Category Archives: Radicals
In a fiery sermon delivered at a Brooklyn mosque, an Islamic preacher assailed hardline Muslim religious leaders who instill hateful ideas into the minds of impressionable Muslim youths, calling it a “cancer.” Instead, he called on worshipers to show kindness and love to others.
Speaking at the Oulel-Albab Mosque, Imam Tareq Yousef Al-Masri raised the Boston Marathon bombing and the recent Paris attacks, asking, “What’s the story with that all-destructive ideology?” according to a translation by the Middle East Media Research Institute.
Al-Masri said Muslims have to be honest with themselves about the problem emerging from hardline ideology, like that of Wahhabi and Salafist Islam.
“Let us admit, without lying to ourselves, that we, the Muslims, are time bombs. When I say ‘we, the Muslims,’ I do not mean every single Muslim, but Muslims of the religious sector are time bombs. When a sinner repents, the first thing he does is make a bomb. He blows it up and kills people,” Al-Masri said.
“We must admit this. We cannot become immune if we do not admit this,” he said. “If you have cancer, it won’t help you if I tell you that you have the flu. I must tell you that you clearly have cancer.”
Al-Masri criticized radical Islamists who preach hatred of Christians.
“Let us admit something else. The majority of us Muslims hate the Christians – true or false? Yes, that is the truth,” Al-Masri said. “When you see how many people oppose [congratulating Christians on their holidays], you have to admit that deep-rooted hatred dwells in the hearts of Muslims.”
“When we tell people that it is forbidden to wish a Christian ‘Merry Christmas,’ does this not lay the foundation for terrorism? This is how you condition yourself to feel hatred,” he said.
Al-Masri asserted that the Koran has been “distorted by scholars who corrupt the youth” who in turn “believe that they are worshipping Allah by killing people.”
“[These scholars consider] any Koranic verse of moral value to have been abrogated. They consider any verse that calls to treat people with kindness to have been abrogated. All that remains valid is: Kill! Slaughter! Is that the only thing that God tells us?” he said.
Perhaps President Obama instinctively understood that any mass unity rally in Paris would be more of a feel-good photo-op than a genuine response to Islamist terror or anti-Semitic violence. Perhaps the Secret Service sought to veto an impromptu visit from the president or even Vice President Biden on security grounds. But whatever the reasons for the decision not to send a high-level American representative to the event in Paris, it told us something important about this administration’s approach to the relevant issues as well as about this president. By choosing to stay away from the march, the United States expressed not only its public disdain for the effort to respond to the rising tide of hate, but the president also demonstrated that he doesn’t understand that being the leader of the free world occasionally requires him to show up even when he’d rather stay home. The symbolism of the boycott illustrated very clearly why Obama is the first American president since World War Two to publicly disdain that title.
Administration defenders are dismissing criticisms of the astonishing U.S. decision not to send a high-ranking representative by saying that it was mere symbolism. They say that American security cooperation with France against terrorism is more important than such trifles and, in a material sense, they are right about that. Indeed, even White House spokesman Josh Earnest’s admission that a mistake was made tried to emphasize that the error was more one about image than substance. The march was just symbolism and, to the extent that many in the media were prepared to treat it as a substantive answer to Islamist terror or the rising tide of Jew-hatred that has afflicted Europe in recent years, it was an entirely inadequate one. A day after this massive event, French Jews remain under siege with their institutions being guarded by thousands of Army troops and police. It has yet to be seen whether a genuine change in atmosphere or anything like it will stem from all of the righteous rhetoric being uttered about unity in a Europe that has proven more interested in appeasing Islamists than fighting, and where anti-Semitism has moved from the margins to the mainstream in the last decade.
But that did not relieve the administration of its obligation to join with other nations who sent their leaders to Paris to show solidarity after such egregious attacks on the West. That even Attorney General Eric Holder, who was already in Paris and meeting with security officials who did go to the march, disdained to make an appearance at the march spoke volumes about the administration’s attitude.
Where to begin? For starters, note that the network is apparently afraid of even using the word Muhammad. Instead, the Islamic religious figure is referred to by CNN merely as “the Prophet.” Not a prophet. And not even the prophet. “The Prophet,” with a capital P.
If we are to take CNN’s memo at its word, no other prophets existed before or after Muhammad. He is literally the only one. Forget Moses. Forget Abraham. Forget that both are major prophets for Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
Nope. Muhammad is the only one (even if that statement itself is heretical to the ideology they’re desperately trying not to offend) and he will be faux-respected by fearful news executives, even if that faux respect results in the blatant disrespect of other religions that outright reject Muhammad’s alleged teachings. Your offense is only worthy of note if comes packaged with a death threat.
I look forward to CNN referring to Jesus Christ as “the Messiah” from now on. I look forward to CNN referring to God as “G-d” out of respect for Jews who believe it is sinful to utter His name. And I really look forward to never seeing another historically illiterate Eastertime screed masquerading as news about how Jesus is just a silly myth who never really existed and that people who put any stock in the most well-attested historical documents in all of antiquity are just a bunch of nutty kooks.
I mean, if we’re talking about respect for religion, surely that must mean respect for religions that don’t send masked terrorists to gun down your news bureau whenever it publishes something stupid and insensitive, right? Or do my views only deserve respect insofar as they refuse to acknowledge your right to even exist?
For the Men Without Chests, however, history, theology, and even grammar must bow before the altar of terrorism.
CNN, a television network that exists to broadcast images to the world, instructed its employees to avoid the use of pictures and instead use words to describe the cartoon images. Did I mention that CNN is a TV station? And that the whole point of TV is to display images? Because it is. That’s why TV exists. To display images. Unless you’re CNN. And how did CNN justify its ban on pictures? It said it was necessary because “[verbal descriptions] are key to understanding the nature of the attack on the magazine and the tension between free expression and respect for religion.”
How will France respond?
France now faces an existential dilemma. By most independent estimates France now has a Muslim population of 6 million, or almost 10% of its 65 million people. If we assume that just 1% of this population are radicalized to the point of engaging in or providing support for terrorist activities, that is a pool of 60,000 individuals. We are not speaking of 60,000 potential bombers or shooters, but a support network that will allow a much smaller number of terrorists to blend into the broader population. In the “no-go” zones of France now effectively ruled by Muslim gangs, moreover, the terrorists can intimidate the Muslim population. France already has lost the capacity to police part of its territory, which means that it cannot conduct effective counter-terror operations
To put that number in context, the whole prison population of France is less than 70,000, of whom 60% are Muslims. It only takes a few dozen trained terrorists with an effective support network to bring ordinary life to a stop in a major city. France has had the toughest enforcement policy against radical Islam among the major European nations, as Daniel Pipes observes. But French security clearly has been overwhelmed. The use of assault rifles and (reportedly) a rocket launcher by highly-skilled gunmen in the center of Paris is a statement of contempt towards the authorities on the part of the terrorists.
The means by which France could defeat the terrorists are obvious: To compel the majority of French Muslims to turn against the terrorists, the French authorities would have to make them fear the French state more than they fear the terrorists. That is a nasty business involving large numbers of deportations, revocation of French citizenship, and other threats that inevitably would affect many individuals with no direct connection to terrorism. In the short term it would lead to more radicalization. The whole project of integration as an antidote to radicalism would go down the drain. The effort would be costly, but ultimately it would succeed: most French Muslims simply want to stay in France and earn a living.
There is no good outcome here, but the worst outcome would be the degeneration of France into a hostage state.
The United Arab Emirates has officially designated 83 groups as terrorist organizations, including two based in the U.S., the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Muslim American Society.
UAE’s cabinet made the announcement following a meeting on Saturday.
Other groups designated as terrorists include al-Qaida, al Nusra, Boko Haram and the Muslim Brotherhood.
CAIR’s designation is interesting given its high profile here in the U.S.
The group was named an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation case in 2007. Leaders of the Holy Land Foundation were found guilty of aiding Hamas, which the U.S. has designated as a terrorist organization.
Starting in 2008, the FBI adopted a strict policy against dealing with CAIR in its investigations. Last year, the Department of Justice inspector general issued a report showing that the FBI had in some instances failed to maintain that arms-length requirement.
According to Reuters, which reported on UAE’s new terrorist designations, the country is at odds with Qatar over the latter’s relationship with Islamist groups, including the Muslim Brotherhood.
President Barack Obama favorably quoted and praised on Wednesday in his speech before the United Nations a controversial Muslim cleric whose organization has reportedly endorsed the terror group Hamas and supported a fatwa condoning the murder of U.S. soldiers in Iraq.
Obama in his remarks offered praise to controversial cleric Sheikh Abdallah Bin Bayyah and referred to him as a moderate Muslim leader who can help combat the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant’s (ISIL or ISIS) radical ideology.
However, Bin Bayyah himself has long been engulfed in controversy for many of his views, including the reported backing of a 2004 fatwa that advocated violent resistance against Americans fighting in Iraq.
This is not the first time that the Obama administration has extoled Bin Bayyah, who also has served as the vice president of a Muslim scholars group founded by a radical Muslim Brotherhood leader who has called “for the death of Jews and Americans.”
The State Department’s Counterterrorism Bureau (CT) was forced to issue multiple apologies earlier this year after the Washington Free Beacon reported on its promotion of Bin Bayyah on Twitter.
“This should not have been tweeted and has since been deleted,” the CT Bureau tweeted at the time after many expressed anger over the original endorsement of Bin Bayyah.
However, it appears that Obama and the White House are still supportive of Bin Bayyah, who, despite his past statements, is still hailed by some as a moderate alternative to ISIL and al Qaeda.
No, it is because, for Christians in Iraq, the past three months have been the climax of 11 years of hell. We Americans have short memories (that goes for you, too, in the “Bush Was Right” crowd), but it’s worth noting that Christians began having serious problems within a year after the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003. Sometimes it was the work of al-Qaeda, sometimes Sunni insurgents pining for the return of Sunni control of Iraq. Sometimes it was Shiite militias fighting the Sunnis but finding time to persecute Christians.
First came assaults on stores that sold alcohol. Then, in August 2004, bombs were placed outside five churches in Baghdad and Mosul. Eleven people died. Two more churches were bombed in November, and Christians began to flee to Kurdistan, Jordan and Syria. Since then, at least 60 churches in the country have been bombed. The latest was in Baghdad on Christmas Day last year.
Priests and bishops became particular targets, in order to deliver a message to their flock that no one is safe. In Mosul in June 2007, gunmen shot dead a Chaldean Catholic priest and three deacons because the priest refused to convert to Islam. The next year gunmen kidnapped Mosul’s Chaldean archbishop, Paul Rahho, and killed his driver and two bodyguards. The abductors stuffed Rahho into the trunk of a car, from where he was able to call a colleague by mobile phone and instruct the church not to pay ransom. He was found dead a few days later in a shallow grave.
Attacks on lay Christians were continuous. Women received threatening messages demanding that they stop working. Families received death threats attached to demands for money called “daftar,” slang for $10,000. Children were taken and held for ransom. Both Sunni and Shiites, though busy with what amounted to a civil war, found time to attack and expel Christians from the Baghdad suburb of Dora.
All this predated the Islamic State.
The French government has come up with an answer to a point of persistent journalistic confusion – how exactly does one refer to the Islamic State organisation brutally carving out a self-declared “caliphate” in Syria and northern Iraq?
From now on the French foreign ministry will be calling it Daesh, the Arabic acronym for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), also known as ISIS or the Islamic State group.
Last week, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius asked journalists and media organisations to do the same.
He said: “This is a terrorist group and not a state. I do not recommend using the term Islamic State because it blurs the lines between Islam, Muslims and Islamists. The Arabs call it ‘Daesh’ and I will be calling them the ‘Daesh cutthroats’.”
His first press release using the name was issued on Monday.
ISIS is calling for radicalized “lone wolves” in the United States to go to the homes of U.S. soldiers and “slaughter” military personnel.
This is part of what is expected to be “a continued call” for American military personnel to be targeted within the United States.
According to Fox News, one British jihadist “encouraged radicals still living in the West to use Facebook and Linkedln to find and target soldiers.” The jihadist tweeted: “You could literally search for soldiers, find their town, photos of them, look for addresses in Yellowbook or something. Then show up and slaughter them.”
Militants in Syria have also been using Twitter to “[encourage] Muslims in the West to target soldiers with spontaneous attacks using [knives and guns],” the report continued.
On September 16, NBC News reported on a Rochester, New York man, Mafid A. Elfgeeh, who was charged for “trying to recruit people to join…ISIS…and shoot people in the United States.” Elfgeeh is a naturalized U.S. citizen from Yemen. The targets Elfgeeh allegedly had in mind were “American military personnel returning from the Middle East.”
The Obama administration continues to claim the Islamic State poses no immediate threat to the homeland, but the threats against our soldiers on our soil, not just serving abroad, appear quite immediate.