The would-be last and only religion 3

The purpose of Islam, the 1400-year-old movement, is to subjugate the world. The aggressive process by which this must be accomplished is called “jihad”. It is surely no more possible to be a Muslim – a follower of Islam – without being dedicated to the achievement of this end, by this means, than it would be possible to be a swimmer who never enters water. 

Daniel Pipes, president of the Middle East Forum, tells this story at Quadrant (read it in full here): 

A petite, pretty twenty-four-year-old Bangladeshi named Momena Shoma arrived in Melbourne on February 1, 2018, to study linguistics on an excellence scholarship at La Trobe University. Describing herself as “an introvert and very shy in nature”, she spoke of an ambition to become a university instructor. Coming from an affluent and secular Dhaka family which considered her “brilliant”, Momena had been an A student at some of the capital’s elite English-language educational institutions: Loreto School, Mastermind School and North South University (NSU). She graduated from NSU with an honours degree in English language and literature in 2016, then enrolled for a master’s degree at NSU before switching to La Trobe. 

Like many newly-arrived foreign students, Momena turned to the Australian Homestay Network (AHN), “Australia’s largest and leading homestay provider”, to find a family with which to board. She quickly settled in a home in Bundoora, near the university. 

What could be more innocent? Anyone worrying about her being dangerous because of her Muslim faith would have been called out for racism, chauvinism, xenophobia, bigotry and (that most dreadful of accusations)“Islamophobia”. That she wore a burka (the black full-body Islamic covering) only made such suspicions the more heinous. 

But, as Momena took a twenty-five-centimetre kitchen knife to her Bundoora room and repeatedly stabbed her bed, she signalled the danger to come. In the words of a magistrate, “She did the practice run on the mattress with the first family that hosted her and they felt intimidated enough to go to AHN, saying, ‘We’re scared, we don’t want her to continue living with us’.” Out she went, facing homelessness.

Responding to her urgent need for accommodation, the Singaravelu family—husband and nightshift nurse Roger (fifty-six), wife Maha (forty-five)and daughter Shayla (five)—welcomed Momena into their four-bedroom house in the suburb of Mill Park on February 7 for a few days until she found more permanent lodgings. Maha explained her motive in accepting Momena: “I felt for her, being in a foreign country. I put myself in her shoes and her parents’ shoes.”

Themselves immigrants from Malaysia, the Singaravelus had come to Australia thirty years ago, Roger explained, “to seek opportunity”.They had hosted foreign students since 2014 in a spirit of multiculturalism, of giving back, and of teaching tolerance to their daughter. A neighbour, Neil Fitzroy, described the Singaravelus as engaging and open, taking in foreign students to give them “an Australian experience”. 

Matters started well enough with Momena, Maha recalls: “She was very pleasant to deal with. She even offered to babysit our daughter if we ever went out.” Roger concurs: “Shoma gave a good impression right up before the attack.” He found her “well mannered” and noted that she spoke betterEnglish than he did.

Growing up in Malaysia, a Muslim-majority country, Roger tells me, he and Maha “understand the norms that are embraced by Muslims”. But AHN had not told the family that Momena wore a burka, and her appearance, Roger recounts, “gave us a shock when she first arrived at our doorstep”. That she “was constantly lifting the burka during meal times” to get food into her mouth made the family feel “uncomfortable having meals together”. Much less did AHN tell the couple about Momena having been thrown out of her previous homestay due to her practice at stabbing. And no one knew she had stolen the knife from the first homestay host.

On February 9, after two days with the Singaravelus, Momena struck. At 4.25 p.m., with Maha out of the house and Roger napping on a mattress in the lounge with his child in his arms, Momena, wearing her burka,used her stolen knife to stab her host in the neck. But the under-five-foot woman lacked the strength to cut the much larger Roger’s jugular vein, getting the knife only superficially into his neck—enough to make him bleed “like a fountain” but not enough to do him fatal damage.

In his words: “I thought I was dreaming as I felt a sharp pain on my neck. I woke up and started screaming.” He tried to pull the knife out as Momena leaned over him and pushed it in, yelling all the while, “Allahu Akbar!” He noted that “her eyes were so intense”. Roger continues:

I reactively grabbed onto the knife and fought [her] off … I was pleading with her for a good four, four and a half minutes and said, “Please let go [of the knife], Shoma. Please let go. We will talk.” All she [kept] saying was “Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar,” while my daughter was screaming here, and I told my daughter,“Run, Shayla, run.” 

Finally, Roger prevailed and pulled the blade out. After that, he says:

I managed to grab hold of my five-year-old daughter out of the house and rang Mustafa Osmanoski from my mobile, and he came to my aid immediately. When I managed to open the garage door, the neighbour across the road came to help me too.

Mustafa, seventy-six, a retired security guard of Macedonian origins, and his wife Safia, watched over a sullen and immobile Momena for twenty minutes as she awaited arrest, slumped against the wall of the room where her attack had taken place. The neighbours recount her saying that “It was a mission and that she had to do what she had to do.” 

To the police, she calmly elaborated that she had come to Australia not to study but to kill “in the name of God”. She expected that a knife stab to the neck “would be fatal”. Seeing herself as a foot soldier ofIslamic State (ISIS), Momena had planned the attack; indeed, before leaving Dhaka, she had told her younger sister Asmaul Husna, twenty-two, of her murderous plan. …

Her motive? Momena acknowledged bearing no personal grudge against Roger (who had spoken barely fifty words to her) but attacked him out of a sense of duty to “trigger the West”: meaning, to spur non-Muslims to attack Muslims, possibly leading to the chaos that brings on the End of Days. She explained: 

I had to do it … it could have been anyone, it’s not specifically him. He just seemed like a very easy target since he was sleeping, so yeah, and I had to push myself. I wouldn’t even hurt a rat. This, I just felt like if I don’t do it I will be sinful, I will be punished by Allah.  

Charged with attempted murder and one count of engaging in an act of terrorism, Momena proudly and defiantly presented herself in the magistrate’s court in August, wearing a niqab, as an ISIS soldier. She refused to stand for the magistrate or to enter a plea.

At the Victorian Supreme Court in September, the judge compelled her to take off the niqab and show her face to establish her identity as she made her plea. This time, Momena pleaded guilty to engaging intentionally in a terrorist act “with the intention of advancing a political,religious or ideological cause, namely violent jihad”. (The attempted murder charge was dropped.) 

Her sentencing will take place in January; the maximum penalty is life in prison. An online poll asked if she should be deported or incarcerated: after running for several weeks, the vote was overwhelmingly (84 to 16 per cent) in favour of deportation. 

Roger suffered cuts to his shoulder, severed tendons in his hand, and a ruptured vertebra in the neck. He recovered after surgery for injuries to his shoulder and neck. Testifying in April, he described the attack’s “devastating effects” on his family. Shayla was traumatised by what she witnessed: “She continues to experience nightmares and flashbacks, and requires psychological treatment. She still sees blood on the wall and asks me to clean it off, although there is nothing there.” …

 [T]ree days after Momena’s attack on February 9, a Dhaka Metropolitan Police team from the CTTC [Counter Terrorism Technology Centre?] went to the Shoma family home at the Royal Aroma Garden apartment building to investigate. … Momena’s sister Asmaul Husna (also known as Sumona), who also attended elite English-language schools, was “very rough” in her attitude. Then, the CTTC reports: “when the police officers were leaving, Sumona surprisingly launched a knife attack, shouting Allahu Akbar. She also said, ‘You are Kafirs [infidels]. We must establish the rule of Islam in the country. We must do jihad if necessary’.” A press account says she added, “I will kill [Bangladeshi Prime Minister] Sheikh Hasina, I will kill [Syrian President Bashar] Assad.They are all infidels. One day everyone will join jihad and Islam will rule the world.”

The injured policeman was taken to the hospital and quickly released. The CTTC subsequently found that, before departing forMelbourne, Momena had ordered her sister to murder a policeman and instructed her on the use of a knife. 

Within three days, then, the two sisters, both inspired by Islamic motives, had stabbed two victims in two countries. … 

Why did the Australian authorities allow Momena into the country after the government of Turkey (and perhaps those of Tunisia and the United States) had rejected her visa application?

The intrusive and “most dreaded“ Australian Form 80, required of all applicants for permanent residence and some for temporary residence, asks, “Have you ever been refused a visa to any country?” and “Have you … ever been associated with an organisation engaged in violence or engaged in acts of violence (including … terrorism)?” What value have these questions? …

The case of Momena Shoma crystallises the need for Australia and other Western countries to develop fair but rigorous mechanisms to exclude Islamists [ie. jihadis – ed] from their countries. Note: Islamists, not Muslims.

Yes, distinguishing the one from the other is a challenge, but, given adequate time, skill and funds, it can be done. 

Can it really?

How? 

Posted under Australia, Bangladesh, Islam, jihad, Muslims by Jillian Becker on Wednesday, December 12, 2018

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