Posts Tagged ‘Hate Speech’

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Legal Conference: Freedom of Speech

September 15, 2009

International Legal Conference
on Freedom of Speech & Religion

October 27 & 28, 2009
Congressional Auditorium
Washington, D.C.

Presented By

The International Free Press Society,

The Liberty Legal Project

International

&
The Center for Security Policy

Co-Sponsored by

The Horowitz Freedom Center &

The Florida Security Council

Liberty_Legal_Conference_Brochure

Register ONLINE: http://www.regonline.com/Checkin.asp?EventId=767320

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ISNA Convention: Hate Speech and Hezbollah Defense

July 8, 2009

“Mainstream” Islamist Convention Features Hate Speech and Hezbollah Defense

IPT News
July 8, 2009

http://www.investigativeproject.org/1085/mainstream-islamist-convention-features-hate

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A top aide to President Barack Obama provided a keynote address at last weekend’s 46th Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) national convention, a gathering that attracted thousands of people and also featured anti-Semitic, homophobic rhetoric and defense of the terrorist group Hezbollah.

In her remarks, Senior Advisor for Public Engagement and International Affairs Valerie Jarrett noted she was the first White House official to address ISNA. She spoke in general terms about interfaith dialogue and cooperation. She praised her hosts for “the diversity of American organizations, and ideas that are represented and will be debated” at the convention.

And she openly invited ISNA President Ingrid Mattson to work on the White House Council on Women and Girls that Jarrett leads.

During her 15-minute remarks Friday, Jarrett briefly echoed the challenge her boss issued in Cairo last month about the changes needed to bring peace between Palestinians and Israelis. “Resistance through violence and killing is wrong and it does not succeed,” Obama said in his speech.

“Hamas,” he added, “must put an end to violence, recognize past agreements, recognize Israel’s right to exist.”

Jarrett was less specific, saying:

“Lasting peace will require a concerted effort on behalf of the Palestinians as well to end incitement and increase security and by Israel’s Arab neighbors to take steps towards normalizing [relations with] Israel.”

That’s a significant shift since ISNA is an unindicted co-conspirator in a Hamas-support conspiracy and maintains significant leadership ties to its foundation 28 years ago by members of the Muslim Brotherhood in America. A more pointed statement also would have stood as a powerful retort to extremist sentiments offered in other segments of the conference.

While many panels featured criticism of U.S. policy and law enforcement, one stood out for its hate-filled rhetoric, and ISNA officials should have seen it coming a mile away. During a “meet the authors” session, Imam Warith Deen Umar, former head of the New York state prison chaplain program managed to:

  • Argue that key Obama aides are “Israeli,” proving Jews “have control of the world.”
  • Malign the motives of Jews active in the Civil Rights movement.
  • Portray the Holocaust as punishment of Jews for being “serially disobedient to Allah.”
  • Insinuate that Hurricane Katrina was a result of tolerance for homosexuality.

Umar’s radicalism is no secret. He previously hailed the 9/11 hijackers as martyrs who were secretly admired by Muslims. He has called for violent jihad. In a January 2004 speech, he urged people:

“Rise up and fight. And fight them until turmoil is no more and strike terror into their hearts.” You think there is no terror in Quran? It’s called [word unclear] read it in the 56th Surah of the Quran. There’s no lack of translation, there’s no mistranslation There’s not one Sheikh says one thing, no, it’s very clear. ‘When you fight, you strike terror into the heart of the disbeliever.’

He has a website promoting a past book, Judaiology, which features an excerpt describing “the inordinacy of Jewish power.” Jews, he wrote, are “an amazing people who can steal you blind as you watch. If you discover the theft, they can put you to sleep. If you wake up to them, they can put you back to sleep with mind games, tricks of fancy, smoke screens, and magic. Henry Ford almost uncovered them.”

Umar’s ISNA appearance Sunday afternoon promoted his latest book, Jews for Salaam: The Straight Path to Global Peace. In discussing it, Umar first thanked ISNA for inviting him to speak.

He then described a distinction between “holy Jews,” who are devout, apolitical and poor, and “unholy Jews” who are greedy, conniving and all powerful. He looked to the White House for an example (hear the clip here):

“You need to know that Obama, the first man that Obama picked when we were so happy that he was the President, he picked an Israeli – Rahm Emanuel – his number one man. His number two man – [David] Axelrod – another Israeli person. Why do this small number of people have control of the world? You need to go back into your history and find out about France and Germany and England and America got together and offered the Israelites, who became the Israelites, they offered them Ghana, the plains of Ghana. Why don’t you take Ghana since we beat you down so badly? That’s what the Holocaust was all about. You need to read my chapter on the Holocaust and the anti-Holocaust movement. There’s some people in the world says no Holocaust even happened. Some of their leaders say no Holocaust even happened. Well it did happen. These people were punished. They were punished for a reason because they were serially disobedient to Allah.” [Emphasis added]

ISNA described the author’s panel as “an interactive session which provides a wonderful platform to learn, share ideas, and provide literary contributions to society.” Remarkably, ISNA included Umar in that platform despite a very public record of anti-Semitism, advocacy for jihad, and praise for the 9/11 hijackers.

Umar shared the microphone with another author who did not spew out bigotry, but who did cast Hezbollah as an innocent player subject to incessant Israeli onslaught. Cathy Sultan described her book, Tragedy in South Lebanon: The Israeli/Hezbollah War of 2006, as a history of “the tragedy of the repeated incursions and wars in South Lebanon, the complexities of the Lebanese politics.”

She made no mention of Iranian funding for Hezbollah or Syrian meddling in Lebanese politics or its suspected involvement in the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. Instead, she lumps Hariri among a list of “docile Arab rulers willing to acquiesce to the West and to Israelis’ demands … provided they eliminate or at least contain and disarm Hamas and Hezbollah.”

Nor did Sultan describe indiscriminate Hezbollah rocket fire toward Israeli civilian communities, or the cross-border attack on an Israeli army base by Hezbollah that left three soldiers dead and two others kidnapped.

In response to a question, Sultan said “Hezbollah still serves a role. I think that Lebanon is still under constant threat from its southern neighbor. And I see nothing wrong, as long as Hezbollah abides by certain rules and regulations; I see no reason why Hezbollah should not remained armed.”

The United States considers Hezbollah to be a terrorist group, and some experts consider it a bigger potential threat to the United States than Al-Qaeda.

The panel did not feature anyone with contrasting viewpoints to challenge Sultan or Umar. The program drew about 50 people, who sat passively during most of the remarks.

Umar’s books were available for purchase at the convention. Government agencies were represented with booths of their own, including the departments of Justice, State, Homeland Security, Commerce, the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).

Before the convention started, ISNA posted a statement for vendors which said “Any literature (fundraising or otherwise) is restricted to the assigned booth and must be pre-approved in writing by ISNA, in ISNA’s sole and absolute discretion. Book selling vendors must complete enclosed form providing inventory of the literature to be sold at ISNA.”

Judaiology devotes two pages to “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion,” allegedly the minutes of a meeting of Jewish leaders at the first Zionist Congress in Basel, Switzerland, in 1897, in which they plotted to take over the world. Researchers have definitively proved that the Protocols were in fact forged in Paris sometime between 1895 and 1899 by an agent of the Russian secret police. This has not kept anti-Semitic groups from believing the validity of this forgery. For example, the Charter of Hamas states:

“For Zionist scheming has no end, and after Palestine they will covet expansion from the Nile to the Euphrates. Only when they have completed digesting the area on which they will have laid their hand, they will look forward to more expansion, etc. Their scheme has been laid out in the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, and their present [conduct] is the best proof of what is said there.”

To Umar, however, the Protocols “remain a mystery:”

“Jewish leaders have denied [the Protocols] and called them a forgery, a pact [sic] of lies, absurd and counterintuitive. No Jew, they say, would ever resort to writing down such self-defeating words and plans. However their denials appear ineffective because the Protocols actually explain and reveal what others observe about the real activities and results of Jewish diplomatic, industrial, business, and political involvement among the peoples of the world… What is revealed and clarified is so shocking and stunningly in accord with the behavior and results of world events that involve Jews that it gives credence and importance, relevance and standing to what otherwise would simply be a biased and discredited documents.”

A woman in the audience reminded Umar that Jews marched with Black people during the Civil Rights movement. But, Umar said, that was not motivated by a genuine desire for justice:

“The Jews in America used the black community to advance the Jewish community. In many instances in history, they gained much of what they gained by putting the African Americans out front to get things that were necessary to get through the politics of this country and of the social setting of this country.”

Umar also managed to stray into a reference about same-sex marriage, which he said would prompt God’s wrath:

“It’s against the laws of Allah and against the laws of the Bible for homosexuality. And if you think the Quran talks about harsh punishment from Allah, you should read what the Bible says. I don’t have the time to go into it, but it’s in my book. The Bible is very hard on, he says, Allah says that the land itself is doomed. You wonder why things are happening in America are going to happen? You think that Katrina was just a blow of wind?”

This is the man responsible for the Muslim chaplain program in New York prisons for 20 years. He was forced out of that job after his praise for the 9/11 hijackers became known. This is who ISNA chose to showcase in a “meet the authors” panel and provide an unchallenged platform.

“My conclusion is that there should be more jihad,” he said. “But people don’t want to hear that. They’re scared.”

In Cairo, the President said:

“Threatening Israel with destruction — or repeating vile stereotypes about Jews — is deeply wrong” and a hindrance to peace. [Emphasis added]

But somehow, partnering with a group that invites the same thing is okay?

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Terror Attacks Within United States

March 10, 2009
Dear friends,
This in ONLY A SAMPLE of Terror Attacks by Muslims here in the United States. An example on one that is left out – from a local restaurant , La Shish owner Talal Chahine – committing and “honor” killing. Khalil, was convicted of murder. He murdered Paul Hallis, a Maronite Christian Arab, for the crime of daring to become engaged to a Muslim woman–a woman who reportedly dated the younger Chahine AND his married brother-in-law, Ali El-Ozeir. Yes, there are Islamic honor killings in America. And FYI, prior to his jail stint for murder, Khalil Chahine was the youth leader at the Hezbollah mosque.
Pass on or comment: any clippings you may have collected – adding to this list
We’ve heard so much from The Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR) about attacks on Muslims by Americans, indicating to them that Muslims are being targeted for just being……. Muslims. Here’s a bit of “hate history” indicating just the opposite.
HATE CRIMES COMMITTED BY MUSLIMS SINCE 1972
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Date Country City/State Killed Injured Description
4/14/1972 USA New York, NY 1 3 Ten members of a local mosque phone in a false alarm and then ambush responding officers, killing one.
1/19/1973 USA Brooklyn, NY 1 1 Muslim extremists rob a sporting goods store for weapons, gunning down a police officer who responds to the alarm.
7/18/1973 USA Washington, DC 8 2 Nation of Islam members shoot seven members of a family to death in cold blood, including four children. A defendant in the case is later murdered in prison on orders from Elijah Muhammad.
10/19/1973 USA Oakland, CA 1 1 Nation of Islam terrorists kidnap a couple and nearly decapitate the man, while raping and leaving the woman for dead.
10/29/1973 USA Berkeley, CA 1 0 A woman is shot repeatedly in the face by Nation of Islam terrorists.
11/25/1973 USA Oakland, CA 1 0 A grocer is killed in his store by Nation of Islam terrorists.
12/11/1973 USA Oakland, CA 1 0 A man is killed by Nation of Islam terrorists while using a phone booth.
12/13/1973 USA Oakland, CA 1 0 A woman is shot to deah on the sidewalk by Nation of Islam terrorists.
12/20/1973 USA Oakland, CA 1 0 Nation of Islam terrorists gun down an 81-year-old janitor.
12/22/1973 USA Oakland, CA 2 0 Nation of Islam terrorist kills two people in separate attacks on the same day.
12/24/1973 USA Oakland, CA 1 0 A man is kidnapped, tortured and decapitated by Nation of Islam terrorists.
1/24/1974 USA Oakland, CA 4 1 Five vicious shooting attacks by Nation of Islam terrorists leave three people dead and one paralyzed for life. Three of the victims were women.
4/1/1974 USA Oakland, CA 1 1 A Nation of Islam terrorist shoots at two Salvation Army members, killing a man and injuring a woman.
4/16/1974 USA Ingleside, CA 1 0 A man is killed while helping a friend move by Nation of Islam terrorists.
3/9/1977 USA Washington, DC 1 1 Hanifi Muslims storm three buildings including a B’nai B’rith to hold 134 people hostage. At least two innocents were shot and one died.
7/22/1980 USA Bethesda, MD 1 0 A political dissident is shot and killed in front of his home by an Iranian agent who was an American convert to Islam.
8/31/1980 USA Savou, IL 2 0 An Iranian student guns down his next-door neighbors, a husband and wife.
1/31/1990 USA Tuscon, AZ 1 0 A Sunni cleric is assassinated in front of a Tuscon mosque after declaring that two verses of the Qur’an were invalid.
11/5/1990 USA New York City, NY 1 0 An Israeli rabbi is shot to death by a Muslim attacker at a hotel.
1/25/1993 USA Langley, VA 2 3 A Pakistani with Mujahideen ties guns down two CIA agents outside of the headquarters.
2/26/1993 USA New York, NY 6 1040 Islamic terrorists detonate a massive truck bomb under the World Trade Center, killing six people and injuring over 1,000 in an effort to collapse the towers.
3/1/1994 USA Brooklyn, NY 1 0 A Muslim fires on a vanload of Jewish boys, killing one.
3/23/1997 USA New York, NY 1 6 A Palestinian leaves an anti-Jewish suicide note behind and travels to the top of the Empire State building where he shoot seven people in a Fedayeen attack.
4/3/1997 USA Lompoc, CA 1 0 A prison guard is stabbed to death by a radical Muslim.
10/31/1999 USA Near Nantucket 217 0 An Egyptian airline pilot runs a planeload of 217 passengers into the water after uttering a Qur’anic prayer.
3/17/2000 USA Atlanta, GA 1 1 A local imam and Muslim spiritual leader guns down a deputy sheriff and injures his partner.
9/11/2001 USA Washington, DC 184 53 Nearly 200 people are killed when Islamic hijackers steer a plane full of people into the Pentagon.
9/11/2001 USA Shanksville, PA 40 0 Forty passengers are killed after Islamic radicals hijack the plane in an attempt to steer it into the U.S. Capitol building.
9/11/2001 USA New York, NY 2772 251 Islamic hijackers steer two planes packed with fuel and passengers into the World Trade Center, killing hundreds on impact and eventually killing thousands when the towers collapsed. At least 200 are seriously injured.
3/19/2002 USA Tuscon, AZ 1 0 A 60-year-old man is gunned down by Muslim snipers on a golf course.
5/27/2002 USA Denton, TX 1 0 Muslim snipers kill a man as he works in his yard.
7/4/2002 USA Los Angeles, CA 2 0 Muslim man pulls out a gun at the counter of an Israeli airline and kills two people.
9/5/2002 USA Clinton, MD 1 0 A 55-year-old pizzaria owner is shot six times in the back by Muslims at close range.
9/21/2002 USA Montgomery, AL 1 1 Muslim snipers shoot two women, killing one.
9/23/2002 USA Baton Rouge, LA 1 0 A Korean mother is shot in the back by Muslim snipers.
10/2/2002 USA Wheaton, MD 1 0 Muslim snipers gun down a program analyst in a store parking lot.
10/3/2002 USA Montgomery County, MD 5 0 Muslim snipers kill three men and two women in separate attacks over a 15-hour period.
10/9/2002 USA Manassas, VA 1 1 A man is killed by Muslim snipers while pumping gas two days after a 13-year-old is wounded by the same team.
10/11/2002 USA Fredericksburg, VA 1 0 Another man is killed by Muslim snipers while pumping gas.
10/14/2002 USA Arlington, VA 1 0 A woman is killed by Muslim snipers in a Home Depot parking lot.
10/22/2002 USA Aspen Hill, MD 1 0 A bus driver is killed by Muslim snipers.
8/6/2003 USA Houston, TX 1 0 After undergoing a religious revival, a Saudi college student slashes the throat of a Jewish student with a 4″ butterfly knife, nearly decapitating the young man.
12/2/2003 USA Chicago, IL 1 0 A Muslim doctor deliberately allows a Jewish patient to die from an easily treatable condition.
4/13/2004 USA Raleigh, NC 1 4 A Muslim man runs down five strangers with a car.
4/15/2004 USA Scottsville, NY 1 2 In an honor killing, a Muslim father kills his wife and attacks his two daughters with a knife and hammer because he feared that they had been sexually molested.
6/16/2006 USA Baltimore, MD 1 0 A 62-year-old Jewish moviegoer is shot to death by a Muslim gunman in an unprovoked terror attack.
6/25/2006 USA Denver, CO 1 5 Saying that it was ‘Allah’s choice’, a Muslim shoots four of his co-workers and a police officer.
7/28/2006 USA Seattle, WA 1 5 An ‘angry’ Muslim-American barges into a local Jewish center and shoots six women, one of whom dies.
10/6/2006 USA Louisville, KY 4 1 In an ‘honor’ attack, a Muslim man rapes and beats his estranged wife, leaving her for dead, then savagely murders their four children.
2/13/2007 USA Salt Lake City, UT 5 4 A Muslim immigrant goes on a shooting rampage at a mall, targeting people buying Valentine’s Day cards at a gift shop and killing five.
1/1/2008 USA Irving, TX 2 0 A Muslim immigrant shoots his two daughters to death on concerns about their ‘Western’ lifestyle.
7/6/2008 USA Jonesboro, GA 1 0 A devout Muslim strangles his 25-year-old daughter in an honor killing.
2/12/2009 USA Buffalo, NY 1 0 The founder of a Muslim TV station beheads his wife in the hallway for seeking a divorce.

3,293 killed by Muslims in America in 62 terror attacks – (list not complete)

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Geert Wilders

January 26, 2009

Interview with Geert Wilders at The Hague

bijenkorf.wordpress.com

bijenkorf.wordpress.com/2009/01/26/geert-wilders


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Hate-Free Speech

January 23, 2009

Hate-Free Speech

By INVESTOR’S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Thursday, January 22, 2009 4:20 PM PT

Islamofascism: A threat to basic freedom has opened a new front in the war on terror. Dutch filmmaker and politician Geert Wilders is finding out what it means to yell “truth!” in a crowded theater.


Read More: Europe & Central Asia


Wilders is a leader in the Dutch Freedom Party and a thorn in the side of politically correct Europeans who’ve been cowered by their increasing Muslim populations into accepting the creeping Islamicization of Europe — or Eurabia, as we and others have dubbed it.

In March 2008, Wilders posted “Fitna,” a film about the Koran, on the Internet. It equates Islam with violence and the Koran with Adolf Hitler’s “Mein Kampf,” at least in its advocacy of obscene violence against humanity and as a blueprint of things to come.

The opening scenes of “Fitna,” a Koranic term sometimes translated as “strife,” shows a copy of the Koran followed by footage of the attacks on the U.S. on 9-11, then London in July 2005 and then Madrid in March 2004. Subtle he is not. But neither is he a criminal.

It did not help that Wilders included in the film a scene showing Muslim protesters holding signs reading “God Bless Hitler.” This would tend to lend credence to Wilders’ thesis. Mention of Hitler and Nazism in any context is still a touchy subject in Europe to this day, as is criticism of anything Muslim.

On Wednesday the Dutch Court of Appeals ordered a criminal prosecution of Wilders, who is also a member of the Dutch parliament. “The Amsterdam appeals court has ordered the prosecution of member of parliament Geert Wilders for inciting hatred and discrimination, based on comments by him in various media on Muslims and their beliefs,” the court said in a statement.

As his film shows, this largely amounts to quoting the Koran accurately and reporting the statements of Muslim organizations and their supporters, many of which can’t be repeated here.

Wilders is in fact guilty of nothing but resisting the Islamicization of Europe and the attempt to impose Sharia law on the West. Suppressing all criticism of and debate about Islam is part of that move. Free speech and Sharia law are incompatible.

Columnist Mark Steyn felt Wilders’ pain in 2008, when he went on trial in Canada for “Islamophobia.” As in Wilders’ case, this consisted largely of quoting Muslim speakers verbatim and then drawing obvious conclusions. Steyn ultimately prevailed, without civil libertarians warning of any “chilling effect” on public discourse.

Leading this charge to eviscerate freedom of speech in the West is a group called the Organization of the Islamic Conference, composed of Muslim governments in the Middle East, Asia, Africa and around the globe. Its stated mission is “defending the image of Islam, and combating the phenomenon of Islamophobia.” In practice, this means using our freedoms to end them.

Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, secretary general of the OIC, says the group has already targeted the United States. “We have established an OIC group in Washington, D.C.,” he announced recently, “with the aim of playing a more active role in engaging American lawmakers.” Prosecution of American politicians and opinion-makers may not be far off.

Ihsanoglu also gave us a warning: “In confronting the Danish cartoons and the Dutch film ‘Fitna,’ ” he said, “we sent a clear message to the West regarding the red lines that should not be crossed.”

We are reminded of Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh, great-great-grandson of the famous artist, who crossed that “red line” and paid for it with his life in 2004. He was shot and his throat slit on an Amsterdam street after making the film “Submission,” which criticized the Islamic world for its harsh treatment of women as exhibited in the Taliban’s reign of terror in Afghanistan. Was his film hate speech or merely a documentary of Muslim intolerance?

Islamofascists know that free speech is the linchpin of Western democracy. We need people like Wilders, van Gogh and Steyn, who dare to exercise that right in the face of such threats. We need to know the truth, for that’s what shall keep us free.

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A Modern-day Islamist Inquisition?

January 6, 2009

Like our hate speech issues that Canada has endorsed at much peril to their liberty – and America is promised the same by Obama – we read about the “fairness doctrine” promised by the Democrats.

Both were promised by a new Administration as first priorities.

Dr. Walid Phares’ article is similar in importance – (Coral Ridge Ministries has hosted Dr. Phares at several of our conferences.)

A Modern-day Islamist Inquisition?

By Walid Phares

The Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC), an association of the world’s Islamic states, is pushing the United Nations to outlaw “defamation” of religion in general, and of one religion in particular.

My remarks that follow are based on 27 years of researching in the field of international relations and conflicts, and on a decade of teaching Religions and World Politics. Since I published my first book in Arabic in 1979, where I addressed the issue of relationships between civilizations and cultural blocs worldwide, I have had the opportunity to publish ten books and hundreds of articles focusing on the rise of ideologies including self-described, theologically-inspired ones such as Jihadism. I also had the opportunity to interact and meet politicians, legislators, authors and academics on three continents, particularly under the auspices of the European Foundation for Democracy. In addition, I was pleased to contribute to the preparation of legislation in the US Congress and initiatives at the European Parliament to defend religious freedom and basic rights of minorities around the world. Last but not least I was privileged to work with diplomats and NGOS on preparing for and passing UN Security Council Resolutions related to the Middle East.
From this background I have prepared a few comments about some initiatives put forth by members of the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) to be introduced at the UN Human Rights Council (headquartered in Geneva) and at the Durban II Conference on Racism, Xenophobia and Discrimination. These initiatives center on the driving principle of sanctioning what was coined as “defamation” of religions, and particularly the Islamic faith, under the term “Islamophobia.”
Let me first state clearly that I do agree with UN efforts, declarations and legislations aimed at countering incitement to violence, physical and psychological against any religion or religious group, or on behalf of any religion or ideology against others. This principle is universal and should apply in protection of Muslims anywhere, and of non-Muslims as well. Any religion or religious group who are the victims of discrimination, intimidation or suppression must receive protection under international law. The United Nations and all of its institutions, including the Human Rights Council, as well as its conferences, including Durban II, must be even-handed and fair in extending their protection on a universal basis, to Muslims, Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, Shintoists, Taoists, all other religions as well as to Atheists and Agnostics. No exception should be made to a particular faith or community and no privilege should be granted to one at the exception of the other. Thus we believe that the highest protection granted to all is epitomized in the Universal Declaration on Human Rights of 1948. Creating another special Charter for one particular religion group would be an act of discrimination against all others.
However, the current proposal by the OIC member States to create legislation that would sanction perpetrators of “defamation of religion” has at least five problems.
Problem of Definition

First, there is a problem about the substance of the concept. Indeed how can one define “defamation” as an aggression against faith, any faith? Where is the limit between criticizing a set of beliefs or ideas and defaming a whole religion? How can members of a religion reform their system if they cannot criticize it? Will reform become synonymous to defamation? If the very concept of “defamation” is not clarified and thoroughly defined, legislation such a sought would lead to blocking reforms and punishing reformers. As it stands at this stage the wording of “defamation of religion” — even if some are well intentioned in pushing for it — is a stark reminder of the blasphemy laws of medieval times which were behind religious persecution and the Inquisition. Defamation of religion as a concept has to be specified and accepted within the state of international consensus so that it won’t become a serious setback to human rights instead of an additional protection to it.
Targets of “Defamation”

By opening the door to create a new set of protected categories under international law, in this case religions — and particularly the Islamic faith — one has to expect that other religious groups, faiths and sects will also want to protect their entities from “defamation.” To the camp irritated by so-called “Islamophobia” (since it still has to be debated internationally) other quarters will respond with “Christaphobia,” “Judeophobia” or “Hinduophobia,” let alone possibly “Atheophobia.”
Muslims have serious reasons to fear discrimination and these fears have to be addressed, but Christians, Jews and Hindus (to name a few) also have significant reasons to fear discrimination. One example can illustrate so-called “defamation” as applied theologically to non-Muslims: the principle of “Infidels.” Indeed, the theological identification of non-Muslims as Kuffar is considered by the latter as a standing, institutional, theologically-based defamation of their very faiths. If the “defamation of religion” initiative led by the OIC passes as legislation its very first implementation should automatically sanction the xenophobic principle of “Kuffar.” If that concept is to be sanctioned under “defamation” those who are attempting to abuse the concept of “defamation” would have opened Pandora’s box, exploding the relationship between modernity and religions. Is the OIC ready to include banning the term “Infidels” as part of its initiative?
Muslims’ Human Rights

Such an international law, if enacted, will be harmful first to Muslims seeking their Human Rights inside the Muslim world. Authoritarian and totalitarian regimes, particularly those claiming theological supremacy, are already abusing their own Muslim citizens on the ground of defamation to religion, as they see it. The Taliban oppression of the Afghan people, including women and minorities, was claimed to be in defense of their faith against those who defamed it. The use of the principle of defending religion from defamation by ideological regimes has led to unparalleled abuse of human rights.
Such abuses, in different versions and degrees, have been practiced in Iran, Sudan and Saudi Arabia. In other more moderate or secular countries in the Muslim world, courts and clerics have issued rulings against so-called defamation, not always fairly. We’ve seen militant organizations and individuals taking the matter in their own hands despite the rule of law. Muslim women, students, artists, workers and secular political parties have been abused in the name of defending the faith against “defamation”.
Such realities have also been part of the history of both Western and Eastern Christianity and other religious civilizations. In the contemporary Muslim world — with all the tensions provoked by radicalization — such an international “defamation law” would provide oppressive regimes and extremist factions with a formidable weapon to suppress opposition and intellectuals. Those Muslims who see “otherwise” would be accused of defamation of the official interpretation of the faith. Radical Sunni and Shia clerics would invoke this international legislation to suppress each other’s sects. In short, if this concept is irresponsibly approved at the UN, it will have incalculable negative consequences on the Muslim world’s civil societies and their future.
Non Muslim Minorities

In Muslim countries where non Muslims form a minority, such an anti-defamation agenda will be devastating against the weakest segments of society. The legislation will be used by Islamist regimes and militant organizations to repress these minorities under the aegis of defending “faith.” Christian Copts in Egypt, who call for equality of treatment with other citizens, are often accused of “defaming” the state religion and thus kept in an awkward state of political backwardness. Baha’is, Christians and Jews are suppressed in Iran in the guise of defaming the established religious hierarchy. In Iraq, Assyro-Chaldeans have been physically attacked by Jihadi terrorists under the slogan of “insulting religion.” In many cases, as in South Sudan, minorities reject the application of Sharia on their own communities. With “anti-defamation” becoming UN sponsored, any rejection of Sharia will automatically become synonymous with “insulting the faith.” Hence religious minorities which should be protected under human rights laws will find themselves persecuted by such a declaration.
Jihadist abuse

Perhaps the most dangerous consequence of the adoption of vague “anti-defamation” legislation — allegedly to address “Islamophobia” — will be to embolden the Jihadi Islamist movements around the world into further violence. Indeed, both Salafists and Khomeinists already claim they are defending the Muslim world against infidels. If the OIC is successful in forcing such a declaration through the UN or the Durban Conference into international law, Jihadists around the world will score a tremendous moral and psychological victory by claiming that the present conflicts are indeed about religion, and that Islam is indeed under attack at the hands of Infidels. An anti-defamation declaration will validate al Qaeda’s agenda and reinforce the Iranian regime’s ambitions. The Jihadists’ ideology, based essentially on their interpretation of theology, builds radicalization by asserting that they are the defenders of the faith. A declaration against the defamation of Islam declaration will serve their strategic interests perfectly, and fuel their indoctrination processes. In short, it will protect their Takfiri ideology.
Dangerous Consequences

If an “anti defamation” declaration or covenant were to be forced through the UN Human Rights Council and the Durban II Conference in 2009 by the OIC, it would have dangerous consequences for the credibility of the UN Council in Geneva, for the state of international law, and for the state of human rights around the world. Among these consequences would be:
1. It will find itself opposed by many democratic and Human Rights NGOs and activists, both within the Muslim World and internationally, on the grounds of it creating discrimination against liberal Muslims, non Muslims and other faiths as well. Such a declaration will create more “phobia” than ever before since it is the product of the medieval concept of inquisition rather than the progressive concept of equality among individuals.
2. The Human Rights Council of the UN would thus be transformed by authoritarian regimes and radical ideologues into a “super regime” covering up and aiding in the oppression of democratic opposition, women and minorities in many countries. This would constitute a major blow to the credibility not only of the highest international institution in defense of Human Rights but eventually of the United Nations as a whole.
3. Such a declaration would naturally unleash a massive protest movement against the “super discrimination regime” by NGOs and activists from Arab, Muslim, and Hindu, African, Asian, Westerner and other backgrounds. The inquisitorial system advanced by members of the OIC against criticism and reform would be opposed as a return to the oppressive, medieval methods of the Dark Ages, which through harsh religious defamation laws caused great harm to Humanity and obstructed progress for centuries. There is no doubt that a contemporary Inquisition — as proposed by some members from the OIC — would deeply affect the Durban II Conference on Racism and Xenophobia, establishing a more lethal form of discrimination via this UN sponsored (and funded) event.
4. One would also expect to see Human Rights groups and pro-democracy movements demanding from national assemblies, particularly in liberal democracies, legislation to protect targeted segments of society such as women, intellectuals, artists, authors, publishers, minorities, reformists and other entities expected to suffer from “defamation persecution.” Democratic constitutions cannot accept a setback to their long evolution away from religious inquisition and theological legal frameworks. It is to be expected that civil societies will rise against such a modern-day inquisition and blast its authors, including unfortunately those UN institutions which were initially designed to protect individuals from religious persecution.
5. Last but not least one would not be surprised if NGOs and individual citizens would take the matter to courts around the world where justice is independent. Intellectuals and opinion makers would seek both protection and reparation from the potential implementation of such an international declaration or legislation. Governments who pushed the “defamation-inquisition” through the UN, and the latter as well, may find themselves taken to court, regardless of the results. The image of judges requesting states and international organization to pay reparation for moral and physical damages caused by a UN declaration responsible for discrimination is not a bright one, but could very much become reality if the OIC project, initially designed by radical ideologues, is not withdrawn or at least restructured.
Suggestions

Here are some suggestions which might help in defusing the emerging crisis between the OIC members who are pushing for this declaration and those pro-democracy and Human Rights NGOs who are opposing it.
1. We suggest that neutral members in the UN Human Rights Council intervene to prevent this crisis by calling for a special forum where both points of views are heard and a new consensus is built: Government representatives, NGOs, and International Organizations should be invited by member states of the Council who wish to engage in this mediation. The mediation forum must find ways to address the real and specific concerns of the OIC regarding the psychological stress induced by severe attacks on religion on the one hand and the concerns of the Human Rights community with regards the discriminatory dimension of the current “anti-defamation” project on the other.
2. We also suggest the organization of a special conference of experts to address the following questions:
a. Define the concept of defamation of religions in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
b. Define the body that can determine the nature of defamation of religions, including the concept of “Kuffar” (infidels) and incorporate this issue in the general discussion of Racism and Xenophobia at the forthcoming Durban II Conference.
Conclusion

In the end, we hope that the voices of reason within the United Nations will prevail over the movement towards increasing radicalization, and strike a balance between the right to be protected emotionally and the right of expression: the one must not eliminate the other.
Dr Walid Phares is a Visiting Fellow at the European Foundation for Democracy in Brussels and a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies in Washington DC. Dr Phares is a professor of Global Strategies and author of numerous books on International Conflicts, including The War of Ideas: Jihadism against Democracies

Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/2008/12/a_modernday_islamist_inquisiti.html at January 06, 2009 – 12:44:55 PM EST

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Liberal Censorship and Its Roots

December 3, 2008
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10 Truths About Hate Crime Laws
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http://townhall.com/columnists/DavidLimbaugh/2008/11/11/liberal_censorship_and_its_roots
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Townhall.com Columnist
Liberal Censorship and Its Roots
by David Limbaugh

The most unnerving aspects about the Democrats’ sweeping victory Nov. 4 are their intolerance for dissent and their willingness to censor and otherwise suppress their opponents.

Consider:

We keep hearing that Sarah Palin’s criticism of Obama for “palling around with terrorists” increased death threats against him, which is bogus in the extreme but consistent with the inveterate liberal tactic of chilling conservative speech by saying it incites violence.

Ohio state employee Vanessa Niekamp said she was ordered to run a child-support check on Joe the Plumber, the man who asked Barack Obama an innocuous question about redistributing taxpayer income. Niekamp doesn’t remember ever having checked into anyone else without having a legitimate reason to do so, such as discovering that someone recently came into money.

Democratic prosecutors in St. Louis threatened criminal prosecution against candidate Obama’s critics. In Pennsylvania, lawyers for Obama wrote intimidating letters to TV and radio stations that aired unflattering ads documenting Obama’s anti-gun record. The Obama campaign complained to the Department of Justice about the American Issues Project’s ad tying Obama to William Ayers. Obama supporters flooded Chicago radio station WGN with harassing calls during its interviews of conservative writers investigating Obama.

On election night, Philadelphia police arrested a man who dared to wear a McCain-Palin ’08 T-shirt at an Obama celebration rally. What’s scarier is that the Obama crowd reportedly chanted with joy as cops arrested the man for exercising his freedom of political expression. According to the liberal worldview, arresting someone for disagreeing with you is not censorship, but implying someone is not patriotic is.

Obama has made no secret of his plan to pass “card-check” legislation, which some have described as the most radical revision of labor law since 1935. It would permit unions to eliminate secret ballots — against the wishes of 78 percent of union members — which would represent a radical blow to democratic principles.

Democrats fully intend to reinstitute the Fairness Doctrine, a euphemistically named regulation aimed at shutting down conservative talk radio, which Sen. Chuck Schumer has compared to pornography. Remember that conservatives have never advocated government action to suppress or censor the liberal media monopoly, which has existed for decades and still dominates mainstream media today. Their answer was the alternative media.

But what is even more frightening than the sinister schemes of liberal politicians to silence and criminalize political opposition is the apparent eagerness of rank-and-file liberals to go along with them, as witnessed by the many examples I’ve cited and numerous gleeful e-mails I get taunting me about the imminent re-invocation of the Fairness Doctrine.

I believe this arrogant attitude can largely be traced to the top-down indoctrination in our schools, cultural  nstitutions and media that liberalism is morally superior because it is tolerant, diverse, intellectual and enlightened. This view holds that conservative expression doesn’t deserve constitutional protection because it is inherently evil. As one liberal academic administrator said in justifying his Draconian action in suppressing a Christian viewpoint, “We cannot tolerate the intolerable.”

This self-blinding, superior mindset explains how liberals can accuse conservatives of racism for their legitimate political differences with Barack Obama while demeaning, with racist epithets, Condoleezza Rice or Clarence Thomas. It’s how they can mock conservatives for being close-minded while nilaterallydeclaring the end to the debate on global warming because of a mythical consensus they have decreed. It’s how they can demand every vote count and exclude military ballots. It’s how they can glamorize Jimmy Carter for gallivanting to foreign countries to supervise “fair elections” and pooh-pooh ACORN’s serial voter fraud in their own country. It’s how they can threaten the tax-exempt status of evangelical churches for preaching on values, even when the churches don’t endorse candidates, but fully support a liberal church’s direct electioneering for specific candidates. It’s how they can ludicrously depict President Bush as a dictator while
romanticizing brute thug tyrants Hugo Chavez and Fidel Castro. It’s how they can falsely accuse President Bush of targeting innocent civilians in Iraq when he does everything possible to avoid civilian casualties but demand our withdrawal from South Vietnam, which resulted in the massacre of millions of innocents. It’s how they can advocate the banning of DDT in the name of environmental progress but be unconcerned about the untold malaria deaths that resulted. It’s how they can oppose the death penalty for the guilty but protect the death penalty for the innocent unborn. It’s how they can prevent the teaching of “intelligent design” in schools in the name of science but defend the many documented myths of biological evolution in public-school textbooks, also in the name of science.

If you believe the left is tolerant, open-minded and democratic, you’re in for a rude awakening.