Leaders of the Western world, including Obama talking from his behind, want us to believe that Islam is a beautiful and peaceful religion.
Here are scenes, pictured or described, showing how beautiful and peaceful Islam really is. -
Musicians punished for making music. Wonderfully made musical instruments smashed to pieces.
Boys killed for watching football.
Men killed for breeding pigeons.
Homosexuals hurled from the top of tall buildings.
The words and pictures come from the Daily Mail:
Islamic State religious police have been filmed beating musicians and destroying their instruments as punishment for playing an “un-Islamic” keyboard.
The men were pictured being hit across the back and legs with a wooden stick in a public square after ISIS’s fanatical Islamic enforcers ruled the electric keyboard was “offensive to Muslims”.
Another picture shows two keyboards and what appears to be a lute smashed to pieces after raids thought to have taken place in Bujaq, a few miles to the east of Aleppo in Syria.
Musicians in Syria were given 90 lashes each after they were caught by the Islamic State’s religious police playing an electric keyboard …
Pictures show the men being beaten on their backs and legs by tribal elders in a public square believed to be in Bujaq, a town to the north east of Aleppo. …
The men were apparently caught playing electronic keyboards, and what appears to be a lute, instruments that were deemed to be “un-Islamic” by ISIS’s fanatical religious police …
Earlier today, it was reported that at least 15 pigeon breeders in eastern Iraq were rounded up after ISIS ruled the sport distracted them from praising Allah.
Three of those held by the group in the eastern province of Diyala have reportedly been killed, according to a security official.
Abu Abdullah, a farmer, said a total of six gunmen barged into his home earlier this week and dragged away his 21-year-old son. Mr Abdullah’s son is just one of the 15 young men – all aged between 16 and 22 – who have reportedly been captured in the province for breeding birds.
Yesterday it was reported that 13 youngsters were killed by firing squad in Iraq’s second city of Mosul for watching an Asian Cup football match between Iraq and Jordan.
Activist group Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently, which operates out of Syria, reported that the teenagers were shot in public and their bodies left there as their parents are too afraid to go and get them.
The boys’ ‘crime’ – breaking religious laws by watching football – was read out on a loudspeaker before their executions.
It came just days after ISIS released a video showing two men being thrown off the top of a tower block in Raqqa, Syria, for being gay.
A masked Islamic State fighter announced the charges against the accused using a small handheld radio, before declaring them guilty of engaging in homosexual activities.
He said they should be punished by death, in accordance with Islamic State’s radical interpretation of Sharia law.
The men were then bound and blindfolded before being pushed off the 100ft tower block to their death.
This article in praise of Capitalism was first posted in 2011. We reproduce it now because our recent post Communism is secular Christianity (January 14, 2015) reminded us of it.
It is human nature to be selfish. If we weren’t selfish we wouldn’t survive. If we didn’t eat when we were hungry, warm ourselves when we were cold, seek cures for our illnesses, defend ourselves (and our children and our life-sustaining property), we’d die out pretty damn quick. Or rather, we would never have come into existence as a species at all.
We are most of us capable of sympathy with others, and we often willingly give away a thing we own to another person. Some are altruistic. A few will even give up their lives to save the lives of others. Nevertheless, we are all naturally and necessarily selfish.
Christianity and Communism require human nature to change. As it can’t, Christianity’s commandments to love our enemies and forgive those who do us harm turn many a person of good will and high aspiration into a hypocrite if not a corpse. Communist theorists have never settled the question of whether human nature must change so that the Revolution can take place, or whether the Revolution must take place in order for human nature to change. Of course it will never change, but there’s no stopping the collectivist dolts arguing about it.
Capitalism works well because it is in tune with our nature. Adam Smith called it “the natural order of liberty”. Everyone selfishly desires to provide for his needs. To pay for what he wants from others – services and goods – he has to provide something that others will pay him for. Millions do it, and the result is prosperity. Capitalism is an abstract machine most beautiful to behold in the wonder of its workings. When individuals have the incentive to achieve, acquire, and enjoy something for themselves, they’ll go to great lengths to afford it. They’ll compete with each other to provide what others want, toil to make it the better product, and set the price of it lower. The best is made available at the least cost. Everyone is both a taker and a giver, and everyone benefits. True, not everyone’s effort always succeeds, but nothing stops anyone from trying again.
Of course capitalism isn’t a remedy for every ill and discontent. But a capitalist society offers the best chance to an individual to make the best of his condition – being alive – which presents him with a tough challenge – to stay alive for a few score years, and make those years as good as his energy, cunning, and adaptability to conditions outside of his control (plus his statistically likely share of luck), can help them to be.
In a capitalist society no one has a fixed place, whether below, in the middle, or on top. A person can rise, sink, or stay. A truly capitalist society is necessarily a free society in which no one is prevented, by some ruler or ruling clique, from bettering his lot, striving, succeeding, or failing.
Capitalism is the enemy of that God of whom all the children in the British Empire used to sing at morning prayers in school assemblies before the Second World War:
All things bright and beautiful,
All creatures great and small;
All things wise and wonderful,
The Lord God made them all. …
The rich man in his castle,
The poor man at his gate,
He made them high and lowly,
He ordered their estate.
The children were being taught to be content with everything as it was, trusting that God the ruler up there, all wise, permanent and unchallengeable had ordained how everyone had his fixed place and should stay in it, and because He had ordained it, it must be perfect. The recognition that such a God was an indefensible authoritarian, a whim-driven cosmic dictator, an unjust and arrogant tyrant, came – perhaps unconsciously – to the choosers of Anglican hymns only after a few of the earth’s dictators had been trounced in a prolonged and terrible blood-letting.
But then Socialists took over from God. They decided what was best for humanity. They established the Welfare State. No rich men in castles, no poor men at gates. The State would provide every citizen with depressing accommodation, dull food, health care if he were judged worthy of being kept alive, indoctrination in schools. Though the Socialist State is a slave society, the citizens are not called slaves but Social Security Recipients, National Health Patients, Students, Workers. The belief of their rulers is that they’ll be content because the State provides them with “everything”; they’ll be grateful for the food however poor, the unit in the tower block however depressing, the bed in the hospital however filthy, the indoctrination however boring. The great thing about it, to the collectivist mind, is they won’t have to strive to keep alive. And no one will have cause to pity or envy anyone else, since no one will have less or worse, or more or better – except of course the rulers up there, all wise, permanent and unchallengeable who ordain that everyone else has his fixed place. They reserve plenty, choice, comfort, luxury, information, and power to themselves.
The recognition that such a State is counter to the human instinct for freedom – call it “selfishness “ if you will – should have come to every sane adult the world over when the Soviet Empire crashed. The idea of Socialism should have died then. But if it did, it was only for a short time. Like the Christian God, it rose again, and lives now in the White House, an administration indefensibly authoritarian, whim-driven, unjust, and arrogant.
Selfish human nature with its instinct for liberty, its impelling desire to possess what is good for it materially and mentally, is the force that can and must defeat it.
This video of Pat Condell saying what needs to be said was published last Thursday (January 15, 2015):
We extracted these paragraphs from an article we liked in the Washington Post by Professor Jonathan Turley, who, though reputed to be a liberal, does actually seem to have a taste for liberty:
The greatest threat to liberty in France has come not from the terrorists who committed such horrific acts this past week but from the French themselves, who have been leading the Western world in a crackdown on free speech.
Indeed, if the French want to memorialize those killed at Charlie Hebdo, they could start by rescinding their laws criminalizing speech that insults, defames or incites hatred, discrimination or violence on the basis of religion, race, ethnicity, nationality, disability, sex or sexual orientation. These laws have been used to harass the satirical newspaper and threaten its staff for years.
Speech has been conditioned on being used “responsibly” in France, suggesting that it is more of privilege than a right for those who hold controversial views.
In 2006, after Charlie Hebdo reprinted controversial cartoons of the prophet Muhammad that first appeared in a Danish newspaper, French President Jacques Chirac condemned the publication and warned against such “obvious provocations”.
“Anything that can hurt the convictions of someone else, in particular religious convictions, should be avoided,” he said. “Freedom of expression should be exercised in a spirit of responsibility”.
The Paris Grand Mosque and the Union of French Islamic Organizations sued the newspaper for insulting Muslims — a crime that carries a fine of up to 22,500 euros or six months’ imprisonment. French courts ultimately ruled in Charlie Hebdo’s favor. But France’s appetite for speech control has only grown since then. …
Charbonnier [one of the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists] died, as he pledged, standing up rather than yielding. The question is how many of those rallying in the Place de la Republique are truly willing to stand with him. They need only to look more closely at those three statues. In the name of equality and fraternity, liberty has been curtailed in France. The terrible truth is that it takes only a single gunman to kill a journalist, but it takes a nation to kill a right.
While we agree with what Professor Turley’s point, we would put it a little differently. We always prefer to speak of freedom rather than of rights: as in “I am free to ….” rather than “I have a right to …”, because ideally we are free to do anything that a law does not proscribe, and ideally all laws protect freedom.
This is a good place for us to declare another of our long-held convictions. That it is impossible to have both liberty and equality. (Fraternity is a superfluous sentimentality that we’ll simply overlook.)
This seems to us so obvious that we can only wonder why everyone, even the French, can’t see it.
Equality – other than in the eyes of the law – can only be created and maintained by force, so there goes liberty. Leave people free and they will not match each other in accomplishment or anything else.
Where the people are free they are not equal, and where they are equal they are not free.
The Left wants equality. We want liberty.
If it sears the mind of a decent person merely to imagine the suffering of Raif Badawi as he is subjected to his punishment of 1000 lashes, administered 50 at a time once a week for 20 weeks, knowing what the punishment is being inflicted for could make his blood boil.
First, here’s a short description of the first day of Raif’s lashings from a site we’ve never visited before named 360NoBS:
A Saudi blogger declared guilty of insulting Islam was brought after Friday prayers to a public square in the port city of Jeddah and flogged 50 times before hundreds of spectators.
Reports further stated that he would receive 50 lashes once a week for 20 weeks. …
Despite international pleas for his release, Badawi, a father of three, was brought from prison by bus to the public square on Friday and flogged on the back in front of a crowd that had just finished midday prayers at a nearby mosque.
His face was visible and, throughout the flogging, he clenched his eyes and remained silent, said the witness.
The witness, who also has close knowledge of the case, said the lashing lasted about 15 minutes.
Badawi has been held since mid-2012 after he founded the Free Saudi Liberals blog. … He used it to criticise the kingdom’s influential clerics …
He was originally sentenced in 2013 to seven years in prison and 600 lashes in relation to the charges, but after an appeal the judge stiffened the punishment.
Following his arrest, his wife and children left the kingdom for Canada.
Rights groups argue that the case against Badawi is part of a wider crackdown on freedom of speech and dissent in Saudi Arabia since the 2011 Arab Spring uprisings. Criticism of clerics is seen as a red line because of their prestige in the kingdom, as well as their influential role in supporting government policies.
The man shackled to a whipping post in this picture from 360NoBS may or may not be Raif Badawi,
but in any case it serves to illustrate Islam’s infliction of agony, humiliation, misery, and despair .
Denis MacEoin writes at Gatestone:
[Raif Badaw’s] first 50 lashes were administered Friday. After the noon prayers, outside the mosque, Saudi writer and blogger Raif Badawi, 30, received a sentence perhaps worse than death. Accused of “insulting Islam,” he is to receive 1000 lashes: 50 per week for 20 weeks — nearly half a year. “The lashing order says Raif should ‘be lashed very severely,'” a twitter notice read. “If they lash him again next week we do not know if he is going to survive. He has no medical assistance,” another notice said.
After that, he is to spend ten years in prison and pay a fine of $266,000. If he ever leaves prison, his life will have been destroyed…
His wife and three children have been given asylum in Canada. Her family has filed for divorce on the grounds of his supposed apostasy. …
Badawi had written, “My commitment is… to reject any repression in the name of religion… a goal that we will reach in a peaceful, law-abiding way.”
He is alleged to have criticized the Wahhabi clergy who run his country hand in hand with the royal family. Muslims seem not to be able to handle questions, reasoned criticism or satire. …
Nadeem Malik, the UK Director of the Bahu Trust, a Sufi Muslim charity that “espouses the virtues of tolerance, peaceful co-existence and equality” said: “Our Prophet would have been absolutely crystal clear and unequivocal in condemning any such action. That’s not in the name of Islam at all, and Muslims are sick of having their faith hijacked in this manner.”
I do not doubt Mr. Malik’s sincerity, and I respect the Islamic tradition (Barelwi) from which he comes as one more in keeping with a non-violent interpretation.
We are sick of hearing that this or that group of violent Muslims have “hijacked” the religion of Islam. Islam enjoins violence.
It is a myth that Sufis are against violence. The Muslim murderers of some 385 people, including 186 small children, at a school in Beslan, Russia, in September 2004, were Sufis.
But his statement sharply points out why there is a problem. He was – quite innocently, I am sure – completely wrong.
The writer shouldn’t be sure. We unhesitatingly doubt his innocence. Either he knows he is lying, or he is unable to understand the words of the Koran, the Sunna, and the Hadith, and knows nothing of Islam’s own tales of Muhammad.
There is an inspiration for attacks like those on writers, cartoonists, and film-makers: France’s Charlie Hebdo journalists; Amsterdam’s Theo van Gogh; Denmark’s Kurt Westergaard, Carsten Juste, and Flemming Rose, and Sweden’s Lars Vilks – as well as the assassination attempt on the Nobel Prize winning Egyptian novelist Naguib Mahfouz and the fatwa for the murder of the British writer Salman Rushdie. The inspiration for this behavior is not that the Prophet Muhammad was lampooned or criticized or mocked. The inspiration for this behavior is that Muhammad himself would have ordered or approved such attacks as revenge for assaults on his honour.
Shortly after his move from Mecca to Medina in 622 CE, for instance, when he became the effective ruler of the town, opponents emerged in the Jewish and wider communities. Poets wrote lampoons and disrespectful verses. Muhammad had them killed. Not just poets, but almost anyone who disagreed with him and his “revelations.”
In 624, for example, a Jewish poet named Ka’b ibn al-Ashraf wrote verses condemning the killing of notables from Mecca. He later became a one-man Charlie Hebdo, writing obscene and erotic verses about the Muslim women. Muhammad took offense and instructed one of his companions, Muhammad ibn Maslama, to assassinate Ka’b. When Ibn Maslama expressed doubts about having to lie to Ka’b in order to trick him into going with him, Muhammad told him lying was permissible for such purposes. Ibn Maslama and some other Muslims went out with Ka’b under false pretenses and murdered him.
Ka’b ibn al-Ahraf was not Muhammad’s only victim. … There is a list in WikiIslam of 43 people – as well as all the men from the Jewish tribe of the Banu Qurayza – who were killed on Muhammad’s orders or whose murders were sanctioned by him.
Today the lashes of Raif Badawi stand with the slaughter at Charlie Hebdo as further symbols of the determination of many extremists to reject the norms of reason, tolerance, pluralism, equality, the Universal Declaration human rights and the value that begins every chapter but one of the Qur’an: mercy.
This cannot be said often or emphatically enough: It is not a case of Islamic “extremists” rejecting reason, but of Islam itself being an ideology totally in opposition to reason.
All “faiths” reject reason by definition. Islam punishes it.
Europe in general and France in particular have chosen to exchange loyal law-abiding highly productive Jewish populations – scientists, inventors, doctors, entrepreneurs, industrialists, writers and musicians – for welfare-dependent, violently law-breaking, Europe-hating Muslims. A crazy deal!
Jews are pouring out of Europe. Thousands have emigrated from France in the last few years, and the rate of emigration will now accelerate, while Muslims continue to arrive. They have taken over control of parts of the country, where they enforce their intolerant and cruel sharia law. They treat their women as slaves. Some obey orders from Al-Qaeda and ISIS. Last week in Paris, four al-Qaeda terrorists murdered journalists, cartoonists, and police officers, and shoppers in a Jewish supermarket; all in the name of their bloodthirsty god Allah.
Dr. Lawrence A. Franklin, who served as a US Military Attaché to Israel, writes at Gatestone:
A seemingly required inclusion in most [American] reports on the recent mass murder in Paris was the rhetorical question posed by reporters: “Will these events invite a wave of anti-Muslim incidents?” …
Under-reported, however, was how rapidly the assault against Charlie Hebdo migrated into an anti-Jewish mini-pogrom in the heart of Paris. What did shoppers in a kosher market, four of whom were slaughtered, have to do with the cartoon images of Mohammad? Nothing. But the assault on the HyperCacher Jewish kosher supermarket has a lot to do with the true nature of Islamic militancy.
It seems the drawings in Charlie Hebdo offended some true believers of Islam, but the mere existence of Jews also offends them. So, apparently, does the existence of Christians, Yazidis, Hindus, Ahmadiyyas; anyone considered a “disbeliever”, “infidel” or “not Muslim enough”; other Muslims, such as those blown up on the streets of Asia each week or the unfortunate Muslim policeman, Ahmed Merabet, wounded, then slaughtered at point blank range, on the sidewalk for not being “part of the plan”.
The Grand Mosque in Paris, like mosques all over the capital, was open for business on Friday, the Muslim day of prayer. Moreover, there was little discernible increased security around the Grand Mosque. It seems French security authorities were less worried about attacks directed at Muslim institutions than were America’s media commentators.
Perhaps [the American reporters] should have spent just a little time reporting on the anti-Jewish rioting that took place in the heavily Muslim neighborhood of Trappes, a suburb of Paris?
In reaction to the murders in Paris, the French capital’s Grand Synagogue was closed for the first time since World War II. In fact, synagogues all over Paris were closed. There were no Shabbat services this Saturday, the Jewish day of rest. The stores in the Marais, the Jewish section of Paris, were also shuttered. In light of all this, the expressed concern about possible anti-Muslim incidents, claims on television, such as on CNN, that “Muslims are the most persecuted people,” seemed jarring and wrong.
We of course do not think it a bad thing in itself when places of worship are closed. But as a symptom of the atmosphere of pogrom in Paris, the closing of the synagogues is ominous.
One cannot see how France can profit in the long run from its pro-Islam anti-Semitic policies. But do the indigenous French care what is happening to their nation? All Europe seems to be in a long-drawn-out suicidal death throe.
This is from Front Page, by Ari Lieberman:
It’s time that we finally admit it. The battle for Old Europe is over. The Gates of Vienna have finally been breached. Old Europe has been experiencing a tidal wave of violence and terror in recent years correlating to and in direct proportion with the growing influence of Muslims in the western part of the continent. [The] massacre in Paris by Muslims screaming “Allahuakbar” (what else?) represents a culmination of growing Muslim power and even dominance in France. Britain, Sweden, Belgium and the rest of the sorry lot are not too far behind. Today’s European Muslims have successfully accomplished what the Nazis could not accomplish in World War II. They have sown an irreversible dread into Europe and implanted a fascist-like Islamist seed that has taken firm root.
It is ironic that France has been the recent target of most of the violence. France of all the countries of Old Europe is one of Islam’s greatest appeasers. …
Since the mid-1960s, the French, motivated partly out of greed, partly out of a need to needle the United States and partly out of genuine dislike for the Mideast’s only democracy, have done everything in their power to appease tyranny rather than fight it, to prop it up rather than obliterate it.
In May 1967 France was the first Western power to unilaterally impose an arms embargo on Israel at a precarious time when Israel was facing existential threats from its Arab neighbors. … The world watched with feigned concern as hundreds of thousands of Arabs soldiers backed by modern Soviet T-55 tanks and Mig fighter jets converged on Israel’s borders. The French, who barely had time to shed the stench of their collaborationist Vichy past, chose to abandon and betray the Jewish State in a transparent effort to curry favor with the Muslim world. The French sold their morality for oil and a few Francs.
France’s duplicitous foreign policies when it came to appeasing two-bit Arab dictators only went from bad to worse. They helped Saddam Hussein construct an atom bomb plant and supplied the tyrant with massive quantities of Mirage fighter jets, missiles, tanks and artillery. …
The French really know how to pick ‘em. Successive French governments have developed a penchant for coddling up to the most vile Islamic dictators and terror sponsoring states. Close relationships were forged with Hafez Assad of Syria and arch terror chieftain Yasser Arafat, a despicable murderer who was always warmly greeted by adoring and fawning French officials.
Rather than fighting and combatting Islamic terrorists, the French have a nasty habit of paying them off. They released frozen Iranian assets in exchange for cessation of Iranian-backed terror attacks against France and paid Palestinian groups protection money in an effort to spare their commercial airliners from the scourge of Palestinian skyjackings.
France’s abominable foreign policy reared its ugly head yet again when on December 30, it backed a Palestinian resolution at the UN Security Council that [would impose] dictates on Israel, compelling the Jewish State to withdraw to pre-1967 borders – borders which Israel’s former UN ambassador, Abba Ebban, perceptively termed “Auschwitz lines” – without addressing Israel’s security needs and territorial claims. …
To the leaders of France, composed of Neville Chamberlin lookalikes, adopting the Palestinian narrative and coddling up to the Mideast’s Muslim dictators, is good for business and insulates France against Islamic-inspired terror attacks. [The recent] barbaric Muslim massacre of French political satirists, journalists and policemen in Paris proves otherwise and should compel French leaders to reevaluate their foreign and liberal domestic policies. It should also serve as a wakeup call for the rest of Old Europe to do the same but something tells me that this will not occur and there will be no course correction. …
In a few weeks or perhaps months, all will return to “normal”. French Muslim Imams will continue to spew hate directed against the “infidels” from the mosques. Violent anti-Israel, Jew-hating protests will resume in the streets of Paris and Marseilles and French officials will once again move to condemn Israel for committing some imaginary offense because it’s good for business.
France’s policy of favoring Muslims and opposing the aspiration of the Jews to preserve their peoplehood, is very long established and deeply grounded.
In his 2006 book Betrayal: France, the Arabs, and the Jews, David Pryce-Jones outlines the history of French relations with the Islamic world, demonstrating how helpful France has consistently been to Arab and Islamic tyrants, in total disregard of moral values. “Morality, justice, fact – they were no obstacle.”
On France’s concept of itself as “une puissance musulmane” (a Muslim power), he writes:
[It is] a concept which could only encourage Arabs and Muslims to feel entitled to make special demands on the country so eagerly co-opting and enrolling them into its national purposes. The definition of Jews as people who must abjure any distinguishing national identity, or else suffer the consequences for preserving their specificity, is one of those special demands, and it happens to coincide exactly with the statute put in place in 1789 by the Comte de Clermont-Tonnerre, and cherished by the state ever since.
Ideas and attitudes work downwards from the political elite that conceives them to the people who have to live with the consequences. The foreign ministry, generally referred to as the Quai d’Orsay, is the institution above all others responsible over an extended period of time for realising the state’s grand design for Arabs and Jews and overseeing the political outcome that derives from it. … [A] small number of highly motivated and carefully selected men of like mind have fostered the preconceptions of Arabs and Jews that have now come to threaten the integrity of the French nation.
So any claim by any French leader that anti-Semitism is alien to France, or that the state has not encouraged conflict between Arabs and Jews, or that the attack by Muslims on the supermarket in a Jewish quarter of Paris is hard to explain, is sheer hypocrisy. France is beginning to pay the price for its short-sighted, immoral, and ultimately unprofitable policies.
Horrible news from Gatestone by Valentina Colombo:
Raif Badawi, a Saudi blogger, has been sentenced to 1000 lashes, ten years in jail and a fine of $270,000 for a blog regarded by Saudi Arabia’s regime as insulting Islam.
The lashing was due to be carried out today, so we are assuming that it was, at least in part. So many lashes have been ordered, the torturer will probably need several sessions to complete his assignment. After which, of course, Reason itself will have learnt its lesson and never dare utter a word in Saudi Arabia again.
Badawi was condemned, according to Amnesty International, for having co-founded a website, “Saudi Arabian Liberals,” and for having written and published on it … as well as on Facebook and Twitter …
He criticized and made fun of Saudi institutions such as the Commission for the Promotion of Goodness and the Prohibition of Vice (also known as “the religious police”), the Saudi Grand Mufti, other Saudi ulema [religious scholars].
The long sentence of the Criminal Court of the district of Jeddah stated that he had undermined the “public order”.
In an interview published in August 2007 by the liberal website Afaaq, Badawi stated that “liberals in Saudi Arabia live between the anvil of State and the hammer of the religious police”.
He also said this:
My commitment is to the advancement of civil society in my country, to reject any repression in the name of religion, to promote liberal* enlightened Saudis whose primary objective is being active in civil society, a goal that we will reach in a peaceful and law-abiding way.
Saudi blogger Raif Badawi (left) and his lawyer Walid Abu al-Khayr
We can only hope that this intelligent and brave young man, a secularist and probably an atheist, survives his appalling ordeal, and his ten years in a notoriously hellish Arab prison.
It would be going too far to hope that his fate will persuade the political leaders of the Western world that Islam is a primitive savage cruel ideology rather than the “beautiful religion” they insistently tell us it is.
* We think and hope he means “liberal” in the true sense of the word: favoring freedom. Not in the contemporary American sense: not favoring freedom.
The weekly magazine Charlie Hebdo laughed at all religions. It mocked religion as such, mercilessly. It dared to mock the nastiest religion of them all, Islam, defying its vengefulness. It was doing a great job for civilization.
Because of the killing of the journalists and cartoonists of Charlie Hebdo yesterday in Paris, we repeat part of our post, Religion and the crippling of the mind – an existential threat (January 2, 2013):
Human survival depends on progress, and progress depends on the criticism of ideas.
Religions are the most dangerous sets of ideas because they are the most dogmatic. Dogma chains and cripples the mind. It denies knowledge and prevents discovery and innovation. The only possible form of argument between opposing dogmas is violence. Religions must be questioned.
Any idea that requires a law to protect it from criticism is ipso facto a bad idea.
The Organization of Islamic Cooperation [formerly the Organization of the Islamic Conference], the United Nations, and the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, are actively engaged in trying to silence criticism of Islam. If their campaign succeeds it will greatly advance Islam’s jihad, its war to impose universal Islamic rule.
The victory of Islam would put humanity under a death sentence.
And this is also a good time to repeat an even earlier post, The need to knock Islam (September 3, 2011):
The greatness of the West began with doubting. The idea that every belief, every assumption, should be critically examined started the might of Europe. When those old Greek thinkers who founded our civilization learnt and taught that no one has a monopoly of truth or ever will have, they launched the intellectual adventure that has carried the human race – not without a long interval in the doldrums – literally to the skies.
Socrates taught the utility of suspicion. He is reputed to have said, “The highest form of human excellence is to question oneself and others.” He was not, however, the first to use doubt for discovery. Thales of Miletos, who was born 155 years before Socrates, dared to doubt that religion’s explanatory tales about how the world came to be as it is were to be trusted, and he began exploring natural phenomena in a way that we recognize as scientific. He is often called the Father of Science. With him and his contemporary, Anaximander, who argued with him by advancing alternative ideas, came the notion – for the first time as far as we know – that reason could fathom and describe how the universe worked.
Science is one of the main achievements of the West, but it is not the only product of constructive doubt that made for its greatness. Doubt as a habit of mind or tradition of thinking meant that new, foreign, even counter-intuitive ideas were not dismissed. Europe, before and after it stagnated in the doldrums of the long Catholic Christian night (and even to some extent during those dark centuries), was hospitable to ideas wherever they came from.
Totally opposed to this intellectual openness were the churches with their dogma. Those who claim that the achievements of our civilization are to be credited to Christianity (or in the currently fashionable phrase to “the Judeo-Christian tradition”) have a hard case to make. It was the rediscovery of the Greek legacy in the Renaissance in the teeth of Christian dogmatism, and the new freedom from religious persecution exploited by the philosophers of the Enlightenment that re-launched the West on its intellectual progress, to become the world’s nursery of innovation and its chief factory of ideas.
Our civilization cannot survive without this openness. Critical examination is the breath that keeps it alive. But it is in danger of suffocation. It is more threatened now than it has been for the last four hundred years by dogmatisms: Marxism, environmentalism, religion – above all Islam which absolutely forbids criticism.
The Founding Fathers of the United States perfectly understood the necessity for an open market of ideas. Every citizen of the republic, they laid down, must be free to declare his beliefs, to argue his case, to speak his mind, to examine ideas as publicly as he chose without fear of being silenced.
Islam is now the major threat to the West. Its ideas are the very opposite of those on which the USA was founded. It is an ideology of intolerance and cruelty. It forbids the free expression of thought. By its very nature, even if it were not now on a mission of world conquest (which it is), it is the enemy of the West.
The best way to defeat it is by criticizing it, constantly and persistently, in speech and writing, on the big screen and the small screen, in the schools and academies, in all the media of information and comment, in national and international assemblies.
If the weapon of words is forbidden, the only alternative will be guns.
Islam is as puritanical as it is cruel. A pernickety fastidiousness over minor “moral” infractions lives in the primitive minds of IS [ISIS/ISIL] alongside an insatiable appetite for inflicting pain, terror, and atrocious murder.
This report comes from the International Business Times:
In a grotesque twist of the saying “live by the sword, die by the sword“, an Islamic State executioner in Syria who carried out beheadings for the jihadist group has been found with his head cut off.
The body of the Egyptian man, known to be the deputy emir of the feared al-Hesbah (or Hisbah) force in the eastern province of Deir al-Zor, was recovered near a power plant in al-Mayadeen city, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
The corpse showed signs of torture and carried the message “This is evil, you Sheikh” written on it. The severed head had a cigarette in its mouth. … The message was obvious.
Islamic State’s ban on cigarettes is one of its signature polices.It has imposed a strict set of Sharia laws barring the use of drugs, alcohol and cigarettes in the territories it has conquered across a swathe of Iraq and Syria.
IS has declared smoking “slow suicide” and demands that “every smoker should be aware that with every cigarette he smokes in a state of trance and vanity is disobeying God”.
We didn’t know God was a non-smoker. After all, he’s smoked a lot of people in his time. (We did know that he isn’t a vegetarian.)
Hisbah is IS’s religious police who perform the role of enforcing the group’s twisted version of sharia in the self-styled caliphate.
“Twisted version of sharia”? What is the “untwisted” version, we wonder.
Last year, Vice News released a documentary on what life is like under Hisbah in Raqqa during Ramadan. The footage shows how the religious police check on shops and scrutinise produce, while at the same time ensuring their strict rules on women’s appearances are adhered to.
And the Express reports:
“Songs and music are forbidden in Islam as they prevent one from the remembrance of god and the koran and are a temptation and corruption of the heart,” according to a statement issued by Isis.
This state of affairs is just like that of Geneva when Jehan Calvin (1509-1564) was its dictator.
We quote from our own post, Calvin: a chapter in the terrible history of Christianity, April 10, 2010:
“[Calvin] instituted a totalitarian reign of terror. He was as convinced a collectivist as Hitler, Stalin, Mao and the rest. He would allow “no liberty, no freedom of the will, for [a] man could only misuse such privileges. … [He, Calvin] must frighten him … until he unresistingly accepts his position in the pious and obedient herd, until he has merged in that herd all that is individual within him, so that the individual, the extraordinary, vanishes without leaving a trace.”
So wrote Stefan Zweig in his devastating dissection of Calvin and Calvinism, The Right to Heresy. He goes on:
“To achieve this draconian suppression of personality, to achieve this vandal expropriation of the individual in favour of the community, Calvin had a method all his own, the famous Church ‘discipline’. A harsher curb upon human impulses and desires has hardly been devised by and imposed upon man down to our own days [pre-Second World War]. From the first hour of his dictatorship, this brilliant organizer herded his flock … within a barbed-wire entanglement of … prohibitions, the so-called ‘Ordinances’; simultaneously creating a special department to supervise the working of terrorist morality … called the Consistory [which was] expressly instructed to keep watch upon the private life of every one in Geneva. … Private life could hardly be said to exist any longer … From moment to moment, by day and by night, there might come a knocking at the entry, and a number of ‘spiritual police’ announce a ‘visitation’ without the citizen concerned being able to offer resistance. Once a month, rich and poor, the powerful and the weak, had to submit to the questioning of these professional ‘police des moeurs’. “
The moral police poked into every corner, examined every part of every house, and even the bodies of those who lived in it. Their clothes and shoes, the hair on their heads, was inspected. Clothes must be dark and plain; hair must not be artificially curled.
“From the bedroom they passed on to the kitchen table, to ascertain whether the prescribed diet was not being exceeded by a soup or a course of meat, or whether sweets and jams were hidden away somewhere.”
They pried into bookshelves – only books approved by the Consistory were permitted.
“The servants were asked about the behaviour of their masters, and the children were cross-questioned as to the doings of their parents.”
Visitors to the city had their baggage examined. Every letter, in and out, was opened. Citizens could not write letters to anyone outside the city, and any Genevan permitted to travel abroad was watched in foreign lands by Calvin’s spies. …
As far as he could, Calvin put an end to pleasure. Music – except for what Calvin deemed to be sacred – was forbidden. So was dancing, skating and sport. Theaters and all other public amusements including popular festivals, were prohibited. Wheeled carriages were not allowed. People had to walk to wherever they needed to go. Guests at family celebrations, even weddings and baptisms, were limited in number to twenty. (The names parents could give their children had to be from an approved list.) The red wine of the district could be drunk in small quantities, but no other alcohol. Innkeepers were not allowed to serve their guests until they had seen them saying their prayers, and had to spy on them throughout their stay and report on them to the authorities.
Punishments included imprisonment in irons, hanging, decapitation, burning to death.
If ever the expression “soul-mates” applied to any two people, it surely applies – regardless of the distance of time between them – to Jehan Calvin and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, leader of IS/ISIS/ISIL.
“Islamism”, “radical Islam”, “Islamic extremism”? They don’t exist. There is only Islam. All Muslims believe that sharia law and its punishments – limb amputations for theft, death for adultery, apostasy, and homosexuality – are the best of all possible punishments. How could any be better, when these have been prescribed by Allah himself?
So says this Norwegian. And almost all the Norwegians in his audience agree with him.