America as a Unique State, and Anti-Semitism

February 26, 2006 at 7:08 pm (From old blog, The United States)

In this post on the Ace of Spades Headquarters, Monty posted a quote. We shall duplicate the entirety of his comment:

Michael Shaara had a wonderful passage in his book The Killer Angels that I’ve never forgotten. The speaker in the piece is Colonel Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain of the 20th Maine Regiment.

He had grown up believing in America and the individual and it was a stronger faith than his faith in God. This was the land where no man had to bow. In this place at last a man could stand up free of the past, free of tradition and blood ties and teh curse of royalty and become what he wished to become. This was the first place on earth where the man mattered more than the state. True freedom had begun here and it would spread eventually all over the earth. But it had begun here.

I still get chills when I read that piece. And by God, I believe every word of it with my whole heart.

Thank you, Monty. Read the rest of this entry »

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“Muslim Rave Video” – an overcome Shiite cleric

February 25, 2006 at 9:10 pm (Amusement, From old blog, Islam, Religion, The Internet, Theology)

In this post by Ace of the Ace of Spades Headqarters, he says

More… Muslim clerics’ hysterics, set to rave music.

Personally, I don’t get this one, but so many people have sent to me that hey, it must be funny.

Thanks, this time around, to Brett.

He links to a certain video (preserved in the above quote) the purportedly represents a Muslim rave party. It is quite amusing.

The original video, with the original audio, can be found here on YouTube.

So, one may be asking oneself, what is this over-emotional display of sentiment?

From the setting – sombre colors, black cloth, Arabic writing thereupon, green cloth, pictures – and from the distinctive shape of the cleric’s turban, one may be able to tell that this is a Shiite event. From the very emotional participation of its people, this event evidently laments an atrocity perpetuated against Hussein or his party. We, however, cannot make out anything about who is being lamented, what event is being lamented, etc.

The obvious sign that this is a Shiite event is the chanting of “yaa Husseyn!” as men remove the distraught cleric. (“yaa” is the Arabic vocative, much like the English “O!”)

Shiites attend such events with great devotion, emotion, and fervency. The most popular speakers or presenters are those who are able to move the crowd to tears or even hysterics by their mastery of the word, moving the people to lament the atrocities against God’s pure ones. (Although it should be said that those who can remain emotional yet composed, unlike the cleric in the video, would be preferred.) There are many songs sung about this, and large lectures also, especially around the time of Ashoora.

Ashoora is often noticed because of the very emotional processions Shiites make on this day, carrying a mock coffin of Hussein. It is accompanied by wailing, chest-beating, and, in some areas, blood-letting (slashing oneself with knives, razors, whips with knives or razors, etc.). The blood-letting is less prevalent where Shiites are a very small minority (where it may be done in private, if at all).

Just as there are many Christians who go to church only on Christmas and Easter, and Jews who observe only the major holy-days, and Muslims who observe only fasting of ramaDaan and ‘eed al-fiTr and ‘eed al-aDHa, most Shiites will observe, at the very least, Ashoora by going to the mosque/imambargah/Husseyniyah to lament the martyrdom of Hussein and his party. In some ways, this is what makes Shiism what it is, what sets it apart. Sunnis don’t go to such great lengths, even if some acknowledge that Hussein’s martyrdom was tragic.

In other words, Shiites are distinctively emotional in some of their gatherings. To the point of hysterics even, as one can see in this video. It is a sign of piety amongst them.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon.

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Mourning Ilan Halimi – upon whom be peace, victim of barbarous animals

February 24, 2006 at 7:57 pm (From old blog)

We had not planned to post tonight, but We found this article via Beautiful Atrocities. More information is at Michelle Malkin’s post on this issue (via the same post on Beautiful Atrocities). Although this is not new news, it is new news to Us.

This was absolutely unacceptable, abhorrent, and abominable. Words cannot express Our outrage and bewilderment at the acts of the perpetrators of this horrid and horrible crime. It is an outrage. When We heard of this occurence, all the issues that Americans face becomes as nothing when brought in front of the image of Ilan Halimi – upon whom be peace – and when one considers the suffering of so many others – Jews and Christians in the hands of Muslims.

We initially composed a long (as usual) post that was half a prayer and half a curse, lamenting this tragedy, condemning its perpetrators, and expressing Our outrage. Yet, in the end, it’s all useless. All We can do is throw Our hands in the air and express Our inability to do or say anything. What can We do? We are hopeless. Nothing We can do or say can change any person’s mind or behavior. He or she who is so full of hatred and inhumanity cannot be reckoned with. We only hope others will stay safe and, when able to, defend the innocent and attack the offenders.

We currently have no sympathy whatsoever for the part of the Muslim world which breeds such irrational and inhuman hatred.

As the demonic Muslims chanted the Qur’an while Ilan Halimi – upon whom be peace – shrieked in pain and torment, let Us strike back. This is in his memory and for his merit. This is the Mourners’ Kaddish. May the merit of his ancestors, Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, be good for him. May his memory be a blessing to the living. Ki zechut avotav Avraham v’Yitzchaq v’Ya’aqov v’zechut kol beit Yisraeil y’hi tov uvrakha lo. Zichrono livrakha lechayyim.

For the following, “e” represents the schwa sound, like the “a” in “but”; the words in the parentheses are said by the congregation in response.
yit-gad-dal ve-yit-qad-dash she-meih ra-ba be-al-ma di ve-ra khi-ru-teih; ve-yam-likh mal-khu-teih be-cha-yei-khon uv-yo-mei-khon, uv-cha-yei de-khol beit yis-ra-eil, ba-a-ga-la u-viz-man qa-riv, ve-im-ru a-mein. (a-mein. ye-hei she-meih ra-ba me-va-rakh le-o-lam ul-al-mei al-may-ya.)

ye-hei she-meih ra-ba me-va-rakh le-o-lam ul-al-mei al-may-ya.

yit-ba-rakh ve-yish-ta-bach, ve-yit-pa-ar ve-yit-ro-mam, ve-yit-na-sei ve-yit-had-dar, ve-yit-a-le ve-yit-hal-lal she-meih de-qud-sha, be-rikh hu (be-rikh hu), le-eil-la min kol bir-kha-ta ve-shi-ra-ta, tush-be-cha-ta ve-ne-che-ma-ta, da-a-mi-ran be-al-ma, ve-im-ru a-mein. (a-mein.)

ye-hei she-la-ma ra-ba min she-may-ya, ve-chay-yim, a-lei-nu ve-al kol yis-ra-eil, ve-im-ru a-mein. (a-mein.)

o-se sha-lom bim-ro-mav, hu ya-a-se sha-lom a-lei-nu ve-al kol yis-ra-eil, ve-im-ru a-mein. (a-mein.)

May glorified and holy be the Great Name throughout the world He created as He willed. May He rule His kingdom in your life and in your days and in the days of all the House of Israel, speedily and soon. And say: Amen. (Amen. May the great name be blessed now and for ever and ever.)

May the Great Name be blessed now and for ever and ever.

May blessed and praised, and glorified and exalted, and extolled and honored, and adored and lauded be the name of the Holy One – blessed be He (blessed be He) – beyond all blessings and hymns, and praises and consolations that are uttered in the world. And say: Amen. (Amen.)

May abundant peace from Heaven, and life, be upon us and upon all Israel. And say: Amen. (Amen.)

May He who makes peace in His heights, make peace upon us upon all Israel. And say: Amen. (Amen.)

vaanachnu lo nëda’ ma na’ase, ki alekha ënënu. zêkhor rachamekha [yy], vachasadekha, ki më’olam hëma. yêhi chasdêkha [yy] ‘alënu, kaasher yichalnu lakh. al tizkar lanu ‘avonot rishonim; mahër yêqadêmanu rachamekha, ki dalonu mêod. chanënu [yy] chanënu, ki rav sava’nu vuz. bêrogen rachëm tizkor. ki hu yada’ yitzrënu, zakhur ki ‘afar anachnu. ‘azrënu, elo[q]ënu yish’ënu, ‘al dêvar kêvod shêmekha, vêhatzilënu vêkhapër ‘al chatotënu lêma’an shêmekha.

May all who mourn be comforted.

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Shiites attack Sunnis after Sunnis destroy the Askari Mosque

February 22, 2006 at 6:34 pm (From old blog, History, Islam, Religion, War)

Shiites have begun attacking Sunnis after they attack (and virtually demolish) an ancient Shiite mosque.

It’s about time.

We do not want to advocate violence or cheer militant Muslims, but the Shiites in Iraq had been living with incessant attacks by Sunnis for too long. If the Shiites did not respond in some manner, the Sunni militants would continue to believe that they could get away with attacking Shiites. For the government to respond would have been difficult: it would be difficult to respond in such a way that Shiites would not see the government as supporting Sunnis or that the Sunnis would not see the government as placating to Shiite desires for vengeance. Read the rest of this entry »

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What if Mecca were destroyed? Answer to max’s question.

February 20, 2006 at 7:43 pm (Uncategorized)

Mecca, in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, is holy by itself and holy because of the Grand Mosque therein. The Grand Mosque is holy because within it is the Ka’bah (literally, “cube”). It is the Ka’bah which is the qiblah (direction of prayer) for Muslims, and which is called the House of God (baytullaah). In Arabic, the Grand Mosque is often called al-masjid al-Haraam, the Haraam Mosque. Most of the time, “Haraam,” an adjective, means “forbidden.” In this case it means “sacred” or “restricted.” It is forbidden to non-Muslims, and violence in its vicinity is forbidden. When “Haraam” is in the dual (“Haramaan” or “Haramayn”), it refers to the Grand Mosque of Mecca and the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah. A title of the King of Saudi Arabia is khaadim al-Haramayn ash-shareefayn, which may be translated as “the Custodian of the Two Holy Sanctuaries” but which also means “the Custodian of the Two Noble Restricted Areas.” The Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah is also off limits to non-Muslims.

Great importance and sanctity is attached to the Ka’bah. It has been rebuilt a number of times, the last time being in 1996 by the House of Saud.

In this thread of the Ace of Spades Headquarters, max asked what would happen if Mecca were destroyed, either by anti-Saudi Muslims or Western powers. The answer depends on a few factors. One thing that would not vary would be that various buildings in Mecca (the Ka’ba, the Grand Mosque, the Zamzam well, Maqaam al-Ibraheem, etc.) would be immediately rebuilt. The Sauds would spare no expense in doing so, in rebuilding them swiftly and rebuilding them extravagantly. Donations from around the world would flow in.

If Mecca were destroyed by Muslims, the reaction would be relatively subdued. Undoubtedly, Saudi forces would enlist the assistance of the armed forces of other Muslim states (and, perhaps, quietly ask for assistance from Western powers) and would annihilate any remnant of the involved Muslim group. There might be protests around the Muslim world against the involved Muslim group. Such an event not be entirely unprecedented, to a degree. In 1979, Juhayman, a Saudi, and his followers took the Mosque hostage. Juhayman was a descendent of a member of the old Ikhwaan (literally, “Brothers”), Wahhabi tribal militants who assisted the House of Saud seize power. They were disbanded when they began striking against the House of Saud, accusing the House of Saud of corruption and abandoning Islam. This takeover of the Mosque stunned the world and, more importantly, the House of Saud. It took them time to respond (such a violation of the Ka’bah is literally inconceivably by Muslims, which is why most have forgotten it by now), then it took them time to mobilize for action. After getting the necessary permissions from religious leaders, and assembling the necessary forces, the hostage-takers were dislodged. The males were beheaded.

What is interesting is that many Muslims would have been sympathetic to Juhayman’s claims and demands. The very same claims and demands were being made by Grand Ayatollah Ruhollah Musavi Khomeyni in Iran. However, by seizing the Mosque (which broke two very important rules: no violence in Mecca, and no endangering the Grand Mosque or the Ka’bah), they lost all support from the Muslim world.

Back to max’s question. If Mecca were destroyed by Muslims but the Muslim world were to be convinced it was actually done by Western powers, Muslims would launch World War III (or World War IV if World War III is going on right now). Even Muslim states that did not want to fight may not be able to control their people.

If Western powers directly destroyed Mecca, Muslims would launch World War III (or World War IV if World War III is going on right now).

In either case, if the West were believed to be involved (in this case, reality is irrelevant: perception matters), there would be a massive reaction against the West by Muslims throughout the world. It would be a cataclysmic war of civilizations. No matter which Western powers were involved or were to be perceived to be involved, all Western powers would come under attack. The West would win, of course, but only after an immense amount of violence.

To what extent Muslim states would become officially involved would have to be seen. Many might become involved despite whatever the government may want: it might become an issue of getting involved to avoid a popular revolt. If the governments are involved at their highest level, the use of unconventional weaponry should not be ruled out, with or without a warning. (Pakistan and Iran would be of major concern here. If North Korea joined on the Muslims’ side, it would add to the concern the US as well as the Asian powerhouses (China, Japan, South Korea).)

Their response would make these riots on Muhammad cartoons look like hopscotch.

Of course, this will never happen. Westerners are too smart.

Now, if a Christian were to enter Mecca and leave a cross/crucifix/Bible – ah, that’s an interesting issue. (We’d do it, except We might be killed. Even if We were not, many thousands of innocent Christians and Westerners might be in the raging flames of the Muslims’ reaction.)

inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon.

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Animation on cartoon controversy

February 20, 2006 at 5:25 pm (Uncategorized)

Here is very amusing animation regarding the Muhammad cartoon controversy. (Warning: contains some foul language, and will be offensive to Muslims.)

Via jmchez via this thread of the Ace of Spades Headquarters.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon.

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An Islamic response to the cartoons (with less Arabic)

February 20, 2006 at 3:31 pm (Uncategorized)

Please note that the “author” of this piece, al-Hajj ‘Abd ar-Raheem bin ‘Abd Allah bin ‘Abd al-‘Azeez bin Khalid al-Awashqi, does not exist. He was created by Us as a foil, as it were, to the Salafi al-Hajj Muhammad ‘Abdullah Saifuddin Fathullah al-Awashqi. Consider them to be brothers. Both are very religious except one is Salafi and the other is less militantly so. Who knows: maybe the more Salafi one will deign to post a Salafi response to the cartoon fiasco.

The fact We are able to capture the Islamic flow of Islamist writing is somewhat scary.

*** *** ***

In the name of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He), the Most Merciful, the Merciful

A response to the disturbance on the cartoons that blasphemed against the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him).

By al-Hajj ‘Abd ar-Raheem bin ‘Abd Allah bin ‘Abd al-‘Azeez bin Khalid al-Awashqi

Blessings and peace be upon our Master Muhammad (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) upon him) and upon his (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) upon him) house (the pleasure of exalted ALLAH be upon them) and upon his (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) upon him) companions (the pleasure of exalted ALLAH be upon them) and upon all Muslims. Amen.

First of all, for Muslims to react so strongly to images drawn by non-Muslims, while the same Muslims disobey and disregard the word of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) and the example and sayings of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him), certainly is shirk as this means that the said Muslims attach more importance to images than to Islam.

Furthermore, by reacting so strongly to images, they commit shirk against Allah (praised and exalted be He) as their actions imply images have power or influence over Muslims, which takes away from the power and influence of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He), when Islam emphatically teaches that only ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) truly has power and influence. Such a reaction to images would be tantamount to setting them beside ALLAH (praised and exalted be He), which would utterly nullify these Muslims’ faith and render them as infidels (kuffaar).

Additionally, it is revealed in the Holy Qur’aan, the Word of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He), that the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him) is only a man. ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) commands the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him) to say: “innamaa anaa basharun mithlukum” (“Indeed, I am a man like you”) (18:110 and 41:6). ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) also commands the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him) to say: “subHaana rabbee hal kuntu illaa basharan rasoolan” (“glory to my Lord, am I but a man, a messenger?”) (17:93). When the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him) announces that he (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him) is but a man like the rest of them/us, he (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him) does not stop there.

In aayah 110 of sooratu-l-kahf (soorah 18), the Holy Qur’aan says:

(bismi-llaahi-r-raHmaani-r-raHeem)

innamaa anaa basharun mithlukum yooHaa ilayya annamaa ilaahukum ilaahun waaHid, faman kaana yarjoo liqaa’a falya’mal ‘amalan SaaliHaan wa laa yushrik bi’ibaadati rabbihi aHada

(Sadaqa-llaahu-l-‘aZeem)

The interpretation of which is:

(In the name of ALLAH [praised and exalted be He], the Most Merciful, the Merciful.)

“Indeed, I am a man like you, it has been revealed to me that your God is a solitary God, so whoever there is who desires a meeting [with ALLAH (praised and exalted be He)] should do good works and not commit shirk in worship of his one Lord.”

(ALLAH [praised and exalted be He] the Great speaks the truth.)

In aayah 6 of sooratu-fuSSilat (soorah 41), the Holy Qur’aan says:

(bismi-llaahi-r-raHmaani-r-raHeem)

innamaa anaa basharun mithlukum yooHaa ilayya annamaa ilaahukum ilaahun waaHidun fa-staqeemoo ilayhi wa-staghfiroohu, wa waylun lil-mushrikeen

(Sadaqa-llaahu-l-‘aZeem)

The interpretation of which is:

(In the name of ALLAH [praised and exalted be He], the Most Merciful, the Merciful.)

“Indeed, I am a man like you; it is revealed to me that, indeed, your God is a solitary God so be upstanding towards Him and ask His forgiveness, and woe to those who commit shirk.”

(ALLAH [praised and exalted be He] the Great speaks the truth.)

When it is then unmistakable that by his (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him) own word and by the command of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) our Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him) is a man like any of us, how can Muslims react with such rage and irrational emotion? Muslims never react this way when Islam or ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) is blasphemed. Muslims never protest to honor ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) against atheist socialists and communists or other atheists and people who have rejected ALLAH (praised and exalted be He), or even those atheists who are non-Muslim (as the cartoonists were non-Muslim).

What is also of grave concern is that fact that what Muslims have done is no way commanded, tolerated, allowed, or permitted by sharee’ah, the divine law revealed by ALLAH (praised and exalted be He). Indeed, by creating such unrest, by causing such destruction, and by the innocent lives lost, the Muslims involved in this fiasco are guilty of going against the divine law and, just as seriously, blaspheming the good name of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) and Islam! See how the non-Muslims mock Muslims and Islam. This is not the non-Muslims’ fault: they are mocking what they see, and what they see is Muslims reacting atrociously to simple images by the hand of non-Muslims! These Muslims proclaim to be protesting in favor of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He), the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him), and Islam, but nothing could be further from the truth. By their actions, they are blaspheming Islam; their actions are worse than those who blasphemed against the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him) in the first place.

The ‘ulamaa’ involved in this fiasco bear upon them a great burden of sin. ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) says in the Holy Qur’aan:

(bismi-llaahi-r-raHmaani-r-raHeem)

wa-l-fitnatu ashaddu mina-l-qatli

(Sadaqa-llaahu-l-‘aZeem)

The interpretation of which is:

(In the name of ALLAH [praised and exalted be He], the Most Merciful, the Merciful.)

“And al-fitnah is worse than killing.”

(ALLAH [praised and exalted be He] the Great speaks the truth.)

What is al-fitnah? It is disbelief and unrest and disturbance. By not commanding in the most emphatic words for Muslims to cease from causing disturbance and, for some, by even contributing to this unrest, these ‘ulamaa’ are guilty of misleading the people, perpetuating their disbelief (shirk), and blaspheming ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) and Islam.

If al-fitnah is worse than killing (and it is because ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) has explicitly said so), then one can make the case that all of these Muslims, who have desecrated Islam by their actions, who have committed shirk by empowering images (which goes against the oneness of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) according to Islam) and by elevating the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him) to an almost divine level (which also goes against the oneness of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) according to Islam and goes against what ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) and the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) be upon him) have said), are worthy of execution. The Muslim-hood of these revolting Muslims can reasonably be questioned.

O ALLAH (praised and exalted be He)! Save us from error and lead us on the straight path!

Allaahumma! “ihdinaa-S-SiraaTa-l-mustaqeem; SiraaTa-l-ladheena an’amta ‘alayhim ghayri-l-maghDoobi ‘alayhim walaa-D-Daalleen.” Ameen!

And ALLAH (praised and exalted be He) knows best.

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An Islamic response to the cartoons (with Arabic)

February 20, 2006 at 3:30 pm (Uncategorized)

Please note that the “author” of this piece, al-Hajj ‘Abd ar-Raheem bin ‘Abd Allah bin ‘Abd al-‘Azeez bin Khalid al-Awashqi, does not exist. He was created by Us as a foil, as it were, to the Salafi al-Hajj Muhammad ‘Abdullah Saifuddin Fathullah al-Awashqi. Consider them to be brothers. Both are very religious except one is Salafi and the other is less militantly so. Who knows: maybe the more Salafi one will deign to post a Salafi response to the cartoon fiasco.

The fact We are able to capture the Islamic flow of Islamist writing is somewhat scary.

*** *** ***

bismi-llaahi-r-raHmaani-r-raHeem

In the name of Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala), the Most Merciful, the Merciful

A response to the disturbance on the cartoons that blasphemed against the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam).

By al-Hajj ‘Abd ar-Raheem bin ‘Abd Allah bin ‘Abd al-‘Azeez bin Khalid al-Awashqi
(al-Haajj ‘abdu-r-raHeemi-bni ‘abdi-llaahi-bni ‘abdi-l-‘azeezi-bni khaalidi-l-awashqee)

as-salaam wa-S-Salaat ‘ala-s-sayyidinaa muHammadin (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) wa ‘ala ahlihi wa ‘ala aSHaabihi wa ‘ala kulli muslimeen. ameen.

Blessings and peace be upon our Master Muhammad (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) and upon his (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) house (raZee allaah ta’aala ‘anhum) and upon his (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) companions (raZee allaah ta’aala ‘anhum) and upon all Muslims. Amen.

First of all, for Muslims to react so strongly to images drawn by non-Muslims, while the same Muslims disobey and disregard the word of Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) and the sunnah and aHadeeth of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam), certainly is shirk as this means that the said Muslims attach more importance to images than to Islam.

Furthermore, by reacting so strongly to images, they commit shirk against Allah (subHaanahu wata’aala) as their actions imply images have power or influence over Muslims, which takes away from the power and influence of Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala), when Islam emphatically teaches that only Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) truly has power and influence. Such a reaction to images would be tantamount to setting them beside Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala), which would utterly nullify these Muslims’ faith and render them as infidels (kuffaar).

Additionally, it is revealed in the Holy Qur’aan, the Word of Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala), that the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) is only a man. Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) commands the Holy Prophet (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) to say: “innamaa anaa basharun mithlukum” (“Indeed, I am a man like you”) (18:110 and 41:6). Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) also commands the Holy Prophet (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) to say: “subHaana rabbee hal kuntu illaa basharan rasoolan” (“glory to my Lord, am I but a man, a messenger?”) (17:93). When the Holy Prophet (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) announces that he (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) is but a man like the rest of them/us, he (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) does not stop there.

In the aayah 110 of sooratu-l-kahf (soorah 18), the Holy Qur’aan says:

(bismi-llaahi-r-raHmaani-r-raHeem)

innamaa anaa basharun mithlukum yooHaa ilayya annamaa ilaahukum ilaahun waaHid, faman kaana yarjoo liqaa’a falya’mal ‘amalan SaaliHaan wa laa yushrik bi’ibaadati rabbihi aHada

(Sadaqa-llaahu-l-‘aZeem)

The interpretation of which is:

(In the name of Allaah [subHaanahu wata’aala], the Most Merciful, the Merciful.)

“Indeed, I am a man like you, it has been revealed to me that your God is a solitary God, so whoever there is who desires a meeting [with Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala)] should do good works and not commit shirk in worship of his one Lord.”

(Allaah [subHaanahu wata’aala] the Great speaks the truth.)

In aayah 6 of sooratu-fuSSilat (soorah 41), the Holy Qur’aan says:

(bismi-llaahi-r-raHmaani-r-raHeem)

innamaa anaa basharun mithlukum yooHaa ilayya annamaa ilaahukum ilaahun waaHidun fa-staqeemoo ilayhi wa-staghfiroohu, wa waylun lil-mushrikeen

(Sadaqa-llaahu-l-‘aZeem)

The interpretation of which is:

(In the name of Allaah [subHaanahu wata’aala], the Most Merciful, the Merciful.)

“Indeed, I am a man like you; it is revealed to me that, indeed, your God is a solitary God so be upstanding towards Him and ask His forgiveness, and woe to those who commit shirk.”

(Allaah [subHaanahu wata’aala] the Great speaks the truth.)

When it is then unmistakable that by his (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) own word and by the command of Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) our Holy Prophet (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) is a man like any of us, how can Muslims react with such rage and irrational emotion? Muslims never react this way when Islam or Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) is blasphemed. Muslims never protest to honor Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) against atheist socialists and communists or other atheists and people who have rejected Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala), or even those atheists who are non-Muslim (as the cartoonists were non-Muslim).

What is also of grave concern is that fact that what Muslims have done is no way commanded, tolerated, allowed, or permitted by sharee’ah, the divine law revealed by Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala). Indeed, by creating such unrest, by causing such destruction, and by the innocent lives lost, the Muslims involved in this fiasco are guilty of going against sharee’ah and, just as seriously, blaspheming the good name of Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) and Islam! See how the non-Muslims mock Muslims and Islam. This is not the non-Muslims’ fault: they are mocking what they see, and what they see is Muslims reacting atrociously to simple images by the hand of non-Muslims! These Muslims proclaim to be protesting in favor of Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala), the Holy Prophet (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam), and Islam, but nothing could be further from the truth. By their actions, they are blaspheming Islam; their actions are worse than those who blasphemed against the Holy Prophet (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) in the first place.

The ‘ulamaa’ involved in this fiasco bear upon them a great burden of sin. Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) says in the Holy Qur’aan:

(bismi-llaahi-r-raHmaani-r-raHeem)

wa-l-fitnatu ashaddu mina-l-qatli

(Sadaqa-llaahu-l-‘aZeem)

The interpretation of which is:

(In the name of Allaah [subHaanahu wata’aala], the Most Merciful, the Merciful.)

“And al-fitnah is worse than killing.”

(Allaah [subHaanahu wata’aala] the Great speaks the truth.)

What is al-fitnah? It is disbelief and unrest and disturbance. By not commanding in the most emphatic words for Muslims to cease from causing disturbance and, for some, by even contributing to this unrest, these ‘ulamaa’ are guilty of misleading the people, perpetuating their disbelief (shirk), and blaspheming Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) and Islam.

If al-fitnah is worse than killing (and it is because Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) has explicitly said so), then one can make the case that all of these Muslims, who have desecrated Islam by their actions, who have committed shirk by empowering images (which goes against the tawHeed of Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala)) and by elevating the Holy Prophet (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) to an almost divine level (which also goes against the tawHeed of Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) and goes against what Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala) and the Holy Prophet (Salla-llaahu subHaanahu wata’aala ‘alayhi wasallam) have said), are worthy of execution. The Muslim-hood of these revolting Muslims can be reasonably questioned.

O Allaah (subHaanahu wata’aala)! Save us from error and lead us on the straight path!

Allaahumma! “ihdinaa-S-SiraaTa-l-mustaqeem; SiraaTa-l-ladheena an’amta ‘alayhim ghayri-l-maghDoobi ‘alayhim walaa-D-Daalleen.” Ameen!

wa-llaahu (subHaanahu wata’aala) alam.

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Muhammad – venerable or average?

February 18, 2006 at 11:28 pm (Uncategorized)

By now, all aware human beings are cognizant of the riots that have swept the Muslim world over a few Danish cartoons that are said to depict Muhammad, the prophet of Islam. Indeed, the world is well aware how much Muslims revere Muhammad. The cartoons of Muhammad were doubly insulting, not only because they mock Muhammad but also because they dared to depict him, which is forbidden in Islam. (Or so it is said: in reality this is not always so. Some Persian portraiture have depicted Muhammad. Twelver Shiites are very fond of posters and visual depictions of the Holy Infallibles, one of whom is Muhammad. If depicting Muhammad is indeed forbidden, then Muslims need to correct violators amongst their own.)

However, We conjecture that such reverence for Muhammad is entirely uncalled for. Here are some verses from the Qur’an that demonstrate that, as far as Islam’s god is concerned, Muhammad is nothing but a normal human being (albeit one who receives inspiration from God).

Verse 50 of soorah 6 (al-an’aam):

qul laa aqoolu lakum ‘indee khazaa’inu-llaahi wa laa a’lamu-l-ghayba wa laa aqoolu lakum innee malak; in attabi’u illaa maa yooHaa ilayya;

Say: “I did not tell you that the treasures of Allah are with me or that I know the Unseen and I did not tell you I am an angel; I follow but what has been sent to me.”

Verse 31 of soorah 11 (hood) says something quite similar to 6:50 except putting the words in the mouth of Noah, thereby also suggesting that Muhammad is just like any other prophet, no greater and no lesser.

Verse 93 of soorah 17 (al-israa’):

…qul subHaana rabbee hal kuntu illaa bashara(n)-rrasoolan.

…say: “Glorified be my Lord. Am I not but a man, a messenger?”

Verse 110 of soorah 18 (al-kahf):

qul innamaa anaa basharun mithlukum yooHaa ilayya annamaa ilaahukum ilaahun waaHid; faman kaana yarjoo liqaa’a rabbihi falya’mal ‘amalan SaaliHaan wa laa yushrik bi’ibaadati rabbihi aHada.

Say: “I am only a man like you. It has been revealed to me that your god is one god. So whoever hopes for the meeting with his lord, let him do good works and not associate partners in the worship of his one lord.”

Verse 6 of soorah 41 (fuSSilat):

qul innamaa ana basharun mithlukum yooHaa ilayya annamaa ilaahukum ilaahun waaHidun fa-staqeemoo ilayhi wa-staghfiroohu; wa waylu(n)-llilmushrikeen.

Say: “I am only a man like you. It has been revealed to me that your god is one god so obey him and ask for his forgiveness, and woe to the unbelievers.”

Q.E.D.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon.

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Hamas wants to drink Jews’ blood

February 16, 2006 at 1:52 pm (Uncategorized)

Hamasniki say: “We will hunt you everywhere, when you wake and when you sleep. We are a blood-drinking people and we know that there is no better blood than Jewish blood.

“We will not leave you alone until we quench ourselves with your blood and we will quench the thirst of our children with your blood. We will not rest until you leave the lands of the Muslims.”

It was well said, whoever said it, that peace will only come when Arabs love their children more than they hate Jews.

Such vile filth is abominable.

(From this post of Bareknuclepolitics.com, as directed by this post of the Ace of Spades Headquarters.)

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Just for Fun: Some Reasons (Conservative) Christians Support Jews and Israel

February 15, 2006 at 11:34 pm (Uncategorized)

An issue that appears every now and then is the support of Christians (particularly on the so-called conservative side) for Jews and Israel. Permit Us to explain a few reasons why this is so and to comment, in general, on this phenomenon.

Like Muslims, many Christians believe in supersuccessionism, namely, that one group chosen by God has been replaced by another group. Muslims believe they have been chosen by God as His people in place of Christians and Jews (ostensibly, ahl al-kitaab, or “the People of the Book,” in Islamic terms). Christianity, having emerged before Islam, views itself as the chosen people of God in place of the Jews, while Muslims have no argument in their favor to claim being a people of God. In other words, with the establishment of Christianity, God, through Jesus Christ, virtually transfers the covenant from the people of Israel by blood (Jews, Hebrews, the offspring of Isaac, however one wants to label them) to the new Israel, the people grafted onto the tree, as it were, by spiritual adoption.

Justifiably, many Jews are concerned about Christian support for Jews and Israel because of this belief. Why would Christians support Jews and Israel when Christians believe Jews and the land of Israel have been replaced by Christians and a spiritual communion that can be called Israel, among other terms? The answer does lie in dispensationalism – which some Christians condemn – but the root reason lies deeper.

Dispensationalism is the belief that certain rules and peoples play a role in God’s work in certain periods of time. At one time, God confined His covenant interaction to a certain people (Jews) for a certain period of time (between Abraham and Jesus, essentially). Even within this period, the rules changed – the rules during Abraham’s time were not the same as those in Isaac’s time, while the rules changed dramatically at the Encounter at Sinai. Some dispensationalists believe that despite Christianity’s claim of being God’s people, despite its supersuccessionism, Jews and Israel continue to play a role, and have yet to play a role, in the end of the current and the beginning of the next dispensation; the two dispensations will be separated by the coming of Jesus. Indeed, many of these dispensationalists believe that after the ingathering of the exiles has completed, the Jews will convert to Christ, be threatened, and then will be saved by Christ.

However, other communities in Christianity, and even people who subscribe to dispensationalism, have different reasons. The root reason goes back to the beginning of Christianity: it’s foundation within Judaism. Although it grew into a religion in its own right, and even though relations between Christians and Jews (not to mention between Christianity and Judaism) have been strained (to put it mildly), there’s a common understanding of God, a common history, and common scriptures that both peoples share. Christians do not reject the “God of the Old Testament”: indeed, they embrace Him, as they believe He came to earth in Jesus Christ. Christians continue to read, study, and interpret what they call the Old Testament. Christians and Jews share many, many stories and tales: Abraham and Sarah, Isaac, Joseph, Job, Jonah, Ezekiel, Daniel, Ruth, Esther, Moses, Isaiah. The list goes on and on. Like Jews, Christians revere the ten commandments. Indeed, various moral laws and rules in the Torah (also known as the Pentateuch or the Five Book of Moses or the Law) are still very much in force within Christianity. These factors give Judaism and Christianity a common ground that no two other religions share.

Islam claims to have evolved from Judaism and Christianity: more appropriately, Islam claims to share the same history, people, and texts with Christians and Jews. However, Islam also teaches that Christians and Jews have perverted their texts, traditions, beliefs, and rules. In reality, there is little, if any, common ground between Christians and Jews on the one hand and Muslims on the other hand. The people of one, who call God their Father (Father in Heaven, Avinu shebashamayim), share little with the people of the other, who call themselves the slaves of God (indeed, “slave” (“‘abd”) is a very common part of Muslim names: ‘abd allaah, ‘abd ar-raHmaan, ‘abd ar-raHeem, ‘abd ar-razzaaq, ‘abd al-malik, ‘abd al-‘azeez, et cetera). So, when Christians are forced to support one culture against another, they will instinctively support Jews and Christians.

Furthermore, both Jews and Christians believe that Israel is holy land. Muslims believe that Jerusalem is holy, but this is exaggerated, for some reason, in Islam. The only real significance Jerusalem has for Muslims is that it is site from which Muhammad supposedly ascended to Heaven, riding a winged beast (buraq), during his Night Vision or Ascension, over which Muslims still bicker whether it was a vision or an actual physical ascension (if the former, then Jerusalem would have no major reason to be significant). It is true that Muslims used to pray towards Jerusalem, but this was only to indicate solidarity with the Jews. When the Jews refused to join the Muslims or recognize Muhammad as a prophet, Muhammad conveniently received a revelation mid-prayer that the direction of prayer has been changed to the Ka’ba in Mecca. Thereby, Muhammad ended his strategy to attract Jews to his religion and began focusing on attracting more Arabs to Islam.

Christianity and Judaism, on one hand, and Islam, on the other, also have different rules and standards. Both Christianity and Judaism began as minority and powerless religions. Even Judaism, when it established a state, was relatively introspective: the Hebrew leaders did not waste time trying to expand their empire to encompass the known world, unlike the Egyptians, Babylonians, Assyrians, Persians, Romans, and Muslims. There is no element of state-building in early Christianity. Islam has aspects of both imperialism and state-building built within itself. This is largely because unlike the “founders” of Christianity and Judaism, the founder of Islam was a successful conqueror and warrior. (Jesus, Moses, and Abraham cared more about imposing, explaining, teaching, and following God’s spiritual and ritual laws than conquest, booty, and other matters of state.) Regarding Judaism, when God gave the Promised Land to His people, He explicitly established its borders. There is no such limiting in Islam.

Another element that does not exist in Islam that exists in Christianity and Judaism is an evolution of the fundamentals of the two religions. The canon of neither religion was decided and enforced in the beginning. Indeed, the canons were closed quite some time into the religions’ lives. Both Christianity and Judaism have seen dramatic changes and innovations over their histories. Indeed, different communities consider each other to still belong to the religion even if they are wrong. (Extremists exist, but they are the fringe.) The Vatican does not say that Protestants are not Christians. (Indeed, most Protestant baptisms are considered valid according to Catholic law.) Jews of all major groups consider each other to be Jews despite level of observance or denominational affiliation. Such cordiality is sorely lacking in Islam, where takfeer (proclaiming another to be a non-Muslim) is often the first, rather than last, impulse when a Muslim encounters one who belongs to another tradition. Additionally, Christianity and Judaism actively try to deal with changing circumstances, integrating ancient fundamentals with modern understanding, in ways that many Muslims seem to oppose. Many Muslims would like to recreate the Islam of the salafeeyoon (early Muslims) rather than adapt Islam to modernity.

Some Christians feel that Jews, although not Christians, are related to Christians spiritually and certainly theologically. These relations exist at no level with Muslims. (If people do believe such relationships exist with Muslims, the explanation as to how this is so would be quite forced.)

These are only a few reasons why Christians support Jews, particularly when confronted with a people like Muslims or a religion/culture like Islam. This is not to say some Christians do not have ulterior motives: but the majority support Jews and Israel for theological reasons and because of a kinship that is strongly felt by Christians.

(These Christians do not support only Jews and Israel. They are also heavy supporters of conservative Jews. This raises the influence of traditional Jewish groups over secular ones; both conservative Jews and conservative Christians oppose efforts by secularists to de-religionize Israel. Both groups seek to religionize Israel, to make it truly a Jewish state, faithful to Jewish (and thus Christian) morals and values. But this is another matter all together.)

inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon.

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A Joke: Iran Air Needs to Land in Tel Aviv.

February 15, 2006 at 11:20 pm (Uncategorized)

We posted this joke, modified from there, in a comment thread of the Ace of Spades Headquarters. We present it here for your amusement.

A flight of Iran Air was flying over the Mediterranean on its way to Teheran, Iran. The pilot noticed something wrong: lights began flashing that should not be flashing. The engines were malfunctioning and fuel was low. The nearest airport was Ben Gurion airport at Tel Aviv, Israel. He sent a broadcast:
Irani pilot: “Hello! Syria, Lebanon, even Egypt and Jordan! We have an emergency and require immediate landing. Please respond.”
There was no response.
Irani pilot: “Any Muslim territory, we need immediate landing! Please respond.”
There was no response. Frustrated, the pilot swallowed hard and contacted Ben Gurion airport.
Irani pilot: “Hello? Tel Aviv? We need to land as soon as possible, and your airport is the closest. Please give us clearance.”
Israeli air control tower: “Hello. This is the air control tower of Ben Gurion. Where are you going to?”
Irani pilot: “Teheran.”
Israeli air control tower: “In Iran?”
Irani pilot: “Yes.”
Israeli air control tower: “Oh? What airline are you?”
Irani pilot: “Iran Air.”
Israeli air control tower: “And you need to land now?”
Irani pilot: “Yes. Immediately. We’re losing fuel fast.”
Israeli air control tower: “Are you carrying any important passengers or cargo?”
Irani pilot: “Why, yes. Agha* Mahmoud Ahmadinezhad and his team of scientific experts, returning from an ‘energy development’ meeting with France. And Grand Ayatollah Khamene’i is with us, returning after attending a fundraiser for Hezb-, um, a Lebanese Shiite charity.”
Israeli air control tower: “Oh, is that so? Very well.”
Irani pilot: “What should we do?”
Israeli air control tower: “Repeat after me: Yitgadal v’yitqadash sh’mei rabba…**

* “Sir” or “Mister” in Farsi.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon.

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Explaining IR to Muslims using “hudnah”

February 11, 2006 at 7:46 pm (Uncategorized)

Systemic international relations, perpetual inter-state competition, and Muslims’ optimal behavior – all explained using the concept of hudnah (“[temporary] truce”; this word also means “pause”).

Very unique and insightful.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon.

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Hypocrisy and Irrational Hatred from the Left, or Another Post on Why America is Great

February 11, 2006 at 5:47 pm (Uncategorized)

In this thread on the Ace of Spades Headquarters, a leftist directed a poster to the army’s website when the poster remarked the poster was in favor of war against Syria. Evidently, some people believe that if one supports war, one ought to participate in it.

How so very strange.

In the meantime, leftists proclaim the evils of capitalism and that socialism (of whatever interpretation) is the solution – whether it is soft socialism (a welfare state) or hard socialism (tyranny of the proletariat). Should they not, then, detach themselves from the capitalist money-making machine, or at least reject any royalties or payments for their words? It seems highly hypocritical for leftists to direct warmongering conservatives to join the military while they refuse to make the sacrifices they must make to realize their own dreams.

How many anti-capitalists (Chomsky, anyone?) are part of the capitalist market machine?
How many anti-Americans benefit from America’s rights, liberties, security, and stability?
How many pacifists benefit from an essentially violence-prone law enforcement presence?
How many environmentalists benefit from the polluting technological advances rampant in the West (the least of which include vehicles; including, of course, all methods of mechanical transportation, factory-made goods, use of fossil fuels)?
How many academics engage in Occidentalism while condemning Orientalism?

We shall bring this to a more pointed level: why is it that those who benefit from corruption will condemn in strong words others who benefit from corruption? Is the evil of corruption a partisan issue, that corrupt Republicans are evil but corrupt Democrats are fine? How can Democrats scream about corruption when the most corrupt state in The United States is the heavily Democratic Louisiana?

Why do leftists condemn the spread of democracy and democratic institutions? Why are they so obsessed with the evil of The United States and the good of others? Why do they sacrifice their own people, culture, values, and leaders to foreign cultures and values? Why do they have no pride in their nation and its awesome military? Why do they desire so much the downfall of their own society?

It seems contradictory that while promoting foreign and alien societies and values, they resent it when any one of these is able to open up to the light of democracy and democratic institutions: are they resentful of another people’s progress? Why can they not wish others to have what Americans and others in democratic states have?

We have lived in non-democratic states, including one that claims to be democratic. Elections a democracy do not make. We were so happy and proud when The United States liberated Iraq: finally, another people would be rid of their heinous tyrannical dictator and will be able to exercise popular sovereignty, able to write their own future. Perhaps leftists do not know what it is like to live in a non-democratic society, while opponents of democracy in other societies are afraid how they will loose control of the people. Democracy is empowering, collectively and individually. How strange, then, that those who claim to uphold values and rights and good would attack America so viciously when it seeks to overthrow unstable regimes of terror and tyranny in order to make a region more secure (in the long run), secure American interests, and provide for the liberated state’s people a better future.

Strange, is it not, that in America people can be so rabidly and vociferously against their nation – which they point out as proof of their claims, for no one is challenging them, or at least not challenging them in such a manner that they would accept the opponents claims (assuming, of course, they are rational, which these anti-Americans are not) – and yet the people of other states are less opposed to their nation. Nationalism or patriotism is seen as a good thing. This, too, is used by anti-Americans to boost up their arguments and hollow pride. Yet the reality lies not in the fact that people are not rising to protest their state, therefore they love it, but that these people are unable to. In America, one can say whatever one wants. In other states, this is not so. People may even pretend to be patriotic to escape their society’s or authorities’ censure. Thus, the very fact these anti-Americans can present and spread their despicable lies with such ease and without hindrance speaks more in favor of The United States than it does against them.

If The United States are evil, then, for all they do for others, then permit Us to be the vilest of demons. We will not change Our allegiance or values because of some doctrine or theory that is blowing in the wind. We do not base Our expectations and hopes on irrational, impractical, and utterly ridiculous slogans. We will not turn against Our society, community, and nation – America, America, and America, respectively – in favor of some foreign, alien, oppressive, tyrranical, deplorable, stagnant, unproductive, uneducated, and unfree people. We freely admit to judging peoples and states; We freely admit to not treating all peoples equally. Such equality is a fiction devised by those who would pander to and continue to enable unevolved and undeveloped peoples. The United States are the best in many areas, regarding which We will never equivocate, hesitate, or back down. We, furthermore, whole-heartedly support a self-interested, active, and autonomous approach to dealing with issues that affect The United States. (Why should The United States hesitate to defend its interests when every nation will do anything to defend their interests? Why should The United States fall into the mischievious hands of those who would sacrifice The United States if it will advance their nefarious interests? Why do people continue to insist on considering others to be benevolently disposed while The United States are malevolently disposed? When was the last time France or Britain instituted democracy? From what We remember, the entire quagmire that is the Middle East is a direct result of British and French imperialist, territorial, mercantilist, and economic meddling. The United States is now forced to mop up their messes: when the old hegema have ruined the world, why should The United States be forced to expiate for others’ sins?) If for this We are considered to be a rabid patriot/nationalist, irrational, insensitive, unaware, ignorant, intolerant, bigoted, or otherwise evil, then so be it.

The United States are not like Britain, or France, or Spain, or Portugal, or Imperial Russia, or the Soviet Union, or Imperial China, or Imperial Japan, or early Islam, or Babylonia, or Assyria, or the ancient Persia, or the Mongol Hordes – they do not hold the world’s people in thrall and slavery, subject to a foreign far-away potentate; they liberate peoples, enlighten peoples, and establish for current and future generations a better world. Why else is everyone clamoring for success and access to the world market? After all, even socialist China desired to join (and was successful in joining) the World Trade Organization.

Why The United States’ own people would oppose The United States – this We simply cannot comprehend.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon.

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Al-lughatu-l-‘arabiyyah – Arabic

February 11, 2006 at 12:41 pm (Uncategorized)

People are rightfully wont to ask what the Arabic We use means. Therefore, We write this post regarding Arabic, which will be updated as may be needed. All terms shall be presented according to classical Arabic and contemporary Arabic renditions.

Regular
muSlihoon – explained here
inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon (inna naHnu al-a’lamoon) (with its many version on this blog) – “indeed, we are the knowers of all,” a parody of sorts of what Muslims are wont to put at the end of their statements: “inna-llaahu-l-a’lamoon,” “indeed, God is the knower of all.”

Phrases and other Arabic (alphabetical according to the first word of the phrase, according to the English alphabet, determined by the beginning letter thereof):
‘alaihi, ‘alaihaa, ‘alahim – “upon him, upon her, upon them” (often as part of a blessing or curse said or written after someone’s name); whenever “‘alaihi” appears, it can be replaced by any of these terms.
‘Ashoorah – “tenth,” referring to the tenth day of Muharram (the first month of the Islamic lunar calendar), on which day Shiites commemorate the martyrdom of Hussein.
HafiZahu-llaahu wa barakaatu-llaahi wa raHmatuhu ‘alayhi – May God keep/guard him, and may His blessings and mercy be upon him
la’nah allaah ‘alaihi / la’natu-llaah ‘alaihi – “may God’s curse be upon him”
ummah – “community,” referring to the worldwide Muslim community

Languages other than Arabic:
Amerika ist nicht das Vierte Reich (German) – “America is not the Fourth Reich.”
NSDAP (German) – “Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei,” the German National Socialist Workers’ Party, often called the Nazi Party.
Vali (Persian) – “Supreme Leader,” the supreme leader of the Irani government based on Grand Aayatollaah Ruhollaah Musavi Khomeyni’s Velaayat-e Faqeh. Khomeyni was Iran’s first Vali. The corrent Vali (successor to Khomeyni) is Grand Aayatollaah Ali Khaamene’i.
Velaayat-e Faqeh (Persian) – “Government by the Jurisprudent,” the theory of theocratic government published, promoted, and implemented by Grand Aayatollaah Ruhollaah Musavi Khomeyni.

Henceforth, a uniform system of transliteration shall be used. It shall be explained here:
The alphabet (name of the letter, how it shall be represented, sound it makes):
alif; a, aa; when short (“a”), like the “a” in “about”; when long (“aa”), like the “a” in “father.”
baa; b; as in English
taa; t; a dental “t”
thaa; th; like the “th” in “thing”
jeem; j; as in English
Haa; H; a throaty “h”
khaa; kh; an aspirated “h,” like the “ch” in the Scottish word “loch” or the German name “Bach” (no English equivalent)
daal; d; as in English
dhaal; dh; like the “th” in “the”
raa; r
zaa; z; as in English
seen; s; as in English
sheen; sh; as in English
Saad; S; a palatal “s” (no English equivalent)
Daad; D; a palatal “d” (no English equivalent)
Taa; T; a palatal “t” (no English equivalent)
Zaa; Z; a palatal “z” (no English equivalent)
‘ayin; ‘; the epiglottal stop, it is a consonant in its own right, and is different from the hamza’ (not always transcribed), which is a glottal stop (no English equivalent)
ghayin; gh; like the French “r” (no English equivalent)
faa; f; as in English
qaaf; q; a “k” further down the throat (no English equivalent)
kaaf; k; as in English
laam; l; as in English
meem; m; as in English
noon; n; as in English
haa; h; as in English
waaw; w, u, oo; when a consonant (“w”), like the “w” in “water”; when a short vowel (“u”), like the “oo” in “book”; when a long vowel (“oo”), like the “oo” in “moon”
yaa; y, i, ee; when a consonant, like “y” in “year”; when a short vowel (“i”), like the “i” in “bit”; when a long vowel (“ee”), like the “ee” in “meet”

Rather than rendering long vowels as double the vowel (aa, ii, uu), We shall render them differently (long “a” = “aa,” long “i” = “ee,” long “u” = “oo”), which will make it easier to be read.

Five consonants are represented by upper-case letters: Haa, Saad, Daad, Taa, and Zaa.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon.

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Ashoorah, and other Miscellania concerning Shiites

February 10, 2006 at 10:02 pm (Uncategorized)

The tenth day of Muharram (which is the first month of the Islamic lunar calendar) is a day of significance for many Muslims. Many Sunnis Muslims will not mark it any way, but this is perhaps one of the most important days for Shiites. It is called “Ashoorah.” (This year, it fell on Friday, February 10, AD 2006.)

Shiites (mostly all except for Nizari Ismailis and Ibadi Shiites) commorate Ashoorah every year. On this day, Hussein ibn Ali ibn Abi Talib (the son of Ali ibn Abi Talim and Fatimah bint Muhammad: Ali was the cousin and son-in-law of Muhammad, Fatimah was Muhammad’s daughter) and family members and soldiers with him were slaughtered by the armies of Yazeed, the Caliph. (The line of the caliphate at this point is: Abu Bakr, Umar ibn Khattab, Uthman ibn Affan, Muawiya ibn Abi Sufyan (and with him the beginning of the Umayyad dynasty), Yazeed ibn Muawiya ibn Abi Sufyan.) Hussein, unlike his brother Hassan, claimed the title of Caliph, Commander of the Faith (Ameer al-Mu’mineen), and Imam. The armies met at Karbala (in present-day Iraq) (although to call Hussein’s group an “army” would be very generous).

For Shiites, this is a very significant event. In addition to the facts of the day, which are related in very dramatic and exaggerated tales on Ashoorah, Shiites have added to the significant of this day the oppression and repression of Shiites throughout history. Shiites believe the attack on Hussein, and the slaughter of his party, represents, additionally, evil’s active plans against God’s people and Sunni Muslims’ unjust oppression of Shiites. Twelver Shiites believe that every imam was killed by order of the (Sunni) caliph (except for the last one, who went into hiding and remains in hiding).

Shiites add to this a personal dimension: if a Shiite were alive then, which side would he/she have chosen? Shiites hope they would have been on Hussein’s side, and interpret any hesitation to be highly sinful. Since disobeying Shiite tenets would be tantamount to deserting or not supporting Hussein, Shiites lament their disobedience and ask for forgiveness from God and the Imams (the plural of “imaam” in Arabic is “a’immah,” by the way).

In some areas, Shiites (particularly Twelver Shiites) perform processions which include a horse representing Hussein’s horse and a coffin or bier to represent Hussein’s coffin. Oftentimes, violent self-flagellation is included with knives, razors, or other such objects. These are acts of expiation (which may include a sense of communal expiation) for sins and is a way to lament Hussein’s slaughter. (According to Jonah Blank’s Mullahs on the Mainframe, Bohra Shiites (properly Da’oodi Tayyibi Ismaili Shiites) engage in maatam (chest-beating) on Ashoorah and throughout the year; violent acts are not permitted, even if they happen.)

Why is this Hussein’s slaughter considered to be such a significant event? After all, Ali, the first imam and much beloved by all Shiites, was assassinated. Every imam (according to Twelver Shiites) was assassinated. Why commemorate Hussein’s death?

Unlike in the deaths of the other imams, Sunni Muslims actually gathered and marched, as an army, against the Imam. Ali was assassinated by a Shiite partisan (a Kharijite). The other imams were usually poisoned. There was no battle fought or other organization/organized body seeking to kill the Imam. (Indeed, Hussein was the second and last Imam to engage in wars. Ali engaged in wars, Hassan didn’t, Hussein did, and after that Shiites became relatively quietist.) In addition, the caliph was not one of the “Rightly Guided Caliphs” who are revered by Sunni Muslims. (These are Abu Bakr, Umar ibn Khattab, Uthman ibn Affan, and Ali ibn Abi Talib; only Ali’s caliphate is accepted by Shiites.) Mu’awiyah changed the traditional form of the caliphate, who was elected, into a dynasty. Even without this fact, Shiites viewed Mu’awiyah and Yazeed – indeed, the entire Umayya clan – to be enemies of Islam. Shiites claim the Umayyads used Islam to get into power. Thus, the army that came out against Hussein belonged to a corrupt, impious, illegitimate caliph, a non-Muslim, and an enemy of Islam. Indeed, to this day when Shiites say the name of this caliph (as with Mu’awiyah’s name), they add a curse (instead of a blessing like some Sunnis do, and which is customary after the names of prophets and angels (and members of Muhammad’s pure household, per Shiites)). This curse is simply “la’natu-llaah ‘alaihi,” “may the curse of God be upon him.” In a certain prayer often recited by Twelver Shiites, there is a considerable list of people who are cursed by name because of their action against Hussein.

Hussein is seen as the quintessential Muslim hero: fighting, despite obvious odds, against evil, to uphold and proclaim what is right and good, protecting what God entrusted to him, fulfilling his obligations as rightful caliph and imam, and never flinching away from the truth. In Hussein, Shiites see a paragon of righteousness, rectitude, piety, courage, bravery, compassion, love, fidelity, faithfulness, responsibility, dependability, charisma, faith, and a single-minded devotion to God. Of course any army that would come out against him would be considered to be a gathering of devils and demons out to destroy true Islam.

As one may have noticed, this concept of “true Islam” is significant amongst Muslims, and one that is not easily settled. Various groups, from Salafi Sunnis to Twelver Shiites, claim to represent, teach, and practice true Islam.

Shiites have used Ashoorah processions and commemorations to protest their recent grievances, whether it is a caliph who assassinates their imams or a tyrant who uses chemical weapons against them. In the Battle of Karbala’, Shiites see a pattern that has repeated numberless times and that will repeat into the future – until the world comes to an end. For this, al-Imaam al-Qaa’im (the ruling Imam), al-Imaam al-MaHdi (the guided Imam), al-Imaam al-MuntaZar (the awaited Imam) must reappear and lead the Muslim armies against Islam’s enemies (which includes Sunni authorities (and, according to some, even Sunni Muslims)) to utterly vanquish them. But not before then will the cycle of oppression against the Shiites end.

Of course, it seems that Ahmadinezhad, and Khomeyni before him, thought differently. Shiites will interpret opposition to Iran in the same way they have interpreted the oppression of Shiites: the armies of evil setting out to defeat the small army of righteousness. They believe the small army will prevail in the end, unlike Hussein’s army. The question arises: which small army will be the small army to conquer?

Religion always makes a mess when it becomes a part of politics. The theocratic regime tends to involve religion to whip the masses, whether to discipline them or organize them in support of the regime, and so it is important to understand such fundamental elements of Shiism.

Side note: Nizari Ismaili Shiites (also known as Ismailis or Aga Khanis) do not commemorate Ashoorah. Their Imam, unlike other Shiite groups’ Imams, is manifest and present (haaZir wa mawjood), he is not in hiding: he is Prince Karim Shah Husseini Aga Khan IV. In Nizari Ismailism, the imam bears with him the spiritual light (noor) of Ali (the first Imam), which is the light of the Imams. As such, according to them, Hussein is alive in their Imam, so there is no need to commemorate Hussein’s martyrdom when he is alive and present. The same can be said for all Imams: they are alive and present in the current Imam. (Partly because of this, these Ismailis believe that they must follow whatever the current Imam says, regardless of what previous Imams have said.) It should be noted that Ismaili Shiites follow a different line of Imams than the Twelver Shiites (and Nizaris and Tayyibis among the Ismailis have diverged as well). The split occurred after the death of Imam Ja’far as-Sadeeq ibn (Imam) Muhammad al-Baqir ibn (Imam) Ali Zain al-Abideen ibn (Imam) Hussein ibn (Imam) Ali ibn Abi Talib; the vast majority followed Musa al-Kazim, while a minority believed that Ja’far’s son Ismail should have been Imam: hence, they are called Ismailis. The Fatimid caliph-imams were Ismaili Imams: the only example of a Shiite imamate successful in establishing a stable polity, even if it did not last so very long. At some point, some Ismailis accused the caliph of assassinating his brother, Nizar (who would be the rightful Imam and rightful caliph): these followed Nizar’s descendents (and are called Nizaris) while the rest, the majority, followed the reigning caliph, Musta’li (known as Musta’lis, and who are more commonly called Tayyibis because the last Imam of this line – who went into hiding – was Tayyib).

Yes, the question of “who is the correct Imam?” is also significant for Shiites (Twelvers, Nizari Ismailis, Tayyibi Ismailis, Ibadites, Zaidis), and plays a role in the even more complex “who are the followers of true Islam?” question.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon.

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“Jihad is Defensive” – the Lie and the Truth

February 5, 2006 at 8:21 pm (Uncategorized)

One thing Muslims have been wont to say is that jihad is defensive warfare or, when one differentiates between the greater and lesser jihads (which differentiation is modern and not one made by classical or older sources), the engaging of the lesser jihad when one must act defensively. In contemporary Islam, such a line of reasoning has become common with those who deal with apologetics or who write in English or who deal with non-Muslims: jihad, if using force, is defensive. The problem is that this does not bear out when one looks at history. (This issue is most excellently dealt with by Professor Dr. David B. Cook, of Rice University, in his Understanding Jihad, which We cannot recommend too much.)

One may make the case that Muhammad and his successors desired to dominate/rule the Arabian peninsula to protect Islam from pagans and other non-Muslims who oppose Islam. But the extent of the conquests stretches this excuse very thin. What need had they to conquer all the way to present-day Syria and Iraq?

The Muslims’ further conquests are obviously offensive rather than defensive. Muslim armies spread all the way to present-day Morocco in the west to present-day Pakistan in the east. The conquests went north to Constantinople, the capital of the Byzantine Empire. What justification is there for this spread? If any justification incorporates offensive elements, then the claim that jihad is fought for defensive reasons is false. If it must be defensive, then early Islam’s conquests are illegitimate, which would be a major blow to Muslim pride as this era is seen as one of glory and triumph. The illegitimization of these conquests would also cast significant doubt on the faithfulness of Muhammad and his successors.

The problem does not end with early Islam. Just recently the Ottoman Empire ruled vast non-Muslim areas: Rumania, Serbia, Hungary, and Bulgaria. When these areas wanted to become independent, the Ottoman emperor-caliph declared a jihad to retake the lands. Why would jihad be involved with lands that have nothing to do with Islam? Why did Muslims conquer them in the first place? The same can be asked about Spain.

Dr. Cook states that this argument, that jihad is fundamentally defensive, came about as Muslims began to observe the Europeans, who were disturbingly acting like the early Muslims. Muslims wanted to formulate an argument that would set the early Muslims apart from the Europeans, for Muslims were vociferously attacking imperialism and did not want to admit that Islam itself is imperialistic.

Some Muslims support their claims by saying that Muslims became involved in the Crusades because the Crusaders unprovocatedly attacked the Muslim realms out of religious fanaticism and economic greed. But one ought to ask: how did those lands became Muslim lands? They were Christian for centuries. One also ought to ask: what precipitated the Crusader invasion? Why, it was the personal appeal of the Byzantine emperor to the Pope in Rome for assistance to protect Constantinople from Muslim invasion. As such, the Muslims provoked the Crusades, and the Muslims are the aggressors on two levels: against Constantinople and by having invaded and conquered vast swathes of Christian lands. In this sense, the Crusaders were entirely justified from a moral perspective.

So, one ought not to allow Muslims to get away with skewing facts, history, and ethics.

What the “jihad is defensive” rhetoric attempts to hide is that Islam permits offensive campaigns. Indeed, one may say that Islam commands offensive campaigns: anything and everything until throughout the world the religion is Allah’s and non-Muslims are subdued.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamuun.

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Muslims rise against mocking Muhammad. But sit when it comes to real atrocities.

February 3, 2006 at 8:04 pm (Uncategorized)

Muslims rise to protest infidel Christians blaspheming Muhammad, the Prophet of Islam. This is no surprise.

Among Muslims, even educated and literate ones and even those with inapproriate senses of humor or amusement, portraying anything central to Islam – Islam, Allah, Muhammad, the Qur’an, sunnah, the sayings of Muhammad, the tenets of Islam, the beliefs of Islam, and even jihad – are strictly not doable. Disparaging any of these is considered to be blasphemy, whose punishment is death. One who engages in blasphemy is considered to be an apostate, a non-Muslim, an enemy of Islam, and one who is actively agitating against Islam. Any one of these categories justifies execution – so the blasphemer is four times worthy of execution. This blasphemy is taken very, very seriously by Muslims. These standards have all Muslims chained, even those who consider themselves free or enlightened.

Now, it should be no surprise that Muslims would strongly condemn ridiculing Islam while Muslims feel free to ridicule (and spread falsehoods about) Christianity, Judaism, and their people. The Qur’an is full of inaccuracies concerning Christianity and Judaism, which are, of course, taken to be undeniable fact. In a democratic society, if someone ridicules Islam, the Muslims will complain of being offended. If a Muslim ridicules another religion (or, as is more likely, insults or calls for the annihilation of another religion), and he/she is told off, he/she will complain that Muslims’ rights are being violated. They would have their cake and eat it too.

There is no concept of multicultural sensitivity or interreligious respect and regard. As a matter of fact, I have read one short article by a highly-regard Muslim author who condemns any Muslim who even hints at Muslims being someway equal to or at the level of Christians or Jews. He insists that Muslims must be above them, and any Muslim who violates this has effectively become an apostate. (If what these experts say is correct, it is then exceedingly easy to become an apostate, it seems.) So, while Muslims may ridicule Christianity (and Christians) and Judaism (and Jews), and while they may issue forth fiery and violent sermons against Christians, Jews, Americans, Europeans, or anyone they do not like, no one may ridicule, speak against, insult, or oppose Islam. It is blasphemy, and must be punished. As Muslims are not free to kill offending infidels in the West, they must oppose it and agitate against whoever is guilty of such a crime.

This is not really a matter of a people being offended. Muslims offend Christians, Jews, Americans, and others on a daily basis. Their political cartoons are simply abominable – and as most Muslim states are state-run, this means that this offending material is actively permitted by our supposed allies. No other people react as Muslims have – on allegations of flushed copies of the Qur’an to cartoons that supposedly mock Muhammad. Not a word about female infanticide, massacres of Sudanese Christians, suicide bombings (unless it happens to blow up a Muslim-inhabited hotel in a Muslim country), massacres of Shiites or Kurds, thousands and thousands of others who have suffered under Muslim tyranny. And the worse we can do is mock Muhammad and take out deranged militants? We think one large portion of humanity needs to have its perspectives adjusted. Cartoons are not more important than human lives. Mocking Muhammad won’t affect him; supression others’ freedom of expression will affect many.

Ayatollah Ruhollah Musavi Khomeini said, “There is no room for play in Islam. It is deadly serious about everything.” Islam needs to get a sense of humor and stop being so deadly. Regardless, the West must realize with whom they are dealing. They must not fall for “elitist moral relativism” (thanks to Madfish Willie in this Ace of Spades Headquarters thread) of those in the West who would be so treacherous as to bow to Islamic culture and stab Western culture in the back – which is what Islamists would have all Westerns do.

If the West gives in, it will only embolden and further enable Muslims. Muslims must come to realize that the world is not at their beck and command. They must live with everyone else, not above them. And they must learn that the rest of the world enjoys its ability to express itself without fear of death or prosecution, regardless of who is offended. The standards of Islam may be applied only to Muslims: never ought it to be used on or applied to non-Muslims. All the world should have the freedom to mock and praise whomsoever one may wish to do so.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamuun.

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Islam =/= the Religion of Peace.

February 3, 2006 at 7:46 pm (Uncategorized)

Muslims are fond of stating that Islam is a/the religion of peace.

(Aside: There is a difference between Islam being a religion of peace and it being the religion of peace. The former admits that Islam is peaceful amongst other religions, thereby equating Islam with other religions or, at least, setting it at the same level of the others. Such equality is prohibited by Islam: Muslims are forbidden to place Islam at the same level of other religions; they must always place Islam above other religions. The latter phrase (“the religion of peace”) means that Islam is peaceful in ways other religions are not or that it is the only peaceful religion. When Muslims speak of Islam as being peaceful, they mean “the religion of peace.”)

This statement is often supported with Qur’anic verses and by pointing out that the root of “islaam” (meaning “submission,” and the name of the religion) is the same as the root of “salaam” (meaning “peace”). Indeed, this is true. Like Hebrew, another Semitic language, Arabic words are derived from roots, which are usually of three letters. From these three letters, vowels and consonants are added in consistent patters to create more words. From the root “salima” (the root consonants being s-l-m (the letters seen, laam, and meem)) come the words “salaam” (“peace”) and “islaam” (“submission”). This is not merely a case of sharing the same root, though; “salaam” and “islaam” are verbal noun forms of the verb/root “salima.” A verbal noun refers to the noun form of a verb.

Form I of the root “salima”: “salima” (literally, “he was at peace,” “he was sure/certain,” “he was safe/secure/unharmed,” or “he was blameless”; with the preposition “min,” it means “he was free from” or “he escaped from”). The verbal noun of form I of this root is “salaamun” (indefinite; by itself, “salaam”) or “salaamu” (definite; by itself, “salaam”) (meaning “soundness, intactness, well-being, peace, security”).

From IV of the root “salima”: “aslama” (literally, “he deserted,” “he let [something] fall,” “he handed over,” “he surrendered,” “he resigned himself [to the will of God],” “he embraced Islam,” or “he committed himself to God/Islam”). The verbal noun of form IV of this root is “islaamun” (indefinite; by itself, “islaam”) or “islaamu” (definite; by itself, “islaam”) (meaning “submission, resignation, reconciliation [to the will of God].” With the article (“al-islaamu”; by itself or at the end of a phrase, “al-islaam”), it refers specifically to the religion, Islam.

So, one can easily see how “peace” (“salaam”) and Islam can be related. The key word, however, is can. Just because they share the same root does not mean they are fundamentally related. Here is an example how this (“words of the same root are related”) is not always true. From the root “‘alima” come “‘ilm,” “‘alam,” “‘aalam,” and “‘aalim.” From the looks of it, all of these would be related, right? The reality is startling. Here are the definitions of the words:
‘alima – he knew, he was informed, he was familiar
‘ilm – knowledge
‘alam – a sign, a token, a mark, characteristic, a road sign, a flag, a distinguished man, an eminent personality, an authority, a proper name
‘aalam – world, universe, cosmos (Muslims will immediately recognize this from suuratu-l-fatiHah, the first suurah (shapter) of the Qur’an: “rabbi-l-‘aalamiin,” “Lord of the Worlds”)
‘aalim – knowing, familiar, expert, professional (the plural of this word, “‘ulamaa’,” refers to scholars of Islamic jurisprudence)

Not so related.

The word “aqtuluu” (imperative masculine plural of form I of the root/verb “qatala” (root letters q-t-l, the letters qaaf, taa’, and laam)) means “kill,” as in a command to kill; “qaatiluu” (imperative masculine plural of form III of the root/verb “qatala”) meaning “fight,” as in a command to fight. Both of these words are used in suuratu-l-tawbah, the ninth suurah (chapter) of the Qur’an, wherein is the Verse of the Sword.

Verse 5 says:
“fa’idhaa-nsalakha-l-ash’huru-l-Hurumu fa-qtuloo-l-mushrikeen Haythu wajad-ttumoohum wa-khudoohum wa-HSuroohum wa-q’udoo lahum kulla marSad”

“Then when the sacred months have passed, then kill the infidels wherever you find them them, and capture them, and besiege them, and lie in wait for them in each and every ambush.”

However, verse 14 says:
“qaatiloohum yu’adhdhibhumu-llaahu bi’aydeekum wa yukhzihim wa yanSurkum ‘alayhim wa yashfi Sudoora qawmin mu’mineen”

“Fight against them so that Allah will punish them by your hands and disgrace them and give you victory over them and heal the breasts of a believing people.”

Verse 29 says:
“qaatiloo-lladheena laa yu’minoona bi-llaahi wa laa bu-l-yawmi-l-akhiri wa laa yuHarrimoona maa Harrama-laahu wa rasooluhoo wa laa yadeenoona deena-l-Haqqi mina-lladheena ‘ootoo-l-kitaaba Hattaa yu’Too-l-jizyata ‘an yadin wa hum Saaghiroon”

“Fight against those who believe not in Allah, nor in the Last Day, nor forbid that which has been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger and those who acknbowledge not the religion of truth among the people of the Scripture, until they pay the Jizyah with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.”

(The jizyah is the tax levied on non-Muslims in a Muslim realm.)

Now, as can be seen, “qaatiloo” and “aqtuloo” both come from the same root (“qatala,” “he killed”). But both have significantly different meanings: one is a command to kill, the other is a command to fight. If, however, they both share a fundamental relationship, it would weaken verse 5 (“Kill the infidels”) or strengthen verse 29 (“Fight those who…”). If verse 29 were to be strengthened, the ramifications would be significantly disastrous: this would mean that the Qur’an, in this late Medinan suurah (therefore, abrogating any previous statements on tolerating non-Muslims, which were revealed in the Meccan era) commands Muslims to kill anyone who does not submit their attempts to subdue and rule the world.

The debate, though, is somewhat moot. Classically, Islam provides Muslims’ opponents with three choices: become Muslims (and join the Islamic crusade), become a subject under Muslims (and pay the jizyah, accept second-class citizenship, and accept substantial restrictions on one’s rights), or fight the Muslims (and die). Convert, submit, or die. Simple yet inhumane.

As such, how can Islam conceivably be called a religion of peace, let alone the religion of peace? From the standards of the non-muslim world, such an epithet is impossible or illogical. The logic of Islam is quite different, though.

According to Islam, Islam is, indeed, the religion of peace. When people live according to the standards of Islam, there is peace. But what is “peace,” according to Islam? In Islam, peace is the tranquility and submission that comes with submitting to Islam and imposing Islam’s standards, rules, practices, commandments, exhortations, morals, values, mores, and traditions. Islam’s mandates are for all people, Muslim and non-Muslim. They are mandatory and comprehensive. To live in peace, one must be at peace with God, which fundamentally requires submitting to His will. Under God’s commands, as revealed in Islam, there will be justice (as defined by Islam), righteousness (as define by Islam), order (as defined by Islam), stability (as defined by Islam), honor (as defined by Islam), and peace (as defined by Islam).

So, Islam is the religion of peace by imposing its peace through violence. After all, Islam’s opponents do have the choice to convert or submit before being killed. Before its imposition, it is a religion of violence; it is peaceful once it is imposed and accepted (whether as a religion or as the ruling regime).

Verse 256 of suuratu-l-baqarah (the second suurah) says:
“laa ikraahi fi-ddeen”

“There is no compulsion in religion.”

This is followed immediately, in the same verse, by:
“qad-ttabayyana-rrushdu mina-l-ghayy”

“For, the Right Path has become distinct from the wrong path.”

The logic goes: there is no compulsion in religion because what is right and wrong is abundantly clear; as such, people should make the right decision; if someone does something wrong, he/she has consciously chosen the wrong path; those who consciously choose the wrong path are in league with the Devil and must be punished/stopped/hindered.

So much for being the religion of peace. islaam huwa haqqan ad-deen li-fitan wa li-Huroob wa li-qatl, huwa deen as-sayf.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamuun.

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