On December 10, “Human Rights Day”, the International Humanist and Ethical Union published Freedom of Thought 2012: A Global Report on Discrimination Against Humanists, Atheists and the Nonreligious, edited by Matt Cherry.
These quotations were selected by Hermant Mehta at the Friendly Atheist:
“This report shows that atheists, humanists and other nonreligious people are discriminated against by governments across the world. There are laws that deny atheists’ right to exist, curtail their freedom of belief and expression, revoke their right to citizenship, restrict their right to marry, obstruct their access to public education, prohibit them from holding public office, prevent them from working for the state, criminalize their criticism of religion, and execute them for leaving the religion of their parents.”
In Afghanistan, Iran, Maldives, Mauritania, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan atheism is a capital crime. Most executions for the crime of atheism are carried out in Pakistan.
“In a range of other countries — such as Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Kuwait and Jordan — publication of atheist or humanist views on religion are totally banned or strictly limited under laws prohibiting ‘blasphemy’.
“In many of these countries, and others like Malaysia, citizens have to register as adherents of a small number officially-recognized religions — which normally include no more than Christianity and Judaism as well as Islam.”
“Speaking of blasphemy,” Hermant Mehta writes, “the report includes a section on the sharp rise of blasphemy charges on social media …” :
“The trend of prosecuting ‘blasphemies’ shared through social media is most marked in Muslim-majority countries. For example, in addition to the tragic, but all too familiar, wave of blasphemy prosecutions in Pakistan, this year saw prosecutions for allegedly atheist comments on Facebook and Twitter in Bangladesh, Bahrain, Egypt, Indonesia, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, and Turkey. In some of these cases, the governments even threatened to prosecute those who commented on, or ‘liked’, or re-tweeted, the offending comments. In May, the Pakistan government went so far as to block all access to Twitter in the country because of objections to ‘blasphemous’ content’. …
“When 21st century technology collides with medieval blasphemy laws, it seems to be atheists who are getting hurt, as more of them go to prison for sharing their personal beliefs via social media… Across the world the reactionary impulse to punish new ideas, or in some cases the merest expression of disbelief, recurs again and again. We even have a case in Tunisia of a journalist arrested for daring to criticize a proposed blasphemy law!”
Max Fisher at the Washington Post provides this map of the countries where atheists are executed, imprisoned or discriminated against by law.
In his comments, Max Fisher points out that –
Restrictions against “religious incitement” … are common in much of the world, including in atheist-friendly Western Europe.
Such laws are applied in many European countries to the critical examination of Islam. And if the Organization of Islamic Co-operation (OIC) – which includes a delegate or “special envoy” from the US, Obama appointee Rashad Hussain – has its way, criticism of Islam will be a punishable offense all over this Islam-diseased world. The Obama administration supported a UN resolution against “defamation of religion” in December 2011.
As a follow-up to our recent posts The State-whisperer and Whom the President praises (both August 16, 2012), about a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, Huma Abedin, being Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s close (closest?) aide and adviser, we quote from an article by Frank Gaffney at Townhall:
Not only does Ms. Abedin’s relationship to the Muslim Brotherhood and involvement in policies favorable to its interests warrant close official scrutiny. There are at least six other individuals with Brotherhood ties whose involvement in Obama administration “Muslim outreach” and/or related policy-making also deserve investigation by the IGs and the Congress:
• Rashad Hussain, Special Envoy to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation;
• Dalia Mogahed, an advisor to President Obama;
• Mohamed Elibiary, a member of Homeland Security Department’s Advisory Council;
• Mohamed Magid, a member of the Homeland Security Department’s Countering-Violent Extremism Working Group;
• Louay Safi, until recently the credentialing authority for Muslim chaplains in the U.S. military and now a leader of the Brotherhood-dominated Syrian National Council; and
• Kifah Mustapha, a Hamas-fundraiser and graduate of the FBI’s ‘Citizens Academy’
The American people are entitled to know who is shaping the policies that are increasingly empowering, enriching and emboldening the Muslim Brotherhood – an organization sworn to our destruction. Under no circumstances should legitimate and well-grounded congressional requests for formal investigations be deflected, let alone suppressed.
In a column titled Who Lost Egypt?, Caroline Glick correctly declares that Egypt’s new president Mohamed Morsy has “transformed Egypt from a military dictatorship into an Islamist dictatorship”.
Her description and analysis of what is happening in Egypt, and Morsy’s belligerent intentions towards Israel, are impressively accurate and clear.
Then she comes to this:
The rapidity of Morsy’s moves has surprised most observers. But more surprising than his moves is the US response to his moves.
Obama administrations officials have behaved as though nothing has happened, or even as though Morsy’s moves are positive developments. …
Morsy’s Islamism … is inherently hostile to the US and its allies and interests in the Middle East. Consequently, Morsy’s strategic repositioning of Egypt as an Islamist country means that Egypt – which has served as the anchor of the US alliance system in the Arab world for 30 years – is setting aside its alliance with the US and looking toward reassuming the role of regional bully.
Egypt is on the fast track to reinstating its war against Israel and threatening international shipping in the Suez Canal. And as an Islamist state, Egypt will certainly seek to export its Islamic revolution to other countries. ,,,
The US’s astounding sanguinity in the face of Morsy’s completion of the Islamization of Egypt is an illustration of everything that is wrong and dangerous about US Middle East policy today.
But why is Obama’s complacency over what the Muslim Brotherhood is doing “surprising”? Why is it “astounding”?
How could it be any more obvious that the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood is precisely what Obama desires? Could he have made it any plainer from his first speech made abroad as president, in Cairo in 2009, when he insisted that the Muslim Brotherhood be present to hear him, to the current state of affairs described by Frank Gaffney?
Barack Obama, the president of the United States, is on the side of his country’s enemy: Islam. Why do so many astute observers of current events fail to see something that is so plainly the case? Because it is simply too dreadful?
Ikhwan is the Arabic for brothers.
Jamiat al-Ikhwan al-muslimun means the Muslim Brotherhood.
The motto of the Muslim Brotherhood is:
Allah is our objective; the Prophet is our leader; the Quran is our law; Jihad is our way; dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope.
The following quotation is from a letter to the editor of Noozhawk, Santa Barbara, by Donald Thorn. It is a useful timetable of the Muslim Brotherhood’s rise to power with the help of the Obama administration. We came to it via Creeping Sharia which has coined the word “Ikhwanization” to sum up the process.
Today, Egypt has a Muslim Brotherhood hard-liner president (Mohammed Morsi), and there are more calls for the destruction of Israel. There are new fears that the regime will invite al-Qaeda back into Egypt and open up a front with Israel along the Sinai.
Who helped the Muslim Brotherhood gain control? [The State Department] and the White House helped train the Brotherhood during Egypt’s elections, selling out Israel and U.S. interests in the Mideast. Even more troubling is the untold story of how the Obama administration secretly helped bring Islamofascists to power.
Consider the timeline:
»1) 2009: Brotherhood spiritual leader Qaradawi writes President Barack Obama and argues terrorism is a direct response to U.S. foreign policy.
» 2) 2009: Obama travels to Cairo and apologizes to Muslims and invites the Muslim Brotherhood, but snubs Israel and Mubarak.
» 3) 2009: Obama appoints a Brotherhood-tied-Islamist, Rashad Hussain, as U.S. envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference, which supports Muslim Brotherhood.
» 4) 2010: State Department lifts visa ban on Tariq Ramadan … grandson of the Muslim Brotherhood founder.
» 5) 2010: Hussain and Ramadan meet at an American sponsored conference attended by U.S. and Brotherhood officials.
» 6) 2010: Hussain meets in Egypt with Brotherhood’s grand mufti.
» 7) 2010: Obama meets with Egypt’s foreign minister, Gheit, who claims Barack said he was a Muslim.
» 8) 2011: The Brotherhood’s supreme leader calls for jihad against the United States, and Qaradawi calls “days of rage” against Mubarak and pro-western Mideast regimes. Cairo erupts into violence.
» 9) 2011: Obama fails to back his ally, Mubarak, then sends intelligence czar Clapper to Capitol Hill to claim the Muslim Brotherhood is moderate and secular.
» 10) 2011: The Brotherhood wins control of Egyptian parliament, vows to tear up 30-year peace treaty with Israel and re-establishes ties with Hamas and Hezbollah.
» 11) 2011: Obama demands Israel relinquish land to Palestine …
» 12) 2011: State Department formalizes ties with the Muslim Brotherhood, letting diplomats deal directly with Brotherhood officials in Cairo.
» 13) 2012: Obama releases $1.5 billion in foreign aid to new Egyptian regime.
» 14) 2012, June: Morsi becomes Egypt’s president and vows to instate Shariah law, turning Egypt into an Islamic theocracy.
» 15) 2012, June: A delegation of once-banned Brotherhood terrorists join a Muslim Brotherhood delegation at the White House, meeting with a national security official.
» 16) 2012, July: Obama invites Morsi to visit the White House in September.
What does all this mean? The Muslim Brotherhood’s didn’t just suddenly take over in the Mideast or Egypt. It was helped along by a U.S. president sympathetic to its interests, over those of Israel and the United States.
It certainly looks that way. It looks like there has been an Ikhwanization of the US administration.
How should the US deal with the Muslim Brotherhood?
Karl Schake of the (estimable) Hoover Institution writes:
There is little doubt that the Muslim Brotherhood is not going to be a comfortable partner for the United States. …
The Muslim Brotherhood operates with decentralized national branches in many countries (including the United States). The different branches, however, share core beliefs. They clearly seek to attain political power in order to foster wide-ranging social change. Make no mistake, the Brotherhood is not a status quo political party. It would institute Sharia law, deny women the political and social latitude of men, and, if history is a precedent, be hostile to non-Muslims. …
In Egypt, the influence of the Brotherhood’s Islamist agenda accounts for less of their appeal than their long-standing opposition to the Mubarak government. Egyptian politicians are keenly aware that while most Egyptians support an Islamic government, polling of public attitudes indicates Islam is not a priority for Egyptian voters — only 3 percent of respondents in recent polls considered Sharia law an important issue. Egyptians are overwhelmingly concerned about security, the economy, and justice.
Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood is not Hamas or Hezbollah …
Note that Hamas, an actively terrorist organization, is a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood …
… at least not yet. It does not bring violence into the political sphere. It was not the motivating force in toppling Hosni Mubarak; in fact, its members were late to the revolution. But the Brotherhood capitalized on its decades of political organization and social activism to dominate the elections.
This should not have been surprising; the Brotherhood had a structural advantage over all of the other political parties just forming. But the sharp decline in support for Brotherhood candidates in Egypt’s June 2012 presidential elections suggested that voters were irritated at the Brotherhood’s ineffectualness in Parliament, concerned that it broke its promise not to run a candidate in the presidential elections, and worried about Islamist domination of Egypt’s politics.
Though Brotherhood candidate Mohammed Morsi did win the election, the Egyptian voters expressed real concern about these issues during presidential polling. Exit polls suggest voters were even more distrustful of the military’s candidate, worried the secular candidate represented the Mubarak past. Voters also resented the military’s moves to usurp Parliament and the Constitution drafting process. For now, it looks like Egyptians are holding the Muslim Brotherhood accountable for their political actions, not just their ideological appeal. …
What they all agree on is that the US should continue providing Egypt with massive aid regardless of who is in power:
Even those political actors deeply suspicious of U.S. policies and resentful of our past actions want the United States to be a major participant in their countries’ transitions. … They want American [economic] assistance — and they don’t have much sympathy for our current economic straits, given how much more dire are their own are. … They want us to actually care about their futures, not what they can do to advance our interests. …
But if what happens to them in no way serves US interests, why should the US care about them? There is something childish about such thinking.
The most worrisome thought dealing with Brotherhood and even Salafist politicians is not what will happen should they succeed, but what will happen should they fail. Moderate Muslims have been winning the argument over the past decade that al Qaeda’s nihilist vision isn’t the path. Restoration of the caliphate by any means is not the Islam most Muslims want.
How can he possibly know that?
He is basing his conclusions on what diplomats said to each other when they met at Doha. How far are the communications of diplomats likely to reflect “what most Muslims want”?
He takes an optimistic view of what “the people” in the Arab world want, but issues a warning:
Elections in Egypt, Tunisia, and Libya — even the glacially slow political change that the Gulf’s authoritarian governments are quietly experimenting with — demonstrate the people of the Arab world want accountable and transparent governments. They want institutions to constrain the power of rulers; they want grievances addressed; and they want the means by which to change their leaders if those leaders aren’t responsive to their concerns. The revolutions of the Arab spring have given citizens of those countries hope that political change can achieve those ends. If governments fail to produce that change, the al Qaeda narrative could again get traction in the disillusionment and despair that follows.
Is that something the US should fear? How much worse would al Qaeda be than the Muslim Brotherhood? How bad the Muslim Brotherhood will be, only time can show.
It is an interesting essay. Read it all here.
Barack Obama is intensely, emotionally, fervently pro-Islam. Under his leadership, the whole executive branch of the government works to advance and empower Islam in North Africa and the Middle East, and/or in the US.
In North Africa and the Middle East:
William Taylor, the State Department’s Special Coordinator for Middle East Transitions, is overseeing US aid to Egypt, Tunisia, and Libya, and advising political parties on how to prepare for elections.
According to a report by Ryan Mauro –
When asked how the U.S. would feel if the Muslim Brotherhood won Egypt’s elections, [Taylor] said, “I think we will be satisfied, if it is a free and fair election. What we need to do is judge people and parties and movements on what they do, not what they’re called.” The answer seemed to infer that critics of the Brotherhood are needlessly alarmed by the name of the group.
It gets worse. Taylor compared the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood to Tunisia’s Ennahda Party, as if that is a positive example to follow. “As long as parties, entities do not espouse or conduct violence, we’ll work with them.” He said there is undue fear of the Islamists. “This is something that we are used to, and should not be afraid of. We should deal with them.”
It is hard to imagine a statement more frightening and naïve coming from a senior official.
The Muslim Brotherhood’s Palestinian affiliate is Hamas, which the Brotherhood still stands by and has never condemned. … The leader of the Ennahda Party, Rachid Ghannouchi, likewise supports Hamas, terrorism and the killing of Israeli children. This certainly qualifies as espousing violence, to use the words of Taylor.
A look at Taylor’s background shows he is a long associate of individuals tied to the Muslim Brotherhood and apologists of the Islamist group. Before taking his State Department post, he was the vice president of the U.S. Institute for Peace (UIP). It has a close working relationship with John Esposito, arguably the most prominent non-Muslim apologist for the Muslim Brotherhood, foreign and domestic.
Esposito defends the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) and Sami al-Arian. He served as an expert witness for the defense in the trial of the Holy Land Foundation, which was found guilty of being a front for Hamas set up by the Brotherhood.
A trial in which Cair and ISNA were found to be “unindicted co-conspirators” with the Holy Land Foundation. Why, we wonder, do they remained forever “unindicted”?
[Esposito is also] the vice chair of the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy (CSID), the board of which has strong associations with the International Institute for Islamic Thought, another Brotherhood front. On April 28, 2010, Taylor’s UIP sponsored a CSID conference that the Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Report calls “perhaps the largest public gathering of global Muslim Brotherhood leaders and U.S. government officials to date.” Tariq Ramadan, the grandson of Hassan al-Banna, the original founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, was there, as was Brotherhood members from Bahrain and Jordan. In May 2011, CSID held an event with a senior leader of Ennahda.
Taylor joins several other Obama administration officials who take a benign view of the Muslim Brotherhood or are linked to its American fronts.
The best example is the Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, who … during testimony to Congress in February, [said] that the “term ‘Muslim Brotherhood’ is an umbrella term for a variety of movements, in the case of Egypt, a very heterogeneous group, largely secular, which has eschewed violence and has described Al-Qaeda as a perversion of Islam.”
There’s Rashad Hussain, the [US] envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference, who attended the aforementioned CSID event featuring Brotherhood leaders.
For the low-down on Rashad Hussain, see our post The trusted envoy, February 20, 2010. The Organization of the Islamic Conference, recently renamed the Organization of Islamic Co-operation is the body chiefly responsible for launching the “soft jihad” invasion of Western Europe. For more about it see our post Europe betrayed, February 11, 2010.
Then there’s Dalia Mogahed, one of the members of President Obama’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnership. She is a close associate of John Esposito and is said to have been the “most influential person” advising President Obama on his speech to the Muslim world in Cairo. …
The State Department has teamed up with CAIR to host an event with the Syrian opposition. In January 2010, members of ISNA, the Muslim Public Affairs Council and Muslim American Society, all tied to the Muslim Brotherhood, were given briefings by the Department of Homeland Security including Secretary Janet Napolitano. A member of the Department of Homeland Security’s Advisory Council, Mohamed Elibiary, has Brotherhood associations and is a defender of the Holy Land Foundation. …
For more on Mohamed Elibiary, who leaked secret intelligence to which the DHS had given him privileged access [!], see our post National Insecurity, November 16, 2011.
Obama’s chief terrorism advisor, John Brennan, speaks alongside the president of ISNA. Another senior advisor to the President, Valerie Jarrett, was the keynote speaker at ISNA’s 2009 convention. It has been reported that the Justice Department even blocked the prosecutions of at least two Brotherhood figures tied to Hamas. …
In the US:
This report comes from Creeping Sharia:
If you are a student of Islam, then you might have gathered that Islam has a doctrine of eternal hatred of Kafirs and their civilization. A student of Islam might also gather that after a 1400 year history of hostilities, murder, rape and enslavement that Islam was at war with us. But the White House, the Department of Justice, Homeland Security, FBI and CIA have informed us that this is not the case.
It started when Steve Emerson [expert on terrorism] and Steve Coughlin [expert on Islamic law] were going to give talks about political Islam to the FBI and Homeland Security . Then the White House informed them that not only were they not going to talk about the Islamic doctrine and history of jihad, but that henceforth, no Kafir could talk to any Federal agencies, unless they were vetted by the Muslim Brotherhood.
Now, Eric Holder, the Attorney General, has ordered a purge of all Department of Justice manuals and training of all material that will “offend” Muslims. …
U.S. Attorney Dwight Holton explained that FBI training materials that even remotely link Islam to violence will be banned.
“I want to be perfectly clear about this: Training materials that portray Islam as a religion of violence or with a tendency towards violence are wrong, they are offensive and they are contrary to everything this president, this attorney general and Department of Justice stands for,” he told Muslim activists gathered at the George Washington University law school. “They will not be tolerated.”
The president and the Department of Justice do not stand for critical thought, an examination of all sides of a problem. The White House wants to see that Muslims are never offended. Notice that the White House does not say that the Kafir analysts are wrong in their facts and data. Instead, they say that facts have no place at the table. Our government no longer stands for logical thought, but only wants to insure that Muslims are not offended by Kafirs. The way for Muslims to not be offended is for the Kafirs to keep silent. This is pure Islamic doctrine, Sharia law. …
Kafirs must not have knowledge of Islamic doctrine. Kafirs must not make their civilization attractive to Muslims. Kafirs must submit to Islam … This is why we are changing how our textbooks explain America because Muslims will read them. Islam must be praised and the West denigrated.
You might wonder why they would not want Kafirs to read the Koran. After all wouldn’t they want the Kafir to read the wonderful Koran and become a Muslim? No, Islam wants for you to listen to a Muslim explain the Koran. A Koran reading Kafir might apply critical thought to the text and that would be a disaster. Only Muslims are allowed to know Mohammed and Allah under Sharia law. …
Now they deny truth. Next they will criminalize truth that offends Islam.
The mass media are helping the administration to lie about the nature of Islam.
How pro-Islam for instance, is ABC?
Here’s David Wood to tell us:
Obama wants the Muslim Brotherhood to participate in the government of Egypt, the country where it was founded but in which it is officially banned.
Obama may or may not be a Muslim, but it’s plain enough that he holds Islam in high esteem. He has steadily extended its reach and influence inside the United States, strengthened Islamic regimes, and facilitated the spread of sharia. We see him as a man with a mission – to aid the advance of Islamic power.
Here, in selected quotations from two articles at FrontPage Magazine, are facts and informed opinion that support our contention.
By Ryan Mauro:
The [Obama] administration has extensive relations with groups and leaders tied to the Muslim Brotherhood. … [It has] opened its doors to Muslim Brotherhood legacy groups such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the Muslim Public Affairs Council, the Islamic Society of North America and other Islamic leaders who come from Muslim Brotherhood backgrounds …
Even before Obama came into office, he was choosing advisers with relationships to Brotherhood front groups. … In the first month of becoming President, Obama selected Ingrid Mattson, the president of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), to take part in the inaugural prayer services. The federal government has designated ISNA as an “unindicted co-conspirator” in the Holy Land Foundation trial, and the Brotherhood’s internal documents identify it as one of its fronts. …
President Obama chose Rashad Hussain to be his special envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference. He has long been a featured speaker at conferences by Brotherhood-tied groups in the U.S., … has spoken for ISNA since being appointed, and has shared the stage with officials from the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), another Brotherhood-tied group that has been listed as an “unindicted co-conspirator” in the Holy Land Foundation trial.
One of the members of the President’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships is Dalia Mogahed. She has been described as the “most influential person” in crafting Obama’s speech in Cairo to the Muslim world. She is a close colleague of John Esposito, perhaps the Brotherhood’s most prestigious apologist in the U.S. He gave expert testimony on behalf of the Holy Land Foundation during its trial and is a vocal defender of CAIR, ISNA and the other organizations tied to the Brotherhood. …
In June 2009, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton invited Esam Omeish, who describes the Brotherhood as “moderate,” to take part in a conference call following President Obama’s speech to the Muslim world in Cairo. Omeish sits on the board of directors of the extremist Dar al-Hijrah mosque, which is closely connected to the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas. …
Officials have met with the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) on at least two dozen occasions, including Attorney General Eric Holder, the assistant director in charge of the FBI, and Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano. From January 27 to 28, 2010, leaders from ISNA, the Muslim American Society and MPAC met with Napolitano and other officials to be briefed on the agency’s counter-radicalization and counter-terrorism efforts. …
The influence of Brotherhood groups in the government even extends to the FBI and military. An official from ISNA was asked to lecture U.S. troops at Fort Hood about Islam after the terrorist shooting took place. The FBI has also held meetings with top ISNA officials and is engaging the organization as part of its outreach to the Muslim community. Shockingly, the decision to use the ISNA came after the FBI decided to end its relationship with CAIR because of concerns over the organization’s ties to Hamas and designation as an “unindicted co-conspirator”—the same label applied to ISNA from the same trial.
A known member of the Muslim Brotherhood, Kifah Mustapha, was even given a six-week tour last year of FBI facilities including the National Counterterrorism Center and a training compound. Documents from the Holy Land trial show that he is a member of the Brotherhood’s secret “Palestine Committee” that set up organizations in the U.S. to support Hamas. …
By Nonie Darwish:
The Muslim Brotherhood has long been a major political force in the Muslim world. … [It] has been a major force in bringing down regimes and installing new governments, and whether we like it or not [it] will play a significant role in any administration, whether it is openly Islamic or nominally secular. …
Now the Brotherhood is operating in the U.S. under pretty names, and influencing our politicians from the lowest to the highest levels. …
Obama has empowered the Islamists not only in the Muslim world, but also inside in the U.S. Could anyone have imagined the U.S. president [would] support the building of a mosque on Ground Zero against the wishes of his own people and the families of the victims? Could anyone have imagined that Islamists are being hired in our homeland security apparatus and in the White House? Could anyone have imagined an American president bowing before the Arabian despot King whose countrymen were behind 9/11? … Who could have imagined that the first US president elected after 9/11 would declare … that America is … a Muslim nation?
How can these actions and policies of Obama’s be explained if not by his being devoted to Islam?
Islam is waging war on America, and America’s head of state is devoted to Islam?
Can it be true?