Sunday, 31 October 2010

Reuel Is Not Gerecht

A couple of weeks ago, Reuel Gerecht published a bizarre article at the New Republic in which he deplored conservatives such as Newt Gingrich who supposedly "blur the line between militant Muslims and the everyday faithful." Specifically, Gerecht was critical of Gingrich's statement in a speech in July that: “I believe Sharia is a mortal threat to the survival of freedom in the United States and in the world as we know it. I think it’s that straightforward and that real.”

I say Gerecht's article is bizarre because it is difficult to tell, after reading through all the posturing and moral lessons, exactly what his point is. It is also notable for the fact that he appears to contradict himself from one paragraph to the next.

(On a side note, the article comes with a headline and a picture of Bill O'Reilly, who is never mentioned once thereafter. Not sure what that's all about.)

Gerecht makes some salient points; for example:

There is, to be sure, absolutely nothing wrong with non-Muslim Americans engaging in a debate about faith and violence that ranges far and wide. Western history offers a lengthy chronicle that encourages an exploration of why devout men kill for God; Christian-Muslim parallels provide a lens through which to see where—and where not—sincere believers in the Almighty have interpreted how violence and religion intermarry. So, no, there is no sin in non-Muslims querying Muslims about why so many terrorists tend to be Muslim and why those terrorists advertise their acts of violence as a defense of their faith. There is nothing wrong with asking why so many Muslims have such a difficult time saying that Palestinian suicide bombers have committed acts of evil. There is nothing wrong, either, in asking why it is that Islamic radicals melted two skyscrapers and blew out a side of the Pentagon and yet prompted so little soulful reflection, produced no Émile Zola, no Captain Dreyfus.

And a little further on:

True, the Holy Law applied can be ugly, not least for women. Westerners, especially Europeans, are quite right to be outraged by the importation of Sharia practices to their shores. And Westerners should cast a very dim eye on any financial institution that sets up Sharia-compliant offices that could, if left unchecked, discreetly normalize anti-Semitic practices in big global institutions.

But despite these admissions, Gerecht still criticises the "blanket demonisation of the Holy Law", and spends the rest of his piece excioriating those who make these same points, peddling the completely false claim that Gingrich - let alone anyone else, anywhere, ever - is saying that "all Muslims are, basically, nuts."

He also errs when he acts as if Gingrich's sole concern with sharia is that Muslims might use it to justify "terrorism" - saying nothing of the amputations, the stonings and the general barbarism that Islamic law entails, which does indeed threaten the West if allowed to take a stranglehold on the secular, democratic values our ancestors fought so hard to define and defend.

Aside from the internal and logical inconsistences, Gerecht makes a number of basic factual errors - whether out of ignorance or willful obfuscation, I'm not certain.

For starters, he lionises as "moderates" Iraq’s Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani, "the most revered Shiite thinker in the world, and one who tried desperately and selflessly to keep his country from descending into internecine savagery", and the late Grand Ayatollah Ali Montazeri, "the spiritual father of Iran’s Green Movement and the nemesis of Ali Khamenei, Iran’s ruler, himself a very mediocre student of the Sharia".

Doesn't Gerecht know that in 2006, Sistani issued a fatwa calling for the execution of homosexuals "in the worst, most severe way possible", which led to an increase in homophobic killings in Iraq? Similarly, doesn't he know that Sistani upholds the bigoted classical Shi'ite doctrine of najis, which declares that non-Muslims are not only ritually impure, but also physically unclean? On his website, his list of the top ten "unclean" things includes dogs, pigs, faeces.....and "kafir", or unbelievers.

As for Montazeri, in her in-depth analysis of the status of non-Muslims under the Iranian theocracy, Eliz Sanasarian demonstrates how, as a direct result of najis policies which were championed by the "moderate" cleric, non-Muslims in Iran were subjected to institutionalised discrimination. For example, non-Muslims were denied production jobs because Muslims refused to touch goods that had been manufactured by infidels, for fear that Muslims would be "contaminated" by them. According to Sanasarian, Montazeri also taught that if a non-Muslim man has a sexual relationship with a Muslim woman, he must be executed.

Later in the piece, Gerecht makes the absurd claim that "If Saudi Arabia, at home and abroad, would just welcome Hanafis, the most open-minded of Sunni Islam’s law schools, it would be an enormous triumph over Wahhabi intolerance and the hatred that spews forth from that oil-rich land."

By what definition are Hanafis more tolerant or "open-minded" than any other school of jurisprudence or sect of Islam? The Hedaya, a classic manual of Hanafi law that is still used by sharia judges in Pakistan today, makes clear that the Hanafis, like all other Sunni schools of Islamic law, believe in the religious obligation of the global Muslim community to submit the world to Islam by way of offensive jihad:

“It is not lawful to make war upon any people who have never before been called to the faith, without previously requiring them to embrace it, because the Prophet so instructed his commanders, directing them to call the infidels to the faith, and also because the people will hence perceive that they are attacked for the sake of religion, and not for the sake of taking their property, or making slaves of their children, and on this consideration it is possible that they may be induced to agree to the call, in order to save themselves from the troubles of war...If the infidels, upon receiving the call, neither consent to it nor agree to pay capitation tax, it is then incumbent on the Muslims to call upon God for assistance, and to make war upon them, because God is the assistant of those who serve Him, and the destroyer of His enemies, the infidels, and it is necessary to implore His aid upon every occasion; the Prophet, moreover, commands us so to do.”

It also promotes the quite intolerant commandment that once non-Muslim nations have been invaded by the Muslims, their people must become dhimmis, or subjects of the Islamic state. These dhimmis are denied equality of rights with Muslims, and discriminated against in many ways, including such rulings as:

“Malik and Shafi [the founders of the Maliki and Shafi'i schools of jurisprudence, respectively] have said that [dhimmi testimony] is absolutely inadmissible, because as infidels are unjust, it is requisite to be slow in believing anything they may advance...the evidence of an infidel is not admitted concerning a Muslim...Besides, a dhimmi may be suspected of having invented falsehoods against a Muslim from the hatred he bears to him on the account of the superiority of the Muslims over him.”

The manual also contains instructions for the execution of apostates and homosexuals. True, it does reject the idea that non-Muslims who insult or criticise Islam should be killed, but it does so not because of any kind of "Islamic tolerance":

Shafi has said that the contract of subjection is dissolved by a dhimmi's blaspheming the prophet; because if he were a believer, by such blasphemy his faith would be broken; and hence, in the same manner, his protection is thereby broken, since the contract of subjection is merely a substitute for belief. The argument of our doctors is that the blasphemy in question is merely an act of infidelity proceeding from an infidel; and as his infidelity was no obstruction to the contract of subjection at the time of making it, this supervenient [sic] act of infidelity does not cancel it.”

In other words, the assumption is that blasphemy is an inherent part of disbelief, and since unbelievers are already being punished by being made dhimmis, further punishment is not necessary. Hardly open-minded, really.

Gerecht concludes with the naive hope that what he terms "the traumatic Westernization of Islam" will render sharia irrelevant. And yet attempts to Westernise Iraq and Afghanistan have clearly failed, as both countries are now in many ways worse off than before we went in, and enshrine sharia as the law of the land in their Constitutions. Furthermore, while Western influence led in many Islamic countries to improvements, most of those improvements have since been rolled back as orthodox Islam regains vital influence.

And there is much evidence to suggest that many Muslims simply don't want to be Westernised, and do revere sharia in all its ugliness. For example, according to a 2007 World Public Opinion poll, 65.2% of Muslims surveyed in four major Islamic countries (Morocco, Egypt, Pakistan and Indonesia) openly declared that they wanted to see a global Muslim state, or caliphate. Concordantly, 65.5% wanted strict (that word was emphasised) application of sharia law in every Islamic country. In early 2009, a follow-up poll by the same team achieved similar results. These facts pose an acute threat to the West, for these same Muslims are being encourage to migrate into our countries in large numbers, bringing these views and desires with them. A study in 2006 reported that as many as 40% of British Muslims would like to see the British legal system replaced with sharia.

To understand why Gerecht's optimism is so unwarranted, one also need only look so far as this recent Haaretz article on the death of Egyptian Muslim thinker Nasr Hamid Abu Zayd. According to the article, Abu Zayd advocated a rationalist approach to Qur'anic interpretation, which involved a "re-contextualisation" of the Qur'an to fit the standards of our time, as opposed to the orthodox views that have prevailed in effect since the early days of Islam, according to which the text of the Qur'an represents divine, absolute and perpetual truth, which is valid for all Muslim communities regardless of time and place. Specifically, Abu Zayd wrote: "If everything mentioned in the Koran must be obeyed literally as divine law, then slavery must be reinstituted...In our times the amputation of limbs cannot be considered a religious punishment that has divine approval."

For having such views, Abu Zayd was exiled from his native country and ostracised for the rest of his life. The obituary notes in summary that "Abu Zayd apparently died with his philosophy falling to a large extent on deaf ears, particularly at home." If Reuel Gerecht took some time to think about why this might be the case, he would surely have to abandon his entire untenable thesis.

In all, Reuel Gerecht's article epitomises the problem with the "learned analysts" that prevail even on the Right today. Although he is far from the liberal apologists who go so far as to fabricate a rosy picture of Islam and demonise as racists all those who think differently, his message is ultimately one of confusion and inconsistency. And that makes him, as far as inspiration to concrete action goes, not much better than those liberals. For if we all remain as vague on sharia, Islam and Muslims as Reuel Gerecht, then the threat that Newt Gingrich was able to articulate so clearly and concisely will certainly not be met by any practical defense solutions.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

More European Leftist Fascism On Display

Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff: "Inciter of hate"...and justifiably proud of it

It's not only Geert Wilders who is being forced to undergo a sham "trial" by biased Leftist Inquisitors for daring to speak some unflattering, but accurate, truths about Islam in Europe.

On September 15th, Austrian writer Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff learned through the media that she — like Wilders and Canadian publisher Ezra Levant — had been charged with “hate speech” and “denigration of religious teachings”.

Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff’s “offense” is to defend freedom of speech and much more against a tsunami of barbarism and against the politically correct silence and hushing-up. The subject of the complaint is the mere fact that she even gives Islam-critical seminars. For example, the indictment charges her with “hate speech” for the following statement: “Sharia is a definite no-no. We want no gender apartheid, no ghettoes, no social and cultural discrimination, no polygamy, no theocracy, no hate…”

This totalitarian crack-down on the free speech of law-abiding citizens is unacceptable, and must be fought to the last. Support Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff in any way you can. Donate to her legal defense fund. Send the information on her trial to everyone you know who cares about basic human freedoms - which are now dually threatened by the "dream team" of the Western Left and orthodox Islam.

In giving Wolff and others like her our unwavering support, we send a clear message to that unholy alliance: We will never give up. Your tyranny will be defeated, and freedom will win out. The truth can not remain locked inside a jail cell.

Saturday, 23 October 2010

O'Reilly And Imam Rauf

O'Reilly: "Condemn 9/11, Rauf."

Rauf: "Ok, Bill (stupid infidel)."

During a recent discussion on the Ground Zero mosque controversy, noted "far-right" American talk show host Bill O'Reilly gave the following message to mosque developer Faisal Abdul Rauf:

"You tell him this. All Imam Rauf and his crew have to do is say 'we're going to dedicate this mosque -- community center -- to peace. And we are going to condemn what happened here on 9/11. (Then) I'll get a hammer and help them down there."

That's it, Bill? He just has to condemn 9/11 and you'll help him build his triumphal Islamic supremacist mega-mosque? You mean you won't rigorously question him on his refusal to denounce Hamas as a terrorist organisation, his apparent refusal to sign a declaration in support of the Muslim's fundamental human right to change his or her religion, his doublespeak and advocacy of sharia law, and numerous other unsavoury connections and words? Hasn't it crossed your mind that he might condemn 9/11 simply because he knows that you want to hear him do so? Or that even if he sincerely does condemn the attacks, he may still sympathise with the ultimate totalitarian goals of those who murdered 3000 innocent people on that day?

Shouldn't you know better than this, Bill?

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Jihad Cat

One of the devoted followers of Sayyid Catb:

Fleas be upon him.

Monday, 18 October 2010

The Return of Dhimmitude In Egypt?

In her landmark book The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam, historian Bat Ye'or outlines some of the ferocious persecution the Coptic Christians of Egypt suffered after the Muslims of Arabia invaded in the seventh century:

On the death of the caliph, Muhammad al-Mudabbir arrived in Egypt as minister of finance (861), coming from Palestine where he had long subjected the inhabitants to every type of misery. He tripled the jizya [non-Muslim poll tax] on Christians and Jews "so that he filled the prisons in every place." He ordered churches to be pillaged and confiscated for the diwan (Islamic treasury) the money and alms intended to maintain bishoprics and monasteries. Monks were imprisoned and put in irons, while the patriarch, unable to pay the taxes demanded from the Coptic episcopate, fled from place to place and went into hiding. (p.84)

Flash forward to today, and it is becoming increasingly clear that Egypt is reverting to its former self, with the Copts still being bullied and humiliated at the hands of the Muslim majority. Disturbingly, the attacking of churches and the kidnapping of monks is still not an uncommon occurence there.

Recently, Muslims reacted with predictable "outrage" over some statements by Bishop Bishoy, secretary of the Coptic’s Church’s Holy Synod. He believes that certain verses of the Qur'an contradict the Christian faith and were added into the book after the death of Muhammad by one of his successors.

Now, Muslims have never been known for their openness to critical scrutiny of "The Mother of the Book", but what makes this case particularly worrying is the official statement issued by Al Azhar University and its Grand Sheikh, Ahmad al-Tayyeb. Al Azhar is the most authoritative institution of Islamic learning in the world, with al-Tayyeb being the closest equivalent in Islam to the Pope in Christianity - a worrying prospect, given that al-Tayyeb justifies wife-beating and suicide bombing, and is hesitant about condemning the 9/11 attacks.

The recent Al Azhar statement decried Bishop Bishoy's statements, and further:

The Statement went on to say the Council stresses the fact that Egypt is an “Islamic State” according to the text of its Constitution, which represents the social contract between its people. “From this stems the rights of citizenship, as taught to us by the Messenger of Allah in his pact with the Christians of Najran, in which he decided that they were to enjoy rights and duties as the Muslims. However, these rights are conditional to respect for the Islamic Identity and the citizenship rights as set by the Constitution.”

The Christians of Najran, Medina, refused conversion to Islam in 631 AD, and were subsequently subjugated under Islamic rule, where they had to accept the dominance of Muslims and pay an annual tribute (the jizya).

So in this statement, al-Tayyeb was explicitly advocating the return of Egypt's Coptic population to an inferior second-class status, where they would be denied their rights as equal individuals before God. As the popular manual of Islamic law Reliance of the Traveller (which was endorsed as a reliable guide to Sunni orthodoxy by Al Azhar in 1991) explains, jizya-paying subjects of the Islamic state are subject to all of the following and more:

“[Dhimmis] are distinguished from Muslims in dress, wearing a wide cloth belt (zunnar); are not greeted with as-Salamu 'alaykum [the traditional Muslim greeting 'peace be with you']; must keep to the side of the street; may not build higher than or as high as the Muslims' buildings, though if they acquire a tall house, it is not razed; are forbidden to openly display wine or pork, [or] to ring church bells or display crosses, recite the Torah or Evangel aloud, or make public display of their funerals and feastdays; and are forbidden to build new churches.”

Al Azhar's advocacy for this inhuman, oppressive system of governance, whereby basic human rights are grossly violated, is extremely sad, but also extremely telling - despite Western Leftists' deluded fantasies - of how wholly immoderate mainstream Islam is. Now, the Copts of Egypt suffer the consequences. Unless the harsh realities of Islamic doctrine and law are confronted, others will surely follow.

Saturday, 16 October 2010

Veil Part of "British Way Of Life"?

Quintessentially British

The full Islamic face-veil is a part of the “British way of life” and should be celebrated along with religious symbols such as the crucifix, according to a report published today.

In the new report from think-tank Civitas, Alveena Malik, a former faith adviser to the last Labour government, said: “The wearing of religious symbols, including the full veil, should be a fundamental human right of an individual in both the public and private sphere.

“The real test for religious symbols in the public sphere should always be: ‘Does the wearing of a symbol (such as the kirpan, turban, yarmulke, crucifix and the veil) hinder a citizen’s ability to perform their public civic duties?’”

Quite aside from whether the burqa is really compatible with the British way of life, and whether or not it is "practical", we need to get our stories straight here. I don't know whether Alveena Malik is herself a Muslim, although I suspect she is, but since many Muslim spokesmen say similar things to this, the point still stands. The question is: Is the veil really a "religious symbol", or isn't it? Some Muslims tell us that the veil has nothing to do with Islam at all, that it is really just a cultural hangover from certain non-Islamic tribal cultures, or even from the medieval Christian world - and they will say that anyone who says it does in fact have something to do with Islam is a greasy racist bigot. Then in the next breath, they will turn around and say that the burqa is a "religious" symbol that deserves respect. So which is it? A pre-Islamic cultural garment or an Islamic traditional dress? And if it is a religious symbol, what exactly is it a symbol of?

And will Alveena Malik ever publish a report defending the rights of Muslim women not to wear traditional Islamic dress? If not, why not?

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Don't Call It Rape

Maulana Abu Sayeed (second from right) and chums discuss "major" and "minor" sins - guess which category rape falls into

A senior Muslim cleric who runs the country's largest network of sharia courts has sparked controversy by claiming that there is no such thing as rape within marriage.

Sheikh Maulana Abu Sayeed, president of the Islamic Sharia Council in Britain, said that men who rape their wives should not be prosecuted because "sex is part of marriage". And he claimed that many married women who alleged rape were lying.

That's what the Independent is reporting today. For more background on Sayeed's horrible views, see here, where we learn that he believes "non-consensual sex is the minor aggression, and calling it rape is the major aggression". He also states, flat out, that to prosecute marital rapists would be "compromising Islamic religion with secular non-Islamic values,” and this should not be done, because "We don’t deviate from Quran, deviate from sunnah.”

And what could possibly go wrong with that? It's not as if the Qur'an describes the woman as a field that a man may "plough" as he wishes: “Your women are a tilth for you to cultivate so go to your tilth as ye will.” (2:223)

And it's not as if the Sunnah (i.e. the teachings and example of Muhammad) condones marital rape, either: "If a husband calls his wife to his bed [i.e. to have sexual relation] and she refuses and causes him to sleep in anger, the angels will curse her till morning" (Sahih Bukhari v.4, b.54, no.460).

Furthermore, the website of Sheikh Sayeed's Islamic Sharia Council says that any Muslim who dares to suggest that some sharia rulings, such as those above, are barbaric or out-of-date in the modern world is an unbeliever and will burn in Hell for all eternity.

Sharia courts in Britain - not such a good idea, eh?

What Happens When The Facts Come Out

Fascinating results from a recent debate in New York can be found here.

The debate, which took place at New York University's Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, featured two sides arguing the motion "Islam Is A Religion of Peace". Arguing for the motion were:

Maajid Nawaz is director of the Quilliam Foundation. Formerly, Nawaz served in the U.K. national leadership for the Islamist party Hizb ut-Tahrir and was involved in HT for almost 14 years. He was a founding member of HT in Denmark and Pakistan. He eventually served four years in an Egyptian prison and was adopted by Amnesty International as a "prisoner of conscience." In prison, Maajid gradually began changing his views until he finally renounced the Islamist ideology for traditional Islam and inclusive politics. He now engages in counter-Islamist thought-generating, writing and debating.

Zeba Khan is a writer and advocate for Muslim-American civic engagement. Born and raised in Ohio by devout Muslim parents, she attended Hebrew school for nine years while actively participating in her local Muslim community. In 2008, she launched Muslim-Americans for Obama, an online network to mobilize Muslim-American voters in support of the Obama presidential campaign. Since then, she continues to work on issues of Muslim-American civic engagement and was recognized for her work by the American Society for Muslim Advancement as a 2009 Muslim Leader of Tomorrow.

Arguing against the motion were:

Ayaan Hirsi Ali was born in Somalia and raised a devout Muslim. She escaped an arranged marriage by immigrating to the Netherlands in 1992 and served as a member of the Dutch parliament for three years. She has since become an active critic of fundamentalist Islam, an advocate for women's rights and a leader in the campaign to reform Islam. She has also become a target of death threats by Islamic extremists. Hirsi Ali is a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and author of The Caged Virgin (2006), Infidel (2007) and Nomad (2010). She is the founder of the AHA Foundation, whose mission is to defend the rights of women in the West against militant Islam and tribal custom.

Douglas Murray is a best-selling author and award-winning journalist. He is also founder and director of the Centre for Social Cohesion, a nonpartisan think-tank in Westminster, London, that focuses on radicalization and has published work on both Islamist and far-right extremism. Murray is a columnist for Standpoint magazine and writes for many other publications. In 2005, he published the critically acclaimed Neoconservatism: Why We Need It, which Christopher Hitchens praised as "a very cool but devastating analysis." He is a co-author of the NATO strategy report, "Towards a Grand Strategy for an Uncertain World: Renewing Transatlantic Partnership."

Before the debate, the audience voted 41 percent in favour of the motion and 25 percent against. Thirty-four percent were undecided. After the debate, however, 55 percent disagreed that "Islam Is a Religion of Peace," 36 percent supported the motion and 9 percent were still unsure. A sure-fire indicator that once proper debate (as opposed to Stalinist show-trials) is allowed to take place, the nature of Islam really does unfold in front of people's eyes. And a reminder that it it is not impossible to make people see the truth before it is too late.

You can watch the debate, starting with the first part, here.

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Bulgaria Reaps The Fruits of The Eurabia Project

Did you hear about this?

I certainly didn't. To my knowledge, not a single mainstream news outlet in the UK covered the news that raids by the Interior Ministry of Bulgaria have uncovered a huge amount of documentation revealing the activities of the Islamic "charity" Al-Waqf Al-Islam.

During the raid, conducted at homes and offices in three different regions of the country, a large amount of propaganda material preaching religious hatred and the overthrow of Bulgaria’s constitutional order (and its replacement with sharia law) was found, along with financial documents showing illegal financial transactions and violations of tax laws, according to the ministry. Gates of Vienna has the details, along with translated excerpts from the Bulgarian media.

One of the regional prosecutors explains: “This is a branch of a radical Islamic movement — Salafism, that indoctrinated Bulgarian Moslems to believe that all the world should be subdued by the power of Islam.”

And that would probably have involved exposing them to certain passages of the Qur'an, particularly this one: “Tell those who disbelieve that if they cease (from persecution of believers) that which is past will be forgiven them; but if they return (thereto) then the example of the men of old hath already gone (before them, for a warning). And fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is all for Allah.” (8:38-39)

They would probably also have pointed out that, according to Islam's most authoritative text outside of the Qur'an, Muhammad, the Prophet of Islam, said: "I have been ordered (by Allah) to fight against the people until they testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that Muhammad is Allah's Apostle, and offer the prayers perfectly and give the obligatory charity, so if they perform that, then they save their lives and property from me except for Islamic laws and then their reckoning (accounts) will be done by Allah.” (Sahih Bukhari v.1, b.2, no.25, and others)

Also notable is that despite its clear connections to Saudi Wahhabis and terrorism, the organisation describes itself as a charity - continuing the long-running tradition, based on mainstream Islamic doctrines, of Muslim "charities" funding violent jihad.

Perhaps most distressing of all is the fact that, according to one of the translated reports:

Later in the day it was announced that a mob in the village of Laznica has surrounded the home of the local imam Mohamed Kamber. Inside the home are detectives from the police and the State Agency for National Security, who wanted to confiscate computer drives, CDs, and books in the Arabic language. The Imam stated that he and his relatives are insulted and suffer mental stress because of the police action. The mob will not allow the police agents to leave the house, unless they leave “the sacred books” inside.

What's this? Don't the vast majority of European Muslims reject the jihadists and practise the "true" peaceful version of Islam? Why would they form "mobs" that try to prevent police from investigating those of their co-religionists who may be involved in jihadist activity?

Don't ask our political elites. They got Europe into this mess. Now they are tasting the bitter fruit of their efforts to alter the demographics and cultural identity of this continent irrevocably.

As a result, no matter how hard they try, it will one day become impossible for our willfully blind media to ignore the cancer of Islam in Europe.

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Jihad And Soup?

The Leftist blogosphere has been in a state of smarmy amusement in recent days as opposition has risen in some quarters to American food company Campbell's producing a line of halal soup. Leftists sneer at the "neocons" who they say are trying to claim that introducing halal soup is the latest step on the path to the Islamisation of the West.

The Economist
, for example, describes a campaign to boycott Campbell's as "ludicrous and hateful", and refers to other opposition to the move as "bigotry", an "ugly wave of anti-Muslim hysteria", "shaming" and "infantile". And yet, this same piece even admits that the primary reason for the objections lies in the fact that "the body certifying the soups as halal has been linked to the Muslim Brotherhood."

As you can see at the link to Campbell's above, the halal products "are certified by the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), the largest non-profit, religious, educational, and non-political Islamic organization in North America. ISNA's Halal Certification Program was established in conjunction with professionals in the field of Islamic foods and nutrition, and with Islamic scholars. The program includes the review of ingredients, formulas, manufacturing and sanitation processes."

This is not a case of bigoted hysteria over Muslims getting their own soup. No one can reasonably object to that (unless, of course, we end up getting it, too, without even realising). The issue is that Campbell's is getting halal certification from ISNA.

And, aside from the platitudes of Campbell's treacly advertisement, who are ISNA? Why, they are the "moderate" Islamic group that supports and funds Hamas terrorists. They are also named (see here, the final page) by the Muslim Brotherhood as one of its key allies in its mission: "eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and 'sabotaging' its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God's religion is made victorious over all other religions." (page 21)

Is it really bigotry to object to a major food company doing dealings with groups that support people who want to exterminate Jews and replace Western democracies with Islamic theocracies? Or are the Leftists just showing us whose side they're really on yet again?

Sunday, 3 October 2010

When A Choice Is Not A Choice

The burkha: a choice - except when it's not

Advocates and apologists for the Islamic veil and headscarf often defend these misogynistic, oppressive garments by claiming that Muslim women "choose" to wear them. Two stories published today by the Daily Mail - both, troublingly, relating to British Muslim communities - give the lie to these claims.


A Muslim woman has been awarded more than £13,500 after she was sacked for refusing to wear a headscarf at the estate agency where she worked.

Ghazala Khan - a 31-year-old non-practising Muslim - was fired less than two weeks into her job at a company run by traditional Muslim businessman Masood Ghafoor simply because she refused to cover her hair.

Mr Ghafoor told Miss Khan, who had nine years experience in the trade, that his wife and female relatives all wore full veils or burkas, telling her that her parents had given her 'far too much freedom'.


At least three Muslim faith schools are forcing girls as young as 11 to wear face-covering veils with the blessing of Ofsted inspectors, it emerged yesterday...

They insist that when girls are travelling to and from school they wear the niqab, a face veil leaving the eyes exposed, or the head-to-toe burka, which covers the eyes with a mesh screen.

School uniform rules listed on Madani's website have been removed but an earlier version, seen by the Sunday Telegraph, said: 'The present uniform conforms to the Islamic Code of dressing. Outside the school, this comprises of the black Burka and Niqab.'

The admission application form warns that girls will be 'appropriately punished' for failing to wear the correct uniform.

Those who would dismiss these incidents as private institutions simply enforcing their dress codes - no different, for example, to insisting that a tie be worn - must consider that Islam is supposed to be a religion (I say "supposed to be" because it is in fact a political ideology in the trappings of spirituality); any encroachment upon matters of politics is morally reprehensible because it leads to theocracy. No one has the right to force people to dress in a certain way in the name of religion.

As I have written before, even in cases where it appears to be a Muslim woman's choice to wear "Islamic dress", it's not really her choice. All Islamic societies cultivate an atmosphere of fear and intimidation. Women who do not wear these garments fear that even if they are not physically harmed, they will face stigmatisation and social awkwardness as a result. Hence, their community makes their "choice" for them.