroaching sharia, Jyllands-Posten and the Danes have showed us that no single bastion of Western liberty can stand alone.
So, how do you say solidarity in Danish? If we don't find out now, our future is more dhimmitude.