December 30, 2010
M. Zuhdi Jasser: Muslims must first look in the mirror
M. Zuhdi Jasser, on Rep. Peter King's (R-NY) plans to hold on American Muslim radicalization and the denunciations by groups like ISNA, CAIR and MPAC that try to deny and obfuscate the connection between "political Islam," or Islamism, and terror:
... [A]ttention to this issue offers an opportunity for American Muslims to confront the radicalization problem and provide solutions -- as only they can.Read more ...
My group, the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, believes these hearings will shed light on the diversity of American Muslims, giving our community a chance to step from behind the veil of Muslim victimization and address head-on the need for long-overdue ideological reforms.
Alas, the announcement of the hearings has triggered heated denunciations by groups like ISNA, CAIR and MPAC, which try to deny and obfuscate the connection between "political Islam," or Islamism, and terror.
This year, the debate on the development of the Ground Zero mosque brought the discussion of political Islam to the front page of every newspaper. While raucous at times, it provided an opportunity for Muslims who don't toe the line of American Islamist organizations to present an alternative vision for American Muslims -- one based in American values and Muslim reform.
Unfortunately, political correctness still too often dominates incidents involving Islamists. This year, the Pentagon released a report on Maj. Nidal Hasan's Fort Hood attack, titled "Protecting the Force: Lessons from Fort Hood." The report was intended to convey to military commanders whatever lessons were learned from the incident, so as to prevent similar attacks in the future. Yet it never mentioned the word Islam or Muslim. Nowhere to be found was any dissection of Hasan's slide into militant Islamism or of his relationship with his homegrown jihadist mentor, Imam Anwar Al-Awlaki.
Meanwhile, President Obama and Mayor Bloomberg used the Ground Zero mosque controversy to tell the more than 70 percent of Americans who oppose the mosque that they were either wrong or confused. Discourse over recent arrests of jihadists in Portland and Baltimore focused on Islamist claims of FBI entrapment, rather than overdue introspection and calls for reform. Worries of Muslim victimization still rule the day.
Our national inability to discuss religious issues honestly is keeping American Muslims from having to accept the reforms needed to defeat political Islam and bring our faith into modernity. The victimization mantra feeds more Muslim isolation and radicalization.
A recent global study by the Pew Research Center showed that Muslims are aligning themselves more and more with Islamism. Of course, most major American Muslim groups, such ISNA, CAIR and MPAC, were built on some strand of that ideology. But knowing where most American Muslims fall in the spectrum of Islamism-vs.-liberalism, as King hopes to find out in his hearings, would be a key step toward counterradicalization.
The fact is, we can't go into 2011 without a discernable strategy on how to defeat Islamist radicalization. House hearings on Muslim radicalization would only be the first step toward finally crafting a US offensive against political Islam.
For the edification of the obviously uninformed liberal politicians and media that parrot the propaganda of groups like ISNA, CAIR and MPAC who vehemently attack the very idea of holding on American Muslim radicalization:
MPAC is a Muslim Brotherhood (MB) affiliated organization whose leadership espouses Wahhabism, a radical Islamic ideology. MPAC has followed a consistent pattern of defending designated terrorist organizations and their supporters, opposing U.S. counterterrorism efforts and spouting anti-Semitic rhetoric. It has sought to undermine law enforcement efforts to monitor Muslim communities. The organization has characterized Israel as a "racist state" and blames the Jewish state for the "pattern of violence" in the Middle East. MPAC has likened members of terrorist groups, such as Hezbollah, to "freedom fighters" and featured an article in its magazine, Al-Talib, praising Osama Bin Laden. At an MPAC-sponsored rally in 2000, literature was distributed that called for the annihilation of Jews and Israel.
CAIR promotes a radical Islamic vision, as evidenced by the fact that its co-founder Omar Ahmad told a Fremont, California audience in July 1998: "Islam isn't in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant. The Koran -- should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth." In a similar spirit, co-founder Ibrahim Hooper told a reporter in 1993: "I wouldn't want to create the impression that I wouldn't like the government of the United States to be Islamic sometime in the future." In 2003 Hooper stated that if Muslims ever become a majority in the United States, they will likely seek to replace the U.S. Constitution with Islamic law, which they deem superior to man-made law. In the late 1980s, Ihsan Bagby, who would later become a CAIR Board member, stated that Muslims "can never be full citizens of this country," referring to the United States, "because there is no way we can be fully committed to the institutions and ideologies of this country."
ISNA devotes much of its energy to providing Wahhabi theological indoctrination materials to some 1,100 of the approximately 2,500
mosques in North America. Many of these mosques were recently built with Saudi money and are required, by their Saudi benefactors, to strictly follow the dictates of Wahhabi imams, which is an edict that affects the tone and content of the sermons given in the mosques. The Saudi money also dictates which books and periodicals may be read in the mosque libraries, or even sold in mosque bookshops. And the dictates go so far as to regulate the policies governing the exclusion or suppression of dissenters from the congregations. The Saudi-subsidized ISNA reportedly holds the mortgages of between 50 and 79 percent of all mosques in the U.S. and Canada. Thus the organization can exercise ultimate authority over the mosques and their teachings. Additionally Former ISNA President, Sheikh Mohammed Nur Abdullah received a B.A. and Masters degree in Sharia, and is a member of the Sharia Scholars Association of North America.And as for the Muslim Brotherhood itself which is behind groups like MPAC, CAIR, and ISNA:The Muslim Brotherhood was founded in accordance with al-Banna's proclamation that Islam be "given hegemony over all matters of life." Accordingly, the Brotherhood seeks to establish an Islamic Caliphate spanning the entire Muslim world. It also aspires to make Islamic (Shari'a) law the sole basis of jurisprudence and governance. Toward this purpose -- encapsulated in the Brotherhood's militant credo: "God is our objective, the Koran is our Constitution, the Prophet is our leader, struggle is our way, and death for the sake of God is the highest of our aspirations" -- the Brotherhood since its founding has supported the use of armed struggle, or jihad. The Brotherhood supports the waging of jihad against non-Muslim "infidels," and has expressed support for terrorism against Israel, whose legitimacy the Brotherhood does not recognize, and against the West, particularly the United States.Which brings us to the question as to why should we lend an ear to the nonsense from MPAC, CAIR, and ISNA, and why shouldn't Peter King hold hearings on American Muslim radicalization. As Zuhdi Jasser goes on to note in his peace, the simple fact is that we can't go into 2011 without a discernable strategy on how to defeat Islamist radicalization. House hearings on Muslim radicalization would only be the first step toward finally crafting a US offensive against political Islam. The time has come for Muslims to look in the mirror, and realize that we indeed need a coordinated national strategy of offense that gives Muslim youth an Islamic counternarrative from that of radical imams, online Wahhabist propaganda, and groups like MPAC, CAIR, and ISNA. We need a counternarrative that defends liberty and that separates mosque and state.
Cross posted from Hyscience
Posted by Richard at December 30, 2010 10:17 AM