Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Islam is a religion of peace ?

Copied from my September - October 2016 ECONOMIC LOGIC newsletter:

Liberal Myth #5:  
Islam is a religion of peace

Each act of terrorism temporarily disrupts a local economy, but also has national costs: For the US, there have been trillions of dollars spent fighting back, thousands of deaths, and far too many maimed soldiers ... yet the number of Quran-inspired terrorist attacks around the world remains in a long-term uptrend. 

Muslim terrorists first attacked the World Trade Center in 1993, killing six people. 

President Clinton had eight years to kill or capture Osama bin Laden. 

George W. Bush had eight more years. 

The leader of al Qaeda was eventually killed by US NAVY SEALS while living in Pakistan -- an 'ally' we had been paying for years to search for him -- they took our money, but I wonder how hard they looked?  

Fighting a very expensive war in Iraq, a nation not connected to the 9/11 attacks, was our choice -- pulling out our troops after the regime change was our second mistake, because it allowed ISIS from Syria to spread to Iraq and many other nations. 

Taking terrorism into the internet age -- ISIS is using social media to 'inspire' Muslims living in predominantly Christian nations to kill people at random.

There are violent verses in the Quran. 

There are also violent verses in the Christian / Jewish Old Testament Bible. 

The differences are very important:
(1)  Violence in the Bible refers to a specific time and place, and

(2) Violence in the Quran is written in general terms, with no time constraints.

In the Bible, God specifically commanded Joshua to annihilate the Canaanites -- but that was not a general instruction to commit violence today. 

In the Quran, there are general instructions to punish and kill unbelievers, with no time constraints.

If Islam is such a "peaceful" religion, then why have Muslims killed so many Christian and Jewish strangers who did nothing to them, and why are Muslim children taught to hate Christians and Jews in their schools?

Danish linguist Tina Magaard spent three years studying texts of the ten largest religions to determine whether any incite violence. 

Her conclusion: 
“The texts of Islam are clearly distinct from the other religions texts as they, to a higher degree, call for violence and aggression against followers of other faiths. 

There are also direct incitements to terror. 

… Moreover, in the Qur’an there are hundreds of invitations to fight against people of other faiths."

"The verses are in black and white and without mitigating context. One of the verses that deal with non-Muslims is: “So when you meet those who disbelieve, strike their necks until you have inflicted slaughter upon them.” (Quran 47: 4).

There are over 100 verses in the Quran about peace and patience in the earlier sections. 

But they have been contradicted by later verses. 

This is known as nasikh (abrogation) -- verses written later in time override earlier verses. 

This can be confusing because the Quran includes all the verses, but they are not arranged chronologically.

In AD 614 Allah made one verse Surah 2:256 
“There is no compulsion (coercion) in religion.” 

... Then in AD 627 a very different Surah 9:5 
"Then fight and slay the Pagans (the unbelievers) wherever you find them ... ". 

The second violent Surah overrode the earlier peaceful Surah. 

For Christians, the Old Testament is the foundation for the New Testament. 

And the New Testament is much less violent. 

For Muslims, the original Quran is the first and only 'bible'.

In the Old Testament adultery and homosexuality were punishable by death under Israelite law. 

In the New Testament, the punishment was reduced to excommunication. 

Among Jews, Old Testament laws were not taken literally (such as 'an eye for an eye'), but were interpreted to have an appropriate monetary payment as a punishment.

The original Quran is the final authority for Muslims -- there is no New Quran after it, nor can it be interpreted to be non-violent. 

(A) Early Christians were killed 
for their faith:
- Jesus was crucified, and ordered followers not to defend him.

- Christians celebrate Jesus' bloody death on the cross. 

- Christian violence against Jews and Muslims during the Crusades was an exception that was not be justified by the New Testament.

(B) Early Muslims killed others 
for their faith:  
- Muhammad started as a peaceful preacher, but became a soldier to get money for his followers -- he fought aggressive, offensive wars to subdue enemies, and on one occasion beheaded Jewish captives.

- Muslims celebrate Muhammad's bloody victory at Khaybar. 

- Wars fought in the name of Allah can be justified by the Quran. 

Islam source texts:
(1) Quran = 'bible'
(2) Sira = official biography of Mohammed
(3) Hadiths = collected reports of the life of Mohammed, which are considered compulsory ‘legislation’
(4) Manuals of Sharia law 

Islam is not the only religion whose 'bible' includes violence. 

But Islam does have the most violent 'bible". 

A smarmy Muslim leader who wants to promote violence can find plenty of ammunition there: Note: I've repeatedly read claims that English translations of the Quran tend to make the religion seem more peaceful than the original language.      

    Quran (2:216)  =  
"Fighting is prescribed for you, and ye dislike it. But it is possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing which is bad for you. But Allah knoweth, and ye know not." 

   Quran (3:56)  =  
"As to those who reject faith, I will punish them with terrible agony in this world and in the hereafter, nor will they have anyone to help."

  Quran (3:151) = 
"Soon shall we cast terror into the hearts of the unbelievers, for that they joined companions with Allah, for which He had sent no authority."

   Quran (8:12)  =  
"I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them."

   Quran (8:39)  =  
"And fight them (the unbelievers) on until there is no more tumult or oppression and there prevail justice and faith in Allah altogether and everywhere.”

   Quran (8:67)  =  
"It is not for a Prophet that he should have prisoners of war until he had made a great slaughter in the land..."

  Quran (9:30) = 
"And the Jews say: Ezra is the son of Allah; and the Christians say: The Messiah is the son of Allah; these are the words of their mouths; they imitate the saying of those who disbelieved before; may Allah destroy them; how they are turned away!"

   Quran (9:123)  =  
"Fight the unbelievers in your surroundings and let them find harshness in you."

  Quran (48:29) = 
"Those who follow Mohammed are merciless for the unbelievers but kind to each other."

  Hadith Sahih (4366)  =  
"I will expel the Jews and Christians from the Arabian Peninsula and will not leave any but Muslims."