Friday, February 25, 2011

The 16 Steps Out Of Islamophobia

THE 16 STEPS OUT OF ISLAMOPHOBIA
***NOTE: TEXT HIGHLIGHTED IN YELLOW AND/OR ENCLOSED IN ASTERISKS (***)  IS MY EMPHASIS***
Systematic discrimination against the Copts has been common in some areas such as exclusion from top state and military positions. But the state's major crime has been in the way it has indirectly incited and fueled sectarian tension between Muslims and Christians. It has done this using its complete control over the state-run media, education and religious institutions.
--
Maha AbdelrahmanUniversity of Cambridge

The Achtiname of Muhammad is a document you have likely never heard of.

However, it perfectly explains exactly why Muslims and Christians stood together in Egypt with a slogan: "Live together or die together." We should stand together across the world. While a bunch of punks bombed churches on New Years Day, the Coptic Christian community celebrated their January 7th Christmas protected by thousands of Muslims, which even the Muslim Brotherhood called for.


The Achtiname was delivered to a Coptic monestary requesting help [04/29/2013 EDIT: IT IS QUITE A PITY THAT SUCH SOLIDARITY HAS FIZZLED IN THE PAST FEW YEARS. SO QUICKLY HUMANITY FORGETS SCENES LIKE THOSE ABOVE. MAKE NO MISTAKE, AS A CHRISTIAN, ON TOP OF MY THEOLOGICAL DISAGREEMENTS WITH ISLAM, I AM APPALLED AT THE POOR TREATMENT OF THE COPTS AND OTHER CHRISTIAN GROUPS TARGETED BY ISLAMIST EXTREMISTS.]


The Quran states, paraphrased:
Do not dispute with People of the Book (Christians and Jews) except those that act unjustly... but say 'We believe in the Revelation which has come down to us and in that which came down to you; Our God and your God is one; and it is to Him we bow.'
Make no mistake, as a Christian, I have many theological disputes with Islamic doctrine and I am appalled at the fact that

Here are two of the most popular Quranic passages quoted to portray Islam as inherently aggressive.


Quran 9:5 is particularly disturbing:
 
So when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captive and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush...
Whew! Pretty brutal, no? The first thing, however, that should alert us to a deeper meaning is the phrase "sacred months." 


The word idolators is more accurately translated as "unbelievers [in Allah]." Thus, it does not refer to Jews or Christians, who are NOT considered unbelievers. Those "idolators" are Arab polytheists. Muhammad and the Muslims made a treaty with them (and the Jews and Christians). Some polytheists broke the treaty and attacked Muslims. Here is the context: 


[9.1] (This is a declaration of) immunity by Allah and His Apostle towards those of the idolaters with whom you made an agreement.
[9.2] So go about in the land for four months and know that you cannot weaken Allah and that Allah will bring disgrace to the unbelievers.
[9.3] And an announcement from Allah and His Apostle to the people on the day of the greater pilgrimage that Allah and His Apostle are free from liability to the idolaters; therefore if you repent, it will be better for you, and if you turn back, then know that you will not weaken Allah; and announce painful punishment to those who disbelieve.
[9.4] Except those of the idolaters with whom you made an agreement, then they have not failed you in anything and have not backed up any one against you, so fulfill their agreement to the end of their term; surely Allah loves those who are careful (of their duty).
[9.5] So when the sacred months [J-VICTUS NOTE: SACRED MONTHS =  THE  FOUR MONTHS MENTIONED IN VERSE 2] have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captive and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush, then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, leave their way free to them; surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.
[9.6] And if one of the idolaters seek protection from you, grant him protection till he hears the word of Allah, then make him attain his place of safety; this is because they are a people who do not know.
[9.7] How can there be an agreement for the idolaters with Allah and with His Apostle; except those with whom you made an agreement at the Sacred Mosque? So as long as they are true to you, be true to them; surely Allah loves those who are careful (of their duty).

So, Muhammad ordered his followers to wait ***four months*** to respond to the violations of the polytheists, during which time they must simply hope that they make good themselves. ***Only*** after than time, can they use force, and only against those who wronged them, and if they offered to make good, the fighting is over. 

Another passage is Quran 2.191, which reads:

And kill them wherever you find them, and drive them out whence they drove you out, for persecution is severer than slaughter, and do not fight with them at the Sacred Mosque until they fight with you in it, but if they do fight you, then slay them; such is the recompense of the unbelievers. 

The surrounding verses are almost unnecessary as we see from this verse alone that it concerns those who persecuted Muslims and "drove them out" in the first place. But here it is:


[2.190] And fight in the way of Allah with those who fight with you, and do not exceed the limits, surely Allah does not love those who exceed the limits.
[2.191] And kill them wherever you find them, and drive them out whence they drove you out, for persecution is severer than slaughter, and do not fight with them at the Sacred Mosque until they fight with you in it, but if they do fight you, then slay them; such is the recompense of the unbelievers.  
 [2.192] But if they desist, then surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.
 [2.193] And fight with them until there is no persecution, and religion should be only for Allah, but if they desist, then there should be no hostility except against the oppressors.

British Jewish scholar of Islam Bernard Lewis in his "Islam: The Religion and the People," Wharton School Publishing, 2008, on page 151 says:


Muslim fighters are commanded not to kill women, children, or the aged unless they attack first; not to torture or otherwise ill-treat prisoners; to give fair warning of the opening of hostilities or their resumption after a truce; and to honor agreements... At no time did the classical jurists offer any approval or legitimacy to what we nowadays call terrorism. Nor indeed is there any evidence of the use of terrorism as it is practiced nowadays. 

Muslims are not a threat to our freedom. And here is a step-by-step explanation, T
he 16 Steps Out Of Islamophobia:

1. There are 1.5 Billion Muslims.


2. 19 attacked us on 9/11.


3. Since 9/11, we have seen fools with underwear and shoe bombs.

4. Osama bin Laden, the CIA, and the 9/11 Commission affirm that US intervention in the Middle East was the prime motivator for the strikes.

5. So in response to a response to intervention, we intervene further. Yeah.

6. And yet, we are not experiencing attacks regularly, even as we ramp up our presence [JUNE 04 2012 EDIT: HOW SCARED OF TERRORISM SHOULD YOU BE?].

7. The argument that "we must fight them over there so we don't have to fight them over here" is totally absurd. I'd rather fight them over here, so I know they exist.

8. But how is keeping an army in the desert halfway around the world while leaving our borders wide open keeping murderers from hijacking jets and smashing them into buildings?

9. Answer: It's not, duh.

10. And yet, we are not experiencing regular attacks.

11. To reiterate, there are 1.5 billion Muslims.

12. If even 20,000 wanted to kill us, we would be under siege every week, every day, and several times a day.

13. No, it is far more likely (or really, the truth) that the majority of Muslims are peaceful people and only psychopaths kill civilians.

14. These psychopaths include Al-Qaeda, Hamas, Hezbollah, the Israel "Defense" Forces, and, yes, some members of the US military.

15. There is ***no*** threat from Islamic terrorism that demands the economic gutting and militarization of our society. These criminal punks were not a fighting force... they were ***criminal punks***.

16. To close, the words of an Iranian in the days after 9/11: "Why should Americans deserve this? That's a sick thought. They are just ordinary people like us."

Simple.


Besides the fear factor, Islamist terrorism (or any terrorism) cannot threaten the United States as a whole. Buildings may be bombed and planes may be hijacked, but those do not threaten, and cannot threaten, the existence of the United States. Indeed, the only ***potential*** threats (besides cyberwarfare) to the mainland United States, so blessed by the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, are the ICBMs of China and Russia.
But let us assume for the sake of absurd argument that there is indeed a Muslim Expeditionary Force coming to get us. Would it not make sense, would it not be their duty, for the United States government to stop defending the borders of Iraq, Afghanistan, South Korea, etc... and bring back troops and resources to defend ***ours***?

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