Monday, July 11, 2005

2005.041 Brave Muslim voices 

According to the Sunday Telegraph (10 July 2005) Tariq Al-Humayd, editor of Al-Sharq Al Awsat, a leading Arab newspaper, has attacked ordinary Muslims in Britain for funding terrorists. He said that collections are frequently held in Arab areas of London for jihadi causes disguised as charities. He wrote-
‘In London we have seen, and are seeing, the money being collected in the streets, and the conventions under various titles, and everyone is inciting jihad in our Arab countries and cursing the land of unbelief in which they live. When you express amazement at this, they tell you that this is freedom. Has freedom no responsibility? No one answers. When you tell them, “Stop being so tolerant of the incitement that comes from your own country, from your skies and from your internet” they turn away. And what happened? The terror struck London, indiscriminately . . . For the sake of the freedom of all of us, stop the ones who are attacking our freedom.’
The report then mentions Amir Taheri (see Blog FBBB121). Apparently he is a columnist of Al-Sharq Al Awsat. The report quotes him as criticising Muslims who equivocate over terrorist attacks. Insinuations that they are provoked by Western actions such as the invasion of Iraq give terrorists the impression that they have tacit support in England. Amir Taheri adds-
‘Until we hear the voices of the Muslims condemning attacks of this kind with no words of qualification such as “but” and “if”, the suicide bombers and the murderers will have an excuse to think that they enjoy the support of all Muslims. The real battle against the enemy of mankind will begin when the “silent Majority” in the Islamic world makes its voice heard against the murderers, and against those who brainwash them, believe them and fund them.’
No praise is too high for these brave Muslim voices who speak out against their own wrongdoers. What a humiliating contrast to the treacherous voices of home-grown British defenders of the indefensible such as Tony Benn and George Galloway!
FBBB122 Doc. No. 2005.041

Friday, July 08, 2005

2005.039 London bombed - And this is why they did it 

While a vestige of freedom of speech remains in Britain before the Government forces through its religious hatred Bill, I want to speak out about the Islamic origins of the bomb attack on London which occurred on 7 July 2005, coinciding with the opening of the G8 Summit. As I write on the day following that event it is reported that 52 people were killed and 700 injured in the attack. No doubt these figures will rise.

After the attack the Archbishop of Canterbury spoke of ‘the faith communities hanging together’. This is strange coming from the head of the Christian Church of England. If faith means anything, what should concern him is surely that the Christian communities hang together. Prime Minister Blair said: ‘The vast and overwhelming majority of Muslims here and abroad are decent and law-abiding people who abhor these acts of terrorism every bit as much as we do”. This may be true, but we should recognise that it is not the whole story. The whole story lies in the nature of the Islamic faith.

I opened my Times this morning to find that what I was about to write had been said for me in an authoritative way by Amir Taheri, an Iranian commentator on the so-called Middle East (what happened to the Near East, familiar when I was young?). Under the same heading I have given this piece, he puts concisely what I have been arguing in books, speeches and articles over many years.

Taheri begins with a reminder of Theo van Gogh, the Dutch film-maker who was shot by an Islamist assassin on his way to work in Amsterdam last November. Van Gogh begged for mercy and tried to reason with his assailant. ‘Surely we can discuss this,’ he kept saying as the shots kept coming. ‘Let’s talk it over.’ Van Gogh, who had angered Islamists with his documentary about the mistreatment of women in Islam, was reacting like BBC reporters did yesterday, assuming that the man who was killing him may have some reasonable demands which could be discussed in a calm, democratic atmosphere. Or like the foolish Tony Benn who argued on Newsnight last night that the matter could be resolved by holding a Middle East peace conference. It is not a case for talking, says Taheri. What the enemy wants is ‘to take full control of your lives, dictate every single move you make round the clock and, if you dare resist, he will feel it his divine duty to kill you’.

Taheri says the ideological soil in which al Qaeda, and the many groups using its brand name, grow was described by one of its original masterminds, the Pakistani Abul-Ala al-Maudoodi more than 40 years ago-
‘When God created mankind He made all their bodily needs and movements subject to inescapable biological rules but decided to leave their spiritual, social and political needs and movements largely subject to their will. Soon, however, it became clear that Man cannot run his affairs the way God wants. So God started sending prophets to warn man and try to goad him on to the right path. A total of 128,000 prophets were sent, including Moses and Jesus. They all failed. Finally, God sent Muhammad as the last of His prophets and the bearer of His ultimate message, Islam. With the advent of Islam all previous religions were ‘abrogated’ (mansukh), and their followers regarded as ‘infidel’ (kuffar). The aim of all good Muslims, therefore, is to convert humanity to Islam, which regulates Man’s spiritual, economic, political and social moves to the last detail.’
But, says Taheri, what if non-Muslims refuse to take the right path? Here answers diverge. Some believe that the answer is dialogue and argument until followers of the ‘abrogated faiths’ recognise their error and agree to be saved by converting to Islam. This is the view of most of the imams preaching in the mosques in the West. But others, including Osama bin Laden, a disciple of al-Maudoodi, believe that the Western-dominated world is too mired in corruption to hear any argument, and must be shocked into conversion through spectacular ghazavat (raids) of the kind we saw in New York and Washington in 2001, in Madrid last year, and now in London.

That yesterday’s attack was intended as a ghazava was confirmed, says Taheri, in a statement by the Secret Organisation Group of al-Qaeda of Jihad Organisation in Europe, an Islamist group that claimed responsibility for yesterday’s atrocity. It said ‘We have fulfilled our promise and carried out our blessed military raid (ghazava) in Britain after our mujahideen exerted strenuous efforts over a long period of time to ensure the success of the raid.’ Those who carry out these missions are the ghazis, the highest of all Islamic distinctions just below that of the shahid or martyr. A ghazi who also becomes a shahid will be doubly meritorious.

There are, adds Taheri, many Muslims who believe that the idea that all other faiths have been ‘abrogated’ and that the whole of mankind should be united under the banner of Islam must be dropped as a dangerous anachronism. ‘But to the Islamist those Muslims who think like that are themselves regarded as lapsed, and deserving of death’.

Taheri says that it is, of course, possible, as many in the West love to do, to ignore the strategic goal of the Islamists altogether and focus only on their tactical goals. These include driving the ‘Cross-worshippers’ (Christian powers) out of the Muslim world, wiping Israel off the map of the Middle East, and replacing the governments of all Muslim countries with truly Islamic regimes like the one created by Ayatollah Khomeini in Iran and by the Taleban in Afghanistan.

How to achieve those objectives has, Taheri adds, been the subject of much debate in Islamist circles throughout the world since 9/11. Bin Laden has consistently argued in favour of further ghazavat inside the West. He firmly believes that the West is too cowardly to fight back and, if terrorised in a big way, will do ‘what it must do’. That view was strengthened last year when al-Qaeda changed the Spanish Government with its deadly attack in Madrid. At the time bin Laden used his ‘Madrid victory’ to call on other European countries to distance themselves from the United States or face similar ‘punishment’.

Taheri ends by saying that Bin Laden’s view has been challenged by his supposed No 2, Ayman al-Zawahiri, who insists that the Islamists should first win the war inside several vulnerable Muslim countries, notably Afghanistan, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Iraq. Until yesterday it seemed that al-Zawahiri was winning the argument, especially by heating things up in Afghanistan and Iraq. Yesterday, the bin Laden doctrine struck back in London.
FBBB121 Doc. No. 2005.039

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