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By Don Feder
A passenger revolt occurred on a Malaga-Manchester flight. Vacationing Brits refused to fly with two Arabic-speaking men. This came in the wake of arrests of 21 British-born Muslims who were plotting to blow up as many as 11 trans-Atlantic flights.
A spokesman for Britain's opposition Tory party said the passengers panicked into "behaving irrationally." Fancy that, not wanting to fly with members of a faith whose adherents keep trying to blow things up. Oh, how irrational!
Within days of this incident, a Lebanese student was arrested for trying to plant bombs on German trains. In India, meanwhile, a group with alleged ties to al-Qaeda threatened to blow up the 17th century Taj Mahal.
If Muslims make travelers nervous, it's not without cause.
Would you be more likely to have an anxiety attack at 20,000 feet if the passenger seated next to you was: A) An Irish nun saying the Rosary? B) A Mormon missionary in regulation white shirt and narrow, black tie? C) A Hari Krishna in a standard-issue saffron robe? or D) A bearded bloke of Middle Eastern complexion holding a well-thumbed Koran?
When you hear of a terrorist incident, is the first thought that pops into your head: Probably some crazy Muslim? Guess what? It probably was some crazy Muslim!
Guessing the religion of those who plant bombs, highjack planes, fire into crowds of civilians, take hostages and murder hostages is the world's ultimate no-brainer.
And yet our leaders, the media and many of us pretend there's absolutely no connection between psychopathic, ideological killers and the religion which exalts the slaughter of unbelievers.
To counter confusion here, a la Letterman, I humbly offer The Top 10 Reasons Why It's Quite Possible That Islam Isn't Exactly A Religion of Peace.
#1 -- While it's certainly true that not all Muslims are terrorists, it's equally true that most terrorists are Muslims.
Think about the really ghastly terrorist incidents over the past two decades -- the 1983 Beirut Marine barracks bombing (242 dead), the 1988 Pam Am 103 bombing (259 dead), the 1993 World Trade Center attack (6 dead, more than 1,000 injured), the 1994 bombing of the Buenos Aires Jewish Center (86 dead ), the 1998 bombing of U.S. embassies in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam (291 dead, 5,000 wounded), the 2000 attack on the U.S.S. Cole (17 dead), September 11, 2001 (over 3,000 killed), the 2002 Moscow theater hostage-taking (94 dead), the 2004 Beslan school hostage crisis (344 dead), the 2004 Madrid train bombings (192 dead), the 2005 London underground bombings (56 dead) and the 2006 commuter train bombings in Mumbai -- formerly Bombay (at least 200 dead).
In each and every case, the killers were... ? That is correct, sir -- Muslims! What other religion condones savagery committed in its name? Jesus said turn the other cheek. Muhammed said cut off the other guy's cheek. The Torah says show kindness to strangers. The Koran says: If you can't convert them, kill them.
#2 -- Muslims don't play well with other children. Wherever there's religious bloodshed anywhere in the world, it's invariably Muslims versus someone else. Could this be a coincidence?
Israel, Gaza and Lebanon -- Muslims verses Jews. Kashmir -- Muslims vs. Hindus. Kosovo/Bosnia -- Muslims vs. Serbian Orthodox. Nigeria, the Sudan -- Muslims versus Christians. Indonesia -- Muslims vs. Christians. Myanmar -- Muslims vs. Buddhists. The Northern Caucuses -- Chechen Muslims against Russia Orthodox, and so on.
Inquiring minds want to know why the "religion of peace" can't behave peaceably with any other religion.
Answer: Islam remains what it was at its beginning 1,300 years ago -- a violent, expansionist faith that will tolerate no competitors. What other religion has the concept of jihad (holy war) -- the notion that if you die fighting for Allah you get 72 virgins (exhausting as that must be) in Paradise? Muhammed started by eliminating the competition -- annihilating Jewish tribes in the Arabian Peninsula. More than a millennium latter, it's still business as usual for his successors.
#3 -- For Muslims, violence and threats of violence are always the first resort to any perceived insult or injury.
Recall the Muslim response to Danish cartoons of their beloved prophet. The Danish embassy in Beirut was burned to the ground. There were death threats against the cartoonists and the editors of papers that published the cartoons. (In London, protestors held signs proclaiming "Those who insult Islam should die" and "Europe is a disease. Islam is the cure.")
In rioting in Nigeria, Libya, Pakistan and Afghanistan, 139 died. Protestors were particularly offended by the implication of the cartoons -- that Muhammed and his religion encourage murder and mayhem. The irony of "They say Islam promotes violence? For that they should die!" was lost on demonstrators.
#4 -- Islam is virulently anti-Semitic
Jews have been described as the miner's canary of the world. Those who start with the Jews never stop there. The 20th century's mass murderers -- the Nazis and communists -- saw Jews as a special threat. Hitler killed 6 million Jews -- as well as millions of non-Jews.
The Koran connects genocide to the end times: "The last hour will not come before the Muslims fight the Jews and the Muslims kill them, so Jews will hide behind stones and trees and the Stone and the tree will say 'O Muslim, 'O servant of God! There is a Jew behind me; come and kill him." Muhammed called Jews "the descendants of apes and pigs."
Every anti-Semitic canard in history has currency in the Muslim world, including the Blood Libel (that Jews murder non-Jewish children and use their blood to bake Passover matzo) and The Protocols of The Elders of Zion ("exposing" a Jewish conspiracy to subdue humanity).
Jew-hatred is a staple of Muslim rhetoric.
In a recent interview with the Egyptian weekly Al-Ahram, Gen. Hamid Gul (former head of Pakistani Intelligence) said Mel Gibson was right, "Jews cause all the wars." Egyptian Mufti Sheikh Ali Gum'a says the war in Lebanon once again exposed the "Hebrew entity" (Israel) as "the bloodsuckers... who prepare matzos from human blood." In Britain, popular Islamic cleric Sheikh Abdullah el-Faisal (a Jamaican convert) tells audiences "Jews should be killed... as by Hitler."
When he met John Paul II in 2001, Syrian President-for-Life Bashar Assad told the pontiff that the Jews "try to kill all the principles of divine faith with the same mentality of betraying Jesus and torturing him."
And Adb al-Rahman al-Sudais, sheikh of Mecca's Grand Mosque, in Islam's holiest city, calls Jews "the scum of the earth," and calls for the genocide of a people who are, in the sheikh's words, "an ongoing continuum of deceit, obstinacy, licentiousness, evil and corruption."
Muslims really have a hard time deciding whether the Holocaust: 1) Never happened 2) Is grossly exaggerated or 3) Didn't go far enough.
#5 -- Public Opinion In The Muslim World is Scary.
Muslim public opinion can be summarized as acid hatred, chauvinism and revenge fantasies -- leavened with paranoia. In the 5 years since 9/11, polls consistently show that, irrefutable evidence to the contrary notwithstanding, worldwide, a majority of Muslims believe the World Trade Center attack couldn't possibly have been committed by Arab Muslims.
Naturally, they attribute the crime to "Zionists." If someone wrote a book titled "How To Fly a Plane Into A Skyscraper Whilst Using Human Blood To Bake Matzos: A Zionist Training Manual," it would top the Tehran Bestsellers List.
#6 -- Generally, the more Muslim a nation, the more lunatic and dangerous it is.
Think Iran. Think Saudi Arabia. Think Afghanistan while the Taliban was in power.
Think of the fate of women in these regimes -- consigned to the status of breeding stock. Think of their attitudes toward democracy, civil liberties and minority rights -- No way, Jamal.
As a rule, the more a nation is governed by Islamic law and customs, the more it hates the West, supports terrorism (Iran's support for Hezbollah, Syria's support for Hamas, Al Qaeda training camps in Taliban Afghanistan. Radical mosques in the US financed by the Saudis), and covets weapons of mass jihad (witness Iran's nuclear program).
If Islam is the religion of peace, where is its St. Francis of Assisi, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Mother Teresa? Where are the Islamic equivalents of the Quakers and Jehovah's Witnesses?
Far from making rulers more enlightened, Islam specializes in the mass production of Ayatollah Khomeinis, Osama bin Ladens, Mullah Omars, Hafez Assads and Saddam Husseins.
#7 -- When a young Muslim becomes more involved with his religion, his thoughts often stray to suicide bombing.
I was in London when the latest terrorist conspiracy went down. On the evening news, I heard a BBC reporter interviewing a neighbor of one of the suspects. "He was a good lad," the neighbor opined. "Played football" (British soccer). "Recently, he became very involved with his religion" (hint: not the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints).
How often have we heard those fatal words? Born-again Christians witness and do good works. Born-again Muslims work with liquid explosives.
Converts to a cause are usually the most enthusiastic. Paul became Christianity's first missionary and foremost proselytizer.
Converts to Islam frequently end up shooting total strangers (John Muhammad and Lee Malvo), try to detonate planes with explosives in their shoes (Richard Reid), fight against their country (American Taliban John Walker Lindh) and frag fellow GIs (Hassan Akbar ). When was the last time you heard of a Jewish convert going after civilians with a high-powered rifle, or a Catholic convert waging jihad to avenge Thomas Moore?
Religion usually makes people better (kinder, more compassionate and more tolerant). The religion of peace is the exception to the rule. You might say Islam is to religion as rap is to music.
#8 -- Islam isn't minority friendly.
In Freedom House's 2006 Global Survey, of the 8 countries with the worst human rights records, 5 are Muslim -- Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Libya, Syria and Sudan. The other three -- Cuba, North Korea and Burma -- are communist dictatorships. Cuba and North Korea are frequently aligned with radical Muslim regimes.
Which would you rather be -- a Muslim living in Tel Aviv or a Jew living in Tehran? A Coptic Christian in Egypt or an Egyptian Muslim in Rome? An Orthodox Serb in Muslim Kosovo or a Turk in Germany?
Islam has the concept of the dhimmi (non-Moslem living under Islam), which is several steps below blacks in the Jim Crow South -- though slightly better than Jews in Nazi Germany.
#9 -- Where Have All The Moderate Muslims Gone -- Long Time Passing?
If suicide bombers are radical Muslims, apologists for suicide bombers must be moderate Muslims. (In a letter to Tony Blair following the unraveling of the latest plot, 40 Muslim community leaders -- including six members of Parliament -- claimed Britain's foreign policy gave "ammunition to extremists.")
If someone slaughtered hundreds of innocents in the name of Christianity, everyone from the Pope and Billy Graham to your parish priest or local pastor would denounce the crime as an obscenity -- without reference to the fall of Constantinople.
Hardly a day goes by that evil isn't perpetrated in the name of Islam somewhere in the world. When it comes to denouncing same, moderate Muslims are mostly AWOL.
Occasionally, we'll hear from a Muslim not mired in the Dark Ages. Usually, they're wondering where all of the other moderate Muslims are. One is Irshad Manji, a fellow at Yale University and the author of "The Trouble with Islam Today: A Muslim's Call for Reform in Her Faith."
Ms Manji can author such a book while safely ensconced in New Haven. If she wrote a book suggesting -- or even hinting -- that Islam is less than perfection, while residing anywhere in the Muslim world, she'd be dead. In fact, in many parts of the Islamic world, a woman can get in serious trouble for reading a book.
# 10 -- Islam is bent on global conquest.
"Islam isn't in America to be equal to any other faiths, but to become dominant. The Koran... should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on earth." -- Omar Ahmad, founder of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR).
"Islam will return to Europe. The conquest need not necessarily be by the sword. Perhaps we will conquer these lands without armies. We want an army of preachers and teachers who will present Islam in all languages and all dialects." -- Dr. Al-Qaradawi, Egyptian-born, Qatar-based spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood.
"The Muslims are required to raise the banner of jihad in order to make the Word of Allah supreme in the world." -- posting on the website of the Islamic Affairs Department of the Saudi government. (These oil-rich fascists control roughly 80% of U.S. mosques.)
"Islam is advancing according to a steady plan, to the point that tens of thousands of Muslims have joined the American army and Islam is the second largest religion in America. America will be destroyed. But we must be patient." -- Saudi Professor Nassar bin Suleiman al-Omar on al-Majd TV.
Within 100 years of Muhammed's death, Islam had conquered the Middle East and spread across North Africa before it was finally stopped in southern France. Today, due to immigration, one in every 10 Frenchmen is a Muslim and an estimated 50,000 convert to Islam each year.
In Britain, with 1.5 million Muslims, attendance at mosques is higher than at services for the Church of England. Islam is spreading down both coasts of Africa -- in Nigeria, Kenya, the Sudan and Ethiopia -- as well as in the Balkans, former Soviet republics, Asia and the Philippines.
Whether they bury us with swords, explosives or immigration and procreation, the fate Islam has in store for us is the same.
If you don't get it, you're not paying attention. Or, perhaps your religion (liberalism) blinds you to the truth.
Islam is: A) A religion of peace B) A religion of rest in peace C) A religion that leaves you in pieces or D) A religion that wants a piece of what you have now -- the rest later?
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