Saturday, February 20, 2010

Not too bad to be true

This report appeared in the online Washington Times today:

"Apostasy killing of former Muslims could become widespread in the United States if the U.S. government and Americans don't "wake up," a panel of three former Muslims said on Capitol Hill Thursday.

"The talk, hosted by three members of the new civil rights organization Former Muslims United, marked the first public appearance as a self-proclaimed "apostate" of Iranian journalist Amil Imani, president of the group. Imani and the panel's two other speakers, authors Nonie Darwish and Wafa Sultan, told the audience that ingrained American religious and ethnic tolerance and myths about Islam are combining to gravely threaten the West."

A Muslim commenter going by the handle of "mustafakhattab" quibbled that "nowhere in the Qur'an will anyone find a verse say kill the apostates [sic]" and enquired, "Isn't what they say too bad to be true?!" No, it isn't. As "mustafakhattab" doubtless knows very well, Muhammad's mandate to kill apostates is found not in the Qur'an but in a hadith in Sahih Bukhari (Volume 9, Book 84, Number 57):

Narrated 'Ikrima: Some Zanadiqa (atheists) were brought to 'Ali and he burnt them. The news of this event, reached Ibn 'Abbas who said, "If I had been in his place, I would not have burnt them, as Allah's Apostle forbade it, saying, 'Do not punish anybody with Allah's punishment (fire).' I would have killed them according to the statement of Allah's Apostle, 'Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him.' "

Friday, February 19, 2010

A stirring event

This morning I attended the Freedom Defense Initiative’s inaugural event at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington, D.C. Held in tandem with the annual Conservative Political Action Conference, this event was arranged by Jihad Watch director Robert Spencer, Islam’s most trenchant contemporary critic, and Pamela Geller, compiler of the outstanding Atlas Shrugs blog.

This was a stirring event with dynamic speakers, each with a compelling story. Former Defense Department analyst Stephen Coughlin was exceedingly informative, and his point that official American self-censorship regarding Islam and jihad has given the enemy a "decisive victory in the information battlespace" was truly chilling. Coughlin, whose perceptions got him crosswise with Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England’s Muslim sidekick Hesham Islam and later excluded from the DoD, insisted that those entrusted with protecting Americans from Islamic terrorism have a “professional duty to know” about the roots of said terrorism’s doctrine in Islamic scripture and tradition. After all, he pointed out, the murderous rampage at Fort Hood, Texas, by Muslim U.S. Army Major Nidal Hasan had a “doctrinal driver,” as evinced by Hasan’s own presentation to his Army medical colleagues calling for Muslim service personnel to be accorded conscientious objector status lest “adverse events” occur. The enemy, Coughlin observed, has stated his doctrine. Can we, he enquired, be politically correct and threat-focused at the same time? No way – because, he concluded, “You cannot defeat an enemy you will not define.” Coughlin's thesis on jihad doctrine may be accessed here. It is lengthy but gripping, and is a must-read.

Psychiatrist Wafa Sultan, a native of Syria and now an American, gave a ringing indictment of Islam – a creed, she declared, that is “not merely a religion but an extremely dangerous adversary that aspires to world domination.” Sultan, who had the grit to take on a Muslim cleric in his own Arabic tongue on Al-Jazeera TV, pointed out that the Islamic teachings cited by Muslims who demand an exemption for their co-religionists from new airport scanning techniques are the very teachings that motivated 19 Muslims to fly airliners into the World Trade Center towers and the Pentagon on 9/11, thus necessitating the scanning in the first place. This she characterized as “absolutely outrageous.” She concluded by quoting Thomas Paine in her exhortation to resist Islam "now - right now!" Sultan has written a book about her experiences, titled “A God Who Hates: The Courageous Woman Who Inflamed the Muslim World Speaks Out Against the Evils of Islam” (St. Martin’s Press).

Simon Deng, African-born and now an American, appeared, he said, as "a voice for those who have no voice," remaining as they do under Islam's yoke in his native Sudan. He told of being captured by Arab bands as a child and enslaved for three years. But today, he declared, “I stand before you as a free man in a free nation.” He warned Americans against complacency in the face of the international jihad. Anders Gravers of Denmark, leader of SIOE (Stop the Islamisation of Europe) and Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff of Austria, who is facing spurious “hate speech” charges in her native country, spoke eloquently about the grim situation regarding Islam and free speech in Europe. And Allen West, a retired U.S. Army light colonel and a candidate for Congress in the 22nd District of Florida, referred in his talk to the Treaty of Hudibayah and Muhammad's letter to the Byzantine Emperor Heraclius, showing that he has read into the history of Islamic imperialism (truly a rarity among politicians). “Sharia (Islamic law) is incompatible with who we are,” he declared, pointedly adding that “I’m not living as a dhimmi (Islamic subject).” He concluded by quoting Ronald Reagan’s succinct policy - “We win, they lose!” – in which the crowd joined in, giving him a thunderous ovation afterwards.

This event was a great lift. Listening to these brave leaders gave me hope and rekindled my own resolve. Kudos to Robert and Pamela for getting them together and ensuring they were heard.

Photo credit: Pamela Geller

Monday, March 2, 2009

A fit over Fitna

Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch, Pamela Geller of Atlas Shrugs, Baron Bodissey of Gates of Vienna and Andrew Bostom have all covered Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders' triumphal Washington appearance last week far better than I could hope to. Suffice it to note that among the scurrilous Islamic/leftist reactions to Wilders' presentation was a post by Muslim activist Eboo Patel, who slagged the Dutchman as a "foreign element threatening America" in his Washington Post/Newsweek blog. Patel also noted that Muslim congressman and former Nation of Islam activist Keith Ellison (AKA Keith E. Hakim, Keith X Ellison, and Keith Ellison-Muhammad), D-Minn., compared the Capitol screening of Wilders' documentary film Fitna "to screening the horribly racist film The Birth of the Nation in the White House."

Patel went on to rhetorically bleat, "Shouldn't Capitol Hill be amplifying our tradition of pluralism rather than returning to the dark days of racism?" (as though resistance to Muslim aggression has anything whatever to do with race) and "Should we engage one-fifth of the world's population by punching them in the mouth or by reaching our hand out in friendship?" (The question raised by Fitna, of course, is just who has been punching whom.) Patel is the head of something called the Interfaith Youth Core and appears to be a great favorite of the tax-funded "public" media. It is accordingly unlikely that this is the last we'll hear of him.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Rocky crumbles

The Rocky Mountain News of Denver, established in 1859, is shutting down as of Friday.

This is very wretched news indeed, for the paper was one of only three major ones in the United States to have run any of the Danish Muhammad cartoons during the international propaganda jihad against them in February 2006. (The other two were the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Austin American-Statesman.) Remarked editor John Temple at the time:

"This whole experience of publishing these cartoons has been enough for me to want to wear a Danish flag pin in solidarity with that country and to regret -- at least during this test of journalism's commitment to free speech -- my membership in the American Society of Newspaper Editors."

However that may have been, at least Temple had the satisfaction of doing the right thing -- of standing in solidarity with his fellow journalists in Denmark, of defending the freedom of the press worldwide, and of pushing back against Islam's odious demands for self-censorship. My own paper, the East Valley Tribune of Mesa, Arizona, faltered in this regard despite my entreaties that it do likewise, prompting my eventual resignation in protest.

Today Temple told his staff, "To me, this is the very sad end of a beautiful thing." Amen to that.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Obama writes Ihsanoglu

BHO says the United States can work with the Organization of the Islamic Conference and that he will strive to improve relations with the group, according to a letter he has sent to OIC Secretary General Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu.

Really? And how does this promise of comity square with the conflict between our core value of free expression, affirmed by the First Amendment to our Consititution, and Item VII, Clause 3 of the OIC's "Ten-Year Programme of Action: "Endeavor to have the United Nations adopt an international resolution to counter Islamophobia, and call upon all States to enact laws to counter it, including deterrent punishments"? (Emphasis mine.)

On the third anniversary of the outbreak of Muslim rage over the Danish Muhammad cartoons, and at a time when Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders faces prosecution in his homeland for his pointed criticism of Islam and its adherents, this is hardly an academic question. It is all the more acute in view of the OIC's proposal to hold an "anti-Islamophobia" conference in the United States this year, made by Ihsanoglu to the Malaysian government last summer. Ihsanoglu, according to Malaysian Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim, "said the United States was chosen as the venue for the convention because of the polemic on Islam in that country as well as the wide media coverage it would get." Moreover, the Malaysian newspaper The Star reported, the Malaysian government pitched the idea of this conference "to the US representative to the OIC during an earlier meeting in Kuala Lumpur."

BHO's letter to the OIC raises the question of how his administration will respond to the group's demand for laws criminalizing criticism, analysis, exposure and mockery of Islam and its followers -- particularly when said demand is being made in his own country. He will be under intense political pressure to accede to it; a pressure that his own truckling efforts at "outreach" will only have exacerbated.

Update: Jihad Watch, The Jawa Report and Atlas Shrugs now have posts on this. Many thanks to all for getting the word out.

Friday, January 16, 2009

An open letter to James Taranto

In today's edition of "Best of the Web Today" -- always a must-read -- the Wall Street Journal's James Taranto made a proposal that prompted the following:

Dear Mr. Taranto:

Your proposal that the term "Islamic supremacy" be used in preference to "terrorism" is sound. However, it behooves you to note that this term has been in use for at least a couple of years at the Jihad Watch website by Robert Spencer, the eminent scholar and polemicist who, as far as I am aware, was the man who coined it.

Moreover, you speak of "non-supremacist Muslims" -- a term that is quite problematic, in view of the sundry verses of the Qur'an assuring Muslims that they are "the best of peoples" (e.g., verse 3:110) and that unbelievers are "the worst of creatures" (e.g., verse 98:6). Given the status of such characterizations in Islam as the eternal, uncreated word of God, passed down to Muhammad through the angel Gabriel, how many genuinely "non-supremacist" Muslims can there be? Few if any, I venture to suggest.


Paul Green

Thursday, December 18, 2008

At war? Absolutely.

This morning Robert Spencer at Jihad Watch posted an elegy to the conservative activist Paul Weyrich, who died today. In the comments thereto, a Muslim troll who posts under the moniker of "Abdullah Mikail" responded to Spencer's characterization of Weyrich as a man "determined to defend the West and present the truth" about Islam with the snide quip that "he knows the truth now." Several commenters having taken him to task for the implication that the deceased is now suffering the sundry torments prescribed in the Qur'an for unbelievers, he protested that he had made his statement with "no malice intended." This struck your correspondent as being very much in line with Muhammad's dictum (recorded in the hadith collection of Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 52, numbers 268, 269) that "War is deceit," and I made a brief post to that effect. This prompted a declaration that I am an "idiot who thinks you are at war."

One generally oughtn't to get sucked into these Internet micturition competitions, as they can be a great waste of time. However that may be, I composed a rejoinder that seems worth putting up here:

"Listen up, boy. I know I'm at war with the odious creed of Islam, because the book the adherents to said creed hold to be the immutable word of God has made that incontrovertibly clear. For example, Verse 9:29 commands Muslims to:

Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge 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.

And were there any doubt as to the gist of that Qur'anic mandate, the exegis of Ibn Kathir clears things up. In his tafsir on Verse 9:29, that eminent Muslim scholar explained that "subdued" means

... disgraced, humiliated and belittled. Therefore, Muslims are not allowed to honor the people of Dhimmah or elevate them above Muslims, for they are miserable, disgraced and humiliated.

Ibn Kathir goes on to note in this tafsir that

`Umar bin Al-Khattab, may Allah be pleased with him, demanded his well-known conditions be met by the Christians, these conditions that ensured their continued humiliation, degradation and disgrace.

He also lists Umar's conditions, among which are that

We will not teach our children the Qur'an ...

Indeed. The better to keep them in ignorance of Islam, the malign creed whose true believers will ever be at war with free men who refuse to 'feel themselves subdued.' "