To my recollection, this type of piece is a first. It is a welcomed first. It flies in the face of the cognitive trap that ensnares Arab-Islamists, namely that of denying any responsibility and projecting blame. What Mr. Nawash says is adult and mature in cognition. It can never make up for damage done, but it does begin to open the door to the future. It is a brave, bold, and elegant statement.
My only concern is that Mr. Nawash refers to Islam as a "peaceful religion." It takes very little study of Islam, the type of study open to anyone who makes the effort to read a book or two, to see that Islam is by definition, so to speak, a violent religion resembling Nazism in style and goals. Muslims who are not violent are really "deviants." They are breaking with the tenets of Islam. Let us be thankful that they are breaking with Islam, but let us realize that they are hypocrites, which Muhammad deplored. But, then, let us realize that all practitioners of all religions are hypocrites, which they must be if they choose to live and prosper on earth. Were they consistent with the tenets of their religions, they would be unable to stay alive.
Here are excerpts. The whole statement is worth reading on Mr. Nawash's website. We hope this is the beginning of disinfecting Islam and Muslims so that they can join the family of free men and women as free men and women.
"We are so Sorry for 9-11September 11, 2004
By Kamal Nawash
This September 11 marks the third unforgettable anniversary of the
worst mass murder in American history. After September 11, many in the
Muslim world chose denial and hallucination rather than face up to the sad fact
that Muslims perpetrated the 9-11 terrorist acts and that we have an enormous
problem with extremism and support for terrorism.
What will it take for Muslims to realize that those who commit mass murder
in the name of Islam are not just a few fringe elements?
What will it take for Muslims to realize that we are facing a crisis that
is more deadly than the Aids epidemic? What will it take for Muslims to realize
that there is a large evil movement that is turning what was a peaceful religion
into a cult? Will Muslims wake up before it is too late?
We should not be afraid to admit that as Muslims we have a problem with
violent extremism. We should not be afraid to admit that so many of our
religious leaders belong behind bars and not behind a pulpit.
Only moderate Muslims can challenge and defeat extremist Muslims. We can no
longer afford to be silent.
If we remain silent to the extremism within our community then we should
not expect anyone to listen to us when we complain of stereotyping and
discrimination by non-Muslims; we should not be surprised when the world treats
all of us as terrorists; we should not be surprised when we are profiled at
Simply put, not only do Muslims need to join the war against terror, we
need to take the lead in this war.As to apologizing, we will no longer wait for
our religious leaders and “intellectuals” to do the right thing. Instead, we
will start by apologizing for 9-11.
We are so sorry for a religious education that raised killers rather than
train people to do good in the world. We are sorry that we did not take the time
to teach our children tolerance and respect for other people. We are so sorry
for not rising up against the dictators who have ruled the Muslim world for
We are so sorry for allowing corruption to spread so fast and so deep in
the Muslim world that many of our youth lost hope. We are so sorry for allowing
our religious leaders to relegate women to the status of forth class citizens at
best and sub-humans at worse.
We are so sorry. "