Nonie Darwish Perfects Double Speak
by Sheila Musaji
In July 2010, Nonie Darwish published an article titled Muslim Groups Attack FMU with Double-Speak on The Iconoclast site responding to an article that I had published back in November of 2009. Don’t know what took her so long to get around to this, but it probably has to do with her most recent mailing of her phony freedom pledge to attempt to find some way to connect herself to the Cordoba House controversy. She was a participant in the SIOA protest against the Cordoba House.
Darwish quotes part of one paragraph from my article Former Muslims United Freedom Pledge Against Punishment for Apostasy a “Red Herring”. Darwish writes: “On Nov. 19, 2009 Sheila Musaji, editor of The American Muslim, wrote an article attacking Former Muslims United (FMU). Ms. Musaji stated “This FMU pledge is simply another attempt to create propaganda. Thus, she [Darwish] planted the idea that American Muslims have not taken a position against punishments for apostasy and attempted to make it seem as if only former Muslims can stand for what is right, and frankly to attempt to increase the visibility of the FMU at the expense of the Muslim community. This is shameful behavior (although typical of members of this group who go beyond denouncing Islamic radicalism to denouncing all of Islam) and is simply another example of attempting to marginalize the Muslim community.”
Of course, she does not give her readers the title of my article, or even a link to the original article. And, even with the snippets of the article that she includes in her tirade she doesn’t include the links. This is the first ploy that is often used by those with axe to grind - make sure your readers only have access to your point of view. To top it off she doesn’t even get the quote right in an obvious attempt to insert herself into my article. Darwish is the Director of FMU, but the Freedom Pledge is signed by 5 Board Members on behalf of the organization. I mention the FMU, but not Darwish or any other particular member of that group. Check out the underlined portion of her “quote” and the same section underlined in the original below. Also notice that she is making a personal attack on me as a person, but her article title refers to “Muslim groups”. No Muslim groups are mentioned, just me, one elderly American Muslim woman who has published The American Muslim for over 20 years on a volunteer basis.
Here is my original article to which Darwish objects:
At the end of September, a group called Former Muslims United created a pledge against punishment for apostasy and sent it out to leaders of Muslim organizations across America asking them to sign it.
The “pledge” begins with a long list of partial quotes then states: “Therefore: To support the civil rights of former Muslims, also known as apostates from Islam, I sign “The Muslim Pledge for Religious Freedom and Safety from Harm for Former Muslims”: “I renounce, repudiate and oppose any physical intimidation, or worldly and corporal punishment, of apostates from Islam, in whatever way that punishment may be determined or carried out by myself or any other Muslim including the family of the apostate, community, Mosque leaders, Shariah court or judge, and Muslim government or regime.”
This FMU group has certainly not paid any attention to what has already taken place within the Muslim community, particularly here in the United States. TAM has an extensive resource collection of articles and information about this called Apostasy and Freedom of Faith in Islam, and we have published many articles discussing this subject. Most importantly, Muslims themselves have created such a pledge more than two years ago. This FMU pledge is simply another attempt to create propaganda (planting the idea that American Muslims have not taken a position against punishments for apostasy) and to attempt to make it seem as if only former Muslims can stand for what is right, and frankly to attempt to increase the visibility of the FMU at the expense of the Muslim community. This is shameful behavior (although typical of members of this group who go beyond denouncing Islamic radicalism to denouncing all of Islam) and is simply another example of attempting to marginalize the Muslim community and bolster the false claim that Muslims don’t speak up against injustices, extremism, etc.
Back in March of 2007, Dr. Umar Farooq met with many Muslim scholars, community leaders, etc. and released a statement which we published on The American Muslim site (TAM), and on a website set up by Dr. Farooq at ( http://apostasyandislam.blogspot.com/2007/03/statement-muslims-uphold-faith-of.html ).
Here is the statement that was signed by over 100 individuals back in 2007 and which goes well beyond this FMU pledge (Note: I was number 24 to sign):
”Muslim Academics/Scholars/Imams/Professionals uphold the Freedom of Faith and the Freedom to Change one’s Faith
“ ... Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands out clear from Error ...” [2:256]
This is Islam’s unambiguous affirmation of freedom of faith, which also applies to changing of faith. The Qur’an illuminates before the humanity the two highways [90:10], one of which leads to salvation. Islam is an invitation to the highway toward salvation, but it is based on FREEDOM OF CHOICE.
Apostasy (riddah) is a major issue that affects the understanding of, and perception about, Islam. Historically, Muslim scholars have not factored in the distinction between apostasy (changing one’s faith, which is strictly a sin against God) and treason (strictly a civil offense against an established public order) when it is stated that Islam mandates capital punishment for riddah. That unnuanced perspective about apostasy has fueled negative propaganda against Islam and a negative image of Muslims. In recent years in some notable and well known cases, a fatwa (legal, non-binding opinion) was issued against alleged apostates and, at times, even a bounty was announced on their head.
Many Muslim scholars and academics have argued against the stated historical position as inconsistent with the Qur’an and on the grounds that killing someone for making a considered choice negates the very Islamic value and principle of freedom of choice, affecting Islam’s position on universal human rights.
Freedom of choice in faith is central to Islam. This has been exemplified in the Qur’anic narrative regarding the choice made by Satan in contrast with Adam and Eve, and the broad agreement of Muslim scholars that only faith freely adopted is meritorious before God. Throughout history prophets and the communities of their believers have struggled to secure freedom of faith for themselves. Indeed it is a principle quintessential to both Islam and humanity.
Choosing a path in line with our beliefs about salvation has significant consequences in terms of our afterlife. In this world that freedom is bestowed upon us by God, which, by implication, must include the possibility of changing one’s faith. Freedom of religion is meaningless without the freedom to change one’s religion. Denial of such reciprocal rights is also inconsistent with the principle of justice (adl/qist), as clearly enunciated in the Qur’an [4/an-Nisa/135].
The Qur’an does not specify any worldly punishment or retribution solely for apostasy. Similarly, there is no clear prophetic judgment on apostasy, nor examples that such punishment was meted out (during the time of the Prophet or in the period of the Righteous Caliphate) to someone solely for abandoning Islam as a creed, in contrast with apostasy-cum-treason, involving taking up arms against the Muslim community or the state.
Islam upholds the fundamental principle pertaining to freedom of faith [“Let there be no compulsion in Deen” 2/al-Baqara/256; also see 39/al-Zumar/41]. Thus:
We the undersigned Muslims from diverse backgrounds affirm: The freedom of faith and the freedom of changing one’s faith. In light of the Qur’anic guidance and the Prophetic legacy, the principle of freedom of faith does not lend itself to impose in this world any punishment or retribution solely for apostasy; thus there ought not to be any punishment in the name of Islam or fatwa calling for the same.
In addition, we call upon:
our esteemed scholars (ulama) and jurists (fuqaha), to address this inconsistency between the Islamic principle of freedom of faith and the position mandating punishment for apostasy, and to bring our legacy of Islamic jurisprudence and general Islamic discourse up-to-date for the times with reference to indisputable and categorical Islamic principles.
our fellow Muslims, to be informed of Islam’s position on apostasy and to uphold the principle of choice so that we may exercise tolerance towards those who have left the “straight path” and deal with their subsequent views and actions (even when they are against Islam) within the conext of human rights and civil liberties allowed by law.
Imams and religious leaders, to educate and sensitize Muslim masses about notions of fairness and justice inherent in Islam and respond to apostasy in a dignified, constructive and patient manner.
governments of Muslim-majority countries, to address this matter constitutionally as well as legally, and actively engage in a process that eventually discards any law entailing punishment for apostasy.
Islamic organizations, to uphold universal human rights (not inconsistent with Islam) and to defend the rights of ex-Muslims in regard to apostasy.
The Qur’an on freedom of thought, conscience and religion:
[10:99]“If it had been the will of your Lord that all the people of the world should be believers, all the people of the earth would have believed! Would you then compel mankind against their will to believe?”
[2:256] There shall be no compulsion in religion: the right way is now distinct from the wrong way. Anyone who denounces the devil and believes in GOD has grasped the strongest bond; one that never breaks. GOD is Hearer, Omniscient.
God Almighty never gave any guardianship role to the Messengers or Muslims over this issue:
[33:40] Muhammad was not the father of any man among you. He was a messenger of GOD and the final prophet. GOD is fully aware of all things.
[4:80] Whoever obeys the messenger is obeying GOD. As for those who turn away, we did not send you as their guardian.
[6:66] Your people have rejected this, even though it is the truth. Say, “I am not a guardian over you.”
[6:104] Enlightenments have come to you from your Lord. As for those who can see, they do so for their own good, and those who turn blind, do so to their own detriment. I am not your guardian.
[18:29]”(O Prophet Muhammad) proclaim: ‘This is the Truth from your Lord. Now let him who will, believe in it, and him who will, deny it.’”
[6:107] Had GOD willed, they would not have worshiped idols. We did not appoint you as their guardian, nor are you their advocate.
[10:108] Proclaim: “O people, the truth has come to you herein from your Lord. Whoever is guided is guided for his own good. And whoever goes astray, goes astray to his own detriment. I am not a guardian over you.”
[11:86] “Whatever GOD provides for you, no matter how small, is far better for you, if you are really believers. I am not a guardian over you.”
[42:48] If they turn away, we did not send you as their guardian. Your sole mission is delivering the message. When we shower the human beings with mercy, they become proud, and when adversity afflicts them, as a consequence of their own deeds, the human beings turn into disbelievers
[4:137] Those who believe, then reject faith, then believe again and again reject faith, and go on increasing in disbelief, God will not forgive them nor guide them nor guide them on the way.
Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person:
[2:178] O you who believe, equivalence is the law decreed for you when dealing with murder - the free for the free, the slave for the slave, the female for the female. If one is pardoned by the victim’s kin, an appreciative response is in order, and an equitable compensation shall be paid. This is an alleviation from your Lord and mercy. Anyone who transgresses beyond this incurs a painful retribution.
[2:191] You may kill those who wage war against you, and you may evict them whence they evicted you. Oppression is worse than murder. ...
[16:126] And if you punish, you shall inflict an equivalent punishment. But if you resort to patience (instead of revenge), it would be better for the patient ones.
[17:33] You shall not kill any person - for GOD has made life sacred - except in the course of justice. If one is killed unjustly, then we give his heir authority to enforce justice. Thus, he shall not exceed the limits in avenging the murder, he will be helped.
Everyone is entitled to these rights and freedoms without distinction:
[2:136] Say, “We believe in GOD, and in what was sent down to us, and in what was sent down to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, and the Patriarchs; and in what was given to Moses and Jesus, and all the prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction among any of them. To Him alone we are submitters.”
[49:13] O people, we created you from the same male and female, and rendered you distinct peoples and tribes that you may recognize one another. The best among you in the sight of GOD is the most righteous. GOD is Omniscient, Cognizant.
It is very obvious why Darwish would not want her readers exposed to the whole article.
Darwish then rants for awhile about Muslims not signing her FMU Apostasy pledge. And then she writes On September 24, 2009 however, two days after we mailed our pledges, Musaji wrote an article stating that “We live in a country where such freedom (of religion) is a foundational principle and must be defended. We must continue to insist on the Islamic principle that there is ‘no compulsion in religion.’” Musaji is an educated Muslim and she must be fully aware that the “no compulsion in religion” verses have been abrogated by all the learned Imams of Islam who wrote the Sharia and who found commandments in Koran and Hadith to kill apostates. She posted a list of a few peaceful verses in the Koran while willfully ignoring the majority of Islamic scriptures stating otherwise.
Again, she does not give the title of the article to which she is referring, which is Apostasy and Freedom of Faith in Islam - Resource Collection, and obviously Darwish is unable to scroll to the bottom of the article where she would discover that September 2009 was when this article was last updated, but it was originally posted in April of 2008 well before she mailed out her spurious pledge. As to the theory of abrogation (naksh) in Islam, perhaps Darwish should read Muhammad Al-Ghazali’s View on Abrogation (Naskh) in the Qur’an by Khaleel Mohammed (with a lengthy bibliography), and On the Theory of Abrogation (Naskh) in the Qur’an by Jeffrey Lang - both of which are published on The American Muslim (TAM) site. This is one of many issues being discussed in depth by scholars of Islam, and about which there is a wide range of opinions, for and against.
More rambling and then The only religion on earth that has multiple answers to every question is Islam. If you ask a Catholic what is the Vatican position on abortion, the answer is clear, even if they disagree with the Vatican, they will say that Catholicism does not allow abortion. But Muslims in America seem to teach, at least temporarily, religious principles that stand in stark contradiction with the core ideology of Islam. Such lies about what Islam is have worked in favor of Muslim expansion. This confusion and double talk in Islam works well in silencing others.
Islam has no hierarchy, and no Pope. Islam has 8 mathabs or schools of thought, according to the Amman Conference Statement to which I subscribe. There are many understandings of Islam - not one monolithic understanding. Therefore to object to the fact that Muslims hold different opinions about any particular issue and see this is some sort of purposeful deception is deeply dishonest.
Darwish also says Musaji tells her community “we need to deal with the issue of apostasy within our community.” She tries to convince us that this issue is just a small community matter but ignores the true source of the problem which is: 45 Muslim countries around the world who legally state that Sharia law supercedes any other law. She has never stated unequivocally that she condemns any laws in Islam that state that apostates must be killed. She was very careful in how she words her objections to killing apostates. From her writing you can tell she is trying to have it both ways, not openly objecting to Islamic law while still trying to tell America she is for freedom of religion. Apparently her seemingly more tolerant views are a form of adaptation to American law until her dream of Islamizing America is accomplished and the ugly reality of Sharia will be the law.
No rational, literate human being could read the Freedom of Faith and the Freedom to Change one’s Faith statement to which I am a signatory and then make the false claims that Darwish makes. And, if she is claiming to be a psychic who can read my mind, she is a failure at that effort also. She would do better to read my published writings to understand my views. In that case she might discuss why she disagrees with something I actually said as opposed to something she thinks that I must be thinking or dreaming. As to my supposed “dream of Islamizing America” she might read my article American Muslims must defend the Constitution of the United States.
Then Darwish brings up Daniel Pipes specious argument in her closing paragraph On her website, Musaji has a map of the USA with Arabic Islamic “in the name of Allah” pasted on the center of the map, the same as the Saudi flag. This speaks for itself as to the true goals of Islam in America.
As I noted in an article rebutting this nonsense about the TAM logo
“The logo of The American Muslim (a map of the U.S. with the Bismillah written on it) has been exactly the same since 1989 - in print and online. It is simply a visual representation of our name. I was the founding editor of this publication, and came up with the logo myself. My only thought was that we are proud Americans and proud Muslims, and Muslim Americans are part of the fabric of American life not outsiders. There is no other significance intended by this logo. I am surprised that anyone would think that “calling down a Divine blessing” on the United States might be a problem.
Many organizations have used maps of the U.S. or even the world with a religious symbol superimposed. The Coalition on the Environment and Jewish Life http://www.coejl.org/ has a Star of David with a globe superimposed. The Canadian Council for Israel and Jewish Advocacy at http://www.cija.ca/index.cfm has the Canadian maple leaf with a Star of David superimposed on it. The Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society at http://www.hias.org/home.html has a globe with a menorah superimposed. If I had the time, I am certain I could find hundreds of such logos. I can’t imagine that these innocuous logos prove some evil intentions.”
Nonie Darwish has a pathological hatred towards Islam, and is part of what has been called the Islamophobic Industrial Complex. She participates in David Horowitz’ Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week held annually on college campuses. She claimed on a Christian radio program about President Obama that “whether he believes in Islam or not,” Obama is a “political Muslim” who, as a child, was “immersed in a culture that was anti-American.” She participated in the virulently Islamophobic film “Obsession”, and in the equally vicious “The Third Jihad”.
In April of 2009 it was reported that “Fox News anchor Alisyn Camerota and guest Nonie Darwish suggested something radical: the Obama administration is attempting to impose Sharia, the strict Islamic law, to the U.S. and its courts.” You can even see the video here.
At a Young America Foundation event, Darwish gave a talk. After the talk a participant asked her “Can Islam be reformed?” According to a report about the event: “Darwish is hopeful that it can and that many Muslims wish, privately, to reform Islam. Then how come there are not more voices crying for reform in the Middle East? Her explanation was as simple as it was disturbing. Because those calling for reform are often labeled “traitors” or “apostates”.” Actually, those calling for reform are more often labelled liars (practicing taqqiyah) or misrepresented by professional Islam bashers like Darwish.
Darwish’s FMU group has posted a digital billboard on a Tennessee Highway opposing the proposed expansion of the Murfreesboro mosque.
Darwish said ”“Islam is cruel, anti-women, anti-religious freedom and anti-personal freedom in general. How could you sympathize with a religion that kills adulterers, homosexuals and people who convert out of Islam? How could you present Islam with such affection? … How could you defend a religion that inspired 9/11?“
After one of Chessler’s appearances at Wellsley College, R.J. Eskow wrote a great satirical article Sorority of Horror: Dispatches From the Islamo-Fascist Front in which he said:
“Wellsley College, the Massachusetts women’s school that has become a front in the Clash of Civilizations.
Ex-Muslim author Nonie Darwish was not heckled, attacked, or confronted when she spoke there recently. Oh, no. The Jihadis are too smart for that. Instead, as Phyllis Chesler informs us, Muslim girls “rolled their eyes” - and several of them took “bathroom breaks.”
O, believers! Your determination will turn the Ladies’ Room into a citadel of freedom!
“They have perfected their intimidation and disruption techniques,” says Darwish - techniques Chesler calls “mean girl” tactics.”
Jim Holston has posted an in-depth expose about Darwish. He uncovers a number of discrepancies in her “biography”, but what I found particularly interesting is the incredible inter-connections between the Islamophobes. Here is the relevant information on that topic
StandWithUs manages an impressive stable of Zionist speakers, including several who are Arabs, Muslims, or ex-Muslims: Brigitte Gabriel, Ishmael Khaldi, Walid Shoebat, Khaled Abu Toameh, and Nonie Darwish. Darwish, born an Egyptian Muslim, now an American Evangelical Christian, is one of the most energetic. She manages the website Arabs for Israel and has appeared on FOX News, on the website Frontpage Magazine, and in the film Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West. She is also the author of Now They Call Me Infidel: Why I Renounced Jihad for America, Israel, and the War on Terror. Penguin Books publishes it under its Sentinel imprint — a special line of conservative titles. Since her book’s publication in 2006, Darwish has toured extensively, speaking primarily at colleges and universities.
Now They Call Me Infidel has blurbs from all the usual crew: Daniel Pipes, David Horowitz, Robert Spencer, Bat Ye’Or, former Senator Rick Santorum, Representative Tom “Nuke Mecca” Tancredo, and General Paul Vallely, who advocates the final ethnic cleansing of all Palestinian citizens of Israel. In the book itself, Darwish interweaves stories of her Egyptian girlhood with potted accounts of female genital mutilation, arranged marriages, polygamy, veiling, domestic abuse, honor killings, sharia law, jihad, censorship, hate-oriented education, the rejection of modernity, the cult of martyrdom, Islamic imperialism, and the pathological, groundless hatred of Israel.
This pretty well sums up just how demented Darwish is. She is an individual who is promoting what I call What everyone “knows” about Islam propaganda. These misrepresentations about Islam and Muslims are the sort of “facts” that Darwish promotes. Perhaps, if she would spend a little time and follow the links in this short listing of “what everyone knows” claims, she might learn something.
UPDATE August 2, 2010
Today, Darwish’s article was reposted on the Front Page site with a new title To Kill an Apostate complete with a visual of a star and crescent dripping blood. It would seem that the form of Christianity that Darwish has found to give her spiritual guidance is the same as that of the Dove World Outreach church and those who didn’t read the part about brotherly love and non-violence.
Perhaps she should study some of the less violent Biblical verses, e.g.:
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. (Mat 5:3-11)
Proverbs 6:16-19, “These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.”
1 John 4:20, “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?”
I don’t know what her motives might be, but her Islamophobic tactics are very much like traditional anti-Semitic tactics.
State Senator Greg Ball (R-NY), chairman of the Veterans, Homeland Security & Military Affairs Committee will hold a hearing titled “Reviewing our Preparedness: An Examination of New York’s Public Protection Ten Years After September 11” on April 8th.
Among the “experts” he has called to testify are Rep. Peter King, Frank Gaffney, and Nonie Darwish. Eleven democratic senators have sent a letter to Senator Ball objecting to the inclusion of such individuals. You can see the full text of the letters back and forth here. For some reason Darwish will apparently speak at the event under the pseudonym “Nahid Hyde.”
Here is the press release from Sen. Parkers office about their letter to Sen. Ball:
Senators Urge Chairman Ball To Reject Bigotry
(Brooklyn, NY) Today, Senator Kevin Parker was joined by Senators Tony Avella, Adriano Espaillat, Ruth Hassell-Thompson, Liz Krueger, Velmanette Montgomery, Jose Peralta, Bill Perkins, Gustavo Rivera, Diane Savino, and Andrea Stewart-Cousins in a letter to Senator Greg Ball opposing the participation of Nonie Darwish and Frank Gaffney in upcoming hearings before the Veterans, Homeland Security, and Military Affairs Committee. On April 8, 2011, Senator Ball will hold a hearing, “Reviewing our Preparedness: An Examination of New York’s Public Protection Ten Years After September 11.”
Regrettably, he includes a topic not germane to the security of New York, Shariah (Islamic law). The Chairman has invited Nonie Darwish, an individual unqualified to speak on Islamic jurisprudence and has a long record of using racist and incendiary language that has no place before any committee of the State Senate. Ms. Darwish has referred to Islam as “not a true religion” and to President Obama’s mother as a “radical” for marrying a Muslim. She told the New York Times in an August 7, 2010 article: “A mosque is not just a place for worship. It’s a place where war is started, where commandments to do jihad start, where incitements against non-Muslims occur. It’s a place where ammunition was stored.”
“I am greatly concerned that a committee of this Senate seeks to criminalize an entire faith tradition,” said Senator Parker. “Moreover, the individual selected by Chairman Ball lacks the credibility and credentials necessary for a substantive policy hearing,” continued Parker. “We in New York face serious challenges with regards to protecting our state, this portion of the hearing merely serves as a distraction.”
Although some seek to isolate and vilify Muslims, this diverse community has played an instrumental role since the founding of our nation. Today, hundreds of thousands of Muslim Americans are a part of the fabric of our state. They are our neighbors, physicians, entrepreneurs, educators, legislators and serve in law enforcement.
It is disconcerting that in the past two years, there has been a growth in vitriol against Muslims and those who are perceived to be Muslim. This coincides with an increase in violence and discrimination against Muslims, Sikhs, Arabs and other members of the South Asian community. Thus, I ask Chairman Ball to withdraw the invitation to Ms. Darwish and Mr. Gaffney, and call upon him to take this opportunity to hold hearings that truly address the safety and well-being for all New Yorkers,” said Parker.
David Freedlander reports that Ball defended the presence of Darwish, saying that “We have to understand who our enemy is, and we have to understand the culture of jihad and get beyond the feel-good politics of political correctness and have New Yorkers have a clear look at people who want to destroy our city and our state.”
Glenn Blain reports that Ball further defended Darwish’s inclusion by saying she spent more than 30 years in Egypt and is qualified to discuss Shariah law.
Amazing logic. I suppose that means that since I have spent more than 60 years in the United States, than I am qualified to testify officially on Constitutional Law.
Darwish was upset that she wasn’t called to testify at Rep. Peter King’s hearings. It seems that she will now get her chance to spew as much anti-Muslim venom as she can.
A video has just been posted on YouTube which is of Nonie Darwish speaking at a Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA) event in Florida last year. Watch the video to hear it for yourself, but here is the text
“Islam is a poison to a society. It’s divisive. It’s hateful. Look what Islam is doing on our college campuses. It’s full of anti-Semitism. It’s going to turn us against one another. It’s going to produce chaos in society. Because Islam should be feared, and should be fought, and should be conquered, and defeated, and annihilated, and it’s going to happen. Ladies and gentlemen, Islam is going to be brought down. . .Because Islam is based on lies and it’s not based on the truth. I have no doubt whatsoever that Islam is going to be destroyed.”
This is pure hate speech. There is no way to annihilate Islam without annihilating Muslims. When these rabid Islamophobes use this sort of demonization, they can claim that “we never called for violence” all they want, but there is nothing except violence that this sort of propaganda leads to.
It is no surprise that groups like SIOA run by Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer embrace such speech. SIOA has been designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Here is some background on SIOA:
The Southern Poverty Law Center published a report citing Geller for hate speech. The AFDI has been named a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The American Freedom Defense Initiative is the parent group of the SIOA. Spencer, Geller, and David Yerushalmi are featured in the SPLC reports Jihad Against Islam and The Anti-Muslim Inner Circle.
Spencer and Geller attempted to patent the SIOA trademark, but were refused by the U.S. patent office The government response, posted on the site, states, “The applied-for mark refers to Muslims in a disparaging manner because by definition it implies that conversion or conformity to Islam is something that needs to be stopped or caused to cease. “The proposed mark further disparages Muslims because, taking into account the nature of the services (‘providing information regarding understanding and preventing terrorism’), it implies that Islam is associated with violence and threats,” the government agency said. Again, Loonwatch has more here which include a number of hateful screen grabs from the SIOA facebook page. Geller says that I engaged David Yerushalmi and Robert Muise of the Thomas More Law Center to pursue this matter legally. Once again, these legal warriors did not hesitate to take the case pro-bono.
The Center for American Progress released a groundbreaking report Fear Inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America. The key researchers for this report were Wajahat Ali, Eli Clifton, Matthew Duss, Lee Fang, Scott Keyes, and Faiz Shakir. The report itself is the result of a six month investigative project, and is 132 pages in length. Geller is cited as part of this network.
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) notes in a backgrounder about the SIOA “Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA), created in 2009, promotes a conspiratorial anti-Muslim agenda under the guise of fighting radical Islam. The group seeks to rouse public fears by consistently vilifying the Islamic faith and asserting the existence of an Islamic conspiracy to destroy “American” values. The organization warns of the encroachment of shari’a, or Islamic law, and encourages Muslims to leave what it describes as the “falsity of Islam.”
Abraham H. Foxman of the ADL wrote an article The new shape of anti-Muslim hatred in which he calls out Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller (the co-founders of SIOA) by name as purveyors of this hatred.
Geller is featured in the People for the American Way Right Wing Playbook on Anti-Muslim Extremism, and the NYCLU report Religious Freedom Under Attack: The Rise of Anti-Mosque Activities in New York State, and the Political Research Associates report Manufacturing the Muslim menace: Private firms, public servants, and the threat to rights and security.
SEE ALSO ON APOSTASY:
Affirmation of Freedom of Expression and Belief in the Quran, Haris Aziz http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/affirmation_of_freedom_of_expression_and_belief_in_the_quran/
Afghan Convert Controversy: A Counter-Perspective on Apostasy in Islam, Yoginder Sikand http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/afghan_convert_controversy_a_counter_perspective_on_apostasy_in_islam/
Apostasy, Freedom and Da’wah: Full Disclosure in a Business-like Manner, Mohammad Omar Farooq http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/apostasy_freedom_and_dawah_full_disclosure_in_a_business_like_manner/
Apostasy and Religious Freedom, Louay Safi http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/apostasy_and_religious_freedom/
Are The Scholars The Same As God Himself?, Dr. Hesham A. Hassaballa http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/are_the_scholars_the_same_as_god_himself/
The Case of the Afghan Apostate, Hasan Zillur Rahim http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/the_case_of_the_afghan_apostate/
Freedoms of Expression and Belief, Istiaq Ahmed http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/freedoms_of_expression_and_belief/
Intellectual Apostasy, the Real Issue, Ibrahim N. Abusharif http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/intellectual_apostasy_the_real_issue/
Is Killing An Apostate in the Islamic Law?, Dr. Ibrahim B. Syed http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/shariah_is_killing_an_apostate_in_the_islamic_law/
Islam and Freedom of Thought, Akbar Ahmed and Lawrence Rosen http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islam_and_freedom_of_thought/
Islam and Pluralism: A Contemporary Approach, Shah Abdul Halim http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islam_and_pluralism_a_contemporary_approach/
Islam and Punishment for Apostasy, Asghar Ali Engineer http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islam_and_punishment_for_apostasy/
Islam and Religious Freedom, Asghar Ali Engineer http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islam_and_religious_freedom/
Moratorium on Death Penalty, Tariq Ramadan http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/moratorium_on_death_penalty/
SEE ALSO ON DARWISH:
Christian radio host Jan Markell hosted conservative activist Nonie Darwish, who advanced claim that Obama is a “political Muslim” http://mediamatters.org/research/200809170020?f=h_popular
Nonie Darwish and the al-Bureij massacre (a review of Now They Call Me Infidel, Jim Holstun http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article9646.shtml
Nonie Darwish caught in a pool of lies http://www.loonwatch.com/2010/02/nonie-darwish-caught-in-a-pool-of-lies/
Nonie Darwish on C-Span: Spreads Anti-Muslim Hate at Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute http://www.islamophobiatoday.com/2012/04/12/nonie-darwish-on-c-span-spreads-anti-muslim-hate-at-clare-boothe-luce-policy-institute/
Nonie Darwish on MSNBC: “Loonwatch are Imams” http://www.loonwatch.com/2010/08/nonie-darwish-on-msnbc-loonwatch-are-imams/
Horowitz and Darwish’s snuff movie - “The Violent Oppression of Woman (sic) in Islam”, Yusuf Smith http://www.blogistan.co.uk/blog/mt.php/2007/10/22/horowitz_and_darwishs_snuff_movie
Islamophobia and self-hating Arabs, Ali Alarabi http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islamophobia_and_self_hating_arabs/
The Islamophobia cash cow http://www.infocusnews.net/content/view/16452/135/
The Islamophobic Industrial Complex: What are the Quasi Muslims Really Selling?, M. T. Akbar http://usa.mediamonitors.net/content/view/full/44416
New York Senate to Host Infamous Islamophobic Bigot at Security Hearing, Interfaith Groups to Challenge http://www.loonwatch.com/2011/04/new-york-senate-to-host-infamous-islamophobic-bigot-at-security-hearing-interfaith-groups-to-challenge/
Our alleged duty to respect Israel - Nonie Darwish’s “Arabs for Israel” site, Yusuf Smith http://www.blogistan.co.uk/blog/mt.php/2007/05/29/our_alleged_duty_to_respect_israel
Review of Cruel and Unusual Punishment: The Terrifying Global Implications of Islamic Law. http://www.straightgoods.ca/2010/ViewArticle.cfm?Ref=671&Cookies=yes