69 million page views

Response to Noah ...

Reader comment on item: Bolstering Moderate Muslims
in response to reader comment: Explain this then, Morgan

Submitted by Morgaan Sinclair (United States), May 10, 2007 at 18:05

Noah, you wrote: "There is very little, if any, danger for a Muslim protesting against terrorism while living in America."

Here's an instruction in point: Go to the Arizona Republic and Frontpagemag.com, and string-search Zudhi Jasser. He's an former Naval physical, an opthalmologist, and lives in Phoenix. It is his film for PBS that has been shelved, and it is a film we are not allowed to see.

But even before that, Dr. Jasser had tried to put together (and managed to) a rally in Phoenix against terrorism. He was viciously attacked by CAIR, and by the local mosque which ran cartoons and wrote articles essentially accusing Dr. Jasser of blasphemy, apostasy, and treason against Islam.

I have no little anger myself that Muslims do not speak out more: if my son can serve in Afghanistan and risk his life to clear up this mess, so can the Muslims in this country.

But make no mistake: if you believe that there is no threat to these people, all you need do is to walk a day in their shoes. Somebody gets out of line, and they get attacked by CAIR. In Canada, the publisher of an anti-terrorism newsletter has had his life threatened multiple times. Irshad Manji has bullet-proof windows in her house. Ayaan Hirsi Ali, travels in an armoured Mercedes with a million-dollar-a-year security detail. Robert Spencer had a death threat on his website last week, which I turned over to the Egyptian embassy in Washington. Two months ago he had one that I turned over to Scotland Yard. The husband of the head of the Muslim women's group in Toronto was called in by the imam and told to "get your wife in line."

My friend Rusia in Orlando was forced out of working at the Middle Eastern market after a Wahhabi imam took over the mosque next to it. The next time I saw she was in cover and cried in my arms. The next time I saw her, her husband warned me that she was being watched for non-Muslim friends. Later she called and cried and said that she would have to stop being friends, because Al Qaeda had threatened Muslims with death who did not stand up against America. She disappeared, and I have never seen her again.

She is like many Muslim women in this country being sucked down into conservative orientations by the fear of reprisals from terrorists. She told me once, "We simply don't know if the person standing next to us watching us." Mostly she was afraid that if she did not comply with these ever-more-strict demands, terrorists (in terrorist-thick Florida) would kill her husband. So this woman went into cover to protect her husband, and she 23 years old, quit her home, and is now house-incarcerated. She is 23 years old.

For more about this see: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/05/07/AR2007050701936.html?hpid=sec-religion

What is developing across the world is what I sall an International Mutawiyyah. You see them in Thailand burning Muslims who don't comply with various moral laws. It is the "IM" that burned the Bali nightclub. It is the IM that is now in Pakistan bombing music stores and kidnapping women who won't wear cover.

And the IM exists in this country, too. Most of its victims are women. But ANY man who starts criticizing Islam openly, or Islamic fundamentalism or violent jihad, is subject to community-wide degradation and often threats. Anybody who publicly talks about the problems of repression and social pressure within the community is punctually punished for it.

And if somebody dies for having said what the powers that be don't want said, you and I will never know it.

There re some very brave people out there: Ibn Warraq, Nonie Darwish, Ayaan Hirsi Ali (I don't particularly like her, but I do respect her), Irshad Manji, Zudhi Jasser, Ali Alyami, Ali Al-Ahmed, and many others who get no press, who do their damnedest. But there are masses of people who are simply totally afraid. They are women who are punished by their husbands for speaking to Western women. They are students and professors who have, essentially, no freedom of speech, because CAIR, the ISNA, ICNA, MPAC, AMPAC, APAC, and a whole host of others will jump down their throats the second they speak out.

And there is very little we can do to help them, because coming to us to ask for help is, in itself, a breaking of the primary Islamic social rule of the ummah: thou shalt not speak ill of a Muslim to a non-Muslim. You break that rule, and you are in very serious trouble.

So, as with so much else, this problem is one Muslims will mostly have to solve for themselves. But they do have friends, among them Dr. Pipes, who support them whenever they are if that want that help. I think they are encouraged now that with rallies in Turkey and Pakistan.

But I also think it is more difficult here, because there are only two nations in the world with Wahhabi-dominated mosques: Saudi Arabia and the United States. Surprised? You shouldn't be. The Saudis have spent, by one knowledgeable person's estimate, $3 trillion in spreading Wahhabism (hell, they have their own Qur'an!), since the Iranian Revolution of 1978 scared the Sunnis to death.

And for 34 years, Saudis have been pouring money into Wahhabi hate speech in U.S. mosques, and only on 9/11 did we wake -- and this is some 10 years after Naqshbandi Sufi Shaykh Hisham Kabbani was screaming bloody murder to the U.S. government to watch out. Would we all had listened.

And another reason that you don't see that 3-million-Muslim march on National Mall is that Muslims flooded to this country to escape all that. And I know it, because the night of 9/11 my 90-year-old Egyptian friend was sobbing in my living room that the violence he'd seen on TV was what he emigrated to the United States to escape. And he made this desperate confession while most of the Muslims in the United States, peaceful, good people, were still saying it couldn't be a Muslim because Islam is a religion of peace. For them it is.

And since 9/11 it has become progressively worse for Muslims due to pressure from Islamists -- just one or two of whom can control a whole mosque with fear tactics -- and it has been made worse by the fact that right after 9/11 shock, dismay, and fear prevented Muslims from gaining any organization, and the Wahhabist groups walked into the vacuum unchallenged.

So yes, there are moderate Muslims. You just know any, probably because you don't actually KNOW any Muslims. But I've had Muslim friends for 35 years. I worked for ARAMCO in the United States, and every time the Big Wigs from Saudi Arabia came to the office, every Muslim in the group called in sick. Why? They're scared of the Wahhabis.

And they should be. But their best protection is speaking out.

Now, some of those people mentioned are non-Muslim Americans. But the threats are actually worse in the Muslim community, because when people get out of line...

Submitting....

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Comment on this item

Mark my comment as a response to Response to Noah ... by Morgaan Sinclair

Email me if someone replies to my comment

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

See recent outstanding comments.

Follow Daniel Pipes

Facebook   Twitter   RSS   Join Mailing List

All materials by Daniel Pipes on this site: © 1968-2021 Daniel Pipes. daniel.pipes@gmail.com and @DanielPipes

Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum.Daniel J. Pipes

(The MEF is a publicly supported, nonprofit organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tax-ID 23-774-9796, approved Apr. 27, 1998.

For more information, view our IRS letter of determination.)