Anti-al Qaeda Base Envisioned

Here is the second post which is connected to the last one. Again, I found this on my friends blog, thank you Stefan. It is an article from The Washington Times, the link for this story is below.  As always any thing in ((and)) is my comment on the subject. One other thing I want to say, completely off topic. I had this post already in the line up to put up. I had hoped to do some research over the last couple of days since this time of year finds most of us extremely busy until after New Year’s Day. The series I am writing on takes a lot of research to get it right and cover everything. Anyway, on Saturday I started coming down with something, now its a full on head cold. The problem is, if it goes to my lungs, I could be in serious trouble. I have a preexisting lung problem and any other insult could not only cause me to have to go into the hospital, but it could kill me.

I’m telling you all this for two reasons; Number 1 is, I will do what I can with my blogs, but you know what its like when you have a head cold or don’t feel well. 2 if I disappear for a week or so, it could be I am in the hospital, so just so you know, its not because I am quiting the blog. 

Now, on with today’s post:

   

Article published Sep 26, 2007
an article from www.washingtontimes.com

By Willis Witter

Exiled Egyptian cleric Ahmed Subhy Mansour, whose teachings have earned him dozens of death “fatwas” from fellow Muslim clerics, uses the English translation for al Qaeda — meaning “the base” — to describe a plan to defeat Osama bin Laden and other terrorists, who he says have seized control of Islam.”Suppose you have here [in the United States] a base to counter al Qaeda in the war of ideas?” Sheik Mansour asked during a recent luncheon at The Washington Times.

“You could convince a large number — millions of silent Muslims. We can convince them very easily that the real enemy is not the United States. It is not Israel. The real enemy is the dictators in the Muslim world and the culture of the Wahhabis and Muslim Brotherhood,” he said, referring to the dominant arbiters of Islamic orthodoxy in Saudi Arabia and Egypt respectively.

Sheik Mansour is the founder of a small Egyptian sect that is neither Sunni nor Shi”ite. They call themselves Quranists because they believe that the Koran represents the single authentic scripture of Islam. They especially anger Sunni Muslims by rejecting the Hadith and Sunna, purported sayings and traditions of the prophet Muhammad.

“Killing people just because they are not Muslims, they have a Hadith for this. To kill a Muslim like me after accusing him to be an ‘apostate,” they have a Hadith for this. To persecute the Jews, they have a Hadith for this.“All this is garbage. It has nothing to do with Islam. It contradicts more than one-fourth of the Koranic verses,” Sheik Mansour said. ((one-fouth Wow!))A former professor of Islamic history at Al-Azhar University in Cairo, he was expelled in 1987 as the Muslim equivalent of a “heretic” and was briefly imprisoned by Egyptian authorities. After subsequent waves of persecution, he finally fled Egypt just months after the September 11, 2001, attacks and received political asylum in the United States the next year.

More recently, in May and June, Egyptian authorities arrested five leaders of the movement, including Sheik Mansour“s brother, on charges of “insulting Islam” and began investigations of 15 others, with the intent, he said, to destroy the entire movement.

From exile in the United States, he continues to attack the Islam of bin Laden and the Wahhabi Islam of Saudi Arabia that gave birth to bin Laden”s beliefs. Sheik Mansour also attacks the Islamist vision of Egypt”s Muslim Brotherhood, a group that rejects violence but shares the goal of a theocratic nationhood under Shariah, or Islamic law.

Though illegal in Egypt, the Brotherhood is allowed to operate openly in an uneasy truce with the government. Police round up its members whenever it delves too publicly in politics — for example, by holding anti-government demonstrations. But the Brotherhood”s interpretation of Shariah provides a benchmark for Egyptian law, which is based primarily on Shariah.

“We are not against the people. We are against this culture that will produce more and more generations of fanaticism. We go to the core of this culture and prove that it contradicts the Koran,” Sheik Mansour said.

“Few Americans understand that the battle against terrorism is a war of ideas,” Sheik Mansour said. “It is a war that is very different from the military in its tactics, its strategy and its weapons.

“Suicide bombings are just one aspect of this war. They brainwash young men to blow themselves up, to kill randomly. Our mission is to convince him, to undeceive them, to convince them that what he is doing is against Islam. He will lose his life and lose his afterlife as well.”Sheik Mansour claims about 10,000 followers in Egypt who accept his teachings, many of whom are part of his extended family.“We find Islam has the same values as the West: freedom, unlimited freedom of speech, justice, equality, loving, humanity, tolerance, mercy, everything. This is our version of Islam, and we argue that this is the core of Islam according to the Koran.”  ((Somebody tell me why people like these are so feared by the powers that be in Muslim nations??))

He and his sons operate the Quranic Center in Northern Virginia, which includes an elaborate Internet site in Arabic and English. On its Web site at www.ahlalquran.com, the organization is republishing dozens of Sheik Mansour“s books and hundreds of articles he has written over the years.  ((the english version http://www.ahl-alquran.com/English/main.php))

The campaign is not without risk. One can find a sampling of fatwas, or edicts by other Muslim scholars against the Quranists, including one saying, “We have issued our commands to the soldiers of God to worship God by pouring out their blood and burning their homes.”  ((Those of you who live in the West, be grateful for your religious freedom.))

Sheik Mansour said in response: “I do not care about my safety, but I do care about my persecuted people in Egypt.”

Paul Marshall, a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute”s Institute of Religious Freedom, said arrests of the Quranists reflect an attempt by Egypt”s government to demonstrate its loyalty to Islam to fend off challenges from even more extreme Islamists who want to impose much harsher restrictions on the Arab world”s most populous nation.

“These arrests are part of the Egyptian government’s double game in which it imprisons members of the Muslim Brotherhood when the latter appear to become too powerful, while simultaneously trying to appear Islamic itself and blunt the Brotherhood’s appeal by cracking down on religious reformers, who are very often also democracy activists,” Mr. Marshall wrote in a recent edition of the Weekly Standard.

The arrests of the Quranists received a brief mention in the latest annual report on International Religious Freedom by the State Department, which noted the arrests of five Quranists and defined the group as “a small group of Muslims who rely largely if not exclusively on the Qur’an as authoritative for Islam, to the exclusion of the prophetic traditions [Hadith] and other sources of Islamic law.”

One detainee told an Egyptian human rights investigator that he was beaten and threatened with rape by one interrogator, the State Department report says.  ((This isn’t the first time I’ve heard of this kind of punishment and interrogation torture.  So here we have a man being persecuted, because he is considered a heretic towards Islam, and we have some Muslims, torturing him and others… Please somebody tell me how one man raping another, or if a man rapes a woman … how ‘Islamic’ is that??  How is torture in any form Islamic??)) 

Since arriving in the states, Sheik Mansour has held a number of academic posts. In 2002, he was a Reagan-Fascell Fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy in Washington, where he wrote on the roots of democracy in Islam.

The next year, he received a visiting fellowship at Harvard Law School’s Human Rights Program.

He also briefly met Karen P. Hughes, the undersecretary of state for public diplomacy, last year in the office of Rep. Frank R. Wolf, Virginia Republican.The meeting, Sheik Mansour said, lasted for 10 minutes, barely enough for polite introductions.

“I said: ‘Please, let me sit down with you for more time. I have big plan,” ” he recalled. But there was no follow-up.

“We need official American help for our arrested people in Egypt,” he said. “We don”t want money. We are talking about releasing our arrested people, saving the lives of scholars, bringing them to the U.S., granting them asylum to help establish this new base for moderate Islam.”

http://www.washingtontimes.com/article/20070926/FOREIGN/109260030/1003

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No Compulsion…As Long As You Believe Like Me

As we are going into Thanksgiving and I am very busy during this time of the year; I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to get at least 3 posts out this week. I won’t be putting up one on the topic I am currently working on however I found this on my friends blog.  We will get back to the other series the first of the week (hopefully).  But this post and the next one is just as informative and interesting as the series we are in, so I really want everyone to read it and the next one.

This article is written by Ahmed Mansour, and tells you some of the beliefs of these people who are being persecuted for not believing the same way as the powers that be.  I am printing it in it’s entirety here, but you can also find it here. Again, thank you Stefan for printing great stuff that I can share with others. I thought it was very interesting and worthwhile reading for all. Since I have 5 blogs, what better way to get this out there.  There is a part 2 to this which I will put up by Friday or Saturday.  Actually I think this post should be the second part, but I am putting it up first.

Again remember there is no compulsion in Islam… as long as you worship and/or believe the way your told. Anything else is subject to discrimination, jail, or death. Even if, or rather, especially if, you are a Muslim in a Muslim nation. In the early 1990’s, I was invited by the Egyptian association for religious brotherhood to lecture in a church in Cairo to Muslims and Christians about tolerance. I was warned that there was a suspicious bearded man waiting for me in front of the church.We talked. He told me that he had spent two months trying to meet me. He told me that he had been a member of secret fanatic organization and was assigned to rebut my discourse, but that my words had changed his and his family’s life. He asked me to join my weekly Friday prayer meeting at my home, and if possible bring his family.

After a month they became Quranists.

Who are the Quranists?

The Quranists are intellectual Muslims who believe in Islam as the religion of freedom, democracy, tolerance, justice, peace and human rights. They fight the terrorists’ culture from within Islam, using Quran as the only source of legislation.

Why they are persecuted?

The Quranic movement started in 1979 by sincere Muslim scholars who specialized in the contradiction between the true Islam and the Culture of Muslims. Therefore they were victimized by terrorists and fanatic scholars.
Being activists for human rights and democracy, and calling for peaceful reform from within Islam, the Quranists are also victimized by the Egyptian regime.

The Egyptian regime and Muslim Brothers are against each other but are usually united against Quranists.

Brief overview of the persecution of Quranists:

The Quranists have suffered three waves of arrest; in 1987, 2000-2001, and finally the third wave starting May 28th, 2007, when five of the Quranists were arrested, tortured for 37 days, interrogated, and suffered ridiculous accusations about their faith and prayers.

Their families were also persecuted in Egypt. Some moved to Upper Egypt and some stayed indoors. The Muslim Brothers used mosques, media and the education system, as well as their control of the streets to try to tarnish the Quranists as ardent enemies of Islam.

After the Egyptian regime officially accused the Quranists of insulting Islam, fanatics used the accusation to call for the Quranists’ death.

The five Quranists have been released in October 6, 2007, after more than four months in prison. Because of torture, my brother Abdellateef had to undergo surgery in his ear. Amr Tharwat needed surgery on his leg, while Ahmed Dahmash has damage in his backbone. The persecution continues. Every week, they must go to the same prison to be interrogated and humiliated by the security services. Any time they may be arrested and tortured again. They are ordered to pray the weekly Friday prayer in fanatic mosques, and are not allowed to contact me, or to write in our site.

In this way he Egyptian regime is seeking to make an example for the rest and keep the Quranists from continuing their reform movement.

Persecution in some detail:

As an assistant professor at Al-Azhar University, the oldest and most famous religious university in the Sunni Muslim world, I wrote five books in 1985 to reform Sunni religious life.. I was accused of being against Islam because I denied the intercession of the prophet Muhammad in the day of judgment, deny his infallibility, and deny that he is the best and the master of all the prophets. In March 1987, I was fired.In November 1987, I was arrested, along with 24 of my followers, and accused of being a denier of the Sunna, the sayings and the deeds of the prophet Muhammad. The government claimed that my writing were a call for Muslims to abandon Islam. After two months I was released.

To save my life, I escaped to the United States. When I returned to Egypt in October 1988 I was again arrested, and released after two days on the condition that I not defend myself whenever the fanatics of Al Azhar attacked me. In the period 1988-1995, I was attacked so severely, and received death threats so that I asked for court protection. From January 1996 until June 2000 I worked at the Ibn Khaldun Center as a Muslim scholar and moderator of the Center’s weekly forum. The Center is run by Dr. Saad Eddin Ibrahim, the famous sociologist, and leader of the movement for human rights, civil society and liberal culture in the Arab world. As an American citizen and part-time counselor of President Mubarak, Dr. Ibrahim has had great influence in Egypt in the 1990s.

My life was in real danger after I wrote a book as a project for the Center on reforming the Egyptian education system to make it more tolerant. I was severely attacked in the Egyptian parliament.

As a result of problems between Dr. Ibrahim and President Mubarak, Dr. Ibrahim was arrested in June 2000 and the Center shut down. Since I was in serious danger, and some of my relatives had been arrested, I contacted and explained the situation to officials in the US embassy.

The security service kept us constantly in a state of terror. They arrested more members of my family in my village. Finally they arrested some of my friends who used to attend my weekly prayer at home. One told me that he expected them to arrest both of us along with more of my relatives. He said they would as usual force my friends to make false accusations about me and so I fled to the US on October, 15, 2001. (This is reviewed in the U. S Department of State’s 2002 International Religious Freedom Report)

Since coming to the U.S, I have found the same Wahabi influence, and founded the International Quranic Center, with a website, to organize Quranists.

So, we suffer the third wave of arrest.

For more details:

http://www.ahl-alquran.com/English/show_article.php?main_id=126

http://www.ahl-alquran.com/arabic/show_article.php?main_id=2048 

How could the Quranists help the U.S in this war of ideas against the terrorists?

The war against terrorism is 90% war of ideas. This intellectual war has its unique aspects and rules. The Quranists are an Islamic group capable of defending the U.S in this ideological war against terrorism. Al Qaeda and all the terrorist organizations have real power in the war of ideas.

But they cannot debate us with logic and evidence, so they resort to brute force, with government accomplices. So we are jailed, tortured, driven from out homes and made refugees in other countries. They issue fatwas calling for our death; thus proving once more that the Wahabi ideology cannot stand on its own feet, but requires the power of authorities to force it on people.

The only way to confront and defeat Wahabis is by using our ways and methods. We are Muslims, sincere about our faith and very much attached to and adhered to the Quran, and for the past thirty years, we never wavered, never retreated, we stood alone and stood firm, and despite the persecution and the lack of means, we managed to succeed in producing a genuine change in the Islamic interpretation and practices among many Muslims.

In conclusion, despite many successes, we are still victims of the Wahabi ideology and persecution of a tyrannical regime in Egypt on one hand, and a total neglect and disregard from the American institutions on the other hand.

http://www.ahl-alquran.com/English/show_article.php?main_id=2614

See :

Egyptian Human Rights Activist Saad Eddin Ibrahim Defies Threats, Arrests to Challenge U.S.-Backed Mubarak Government

And my next post, if you just can’t wait.  Or rather my copy/paste of Stefan’s post lol.  Oh well, it is a holiday after all. 

The Coming Utopia??

The Coming Utopia magnify

I’ve pointed out some of this before, but when I found this, I just had to share it with you. I’ve said many times what would happen if Islamist/Jihadist get their way… ENJOY!!! Islamic Utopia??  

In the year 3000, we will live in the Dar-ul-Aman ruled by a pious Khalifa and surrounded by the bounty our Lord promised us:

  • All men will be freed from the curse of razor-burns that has plagued mankind for centuries.
  • The women, cloaked in tent-like burqas (veils) will be protected from the sun and their complexions will blossom without help from Este Lauder.
  • The faithful will never again have to suffer just because the singular wife has a headache – they will be able to choose from a harem of four plus forty.
  • Children will not have to struggle with thirty textbooks and useless subjects like biology and European History – all they will need to do is “memorize one book, which holds all the answers”. (Quran)
  • The state will provide free entertainment every Friday in the form of lashings, beheadings and stonings – G-rated fun for the whole family.
  • We won’t have to keep track of the Bank holidays, as all banks will be shut down once we do away with the curse of currency and go back to the blessing of barter trade.
  • Once the decadent internet is outlawed and the ISPs shut down, we will be spared the arbitrary pricing and bad service from the likes of AOL and @home.
  • Men will have more time for spiritual cleansing rites once the women are children are banished to the harem after the Majlis-I-Shoora passes the “Seldom Seen Never Heard” law.
  • Members of the Majlis will be able to consume mass quantities of halwa (fattening sweets) unfettered by the unislamic tie and belt.
  • No more traffic jams and pollution once we go back to riding camels and donkeys to uphold the Sunnah.
  • No more load-shedding once we harness the power of the jinns to produce zillions of megawatts in the Hazrat Suleiman Jinn Power Plant (HSJPP) – and to heck with the HUBCO!
  • As for the dastardly Indians, they won’t have the nerve to bother us once we have raised a few squadrons of Ababil (myth: birds who killed elephants by dropping pebbles from their beaks) and learned the art of parting the Ravi (a river in Indo Pakistan Sub Continent).
  • Once we have reached the required level of piety, we shall dine on Manna (Quail) and Salwa (another pre cooked divine food) from that big kitchen in the sky – who needs McDonalds and KFC.
  • The faithful will be spared the ignominy of buying liquor licenses from their non-Muslim “friends” because most be banished to Dar-ul-Harb for refusing to pay Jiziya.
  • We will be free from the curse of the blood-sucking lawyers once we establish the quick-and-dirty Islamic Justice system, which will be merged with the Ministry of Sports and Entertainment.
  • Government expenditure on education will be reduced by firing the likes of Dr. Hoodbhoy and merging the Quaid-i-Azam University with the one and only IU, whose Rector will also serve as the Imam (cleric) of the Faisal Masjid and head up the Institute of Research on Islamic Foods (in the pre-Salwa era.)
  • Islamic Research will finally solve the mysteries of the Composition of Milk and discover the cure for hoof-and -mouth disease (all hidden in the Quran as the faithful have claimed for centuries.
  • My brother-in-law, an under-employed physician and cricket purist, will be able to moonlight at the stadium amputating arms that chuck and beheading physicists who dare to think.
     
  • So, don’t let the lackeys of the West, the heretics and Hypocrites discourage you from following the True Path, the Sirat-ul-Mustaqeem, which will lead to salvation and glory for the Ummah. Those who stray from this path will suffer the ignominious 62-7 fate of the Miami Dolphins.

No disrespect intended.  As most of you know, I try not to disrespect anyone’s religion, but there was too much important stuff in the above info to ignore it all together. 

I would like to ask my Muslim friends and readers if this is how you would like to live??  Because this is only a small example of how the Islamist/Jihadist want to rule the world.   

I realize that different parts of the world allow different things in regards to ‘punishment’ for ‘criminal’ acts. But to me and most Westerners this is a bit over the top. Not to mention the fact that what the Islamist considers ‘criminal’ may be far out of line to even the most devout Muslim. I’ve pointed out how it could be different here…

https://eaglespearlsofwisdom.wordpress.com/2007/08/04/islamist-principle-of-repayment-in-kind/

And I continue to point out that it would be terrible if we did that type of thing to Muslims, so Muslims should think it would be terrible if they did it to us. Do you agree?? Are you trying to do any thing about it?? Do you talk to your Muslim brothers and sisters about this subject and how it is wrong?? I am interested to see what you have to say on this subject.

P.S.  To my readers, sorry if the text cames out small.  Seems like wordpress has a mind of it’s own, everytime I preview the post, it looks different, so who knows how it will look when I post it LOL…

http://www.homa.org/Details.asp?ContentID=2137352755&TOCID=2083225348

They Said What???

They Said What?!?!? magnify

I have posted and will again post using the words of radical Islamist/Jihadist. But since I have had so much feedback from people who haven’t seen/heard any/enough of response from Muslims in general over Bin Laden and terrorism, I am going to post a list of quotes from Muslim scholars in regards to this subject. Hopefully you will see something you haven’t seen before.

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Grand Sheikh Mohammed Sayed Tantawi of the Al-Azhar mosque of Cairo – which is seen as the highest authority in Sunni Islam – said groups which carried out suicide bombings were the enemies of Islam. “I do not subscribe to the idea of a clash among civilizations. People of different beliefs should co-operate and not get into senseless conflicts and animosity.” “Extremism is the enemy of Islam. Whereas, jihad is allowed in Islam to defend one’s land, to help the oppressed. The difference between jihad in Islam and extremism is like the earth and the sky.”Sheikh Tantawi said Muslim suicide attacks, including those against Israelis, were wrong and not be justified.

His comments echoed those by Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir Mohammed who said, at the opening of the conference on Thursday, that salvation could not be achieved through the killing of innocent people.“I would rather live in America under Ashcroft and Bush at their worst, than in any “Islamic state” established by ignorant, intolerant, and murderous punks like you and Mullah Omar at their best.” A thought provoking, controversial, pre-war article by Muqtedar Khan, Ph.D. 

Prominent Muslim scholar Dr. Youssef Al-Qaradawi has condemned Al-Qaeda for their fuel tanker suicide bombing of a centuries-old Jewish synagogue on the Tunisian island of Djerba in April 2002.

On June 23 in a statement broadcast on the Qatar-based Al-Jazeera television channel, Sulaiman Abu Gaith, a spokesman for the Al-Qaeda network, claimed responsibility for the explosion that killed 14 German tourists. Five local Jews also perished.

Dr. Al Qaradawi said that in Islam it is not permissible to attack places of worship such as churches and synagogues or attack men of religion, even in a state of war. “Civilians, such as the German tourists, should not be killed, or kept as hostages. Jews, not in conflict with Muslims, must not be killed either. Anyone who commits these crimes is punishable by Islamic Sharia and have committed the sin of killing a soul which God has prohibited to kill and of spreading corruption on earth.”

When asked whether the killing of Jewish women, children and men is permissible, Islamic scholar Muhammad Al-Hanuti said that no one may be persecuted or tortured because of their religion. “The only one who could be killed is the murderer or the one who commits a crime punishable by the law. In war, when people are fighting for a certain cause, Muslims are not allowed to kill the elderly, women or children. The only legitimate target is the one who is involved in combat against Muslims.”

Dr. Al-Qaradawi said that the conflict with the Jews is over land and not about their Judaism, because they are people of the Book (i.e. they believe in a revealed religion). “We are allowed to eat their food and marry their women. Accordingly, social intercourse, including inter-marriage, is permitted with the People of the Book. The Jews lived under Muslims’ protection for many centuries.

Over the attacks on 9/11, Al-Qaradawi said, killing hundreds of helpless civilians who have nothing to do with the decision making process and are striving hard to earn their daily bread, such as the victims of [9/11], is a heinous crime in Islam. The Prophet, pbuh, is reported to have stated that a woman was qualified to enter Hell because of the cat she locked up to death. If such is the ruling applied in protecting animals, no doubt, aggression against human beings, a fortiori, deserves greater protection, for human beings are honored by Allah Almighty and are His vicegerents on earth.” “Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you. Remember that you will indeed meet your Lord, and that He will indeed reckon your deeds” From the last sermon of Mohammed

“It is time that we Muslims acknowledge that the freedoms we enjoy in the US are more desirable to us than superficial solidarity with the Muslim World. If you disagree, then prove it by packing your bags and going to whichever Muslim country you identify with.” Dr. M.A. Muqtedar Khan

Ed Bradley: Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t it the responsibility…Does not Islam, does not Allah require that Muslims police their own religion and rid themselves of extremists?

Hamza Yusuf: Yes, absolutely. It’s an obligation for Muslims to root them out. And I think it is a jihad now for the Muslims in the Muslim country to rid themselves of this element. (CBS’s 60 Minutes Sept. 30, 2001)

“Who has the greatest duty to stop violence committed by Muslims against innocent non-Muslims in the name of Islam?? The answer, obviously, is Muslims.” Ingrid Mattson, Vice President, Islamic Society of North America

“Hijacking Planes, terrorizing innocent people and shedding blood constitute a form of injustice that can not be tolerated by Islam, which views them as gross crimes and sinful acts.” Shaykh Abdul Aziz al-Ashaikh, Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia and Chairman of the Senior Ulama, on 9/15/01

“The terrorists acts, from the perspective of Islamic law, constitute the crime of hirabah (waging war against society).”
September 27, 2001 – Fatwa, signed by:
Shaykh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, Grand Islamic Scholar and Chairman of the Sunna and Sira Council, Qatar
Judge Tariq al-Bishri, First Deputy President of the Council d’etat, Egypt
Dr. Muhammad s. al-Awa, Professor of Islamic Law and Shari’a, Egypt
Dr. Haytham al-Khayyat, Islamic scholar, Syria
Fahmi Houaydi, Islamic scholar, Syria
Shaykh Taha Jabir al-Alwani, Chairman, North America High Council

“Neither the law of Islam nor its ethical system justify such a crime.” Zaki Badawi, Principal of the Muslim College in London. Cited in Arab News, 9/28/01.

“It is wrong to kill innocent people. It is also wrong to praise those who kill innocent people.” Mufti Nizamuddin Shamzai, Pakistan. Cited in the NY Times, 9/28/01.

“What these people stand for is completely against all the principles that Arab Muslims believe in.” King Abdullah II, of Jordan; cited in the Middle East Times, 9/28/01. (The above statements by high ranking international Muslim scholars and leaders appeared in an advertisement placed by the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, in the New York Times, 10/17/01)

“I’m a Muslim, I’ve been a Muslim for 20 years. I want the world to know the truth about Islam. I wouldn’t be here to represent Islam if it were the way the terrorists make it look…Islam is for peace.” Former World Heavyweight boxing champion, Muhammad Ali, at the telethon benefit concert, 9/21/01

“Those terrorists must be reading a completely different Quran than the rest of us. This isn’t about Islam. It’s about terrorism.” US Marine Corps Captain Aisha Bakkar-Poe.

“Terrorists claiming to act in the name of Islam is like a knife through my heart – that people would practice Islam, but do deeds like what they’ve done. It’s not true faith. Some people twist religion to the way they think.” US Army Captain Arneshuia Balial, a convert to Islam since 1987.

The country’s top cleric told 2 million hajj pilgrims Wednesday that some of Islam’s own sons had been “lured by the devil” to conduct violent attacks on the kingdom and charged that non-Muslims were conspiring against people of the faith. Sheik Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah al Sheik, speaking at a mosque near Mt. Arafat, lamented the violence waged by Muslim militants against Saudi Arabia.

“The greatest affliction to strike the nation of Islam came from some of its own sons, who were lured by the devil,” the cleric said. “They have called the nation infidel, they have shed protected blood and they have spread vice on Earth, with explosions and destruction and killing of innocents.”

He pointedly asked of Muslim youth: “How would you meet God? With innocent blood you shed or helped shed?”

A leading Saudi cleric issued a plea today for Muslims not to heed calls to wage terror attacks in the name of Islam. Sheikh Abdulrahman al-Sudeis, the state-appointed preacher at the Grand Mosque in Mecca, told pilgrims in a sermon marking the feast of Eid al-Adha that scholars must preach moderation to confront militants, who were using “misguided and void” interpretations to justify violence. His sermon, dedicated to the 2.5 million Muslims performing the hajj pilgrimage in Mecca, echoed comments made yesterday by Sheikh Abdul-Aziz al Sheik. The kingdom’s grand mufti said the greatest test to the nation of Islam came from its sons who were “lured by the devil” to carry out acts of violence.

Sheikh al-Sudeis said militancy was not a valid interpretation of Islam. “Because Muslims have strayed from moderation, we are now suffering from this dangerous phenomenon of branding people infidels and inciting Muslims to rise against their leaders to cause instability,” he said.

“The reason for this is a delinquent and void interpretation of Islam based on ignorance … faith does not mean killing Muslims or non-Muslims who live among us, it does not mean shedding blood, terrorising or sending body parts flying.”

The preacher warned that extremism would ruin the Muslim nation: “This phenomenon has expanded so much that scholars must confront it with concrete proof from Islam to protect our youth from its stench and putridity.”

A a quick browse of Muslims Condemn Terrorist Attacks will show, every major Muslim group in every English-speaking country (since I don’t speak other languages, my collection is limited in this regard) has issued statements condemning terrorism. All the major scholars and schools of thought in Islam have issued statements condemning terrorism. Political and community leaders from across the Muslim world have issued statements condemning terrorism. Many ordinary Muslims have written articles condemning terrorism or posted condemnations to their websites. What more do the critics want? A sworn affadavit from each of 1.2 billion Muslims?

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There is so much stuff out there in this same vein, that it is hard for me to put it all in one post.  Or even decide which ones I want to use and how much of it.  I don’t want to bore you with positive things.  Some of it comes out of the most surprising places when you consider their past.  

I am going to post some website links at the bottom of this post.  Some are source links but within them are all kinds of information.  You can see a mutitude of Muslims who have condemned terrorism, Bin Laden, and all his practices.  You can find info on those pesky verses in the Quran that seem to say to kill everyone.  You can get some insight from Muslim scholars as to why the terrorists are wrong in their interpetation of the Quran.  If you have doubt in your mind, please check it out.  Seriously, 1.something billion Muslims are not out to kill you, if they were, you would already be dead. 

Muslims become just as frustrated when they feel people are wanting day to day demonstrations of apology, protests, and begging of forgiveness for a crime that they didn’t commit.  How many times must I say, just because the crime was commited by a Muslim, does not mean that all Muslims are criminals.  

http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/muslim_voices_against_extremism_and_terrorism_part_i_fatwas/0012209

http://www.theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php

http://www.muhajabah.com/otherscondemn.php

http://freemuslims.org/

http://www.islamfortoday.com/terrorism.htm

http://www.rayhawk.com/classics/matusa/home.html

http://www.islamdenouncesterrorism.com/

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/3059365.stm

This is a link to a friend where he has a poll of Muslims in various countries.  It shows that the majority of Muslims disagree with the tactics of al Qaeda.

http://towelianism.wordpress.com/2007/05/29/islam-muslims-the-world-a-brief-paradigmatic-analysis/

 

Memo To Osama Bin Laden

Memo To Osama Bin Laden magnify

 

I saw this and thought that since we are on the subject, you might be interested in seeing it.  Basicly it is a letter to Bin Lyin, from Muqtedar Khan, Ph.D. This is an American Muslim’s response to the tape recorded message dated 2/11/03 by fugitive terrorist Osama Bin Lyin.  

Mr Bin Laden,

In the name of Allah, The Most Merciful, the Most Benevolent.

I begin by reciting some important principles of Islam to remind you that there is more to Islam than just a call to arms.

1 Islam was sent as mercy to humanity (Quran 4: 79).  2. Do not make mischief on the earth (Quran 29:36).  3. People, We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes that you might know one another.  The noblest of you before God is the most righteous of you. (49:13)  4. There are among the People of the Book (Jews and Christians) upstanding nations that recite the message of God and worship throughout the night, who believe in God, who honor and forbid dishonor and race in good works.  These are the righteous. (3:113-114). 

I am writing this to make it clear that there are Muslims in America and in the world who despise and condemn extremists and have nothing to do with Bin Laden and those like him for whom killing constitutes worship. 

Islam was sent as mercy to humanity and not as an ideology of terror or hatred.  It advocates plurality and moral equality of all faiths (Quran 2:62, 5:69).  To use Islam, as a justification to declare an Armageddon against all non-Muslims is inherently un-Islamic – it is a despicable distortion of a faith of peace.  One of Allah’s 99 names in the Quran is “Al Salam” which means Peace.  Thus in a way Muslims are the only people who actually worship peace.  Today this claim sounds so empty, thanks to people like you, Mr. Bin Laden.  You and those like you are dedicated to killing and bringing misery to people wherever they are.  God blessed you with the capacity to lead and also endowed you with enormous resources.  You could have used your influence in Afgahanistan to develop it, to bring it out of poverty and underdevelopment and show the world what Islam can do for those who believe in it.  You chose to provoke and bring war to a people who had already been devastated by wars.

Yes many innocent people lost their lives in America’s war on Afghanistan and many more might lose their lives in Iraq.  This is indeed regrettable.  But we must never forget as to how the West is divided over this and how nations and people within nations are agonizing in Europe and in America over this decision to go to war in Iraq.  While many Americans and Europeans oppose the war, Muslim nations have already agreed to cooperate in this war.  No Muslim leader has tried to play the role of a statesman on this issue.  It is a tragedy that there is not a single Ted Kennedy, Jimmy Carter or Nelson Mandela in the entire Muslim world who would stand up and speak for justice!

Before we rush to condemn America we must remember that even today millions of poor and miserable people all across the world are lining up outside US embassies eager to come to America, not just to live here but to become an American.  No Muslim country today, can claim that people of other nations and other faiths see it as a promise of hope, equality, dignity and prosperity. 

Yes, we American Muslims will continue to challenge the Bush administrations’ proposal to wage war against Iraq.  We think a regime change in Washington is as necessary as a regime change in Baghdad, but that is an intramural affair.  Once the war is declared, make no mistake Mr. Saddam Hussein and Mr. Bin Laden, We are with America.  We will fight with America and we will fight for America.  We have a covenant with this nation, we see it as a divine commitment and we will not disobey the Quran (9:4) – we will fulfill our obligations as citizens to the land that opened its doors to us and promised us equality and dignity even though we have a different faith.  I am sure Mr. Bin Laden, you can neither understand nor appreciate this willingness to accept and welcome the other.

Sure at this moment out of anger, frustration and fear, some in America have momentarily forgotten their own values.  I am confident that, God willing, this moment of shock and insecurity will pass and America will once again become the beacon of freedom, tolerance and acceptance that it was before September 11th.  On that day Mr. Bid Laden, you not only killed 3000 innocent Americans, many of whom were also Muslims, but you signed the death warrants of many innocent people who will die in this war on terror and many more who will live but will suffer the consequences, the pain and the misery of war.  Before September 11th, the US was giving aid to Afghanistan and was content to wait for the Iraqi people to free themselves and the rest of the world from their dictator.  On that day you changed the rules of the game and Muslims in many places are suffering as a direct consequence.

When the Prophet Muhammad (saw) and his companions fought in the name of Islam, Allah made them victorious and glorified them in this world.  They made Islam the currency of human civilization for over a millennium.  You and your men on the other hand face nothing but defeat, global ridicule and contempt and run and hide like rats in caves and dungeons.  You live in the dark.  Your faith neither enlightens you nor enables you to live in the light and you have made Islam the currency of hate and violence.

Let me tell you that I would rather live in America under Ashcroft and Bush at their worst, than in any “Islamic state” established by ignorant, intolerant and murderous punks like you and Mullah Omar at their best.  The US, Patriot Act not withstanding, is still a more Islamic (just and tolerant) state than Afghanistan ever was under the Taliban.

Remember this:  Muslims from all over the world who wished to live better lives migrated to America and Muslims who only wished to take lives migrated to Afghanistan to join you.

We will not follow the desires of people (like you) who went astray and led many astray from the Straight Path. (Quran 5:77)

I conclude by calling upon you Mr. Bin Laden and your Al Qaeda collegues and Mr. Saddam Hussein to surrender to International Courts and take responsibility for your actions and protect thousands of other innocent Muslims from becoming the victims of the wars you bring upon them.

Muqtedar Khan, Ph.D.  Muqtedar Khan, Ph.D.
Director of International Studies, Adrian College, MI
Director of Muslim Social Scientists
Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy.

.

Just so there is no misunderstanding. I agreed with President Bush in going into Iraq. Knowing the history of Saddam, and after what had happened on 9/11, we couldn’t take the chance. I do NOT believe that Saddam had any ties to what happened on 9/11. He had plenty of time to cooperate with the UN before we invaded. He even had the chance to leave Iraq. Why he did neither, I will never understand.

Though some people have changed their mind on this subject I have not. As to the US still in Iraq, I don’t think we should leave unless the leaders of Iraq asked us to, and to date, they have not. Whether you think it is right, wrong or indifferent, we stay until Iraqi’s can defend themselves, to leave before that, would cause a bloodbath.

Some of you may disagree with me on this, and that’s OK, I am merely telling you my views on the manner.

 

 

Reform In Islam

Reform In Islam magnify

  

I have GOT to stop getting distracted LOL. I start with one thing and get switched to something else. I have been really busy the last couple of days, so I haven’t been keeping up with my blog. Please accept my apologies. I am doing research right now for some upcoming topics, I don’t want to miss anything so it takes a little time. In the mean time, I will cheat with some easy posts.

I want to print some stuff that I have found out there from Muslims in regards to current events. I still see that people question Muslim attitudes, acts/non-acts, etc. I was a little disappointed that when I posted the letter which was sent 5 years ago on the anniversary of 9/11, I still saw people questioning all Muslims because of the actions of a few. Too bad it can’t be the other way around.

I could, if this blog was about Islam in general, which it isn’t,…but I could post a story everyday for at least the next 2 years with stories of Muslims against terrorism, against radical Islam.  Muslims who believe that those people in radical Islam are not Muslims.  They feel that the radicals are not following the Quran.  I could post those stories every day, and I doubt it would change some peoples minds.  I tried to point out just a few things in hopes of changing minds, please be aware that there is much, much, more out there and it’s easy to find. 

The following comes from a Muslim college lecturer. His concern over the U.S. invading and taking over due to human rights violations… I seriously doubt. At any rate, he is speaking against Sharia and of reform, both in the past and in the future. I may not agree with everything he says, in regards to the U.S., but I am always grateful when I hear of Muslims wanting to step into the 21st century.  It was written Sept. 9, 2004

Christianity had its own violent past. There were many things done in the name of Christianity that we no longer do today. In time, I hope, the same will be able to be said of Islam. As my friend salahudin said, Islam hasn’t been around as long as Judaism or Christianity. They seem to be having their own “dark ages”. If we are honest with ourselves we can start a list of the violence done in the name of Christianity. But even in those days, not all Christians acted the same way, as a matter of fact, MOST didn’t. So why would you think that all of Islam is the same??

Tunisian University Lecturer: Sharia Must Not Be Implemented Today

In an article titled “Shari’a Must Not Be Implemented Today” posted on the liberal Arab website www.metransparent.com, Dr. Iqbal Al-Gharbi, lecturer in psychology at Al-Zaytouna University, Tunisia, wrote that during Islam’s formative years, the Prophet Muhammad and the four Righteous Caliphs placed the best interests of the Muslim nation before a literal adherence to the Koran and blind imitation of the Prophet’s way of life (the Sunna). She stated that the principle of placing the Muslim nation’s best interests first and using logic must guide the Muslim world today as well. The following are excerpts from the article: [1]

‘The Implementation of Shari’a in Our Generation Harms Shari’a and the Islamic Nation’

Shari’a [Islamic religious law] must not be implemented in the Arab world today because its implementation threatens the cultural balance that has existed in this region for hundreds of years. For example, [implementing Shari’a caused] Christian Arab emigration to the West, which is a mark of shame on the forehead of the [Muslim] nation.

“Statistics show that the number of Christian Arabs, which today stands at 12 million, has waned, and their presence in the Arab region has diminished. In Syria today there are half the Christians that there were in the 1950s, and in Jerusalem, there are only a few thousand, when in 1948 they numbered 50,000…

“In addition, the implementation of Shari’a in our generation harms Shari’a itself, as well as the Islamic nation – which will become a world joke for [dictating] amputating the hand of someone who stole ‘a quarter of a dinar,’ stoning [adulterous] lovers, publicly giving 1,000 lashes to anyone who imbibes a glass of wine, and breaking the necks of [Muslims] who adopted another religion or of those who do not act according to any religion.

“Moreover, the day will come when the U.S. will use our violation of the Human Rights Convention as an excuse to occupy us and make us into other Indians [and do to us what they did to them]. This is because it is clear today, in the era of globalization, that any internal problem not dealt with by deep-rooted reform becomes an international problem…”

‘The Demand to Implement Shari’a Today is Absurd and Ill-Intentioned’

“The demand to implement Shari’a today is absurd and ill-intentioned. It indicates its supporters’ ignorance both of Islamic history and of the aims of Shari’a. The Prophet Muhammad did not implement Shari’a fully because [ Shari’a ] was not revealed to him all at once but gradually, over more than 20 years, in response to problems that arose with the organization of the new nation and in response to the challenges [posed] by the Children of Israel in Al-Madina…

“[Likewise], an important part of the Koran was abrogated because every time the social, economic, and security circumstances of the Islamic nation developed, the previous verses, which were no longer appropriate [in light of] the new changes, were abrogated…

“[Furthermore,] Islam urges the use of logic and wisdom. The role of the Prophet was not only to declare the revelations and interpret the Koranic text, but also to get [the people] accustomed to using logic… For this reason, the abrogation of Koranic verses did not end with the death of the Prophet – because social conditions did not freeze in place, but continued their constant movement from the simple to the complex.”

‘The Four Righteous Caliphs Continued [in the Path of the Prophet], Abrogating and Amending’

“The four Righteous Caliphs continued [in the path of the Prophet] and abrogated and amended the verses connected to the commandments between man and his fellow [man], in accordance with the Shari’a principles based on encouraging good deeds and refraining from evil deeds.

“Thus, for example, [the First Caliph] Abu Bakr abrogated the verse ‘Alms are only for the poor and the needy, and those who collect them, and those whose hearts have [recently] been reconciled to [Islam] [Koran 9:60]’ – that is, [Abu Bakr eliminated the grant] to those who had newly joined Islam, while the Prophet continued to give this Zakat [charitable grant] to them throughout his life. It is interesting that none of the Prophet’s Companions argued with him about this, or accused him of deviating from Islam – like people today hasten to accuse [others] of betrayal and apostasy.

“Abu Bakr’s argument when he abrogated this verse was based on logic, not on tradition: ‘Islam has become stronger, and we have no need for them [i.e. those who have newly joined Islam]’ Why? Because the balance of power between the Muslims and the polytheists had changed from the situation that existed when the verse was revealed. Previously, the [Muslim] nation was weak, and needed to entice people with material temptations so they would join. But when it became stronger, both numerically and with regard to its [military] preparedness, it no longer needed this…

“According to this logic, which is open to the innovations of life and sets the public [wellbeing] over the text of the Koran or the Sunna, [the Second Caliph] Omar bin Al-Khattab abrogated the Koranic punishment for theft in the year Al-Ramada [18 in the Muslim calendar], the year that famine struck the Arabian Peninsula. [He did so] even though the verse clearly and absolutely orders hand amputation: ‘As for the thief, both male and female, cut off their hands. It is the reward for their own deeds. [Koran 5:38].’

“The reason why [this punishment was abrogated] was a change in the Muslim nation’s strategic situation in Omar’s day, in contrast to the situation in the day of the Prophet. The nation had become a conquering [nation], and had [developed] a mighty military program – to topple the Persian and Byzantine empires. Such objectives cannot be achieved with a military consisting of one-armed men, and in the year Al-Ramada, Mecca and Al-Madina alone had 15,000 thieves, and doubtless the number [of thieves] in the rest of the Arabian Peninsula was many times greater…

“[The Third Caliph] Uthman bin ‘Affan went even farther than his two predecessors in abrogating texts in the Sunna and the Koran – even in the sphere of ritual between man and God. He prayed at Mina, while the Prophet and [the previous Caliphs] Abu Bakr and Omar abandoned this prayer. Also, he introduced many changes unfamiliar to Muslims in the deeds between man and his fellow [man] – which aroused outbreaks against him and led to his cruel murder.

“For example, he introduced new Persian [-style] taxes, when the Koran and the Sunna recognized only the Zakat and the Kharaj [land tax], and preferred to give his family state jobs and funds from the Muslim treasury…

“Also, the Fourth Caliph Ali bin Abu Taleb acted no differently than his three predecessors, placing what he thought was the best interests of the [Muslim] nation over the text of the Koran and the Sunna… [Thus for example] he invented the punishment for [imbibing] wine… [Imbibing wine] is forbidden in the Koran…: ‘Intoxicants and gambling, (dedication of) stones, and (divination by) arrows are an abomination [and] Satan’s handwork: Eschew such (abomination) [Koran 5:90].’ However, the Koran had not determined a punishment for anyone violating these prohibitions… The Prophet had not punished anyone who drank wine, and even Abu Bakr had not, and apparently also Omar had not…

“But the Imam Ali [did so because] he was horrified by the worsening of alcohol consumption and by the grave sins stemming from it during the period after the spread of the [Muslim] occupation, at a time when the booty flowed abundantly to Mecca and Al-Madina, and corruption and drunkenness proliferated there.

“In an attempt to be rid of this corruption, he did not hesitate to differ from what was said in the Koran and the Sunna, and to invent a punishment for wine-drinkers…”

‘The Flaw Lies in Reliance upon a Literal Reading of the Koran and Sunna’

“The flaw [in understanding Shari’a ] lies in the reliance on a literal reading of the Koran and Sunna, instead of an allegorical and rational reading that sets the best interests of the nation over the texts of its heritage – as did the best of [our] ancient, righteous patriarchs who made us a nation among the advanced nations, that set logic above tradition and placed the best interests of flesh and blood man over the rituals of their forefathers.

“If we do not turn [in this direction] swiftly and with maximum determination, we will remain a nation of the agrarian era that has no place in an era of industrial revolutions that follow each other…”


 http://www.metransparent.com/texts/ikbal_algharbi_application_of_sharia_today.htm, September 9, 2004. Abrogation is a method known in Islam by the technical names of Nasekh and mansoukh which offers a solution to the contradictions between Koranic verses. According to this method, the Koran includes verses that were subsequently abrogated by verses revealed at a later stage, and only the later verses are binding upon Muslims.

In Memorial, Never Forget

In Memorial, Never Forget magnify

As we approach the anniversary of 9/11/2001, I want to leave a simple message of tribute to those who died then (on 9/11) and now, serving in the military. May God bless and comfort their families. Never forget that day, or the days that followed, when we as a nation stood hand in hand together. Not Republican and Democrat, but Americans. May we get back to that.

I have been doing a series of posts on bigotry, because some people think all Muslims think alike. Below is a letter from a Muslim, in regards to 9/11, I think its important for us all to read. It was printed in Time one year after 9/11.

As an Egyptian, I find myself compelled to apologize to the American people for what happened to them on Sept. 11. I apologize because one of those involved in that horrible disaster was Egyptian. As a man of letters, I declare myself innocent of having any part in the creation of the culture that spawned these individuals.

A long time before New York City’s Twin Towers were destroyed, many towers in my country were brought down by this same brand of perpetrators. They killed President Anwar Sadat, who initiated peace with Israel and liberalism in Egypt; they killed the Egyptian writer Farag Fouda, a defender of freedom and secularism; they stabbed our Nobel laureate, Naguib Mahfouz, when he was 82 years old, after discovering that 30 years earlier he had written a novel they considered the work of an infidel. They said they had not read the novel. Who told them it was sacrilegious? Someone living in a cave in the mountains of Afghanistan, or sitting in a London café or a mosque in New Jersey, told them so. In Egypt alone, these fundamentalists have killed more than 1,000 policemen and ordinary citizens, Christian and Muslim alike. In one of the most beautiful places on earth, the temple of Queen Hatshepsut in Luxor, they slaughtered nearly 60 tourists in 1997. In Algeria their sickles endlessly harvest the souls of the poor and helpless. They have committed all these crimes with the purpose of establishing the kingdom of God on earth and have succeeded only in turning our lives into hell.

In my country, art, education and the economy have all been leveled to a ground zero. I’m convinced, though, that the problem we face is not religious but political. And so it will never be solved with a religious summit. If you hold a meeting of Muslim sheiks, Christian pastors and Jewish rabbis, they inevitably come out with blissful smiles and report that they have found their values to be mostly identical, and they are right.

Extremism may claim God as its redeemer, but it’s really the selfish product of lunacy. In America, the most free and modern nation of our time, you see it too. You saw it with Jim Jones, who told his flock in Guyana to follow him into death by drinking poisoned Kool-Aid, and you saw it when David Koresh created his own small hell in Waco, Texas.

In my part of the world, the Arab Middle East, a great tragedy results from our governments’ well-intentioned attempts to cure society of extremism through education. These leaders, however, don’t teach what they should to produce the values they want. They seek moderation and enforce piety. They seek citizens who value life, yet their school curriculum’s exalt the value of science and ignore philosophy and history and the liberal, humanistic values they embody. That is why those who excel in such a system are no less immune to the call of extremism.

Our governments assume that people need to understand Islam in its purest form to stay religiously moderate. The result is the mass production of true believers, not good citizens. Because people initially welcome the imposed piety but then gradually realize it doesn’t equip them to meet the challenges of getting through life, life becomes a morbid burden. To shake off this burden, some of them, usually young men, can’t wait for natural death and decide instead to take a short cut to heaven.

Before ascending, they must have a cause that’s canonized by their community—the greatest cause on earth, capable of justifying their sacrifice in the eyes of their kin. It’s not enough to die fighting for their country; they must be fighting for God. Once they have secured that cause, they search for a way to ennoble it in the eyes of ordinary people who do not share their holy delusion but whose admiration they crave. They know that most people respect logic and reason. So they go looking for a nationalistic cause: this is what Osama bin Laden did when he claimed the Palestinian cause as a justification for the destruction of Sept. 11.

But beneath their claims is a sadder truth: these extremists are pathologically jealous. They feel like dwarfs, which is why they search for towers and all those who tower mightily. We must admit that we failed to teach these people that life is worth living. These extremists exist now, and will exist forever, so the question before us must be, How can we defend both our lives and theirs? We in the Arab world love freedom and want the chance at a decent life. We are not different from you, as it sometimes seems. We may be just temporarily backward. Working together, our governments must decide how, with what culture and by what actions, they will combat the influence of those who hate life.

Ali Salem is a playwright and the author of several books, including “Journey into Israel.” He lives in Cairo

.

Never forget my friends, never forget.  And thank you to Ali Salem and other Muslims and Arabs who have spoken out against extremism.  Thank you to all people who have sent their respects to our nation and to the families of the fallen.  Thank you to all the troops, both foreign and domestic that fight for the cause of freedom.  The troops who are volunteers, knowing that we are at war, but still raise their right hand.  Thank you to our brave fire and police personnel, who when others are running out, you are running in.  Thank you to those nations who send their young men and women to fight beside ours.

If I missed anyone, please accept my apology.  I can never say thank you enough for all those mentioned.  They are the new hero’s of our time.  All of us would do well to fashion our life like theirs.  May God bless them all.  There is one more thing I would like to say to our fine young men and women in our armed forces.  It is a little prayer I pray daily.  I would ask us all to say this little prayer.  That goes out to our Muslim soldiers as well.

May God keep you safe, never too hot, never too cold, never too hungry, never too lonely, always thankful, always enlightening, may He shield your eyes from the things that would haunt you.  May He shield your body from the enemy.  May He wrap His loving arms around you at all times. May He remind you at all times, that His love and grace is sufficient. May He heap blessings upon you and your family, and keep them from worry.  May He bless the people of Afghanistan and Iraq, and free them from al qaeda and the Taliban.  
 

We all know that freedom is never free.  I would ask my readers to go up to a veteran, a police officer, any fire personnel, any current service member of our armed forces; Buy them a cup of coffee, or dinner, or even just shake their hand.  Let them know you appreciate their service.  Remember it is because of these men and women, that you are free, safe, and live the way you do. 

We seldom think of it, but we should.  How many police and fire official’s die in the line of duty every year??  How many are retired because of injury in the line of duty??  Do you know??  Have you ever thought about it??  What about our military personel, how are their families taken care of if they die in battle??  Are they provided for??  What about their children, is there money for them to go to college??  What can we do to help?? 

These are important questions, that you should be asking.  You should be trying to assist where you can.  We get calls for this charity, and that charity, but these people never call out for help.  We are a generous nation, there are charities you could donate too that helps with the above.  Please consider donating to them.