The Problem With Islam

I’ll say something that is not politically correct in the slightest, something that a number of people may disagree with, and then I’ll take a bit of time to explain why I think it is true. Let me invite you to set aside all of your current conceptions about Islam for a few moments—you can easily take your previous ideas up again afterwards if I’m wrong. If you are willing to give my claims and concepts a fair trial and to read to the very end, important footnotes and all, you may agree with me when I say that the problem with Islam is not Muslim “extremists”, nor is it “radical” Muslims. In fact, the problem with Islam is not Muslims of any kind. It is far deeper than that.

The problem is that Islam is not just a religion. Islam is also a terrorist ideology.

Let me be clear from the outset that none of what I will say below is about individual Muslims. Well, except Mohammed, I do mention him. Modern Muslims, like all other people, exist in the usual varieties—the good, the bad, and the ugly. Recently I spent four hours talking to an intelligent, charming Muslim man. And I spent an hour today immersed in the oceanic Islamic poetry of the Mathnawi of Jelaluddin Rumi. In short, I am well aware of the multitude of contributions by individual Muslims to medicine, science, mathematics, poetry, astronomy, and many other fields.So as you read through this analysis, please be clear at all times that I am discussing the ideology, nature, texts, strictures, history, laws and rules of Islam itself; I am not discussing any individual follower of Islam. With that as prelude, let me return to the question.

Why do I say that Islam is a terrorist ideology? The biggest and most visible reason is that worldwide, Islam is the greatest single force oppressing, subjugating, raping, belittling, excluding, enslaving, torturing, repressing, and killing women around the planet … and that is the very definition of terrorism. Here are some Islamic beliefs and how many Muslims believe them:

islam-religion-of-peace

It surprises me to see people who still believe that Islam is just Christianity in funny hats. It is not. Sharia Law, which is the written embodiment of the Islamic legal rules as spelled out in the Koran, specifically authorizes and legalizes some combination of the following barbaric abuses of women:

•  wife beating

•  unilateral instant divorce declarations (by men only, of course)

•  polygamy

•  reduction of women’s rights to inherit

•  spousal rape

•  women’s testimony only counting half as much as men’s testimony in court

•  honor killings of women, including those whose only “crime” was to have been raped

•  imprisoning women in their own homes, unable to leave unless accompanied by a man

•  death for adultery, often by stoning (for both women and men, but rarely applied to men)

•  infant marriage, and consummation at nine years of age

Not only that, but as the Pew Forum worldwide Muslim poll results above show, Sharia Law is the expressed preference of about 70% of Muslims worldwide. This means that the barbaric 7th century laws authorizing inhumane abuses of women are NOT extremist Islamic views.

Those legalized Islamic abuses of women are the stated preference of a majority of Muslims worldwide.

In the Muslim world, those egregious violations of womens’ basic rights are not unusual or fanatical views. They are not a “radical interpretation of the Koran”. They are not held by some mythical “extremist minority” of Muslims. I say again:

The various barbaric and ruthless repressions of women specified in the Koran and codified in Sharia Law is the clear preference of Muslims worldwide.

How is it that the women of the world have not risen up against this oppressive Islamic terrorist ideology? … well, I guess I’ve just answered my own question. It’s dangerous to “rise up” against a terrorist ideology. Both women and men have stayed silent because Islam is not just a religion—it is also something to fear. From the days of Mohammed to this very day, followers of Islam have hurt and terrorized and bullied and bombed and killed women as well as men, in order to get their way. And that terrorism starts against women in the home.

So it’s no surprise that women are unwilling to speak out against Islam. Here’s a small sample from the Koran to help explain why Islamic women don’t protest against their mistreatment:

Qu’ran 4:34—Men are the managers of the affairs of women for that God has preferred in bounty one of them over another, and for that they have expended of their property. Righteous women are therefore obedient, guarding the secret for God’s guarding. And those you fear may be rebellious admonish; banish them to their couches, and beat them. If they then obey you, look not for any way against them;

The Koran says if your wife is “disobedient”, meaning if she disagrees with you about something and won’t follow your orders, you are to confine her to her bedroom and there, hidden from public view, where no one will help her or answer her screams, the Koran says to beat her into submission, and don’t stop until she obeys you … call me crazy, but on my planet we don’t call that religious instruction—we call it terrorism.

That verse of the Koran might as well be calledDomestic Terrorism For Dummies. It is a training manual for terrorism in the home, a way to silence all protest. I implore you to look carefully at what the Koran is teaching impressionable young Muslim men, and think deeply about the subtext. Here is what that verse of the Koran is actually saying:

Qu’ran 4:34—Don’t beat your wife at random whenever you feel angry or had a bad hair day, you simpleton! That will just make her constantly frightened, unsure, and afraid to act. If you do that she’ll be useless to you. Instead, only beat her when she disobeys you, and stop as soon as she obeys you … that way, she will be your perfect servant—obedient, submissive to your every wish, and permanently terrified of not pleasing you. Go and do likewise.

So we should not be surprised that the Pew Trust poll results above show that 80% of Muslims worldwide said women must, not should but must, obey their husbands. Like I said … the Koran is not just a religious manual—it is also a training manual for terrorists. Islam is not just another religion as we understand religions in the Western sense. It is also a terrorist ideology, and tragically, the main victims of Islamic terrorism are and always have been women.

Does this mean that all Muslims are wife-beaters? Heck, no, that’s crazy talk. Some Muslims are incredibly gentle and spiritual human beings. Remember, I’m talking about Islam itself and not about individual Muslims.

However, in this context it’s worth noting that most women in many Islamic societies have internalized the rules and thus they submit to the outrageous mistreatment without protest … so there’s no reason for their husbands to beat them. Tragically, for many of them, generations of Islamic terrorism have silenced them effectively and perhaps beyond redemption … we can only hope for their daughters.

ORTHODOXY AND EXTREMISM

While researching and contemplating this subject, I got to thinking about the idea of “orthodoxy” and orthodox religious views. Me, I’m a shamanist, and all religions are of interest to me. Google provides the following definition:

Orthodoxy (from Greek orthodoxia – “correct belief”, “right opinion”) is adherence to correct or accepted norms, more specifically to creeds, especially in religion. In the Christian sense the term means “conforming to the Christian faith as represented in the creeds of the early Church”.

Orthodox believers are those who follow the creeds of the early churches. Now, the opposite of orthodox views are what might be called “extremist” views. An example of Christian extremism would be a white supremacist interpretation of the Bible, of some type that would allow someone to justify violence against their so-called “racial enemies”.

One clear guide to the orthodox/extremist divide are the stories of the lives and actions of the prophets and holy men of the various religions. For example, suppose someone today wants to live like Jesus, devoting her or his life to helping the poor, befriending the neighbors, working with the community on barn-raisings, and perhaps occasionally even attempting unsuccessfully to water-ski without either skis or a boat.

I would call that an orthodox view of Christianity, not an extremist view. It is certainly the view reflected in the creeds and practices of the early Christian churches.

For the modern variant of orthodoxy, in the US you see bumper stickers that say “WWJD?”. This stands for the question, What Would Jesus Do? It is a question that some Christians ask themselves to clarify the original Christian view of some modern situation. This is not extremism, nor does it lead to bombing a church or shooting black people. It is orthodox Christianity, a return to the fundamental teachings of Christ.

Similarly, if someone wants to live like the Buddha, sitting under the Bodhi tree in silent meditation, working for the emancipation of all mankind, contemplating their omphalos and striving to hear the sound of one hand clapping, I would call that orthodox Buddhism. It is not an extremist view of Buddhism. And again, if you are someone who asks “WWBD?”, what would Buddha do, it doesn’t lead you to start blowing up buildings.

But when we do the same with Islam, we get into trouble right away. Here’s why:

Many people were shocked when it was revealed recently that the men of ISIS, the terrorist organization also known as Daesh or ISIL, were routinely raping the women that they captured in the conquered regions and keeping them permanently as sexual slaves. Included among the sexual slaves have even been some Western women tragically caught up in the fighting. And although I have read over and over that ISIS is following an “extremist” interpretation of Islam, or that this sexual slavery is based on some alleged “radical” reading of the Koran, nothing could be further from the truth.

For me, this ISIS re-run of the same bad Islamic war movie came as no surprise, because I’d read the book … the Koran, that is. When I was young I read what I came across of the various “holy books” of different religions. And in reading and researching the Koran years ago as a young man, I’d come across the interesting story of how the Koranic law regarding raping female captives of war came into existence. But to explain it, I’ll have to take a bit of a long way around, so you might grab a cup of coffee. After all, Islam has been here for a while, so as you might expect, it doesn’t fit into a 140-character tweet … it’s a convoluted tale involving an  obscure but fascinating bit of history.

Now, as I noted above, asking “WWJD?”, thinking about what Jesus would do in a certain situation, is a way of clarifying ethical and moral choices for Christians based on their religion. It highlights the difference between the orthodox and the extremist views of the religion.

In Islam, just as in Christianity, there are folks who figuratively ask themselves “WWMD?”, meaning, “What would Mohammed do?”. And that is the core of the problem, and the heart of this story of ancient and modern wars. Because when we ask ourselves “What would Mohammed do with female captives of war”, the answer is clear.

Mohammed would rape them and keep them as sexual slaves. No question.

We know that for a simple reason—because that is exactly what Mohammed did in his own lifetime, and it is also what he told his companions to do. Which means that raping female prisoners of war is not an extremist misinterpretation of Islam. It is not “radical” in the slightest. Keeping female war captives as sexual slaves to be raped at will is an Orthodox Islamic belief taken straight from the Koran. It was a tenet of early Islam, and more to the point, it was practiced by Mohammed himself. You can’t get more orthodox (or more terrorist in this case) than by following the lead of the holiest man in the religion.

TALES OF WAR

How does the holy Koran fit into this story? Several verses of the Koran say that men are forbidden from having sex with anyone but their wives, their slaves, including women taken captive in war. (Prisoners of war and slaves are referred to in the Koran as “those whom your right hand possesses”, meaning that they are your property. “Made lawful” in these verses means lawful for sex.) The Koran says you can have sex with slaves and captive prisoners in several different verses (emphais mine).

Qur’an 23:1-6—The Believers must (eventually) win through—those who humble themselves in their prayers; who avoid vain talk; who are active in deeds of charity; who abstain from sex, except with those joined to them in the marriage bond, or those whom their right hands possess—for (in their case) they are free from blame.

and

Qur’an 70:22-30—Not so those devoted to Prayer—those who remain steadfast to their prayer; and those in whose wealth is a recognized right for the (needy) who asks and him who is prevented (for some reason from asking); and those who hold to the truth of the Day Of Judgment; and those who fear the displeasure of their Lord—for their Lord’s displeasure is the opposite of Peace and Tranquility—and those who guard their chastity, except with their wives and those whom their right hands possessfor (then) they are not to be blamed.

And specifically regarding civilian prisoners of war:

Qur’an 33:50—O Prophet! surely We have made lawful to you your wives whom you have given their dowries, and those whom your right hand possesses out of those whom Allah has given to you as prisoners of war

Of course since slaves, and women taken prisoner in war, and wives (up to four) are all the property of some man, there is never a question of what here in the West is called “spousal rape”. In the Islamic view expressly spelled out in the Koran, sex with your property can never be rape. Ever. The very concept of spousal rape does not exist in the Koran or in Sharia Law. A man is always entitled to have sex with his own property whenever he wants, whether his property agrees or not. Oh, it’s a charming ideology, all right … but it’s hardly a religion as we understand religions.

Now, I can hear you thinking … why on this lovely verdant forgiving green Earth would a so-called “sacred religious holy book” even discuss raping female captives, much less say that it is absolutely OK to rape them and hold them in sexual slavery forever?

Funny you should ask.

This tale of war occurred in Mohammed’s later life, during a time when what would someday become the verses of the Koran were still being revealed to him one by one. During that time, in addition to being the religious leader of his people, Mohammed was a warlord who led his comrades-in-arms in sporadic raids on the surrounding towns and villages. The Koranic verse about women taken prisoners during war was revealed to Mohammed during this time, in order to solve a very practical and urgent real-world problem involving one of his military campaigns. Here’s the backstory:

One unfortunate day about fourteen hundred years ago, Mohammed decided that some of the people in a nearby Jewish village called Banu Qurayza were aiding his enemies. Maybe they were, maybe they weren’t—Muslim historians are emphatic that the villagers were betraying Mohammed, but at this late date nobody knows. Nor does it matter.

It doesn’t matter because in either case, in best Islamic fashion, Mohammed solved it by the sword, and wholesale. He gathered his raiders, and they armed themselves and besieged Banu Qurayza. After several weeks the villagers surrendered, and the Muslims took all the Jews captive.

When the battle was won, Mohammed lined up all of the survivors in the village. He made all of the males pull their pants down. Right there on the spot, he gave the order to his men to kill every male that had pubic hair, dozens and dozens of them. And to close the deal, once all the men were dead he gave all the women and children to his followers as spoils of war, reserving some for himself of course. These are well-known historical facts, not basically disputed even by Muslims, discussed in the Hadiths. Don’t shoot me, I’m just the messenger.

Of course, because Mohammed was their holy spiritual leader as well as their warlord, his followers asked him what the deal was with the female prisoners he’d just given to them. Under their new religion, what were the rules? Could they have sex with these women? … meaning of course, could they rape these women whose husbands they had just brutally executed? It appears that the question hadn’t come up before, and now it was urgent because of the number of captives involved.

Well, since Allah is all-wise and generous (but clearly not fond of women), you gotta know that Allah had his main man Mohammed’s back. Allah stepped up. Sometime in the night, right there in that blood-soaked village, Allah gave Mohammed the divine revelation of the Koranic wisdom about how sex with female war captives was perfectly fine and dandy.

So in the morning, Mohammed announced to his men this new Koranic revelation that he’d gotten from Allah, and guess what?

His men were all perfectly fine and dandy with it being perfectly fine and dandy to rape their captives at will and keep them as sexual slaves forever. Who would have guessed? We can safely assume that Allah was a very popular god that day … well, popular with everyone except the women …

And of course, this was also perfectly fine with Mohammed, since along with his men he’d taken his share of the women, including a “recently widowed” pretty young Jewish woman he had his eye on. And meanwhile, Mohammed was accompanied on this military campaign by one of his favorite wives, a 12-year-old whom he had married three years earlier. Again, tragically, historical facts, discussed in the Hadiths, don’t shoot the messenger.

So … that’s why the Koran says it’s OK to rape female captives. And whether that tale has been amplified somewhat over the centuries in the telling, I think you’ll agree it is  both a curious and a disheartening tale indeed, given that we are now in the 21st century and Muslims still believe in and practice that kind of peculiarly Islamic barbarous kind of sexual slavery while calling it a sacred tenet of their religion …

IT’S CERTAINLY EXTREME … BUT IT’S NOT EXTREMISM

Here’s what most folks don’t understand about ISIS. People think that ISIS is made up of “Islamic extremists”, or that ISIS represents “radical Islam” in some form. Nothing could be further from the truth. The men of ISIS are orthodox Islamic adherents of the purest kind. I read a description of Orthodox Judaism the other day. It said:

Orthodox Judaism is distinguished by its maintenance of the traditional forms of worship in the Hebrew language, and of the traditional observances as prescribed by the Torah.

The men who make up ISIS are assuredly Orthodox Muslims. They maintain the traditional forms of worship and the traditional observances in the traditional language to the very letter of the law.

ISIS is not the face of some imagined “Islamic extremism”. ISIS is not a “radical Islamic sect”. ISIS is not a “fanatical minority”. They aren’t inventing their own rules. They are not wild-eyed bomb throwers with no guidelines or limits. In many cases they are very observant Muslims and devout students who spend hours studying the Koran. ISIS is orthodox Islam to the core, unchanged for centuries. It is the brutal face of the Koran itself. The men of ISIS are not an oddity or an outlier. In Islamic terms they are neither extreme nor radical. The men of ISIS are Orthodox Muslims, living exemplars of what the Koran specifically requires and allows among its followers. They are doing their best to faithfully follow the dictates of the Koran as closely as possible, by waging war on unbelievers, spreading their Islamic Caliphate by the sword, establishing Sharia Law, praying, fasting, and of course, raping and oppressing women along the way, just as the Koran says that good Orthodox Muslims are supposed to do.

And just as is prescribed in the Koran, and just as has happened many times before over the centuries, the men of ISIS have established the latest incarnation of the “Islamic Caliphate” ruled by Sharia Law, a glorious country wherein thieves lose their hands, people who try to leave the “religion” are killed, and women are abused, raped, and stoned to death.

Sadly, at this point they have a huge advantage. The advantage is that they are clear that from their perspective this forever war is a fight to the death between Western modernism and 7th century Islamic ideals … and meanwhile, the West hasn’t yet even begun to grasp that particular nettle. For example, you’ve heard of “Boko Haram”, the Nigerian group that kidnapped the hundreds of schoolgirls to keep them as sex slaves? Well, “Boko Haram” means “The Ways of the West Are Forbidden”.

You can’t get much clearer about the goals of your ideology than that … but despite many detailed declarations of war against the West, the Western leaders have great difficulty even stating the obvious, much less acting on it. Here’s the bizarre current situation:

It is indeed true that the West is not at war with Islam, as many insist … however, it is equally true that Islam is indeed at war with the West, and has been for fourteen centuries. Western ideals are totally antithetical to Islamic beliefs, and they know it. As a result, since the time before Mohammed died they have waged war to try to  wipe out Western beliefs and believers completely.

Tragically, as has been the case hundreds of times over the last 14 centuries, this anti-Western Islamic militarism is once again recurring in various forms in various countries all around the Islamic world. Why? Because that is exactly what the Koran exhorts the faithful to do. Violent jihad is not an extreme view of the Koran. It is a plain reading of what the Koran tells the faithful to do, quite clearly and literally. And this jihad has been the guiding dream of much of Islam for fourteen centuries of endless war by now—to conquer the entire world at the point of the sword and establish a global Caliphate for the greater glory of Islam.

Let me close this section with a quote from Winston Churchill’s book “The River War” (1899), wherein he said:

The fact that in Mohammedan law every woman must belong to some man as his absolute property – either as a child, a wife, or a concubine – must delay the final extinction of slavery until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men. … Individual Moslems may show splendid qualities. Thousands become the brave and loyal soldiers of the Queen: all know how to die: but the influence of the religion paralyses the social development of those who follow it. No stronger retrograde force exists in the world.

Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science, the science against which it had vainly struggled, the civilisation of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilisation of ancient Rome.

I agree with Churchill, and I note with concern that since his time, the West has become less and less the only group “sheltered in the strong arms of science”.

As Churchill said, individual Muslims indeed show splendid qualities. I know some Muslims myself and I can testify that like people everywhere, some are good, decent people. I understand that fact, however, not as a testament to Islam, but as a testament to how the indomitable human spirit can rise above even one of the most warlike, twisted, misogynistic terrorist ideologies known in either ancient or modern times.

Finally, is Churchill being “Islamophobic” in his views? No way. He’s being as realistic as the Romans were in the year 846, the year Islamic armies sacked the Holy City and vandalized the tombs of the saints.

A “phobia” in this sense is an exaggerated, unreasoning and unreasonable fear of something that may actually be harmless.

On the other hand, what Churchill had, what I have, what the citizens of Rome had in 846 and the citizens of Brussels and Paris have today, is a very reasonable and reality-based fear of Islam for a simple reason—because historically and currently, plain old Orthodox Islam violently rejects and tries to stamp out all other views and all other religions. In particular they’ve tried for centuries to extirpate Western ideals such as equality of the sexes, human rights, and separation of church and state. The fundamental tenets of Islam are antithetical to the fundamental Western views and ideas of life … and as the newspaper shows every day, Islam continues to be an ongoing threat to world peace. We are fools if we do not have a healthy fear of such a perennially destructive and endlessly resurgent force.

WE RETURN TO THE STARTING QUESTION—ISLAM: RELIGION, OR TERRORISM?

The fact that the men of the armies of ISIS rape female war captives and keep them as sexual slaves is among the many reasons that ISIS is recognized worldwide as a terrorist organization. And rightly so, because the rape of helpless women prisoners is clearly an example of terrorism at its worst.

Remember, however, that this authorization to rape female captives of war and keep them as sexual slaves is not a local minority view. It is not something modern. It is not an idea that ISIS dreamed up. Nor is it a tortured or “extremist” or “radical” interpretation of the Koran. The tragic reality is that  keeping women as permanent sexual slaves is a crystal-clear Islamic rule, spelled out in detail by the Koran verses quoted above, practiced by Mohammed himself, and with further support in the Hadiths. There is no wiggle room, no place for differing interpretations.

The same lack of wiggle room is true about what happens if you leave and you speak out against Islam, like say Ayaan Hirsi Ali has done. The Koran says quite clearly that you should suffer one of four fates: execution, exile, crucifixion, or having one hand and one foot chopped off … on opposite sides of the body. Truly. Opposite sides of the body. No way to “interpret” that. Again, no wiggle room.

People sometimes think I make this sick stuff up. Here is one of what Salman Rushdie called the “Satanic verses” of the Koran. This is the “apostasy” verse that deals with what should happen to people who leave Islam and speak out against Islamic practices, like Ms. Ali …

Qur’an 5:33—The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and strive with might and main for mischief through the land is: execution, or crucifixion, or the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides, or exile from the land: that is their disgrace in this world, and a heavy punishment is theirs in the Hereafter;

And again, far from being an “extremist” view, the Pew Poll results above show that just as the Koran commands, about half a billion Muslims worldwide think people who leave Islam should be killed. Let me say that again. There are about half a billion Muslims who think anyone who leaves Islam should be killed … and as a result, a brilliant woman like Ayaan Hirsi Ali has to live with bodyguards.

problems-with-islam

When half a billion people believe something, it is not an extremist belief of any kind—at that point it is dangerously orthodox.

Now, I said at the start that by the end of my account, you might agree with me that Islam is a terrorist ideology. So to determine if that is the case, here are my questions regarding Islam:

=========================================================

• Is a system that sentences women to a lifetime of ownership by men and to inescapable second-class citizenship, an ideology that deprives women of civil and human rights and subjects them to legalized beatings, rape, and honor killings to keep them in submission 1) a religion, or 2) a terrorist ideology?

 Is a system that explicitly permits the raping of female civilian prisoners of war and keeping them forever as sexual slaves 1) a religion, or 2) a terrorist ideology?

 Is a system that sentences women convicted of adultery to be buried up to the neck in the ground and slowly killed by stoning them to death with specially chosen small stones to prolong their agony 1) a religion, or 2) a terrorist ideology?

 Is a system that mandates that its followers kill, crucify, or cut the hands and feet off of people who leave the group and speak against the group 1) a religion, or 2) a terrorist ideology?

 Is a system that sentences artists and cartoonists to death for drawing pictures of their founder 1) a religion, or 2) a terrorist ideology?

=========================================================

I ask because orthodox Muslims practice all of those things today, not by chance, but because those terrorist acts are explicitly ordained and authorized in the Koran, the Hadiths, and Sharia Law. They are not extremist views. Those acts are Orthodox Islam to the core.

All of these horrific abuses have been actively practiced for fourteen centuries, and what is more, all of them are being actively practiced today, with the specific blessing of the Koran. Which is why I say that the problem is not some fancied Islamic extremism, nor is it “radical” Islam, nor Islamic refugees, nor individual Muslims of any kind.

Instead, the problem is that plain old generic orthodox Islam itself is not just a religion—it is also a terrorist ideology.

When a group kills people for drawing cartoons of their leader, they are not just a religion. They are unabashedly terrorists, using fear to try to make people change their ways.

When a group chops off the hands and feet of people trying to leave the group, they are not just a religion. They are terrorists frightening the membership to keep them in line and submissive.

When a group sets off bombs in Paris and Brussels, they are not just a religion. They are terrorists … good, old-fashioned orthodox Islamic terrorists once again attacking Western ways and Western ideologies by spreading terror throughout Europe, following the explicit instructions of the Koran just as they have done for centuries.

FIGHTING THE GOOD FIGHT

All of which brings me to what is the most important point of this tragic tale. We are engaged in the most recent reincarnation of the continuing fourteen-century-long fight against a terrorist ideology whose clearly stated and oft-repeated goal is to destroy the Western way of life. Our overriding need, the most important goal, is to not to lose our own humanity in this struggle. To do this we need to be clear that we are fighting the ideology of Islam, not the people of Islam.

It’s the old ideal about “hate the sin, but love the sinner” … my dad was really good at doing that. He loved his eight kids deeply, even though he was a Victorian gentleman who was deeply shocked by how we lived and what we did, and he couldn’t abide and violently disagreed with what we believed in.

But he still supported all of us wholeheartedly and loved us dearly.

In the same manner, we need to distinguish between the ideas of the Koran on the one hand, and the followers of the Koran on the other hand, and learn to hate the sin and love the sinner … but dang, when the men of ISIS burn prisoners of war alive in cages, and chop Christians’ heads off on the beach, and keep sex slaves, and post the videos online, it is mighty tough to distinguish between the sin and the sinner …

However, if we are not able to distinguish between the sin and the sinner; if we sink to the level of hating the sinner and not just the sin; if we insensibly grow to wish upon them the same brutality they inflict upon us and others, then we would be no better than those we oppose.  We face the hoary problem that you tend to become what you fight. We definitely need to work, as Churchill said, “until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men” … but we need to do it while being clear that we oppose Islam itself, and not the followers of Islam.

So how can we best fight this fight? Sadly, as ISIS shows, we have to fight Islam at all levels including militarily. However, the more important fight will involve changing attitudes. To begin with, people in the West need to realize that whether or not the West notices that it is at war with Islam, Islam is certainly at war with the West and has been for fourteen centuries. This is a fight where the supporters of  seventh century virtues and ideals are doing their utmost to wipe out modern virtues and ideals … and the previous President couldn’t bring himself to utter the words “Islamic terrorism”.

The most important battleground in all of this, however, is not military. It is the battleground of ideas. As George Orwell remarked, “In times of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act”. The crucial first step in this war is to start being honest about Islam, and stop this universal deceit about how Islam is just another religion, one among many … it is not. Unlike the other major religions, it is also a brutal and barbaric seventh century creed of terror, war and vengeance. The single most important thing we can do to win this struggle is to acknowledge the truth about Islam:

Islam is not just a religion. Islam is also a terrorist ideology.

I gotta say, when I was a kid in the fifties, I expected the 21st century to be all Buck Rogers and jet packs and robots and flying cars … and the last thing I expected was that a resurgent militant Islam would turn it into yet another of the endless centuries of Islamic religious wars. I mean, Brussels as a hotspot of Islamic jihad in 2017? Who saw that coming?

Sigh …

I’ll discuss further issues and steps we can take to discredit the violent parts of Islam in a further post. [UPDATE: That post is here.]

So, best wishes to all, Muslims and Buddhists, Sikhs and Shamans, Sufis and Zoroastrians, Christians and Hindudes, Jains and Janisaries, inlaws and outlaws, sharks and dolphins, we all have to learn to share this marvelous world  …

w.

IMPORTANT FOOTNOTES: COMMENT POLICY, DATA, HISTORICAL COMPARISONS, AND THE ISLAMIC CARTOON WARS

Comment Policy: This is a fractious and divisive issue. I have done my best to treat it fairly and with due respect to my Muslim friends, and with deference to that part of Islam that actually IS a religion. Please keep the comments courteous. I invite you to join me in restricting your comments to the issues of Islam and the Koran, and leave comments about Muslims to the side. If anyone starts in on “ragheads” and “camel jockeys” you’ll get frowned upon from a great height and it might get nautical. We have very different ideas about these issues, but that doesn’t make any of us bad people. So please, discuss people’s ideas, and not the people themselves.

Further: When you comment, please QUOTE THE EXACT WORDS YOU ARE DISCUSSING so we can all be clear on your subject.

Data: The version of the Koran I quoted from above is here.  In addition to having seven different expert translations, if you click on the Arabic text it provides a word-by-word translation of the original Arabic Koranic verse. Fascinating.

Historical Comparisons: I keep hearing the argument that the Koran is not alone in advocating horrible things, that other holy books contain such verses. And that is true … but the other religions gave those practices up millennia ago.

For example despite the clear instructions in Exodus 35:2 which say (emphasis mine), “For six days, work is to be done, but the seventh day shall be your holy day, a day of sabbath rest to the LORD. Whoever does any work on it is to be put to death.”  nobody has been killed for that for centuries. According to the Bible (Numbers 15:32-36) the Jews of the time stoned a man to death for gathering sticks on the Sabbath for his fire … but they gave up killing people who work on Sunday. And by the same token, Christians and Jews haven’t stoned many people to death for anything since Jesus said “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”.

The reason for these changes is that over the years there have been “reformations” in Judaism and Christianity, during which they shed the savagery of earlier times.

But sadly, Islam has never had a reformation. Islam and Islam alone continues these savage barbarities into the 21st century … and an Islamic reformation is unlikely. Baha’u’llah was the last person to try it, and his followers, the Baha’i, have been ruthlessly hounded and brutally killed by Muslims ever since. And that is exactly how the Koran says such people should be treated—the Koran is clear that they should be killed for leaving the true faith and speaking against Islam. Tends to make reformers nervous …

Islam is so comprehensive and so interlinked and intertwined that from the time it took its modern form, not one verse of the Koran has ever been disavowed. To date it has proven to be impossible to reform even one little verse, much less a bunch of big verses. In any case, for whatever the reason, such a reformation has never occurred—the Koran is literally and figuratively carved in stone, and speaking of which, the stonings and lopping off body parts and other barbaric practices have endured to this day without the slightest change either.

And to this day, all branches of Islam still claim to believe the Koran literally, and all branches profess to follow it absolutely … and in fact it’s hard to take a complexly intertwined and mutually reinforcing set of laws and punishments any other way but absolutely literally. When Allah in the Koran says men can keep their female captives of war as sexual slaves and rape them at will, there’s no confusion, no mixed message, no room for change or interpretation. Nothing you or I say can ever alter its meaning. It is quite clear and explicit, and it is certainly taken literally by the observant Muslims of ISIS and Boko Haram among many others throughout history. The Koran is the law, and an observant Moslem has to buy in to all of the parts of it. An observant Muslim is not allowed to pick and choose which verses to believe. You can’t say “I’m good with praying five times daily, but fasting is just soooo Seventh Century, I’m gonna give that a miss like totally!”

Well, actually you can say you don’t believe certain verses of the Koran … but you may not like the results. Salman Rushdie tried that with his book, “The Satanic Verses”. It was based on an ancient Islamic myth. The story goes that years after the death of Mohammed, during the period when the Koran was being written down and codified from the various oral versions, that Shaitan his demonic self inserted some false and misleading verses into the Koran, called the “Satanic Verses”. They were verses designed to spread strife and sorrow in the world.

Of course, if such “Satanic verses” do exist, then Muslims would be justified in ignoring some laws of the Koran, just as Christians ignore the law in Exodus 35:2 to kill people for working on Sunday. Seems simple, right?

However, Islam doesn’t work like that. It is a terrorist organization. For merely suggesting the possibility that orthodox Muslims might be able to reject and condemn say the verse about beating your wife or the verse about how it’s OK to keep sexual slaves, Salman Rushdie had a death sentence put on his sorry fundament and he had to live with bodyguards for decades.

So while the Bible does indeed contain savage laws and primitive rules, people in the West got over that. Christians and Jews don’t keep sexual slaves in the 21st century. Christians and Jews don’t kill women for marrying outside the religion. Christians and Jews don’t try to kill innocent people like Ayaan Hirsi Ali for leaving the faith … but Muslims do, so she has to live with bodyguards.

So please, spare me the argument that “Christianity and Judaism are the same as Islam because the Bible has barbaric laws in it too.” Since we don’t follow those laws any more, and haven’t for millennia … so what? I’m interested in ending stoning and sexual slavery today, not a thousand years ago.

Declaration of Conflict of Interest: I do have “a dog in this fight”, a personal stake in this struggle. During the Islamic Cartoon Wars of 2006, a number of orthodox Muslim leaders published “fatwa” death sentences on the heads of the twelve Danish cartoonists who published their cartoons of Mohammed in a Danish newspaper. I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised, Islam is a terrorist ideology. But to be fair, I didn’t expect that the Cartoon War would go world-wide.

As a result of the fatwas, other orthodox Muslims rioted in many countries. Muslim mobs burned the Danish flag, attacked Embassies, and killed two hundred people around the planet, including some poor dang Swede who had nothing to do with cartoons or Islam at all. And meanwhile Muslim imams and religious leaders were busy approving of the violence and the deaths … it’s not just a religion, folks—it is also a terrorist organization.

interview-prophet-1

Now, along with many other personal failings, I’m a cartoonist myself. So I felt that this was a fight I had to take part in. For me, freedom of speech includes the freedom to draw cartoons of whatever I damn well please. So to honor the twelve cartoonists, I drew twelve cartoons of Mohammed and sent them around to my friends. Wasn’t much, but solidarity is important and I felt I had to do something.

problems-with-islam

I’ve appended those cartoons below, so that if you are interested you can see if they are worthy of a death sentence. (Admittedly, the sentence might be for either religious or artistic reasons.)

Now, if cartoons of Mohammed offend you, then please do not look at my cartoons. Close this page right now, and go look at something more agreeable to your spirit. It’s as simple as that. What follows are cartoons of Mohammed. It is not my wish to offend anyone, nor to push the cartoons in anyone’s face. It is your choice, and if you now choose to read further, it’s on you, not on me.

Am I concerned about publishing these cartoons? It’s not likely to lead to anything untoward, because my cartoons were done out of kindness and laughter and not out of hatred, but you betcha … I’d be a fool not to be concerned about some kind of reaction, and that’s not Islamophobia of any kind. That’s realism. A couple of the Danish cartoonists are still under police protection. My only consolation is that if some Orthodox Muslim had killed me in 2006 for drawing cartoons of the Prophet and trying to end the Cartoon wars, I’ve lived as joy-filled, marvelous, full, and exciting a life as any man has been offered.

And what’s more, in the extremely unlikely chance that happens, you can bet that my cartoons and this particular piece of my writing will live forever … the writer and the cartoonist’s reverse Faustian bargain.

So … if you do choose to look at the cartoons after being clearly warned, then your outrage or your laughter is your own. With that clear warning, viewer discretion is advised, on your head be it, the twelve cartoons are below, one in honor of each Danish cartoonist …

===================================================

interview-coverinterview-01interview-02interview-03interview-04interview-05interview-06interview-07interview-08interview-09interview-10interview-11interview-12

===================================================

Advertisements

90 thoughts on “The Problem With Islam

  1. I will point out that the Early Catholic Church held meetings to define what was and wasn’t part of the bible (some people still disagree with the results)

    But the only thing I really can quibble with isn’t even what you said, but rather the poll results. In this last election we saw a lot of people lying to pollsters because they didn’t want the abuse of being labeled as one of the ‘Degenerates’ (you can put it many ways, but the sentiment is there)

    How many Muslims answered the way they did in fear of other Muslims?

    Those numbers would still be WAY too high even if they are off by 10-20%

    I also suspect that if there was a breakdown by age/location you would find that second generation (or later) Muslim immigrants to the west have very different views than those in Muslim countries. Even the first generation of immigrants is probably better than those in Muslim countries, but as you say, most of them have been so indoctrinated that there is little hope for them to change their views much.

    The key is to limit the immigration so that the immigrants can be assimilated andchange their beliefs over time. If there are too many people of a given group, they tend to form a tight, local community and not interact much with the rest of us. This has always caused problems (and I don’t care if it was the German, Polish, Jews, Chinese, Irish, or any other group), when enough arrive in a chunk to form ‘liitle wherever’ it drastically slows their integration with the rest of the country

    Liked by 2 people

    • David I also wonder how many muslim women were asked those questions and how they felt answering them. Even if they did answer them at all. ( or where even allowed to).

      Like

    • I’ve read that a major factor of “radicalization” has to do with the family.
      If the immigrant father and family do not assimilate the sons are more prone to terrorist acts.
      I don’t know if that’s accurate, just something I’ve read that sounds logical to me.

      Like

  2. You nailed it Willis and thanks for shooting straight with those willing to see the truth. We were barely established as a nation and we were already fighting them in the Barbary Powers war. Some things never change.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Willis I agree with everything you say, but how do you suggest this religion could ever change? Their prophet was just another vile con merchant and their historical accounts are so much nonsense that one hardly knows where to start.
    BTW your story about Jesus forgiving the adulterous woman is a much later edition to the Bible and was not part of the text until after 1000 AD.
    Bart Ehrman explained how this took place in one of his debates a few years ago. Amazing how few people understand that this most quoted story about Jesus is just more silly BS and fra-d.

    Like

    • The bible went through various revisions, which both added and removed text. Saying that things added were “BS” or made out of whole cloth is being very disparaging.

      Even if you believe that to be the case, Insulting people that you are trying to get to change their mind is not a good way to start.

      Willis did a good job in his post of laying out the details while not going out of his way to be insulting (some things will be treated as insults no matter what, and just like a discussion of WWII, there is a need to make statements that show some individuals; in this case, long dead individuals; in a bad light, directly or implied.)

      Like

      • DL I’m sorry if I offended anyone, I just get a little annoyed with religious nonsense and people’s need to believe the most preposterous stories that anyone cares to hang on them.
        Can I just say that Islam is probably best and more accurately described as a cult. And if anyone thinks you can expose this cult quickly and change the followers beliefs anytime soon I think you will be very disappointed. Most of their followers literally believe this delusional nonsense whether they be tertiary educated people or not.

        Like

  4. I would disagree with you a bit over “Reformation” of religions. My impression was that reformations were usually the result of corruption within the church organization, and efforts to eliminate that by taking the practices back to their original religious tenets.

    Unfortunately, the Koran is all too accommodating of that sort of corruption, so any reformation wouldn’t get rid of it.

    And you’re right that there’s no way change the Koran and “interpret-out” the grizzly stuff. The Koran is believed to be quite literally the Word of God, passed to Mohammed, and then transcribed into writing. It is as though the Koran was cast into stone harder than diamond. Further, the “official” word is the Arabic version, and any of the “interpretations” and translations into other languages are not really considered valid. You just cannot get around the inconvenient passages in the Koran.

    Like

    • The religious reformations are given too much credit. “they shed the savagery of earlier times”. True, but did they do it by changing the texts (other than adding the New Testament) or did they just ignore the parts that didn’t fit with their modern attitudes?
      The Reformation did have an indirect effect:
      http://foreignpolicy.com/2015/01/02/islam-will-not-have-its-own-reformation/

      Compare Mohammed with Joseph Smith. Both were polygamists. The Koran was and always will be pro-polygamy because Mohammed was the last prophet so more words from Allah will not be forthcoming. Mormans on the other hand believe in continuing revelation, and indeed one was received which retracted polygamy. Fundamentalist Mormans split off at that point.

      Mustafa Kemal Ataturk tried to secularize Turkey. It didn’t last.

      Like

      • The new Testament with things like “those without sin cast the first stone” and “render unto Caesar that which is Caesar” did wonders.

        This didn’t stop the Church (Roman Catholic in Europe, other churches elsewhere in the world) from dictating to rulers what had to be done for a few centuries.

        The Protestant Reformation in Europe was a rebellion against the Church controlling everything. But yes, the final solution was the Churches agreeing to live-and-let-live, recognizing that they did not have the right to dictate a person’s religion.

        If Islam were to just loose the concept that they have the responsibility to convert everyone to Is;am by the sword, and that people leaving Islam are to be killed, then real progress would become possible.

        Like

  5. Oh, and I wanted to add that my own usual comment about the much-hoped-for Islamic Reformation is that if people would take off their blinders, they’d see that what’s going on now is the Islamic Reformation, and that ISIS and Al Qaida are just the pointy spear-tips of that reformation.

    Like

  6. An old observation has Islam an ideology masquerading as a religion and communism a religion masquerading as an ideology. Much truth to that, I think.

    Other data point is that I pay very, very close attention to those that publicly say they want to kill me for what I believe and take them at their word. And then I make very, very sure that they will not be successful. We Americans will generally never take the first shot, but when it comes time to return the favor, watch out. Watch out. Cheers –

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Willis , I agree with your article . It is correct but the one thing that you could have added ( although maybe you will devote another article to this) is the treatment of Homo sexualism, the treatment of captives, the treatment of people that convert to Islam and other facets of the Koran that make it even more clear that they are at war with us today and everywhere on this planet with only one thing in mind.
    The defeat of anyone that in their eyes is not a “true” believer. And frankly that scares the Bejees out of me.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Excellent !!!

    In your first cartoon it was claimed that CNN is a news organization. Maybe so decades ago. But then it is a cartoon where such was written so all is well !

    Like

  9. For Christians, at least, it is rather difficult to find justification in the New Testament for the use of violence or deceit. “Christian” terrorists must ignore it and find their bloody justifications in the Old Testament.

    But are not the “religion of peace” quotes from the earlier Koran? And did not the Prophet subsequently explicitly take them back, saying they were no longer valid, and then commence with bloody injunctions against the infidel, exhorting the faithful to use all means to bring about Sharia? And was not one of those later Koran injunctions the assurance to the faithful that the duty of honesty and fair dealing prescribed by the Koran was owed solely to believers? Deceiving and lying to the infidel was perfectly fine. My neighbors appear civilized but have been taught from childhood that it is OK to lie to us, the infidels. They mouth the “religion of peace” lines ….. but are they sincere?

    Like

    • Thanks, Pete. You are right that in the earlier part of the Koran, Mohammed was an itinerant street preacher. Being weak and vulnerable, the verses of the Koran from that time are generally peaceful towards Jews and Christians.

      However, in his later years Mohammed had lots of supporters and followers. He became a warlord. The parts of the Koran revealed during this time are often brutal and warlike, calling for killing Jews and Christians.

      Regards,

      w.

      Like

      • Willis, my main point was – assuming my recollection is correct – that the creed teaches the faithful that they can lie as desired to infidels. I would argue we can see the effects of this in many of the 9/11 and other terrorist perpetrators: people who must have taken oaths and made pledges in order to reside in, and in many cases become citizens of, Western nations. To me it is folly to trust a Muslim. even one passing a lie detector – for him it is not a lie to tell an untruth to an infidel. To belabor the point, having been raised form infancy to tell the truth, I would have a hard time lying even to a Nazi. But had I been raised from infancy to regard such untruths to be not covered by my religion’s injunction against lying, I could lie to any Nazi not only with a straight face but without even any internal stress. Thus I could do a splendid job of pretending to be a Nazi. I suspect most of the Muslims amongst us are pretending tolerance. When push comes to shove they won’t be helping us and some will put knives in our backs.

        Like

        • pete March 11, 2017 at 3:44 am

          Willis, my main point was – assuming my recollection is correct – that the creed teaches the faithful that they can lie as desired to infidels.

          Yes, I didn’t have time to cover all the good points of this “religion”. What you are talking about is called “taqiya”.

          Taqiyya (taqiya, taqiyah, taqiyyah) is a form of Islamic deception. The Quran (16:106 and 3:28) allows Muslims to lie in order to protect themselves or to protect the Muslim community.

          w.

          Like

      • The Koran can be divided into those parts revealed to Mohammed whilst he resided in Mecca and those from his exile in Medina. His particular antipathy towards Jews stems from their resistance to his pursuit of power in Medina.

        Like

  10. Orthodox Christianity . Information is available here https://orthodoxwiki.org/Main_Page.
    There is also a site https://blogs.ancientfaith.com/. You may find that what you thought you knew is the usual taradiddles of the Marxists.
    As for Islam it is a Warrior Creed. It started with some riders from Yemen who attacked caravans of the declining Byzantine Empire after plagues and droughts had weakened defences. They also attack cities in North Africa and the religion came along with them as they used protection rackets and later sieges to weaken trade in the Mediterranean. Later the religion became more important and the conquered people were converted by various means so it spread by force rather than persuasion . It was now something more like an ideology rather than a religion.( Like Chinese or North Korean Communism.)

    God is unavailable and remote and all they have is the writings to guide them. It seems similar to a Christian heresy current around the time of the Prophet. They are much to be pitied .

    The readers of this blog may find they are targeted for looking at the cartoons. They are don’t suffer insult gladly.

    Like

  11. First, a moment of silence for cartoonist Bill Leak, who was on the ISIS hit list, and who also suffered from the Political Correctness of his own government.
    http://www.steynonline.com/7709/that-not-how-we-do-things-in-australia

    Second, who gets to decide what’s politically correct anyway?

    Who gets to decide what gets to be a religion instead of a cult or some other thing?
    The freedom of religion thing works much better as a freedom of faith or freedom of belief — as long as it is just something personal and not something that you force others into or something that goes against our laws.

    I heard that Mohammed started out to build a religion. Nobody was interested. So that only lasted a very short time, then he switched into Jihad mode and the rest is history. I think that was said very seriously although I’ve forgotten who said it and all the details.

    I don’t think much of Islam, but I grudgingly admit that Mohammed was a genius. He may even have been liberal for his time and place and had a noble goal, although it benefited him personally and others suffered and continue to suffer from what he did.

    The biography of Mohammed is very important to know because his treatment by his family and his tribe affected him immensely and the result is that Islam could be considered his revenge. Islam is considered an Abrahamic religion. I think Mohammed identified very much with the story of Abraham . The theme of submission to God’s will, over and above anything personal, is Huge.

    This book is absolutely essential reading:
    The First Muslim: The Story of Muhammad” by Lesley Hazleton

    Like

  12. Hi Willis, A few years ago I told my family that the west was at war but no-one wants to admit it. Your essay has pointed out that indeed we are at war and still few will admit it. I fear for my grandchildren.

    Thank you for a beautifully written piece.

    Like

  13. Willis

    Superb explication

    An answer to you (rhetorical?) question…

    ***
    “… and the last thing I expected was that a resurgent militant Islam would turn it into yet another of the endless centuries of Islamic religious wars. I mean, Brussels as a hotspot of Islamic jihad in 2017? Who saw that coming?”
    ***

    In Sept of 2003 Mark Steyn saw that coming. In “America Alone” He discussed the situation from a demographic viewpoint

    He didn’t specifically focus on jihad but he certainly saw it as an impending “end of the world as we know it” In 2006 he saw that Islam was in the process of taking over Europe, and today it is obvious that the process is continuing with the full blessing and assistance of the European ‘tolerance brigade’

    Starting at the bottom of page 20 of “America Alone” In 2006

    “What’s the Muslim population of Rotterdam? Forty percent. What’s the most popular baby boy’s name in Belgium? Mohammed. In Amsterdam? Mohammed. In Malmo, Sweden? Mohammed. By 2005, it was the fifth most popular baby boy’s name in the United Kingdom. Yet most Europeans weren’t even aware of the dominant demographic trend until September 11, and subsequent events in Madrid, Paris, and London.

    Or to put it at its most basic: Why is the world we live in the way it is? Why is this book written in the language of a tiny island off the coast of northern Europe? Why is English the language of global business, of the Internet, of the paramount power of the age and of dozens of other countries from Belize to Botswana, Nigeria to Nauru? Why does Canada share its queen with Papua New Guinea? Why does a quarter of the world’s population belong to the British Commonwealth and enjoy to one degree or another English Common Law and Westminster parliamentary traditions?

    Because in the early nineteenth century the first nation to conquer infant mortality was England. Hitherto, the British Isles had been like the rest of the world: you had a big bunch of kids and a lot of them died before they could be of economic benefit to you or to society. But by 1820 medical progress and improvements in basic hygiene had so transformed British life that half the population was under the age of fifteen.

    In sheer numbers, the country was still a pipsqueak cluster of North Atlantic islands with 28 million people compared to China’s 320 million. But it was the underlying demographic trend that proved decisive in the century ahead..”

    So combining the dogmatic intolerance of Islam with the immutable demographics, I keep looking around for a paddle

    Thanks again

    JW

    PS America Alone is available as a PDF download

    https://ia902609.us.archive.org/26/items/AmericaAlone/AmericaAlone_byMarkSteyn.pdf

    Like

  14. I noticed I have a hornets nest in the upper branches of the maple tree in my backyard.
    Not really sure how hornets make their living, but I have seen them collecting wood pulp off my shed.
    I’ve even swatted at them near the shed, with no painful results.
    What concerns me, is that an “act of god” should cause the nest to fall out of the tree.
    Then I’ve got a whole bunch of hornets in defense mode.
    The outcome for the hornets won’t be good, I mean it’ll either be chemical warfare or a flame-thrower.
    They are just following their programming.

    Like

  15. Those in the West, are perhaps used to the way Christianity was reformed by the New Testament which modified the violent ways of the Old Testament (not that it stopped the often corrupt leadership from engaging in whatever violence they thought was required to keep the disgruntled in line). Unfortunately Islam never had a New Testament equivalent.
    Even more interesting are the many, many repetitive everyday rules required that has to create an OCD illness in the lot of them. An example are some of the toilet rules: left foot in and right foot out when leaving/prayers a must, no amulet with Allah or Koranic inscription visible (pocket carry okay), separate clothing desired, no looking at the naughty parts, no standing, no smoking/gum/reading/speaking or singing, no spitting in toilet, no urine dripping allowed on undies (use of a cotton wick or barley seed plug permitted), use fingers and water for wiping (toilet paper allowed for drying).
    Starbucks has indicated that they will hire 10,000 refugees in the next 5 years. However, if I ever see any personnel that are possibly Islamic serving at any Starbucks in my area, I plan on vacating the premises based on potential hygiene violations alone and that doesn’t include the potential for diseases like TB which Obama failed to screen refugees for (which use to be a routine immigration requirement). I already change lanes at Target and other stores if I recognize one behind the register. Of course PC will prevent most from discussing/attacking such distressing cultural differences (see HeatStreet article below).
    http://www.myreligionislam.com/detail.asp?Aid=6096
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3537652/Swindon-takeaway-chef-prepared-food-wiping-bottom-bare-hands-doesn-t-use-toilet-paper-cultural-reasons.html
    https://heatst.com/culture-wars/georgetown-islamic-studies-professor-slavery-ok-so-is-non-consensual-sex/

    Like

  16. You cannot separate the Muslim orthodoxy from orthodox Muslims like Daesh. It is the unorthodox Muslims that we may be able to live with. Never orthodox ones for the reasons you point out. One possible way to do vetting for US visas is a written, signed renunciation of Sharia. The problem is that the Quran says it is ok to lie to infidels. Taqiyya.

    Like

  17. Thanks Willis for another great post. You write

    However, the more important fight will involve changing attitudes.

    I have great hopes in Britney Spears and other cultural weapons of mass disillusion. I hope in a generation or two the old die-hards will be gone. But I’m known to be too optimistic.

    Like

  18. I honestly think that we’ve passed the point of no return. I think a majority of Muslims will always listen to their leaders first and when push comes to shove most will always turn their backs on the western idea of the rule of law and will always follow their religious cult.
    But please can anyone tell us how you would bring about genuine change within their so called religion? And a time frame? First they must want a reformation or change and there seems to be no sign of that anytime soon.

    Like

    • > I think a majority of Muslims will always listen to their leaders first

      People were also worried when JFK was elected that as a Roman Catholic he would obay the Pope (through the church leaders)

      It’s not a given, but it requies that Muslims integrate/adapt into the west rather than transplant their culture.

      Unfortunantly, the teachings from the Left that all other cultures are better than Western culture, and that it’s evil to not comply with the culture of your ansesters is going to inhibit this.

      Like

  19. DL the Kennedy comparison is a very poor one. Kennedy was not a very serious Catholic at all and neither was his Dad or siblings. But Rose more so. And Catholicism had already experienced their reformation centuries before and had a big update at about the time of Kennedy’s election.
    Compared to the Kennedys most Muslims could be called fanatics and most polling supports what I’m saying. IOW they literally believe everything in the Koran is the word of Allah. I know this is unbelievable and crazy, but it’s true.

    Like

  20. Pingback: The Forever Wars | Skating Under The Ice

  21. Pingback: Orthodox Hate Speech | Skating Under The Ice

  22. If you think of The Reformation as a schism, Islam has had one of those: Shia versus Sunni. To us “they all look the same”, we need to pay closer attention to their differences.

    The following comments are about Gertrude Bell, who played a key role in the political divisions of Mesopotamia. She knew there was no good solution; now we understand.

    […] she saw Iraq’s better-educated Sunni minority as the natural party of government. The more devout Shias, she said, were too easily swayed by “fanatic” clerics, despite being the two-thirds majority. Thus was sectarian division institutionalised in both the monarchy and Saddam’s Sunni dictatorship, paving the way for the Sunni-Shia civil war that raged from 2006-07.

    “In a sense, Gertrude Bell was right – the Shia are more emotional people, but her ideas did lay the framework for people like Saddam,” says Mowaffaq al-Rubaie, a Shia politician who saw the downside of Bell’s legacy first-hand.

    Like

  23. Very interesting essay. Another writer who came to similar conclusion by a very different route, prosecuting the Blind Sheik after the 1st World Trade Center bombing, wrote a book of what he found himself confronting. Reviewed here: http://www.publishersweekly.com/978-1-594032-13-4. The book traces the specifics of 20th century policies and such but, as the reviewer put it: “The most enduring oversight, however, at least from McCarthy’s perspective, is the refusal among academics and political leaders to confront fundamentalist Islamic tenets, the “800-pound gorilla that is somehow always in the middle of the room when terror strikes.” The jihadist philosophy that guided the Blind Sheikh is traced through generations of Islamic thinkers to the Prophet Mohammed himself.”

    Like

  24. Is this an attempt to modernize Islam, one woman at a time?
    Watch Nike’s promo video:

    “Nike set to launch the ‘Pro Hijab’ for female Muslim athletes”

    Like

  25. Good post, Willis, and all points I have been putting forward to people since the 1980s. I’m late to the party and just quick scanned other comments and see a couple referring to Reformation. There will be no Reformation in islam because each time a Calvin or Martin Luther raise their heads it gets cut off, their families get killed and everyone who associated with them gets rounded up and has a “come to Jesus” moment at which you best loudly and convincingly proclaim said reformers to be apostate and condemn them and all their generations as enemies of islam or you will be killed, too.

    People who refuse to accept the reality of islam are the same as women who keep returning to abusive/violent husbands and boyfriends, and you have just about as much likelihood of success convincing them of the truth of the reality of islam. Sad fact, fact all the same.

    Like

  26. How can Islam be reformed so it is not a threat to non-Muslims the world over? There are two threads: (1) there are hundreds of millions of Muslims (e.g., in Indonesia, Malaysia, and the West) who, despite what the Koran says, have no desire to kill non-believers, or to kill those who leave Islam, or to treat women as subordinate and with violence. Many may claim to “believe” those things, but would not practice those things except under duress. Thus, there is a large portion of Muslims who are not a threat to anyone. (2) Those Muslims who are a threat are to a great extent inspired and supported by what are considered to be legitimate nation-states (primarily Iran, Saudi Arabia and, if allowed, ISIL).

    The nation-states that support militant Islam are the true drivers of the Islamic threat. Disable those States and I believe the threat from radical Islam will be significantly reduced.

    I will agree there still remains a fundamental conundrum: the Koran has no conciliatory language for non-believers, apostates, or women. How does a future Islam evolve that renounces those core violent and harsh edicts? Clearly, only if Islamic clergy lead that change, but how might that happen? The Reformation was mostly a revolt against the Pope and Roman Catholicism because it was felt they did not properly interpret the Bible or represent its edicts. But, the Bible is a far more ambiguous document than the Koran (from what I can tell — I am not a scholar in either). How could any Islamic clergy make a case that the commands to violence against non-believers, apostates, and women are to be ignored but all else revered?

    The human mind is capable of just about any rationalization to fit some desired outcome, so I do not believe that Islam cannot change to be compatible with what most other religions and secular nation-states find acceptable. Must that change be the result of violence within Islam (or from without Islam), besides that needed to disable provocative Islamic nation-states? Or, can it be an evolution in thinking that happens with minimal violence? Sadly, I won’t see that change, if it happens, however it happens, in my lifetime.

    Like

    • John P Miller March 13, 2017 at 9:10 pm

      How can Islam be reformed so it is not a threat to non-Muslims the world over? There are two threads: (1) there are hundreds of millions of Muslims (e.g., in Indonesia, Malaysia, and the West) who, despite what the Koran says, have no desire to kill non-believers, or to kill those who leave Islam, or to treat women as subordinate and with violence.

      John, I fear you’ve fallen for Islamic propaganda. You should check out the Pew Forum study cited at the bottom of the first figure in the head post. It splits the results of the Muslim poll down by country.

      For Indonesia, generally cited as the most liberal Muslim majority country, some of the numbers are:

      74% support Sharia Law … bad news already.

      93% say a wife is always obliged to obey her husband. Always.

      45% say thieves should have their hands cut off.

      48% say adulterers should be stoned to death. HALF! Half the oh-so-moderate Muslims in Indonesia support burying women up to the neck and throwing stones at them, smashing their faces and battering their heads in, until they finally die in agony. “Moderate Islam”, my ass!

      However, unlike more conservative Muslim countries, only 18% of Indonesians say people should be killed for leaving the religion. Be still, my beating heart. Think of how vengeful a society is when one person in five thinks people should be KILLED for merely wanting to leave the official religion … and then consider that this is the NICEST version of Islam. And even in the nicest version we don’t find that there is “no desire to kill those who leave Islam” … instead, we find that one person in five wants to kill those who leave islam.

      It is a measure of how deeply desensitized we are to Islamic violence that we think that an Islamic society where there is one bloodthirsty savage for every four more rational people is a “moderate” Islamic society

      Gotta say, John, when half the populace thinks women should be stoned to death for adultery and 93% say a woman MUST obey her husband, that is not a tolerant or a moderate society on my planet …

      Regards,

      w.

      Like

  27. Just two thoughts. First, sadly, it is western nations that have chosen to utilize this “aggressiveness” of Islam as a means to interfere with the internal affairs of other nations. They have armed them with new abilities and weaponry to “do it better.” And now the “useful idiots” have turned into a genuine concern for all forward thinking people.

    Second, loved the cartoons. A lot of thought and outreach in them. Your array of talents continues to amaze.

    Like

    • Tom O March 14, 2017 at 7:24 am

      Just two thoughts. First, sadly, it is western nations that have chosen to utilize this “aggressiveness” of Islam as a means to interfere with the internal affairs of other nations. They have armed them with new abilities and weaponry to “do it better.” And now the “useful idiots” have turned into a genuine concern for all forward thinking people.

      Mmmm … Islam has been “a genuine concern for all forward thinking people” for about fourteen hundred years now, so I’m not buying that it’s the fault of the West …

      Second, loved the cartoons. A lot of thought and outreach in them. Your array of talents continues to amaze.

      Thanks for that, Tom. I’m (likely overly) proud of certain things I’ve created, and those cartoons are definitely among them. I wanted to respond to a bloody and ugly war without making the opponents wrong or losing my own humanity in bitterness.

      Best regards,

      w.

      Like

      • Great article Willis, well argued. After the Pew research, I particularly liked the juxtaposition of ‘WWJD’ with ‘WWMD’. Thank-you, this is one to keep.

        You might want to re-visit using Orwell as the originator of “In times of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act”. The Quote Investigator in a well-researched piece, remarks – “Several researchers have tried to find these words in George Orwell’s oeuvre and have not succeeded.”, see http://quoteinvestigator.com/2013/02/24/truth-revolutionary/. He finds a Gramsci quote that’s similar, but nothing in Orwell’s work. I find the word ‘communist’ in Gramsci’s quote particular dark in what is otherwise a great quote. Pity eh?

        Like

      • I wasn’t referring to 14 centuries of problems with Islam, I was referring to ISIS when I said the west used that aspect of Islam to interfere with internal affairs. We all know who supplies them with weapons, if only indirectly through our allies in the region. As for Jihadist attacks prior to that, they were mostly issues within the region. ISIS grew into a well supported military state in short order without the ability to build weaponry. In the desire to end Assad’s regime, even though the Syrians didn’t seem to care, the weapons came into their possession, and since then, they have used the “west” to spread their views. I will admit, I don’t like Sharia at all since, like you, I have great respect and regard for the opposite sex – the gorgeous ex-fiancée comes to mind, not Killary Clinton.

        Like

        • Really? America is selling Russian, Chinese, Iranian and Pakistani manufactured weapons to ISIS? Or are you referring to SecState Clinton and Mr Brennan supplying weapons to multiple islamic terrorist groups in Libya/Tunisia guns for cash lotto which lead to Benghazi and a dead US Ambassador?

          islam has been, and will always be, expanded by fire and sword. Its what they do. Sure, they use lies and subterfuge and deceit to expand, fire and sword is their preferred method. Oh, and don’t forget rape! They love using rape to expand islam, every illegitimate child they breed is another muslim.

          Like

  28. Pingback: The Problem With Islam | Skating Under The Ice | Cranky Old Crow

  29. Pingback: The Problem With Islam – HiFast News Feed

  30. Pingback: The Forever Wars – HiFast News Feed

  31. Well written blog piece Willis. Thx. I’ll forward your link within my network. I spent more than 20 yrs working as a professional in the middle east and what you have written is accurate. The West has actually financed the spread of fundamental Islam via the petroleum boom – and still is. The fact that there is no interaction between young males and females leads to some spectacular confrontations and interactions when they do get together. Very amusing from a Western perspective. Less amusing however, Arab males are taught that Western women who do not dress conservatively are actually prostitutes and should be treated as such. I have observed that Arab men have no qualms about treating them otherwise. Women are definitely Second Class Citizens in Arab societies iif you could give them that high of distinction. I have found that the vast majority of Muslims are not comfortable with the historical butchery of their ideology in practice. It didn’t happen during their time…. but now it is… and that’s really disturbing to them. There is and always will be a very hard-core group of fundamentalists that adhere to the Prophet’s teaching and they are the enforcers of the FAITH. There is an uncomfortableness with the realization that Islam is not the current bastion of technology, philosophy, medicine, knowledge,etc. that is exhibited in the Western world. The unwritten answer is that Islam has to resort to its roots – early orthodoxy to regain its previous strength and dominance in the world and thereby eliminate Western culture and regain dominance. Thx again

    Like

    • Thanks, HomiHomi. I’m always glad to hear from people who, like myself, have spent time in Muslim countries. Admittedly, I don’t have your 20 years experience … and from what I’ve seen, for that I’m very thankful …

      Regards,

      w.

      Like

  32. I was really surprised to learn that 45 states have signed Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam

    “This declaration is widely acknowledged as an Islamic response to the United Nations’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), adopted in 1948.” Wikipedia – Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam

    I am not kidding. To give a little taste:

    “ARTICLE 1:
    (a) All human beings form one family whose members are united by their subordination to Allah and descent from Adam. All men are equal in terms of basic human dignity and basic obligations and responsibilities, without any discrimination on the basis of race, colour, language, belief, sex, religion, political affiliation, social status or other considerations. The true religion is the guarantee for enhancing such dignity along the path to human integrity.

    (b) All human beings are Allah’s subjects, and the most loved by Him are those who are most beneficial to His subjects, and no one has superiority over another except on the basis of piety and good deeds.”

    ARTICLE 2:
    (a) Life is a God-given gift and the right to life is guaranteed to every human being. It is the duty of individuals, societies and states to safeguard this right against any violation, and it is prohibited to take away life except for a shari’ah prescribed reason.

    (d) Safety from bodily harm is a guaranteed right. It is the duty of the state to safeguard it, and it is prohibited to breach it without a Shari’ah-prescribed reason.

    ARTICLE 16:
    Everyone shall have the right to enjoy the fruits of his scientific, literary, artistic or technical labour of which he is the author; and he shall have the right to the protection of his moral and material interests stemming therefrom, provided it is not contrary to the principles of the Shari’ah.

    ARTICLE 22:
    (a) Everyone shall have the right to express his opinion freely in such manner as would not be contrary to the principles of the Shari’ah.

    1.. Everyone shall have the right to advocate what is right, and propagate what is good, and warn against what is wrong and evil according to the norms of Islamic Shari’ah.

    ARTICLE 24:
    All the rights and freedoms stipulated in this Declaration are subject to the Islamic Shari’ah.

    ARTICLE 25:
    The Islamic Shari’ah is the only source of reference for the explanation or clarification of any of the articles of this Declaration.

    Like

  33. Hi Willis,

    Don’t know if “fan” is the right word, but I’ve been following you for years on WUWT, your analyses there are always thoughtful, and I’m very pleased with your new blog. It’s bookmarked.

    So pleased, in fact, that I have forwarded this article to several friends and, as expected, conversations have ensued. Like you, I am a data junkie. The graphic you show in this post titled “Islam: The “Religion of Peace”, Attitudes of Muslims Worldwide,” references a Pew Foundation report. I went to it (painstakingly; it would help if your data sources were actual links instead of being embedded in a picture), and am just now going through all 226 pages. From a first glance, it looks like maybe you have consolidated some of the analysis in your own way? Could you share any spreadsheets, etc., you have that enabled you to create the graphic I noted? Or, if it is all summarized in a table somewhere in the 226 page report, could you point me to that table?

    Thanks again for all you have written. This is not the first time I have forwarded your stuff to people whose opinions I value.

    PS – I liked this article too, just sayin’, not sure if you have seen it: http://www.hoover.org/research/how-counter-political-islam

    PPS – This is the first comment I have ever posted on any of the many blogs I follow, so please excuse me if I have not posted links correctly, violated some sort of protocol or etiquette, etc. Thanks.

    Like

    • Steve, thanks for the comment. I’ll take a look at the link you gave. Regarding the graphic, I can’t recall just where in the 226 pages I got the data, I’ll check on that.

      Regards, much appreciated,

      w.

      Like

  34. Pingback: The UN Condemns Freedom of Speech | Skating Under The Ice

  35. Regarding understanding “the problem with Islam” consider this statement made by Jim Mattis, the current Sec. Of Defense.

    The death of Qari Yasin is evidence that terrorists who defame Islam and deliberately target innocent people will not escape justice,” said Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis.”

    This person was an Al Qaeda leader responsible for the deaths of dozens. He was “one of the greatest trainers of explosives and electronics in the fields of jihad,” so says Mohammad Khurasani, the Pakistani Taliban spokesman.
    Story here.

    How could such a “great” person defame the religion that spawned him?

    As Scott Adams might say, there are 2 movies playing in people’s heads.

    Like

    • Good question. One definition of ‘defame’ that I looked up was “damage the good reputation of (someone)”. He did damage the reputation of Islam. How ‘good’ that reputation was depends on how naive you were. Mattis might be an expert on Pollyanna Islam. That’s the PG/Disney movie.

      Like

  36. Pingback: Islamics, Islamists, and Scotsmen | Skating Under The Ice

  37. “The problem is that Islam is not just a religion. Islam is also a terrorist ideology.”

    White House counterterrorism strategist and Deputy Assistant to the President, Dr. Seb Gorka
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/03/31/exclusive-powerful-briton-america-really-like-donald-trumps/

    “Jihad is my bag,” Gorka tells me. Former presidents Barack Obama and George W Bush were careful to define Isil, Al-Qaeda and other extremists as groups that violate the Muslim faith. But Gorka believes they exist because of it.

    Extremism, he says, is rooted not in repression, wars or poverty, but in the tenets of the religion itself; in what he calls the “martial parts” of the Koran (which Gorka says he has read in translation).

    “Look, our struggle, our war – I’m going to use the word war,” the 46-year-old says, “is with what I call the global jihadi movement. It’s rooted in the politicised version of Islam.” Winning takes more than bombing the jihadists from the air, he believes. “Killing terrorists is great. If you can’t capture them, you kill them. But at the end of the day you have to stop people wanting to become terrorists.”

    Excellent point. How do you convince members of a death cult to choose life? Especially since the other members will kill them if they do?

    The problem with Islam is that it is a totalitarian ideology.

    The Prophet said “Yawning is from Satan”. Is there anything he didn’t care about?

    Like

  38. my comment is a question in regards to your entire write up, which by the way is really beautiful, enlightening, and truthful. I do not fault your views, because as raw as you presented them without the slightest bit of euphemism, they are indeed what I deem for the truth. My question then, is how do we move forward? how do we tackle the issue of Islam as a terrorist ideology, and not as a religion? are we supposed to campaign for the absolute elimination of Islam, or for reformation(although you pointed out that reformation under Islam is near to impossible, due to scriptures against it) Hope to hear from you soon
    regards ‘
    truth zombie

    Like

    • We can begin by telling the truth—that inter alia, Islam is a terrorist organization.

      Next, we can start vetting any prospective Muslim immigrants for their actual views. Are they coming to the US for a better life, or are they coming here to spread their Sharia sickness?

      Next, we can support the efforts of people like Ayaan Hirsi Ali to reform Islam in some manner.

      Finally, we can ask Muslims, which of the verses of the Koran are “satanic verses”, verses which should be ignored. If they say none, that it is all divinely inspired, that means they support sexual slavery and should not be listened to.

      No easy answers, though, I fear that the Islamic sickness will be with us for decades …

      w.

      Liked by 1 person

      • as dautingly haunting as your last remark is, “I fear that the Islam sickness…” it appears to be quite the truth. Very well answered, and nice write up once again.

        Like

  39. Question. Is this joke in bad taste?

    Why did the Islamic terrorist bomb the Ariana Grande concert full of young innocent girls?
    Because they were running out of virgins in heaven.

    It’s not as sick as bombing a concert full of young girls at least.
    Or as sick as the Koran promising 72 virgins to jihad self-martyrs.
    I think I would want to check the exact wording on that before acting on it.
    St. Peter equivalent to jihadist: “Virgins in heaven are eternally virgin, loser!”
    Or, 72 virgins, period. Not 72 each.
    Satanic Virgins, errr Verses, indeed.
    Where is the outrage expressed by the Muslim world about this bombing? I didn’t hear of any.

    Like

  40. Pingback: Suicidal Murderers | Skating Under The Ice

You are invited to add your comments. Please QUOTE THE EXACT WORDS YOU ARE DISCUSSING so we can all be clear on your subject.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s