Taqiyya about Taqiyya

raqBy Raymond Ibrahim:

I was recently involved in an interesting exercise—examining taqiyya about taqiyya—and believe readers might profit from the same exercise, as it exposes all the subtle apologetics made in defense of the Islamic doctrine, which permits Muslims to lie to non-Muslims, or “infidels.”

Context: Khurrum Awan, a lawyer, is suing Ezra Levant, a Canadian media personality and author, for defamation and $100,000.  Back in 2009 and on his own website, Levant had accused Awan of taqiyya in the context of Awan’s and the Canadian Islamic Congress’ earlier attempts to sue Mark Steyn.

For more on Levant’s court case, go to www.StandWithEzra.ca.

On behalf of Awan, Mohammad Fadel—professor of Islamic Law at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Law—provided an expert report to the court on the nature of taqiyya, the significance of which he portrayed as “a staple of right-wing Islamophobia in North America.”

In response, Levant asked me (back in 2013) to write an expert report on taqiyya, including by responding to Fadel’s findings.

I did.  And it had the desired effect.  As Levant put it in an email to me:

It was an outstanding report, very authoritative and persuasive. Of course, we don’t know what the plaintiff’s [Awan’s] private thoughts about it were, but we do know that after receiving the report, he decided to cancel calling his own expert witness [Dr. Fadel]—who happens to be a Muslim Brotherhood sympathizer. After reading your rebuttal, he decided he would rather not engage in that debate.

My expert report follows.  In it, I quote relevant portions of Fadel’s expert report (which can be read in its entirety here).  Most intriguing about the professor’s report is that it’s a perfect example of taqiyya about taqiyya.  By presenting partial truths throughout the report, Fadel appears to have even employed taqiyya’s more liberal sister, tawriya.

Accordingly, readers interested in learning more about the role of deception in Islam—and how to respond to those trying to dismiss it as an “Islamophobic fantasy”—are encouraged to read on.

Raymond Ibrahim’s Expert Report on Taqiyya

Instructions: I have been asked to assess a report concerning the doctrine of taqiyya in Islam, written by one Mohammad Fadel; and, if I disagreed with any parts of it, to explain why—objectively, neutrally, and in a non-partisan manner.  My findings follow.

 Introduction

The Islamic doctrine of taqiyya permits Muslims to actively deceive non-Muslims—above and beyond the context of “self-preservation,” as is commonly believed.

One of the few books exclusively devoted to the subject, At-Taqiyya fi’l-Islam (“Taqiyya in Islam”) make this unequivocally clear. Written (in Arabic) by Dr. Sami Mukaram, a former Islamic studies professor at the American University of Beirut and author of some twenty-five books on Islam, the book demonstrates the ubiquity and broad applicability of taqiyya in its opening pages:

Taqiyya is of fundamental importance in Islam. Practically every Islamic sect agrees to it and practices it … We can go so far as to say that the practice of taqiyya is mainstream in Islam, and that those few sects not practicing it diverge from the mainstream … Taqiyya is very prevalent in Islamic politics, especially in the modern era.[1]

The following report is written as a response to Mohammed Fadel’s report (henceforth referred to as MFR) which deals with the topic of taqiyya and its place and usage in Islamic jurisprudence.   Because MFR is written in a premises-conclusion format, the following report will follow MFR’s numbering schemata, pointing out which premises are agreeable and which are not—offering correctives to these latter resulting in an antithetical conclusion.

Numbers/Premises of MFR in Order:

1-3: Preliminary statements.

4: Agreed.

5:  Agreed, with the following caveat:  To many Muslims, jihad, that is, armed struggle against the non-Muslim, is the informal sixth pillar.   Islam’s prophet Muhammad said that “standing in the ranks of battle [jihad] is better than standing (in prayer) for sixty years,”[2] even though prayer is one of the Five Pillars, and he ranked jihad as the “second best deed” after belief in Allah as the only god and he himself, Muhammad, as his prophet, the shehada, or very First Pillar of Islam.[3]

All this indicates jihad’s importance in Islam—and thus importance to this case, since, as shall be seen, taqiyya is especially permissible in the context of jihad or struggle to empower Islam and/or Muslims over non-Muslims.

6: Agreed.  Qiyas, or analogical reasoning, the practice of finding antecedents in the teachings of the two revelatory sources (Qur’an and Hadith) and rationalizing their applicability to modern phenomena, also belongs to usul al-fiqh, or Islam’s roots of jurisprudence.  It gives more elasticity to Islam’s rules (a major theme throughout this report).  Qiyas, for example, is the way al-Qaeda and other jihadi organizations justify suicide attacks: although killing oneself is clearly forbidden in Islam, in the context of jihad—in the context of trying to empower Islam—suicide attacks are rationalized as legitimate forms of stealth warfare, since those giving their lives are not doing so out of despair but rather for Islam (as in Qur’an 9:111).[4]

7-19: Generally agreed (or indifferent to: some information in these numbers is not necessarily germane to the issue at hand and did not warrant confirmation).

20:  “Normative Islamic doctrine places strong emphasis on the obligation to speak the truth.”

This is the first of many statements/premises that are only partially true.

For starters, Islamic jurisprudence separates humanity into classes.  The rules concerning the relationship between a Muslim and a fellow Muslim differ from the rules concerning the relationship between a Muslim and a non-Muslim.

First there is the umma—the “Islamic nation,” that is, all Muslims of the earth, irrespective of national, racial, or linguistic barriers.  Many of the Qur’an’s and Hadith’s teachings that appear laudable and fair are in fact teachings that apply only to fellow Muslims.

For example, although the Qur’an’s calls for Muslims to give charity (zakat) appear to suggest that Muslims may give charity to all humans—in fact, normative Islamic teaching is clear that Muslim charity (zakat) can only be given to fellow Muslims, never to non-Muslims.[5]

As for legal relations between Muslims and non-Muslims—or kuffar, the “infidels” (kafir, singular)—within the Islamic world, these fall into two main categories: first, the harbi, that is, the non-Muslim who does not reside in the Islamic world; if at any time a Muslim comes across him in the Muslim world, according to classic Islamic doctrine, he is free to attack, enslave, and/or kill him (the exception is if he is musta’min—given a formal permit by an Islamic authority to be on Muslim territory, such as the case of the many foreigners working in the Arabian Peninsula).[6]

Second is the dhimmi, the non-Muslim who lives under Muslim domination (for example, all the indigenous Christians, Jews, Zoroastrians, Berbers, etc. whose lands were conquered by Muslims beginning in the 7th century).   By today’s standards, the rules governing the dhimmi, most of which are based on the so-called “Conditions of Omar” (sometimes the “Pact of Omar”) are openly discriminatory and include things such as commanding non-Muslims to give up their seats whenever a Muslim wants it.[7]

It is, then, in this divisive context that one must approach the Qur’an, keeping in mind that most of the verses discussing human relations are discussing intra-relations between Muslims, not Muslims and non-Muslims.  For examples of the latter, see Qur’an 9:5, 9:29, 5:17, and 5:73 for typical verses that discuss relations between Muslims and non-Muslims, verses which have further abrogated the earlier, more tolerant ones. [8]

As for the Qur’an verses listed in MFR 20—which are meant to support the statement that “Normative Islamic doctrine places strong emphasis on the obligation to speak the truth,” a close reading, supported by mainstream Islamic exegeses, demonstrates that the true function of those verses is to portray true believers (Muslims) and Islam’s prophets as the epitome of honesty and sincerity.  Significantly, none of the verses mentioned in MFR 20 actually exhort Muslims to be honest and truthful, including to fellow Muslims, in the same vein as, for example, unequivocal statements such as Do not lie to one another” (Colossians 3:9) and “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor” (Exodus 20:16).

The fact is, other Islamic teachings and caveats have permitted Muslims to deceive even fellow Muslims.  For example, the doctrine of tawriya allows Muslims to lie in virtually all circumstances provided that the lie is articulated in a way that it is technically true.

The authoritative Hans Wehr Arabic-English Dictionary defines tawriya as, “hiding, concealment; dissemblance, dissimulation, hypocrisy; equivocation, ambiguity, double-entendre, allusion.” Conjugates of the trilateral root of the word, w-r-y, appear in the Quran in the context of hiding or concealing something (e.g., 5:31, 7:26).

As a doctrine, “double-entendre” best describes tawriya’s function. According to past and present Muslim scholars (several documented below), tawriya is when a speaker/writer asserts something that means one thing to the listener/reader, though the speaker/writer means something else, and his words technically support this alternate meaning.

For example, if someone declares “I don’t have a penny in my pocket,” most listeners will assume the speaker has no money on him—though he might have dollar bills, just literally no pennies.

This is legitimate according to Islamic law, or shari‘a—the body of legal rulings that defines how a Muslim should behave in all circumstances—and does not constitute “lying.”

In a fatwa, or Islamic decree, popular Sheikh Muhammad Salih al-Munajid asserts that, “Tawriya is permissible if it is necessary or serves a shari‘a interest.”  As mentioned, empowering Islam is one of the highest shari‘a interests [9] (hence why jihad, so lauded by Islam’s prophet as aforementioned, is sometimes seen as the “sixth pillar”).

Read more at Front Page

Video: Glick, Spencer & Ibrahim on the truth about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict

hj1-450x250This week’s special episode of The Glazov Gang was filmed at David Horowitz’s West Coast Retreat held at the Terranea Resort in Palos Verdes, California, from March 21-23, 2014.

The panel, titled The Mideast Test, was joined by:

Caroline Glick, the senior contributing editor to the Jerusalem Post who is the author of the new book, The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East.

Robert Spencer, the director of Jihad Watch who is the author of an upcoming book, Arab Winter Comes to America: The Truth About the War We’re In.

and

Raymond Ibrahim, a Shillman Fellow at the Freedom Center who is the author of his recent book, Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians, published by Regnery.

The panelists discussed their books and how to best confront the threats emanating from the Islamic Middle East:

Why ‘Moderate Islam’ is an Oxymoron

By Raymond Ibrahim:

At a time when terrorism committed in the name of Islam is rampant, we are continuously being assured—especially by three major institutions that play a dominant role in forming the Western mindset, namely, mainstream media, academia, and government—that the sort of Islam embraced by “radicals,” “jihadis,” and so forth, has nothing to do with “real” Islam.

quran (1)“True” Islam, so the narrative goes, is intrinsically free of anything “bad.”  It’s the nut-jobs who hijack it for their own agenda that are to blame.

More specifically, we are told that there exists a “moderate” Islam and an “extremist” Islam—the former good and true, embraced by a Muslim majority, the latter a perverse sacrilege practiced by an exploitative minority.

But what do these dual adjectives—“moderate” and “extremist”—ultimately mean in the context of Islam?  Are they both equal and viable alternatives insofar as to how Islam is understood?  Are they both theologically legitimate?  This last question is particularly important, since Islam is first and foremost a religious way of life centered around the words of a deity (Allah) and his prophet (Muhammad)—the significance of which is admittedly unappreciated by secular societies.

Both terms—“moderate” and “extremist”—have to do with degree, or less mathematically, zeal: how much, or to what extent, a thing is practiced or implemented.  As Webster’s puts it, “moderate” means “observing reasonable limits”; “extremist” means “going to great or exaggerated lengths.”

It’s a question, then, of doing either too much or too little.

The problem, however, is that mainstream Islam offers a crystal-clear way of life, based on the teachings of the Koran and Hadith—the former, containing what purport to be the sacred words of Allah, the latter, the example (or sunna, hence “Sunnis”) of his prophet, also known as the most “perfect man” (al-insan al-kamil).   Indeed, based on these two primary sources and according to normative Islamic teaching, all human actions fall into five categories: forbidden actions, discouraged actions, neutral actions recommended actions, and obligatory actions.

In this context, how does a believer go about “moderating” what the deity and his spokesman have commanded?    One can either try to observe Islam’s commandments or one can ignore them: any more or less is not Islam—a word which means “submit” (to the laws, or sharia, of Allah).

The real question, then, is what do Allah and his prophet command Muslims (“they who submit”) to do?  Are radicals “exaggerating” their orders? Or are moderate Muslims simply “observing reasonable limits”—a euphemism for negligence?—when it comes to fulfilling their commandments?

In our highly secularized era, where we are told that religious truths are flexible or simply non-existent, and that any and all interpretations and exegeses are valid, the all-important question of “What does Islam command?” loses all relevance.

Hence why the modern West is incapable of understanding Islam.

Indeed, only recently, a Kenyan mosque leader said that the Westgate massacre, where Islamic gunmen slaughtered some 67 people, “was justified.  As per the Koran, as per the religion of Islam, Westgate was 100 percent justified.” Then he said: “Radical Islam is a creation of people who do not believe in Islam. We don’t have radical Islam, we don’t have moderates, we don’t have extremists. Islam is one religion following the Koran and the Sunna” [emphasis added].

Note his point that “Radical Islam is a creation of people who do not believe in Islam,” a clear reference to the West which coined the phrase “radical Islam.”  Ironically, the secular West, which relegates religious truths to the realm of “personal experience,” feels qualified to decide what is and is not “radical” about Islam.

Consider one example: Allah commands Muslims to “Fight those among the People of the Book [Jews and Christians] who do not believe in Allah nor the Last Day, nor forbid what Allah and His Messenger have forbidden, nor embrace the religion of truth [i.e., Islam], until they pay the jizya [tribute] with willing submission and feel themselves subdued”  [Koran 9:29].

How can one interpret this verse to mean anything other than what it plainly says?  Wherein lies the ambiguity, the room for interpretation?  Of course there are other teachings and allusions in the Koran that by necessity lend themselves over to the fine arts of interpretation, or ijtihad.  But surely the commands of Koran 9:29 are completely straightforward?

In fact, Muhammad’s 7th century followers literally acted on this and similar verses (e.g., 9:5), launching the first Muslim conquests, which saw the subjugation of millions of Christians, Jews, and others, and the creation of the “Muslim world.”  Such jihadi expansion continued until Islam was beaten on the battlefield by a resurgent West some two or three centuries ago.

Read more at CBN with video

Western Ignorance of the ‘Conditions of Omar’

Church in RaqqaBy Raymond Ibrahim:

A jihadi group occupying the Syrian town of Raqqa recently gave Christian minorities living there three choices: 1) convert to Islam, 2) remain Christian but pay tribute and accept third-class subject status, or 3) die by the sword.

According to the BBC, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria issued a directive

citing the Islamic concept of “dhimma”, [which] requires Christians in the city to pay tax of around half an ounce (14g) of pure gold in exchange for their safety. It says Christians must not make renovations to churches, display crosses or other religious symbols outside churches, ring church bells or pray in public.  Christians must not carry arms, and must follow other rules imposed by ISIS (also known as ISIL) on their daily lives.  The statement said the group had met Christian representatives and offered them three choices—they could convert to Islam, accept ISIS’ conditions, or reject their control and risk being killed.  “If they reject, they are subject to being legitimate targets, and nothing will remain between them and ISIS other than the sword,” the statement said.

Because several Western media outlets uncharacteristically reported on this latest atrocity against Syrian Christians, many Westerners are shocked—amazed to hear of such draconian conditions.

In reality, however, these three choices are fully grounded in Islamic teachings, as shall be demonstrated below.

So why is the West, here in the “information age,” utterly if not abhorrently ignorant of the teachings of Islam?   Because those responsible for making such knowledge available—specifically academia, media, and government—are more interested in whitewashing Islam andbemoaning Islamophobia (see pgs. 219-249 of Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians for specifics).

Western Dissembling

Most symbolic of all this is that right around the same time news that jihadis were subjugating and extorting jizya-money from Syrian Christians appeared, the Saudi-funded Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Christian-Muslim Understanding at Georgetown University, Washington D.C.,  held a seminar discussing how Islam is misunderstood and being demonized by so-called “Islamophobes.”

I have direct experience of this.  Many years ago, as a graduate student at Georgetown University’s Center for Contemporary Arab Studies, my interest in medieval Islamic history, Sharia, and jihad received askance looks from professors—not least because most classes offered were about the evils of colonialism and Orientalism, or Islamic “feminism.”

It was the same when I worked at the African and Middle Eastern Division of the Library of Congress, a governmental institution; there, our conferences regularly focused on the purported achievements of Islamic civilization.

As for the endemic Muslim persecution of Christians—past or present—apparently only an “Islamophobe” would raise that topic up.

Speaking of government, also around the same time jihadis were giving Christians the three classic choices of Islam—conversion, subjugation, or death—a delegation of Syrian Christian clergy came to the Senate Arms Services Committee meeting room to offer testimony concerning the sufferings of Syria’s Christians.  Then,

Sen. John McCain marched into the committee room yelling, according to a high-level source that attended the meeting, and quickly stormed out. “He was incredibly rude,” the source told Judicial Watch “because he didn’t think the Syrian church leaders should even be allowed in the room.” Following the shameful tantrum McCain reentered the room and sat briefly but refused to make eye contact with the participants, instead ignoring them by looking down at what appeared to be random papers. The outburst was so embarrassing that Senator Graham, also an advocate of U.S. military intervention in Syria, apologized for McCain’s disturbing outburst. “Graham actually apologized to the group for McCain’s behavior,” according to the source, who sat through the entire meeting. “It was truly unbelievable.”

Less dramatically but equally revealing, CIA chief John Brennan recently declared that the ideology of those offering Christians three choices is “a perverse and very corrupt interpretation of the Koran,” one that has “hijacked” Islam and “really distorted the teachings of Muhammad.”

And if the attempts to suppress the reality of Christian suffering under Islam by academia, media, and government were not enough, months and years back, when the plight of Syria’s Christians was becoming known, even random (but supposedly nonbiased and independent) think tanks and writers also tried to suppress it.

Is it any wonder, then, that Christians in Syria being offered three choices—Islam, subjugation, or death—is mindboggling to the average person in the West, appearing as a wild aberration?

The Conditions of Omar

Yet knowledge of the particulars of Islam’s three-fold choice has been available for centuries; early Western peoples were much acquainted with it, including the now much maligned “Orientalists.”

Whereas Koran 9:29 provides divine sanction to fight the “People of the Book”  (namely, Christians and Jews) “until they pay the jizya with willing submission and feel themselves subdued,” the lesser known Conditions of Omar (also known as the Pact of Omar) lays out in detail how they are to feel themselves subdued.

Named after the second caliph, Omar bin al-Khattab (r. 634 to 644), the Conditions was purportedly agreed upon between the caliph and a community of Christians conquered by invading Muslims, ironically in the region of Syria.  It has since been referenced in most major works on the treatment of dhimmis—non-Muslims living under Islamic authority.

Read more at PJ Media

Islamic Jihad and the Doctrine of Abrogation

By Raymond Ibrahim:

While other scriptures contain contradictions, the Qur’an is the only holy book whose commentators have evolved a doctrine to account for the very visible shifts which occur from one injunction to another. No careful reader will remain unaware of the many contradictory verses in the Qur’an, most specifically the way in which peaceful and tolerant verses lie almost side by side with violent and intolerant ones. The ulema were initially baffled as to which verses to codify into the Shari’a worldview—the one that states there is no coercion in religion (2:256), or the ones that command believers to fight all non-Muslims till they either convert, or at least submit, to Islam (8:39, 9:5, 9:29). To get out of this quandary, the commentators developed the doctrine of abrogation, which essentially maintains that verses revealed later in Muhammad’s career take precedence over earlier ones whenever there is a discrepancy. In order to document which verses abrogated which, a religious science devoted to the chronology of the Qur’an’s verses evolved (known as an-Nasikh wa’l Mansukh, the abrogater and the abrogated).

Koran and Sword: Hand in Hand

Koran and Sword: Hand in Hand

But why the contradiction in the first place? The standard view is that in the early years of Islam, since Muhammad and his community were far outnumbered by their infidel competitors while living next to them in Mecca, a message of peace and coexistence was in order. However, after the Muslims migrated to Medina in 622 and grew in military strength, verses inciting them to go on the offensive were slowly “revealed”—in principle, sent down from God—always commensurate with Islam’s growing capabilities. In juridical texts, these are categorized in stages: passivity vis-á-vis aggression; permission to fight back against aggressors; commands to fight aggressors; commands to fight all non-Muslims, whether the latter begin aggressions or not.[1] Growing Muslim might is the only variable that explains this progressive change in policy.

Other scholars put a gloss on this by arguing that over a twenty-two year period, the Qur’an was revealed piecemeal, from passive and spiritual verses to legal prescriptions and injunctions to spread the faith through jihad and conquest, simply to acclimate early Muslim converts to the duties of Islam, lest they be discouraged at the outset by the dramatic obligations that would appear in later verses.[2] Verses revealed towards the end of Muhammad’s career—such as, “Warfare is prescribed for you though you hate it”[3]—would have been out of place when warfare was actually out of the question.

However interpreted, the standard view on Qur’anic abrogation concerning war and peace verses is that when Muslims are weak and in a minority position, they should preach and behave according to the ethos of the Meccan verses (peace and tolerance); when strong, however, they should go on the offensive on the basis of what is commanded in the Medinan verses (war and conquest). The vicissitudes of Islamic history are a testimony to this dichotomy, best captured by the popular Muslim notion, based on a hadith, that, if possible, jihad should be performed by the hand (force), if not, then by the tongue (through preaching); and, if that is not possible, then with the heart or one’s intentions.[4]

Read more

The Aftermath of Jihad: Invisible Women

????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????by Raymond Ibrahim:

Massacres, beheadings, rapes and the rest often take place whenever and wherever Islamic jihadis take over.  Lesser known but no less eye-opening, however, is the aftermath of occupation—the everyday “rules” and laws the jihadis enforce once they’re in charge.

Consider the al-Qaeda-linked Islamic State of Iraq and Levant’s (ISIL) recent occupation of Raqqah, a city in northern Syria.  First there was the overt violence.  Among other acts of savagery, the jihadi organization attacked two Christian churches—the Church of the Annunciation and the Church of Martyrs—broke their crosses, burned their Bibles, and raised the Islamic flag in triumph.  One video depicts a Muslim “freedom fighter” smashing a Virgin Mary statue to shouts of Islam’s victory cry, “Allahu Akbar!”

Now consider the rules that organizations like ISIL enforce on the people living in the territories they occupy—or the inevitable “talibanization” of societies where Islamic supremacists hold sway.  A Syrian news clip recounts the following new laws ISIL promulgated in a statement it issued soon after taking over Raqqah:

  • Women are banned from sitting on chairs (as reported verbatim).
  • All women are obligated to wear Islamic attire, such as the niqab and burqa (which cover the entire body and face); sweaters, jeans, and makeup of any kind are strictly banned.
  • Female clothing is not to be displayed in shop windows, and only women are allowed to work there; if a man is found on the grounds the shop faces closure.
  • Women are banned from seeing male gynecologists.
  • Smoking—cigarettes, water pipes, etc.—is banned.  Violators could face the death penalty; shops found selling cigarettes are to be burned to the ground.
  • All barbershops are to be closed down and men forbidden from having short hair, wearing modern hairstyles or using hair products; men are also forbidden from wearing low-waist jeans.
  • Anyone who uses the word “Daash” (an Arabic acronym for the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant in Arabic) will receive 70 whippings; the organization is to be referred to by its proper name.

The punishments are indeed severe: swindling taxi drivers face repercussions ranging from chopped hands to chopped heads; the reason cited is that their swindling may somehow interfere with a passenger’s worship (e.g., a Muslim seeking to go to mosque at the proper time).  Likewise, shop owners who do not shut down during prayer times must face the consequences.

All this is a reminder that, while the Islamic jihad may lead to brief, spectacular forms of terror—massacres, beheadings, rapes, bombed churches—its aftermath and goal, purportedly the creation of a “perfect Islamic society,” is “spectacular” in its own way, especially for women, who become virtually invisible members of society.

Christmas Holiday, Islamic Horror

by :

As Christians in the West go to church and worship during this Christmas season, it is well to reflect on how these two simple acts—going to church to worship—can be life-threatening for Christians in the Islamic world, especially on Christmas.  The following excerpt from my book, Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians (pgs. 42-45), provides a glimpse of the horrors and humiliations Christians throughout the Muslim world can be exposed to whenever they try to meet and worship in church on Christmas and other Christian holidays.  One can only hope—perhaps in vain—that this coming Christmas does not add new victims to the list.

—-

image1Christians in the Islamic world today are suffering attacks motivated by the very same diabolical animus as a thousand years ago under Hakim [Egyptian caliph who ordered the destruction of reportedly 30,000 churches in the 10th –11th century].  Proof of this is that some of the most terrible assaults occur precisely on Christian holidays—Christmas, Easter, and New Year’s Eve (which is a major church day in the Middle East). And no wonder, considering that some Muslim clerics insist that “saying Merry Christmas is worse than fornication . . . or killing someone.”

After some fourteen centuries of church attacks and other persecution—punctuated by a brief Christian Golden Age—Egypt’s Copts began the new year in 2011 once again under assault, at one of their largest churches: during midnight Mass in the early hours of January 1, 2011, the Two Saints Coptic Church in Alexandria, crowded with hundreds of Christian worshippers, was bombed, leaving at least twenty-three dead and approximately a hundred injured. According to eyewitnesses, “body parts were strewn all over the street outside the church. The body parts were covered with newspapers until they were brought inside the church after some Muslims started stepping on them and chanting Jihadi chants,” including “Allahu Akbar!” Witnesses further attest that “security forces withdrew one hour before the church blast.” And a year earlier, Muslims shot and killed six Christians as they were leaving church after celebrating the Coptic Christmas Eve midnight Mass in Nag Hammadi.

December 25, 2011, was called Nigeria’s “blackest Christmas ever.”  In a number of coordinated jihadi operations, Reuters reported, Islamic terrorists bombed several churches during Christmas liturgies, killing at least thirty-eight people, “the majority dying on the steps of a Catholic church after celebrating Christmas Mass as blood pooled in dust from a massive explosion.” Charred bodies and dismembered limbs lay scattered around the destroyed church. This attack was simply a reenactment of Christmas Eve one year earlier, in 2010, when several other churches were set ablaze and Christians were attacked, also leaving nearly thirty-eight dead. There was no reprieve for Nigeria’s Christians when the next religious holiday came; some fifty Christians were killed “when explosives concealed in two cars went off near the Assemblies of God’s Church during Easter Sunday services” in April 2012 in a predominantly Muslim region. According to the pastor, “We were in the Holy Communion service and I was exhorting my people and all of a sudden, we heard a loud noise that shattered all our windows and doors.” December 25, 2012, saw a repeat of the last few Christmases: in two separate attacks, Islamic gunmen shot and killed twelve Christian worshippers who had gathered for Christmas Eve church services, including one church’s pastor.

The violence in Indonesia, which has the largest Muslim population in the world, was not so bloody, but Muslims’ hostility was equally clear.  In December 2012, more than two hundred Muslims threw rotten eggs at nearly one hundred Christians desiring to hold a Christmas Mass in empty land outside Jakarta, since their church, the Philadelphia Batak Protestant Church, had been illegally closed. A photographer saw angered Muslims—men, women wearing the hijab (the Muslim headscarf), and children—blocking the road and hurling rotten eggs at those attempting to worship. According to the Reverend Palti Panjaitan, the incident followed a Christmas Eve attack when “intolerant people” threw not only rotten eggs but also “plastic bags filled with urine and cow dung” at the Christians. “Everything had happened while police were there. They were just watching without doing anything to stop them from harming us.”

The attack was a repeat of what had happened several months earlier, during an Ascension Day church service in May 2012. Then some six hundred Muslims threw bags of urine, stones, and rotten eggs at the same congregation. The mob also threatened to kill the pastor. No arrests were made. The church had applied for a permit to construct its house of worship five years ago. But pressured by local Muslims, the local administration ordered the church to shut down in December 2009—though the Supreme Court recently overruled its decision, saying the church was eligible for the permit. Regardless, local Muslims and officials demand the church cease to exist.

In the Philippines, during Mass on Christmas Day 2010, a bomb exploded inside a packed Catholic church in the “Muslim-dominated” island of Jolo, injuring six worshippers including the priest. The bomb was planted by the al-Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf group, which according to the Daily Mail “has been blamed for several bomb attacks on the Roman Catholic cathedral in Jolo since the early 2000s and for kidnapping priests and nuns.”

While many more examples of church attacks on Christian holidays could be given, the four examples above demonstrate an important point. Egypt, Nigeria, Indonesia, and the Philippines have very little in common. These countries do not share the same language, race, or culture. What, then, do they have in common that explains this similar pattern of church attacks during Christian holy days? The answer is Islam. All four countries have large Muslim populations.

Read more

Islamic Jihad on Christian Nuns: A History

Maaloula: ancient Christian site where inhabitants still spoke Aramaic, language of Jesus, before being devastated by the jihad, its nuns abducted, its ancient churches desecrated.

Maaloula: ancient Christian site where inhabitants still spoke Aramaic, language of Jesus, before being devastated by the jihad, its nuns abducted, its ancient churches desecrated.

by :

Yet another phenomenon with a long paper trail in Islamic history has just taken place, even as the Western “mainstream”—little acquainted with true history or reality—dismisses it as an aberration.  Asia News has the details:

Islamist rebels have kidnapped a group of nuns from the Greek Orthodox monastery of St Thecla (Mar Taqla) in Maaloula [an ancient Christian community where Christians were earlier forced to convert to Islam or die]…  “Armed men burst in the monastery of St Thecla in Maaloula this afternoon [Dec. 2]. From there, they forcibly took 12 women religious,” Mgr Zenari said …. Neither the nuncio nor the Greek Orthodox Church know [the] reason behind the kidnapping.

The “reason behind the kidnapping”?  Sexual abuse and rape certainly should not be discounted, as these have been the lot of thousands of women abducted by U.S.-sponsored “freedom fighters” in Syria. Indeed, a new report issued by the National Reconciliation Commission in Syria states that some 37,000 women have been raped since the war started.

To keep the jihad in Syria alive, pro-war Islamic clerics have issued any number of fatwas, or Islamic rulings, permitting sexually-frustrated, female-deprived rebels to rape women.  Most of these are based on the simple fact that Islam permits jihadis, based on the example of their prophet, to copulate with any captured woman—or, in the words of the Koran, “what your right hands possess” (see “The Jihad on Christian Women: Abduction, Rape, and Forced Conversion,” pgs. 186-199 in Crucified Again for detailed information).

One cleric permitted the abduction and rape of any Syrian woman, provided she is not Sunni.  Yet apparently because there are still not enough women for the jihadi hordes, many of whom are foreigners—one Christian child was recently raped by 15 men before being killedSunni Muslim women are also being targeted through sex jihad fatwas.

So would such jihadis and their clerics have any special respect for Christian nuns?

The fact is, raped nuns is a phenomenon that goes back centuries.   According to Muslim historian Taqi al-Din al-Maqrizi (1364-1442) during his raids on Egypt, Caliph Marwan II (r.744–50) “made captive a number of women from among the nuns of several convents. And he tried to seduce one of them.”  The account describes how the enslaved nun tricked him into killing her, by claiming she had a magic oil that make skin impenetrable: “She then took some oil and anointed herself with it; then stretched out her neck, which he smote with the sword, and made her head fly.  He then understood that she preferred death to defilement.”

Read more

Egypt’s Latest Fatwas from Salafis and Brotherhood

by Raymond Ibrahim:

When a women goes swimming, as the word for sea is masculine, when “the water touches the woman’s private parts, she becomes an ‘adulteress’ and should be punished.” — Summary of Al Ahzar Fatwa Committee, reported in Al Masry Al Youm

Meanwhile the Salafis — who, in the light of the Bortherhood’s ouster have become Islam’s standard bearers there — continue successfully to push for strict interpretations of Sharia law in Egypt’s new constitution.

As the full ramification of the Muslim Brotherhood’s year in power continues to be exposed, a new study by Al Azhar’s Fatwa Committee dedicated to exploring the fatwas, or Islamic decrees, issued by the Brotherhood and Salafis — the Islamists — was recently published.

Al Azhar, in Cairo, is considered by many to be one of the oldest and most prestigious Islamic universities in the world. The study, written by Al Azhar’s Dr. Sayed Zayed, and entitled (in translation), “The Misguided Fatwas of the Muslim Brotherhood and Salafis,” reveals a great deal about how Islamists view women.

The Al-Azhar Mosque in Cairo, pictured above, is part of Al-Azhar University. (Image source: David Stanley)

The Egyptian newspaper Al Masry Al Youm summarized some of the Al Azhar study’s main findings and assertions on November 15 in a article entitled (in translation), “Muslim Brotherhood fatwas: A woman swimming is an ‘adulteress’ and touching bananas is ‘forbidden.’”

According to the report, “fatwas issued by both groups [Brotherhood and Salafis] regard women as strange creatures created solely for sex. They considered the voices of women, their looks and presence outside the walls of their homes an ‘offence.’ Some went as far as to consider women as a whole ‘offensive.’”

The study addressed 51 fatwas issued during the rule of ousted president Mohamed Morsi. Among them, the Muslim Brotherhood and Salafis “permitted wives to lie to their husbands concerning politics,” if the husband forbids her from being supportive of the Islamists or their agenda; she may then, through taqiyya [dissimulation] — a Muslim doctrine that permits deceit to empower Islam — still be supportive of the Islamists while pretending to be against them.

The study similarly revealed that some of these fatwas decreed that women who swim in the sea are committing “adultery” — even if they wear a hijab: “The reason behind this particular fatwa, from their point of view, is that the sea is masculine [as with many other languages, Arabic nouns are gender specific, and "sea" is masculine], and when the water touches the woman’s private parts she becomes an ‘adulteress’ and should be punished.”

Moreover, “Some of these fatwas also forbade women from eating certain vegetables or even touching cucumbers or bananas,” due to their phallic imagery, which may tempt women to deviate.

Read more at Gatestone Institute

 

Islamic ‘Racism’: Muslim Blood Superior to Infidel Blood

123by Raymond Ibrahim:

Arguing that Muslim blood is more precious than infidel blood, Muslim clerics in and out of Sudan are outraged because a Sudanese court has condemned a Muslim man to death—simply because he murdered a non-Muslim, the American diplomat John Granville on January 1, 2008.

A 2009 report offers context:

The court had sentenced the men [originally four] to death in June for killing Granville and his driver in January 2008, but the sentence was cancelled in August after [his Muslim driver] Abbas’s father forgave the men.

Under Islamic law, the victim’s family has the right to forgive the murderer, ask for compensation (fedia) or demand execution.

Granville’s mother, Jane Granville, at the time had asked for the men’s execution, but her letter was rejected because it was not notarized.

The judge said the sentence was confirmed because Granville’s family, from Buffalo, in northern New York State, had requested it.

Then, in 2010, the four men convicted of murder, in the words of the U.S. State Department, “escaped from a maximum security prison” in Khartoum. One of the men, Abdul Ra’uf Abu Zaid Muhammad Hamza, was recaptured and is currently in prison awaiting execution.

Finding the punishment unjust, several international Islamic organizations, most recently, the London-based Islamic Media Observatory, have been trying to commute the death sentence, mostly by arguing for Abdul Ra’uf’s “human rights.”

However, the Legitimate League of Scholars and Preachers in Sudan (an influential body of Muslim clerics) issued a statement last month titled “Let no Muslim be killed because of an infidel”—a verbatim quote, in fact, from Islam’s prophet Muhammad—revealing the true reason why so many Muslims are trying to overturn the death sentence.

John Granville and his murderers.

John Granville and his murderers.

The Arabic language statement begins by asserting that “Allah has honored human beings over creation and multiplied the Muslim’s honor over the infidel’s, because Islam elevates and nothing is elevated above it. The value of the blood of Muslims is equal, or should be, but not so the value of the blood of others.”  (The Koran itself, e.g., 2:221, confirms this idea that even the lowliest Muslim is superior to any non-Muslim.)

Next, the statement quotes the clear words of Islam’s prophet, Muhammad, as recorded in a canonical hadith: “Let no Muslim be killed because of an infidel.”  It then elaborates on the meaning of this statement by quoting from “the consensus of Islamic scholars,” or ijma‘, a legitimate source of Islamic jurisprudence.

The Legitimate League of Scholars and Preachers then elaborate on the prophet’s injunction as meaning that, when judging between Muslims and non-Muslims, under no circumstances are Muslim rulers ever permitted to execute Muslims—even if they murder non-Muslims in cold blood, including those groups that are nominally “protected” by Islamic law, such as dhimmis(subjugated, tribute-paying non-Muslims) and foreign non-Muslims granted aman, or a pledge of security to enter Muslim lands.

Abdul Ra’uf triumphantly holds a Koran while in prison for murdering an “infidel.”

Abdul Ra’uf triumphantly holds a Koran while in prison for murdering an “infidel.”

Finally, after chastising the offending judge of North Khartoum’s felony court, Sayed Ahmed al-Badri, the statement concludes by warning all Muslim rulers and judges “to fear Allah, to apply Allah’s law in every matter, whether big or small, to seek justice according to the consensus of Islamic scholars, not to seek to please the infidels, not to rush the verdict, and to know that Allah prefers the annihilation of the entire earth over the spilling of the blood of one innocent Muslim” (emphasis added).

When American soldiers desecrated copies of the Koran—a book—media maelstroms occurred and grandstanding politicians condemned.  But when the scholars of Islam, quoting the words and teachings of their prophet, openly assert that the blood of non-Muslims is cheaper than the blood of Muslims—and hence the murder of an American “infidel” by a Muslim cannot be punished blood-for-blood—such hate-filled supremacy and racist-like contempt is not even deemed worth reporting by Western media or condemned by Western politicians.

 

 

Al-Qaeda’s Jihad Supported by Muslim Brotherhood

by Raymond Ibrahim:

While some are convinced that the various Islamic organizations are discreet and disparate phenomena with divergent goals, once again information appears indicating that, all semantics aside, they are better viewed as branches emanating from one root — branches that complement and work with one another for the same goal: the empowerment of Islam, whether through jihad or suits and smiley faces.

Many are aware that the current al-Qaeda leader, the Egyptian Ayman Zawahiri is a former Brotherhood member (read here); yet few know that the original al-Qaeda leader, the Saudi (and “Wahhabi”) Osama bin Laden was also a Brotherhood member. While Zawahiri made as much clear in a recent video, more interestingly, he indicated that  the Brotherhood also supported bin Laden’s jihad.

In Zawahiri’s words:

Sheikh Osama used to say: “I was evicted from my organization.  Although I was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood organization, I was rejected by the organizations.”  Sheikh Osama bin Laden was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood group in the Arabian Peninsula. After the Russian invasion in Afghanistan, he immediately went to Pakistan to make the acquaintance of and work with the mujahidin. The group of Islamists gave him instructions to remain in Lahore to orchestrate aid; yet he was not to leave Lahore, but remain there and they would deliver aid and relief and he decide how to use it.

Interesting here is Zawahiri’s use of the term “the group of Islamists.”  While some may think this is a reference to al-Gam’a al-Islamiyya of Egypt — literally, “the Islamic Organization” — based on the context of his discussion, it is clear that Zawahiri is generically referring to the Muslim Brotherhood, as in that “group of Islamists.”

This only further confirms what recent events, especially in Egypt, demonstrate — that the Muslim Brotherhood is an inciter and supporter of the jihad around the world, also known in the West as “terrorism” — and that ousted president Morsi was in league with al-Qaeda.

 

Obama Accused of ‘Crimes Against Humanity’

OBAMA-articleLargeby :

According to Egyptian newspaper El Watan, a group of Egyptian lawyers has submitted a complaint charging U.S. president Barrack Hussein Obama with crimes against humanity at the International Criminal Court.

The complaint charges Obama of being an accessory to the Muslim Brotherhood, which incited widespread violence in Egypt both before and after the June 30 Revolution.

Along with Obama, the complaint reproduced by El Watan mentions several Brotherhood members by name, beginning with the leader of the organization Muhammad Badie, and other top ranking leaders such as Mohamed al-Beltagy, Essam al-Erian, and Safwat Hegazi, adding that “Obama cooperated, incited, and assisted the armed elements of the Muslim Brotherhood in the commission of crimes against humanity in the period from 3/7/2013-8/18/2013, in the Arab Republic of Egypt.”

According to the published text, the complaint begins by quoting Article 7/1 of the Statute of the International Criminal Court, titled “Crimes against humanity,” which is reproduced below:

Article 7

Crimes against humanity

1. For the purpose of this Statute, “crime against humanity” means any of the following

acts when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against

any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack:

(a) Murder;

(b) Extermination;

(c) Enslavement;

(d) Deportation or forcible transfer of population;

(e) Imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty in violation of fundamental rules of international law;

(f) Torture;

(g) Rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy, enforced

sterilization, or any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity;

(h) Persecution against any identifiable group or collectivity on political, racial,

national, ethnic, cultural, religious, gender as defined in paragraph 3, or other

grounds that are universally recognized as impermissible under international

law, in connection with any act referred to in this paragraph or any crime

within the jurisdiction of the Court;

(i) Enforced disappearance of persons;

(j) The crime of apartheid;

(k) Other inhumane acts of a similar character intentionally causing great

suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health.

Next, the complaint shows how Muslim Brotherhood leadership violated some of the above definitions, for example, by torturing, mutilating, raping, and killing Egyptians in their “sit in” camps (first reported here), with a highlight on the role the Brotherhood played in inciting violence and the killing of peaceful protesters around Itthadiya Palace back in December.

Above and beyond the accusations of crimes against humanity that the lawyer-drafted complaint cited by El Watan levels against the Brotherhood, one need only look to the fate of Egypt’s Christian minority, who were especially targeted by the Muslim Brotherhood—and thus, by extension, their supporter, Obama—to see numerous examples of nearly every aforementioned definition of crimes against humanity, as follows:

Read more with video

Exploiting Christian Persecution to Demonize Israel

by :

What’s worse than the silence of Western Christians concerning the Muslim persecution of their coreligionists in the Islamic world?  Answer: Cynically exploiting that persecution for a political agenda—in the case of a recent Daily Beast article, to excoriate the state of Israel and its supporters.

Titled “Why Won’t the West Defend Middle Eastern Christians?” and written by Diarmaid MacCulloch, a Fellow of St. Cross College, the article touches on the persecution of Christians, but primarily as a springboard to attack American Christian support for Israel.

One of countless churches around the Islamic world recently set aflame: all because of Israel?

One of countless churches around the Islamic world recently set aflame: all because of Israel?

Consider the following excerpt:

… one of the silences which I find most frustrating is precisely the lack of noise from Western Christians about the fate of ancient Christianities in the Middle East. At the heart of the problems in the Middle East is seven decades of unresolved conflict between Israel and Palestine…

Yes, Western silence vis-à-vis the plight of Mideast Christians is as real as it is frustrating, but exactly how is MacCulloch able to jump to the conclusion that the Arab-Israeli conflict is “the heart” of the problem?

What about the well-documented Islamic doctrines that codify the suppression and persecution of Christians and other non-Muslims?

What about the documented fact that Christians under Islam have been persecuted for more than 1300 years before the existence of the state of Israel, in complete accordance to said doctrines?

Read more 

 

Egyptian Paper Names 30 Brotherhood Operatives in U.S.

Morsi3

El-Watan, one of Egypt’s most widely-read newspapers, published a list of 30 alleged Muslim Brotherhood fronts and operatives in the U.S..

By Ryan Mauro:

One of Egypt’s most widely-read newspapers El-Watan has published a list of 30 alleged Muslim Brotherhood fronts and operatives in the U.S. that were tasked with winning public support for the Islamist group.

Citing unnamed “informed sources,” journalist Ahmed al-Tahiri says the Muslim Brotherhood has a “lobby inside America.” Raymond Ibrahim translated the article verbatim. It opens by describing the goal of the political influence operation:

“The sources said that these organizations, which are spread throughout the States, agitated for and were supportive of the decisions taken by Mohammed Morsi’s project to ‘Brotherhoodize’ and consolidate power and gave a favorable opinion to the general American public that Morsi’s decisions were welcomed by the public [in Egypt].

Following the June 30 Revolution, these groups launched a malicious war in order to incite the American administration to take hostile decisions against Egypt, with the aim of bringing the Brotherhood back to  power.”

Background information on a significant number of the identified entities and individuals could not be found, with alternate spellings likely being a major factor. In other cases, Clarion Project research supports the newspaper’s reporting.

Go to Clarion Project to see what Ryan Mauro has so far on some of the names. And he asks that “If you have verifiable information about the individuals and organizations named in the Egyptian press report, please contact us.”

 

Exposed: Names and Identities of Muslim Brotherhood Operatives in U.S.

Muslim Brotherhood Demonstrators Burn United States Flag, Amman, Jordan, September 1990By Raymond Ibrahim:

El Watan, one of Egypt’s most widely circulated and read newspapers, published a report discussing the Muslim Brotherhood’s influence over the United States, especially in the context of inciting pro-Brotherhood policies against Egypt’s popular June 30 Revolution, which resulted in the ousting of Muhammad Morsi and the Brotherhood from power.

Titled (in translation), “With Names, Identities, and Roadmap…  El Watan Exposes Brotherhood Cells in America,” it’s written by investigative journalist Ahmed al-Tahiri, who begins the report by saying:

In the context of El Watan’s ongoing investigation concerning the Brotherhood’s cells and lobby inside America that support the regime of the ousted [Morsi], and which intensified their activities to attack and defame the June 30 Revolution, informed sources have disclosed to El Watan newspaper the names and cell entities of the Brotherhood and their roadmap of activities all throughout the United States of America.

The sources said that these organizations, which are spread throughout the States, agitated for and were supportive of the decisions taken by Muhammad Morsi’s project to “Brotherhoodize” and consolidate power [in Egypt] and gave a favorable opinion to the general American public that Morsi’s decisions were welcomed by the public [in Egypt]. Following the June 30 Revolution, these groups  launched a malicious war in order to incite the American administration to take hostile decisions against Egypt, with the aim of bringing back the Brotherhood to the power.

El Watan then goes on to name names, saying that the following activists and entities are Brotherhood operatives working within the United States (reproduced verbatim):

  • Union of Egyptian Imams in North America, represented by Sheikh Muhammad al-Bani
  • The Egyptian American Foundation for Development
  • Dr. Khalid Lamada, New York
  • Dr. Hassan al-Sayah, Virginia
  • The Egyptian Network in America, led by Dr. Muhammad Helmi
  • Dr. Akram al-Zand, Sa’ad Foundation
  • Muhammad al-Khashab, Head of ART channelsin America
  • Sameh al-Henawi, member, Business Association of America
  • Dr. Hany Saqr, member, Egyptian Association in America
  • Dr. Khalid Hassan, Maryland
  • Dr. Muhammad Abdel Hakem, Seattle
  • Dr. Ahmed Ismat al-Bendari, President, Islamic Society of America
  • Walid Yusari, Chicago
  • Ahmed Shadid, New Jersey
  • Ahmed al-Hatab, Indiana
  • Dr. Muhammad Morjan, Boston
  • Ramadan Ridwan, Houston
  • Ahmed Fayez, Las Vegas
  • Dr. Amru Abbas, member, Egyptian Foundation in Michigan
  • Dr. Safi al-Din Hamed, Pennsylvania
  • Dr. Hamdy Radwan, North Carolina
  • Ahmed Shehata, Director, Egyptian American Organization for Democracy and Human Rights
  • Dr. Iman Shehata, New York
  • Dr. Muhammad Amru Attawiya, member, Organization of Islamic Relief in the United States
  • Dr. Khalid al-Sayes, member, Rebuilding of Egypt Foundation
  • Dr. Tariq Hussein, member, American Islamic Relations Council (CAIR)
  • Dr Hisham al-Gayar, member, Egyptian Foundation, Michigan
  • Amin Mahmoud, Maryland

As a most recent example, El Watan quotes from an American op-ed published on October 16 (just two days before the publication of the El Watan report itself).  Titled “Egypt: 100 days later” and written by Ahmed Shehata of the Egyptian American Organization for Democracy and Human Rights, the piece appeared in The Hill, the Capitol’s most widely circulated newspaper, published specifically for Congress.

The op-ed is certainly a prime example of pro-Muslim Brotherhood propaganda that actually tries to “shame” U.S. policymakers into returning the Brotherhood back to power in the name of “democracy.”

Key excerpts follow:

Read more: Family Security Matters 

Raymond Ibrahim is a widely published author, public speaker, and Middle East and Islam expert.  His books include Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians (2013) and The Al Qaeda Reader (2007).