Islam’s ‘Reformation’ Is Already Here—and It’s Called ‘ISIS’

vcBy Raymond Ibrahim, May 7, 2015:

The idea that Islam needs to reform is again in the spotlight following the recent publication of Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s new book, Heretic: Why Islam Needs a Reformation Now.  While Ali makes the argument that Islam can reform—and is in desperate need of taking the extreme measures she suggests to do so—many of her critics offer a plethora of opposing claims, including that Islam need not reform at all.

The one argument not being made, however, is the one I make below—namely, that Islam has already “reformed.”  And violence, intolerance, and extremism—typified by the Islamic State (“ISIS”)—are the net result of this “reformation.”

Such a claim only sounds absurd due to our understanding of the word “reform.”  Yet despite its positive connotations, “reform” simply means to “make changes (in something, typically a social, political, or economic institution or practice) in order to improve it.”

Synonyms of “reform” include “make better,” “ameliorate,” and “improve”—splendid words all, yet words all subjective and loaded with Western connotations.

Muslim notions of “improving” society can include purging it of “infidels” and “apostates,” and segregating Muslim men from women, keeping the latter under wraps or quarantined at home. Banning many forms of freedoms taken for granted in the West—from alcohol consumption to religious and gender equality—is an “improvement” and a “betterment” of society from a strictly Islamic point of view.

In short, an Islamic reformation will not lead to what we think of as an “improvement” and “betterment” of society—simply because “we” are not Muslims and do not share their first premises and reference points.  “Reform” only sounds good to most Western peoples because they naturally attribute Western connotations to the word.

Historical Parallels: Islam’s Reformation and the Protestant Reformation

At its core, the Protestant Reformation was a revolt against tradition in the name of scripture—in this case, the Bible.  With the coming of the printing press, increasing numbers of Christians became better acquainted with the Bible’s contents, parts of which they felt contradicted what the Church was teaching.  So they broke away, protesting that the only Christian authority was “scripture alone,” sola scriptura.

Islam’s current reformation follows the same logic of the Protestant Reformation—specifically by prioritizing scripture over centuries of tradition and legal debate—but with antithetical results that reflect the contradictory teachings of the core texts of Christianity and Islam.

As with Christianity, throughout most of its history, Islam’s scriptures, specifically its “twin pillars,” the Koran (literal words of Allah) and the Hadith (words and deeds of Allah’s prophet, Muhammad), were inaccessible to the overwhelming majority of Muslims.  Only a few scholars, or ulema—literally, “they who know”—were literate in Arabic and/or had possession of Islam’s scriptures.  The average Muslim knew only the basics of Islam, or its “Five Pillars.”

In this context, a “medieval synthesis” flourished throughout the Islamic world.  Guided by an evolving general consensus (or ijma‘), Muslims sought to accommodate reality by, in medieval historian Daniel Pipes’ words,

translat[ing] Islam from a body of abstract, infeasible demands [as stipulated in the Koran and Hadith] into a workable system. In practical terms, it toned down Sharia and made the code of law operational. Sharia could now be sufficiently applied without Muslims being subjected to its more stringent demands…  [However,] While the medieval synthesis worked over the centuries, it never overcame a fundamental weakness: It is not comprehensively rooted in or derived from the foundational, constitutional texts of Islam. Based on compromises and half measures, it always remained vulnerable to challenge by purists (emphasis added).

This vulnerability has now reached breaking point: millions of more Korans published in Arabic and other languages are in circulation today compared to just a century ago; millions of more Muslims are now literate enough to read and understand the Koran compared to their medieval forbears.  The Hadith, which contains some of the most intolerant teachings and violent deeds attributed to Islam’s prophet—including every atrocity ISIS commits, such as beheading, crucifying, and burning “infidels,” even mocking their corpses—is now collated and accessible, in part thanks to the efforts of Western scholars, the Orientalists.  Most recently, there is the Internet—where all these scriptures are now available in dozens of languages and to anyone with a laptop or iphone.

In this backdrop, what has been called at different times, places, and contexts “Islamic fundamentalism,” “radical Islam,” “Islamism,” and “Salafism” flourished.  Many of today’s Muslim believers, much better acquainted than their ancestors with the often black and white teachings of their scriptures, are protesting against earlier traditions, are protesting against the “medieval synthesis,” in favor of scriptural literalism—just like their Christian Protestant counterparts once did.

Thus, if Martin Luther (d. 1546) rejected the extra-scriptural accretions of the Church and “reformed” Christianity by aligning it exclusively with scripture, Muhammad ibn Abdul Wahhab (d. 1787), one of Islam’s first modern reformers, “called for a return to the pure, authentic Islam of the Prophet, and the rejection of the accretions that had corrupted it and distorted it” (Bernard Lewis,The Middle East, p. 333).

The unadulterated words of God—or Allah—are all that matter for the “reformists,” with ISIS at their head.

Note: Because they are better acquainted with Islam’s scriptures, other Muslims, of course, are apostatizing—whether by converting to other religions, most notably Christianity, or whether by abandoning religion altogether, even if only in their hearts (for fear of the apostasy penalty).  This is an important point to be revisited later.  Muslims who do not become disaffected after becoming better acquainted with the literal teachings of Islam’s scriptures, and who instead become more faithful to and observant of them are the topic of this essay.

Christianity and Islam: Antithetical Teachings, Antithetical Results

How Christianity and Islam can follow similar patterns of reform but with antithetical results rests in the fact that their scriptures are often antithetical to one another.   This is the key point, and one admittedly unintelligible to postmodern, secular sensibilities, which tend to lump all religious scriptures together in a melting pot of relativism without bothering to evaluate the significance of their respective words and teachings.

Obviously a point by point comparison of the scriptures of Islam and Christianity is inappropriate for an article of this length (see my “Are Judaism and Christianity as Violent as Islam” for a more comprehensive treatment).

Suffice it to note some contradictions (which naturally will be rejected as a matter of course by the relativistic mindset):

  • The New Testament preaches peace, brotherly love, tolerance, and forgiveness—for all humans, believers and non-believers alike.  Instead of combatting and converting “infidels,” Christians are called to pray for those who persecute them and turn the other cheek (which is not the same thing as passivity, for Christians are also called to be bold and unapologetic).  Conversely, the Koran and Hadith call for war, or jihad, against all non-believers, until they either convert, accept subjugation and discrimination, or die.
  • The New Testament has no punishment for the apostate from Christianity.  Conversely, Islam’s prophet himself decreed that “Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him.”
  • The New Testament teaches monogamy, one husband and one wife, thereby dignifying the woman.  The Koran allows polygamy—up to four wives—and the possession of concubines, or sex-slaves.  More literalist readings treat all women as possessions.
  • The New Testament discourages lying (e.g., Col. 3:9).  The Koran permits it; the prophet himself often deceived others, and permitted lying to one’s wife, to reconcile quarreling parties, and to the “infidel” during war.

It is precisely because Christian scriptural literalism lends itself to religious freedom, tolerance, and the dignity of women, that Western civilization developed the way it did—despite the nonstop propaganda campaign emanating from academia, Hollywood, and other major media that says otherwise.

And it is precisely because Islamic scriptural literalism is at odds with religious freedom, tolerance, and the dignity of women, that Islamic civilization is the way it is—despite the nonstop propaganda campaign emanating from academia, Hollywood, and other major media that says otherwise.

The Islamic Reformation Is Here—and It’s ISIS

Those in the West waiting for an Islamic “reformation” along the same lines of the Protestant Reformation, on the assumption that it will lead to similar results, must embrace two facts: 1) Islam’s reformation is well on its way, and yes, along the same lines of the Protestant Reformation—with a focus on scripture and a disregard for tradition—and for similar historic reasons (literacy, scriptural dissemination, etc.); 2) But because the core teachings of the founders and scriptures of Christianity and Islam markedly differ from one another, Islam’s reformation is producing something markedly different.

Put differently, those in the West calling for an “Islamic reformation” need to acknowledge what it is they are really calling for: the secularization of Islam in the name of modernity; the trivialization and sidelining of Islamic law from Muslim society.  That is precisely what Ayaan Hirsi Ali is doing.  Some of her reforms as outlined in Heretic call for Muslims to begin doubting Muhammad (whose words and deeds are in the Hadith) and the Koran—the very two foundations of Islam.

That would not be a “reformation”—certainly nothing analogous to the Protestant Reformation.

Habitually overlooked is that Western secularism was, and is, possible only because Christian scripture lends itself to the division between church and state, the spiritual and the temporal.

Upholding the literal teachings of Christianity is possible within a secular—or any—state.  Christ called on believers to “render unto Caesar the things of Caesar [temporal] and unto God the things of God [spiritual]” (Matt. 22:21).  For the “kingdom of God” is “not of this world” (John 18:36).  Indeed, a good chunk of the New Testament deals with how “man is not justified by the works of the law… for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified” (Gal. 2:16).

On the other hand, mainstream Islam is devoted to upholding the law; and Islamic scripture calls for a fusion between Islamic law—Sharia—and the state.   Allah decrees in the Koran that “It is not fitting for true believers—men or women—to take their choice in affairs if Allah and His Messenger have decreed otherwise. He that disobeys Allah and His Messenger strays far indeed!” (33:36).   Allah tells the prophet of Islam, “We put you on an ordained way [literarily in Arabic, sharia] of command; so follow it and do not follow the inclinations of those who are ignorant” (45:18).

Mainstream Islamic exegesis has always interpreted such verses to mean that Muslims must follow the commandments of Allah as laid out in the Koran and the example of Muhammad as laid out in the Hadith—in a word, Sharia.

And Sharia is so concerned with the details of this world, with the everyday doings of Muslims, that every conceivable human action falls under five rulings, or ahkam: the forbidden (haram), the discouraged (makruh), the neutral (mubah), the recommended (mustahib), and the obligatory (wajib).

Conversely, Islam offers little concerning the spiritual (sidelined Sufism the exception).

Unlike Christianity, then, Islam without the law—without Sharia—becomes meaningless.   After all, the Arabic word Islam literally means “submit.”  Submit to what?  Allah’s laws as codified in Sharia and derived from the Koran and Hadith—the very three things Ali is asking Muslims to start doubting.

The “Islamic reformation” some in the West are calling for is really nothing less than an Islam without Islam—secularization not reformation; Muslims prioritizing secular, civic, and humanitarian laws over Allah’s law; a “reformation” that would slowly see the religion of Muhammad go into the dustbin of history.

Such a scenario is certainly more plausible than believing that Islam can be true to its scriptures and history in any meaningful way and still peacefully coexist with, much less complement, modernity the way Christianity does.

Note: An earlier version of this article first appeared on PJ Media in June 2014

Imam Anjem Choudary Tells Hannity That Pamela Geller Should Die

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Truth Revolt, by Caleb Howe, May 7, 2015:

On Fox News last night, Sean Hannity hosted what basically amounted to a verbal holy war between Islamic Imam Anjem Choudary and Pamela Geller. Choudary repeatedly stated that Geller knew the “consequences” for her actions, and that the consequences for her actions are death. He says that she isn’t even good enough to be called a pig. He said America was the real murderer, that all will come under sharia law, that any who insult the prophet should receive “capital punishment.”

This is a good time to remind our readers that people who talk about sharia in America are called conspiracy theorists, that Pamela Geller, who has been marked for death by Islam over cartoons, is the one being called “hateful” by our media, and that the official position of Smart People is that only a tiny few Muslims are terrorists and murderers.

As far as we know, Anjem Choudary isn’t a terrorist. Using the standard the media and the President use, he would not be counted in the “less than one percent” of Muslims who commit acts of terror or join ISIS or kidnap girls in Africa. Yet here he is on a major news outlet telling the world, as he often does, that he believes the exact same thing as the terrorists.

Nobody is a terrorist until they are. But it is clear that support for the murder of cartoonists extends beyond just the murderers themselves. Believing that those who insult Mohammed should be put to death does not mean you are in some exclusive terrorist-only club, or that you are a member of ISIS. It is not uncommon. It is a widely shared conviction. And what’s more, it’s put into practice by people who aren’t counted in that “one percent” we’re supposed to find insignificant.

Also see:

Pamela Geller, TIME Magazine: A Response to My Critics—This Is a War

Screen-Shot-2015-05-06-at-11.01.54-AMBy Pamela Geller, May 6, 2015:

The cartoon contest was needlessly provocative? No — murdering cartoonists is needlessly provocative.

It was the jihadis, not I, who made the cartoons a flash point. If we surrender on that point and stop drawing Muhammad, we’ve established a precedent of surrendering to violent Sharia enforcement, and once established, we will be made to reinforce it again and again.

Did anyone think these 2 gunmen would have lived quiet lives as peaceable and loyal Americans if we hadn’t held the contest? They would have waged jihad elsewhere, on a less protected target, and killed more people.

“Pamela Geller: A Response to My Critics—This Is a War,”  Time Magazine, May 6, 2015

NEW YORK - AUGUST 3:  Pamela Geller, author of the book The Post-American Presidency and a proponent of the proposed World Trade Center Islamic Center answers emails inside her home on August 3, 2010 in New York City. Mrs. Geller has spoke and written heavily against the center on her blog Atlas Shrugs. (Photo by Jason Andrew/Getty Images)

Some are saying I provoked this attack. But to kowtow to violent intimidation will only encourage more of it.

Sunday in Garland, Texas, a police officer was wounded in a battle that is part of a longstanding war: the war against the freedom of speech. Some people are blaming me for the Garland shooting — so I want to address that here

The shooting happened at my American Freedom Defense Initiative Muhammad Art Exhibit and Cartoon Contest, when two Islamic jihadists armed with rifles and explosives drove up to the Curtis Culwell Center in Garland and attempted to gain entry to our event, which was just ending. We were aware of the risk and spent thousands of dollars on security — and it paid off. The jihadis at our free speech event were not able to achieve their objective of replicating the massacre at the offices of the Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine last January — and to go it one better in carnage. They were not able to kill anyone. We provided enormous security, in concert with the superb Garland police department. The men who took the aspiring killers down may have saved hundreds of lives.

And make no mistake: If it weren’t for the free-speech conference, these jihadis would have struck somewhere else — a place where there was less security, like the Lindt cafe in Australia or the Hyper Cacher Kosher supermarket in Paris.

So, why are some people blaming me? They’re saying: “Well, she provoked them! She got what she deserved!” They don’t remember, or care to remember, that as the jihadis were killing the Muhammad cartoonists in Paris, their friend and accomplice was murdering Jews in a nearby kosher supermarket. Were the Jews asking for it? Did they “bait” the jihadis? Were they “provoking” them?

Are the Jews responsible for the Nazis? Are the Christians in the Middle East responsible for being persecuted by Muslims?

Drawing Muhammad offends Islamic jihadists? So does being Jewish. How much accommodation of any kind should we give to murderous savagery? To kowtow to violent intimidation will only encourage more of it.

This is a war.

Now, after the Charlie Hebdo attack, and after the Garland attack, what are we going to do? Are we going to surrender to these monsters?

The attack in Garland showed that everything my colleagues and I have been warning about regarding the threat of jihad, and the ways in which it threatens our liberties, is true. Islamic law, Sharia, with its death penalty for blasphemy, today constitutes a unique threat to the freedom of speech and liberty in general.

Freedom of speech is the foundation of a free society. Without it, a tyrant can wreak havoc unopposed, while his opponents are silenced.

Putting up with being offended is essential in a pluralistic society in which people differ on basic truths. If a group will not stand for being offended without resorting to violence, that group will rule unopposed, while everyone else lives in fear.

Islamic law as it’s interpreted by extremists forbids criticism of Islam, the Quran, and Muhammad. If they cannot be criticized in the United States, we are in effect accepting Islamic law as overriding the freedom of speech. This would establish Muslims as a protected class and prevent honest discussion of how Islamic jihadists use the texts and teachings of Islam to justify violence.

Some say that “hate speech” should be censored. But what constitutes “hate speech” is a subjective judgment that is unavoidably influenced by the political perspective of the one doing the judging.

Allowing this sort of censorship would mean nothing less civilizational suicide. Many in the media and academic elite assign no blame to an ideology that calls for death to blasphemers — i.e., those who criticize or offend Islam. Instead, they target and blame those who expose this fanaticism. If the cultural elites directed their barbs and attacks at the extremist doctrine of jihad, the world would be a vastly safer place.

You can try to avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality. The shootings in Garland, Paris, and Copenhagen targeting defenders of free speech, and the raging jihad across the Middle East, Africa, and Europe, are the disastrous consequences of avoiding reality.

I encourage all Americans to watch the videos of the Garland event and see what Islamic supremacists wish to silence: basic, elemental free speech arguments.

But we are unbowed. Even when the venue was in lockdown and hundreds of attendees were ushered down into the auditorium, the crowd was singing the Star Spangled Banner and G-d Bless America. In the face of fear, they were staunchly and uniquely American.

To learn who rules over you, simply find out whom you cannot criticize. If the international media had run the Danish cartoons back in 2005, none of this could have happened. The jihadis wouldn’t have been able to kill everyone. But by self-censoring, the media gave the jihadis the power they have today.

We must take back our freedom.

Pamela Geller is the President of the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI), publisher of PamelaGeller.com and author of The Post-American Presidency: The Obama Administration’s War on America and Stop the Islamization of America: A Practical Guide to the Resistance.

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More videos added! 21 and counting!

Reformist Approach to Sharia a Refreshing Break with Academic Apologists

Rumee-Ahmed-ramadan-770.JPGJihad Watch, by Andrew Harrod, May 2, 2015:

In a refreshing departure from Sharia apologias common in Middle East studies, University of British Columbia Islamic law professor  rejected the “myth” of Sharia (Islamic law) as a “static, fixed, reified entity” on April 22 in the Georgetown University Center for Contemporary Arab Studies’ wood-paneled boardroom. Ahmed’s presentation, “Shari’a 2.0: Islamic Systematics and the Science of Islamic Legal Reform” before a student-dominated audience of about fifteen, demonstrated simultaneously Sharia’s all-too human origins as well as its embedded dangers.

He described a “sharp, sharp disconnect” between contemporary and historical Islamic interpretations of Sharia. According to the former, Islamic legal scholars substantiated their claim of being central to legitimating Islamic regimes that claimed to rule by God’s law. Yet judges who were not legal scholars often made politically motivated legal decisions that were subject to subsequent overruling by temporal rulers such as caliphs. Campaigning armies, meanwhile, would simply make unilateral decisions without consulting legal scholars on issues such as the division of spoils.

Concerning pre-colonial Islamic legal scholars, Ahmed questioned the power and reputation of such men in a world of three percent literacy. Political patronage could compromise the purity of their intentions. Danger lurked, he noted, since their struggles with rulers could lead to imprisonment or even execution.

Ahmed expressed a “very cynical view” regarding past legal use of Islam’s canonical texts. Quran 8:67-68, concerning the Muslim victory at the Battle of Badr under Muhammad, suggested that taking prisoners manifested a failure to fulfill a divine command to fight the enemy. But “sharp breaks” throughout history in the acceptance of taking and ransoming prisoners by Sunni Islam’sHanafi school of jurisprudence demonstrated how Islamic law responded to political developments with theological reinterpretation.

Practical realities aside, Ahmed described how earlier Islamic legal scholars created in their voluminous writings “subjunctive worlds.” Although these legal visions often had no expectation of implementation, they expressed the “ideal relationship between human beings and God.” “Writing a book of law is never a waste of time,” he noted, but is a “way to express your religiosity” or a “devotional act” similar to prayer. The intricacy of such legal thinking means that attempts to reform a single point of Islamic law on, for example, punishments involving whipping necessitates considering several other elements of Islamic legal theory.

Islamic legal history is replete with controversies surrounding reform, he said. Quran 5:38 was “pretty clear” in mandating hand amputation as punishment for stealing, although some had tried to interpret this verse to mean “cut off their power” with imprisonment. Several hadith, or canonical narratives of Muhammad’s life, however, did indeed mandate amputation and formed a corresponding pre-colonial Islamic legal consensus, contrary practice notwithstanding.

Slavery’s permissibility received a similar “unequivocal yes” in Islamic law sixty or seventy years ago. Political pressures forced Muslim scholars to justify abolition in what Ahmed described as a “little bit of a technical argument” premised on the understanding that “times have changed.” The Islamic State (ISIS), though, has recently reintroduced slavery, arguing that times have changed again.

Other controversies involving Sharia have been addressed creatively, Ahmed noted. The Egyptian jihadist group Gama’a al-Islamiyya, for example, discovered in Western contract law a unique basis for abolishing airline hijacking: the purchaser of an airline ticket may not violate its terms by destroying or seizing the plane. In the political sphere, while many European diaspora Muslims vote simply for the sake of political participation, the Sharia principle of maslaha or public good allows conservative Muslims to participate in non-Muslim politics in order to advance Islam.

One of Ahmed’s Powerpoints stated, “Gender: The Greatest Challenge to Islamic Reform.” “Gender pervades every part of Islamic law,” he explained, a law that was traditionally patriarchal. The Quran, for example 4:11, prescribes half the inheritance for women as for men.

Nonetheless, Sharia’s past malleability made Ahmed optimistic that in Islam, “any law, no matter how entrenched it seems in Muslim texts, can be reformed.” To this end, he is developing an application allowing popular citation of legal arguments and sources in order to “democratize” and “crowdsource Sharia.” That way, less educated and “state-sponsored ulama” (religious scholars) will “not have a monopoly on Islamic law.”

Ahmed himself would like to “get less religion” in Muslim governance, but Sharia is not going to disappear from Muslim societies anytime soon, including pertinent national constitution clauses. An “overwhelming number” of surveyed Muslims expressed a belief in Sharia, often including corporal punishment, as divine. Alternatively, millions of Muslims sought an Islamic theological basis to justify their support for human rights norms such as gender equality. “Context driving law is not just legitimate, it’s inevitable,” he concluded.

Ahmed’s illuminating and refreshingly honest examination of Sharia raised several important concerns surrounding Islamic law and its reform. On one hand, critical examination of Sharia’s past could cause many Muslims to be as reform-minded as Ahmed and to reject Sharia as a divinely-ordained, unalterable legal code that demands future application. On the other hand, Sharia contains serious moral failings not easily resolved even with the most sophisticated (or sophistic) Islamic theological and legal arguments.

As presented by Ahmed, Islamic law suffers from an unwieldy, unstable, and incoherent structure stemming from Islam’s doctrinal foundations. As one of his slides stated, Islam’s arbitrary conception of God is “beyond our moral code.” Islamic norms then derive from Muhammad, who “is supposed to be the pristine believer” in Islamic teaching and thus, according to some Islamic teachings, incapable of sin. On the basis of the life of this seventh-century desert dweller, Islamic law has accepted slavery while possessing an “unnecessary amount of information on the law of wells.” Developing modern legal standards for a free society within such a body of law will be difficult indeed, which is why Ahmed’s insistence on reform is so important.

Andrew E. Harrod is a freelance researcher and writer who holds a PhD from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and a JD from George Washington University Law School. He is a fellow with the Lawfare Project; follow him on twitter at @AEHarrod. He wrote this essay for Campus Watch, a project of the Middle East Forum.

Dhimmitude: Get to know what it is

20130603_ISLAM_MOSQUE_CRESCENT_LARGEFamily security Matters, by Victor Sharp, April 27, 2015:

Ask people in the United States what a dhimmi is and perhaps a handful might know. In Europe, and as far as India and the far east, the number would be higher because of latent memories of battles fought against invading Moslem armies across the span of centuries.

For a while there was the specter of triumphant Islam building a giant mosque mere yards from Ground Zero in New York City where Islamic fanatics, in the name of Allah, destroyed the World Trade Center and brought the two magnificent towers down in a cascade of horror.

The mosque would have risen to thirteen or more stories and overlooked the blasted hole in the ground that was once a symbol of America’s freedom and technical ingenuity.

If this outrage had been built, it would not have been a symbol of Muslim outreach to non-Moslems; it would have been a sickening insult to the victims of Islamic barbarism and a tangible rallying cry to millions more jihadists who would see it as Islam’s victory over a vanquished United States of America.

This would have been the 21st century revenge of resurgent Islam over those who centuries ago beat back the many previous Islamic invasions and attempted Muslim conquests of non-Muslim lands.

In 732, Charles Martel led his Frankish forces at Tours to victory against an Islamic invasion of France, which nearly destroyed Christian Europe. Similarly, Islam was ousted from Spain in 1492 after an occupation of the Iberian Peninsula by the Moslems for hundreds of years.

In Italy, Islamic power was brought to an end when the heavy Turkish galleys were defeated by Venetian galleasses at the great naval battle of Lepanto in 1571. And the Moslem Ottoman power, which at its height again threatened Europe, was barely turned back at the gates of Vienna on 11 September 1683 by a coalition of European armies. A previous 9/11.

These were four major defeats by Europe of Islamic attempts of conquest and subjugation set against a history of victorious Moslem invasions and conquests that has been the hallmark of Islam since its founding in the seventh century.

But what of the peoples and nations that fell under Islamic occupation? For them the story was one of forced conversions to Islam, slavery, death, and the Islamic institution of dhimmitude.

This is the word that describes the parlous state of those who refused to convert to Islam and became the subjugated non-Muslims who were forced to accept a restrictive and humiliating subordination to a superior Islamic power and live as second-class citizens in order to avoid death.

These peoples and populations were known as dhimmis, and if such a status was not humiliating enough, a special tax or tribute, called the jizya, was imposed upon them and upon all dhimmis.

Dhimmitude and Shariah law are the direct outcomes of jihad, which is the conquest of non-Islamic territory mandated by Allah as a spiritual obligation for every individual Moslem and Moslem nation.

From its beginnings in the seventh century, Islam spread through violent conquest of non-Moslem lands. In the eighth century, a formal set of rules to govern relationships between Moslems and non-Moslems was created based upon Moslem conquests of non-Moslem peoples. These rules were based upon jihad, which established how the Moslems would treat the conquered non-Moslems in terms of their submission to Islam.

Jihad can be pursued through force or other means such as propaganda, writing, or subversion through Shariah law against the perceived enemy. The so-called enemies are those who oppose the establishment of Islamic law or its spread, mission, or sovereignty over them and their land. The building of mosques on or near the site of an Islamic victory against non-Moslems is a tangible expression of Islamic triumphalism.

The Al-Aksa mosque in Jerusalem – built upon the very site of the two ancient Jewish Temples – is a stark example. The great Haggai Sophia church in Constantinople was converted into a mosque when the Ottoman Turks destroyed the city, renaming it Istanbul. It is now a museum.

Similarly, the Greek Catholic cathedral in Nicosia, Cyprus, was converted into a mosque after the Turks invaded northern Cyprus in 1974. They still remain in illegal occupation having driven out the Greek Cypriots and turned churches into mosques. And Obama is the close friend of Turkey’s Islamist leader, Tayip Recip Erdogan.

These are just three examples of the thousands of churches, synagogues, as well as Hindu, Buddhist and Bahai temples, converted into mosques over the centuries by victorious and triumphal Islam.

Propaganda and subversion are the very means now being employed against the West and Judeo-Christian civilization, and Islamists have shown themselves to be brilliantly adept at manipulating the gullible West in pursuit of their aims of world domination.

As I have written in previous articles, non-Islamic lands are considered the dar al-harb, the “house of war,” until they submit to Islamic rule and enter the dar al-Islam, the “house of Islam.”

Moslem authorities perceive enemies of Islam fall into three categories: those who resist Islam with force, those living in a country that has a temporary truce with Islam, and those who have surrendered to Islam through the ultimate foolishness of exchanging land for a so-called peace.

The belief that Moslem Arab powers respond to overtures of peace by ending their aggression is but a mirage in the desert. This is proven time and again to be a delusion and is, in fact, a classic example of the mindset and behavior of the dhimmi.

A non-Moslem community forced to accept dhimmitude is condemned to live in a system that will only protect it from jihad if it is subservient to the Moslem master. In return, it is guaranteed limited rights under a system of discriminations that it must accept, or face forced conversion or death.

In the early years of the Islamic conquests, the “tribute” or jizya was paid as a yearly poll tax, which symbolized the subordination of the dhimmi. Later, the inferior status of Jews and Christians was reinforced through a series of oppressive regulations that governed the behavior of the dhimmi.

Jews and Christians were awarded a different status than other faiths. They were considered to be under protection as ‘people of the book.’ People of non-monotheistic faiths, pagans, or atheists were simply to be exterminated.

According to Mitchell G. Bard, who has written extensively on the subject and produced the excellent rebuttal to Arab and pro-Arab propaganda in his book Myths and Facts writes: ” … dhimmis, on pain of death, were forbidden to mock or criticize the Koran, Islam or Muhammad, to proselytize among Moslems or to touch a Moslem woman (though a Moslem man could take a non-Moslem as a wife).”

Dhimmis were excluded from public office and armed service, and were forbidden to bear arms. They were not allowed to ride horses or camels, to build synagogues or churches taller than mosques, to construct houses higher than those of Muslims or to drink wine in public. They were not allowed to pray or mourn in loud voices as that might offend the Moslems.

The dhimmi had to show public deference toward Moslems, always yielding them the center of the road. The dhimmi was not allowed to give evidence in court against a Moslem, and his oath was unacceptable in an Islamic court. To defend himself, the dhimmi would have to purchase Moslem witnesses at great expense. This left the dhimmi with little legal recourse when harmed by a Moslem.

Dhimmis were also forced to wear distinctive clothing. In the ninth century, for example, Baghdad’s Caliph al-Mutawakkil designated a yellow badge for Jews, setting an odious  precedent that would be followed centuries later by Nazi Germany.

By the twentieth century, the status of the dhimmi in Moslem lands had not significantly improved. H.E.W. Young, British Vice-Consul in Mosul, wrote in 1909:

“The attitude of the Muslims toward the Christians and the Jews is that of a master towards slaves, whom he treats with a certain lordly tolerance so long as they keep their place. Any sign of pretension to equality is promptly repressed.”

The concept of jihad is not something now discarded by Islam as a quaint belief appropriate to the distant past. On the contrary, it is a cardinal belief in the 21st century for Moslems based upon Koranic injunctions.

The extermination and genocide of Christians in the Middle East – just like the Turkish genocide against the Christian Armenians in 1915 – is happening now: even as you read this.

Jihad is believed in by millions of Moslems around the Third world, as much as by Moslems living in America, Britain, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. It is a belief, passionately held, that one day the entire world will be forced to accept Islam and the will of Allah.

It is vital, therefore, that the general public in every non-Moslem country be made aware that Moslems consider themselves in a perpetual state of war, however outwardly peaceful they may sometimes appear to their non-Moslem neighbors.

If Islamic armies are unable to defeat what they consider the so-called infidels, then a period of “truce” exists, which has several conditions. These include allowing Islam to be propagated, the building of numerous mosques, and the requirement of Shariah law co-equal with civil law. If a non-Moslem nation forbids it, then that nation will be considered subject to violence through “holy” jihad.

It is nearly impossible for sophisticated and secularized Western elites to understand or accept such medieval concepts, let alone the idea that a 7th century religious war is being waged against them.

But their dismissal and amused disregard of what is taking place is as calamitous as that exemplified by myopic politicians in Britain and America before the Second World War.

The lone voice in the wilderness at that time, Winston Churchill, appealed in vain to the British political leaders who had not the ears to hear or the eyes to see the growing fascist menace during the 1930s posed by Hitler’s Germany and Mussolini’s Italy.

Western notions of peaceful co-existence between states, human rights and democracy, are all alien to the imams, mullahs and assorted tyrants of the Islamic world.

Hezbollah, Hamas, ISIS, the Muslim Brotherhood, Boko Haram, Iran’s Ayatollah Khamenei, ad nauseum, all consider Judeo-Christian civilization as being in theological error.

For them, the entire human race must embrace Allah’s pre-eminence, and the Moslem believer is the divine instrument to bring about the “Umma” (worldwide Moslem community) in whatever way possible, including warfare and nuclear terror.

Jihad has reappeared as a way of wiping out the humiliation the Arab and Moslem world has felt as Western power became ascendant, especially after the defeat of the Ottoman Turkish Caliphate at the end of the First World War.

With a fabulous and never ending flow of petrodollars pouring into Arab and Moslem coffers, the belief among Moslems is that the time is now right for Islam to reassert itself in dominating the world and bringing it to Allah through all-out war, including nuclear war, if necessary.

The corollary to jihad is dhimmitude. This is what appeasement by non-Moslems to Islamist threats, demands, and terror leads to. Winston Churchill would have been shocked but not surprised at today’s craven appeasement or even empathy towards Islam displayed by  elitists in the Western political echelons – not least by Barack Hussein Obama.

Today, America is seduced by the unholy trinity of political correctness, multiculturalism, and diversity. These idiocies hobble the minds of too many officials and politicians so that they are incapable or unwilling to prevent the pernicious introduction into America of stealth Islamic Sharia law or win effectively on the battlefield against jihadists in the Middle East, Afghanistan, or wherever this terrifying struggle may take us.

It is in marked contrast to the manner in which an earlier existential Islamic threat to Europe hundreds of years ago was defeated decisively at Tours, Sicily, Iberia (Spain and Portugal), Lepanto, Vienna, Greece and in the Balkans.

But without a similarly decisive defeat of present day Islamo-Nazi aggression, we may all be faced, sooner than we might think, with the choice of forced conversion to Islam or subservience and wretchedness as dhimmis.

Better, therefore, for us all to be aware of the facts and not be dummies.

Victor Sharpe is a freelance writer and author of several books including The Blue Hour, a collection of short stories, and Volumes One and Two of Politicide: The attempted murder of the Jewish state.

What Ex-Baathists Within IS Do and Don’t Signify

CSP, by Kyle Shideler, April 20, 2015:

The interwebs are abuzz with discussion over the significance of Der Spiegel’s scoop regarding the role of Former Iraqi military intelligence officer Samir Abd Muhammad al-Khlifawi (AKA Haji Bakr), and what is reported to be pages of documents showing the plan Haji Bakr put together for Islamic State operations in Syria and the establishment of an IS intelligence service which involved both conducting Intelligence Preparation of the Battlefield (IPB) for IS fighters, including infiltrating fighters and gathering intelligence on likely resisters, and establishing a counterintelligence function within the group’s fighters.

Haji Bakr's plan

This is all good information, and does much to explain how Islamic State operates on a tactical level, and so for that reason the journalists at Der Spiegel should be applauded for their work. It also helps to explain how Islamic State has relied on Ex-Baathists with military and intelligence experience to provide the high degree of technical expertise the Islamic State has generated thus far.

However, the article drastically oversells the importance of the Baathists within the Islamic State’s hierarchy, treating Caliph AbuBakr AlBaghdadi, and the tens of thousands who have flocked to Islamic State’s banner as merely pawns of a clever Iraqi intelligence con game:

But apocalyptic visions alone are not enough to capture cities and take over countries. Terrorists don’t establish countries. And a criminal cartel is unlikely to generate enthusiasm among supporters around the world, who are willing to give up their lives to travel to the “Caliphate” and potentially their deaths.

IS has little in common with predecessors like al-Qaida aside from its jihadist label. There is essentially nothing religious in its actions, its strategic planning, its unscrupulous changing of alliances and its precisely implemented propaganda narratives. Faith, even in its most extreme form, is just one of many means to an end. Islamic State’s only constant maxim is the expansion of power at any price.

As the Center for Security Policy has noted repeatedly, the reality is that much of Islamic State’s behavior IS explained by examining matters of Islamic Law, as they related to jihad violence, relations with non-Muslims, Islamic State’s extortion of Christians and tax collection from Muslims (Jizya and Zakat), it’s treatment of women captives, etc.

Simply put, The “Islamic State as puppet for Ex-Baathists” theory fails to properly explain a whole host of Islamic State behaviors, which CAN be understood within the context of an Islamic terrorist organization, with roots in Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood with an end goal of reestablishing the Caliphate globally.

“The Ex-Baathist theory” does not explain, for example, the amount of time and effort expended by the group in its feud with Al Qaeda, including its efforts to “pick off” groups formerly linked to Al-Qaeda. Accepting the oath of loyalty from Boko Haram, and urging jihadists to travel to West Africa to fight, does nothing for Saddam Hussein’s former military commanders whose goals are presumably Iraq-focused. Neither does IS’ efforts to supplant the Taliban in the AF/PAK region with a “Khorasan Province.”

It does not explain the insistence on burning a Jordanian pilot, or beheading Coptic Christians in Libya, when those acts have clearly drawn more support for efforts to defeat them and could easily have been avoided. It doesn’t explain Islamic State’s infighting with Ex-Baathists within the Army of the Men of the Naqshbandi order (JRTN), against which Islamic State conducted a purge in early April. It does not explain how Islamic State’s efforts at establishing the Caliphate with Iraq as the centerpiece actual precedes the supposed Iraqi mastermind.

This new cache of documents is worth considering for all they can tell us about HOW the Islamic State is able to do what it does. It would be a drastic mistake to think that they unlock any clues as to the WHY of Islamic State.

These five potentially banned pages tell you everything you need to know about the disastrous state of America’s national security

The Blaze:

Major Stephen Coughlin, an attorney, decorated intelligence officer and the man known as the Pentagon’s leading expert on Islamic law has been warning America for years about our inability or unwillingness to know, let alone define our enemy, and the disastrous consequences we will face as a result.

Catastrophic-Failure-ShrunkIn spite of his groundbreaking work for the Pentagon’s National Military Command Center, the National Military Joint Intelligence Center, the National Security Council’s Interagency Perception Management Threat Panel and the Joint Chiefs of Staff Intelligence Directorate, along with lectures at practically all of America’s leading national security institutions, by his own admission Coughlin’s work is no longer welcomed in much of Washington D.C.

Fearing such censorship, he has decided to bring his critical work to the public, in the form of a forthcoming book titled ”Catastrophic Failure: Blindfolding America in the Face of Jihad.”

Below is a Blaze exclusive excerpt from “Catastrophic Failure,” illustrating the dire state of America’s national security and what the country can and must understand to effectively counter our enemies.

Introduction

What constitutes the bulwark of our own liberty and independence? It is not our frowning battlements, our bristling sea coasts, our army and our navy. These are not our reliance against tyranny. All of those may be turned against us without making us weaker for the struggle. Our reliance is in the love of liberty which God has planted in our bosoms. Our defense is in the spirit which prizes liberty as the heritage of all men, in all lands everywhere. Destroy this spirit and you have planted the seeds of despotism at your own doors. Familiarize yourselves with the chains of bondage and you prepare your own limbs to wear them. Accustomed to trample on the rights of others, you have lost the genius of your own independence and become the fit subjects of the first cunning tyrant who rises among you.

Abraham Lincoln Speech at Edwardsville, Illinois

September 13, 1858

Why Me?

I did not set out in life to be a student of jihad and Islamic-based terrorism. In the fall of 2001, I was a reserve officer in the United States Army, called to active duty from the private sector due to the events of September 11.

My posting was to the Joint Chiefs of Staff Intelligence Directorate (JS-J2). As I watched America respond to events across the world, I noticed with alarm that decisionmaking seemed to be increasingly less focused on the threat as it presented itself and more on the narratives that reduced the threat to a nameless abstraction.

As a mobilized officer brought into the heart of the strategic intelligence world, I knew there would be a large learning curve involved in formulating the threat doctrine of an enemy that had brought down the Twin Towers in the name of Islam and according to Islamic law.

I made a point of going to the source. I found actual books of Islamic law. I read them and found they could be mapped, with repeatable precision, to the stated doctrines and information that groups like al-Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood disclosed about themselves and used when speaking to each other. My analysis helped me develop a threat doctrine, an understanding of the enemy as he understands himself unconstrained by the influences of the environment – Sun Tzu’s “Know your enemy.” That threat analysis was in line with all the standard doctrines on threat development I had been taught when I learned to do intelligence analysis. Because the declared enemy stated that his fighting doctrine was based on the Islamic law of jihad, Islamic law had to be incorporated into any competent threat analysis. When assessing al-Qaeda in light of the jihad doctrines that the group’s members actually cite, I came to realize that such doctrines did exist, they are generally cited properly, and that al-Qaeda made plausible claims to be actually following those doctrines. In legal parlance, al-Qaeda’s claims to be operating in accordance with mainstream Islamic law could at least survive summary judgment. By the same token, any analysis of al-Qaeda that failed to account for such a self-disclosed component of an identified threat doctrine could not be competent. I assumed everyone with whom I worked in the intelligence directorate was aware of the most basic aspects of intelligence, such as threat identification.

I was wrong. I had entered the Intelligence Directorate adhering to the traditional methods of analysis. Soon, however, I discovered that within the division there seemed to be a preference for political correctness over accuracy and for models that were generated not by what the enemy said he was, but on what academics and “cultural advisors” said the enemy needed to be, based on contrived social science theories.

It seemed the enemy was aware of this as well. Forces hostile to the United States in the War on Terror appeared to have successfully calculated that they could win the war by convincing our national security leaders of the immorality of studying and knowing the enemy. It is not our fault that the threat we face identifies its doctrine along Islamic lines, but it is our fault that we refuse to look at that doctrine simply because our enemy wishes to blind us to its strategic design.

Some time ago, I had an opportunity to analyze the Muslim Brotherhood in North America’s strategic documents, which were entered into evidence in a federal terrorism trial. In those documents, the Muslim Brotherhood explicitly states its designs for “civilization-jihad” and its intent to sabotage America by getting us to do the job for them. This doctrine of subversion could likewise be mapped to mainstream Islamic law. Individuals and organizations named in the Brotherhood’s documents were shown in the government’s investigative files, surveillance photos, audio recordings, and wiretaps to have been aligned with or members of the Muslim Brotherhood. But while the government was identifying many of these people and entities as providing material support to terrorism in a federal court, it was also seeking out those same people as cultural experts, “moderates,” and community outreach partners.

As early as 2003, I began putting together briefings that easily outperformed competing explanations for the enemy’s doctrinal motivations. My briefings have always spoken to verifiable and authoritative facts. Others, however, were based on social science modeling and depended on dubious academic constructs—which, of course, were needed to satisfy the overriding requirement that we avoid associating the war we were fighting with the very Islamic concepts that the enemy self identified as the justification and basis for their actions.

Before demobilizing from the Joint Staff in 2004, I wrote a forecast of adverse events that would occur because of our refusal to undertake evidentiary threat analysis. Eighteen months later, while standing on a Metro platform in downtown Washington, D.C., I happened to run into the senior civilian in the Joint Staff Intelligence Directorate, retired Marine Corps Colonel David Kiffer. He told me he was impressed by my briefs, particularly by how the presentations accurately frame emerging events to that day.

When asked how I could identify emerging threats with such precision, I explained that there is no crystal ball. It’s just that al-Qaeda, the Taliban, the Muslim Brotherhood, and others have knowable threat doctrines. Forecasting is as simple as mapping their stated objectives to the doctrines they follow in conjunction with their known capabilities. At the core of those doctrines, of course, was Islamic law.

As a retired Marine Corps officer, the senior civilian intelligence officer understood my concern for the lack of basic analysis. He asked me to come to the Pentagon and brief the Flag and General officers on the J2 Staff. I accepted the offer but insisted that I be able to present what I believed to be the central problem in the War on Terror. He agreed, so I put a briefing together and spoke at the Pentagon around Christmastime in 2005. The briefing culminated in a slide that raised two central questions:

Can overdependence on “moderates” to explain non-Western motivations and beliefs lead us to (overly) depend on them for the decisions we make?

Is there a point where the outsourcing of an understanding of events leads to the outsourcing of the decisionmaking associated with those events?

Underlying both questions was my concern that decisions central to the warfighting effort are based solely on the inputs of experts on subjects that the decisionmakers themselves do not understand. When such a practice becomes chronic, actual decisionmaking shifts from those responsible for making decisions to the experts they rely on for information. It is a subversion of both the decisionmaking and the warfighting processes.

At the Pentagon, after I had expressed my opinion on these issues directly, I was asked to join the Intelligence Directorate as a full-time consultant. Since then, while I repackaged my presentations and restated them in many ways with greater demonstrated foreseeability, the central issue has remained the same: Senior leaders remain profoundly unaware of the Islamic doctrines that frame the War on Terror. Tragically, not knowing these doctrines kills Americans and undermines our security.

Read more at The Blaze

Tariq Ramadan’s Research Center Holds International Conference In Europe For The First Time

Tariq Ramadan p12412-300x169By gmbwatch on March 18, 2015:

Islamist media is reporting on the third Annual International Conference of the Research Center for Islamic Legislation and Ethics (CILE), headed by Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Tariq Ramadan. According to the IslamOnline report, this is the first time that the conference has been held in Europe:

BRUSSELS – The third Annual International Conference on Islam and Contemporary Ethical Dilemmas was inaugurated in the Belgium capital, Brussels, on Saturday, March 14, presenting an insight on Islam and global ethics.

‘We are paying the price of a certain restrictive conception that says Islam is only Fiqh,’ Dr. Tariq Ramadan, the director of the Research Center for Islamic Legislation and Ethics (CILE) told attendants.

In his speech titled ‘Global Ethics and Applied Ethics’, Dr Ramadan presented an overview of three main sources of Islamic ethics which are law (fiqh), philosophy-theology and Sufism, in a bid to help audience understand how ethical values and principles are produced from within.

Dr. Ramadan also urged Muslims to go deeper in understanding the objectives of Islam, and not just stop at the level of Fiqh.

He was speaking at the inauguration of the third Annual International Conference on Islam & Contemporary Ethical Dilemmas held in Brussels.

Read the rest here.

According to the CLIE website, the following individuals of interest were expected to participate in this year’s conference:

In March 2014, the GMBDW reported on the the 2nd Annual CLIE international conference that was expected to include Wadah Khanfar, with a background in the Muslim Brotherhood and likely Hamas and Yemeni Muslim Brotherhood figure Tawakkul Karman a winner the Nobel Peace Prize.

The Research Center for Islamic Legislation and Ethics (CLIE), headed by Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Tariq Ramadan, was launched in January 2012 and represented a significant coming together of Global Muslim Brotherhood leaders Ramadan and Youssef Qaradawi, noting that the Deputy Director is a close associate of Qaradawi’s at the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS).The new center appears to be the latest in the series of research centers being established by the Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies (QFIS). The launch ceremony for Center was co-organized by a group that included five U.S. universities, among them Georgetown University, together with representatives of two organizations headed by Youssef Qaradawi and the Global Center for Renewal and Guidance. According to Saudi media, the Global Center for Renewal and Guidance is a U.K. based organization created to improve the Islamic education curriculum and headed by Abdullah Omar Naseef who has held many important positions Saudi Arabia including serving as Vice-President of the Kingdom’s Shura Council, President of King Abdul Aziz University, and most importantly as Secretary-General of the Muslim World League (MWL) from 1983-1993. Dr. Naseef also heads the Cairo-based International Islamic Council for Da’wa and Relief, (IICDR), an umbrella group or 86 Islamic organizations, many of which are associated with the global Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas fundraising, or support for Al Qaeda.

Tariq Ramadan is the grandson of the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood. For his profile, go here.

Will al Shabaab Join Islamic State?

1321364230CSP, by Nicholas Hanlon, March 18, 2015:

The past weeks of debate regarding the relationship of Boko Haram and IS paints a picture of the how Western analysts weigh relationships between Sunni Islamic movements.  Most analysis in the media weighed tactical considerations that proved to be superficial in the end.

The overarching predictor of behavior for the allegiance between Boko Haram and IS was their strict religious interpretation of Islamic Law.  This is why the Threat Information Office at the Center for Security Policy so confidently predicted the acceptance of allegiance from Boko Haram by IS.

The tactical superficialities often discussed included egos among leadership in the groups, Arab racism toward black Africans, and propaganda ploys made in desperation.  All of these lines of inquiry are factors that merit assessment but ultimately they are symptoms.   Good intelligence analysis should not resemble an after action report.  It should predict behavior in order to prevent strategic surprise.

One of the symptoms or tactical superficialities that came into focus just before the alliance was the upgrade in Boko Haram’s media capability.  This led many to speculate that they had help and training from IS for their propaganda division.  The assistance could have as easily come from al Shabaab.  Al Shabaab has long had an impressive media capability but the latest video on their invasion of Mpeketoni in Eastern Kenya seems to be a leap forward none the less.  If the propaganda videos released by each group serve a purpose, it is to teach us about tactics and goals.  Emphasize the goals over the tactics and you will have a better handle on behavior.

It has been the over-emphasis on tactics that have cost us the big picture.  Again, it was strict religious interpretation which trumped racism that U.S. intelligence officials said would prevent an allegiance between Boko Haram and IS.  The Ansaru faction of Boko Haram for example came from the mind of Mokhtar Belmokhtar (of AQIM at the time).  The media picked up on Ansuru’s condemnation of Boko Haram’s horrific tactics.  If one were to be specific, Ansaru’s issue was with Boko Haram’s horrific treatment of it’s own members.  Not infidels generally.  In fact, by Belmokhtar’s design, Ansaru was meant to be a regional actor where Boko Haram was local.  Maaman Nur led Ansaru and connected with al Shabaab between 2009 and 20011.  Nur, like Abubakar Shekau, was a disciple of Muhammed Yousef.  Many of Yousef’s followers joined Al Qaeda after his death.

This is all to say that the things that divide these groups do not deter them from their long term goals.  There are now hints that Al Qaeda linked al Shabaab will be the next to pledge to IS.  We can continue to ask if tactical factors will cause significant divisions.  One of the big question that remains is whether alliances between these groups will strengthen them tactically.

Despite military success of western alliances in Nigeria, Somalia, or the Middle East, these allegiances will strengthen these Sunni Islamist groups.  In one sense, they already have because policy makers have alluded themselves that the different banners under which global jihadists fight are more significant than they seem.  Now, as they move toward one banner with four globally connected Jihadist groups holding territory (Taliban, Boko Haram, IS, al Shabaab) the threat will extrapolate.

Consider the ten thousand fighters from Western Europe living in democratic societies whose beliefs caused them to heed the call to battle once IS declared the Caliphate and gave them and accessible place to live out their belief.  Success is a great propaganda and recruiting tool.  Every new place they can paint the black flag of Jihad on the map, more will rally to their banner.

Also see:

Boko Haram: What It Means to Swear an Oath

2700814599CSP, by Kyle Shideler, March 11, 2015:

In response to the fact that Nigerian terror group Boko Haram has sworn allegiance to Islamic States, analysts have primarily seized on what benefit Boko Haram is expected to get out of it, and whether the Nigerian insurgency needed a “propaganda” boost, at a time when they are facing a coalition of African states seeking to roll back them back.

This focusing solely on the question of benefit seems logical to the average western analyst, but is deeply problematic.

First, what is Boko Haram? An insurgency? A terrorist organization? Boko Haram, in their own words, is a jamaat (group) dedicated to dawa (proselytizing) and jihad (warfare against unbelievers). These words in and of themselves are pregnant with significance.

Consider from the prospective of those whom Boko Haram considers a relevant authority on these matters. Founder Mohammed Yusuf in 2009 reportedly stated that: “All Islamic scholars who undermine Ibn Taymiyyah, Sayyid Qutb, Hassan al-Banna and Osama Bin Laden are not authentic Islamic scholars.” Sayyid Qutb, in his seminal work “Milestones” had this to say about Dawa and Jihad:

“The movement uses the methods of preaching and persuasion (Dawa) for reforming ideas and beliefs and it uses physical power and Jihad for abolishing the organizations and authorities of the Jahili (pre-Islamic) system.”

As a Dawa and Jihad organization adhering to Qutb’s methodology, Boko Haram from the beginning was oriented towards the eventual seizure of territory upon which to rule while abolishing Nigerian rule.

Having reached a stage (or milestone as Qutb would have called it), where they felt it appropriate, Boko Haram announced in August of 2014 the establishment of an Islamic state over the territory they controlled in Northern Nigeria. At the time many western analysts misunderstood this claim to be one of a “rival” caliphate. Boko Haram reaffirmed its position of ruling territory in January of this year, noting in discussing its seizure of the town of Baga:

“As for it’s importance to us, it’s because of it removes that military presence from the lands of the Islamic state, and hence establish the Shariah of Allah in the region, and attain safety and security in it for Muslims.”

It was during this period that Boko Haram began openly expressing itself with Islamic State imagery, including their version of the black shahada flag, and using nasheeds (acapella singing) popular with IS fighters in their videos.

Finally the Boko Haram’s Shura Council was previously reported to be considering whether or not to swear an oath to “Caliph” AbuBakr Al-Baghdadi. Having finally done so, it has been reported as an “alliance” or a “team up” but the reality is different. An oath to a caliph carries with it significant implications. Regarding the oath, Islamic jurist Ibn Khaldun (d.1406) wrote:

It should be known that the bay’ah (oath of allegiance) is a contract to render obedience. It is as though the person who renders the oath of allegiance made a contract with his amir, to the effect that he surrenders supervision of his own affairs and those of the Muslims to him and that he will not contest his authority in any of (those affairs) and that he will obey him by (executing) all the duties with which he might be charged, whether agreeable or disagreeable.

In practice, because of geographical distance, and because Boko Haram remains capable of operating independently, it’s unlikely that this degree of total control would be applied, particularly if Boko Haram is granted the position of an IS Province), but legally that is what has been sworn.  It’s an oath which is pre-modern in its conception, and attempting to understand it in the context of  a joint venture between two companies, or a nation-state alliance is an error.

As regards Islamic State’s view of the matter, many questioned whether Boko Haram’s oath would be accepted (it appears to have been). This should come has no surprise either, because Islamic State has explicitly told groups like Boko Haram that such an oath is not only welcome, but “obligatory.” The Islamic State noted in its Caliphate Declaration (This is the Promise of Allah) that:

We clarify to the Muslims that with this declaration of khilāfah, it is incumbent upon all Muslims to pledge allegiance to the khalīfah Ibrāhīm and support him (may Allah preserve him). The legality of all emirates, groups, states, and organizations, becomes null by the expansion of the khilāfah’s authority and arrival of its troops to their areas. (emphasis added).

This would seem to suggest that the Islamic State is now in the position to offer at least some level (of possibly technical) assistance to Boko Haram, thus representing an “arrival of its troops.” Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has already claimed that Islamic State has been training Boko Haram’s forces, although whether that’s true remains to be seen.

Seeking to understand and analyze jihadist organizations absent the context of the sharia law that dictates their actions and which they hold as legally binding and obligatory,  continues to mislead and confuse.

 

A top Shariah lawyer’s stunning response to the question: ‘Is there such a thing as moderate Islam?’

419gPOS7xaLThe Blaze, by Benjamin Weingarten, Feb. 26 2015:

We sat down with a leading Shariah lawyer from Iran, Daniel Akbari, to discuss his illuminating new book ”Honor Killing: A Professional’s Guide to Sexual Relations and Ghayra Violence from the Islamic Sources, in which he seeks to awaken Americans to the generally antithetical nature of Islam to Judeo-Christian society, and specifically Shariah-dictated domestic violence towards women — up to and including so-called honor killings — and how we in the West can prevent such atrocities.

During the extensive interview, which you can skip to here, we had a chance to ask him a series of questions on the nature of Islam, its goals, tactics, how Western Muslims become jihadists, and all manner of other topics.

But it was in response to a question on whether there is such a thing as moderate Islam that Mr. Akbari, a man who studied at the seat of Shia religious learning at the Tehran University School of Law, and specialized in criminal and family law before leaving Iran, gave perhaps his most stunning response of all, stating:

What Erdogan, the Prime Minister of Turkey says is actually perfect and totally Islamic because Islamis Islam. We don’t have such a thing like — “radical Islam extremism” — many things that are said in Islam like beheading, like stoning, like flogging — they are not extremism acts, those are pure Islam.

…The second thing is, this is not “extremism,” this is “fundamentalism.” People who believe in [the] Koran understand it and practice it and take it serious.

About moderate Muslims, we have to…make a distinction between those people who come from Islamic backgrounds, come from [the] Middle East, their names are ‘Mohammed’…they might not believe in [the] Koran at all. They might just be atheists. They just come from that region.

Who are moderate Muslims in reality according to Akbari?

…Moderate Muslims actually are kind of like CAIR [Council on American-Islamic Relations] people — people who are Muslim Brotherhood types…and these people fight for Islam, love it, but they give a peaceful feature, and good-looking [nature] to Islam, to…deceive Americans not to resist the process of Islam.

Sometimes they deceive Americans this way that “We are the same as your neighbor who is from the Middle East.” That neighbor might be an atheist, might be a Buddhist at heart. Just by nature and feature, people might assume [him or her] Islamic.

…Moderate Muslims, as we might know as Muslim Brotherhood, they are the backbone of jihad.

Without them, there…[are] not gonna be any jihadis. They support jihad financially. They recruit here for jihadists — they recruit in this country. They have their own Islamic centers. They go to jail and recruit for ISIS.

So without these moderate Muslims — I’m not talking about just people coming from [the] Middle East — I’m talking about those who fight for Islam, or those who love Islam and pay for jihadists and also support to…try to recruit people, or sympathizers. My point about moderates is kind of different than what Americans might say.

Moderates are not anybody from [the] Middle East with an Islamic name.

My point about moderates are people who have Islamic organizations in an organized way, fight to improve Islam, I call those people moderates. To my eyes, those moderates are no different than ISIS or other jihadists.

During the interview, we also had the opportunity to discuss a series of other topics with Mr. Akbari including:

Follow Ben Weingarten (@bhweingarten) and TheBlazeBooks on Twitter and Facebook.

National Security Expert: U.S. Foreign Policy Leaders ‘Have Lost The Ability To Think’

coughlinDaily Caller, Ginni Thomas, Feb. 22, 2015: (video at Daily Caller)

From his time briefing generals in the Pentagon, Stephen Coughlin — a leading expert on national security and author of the soon-to-be-published book, “Catastrophic Failure: Blindfolding America in the Face of Jihad” — has always feared for our nation’s safety and thinks it’s time for the government to stop lying.

Coughlin is an attorney, decorated intelligence officer and expert on Islamic law and terrorism. He says the “entire world, friend and foe alike, understands, that starting with the Bush administration and accelerating in the Obama administration, that our foreign policy community is absolutely incoherent and completely vulnerable. These people have lost the ability to think.”

He contends that government bureaucrats have become so focused on fighting “narratives” consistent with a post-modern, politically correct worldview, rather than the facts on the ground, that America’s war on terrorism has become a catastrophic failure.

Rather than be tethered to the professional canon requiring a “duty to be competent” and know the enemy, or their oath to support and defend the nation from enemies foreign and domestic, Coughlin argues the military has been persuaded, cajoled and perverted into fighting based on narratives.

“This country is in serious trouble,” he believes. “The people who hate us — and it’s not just radical Islam, it’s the Chinese, it’s the Russians, it’s the Iranians — they know that our leaders don’t know what they’re doing, because they’ve been kicking the tires.”

In this exclusive video interview with The Daily Caller, Coughlin says our allies in the war of terror “watched us change sides” in 2010 and 2011, but “the scariest thing” to him “is that our senior national security leaders seem to have no comprehension that they did.”

As for President Obama’s Summit this week, Coughlin sees the touted euphemism as an example of his point, and declares, “When you are fighting ‘violent extremism,’ you are not defending this country. You are bringing it down.”

His greatest fear is that “we may be put to sleep, like the frog that boils to death, mired in the pollution of our own politically correct narratives that has created a complete inability for us to understand and further the truth, so much so, that we have to treat the truth as propaganda just to be heard.”

Discussing the 2009 Fort Hood shooter, Maj. Nidal Hasan, Coughlin says this is a clear example that when you commit to a narrative, you can suppress the truth and undermine our national security. He says Hasan told us “at the Walter Reed and the Pentagon, over 20 times” to military officers that, “I am a Muslim. If you send me to war, I will become a jihadi.”

Coughlin describes the efforts by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to work with the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), an international organization with 57 Member States (56 countries and the Palestinian Territories) concerning their 10 Year Programme of Action to make defaming Islam a punishable crime.

The UN Human Rights Commission passed UN Resolution 1618, to implement OIC’s 10 year plan. If it becomes law, “it would have the effect of subordinating our first amendment to Islamic slander laws,” Coughlin says. He discusses a meeting then-Secretary Clinton had on July 15, 2011 in Turkey where Clinton promised to use the government’s “best efforts to pass 16/18, and would resort to peer pressure and shaming against Americans who might violate that standard.”

The security expert claims this would result in an “extra-legal means to attack Americans for exercising their free speech rights inside America if they say something that the OIC deems insulting.”

To Coughlin, this is a layered strategy that calls for the dots to be connected by astute citizens. There is Islamic slander law, the OIC’s Ten Year Programme of Action and UN Resolution 16/18. Now, alongside Resolution 16/18 at the UN, is a new supporting effort to redefine “incitement” in international treaties to which the U.S. is a party to achieve their controversial objectives.

Coughlin’s hope is that more citizens should confidently and strongly ask, why is our government lying to us.

The Political Left’s Marriage to the Islamic Jihad: Silencing Truth and Lying as a Strategy

behead_those_who_insult_islamUTT, by John Guandolo, Feb. 20, 2015:

This is the third in a 4-part series on The Political Left’s Marriage to the Islamic Jihad

The truth always offends those who do not have it.

In the Sharia (Islamic Law), “Slander” is defined as follows:  “To mention anything concerning a person (Muslim) that he would dislike (Um Dat al Salik, Islamic Sacred Law, r2.2).”   The Quran, the Hadith, and a consensus of the Muslim scholars all agree that anyone who insults the Prophet and/or Islam must be killed (e.g. Surah 9:12, Hadith – Abu Dawud and al-Nasa’i, from Ibn-‘Abbas).  The punishment for Slander in Islam is death.

Currently, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) – the largest international body in the world second only to the UN, made up of all 57 Islamic nations on the planet – is officially calling for “deterrent punishments” (Section VII, para 3) for anyone who offends Islam, and continues to petition the United Nations for such action.  This campaign is called “Islamophobia.”

Islamophobia is the imposition of the Islamic Law of Slander.  To be called an “Islamophobe” is to be threatened.

Islamophobia

Book R of the Um Dat al Salik (Islamic Sacred Law) is entitled “Holding One’s Tongue.”  Section 8 is “Lying” with a sub-section titled “Permissible Lying.”  This alone is telling.  The Sharia quotes the Prophet Mohammad from the authoritative Hadiths of Bukhari and Muslim:  “I did not hear (the Prophet) him permit untruth in anything people say, except for three things:  war, settling disagreements, and a man talking with his wife.”

The law is clarified further:  “It is permissible to lie if attaining the goal is permissible…it is obligatory to lie if the goal is obligatory (ibid, r8.2).”  Jihad is obligatory.

The Political Left around the globe, and especially in the United States, also uses lying, deceit, and the destruction of those who speak the truth as weapons for their own ends.

The current “Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) Summit”  is a tremendous example of the deceit of the Obama administration.  The U.S. CVE program was adopted from our British allies who created this program in tandem with the British Muslim Brotherhood (MAB and MCB).  This ongoing effort identifies “Violent Extremists” as the threat to America.  Yet, our enemy self-identifies themselves as “Muslims” waging “Jihad in the Cause of Allah” in order to impose “Sharia” and establish the “Caliphate” (global Islamic State).  The Department of Homeland Security, FBI, CIA, Pentagon, and other intelligence and law enforcement agencies at the federal level forbid the use of the above-quoted terms.

If you cannot define the enemy, you cannot defeat the enemy.

It is worth noting that the DHS CVE Working Group has Muslim Brothers Imam Mohamed Magid and Arif Alikhan as members, as well as Muslim Sister Dalia Mogahed.  Magid was the VP then President of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) which is the “nucleus” for the Islamic Movement in North America and a financial support arm for Hamas, according to documents entered into evidence at the largest Hamas trial ever successfully prosecuted in U.S. history (US v Holy Land Foundation, Dallas 2008).

Imam Magid continues as the Executive Director of the Muslim Brotherhood’s ADAMS Center in Sterling, Virginia, which is one of three primary outreach partners with the FBI (along with MB group MPAC).

Another lie peddled by this administration is that Muslims were an important part of America’s founding, which is utter nonsense and historically untrue.  Two notable occasions where this lie was repeated:  March 6, 2011 at aspeech given by the President’s Deputy National Security Advisor Denis McDonough (now the President’s Chief of Staff) at the Muslim Brotherhood’s ADAMS Center in Sterling, Virginia where he thanked MB leader Imam Mohamed Magid for leading prayers at the White House Iftar Dinner (the end of Eid – the celebration of the first Islamic military victory over non-Muslim forces, but I digress).  He continued, “A dinner which, as the President  noted at the time, is a tradition that goes all the way back more than two centuries when Thomas Jefferson hosted the first iftar at the White House.”

Thomas Jefferson waged war on the Islamic states (Barbary states).  We built up the U.S. Navy to “meet the menace” of the Islamic jihadis, and Jefferson himself, as the Ambassador to France – along with John Adams in a letter to Congress – explained the Muslims were waging war on America’s ships and citizens because it was acommand from Allah to do so.

In a speech this week, the President said, “Here in America, Islam has been woven into the fabric of our country since its founding.”

One has to ask, what is the purpose of the President of the United States and his senior advisors repeating an easily refutable lie other than to soften the response from Americans to an overt threat from the Islamic Movement, and aid our enemies.

The President, Attorney General, leadership of both political parties, Cabinet Members, and others all parrot the phrase that this war “has nothing to do with Islam.”  Yet, our enemies say Jihad is an obligation Islam commands them to undertake.  Either our government is extremely ignorant, naive or this is an intentional move to deceive the public about a massive threat to our security.

Those who speak the truth about this threat are attacked, not just by the jihadi organizations like ISNA, CAIR, and Islamic Centers across the country (not to mention the Southern Poverty Law Center and the ACLU who overtly defend the jihadis), but by the administration.

The Joint Forces Staff College (JFSC) previously had one of the best programs in the nation educating senior military officers on the threat of the Global Islamic Movement until ISNA, CAIR, MPAC and others petitioned the White House, deeming the training “offensive” to Muslims.  This action was initiated after a Muslim, who was not even a part of the course, complained.  The proctor for the JFSC course, Lieutenant Colonel Matthew Dooley, was publicly chastised by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs General Dempsey who stated, “It was just totally objectionable, against our values, and it wasn’t academically sound.”

It would be nice for the General to provide the public with any of the evidence, doctrine or facts taught about the Islamic Movement or Sharia that were not locked down in truth.  He cannot.  I know, because I was one of the instructors at that course.

Together, the Political Left and the Islamic Jihadi Movement are silencing those who speak the truth about a real threat to our Republic.  The very Muslims and Islamic organizations our government is directly working with are ideologically and practically aligned with ISIS, Al Qaeda, and all the other jihadi organizations we claim we are fighting.

We are being lied to by both sides of this unholy marriage.

“Don’t Let the AUMF Fulfill the Islamic State’s End Times Prophecy”

2240479620CSP, by Clare Lopez, Feb. 15, 2015:

If it seems that Islamic State (IS) atrocities are descending to ever-more horrific levels of barbarity, then the message is getting through as intended. As Congress begins to consider the President’s proposed new Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF), it would be well to understand just how desperately IS has been trying to lure Western ground forces into the land of Al-Sham. The amputations, beheadings, crucifixions, immolations, and sex slavery – perpetrated in meticulous emulation of the Life of Muhammad and obedience to Islamic Law (shariah) – were from the beginning carefully calculated to ‘strike terror into the hearts of the enemy’ (Q 8:12, 8:60), while also eliciting an emotional reaction that would drive the U.S. recklessly to send its military back to the region’s battlefields.

The name of the place matters: it’s not ‘the Levant.’ It’s al-Sham, which means Greater Syria, an historical and geographical term that includes the entire southeastern littoral of the Mediterranean Sea from Turkey to Egypt and inland as far as Jordan and Iraq. The Arabic abbreviation for Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) is Da’esh – which, letter for letter, stands for the same words that ISIS does. But more to the point is what IS calls its slick, full-color, English language, online magazine: DABIQ. Dabiq is the name of a town in northern Syria (north of Aleppo) that figures prominently in a Sunni hadith (a saying attributed to Muhammad) that foretells the End Times. According to that hadith, the Day of Judgment for the Muslim believers will not arrive until an army from the West, sometimes called ‘Romans’ or ‘Byzantines’ or ‘Crusaders,’ will land at Dabiq and be met and defeated in battle by the Muslim forces. See Dabiq Issue 3 for the IS strategy in its own words.

Alastair Crooke has an excellent 13 February piece at Huffington Post entitled “Is Jordan Facilitating IS’ Grand Strategy?” in which he explains all this, but then takes it one step further, to consider how the deliberate destabilization of Jordan (triggered by the early 2015 immolation murder of its pilot) could be intended to bring IS that much closer to Israel. I would suggest additionally that potentially regime-threatening chaos in Jordan (home of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the forerunner of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi) could open a backdoor route, not just to Israel, but to Sinai (base of operations for IS affiliate Ansar Beit al-Maqdis) and also to Saudi Arabia – which, for all the sophistication of its top-of-the-line arsenal, does not field the most disciplined or motivated military force in the region. Apart from Israel, that distinction would go to IS at the moment, against which Bashar al-Assad’s formidable army, bolstered by significant resources from Iran and Hizballah, has been able to hang onto barely one-third of what used to be called Syria.

And so to the AUMF. It misrepresents the Islamic State, for some odd reason calling it “ISIL,” and seemingly oblivious to developments of the past eight months, appears to have missed the fact that ISIS long time since became IS, and then, in late June 2014, was declared a Caliphate. The question must be asked whether an AUMF against “ISIL” includes the use of military force against the Caliphate, if and when IS expands operations westward into Jordan or southward into Saudi Arabia. Would the explicitly worded AUMF that authorizes U.S. military action only in Iraq and Syria (neither of which actually exists anymore) have to be rejected to consider a new AUMF for operations in those two additional countries? What about IS ‘franchise’ operations in Libya or the Sinai or its reported presence in Yemen?

The problem with the president’s proposed AUMF language is not that it declares war against IS, but that it places such tight limits on what the U.S. response is to be against the Global Jihad Movement. Of course, ever since the 2011-2012 Muslim Brotherhood-supervised language and curriculum purge in the U.S. government, neither the White House nor Pentagon would describe the enemy in such terms, but that’s in fact what we face. And it’s why the Center for Security Policy (CSP) issued the comprehensive Secure Freedom Strategy: A Plan for Victory Over the Global Jihad Movement and then followed that with a Defeat Jihad Summit that define the enemy as all who fight or support jihad to impose Islamic Law (shariah) and propose a comprehensive all-of-government strategy to defeat that enemy.

The CSP plan does not cringe from confronting the enemy threat doctrine, which is shariah. Rather, the CSP strategy understands that the jihadist enemy’s ultimate objective is not merely to rampage, slaughter, and terrify, but to use such tactics in order to impose and enforce shariah worldwide. That is why IS is so determined to erase nation state borders, drawn a century ago by colonial powers. IS seeks above all to destroy the Westphalian nation state system and replace it with the shariah rule of an ever-expanding Caliphate. Savage attacks against police and military in Canada; a chocolate shop in Sydney, Australia; an irreverent newspaper in Paris; police in Copenhagen; and Jews everywhere, from Brussels to Paris to Copenhagen and Jerusalem are not random, Mr. President. This is the strategy of Islamic terror, of jihad.

An AUMF that does not forthrightly identify the enemy as the Global Jihad Movement and all who support it has no chance of defeating IS or any Islamic terror group. A national security strategy that is more concerned with climate change than jihad is absurd and useless. And a commander-in-chief who cannot or will not lead America in defense of liberty must be challenged – by Congress as it meets to consider a new AUMF and by We, The People, whose liberty is every bit as much in peril as that of the citizens’ of Copenhagen, Denmark tonight.

Sharia Court in Texas: What Could Go Wrong?

By Patrick Poole:

Yesterday I was interviewed by the Glenn Beck Show on Blaze TV following up from Glenn’s interview on Monday with two of the imams responsible for the sharia court that they’re opening up in Dallas, Texas.

A sharia court in Texas? What could possibly go wrong? Well, I can think of a few things…

In this segment of Glenn’s interview with the imams, Taher El-Badawi claims that cutting off heads is not just something they do in Islam, but it’s practiced everywhere, including the US (!!!), and that cutting off hands for theft in America would be economical:

 

Taher : We are ready for any point to discuss with, but the main point here, the reason we are here to discuss this issue what kind of cases Islamic tribunal handle, and you start with the sharia. Why the people afraid from sharia? I’m sorry to say it, one point related to this, cut head is not just in sharia law, just in Islamic law. It’s everywhere. Who said that just in Islamic law? That’s even another sharia, in Jewish sharia, in Christian sharia, in American here, we cut we cut head for some reason.

So, I’m asking you an easy question, if anyone kill another, he should get killed by law, by Islamic law, by government. He should get killed. What is wrong with that? If a thief jump, I’m sorry, to your house, scare your wife, scare your children, scare your neighbor, and they did that with our stores, this is the law, the law to cut his hand because if he feels my hands were cut because of that, he will think about this 100 times. He will never do it. If he do that one time, he will never do it again.

Look how many millions of dollars American here or other states or other states outside spend to keep the criminal in jail, a lot of millions of dollars. We can save that, just let him go, and that’s it, because he did something wrong in the whole community and this kill the whole community. Why not?

OK, then…

One of the other important issues covered my interview was about the imam’s claims that the court will only handle “family issues, includes manners, behavior characters, including marriage divorces, including inheritance law…”.

Contrary to sharia apologists, these courts are not just about whether you pray five times a day or which foot you enter a bathroom with. It is precisely where U.S. family law conflicts with Islamic law that is one of the greatest concerns some have with the establishment of sharia courts in the US.

In 2013, the BBC program Panorama went undercover in sharia courts operating in the UK and found systematic discrimination against women in these courts and regularly telling women suffering from domestic violence not to go to police against UK public policy.

You can view the full Panorama program here:

 

When Glenn asked whether divorces by U.S. courts would be recognized, the imam admitted that women would also need to get an Islamic divorce, and that her US court divorce would not be recognized if she traveled to Islamic countries (the imam specifically mentions US ally, Jordan). So US civil law, even by their own admission, isn’t recognized by Islamic law, here or abroad.

And what about the testimony of women in Islamic court? The imams tried to brush it off that it only related to financial transactions, but you only need to go to the IslamQA website where they defend the principle that the testimony of women isn’t the same as that of men.

As I noted in my own interview, a 2011 survey of Middle East countries by UNICEF found only in Tunisia and Oman (one could also add here Israel) is the testimony of women fully admitted in all judicial proceedings. In most Middle Eastern countries, a woman’s testimony is regularly limited in family and financial matters. This is hardly a secret.

I recall the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), Barack Obama’s favorite US Islamic group, used to publish a ruling on their website by one of the top Islamic jurists in the US expressly forbidding Muslim women from marrying non-Muslim men, saying “It is better to a slave, bondsman than get married to a non-Muslim.”

After the ruling was pointed out by sharia critics, ISNA removed it from its website, but it still can be found at Web Archive.

fiqh

Among the more laughable claims the imams made in their interview is that you need an Islamic state led by a caliph to implement penal “hudud” punishments (meaning therefore that no one is actually implementing Islamic law anymore), and that Saudi Arabia is not governed by Islamic law.

One only need look at the implementation of sharia in Islamic-majority countries around the world, and enshrining sharia as the ultimate source of their law codes in their respective constitutions, to see they have no problem implementing sharia in the absence of a recognized caliph or an Islamic state.

And Saudi Arabia isn’t governed by Islamic law? Really? [insert laugh track]

In my interview I noted that you can walk into practically any mosque or Islamic bookstore and pick up books like Mohamed S. El-Awa’s “Punishment in Islamic Law,” which is published by American Trust Publications, the publishing arm of the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT), which owns and operates hundreds of mosques around the country. In El-Awa’s book, you find helpful advice on: “How the hand should be cut off (Makan al-Qati’),” “Stoning as punishment (al-Rajm),” “Flogging (al-Jald),” and “The Death Penalty (al-Ta’zir bil-Qatl).”

The same is true for another manual of Islamic law from the Shafi’i school of jurisprudence published in America – translated in English and approved by many global Islamic authorities – called “Reliance of the Traveller (sic).” Book O is dedicated to “Jihad,” and they don’t mean “internal struggle.” Again, these are books marketed directly to American Muslims.

And let’s not forget the imam last July, as reported by Reuters, who tried to cut off the hand of one of the mosque attendees accused of stealing. But this wasn’t Cairo, Tehran or Riyadh. This happened in Philadelphia. Did this imam misunderstand Islam?

Read more at PJ Media