Hugh Fitzgerald: A Review of Ibn Warraq’s The Islam In Islamic Terrorism

Jihad Watch, by Hugh Fitzgerald, May 12, 2017:

Ibn Warraq, the celebrated apostate, author of Why I Am Not A Muslim and of scholarly works on the Koran, Muhammad, and early Islam, as well as polemical works in defense of the West, has now written The Islam in Islamic Terrorism, showing, in the words of the Islamic fundamentalists (or, more exactly, revivalists) themselves, what really motivates Islamic terrorists today, and what has motivated them since the time of the Kharijites in the first century of Islam: the belief in the need to recover the pristine Islam of the time of Muhammad, by removing all innovations (bid’a), the further belief that it is the duty of Muslims to wage Jihad against all Unbelievers until Islam everywhere dominates, and to bring about the resurrection of the caliphate, and the imposition of Islamic Law, or Sharia, all over the globe.

Ibn Warraq’s The Islam In Islamic Terrorism is a brilliant series of reported echoes down the corridors of Islam, where the same complaints about bid’a, the same insistence on regulating every area of a Believer’s life, the same refusal to allow freedom of religion or thought, the same duties of violent Jihad and Commanding Right and Forbidding Wrong, the same demands for a return to the same pristine Islam of Muhammad, the same virulent antisemitism, the same quotes from the Koran and Hadith, the same hatred of Infidels, the same insistence that “we love death more than you love life,” the same call for bloodshed and Muslim martyrdom, the same dreary fanaticism, are thoroughly described and dissected, and above all the various violent manifestations of this revivalism over the centuries are linked to one another, as Ibn Warraq brings to bear the massive research he has been conducting over many years, in primary and secondary sources, and here deploys to splendid effect.

Ibn Warraq has performed a service for all those who are at last ready to look beyond the present platitudes about socioeconomic and other putative “root causes” of Islamic terrorism — Israel, the Crusades, European colonialism, American foreign policy, all held up for dissection and dismissal one after the other. He cites the studies that reveal Muslim terrorists to be both better off economically, and better educated, than the average Muslim. Most of the terrorist leaders have received solid educations in Islam, giving the lie to those apologists who claim that only those “ignorant of the true Islam” become terrorists.

He notes that Jihad against the Infidels started more than 1300 years before Israel came into existence, that the Muslims paid little attention to the Crusades until very recently, and that American foreign policy has often favored the Muslim side, rescuing Arafat from Beirut when he was besieged by the Israelis, supporting Pakistan despite its collusion with terrorists, looking away when Turkey invaded Cyprus, putting troops in Saudi Arabia to protect that kleptocracy from Saddam Hussein, and lavishing hundreds of billions in foreign aid on Muslim countries, and more than four trillion dollars on military interventions and “reconstruction” in Iraq and Afghanistan, in the hope, likely forlorn, that those countries could be made less barbarous than before.

Having dispatched these factitious “root causes,” Ibn Warraq returns us to the o’erweening fact of Islam, and begins commonsensically with the Koran, hadith, sunna, and sira, showing how violent Jihad, including the weapon of terrorism, is deeply rooted in the texts of Islam and the example of the Prophet. Muhammad was the first Islamic terrorist. Ibn Warraq then introduces readers to a course in Islamic history, bringing to bear an enormous amount of research — every vein is mined with ore — on a succession of violent revivalist movements that wished to return Islam to its pristine state, ridding it of any innovations (bida’). He begins this story in the first century of Islam with the Kharijites, with stops in ninth and tenth century Baghdad, sixteenth century Istanbul, and eighteenth-century Arabia, right up to those ideologues and thinkers who inspire the terrorists today, including Mawdudi, Qutb, Azzam, Faraj, and Khomeini. He gives considerable attention to the other duty of Muslims, that of Commanding Right and Forbidding Wrong (he tentatively suggests that “Jihad” might be considered as coming under the duty of “Commanding Right”), and what that duty has meant for activists and terrorists. His account of Commanding Right and Forbidding Wrong appears to be the most extensive treatment to date of this duty outside of the specialist literature.

He is a Great Debunker. He calls into question the “greater Jihad” of spiritual struggle, so beloved of Muslim apologists, quoting extensively from the modern ideologues who insist it is based at most on a single weak hadith (and some claim even that does not exist), but in any case, the non-spiritual kind of Jihad remains a duty incumbent on all Muslims. He debunks, too, the common perception of Sufis as pacific, showing how, both in Safavid Persia and, later, in India, Sufis eagerly promoted, and participated in, violent Jihad. This matters, because the myth of the “peaceful Sufis” holds out a false hope — a peaceful sect of Muslims! Maybe they can all become Sufis! — that gets in the way of recognizing a much grimmer reality.

His detailed treatment of Haj Amin Al-Husaini is an example of his thoroughness, and his ability to see what others have overlooked. He shows how Al-Husaini’s fanatical antisemitism had nothing to do with the Nazi version, but was rooted in Koran and hadith. He rejects, that is, Matthias Kunzel’s claim that Al-Husaini learned his antisemitism from the Nazis. Ibn Warraq insists that there was no need; Islamic antisemitism predated that of Hitler by 1350 years. He does offer new revelations about Al-Husaini’s role in the Holocaust. It was he who convinced Hitler not to let German Jews leave Germany, because he was afraid they would move to Palestine. Several hundred thousand Jews were thus condemned to die because of Al-Husaini. Furthermore, in order to keep Jews from elsewhere in Europe entering Palestine, Al-Husaini pressed the British to undertake a blockade so that Jewish refugees could not land in Palestine. The British, wanting to curry favor with the Arabs, agreed to this demand. How many Jews from all over Europe, who might have been saved, died as a result of Al-Husaini’s action? Possibly a million might have escaped Europe through the Black Sea port of Costanza, that remained open during the war, but only if they had a place – Palestine – that would take them in. Haj Amin Al-Husaini made sure they would not be allowed to land in Palestine.

The discussion of this is unique to Ibn Warraq. Also unique is his suggestion that it was Al-Husaini who, from 1948 to his death in 1973, kept the Islamic fundamentalist movement alive. He was the key figure linking the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt to other Islamist groups. He helped organize the assassination of government officials deemed too secular. He also brought 4000 Nazi war criminals to the Middle East, helping them find jobs in the security and intelligence apparatus of several Arab states, and even converted some to Islam. It is both his role in the Holocaust, cutting off an escape route for Jews, and in his postwar work at the very center of the Islamist movement for 25 years, that only Ibn Warraq has discussed.

The book is well-sourced, with copious citations from Koran, hadith, sunna, and sira. Ibn Warraq allows the terrorist ideologues to speak for themselves, and at length. Everyone will have his own favorite examples of fanaticism: two of mine were the rant of Sayyid Qutb about American decadence, prompted by his 1951 attendance at a distinctly modest church square dance, and Khomeini’s remarkable speech about how he “spit on those” who denied the centrality of bloodshed in Islam. Finally, Ibn Warraq has read, thoroughly assimilated, and fittingly deployed, excerpts from dozens of scholars of Islam, from C. Snouck Hurgronje and Joseph Schacht to Michael Cook and Patricia Crone. The comprehensive bibliography is divided into primary and secondary sources, for those who wish to pursue the subject further.. It will be impossible for Muslim apologists to rebut any part of this incredible work. What they will do is try to have it ignored, or to dismiss a work of solid scholarship as merely an apostate’s “Islamophobia.” We must not let those efforts succeed. Buy and read this book, see that libraries order it, that those in the media and the government who make or influence policy are sent copies. For Ibn Warraq’s sake, and for our own.

Are Islamists Conducting a New Jihad against the West?

Gatestone Institute, by William DiPuccio, May 12, 2017:

  • “But, as regards the reward and blessing, there is one deed which is very great in comparison to all the acts of worship and all the good deed­[s] — and that is Jihad!” — Saudi publisher’s prefatory note, Jihad in the Qu’ran and Sunnah by Sheikh ‘Abdullah bin Muhammad bin Humaid.
  • The rewards of Paradise are also promised to the observant Muslim, but the highest grades of Paradise, of which there are 100, are reserved only for those who perform jihad.
  • Jihad is, by all appearances, first and foremost an act of religious devotion and only secondarily an act of economic and political rebellion.

About four decades have passed since Sheikh ‘Abdullah bin Muhammad bin Humaid (1908-1981), ex-Chief Justice of Saudi Arabia, published his lengthy, impassioned, essay on jihad.[1] This essay, still available on the Internet, is the only one that Saudi religious scholars chose to include with the Noble Quran — a modern, nine volume, English translation of the Quran, which includes ancient commentary.[2]

A cursory reading of Sheikh bin Humaid’s essay should forever silence any fantasies regarding traditional Islam’s peaceful disposition toward the non-Muslim world.[3] As the Saudi publisher says in his prefatory note:

“But, as regards the reward and blessing, there is one deed which is very great in comparison to all the acts of worship and all the good deed­[s] — and that is Jihad!”

The publisher continues:

“Never before such an article was seen, describing Jihad in its true colours­ — so heart evoking and encouraging!… We are publishing this article and recommend every Muslim not only to read it himself but to offer every other Muslim brother within his read.”

To be clear, Sheikh bin Humaid defines “jihad” as “holy fighting in Allah’s Cause.” This is not, in other words, the “lesser jihad,” or “spiritual struggle,” that some Muslim apologists cite, possibly to obfuscate the primary historical usage of the word. Jihad is war fought with “the heart,” “the hand (weapons, etc.),” and “the tongue” (2).

Why Do Muslims Take Up Arms?

According to Sheikh bin Humaid, Allah sent Muhammad to fight against the mushrikun of Mecca — the “polytheists, pagans, idolaters, and disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah and in His Messenger Muhammad” (2). Muhammad patiently invited the Meccans to Islam for 13 years, warning them of Allah’s judgement. But they refused the invitation.

This refusal, by itself, was not the justification for jihad. Allah’s mercy was not yet exhausted. Sheikh bin Humaid tells us, in storied detail, that Muhammad and his followers were oppressed and persecuted by the Meccans. They were “imprisoned, made to suffer from hunger and thirst and by being beaten (in a horrible manner)” (3). Moreover, Muhammad himself was physically accosted more than once.[4]

The portrayal of cruelty on the part of the Meccans is enough to evoke sufficient anger in the reader, setting the stage for retaliation and jihad. At first Allah permitted the Muslims to defend themselves, but jihad was not obligatory. Allah can certainly defend the Muslims without fighting, according to the Sheikh, “but Allah wants from His worshippers obedience with all their efforts” (4). Consequently, he calls them to jihad as an act of obedience and devotion, not simply as an act of self-defense. This appears to be the birth of the Islamic doctrine of war.

Who is the Enemy of Islam?

Bin Humaid views jihad as a perpetual war that is to be waged against the world until submission to Islam is secured. The time for patience is over; the time for judgment has come. He cites the famous “verse of the sword”:

“Fight those who do not believe in Allah or in the Last Day and who do not consider unlawful what Allah and His Messenger have made unlawful and who do not adopt the religion of truth from those who were given the Scripture – [fight] until they give the jizyah willingly while they are humbled.” (Quran 9:29, Sahih International)

Bin Humaid tells us that Allah ordered the Muslims

“to discard (all) the obligations (covenants, etc.) and commanded the Muslims to fight against all the Mushrikun as well as against the people of the Scriptures (Jews and Christians) if they do not embrace Islam, till they pay the Jizya (a tax levied on the non-Muslims who do not embrace Islam and are under the protection of an Islamic government) with willing submission and feel themselves subdued” (4).

Peace with pagans, Jews, and Christians is not an option as long as they resist Muslim rule. And, as long as the Muslims were capable of fighting, says Sheikh bin Humaid, they “were not permitted to abandon ‘the fighting’ against them… and to reconcile with them and to suspend hostilities against them for an unlimited period” (4).

What is the Reward for Jihad?

Muslims, according to the Qur’an, disliked the call to jihad at first, but Allah insisted upon it:

“Jihad (holy fighting in Allah’s Cause) is ordained for you (Muslims) though you dislike it, and it maybe that you dislike a thing which is good for you and that you like a thing which is bad for you. Allah knows but you do not know” (2:216): (5).

Jihad, then, was not a fabrication of Muhammad; it was, we are told, a direct command from Allah himself.

According to Bin Humaid, Muslim resistance to jihad soon turned to a love for the fight. The motivation, in this case, is the reward, which far exceeds the hardships of fighting. These warriors (Mujahidin) “fight against the enemies of Allah in order that the worship should be all for Allah… and that the Word of Allah… should be superior” (5).

This alone, he tells us, should be sufficient compensation for the warrior, but Allah goes farther. “He will forgive your sins, and admit you into Gardens under which rivers flow and pleasant dwellings in Gardens of Eternity” (6).

Allah, says the Sheikh, also assists the Muslims in their battles against the enemies to give them victory. Although not specifically mentioned in the essay, Muslims find a celebrated example of this divine intervention in Islam’s first major conflict, the Battle of Badr. In it, a relatively small army of Muslims defeated the well-equipped Meccan army. This was acclaimed as a certain sign of divine favor.

Sheikh bin Humaid spends several pages (6-10) discussing the superiority of the mujahidin (the warriors) over every other ministry and occupation in Islam, including those who maintain the mosque. The “believers who fight in Allah’s Cause (mujahidin) are far superior in grades before Him” (7).

He describes the rewards of Paradise that await them (although he never mentions the fabled virgins). The rewards of Paradise are also promised to observant Muslims, but the highest grades of Paradise, of which there are 100, are reserved only for those who perform jihad (8).

Sheikh bin Humaid places virtually no emphasis on the spoils of war as a reward (see 16). Yet, we know from the many battles chronicled in the hadith, that booty was a major motivation for some of Muhammad’s men.[5] Sheikh bin Humaid’s idealism seems intended to appeal to the “true believer,” and to the purest and most exalted motives to which devout Muslims aspire.

Is Jihad an Act of Worship?

Jihad, according to Sheikh bin Humaid, is spiritual warfare as well as armed conflict. The Quran says (4:76): “Those who believe, fight in the Cause of Allah, and those who disbelieve, fight in the cause of Taghut (Satan etc.).” By battling the friends of Satan, Muslims are, according to him, protecting the weak and rescuing the oppressed from this evil (10). They are fighting to bring mankind “from the darkness into the light,” from idolatry to the worship of Allah alone, and “from the injustices of the religions to the justice of Islam” (17).

Jihad, bin Humaid tells us, is also connected deeply to prayer and fasting — all three of which are ordained by Allah. “All the Muslim religious scholars unanimously agree” that it is superior to non-obligatory prayer, as well as to the Hajj (the required pilgrimage to Mecca) and the Umra (a voluntary pilgrimage to Mecca) (11).

The Prophet Muhammad’s lofty aspiration for Jihad is captured in this hadith from Sahih Al-Bukhari (2797). “I would love to be martyred in Allah’s Cause, and then come back to life, and then be martyred, and then come back to life again, and then be martyred, and then come back to life again, and then be martyred” (11).

“Anyone”, said Muhammad, “whose both feet get covered with dust in Allah’s Cause will not be touched by the Hell-fire” (Sahih Al-Bukhari 2811) (16). This quest for martyrdom was echoed by the Fort Hood killer, Major Nidal Malik Hasan. Two years before he killed 13 people in 2009, he told an audience of his fellow Army doctors, “We love death more than you love life!”[6]

What are the Punishments for Refusing to Participate in Jihad?

If the rewards of jihad are great, then so, it seems, are the punishments for able-bodied Muslim men who refuse to participate, or who withdraw. According to Sheikh bin Humaid:

“Allah (swt) disapproved of those who abandoned Jihad (i.e. they did not go for Jihad) and attributed to them hypocrisy and disease in their hearts, and threatened (all) those who remain behind from Jihad and sit (at home) with horrible punishment” (12).

Punishment, says the Sheikh, is not limited to temporal justice: “whosoever turns his back to the unbelievers on the field of battle…has drawn upon himself the wrath from Allah. And his abode is Hell, worst indeed is that destination!” (Quran 8:16) (16). In the event that the Muslim people “march not forth,” and forsake their duty to jihad, Allah has threatened to replace them with another people (12).

The severity of punishment for those who forsake jihad has been graphically demonstrated by ISIS during the last few years. ISIS cruelly executed dozens of their own soldiers who fled the battlefield. News reports indicate that these fighters were either burned alive, gassed, beheaded, or buried alive. [7]

How is Jihad Carried Out?

The call to jihad requires the support of the entire Muslim Ummah or people. It involves the transformation of a religious community into a military machine. Sheikh bin Humaid states:

“And you will not find any organization past or present, religious or non-religious…(ordering) the whole nation to march forth and mobilize all of them into active military service as a single row for Jihad in Allah’s Cause so as to make superior the Word of Allah…as you will find in the Islamic Religion and its teachings” (13).[8]

The jihad must be fought with “true bravery,” faith, and utter confidence (of which the author cites numerous historical examples). Allah assisted the prophet and his fighters, “with victory” and “helped them with angels and… cast terror into the hearts of their enemies” (16). Against those who disbelieve, jihadists are instructed to “smite at their necks[9] till you have killed and wounded many of them.” If the enemy does not capitulate, captives may be ransomed, or freed without ransom, “according to what benefits Islam” (14).

Mercifully, women, children, and the elderly, should not be killed in battle (Sahih Al-Bukhari 4:52, 257) (16). Although this rule of engagement was generally followed by Muslim armies on the battlefield, it does not prevent Muslims from engaging in mass destruction (such as setting fire to habitations, using catapults or bombs) that may entail the death of innocents.[10] Muhammad, moreover, appears not to have spared his personal enemies, regardless of age or sex, according to the historical traditions.[11]

Why did 20th Century Islam Forsake Jihad?

Having set before his readers the high calling of jihad, Sheikh bin Humaid turns his attention to the plight of 20th century Islam. The success of jihad has always depended on the ability of Muslims to maintain a pure faith. This entails the fear of one’s own sins, and the fear of disobedience to Allah. Muslims are victorious, despite their small numbers, because, according to bin Humaid, their enemies disobeyed Allah. Should the Muslims fail in this one point, they will be overpowered by their enemies (18).

By Allah’s might, bin Humaid continues, the Muslims became “the best of peoples ever raised up for mankind” — enjoining true monotheism and forbidding polytheism. But today they “are leading a life of the one who knows not any Prophet, nor believes in any Divine Message or Divine Revelation,[12] nor expects any reckoning nor is afraid of the Hereafter.” They have, in some ways, he laments, reverted to the pre-Islamic ignorance of Arabian polytheists (19).

In response, Allah has sent them trials through the imposition of Western civilization and Soviet communism (this was written before the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991). “So their land,” says the Sheikh, “became ‘a free wealth’ with no protector.” Fulfilling Muhammad’s prophecy, Allah has removed fear from the hearts of those who hate Islam, while casting a love for this world and a hatred of death into the hearts of Muslims.[13] Allah has covered the Muslims in humiliation for cheating one another, abandoning their nomadic lifestyle to indulge their own comforts,[14] and deserting their call to jihad (19).

Having fallen so far, Muslims, he adds, have added yet another sin to their apostasy: They have asked for help from their enemies, and asked unbelievers to protect them, “begging them; turning towards them, expecting good from them” (19). Sheikh bin Humaid does not link this charge to any specific historical events. He was probably referring to numerous Saudi-American ventures including oil exploration in the 1930s, the permanent establishment of U.S. air bases in Saudi Arabia near the end of the WWII, and the military protection the U.S. has afforded Saudi Arabia since the 1940s.

Despite maintaining an outward appearance of Islamic religion and culture, Muslims, he says, have “become mean, despised before Allah.” They have immersed themselves in luxury, the worship of wealth, and a love for this world. They have succumbed to their enemies without so much as raising a hand. They have abandoned Islamic law (sharia) in favor of man-made laws which are in conflict with Allah’s judgement (19-20).

There is, in the Sheikh’s exhortation, a complete absence of the usual refrains against Western imperialism and economic oppression that we are accustomed to hearing today. With some notable exceptions, Muslims have not suffered economically under Western influence; rather they have thrived, especially those who live in the oil-rich Gulf states. The guilt for abandoning their religion is the result of indulgence rather than want or oppression.

With some notable exceptions, Muslims have not suffered economically under Western influence; rather they have thrived, especially those who live in the oil-rich Gulf states. Pictured above: The skyline of Dubai. (Image by Francois Nel/Getty Images for XCAT)

In his final appeal, Sheikh bin Humaid exclaims that it is “absolutely obligatory” for the Muslim people, and especially for Islamic scholars, to obey Allah, settle their differences, invite Muslims and non-Muslims alike to Islam, “publish its good aspects,” and instruct the people in the laws and wisdom of Islam, “as did Muslim nobles of early days.” Failure to do so is an invitation to Divine judgement (20-21).

The New Jihad

Since Sheikh bin Humaid penned this essay, evidently between 1974 and 1981, we have seen a resurgence of traditional faith in much of the Muslim world. With that renewal has come, predictably, an increase in violence as Muslims subdue unbelievers and seemingly attempt to purify their own ranks by punishing and killing apostates. Whether Sheikh bin Humaid would have approved of the brutality of ISIS and the use of suicide bombers is open for debate. But we can be certain that he would have lauded the willingness of many Muslims to spread the message of Islam and sacrifice their lives for the cause.

The new jihad is not primarily a reaction to Western economic oppression, as if more wealth in the hands of the many would arrest the problem.[15] To view this in neo-Marxist terms as an economic class struggle would be misleading. Muslim countries, as noted above, have largely prospered under Western influence and some have invited the protection of Western powers.[16] Rather, the new jihad evolves naturally from traditional Islamic doctrine which seeks to emulate Muhammad and his historical successors. Jihad is, by all appearances first and foremost an act of religious devotion, and only secondarily an act of economic and political rebellion.

Whereas Western nations generally seek peace and view it as a corollary to prosperity and the development of a high culture, Muslim traditionalists such as Sheikh bin Humaid believe that jihad is indicative of a vigorous and pure Islamic faith. Peace, according to him, can only be achieved when unbelief is subdued or vanquished from the earth. An Islam at perpetual war with the unbelieving world is the highest aspiration of faith and obedience. By contrast, the peace, prosperity, and culture so prized by the West has corrupted traditional Islam from within, posing a threat to its existence. This, evidently, is why the new call to jihad against the West has become more urgent for Islamists than ever.

William DiPuccio holds a Ph.D. in religious studies and has authored numerous articles and essays on both religion and science. He has also worked and taught in both fields. You can find his blog, Science Et Cetera, at http://scienceetcetera.blogspot.com

 

Obama Sides With Muslim Brotherhood In Islamic Reform Debate

 

Daily Caller, by Neil Munro, Jan. 12, 2015

The president of the United States has somehow put himself on the opposite side of an Islamic theological debate from the Muslim president of Egypt.

President Obama has aligned himself with revivalist groups — including the Muslim Brotherhood — that are trying to promote traditionalist Islam, while Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has begun championing Islamic modernizers.

Those modernizers want to defang the militant and supremacist Islam that has reigned since Islam emerged in the 700s. In contrast, the revivalists — and their allied jihadis — want to regain the regional power that traditionalist Islam held until roughly 1800.

The Islamic debate was dramatically exposed Jan. 1 when Sisi called a public meeting with the leaders of Islam’s leading seminary, which is based in Cairo.

“Is it possible that 1.6 billion people [Muslims] should want to kill the rest of the world’s inhabitants — that is seven billion — so that they themselves may live? Impossible!” Sisi said in front of the TV cameras and religious leaders at Al Azhar.

Sisi tried to portray Islam’s traditional doctrines as outmoded ideas wrongly attached to the faultless core of Islam. ”That thinking — I am not saying ‘religion’ but ‘thinking’ — that corpus of texts and ideas that we have sacralized over the years, to the point that departing from them has become almost impossible, is antagonizing the entire world. It’s antagonizing the entire world!”

“You need to step outside of yourselves to be able to observe it and reflect on it from a more enlightened perspective. … We are in need of a religious revolution. You, imams, are responsible before Allah. The entire world, I say it again, the entire world is waiting for your next move … because this umma [Muslim community] is being torn, it is being destroyed, it is being lost — and it is being lost by our own hands.”

In contrast, Obama has repeatedly praised Islam as a “religion of peace,” and says that jihadis are violating the established beliefs of Islam.

His attorney general, Eric Holder, told NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Jan. 11 that “we are at war with terrorists who commit these heinous acts and who use Islam, they use a corrupted version of Islam, to justify their actions.”

When quizzed by ABC’s George Stephanopolous the same day, Holder repeated the same traditionalist message. “We are at war with those who would commit terrorist attacks and who would corrupt the Islamic faith in the way that they do to try to justify their terrorist actions,” Holder said.

Obama’s spokesman, Josh Earnest, repeated Obama’s theological claim Jan. 7, shortly after Muslim revivalists murdered eight journalists, two cops and two other people at the Paris office of a satirical magazine, Charlie Hebdo. “There are some individuals that are using a peaceful religion and grossly distorting it,” he claimed.

“We have enjoyed significant success in enlisting leaders in the Muslim community, like I said, both in the United States and around the world to condemn that kind of messaging … and we’re going to redouble those efforts in the days and weeks ahead,” Earnest said.

On Jan 11. the White House announced it would hold a Feb. 18 meeting to showcase its efforts to prevent “violent extremism” in the United States. The announcement didn’t mention Islam.

The administration’s current policy recruits Brotherhood-aligned groups in the United States to identify and re-educate potential jihadis living in semi-segregated Muslim communities in the United States.

The White House’s continued support for traditionalist Islam is drawing new criticism. ”The Obama White House is now a propaganda center for what Earnest described as ‘peaceful’ Islam,” said a Jan. 9 statement from Newt Gingrich.

“This is either madness or cowardice,” he added. ”It could be madness because President Obama and his team are so out of touch with reality that they see themselves as the definers of a 1,500-year-old religion.”

“It could be cowardice because our national elite in both parties … is afraid to face the reality that millions of people around the world, many of them motivated by religion, hate the West and want sincerely to destroy it,” he added.

Obama has pushed the same revivalist message since 2009, when he flew to Cairo to give a major speech to Muslims, dubbed, “A New Beginning.”

Obama began the 2009 speech by praising the same seminary that Sisi reprimanded.

“For over a thousand years, Al-Azhar has stood as a beacon of Islamic learning; and for over a century, Cairo University has been a source of Egypt’s advancement. And together, you represent the harmony between tradition and progress,” he said.

Prior to the speech, Obama insisted that some members of the then-suppressed group be allowed to attend.

Once the Muslim Brotherhood revivalist movement narrowly won Egypt’s presidency in June 2012, Obama tried to help them reconcile their Islamic worldview with the attitudes needed for stable government.

Since 2009, Obama and his deputies have mostly partnered with the revivalists who are tied to the Muslim Brotherhood, not with the fewer modernizers promoted by Sisi.

In the United States, his deputies have privately and publicly met with the revivalist groups’ allies hundreds of times, and he has invited them to the White House. For example, Obama has met with Haris Tarin, D.C. head of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, who has called for the U.S. government to stigmatize speech critical of Islam.

That’s very different from Sisi, who is trying to suppress the Brotherhood movement and push al-Azhar’s Islamic leaders toward modernity.

Sisi made his demand for modernity in front of TV cameras, and then underlined his modernist approach by joining the head of Egypt’s remaining Christian community of roughly eight million people at a New Year Mass.

“It is very important that the world sees us as Egyptians. … We are setting an example from right here in Egypt. That is why it is not acceptable to say anything except that we are Egyptians. We must be Egyptians only. Yes, Egyptians. Yes, we are one hand. … We will treat each other with respect. And we treat each other with love, a deep and sincere love,” Sisi said.

Sisi’s presence at the Mass was a first for an Egyptian head of state, and it comes only two years after Egypt’s electorate overwhelmingly elected two militantly revivalist parties to run Egypt’s government. In July 2012, Sisi overthrew the revivalists amid huge public protest against their slow-motion, economy-wrecking imposition of totalitarian Islam.

Obama’s distance from Sisi isn’t surprising, Robert Spencer, an expert and critic of Islam, told The Daily Caller. “Obama believes that Islam is a ‘religion of peace,’ he probably doesn’t think it needs any reform, and thus regards Sisi’s recommendations as unnecessary.”

Sisi’s embrace of modernity, and of Egypt’s Christian community, is far more politically dramatic than anything imaginable in the United States.

Al-Azhar isn’t just the Harvard of Islam — it’s the intellectual partner of the Brotherhood and its various jihadi groups, including Hamas in Gaza and the gunmen who killed Sisi’s predecessor, President Anwar Sadat, in 1981.

Unsurprisingly, the Brotherhood’s supporters oppose Sisi’s push.

Pro-Sisi “Egyptians shouldn’t worry about my not supporting his call for ‘religious revolution,’” said a tweet from Mohamed Elibiary, a Texas-based Brotherhood supporter who served as an adviser until late 2014 in the Obama’s Department of Homeland Security.

Islam’s Second Crisis: the troubles to come

sunset on Islam

Muslims will hold Islam accountable when Islamic revivalists promise utopia but deliver chaos and human rights abuses.

By Mark Durie:

In What Went Wrong, Bernard Lewis charted the decline of Islam in the modern era and the resulting theological crisis for the Muslim world.

Now Islam is going through a second crisis, caused by the repeated failures of revivalist responses to the first crisis.  This second crisis, combined with the cumulative effect of the first crisis, which remains unresolved, will lead to a long drawn-out period of political and social instability for Muslim societies.


The first millennium of Islam was a period of expansion through conquest.   However for five centuries from around 1500, Western powers were pushing back Islamic rule.  There were numerous landmarks of the ascendancy of the West (which includes Russia), such as:

  • the conquest of Goa in India by the Portuguese in 1510;
  • the liberation of Christian Ethiopia in 1543 with the aid of the Portuguese soldiers;
  • the defeat of the Ottomans at the gates of Vienna in 1683 and
  • the ensuing liberation of Hungary and Transylvania;
  • Napoleon’s conquest of Egypt in 1798;
  • the USA-Barbary State Wars of 1801-1815, which put an end to tribute payments by the US to the north African states to prevent piracy and the enslavement of US citizens;
  • a long series of defeats for the Ottomans in Russo-Turkish wars stretching across four centuries and culminating in the 1877-78 Russo-Turkish war,
  • which led to the independence of Romania, Serbia, Montenegro and Bulgaria;
  • the overthrow of Muslim principalities in Southeast Asia by the Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch and English;
  • the final destruction of Mughal rule in India at the hands by the British in 1857;
  • the defeat and dismantling of the Ottoman Empire as a result of WWI;
  • and finally, the establishment of the modern state of Israel in 1948, in territory formerly ruled by Islam, which was considered by many Muslims to be the crowning humiliation in this long line of defeats.

We are not just talking about Western colonialism.  Some of the victories over Muslim principalities involved the occupation or colonisation of primarily Muslim lands, but many involved the liberation of non-Muslim peoples from the yoke of Muslim rule, such as in Ethiopia, Hungary and India, and some were defensive responses to Islamic aggression, such as the defeat of the Ottomans at the gates of Vienna.

While the external borders of Islam kept shrinking, its position of dominance within its own borders was also being challenged.  During this same period there were in many places improvements in the conditions experienced by non-Muslims under Islamic rule – a weakening of the dhimmi system – which communicated to Muslims an impression of their own faith’s loss of dominance and its loss of ‘success’. A landmark in this long process was the Paris Peace Treaty of 1856, which settled the Crimean War.  As part of this settlement the Ottomans were compelled to grant equal rights to Christians throughout their empire.

The gradual process of improvement of conditions for Christians and Jews under Islam was regretted by Muslim scholars, who saw it as evidence of Islam’s decline.  For example a request for a fatwa from a Egyptian Muslim judge in 1772 lamented the ‘deplorable innovations’ of Christians and Jews, who were daring to make themselves equal to Muslims by their manner of dress and behavior, all in violation of Islamic law.

In a similar vein, the Baghdad Quranic commentator Al-Alusi complained that non-Muslims in Syria during the first half of the 19th century were being permitted to make annual tribute payments by means of an agent, thus escaping the personal ritual degradations prescribed by Islamic law.  He concluded:  “All this is caused by the weakness of Islam.”

Why would Islam’s lack of dominance be evidence of weakness?

Islamic doctrine promises falah ‘success’ to the religion’s followers, symbolized by the daily call to prayer which rings out from minarets: ‘come to success, come to success’. The success promised by Islam has always been understood to be both spiritual and material: conquest and rule this life, and paradise in the next. The Qur’an states that Allah has sent Muhammad “with the guidance and the religion of truth, that He may cause it to triumph over all (other) religions” (Sura 48:28).

Islam’s theology of success meant that the global failure of Islamic armies and states at the hands of ‘Christian’ states constituted a profound spiritual challenge to Islam’s core claims. Just as Muslim scholars had always pointed to the military victories of Islam as proof of its divine authority, this litany of defeats testified to its failure as the religion of the successful ones.

The urgency of the question ‘What went wrong?’ drove the Islamic revival, an interconnected network of renewal movements which have as their central tenet that Muslims will once again be ‘successful’ – achieving political and military domination over non-Muslims – if they are truly devoted to Allah and implement Islamic laws faithfully.   These are reformation movements in the original (medieval) sense of the Latin word reformatio, for they seek to restore Islam to its former glory by returning to first principles.

Some of the main formative strands of Islamic revivalism have been:

  • the Wahhabi movement which originated in the 18th century;
  • the Deobandi movement in India and Pakistan which dates from 1866;
  • Jamaat e-Islami, which was founded 1941 in India;
  • the Muslim Brotherhood, founded 1928;
  • and the Iranian Revolution of 1979.

Out of these have come a myriad of offshoots and branches such as the Taliban (from the Deobandi movement); Al Qaida (a product of the ideology of Muslim Brotherhood theologian Said Qutb); the missionary movementTablighi Jamaat; and Hizb Ut-Tahrir.

Even the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, the ‘United Nations’ of the Muslim world, is a revivalist organization: this is reflected in its Charter which states that it exists “to work for revitalizing Islam’s pioneering role in the world”, a euphemism for reestablishing Islam’s dominant place in world affairs.

In essence, Islamic revivalist movements aim to restore the greatness of Islam and make it ‘successful’ again.  This hope is embodied, for example, in the Muslim Brotherhood’s slogan “Islam is the solution”.  This implies that when Islam is truly implemented all the problems human beings face – such as poverty, lack of education, corruption, and injustice – will be solved.  The flip-side of this slogan is the thesis that all the problems of the Muslim world have been caused through want of genuine Islamic observance:  Allah allowed his people to fall into disarray because they were not faithful in obeying his laws. The correction to this spiritual problem should therefore be more sharia compliance.  This is the reason why headscarves and burqas have been appearing on Muslim women’s heads with increasing frequency all around the world.

For a time it appeared to many Muslims that the revivalist program was working.  The Iranian Islamic revolution, and the later victory of jihadis in Afghanistan and the break-up of the Soviet Union was considered to be evidence of the success of the revivalist program.  This was the certainly view of the translator of Sheikh Abdullah Azzam’s jihadi tract Join the Caravan:

“The struggle, which he [Sheikh Azzam] stood for, continues, despite the enemies of Islam. ‘They seek to extinguish the light of Allah by their mouths. But Allah refuses save to perfect His light, even if the Disbelievers  are averse. It is He who has sent His messenger with the guidance and the true religion, in order that He may make it prevail over all religions, even if the pagans are averse.’ [Qur’an, 9:32-33] Since the book was written, the Soviets have been expelled from Afghanistan, by Allah’s grace, and the entire  Soviet Union has disintegrated.”

Utopian claims are risky, because they open up the possibility for even greater failure, and amplified cognitive dissonance as the gap between one’s faith and reality widens.  The first crisis of Islam was the rise of West through superior technological, economic and military prowess.  The second crisis is the failure of Islamic revivalism as a response to the first crisis.  The second crisis could prove even more painful and profound in its effects on Islam than the first.

The manifestations of revivalism’s failures are as diverse as the Islamist movements which generated them.  One could point to:

  •  the atrocities and backwardness of the Taliban;
  • the corruption and cruelty after the 1979 Iranian Revolution;
  • the failure of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt to govern for the benefit of the Egyptian people, leading to a wildly popular military coup in 2013;
  • the present-day economic collapse of Turkey under big-talking Islamist Prime Minister Erdogan;
  • the genocidal campaigns of Khartoum’s military campaigns against its own citizens, causing more than a million casualties;
  • and the ongoing Iraqi and Syrian jihad-driven bloodbaths.

Everywhere one looks there are good reasons for Muslims to question the Islamic revivalist creed. The outcomes of more than two centuries of theological fervor are not looking good. Muslim states are not realizing the utopian goals set by these movements.  Indeed the opposite is the case: again and again, wherever revivalist movements have gained the ascendancy, human misery has only increased. Too many Muslim states continue to be models of poverty and economic failure, despite all those female heads being covered up.

One inevitable consequence of this trend is disenchantment with Islam, and a growing sense of alienation from the religion. The manifest failure of the revivalist creed creates a sense of anxiety that Islam is under threat, not from the infidel West, but from reputational damage caused by the revivalists themselves.  It is a case of the cure being worse than the disease.

*****************

Fasten your seat-belts: the world will be in for quite a ride in the years to come, as Muslims – who constitute around a quarter of the world’s population – struggle to make theological sense of the trashing of their religion’s utopian vision.  It is one thing to blame the infidels for this – or the proxy tyrants which revivalists claim the West has foisted on the Muslim world – what is more threatening by far is the damage being done to Islam’s name by revivalist Muslims themselves.

Read more

Dr Mark Durie is a theologian, human rights activist, Anglican pastor, a Shillman-Ginsburg Writing Fellow at the Middle East Forum, and Adjunct Research Fellow of the Centre for the Study of Islam and Other Faiths at Melbourne School of Theology. He has published many articles and books on the language and culture of the Acehnese, Christian-Muslim relations and religious freedom. A graduate of the Australian National University and the Australian College of Theology, he has held visiting appointments at the University of Leiden, MIT, UCLA and Stanford, and was elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities in 1992.

Choudary urges fanatics to scrounge for holy war

choud620_1674690aBy STEPHEN MOYES: SCROUNGING hate preacher Anjem Choudary has told  fanatics to copy him by going  on benefits — urging: “Claim your Jihad Seeker’s  Allowance.”

He cruelly ridiculed non-Muslims who held down 9-to-5 jobs all their lives  and  said sponging off them made plotting holy war easier.

The Sun secretly filmed him over three meetings also saying leaders such as  David Cameron and Barack Obama should be KILLED, grinning as he  branded  the Queen “ugly” and predicting a “tsunami” of Islamic immigrants  would sweep  Europe.

Father-of-four Choudary, who has praised terrorist outrages, pockets more  than £25,000 a year in benefits — £8,000 more than the take-home pay of some  soldiers fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan.

He laughed as he told supporters:

“You find people are busy working the whole of their life. They wake up at 7  o’clock. They go to work at 9 o’clock. They work for eight, nine hours a  day.  They come home at 7 o’clock, watch EastEnders, sleep, and they do that  for 40  years of their life. That is called slavery.

“And at the end of their life they realise their pension isn’t going to  pay  out anything, the mortgage isn’t going to pay out anything.

He went on: “People will say, ‘Ah, but you are not working’.

“But the normal situation is for you to take money from the kuffar.

“So we take Jihad Seeker’s Allowance. You need to get support.”

Figures obtained by The Sun in 2010 showed the extremist cleric received £15,600 a year in housing benefit to keep him in a £320,000 house in  Leytonstone, East London.

He also got £1,820 council tax allowance, £5,200 income support and £3,120  child benefits — equivalent to a taxed salary of £32,500.

In another bile-filled rant, the scrounger said Mr Cameron, Mr Obama and the  leaders of Pakistan and Egypt were the shaitan (devil).

He added: “What ultimately do we want to happen to them? Maybe I’m the only  one who wants the shaitan to be killed. The shaitan should be finished.  There  should be no shaitan.

“All should be obedience to Allah, or you have no right to call yourself  Muslim.” At a three-hour meeting in a community centre in Bethnal Green,  East  London, he insisted it was wrong to deny any aspect of Islam — including jihad  or ultra-strict sharia law.

He told a 30-strong crowd: “We are going to take England — the Muslims are  coming.”

He gloated that the 9/11 terror attacks “shook the enemy” and claimed white  supremacists wished they had the “fortitude” to fly planes into buildings.  He  went on to proclaim: “You must hate in your heart — Cameron, Obama, all  that  they worship.

Read more at The Sun with video

The Salafi Crusades

greenfield121012By Daniel Greenfield

Empires leave behind a mess when they leave. And that mess acts as the building blocks of a new empire. One empire falls and another rises in its place. It’s an old story and it is what we are seeing in the Middle East.

The Islamist resurgence was fed by the collapse of two world powers, the USSR and the US. The fall of the Soviet Union robbed the Arab Socialist dictatorships of their support. The last of these, Syria, is now under siege, by Sunni Islamist militias after becoming an Iranian Shiite puppet.

Egypt’s Sadat had made the move to the American camp early enough to avoid the fate of Syria or Iraq, but instead his successor, Mubarak, encountered the fate of the Shah of Iran. With the fall of Egypt, Syria is the last major Arab Socialist holdout, and if it falls, then the Middle East will have shifted decisively into the Salafi column.

Unlike the Soviet Union, the United States has not actually collapsed, but its international influence is completely gone. Bush was accused of many things, but impotence wasn’t one of them. Obama however gave the Taliban a premature victory with a pullout deadline, ineptly waffled over the Iranian and Arab protests, before eventually getting on board with the latter, and allowed the UK and French governments to drag him into a poorly conceived regime change operation in Libya.

The Palestine UN vote, China’s South China Sea aggression and Karzai’s growing belligerence were just more reminders that no one really cared what the United States thought anymore. America had ceased to matter internationally as a great power. It still dispensed money, but its government had become an inept tail being wagged by Europe and the United Nations.

The loss of American influence was felt most notably in the Middle East, where its former oil patrons took the opportunity to back a series of Salafi crusades, the political Islamist version of which was known as the Arab Spring. The rise of political Islamists in democratic elections was however only one component of a regional strategy that depended as much on armed militias as on the ballot box.

In Egypt, protests followed by elections were enough to allow the Salafis, a category that includes the Muslim Brotherhood, to take over. That was also true in Tunisia. In Libya, a new American client, the government put up a fight, little realizing that Obama wasn’t Putin, but a horrible mashup of Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Henry Wallace. Instead of getting American backing, Gaddafi got American bombs, and the Islamist militias, armed and funded by Qatar with Obama’s blessing, got Libya. In Benghazi they repaid the help they received from Obama and Stevens by humiliating the former and murdering the latter.

In Syria, the Muslim Brotherhood’s militias are racing the Al-Qaeda linked militias to the finish line in Damascus

In Syria, the Muslim Brotherhood’s militias are racing the Al-Qaeda linked militias to the finish line in Damascus, while Western pundits prattle reassuringly about a moderate and secular Syrian opposition, which is as moderate and secular as Egypt’s Morsi.

The regional snapshot of the Arab Spring isn’t reform, but a land rush as secular governments affiliated with Russia and the United States fall, to be replaced by believers in an emerging Islamist Caliphate. The Arab Spring isn’t 1848; it’s 638, the Mohamedan expansion at the expense of the ailing Byzantine Empire, a rampage that eventually ended in the Islamization of the Middle East. For Salafis, this is their opportunity to Re-Islamize the Middle East under the full force of Islamic law.

The Muslim world does not keep time by European progressive calendars. It isn’t out to recreate the republican revolutions that secularized and nationalized Europe; rather it is trying to undo the secondhand European effects of those revolutions on the Middle East. The left is celebrating this as a triumph for anti-imperialism, but it’s just a matter of replacing one empire with another.

Muslim imperialism and colonialism were far more brutal and ruthless

Muslim imperialism and colonialism were far more brutal and ruthless, as the Indians could tell you, and if the Salafis have their way, and they are having their way for the moment, it will be the beginning of a new wave of global conquests, with old sheiks using oil money from the decadent West to outfit militias of young men with top quality American and Russian weapons before sending them off to die, while they wait for news of the new caliphate and bed down with their eight wife.

This isn’t an entirely new game. Bin Laden was playing it for decades and Salafi crusaders have been fighting the Ottoman Empire and massacring Shiites for centuries. The notion of them extending their power into Cairo would have been absurd, but for the collapse of the Ottoman Empire and the backlash from the efforts to modernize its former major cities which created a modernized Islamist movement inspired by Nazi politics and funded by Nazi money. A movement that we know as the Muslim Brotherhood. It took the Brotherhood a good 80 years, but they finally took Cairo.

The notion of the Salafis threatening the Middle East and the whole world would have been even more absurd if American oil companies hadn’t rewarded their tribal allies with inconceivable wealth while turning a blind eye to their ambitions. And the notion that the Salafi crusade would ever extend to Europe would have been even more absurd, if not for the jet plane and the liberal immigration policies of Socialist governments with aging populations looking for a tax base and a voting base.

The Salafis, despite their feigned obsession with the purity of the desert, have piggybacked their conquests entirely on Western technologies and policies, from the wire transfer to the jet plane to the cell phone to liberal political correctness and Third Worldism. The Salafi crusades were never any match for 19th Century policies and weapons, except in the occasional brief conflict. But they are a match for 21st Century policies and the accompanying unwillingness to use the full force of modern weaponry on people that a century ago would have been considered bloody savages, but today are considered potential peace partners.

Read more at Canada Free Press

Daniel Greenfield is a New York City writer and columnist. He is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and his articles appears at its Front Page Magazine site.

Daniel can be reached at: sultanknish@yahoo.com

Egyptian Cleric Threatens Christian Copts with Genocide

By Raymond Ibrahim

Islamic leaders continue to portray the popular protests against President Morsi and his recently passed Sharia-heavy constitution as products of Egypt’s Christians. Recently, Muslim Brotherhood leader Safwat Hegazy said in an open rally, as captured on video:

A message to the church of Egypt, from an Egyptian Muslim: I tell the church — by Allah, and again, by Allah — if you conspire and unite with the remnants [opposition] to bring Morsi down, that will be another matter…. our red line is the legitimacy of Dr. Muhammad Morsi. Whoever splashes water on it, we will splash blood on him.”

Dr. Wagdi Ghoneim

More recently, Dr. Wagdi Ghoneim — who earlier praised Allah for the death of the late Coptic Pope Shenouda, cursing him to hell and damnation on video — made another video, entitled, “A Notice and Warning to the Crusaders in Egypt,” a reference to the nation’s Copts, which he began by saying, “You are playing with fire in Egypt, I swear, the first people to be burned by the fire are you [Copts].” The video was made in the context of the Tahrir protests against Morsi: Islamic leaders, such as Hegazy and Ghoneim, seek to portray the Copts as dominant elements in those protests; according to them, no real Muslim would participate. Ghoneim even went on to say that most of the people at the protests were Copts, “and we know you hid your [wrist] crosses by lowering your sleeves.”

The heart of Ghoneim’s message was genocidal: “The day Egyptians — and I don’t even mean the Muslim Brotherhood or Salafis, regular Egyptians — feel that you are against them, you will be wiped off the face of the earth. I’m warning you now: do not play with fire!”

Along with trying to incite Egypt’s Muslims against the Copts, and threatening them with annihilation, Ghoneim made other telling assertions, including:

  • Addressing the Christians of Egypt as “Crusaders,” once again showing Islam’s simplistic, black-and-white vision, which clumps all Christians — of all nations, past and present, regardless of historical context and denomination — as one, in accordance with an Islamic tradition that states “All infidels are one religion.”
  • Comparing Christian Copts to animals: “Respect yourselves and live with us and we will protect you… Why?… because Allah has forbidden me to be cruel to animals. I’m not trying to compare you to animals … but if I am not cruel to animals or plants, shall I be cruel to a soul created by Allah? You are an infidel in Allah’s sight — and it is for him to judge you. However, when you live in my country, it is forbidden for me to be unjust to you — but that doesn’t mean we are equal. No, oh no.”
  • Telling Copts: “I want to remind you that Egypt is a Muslim country…. if you don’t like the Muslim Sharia, you have eight countries that have a Cross on their flag [in Europe], so go to them. However, if you want to stay here in Egypt with us, know your place and be respectful. You already have all your rights — by Allah, even more than Muslims… No one investigates your homes, no one investigates your churches. In fact, in the past, the Islamic groups used to fake their IDs and put Christian names on them when they would go out for [jihadi] operations, so that when the police would catch them, they would see they are Christians and be left alone.” Ghoneim misses the irony of what he says: Police know that Egyptian Christians are not going to engage in terror; Egyptian Muslims are suspect.
  • Saying, in mocking tones, towards the end: “What do you think — that America will protect you? Let’s be very clear, America will not protect you. If so, it would have protected the Christians of Iraq when they were being butchered!” — a reference to the fact that, after the U.S. ousted Saddam Hussein, half of Iraq’s Christian population has either been butchered or fled the nation, and all under U.S. auspices.
  • Claiming that the Copts are only four million while the Muslims are 85 million — even as Coptic Orthodox Church registries maintain that there are more than 15 million Copts, and most outside analysts say 10 million, in Egypt— and adding that Morsi was only being nice by saying, as he did during one of his speeches: “There are no minorities in Egypt.” Ghoneim fails to explain, if Copts are so few — four million compared to 85 million — how could they be so influential, and flood the Tahrir protests with such large numbers?
  • Mocking new Coptic Pope Tawadros—not surprising considering his great hate for the former Pope—by claiming that the new Pope urged Copts to protest; that the new Pope wants to see Morsi and Sharia law fall, and by adding, “Is it not enough that you have all those monasteries?”

 

Watch Raymond Ibrahim talk with Robert Spencer about what’s going on in Egypt, the plight of Coptic Christians, Islamic Revivalism, the Muslim Brotherhood and more: