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Friday, April 1, 2011

April Fools: Assumptions and Superficiality Make Fools of You

Since the passage of the latest UNHRC resolution combating Islamophobia, the headlines keep flowing at an accelerating pace. Here is a sample

    What do the headline writers have in common?  They failed to read and comprehend  A/HRC/16/L.38 and the statements made in support of it in the HRC.

    ¶5 of the resolution "notes" the remarks of Secretary-General of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu ... "and draws on his call on States to take the following actions". ... Did anyone bother to refer to that address?  The relevant paragraphs are reproduced below with emphasis added. 

Islamophobia. is a contemporary manifestation of racism and the phenomenon must be addressed in that context. It is matter of priority for the OIC that must not be treated as merely   a   numbers   game.   It   indeed  threatens   the   multi-cultural fabric ofour societies. Most importantly, it poses a clear   and   present   danger   to   international   efforts   geared towards peace stability and security, in both the regional as well as global context. Accordingly it needs to figure into the strategic calculations of the international community in our bid to bequeath a peaceful abode for the future generations.

    OIC has a principled position against defamation of any religion, dehumanization of the followers or denigration of
symbols sacred to all religions. The developments including the ban of construction of minarets, the attempts
towards burning of Quran and the use of Islamophobia as an instrument of electoral politics are ominous. There is an
urgent need to initiate and sustain what I would like to term as 'preventive cultural diplomacy'. We need to move
beyond event based calls for action to create spaces for structured engagement. The Human Rights framework
provides with a concrete basis for this engagement. We believe that the workshops on incitement to hatred under
the Durban mandate constitute and important avenue for a synthesis aimed at bridging the divergence of views. I
reiterate my call, during the 15th Session of the Council, for establishing an Observatory at the Office of the High
Commissioner to monitor acts of defamation of all religions or incitement to hatred or violence on religious grounds as
a first step towards concerted action at the international level. Let me also recall that I had outlined eight areas of
action for consideration by states, at both the national and international level, with a view to dealing with defamation
issue. I am pleased to note that the proposal has found some resonance.

    The OIC has shown flexibility in negotiations with our partners over the past couple of years and we would now
expect some reciprocity. The perception that supporting the resolution would throttle one's right to freedom
expression is only a myth. Freedom of expression will always be upheld but it cannot be allowed to be a tool to
use for inciting fear and hate.
     I would like to take this opportunity to say that I felt encouraged by some positive and constructive proposals in
finding a way forward on the text of the Resolution. If there is a genuine political will on the part of all to address the
issue of incitement of hatred against religions in earnest, I am confident that we can achieve a consensus.


Review the key phrases from that address to the HRC, what to they tell us about the objective, content and methodology of the resolution?

  • Islamophobia
    • contemporary manifestation of racism
    • priority
    • threatens multicultural fabric
    • endangers peace & security
  • defamation of religion
  • denigration of symbols
  • minaret ban
  • Qur'an burning
  • electoral Islamophobia
    • ominous
  • preventive cultural diplomacy
  • structured engagement
  • human rights framework
  • monitor acts of defamation
    • first step
  • dealing with defamation
    • found resonance
  • freedom of expression
    • tool for incitement
  • incitement of hatred

    Lets take the last term first. Exactly what does that phrase mean?  How is it defined and exemplified?

Reuters quotes U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon about Fitna:

"There is no justification for hate speech or incitement to violence," Ban said in a statement. "The right of free expression is not at stake here."

From that concrete example we discover that incitement includes exposing the nexus between Islamic scripture & oral tradition with terrorism & mob violence.

    Exactly why is defamation of Islam mentioned three times in a speech promoting a resolution which supposedly lays that concept to rest?  The resolution is presented as protecting individuals, not religions.  This address to the HRC demonstrates the fallacy of that presentation.

    It is not about the human rights of individuals, as pretended; it is about Islamophobia.  Burning the Qur'an is not an offense against individuals, it is an expression  of revulsion at the evil acts mandated by that accursed book. 

    A handful of congressional candidates exposed Islam in campaign speeches and advertisements.  That is not an offense against individuals, it is discussion of common sense public policy issues.  The subject matter of our political campaigns is not a proper subject of international legislation or resolutions.

    What race is Islam?  There are Muslims of all colors due to Islam's widespread conquest.  Of course, Islam is against racism, isn't it?

"Arabs are the most noble people in lineage, the most prominent, and the best in deeds. We were the first to respond to the call of the Prophet. We are Allah's helpers and the viziers of His Messenger. We fight people until they believe in Allah. He who believes in Allah and His Messenger has protected his life and possessions from us. As for one who disbelieves, we will fight him forever in Allah's Cause. Killing him is a small matter to us."
Tabari IX:69 Quoted by Craig Winn in The Prophet of Doom.

"It is your folly to fight the Apostle, for Allah's army is bound to disgrace you. We brought them to the pit. Hell was their meeting place. We collected them there, black slaves, men of no descent." The Life of Muhamad pg. 450, quoted by Craig Winn in The Prophet of Doom.

"Allah's Apostle said, 'You should listen to and obey your ruler even if he is a black African slave whose head looks like a raisin.'"
Sahih Bukhari 9.89.256


        Denigration of symbols?  They thought this was a human rights issue!  Only Allah has the right to be worshiped. Only Allah has the right to rule and govern.  If those are human rights, Allah must be human. When will he appear in court to testify against those who blaspheme against him?  When some goes to a book store, wastes $25. on a Qur'an and burns it, whose human rights are violated?  When I expose its content and curse it, what human rights are violated? 

    Exactly how does the Swiss minaret ban violate anyone's human rights?  The minaret is not a divine manifestation. Where is it mentioned in the Qur'an? Need I remind you that Shari'ah forbids Christians to build churches? 

    The defamation of Islam concept has not been dropped, neither has it been laid to rest. The headlines are a cruel hoax, not an April Fool joke. Those who wrote them are perennial fools, always blooming, without season. 

    Regional and international peace & security are at stake precisely because of the execrable doctrines of Islam laid down in Allah's accursed jihad, terror & genocide imperatives.  The clear and present danger is brought closer by failure to recognize it.  If our freedom of expression is impaired as Islam demands, then it will be closer still; we will be unable to sound the alarm.