May peace be upon you
Holding Islam to account
November 13, 2006
Islam has spawned many sects that are master practitioners of the art of double standards. As far as Muslims are concerned what is good for Muslims is not good for the non-Muslims; and, what is bad for Muslims is good for non-Muslims.
What complicates matters is that there is no way of knowing which of the dozens of at-each-other's-throat sects is the legitimate Islam. As sooner as Muhammad died his religion of peace became a house of internal war: jockeying for power and leadership started, sects formed and splintered into sub-sects, and bloodletting began in earnest.
The internal infighting in Islam is presently playing in full color -- in red -- most dramatically, in the Iraqi theater. Shiite raid Sunni civilians, slaughter them like sheep, and toss their bodies like trash in the streets or the rivers. The Sunnis return the favor with just as much viciousness and savagery.
Question: if this is the way these Muslims treat each other, how would they deal with the infidels, when they have the chance?
Answer: these devoted followers of Muhammad would deal with the infidels exactly the way Muhammad did: behead the non-believers, take them as slave to hold or sell, or make them pay back-breaking jazyyeh -- pole taxes.
Some may objects that writings like this are little more than hatemongering and fanning the fire that rages between Islam and the non-Islamic world. They may further flash the Islamic apologists' few well-worn-out propaganda cards as evidence for their contention that Islam is not what its detractors claim.
Here are the few favorite cards:
* There is no compulsion in religion says the Quran -- the full context is never shown.
* "Islam," means "Peace," so Islam is religion of peace.
* "For you, your religion, and for me, my religion," Muhammad reportedly has said.
The Muslims and their apologists quickly run out of their few cards and the rest of the Islamic deck is all about intolerance, hatred, and violence toward the infidels and all others who are not true Muslims, even toward those who consider themselves as Muslims. Shiites, for instance, judge the Sunnis as traitors to Islam and Sunnis condemn the Shiites as heretics. Each side deems the other worthy of death and hellfire.
This internecine Islamic war of the religion of peace is not confined to the Shiite-Sunni divide. There are so many internal divisions within each side that listing and describing them comprehensively would be encyclopedic.
So, who is right? What are the facts about Islam and how does Islam impact the ever-shrinking village earth and its inhabitants? Admittedly, this is a huge question and cannot be answered satisfactorily in one article. However, some facts can be presented to help the reader decide.
There is no need to belabor the point that Islam is not and has never been a religion of peace. The word "Islam," is derived from "taslim," which means "submission," while the term for "peace," is "Solh." Another derivation of the word "taslim," is "salamat" which means "good health," and so on.
Irrespective of what the term "Islam" may mean, the facts on the ground conclusively demonstrate Islam's violent nature from its very inception. No need to go back to the time of Muhammad and examine the historical records. Just a few from contemporary events should make the point.
Here is a partial list: the savage Shiites-Sunnis bloodletting in Iraq; the barbarism of the resurging Taliban in Afghanistan; the genocide in Sudan's Darfur; the Somalis killings; the Iranian mullahs murder of their own people and support of mischief abroad; the cross-border attack on Israel by Lebanese Hizbollah; the incessant terrorist acts of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Fatwa of the Palestinians against Israel; the bombing of Shiites mosques in Pakistan and the Shiites retaliation against easy innocent civilian targets.
Clearly, there is no place on the planet where Muslims reside that is in peace from the religion of peace. Spain, France, Holland, England Thailand, and Indonesia, have already been attacked while others such as Belgium have been threatened and sanctioned.
Stretching the benefit of the doubt beyond limits, one may believe that all these acts of horrors are committed by a small minority of thugs and radicals who happened to be Muslims.
Fine, let us ignore all those "fringes" for now: those who are giving Islam a bad reputation. And never mind Saudi Arabia, the cradle of barbarism fixed in formaldehyde since Islam's inception. Also, let us overlook the dastardly Shiite fanatics presently ruling (ruining) a great nation of Iran. Iran Shiite Hitlerists are hell-bent on wiping Israel off the face of the planet while viciously devastating Iran's own largest minority -- the Bahais; the people universally-recognized as law-abiding and peaceful.
Would someone account for what is happening in the "civilized" Islamic country of Egypt? The world owes Egypt a debt of gratitude for giving it the Muslims Brotherhood -- the lead promoter of Sunni hatred toward the infidels with chapters and front organizations in much of the world. With typical Islamic hypocrisy, the Egyptian government claims that the Muslims Brotherhood is outlawed, when in actuality the Brotherhood holds twenty-five percent of the seats in the Egyptian parliament. The same country that gave the world vicious American killers like Al Zawahiri is the recipient of huge largess from the American taxpayer.
And the latest shameful action of the Egyptian government is the issuance of identity cards that requires listing of one's religion. In order to be issued an ID card which is essential for just about any and all exercises of the rights of citizenship, the individual must list his religion as one of the three sanctioned faith: Islam, Christianity, or Judaism. No one is allowed to leave the religious affiliation blank or list any other religion. Buddhists, Hindus, Bahais or agnostics and atheists have to either lie and fake a religious affiliation or run the serious risk of having to survive as non-entities in the "crown jewel" of modern and moderate Islamic society.
These are the conditions on the ground wherever Islam rules. Violence of all forms is endemic to Islam and is not confined to any fringes. Islam itself is the fringe. A fringe that is oppressive, hateful of others and violent to the core.
The world must confront Islam and demand that it mends its ways in conformity with the Bill of Rights, where every man, woman, and child is fully entitled to equal treatment under the law, irrespective of any and all considerations. Comment
Amil Imani is an Iranian-born American citizen and pro-democracy activist residing in the United States of America. Imani is a columnist, literary translator, novelist and an essayist who has been writing and speaking out for the struggling people of his native land, Iran. He maintains a website at AmilImani.com.