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I have never read the Koran (I am suppossed to) but from what I gathered, there is no real way to say the people who are the current terrorists of this time can actually be Muslim.

They are Arabs for the most part... but Arabs can be anyone or anything as well as being Christian... so how is it that someone who is Muslim can carry out these acts and still say they are Muslim?

I don't know.

on Jul 19, 2005
Good post Joe...
As a Jew living in Israel, I have seen with my own eyes the horrors that result from a suicide bombing. These acts are carried out, in the main, by young fanatics that are promised great glory in the World to Come. In reality, all they will get is an early grave.
As you said, Arabs can be Muslim, Christian, even Jewish. None of these religions condone suicide or murder, the punishment being eternal damnation. The gates to Paradise are closed to these peole, despite the promises made to them.
So to answer your question, NO, a Muslim cannot be a suicide bomber. A Christian cannot be a nazi and a Jew cannot be a terrorist. The fact that so many of the above claim to be one or the other is totally against all of the religions mentioned.
The link you provided is very interesting.
on Jul 19, 2005
The entire British-Muslim community has denounced the recent acts of the so-called Muslim suicide bombers. Basically their stance is that these people may claim to be killing in the name of Allah (even though there is no direct evidence to point to the fact that these killings were religiously motivated) but that means that they are not truly Muslim. The moment they detonated those bombs they committed an unforgiveable sin and, as Mano said, closed the gates of Paridise for themselves.

So in response to your question, no, a true Muslim cannot be a suicide bomber. Sadly these people can claim that they are performing acts in the name of Allah and tarnish the name of Islam for all the peaceful, wonderful Muslim people around the world. These people really just represent a tiny faction of fanatical people clinging on to a greater organisation in order to insight hatred and misunderstanding around the world. Sadly many people are too narrow minded to realise that a few do not actually represent the whole, and so the hatred is continued.

Maybe one day we'll evolve enough to sort it out.
on Jul 20, 2005
I addressed this very subject in a letter I sent to the Irish Times in response to an article of theirs about the reaction of the Irish Muslim community. I cannot, unfortunately, reprint the article, but I quote from it in the letter, which follows.


I am writing you about an article published in the Times on Monday, July 18. On page four the article is titled "Islamic leader seeks Muslim unity here".

The author, one Joe Humphreys, more or less interviews an Islamic leader, one Sheikh Allama Zille Umar Qadri, who believes that "Muslims [in Ireland] should unite - to form one umbrella" and who blames Islamic violence on a system in which every city has its own mosque "and problems can start".

What the Sheikh does not explain is how a unified Islam in Ireland or Britain could prevent terrorism or how such a union would even attempt to prevent terrorism. For all I know a union of previously somewhat independent mosques could merely prevent liberal mosques from distancing themselves from more radical mosques; the union, the "umbrella" could very likely organise Islam the same way it is organised in other countries in Europe and the middle east. And the result does not speak for the Sheikh's theory.

But even if we assume that the Sheikh can manage to take control of that union, I wonder how much good that will do. The Sheikh himself says we must find the root of terrorism and says that "people are angry over Palestine and other injustices". It appears the Sheikh has found his root. But did he actually look or did he know what the root was from the very beginning?

He ultimately blames the Jews. And I am getting tired of it. One major difference between the Germans in the 1930s and the Arabs of today is that the Germans then had one fewer example of where blaming the Jews turned out to be wrong. The Arabs today should know.

Jews have been murdered all over the Arab world and in Palestine for a long time, before Israel even existed. But we do not see Jews blowing up civilians in suicide attacks.

Injustice rules over large parts of the world, poverty and tyranny control most of Africa, poverty reigns in South America, but suicide attacks and terrorism come only from the Arab world, a region presumably rich because of oil (it's not).

Perhaps the root of terrorism is not injustice (because injustice on non-Arab countries does not generate terrorism) and not Palestine (because the Jews suffering from Arab attacks there do not blow up civilians all over the world), but Islam.

Islamic leaders say that the terrorists are not real Muslims, the Sheikh says that "those people who say we do not need to condemn terror do not know their religion". That is possibly true. Islam is possibly a peaceful religion.

But it is up to Islamic leaders to make that point. I challenge the Sheikh to condemn terrorism without putting the blame for it on Jews or Israel, to make it absolutely clear that the terrorists are not Muslims, and to take sides against terrorism even if it means siding with Israel or America.

It is up to Islamic leaders to make their point. Unfortunately Sheikh Allama Zille Umar Qadri has made the point that anger over Palestine is the reason for terrorism, even though not all of those who have a reason to be angry over Palestine, not all Arabs, and no Jews, commit terrorist acts, only Muslims do.

His second point, that education, or rather the lack of it, is a root cause for terrorism, is an odd one. For one thing, the correlation he sees between violence and illiteracy I cannot confirm. He has perhaps other sources. But it should be noted that the BBC ran an article in 2004 ( which said, and I quote:

"All of the Al-Qaeda members studied came from middle or upper class backgrounds. Two-thirds were college educated, a tenth had a postgraduate degree and more than seven out of 10 were married with children."

It seems to me that at least the leading and most violent terrorists are better educated than the people they attack.

Perhaps the Sheikh was not aware of this?

P.S.: Today's article about the victims of the war in Iraq gives a rather positive picture of the conflict compared with the known number of victims of Saddam's regime even in the 1990s and early 2000s. But why does the news paper not report the significance of the decrease in deaths in Iraq since and because of the regime change?
on Jul 20, 2005
There is a way that seemeth right to a man..... but the way is unto death.

For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit and not in the letter.........

The outward manifestation is the condition of the heart.... that which proceedeth forth!

Peace My Friend
on Jul 23, 2005
"Jews may not currently be carrying out acts of terrorism"

But that doesn't stop you from attaching some blame to them, I guess.

"but nothing stopped Zionists from murdering British policemen and soldiers during the time of the British Mandate in Palestine"

I was under the impression that policemen and soldiers are legitimate military targets. The idea of terrorism surely is to create terror by murdering civilians, not attacking military targets. Perhaps the term you are looking for is "guerilla". If the Arab terrorists decided to attack military targets for once, they wouldn't be terrorists. You have perhaps found the difference that you do not want to see.

"I grow tired of the myth of the innocent, persecuted Jew, universal victim, forever wringing his hands and wailing 'why ME Lord, why ME'."

The problem is, of course, that certain people grow tired of the "myth" every few decades. And it is the acts that often follow that make the myth true.

(I think I can add a new definition to my Liberal Dictionary!)
on Jul 23, 2005
"I grow tired of the myth of the innocent, persecuted Jew, universal victim, forever wringing his hands and wailing 'why ME Lord, why ME'. Why not you?"

I can tell you why I did not grow tired of the myth of the innocent, persecuted Jew.

I do not get tired of the myth of the innocent, persecuted Jew because Jewish institutions in Germany have to be guarded by the police;

because synagogues in France are being burned down every now and then.

because the local synagogue has swastikas painted on its walls every few months.

because Israel is supposed to make concessions to a Palestinian people who do not abide by the terms of a cease-fire and are not expected to.

because Palestinian refugees from Israel received and continue to receive UN help and Jewish refugees from Arab countries do not.

The list goes on and on. The last two points are pet peeves of mine. But the first three are instances of the "myth" that directly concern me personally.

If you think that anti-Semitism is a myth, than I envy you and would love to live in your world.

Alas, I cannot.
on Jul 24, 2005
If you think that anti-Semitism is a myth, than I envy you and would love to live in your world.

Leauki, I doubt you'd want to live in emporor's and whip's deranged world, where hate of Jews, Blacks, Muslims and whatever seem to abound. My pet peeve is really that some people stick their heads in the proverbial sand, proclaim themselves to be the most worldly and worthy, condemn anyone who thinks otherwise, and are blatantly racist by any standard or definition.

In fact, Muslims are coming out in droves to condemn the suicide bombings. But, what really gets me is that the Arab countries and governments, ie Saudi Arabia, Iran, etc., are sitting by and doing nothing to prevent the terrorism that abounds. In fact, they seem to be using the terrorists, those hateful stupid slobs, who happen to be Arabs, to fight their collective insidious war against the western world. As far as I can see, it's not the Muslims, for the reasons that any one with any common sense has come to realize, but instead hateful Arabs who are perpetrating these acts. And, to now turn around and condemn Jews in the same post and breath is reprehensible.
on Jul 24, 2005
It is indeed not Islam or Muslims who perpetrate these acts, it's Arab nationalism and its dream of a pan-Arabic and possibly pan-Islamic empire.

Muslims like the Kurds and even the Iranians have fought Arab nationalism and so have individual Arab countries that were under attack (Jordan, Kuwait).

I wrote about that in my blog. Look for two articles about Pan-Nationalism.
on Jul 24, 2005
"Leauki, I doubt you'd want to live in emporor's and whip's deranged world, where hate of Jews, Blacks, Muslims and whatever seem to abound. "

That's an asinine statement, and you know it. You have nothing to back such a statement up. On the other hand someone like Reiki House, who you almost always agree with, you'd never mention, though he is openly a nazi apologist, holocaust revisionist fellow who writes articles titled "Jews are a disease" with no hesitation...

" It is indeed not Islam or Muslims who perpetrate these acts"

That statement simply can't be taken seriously. As I said on another blog, the wretch that straps on a bomb and hops a bus in Israel isn't dying for a pan-Islamic world. For you to say this isn't religious is to deny the motivation, and more importantly the VALIDATION of the majority of people who do the harm.

Granted, the upper echelons of terrorism use religion as an excuse, but left to themselves they are impotent without religion. They most certainly won't risk themselves or blow themselves up. In order to do it they have to brainwash the gullible. They do that through religion.

If you don't want to call it Islam, fine, but they do. You don't make their beliefs, they do, and you can no more define them.
on Jul 26, 2005
I gave the question much thought, and my answer to it is an emphatic YES! Here's why.

As Christians, we have been held responsible for our fanatical elements. Despite our fervent pleas that the "Reverend" Fred Phelps and abortion clinic bomber Eric Rudolph do not represent the teachings of Christianity, we have been told repeatedly by our critics and detractors that they ARE a liability of our faith, and that, as Christians, we have a responsibility to speak out against those who profess the faith and act in such manner. It would be inconsistent, then, to insist that the Muslim faith, which has a FAR higher incidence of such extremism among its "members" be immune to such accountability.

So yes, a Muslim CAN be a suicide bomber. But the vast majority of Muslims are not, and never would be. This last statement can be proven by the FACT that since 9/11 we have NOT experienced the rash of terror attacks that one would expect if we had a religion of terror with over 1 million members among our citizenry.