Posts Tagged ‘Islamic supremacism’
By Elliot Friedland
The Clarion Project
April 20, 2017
Who is doing the ground work in the struggle against Islamist extremism? A lot of the people tackling radical Islam don’t get as much press time as the jihadists they oppose. We want to introduce you to five Americans who are making a difference.
Anila Ali is the founder of the American Muslim Women’s Empowerment Council, which works on the ground with law enforcement and interfaith leaders to counter radicalization. The goal is to build capacity in the Muslim community so they can be the first line of defense against radicalization.
She also promotes community engagement and supports South-Asian peace through the arts through another group she founded, the Irvine Pakistani Parents Association (IPPA).
Other organizations she is involved with include the Council of Pakistan-American Affairs (COPAA), the International Leadership Foundation and Olive Tree Initiative (OTI), all of which promote active engagement of the Pakistani community in American life and dialogue between cultures.
For her work she received the Volunteer Service Award from President Obama in 2011.
Read our interview with Anila about her work here.
Mohamed Amin Ahmed
Mohamed Amin Ahmed is a Somali-American who runs a gas station in the Twin Cities. When he grew sick of the repeated cases of radicalization in his community in Minneapolis, he decided to do something about it. So he founded the ‘Average Mohamed’ organization to counter the extremist message through short animated videos.
“The extremists are having their conversation with our youth,” he told Clarion Project in an interview last year. “No parent talks to their kids about extremism because no parent believes their child can become one. Average Mohamed is about bridging that gap, getting that conversation by guiding it.”
The videos focus on issues like being comfortable with multiple identities and highlights peaceful messages within the Islamic tradition.
His organization is also engaged in direct community outreach, visiting schools, mosques and madrassas, as well as events like the Somali Independence Festival.
Check out his website to see his work.
Stephen Suleyman Schwartz
Stephen Schwartz is an Islamic scholar and Sufi Muslim who has dedicated his career to exposing radical Islam. He is the Executive Director of the Washington based Center for Islamic Pluralism, which puts forward a moderate and tolerant approach to Islam as well as highlighting the activities of extremists.
He has a special section on his website entitled “WahhabiWatch” where he critiques the spread of the austere Saudi-backed form of Islam known as Wahhabism and which, when implemented in the political sphere, results in human rights abuses.
Check out his website here.
Muhammad Fraser-Rahim has over a decade of experience working for the U.S. government in roles countering extremism, including for the Department of Homeland Security, Director of National Intelligence and the National Counterterrorism Center, on highly sensitive counter-terrorism matters.
He has also worked throughout the Middle East and North Africa, most recently in the Horn of Africa for the U.S. Institute for Peace as an expert on countering violent extremism and as senior program officer.
He is a PhD candidate specializing in Islamic Thought, Spirituality and Modernity at Howard University.
Now he has joined the counter-extremism think tank the Quilliam Foundation to head up their operations in North America.
Quilliam produces high-quality research aimed at combating the extremist narrative as well as conducting outreach to the Muslim community and speaking out against extremism in the media.
“As a descendant of the indigenous African American Muslim community, whose families made great sacrifices in America, our story is one built on resilience, the fostering of trust and of dialogue across multiple viewpoints,” he said on accepting the role which he started at the beginning of April. I look forward to furthering this time honored tradition, rooted in my historical past and envisioning it further in the future with Quilliam.”
Sarah Haider is the co-founder of and director of development for the Ex-Muslims of North America.
The group “advocates for acceptance of religious dissent, promotes secular values, and aims to reduce discrimination faced by those who leave Islam.”
It provides a support network for those who choose to leave the faith and helps the fight against the discrimination they may face from family members and former friends who are angry at their decision.
“We started with the goal to build communities for ex-Muslims and that remains one of our main goals” she told Areo Magazine in a December 2016 interview. “As you may know, it’s difficult for apostates to be open about their lack of belief. They face a lot of social stigma from friends and families and from their broader communities. Many of them are immigrants themselves so it’s difficult for them to fit into the broader American culture.
“When you leave religion there is a loss of both your religion and to some extent your cultural identity. We wanted to mitigate this sense of loss, so we decided to have in-person meetings to foster community. We screen people before they come in to protect privacy and provide anonymity. The goal is to provide them with a support network where they can feel comfortable being themselves. Since then, more people are coming out and being open about their apostasy. Recently, we’ve embarked on a project to make videos about people who want to come out as open apostates and share their experiences. We want to show the wide variety of ex-Muslims and their experiences.”
Her work however does not aim to take on Islam in general, and Ex-Muslims of North America states unequicovally “We do not wish to promote hatred of all Muslims. We ourselves were Muslim. Many of our families and friends are Muslim. We understand that Muslims come in all varieties and we do not and will not partake in erasing the diversity within the world’s Muslims.”
This grassroots work is largely unpublicized but has made an invaluable difference to the lives of many ex-Muslims.
Check out their magazine, The Ex-Muslim, the only one of its kind.
By Katie Pavlich
April 19, 2017
Detroit emergency room Dr. Jumana Nagarwala was arrested and charged last week for allegedly conducting female genital mutilation [FGM] on girls as young as six-years-old.
As previously reported, the details are horrifying.
According to the criminal complaint, Nagarwala performed the illegal and severe procedure in a “medical clinic” outside of the hospital, but did not receive payment and did not bill patients. The FBI classified her as a member of a specific religious community. Girls from neighboring Minnesota, at least one who was seven-years-old, were brought by their parents to Nagarwala for the procedure. They were also interviewed by the FBI and could face charges.
The minors were told they were being taken on a “girls trip.” Once they arrived at the hotel, they were told they needed to go the doctor for a “stomach ache” and FGM was performed to “get the germs out.”
During her court hearing this week, Nagarwala defended the practice as a “religious removal” and denied it was mutilation at all. From Fox 2:
Inside a federal courtroom, 44-year-old Dr. Jumana Nargarwala, a mother of four, stood before a judge handcuffed, dressed in an orange jumpsuit and a long hijab draped down her arms and shoulders, appearing emotionless as the prosecution and defense divulged gruesome details of what allegedly went on in her Livonia clinic after hours.
The defense argued, claiming no female genital mutilation took place, instead, a religious removal of a mucus membrane from the genitals which was wrapped up and given to the parents to bury — a practice they say is performed by a small sect of Indian-based Islam called Dawoodi Bohra.
Their mosque is located in Farmington Hills.
In the criminal complaint, the FBI classified the doctor as a member of a specific religious community. They did not name or mention Islam. For more detail on how the World Health Organization defines FGM, please read the affidavit.
Nagarwala is being held without bond due to being a flight risk. She is facing life in prison if convicted. This is the first federal FGM case in American history.
NYC censored anti-terror handbook to appease Muslims, but it accurately predicted radicalization patterns
By Robert Spencer
April 16, 2017
This is an illustration of the truth about what I said last Thursday at Truman State University: that charges of “Islamophobia” and “racism” are used to hinder legitimate counterterror efforts, thus paving the way for more jihad terror attacks.
“The purge of a report on radical Islam has put NYC at risk,” by Paul Sperry, New York Post, April 15, 2017:
The NYPD has had a stellar track record of protecting the city from another 9/11, foiling more than 20 planned terrorist attacks since 2001. But some worry the department is losing its terror-fighting edge as it tries to please Muslim grievance groups.
Last year, for instance, it censored an anti-terror handbook to appease offended Muslims, even though it has accurately predicted radicalization patterns in recent “homegrown” terror cases. Rank-and-file NYPD officers, detectives and even intelligence and counterterrorism units are officially barred now from referring to the handbook or the scientific study on which it was based.
Former law-enforcement officials fear its removal as a training tool may be hurting efforts to prevent terrorist activity, such as the vehicle-ramming attacks plaguing European cities.
“The report was extremely accurate on how the radicalization process works and what indicators to look for,” said Patrick Dunleavy, former deputy inspector general of the New York state prisons’ criminal-intelligence division, who also worked with the NYPD’s intelligence division for several years.
Mayor de Blasio agreed in January 2016 to purge the remarkably prescient police training guide “Radicalization in the West: The Homegrown Threat” to help settle a federal lawsuit filed by the ACLU and Muslim groups who claimed the NYPD’s anti-terror training discriminated against Muslims.
Written 10 years ago, the seminal NYPD report detailing the religious steps homegrown terrorists take toward radicalization is now more relevant than ever, with recent terror suspects closely following those steps. But in 2007, the same year the study was released, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) organized a protest against it, complaining it “casts suspicion on all US Muslims.” Even though federal law enforcement has long-shunned CAIR as a suspected terrorist front organization, “groups like CAIR were insistent on having it removed, and de Blasio caved into them,” Dunleavy said.
Under the city’s unusual settlement agreement, the NYPD as well as New York state agencies were forced to remove its 90-page anti-terror study — described by plaintiffs as “deeply flawed” and “inflammatory” — from databases and no longer rely on it “to open or extend investigations” into terrorist activities. Also, police must now commit to “mitigating the potential impact” of any counterterrorism investigation on the Muslim community.
The deal has had a chilling effect on other city police forces’ ability to use fact-based, trend analysis to develop terrorism cases, experts say. They warn that purging such studies deprives local law enforcement of the ability to understand how ISIS and other jihadists recruit, organize and operate — which is critical to disrupting terrorism plots.
“The FBI has its hands full with over 1,000 open cases on ISIS terrorist suspects already in the US,” former FBI Agent John Guandolo said, “and it needs the help of well-trained eyes and ears on the ground at the local and state level.”
“The bad guys know if police don’t know this stuff at the ground level, they win,” added Guandolo, who trains sheriffs departments across the country to ID local jihadi networks through his consulting firm, Understanding the Threat LLC.
The authors of the report, led by Mitch Silber, former NYPD director of intelligence analysis, examined hundreds of “homegrown” terrorism cases and found that suspects followed the same “radicalization” path. Key indicators include: alienating themselves from their former lives and friends; giving up cigarettes, drinking and partying; wearing traditional Islamic clothing; growing a beard; becoming obsessed with Mideast politics and jihad; and regularly attending a hardline mosque. In other words, the more they immersed themselves in their faith, the more radical they grew.
“You can take all the terrorist cases since that report and compare the information on the subject and the case and see stark similarities to what Mitch laid out,” Dunleavy noted.
The terrorists who carried out recent attacks in Boston; Fort Hood, Texas; Little Rock, Ark.; Chattanooga, Tenn.; San Bernardino, Fla.; Orlando; Philadelphia and at Ohio State University, among others, followed a similar pattern of radicalization. In each case, the Muslim attacker was influenced through “incubators of extremism” within the Muslim community, including Islamic student associations, schools, bookstores and mosques. Jihadi websites also played a role, but what unifies them all is Islamic doctrine. As the NYPD study found, “The ultimate objective for any attack is always the same — to punish the West, overthrow the democratic order, re-establish the caliphate, and institute Sharia,” or Islamic law.
“The radicalizer is Sharia, not the Internet,” said Philip Haney, a former Homeland Security counterterrorism analyst. Haney says the feds are plagued by their own PC censorship. Bowing to pressure from CAIR and other Muslim groups, Homeland Security and the Justice Department have purged anti-terrorism training materials and fired instructors deemed offensive to Muslims. CAIR-launched protests also helped convince the FBI to recently suspend an Internet program aimed at preventing the radicalization of Muslim youth.
“If we fail to correct this situation, it is inevitable that more attacks will occur,” warned Haney, author of “See Something, Say Nothing.”…
By Robert Spencer
April 13, 2017
“2 suburban Chicago men arrested on terrorism charges,” AP, April 12, 2017:
CHICAGO (AP) — Two suburban Chicago men who posed for photos holding a black Islamic State flag at a Lake Michigan beach park were arrested Wednesday on federal terrorism charges, and an undercover agent said one of the men suggested homosexuals should be thrown off the city’s tallest building.
An FBI sting going back several years compiled evidence that Joseph D. Jones and Edward Schimenti conspired to provide and attempt to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, according to a complaint. That included allegedly provided cellphones to someone working with the FBI, believing the phones would be used to detonate explosives in Syria.
The court filing includes photos of the 35-year-old men holding an Islamic State flag at the Illinois Beach State Park in Zion, where they live.
This past February, Schimenti allegedly told one person in on the sting that he was angry about someone from work because he was gay, according to the complaint. If Islamic Law was ever instituted in the United States, Schimenti was quoted as saying, “We are putting you (homosexuals) on top of Sears Tower (now the Willis Tower) and we drop you.”
The complaint also details postings on the suspects’ social media accounts, which included Islamic State beheadings.
It says a photo posted on Schimenti’s Google Plus profile shows a masked man holding a knife and standing alongside an IS flag. A caption reads in capital letters that if you can’t travel abroad to fight, “then slaughter the pagans next to you.” Another posting reads: “Islamic State will control your country, matter of fact, Islam will dominate the world!!”
In 2015, a video was posted on Jones’ Google Plus profile entitled “Some of the Deadly Stabbing Ways: Do not Forget to Poison the Knife,” the complaint says. Another time, a person in on the FBI sting asked Jones if he ever thought about traveling to Syria to live in Islamic State territory. He answered, “Every night and day,” the complaint says….
By Robert Spencer
April 7, 2017
Whoever said that fascism would come to America in the guise of anti-fascism got it right. This violence and brutalization of political opponents is a new phenomenon in American politics, but it is becoming increasingly common, and it has a historical antecedent: the Nazi Brownshirts. In The Coming of the Third Reich, historian Richard J. Evans explains how, in the early days of National Socialist Germany, Stormtroopers (Brownshirts) “organized campaigns against unwanted professors in the local newspapers [and] staged mass disruptions of their lectures.”
To express dissent from Nazi positions became a matter of taking one’s life into one’s hands. The idea of people of opposing viewpoints airing their disagreements in a civil and mutually respectful manner was gone. One was a Nazi, or one was silent (and fearful).
That is just the kind of public arena that the Left has been trying to bring to the United States for years — particularly on college campuses. But I’ll be at Truman State University next week anyway, facing down the fascists. If they succeed in beating me up, will it prove them right? No. Will it demonstrate their moral superiority? Quite the contrary. Will it stop me from speaking? Absolutely not. And even if they kill me, others will keep on telling the truths they hate. They can’t kill us all, although I fully expect that in the long run they will try.
“Truman State University Student Threatens Violence Ahead of Robert Spencer Lecture,” by Andres Taborda, The New Guard, April 6, 2017:
Robert Spencer, conservative speaker and director of Jihad Watch, received threats of physical violence from a student at Truman State University where he is slated to speak next week as part of Young America’s Foundation’s best-in-the-movement campus lecture program.
In a slew of tweets, “Bella Waddle,” started off with the following:
This was followed up by a suspenseful tweet:
And if “Bella Waddle’s” retweet of the following tweet is any sort of endorsement, then we have a serious threat of violence towards Robert Spencer:
Hmm…not sure it’s a good idea to share with the world that you want punch Robert Spencer’s face.
Yet again, we see attempts by campus leftists to intimidate conservative speakers. If leftists really stood for tolerance, having a different point of view on campus would fulfill their mission. As we see here, though, leftists’ knee-jerk reaction to differing opinions is physical violence.
It’s amazing that groups who warn of violence on campuses are the ones who advocate for it the most.
So while “Bella Waddle” develops a sure-to-fail protest plot, just know one thing: We will be at Truman State University with Robert Spencer next week to discuss the dangers of Radical Islam.
Deal with it.
City governments vow to protect even violent predators in defiance of Trump administration.
By Joseph Klein
March 29, 2017
Attorney General Jeff Sessions warned on Monday that sanctuary jurisdictions risked losing federal grants if they persisted in obstructing the enforcement of federal immigration laws. Billions of dollars in federal law enforcement funding are at stake. “I urge the nation’s states and cities to carefully consider the harm they are doing to their citizens by refusing to enforce our immigration laws,” Attorney General Sessions said. “Countless Americans would be alive today and countless loved ones would not be grieving today if these policies of sanctuary cities were ended.”
Instead of heeding the Attorney General’s sound advice and taking care of their own citizens, city officials around the country are planning to sabotage federal law enforcement of the nation’s immigration laws.
“We are going to become this administration’s worst nightmare,” said New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito. On the same day that Attorney General Sessions issued his warning, she hosted a meeting with like-minded officials from other sanctuary cities, including San Francisco, Seattle, Denver, Chicago, and Philadelphia, who prioritize the welfare of illegal immigrants over their own citizens. Ms. Mark-Viverito and her comrades threatened to block access by federal immigration authorities to city property and to city records that could help with the enforcement of the nation’s immigration laws. They are acting in the spirit of Alabama’s late Governor George Wallace, who stood in the schoolhouse door to defy federal enforcement of desegregation.
“The Trump Administration is pushing an unrealistic and mean spirited executive order,” tweeted New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. Spare us the tears, Mr. Mayor. We are not talking about innocent children caught up in vindictive mass deportation sweeps. Rather, President Trump’s so-called “mean-spirited executive order” is intended to rid this country of fiends like Estivan Rafael Marques Velasquez, a gang member from El Salvador with a criminal record, who was released from Rikers Island this year onto the streets of New York before U.S. officers from the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) unit could pick him up for deportation proceedings. And there is Luis Alejandro Villegas, 31, who was released from local custody on Dec. 31, 2016, despite a detainer request from ICE. Villegas had previously been removed from the United States and has a prior conviction for forcible theft armed with a deadly weapon.
“Villegas is a criminal alien who was released back into our New York communities, posing an increased and unnecessary risk to those who live in this great city,” said Thomas R. Decker, field office director for ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations in New York.
Fortunately, ICE agents were able to catch up with both Velasquez and Villegas on their own and place them into federal custody. If de Blasio has his way, we may not be so lucky next time. In the New York City suburb of Hempstead, two women and a 2-year old girl ran out of luck. A MS-13 street gang member, who had been deported back to El Salvador from the U.S. four times and had a number of prior arrests, stabbed the women and sexually assaulted the little girl.
Hempstead is in Nassau County, which is a sanctuary jurisdiction. Hempstead’s Mayor Wayne J. Hall, Sr. said last February, “President Trump’s recent executive orders go against the moral fiber with which our great nation was built, and I wholeheartedly support New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio and countless other Mayors throughout the United States in denouncing these acts. I, Mayor DeBlasio and leaders from many other communities throughout the country will work together to oppose these executive orders and protect the rights of all people.” Good going, Mayor Hall. Now you can explain your opposition to rounding up and deporting illegal aliens with prior criminal records to the illegal aliens’ victims in your town, whom you should have been more worried about.
Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who is presiding over a city beset by rampant crime, reiterated his pledge that Chicago will “continue to welcome” immigrants. “Chicago was built on the back of immigrants and our future is hitched to the wagon of immigrants who come to the city,” he added. Do these include the 45 out of 48 illegal immigrants picked up in a raid last month in the Chicago area who had previously been convicted of crimes, including criminal sexual assault? Twenty of the illegal aliens had returned to the country after have been already deported. In refusing to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement officials, Mayor Emanuel is hitching Chicago’s future in part to criminal illegal aliens who remain free to prey on Chicago’s citizens.
Challenging the Trump administration’s intention to put an end to sanctuary cities, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said Monday that his city’s policies are “designed to keep our residents safe.” Tell that to the surviving family and friends of the Californian woman killed in a car crash caused by a drunk illegal alien with a long rap sheet, who had been deported previously. Perhaps Mayor Garcetti would do well to listen to the victim’s fiancé, who blamed politicians like himself for the “criminal illegal immigrants that are being harbored here.” Then again, Garcetti, Emanuel, de Blasio and the rest of the sanctuary city crowd are intent on placing their own pro-illegal alien progressive agenda above the safety and welfare of the people they are supposed to serve and protect.
In Travis County, Texas, Sheriff Sally Hernandez, known as “Sanctuary Sally,” has adopted sanctuary policies for the county in defiance of both federal and Texas state law enforcement. “We can’t have state and elected officials in the state like Sanctuary Sally [Hernandez] down here in Travis County turn a blind eye to releasing illegals that have felony convictions and then wonder what’s going to happen when they get back into general population,” said Texas District 7 Senator Paul Bettencourt. But it may be too late. According to a report issued by ICE on March 20, identifying those sanctuary jurisdictions which released criminal aliens under an immigration detainer, Sanctuary Sally’s county scored the number 1 position. It’s only a matter of time when a released illegal immigrant with felony convictions commits another crime.
Illegal immigrants in the United States make up approximately 3.5% of the nation’s entire population. According to data compiled from the U.S. Sentencing Commission for fiscal year 2015, illegal immigrants were responsible for 30.2 percent of convictions for kidnapping/hostage taking, 17.8 percent of convictions for drug trafficking, 11.6 percent of convictions for fraud, 10.4 percent of convictions for money laundering, 6.1 percent of convictions for assault, and 5.5 percent of convictions for murder. So much for the myth spread by the pro-illegal immigrant crowd that illegal immigrants commit serious crimes at a much lower rate than U.S.-born citizens.
Harboring or shielding from detection any alien who “remains in the United States in violation of law” is itself a violation of federal law. It also has real life consequences for the victims of the crimes committed by illegal aliens who are being shielded in sanctuary jurisdictions. Local and state officials who willfully help illegal immigrants evade detention for possible deportation should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
Joseph Klein is a Harvard-trained lawyer and the author of Global Deception: The UN’s Stealth Assault on America’s Freedom and Lethal Engagement: Barack Hussein Obama, the United Nations & Radical Islam.
By Robert Spencer
April 1, 2017
Do they even know what Sharia is? Almost certainly not. They’ve just been told that to oppose it is “racist,” and that’s good enough for them. Stonings, amputations, the institutionalized degradation of women and non-Muslims, the denial of the freedom of speech and the freedom of conscience — what’s not to like?
“Montana Democrats Vote Against Bill Banning Sharia Law, Call It ‘Repugnant,’” by Ben Kew, Breitbart, March 31, 2017:
Democrats in Montana have opposed a bill banning the use of foreign law in its state courts on the grounds that such legislation would target Muslims.
Senate Bill 97, introduced by Keith Regier (R-Kalispell) bans the application of foreign law in Montana’s courts, with the debate particularly focused on Sharia Law, a form of Islamic law typically used in the Middle East.
Although the bill passed on party lines by 56-44, Democrats claimed it was designed to target Muslim communities.
“I think it sends a dangerous message to minority groups both here living in our state and wanting to come visit our state, just merely on the fact that you may be different,” said Rep. Shane Morigeau, D-Missoula, while debating the bill. “I truly believe this law is repugnant. I believe this is not who we are as Montanans.”
Meanwhile, Rep. Ellie Hill Smith (D-Missoula) proposed a failed amendment to the bill to include a ban on both Sharia Law and the Law of Moses, in order to “show the state of Montana that it is not just about Islamic Law.”
“The courts have said that laws that single out certain religions violate the First Amendment,” Smith said, claiming that it was “peppered with anti-Muslim bigotry.”
Another Democrat, Rep. Laurie Bishop (D-Livingston) urged legislators “not to forget the roots of this bill,” adding that “our children are watching.”
Meanwhile, Rep. Brad Tschida (R-Missoula) said the bill was an attempt to push back against a “constitution [that] is constantly under assault.”…
By Robert Spencer
March 29, 2017
How incoherent is today’s dominant discourse about the jihad threat? Here is an illustration.
I reported here about the controversy at Rollins College, where Professor Areej Zufari taught “that the crucifixion of Jesus was a hoax and that his disciples did not believe he was God.”
That’s all that we get about what Professor Zufari said in the Central Florida Post story that both the Clarion Project (below) and I referenced. Both assertions are straight from the Qur’an. It says that Jesus was not crucified: “And their saying, ‘Indeed, we have killed the Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, the messenger of Allah.’ And they did not kill him, nor did they crucify him; but it appeared so to them. And indeed, those who differ over it are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge of it except the following of assumption. And they did not kill him, for certain.” (Qur’an 4:157)
It also has Jesus denying before Allah that he told people that he was God, thus indicating that his disciples, who were faithful Muslims (Qur’an 3:52, 5:111) would not have believed that he was God: “And when Allah will say, ‘O Jesus, Son of Mary, did you say to the people, “Take me and my mother as deities besides Allah ?”‘ He will say, ‘Exalted are you! It was not for me to say that to which I have no right. If I had said it, you would have known it. You know what is within myself, and I do not know what is within yourself. Indeed, it is you who are knower of the unseen.’” (Qur’an 5:116)
So Areej Zufari was simply restating Qur’anic belief about Jesus. For challenging her, student Marshall Polston was suspended and a police report was filed. As far as the Clarion Project, is concerned, Polston was suspended for challenging “radical Islam.” Clarion has to put it this way because it is an exponent of the mainstream conservative/Republican establishment (George W. Bush, etc.) view that Islam itself is wholly and entirely benign, and every problematic action by Muslims, from jihad terror to Sharia oppression, must be described as a manifestation of “radical Islam” (which is at least a trifle more realistic than the Left’s “violent extremism”).
However, the Islam/radical Islam distinction all too easily entangles in absurdity those who wish to exonerate Islam of all responsibility for the crimes done in its name and in accord with its teachings, and this is an example. From the Central Florida Post report that Clarion picks up on, all Areej Zufari did was repeat Qur’anic teaching. According to Clarion’s official line, doing this ought to be an entirely benign, and indeed beneficial exercise. But in this case it sparked a controversy, and so Zufari’s Qur’an-invoking becomes “radical Islam.” Is the Qur’an, then, radical Islam? Of course Clarion officials would say no, it isn’t, it’s the beautiful holy book of the peaceful religion that has unfortunately been hijacked by radical extremists. But if that is so, then how is what Zufari said “radical”?
These issues cry out for clarification, and I would be happy to engage any Clarion Project official in public discussion or debate of them. Too often, however, they are covered over by name-calling (I’ve been called a “jihadist” for pointing out how jihadis use the texts and teachings of Islam to justify violence and make recruits among peaceful Muslims) and sloganeering and left at that. The victims of jihad terror deserve better.
“Suspended for Challenging Radical Islam,” by Meira Svirsky, Clarion Project, March 28, 2017:
A Christian student was suspended from his Florida university after he challenged the views of his Muslim humanities professor and those of a radical Muslim student, wrote investigative reporter Jacob Engels in the Central Florida Post.
The professor, Areeje [sic] Zufari, of Rollins College located just outside Orlando, has a history of accusations of radicalism enumerated in a law suit filed by an FBI source and from her role as a leader in the Islamic Society of Central Florida.
Twenty-year-old sophomore Marshall Polston’s troubles began when Zufari began making disparaging statements about Christianity, claiming the religion’s most basic beliefs were a hoax.
Zufari asserted that Jesus was not crucified and his followers did not believe he was God.
“It was very off-putting and flat out odd. I’ve traveled the Middle East, lectured at the Salahaddin University, and immersed myself in Muslim culture for many years. Honestly, it reminded me of some of the more radical groups I researched when abroad,” Polston said.
“Whether religious or not, I believe even those with limited knowledge of Christianity can agree that according to the text, Jesus was crucified and his followers did believe he was divine,” he added.
After Polton challenged Jufari during a class discussion on these assertions, Jufari failed him on a major essay and refused to explain the reason…
By Elliot Friedland
The Clarion Project
March 22, 2017
There are many different ways to challenge radical Islam. Here are four of our top suggestions that you can take on in your own life.
The first step to defeating a toxic ideology like that of radical Islam is to understand it. If you understand what it is and what the goals of those who subscribe to it are, you will be much better placed to resist it.Radical Islam is a totalitarian ideology based on a theological interpretation of Islam that sees the faith as political. It seeks to impose the religion onto others and to establish sharia governance as a system of laws for states. Countries which have implemented this system, such as Iran and Saudi Arabia, have governments that perpetrate widespread human rights abuses in the name of Islam.Islamist terrorists carry out attacks in order to advance the cause of this ideology by waging what they see as holy war against the West. Understanding this ideology is vital to putting these outrages in context and understanding how to bring about positive change. Start with Clarion’s introduction: Understanding Radical Islamism.
Support the Work of Muslim Human Rights Activists
There are many Muslim activists around the world who are on the front lines of the struggle against extremism, oftentimes risking their lives to promote change. Unfortunately they don’t get anywhere near the press coverage they deserve, despite the amazing work that they do. Support these brave activists on social media and share their work. This will empower them to have more clout against the radicals who don’t wish to see Muslims and non-Muslims getting along.We are proud to support: Raheel Raza, Dr. Zudhi Jasser, Dr. Elham Manea, Shireen Qudosi and Maajid Nawaz among others. Share this video of Raheel Raza speaking out.
Stand up Against Anti-Muslim Bigotry
No-one wants to feel victimized for things they didn’t do. Targeting ordinary Muslims for the actions of radicals is unfair and unjust. It also harms the fight against radical Islam. Increased anti-Muslim sentiment creates a sense of fear which makes Muslim activists less inclined to trust non-Muslims to defend their liberties and interests. If Muslims feel threatened in this way, they will be less willing and able to engage in difficult conversations about extremism.For the radicals, anti-Muslim bigotry make fertile ground for recruitment, since it enables them to stoke a sense of grievance in the vulnerable people they are seeking to radicalize.
Anti-Muslim bigotry and radical Islam empower each other. Say no to both and challenge anti-Musim bigotry whenever and wherever you find it. Read and share our statement on anti-Muslim bigotry.
Speak Out About Radical Islam
Once you have become educated about the danger posed by radical Islam, you can play a role in spreading the word. Movements don’t bring change overnight, and every person is vital in the greater effort to confront this dangerous ideology. Social media is a great place to speak out. With enough exposure, real change can happen and has happened on a number of issues. Individuals, companies and even governments are forced to respond when enough people demand action. Start with our bold informative video By The Numbers. Sign petitions, share stories and spread the message:
Say NO to [radical] Islam.
By Hugh Fitzgerald
March 23, 2017
Mother Jones is a left-wing publication that, while it seldom – and possibly never — has had a kind word for Christianity in its history, turns out to be a stout defender of Islam. How the Left fell so hard for Islam is a puzzlement, for a more retrograde faith — misogynistic, supremacist, homophobic, protective of slavery, one that severely restricts freedom of speech and thought, and even what kinds of artistic expression are allowed (for example, forbidding paintings and statues of people and animals because of what, according to various “reliable” Hadiths, Muhammad said about “pictures”) — can scarcely be imagined. Violent and aggressive, this is a faith whose adherents have a 1400-year history of conquering many different lands and subjugating many different peoples. None of this appears to have made an impression on the mickey-mockers at Mother Jones.
The magazine’s latest screed on Islam, by one Bryan Schatz, comes to the stout defense of that inexplicably maligned faith. According to Schatz, those who call Islam a “political ideology” rather than a “religion” must be wrong, not because he has himself made the attempt to see if it makes sense to define Islam, at least in part, as a “political ideology,” but only because the people who do so are President Trump’s loyal retinue, and therefore, in the logic of Mother Jones, whatever they say perforce must be false; there is no need for further discussion. If Lt. General Flynn (still a Trump adviser in spirit, if no longer in letter) says that “I don’t see Islam as a religion. I see it as a political ideology that…will mask itself as a religion globally….it can hide behind and protect itself by what we call freedom of religion,” that can’t possibly be true, because the right-wing General Flynn has said it. When Steve Bannon says that Islam “is a political ideology,” criticizes former President Bush for calling Islam “a religion of peace,” and suggests that there is an “existential war” between Islam and the West — statements that many thoughtful people who have studied Islam, or grown up in Islam only to reject it, agree with Bannon about – Schatz again dismisses this, because Bannon said it. And Bannon is part of some “right-wing,” “alt-right,” “hate- speechifying Islamophobic group” — we know this must be because it keeps being repeated — and therefore no argument needs to be offered against what he maintains. The Mother Jones writer describes Bannon’s as an “us-versus-them” argument; Schatz would have it that the war originates with “us,” Islamophobes, hostile to peaceful Muslims, and not as Bannon & Co. would have it, originating with “them,” the hatred of Muslims for Unbelievers mandated by the Qur’an and Hadith. No arguments, of course, are necessary. It’s all ad hominem; if Bannon said it, his reputation having been comprehensively and deliberately sullied by his political enemies, it must be false.
Nor is Samuel Huntington, the mild-mannered Harvard academic who died in 2008, spared for his views that the contemporary world could best be understood as now divided not among countries but according to eight “civilizations,” which he identified as: (i) Western, (ii) Latin American, (iii) Islamic, (iv) Sinic (Chinese), (v) Hindu, (vi) Orthodox, (vii) Japanese, and (viii) African. Huntington claimed that the most severe antagonism, the one that merited being described as a “clash of civilizations,” was that between Islam and the West. Schatz gives Huntington’s views complicated views only a one-sentence summary, and dismisses them for no other reason than that they have been echoed by “conservative evangelicals” and “the far-right fringe.” If Huntington’s views deserve criticism, it would surely be not that he was too hard on Islam, but too soft, that is he failed to see that Islamic civilization permanently “clashed” not only with the West, but with all seven of the other “civilizations” he identified.
Bryan Schatz goes after, too, those outside the government and universities, that is, the extremist, right-wing, Christian clergy, who spew their anti-Islamic rhetoric as such fanatical Christians always do (for Mother Jones, Muslims, funnily enough, are never fanatical), such people as the Rev. Jerry Falwell, who called Muhammed a “demon-possessed pedophile.” Mother Jones carefully refrains from mentioning why Falwell might have described him thus – the fact of Muhammad’s consummation of his marriage to little Aisha when she was nine years old. Readers are thus left with the impression that Falwell pulls these preposterous charges out of thin air, without any conceivable basis in fact (but it’s a fact clearly spelled out in the most respected collection of Hadith, Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 5, Book 58, 34 and 36). Then there is Pat Robertson, another “right-wing” Christian, who claims that Islam is “not a religion…but a worldwide political movement bent on domination of the world.” Now where could Robertson have gotten that idea? Possibly from the Qur’an, with its more than one hundred “Jihad verses”? But Pat Robertson said it, and therefore it cannot possibly be true. And Schatz reminds us of Lt. General Jerry Boykin, who believes that Islam should not be given First Amendment protection, because “those following the dictates of the Quran are under an obligation to destroy our Constitution and replace it with Sharia law.” Is there any evidence that the Sharia and the American Constitution flatly contradict each other on such matters as freedom of speech and the establishment and free exercise clauses? Shouldn’t Schatz have looked into Boykin’s assertions to see if there might be something to them, rather than treat them as self-evidently absurd to all right-thinking readers of Mother Jones, and thus not worth discussing?
As for Robert Spencer, who doesn’t quite fit into any mold, and certainly not that of a Trump-camp-follower or of the “right-wing” Christian-clergy, although he has written 16 books and many thousands of postings at several online sites, always copiously quoting from the Qur’an and Hadith, he is identified only as “the director of the Islamophobic site Jihad Watch,” without Schatz adducing a single sentence of Spencer’s as evidence of that claimed “Islamophobia.”
What is wrong with declaring Islam to be a “political ideology” — that is, only that and nothing more — is that one opens oneself unnecessarily to criticism that can easily be avoided. Why not concede that Islam is both a religion and a political ideology? Concede, that is, that the Qur’an establishes rules for worship for Believers, the Five Pillars of Islam, describes the characteristics of Allah and his relation to Believers, and also provides rules for Jihad, for the war against the Unbelievers that cannot end until the complete submission of everyone to the rule of Islam is attained, so that Islam everywhere dominates and Muslims rule everywhere. Having conceded that Islam is partly a religion, as ordinarily understood, we are then in a stronger position to insist, more in sorrow, that “unfortunately, Islam is also a political ideology, an ideology of conquest, and we have a responsibility to recognize this, in order to better protect ourselves and our own civilization. And we must remember, too, that this conquest need not take place on a battlefield. There are many instruments of Jihad. Terrorism, propaganda, the money weapon, and now, the newest and most effective and least understood weapon to spread Islam, demographic conquest, which Muslims discuss quite openly, for they assume that Europe, having opened itself up to millions of Muslims (there are now more than 50 million Muslims in Europe), can do nothing, at this point, to halt or reverse that human tide. And this we cannot ignore.” The tone is different, one of reason but also justified anxiety, and the information conveyed important.
Mother Jones can keep on with its mindless campaign of loathing and ridicule for all those who are dismissed as “right-wing” extremists, crazed Christians, or people who, like Robert Spencer, are pigeonholed as members of a “cottage industry of Islamophobic misinformation.” But not once in this article (or in many others that the magazine has published on the same theme) is there any attempt to rebut what has been said about Islam. The complacent dismissal of those whom “no one” can possibly take seriously is wearing thin.
Could any fair-minded person, having read and studied the Qur’an , fail to see how much of it is devoted to warfare against the Unbelievers? How could such a person not notice that Jihad is the supreme duty of Muslims, and that once conquered by them, Unbelievers are left with only three choices: to be converted, or killed, or required to pay the onerous Jizyah? Isn’t the uncompromising division of the world into Dar al-Islam and Dar al-Harb a political matter? Isn’t the duty of Jihad against the Unbelievers part of a “political ideology”? Aren’t the rules of warfare, set down in the Qur’an and the Hadith, including even how the spoils of war are to be divided among the victorious Muslims (with Muhammad taking 20%) more properly described as being part of a “political ideology” and not part of what we think of as a religion? Doesn’t commanding Muslims to avoid taking Christians and Jews as friends, “for they are friends only with each other,” belong to a “worldwide political movement, bent on domination of the world,” as Pat Robertson said? Doesn’t Islam set out rules for the conquest of Unbelievers, describe what varied methods can be used to conquer them, and focus on Jihad through armed conflict, including acts which “strike terror” in the hearts of the Unbelievers? Isn’t it true that of the 200 times the word “Jihad” appears in the Sahih Bukhari (the preeminent Hadith collection), 98% of them refer to “Jihad” in the sense of armed conflict? Does that seem to you to be part of a “religion” or is it, rather, part of a blueprint for world conquest?
Finally, how long can Mother Jones get away with the transparent strategy of listing the names of those it vilifies as being “right-wing” or “Islamophobic” in order to spare itself the bother of coming to grips with the assertion that Islam is indeed, for the most part, a “political ideology”? What happens when the reality of Muslim behavior around the world leads more Unbelievers, by slow degrees, to see the wisdom of those who, based on their knowledge both of Islamic texts and 1400 years of Islamic history call Islam a “political ideology”? And they will do so because, as any Believer (and Unbeliever too) can understand, Islam sets out a plan for conquest and rule over Infidels everywhere, describes the ideal of the Islamic state, governed according to the Sharia, and details how this is all to be achieved.
Particularly of note is how writers in Mother Jones appear to believe that opposition to Islam is a new thing, the result of a whipped-up hysteria from these dangerous people now in the corridors of power who have been allowed to promote what Mother Jones calls “a crazy idea that went from the fringe to the White House.” Actually, ever since the 7th century, the real “crazy idea” in the West was that Islam is only a “religion,” that it is “peaceful,” and that it is absurd to be alarmed over its territorial conquests and increase in both numbers and power. We have, after all, 1400 years of history to examine, and in the long history of Islam’s encounter with the West, the “crazy idea” that Islam’s adherents were hellbent on conquest was shared by almost every thoughtful person. Statesmen, writers, philosophers, theologians, scholars of Islam — none of them to be dismissed as “right wing”– understood Islam in a no-nonsense, and therefore highly critical fashion. Many of their statements have been repeatedly posted on the web, but none of them make it to the pages of Mother Jones, for they eloquently undermine that magazine’s narrative.
There was Winston Churchill, who drew his conclusions from observing Muslims in the Sudan in 1898-99, when he was a war correspondent with the 21st Lancers as they fought the Mahdists:
How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. The effects are apparent in many countries, improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live.
A degraded sensualism deprives this life of its grace and refinement, the next of its dignity and sanctity. The fact that in Mohammedan law every woman must belong to some man as his absolute property, either as a child, a wife, or a concubine, must delay the final extinction of slavery until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men.
Individual Muslims may show splendid qualities, but the influence of the religion paralyses the social development of those who follow it. No stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science, the science against which it had vainly struggled, the civilization of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilization of ancient Rome.
For the kind of people who write for, and read, Mother Jones, no doubt Churchill can be dismissed — too “right-wing,” too much of a “colonialist” to be taken to heart. After all, didn’t Obama remove Churchill’s bust from his office? Doesn’t that mean Churchill need not be heeded? But can they deny that “Mohammedanism” was and is now a “militant and proselytizing faith”? Or that in Islam women are in all respects inferior to men, if not always, pace Churchill, their “absolute property”? Slavery is part of Islam, as Churchill wrote truly, for slavery remains permanently sanctioned by Islam and by the practice of Muhammad, who owned and traded in slaves. Slavery was outlawed in Muslim countries very late, and only under Western pressure. There was no Muslim William Wilberforce. There are still Muslim clerics today, as well as members of the Islamic State, who maintain that slavery is part of Islam, and who are especially pleased to make sex slaves of the Yazidi and Christian girls (in Syria, in Iraq, in Nigeria) they captured.
But let’s leave Churchill’s vivid impressions of the “Mohammedans” aside, and turn to our most scholarly president, John Quincy Adams, and his 70-page study of Islam. Adams was an early opponent of slavery, who famously argued on behalf of rebel slaves before the Supreme Court in the Amistad case. John Quincy Adams studied Islam at length, and his conclusion, long before Bannon and Flynn and Pat Robertson, was eloquent, severe, and grim:
…he [Muhammad] declared undistinguishing and exterminating war, as a part of his religion, against all the rest of mankind…The precept of the Koran is, perpetual war against all who deny, that Mahomet is the prophet of God.
In the seventh century of the Christian era, a wandering Arab of the lineage of Hagar [i.e., Muhammad], the Egyptian, combining the powers of transcendent genius, with the preternatural energy of a fanatic, and the fraudulent spirit of an impostor, proclaimed himself as a messenger from Heaven, and spread desolation and delusion over an extensive portion of the earth. Adopting from the sublime conception of the Mosaic law, the doctrine of one omnipotent God; he connected indissolubly with it, the audacious falsehood, that he was himself his prophet and apostle. Adopting from the new Revelation of Jesus, the faith and hope of immortal life, and of future retribution, he humbled it to the dust by adapting all the rewards and sanctions of his religion to the gratification of the sexual passion. He poisoned the sources of human felicity at the fountain, by degrading the condition of the female sex, and the allowance of polygamy; and he declared undistinguishing and exterminating war, as a part of his religion, against all the rest of mankind. THE ESSENCE OF HIS DOCTRINE WAS VIOLENCE AND LUST: TO EXALT THE BRUTAL OVER THE SPIRITUAL PART OF HUMAN NATURE [Adam’s capital letters]….Between these two religions, thus contrasted in their characters, a war of twelve hundred years has already raged. The war is yet flagrant…While the merciless and dissolute dogmas of the false prophet shall furnish motives to human action, there can never be peace upon earth, and good will towards men.
As the essential principle of his faith is the subjugation of others by the sword; it is only by force, that his false doctrines can be dispelled, and his power annihilated. They [The Russians] have been from time immemorial, in a state of almost perpetual war with the Tatars, and with their successors, the Ottoman conquerors of Constantinople. It were an idle waste of time to trace the causes of each renewal of hostilities, during a succession of several centuries. The precept of the Koran is, perpetual war against all who deny, that Mahomet is the prophet of God. The vanquished may purchase their lives, by the payment of tribute; the victorious may be appeased by a false and delusive promise of peace; and the faithful follower of the prophet, may submit to the imperious necessities of defeat: but the command to propagate the Moslem creed by the sword is always obligatory, when it can be made effective. The commands of the prophet may be performed alike, by fraud, or by force. Of Mahometan good faith, we have had memorable examples ourselves. When our gallant [Stephen] Decatur ref had chastised the pirate of Algiers, till he was ready to renounce his claim of tribute from the United States, he signed a treaty to that effect: but the treaty was drawn up in the Arabic language, as well as in our own; and our negotiators, unacquainted with the language of the Koran, signed the copies of the treaty, in both languages, not imagining that there was any difference between them. Within a year the Dey demands, under penalty of the renewal of the war, an indemnity in money for the frigate taken by Decatur; our Consul demands the foundation of this pretension; and the Arabic copy of the treaty, signed by himself is produced, with an article stipulating the indemnity, foisted into it, in direct opposition to the treaty as it had been concluded. The arrival of Chauncey, with a squadron before Algiers, silenced the fraudulent claim of the Dey, and he signed a new treaty in which it was abandoned; but he disdained to conceal his intentions; my power, said he, has been wrested from my hands; draw ye the treaty at your pleasure, and I will sign it; but beware of the moment, when I shall recover my power, for with that moment, your treaty shall be waste paper. He avowed what they always practised, and would without scruple have practised himself. Such is the spirit, which governs the hearts of men, to whom treachery and violence are taught as principles of religion.
That was John Quincy Adams, more severe on Islam than any of those accused by Mother Jones of “Islamophobia.” Has Mother Jones ever alluded to what that great liberal, and hero of the Amistad case, thought of Islam? Shouldn’t a decent respect for the opinions of mankind include the opinions of those who lived in the intelligent past? Were the texts and teachings of Islam in 1830 any different from its texts and teachings today?
Then there is Jefferson, who had dealings with those envoys of North African Muslims known to us as the Barbary Pirates, recording the words of Tripoli’s envoy to London:
In reference to the Islamic slave trade of Americans and Europeans by the Barbary states, Jefferson asked Tripoli’s envoy to London, Ambassador Sidi Haji Abdrahaman, by what right he extorted money and took slaves in this way. He answered:
The ambassador answered us that [the right] was founded on the Laws of the Prophet, that it was written in their Koran, that all nations who should not have answered their authority were sinners, that it was their right and duty to make war upon them wherever they could be found, and to make slaves of all they could take as prisoners, and that every Mussulman who should be slain in battle was sure to go to Paradise.
And while Mother Jones seems to believe that it is fanatical Christians who are the most anti-Islam, it is that famous skeptic and freethinker, David Hume, an enemy to all organized religion, regarded by most of his contemporaries as an atheist and anti-Christian, who even harsher in his verdict on Islam than any falwell or robertson. To wit:
The admirers and followers of the Alcoran insist on the excellent moral precepts interspersed through that wild and absurd performance. But it is to be supposed, that the Arabic words, which correspond to the English, equity, justice, temperance, meekness, charity were such as, from the constant use of that tongue, must always be taken in a good sense; and it would have argued the greatest ignorance, not of morals, but of language, to have mentioned them with any epithets, besides those of applause and approbation. But would we know, whether the pretended prophet had really attained a just sentiment of morals? Let us attend to his narration; and we shall soon find, that he bestows praise on such instances of treachery, inhumanity, cruelty, revenge, bigotry, as are utterly incompatible with civilized society. No steady rule of right seems there to be attended to; and every action is blamed or praised, so far only as it is beneficial or hurtful to the true believers.
Another famous scoffer at Christianity, Mark Twain, thought even less of Islam:
When I, a thoughtful and unblessed Presbyterian, examine the Koran, I know that beyond any question every Mohammedan is insane; not in all things, but in religious matters.
George Bernard Shaw, who took whacks at both Islam and Christianity, clearly found Islam the more disturbing of the two:
Islam is very different [from Christianity], being ferociously intolerant. What I may call Manifold Monotheism becomes in the minds of very simple folk an absurdly polytheistic idolatry, just as European peasants not only worship Saints and the Virgin as Gods, but will fight fanatically for their faith in the ugly little black doll who is the Virgin of their own Church against the black doll of the next village. When the Arabs had run this sort of idolatry to such extremes [that] they did this without black dolls and worshipped any stone that looked funny, Mahomet rose up at the risk of his life and insulted the stones shockingly, declaring that there is only one God, Allah, the glorious, the great… And there was to be no nonsense about toleration.
And then there is Bertrand Russell, whom one would have thought Mother Jones would approve of, for writing Why I Am Not A Christian and for setting up a War Crimes Tribunal, with America intended to be in the dock for the war in Vietnam, and for his general latter-day left-wing take on the world. But they don’t care, or dare, to quote Russell on Islam:
Among religions, Bolshevism is to be reckoned with Mohammedanism rather than with Christianity and Buddhism. Christianity and Buddhism are primarily personal religions, with mystical doctrines and a love of contemplation. Mohammedanism and Bolshevism are practical, social, unspiritual, concerned to win the empire of the world.
Immediately after his [Muhammed’s] death the conquests began, and they proceeded with rapidity… Westward expansion (except in Sicily and Southern Italy) was brought to a standstill by the defeat of the Mohammedans at the battle of Tours in 732, just one hundred years after the death of the Prophet… It was the duty of the faithful to conquer as much of the world as possible for Islam… The first conquests of the Arabs began as mere raids for plunder, and only turned into permanent occupation after experience has shown the weakness of the enemy… The Arabs, although they conquered a great part of the world in the name of a new religion were not a very religious race; the motive of their conquests was plunder and wealth rather than religion.
Does this differ in any essential way from what Bannon or Flynn or Robertson or Falwell say today?
Then there is Oriana Fallaci. Even Mother Jones doesn’t dare to call her “right-wing.” She was for forty years the most famous left-wing journalist in Italy. As a teenager, she was in the anti-fascist resistance, which at the time also meant risking her life trying to prevent the Nazis from blowing up historic sites in Florence (they blew up all the bridges over the Arno – the Ponte Vecchio alone was spared). At seventeen she became a journalist. She spent time with the Viet Cong, and denounced the American war in Vietnam. She had a long-term lover, Alexandros Panagoulis, who was a one-man resistance movement against the Greek dictator, Colonel Papadopoulos. He died – was likely murdered — in a “road accident.” Fallaci wrote a book about Panagoulis, Un Uomo. She spent a lot of time reporting on Muslims in the Middle East, writing a book on women in Islam, The Useless Sex. She spent time with a PLO squad, coming under Israeli fire, and interviewed Arafat, Khomeini, and Qaddafi, among others. She came to detest, through living among and observing Muslims, the ideology of Islam and those who took it to heart. She was particularly disturbed as she saw Muslims entering and settling in Italy and especially in her beloved Tuscany, and busily building mosques, even in Colle Val d’Elsa, that most Tuscan of little hill towns between Florence and Siena.
She vividly describes how Muslim migrants would urinate and defecate on artistic treasures in Florence, including the celebrated bronze doors at the Baptistery – the “Gates of Heaven” by Lorenzo Ghiberti. Right after 9/11, Fallaci wrote a furious article about the behavior of Muslims in the West; it took up four full pages in the Corriere della Sera; she then turned it into a book, The Rage and the Pride, a full-bore attack on Islam and Muslims that does not mince words, and that has sold millions of copies. This biographical note is meant to show that it is perfectly possible to be politically on the left all of one’s life and also be furiously anti-Islam, a possibility which the writers for Mother Jones seem incapable of grasping. Perhaps if they read Oriana Fallaci, and saw how she out-bannons Bannon, or studied John Quincy Adams, who out-falwells Falwell, they might be persuaded to themselves read the Qur’an and Hadith with attention, to learn something of the history of Islamic conquest, and to treat with respect the views of so many of those in the intelligent past, such as Hume and Russell, Churchill and Shaw, Pascal and Twain, Montesquieu and Schopenhauer, who had nothing good to say about Islam. And one might ask the Mother Jones writers to take a look at the studied verdict on Islam of so many other distinguished students of Islam from the past. They might start here.
It would be interesting to see if the Mother Jones writers can come up with list of notable non-Muslims who were favorably impressed with Islam. How long and impressive would such a list be? Of course we all know one person who was deeply impressed by Islam. But I’m not sure Adolf Hitler ought to be used as a reference. And what did those who admired aspects Islam find to admire beyond the fanatical faith of the Believers that made them so willing to die? Try yourself to find anyone who praises Islam for something else.
And ask yourself, too, in the world today, which regime is now the most ferociously anti-Islam of all? It turns out to be Communist China, where worry over the Muslims in Xinjiang has led the Communist authorities in Beijing to impose a series of anti-Muslim measures much stronger than anything that has been done in the West. The Communist Chinese require that all restaurants remain open during Ramadan, and that fasting during Ramadan be banned. The same government requires that women be banned from wearing the burqa in public, and men with long beards prohibited from riding buses, the stated reason being that explosives and other weapons could be concealed behind burqas or beards. Muslim websites are unceremoniously removed from the Internet by the Chinese authorities. The Chinese leaders have denounced the Dalai Lama because he called for entering into a dialogue with the Islamic State. The Communist Chinese do not treat the Dalai Lama, whose remarks on Islam have become increasingly bizarre, with the automatic respect he gets, but no longer deserves, in the West. And in the last three months of 2016, the Chinese government demolished 5000 mosques, or 70% of those originally standing in Xinjiang. The stated reason was that of “public safety,” that is, the mosques were supposedly so dilapidated that they might collapse. No one in Xinjiang was fooled.
So what does Mother Jones think of the Chinese Communist view of Islam? Are the boys in Beijing just too “right-wing” and “alt-right” for the magazine’s taste? Is that what explains why the Chinese now prevent Ramadan from being celebrated, or why they recently demolished 5000 mosques in Xinjiang? Is it possible the Chinese know something about Islam, and the menace its adherents presents to Unbelievers everywhere, that doesn’t quite fit the world view of the mickey-mockers at Mother Jones?