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Let's see what the Koran says

Reader comment on item: The Problem with Middle East Studies
in response to reader comment: You dunno anything about Islam

Submitted by Geno M. (United States), Dec 6, 2008 at 19:56

Mr. Abdelrahman writes "And for those who don't know more about true Islam just read more about it...." A fair challenge, and his point, if I understand the gentleman correctly, is that it is not Islam to blame for terrorism but outside un-Islamic factors.

Abdelrahman goes on to say "But the occuping forces in these countries gave a golden chance to terrorists to brainwash muslims and make them launch attacks on (civilian targets) which is tottaly forbidden by Islam and any other religion....". Another interesting point. Maybe Abdelrahman and those like him are right and we've been unfair in categorizing Islam as a dangerous and violent plague. Let's put the question to the test by cross referencing what the Koran has to say.

I believe a few choice quotations will suffice: Here is a couple of nuggets of wisdom from the Koran that deal with persons who do not subscribe to Islam 8.12: When your Lord revealed to the angels: I am with you, therefore make firm those who believe. I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them. 4.89 : They desire that you should disbelieve as they have disbelieved, so that you might be (all) alike; therefore take not from among them friends until they fly (their homes) in Allah's way; but if they turn back, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them, and take not from among them a friend or a helper. And here is how Allah sanctions the faithful to use lies and deception.

The primary Koranic verse sanctioning deception vis-à-vis non-Muslims states: "Let believers not take for friends and allies infidels instead of believers. Whoever does this shall have no relationship left with Allah—unless you but guard yourselves against them, taking precautions" (3:28; other verses relied on by the ulema include 2:173; 2:185; 4:29; 16:106; 22:78; 40:28). Just in case you think you've read this wrong, here's how the verse is interpreted by Ibn Kathir, one of the principle scholars of Islam. Regarding 3:28," Ibn Kathir (d. 1373, second only to Tabari) writes, "Whoever at any time or place fears their [infidels'] evil, may protect himself through outward show." As proof of this, he quotes Muhammad's companions: Abu Darda said "Let us smile to the face of some people while our hearts curse them"; while al-Hassan said, "Doing taqiyya is acceptable till the Day of Judgment [i.e., in perpetuity]."

But maybe this is not fair and we're just cherry picking inflammatory verses from the Koran. Maybe the bulk of the book counsels peace and harmony. But no, wait. It appears that this is not the case. In fact, it turns out that over 100 Koranic verses exhort believers to wage jihad against unbelievers. "When you meet the unbelievers in the battlefield, strike off their heads and, when you have laid them low, bind your captives firmly" (Koran 47:4). This is emphasized repeatedly. Jews and Christians are among those to be fought: "Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued" (Koran 9:29). Okay, so the Koran is filled with violent and inflammatory passages. But so is the Christian bible. Same difference right? Wrong.

There is a profound difference between the two. Whereas the Christian bible is descriptive -- describing events that happened long ago, the Koran is prescriptive -- inciting followers to act violently TODAY. The proof of this difference is not hard to see. More than ten thousand acts of butchery and violence committed in the name of Islam, just since 9/11. Yet there is no corollary carnage being committed in the name of Jesus Christ. Islam then is a religion unlike any other, committed to the perpetuation of violence, conquest and cruelty. Though borrowing liberally from both faiths, Islam is closer in philosophy and deed to Nazism then to Judaism or Christianity. Islam seeks to dominate and destroy. Thank you Mr. Abdelrahman for your kind invitation to learn more about your faith. But for those of us with our eyes wide open, fourteen centuries of carnage, millions of innocents slaughtered, and the smoking ruins of the WTC have already taught us everything we need to know about your glorious religion.


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