Jihad

Sun, August 3, 2014 Chicago Imam: Violent Jihad Must be Waged Against Israel

Imam Mohamed Elimam of the Chicago Islamic Center.

Imam Mohamed Elimam of the Chicago Islamic Center.

by: 
Ryan Mauro

A video has emerged of an imam in Chicago preaching that Muslims should wage war against Israel and that paradise awaits those who die in jihad. The website of his mosque says it has hundreds of members and a full-time Islamic school for children.

Imam Elimam explicitly tells audience that violent jihad must be waged against Israel and refers to the fighters in Gaza (Hamas) as “the resistance:”

  • “Return to the battle of jihad in Palestine.”
  • “Oh, those of you who want to wage jihad for the sake of Allah, Palestine is calling you and Gaza is crying out for your help. If you are true believers, true mujahideen, hasten to Palestine.”
  • “Paradise belongs to you, oh martyrs, oh fighters, oh mujahideen, oh our beloved Gaza and wounded Palestine.

The objective of this jihad is not to stop Israeli military action in Gaza, but to eliminate the state of Israel and to force Israeli Jews to leave the area.

  • “Global Zionism is unadulterated evil besetting all people.”
  • “The enemy [Israel] was placed in the midst of the Arab nation…in order to be a thorn in the side of the Arab and Islamic nations. May Allah pull this thorn out, and stick it down their throats. May they be sent back to their countries in shame and disgrace, Allah willing.”

Elimam’s advocating of violent jihad is not just about Israel. He preaches that Muslims are required to participate in jihad against perceived enemies of Islam in general and those who do are rewarded with Paradise:

  • “Know that ‘Paradise lies beneath the shade of the swords.’”
  • “(The Quran says): ‘Prepare for them what force and steeds of war you can, to strike fear in the hearts of the enemy of Allah and of your own, and others besides them, whom you do not know, but Allah knows.’”

Elimam is not the only American Islamist leader supporting violent jihad against Israel. The National Campus Coordinator of American Muslims for Palestine, Taher Herzallah, posted photos of injured Israeli soldiers on his Facebook and wrote underneath, “The most beautiful site in my eyes.” The post was removed after it got attention.

In another Facebook conversation about Hamas’s rocket fire on Israel, he said the terrorist group’s violence is justifiable legally and morally. He characterized it as a meager defense against an enemy dedicated to genocide:

“Hamas’ rockets are an oppressed people’s audible cry for help. An attempt to resist the brutalization, degradation, humiliation and extermination of the Palestinian identity. An act of resistance that shows that no matter what Israel does to the embattled people of Gaza, they will never submit.”

The Chicago Islamic Center should have banned Elimam as a preacher immediately after his first jihadist sermon. Its continuance indicates that the ideology of the mosque itself is radical; an observation that becomes exponentially more disturbing when you juxtapose his preaching with the video of children learning at the mosque’s school.

The ideology pushed by Elimam should repulse all peace-seekers. The belief that Israel must be destroyed through jihad is a recipe for endless war with mounting casualties for both Israelis and Palestinians. That mindset, more than anything else, is responsible for the pain that Elimam and other Islamists decry.

The preaching also poses a direct threat to the U.S. By teaching that Paradise is offered to jihadists who die fighting perceived enemies of Islam, Elimam opens the door for targets other than Israel. And no other country is described as an enemy of Islam more than the United States. That logic sets the stage for attacks on the U.S. and its interests and soldiers abroad.

For the sake of peace and security, Elimam’s ideology must be acknowledged, addressed and ultimately defeated by Muslims and non-Muslims.

Ryan Mauro is the ClarionProject.org’s National Security Analyst, a fellow with the Clarion Project and is frequently interviewed on top-tier TV stations as an expert on counterterrorism and Islamic extremism.

Tue, July 29, 2014 Leading Salafi Charities Grooming Jihadists in UK

An Islamist protest in Britain. (Photo © Reuters)

An Islamist protest in Britain. (Photo © Reuters)

by: 
Samuel Westrop

This article originally appeared on Gatestone.

"These boys were groomed [at the Al Manar Centre] ... so that they are satisfied that what they go to do is right ... once they're groomed, all it takes is someone to say come and I'll take you." — Source close to the Yemeni Community, Cardiff, U.K., as reported in The Telegraph.

All these preachers share one thing in common: they are favorites of the two leading government-subsidized Salafi charities in Britain.

The British government, on June 26, banned Sheikh Mohammad Al Arifi from entering the United Kingdom, after reports in the British media linked the Saudi preacher to the radicalization of British youth now fighting for ISIS in Syria.

Arifi's sermons at the Al Manar Centre in Cardiff in particular, have been linked to the radicalization of three young British Muslims: brothers Nasser and Aseel Muthana and their friend, Reyaad Khan.

In an interview with Channel 4 News, Mohammad Al Arifi denied the charges and voiced condemnation for those who incite Muslims to fight in Syria. His denial, however, was clearly at odds with his earlier declarations. In 2010, Arifi stated in a television broadcast that:This ban demonstrates the British government's growing acceptance that Islamist preachers actually do play an important role in driving Muslim youth toward terrorism.

"There is no doubt that a person whom Allah enables to sacrifice his soul, and to fight for the sake of Allah, has been graced with a great honor.
...
"Devotion to Jihad for the sake of Allah, and the desire to shed blood, to smash skulls and to sever limbs for the sake of Allah and in defense of His religion, is, undoubtedly, an honor for the believer.
...
"The Koranic verses that deal with fighting the infidels and conquering their countries say that they should convert to Islam, pay the jizya poll tax, or be killed. If the Muslims had implemented this, we would not have reached the humiliation in which we find ourselves today."

In a statement to the media, the British Home Office said: "The UK Government makes no apologies for refusing people access to the UK if we believe they represent a threat to our society. Coming here is a privilege that we refuse to extend to those who seek to subvert our shared values."

Barak Albayaty, a trustee of the Al Manar Centre, has claimed that the Muthana brothers chose to fight with ISIS not because they were radicalized by speakers visiting the mosque, but "by the internet."

Mohammad Al Arifi was not, nevertheless, the only extremist preacher to give sermons at the Al Manar Centre. Now that the government appears to have accepted that Arifi's presence in Britain serves to radicalize young Muslims, will it also focus on other extreme preachers already in Britain?

Haitham Al Haddad, for instance, is an Islamist preacher who describes Jews as "apes and pigs" and "enemies of God," quotes the Protocols of the Elders of Zion and speaks of a "conflict" between Muslim and Jews. Haddad has spoken at the Al Manar Centre on at least four occasions, two of which took place in 2014. Haddad's written work has also been promoted on the Al Manar Centre's Facebook page. Ali Hammuda, an Islamist preacher at Al Manar, describes Haddad as the "beloved Sheikh Haitham."

Abu Usamah ad-Dhahabi, who has spoken at the Al Manar Centre, calls for the killing of apostates. He has said: "If I were to call homosexuals perverted, dirty, filthy dogs who should be murdered, that's my freedom of speech, isn't it?" Dhahabi, according to a report by the Centre for Social Cohesion, also "advocates holy war in an Islamic state; preaches hatred against non-Muslims; that apostasy and homosexuality are punishable by death; and that women are inferior to men."

In addition, Muhammad Mustafa Al Muqri, the former spiritual leader of Gama'a Al Islamiyya, the Egyptian affiliate of Al Qaeda, was also invited to speak at Al Manar. One Islamic discussion forum refers to Al Muqri as being, at one point, the Imam of the Centre.

Ahmed Muthana, the father of the Muthana brothers fighting for ISIS in Syria, told the Daily Telegraph that his sons were "brainwashed" after they began attending the Al Manar Centre. He claimed visiting clerics put ideas in the heads of his boys.

The Telegraph further reported that a source close to the Yemeni community in Cardiff said, "These boys were groomed (at Al Manar) – obviously not to the stage to go, but so that they are satisfied that what they go to do is right. It all comes from the same school of thought. ... The teaching [at Al Manar] helped the people recruiting. ... once they're groomed, all it takes is someone to say come and I'll take you."

The Muthana brothers were not radicalized by just one visit from Muhammad Al Arifi. Their decision to wage jihad in Syria was, according to The Telegraph, the result of regular seminars and talks by the extremist preachers listed here.

All these preachers share one thing in common: they are favorites of the two leading government-subsidized Salafi charities in Britain: the Al Muntada Al Islami Trust (also known as the West London Cultural Centre) and the Islamic Education and Research Academy (iERA), both of which are funded by the taxpayer through a "tax-back" scheme named Gift Aid, in which charities can claim the 20% basic rate tax back on every pound donated.

Mohammad Al Arifi has repeatedly spoken at Al Muntada's annual conference, "Month of Mercy;" Haitham Al Haddad was the former Imam of the Al Muntada mosque and still speaks at the charity's conferences, and Muhammad Al Muqri has taught weekly lessons at the Al Muntada Mosque.

The Al Muntada Trust claims to provide charitable aid across the world. It also runs two schools in the UK. Every year, the Al Muntada Trust runs a conference named "Month of Mercy," which features some of the most outspoken preachers of this kind from across Europe and the Middle East. Nigerian media has accused Al Muntada of direct links to Nigeria's Al-Qaeda affiliate, the terrorist organization Boko Haram.

Boko Haram recently made headlines after kidnapping 276 schoolgirls and murdering up to 300 people. Emmanuel Ogebe, a Nigerian human rights lawyer, told US Congress that "Boko Haram's funding has been traced to … [the] Al Muntada Trust." Moreover, according to the Jamestown Foundation, Al Muntada is "associated with the official Saudi state charitable and da'wa institutions, the Muslim World League (MWL), World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY), International Islamic Relief Organization (IIRO), and Al Haramain Islamic Foundation. All these groups are alleged by American and international investigators to be terror-financing bodies."

Meanwhile, the other Al Manar speaker, Abu Usamah ad-Dhahabi, is an Imam in Birmingham at the Green Lane Mosque, which jointly organizes courses with the iERA. The Al Manar Centre itself, in fact, frequently runs courses with the iERA, and has provided a platform for iERA staff on multiple occasions.

The iERA is an extreme Islamist "da'wah" [proselytization] group, which tours hate preachers around Britain. Three iERA speakers have been banned from entering Britain: Bilal Philips, described by the U.S. an "unindicted co-conspirator" in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing; Zakir Naik, banned from the UK for saying that "every Muslim should be a terrorist," and Hussein Yee, who openly preaches hatred against Jews, and claims that Jews in America were "happy" when the Twin Towers fell.

Both the Al Muntada Trust and the iERA have worked together in the past to organize a conference featuring extremist preachers, with the support of groups such as the World Association of Muslim Youth, a Saudi youth organization that US government agencies and officials claim has funded terrorism in places such as Bosnia and Israel, and which publishes and distributes anti-Shia and anti-Semitic publications.

Some of these conferences have also included British parliamentarians, such as Jeremy Corbyn MP. Stephen Timms MP, another example, is a former Treasury Minister who has spoken at Al Muntada fundraising events,alongside shadow Justice Minister Andrew Slaughter MP, Conservative Peer Lord Sheikh, and former deputy mayor of London, Richard Barnes.

That these Salafi groups are providing the preachers at institutions where young British Muslims are radicalized should not be ignored. Although most of these extremist preachers are residents of Britain and therefore cannot be banned from the country, there are other steps the British government could take, such as -- with Al Manar Centre, Al Muntada and the iERA -- granting greater statutory powers that would allow the Charity Commission to strip the organizations of their charitable status.

The failure of the British government to take proactive steps to counter these Islamist ambitions, especially when they are couched as charitable endeavors, looks set to produce many more Muthana brothers -- some who will die on the battlefields in Syria and Iraq, and others who will return to Britain to wreak havoc there.

Sam Westrop is a Senior Fellow at the Gatestone Institute and also Director of Stand for Peace, a counter-extremism organization based in London. He appears regularly on television and radio to discuss the problem of Islamist, far-Left and far-Right extremism.

Jasser: How Islamism Restricts Religious, Civil Liberties

Dr. Zuhdi Jasser speaks at a press conference supporting the NYPD's anti-terrorism programs.

Dr. Zuhdi Jasser speaks at a press conference supporting the NYPD's anti-terrorism programs.

by: 
M. Zuhdi Jasser

Islam’s holiest month, Ramadan, is a time for intense personal and community reflection. As we abstain from all food and drink from sunrise to sunset, we are given an opportunity to feel a new level of gratitude for our blessings, as well as to share more of what we have with the less fortunate. No denials, no excuses.

As Americans, we are free to accept or reject any tenet of our individual religions. Individuals are also free to reject faith entirely without fear of state reprisal. As a practicing Muslim, I fast during Ramadan, observe the five daily prayers, give to charity, read Qur’anic scripture, and adhere to a range of guidelines prescribed by my faith, such as abstinence from alcohol and pork.

I have practiced my faith not just as a civilian, but also as a Lieutenant Commander in the United States Navy. I have never experienced any conflict between my American identity and my Muslim faith. If anything, the fact that we have the freedom to practice any religion or none makes me freer to practice my faith with sincerity than I would be in any Muslim-majority society where a particular interpretation of the faith is coerced. In many Muslim-majority societies, the fast is enforced by law or social coercion, prayer times are mandated, and work schedules are modified during the month of Ramadan.

As a Muslim, I must ask myself: Is a coerced practice of Islam as meaningful—and as rewarded by God—as one freely chosen? The logical answer is no, that in order to sincerely practice one must have the choice not to. “Doing good works” requires no personal fortitude if no other option exists. 

Freedom of religion is the first right in the US Constitution because without it, no other right can stand. The Founding Fathers, who espoused a range of personal views when it came to God and faith, shared a common commitment to individual liberty. It was their vision that America would be a nation wherein faith would be a matter of personal choice and the expression of it an inalienable and protected right. It is this understanding that my family embraced as patriotic Americans the moment they arrived here in the 1960s to escape the persecution of Syria’s Baathists. 

Contrarily, while it is certainly true that anti-Muslim bigotry exists—including efforts by some to prevent the building of mosques and to restrict our religious rights—it is also true that we Muslims, like all Americans, are protected by the United States Constitution and a whole host of laws protecting our civil rights.

Further, Muslims are not alone. Other religious minorities, in fact, continue to face a much higher level of persecution than we do. According to the FBI, 66% of hate crimes against religious groups over the last decade targeted members of the Jewish community, while 12.1% of these crimes targeted Muslims.

Some Muslims point to the rise of “anti-sharia” legislation as an indicator of the oppression of Muslims in the United States. Indeed, bills like the one proposed in Tennessee have been far too broadly written, seeming to make any gathering of Muslims an illegal act. (This bill was later amended).

Yet, on the other hand, those bills which did not explicitly identify sharia but more appropriately targeted those foreign laws which violate American standards of gender equality and religious freedom (like the Michigan law) were in fact supported by many Muslims, including our American Islamic Leadership Coalition. On either side of this debate, the American system is designed to give us room to comfortably support or actively dissent against policies and people who fail to fairly represent us. 

Because issues related to Islam and Muslims are so often in the media, individuals with malignant intentions, including both anti-Muslim bigots and Islamist supremacists, will do everything in their power to exacerbate tensions and stoke fear in their respective bases.

In this month of atonement, we Muslims must honestly reflect upon the reality of the global scope and scale of religious repression done in the name of Islam (Islamism). Sure, Muslims have every right to advocate for our own civil liberties, but we must not be hypocritical.

We must use our freedoms to protect, from the threat of Islamism, the values upon which this nation was founded: individual liberty for all people. We Muslims have a unique responsibility to be at the forefront of efforts aimed at countering the encroachment of Islamism in our private and public institutions, including courts. These efforts needn’t restrict freedom of speech for Islamists; in fact, it is both un-American and dangerous to push abhorrent speech underground, where it can easily foment into radicalism. 

Many Americans struggle with how to react and are rightfully concerned about the growing reach of political Islam at home and abroad by nations and movements empowered by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). There is no getting past the fact that the militants of Al-Qaeda, Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, Boko Haram, and the Taliban and the larger theo-political movements of the Muslim Brotherhood and Jamaat Islamiya share the anti-freedom ideology of Islamism. 

Some rush to condemn anything associated with Islam, from the construction of mosques to the wearing of the hijab (headscarf). Of course, while these things have been manipulated by Islamists, they are not “Islamist.” Rather, they are things Muslims also use and wear as part of our personal faith practice. Conflating personal faith practices with theo-political movements, activists and lawmakers run the risk of both empowering Islamists and contradicting core American values. 

Ultimately, while we need the support of non-Muslim allies, the primary responsibility of reform falls on Muslims ourselves. This Ramadan, we should reflect on how Islamism itself restricts our religious and civil liberties, and how it promises to poison interfaith relations and our engagement with broader American society.

During Ramadan, we feel the lack of sustenance in the daylight hours, reminding us how central food and water are to our ability to survive. We should use this month to reflect on the fact that religious liberty, protected by a secular government, is the primary if not the only guarantor of our own religious freedoms.

As American Muslims, we have not only the privilege of living in this great nation but also a tremendous responsibility to use our freedoms in such a way that we empower others to be free. By making efforts to celebrate and advance American ideals of liberty and freedom as we do at the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, Muslims can help to advance an urgently needed message: that liberty-minded Muslims are the solution to both combating radical Islam and to eliminating the poison of bigotry.

 

Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser is the president of the Phoenix-based American Islamic Forum for Democracy,  founded in the wake of the 9/11 attacks on the United States as an effort to provide an American Muslim voice advocating for the preservation of the founding principles of the United States Constitution, liberty and freedom, through the separation of mosque and state. He is the author of Battle for the Soul of Islam. Dr. Jasser served 11 years as a medical officer in the U. S. Navy and was Staff Internist for the Office of the Attending Physician to the U.S. Congress. Jasser was the narrator of Clarion Project's film "The Third Jihad" about the threat of Islamic extremism in the U.S.

Jihadi Rhetoric: Deadly Consequences Ignored by West

Islamic State imam in Mosul preaches jihad. (Photo: YouTube screenshot)

Islamic State imam in Mosul preaches jihad. (Photo: YouTube screenshot)

by: 
Raymond Ibrahim

I just spent the better part of the day reading and listening to sermons by the leaders and jihadis of the new “caliphate” in Mesopotamia, the Islamic State (formerly “Islamic State of Iraq and Syria”).

I did so in the vain hopes of learning something “new.”

But it was absolute déjà vu—taking me back to a decade ago, when I was reading and translating the Arabic writings and speeches of al-Qaeda leaders Osama bin Laden and Ayman Zawahiri, as collated in The Al Qaeda Reader.

Now as then, it’s the same Koran verses; the same hadiths of Islamic prophet Muhammad waging and praising jihad; the same threats of hellfire for the munafiqun (hypocrites or lukewarm Muslims); the same carnal rewards in the now or hereafter for those who join the “caravan” of jihad.

Consider for instance the following opening words of a recently released short video from the Islamic State titled, “There is No Life Without Jihad”:

If you wish to know the way to glory and power, to goodness, security and joy, you must learn that there are no rights without jihad, no justice without jihad, no dignity without jihad, no security without jihad, no future without jihad, no life without jihad, no life without jihad.

After this rather hackneyed opening, one Abu Muthana, a jihadi from Britain, appears quoting some more of the usual Koran verses, hadiths, and ulema, in this case, Imam Qurtubi, who wrote that “jihad gives life.”  Finally he summarizes the goal of the jihad—in case anyone is still not sure—namely, to fight until “the law [Sharia] of Allah is implemented and the caliphate restored.”

To reiterate, there is little new or original in the videos and communiques from the Islamic State.  Just static Islamism.

If one turns to the speeches of other Islamic and jihadi groups around the world—from the African groups such as Boko Haram (Nigeria) and al-Shabaab (Somalia), to Asian groups such as Abu Sayyaf (Philippines) and the Islamic Movement (Uzbekistan)—it’s the same thing, same themes, same scriptures, same quotations, same exhortations, same condemnations.  Only their temporal circumstances and vicissitudes of victory or defeat differ.

While the Western mentality, so used to seeing and hearing about the “latest” or “newest” fad, may deem the Islamist approach as static or insipid, it is, quite the contrary, immensely effective for its purposes, and thus dangerous.

 

Consider: It’s the same exact message—of supremacism, hate, and violence, capped off with divine sanctioning—repeated over and over again, from a myriad of sources and organizations, all of which claim authority.

One can think of few better ways to brainwash and indoctrinate young and impressionable minds—to the point that they eagerly embrace death, including through suicide (AKA “martyrdom operations”).

Nor is this message of jihad, conquest, and death-to-the-infidel, limited to the verbiage that transpires among terrorist organizations; instead, this sort of rhetoric has spread far and wide, thanks to modern technology—including the Internet and social media—and the rich Gulf States, chief among them Saudi Arabia, which have seen to it that the jihadi books and passages being quoted are available to all and sundry.

Indeed, and has been demonstrated repeatedly, such jihadi rhetoric is regularly used in mosques all throughout Europe and America—explaining why an inordinate amount of jihadis in Syria and Iraq, such as Abu Muthana,  the aforementioned “Brit,” are in fact from the West.

If the West, in the name of “religious freedom,” is still too fretful to monitor and ban such sermons, in Egypt—a Muslim nation in the heart of the Islamic world—the post Muslim Brotherhood government has come to understand the necessity of outlawing “certain” kinds of sermons and preachers from the mosques, specifically, those about jihad against infidels and apostates.

Of course, such a move sounds extremely “anti-freedom” to the liberal mentality; the New York Times bemoaned it, without considering that such a clampdown on sermon topics actually combats terrorism and saves human lives.  For example, the overwhelming majority of attacks on Egypt’s Christian Copts occur on Friday—the one day of the week Muslims congregate in mosques to hear sermons.

Ultimately, however, such a move from Egypt—an Islamic nation—is an indicator of just how problematic unregulated (i.e., jihadi) sermons can be: if “moderate” Muslims are fearful from the repercussions of “radicalized” sermons, shouldn’t we “infidels” be even more wary of them?

In the end, there’s good news and bad news in all this: the good news is that one need not be familiar with the constant communiques, videos, and messages emanating from this or that jihadi group—for they are all recycled, all the same.  To hear one, is to  hear them all.

The bad news is that, due to the severe lack of common sense and censorship in the form of political correctness that plagues the West, the rhetoric of jihad and its unvarying message of hate remains wholly unintelligible.

If the jihadis, like parrots, are forever repeating each other—and compelling other parrots to join them—Western leaders and politicians, like ostriches, are forever sticking their heads in the sand, lest they acknowledge the cacophony of hate surrounding them, and us.

 

Raymond Ibrahim is the author of Crucified Again: Exposing Islam's New War in Christians (published by Regnery in cooperation with Gatestone Institute, April 2013). He is a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and an associate fellow at the Middle East Forum. Mr. Ibrahim's dual-background—born and raised in the U.S. by Egyptian parents —has provided him with unique advantages to understanding of the Western and Middle Eastern mindsets.

Paralyzed World Looks on to Orgy of Jihadi Terror

ISIS prisoners moments before their execution.

ISIS prisoners moments before their execution.

by: 
Tarek Fatah

The world is ablaze in an orgy of jihadi terror and war in the lands of Islam and no one seems to know what to make of it, let alone how to resolve the crisis.

The brutality of this mayhem was best captured in a deeply disturbing video released on the Internet by jihadis fighting for the "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS).

It shows a bearded, young ISIS fighter in full battle gear posing for the camera with a decapitated head in his hand.

On cue from the cameraman, the jihadi fighter lifts the head, turns towards it and says, "Hello, my name is John."

Both men then break into laughter, after which the cameraman derisively remarks, "Why doesn't John look like he died of natural causes?"

The decapitated head is then thrown to the ground as another ISIS man can be heard off camera joking: "This guy died of natural causes by a knife ... It cut his throat", to which the cameraman guffaws, "Natural causes - the mujahedeen ... Natural cause for an apostate," before chanting the Islamic battle cry, "Allah O Akbar."

This desecration of a dead body is not an isolated incident.

Just last year the Taliban were filmed playing football with the decapitated heads of beheaded prisoners - fellow Muslims.

And while much of the Islamic community is in a state of denial, blinded to the atrocities being committed by their co-religionists across the globe, the rest of the world watches in shock.

In Kenya and Nigeria Islamists are targeting Christians while in Iraq and Pakistan they are killing Shia Muslims, who Saudi-funded clerics have designated as "Kaffirs'", non-believers in Islamic disguise whose founders, they falsely claim, were Jews.

The apologists among us claim these atrocities are not part of the Islamic rules of war, but that does not withstand scrutiny.

The fact is, no less a person than the grandson of Prophet Muhammad was beheaded in battle by fellow Muslims on Oct. 10, 680. His decapitated head was paraded in the streets of Damascus.

The eminent Egyptian Islamic reformer of the 20th century, Ali Abd al-Razik, writes in his book Islam and the Fundamentals of Authority that within a year of Prophet Muhammad's death, political disputes among the Muslims were settled by public beheadings.

Raziq writes about one incident of early Islam when the celebrated Muslim general Khalid Ibn Walid made a cooking pot out of the decapitated head of another Muslim general, Malik ibn Nuwairah, after defeating him in a battle and beheading him as a POW.

Fortunately, Canada is the only western country that has a critical mass of liberal Muslims honest enough to acknowledge the fact that not all of our history is as unblemished as our parents and clerics wanted us to believe as children.

The slaughters we read about in Syria, Kenya, Iraq, Pakistan, Nigeria and Afghanistan have common factors.

They're the same ones that feature in the so-called honour killings and female genital mutilation of girls in the UK, Canada, America and Europe, as well as in much of the Arab world and Africa.

Those factors are Islamism and sharia.

The sooner we Muslims acknowledge this truth, the better equipped we will be to join the rest of humanity as partners in peace for our common good.

If not, we may well end up in the scrap heap of history.​

 

Tarek Fatah, is a Canadian writer, broadcaster and anti-Islamist Muslim activist. He is the author of Chasing a Mirage: The Tragic Illusion of an Islamic State and the founder of the Muslim Canadian Congress.

Sharia Versus Freedom

Sharia Versus Freedom

By Dr. Andrew G. Bostom

The book elucidates, unapologetically, Sharia's defining Islamic religious principles and the consequences of its application across space and time, focusing upon contemporary illustrations.

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