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Monday, September 20, 2004

From droplets come mighty rivers ...

Jihad Watch: Rage of the Muslim in defence of a peaceful religion

Football Sundays are good for two great reasons: (1.) NFL football; and, (2.) catching up on the great Islam-related reading from the truly wonderful websites available these days. Robert Spencer's utterly superb Jihad Watch for 19 September features a very revealing article from a moderate Malaysian Muslim and outstanding comments from readers of Jihad Watch.

The article was written by Fatimah Abu Bakar for the New Straits Times.

A few quotes express this Muslim's quandry, confusion, and dilemma:

"Can we, the truly caring decent Muslims, not protest? Can we not say to the world that no, you have it wrong. Islam is not about killing. Islam is not about attacking five-year-olds on the threshold of a new life in a new country, killing them or leaving them impaired for life, if not physically, then definitely psychologically.

"Islam is not about killing, torture and revenge, but whom do we tell this to? Where can we, the common man, go to plead the case for Islam? Is there a world tribunal for redress where people like you and I can plead on behalf of our faith? Where we can explain in simple layman's terms that mad people kill, not religion? I know I am not equipped to delve at length into the philosophies and the fatwa, or the intricacies and the why of clever things like international relations and politics. I just despair that we have still not resolved age-old differences, nor healed age-old wounds. Since the dawn of mankind, we have always been at strife with one another.

"People who kill innocents and who do not respect life must be exposed. Decent Muslims must stand up to expose them for the devils that they are for the sake of all good and peace-loving Muslims.

"And we have to do it now.

"For Muslims all over are being condemned and spat upon by people who do not know better.

"The Muslim world must counter these atrocities. For how else can we set the balance right? Soon after Sept 11, I remember sitting horrified for days watching and listening to the reports on CNN and BBC. Much of what was happening was beamed to the world, primarily through these two channels. The news was slanted to portray the suicide bombers as the cold-hearted cowardly common murderers that they were. And I cringed at the terms that flailed my very soul — Muslim terrorists, Muslim suicide bombers, Muslim this and Muslim that. It is so unfair to be associated with killers who have no right to call themselves Muslims."

If this is the mentality of the literate, moderate Muslim, reform of Islam may have no chance. This person expresses little to no knowledge of the history of Islam and its doctrines. Were this person educated to these, he or she would see that the jihadists are consistent practitioners of the Islam which came from Muhammad. There is no peacefulness, love, and humanity in orthodox Islam. These qualities have been superimposed by moderate Muslims, who, by deviating, have become "hypocrites," in Islamic parlance. However, these admirable qualities ought to be a part of a fundamental reformation of Islam.

While this Muslim is awash with anguish, commentors--I am proud to say--to this article on Jihad Watch "get it." More and more, westerners are "getting it." The swelling numbers remind me that the Amazon River begins as droplets in the Andes mountains.

Some of the comments are worth citing:

From Nicholei, who referred this article to JW:

"Osama and the likes of him are able to and confidently quote from the Koran and hadiths to justify their terror. Many of the Muslim terrorists have studied in madrassahs and too many Islamic teachers and scholars have have been associated with or condoned the Islamic terrorists for their Islam to be classified as an aberration. Those who do so, like this writer, can at best only quote the Meccan revelations, but they are unable to effectively deal with the Islamic doctrine of abrogation -- whereby the violent Medina verses that inspires the terrorists, overrules the peaceful Meccan verses. Islamic orthodoxy has consistently branded Muslims who deny the authority of the hadiths as heretics.

"While I can cheer for Muslims like this writer, I also pity them; for until they deal with the violent verses in the Koran and hadiths and their historical tradition of violent jihad, they will be unable to convince knowledgable Muslims like Osama that what the terrorists did and will do in the name of Islam is wrong. On the contrary, Osama will view these peaceful Muslims as apostates, who ran away from the battle -- and deserve their wrath with extreme prejudice."

From RW:

"Whether the writer likes it or not, the 9/11 hijackers WERE Muslims and they WERE terrorists and they DID kill 3000 or more people.

"Whether he likes it or not, the murderous lunatic that hacked of the heads of Nick Berg and the Nepalese man did so in the name of Allah and Islam and even shouted it out as he was doing so.

"The fact also remains that every bombing, hijack, beheading (another one in Kashmir, yesterday) etc are all being done in the name of Allah and Islam."

From witness:

"The writer may be well intentioned, but is a "revisionist."

"islam is, what it has always been; no amount of revision, how ever well meaning and intended, can change the fundemental tenets of islam or its history.

"The writer faces a choice of either getting out of islam on pain of death; or eventually coming to grips with its more unsavory aspects and embracing them.

"I do not envy this writers precarious situation."

From callistos:

"Islam was born bad, Muhammed was a terrorist and therefore islam cannot be salvaged or reformed. "

The most profound comments came from Hugh, who regularly comments in Jihad Watch:

"Islam, a study of its history reveals, is responsible for the ills of the Muslim countries. It is Islam, as a vehicle of Arab imperialism, that has deprived large numbers of people of any real understanding of their own past, any connection to history other than that timeless one that Islam provides. "

Hugh delivers the knock-out punch which undercuts all resistance to reforming Islam:

"One need not be locked forever into a belief-system that inculcates hostility, even murder, of those who do not share that belief-system, that systematically suppresses women, that suppresses freedom of conscience by prescribing death for apostates, that limits free inquiry (why, after all, have there been fewer translations into Arabic, in all of recorded history, than the number of translations made each year in Spain alone -- surely the reason is the remarkable lack of curiosity, born both of fear and contempt, for anything that is non-Islamic, except perhaps as a curio, or when absolutely necessary for certain limited ends, such as weapons technology).

"Not everyone who, through no fault of his or her own, is born into Islam, is a robot or automaton. Not everyone born into Islam, through no fault of his own, is willing indefinitely to accept this belief-system without some inquiry into its origins in history (an attempt by pagan Arabs to offer a belief-system, familiar and yet different, that would both justify and promote their conquest of much larger, settled, richer, more advanced populations of Christians and Jews in Mesopotamia, Syria, Judea, Egypt, North Africa). Some of these people will call themselves ex-Muslims. Some will say nothing, and quietly move away. And others will attempt to have the Higher Criticism that was applied to Christiantiy and Judaism applied to Islam."

In short, humans are equipped by their fundamental nature to get out of this quagmire called Islam. They do it and can do it because of the human being's nature: (1.) Humans have volitional consciousness; and (2.) humans can employment reason. We are born with the capacity to think. Whether we use this capacity or not constitutes a choice each of us makes myriad times in life. When we do elect to use our minds properly to think at the human level, we need reason as our processor. Apostates from Islam have demonstrated beautifully how they got out of the trap in such books as Ibn Warraq's, Leaving Islam. Muslims' blinders must come off. They must accept Islam for all of its evil before they can change it, and change it, they must. Their dedication to reality and reason must be turned on. And, they must no longer accept wallowing in filth, mud, degradation, and backwardness as their predestined lot in life when cleanliness, health, happiness, and prosperity lie within their grasps.

No one to my knowledge has said that the way out is easy, but there is a way out. Some more will take it; many will not. The way out is a door that never closes.

Arab-Islamists suffer from the same self-induced syndrome disabling many in American minority groups. They see themselves as victims, and they love wallowing in their victimhood. Their victimism serves to rationalize laziness and non-productivity. It enshrines non-effort. How easy it is to say that they just could not help it-- "Such is the life Allah ordained for me." People who think like this need to be given all the pig wallows they seek, and that ought to be the only thing given them. It is immoral to support any who will not help themselves on principle, whether in the Middle East or in America. Give them the option, and if they opt out, then let them fall on their own swords and perish by their own hands. We need to expedite their removal as pains in our asses.


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