Post Number: 44
|Posted on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 09:47 am: ||
The news is heating up about the militant Muslims.
President Bush very rightfully says that we are not at war with the religion of Islam, but with terrorists who have hijacked a religion.
Let's look more closely at that.
The moral code that underlies this web site includes the precept, "Respect the religious beliefs of others." I adhere to that code and urge it on others as their personal decision to adopt.
But, think carefully about that.
The code does NOT say that we should respect the religious practices of others. We may! We may not!
Surely the religious practice of stoning to death a Muslim woman found guilty of adultry -- that is a religious practice and it is not one I can accept.
I can, then, respect the religious beliefs of the Muslims but not necessarily all their religious practices.
Are some of those practices so horrific for us, and are they tied so closely to the very core of the religion of Islam -- that we must denounce the religion along with the practice?
The stoning to death of a woman seems barbaric to me, but at least it does not involve blowing up the Twin Towers -- it is "over there."
But, some of the news that is current gives me pause on this score.
Let's take the subject of "hate speech." It is clear now that hate speech is common in the Muslim world -- apparently promoted in the religious groups, and mosques. We hear stories that are not denied that Saudi Arabia gives millions of dollars to support educational activities where the "education" is to "hate Americans."
We hear uncomfortable stories about bonuses being paid to the widows and mothers of suicide bombers -- and recognize that many terrorists blow themselves up, along with others, because they believe they will instantly arrive in Paradise, and that their family will be rewarded with honor and cash.
At what point are these practices, which cannot be denied to exist, so much a part of the religion that we must start to question the very issue of differentiating between the religion of Islam and the practices of terrorists???
When that hate speech is taught in the homeland of the United States, by Muslims, and that teaching is generously financed from Saudi Arabia, isn't it time to face some reality?
There is a related article in the Wall Street Journal of October 24, 2003:
He has told his followers that a society governed by strict Islamic law, in which adulterers would be stoned to death and thieves would have their hands cut off, would be superior to American democracy. Speaking of unnamed forces in the U.S. government and media, he has preached, "These people want the destruction of Islam." Source
The Wall Street Journal carries a massive amount of information on probably the leading Muslim cleric in the US today -- here is more:
In the burgeoning world of Islam in America, Imam Siraj Wahhaj is a star. In 1991, he was the first Muslim ever to lead a prayer before the start of a session of the House of Representatives. Four years ago, then-Secretary of State Madeleine Albright hosted him and other Muslim notables at a State Department banquet of lamb, lentils and saffron rice to break the Ramadan fast. One of the country's most popular Muslim preachers, he travels widely, extolling the Quran to large crowds at immigrant Islamic centers, conventions and universities. Source
Is it possible that we are harboring the enemy within our own bosom? President Bush has rightfully said that the terrorists are our enemy and anyone who supports them.
Is the Iman an enemy in our midst? Financed by enemies from outside? Preaching hate to black Americans who are attracted to this type of talk???
Here is a news item from the Boston Globe:
The underground organization was responsible for the bombing of two Bali nightclubs last year, which killed 202 people, and has been blamed by Indonesian police for the attack last month on the J.W. Marriott Hotel in Jakarta, which killed 12. Ba'asyir, 65, was not charged in connection with either attack.
The judges convicted him of trying to overthrow the Indonesian government, saying he had approved of his followers seeking military training abroad with the goal of establishing an Islamic state. Source
Have we not heard that Muslim clerics around the world are preaching violence? Is there room for free speech when the speech is "hate speech?"
The usual legal view of this would probably be that if the hate speech directly and provably leads to illegal action, then that speech is part of an illegal conspiracy.
That's tough to prove, as they discovered in Indonesia when they gave that cleric only a four year sentence.
With the bleeding heart liberals in the US, and the defenders of the First Amendment, I suspect that some very hateful hate speech would get a pass here.
Is it time to reconsider that?
Recnetly a very highly decorated war hero has gotten into the news on this issue:
Boykin, the Pentagon's newly named deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence, sparked a controversy after NBC News and the Los Angeles Times revealed comments he made to evangelical Christian audiences.
Appearing in uniform, he repeatedly described the war against terrorism as a conflict between a "Christian nation" and radical Islamists.
During a Jan. 28 speech at a Southern Baptist evangelism conference at First Baptist Church of Daytona Beach, Fla., Boykin described his 1993 efforts to capture a Somali warlord who had boasted that Allah would protect him from defeat. "I knew that my God was bigger than his. I knew that my God was a real God and his was an idol," Boykin said. source
Where do I come out on this?
It is time for the President to say that we are not fighting the religion of Islam.
Because we can accept the help of our moderate enemies to fight the really bad enemies.
But, enemies they are.
I don't have that constraint on my thinking or writing.
When you consider that we ARE at war with most of the religion of Islam, the current turmoil fades into smallness.
Is there an ally here who can help?
Is there a country where Muslims and Hindus live in peace together?
Yes, in India.
India has become "virtually self-sufficient" in its missile programme enabling it to avoid international export control regime and difficulties arising out of foreign involvement in its programme, a US Congressional body has said.
Karl Note: The joining of forces by the US, Israel and India could be the next stage in the coalition the super police. Source
India has the most peaceful group of Muslims around, as far as I know. They have the atom bomb -- one of three admitted countries.
They need to play a larger role on the world platform, but the US should start addressing the issue of allowing hate speech in our midst.
Now, finally, I entitled this article to suggest that there may well be need of a "holy" war -- between Christianity and Islam.
THAT IS NOT THE POINT I WANT TO MAKE.
This is a war between good and evil, not between religions.
There is enough bigotry in every religion to make any one of them need some change before any could serve as a political model for society.
Democracy, as they often say, may not be the best system, but it is the best anyone has found.
I say, religion must ALWAYS be junior to the political system. So, no religion can violate the laws of the land and say it is their religious right to do that.
Perhaps the laws in some countries allow barbaric practices, in or not in the name of religion. But, the general war we are in is between the forces of evil and the forces of good.
There are good Muslims and good Christians (Jews, Hindus, etc.)
There may be some bad Christians who claim to practice their evil in the name of Christ, and there certainly are many Muslims who claim to practice their evil in the name of Alah.
The moral code that is needed on this planet is NOT a religiohs code -- since no one has ever been acceptable to all groups.
What I offer here is a moral code based on common sense -- on the contribution toward survival from the practices I suggest. Who is to survive?
That is the individual, his family, his nation, all mankind, all living things, all the physical universe, the spiritual universe and God.
That may not be easy to calculate, but that is what we need to do.
Post Number: 11
|Posted on Thursday, October 30, 2003 - 06:59 am: ||
A very poignant view point in deed from Karl Loren.
Let me touch the local history a bit.....
Yes in India Hindu's & Muslims have together fought for freedom from colonical rule & lived in peace with one another, inspite of the fact that persian muslim invaders plundered Hindu India converting many Hindu's into Islam through torture. The present muslims in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Srilanka and even Afghanisan are all such converts only from Hinduism. There are no original muslims in the sub-continent.
For maintaining the peace in India with Muslims, Hindu's have sacrificed a lot for too long. When Hindus in India started resenting their own passivity against the aggression of Indian muslims, Pakistan tried to exploit & encash it fully by fishing in troubled waters -- which continues till day.
A small percentage of bad people can be found in all religious groups. But as it appears, only Islam among all religions is supporting the bad people for their violence and terrorism.
It requires to be thoroughly investigated as to what is it in Islam that is fundamentally wrong, or, wrongly interpreted by the powerful & influential within, that Islam has come to be a synonym for terrorism. Moderate muslims argue that there is prejudice in calling the terrorists -- "Islamic" -- as the LTTE is not called "Hindu" terrorists & Irish terrorists are not called "Christian" terrorists. There is no prejudice at all here, as the muslim terrorists identify themselves as the "Islamic Jihadis" and others have only accepted that identity. This is futher reinforced by the fact that the self proclaimed Islamic nations are providing state support, fiance and arms for carrying our terrorism --- primarily targetting the non-islamic countries.
Islam was born in Deserts for a very primitive tribes then. Some of the tenets of Islam might have been relevent there, for them at that time --- but not now, here for the population of the world at large.
Islam has to undergo radical change in its interpretation of --- Good , Bad & Ugly --- if it has to survive in peace as a religion for future. Alternatively it will have to fight the whole united world for its survival -- only to lose ultimately.