Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
By Walid Phares
Co-Editor's Note: Walid Phares was interviewed on C-SPAN on November 20 about this tape - watch here.)
As observers were awaiting the release of the "official" al Qaeda position regarding the election of Barack Obama as the new President of the United States, seasoned experts on the Jihadist movement had little doubts as to the substance of the main message. As I have outlined in my appearances on Arabic television channels since November 4, Bin Laden or his second in command was expected to declare that their "Jihad" will continue despite the election of an African American President and despite Obama’s intention to withdraw from Iraq. Ayman Zawahiri did just that on Wednesday in his latest message to his supporters and his enemies: even if the war ends in Iraq, the global war will continue everywhere.
The tape was expected to appear a couple weeks after the election because of al Qaeda's method of monitoring the reactions of the international community, of the Arab and Muslim world and also of other Islamist authorities. The Bin Laden-Zawahiri style is to give the "last word," like a Caliph would. The points raised in the tape were almost all predicted by experts familiar with the Jihadi-combat mind set: Although a new president was elected - one who would reverse some of Bush’s policies, the new president will devise new strategies to defeat al Qaeda.. Zawahiri isn't buying the version proposed by other anti-American critics of Washington's War on Terror. Most of Europe's left, the Arab authoritarian regimes, and the Islamist fundamentalist establishment have all welcomed the news of an Obama victory and are tailoring new proposals for the region's future (of course to their advantage). But not al Qaeda. That's why this Zawahiri message is important. It is telling the world and allies that there will be no respite in the conflict.
The al Qaeda’s number two had to address the election of a Black President of the United States because of the two massive changes this choice has brought to the Jihadist agenda: On the one hand, Obama is very popular in the eyes of international public opinion; on the other hand the President elect is planning on withdrawing from Iraq and pushing forward in Afghanistan. All this changes al Qaeda's game. Zawahiri's tape had to address these "challenges" as pressure was mounting among Jihadists to deal with this election. Hence, the main points presented by the audio message are as follows:
1. The election of Obama is a defeat to the United States in Iraq and a victory to the Jihadists
In his tape Zawahiri congratulates the Muslim world
"on the American people's admission of defeat in Iraq. Although the evidence of America's defeat in Iraq appeared years ago, Bush and his administration continued to be stubborn and deny the brilliant midday sun. If Bush has achieved anything, it is in his transfer of America's disaster and predicament to his successor. But the American people, by electing Obama, declared its anxiety and apprehension about the future towards which the policy of the likes of Bush is leading it, and so it decided to support someone calling for withdrawal from Iraq"
In al Qaeda's lexicon it is crucial to demonstrate to their supporters that it is "their" actions (terror in Iraq) which convinced, if not intimidated, American voters into voting against McCain and electing Obama. Zawahiri wants al Qaeda to be credited for the behavior of America's voting majority in the same way it took credit for the change in electoral direction that took place in Madrid after the March 11, 2004 attacks.
2. A warning to Obama: Don't send additional troops to Afghanistan
Zawahiri then sends a warning to President elect Obama:
"The second of these messages is to the new president of the United States. I tell him: you have reached the position of president, and a heavy legacy of failure and crimes awaits you. A failure in Iraq to which you have admitted, and a failure in Afghanistan to which the commanders of your army have admitted. The other thing to which I want to bring your attention is that what you've announced about how you're going to reach an understanding with Iran and pull your troops out of Iraq to send them to Afghanistan is a policy which was destined for failure before it was born. It appears that you don't know anything about the Muslim Ummah and its history, and the fate of the traitors who cooperated with the invaders against it, and don't know anything about the history of Afghanistan and its free and defiant Muslim people. And if you still want to be stubborn about America's failure in Afghanistan, then remember the fate of Bush and Pervez Musharraf, and the fate of the Soviets and British before them. And be aware that the dogs of Afghanistan have found the flesh of your soldiers to be delicious, so send thousands after thousands to them."
If victory has been achieved by the Jihadists against the United States in Iraq by forcing the new Administration to pull out of that country, in Zawahiri's mind, another defeat awaits America in Afghanistan according to al Qaeda's latest message. The logic of endless Jihad seems to be that wherever American forces would be sent, the Jihadists will meet them for a fight until the US redeploys its contingents from around the world, back to "its borders" as previous al Qaeda messages have underlined.
4. The same US aggression remains
Concerned about the sympathy emerging from around the world and within the Muslim community regarding the new President, Zawahiri reminds his Islamist followers that "crimes have been committed and the mentality that produced them is still around." He doesn't want to see a shift in pubic opinion towards a "nicer" America. He says:
"As for the crimes of America which await you, it appears that you continue to be captive to the same criminal American mentality towards the world and towards the Muslims. The Muslim Ummah received with extreme bitterness your hypocritical statements to and stances towards Israel, which confirmed to the Ummah that you have chosen a stance of hostility to Islam and Muslims."
Clearly, Zawahiri is trying to draw red lines for the acceptance of Obama by the Arab and Muslim world. This audiotape is probably the prelude to a campaign by the Jihaidists to minimize Obama's emergence and classify him as just "another US President, with a different face."
5. You're not real
Then Zawahiri begins the Jihadi deconstruction of Obama's image. He declares:
"You represent the direct opposite of honorable black Americans like Malik al-Shabazz, or Malcolm X (may Allah have mercy on him). You were born to a Muslim father, but you chose to stand in the ranks of the enemies of the Muslims, and pray the prayer of the Jews, although you claim to be Christian, in order to climb the rungs of leadership in America. And so you promised to back Israel, and you threatened to strike the tribal regions in Pakistan, and to send thousands more troops to Afghanistan, in order for the crimes of the American Crusade in it to continue. And last Monday, your aircraft killed 40 Afghan Muslims at a wedding party in Kandahar. As for Malik al-Shabazz (may Allah have mercy on him), he was born to a black pastor killed by white bigots, but Allah favored him with guidance to Islam, and so he prided himself on his fraternity with the Muslims, and he condemned the crimes of the Crusader West against the weak and oppressed, and he declared his support for peoples resisting American occupation, and he spoke about the worldwide revolution against the Western power structure. That's why it wasn't strange that Malik al-Shabazz (may Allah have mercy on him) was killed, while you have climbed the rungs of the presidency to take over the leadership of the greatest criminal force in the history of mankind and the leadership of the most violent Crusade ever against the Muslims. And in you and in Colin Powell, Rice and your likes, the words of Malcolm X (may Allah have mercy on him) concerning "House Negroes" are confirmed."
Zawahiri's words are strong and are aimed at putting pressure on all those in the region who rushed to announce that Obama will radically change the "regime" in the United States. The number two of al Qaeda is painting the President elect as an opportunistic politician who used all three faiths to access power. One can see that Zawahiri is trying to achieve two goals: maintaining his own flock fully indoctrinated against Washington regardless of the change in the White House; and pressuring the radical clerics in the Wahabi and Muslim Brotherhood circles - who are welcoming Obama's victory - into retreat from such "apostasy."
6. The War must continue..
Zawahiri's main message is to call on the Jihadists everywhere to resume the war relentlessly and to "strike." Yes, he argues, there was a victory when American changed direction in Iraq, but the road to full Jihadi victory is still long. Read it as follow: The fight over Iraq will continue until the establishment of an al Qaeda like Emirate in the Sunni Triangle, which would be then the real accomplished victory. The fight will go on in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Somalia and beyond. In short, the al Qaeda world war against the rest won't stop because of an election in America. Zawahiri said:
"You also must appreciate, as you take over the presidency of America during its Crusade against Islam and Muslims, that you are neither facing individuals nor organizations, but are facing a Jihadi awakening and renaissance which is shaking the pillars of the entire Islamic world; and this is the fact which you and your government and country refuse to recognize and pretend not to see. I tell the Muslim Ummah: America, the criminal, trespassing Crusader, continues to be the same as ever, so we must continue to harm it, in order for it to come to its senses, because its criminal, expansionist Crusader project in your lands has only been neutralized by the sacrifices of your sons, the Mujahideen. This, then, is the path, so stick to it. To the Mujahideen. I tell them: may Allah reward you in the best way for your historic heroics, which have ruined America's plans and rendered its projects ineffective. So be firm and resolute. Your enemy's stagger has begun, so don't stop hitting him. I say to my brothers the Mujahideen in Iraq in general and the Islamic State of Iraq in particular, and to its Amir, the towering mountain Abu 'Umar al-Baghdadi: your enemy has admitted defeat, and the forthcoming stage is expected to be dominated by conspiracies and betrayals in order to cover the American withdrawal, so you must persevere, for victory is in an hour of perseverance. And I tell my brothers in Somalia: rejoice in victory and conquest. America is gathering its wounds in Iraq, and Ethiopia is looking for a way out, and for this reason, the stage of conspiracies and machinations has begun. So hold tightly to the truth for which you have given your lives, and don't put down your weapons before the Mujahid state of Islam and Tawheed has been set up in Somalia. And I tell all Mujahideen everywhere: Allah has granted you success and honored you by making you the most important cause of that, so be resolute on the path of Jihad until you meet your Lord while He is pleased with you."
As many experts in Jihadism have underlined - and as I projected in my last three books on Future Jihad - even if we decide to change course in Iraq or even in Afghanistan, the strategic intentions of the Jihadi Salafists is to engage in confrontation worldwide, including within democracies.
7. Until you surrender..
Echoing this assessment of the global Jihadi drive, Zawahiri asks the followers of this ideology -not just his membership - to relentlessly fight against what he perceives as the "Grand Crusade." A stark reminder that the forces, which waged their campaigns against the United States as of the early 1990s peaking on 9/11 and widening their warfare to dozens of countries since, aren't going back to the pre 9/11 mode. Once again, al Qaeda's number two offers a deal to the "infidel powers": quit and withdraw from this entire region or face a greater war. It is a chilling statement of the so-called Jihadi offensive. It is not just about Iraq: It is about the Planet as a whole. He goes on:
"And my fifth message is to all the world's weak and oppressed. I tell them: America has put on a new face, but its heart full of hate, mind drowning in greed, and spirit which spreads evil, murder, repression and despotism continue to be the same as always. And the Mujahideen of Islam, by the grace of Allah, continue to be the spearhead of the resistance against it to restrain it from injustice, aggression and arrogance. As for my final message, it is to the American people. I tell it: you incurred defeat and losses from the foolish actions of Bush and his gang, and at the same time, Shaykh Usama bin Ladin (may Allah preserve him) sent you a message to withdraw from the lands of the Muslims and refrain from stealing their treasures and interfering in their affairs. So choose for yourself whatever you like, and bear the consequences of your choice, and as you judge, you will be judged."
Against all other reactions, both positive and neutral, vis-a-vis Obama's election, al Qaeda stands firm in rejecting the new leadership even before the President elect takes office in January. From a politico-psychological perspective the master of Jihadism Usama Bin laden cannot be overshadowed by another international leader, particularly if that emerging figure is the President of the "Great Satan." Zawahiri's response to the election seems to re-frame the results of the election, one viewed worldwide as one of change. To al Qaeda there is no altering of direction in their struggle and agenda. In their own logic, either Obama will end American presence altogether in the Greater Middle East, or nothing will really change in the global battlefield.
Once Obama’s victory was solidified, many wondered what al qaeda’s response would be. Many of observers thought that the election of Mr. Obama would wash away the grievances of al Qaeda and isolate the pockets of violence to a few valleys in Afghanistan. Zawahiri's answer is bluntly no. Obviously, by al Qaeda's book, this is a step forward but it is not enough. Pulling out of Iraq is a victory, as claim the Jihadists of all genres, but more victories are needed to end the war from their perspective. This indicates that the post 9/11 era may well be reversed in the mind of liberal democracies via electoral victories at home as was the case in Spain and now in the United States, but in the mind of the Jihadists - it is irreversible. Out of all points raised by the Zawahiri audiotape, I move to state that the central message is this: redeploy as you wish and change all the leaders you want, but know that we will continue our global fight against you. This means that the forthcoming Administration has a tremendous challenge to confront and it will have to do so by learning from the past and enhancing the strategies for the future. The landscape of the War with the Jihadists may be changed from what it was over the past eight years but it will be different from what it was during the 1990s. A whole new configuration is ahead of us.
Dr Walid Phares is the Director of the Future Terrorism Project at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies and the author of The Confrontation: Winning the War against Future Jihad.
By Walid Phares on November 19, 2008 11:10 PM
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Welcome to the United States of America. We speak English here. We’re a free nation. We work hard, drink beer, take care of our family and friends and play hard. Although the religious majority is overwhelmingly Christian, we’re tolerant of all races and religions as opposed to your intolerant countries. You’re welcome to practice your faith here, but forget about dominating anything. You can stay as long as you respect our laws and our citizens. Understand that it’s not up to us to adapt to your culture, it’s your responsibility to adapt to ours. You’re in our house, so you follow the house rules or else… take a one way ticket back to your country and stay there. The preservation of American culture, American borders, the English language and the United States Constitution remain at the forefront of the American Patriot agenda. Don’t make the mistake of underestimating the backbone, the willingness or the means at our disposal to do what’s necessary in protecting this to-do list. Enjoy your day!
Thursday, November 20, 2008
By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY Posted Wednesday, November 19, 2008 4:20 PM PT
Piracy: India, from whose Hindi language we get the word "thug," knows how to handle them. Its navy blew away two Somali pirate ships in a week, sending a message in the only language thugs understand. Kudos.
Read More: Energy East Asia & Pacific
The next Somali crew of pirates on a ship slinking through the Gulf of Aden looking for an easy ransom won't smile through its cutlasses if it spies an Indian-flagged ship. It will move the other way as fast as possible.
Tuesday, a pirate mother-ship crew aimed grenade launchers at an Indian naval frigate and tried to ram it. The Indian ship Tabar fired back, set the vessel on fire, and left it at the bottom of the sea. It was the second pirate ship India's navy had blown out of the water, another was taken out Nov. 11. There won't be many more.
India's clear response to the Somali pirates is the only one likely to prove effective. It contrasts sharply with the handwringing helplessness of other navies patrolling the area under a United Nations mandate. Their mission is proving ineffective, and the enemy is growing bolder. Since a Saudi supertanker was seized on Saturday, pirates have commandeered three more ships.
It's happening because the current international mission is largely hamstrung by attempts to enforce laws on nationals from a state without laws, let alone prisons or courts. Somali pirates right now get a free ride. When they aren't reaping ransoms from captured ships — $50 million in 2008, with another $10 million expected from the Saudi supertanker — they are being captured and released by international patrols that have no place to take them. It all adds up to a riskless venture for pirates.
India showed that the only message with authority in this perversely incentivized void is force. The West may have bigger, more technologically advanced navies than India's 118-ship naval flotilla, but only India has demonstrated the way to raise the cost of piracy. As a result of its actions, there are stirrings in the U.N. and NATO to adopt this strategy.
India's actions probably saved many more ships than the few it has protected and saved unnecessary costs, as well. Indian companies faced a $450,000 increase in shipping insurance costs due to the increased risk of piracy. That's a pittance here, but not in a country full of poor merchants trying to play by the rules and legitimately integrate into the global economy through trade. India's act was motivated by a desire to stand up for its nationals, but in reality, it stood up for all of us.
The West needs to heed India's example because its energy supply is at stake, and every ransom paid empowers the pirates and their terrorist allies. India's leadership and resolve should increase its international stature. That's what comes to nations that have the common sense to confront thugs.
Other thugs will come if we don't punish the Somali pirates
Read "Somali jihadists reaping benefits of piracy"
By JOSEPH CALLO Posted Wednesday, November 19, 2008 4:30 PM PT
There's someone at America's back door, and it's not a friendly neighbor.
While our national attention is focused on the decimation of our 401(k)s, a Congress lusting after tax increases, "the never-ending political campaign" and events in the Middle East, a very significant strategic economic threat to America is looming in the Caribbean Sea and along its littoral.
Venezuela and Cuba, with noteworthy help from outside the region, are successfully building an anti-America axis in the Caribbean that has opened the back door to U.S. economic security.
It won't take much more in the way of air and naval power in those two countries to put them in a position to challenge current U.S. military capabilities in the area. And there are eager enemies of the United States demonstrably willing to provide the military wherewithal to accomplish that end.
The evidence of the problem is mounting. A joint Venezuelan-Russian naval exercise in the Caribbean is one of the more obvious, and there is also talk of Russia basing long-range bombers in Cuba. Other countries on the Caribbean rim, such as Nicaragua, are watching to see which way the wind is going to blow in the near future.
While these events have been developing, China has emerged as an economic and strategic wild card, having steadily built very significant economic ties with many countries in the Caribbean and on its rim.
The fact that Chinese is the most popular second language presently taught in the Caribbean island's schools underscores the degree of its economic penetration in the region.
Control of the Panama Canal by a Chinese company with links to that country's army adds significantly to China's economic influence in the region. China's commercial leverage in the managing of the Panama Canal, combined with its steadily increasing naval reach, adds an ominous dimension to its current de facto control of the Panama Canal "choke point."
The U.S. economic vulnerability to a threat from the Caribbean is very real and, at least as far as political and media attention is concerned, largely ignored. Consider, for example, the vulnerability of the U.S. Gulf Coast offshore oil platforms.
Picture for a moment the TV images of the U.S. Gulf Coast during the approaches of the periodic hurricanes that sweep into the Gulf of Mexico. The thousands of offshore oil rigs are so numerous that they blend together into one visual mass on your TV screens.
And while the TV commentators are always quick to point out the economic implications of hurricanes to America's offshore oil sources in the Gulf of Mexico, they haven't picked up on the greater, and increasing, threat from aggressively unfriendly Caribbean neighbors.
A few successful naval or air attacks against those rigs could eliminate scores of those platforms outright and shut down the entire Gulf Coast offshore production capability, simply on the basis of the threat of further attacks.
Since those platforms account for roughly 25% of U.S. oil production, such a situation would instantaneously bring the United States to its knees economically.
There is also the issue of the U.S. oil-refining facilities along the Gulf Coast and of the U.S. imports and exports that pass through our Gulf Coast ports. The latter include not just petro-products but also much of the stuff of daily life in the United States. That seaborne commerce accounts for roughly 10% of total U.S. imports and exports.
Clearly the U.S. Navy is aware of the threat, and recently it re-established the 4th Fleet for operations in the Caribbean. Problem is, the 4th Fleet is mostly a paper command, with tangible military assets to be added "as needed."
Unfortunately, with our currently undersized and shrinking Navy, there are not a lot of assets available, and building up meaningful U.S. naval strength in the Caribbean would mean drawing down forces that are focused on such critical areas as the Middle East and the Western Pacific.
There have been a lot of major political, economic, military and diplomatic distractions for America recently, but the time has come to take a long, hard look at what is going on in our geographic backyard.
And if the current situation in the Caribbean is as serious as the facts indicate, somebody better talk to politicians such as Rep. Barney Frank, who recently advanced the idea of a 25% cut in our military budget!
It's time for a reality check. There are some very shady characters at America's back door, and they can't be dismissed by such labels as "El Loco," and they aren't going to knock politely when they decide to come in.
Callo is a retired U.S. Navy rear admiral and author. His most recent book is "John Paul Jones: America's First Sea Warrior."
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
The phrase "Don't tread on me" was coined during the American Revolutionary War, a variant perhaps of the snake severed in segments labelled with the names of the colonies and the legend "Join or Die" which had appeared first in Benjamin Franklin's Pennsylvania Gazette in 1754.
The Rattlesnake Jack and the Modern Navy
As part of the commemoration of the bicentennial of the American Revolution, by an instruction dated 1 August 1975 (SECNAV Instruction 10520.3) the Secretary of the Navy directed the use of the rattlesnake jack in place of the union jack (blue field with white stars) during the period 13 October 1775 (the bicentennial of the legislation that created the Continental Navy, which the Navy recognizes as the Navy's birthday), and 31 December 1976.
By an instruction dated 18 August 1980 (SECNAV Instruction 10520.4), the Secretary of the Navy directed that the commissioned ship in active status having the longest total period in active status to display the rattlesnake jack in place of the union jack until decommissioned or transferred to inactive status.
By an instruction dated 31 May 2002 (SECNAV Instruction 10520.6), the Secretary of the Navy directed the use of the rattlesnake jack in place of the union jack for the duration of the Global War on Terrorism.
DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER The U.S. Navy's First Jack
DON'T TREAD ON ME encapsulates the difference between Americans and the docile European and UK populations that are being crushed by Moslem incursions and their own complicit governments.
It is a warning and a promise. Moslems should not take this lightly. There is a spirit in a determined American population that will not be cowed neither by Islamic threats nor whining. CAIR should take this is as seriously as they do the koran and the Islamic terrorist groups that they support and front for.
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Saturday, November 8, 2008
Passages that incite to violence, hatred, and discrimination against women in the Koran and Sunnah must be removed, or viewed in their historic context if Islam and Muslims want to be accepted by the world community.
The German media reported early September 2008 that the German Professor Sven (Muhammad) Kalisch, a Muslim convert, who teaches Islam theology at Münster University, Germany, doubts it very much that Muhammad, the Prophet of Muslims “has ever existed.”
In a public lecture at Bielefeld University, Germany, (27.7.2008), Kalisch laid out his latest position about Islam and the Koran. He said that either Muhammad was a fictitious figure that never existed, or someone like him had existed and later was declared a prophet after his death.
It is good that an Islam expert has dared say that at a time when everybody is intimidated to criticize Islam and its symbols. Almost two years ago though, Kalisch thought and lectured differently. In another public lecture also at Bielefeld University (16.3.2006) he defended Al Shri’a as the law of God. As I confronted him with atrocious passages from the Koran inciting to violence, hatred, and discrimination against women, (check Islam is a violent Faith) he started stuttering and did not know what to say.
Obviously, Kalisch has drastically changed over the past two years, from a dogmatic (convert) Muslim to a “liberal” one. What happened? We do not know. But one thing is clear. Now for many fanatic Muslims, Kalisch is a heretic and apostate. And most certainly one of those grand muftis in the Muslim world will issue a fatwa urging “pious” Muslims to kill Kalisch.
In an interview with the German daily Taz (29.12.2004) Kalisch was asked why he converted to Islam. He answered, “because rationality prevails in Islam”. “Rationality”!? This is laughable. The Koran and the Sunnah are replete with threats, fear, hatred, violence, and discrimination against non-Muslims and women. The word “Islam” means “submission”.
Kalisch’s students are also stunned how the man has changed. On condition of anonymity, one of those students told me, “I don’t know what happened to Professor Kalisch. He used to defend every word in the Koran, even archaic and obsolete things. Now he is rejecting them, and demanding that Islam be reformed. He even said, Islam needs a Martin Luther.”
Kalisch’s students, who in one year will be released to teach Islam at schools, are split between those who follow a moderate course of Islam and those who follow a dogmatic one. Lamya Kaddor, Kalisch’s assistant is still teaching a dogmatic course of Islam.
Ms. Kaddor is indeed popular among her Muslim students (the majority of which are native Turks or Arabs) at the University of Münster and at the Glückauf Pubic School in Western German city of Dinslacken-Lohberg near Essen, as Speigel Online claims on March 14, 2008, and that is so for one simple reason, which Der Spiegel did not mention.
Kaddor repeats ad nauseam in front of her students that the whole world is afraid of Islam because it has the stronger arguments, and sooner or later the Muslim Caliphate, the Muslim empire is coming and will prevail all over the world. Therefore, rejoice!
According to the Turkish Daily Zaman, Kalisch rejected Kaddor’s doctorate dissertation because it was full of plagiarism. Kalisch also accuses his assistant of having peculated huge amounts of research money.
A moderate student of Kalisch told me that the majority of his colleagues would teach a dogmatic variety of Islam.
The Ministry of Education in NRW, the German federal state which commissioned Kalisch to train Islam teachers for schools has been presented a general outline of an Islam course at the NRW schools. The details were left out.
Ayub Axel Köhler, the Chairman of the Central Council of Muslims in Germany and some of Kalisch students insist that Islam teachers at German schools must teach the Koran and the Sunnah as they are: “They are word of Allah.”
Wolfgang Borgfeld, who after converting to Islam changed his name to Muhammad Siddiq, established an association he called “The House of Islam” in the south of Frankfurt. The “House”, which used to be a hotel and harbours several halls for seminars and conferences, is financed by the Saudis and Kuwaitis. It is, however, largely a Koran school without any official control.
Recently I visited “The House of Islam” and Mr. Siddiq was delighted to show me his school and meet his students. I was curious and wanted to know what the students (8 – 18 years old) have learned. I asked a 16 year old girl why she was wearing a headscarf . She said she was proud of it because with it she is fulfilling the commandment of Allah. I asked a 15 year old student what Jihad meant. His answer: “It is fighting for Islam to prevail.” I asked further, also with weapons? “If need be, yes.” He heftily replied.
Siddiq’s House has around 60 students. One third of them are converts. And they are quite zealous about Islam. Uta Rasche wrote in the Frankfurter Allgemeine (September 1, 2004), “The number of those who converted to Islam (in Germany) is between 13,000 and 60,000, according to estimates. In any case, they make up only a small share of Germany’s more than 3 million Muslims.
But many converts have a very special story. Often they are extremely attached to their religion—and sometimes, they are particularly dangerous. They want to prove to themselves and their new fellow worshipers that they take their conversion seriously and therefore have a strong desire to demonstrate their religious commitment.”
Rasche also says, “Certainly, not every visit to an Islamic school produces an extremist, and naturally, not every convert becomes a terrorist. But when Islamic fundamentalists are looking for people in Germany whom they can use for their purposes, young converts have proven to be an ideal target group: They are enthusiastic, want to prove themselves, have severed all their ties and left their western circle of friends behind for the sake of the Muslim community. And there are decisive practical advantages: They have a German passport, can travel without restrictions within Europe, often speak good English and do not look suspicious at all.”
Gudrun Krämer, an Islam Professor at Berlin University (FU) rushed all of a sudden to support Professor Kalisch that the Muslim leader, Muhammad “maybe never existed”. She claimed that she had thought of that and came to the same conclusion. If that were the case, why did she then defend the fictitious Koran in most of her published articles and books?
For instance, she tries to justify the Koran discriminating against women as witnesses. She argues that the testimony of a woman is half as valid as that of a man, according to the Koran, because when women get their menstruation they do not think and remember clearly. Besides, she added, women were illiterate. The truth of the matter is the vast majority of men were also illiterate during the rise of Islam.
In fact, Krämer is not the only relativist among Islam experts in the West. So far, none of these experts has had the courage to criticize the Koran and the Sunnah which preach violence, hatred, and discrimination against women and followers of other faiths.
George Stauth, another Islam relativist, defends Islamism as a reaction to Western colonialism and modern consumerism. Stauth adds, Islamism is a “protest movement” against corruption and despotism in the Muslim world.
This might be the case, but the Islamists, who are inciting to violence, hatred, and discrimination against women inspired by the Koran and Sunnah, are the least qualified to change the status quo situation. If Islamists took over, they would replace the evil by a worse one. They simply reject political and religious pluralism. They reject the others completely.
In any case, we Muslims have the right to practice our religion like followers of other faiths do. But at same time we must skip all those passages in the Koran and Sunnah which preach commandments against human rights, freeze them, or discuss them in their own historic context. Followers of other religions have already done that; the Christians, the Jews, and the others.
Whether the Prophet Muhammad existed or not is insignificant. Islam, however, is a fact of life. But if we, Muslims want to be accepted by the world community, then we must renounce violence, hatred and discrimination against women. We must accept the other faiths as they accept us.
The way up to all that seems to be quite long and thorny. Both peace-loving Westerners and Muslims must work on reaching that aim. Preaching relativism and being fearful to spell out the bitter truth would only strengthen the Islamists and their destructive ideology. There must the fight against extremism and fanaticism begin.
Posted October 5th, 2008 by hrc
Saturday, November 1, 2008
How many Muslims in American share these views? We don’t know, as we’re not aware of any empirical survey data that would answer that question. We do know, however, that very few American Muslims are willing to stand up and publicly denounce such calls for Islamic law in America.
What’s more, surveys in Great Britain reveal that between 40% and 60% of British Muslims now favor the imposition of Islamic sharia law in that country, and they are getting their wish as cities across Britain are recognizing sharia law and courts.
As Dr. Walid Phares so eloquently argued in his commentary we emailed out yesterday, we need to vote as if our national survival depends on it – because it does.
MSA Chapter Official: Don't Vote; Destroy
October 28, 2008
In the final days of the 2008 Presidential election season – with just 6 days now remaining until voters cast their ballots – both campaigns are carefully maneuvering to gain an edge, while still others are singularly focused on just "getting out the vote." Regardless of the outcome desired by these activists, there seems to be one unified message across the American political spectrum these days: Participate in our democratic system.
However, one college's Muslim student organization has sought to air a completely different message regarding the election: that of the Islamists.
A student named Farhad Akbari posted an essay on the internal Yahoo! Group of the Muslim Student Association (MSA) at San Diego Mesa College on October 14. In his post, "The Issue of Voting," Akbari delves into the election, warning his fellow group members of the fate in store for those who cast a ballot for "a person who fights Islam, governs contrary to Islam, and is himself a kafir [infidel or unbeliever]…" Akbari does not reserve this treatment for any specific candidate. Rather, he holds both major party candidates in equal regard.
Continuing in his reproach of American democracy, Akbari writes:
"Whether you vote for the white kafir or the half-black kafir, they will kill our brothers and sisters. They will subjugate our brothers and sisters. And they will certainly support Israel in killing our brothers and sisters. There is no "lesser of two evils" here. They are both greater evils. The lesser evil is avoiding the situation, as both are equally poisonous to the cause of Islam…Brothers and sisters, I have one thing to say: DON"T [sic] VOTE."
In most cases, publicly proclaiming one's decision not to vote – even encouraging others to follow suit – would not be noteworthy. For better or worse, the right to vote in the U.S. democratic system includes the choice not to exercise that right. For many, this decision is one of protest – speaking out on a variety of concerns from the lack of third party viability, to the perceived unimportance of a single vote. "The Issue of Voting," however, is in a league of its own, considering what Akbari, the MSA chapter Treasurer, proposes to be the real answer to Muslim grievances by invoking the words of Islamic scholars:
"Those who do not govern according to to [sic.] the (law) which Allah has revealed [Shari'ah law], verily, they are the kaafiroon…
Democracy, like all other systems fabricated by the minds of men are untenable in Islam. It is an un-Islamic system…[and] there is absolutely no basis anywhere in the Qur'aan for western democracy and its parliamentary system. A government of democracy is a government appointed by Juhhaal (ignoramuses). Ignoramuses, fussaaq and fujjaar have no share in appointing a government in Islam. The Islamic system is Khilaafat…"
The moral of the story: don't support the "infidel" system; defeat democracy in the U.S. and replace it with Islamic law. So much for a mere protest.
While postings similar to Akbari's do not appear to be common among the group, it is telling that not one person responded to challenge his argument (nor does it appear that anyone followed up in support either). Additionally, the fact that the MSA members voted in as Treasurer an individual whose MySpace page includes a photo of him wrapped in a kefiya (reminiscent of Hamas, Hezbollah and other Islamist militants) with a caption reading "not shown: AK-47/Suicide bomb jacket strap/anthrax/airplane/boxcutter" leads to questions about the activities of the MSA chapter on the whole. Akbari's newly created Facebook profile shows that he lists his "Political Views" as "Khilafa" – or a political system based on the Islamic caliphate and Shari'ah law.
As far as the chapter itself, it's not clear whether the San Diego Mesa College MSA is directly affiliated with the Muslim Students' Association - National (MSA) organization. The college's chapter is not among those listed on the MSA - West Zone USA directory of chapters. However, as noted in the IPT's dossier on the national, Muslim Brotherhood-linked organization, the MSA has nearly 600 chapters, of which roughly 150 are directly affiliated.
MSA is a member organization of a national "taskforce" that recently sent out an "election advisory," encouraging Muslims to "full[y] participat[e]" in elections on Tuesday.
However, it must be noted that the radical rhetoric being spewed in San Diego is not an anomaly among MSA chapters on campuses nationwide. At chapters across the U.S. and Canada, directly affiliated to the parent organization and not, Islamism and its hate-filled ideology is on full display. Take, for instance, the March 2003 account of Aaron Klein of WorldNetDaily.com, who, after secretly attending a private MSA (aka "Muslim only") event at Queensborough Community College in Queens, NY, reported what he saw. According to Klein, one of the speakers at the event, Mohammad Faheed, blasted America and its democracy, and encouraged the audience to help bring about its demise:
"We are not Americans!" [Faheed] shouted. "We are Muslims! [The U.S.] is going to deport and attack us! It is us vs. them! Truth against falsehood! The colonizers and masters against the oppressed, and we will burn down the master's house…we reject the U.N., reject America, reject all law and order. Don't lobby Congress or protest because we don't recognize Congress! The only relationship you should have with America is to topple it!"
Faheed continued, paralleling Akbari's more recent calls for Shari'ah:
"The so-called terrorists are the only people who truly fear Allah. We must join these organizations. They are the only worthy causes, and the mighty superpower only fears them…[the U.S.] is not strong. Vietnam, they lost. Somalia, they ran away from. America hasn't won anything since World War II. We can defeat America…Eventually there will be a Muslim in the White House dictating the laws of the Shariah."
Such radical sentiment against the United States rises to the highest levels of MSA leadership. At the April 2007 MSA-West Zone Conference, West Zone President Amir Mertaban told students their paramount loyalty is to Muslims first, no matter what they may do:
"Osama bin Laden – I don't know this guy. I don't know what he did. I don't know what he said. I don't know what happened. But we defend Muslim brothers and we defend our Muslim sisters to the end. Is that clear? I am not saying support terrorist acts. I am not saying any of that. I am saying generally speaking. If a man comes and robs a store – if you're going to rob the store, go ahead and rob the store, are we going to condemn him? No, you support your Muslim brothers whether it is right or wrong. When they do wrong you grab them and you slap some sense into them, you're doing wrong. You see what I am saying.
So you never compromise on your faith. You be confident in every aspect of life. In every aspect of Islam you are confident. Four wives? Yes men are allowed to have four wives within this context. Jihad? Yes Jihad! Jihad is the tightest thing in Islam. Don't compromise on these little things. Be proud of it. Why? Because Islam is a perfect religion. If you sit here and you start saying, ‘Jihad is only an internal this and that,' you are compromising on your faith."
These comments beg the question: is it possible that the small, community college MSA chapters are as radical as some of their larger campus counterparts? San Diego Mesa College and Queensborough Community College – from two opposing coasts, both not directly affiliated with the national MSA, yet still espousing the same hate-filled and violent rhetoric seen at larger and more directly-affiliated chapters. It is clear that the Islamist infiltration goes far beyond what may first meet the eye.
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