Islam's Female Foe Reported to Seek Washington Perch

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who has become a household name in Europe for her controversial renunciation of Islam, may soon be coming to Washington, according to the European online media. Today, Ali resigned her seat in the Dutch parliament and said she will soon leave the Netherlands.

For supporters, Ali's odyssey exemplifies the threat of Islamic intolerance. Raised in Kenya, Ali reportedly fled an arranged marriage in 1992 and moved to The Netherlands where she renounced Islam for atheism. She won a seat in parliament in 2003 and emerged as the continent's leading critic of Islam and multiculturalism.

Radio Netherlands reported Monday that the Somali-born Ali "will announce later this week that she is to move to the United States." The Dutch newspaper de Volkskrant reports that she will be working for the American Enterprise Institute.


Ayaan Hirsi Ali (AP)

Ali gained notoriety in 2004 for a short film that she wrote and narrated about the Islamic mistreatment of woman. Entitled "Submission," the 11-minute film was directed by Theo Van Gogh, a great grand-nephew of the painter Vincent Van Gogh. Muslims found it blasphemous because it depicted passages of the Koran about women projected onto the body of a woman in a see-through burka. In November 2004, a radical Islamist tracked Van Gogh down on the street, shot him, stabbed him, and left a knife in his chest pegged to a five-page letter containing a threat to Ali's life.

Ali, given tight security by the Dutch government, became famous overnight. She was seen as a latter-day version of novelist Salman Rushdie, whose impious novel, Satanic Verses, earned him a death sentence fatwa from outraged Muslim clerics in 1988.

Ali has not ceased to speak out against Islamic intolerance. She does not discourage reports that she is considering making a sequel to "Submission."

Last Sunday, she told Spiegel Online that "those Muslims who wish to kill someone receive a great deal of support from their home countries. There is plenty of wealth, there are plenty of sponsors and there are plenty of desperate people who choose this path. We must defend ourselves if we wish to preserve our Western values. The price we pay is to be threatened."

Her outspoken views were not received well in the Netherlands, the prosperous and tolerant enclave on the northern European coast where consensus-oriented politics reign.

"Ali is internationally lauded," notes ANP, the Netherlands news service. "Time Magazine selected her as among the 100 most influential people in the world - but in the Dutch media, she is often approached as a pariah."

Last month, Ali praised the publication of cartoons of Muhammad in European newspapers. The Dutch prime minister criticized her stance, as did the speaker of Iran's parliament.

The reports of Ali's resignation and possible move to Washington follow a Dutch television documentary, shown last week, which suggested she had misrepresented how she fled her native country. According to The Independent of London, the program features interviews with members of Ali's family who denied her story of a ducking out of an arranged marriage.

"The programme also alleged that, contrary to her claims of having fled a war zone in Somalia, the MP had lived in comfortable upper middle-class circumstances safely in Kenya for at least 12 years before she sought refugee status in the Netherlands in 1992. Her family home -- which is large and comfortable by Kenyan standards -- was shown in the programme."

(The program from Zembla TV, narrated in Dutch, can be seen here.)

Leon de Winter, an English-language blogger for the conservative German daily Die Welt, said, "She rocks the boat. As a member of the Dutch parliament for the liberal party she scares the insipid appeasers of the centre-left who'd like nothing better than to ignore what she has to say. What the racist right think of her is perhaps best left unsaid."

The report that Ali would join AEI was "premature," he added.

The Dutch media reaction to her prospective exile to America has been mixed, according to Expatica.com. Some political allies have expressed regret, while a spokesman for a Dutch Muslim group said her departure would contribute to religious understanding. An AEI spokesman cited a blanket policy of not commenting on personnel decisions.

If Ali is headed for AEI, Dutch researcher Peter van Ham suggested her atheistic convictions may create conflicts. He predicted she would not be encouraged to express her liberal views about euthanasia, homosexuality and abortion.

"The people who work there have a very religiously-tinted worldview," he said. "I think Hirsi Ali will feel totally claustrophobic there."

By Jefferson Morley |  May 16, 2006; 12:11 PM ET  | Category:  Europe
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Comments

Please email us to report offensive comments.



Those who would use the word of god to justify killing, opression of the masses, controlling women, and media, and earning revenue for doing so are evil. They must be identified and labeled as hypocrites, and ostracized by society.

True Islam, true Judaism, and true Christianity have all been hijacked by radical mullahs, rabbis, TV evangelists and politicians all for personal gain.

This woman is a hero regardless of certain shortcomings as they may be.

Posted by: Religeosity is evil | May 16, 2006 12:00 PM

Just what we need, another opinion...

Posted by: James | May 16, 2006 12:08 PM

THis woman is an anti-islamic looney and a proven liar. She will continue her dirty talk in the US, I hope American Muslims can respond to her allegations in a more mature and effective manner than our Dutch brethren. One advantage we have is this woman completely plays on negative stereotypes and is a media-creation. She has zero appeal or influence among Muslims.

Posted by: Aamir Ali | May 16, 2006 12:10 PM

What Religiosity is Evil said.

Posted by: Tom Pollock | May 16, 2006 12:15 PM

I completely support Ms. Ali. As an American I find it repulsive that anyone would be forced to feel threatened because he/she has expressed personal views about the religious/cultural paradigm in which he/she was raised. It's unacceptable that so many people have been intimidated into represssing or covering up their honest views about current trends in Muslim society -- or about specific aspects of Muslim culture -- by violent, intolerant, and hysterical followers of that religion. We ought not stand silently by while these people scream for blood in the name of "tolerance and peace." Ms. Ali, you are indeed a brave and righteous individual.

Posted by: Ariel Wyckoff | May 16, 2006 12:15 PM

Islam has been hijacked? But mainstream Islam, that is, that practiced by the majority, is in fact intolerant, is it not? Look at the reaction to the publication of images of Muhammed; that's intolerance, that's a demand of submission from non-muslims, and it was widespread throughout the umma. Muhammed himself was a murderer of non-muslims and critics, and he is viewed as being without sin. So, true islam is fundamentally intolerant. Just as Ayan Hirsi Ali maintains, and she is in a position to know.

Posted by: tolerance? | May 16, 2006 12:20 PM

"She has zero appeal or influence among Muslims.

Posted by: Aamir Ali | May 16, 2006 12:10 PM"

That's fine by me because she has a great deal of influence and appeal to me and anyone else who recognizes the brutish religion that is Islam as well as a danger to all intelligent, civilized people.

Posted by: Indigo Red | May 16, 2006 12:28 PM

OK, what I really think..which is that you are all nuts. I really just want to be able to buy beer on Sundays. But beyond that, I know that any one of you can run amok at any time, which is why I jump in here to defend Separation of Church and State.

Posted by: Tom Pollock | May 16, 2006 12:30 PM

I actually picked up a browsed thru a copy of the Koran a while back. There were paasages in there about beheading non-believers. I do not have a quote handy. I tried to justify it as an analogy perhaps, or maybe in a historical sense, but realized that it meant it literally to be followed in the present.
Not exactly a kind, peaceful religion in my opinion. rather it is intolerant, controlling, and violent.

And if I am wrong - then why hasn't some leader in the Islamic faith stood up publicly called for peace? are there no quotes in the Koran about living peacefully with all the worlds other inhabitants?

Posted by: Matt | May 16, 2006 12:51 PM

why is islam the fastest growing religion in the world....?
especially amongst western women...........

Posted by: islam | May 16, 2006 01:12 PM

I live in Europe and can also say that Hirsi Ali has already come and gone with her 15mins of fame. What she apparently represented - a free thinking critic of religious intolerance - has slowly curdled into a sour concoction of narcissism, self-promotion and even bigotry. It's rather sad, as I think many here and around the world relish those critical thinkers from the Muslim world - people like Nobel Laureate Shirin Ebadi - who really are genuine in their work and efforts... Now she's off to join the mindless minions at a right-wing American think-tank... all the while the US refuses a visa to a nuanced and profound intellectual like Tariq Ramadan (now at Oxford).

Posted by: FreeThought | May 16, 2006 01:17 PM

Jefferson,

Thank you very much for your entry. The latest developments about Ali was not covered by mainstream media, especially the issue of her past before coming to the Netherlands.

I however have a comment about the way your described her "views". Besides the title, which I think is accurate, you used outspoken and controversial.

Ali has publicly and on record called Islam "a backward religion" and called Mohammed, the prophet of Islam, a "tyrant".

Shouldn't the readers know that Ali views are more than controversial?

I think readers should know that Ali is not just criticizing certain Islamic traditions (that Muslim themselves criticize) she does insult and ridicule the Islamic faith as a whole.

Thanks again, and keep up the good work.

Posted by: Karim | May 16, 2006 01:27 PM

Indigo Red,

Which intelligent and civilized people are you referring to?

There are little over 1 billion Muslims in the world, and the world population is estimated at 6 billion. That is 1/6 of this planet.

How is Islam a threat to you? Explain to us.

Posted by: Karim | May 16, 2006 01:35 PM

And the dhimmification of Europe continues.

Posted by: Rhymes With Right | May 16, 2006 01:35 PM

This is another cartoon controversy that will make the situation in the Middle East worse. There are, according to David Fromkin, 71 different branches to Islam. Are you going to tell me that all of them are evil? There are many branches of Christianity that I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole, but I would not say all of Christianity is evil.
The American Enterprise Institute supplied the Neoconservatives that hyped the war for the Bush Administration. Cheney's wife is an official in that organization. They are also very close to the Likud Party in Israel and in America. The Likud recently started an American branch. Olmert's new party has also started a new U.S. branch within the last month. Of Course, Israel isn't trying to influence the American political process. The A.E.I. are behind the Bush Administration's "Clean Break" foreign policy in the Middle East.
(This has been a busy day!)

Posted by: P. J. Casey | May 16, 2006 01:39 PM

why is islam the fastest growing religion in the world....?
especially amongst western women...........

Posted by: islam | May 16, 2006 01:12 PM

I guess there is no shortage of ignorant and intolerant people worldwide. People need to think for themselves, not be driven by some ideology (be it islam, chritianity, judism, etc.) A relationship with God is in your heart, and between you and Him only. no prophets, books, or 'leaders' are required.

Posted by: | May 16, 2006 01:47 PM

Those who would use the word of god to justify killing, opression of the masses, controlling women, and media, and earning revenue for doing so are evil.

Religeosity is evil

True. Similar to those who use the word 'democracy' to justify mass murder (collateral damage, sending cruise missiles from the sea, drooping bombs from high altitude on innocent civilans etc), illegal occupation of foreign land, and theft of natural resources from other nations.. As well as those who use the pretence of 'freedom' to slander innocent men who died cebturies ago, not present to defend themselves.

In response to Matt, until you come forward and quote a Qur'anic ayah which incites hatred and violence towards an innocent party or individual, then you really cannot be taken seriously. Moreover, non-Muslims like Ayaan Ali and other Islamphobes have a tendency of reading the transliteration of the Qur'an out of context and ignoring the verses before and after a partcular ayah they are using, thus choosing it to mean what suits them. As for any Ayah which encourages the Muslims to fight etc...anyone with a pulse will be aware that even in the army for example, US troops sent to Iraq, Afghanistan and other places of war, are not told they are there to go flower-picking, but to KILL. How they were psyched up to kill, they alone know.

Posted by: | May 16, 2006 02:12 PM

I'll get that quote and post it here tonight.

Posted by: Matt | May 16, 2006 02:26 PM

why do western women convert to islam? well.. let me see.. they are blinded by the propoganda about the 'religion of peace' and dont understand the message of the q'uran. they also don't know that the original q'uran was destroyed in a fire in the 7th century A.D and wasn't written again until 150 years later.. try to remember a text that has been lost for 150 years completely from memory! further the original was written in the aramaic script as arabic hadn't developed a script then and when re-written 150 years later was written in arabic! re-written from memory and in a script which wasn't around when it was originally written and all from memory! so much for god's message. in aramic the '72 virgins..' is actually supposed to mean 72 different kinds of berries. it's a myth and as with any myth has been tailored to suit those in power.

Posted by: KMV | May 16, 2006 02:29 PM

I welcome Ayaan Hirsi Ali to the USA.

Posted by: Holly in Cincinnati | May 16, 2006 02:34 PM

I don't know if Ms. Ali lied about her background or not. I do know she's shown guts in facing intolerance, hatred and death threats in the Netherlands. If she comes to the U.S., hopefully she'll escape at least some of that insanity. we're not a nation of dhimmis quite yet.

Posted by: CE | May 16, 2006 02:38 PM

"Indigo Red,

Which intelligent and civilized people are you referring to?

There are little over 1 billion Muslims in the world, and the world population is estimated at 6 billion. That is 1/6 of this planet.

How is Islam a threat to you? Explain to us.

--Karim | May 16, 2006 01:35 PM--"

Okay, I will explain.

1/6 of the population of earth is Muslim; 5/6 of the population is other than Muslim. It's the 1/6 that has shown a consistant desire to convert or kill the unbelievers by Noble Koranic edict as well as Hadith example. Before 9/11, I didn't give a tinker's dam how Muslims lived. Now I don't give a tinker's dam how they die. When Muslims stop trying to kill me and mine, I will stop advocating the complete irradication of the philosophy.

The civilized and intelligent people to whom I refer are all those peoples of the world who DO NOT hold to any belief system that explicitly states that killing other people is the highest form of god worship as Islam does.

"why is islam the fastest growing religion in the world....?
especially amongst western women...........

Posted by: islam | May 16, 2006 01:12 PM"

Islam is not the fastest growing religion in the world - Evangelical Christianity is. Islam grows primarily through high birth rates. Christianity grows through both birth rate and conversion. The greater number of Christian converts come from Islam. Recently, it was reported that some 6 million people per year convert to Christianity. Christians outnumber Muslims 3-1. Islam is and will remain a minority religion, that is, if it survives at all.

If you wish further explaination, visit (shameless plug) Further Adventures of Indigo Red and you will find many fine posts on this and other subjects.

Posted by: Indigo Red | May 16, 2006 02:59 PM

wow Matt- I'm suprised you the only in my 31 years I never heard all about the Quran being re-written. To think you have all these damaging information about Islam, yet not even the crazy right wingers like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson have not chosen to broadcast over their TV and radion stations...talk about missed opportunity...even only people would listen to you this World would be a better place. I wonder if you have other information about the Hindu and Jewish religions ? I would love if you educate us about those religions too

Posted by: Samir | May 16, 2006 03:04 PM

Islam doesn't have a "female foe." Islam is not a living thing. Its values are embodied in its followers.

If these are the journalists who supposedly write and talk about Islam as "experts" have so little knowledge about Islam, just think about the average guy who gets their "diet of ignorant views as news" from them?


Somali-born Dutch MP Ayaan Hirsi Ali has resigned after revelations that her asylum application in 1992 was falsified.

I have long found her irrational hatred of Islam unbearable and will not
miss her. Now at least we know one reason why she had such problems with Islam:
good Muslims don't tell lies! If indeed, as reported, she intends to go to America and gets a job at the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think-tank, she will be in suitable company and will get all the encouragement she craves to pursue her pathological version of islamophobia.

Posted by: Cheryl | May 16, 2006 03:07 PM

I find it troubling that 'Time' magazine has named her "one of the most influential thinkers of our time" and wonder on exactly what grounds that judgment was made.

Oh I know, She's a liar, just like them who made it her business, like so many neoconservatives, to bash anything and everything Islam. As her criminally false data on her asylum application has come to light, she's crying "victimization," again and into America. God help us.

Why does Time magazines like to shove fringe voices down our throats as "influential" and "reprsentative of Islam?"

Sure they can quote and publish their entire interview with her; but not one Islamic scholar who actually stands for Islam and represents the majority of Muslims?

She isn't "brave" for her Islam-baiting, just another self-hating ex-Muslim who would compromise her beliefs just to be paraded on right-wing talk shows and magazines.

Posted by: Nazim H. | May 16, 2006 03:12 PM

Indigo Red,

You belong to the racist, evangelical cult of Robertson; just by your Islam-baiting you expose for Islamophobic paranoia.

Looks like your sister Hirsi Ali and you aren't too different after all. Maybe you should also join AEI (American Enterprise of Israel)

As one reader said, AEI will be in suitable company where you will get all the encouragement you and Ali craves to pursue her pathological version of islamophobia!!!!

Posted by: TJ | May 16, 2006 03:23 PM

Hi,
If it is about Ayan Hersi, Alias Ayan Magan. The Dutch government has made the right decision because she lied on every things when claiming asylum. She was living in Kenya with her family without any problem and then came all the way to Holland via Germany with a new identity made to deceive immigration services. Would you like to ignore all these because she is insulting Islam? That is double standard justice. And it is a western speciality. A LIAR IS A LIAR and NOBODY IS ABOVE THE LAW. Ayan Hersi should be sent back to Kenya where she belongs.
Ayan Dameerti faraska is moodey.
Bye

Posted by: Said Jama | May 16, 2006 03:27 PM

It speaks volumes that this lady is going to the American Enterprise Institute - the "war of civilizations" crowd. Looks like a perfect fit.

Posted by: Leeroy Jenkins Sr. | May 16, 2006 03:33 PM

wow Matt- I'm suprised you the only in my 31 years I never heard all about the Quran being re-written. To think you have all these damaging information about Islam, yet not even the crazy right wingers like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson have not chosen to broadcast over their TV and radion stations...talk about missed opportunity...even only people would listen to you this World would be a better place. I wonder if you have other information about the Hindu and Jewish religions ? I would love if you educate us about those religions too

Posted by: Samir | May 16, 2006 03:04 PM

I did not post that Samir. I have no idea if that is true or not. like i said before, a relationship with God does not require any books - only an open mind and heart are required. The bits I read in Borders one day spooked the heck out of me.

Posted by: Matt | May 16, 2006 03:38 PM

TJ--

"Islamophobia" is fear of Islam. By my words one can plainly understand I am not afraid of Isalm or Muslims. It is a punk cult with punk cultists as members.

I am also not part of the Robertson religious persuasion as I, like my sister Hirsi Ali, am an atheist. There is no god or gods.

The pathology shown by Islam has been all too clear since Mohammad invented his stories and robbed the carravan at Badr making himself a multi-millionaire. The path chosen by Islam is one of constant war, destruction, and killing. If there are no infidels to kill, they kill their own in blood feuds and honor killings.

"By their fruits you shall know them" and the rottem fruits of Islam has polluted the atmosphere the world round. It's time to clear the air and recognize fully what the civilized world faces - unending war, subjugation of women, mutilation of young girls, brainwashing of the minds of young boys to blow themselves to smitherenes so they can get to heaven and the 72 virgins or raisons (no one is really sure on the translation.)

If wanting to live in a world without a death cult trying to kill me at every turn, then I am a racist and Muslims are still barbarians.

Posted by: Indigo Red | May 16, 2006 03:43 PM

The person above is an uneducated fool. Which "civilization" pray tell brought us 2 world wars, nuclear bombs, holocaust, not to mention countless wars of conquest. Who also is consuming (and polluting) the world at an unsustainable rate? Gee... gotta be those Muslims! Lets blame the world's problems on these folks... after all, a few fanatics managed to kill thousands, compared to the millio... oh, lets not go there.

Posted by: Peter Kaplan | May 16, 2006 03:55 PM

Indigo Red said: "Islam is not the fastest growing religion in the world - Evangelical Christianity is. Islam grows primarily through high birth rates. Christianity grows through both birth rate and conversion."

You have that backwards.

What proof do you have to substantitate your wild claims. You claims are as absurd as your arguments.

The fact remains Evangelicas are growing (no one disputes that) but mostly from disillusioned Catholics (one Christians "converting" if you will to another sect.) and high birth rates.

I read there was a pastor in Arkansas who had some 15 kids and his urging his wife for more. Talking about "women's rights."

Posted by: TJ | May 16, 2006 03:57 PM

Indigo Red said of Islam: It is a punk cult with punk cultists as members.

Very mature and "enlightening" of you.

Any more enligtened propaganda you want to share with us today? Like Muslims worship the Moon God, Hindus the soil god, and Jews not for Jesus will be destroyed in the battle for Armaggedon?

I request you politely if you don't want others to bash your fundamentalist, literalist interpretation of the Bible; you apply the "golden rule" to other faith groups aswell.

Posted by: TJ | May 16, 2006 04:02 PM

In Africa we have a saying which goes "If you plant wind, you will reap a tornado". Hirsi Ali lied her way into the hearts of the extreme right members of the Netherlands political elite, and now they have used her and thrown her out. She is the typical poster girl the western society clings to to vilify other cultures. I hope next time someone comes with the kind of a yarn this lady spun, people will be more careful.

Posted by: IndigoRed an uneducated fool. | May 16, 2006 04:06 PM

How did Ms. Ali come to be admitted to the USA?

She is an asylum seeker, a foreigner, a Somali and now a liar.

Doesn't the State Department turn people like this away?

Posted by: DC Rez | May 16, 2006 04:07 PM

I find this debate very interesting, given that Islam makes no secret of the fact that those who convert from Islam are to be put to death. Peaceful religion indeed.

Posted by: ChrisnDC | May 16, 2006 04:11 PM

As an impartial third person let me just say you're all dangerous and any of your choices of religion (Islam, Christianity, Shinto, Judaism) in the wrong hands leads to death. Thanks for that. Really. Its nice to be killed because you're afraid of an all knowing God who will kill you if you don't obey. Super. Keep up the good work. I'm Sure God/Allah/Jahweh is really pleased.

Posted by: Will | May 16, 2006 04:31 PM

"How did Ms. Ali come to be admitted to the USA?

She is an asylum seeker, a foreigner, a Somali and now a liar.

Doesn't the State Department turn people like this away?"

Well, is not hard to explain, wonder how come she will work for the right-wing-necon american entreprise institute?. Just another well paid propaganda tool to be used. She knows it and is willing to do her part

Posted by: Skeptic | May 16, 2006 04:34 PM

It is good to welcome women like Hirsi Ali to this country. Islam today is no different than Christianity during the times of the Spanish Inquisitions. Heretics and women were tortured and burned at the stakes. Wood being a precious commodity in the middle east, Islam stones them. The difference is moot.

In perhaps a few hundred years Islam will become more civilized. In the meantime, we should offer santuary to those oppressed by its fanatical zeal.

Posted by: Oscar Mayer | May 16, 2006 04:39 PM

why is islam the fastest growing religion in the world....?
especially amongst western women...........
Posted by: islam | May 16, 2006 01:12 PM

I guess going from 2 converts to 4 is a 100% growth rate. You should be able to sustain that kind of a growth rate for a long time. Good Luck

Posted by: Oscar Mayer | May 16, 2006 04:44 PM

Well if you are going to look for violence in the Quran, you might also take a gander at the Bible.

"Then Moses stood in the gate of the camp and said, Who is on the Lord's side? Let him come unto me. And all the sons of Levi gathered themselves together unto him.
"And he said unto them, Thus sayeth the Lord God of Israel, Put every man his sword by his side, and go in and out from gate to gate throughout the camp, and slay every man his brother, and every man his companion, and every man his neighbor.

"And the children of Levi did according to the word of Moses: and there fell of the people that day about three thousand men."


Posted by: Fact Checker | May 16, 2006 04:46 PM

"why is islam the fastest growing religion in the world....?
especially amongst western women...........

Posted by: islam | May 16, 2006 01:12 PM"

Islam's growth rate is occuring almost exclusively through by sexual reproduction--birth rates. Actual conversion rates will demonstrate that Islam is infact NOT the fastest growing religion in terms of new followers (or "reverts" as my Muslim friends have called them).

Beyond that, the growth rate of a particular belief system has absolutely no bearing on how true it is. Any argument claiming a relation between the two is nothing more than ignorant. It is nearly laughable that so many arguments Muslim apologists offer rely on this type of "evidence". The truth is, a large majority of people from the Muslim world hold a worldview and a mindset that does not lend itself to any kind of fluency in the Western way of building arguments through logic. Instead the culture lends itself to parables and stories. This is more than apparent when followers of Islam make comments like this.

Posted by: answeringislam | May 16, 2006 04:48 PM

Religion is the means by which the rich keep the poor from killing them.

Posted by: Registered Voter | May 16, 2006 04:54 PM

The enemy of my enemy is my friend might be in play here but I wonder how the Pat Robertson Evangelical crowd will react to Ms. Hirsi Ali as she bashes Christians and other homophobic, anti-abortion zealots in this county? If she's smart she'll get baptized, write a few Anti-Muslim books, do the talk show and lecture circuit and laugh all the way to the bank just like the Coulters, the Hannity's, the O'Reilly's, and the Malkin's before. Charlatan's all. Filthy rich charlatan's that is.

Posted by: Fact Checker | May 16, 2006 05:00 PM

answeringislam said: " The truth is, a large majority of people from the Muslim world hold a worldview and a mindset that does not lend itself to any kind of fluency in the Western way of building arguments through logic."


So you've done studies on this? Can I see actual proof of what you say or are you talking out of you nether regions?

Posted by: | May 16, 2006 05:04 PM

Most Muslim immigrants who came to the West have fled wars, political instability or failing nation-states. Once in the West, the main pre-occupation is really survival and the hope of etching a better live for oneself and those left behind. We contribute to their adopted societies and change its identity. But we also change. Some of us become more religious while others abandon their religion. Yet many others try to keep what they have learned about their faith and culture and pass it on to their children. Who we are changes in the process as we change the society we live in. Ms Hersi takes this complex journey of immigration and reduces to simple mindeless dichotomies. Assimilate or immigrate. In an odd way, she is the mirror image of the Muslim radicals she hates so much who warn that immigration to the West is assimilation. But there are choices and people make choices about how to live their lives everyday. All she succeeded in doing is to poison the debates about immigration and assimilation with her self-promoting diatribes. She has made the lives of struggling Muslim, African and Asian immigrants in Europe even more difficult. Her ignominous departure is nothing short of Divine justice.

Posted by: Ayanleh | May 16, 2006 05:15 PM

"answeringislam said: " The truth is, a large majority of people from the Muslim world hold a worldview and a mindset that does not lend itself to any kind of fluency in the Western way of building arguments through logic."


So you've done studies on this? Can I see actual proof of what you say or are you talking out of you nether regions?

Posted by: | May 16, 2006 05:04 PM"

This is based upon hundreds of hours of discussions while living in Turkey (Turks and Kurds)and Iraq (Kurds, Arabs, Turkomen, Persians)and the short time I spent in Jordan. It is also based upon upon similar discussions I've had with a Saudi Arabian and Lybian friends in the US and reading apologetic literature (brochures) such as those published by Dr. James Baldawi (sp?).

There are also apologetic Muslim websites I've encountered in the past and boards in which the authors of the material were clearly akward using a western/logical style of argument. (Very much the same as how the quote I refered to by "Islam" equates the truth of Islam with its growth rate.) It was very consistent with the way I watched people argue in these cultures.

I apologize for being too broad in citing the Muslim world--I meant to refer to Arab and and Middle-Eastern cultures (I have little to no experience with Muslim peoples east of Iran.)

Posted by: answeringislam | May 16, 2006 05:24 PM

heres the passgae from Al Qur'an - A contemporary translation. by Ahmed Ali.
pg 435 starting with verse 4 in the chapter titled Muhammad
"So when you clash with the unbelievers
smite their necks till you overpower them,
then hold them in bondage.
Then either free them graciously or fter taking ransom, until war shall have come to an end.
If God had pleased
He could have punished then (Himself)
But he wills to test some of you through some others.
He will not allow the deeds of those who are killed in the cause of God to go to waste"

Seems to advocate violence and kidnapping in the present tense. And for this you get to go to heaven! anyone want to change my interpretation?

Posted by: Matt | May 16, 2006 05:29 PM

You are basing your facts on your observations. Fair enough. The problem comes when you use the words " large majority". The facts are it is not a large Majority. From your own words it is based on your observations in the countries you visited based on hundreds of hours of discussion. What type of discussion were those? Did they involve any scientific logic? Did you use polls? What were your questions? In fact just what are your credentials to be conducting this type of research? You know what the problem is on BLOGS like this. Everyone is an expert. Everyone has an opinion. Most all have a hidden agenda.

Posted by: Fact Checker | May 16, 2006 05:41 PM

Ariel Wyckoff said "I completely support Ms. Ali. As an American I find it repulsive that anyone would be forced to feel threatened because he/she has expressed personal views about the religious/cultural paradigm in which he/she was raised."

Ms Wyckoff did you ever go to the Anti-War rallies that were held in this country before the war started? Do you know that Anti-War protesters were called traitors to this country by the media and by there fellow citizens. What you say to those that call Cindy Sheehan a traitor Ms Wyckoff? Wouldn't you say that intolerance and bigotry is a human trait as opposed to a religious trait?

Posted by: Fact Checker | May 16, 2006 05:50 PM

Before 9/11, I didn't give a tinker's dam how Muslims lived.
Now I don't give a tinker's dam how they die. When Muslims stop trying to kill me and mine, I will stop advocating the complete irradication of the philosophy.
-Indigo Red

But you've got that so backwards! How can we help an entire 1/6th of the worlds population embrace the rest of the world as brothers and sisters if we "don't give a tinker's dam" about them? It's THAT kind of animosity that keeps the religious and racial hatred running rampant through the Islamic extreamists. You just help to feed their resolve when you turn your back away and say you don't care.

I don't know about this woman: I can't base my opinion on one article, when I've never heard of her before. But I do know a little about Islam, and I believe that the vast majority of Americans are very ignorant of the actual religion itself. They know what the media tells them about the extreamists and their beliefes, and often times don't want to hear about the other, more peaceful population of Muslims.

I am in no way advocating this religion, mind you. I'm a Christian, but AS a Christian I've always felt that it was better to love and try to understand others and their religious beliefs than to turn away and condem them. Americans, Christian and non-Christian alike, have as a majority seemed to stop this practice and started resorting to their own forms of extreamists in "reaction" to the threat of Islamic terroists.

I say that as long as we are always on the defensive and "don't give a damn" about the people on the other end, than the terrorist threat will never stop, because their will always be someone on the other side who responds to that animosity.

Posted by: Michelle | May 16, 2006 05:52 PM

Poster Tolerance? Said "Muhammed himself was a murderer of non-muslims and critics, and he is viewed as being without sin. So, true islam is fundamentally intolerant. Just as Ayan Hirsi Ali maintains, and she is in a position to know. "

Did the great prophet Abraham kill for survival? What about Moses? Did he banish the sword? Isaac then or maybe Jacob? Did the violence in the Old Testament slip by you totally?

Posted by: Fact Checker | May 16, 2006 05:54 PM

Michelle that was awesome!

Posted by: Fact Checker | May 16, 2006 05:56 PM

"...any of your choices of religion (Islam, Christianity, Shinto, Judaism) in the wrong hands leads to death. Thanks for that. Really. Its nice to be killed because you're afraid of an all knowing God who will kill you if you don't obey. Super. Keep up the good work. I'm Sure God/Allah/Jahweh is really pleased.

Posted by: Will | May 16, 2006 04:31 PM"

Thank you, Will. You're right. Any religion is dangerous in the wrong hands and heads. Even my atheism can be dangerous as the communists have proven.

"The person above is an uneducated fool. Which "civilization" pray tell brought us 2 world wars, nuclear bombs, holocaust, not to mention countless wars of conquest. Who also is consuming (and polluting) the world at an unsustainable rate? Gee... gotta be those Muslims! Lets blame the world's problems on these folks... after all, a few fanatics managed to kill thousands, compared to the millio... oh, lets not go there.

Posted by: Peter Kaplan | May 16, 2006 03:55 PM"

I take "fool", but I'm certainly not uneducated which is one of the reasons my comments are being singled out. One would not do so for a true idiot.

But, Peter, Muslim is not a civilzation nor is Islam. Islam is a religious philosophy and Muslims are those who follow that religious philosophy. World Wars I & II were nationalist wars of power not granted religious sanction by the Christian religious philosophy nor leading churches of the time. The nuclear bombs were not designed by any Christian church, but rather by physicists at the direction of the US government (secular type.) The other wars of conquest to which you refer unspecifically, one can only guess, were also wars of national agrandizement and gold. The Crusades one could argue were religious in nature and that's fine by me.

Warfare is in the Bible, but not the NEW TESTAMENT which is the Christian part. War is not part of the teachings of Jesus. War is, on the other hand, an integral part of the teachings of Mohammad and Allah (the Arab pagan moon god.) To equate western warfare of secular nationalism with the god-demanded duty to kill advocated by Mo and Allah is indicative of your own ignorance of the subject. Kaplan - that's a Jewish name, isn't it? How long do you really think you would be aloowed to breath under Islam?

Posted by: | May 16, 2006 06:01 PM

She does not just speak out against muslim intolerance, but against islam as a whole.
In a recent newspaper article (Dutch 'Volkskrant') she equated islam to nazism, comparing those who propose dialogue with the islamic world as Chamberlains (no mention of Eden in the Suez crisis of course). She actually comdemns muslims for what they are, and not for what they do, thus putting a lot of well meaning muslims in a bad daylight.
For her personally, we should be happy with this step in her career. For peace in the world, we should be happy that she will have to swap demogoguery for analysis.

Posted by: Erasmus (Netherlands) | May 16, 2006 06:12 PM

Dear Matt:
From http://www.quran.org.uk you can get the historical background for Chapter Muhammad which includes the verse 4 you cited.

Historical Background
The conditions at the time when this Surah was sent down were such that the Muslims were being made the target of persecution and tyranny in Makkah in particular and in Arabia in general, and life had become miserable for them. Although the Muslims had emigrated to the haven of Madinah from every side, the disbelieving Quraish were not prepared to leave them alone and let them live in peace even there. Thus, the small settlement of Madinah was hemmed in by the enemy, who was bent upon exterminating it completely. The only alternative left with the Muslims were that either they should surrender to the forces of ignorance, giving up their mission of preaching the true Faith, or even following it in their private lives, or should rise to wage a war at the cost of their lives to settle finally and for ever whether Islam would stay in Arabia or the creed of ignorance. On this occasion Allah showed the Muslims the same way of reso1ution and will, which is the only way for the true believers. He first permitted them to fight in Surah Al Hajj 39 and then enjoined fighting in Al Baqarah 190. But at that time everyone knew fully well what it meant to wage a war in those conditions. There were only a handful of Muslims in Madinah, who could not muster even a thousand soldiers; yet they were being urged to take up the sword and clash against the pagan forces of the whole of Arabia. Then the kind of the weapons needed to equip its soldiers for war could hardly be afforded by the town in which hundreds of emigrants were still homeless and unsettled even by resort to starving its members at a time when it had been boycotted economically by the Arabs on all sides.

You can also get the following explanation of that verse by MUHAMMAD AL-AMEEN ASH-SHANQEETEE.
4) NOW WHEN you meet [in war] those who are bent on denying the truth,
[Sc., "and on barring [others] from the path of God" - thus connecting with verse 1 and laying down the fundamental condition which alone justifies physical warfare: namely, a defense of the Faith and of freedom (cf. in this connection see note on 2: 190). In other words, when "those who are bent on denying the truth" try to deprive the Muslims of their social and political liberty and thus to make it impossible for them to live in accordance with the principles of their faith, a just war (jihad) becomes allowable and, more than that, a duty. The whole of the above verse relates to war actually in progress (cf. note on the first part of 2: 191); and there is no doubt that it was revealed after 22: 39-40, the earliest Quranic reference to physical warfare.]
smite their necks until you overcome them fully, and then tighten their bonds; [Lit., "tighten the bond". According to almost all the commentators, this expression denotes the taking of prisoners of war. In addition, it may also refer to any sanctions or safeguards which would make it unlikely that the aggression could be resumed in the foreseeable future.]
but thereafter [set them free,] either by an act of grace or against ransom, so that the burden of war may be lifted: [Lit., "so that (hatta) the war may lay down its burdens". The term "ransom" comprises also, in this context, a mutual exchange of prisoners of war (Zamakhshari, quoting an opinion of Imam Ash-Shafi).]
thus [shall it be]. And [know that] had God so willed, He could indeed punish them [Himself]; but [He wills you to struggle] so as to test you [all] by means of one another. [I.e., so as to enable the believers to prove by actual deeds the depth of their faith and their readiness for self-sacrifice, and to enable the aggressors to realize how wrong they have been, and thus to bring them closer to the truth.]
And as for those who are slain in God's cause, never will He let their deeds go to waste:

Posted by: Ayanleh | May 16, 2006 06:25 PM

I loved this observation from one of the previous posts:

"all the while the US refuses a visa to a nuanced and profound intellectual like Tariq Ramadan (now at Oxford)."

Tariq Ramadan is an Islamic fundamentalist, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood - the breeding ground of the most violent and fanatical Islamic terror organizations of our times - and not just any member but the grandson of the its founder, Muhammad Hassan al-Bana. He is close friends with some of Al-Qaeda's top figures including Ayman al-Zawahri, Bin-Laden's number 2 and himself a leader of the Muslim Brotherhood. Ramadan is an apologist for suicide bombings and a purveyor of wild 9/11 conspiracy theories which seek to exonerate Bin-Laden of the crime. In line with fundamental Islamic ideology, he supports the imposition of Sharia law on all Muslim countries. He is a staunch opponent of Western values and culture, and of the integration of Muslims into the Western societies in which they live. Yup, that's exactly the kind of person we need in the U.S.

Posted by: Michael O. | May 16, 2006 06:39 PM

To start, the comment at "Posted by: | May 16, 2006 06:01 PM" above is also Indigo Red.

Michelle quotes: "Before 9/11, I didn't give a tinker's dam how Muslims lived.
Now I don't give a tinker's dam how they die. When Muslims stop trying to kill me and mine, I will stop advocating the complete irradication of the philosophy.
-Indigo Red"

But you've got that so backwards!
Posted by: Michelle | May 16, 2006 05:52 PM"

You are so right, Michelle. Except the backwards part. Why should I have paid any attention to the Islamic world before 9/11? It was none of my affair how they lived their lives, conducted business, chose their governments, or treated their fellow citizens. I was happy giving my monies to the drought stricken Muslims of Africa, or the starving of Pakistan, the freezing of Afghanistan. I advocated for the decent treatment of women, the abolition of child marriage, an end to slavery, but through peaceful means.

When imams and clerics the world over, in Mosque after Mosque, even in the town in which I live entreat the congregants to kill me for providing shelter and succor to those in need, showing any mercy at all, simply for not believing as they do,then all bets are off.

The resolution to this battle is in the hands of Muslims - stop trying to kill me and I'll stop advocating the end of Islam. My family is from Hungary where my ancestors fought the Muslims to keep them out of Europe and the Muslims have never ceased in their attempts the destroy my culture.

I have no problem being neighborly to anyone who wishes me no harm. Even though, I am atheist, I live my life by the teachings of Jesus. But, unlike Jesus, I've run out of cheeks.

Posted by: Indigo Red | May 16, 2006 06:54 PM

In response to "fact checker." (I am a male, just to clarify.)You make a valid point when referring to anti-war portests and Cindy Sheehan. However, what makes you think I condone intolerance and persecution of free expression of one's ideals in my own country, if I am repulsed by it in another? You've proven my point exactly. As an American, which was my previous point, I understand that I am entiteld to freedom of expression, belief, assembly, and the equal protection under the law. I also care about my fellow countrymen/women -- and it sickens me to see -- ANYWHERE -- such freedoms repressed because I undersatnd that I am very fortunate to have such freedoms, to express and explore my thoughts, feelings, talents, and potentials to the "N"-th degree (or to the extent fiscally possible anyway...).

Let me make briefly one more point, this comment "any of your choices of religion (Islam, Christianity, Shinto, Judaism) in the wrong hands leads to death" I think is the most important I've seen on this blog today. It is not any one demographic or cultural group that takes the blame prejudice, intolerance, suppression of their neighbors, daughters, elders, or peers -- it is THOSE WHO WILL NOT TOLERATE DISSENT in ANY culture that create my revulsion and repugnance. As an earlier poster stated, Muslims constitute close to 1/4 of the Earth's population (actually over 2 billion people I believe). No one can really be saying they seriously believe such a multitutde all as a single entity are committing murder and setting off bombs, can they? That's absurd. It is the minority who happen to be in control that create the problem.

What bothers me is not that I see such a difference between persecution of those who would speak truth to a power based on a core group of rich and vocal religious fundamentalists in this country and in the Islamic nations -- IT'S THAT I SEE THE SAME D__N THING in both places, and am apalled at the lack of BACKBONE by educated, moderate, sensitive, and understanding leaders or potential leaders in both situations!! The Democrats conceding that no-one in America cares about a a balanced budget, ending the war in Iraq, responsible family planning, REAL and feasible efforts to deal with social security and education, or an end to the pandering of entrenched special intersts is EXACTLY the same sort of equivocation educated Muslim leaders are demonstrating in conceding to the fire-brand clerics in conceding that no sane Muslim could value the education of women, improved infrastructure nation-wide, the literacy and basic education of the poor, funding for social health care centers, or the normalization of relations with Israel (without all the nonsense about religious beliefs) because they'd make a D__N good trading partner! It's the sensationalist, thoghtless, short-sighted bible-thumpers in both countries stomping on free and honest dialogue about social circumstances in the US AND abroad that set me off!!

Posted by: Ariel Wyckoff | May 16, 2006 07:18 PM

I agree with Mr. Kaplan. The guy to whom Mr. Kaplan responded to (above), is not only an uneducated fool, but a hateful one at that! I am afraid that the danger to humanity cannot possibly be worse than when it comes from those who are unintelligent, uneducated, and hateful. What is Mr. Kaplan's religion, ethinicity, etc. have to do with the subject being discussed. May be , and only may be, if you were educated and intelligent that you would refrain from infering someone's religion or ethnicity from the way their name "sounds". Racism. It is precisely your ignorance, lack of education, and hate that prompts you to "naturally" use someones ethinicty, rligion, etc. in responding to an argument. It clearly shows your dangerous lack of intellect. How little you know about how "much" a jewish person "can breathe" under Isalm! Jews have always "breathed" well, and will continue to do so under Islam. Get a real education -not one from blogs, etc.-

Posted by: Mark | May 16, 2006 08:50 PM

Can someone tell me which middle east countries give equal rights under law to non-moslem minorities?

Comments from Moslems are especially welcome.

Posted by: Oscar Mayer | May 16, 2006 09:19 PM

"Jews have always "breathed" well, and will continue to do so under Islam. Get a real education -not one from blogs, etc.-

Posted by: Mark | May 16, 2006 08:50 PM "

OMG! What an idiot! One of the first things we hear about when Muslims kidnap large groups of people is that they separate Jews and those with Jewish sounding names. Where have you been living, Mark? Jews have never breathed free under Islamic rule. Neithe have Christians, Jains, Hindus, Buddhists, or any other religion that isn't Islam. Just read the Koran and Hadiths, but that would be an exposure of far too much truth.

Are you even aware, Mark, that Mohammad preached planet Earth is promised only to Islam, that all others must convert, pay jizya, or be killed?

Posted by: Indigo Red | May 16, 2006 10:15 PM

Oscar Mayer,

I can name a few: Syria (10% christian), Lebanon (39% christian), Jordan (6% christian). Both the Muslim majority and the christian minority in these countries are composed of many diverse sects (that you never heard of). You will not find a single western country which is religiously as diverse as Lebanon for example.

It would be unthinkable for a western state to tolerate 40% of Muslims in its midst. European states are alarmed by Muslim minorities as low as 5% and some have restricted their rights.

In addition to the states above, there is Morocco (with a very small Jewish minority), and Tunisia (2% Christian/Jewish).

Posted by: Karim | May 16, 2006 10:22 PM

Factchecker: (and I use that term loosely)
Did the new testament slip by you?

You offer nothing that disputes the history (recorded and cited by Muslims) that Muhammed was, from a modern Western point of view, a murderer, thief, pedophile and misogynist. Absolutely.

Posted by: tolerance? | May 16, 2006 10:33 PM

Indigo Red:

"OMG! What an idiot! One of the first things we hear about when Muslims kidnap large groups of people is that they separate Jews and those with Jewish sounding names"

You are confusing Palestinian militant groups fighting Israel, and Muslims in general. The Palestinian militant groups are not always led by Muslims. For example, the Munich attack on Israeli athletes was led by a Christian Palestinian, and 2 other christian Palestinians also took part of the attack.

So what you heard was not accurate.

What Mark wrote is relatively true (ie it doesn't mean there was no Jewish discrimination).

Jews have for centuries preferred to live in Muslim ruled areas than in European-Christian (emphasis on European) ruled areas.

One can't forget that after centuries of Muslim, Jewish, and Christian relative co-existence in Spain under Muslim rule, the European-Christians evicted out every single Jew and Muslim after the inquisition.

Also when the crusaders, again European-Christians, took over Jerusalem, they banned the Jews from city. When Muslims took it back under Saladin, Jews were let back in.

Finally, the people who killed 6 million Jews and who tried to exterminate them for once and all, were of European Christian heritage (and civilized too!).


Posted by: Karim | May 16, 2006 10:49 PM

Tolerance,

What would that "modern western point of view" call the killing of over 2 million Vietnamese civilians during the brutal US invasion and occupation of Vietnam in the 60s? It was only about 40 years ago, not centuries.

Please stop chanting to us that "modern western standard" RACIST slogan. It is the same slogan that was chanted while Europe was colonizing by force (and killing) half of the globe and when one of the ugliest crime of history was committed by a developed western state: the holocaust.

Here is something to remember:

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was enacted in 1948. It was voted by all Western nations including the US government.

Now, in 1948, most European-Western nations were still colonizing much of the globe (in direct violation of the same declaration).

And in 1948, the US government still officially discriminated against its black citizens (in violation of the same declaration).

Do you really think we, the rest of the world, are some kind of sheep that buys in your empty slogans, under which today people are killed in Iraq on every single day?

Posted by: Karim | May 16, 2006 11:23 PM

I'm not welcomed Ayaan Ali because we don't new conflicted between American Muslim and American Christine

Posted by: Mr.Keen | May 16, 2006 11:25 PM

'O Messenger of Allah ! What right has the wife of one among us got over him?' He said: 'It is that you shall give her food when you have taken your food, that you shall clothe her when you have clothed yourself, that you shall not slap her on the face, nor revile her, nor desert her except within the house.'"[50]

Posted by: Mr joe | May 17, 2006 12:00 AM

'O Messenger of Allah ! What right has the wife of one among us got over him?' He said: 'It is that you shall give her food when you have taken your food, that you shall clothe her when you have clothed yourself, that you shall not slap her on the face, nor revile her, nor desert her except within the house.'"[50]

Posted by: mcknight joe | May 17, 2006 12:00 AM

Karim:

"Finally, the people who killed 6 million Jews and who tried to exterminate them for once and all, were of European Christian heritage!"

Right, and the people who supported them were the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, the Syrians, and the rest of the ARab world, Karim.

"Do you really think we, the rest of the world, are some kind of sheep that buys in your empty slogans, under which today people are killed in Iraq on every single day"

The real question, Karim, is do you really think that we, in the Western World, don't see through this b.s. you keep preaching - while blacks are being slaughtered by Muslim Arabs in Sudan - and the Arab world doesn't do a thing to stop it?

Posted by: saxyboy | May 17, 2006 12:48 AM

Re:Indigo Red:"OMG! What an idiot! One of the first things we hear about when Muslims kidnap large groups of people is that they separate Jews and those with Jewish sounding names"

These lines could only come from an uneducated fool, hateful biggot, or someone who promotes endless conflict and blood shed. Now the hope, and the expectation is that you don't believe yourself. Your venomous, deceitful charaterization of a few inidividuals (be it tens, hundreds, or thousands) who happen to be moslims and "kidnap".....]as when "moslims kidnap" is as misleading, hateful, uneducated, and as venomous as characterizing abhorent acts committed by Christians (such as Tim Mcveigh) by saying that Christians are baby killers. If you don't see the distinction between describing the actions of a number of people who belong to a specific faith, etc. from all of those who belong to that faith, you certainly are at an intellectual deficit of one sort or another. From your writing and your thought processes, one can clearly conclude-amongst other things- that you are an uneducated fool. It is thus recomended (with all humility) that you get yourself some "real" education. If you can financially afford it, some travel (overseas) would help you get out of your own, little dark world. There is alot more to contribute to this world than your lies and deceitful comments. Get Real.
Mark

Posted by: Mark | May 17, 2006 12:51 AM

"When Muslims took it back under Saladin, Jews were let back in."

Karim, don't you ever get tired of writing Islamo-facist propaganda here? While Jews were tolerated by muslims, they were still subject to heavy taxes, they weren't allowed to own land, they were heavily discriminated against, and pogroms were common. Their situation - with a some exceptions - wasn't much better than American blacks before the civil rights movement.

Karim - we Jews don't want to live as a minority in the Muslim world. Please, convince me - a mainstream secular Jew - why I should want to live as a dhimmi in an bi-national Islamic state.

Posted by: saxyboy | May 17, 2006 01:02 AM

Mark:

"misleading, hateful, uneducated, and as venomous as characterizing abhorent acts committed by Christians (such as Tim Mcveigh) by saying that Christians are baby killers. If you don't see the distinction between describing the actions of a number of people who belong to a specific faith, etc. from all of those who belong to that faith, you certainly are at an intellectual deficit of one sort or another. From your writing and your thought processes, one can clearly conclude-amongst other things- that you are an uneducated fool."

Forgot to take our medication, have we?

Posted by: saxyboy | May 17, 2006 01:04 AM

Re: saxyboy: "........don't you ever get tired of writing Islamo-facist propaganda here? ".

You certainly are even more hateful.
Your use of hateful words such as "Islamo-facist" indicate the following(just to mention a few): 1. A serious lack of knowledge about history, religion, and politics. 2. A dangerously low level of education in general. 3. An more serious lack of solid intellectualt thinking and logical thought processing. One must therefore promote you to the category of "uneducated fools" without hesitation. Note:Use of others' "philosophies", etc. as your own, without giving due credit doesn't reflect good on you. Try to not listen too much to characters like daniel Pipes, Bill O'Reilly, and the likes. You claim that you are Jewish. If that is actually true, you of all people, should know better than hate is an evil thing. The jewish people suffered plenty throughout the centeries because of it. You, and people like you, should know better. Its never too late to learn. Don't be an ignorant fool.

Posted by: | May 17, 2006 01:46 AM

Although Ayaan Hirsi Ali accurately describes Muslims to be sub-human, she herself is a liar. The American Enterprise should never have hired her even if its scholars like her message. Ali comes from a culture where lying is the norm.

A similar situation arose in the days leading to the Iraq war. Numerous Iraqi Islamic dissidents told American politicians what they wanted to hear. What the Muslims claimed was entirely 100% false. The Muslims completely fooled Washington into initiating the Iraq War.

Posted by: Alaskan | May 17, 2006 03:34 AM

Although Ayaan Hirsi Ali accurately describes Muslims to be sub-human, she herself is a liar. The American Enterprise should never have hired her even if its scholars like her message. Ali comes from a culture where lying is the norm.

A similar situation arose in the days leading to the Iraq war. Numerous Iraqi Islamic dissidents told American politicians what they wanted to hear. What the Muslims claimed was entirely 100% false. The Muslims completely fooled Washington into initiating the Iraq War.

Posted by: Alaskan | May 17, 2006 03:37 AM

Unlike Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Dr. Wafa Sultan is honest. Sultan is an atheist who turned her back on Islam.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wafa_Sultan

If the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) wants to maintain its credibility, AEI should hire Dr. Sultan, not Ali.

Posted by: Alaskan | May 17, 2006 03:41 AM

To understand why Dr. Sultan despises Islam, consider the case of Abdul Rahman.

http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/meast/03/21/afghan.christian/

He is the Afghan who converted from Islam to Christianity. Almost all Afghan Muslims wanted to kill him.

We are not talking about only the most radical Muslims in Afghanistan. Nearly all the Muslims in Afghanistan wanted to kill Rahman.

Posted by: Alaskan | May 17, 2006 03:47 AM

Oscar, You could be right. maybe islam is still developing and in a few hundred years will stop preaching holy war and killing 'non-believers' as christianity has changed since the spanish inquisition. our descendents will see if it does so(hopefully!)

Posted by: KMV | May 17, 2006 04:33 AM

'fact checker', bigotry and animosity are indeed human characterestics but only islam and medieval chrstianity give religious sanction to it. while in the middle ages muslims and christians may have been genuinely threatened at various points and may have led them to read such meaning into their faith (or maybe write it into their faith!) there is no justification now as the power of media amplifies the effect of shame and anyone found to be bigoted can be vilified almost instantly and so there is no need for physical violence. infact even vilification isn't justifiable as the power of communication has made resoned arguments most effective. so perhaps muslims can now stop being so prickly and violent and learn to make their point peacefully. some muslims are trying to like the journalist Abdel Bari Atwan of 'Al Quds' newspaper but by not being unequivocal in their criticism of muslim extremists they are by default codoning them.

Posted by: KMV | May 17, 2006 05:21 AM

One of the most sane voices of Holland has been forced away. This is just another sign of the decline and fall of freedom in Europe. Actually we're on our way to move back 500 or perhaps 1000 years in history due to the insane ideology of "multiculturalism". The ideology of Islam is what Richard Dawkins describes as a Meme or Meme complex. And one with enormously dangerous consequences. Islam like many other creeds is a self-referential system containing the instructions for its own propagation. But it also attacks every human being who is not a "believer". The fact that Islam demands both superiority / submission and social isolation or death for apostates should be a warning to all Westerners. The totalitarian and anti-evolutionary character of Islam isn't compatible with either life, modernity or science. By oppressing free thought and free speech the new European-Islamic alliance will effectively kill Western civilization in Europe.

Posted by: Jan from EU | May 17, 2006 07:17 AM

Finally, a woman of certain aspect who can straddle the thought of Steven Emerson and Samuel Huntington. But on this one the boys of inflammation will have to parse their discourse with care as La Coulter may take extreme umbrage given the ratings challenge when Ali heats up her mike clip.

Posted by: Reynolds | May 17, 2006 07:33 AM

Here's a bit more background on the story:
Ayaan Hirsi Ali is a member of the same [liberal] party as Rita Verdonk.

Rita Verdonk is well known for her strict, but fair, immigration policy.
Just a couple of weeks ago she'd send a young girl [Taida Pasic] - who lied to get into the Netherlands - back to her own country.

Rita Verdonk is the most populair minister at the moment. Her - and Ayaan's - party were gaining in the polls.


The party [labor] who was losing in the polls, also has the largest number of muslim-voters.
The radical muslims in the Netherlands hate Ayaan Hirsi Ali.

Now listen to this:

The documentary, which showed nothing new, [everyone knew Ayaan had lied] was made by Zembla which is owned by the labor party.

Right after the 'documentary' was aired, the whole stinking mess began.

Rita Verdonk couldn't take any other way with Ayaan as she did with the Pasic girl.

Labor knew that.

So:

Labor got rid of Ayaan Hirsi Ali, thereby satisfying it's muslim voters.
Labor made sure Rita Verdonk is seen as the monster in this debacle, thereby getting rid of the most populair minister.
Labor is hoping this whole thing will get the voters, who supported Ayaan AND Rita Verdonk, back.

As Theo van Gogh's [the director of Ayaan's movie - who was butchered by a muslim] Mother said:
"Labor laid a mouse-trap for Rita Verdonk, with Ayaan Hirsi Ali as bait."


In the meanwhile the Netherlands have lost an intelligent and very brave woman.

I'm very much ashamed being Dutch, right now.

Ayaan: I apologise for the Dutch.
Fair well, my dear.
May peace be with you and may you have a happy life in the beautiful USA.

GJ Klaver.

Posted by: GJ Klaver. Amsterdam the Netherlands | May 17, 2006 07:52 AM

saxyboy:

"Right, and the people who supported them were the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, the Syrians, and the rest of the ARab world, Karim."

Pro-Israel always bring up the Grand Mufti. It is a cliche. If the Grand Mufti supported the Nazi, well he was wrong. Didn't one of Zionist Jewish militant groups work with the Nazis? The stern gang?

Didn't IBM make the card readers used by the Nazis to keep track of the Jews it rounded up? It sure did. Good ole American company.


Now,

Name me one single case in which any modern Arab government or otherwise sent its Jewish subjects to death camps like Germany, France and others did?

When French Nazi government Vichy requested from Morocco, under French control, to round up its Jews and ship them to Europe (to death camps), the Moroccan Sultan replied that before they can get to any Jew they would have to first get them.

No matter how hard you try to spin this, no organized government or army known to us has ever engaged in the gruesome killing and burning of human beings in ovens like the Nazi Germans did.

The Jews are middle eastern people before anything, just like the Arabs of today.

Make no mistake, these Nazis were western, developed, supposedly civilized, secular and whatever "western standard" you guys chant to us day and night.

The Arab governments response to the Sudanese tragedy is shameful!

Posted by: Karim | May 17, 2006 08:58 AM

Karim, no one doubts all cultures and peoples have shown themselves capable of awful things. That's a straw man.

do you really think a Jew or Christian in Saudi Arabia or Iran enjoys all the rights and protections of the law enjoyed by a Muslim in the US or UK?

Posted by: CE | May 17, 2006 10:25 AM

GJ Klaver, only NOW you are ashamed of being Dutch ? The Netherlands have been in the grip of xenophobism for a couple of years, and many people with less influential friends, and fewer options, than Ayaan Hirschi Magan (alias Ali) have been victim of this.

Posted by: Arnold, Amsterdam, NL | May 17, 2006 11:06 AM

I see that some crazy people have responded to my comments by insulting Islam and overgeneralizing about Muslims. What do you hope to achieve by your insults? Islam is a religion of peace and brotherhood, you people deliberately ignore the 99.99% of Muslims in this world and focus on the tiny extremists, that is your fault, not ours.

btw- the majority of the protests against those trashy Danish cartoons were peaceful and legitimate. There were some violent protests, as can be expected since you are reviewing "Muslims", which means people of every race,nationality and situation. The violent protests are still regrettable.

Posted by: Aamir Ali | May 17, 2006 11:26 AM

In these troubled times of witch the old and new world are threatened by terrorism, mostly by the feared Al-Qaeda group, legislators are troubled with decisions on treating every human being as an equal. Critic is given to Guantanamo Bay, and many countries are discussing new immigrant legislation. Monday evening President Bush announced to reinforce the southern border, to prevent immigrants to illegally enter the "New World". Well Washington, a new immigrant is coming your way.

Tuesday morning all the Dutch newspapers wrote articles on Ayaan Hirsi Ali resigning her function. The Somali-born Dutch legislator lost her passport and with that her function in the government because of lying on her asylum application when she fled to the Netherlands in 1992. Hirsi Ali will leave The Netherlands to work at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, witch already have mentioned they will do everything in their strength to accelerate Hirsi Ali's relocation to Washington DC.

Hirsi Ali mentioned in her press-conference she will be leaving The Netherlands. At this time she has an immigrant status, and could apply for a new passport. There is also the possibility to appeal the decision of withdrawal of her passport, so why leave so soon?

Could the former Dutch legislator flea to the US? She lied about her name (witch actually is Ayaan Magan) and date of birth, about her (by her saying pre-arranged) marriage to a Somali living in Canada, her family (who, according to HA have threatened to kill her because of family honour) and about where she travelled from on her escape from Somalia. Maybe the US will be her second chance. But does the US want another immigrant, although this one will arrive flying 1st class instead of in the luggage department of a truck, driving thru the El Paso border checkpoint.

In The Netherlands everyone knows Hirsi Ali for her sharp non-revealing questions, right-wing opinion and controversial renunciation of Islam. Because of this she could be an ideal fit for the AEI, whom welcome her controversial personality in a personal letter. Nevertheless she lied about to many things to be a trustworthy personality. If she had been honest about her situation in 1992, she wouldn't been seen as a refugee in humanitarian crisis but just the same as the US would react to any Mexican immigrant who wants to live in a more developed western country.

Ayaan Magan left Somalia at the age of 6, went with her family from Saudi-Arabia to Ethiopia and Kenya. At age 23 the married Ayaan went via Germany to The Netherlands and got, because of the Genève convention and a story of coming directly from Somalia, political asylum within 5 weeks. During the first year in The Netherlands she had been visited by her husband, where both parties agreed to a divorce. There would be no threats of family-honour consequences since this is not a part of the culture of Somalia.

By law Ayaan Magan can still get a new passport, and many Dutch political leaders are fighting for this. Only one person is looking beyond this battle: the protagonist. She has found yet another country that can be asked for asylum as political refugee. With a future employer as the influential AEI, it must be possible for Ayaan to finally realise her biggest dream, the American dream. This must give all the illegal Mexican immigrants hope, more than any National Guard members could stop at the U.S.-Mexican border.

Leon C Koopmans
Leeuwarden, The Netherlands.

Posted by: | May 17, 2006 11:28 AM

Mr Oscar Meyer...Please meet a few Muslims in your city before passing judgements on Islam and its followers. Ignorant Americans like you who love to overgeneralize are a problem in this world. Islam is a civilized religion and so are its followers, there are always detractors and those who go astray. It is correct for you to condemn extremists etc. dont condemn Islam/Muslims.
Your condemnations are useless anyway.

Posted by: To Oscar Meyer | May 17, 2006 11:29 AM

Jews do enjoy full rights in Iran, Saudi Arabia is a 100% Muslim country. Both are specific countries with different cultures, you cannot use them as an example to attack all Muslims.

I ask you antiislamic looneys on this board: What do you hope to achieve my denouncing Islam? Are you that arrogant to think it will disappear or change because some american opened their mouth or fired some bullets? Stop mocking Muslims and learn to tolerate them. You can go ahead and denounce as many Bin Ladin's as you want, that is fine. I dont like him either. But you cannot trash Islam/Muslims.

Posted by: to CE from Aamir Ali | May 17, 2006 11:33 AM

> Karim,

Of course it's silly to generalize. There are however two unpleasant circumstances:

1. Arab regimes (all of them non-democratic) expelled hundred of thousands of Jews during the 20th century (i.e. an indigenous people living continuously in the area nearly two millennia before Islam and the Arab conquest of North Africa and the Near East). These regimes are also anti-Christian -- and actually anti-everything-else-than-Islam -- in various degrees. Look at Egypt and the oppression of the Christian Copts (once again an indigenous non-Muslim people). Or by the way the expulsion of the Greeks during the years of Gamal Abder Nasser (you know the same people who built Alexandria some 1000 years before the arrival of the Arab general Amr ibn al-As).

2. Both Pan-Arabism and modern Islamism are ideologies highly inspired by Fascism and National Socialism. I recommend you to study "Terror and Liberalism" by Paul Berman. The Mufti is just one of many examples and has little to do with "pro-Israel" lobby-groups or other bogey men and everything to do with plain facts. A newly released report based on German Archives from WWII will give you all the details: "Deutsche, Juden, Völkermord - Der Holocaust als Geschichte und Gegenwart" (Universität Stuttgart 2006):
http://www.uni-stuttgart.de/aktuelles/presse/2006/36.html http://www.amazon.de/exec/obidos/ASIN/3534184815/302-7117702-3735252

"Bedeutendster Kollaborateur der Nationalsozialisten und zugleich ein bedingungsloser Antimsemit auf arabischer Seit war Haj Amin el-Husseini, der Mufti von Jerusalem", schreiben Mallmann und Cüppers. In seiner Person habe sich exemplarisch gezeigt, „welch entscheidende Rolle der Judenhass im Projekt der deutsch-arabischen Verständigung einnahm". El-Husseini habe unter anderem bei mehreren Treffen mit Adolf Eichmann Details der geplanten Morde festgelegt."

> Aamir Ali

Islam is a creed (= a self-referential system without empirical validity). Nothing else. You're free to believe what you want. But you're not free to force non-Muslims all over the world to "submit". And that's the problem with Islam. We can not and will not tolerate this kind of intolerance. Not in a free society.

Posted by: Jan from EU | May 17, 2006 12:31 PM

"Pro-Israel always bring up the Grand Mufti."

Right. And Arab anti-Zionists (am I a racist for using that phrase?) always engage in pretzel logic that says, "Well, the Nazis and the Christians were the anti-Semites. Muslims, at their core, just love you Jews, and we'd still love you if it weren't for tiny Israel."

They also always make spurious, insulting claims - a la Edward Sa'id and David Duke - about Jews supporting Nazis. And they cite open sources - where anyone can post whatever they want -like Wikipedia to back them up.

And I'm glad you share my disgust with the Arab relative silence about the genocide in Sudan. It seems that Arab leaders and their apologists only feign concern for Human Rights (and yes, I say "feign", because you know that the Arab governments - for all their talk about loving the Palestinians, give them almost no money. Right now, persecuted Palestinians are fleeing Iraq only to be turned away by Syria, much to the indifference of the Arab governments.) in regards to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank (which I don't support, BTW. I am not pro-settlement).

Posted by: saxyboy | May 17, 2006 12:51 PM

Amir, it's absurd to claim that Jews enjoy full rights in Iran. here's the truth -
http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/irf/2005/51599.htm

Posted by: CE | May 17, 2006 01:39 PM

Karim:

BTW, I apologize for my comment on that thread a couple of weeks ago where I made a racist slur. It was completely inappopropriate and low class.

Posted by: saxyboy | May 17, 2006 02:26 PM

Can you imagine the reaction if a Beautiful Palestinian woman was put on Fox News or any major news source (as I'm sure this woman will be if they can shape her spin into something that vilifies Islam in a "Project for the New American Century" friendly manor) and allowed to decry her treatment at the hands of the Israelis while being referred to as "America's leading critic of Judaism (as opposed to Islam) and multiculturalism" as though that title was not exactly the same description you might use to describe the Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan?

Can you imagine the Description" the leading critic of Judaism and Multiculturalism" being used in any context in any American publication or broadcast without unequivocally and immediately attaching some sense of revulsion and horror to the meaning that the title conveys?

William Kristol's head would explode and the cries (in this case actually merited) of anti-Semitism would be so loud and thick that they might even completely obscure other much more important reporting such as that round the clock, continuous reporting on that girl that was killed while on vacation.

Salmon Rushdie was alluded to above as being the victim of a fatwa. This is, as far as I know, is a true and regrettable fact.

But what of our insane cleric Pat Robertson? he came frighteningly close to being the Republican front runner in years past, supposedly is representative of a very large voting block in this country and has a not insubstantial influence on thinking and action in Washington. He issued a Fatwa against Hugo Chavez, publicly suggesting that he thought it would be a good idea if our government murdered him. I'm not sure where the moral high ground is in that comparison, but I know that Pat is not on it.

Thank God that Pat does not, as every one in America knows, personally represent "Christianity" or apparently even understand it's guiding principles very well. If he did, he might also understand that suggesting that the coming to theological conclusion that God caused Ariel Sharon's stroke as a punishment for giving up the Gaza (as opposed to... what? a more normal death?) might also well lead the most dim and faithful (faithful to Pat that is) to conclude that God allowed Jesus to be crucified not as a method of saving mankind from sin , but rather as a punishment for wasting his time "loving People" and not being interested at all in liberating the holy land from the Romans.
Idiocy. complete idiocy.

So how can a Billion Muslims be lumped together and referred to as a group in such a way that we would never do with christianity in this country or throughout the world?

There are many ways to interpret Christianity. Most are loving and life and spirituality oriented,
others are horrific and oriented towards the use of Jesus' teachings as a geopolitical tool which can condone murder, and worse.

I am sure that Islam and every other major religion are subject to the same rules.

I shudder to think how this woman's experiences, regrettable as they may be, will be used to sway our country away from understanding and tolerance, which we value as a nation, and move us towards greater hatred, violence, and intolerance.

Shame on you in advance, American media.

J

Posted by: J | May 17, 2006 04:23 PM

J said:

"Can you imagine the reaction if a Beautiful Palestinian woman was put on Fox News or any major news source...and allowed to decry her treatment at the hands of the Israelis while being referred to as "America's leading critic of Judaism ... and multiculturalism" as though that title was not exactly the same description you might use to describe the Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan?"

Run that by me again?

Posted by: saxyboy | May 17, 2006 04:44 PM

Mad Mark Says (Note - abbreviated for educational purposes)

"If you were educated and intelligent...
Racism...It is precisely your ignorance, lack of education, and hate that...clearly shows your dangerous lack of intellect. How little you know about how "much" a jewish person "can breathe" under Isalm!... Get a real education...OMG! What an idiot! fool, hateful biggot...you don't believe yourself. Your venomous, deceitful charaterization of...moslims and "kidnap"...as when "moslims kidnap" is...misleading, hateful, uneducated...venomous... by saying that Christians are baby killers...You certainly are at an intellectual deficit of one sort or another. One can clearly conclude-amongst other things- that you are an uneducated fool. It is thus recomended...that you get yourself some "real" education. If you can financially afford it, some travel...would help you get out of your own, little dark world. There is alot more to contribute to this world than your lies and deceitful comments. Get Real."

Take that.

Posted by: saxyboy | May 17, 2006 04:46 PM

To the uneducated fool: are you intellectually capable of anything else besides taking someones' comments and remove from them what you dont like add what you like and then call it "abbreviated for educational purposes". Thats why its imperative for you to get yourself some education. It would serve you before anyone else. A quick survey of this page attests to that.

Posted by: Mark | May 17, 2006 05:23 PM

Mad Mark says:

"are you intellectually capable of anything else besides taking someones' comments and remove them...Thats why its imperative for you to get yourself some education."

You're right. I'll go get myself some education...maybe take myself a course in basic grammar and punctuation.

Perhaps I'll even learn myself to use spell check.

In the meantime, I recommend increasing your dosage. Seething is so unattractive.

Posted by: saxyboy | May 17, 2006 06:02 PM

why is everyone calling her name Ayan Hirsi but the last time I check was Ayan Magan.

Posted by: Reminder | May 17, 2006 06:34 PM

You asked "Ignorant Americans like you who love to overgeneralize are a problem in this world. Islam is a civilized religion and so are its followers, there are always detractors and those who go astray".
_____________________________________
Okay. Lets accept I am ignorant. Having travelled in Saudi Arabia I can tell you first hand that:
1. Religious Freedom
Poor slobs coming from Asian Countries like India have their Holy Book (forget the name) confiscated at the point of entry and they cannot wear their symbol which is equivalent to the cross. Nor can they openly pray to their god. Christians are only a little better but not much. No churches allowd. Forget about Jews.

2. Legal Right
Workers hired from overseas have their passports confiscated as soon as they touch Saudi soil. Passports cannot be returned until the Saudi sponsor agrees. Sponsors never agree if you are a menial worker in a household or small shop. Control and exploitation (sometimes sexual) is complete.

3. Sharia Law
I do not need to remind you that under Sharia Law which is practiced in many Islamic countries including Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, in a court of law the testimony of a moslem is equivalent to that of two infidels "non-moslems" or women.

Need I say more! Any decent website will show you ecxample that demonstrate barbarism is still inherent in Islam. You might remember that in Afganistan the Islamists blew up 60 foot high statues of Bhudda that were historical treasures and recently attempted to condemn a man to death who wished to convert from Islam to Christianity. Did ANY ISLAM NATION OBJECT???

I think you will find that most Islamist are incapable of building a logical argument. Emotions and dogma seem to rule.

Posted by: Oscar Mayer | May 17, 2006 09:23 PM

Karim and factchecker use the same tactic as many Islamic apologists - a strawman moral equivalency argument. This fails to address any of the true or perceived ills of Islam.

Karim mentions the UN declaration of human rights, but fails to note that most Islamic-majority nations rejected the Declaration. I forget who, but someone drafted a revised version of the Declaration more compatible with Islam - and therefore less compatible with human rights. Islam cannot tolerate true equality, because women are inherently inferior to men, and non-muslims are inherently inferior to muslims. It's in the quran.

And still, there is no contest of the Islamic history recording that Muhammed was a murderer, thief, pedophile, and misogynist. I say according to a modern, western viewpoint, because Muslims believe that Muhammed was without sin, a model for all Muslims to emulate. Which helps explain why women today are limited in their rights under Islam, property of their male relatives or husbands.

Posted by: tolerance? | May 18, 2006 10:24 AM

Saxyboy,

Its alright. I think you confused me with someone else. Never posted anything linking mossad to Jodan's bombings.

Posted by: Karim | May 18, 2006 11:48 AM

tolerance:

"Karim mentions the UN declaration of human rights, but fails to note that most Islamic-majority nations rejected the Declaration"

Can you list those countries that rejected it?

Well I know you wouldn't find them because when the declaration was put to vote in the assembly, there was no rejection. 8 countries chose to abstain: soviet block, Saudi Arabia and South Africa. The rest voted in favor including Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, etc.

The rest of the Arab states were still colonized by France, Spain, England or Italy....the same western countries that voted for the human rights declaration!

Good ole western free France up to 1961 killed almost 1 million Algerian in order to put down (with no success) the Algerian revolt against French colonialism. Only western French could be free...the backward Algerian had to be ruled by the Free people of Europe!

This is not about moral relativism my friend. I don't think the west, as a block, not as people, ever cared for the lives of non-western people (still applies today). I am just reminding you we don't need your slogans.

Posted by: Karim | May 18, 2006 12:14 PM

I think Ms. Ali/Magan should be able to say what she likes within the framework of the Dutch laws. Like most Americans the 911 attacks freaked me out. But....I still don't believe all people are evil...I believe most people are good. when I was in college I worked with a Syrian student and I have to say he was one of the loveliest and most gracious persons I've met in my life. When I hear and read the sorts of things I see in the news these days, I reflect back on this friendship and it brings a smile to my face. I don't agree with much of what the Islamic religion proposes but I respect the fact that not everyone in the Muslem world is a nut.

Posted by: virginia | May 18, 2006 01:55 PM

"This is not about moral relativism my friend. I don't think the west, as a block, not as people, ever cared for the lives of non-western people (still applies today)."

You might have a point, but...

"The rest voted in favor including Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, etc"

....I don't understand why you think that kleptocricies like Syria, Egypt, and Syria deserve a pat on the back for simply signing a piece of paper, while you sit here and bemoan the intolerance of "The West".

Kind of On Topic - a great movie about Western Colonialism and Islamic response is the Battle of Algiers. It's sympathetic to the occupied, but doesn't shy away from showing the barbarity of the Algerian tactics of blowing kids up in cafes (Unlike the ridiculous Paradise Now, which portrays suicide bombers as innocent and oppressed), while establishing Sharia law and killing anyone who didn't go along with it. And the film was directed by a Jewish guy over 30 years ago. Go figure.

Posted by: Saxyboy | May 18, 2006 01:57 PM

Sorry, Karim, I meant Jordan.

Posted by: saxyboy | May 18, 2006 01:58 PM

Heres what is missing: a visible representative of Islam that takes the lead in a peaceful discourse. Unfortunately, the only middle-eastern or Islamic folks I am exposed to are raving lunatics (bin-Laden, Saddam, the maniac running Iran, the mad 9/11 wanna-be-hijacker) - I apoligize if I am lumping many cultures and folks together.
If 99.9% of all muslims are peaceful, nice, friendly folks, where then is their equivalent of Martin Luther King? does he even exist?

Posted by: Matt | May 18, 2006 02:16 PM

After reviewing the board comments, I have come to one conclusion...

How peaceful the world would be WITHOUT religion.

Come'on people. What a crock of juvenile sh*t (my religion is better than yours, misquoted facts & events, Bible vs. Koran, etc.).

I think all of you are NUTS!!

Posted by: Jett | May 18, 2006 02:16 PM

Jett:

That was the best post ever I read on this board.

Seriously. Thanks for putting everything in perspective.

Posted by: Saxyboy | May 18, 2006 04:48 PM

Jeff,

Relativism isn't the answer.

Islam is not the same thing as Christianity or Buddhism.

The problem with Islam isn't actually the first component although there are several complications: a belief in a god called Allah and an alleged prophet, warrior and role-model with the name Muhammad ibn Abdullah ibn Abdul-Muttalib. The main problem is the second component: expansion and submission. Islam has and always had universal and totalitarian ambitions. Therefore war and conflict will follow in the footsteps of Islam as long as Islam upholds concepts like Jihad, Sharia, Dawah, Dhimma etc. It's as simple as that.

Posted by: Jan from EU | May 18, 2006 04:55 PM

The "1 billion Muslims" figure includes a lot of people who barely believe the religion at all but are counted as Muslims because they have Muslim fathers (it's like being secular Jewish and counted as Jewish). Meanwhile, there are lots of different subgroups and lots of disagreements among them. Condemning everyone in that group of 1 billion because some Muslims are oppressive and some societies are Muslim chauvinist is ridiculous, like condemning all 3 billion men and boys because some men are oppressive and some societies are male chauvinist.

Posted by: Nina | May 18, 2006 05:30 PM

http://www.faithfreedom.org/Articles/abulkazem/face_of_islam.htm

Posted by: Peter | May 18, 2006 06:31 PM

Christianity is all love.

Look! We slaved people here because they were black and we justified our action using the Holy Scripts. We tried to exterminate the Jews during WW2, because the bible told us that they are the raison for the fall of Jesus. We had no problem killing and trying to extreminate the American Indians because they were non-believers. We had no problem killing and forcing the Jews and the Muslim to convert to Christianinty in Spain all in the name of LOVE. and Christianity.
And what happened in Rowanda? Nuns are tried in the international court for helping the killing of some tribes.
Yes, yes in deed, our God is the God of Love and all other Gods are only of hatered.
We are the most loving poeple. As long as others do not have what we have, we love them.
In deed we are the best religion. While we believe in God, others believe in Allah, it does not matter that our Arab brothers in religion call God Allah, because Allah cannot be God. Of course Dieu, Dios, and God represent the same entity, but Allah is another entities. Then we must ask ourselves Is there Multiple GODS, or only a Christian GOD?

Posted by: Nora | May 18, 2006 08:19 PM

I have never met Ayaan, nor read her works. But I know of her. I know she is an advocate for women rights and in that light, critises Islam, or more correctly, Islam's treatment and attitude towards women. I myself am from the same roots as Ayaan and was born to Moslem parents. Although Ayaan might be a little excessive sometimes in her critique of Islam, most of what she says is very true and I think she very curageous to risk the wrath(and we know what that leads to) of the the Islamic Zealots in Europe. The Dutch Government's decision to withdraw Ayaan's citenship is very regrettable and quite a shame to both the Netheralands and the Western World as whole.

Posted by: B Mansen, Oslo | May 19, 2006 08:51 AM

Saxyboy,

I didn't imply they should deserve a pat on the back. I attempted to correct what some poster has claimed (the poster claimed they rejected it). In 1948, most of those countries just got their independence from the west, so to be fair to them, it was early to judge. Now of course, we realize that they didn't really believe in that declaration and the same applies to most western nations.


I've seen the battle of Algiers a long time ago. Great work. You wrote about "Western colonialism vs Islamic response" but my question to you is the following: why do you project the Algerian case on all "Islamic people"? Was the Moroccan and the Tunisian response the same? 2 neighboring Muslim countries?

Why didn't call it "Western Christian colonialism vs Islamic response"? I hope you realize that your generalizations are way out of proportions.

The director of the film, Gillo Pontecorvo, was Italian (didn't know he was a Jew and it really is irrelevant), who was also member of the communist party at the time. The film was banned in France for a while, and the gruesome torture scenes were also cut off for a while in versions distributed in Britain and the US (I wonder why?).

Killing innocent people, including children, is a crime and a barbaric act. And so was the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagazaki by the US government (although i am sure you wouldn't label that "American barbarity" because your apologists in America keep telling people that those barbaric bombings on civilian cities saved the world).

I have not seen paradize now so I can't comment on it.

Posted by: Karim | May 19, 2006 10:58 AM

Yeah, I'm going to go with a blanket indictment of all religious extremists, whatever flavor, color, or creed. Anybody who holds the tenents of their religion to be more valuable than someone else's life, under ANY circumstances, is out of their mind (or evil, take your pick). Evangelical and Fundamentalist Christians, Islamic Fundamentalists (and a sizable portion of alleged islamic non-fundamentalists), and anybody else who justifies killing on religious grounds are dangerously unbalanced and represent a threat to reasonable people everywhere. Moreover, the typical response of islamic apologists to arguments like the one presented above (that westerners are biased and kill more muslims than muslims kill westerners) misses the point that westerners do not go to war over religion- we go to war over resources such as oil or political and geographic considerations. The essential sanity of the western view on this is that the war is not aimed at people, but at institutions. When those institutions are destroyed or defeated, the war ends. Clearly, although they were never intentionally targeted, innocent people were killed by US forces in the recent invasion of Iraq. However, in those areas where fighting is no longer occurring (kurdistan, basically), innocent people are no longer being killed. Contrast this with the character of war in islam-- the enemy is not the idea, but the people, and the only solution is extermination. Witness the Iranian president's comments on Israel. The primary threat that Islam poses to the world arises not from its status as a threat to Christianity (I don't give a rat's hindquarters about Christianity, frankly), but from its inherent lack of compunction, maturity, and restraint. It is a shame that the religion and worldview that was the most advanced in the world in the 10th century AD has not moved one iota forward since.

Posted by: Burke | May 19, 2006 11:15 AM

Karim, re. UNDHR

According to your interpretation, the US has accepted the International Criminal Court. It's true, the US government signed the treaty. It was never ratified, and most people don't think much of it, with its lack of accountability and other flaws, but it was signed. Just because it was signed doesn't mean it was ever accepted. And you have nothing to say about the Islamic Declaration and why it was drafted?

Keep up the straw man arguments. You're failing just fine.

Posted by: tolerance? | May 19, 2006 11:18 AM

Tolerance,

Which Islamic declaration are you referring to? Could you please post a link to it?

My understanding is that when some Muslim nation signs those "western inspired" declarations, they usually attach "reservations" to it. That is honest if you ask me, unlike few Western nations which sign it but maintained either colonial rule (by force) or legal discrimination.

I read how you keep repeating "Islam doesn't allow this or that" as if Muslim nations are directly ruled by the religion itself. Islamic views on women or on non-Muslims is no different than either Christianity or Judaism. It was only about 50 years that the west granted women (and blacks) equal rights with few exceptions (Western ruled Apartheid south Africa until 1995). The same applies to most Muslim countries.

Muslim women themselves are the ones who are fighting for their rights among their own people. It is up to them to define what constitutes "equal rights" not to some "western bigot" chanting those same empty slogans so they can feel good about themselves.

Posted by: Karim | May 19, 2006 11:48 AM

I'd like to emphasis that this is not about "western vs non-western". I always showed great respect and admiration for many western based organizations such as Amnesty, Human Rights Watch, Red Cross, etc.

These organizations are in my opinion genuine and only seek to defend human rights the way all humans understand them not the way some "right-wing or left-wing" political organization understands them (usually for their own benefits).

I do have mixed feelings about the UN but nevertheless I think the world would be worse without it. It is a venue for all nations to debate things and to make their voice heard, instead of having few authoritarian-like people in Washington (elected or not) debate what needs to be done in nations 5000 miles away without the consent of its people.

Posted by: Karim | May 19, 2006 12:04 PM

Karim, without intending to impugn your motives, the organizations you name have a historical habit of perpetuating double standards with regards to the condemnation of human rights abuses. Specifically, they hold press conferences about the inhumanity of relatively minor infractions such as the US treatment of detainees at Gitmo (admittedly a shameful situation) while ignoring the enormously more vile abuses occuring elsewhere (including the middle east). For instance, Chinese legal experts estimate that China executes approximately 8000 prisoners a year, many without more than a cursory trial-for-show. The actual number is unavailable, as it is classified as a Chinese State secret. That would suggest that China kills more people every year than the war in Iraq (including US, insurgent, AND civilian dead). Equally, the persistant use of far more heinous torture and public execution by nations such as Iran, Egypt, Libya, and Saudi Arabia passes with little comment, while the shaving of detainees (to prevent vermin infestation) provokes harsh criticism.
Similarly, the UN may have a role to play in mediating disputes and providing legitimacy to decisions made for or on behalf of the world, but its politics and internal structure have made it a perennial apologist for despots. Take, for example, the membership of the UN committee on human rights (which includes China, Cuba, Congo, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia, all despotic regimes with serious human rights issues). Until the UN and international NGOs begin to judge all nations by the same universal principles of human rights, they should be viewed with a fair degree of cynical skepticism.

Posted by: Burke | May 19, 2006 12:52 PM

Lets list all the countries whose constitution(if they have it)/laws are crafted based on islam/koran against their level of religious freedom/tolerance, i dont know most of the countries so rest of you guys out there in this discussion can fill up. When you add another country copy this list add to this and re post.

country tolerance(rel) Westernised
------- -------------- ---------------
Saudi 0% 0%
UAE
Iran
Syria
Lebanon

Posted by: indian | May 19, 2006 08:52 PM

Burke,

The organizations I mentioned cover non-western countries extensively. If you can show us that they have more reports about the US then other nations please let me know. Whatever the media chooses to cover is not necessary a good indicator of what they actually do. Remember that the US media was partially responsible for the invasion of Iraq.

The same goes for the death penalty. In 2004, China held the record, followed by Iran, Vietnam, USA, and then Saudi Arabia.

Until last year, the USA used to execute minors.

Who do you think campaigned for the end of minor executions if it was those organizations?

I sincerely ask you to re-consider your views on these organizations. No reasonable person can side with governments (elected or not, western or not) against these independent organizations that only seek to defend the rights of oppressed people, no more no less.

Posted by: Karim | May 20, 2006 12:45 PM

Indian,

how do you come up with those percentages?

What would you give India for instance?

Posted by: Karim | May 20, 2006 12:58 PM

Karim,

Just try for a second try to be free from any religious bindings you have and take a holistic look at the societies in different parts of the world, see which societies dont have freedom of speech, freedom of religion, where religion and state are tied together, where women are dergated to second level humen beings, if you do such an impartial and unbiased analysis you would be able to see that all countries where islamic law and religion are tied to the government/constitution/law will top the list with lowest score. Of course none of the other religion are perfect. Not christianity,not hinduism,none of them, i believe religion have been always a dividing factor in scociey throughout history, and the reason i see for that is the religious leaders with an agenda. So all are bad, and of that islam tops the list.

To answer the question, how i rate India in that chart. I think india is way better of than any of the islamic states. I was born and raised Christian in India and i never in any ciscumstances felt that my rights were threatned because of my religion. There have been many occurances of hindu fundamental activities in other parts of India, so have there beeen muslim fundamental activities, but they are very localized. At least in the part of India where i grew up we had complete harmony of all religions,Hindus,Muslims and Christians. And one main factor which i see contributed to this harmony is the level of litracy among the people of that part. The state of kerala is almost 100 % literate. When people give priority to education first and religion second they can easily figure out the the good and bad side of any religion, they can easily uncover the hidden agenda of the false leaders. So Karim my friend, I think the only solution for islamic countries to get any traction in the real world is to disconnect the religion from their constitution/law/government and make sure that the younger generation gets education FIRST and then if they want religion.

Posted by: | May 22, 2006 01:27 PM

Shut Up! What a fool! You couldn't be more stupid than to say something like this:"I think the only solution for islamic countries to get any traction in the real world is to disconnect the religion from their constitution/law/government and make sure that the younger generation gets education FIRST and then if they want religion."

Advice: How about getting some education for yourself first before you make a moronic statement like this? and who are you by the way?? A "christian" and an Indian? WAKE UP!

Posted by: | May 22, 2006 09:32 PM

I think Ayan Hirsi Ali is enjoying the fame her current position is replenishing for her. All stars, movie makers, film directors, singers, music producers, actors and all types of talented people including polititians have a short life called "Fall and rise life". This woman is trying to fool averyone around her. The west is not stupid to to examine motives and the prime purposes of this woman. She is just another Jeffrey Archer in Conservative Party's Conference in the eighties. Muslims around the world should let her speak her mind in a democratic & free world. It's good to knnow that even mad cows can enter European partliaments like that of the Netherlands. I am so sure this could not have happened here in UK, Canada or even in the United States where all humans and their religions are respected at it's highest standards. Ayan Hirsi Ali is another liar, liars have onething in common; THAT IS FAME , which is what she is getting now. QUESTION IS HOW LONG?

Posted by: Bashir | May 23, 2006 05:12 PM

who is this "Indigo Red", nonsence commands... without knowing well about islam no one should talk about it. plz if u don't know anything, better u keep quit, otherwise wants to discuss, then atleast try to know the basics of Islam, that is enought to understand the whole world and and the fact of living. Actually i am verymuch upset, now really i want to scold u in bad words.. but now also Islam restricts and bands me to do so.. that is the reason now i am not scolding u. This is one example.. like that in each and every activity of human being and life practice, Islam teaches the best way to live and sucess in both the worlds.. I hope u can understand about it soon.

Posted by: Normal person | May 24, 2006 10:50 AM

Some people can do anything for money.. like "Hirsi Ali". Obviously everyone knows that she is doing all these for money.. what she knows about Islam. This type of people (not only her may be like her so many peoples getting train and planning to create bad name against islam)they just acting like a muslim, they first entering into islam as saying muslim, then just keep quit for a period, after getting popularity among people, then they starting critizing the islam and blaming it without knowing it well.. some uneducated people may belive that, one muslim lady is speaking like that, so whatever she is saying may be true some thing like that.. plz people try to understand that whatever she says is for money only.. if GOD just flips one of her nerve.. she can't able to talk more.. she has to fear GOD. For money purpose no one must not talk about islam wheather it may be about good or bad. Islam is not spending any money and not taking any serious efforts to convert the people to islam. But about cristiantiy, i no need to say that.. everyone in this world knows that, how much they are spending money to change the people's mind, like giving money, place and household things etc.. But Islamic people never do this.. each and everyone should understand what is in islam then only, they are pure muslim. I just compared the overall and mentioned the fact, hope everyone knows this. I can able to scold cristianity now also.. but i belive that ESA (jesus) is also one of the prophet of GOD, so i have to respect him. Moreover QURAN says that, belivers should be scold the other religion. As said in Islam, i don't want to scold other religiion. But i am requesting all the people, plz try to understand well about islam. plz don't see the people who is doing wrong things by having the name of muslims.. plz see what is said in islam. hope everyone of u will understand about it. plz don't belive Hirsi Ali, she can do anything for money. God only knows the real reason why she has the name of Muslim, she thought that, she is doing good business and earning lot of money.. in her last days, sure she will understand the truth, but that time no use.. what she did wrong is worng.. If God wills, He may forgive her.

Posted by: Normal person | May 24, 2006 11:11 AM

plz forgive me.. actually typing mistake..

in my previous command, i typed wrongly. God has to forgive me..

ISLAM SAYS.. MUSLIMS SHOULD NOT SCOLD OTHER RELIGIONS.

"i belive that ESA (jesus) is also one of the prophet of GOD, so i have to respect him. Moreover QURAN says that, belivers should "not" be scold the other religion."

Posted by: Normal person | May 24, 2006 11:19 AM

I dont know if she knows who the AEI is!! I know she is very libral in her views! so how is that going to fit with the narrow minded AEI??? hmmmmmmm she will be surpriesed of how consrvative some people are in this country.

Posted by: Mario | May 24, 2006 11:48 PM

After reading the Qur'an and the Sunnah one has to conclude that Islam is a typical cult based on one single leader (an alleged "prophet" of the god Allah) claiming total control, obedience and submission (i.e. "Infidels" must die, convert or pay special taxes, "infidel" land has to be conquered, marriages between Muslim women and non-Muslim men are forbidden, Apostasy is punished with death etc).

The ideology of Islam isn't compatible with Freedom (or freedom of thought or Speech) just as Communism isn't compatible with Liberal Democracy.

The smear-campaign unleashed against Ayaan Hirsi Ali is based on this simple fact.

I recommend every Westerner to read the Qur'an. It's all there.

And don't forget:

"They may take our lives, but they'll never take our FREEDOM!"

http://www.moviesoundscentral.com/sounds/braveheart/freedom.wav

Posted by: Jan from EU | May 25, 2006 03:50 PM

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