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Terrorism & Militancy: British Muslims vs. American Muslims

Abu Reem

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As the story unfolds in Britain, it seems that the recent terrorist operations have Muslim fingerprints again. It also seems that most, if not all, are foreign-born Muslims. It is of course too early to make any judgments and we have to also always remember the notion of innocence until proven guilty. However, if the persons caught red-handed driving the Jeep Cherokee into the airport (should we award those two the second prize for dumb terrorists after the Fort Dix folks?) were Muslims, then it is tough to argue that again unfortunately, people who claim our great religion, have succumbed to the pitiful state of would-be-murderers.

How tragic it is when these fools not only hurt themselves, their families, and their friends directly, but they also hurt the dawah to Allah and the image of Islam, as well as affecting the lives of so many other Muslims who have to bear the brunt of new government measures. What do these nut-jobs achieve in the end? Does the war in Iraq cease? Do suffering Muslims around the globe earn a reprieve? Do Muslims in the West stop being targets of Islamophobia? No, none of that. Rather, what they achieve is the exact opposite: they achieve in providing ammo for the justification of the Islamophobic rhetoric, and consequently all the wars fought against the “Islamic threat”. If there was ever a lose-lose situation, then these “missions” are big IT!

Back to our topic then, regardless of how many “plots” the American government has claimed to have thwarted in America, I would not call one of them viable AND “imminent”. Most of the those have been put behind bars for “terrorism” have been accused of saying the “wrong” things and/or talking/encouraging “jihad” OUTSIDE America, like in Kashmir or Afghanistan. Many behind bars for long terms including life, like anti-terrorist Dr. Ali Timimi, have been victims of an overzealous/McCarthyish prosecution and biased jurors (I would say that there is a 5% chance of finding a non-Muslim-prejudiced jury in America). Recently, the case of Jose Padilla highlights such a pathetic level of evidence that any average person can read the case details and be dumbfounded how this “dirty-bomb-dangerous-terrorist” was actually relatively benign! In fact, the prosecutors played a tape of Osama Bin Laden from years ago, saying NOTHING about Jose or his co-accused, but just to tell the jury that this message is what co-accused talked about! Images used to taint and blurry the mind of the jurors of course.

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The point of the preceeding paragraph is that America has seen nothing of the sort of threat and radicalism that has raised its ugly head in UK and other parts of Europe. I was thinking about some of the reasons for the differences and having never lived in Europe, I can only guess on a few fronts based on my gathering of information from different sources. I would love to hear from Yusuf Smith, other UK bloggers and non-bloggers to add to this conversation:

  • Easier access to Europe for would-be terrorist. Land access makes it easier to send operatives to Europe. Once in Europe, it isn’t hard to get to UK. Much harder to come to America, and if the purpose is to attack the “Western enemies”, then why go after US, when UK comes easier?
  • Muslim immigrants to Europe are very different in their financial well-being and their “assimilation” into the local communities. While I cannot think of one “Muslim slum” in America, there are many downtrodden and “third-ward” Muslim areas in Europe.
    • Desperation and poverty is one (though not the only as the recent case may highlight) of the causes of recruitment into radicalism. It is easy to harp about the “kaffir government” when your livelihood is very substandard compared to most of the other “kaffirs”. And then the message can be expanded to include how what they are doing to you by keeping you poor is part of the conspiracy against Muslims and Islam.
  • A strain of highly radicalized message has been allowed to resonate in UK for sometime now in the name of freedom of speech. This is a slippery slope of course. The objectivity of the government in discriminating between “radical-terrorist” message and “orthodox-non-violent” message is difficult to trust. But, still, people like “Sheikh” Faisal, Abu Hamza, and the rest of the notorious gang should have been locked up a long time ago. Of course in America, it has gone the other way, with the government infringing on the freedom of speech even when it is completely non-violent, and impeding/blocking Islamic scholars and personalities such as Yusuf Islam, Tariq Ramadan, etc from entering the country. So, balance is needed.
  • In UK, it seems that there is increased sectarianism and the lack of national societies that control large sectors of the Islamic Centers and Masajids. While you have mega-Islamic institutes in America such as ICNA, ISNA, MAS, WD, etc., it seems that there is much more fragmentation in UK, with the tiny fragments working mostly separately and independently. So, there is much less oversight.

That is all I could think of. I may be mistaken in my estimations in one or all of the points I have raised above, so feel free to correct me, and add your own valued comments.

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Abu Reem is one of the founders of MuslimMatters, Inc. His identity is shaped by his religion (Islam), place of birth (Pakistan), and nationality (American). By education, he is a ChemE, topped off with an MBA from Wharton. He has been involved with Texas Dawah, Clear Lake Islamic Center and MSA. His interests include politics, cricket, and media interactions. Career-wise, Abu Reem is in management in the oil & gas industry (but one who still appreciates the "green revolution").

37 Comments

37 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Hassan

    July 2, 2007 at 1:49 PM

    Why the timings of all such terrorist activities are so convenient for neo-cons? The new Britain PM Brown took over, and it seemed that he was going to be reluctant in efforts with America on war in Iraq and war in terror in general. But suddenly these things happened to put pressure on new PM Brown to stay offensive. And Guliani here immediately started speaking about immigration (muslims) and how it has caused terror cases in Britain.

    I am no conspiracy theorist or muslim extremist denier, yet I hate it when such actions are so timed to suit anti-muslim agendas.

  2. Amad

    Amad

    July 2, 2007 at 2:02 PM

    Like in Nexus of Politics and Terror

    I don’t know if there is any “good” or “bad” timing, though some are more politically favorable than others. If this was just some high-profile arrests, then the timing could be questionable, but these dudes were caught in action! Rather, it was probably these terrorists who were trying to send a “message” to the new PM… and that they surely did. Though probably not the message that most Muslims would have liked!

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  4. Avatar

    abu ameerah

    July 2, 2007 at 6:01 PM

    i’m a little disappointed. i expected the term KHAWAAAAARIJ (said with a tone of anger and with a mental picture of Sheikh ul Islam Falih al Harbee in my mind) to be used by now to describe these dudes.

  5. Avatar

    safiya

    July 2, 2007 at 6:41 PM

    Salaam Alaikum,

    I am a British Muslim and I do not have a clue why these people are doing this.

  6. Avatar

    Affad Shaikh

    July 2, 2007 at 9:22 PM

    Have you heard about the Irvine Terror Plot. It seems that there is a guy talking up about Jihad and bombing American Military targets. It was in the LA Times after the Islamic center took out a restraining order against this Craig Montielh, who is a revert to Islam.

    You can track the situation here

    http://muslamics.blogspot.com

  7. Avatar

    Sequoia

    July 2, 2007 at 9:52 PM

    Not that any of you need to hear this from me…but we are all in this together..as these fools didn’t care who they were targeting…Do no Muslims go to the airport? When I was living in Turkey, terrorists targeted the HSBC bank..where it was all (or mostly all) Turkish Muslims who worked and banked. Guliani and his “brothers” on the other end, Al-Queda, will always try to divide us. Both are dangerous and both must be stopped ideoligically. We may never agree on everything or most things :)….but as long as we have mutual respect and tolerence we will win this battle. I am not as good with words as Amad or Mouse or the other posters on here are…but I just wanted to add that there are those of us who are non-Muslims who support you and try (albeit very little) to help out with the mischaracterizations or predjudices our families, friends and co-workers harbor towards you and your religion. I have been around enough Muslims in my life and the diversity within their/your communities to know that you are my brothers and sisters just as much as my Christian/Hindu..ect friends.

  8. Avatar

    Moiez

    July 3, 2007 at 12:27 AM

    I thought the British were trying to improve the muslims in society, why I just heard that the police force just added to the dress code (if your a muslimah) a company hijab. There are several others but I cannot recall them. I believe I saw them on Islam Channel which i think sounds like a BRITISH news station.

  9. Avatar

    Kashif

    July 3, 2007 at 2:25 AM

    salaam aleikum,

    seems the questions you’ve asked deserve more detailed analysis then the superficial stuff that is posted in some of the comments above, but let me first say the following:

    1. The only reason that you have not seen this level of mayhem and violence in north america amongst muslims is because they are for the most part assimilated — with very little attachments and concerns for the Ummah. Secondly, most live comfortably well and in suburbs away from a life of petty crime, drugs, gangs, etc.. Why is this relevant? because Muslims in Europe ARE the underclass. They are the inner city blacks and latinos that you see in american and don’t give a second glance to. They are the one’s who live in isolated ghettos drawn in by discrimanatory housing laws and high unemplyment. They are the ones with low educational achievement and high birth rates (coupled with high immigration to support the European welfare states). Not just the UK, but the riots in France, the cartoon outbursts in denmark, and the events of the bombings in madrid all are evidence of this.

    2. Couple that with the fact that the UK political establishment in particular, deliberately worked to cultivate jihadis after the first gulf war in 1991. Why would they do this? Because after the gulf war in 1991 it was proven that america was the sole superpower in the world but it owed its victory in large part to jihadis who came by the thousands to afghanistan, died, and bled the soviet union into dissolution. if you are a former colonial power and have a huge rival who cannot be stopped, these jihadis offer a cheap means to compete.

    3. Subsequently, immigration and asylum laws were changed , laws on the books against inciting hatred and violence were never enforced, and most importantly these same jihadis were given open media coverage by the tabloids, helping to attract even more followers. moreover, most , if not all were on welfare, so British taxpayers were helping to subsidize the whole exercise.

    4. Sometime around the late 1990s, seems other European countries got in on the act. and it was there that they allowed the 9/11 plotters to go ahead (muhammed atta and 3 of his followers were under surveillance by German police for over a year, but the police never did anything).

    5. having let the genie out of the bottle, now these same jihadis are snapping back on their masters and former patrons, some striking out haphazardly and with no rhyme and no reason.

    here are some good articles which give a more complete picture on this:

    http://www.rollingstone.com/news/story/8898175/the_insurgents_tale

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/attackonlondon/story/0,16132,1532132,00.html

    http://www.theasiannews.co.uk/news/s/204/204612_britain__recruited_terrorists_meacher_claims.html

    and here is a very well written article on the
    life and motivations of the 7/7 ringleader:

    http://www.prospect-magazine.co.uk/article_details.php?&id=9635

    should shed some light on the motivations of these people and how they are being used by different governments to fulfill political objectives.

  10. Avatar

    Sami

    July 3, 2007 at 7:58 AM

    No, I do have to say – imo, it IS better to be a muslim in the UK than in the USA.. but its all relative innit.

  11. Amad

    Amad

    July 3, 2007 at 9:08 AM

    Kashif, jak for the excellent comments. Very insightful.

    Sequoia, wonderful of you to stop by and to affirm the goodness that is innate in all human beings until it is changed by one’s own evil or by the evil of Satan. I have an unrelated question for you: do you find it in any way offensive or strange to hear references to “non-Muslims”. This may be a point of semantics and it is not meant to be in “mean spirit”, but we don’t usually hear terms such as “non-Christians” for instance.

  12. Avatar

    Mujahideen Ryder

    July 3, 2007 at 12:08 PM

    The UK has one good thing though, and that’s the Islam Channel

  13. Avatar

    salman

    July 3, 2007 at 6:21 PM

    I’m sure you wouldn’t write such a post if your family/ friends/ country is bieng bombed into pieces day in day out.

    Although I don’t necessarily agree with such types of attacks, I completely understand and sympethise with the brothers. Only Allah knows why they did it.

    In terms of Dawah, Allah “works in mysterious ways”. There has always been a rise in the number of Muslim reverts whenever Islam is demonised. Naturally, more people want to learn about Islam. If you feel so strongly about Dawah, here is your chance!

    It’s best if all of us stop calling others names and make the best of our lot, whether it good or bad.

  14. Amad

    Amad

    July 3, 2007 at 6:42 PM

    ASA,

    Salman: I’m sure you wouldn’t write such a post if your family/ friends/ country is bieng bombed into pieces day in day out.

    Well, I am not sure how you were sure that I wouldn’t. In fact, I am sure I would. If x is hurting my family, I wouldn’t go and hurt y or z for it neither would I support such oppression.

    Salman: Although I don’t necessarily agree with such types of attacks, I completely understand and sympethise with the brothers. Only Allah knows why they did it.

    Not necessarily? Which parts of the attacks do you agree then? And which part of their action do you sympathize with? Of course only Allah knows what is in their hearts, but if one of the terrorists were to blow up your house or kill your family member (I’ll reverse that one on you), would you be so kind to wonder “only Allah knows why they did it” and “understand and sympathize” with the terrorist? If you are a “normal” human being, you would want the terrorist be punished to the fullest extent of the law. And indeed if you felt this “normal” way, then why the double-standards if the terrorist kills someone other than your family member? Even if he be a non-Muslim? When did Allah allow you to have one standard of justice with Muslims and another for non-Muslims?

    Salman: It’s best if all of us stop calling others names and make the best of our lot, whether it good or bad.

    Are you kidding me? Did you read this article or this one.

    Did you consider the following hadith:

    Whoever kills an unbeliever protected by a treaty (mu‘ahad) that person would not smell the scent of paradise even though its scent will be smelt from a distance of forty years.

    Are you not going to pay heed to the Prophet (S):

    To enjoin what conscience rejects and forbid what conscience embraces is injustice. Having suffered from injustice does not license anyone to commit injustice. “Help your fellow Muslim, whether oppressor or oppressed,” said the Holy Prophet. “We know how to help the oppressed,” the Companions said, “but how are we to help the oppressor?” “Your help to him,” said the Messenger of God, “is to prevent him from oppressing.”

    So, Salman, we do not make the “best of our lot”. Rather, it would be our oppression, your oppression to give the transgressors among us a free-ride on the basis of being part of “our lot”. If you really care about the Muslim Ummah, and I am sure you do, because you are willing to give benefit of doubt even to would-be-murderers, then do the right thing. Spread the true message of Islam, its emphasis on sanctity of all life (even of animals), its sense of justice for all (not for only Muslims), and so on. Be the harbinger of good news, and terrorism against innocent souls was never, and will never be good news in Islam. If you love the Ummah, be just and protect your community (Muslims and non-Muslims alike) from injustice from both Muslims and non-Muslims.

    Quran: “O you who believe! Stand out firmly for Allah as just witnesses; and let not the enmity and hatred of others allow you to avoid justice. Be just: that is closer to piety; and fear Allah. Indeed, Allah is Well-Acquainted with what you do.” [Al Maaidah: 8]

  15. Avatar

    Molly

    July 3, 2007 at 6:43 PM

    I notice in your list of people they hurt you included:

    “themselves, their families, and their friends directly, but they also hurt the dawah to Allah and the image of Islam, as well as affecting the lives of so many other Muslims who have to bear the brunt of new government measures.”

    but not the innocent civilians they attempted to kill. Why is that, Amad?

  16. Amad

    Amad

    July 3, 2007 at 7:01 PM

    Absolutely Molly, thank you for pointing that out.

    The only reason I mentioned what I did is that these terrorist feel that they are doing Islam and Muslims “a favor” so I am pointing out what they are actually doing is actually HURTING Islam and Muslims. Hope you see my reasoning for the deliberate exclusion of the target of those attacks, who of course face the primary and most direct “hurt”.

    Also, my previous comment talks about the civilians.

  17. Avatar

    Molly

    July 3, 2007 at 7:08 PM

    You are right, I alway say no one was hurt by 9-11 (other than the victims and their families) than Muslims themselves. They don’t realize they are making everyone with brown skin (even Brazilians) in Britain a target.

  18. Avatar

    Molly

    July 3, 2007 at 7:09 PM

    Actually, they probably do realize it (they are not stupid) but do not care.

  19. Avatar

    Affad Shaikh

    July 3, 2007 at 7:30 PM

    So that people remember what happened, I want to remind everyone that following 9/11 the first three people to be killed in the United States by “patriotic citizens” were:

    1. Balbir Singh Sodhi, a turbaned Sikh man who was shot and killed in Mesa, Ariz., on Sept. 15, 2001, by a man who called himself a “patriot.”
    2. An Egyptian-American (Coptic) grocer was shot and killed near his store in San Gabriel, California
    3. storeowner from Pakistan was shot dead in Dallas, Texas

    These were the first killing of an estimated 19 “retribution” murders in the year after the Sept. 11 attacks.

    It is important to remember that the Muslim community is not the only one that suffers, but more so for Muslims it is important to remember that it is us who face two fronts- one from with-in those who use violence and justify their actions in the name of Islam and then those around us who view *all* Muslims as justifying violence and espousing violence.

    When we look at the difference between the communities we need to remember that for the most part Muslims in America have had access to education, integration, employment and social mobility- also important to this is the immigration patterns, the types of immigrants coming to the host country. These key factors, I believe set the two community apart, as well as internal factors- citizenship, laws and traditions, government accesibilty and internal community institutions.

    Just my thoughts.

  20. Avatar

    salman

    July 3, 2007 at 7:43 PM

    Amad, I was giving you the benefit of the doubt. My point is that although we may sympathise with others who lost loved ones in horrendous circumstances, we don’t truely know how they feel unless we are in that exact situation. It has been reported that one of the would-be perpetrators of the London attacks was an Iraqi doctor whose family/friends were sluaghtered in Iraq.

    That’s why I understand such attacks without necessarily agreeing with them. We may condemn their actions but that shouldn’t stop us from understanding the context of such actions.

    What I meant by “…make the best of our lot, whether it good or bad” is to carry on the Dawah work rather than blaming others for bringing it to a halt. If you are looking for Dawah opportunities, now is the time. Despite the media onslaught, people want to find out about Islam.

  21. Amad

    Amad

    July 3, 2007 at 7:59 PM

    Salman, you sound much better this time, but I still cannot fathom how you would allow yourself or expect others to “understand” or “sympathize” with such perpetrators. I mean if my family, Allah forbid, is killed by let’s say, your cousin. Would you “understand” if I decide to seek revenge on your wife or your children?

    Two wrongs never make a right. We have to condemn both: the killing of civilians and bloodshed in Iraq and the actions of this Iraqi in UK. In fact his actions in the UK provide justification to those who think we did the “right” thing by invading the land of “those savages”. Think about it.

    Finally, I am not blaming anyone for hurting the dawah, rather I am stating a FACT, that it DOES hurt the dawah. And you can’t blame people for making an unfair assessment of Islam when we have people involved in such evil actions. It makes our job harder, but doesn’t mean we stop it. As you said, we need to carry on.

  22. Avatar

    Kashif

    July 3, 2007 at 8:09 PM

    salaam aleikum,

    3 points to be mentioned:

    1. This is not in any way to condone what has happened, but please do keep in mind that the UK and USA are countries currently at war with Muslims in 2 countries (Afghanistan and Iraq) with some neo-cons (Cheney) itching for the U.S. to start a third (Iran) with little or no evidence.

    The hadith above clearly doesn’t apply under these circumstances.

    2. Tied in with that fact is that this is DIRECTLY connected with what is going on in Iraq. How so? read this about one of the motivations of the bombers:

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/crime/article2023024.ece

    thanks to the revolution in telecommunications i.e. information technology and satellite channels, the world is globalized. What were once considered “local” problems and tensions become globalized within a very short amount of time.

    3. The failure of Muslim “sheikhs”/Imams and self declared “leaders” to either:

    a. publicly discuss these issues from an Islamic perspective what the shari’ah allows and does not allow and propose an Islamic solution.
    b. have any degree of credability with the Muslim masses rather than pandering to the powers that be.
    c. engage the Muslim mind in seeking to understand events rather than simply peddle rehashed conspiracy theories i.e. 4,000 jews didn’t show up to the WTC on 9/11 nonsense, etc.

    until we work from an Islamic perspective on addressing these problems rather than sweeping them under the rug or blanketly “condemning terrorism” nothing is really gonna change.

    salaam aleikum,
    sh

  23. Avatar

    Salman

    July 3, 2007 at 8:24 PM

    Amad, you are right. Two wrongs don’t make a right. But that doesn’t stop me from understanding why it happened in the first place. Again, that’s why I sympathise with such people.

  24. Avatar

    Kashif

    July 3, 2007 at 8:26 PM

    one other thing of note, the British govt. was warned by both the CIA as well as by its own security services that support for the U.S. could mean that some of the violence from Iraq could blowback into the UK and other Middle Eastern countries:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,,1512522,00.html

    salaam aleikum
    sh

  25. Amad

    Amad

    July 4, 2007 at 12:20 AM

    Kashif, which hadith doesn’t apply? And what is your evidence for saying so.

  26. Avatar

    Kashif

    July 4, 2007 at 1:30 AM

    specifically am referring to this one:

    “Whoever kills an unbeliever protected by a treaty (mu‘ahad) that person would not smell the scent of paradise even though its scent will be smelt from a distance of forty years.”

    while the hukm is is that it is haram to kill unarmed civilians, the above certainly does NOT apply to Muslims living under imperial occupation in Iraq or in Afghanistan.

  27. Avatar

    Karima Hamdan

    July 4, 2007 at 3:38 AM

    Assalamualikum
    Another terrible outcome of the attempted car bombs is the promotion of Hassan Butt as the great brown hope of Islam. He seems to be everwhere on the TV, radio and on the print news promoting his version of reformed Islam.
    There is an article posted up on ummahpulse.co.uk that tries to refutes some of what he says, the link is below.
    http://ummahpulse.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=145&Itemid=37
    Wassalam

  28. Amad

    Amad

    July 4, 2007 at 3:38 AM

    It does apply under the circumstances I mentioned since we were talking about incidents in UK and the West in this post. And whether this hadith applies to it or not, there are certainly many other to sanctify the lives of innocent civilians anywhere in the world with or without a treaty.

  29. Avatar

    realMuslim

    July 4, 2007 at 9:16 AM

    How can any Muslims condemn these “alleged” acts of the Muslim brothers? Or any so-called “terror” operations done by Muslims? Are you trying to please the kuffar? Have you not forgotten about al-Walaa wal-Baraa?

    Obviously the UK and other kaafir nations are considered Dar al-Harb. How can you all deny this? So do the mujahedeen not have a right to do what they are doing? The real, true shuyukh (as opposed to the pro-tawhgout “shuyukh”) DO NOT say that any of these operations are “haraam” in any way! Why would they? Are you people going to deny what Allah says in the Qur’an? Have you Muslims forgotten what Allah says in the Qur’an??? Please tell me HOW these Ayat do not give Muslims the right to do what these brothers were alleged to have done. I’d like to see some of you try to refute what I’m saying :)

    [003:140] If a wound (and killing) has touched you, be sure a similar wound (and killing) has touched the others. And so are the days (good and not so good), We give to men by turns, that Allah may test those who believe, and that He may take martyrs from among you. And Allah likes not the Zalimoon (polytheists and wrongdoers).

    [009:029] Fight against those who believe not in Allah, nor in the Last Day, nor forbid that which has been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger and those who acknowledge not the religion of truth (i.e. Islam) among the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians), until they pay the Jizyah with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.

    [002:193] And fight them until there is no more Fitnah (disbelief and worshipping of others along with Allah) and (all and every kind of) worship is for Allah (Alone). But if they cease, let there be no transgression except against Az-Zalimoon (the polytheists, and wrong-doers, etc.)

    [002:194] The sacred month is for the sacred month, and for the prohibited things, there is the Law of Equality (Qisas). Then whoever transgresses the prohibition against you, you transgress likewise against him. And fear Allah, and know that Allah is with Al-Muttaqoon

    [008:060] And make ready against them all you can of power, including steeds of war (tanks, planes, missiles, artillery, etc.) to threaten the enemy of Allah and your enemy, and others besides whom, you may not know but whom Allah does know. And whatever you shall spend in the Cause of Allah shall be repaid unto you, and you shall not be treated unjustly.

    [016:126] And if you punish (your enemy, O you believers in the Oneness of Allah), then punish them with the like of that with which you were afflicted. But if you endure patiently, verily, it is better for As-Sabirin (the patient ones, etc.).

    [042:041] And indeed whosoever takes revenge after he has suffered wrong, for such there is no way (of blame) against them. [042:042] The way (of blame) is only against those who oppress men and wrongly rebel in the earth, for such there will be a painful torment.

  30. Avatar

    Yasir Qadhi

    July 4, 2007 at 1:59 PM

    ‘RealMuslim’

    Your responses are (stereo)typical of the overzealous jihadi mentality that is the cause of all of this fitnah.

    I am sure that you, along with all those who agree with your world view, have only studied Islam in a very cursory manner. And indeed, a little knowledge is a very dangerous thing. It facilitates quoting verses completely out of context. It enables individuals to follow emotional fatwas without caring about the evidences or consequences. It falsely empowers laymen to feel superior to scholars whom they can conveniently accuse of not being true or sincere scholars merely because they do not agree with this layman’s understanding of Islam.

    Really I do not wish to get involved in a debate with you, as I am all too familiar with you and your type, and I feel there is little good in debating with someone who has already made up his mind about the issue. But one simple question: all that you quote, how exactly does it apply to the situation at hand??? The people whom these lunatics tried to harm (some of whom would undoubtedly have also been Muslim!) are absolutely and totally innocent of the crimes that you are so angry about.

    You see, it is this black and white mentality, this Manichean view of people, that is shared by Western world leaders and Usama b. Laden, ‘You are either with us or against us’. No, that’s simply not true. I am not with either camp. I don’t agree with the ‘War on Terror’, or the ‘terrors’ that sparked the ‘War on Terror’, or the ‘terrors’ that sparked the terror that sparked the War on Terror (if that makes any sense!). Terrorism leads to terrorism, and the only way we can stamp out such violence is not to resort to MORE terrorism, but to wipe out terrorism whenever and wherever it is perpetrated, regardless of whether the person committing it is an individual or government, Muslim or human secularist.

    Walaa and baraa? Don’t come preaching your twisted version of walaa and baraa – a version that is based totally on *your* perverted understandings of some Texts. I’m sorry, but you have no clue what walaa and baraa is, you have read one or two works (probably in English) and think that you can now pontificate to the rest of us. What understanding of walaa and baraa justifies the support of ALL Muslims, regardless of what they have done, and lumps ALL non-Muslims together as guilty for the crimes of a few, regardless of how much so many of these non-Muslims might have done to try to distance themselves from the actions and policies of their own governments?

    I am enraged at certain policies that our own governments support – policies that cause such anger and frustration, amongst Muslims and amongst people of other faiths as well. But, as enraged as I am, I also realize the need to correct these policies in a legitimate and Islamic manner, a manner that I have learnt from the Seerah of the beloved Rasul, and the Book of Allah in its totality, and not a few (mis)quoted verses here and there. I wish to correct these policies FROM WITHIN, and not by the cowardly jihadi tactics that cause nothing but harm to me, my family, my co-religionists around the world, and of course the innocent people of all faiths who die or are harmed in such senseless acts.

    I firmly believe that If Americans Knew (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-m73iaP-bE) the reality, they too would be just as enraged as I am, and would want to do whatever is permissible and feasible in order to stop all violence and injustice everywhere. But blind rage and unchecked emotions is not going to help anyone – remember the Incident of Hudaybiyah, and act like Abu Bakr did, and do not fall into the mistake that Umar himself realized he fell into and repented from.

    Of course, from your Manichean perspective, someone like me is an automatic sell-out, merely because we do not agree with your retroactive and violent views. Perhaps some of your ilk would then also justify the killing and murder of such ‘sell-outs’ as well…

    So be it. The truth shall indeed prevail over falsehood, even if the mujrimun don’t like it.

    Yasir

  31. Avatar

    salman

    July 4, 2007 at 6:06 PM

    I can’t believe how people are quick to judge brothers they don’t know, brothers they haven’t met. All we have so far are accounts from the media, yet people are already making assumptions about the intentions of the brothers as well as condemning them and calling them names.

    I suggest people either qualify their comments or stop making predjuiced comments about the brothers until we hear their side of the story.

  32. Amad

    Amad

    July 4, 2007 at 6:07 PM

    Jak Sh. Yasir…

    People like “realMuslims” are really “realCowards”, because they don’t even have the courage to post comments under their names, instead hiding under various pseudonyms (this person also posted on Umar’s blog as “hatetawghut”).

    It is easy to cheer the killing of innocent civilians because these poor souls are unarmed and untrained, and hence “easy targets”; cowards by definition do not have the courage except to engage in these cowardly acts!

  33. Amad

    Amad

    July 4, 2007 at 6:16 PM

    Salman, I cannot judge the role of the other doctors/folks “not at the scene” and definitely (based on the less-than-stellar-history of such rushed arrests post-incidents) we have to give time for these things to sort out before making accusations. However, we cannot have much doubt about the person(s) caught red-handed.

    Finally, I think a lot of what we are saying here is in terms of generalities, so it applies to all those who think it is okay to be terrorists in “kaffir lands”. That is the important point that is to be gained from this particular discussion/post.

    And so if any disaffected member of the Muslim population is reading this, my message to you is: Think ten times before considering such evil actions. And if you are doubtful or need to talk to someone to sort your head out or to refute such nonsense fed to you, then email us and we will try to help you. Let us spread the antidote to the message of hatred.

  34. Avatar

    Myopic Vision

    July 4, 2007 at 11:32 PM

    Muslims in europe are like inner city blacks and latinos?
    First off theres a very large country called pakistan and another large one called India with a large proportion of poor muslims. Poorer than a lot of the inner city blacks and latinos in the US.
    The people involved in this newest plot were all educated, professional muslims. Doctors no less….stop trying to lay radicalism at the feet of poor people. Most poor people are trying to feed their families and dont have the money to create elaborate plots.
    Who has a spare mercedes to blow up?

  35. Avatar

    Kashif

    July 5, 2007 at 12:12 AM

    >stop trying to lay radicalism at the feet of poor >people. Most poor people are trying to feed >their families and dont have the money to >create elaborate plots.

    1. Poor people are used and exploited the world over, not just by Uncle Sam but also by so-called “jihadists” and spiritual sufi “sheikhs”

    2. I was NOT saying that all or even most poor people engage in this, actually most of the 9/11 hijackers were from wealthy families and very well educated. This marxist thesis of poverty was the prevailing one by so-called orientalists in “Islamic” studies departments as late as the mid 90s, i.e. that Muslims or muslim “extremists” only did political violence because they were poor. Most leaders of political islam were MIDDLE CLASS. Most of those who flip out and go the violent route are very well educated, usually a history of being very secular, and come from wealthy families. Usually it is some event or occurence that triggers a spark that causes them to act out this way and then to use Islam to justify this type of violent reaction.

    http://www.commondreams.org/views05/0720-33.htm

    What i was saying is that rather the political and social conditions in European countries as a WHOLE make recruitment for this type of mayhem easier.

    These articles are just a few which touch upon these social conditions:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/frontpage/story/0,16518,1637465,00.html

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/6189675.stm

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,,1840737,00.html

    This condition and these people were used to fight and eliminate one superpower (russia) there is no problem for other countries using them against another (america). since these type of actions never have any type of long term thinking or agenda to them this makes these people like a donkey ready to be ridden by whoever wants to take them anywhere they wanna go.

  36. Amad

    Amad

    July 6, 2007 at 11:38 AM

    Please see this new post from Abu Easa:
    Terrorism, Stability and Other Personal Thoughts

  37. Pingback: muslimmatters.org » Homegrown … Musings on the NYPD “Intelligence” Report

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