Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A Response to Fitna And A Response From Me

As a number of you may remember, Dutch Politician Geert Wilder recently released a movie entitled Fitna, which juxtaposed certain portions of the Quran with certain activities of members of the Religion of Peace and led to death threats for Wilder.

Reader khany commented, quite rightly that `it is probably just as important to report what Muslims think about fitna' and directed my attention to this video response, which I'm happy to post in the interests of fairness. I applaud his efforts to discuss these things rationally, and I can appreciate how difficult that is.

After watching this I have this to say....

This critique of some parts of Fitna focuses on two main areas, that the verses used in the film were mistranslated, taken out of context and that certain parts modifying the verses highlighted were omitted. The video response to Fitna leaves out certain uncomfortable facts, and as someone who's actually read the Qu'ran in various comparative translations as well as an observer of history and current events, I feel compelled to point these out.

First of all, Khany's message was that I should report on what Muslims think of Fitna. In looking at the explanations the video response to the film gives, much is made of the harsh provisions of the verses applying to 'treaty breakers' and combatants in wartime rather than non-combatants.

The quick response to Khany is the old Biblical verse, "By their fruits ye shall know them." While the makers of this video may interpret these verses to apply only to 'treaty breakers' and combatants, it is obvious that not all Muslims agree with them - as a matter of fact, looking at recent events quite a few obviously do not.Need I cite the carnage visited against children in Beslan and Ma'alot and Afghanistan, against Muslim women in Darfur and what is now Bangladesh, against Armenians in the Ottoman Empire, against Jews in Gush Etzion who surrendered to Muslims after receiving a guarantee of safety, 9/11, London, Madrid, Mumbai...

As a matter of fact, if one reads the various Hadiths, Mohammed himself did not follow those sentiments.One need merely look at the accounts ( and there are many examples) of the Treaty of Hubidiyeh, which Mohammed broke as soon as he felt strong enough to annihilate his enemies, and Mohammed slaughtering the Jews of Medina who had taken him in as a refugee and the massacre of the Quraysh after both had surrendered to him and begged for mercy. As Islam's prophet himself stated on several occasions, "War Is deception."

One could also look at the treatment Mohammed meted out to captives and non-combatants, particularly women. There is a whole sura in the Qu'ran on how to divvy up that kind of booty.

Part of what is going on here, of course, is a major gap between what many Muslims consider peace and what many of the rest of us might consider peace.

To many Muslims, peace is another way to refer to Dar Islam, the peace that will of course follow when Islam dominates the earth and all those in it. Muslims, in fact, divide the world into Dar Islam, the places ruled by Islam and Dar Harb, literally 'the place of war' the area not ruled by Muslims.

In that sense, one can spin Mohammed's exhortation to his followers before his death in 632 CE to fight the infidels until they either became Muslims, died or paid the jirzyah ( tribute) willingly and 'felt themselves subdued' as a striving for peace!

Most of us would undoubtedly look at the matter differently, especially if we take a look at how dhimmis ( non-Muslims living under Muslim rule)actually fared in a society where they had no rights but existence at the whim of the Muslims.

However, let's put that aside and assume that Khany and the makers of this video really do see Islam as a religion of peace and regard the verses in question as truly being related to combatants and 'treaty breakers'.

Well and good...I would then expect them to agree that the Muslims who are using these verses to commit carnage on helpless noncombatants in the name of Islam are the vilest of apostates and perverters of Islam, and to be in the forefront of those condemning them and helping to destroy them.

Unfortunately, with the exception of a number of extremely brave individuals, some of whom I link to on this site, that isn't happening.

Instead, what we get is silence at best and taqiya, dissembling and attempts to justify Islamist terrorism at worst.

This video is unfortunately an example. While a number of its assertions may be technically correct, the things it doesn't address speak volumes. Fitna, on the other hand, seems to address the facts on the ground, in spite of it's sensationalism....much of which is based on the violent and murderous reaction to it by some Muslims in the name of their religion.

I appreciate Khany sharing this with me and have informed him of my response, and I look forward to hearing his. We may all learn something.

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