New Muslim Outrage Materializes
by Sher Zieve
As we in the Western world have come to expect, many Muslims and Islamic organizations claim “outrage” at almost anything and everything they can find. They rioted, burned buildings and vehicles over cartoons that parodied their prophet Muhammad. Then Muslims rioted, burned buildings and vehicles and even murdered a nun when Pope Benedict XVI quoted a 14th century Emperor who was critical of Islam. Like the Left, apparently, they have little to do—except riot or protest and attempt to silence all of those who have the unmitigated gall to disagree with their tenets of belief. Political correctness has completely taken over the secularists of the West, which has become feckless, jaded and pathetic. Now, all that terrorists and their supporters have to do is complain that they are “being discriminated against” (and threaten to call someone—somewhere—a “racist”) and the West caves easily and willingly to all of their demands. Nowhere is this surrender more evident than in the case of Muslims’ latest indignation.
Five CW Post College students created a parody video, along the lines of the satirical film “Team America”. The video was directed at the Long Island University’s residence hall mascot—a rubber duck. In the film, which clearly stated in its intro that the film was a joke, five ski-mask wearing men of presumed Middle Eastern origin kidnap the duck and threaten to cut its throat. Muslims and, therefore, CW Post College officials were horrified! Gazi Khanhan of the American Muslim Alliance is quoted as saying: “The harm that generates out of such jokes stereotypes Muslim Americans!” Note to Khanhan: It only “stereotyped” terrorists. From his comments, one has to wonder if Khanhan and his group support them.
To add insult to injury, CW Post College fired all of the film-making and honor-roll students from their jobs as Residence Hall Assistants and threatened to expel them. The reason given by college officials was that the film was “insensitive”. Question: Have these university officials seen the recent films coming out of Hollywood? Apparently, actual terrorist beheadings of real people is not a problem for the university. The students, unless they wished to lose their status as students, were forced to offer their mea culpas. They have apologized for making fun of the new “politically correct” terrorists. As I wrote in a previous column, the Left will soon consider terrorism to be just another ideology—to be accepted and protected by their suicidal minions. Now, CW Post College has proved my point. Apparently terrorists are to be accepted, if not revered, by all who are allowed to set foot upon this university’s “hallowed” grounds. I’m guessing this college also bans US Military recruitment.
We-the-people are now being forced to accept terrorists and their killing-field philosophies into our midst and are not allowed to oppose them. Even our troops who are courageously and honorably working to keep the terrorists from our shores are being forced to fight an increasingly PC war. While our valiant soldiers fight an enemy that has vowed to destroy us and dominate the world, the leftist press, elected officials and our own universities work against them—and then fight for terrorists’ rights. The insanity is becoming more and more prevalent, folks. Unless we can soon gain a majority of true conservatives into elected office, our fate will be sealed. It’s just that clear.
Sher Zieve is a staff writer for the New Media Alliance, Inc. The New Media Alliance is a non-profit (501c3) national coalition of writers, journalists and grass-roots media outlets.
Alarmists on a hot tin roof: Global warming psychology
An issue that has garnered much attention lately, in between the media bites about Iraq and the salacious lives of celebrities, is the controversy over global warming. Both the pro and the con side consider their opponents the heretical misfits and purveyors of junk science.
But the debate is not so much about whether the earth is actually warming, but whether the phenomenon is man-made, and must culminate in catastrophe.
While most of us lack any academic credentials to have an informed opinion on the matter, we do possess the logical faculties to philosophically cross-examine the cogency of any theory presented to us.
I remain skeptical of the alarmist approach, and wish to offer some concerns I have.
Geologists tell us that we had a glacial ice age only several thousand years ago. How did the earth warm by over several degrees without any man-made carbon dioxide to account for it?
Whenever people say: “Most credible scientists believe…” The statement following becomes subjective and almost meaningless, because unless someone first believes in particular interpretations of a given phenomenon, they won’t be considered “credible” to begin with.
In general, people confuse two concepts: expertise and objectivity. Having great intelligence or specialized knowledge isn’t assurance against a person remaining unbiased in their public opinions. Persons of all stripes are generally loyal to their source of income. We shouldn’t assume that every expert begins their search tabula rasa, that is to say, without an agenda or wholly independent of prevailing consensus.
Why do we assume that a variance in the 5% of carbon dioxide caused by human activity is sufficient to put the climate out of kilter, but changes in the 95% of naturally produced carbon dioxide is irrelevant? Notice also, that whether it is warm or cold, global warming is given as the reason, thus inoculating the concept from falsification.
How come developing countries such as China or India are held to lesser pollution standards under the provisions of the Kyoto Treaty? Does the environment care which countries contaminate the atmosphere?
The whole psychology of catastrophe is hardly new. When my parents were young, they were told we would soon run out of the earth’s supply of coal. At various times, the same was predicted of crude oil. When I was younger, I sat in science classes where documentary films were shown that predicted the earth was cooling, and that we would all need gas masks by the mid 1980’s because of pollution. Such was predicted in a Newsweek editorial in the April 28th, 1975 edition. http://denisdutton.com/cooling_world.htm
In the 1960’s we were terrorized by the specter of Paul Ehrlich, and his “population bomb” statistics. When we moved into the 1980’s, we were warned of the ominous “Jupiter Effect,” an event where all the planets were in orbital alignment, causing a catastrophic gravitational force for the inhabitants of earth.
In the fall of 1983, we had a Sunday night television premier of the “The Day After.” The movie depicted a nuclear holocaust, and how it impacted residents of small town Kansas. The movie terrified a nation that had endured over three decades of cold-war threat. After the movie, a network anchor interviewed then Secretary of State George Shultz, asking the prophetical question borrowed from Charles Dickens story, A Christmas Carol: “Are these shadows of the way things must be, or only shadows of the way things might be”? Schultz emphatically answered “neither.”
And who among us was not impacted by the hype surrounding Y2K? When advertisements for ordering gold coins and dehydrated food supplies via credit card started popping up, I knew it was overblown and unlikely to be problematic. Why would anyone exchange vital survival supplies for worthless credit card receivables if they were convinced of certain crisis? If experts have been dead wrong about all these calamities, I don’t think my own skepticism is entirely irrational.
As for great variance in temperature readings, I suggest people should do some reading on the weather patterns of the 1930’s. That decade witnessed great thermal extremes here in the U.S.A. If you recall, the Midwestern “dustbowl” was a factor contributing to the severity of the nation’s Great Depression. In many areas, we experienced extremely hot summers. At that time, nobody was advancing theories about carbon dioxide causing warming of the earth. We had fewer man made contributors. So if global warming in really occurring, can burning less fossil fuels really keep it from happening? I don’t know, but I doubt it.
There are probably a myriad of other hysterical incidents that can be recalled, which were supposed to spell doom for mankind. One issue that has been the fodder for disaster films in recent years is the idea that a large asteroid will collide with earth. Now how do we solve that problem?
There will always be some crisis looming on the horizon threatening human existence, with no foreseeable solution. There will always be a cadre of alarmists who want to remind you about these insurmountable challenges.
Environmental stewardship is beneficial, agenda driven hysteria is not.
Robert E. Meyer is a staff writer for the New Media Alliance, Inc. The New Media Alliance is a non-profit (501c3) national coalition of writers, journalists and grass-roots media outlets.
By Dr. Steve Carol ©
Dear Friends in Israel:
In reply to your just released letter: “Joint Statement by Mattot Arim, Professors for a Strong Israel and Women in Green: Jews Abroad, Do Not Remain Silent At This Time!” let me add my voice to those who have already written to you. There are those of us in the Diaspora, myself included, who have not “remained silent” and are very active in promoting Israel’s case for a Jewish state in all of the Land of Israel, Judea, Samaria, Golan and even Gaza included! We have written articles (see many of my 60 articles – copies of which have been forwarded to all of you – and many of which are posted on our Middle East Radio Forum website and broadcast a radio show (one of only two in the entire U.S.A.) dealing with these very points for over the past three years. We have helped educate many as to the real facts of the situation and swelled the ranks of those Jews and non-Jews REALLY concerned about Israel’s current plight and indeed its very survival.
That said, we are dismayed and distressed that the people of Israel have acquiesced to the path being taken – the “disasterous experiments” as you call them – by the current government, indeed by all governments since 1993. This is a path that, we believe, if followed will lead to the termination of the third Jewish commonwealth. It took 1,875 years to re-establish a Jewish state. If it vanishes now, only God knows if and when another will ever reappear. To mention that should such an event take place, the status of Diaspora Jews would quickly take a turn for the worse.
The key issue is, however, where are the Israelis? Where are Israeli citizens out demonstrating en masse – tens of thousands in every city – banging pots and pans, shouting “The government must go”? Where is a nationwide strike to force the government to step down? Where are the massive calls for reforms to be made, for a sound policy voiced and for Israel to return to the image, status, and power it had at the conclusion of the Six Day War?
Today, Israel projects, not strength but weakness to the entire world and especially to its enemies, who like sharks smelling the blood in the water, are circling ever closer for the kill.
Excuses of U.S. “pressure” on Israel have been made and will be made again. But Israel itself is doing the work of the Arabists in the U.S. State Department. The U.S. need not pressure Israel anymore, when the Israeli government voluntarily takes the steps that will ensure the states demise.
The reality is that Israeli people themselves must exhibit the will to take harsh, perhaps unpleasant actions to correct its course. Israel should not commit politicide for the sake of “world opinion.” It should not continually weaken itself with unilateral territorial retreats, such as from southern Lebanon in 2000, and Gaza in 2005. Israel’s mortal foes have become more emboldened and demand even more. Now “Israeli” Arabs openly consort with the enemy, make demands for changes in the Israeli flag, anthem and structure calling for a bi-national state. Even Egypt, which has had a “cold war” – not a “cold peace” with Israel for some 28 years, now demands Eilat and portions of the Western Negev, while Syria demands not only the Golan but the eastern shorefront of the Sea of Galilee (Lake Kinneret).
It is the people of Israel who must take the lead in reversing the present course. It is the Israelis themselves who must save their own nation. When the Israelis take such action, they will gain more backing from their supporters, more respect from those “disinterested” parties, and be feared by its enemies. That is the reality of the world. Unless and until this occurs, the relatively few voices supporting Israel will shrink to fewer still, as Israel vanishes. It is up to the Israelis to save their own nation. Taking the necessary steps to reverse course, show firmness, and determination will find many supporting the Jewish state.
Dr. Steve Carol
Prof. of History (retired)
Official Historian “Middle East Radio Forum” http://www.middleeastradioforum.org
From the desk of The Brussels Journal on Mon, 2007-02-12 13:14
An article by Helena Christofi
London is the leading Islamic banking center in the West. Islamist clerics with terrorist connections and a mission to Islamize Europe are infiltrating the United Kingdom through its banking system, and British officials are encouraging them. HSBC, Lloyds TSB, and Citigroup have opened Islamic banking units and branches throughout England. In 2005 the first stand-alone British Islamic bank, Islamic Bank of Britain, opened its doors. Middle Eastern Islamic banks have also set up shop in the UK.
Islamic banks are managed according to shari’a law, the defining principle being the prohibition of interest in all monetary transactions as commanded in the Qur’an. The other defining feature of Islamic banks is their operation of shari’a advisory boards comprised of Islamic scholars and clerics whose job it is to ensure that the banks’ activities comply with shari’a law. Proponents of the Islamic economic model (of which Islamic banking is a central pillar) argue that the Islamic system is superior to capitalism because it is structured around a strict code of ethics prohibiting exploitative practices, such as the charging of interest, with the aim of constructing a moral society. Capitalism’s single-minded focus on money, they argue, produces the social ills we see in the West whose manifestation would become impossible under the Islamic model.
Sheik Yousef Al-Qaradawi, a leading Sunni cleric, spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, and instigator and financier of terrorism in Europe and the Middle East, heads the fundamentalist European Council for Fatwa and Research, several of whose most prominent members sit on every major British Islamic bank’s shari’a board. Both Al-Qaradawi and the Council have expressed their hope that “Islam will return to Europe as a conqueror” by way of “preaching and ideology” or “by the sword.”
British Islamic banks have naturally positioned themselves as the moral alternative to conventional banking for Muslims (research done by Lloyds TSB found that over seventy five percent of British Muslims want shari’a-compliant banking products). But the banks are also targeting non-Muslims with the message that their services are ethically superior to those of the West, pushing the idea that interest – and capitalism – is unethical and should be replaced in Europe by the Islamic financial model. In such a situation the West’s conversion to Islam would occur in tandem. The message is catching on; Mufti Abdul Barkatullah, shari’a adviser to Lloyds TSB and imam at the North Finchley mosque, reports that twenty percent of the inquiries into Islamic products at one of Lloyds’ Islamic branches come from non-Muslims.
Barkatullah told The Guardian:
Interest is bad because it diverts resources from the poor to the rich and so concentrates wealth […] Instead of a few being superrich through interest, Islamic finance and its emphasis on the exchange of useful goods and services rather than exchanging interest on money, leads to a fairer society.
Barkatullah proceeded to advocate a ban on interest in the UK altogether, stating a ban could lead to “self-sufficiency” and “fairness in society.” The Guardian corroborates the position held by Islamic banking’s supporters, naively echoing their argument that interest discourages industry.
Wasn’t England the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution and creator of the common law, the most successful and equitable legal system in history?
But Barkatullah and The Guardian didn’t just fail to study up on basic British history; they also failed to reveal Islamic banking’s dirty little secret: Islamic banks charge interest just like their conventional counterparts.
Any bank, be it Islamic or conventional, risks running losses if it does not charge some form of interest; Islamic banks circumvent this danger by extending a type of Islamic “credit” that shifts risk to the borrower in a manner similar to interest.
An Islamic bank granting murabaha credit to a customer for an automobile, for example, would purchase the automobile for the customer for £10,000 and the customer would owe the bank £12,000 in a year’s time. Similarly, under the “diminishing musharaka” credit, the Islamic version of a mortgage, the bank and the customer purchase the property together. The customer must make monthly payments to the bank and pay a monthly rental fee, both based on the portion of the purchase price the bank still owns. Ironically, the interest this amounts to ranges between one and two percent higher than the interest on a conventional mortgage (4.75-5% APR conventional rate versus 6.16-6.45% APR Islamic rate).
Although the resale price of the vehicle and the rent paid on the house are akin to simple interest charges, the banks’ shari’a boards legitimate the charges by renaming them “commissions” or “profits.” Islamic banks could not remain profitable – or ideologically influential – if they complied with the Qur’anic injunction again interest.
The justification for replacing capitalism with the Islamic model is based on an intentional corruption of shari’a law, but the banks’ clerics don’t seem to mind undermining their theological philosophy, since the ethical image their misrepresentation has created for Islamic banking has managed to spread Islamic ideology to non-Muslims in Britain. According to Al-Qaradawi, Islam’s ideological infiltration into the West will be the vehicle through which it will establish an Islamic government over the entire globe:
Perhaps the next conquest [of Europe], Allah willing, will be by means of preaching and ideology. The conquest need not necessarily be by the sword […] Europe will see that it suffers from materialistic culture, and will seek an alternative […] It will find no lifesaver but the message of Islam […] Allah willing, Islam will return to Europe and the Europeans will convert to Islam. Then they themselves will be able to be the ones to disseminate Islam in the world.
Replacing western institutions with a global Islamic order is, in fact, the goal of Al-Qaradawi’s Muslim Brotherhood. According to its founder, Hassan Al-Bana, the Brotherhood seeks to “[reclaim] Islam’s manifest destiny; an empire, founded in the seventh century, that stretched from Spain to Indonesia,” and its 1982 “secret plan” exhorted its members “to channel thought, education and action in order to establish an Islamic power on the earth.” The Muslim Brotherhood is a central link between Islamic banking and Islamic fundamentalism; the first Islamic bankers were members of the Muslim Brotherhood who wanted to use “the structural power of bank ownership” to advance the fundamentalist movement in the Gulf States in the 1970s. Today, its most powerful progeny, the Kuwait Finance House, covertly finances fundamentalist groups in Kuwait and abroad.
Dr. Ahmad Al-Rabi, a former Kuwaiti official, stated in a 2005 newspaper column that the “beginnings of all of the religious terrorism that we are witnessing today were in the Muslim Brotherhood’s ideology.” This is not a casual exaggeration; the Brotherhood’s members founded Al-Qaeda, bombed the World Trade Center in 1993, and applauded the 2001 World Trade Center massacre as America’s just desserts.
With the Muslim Brotherhood directly involved in Islamic banking in Europe, Al-Qaradawi’s hope that Islam conquers Europe either by “ideology” or “by the sword” is becoming a palpable possibility. A look at two European Islamic banks is revealing:
Al-Qaradawi is a principal shareholder and past shari’a adviser to Bank Al-Taqwa, part of the Al-Taqwa group based in Lugano, Switzerland. The United States government has designated the Al-Taqwa group a financier of Osama Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda, and in 1995 Italy’s anti-terrorist agency DIGOS allegedly told Swiss federal prosecutors that Al-Taqwa “comprises the most important financial structure of the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamic terrorist organizations.” Like the Kuwait Finance House, Bank Al-Taqwa was established with significant backing from the Muslim Brotherhood, and the network is believed to have also financed Hamas, the Palestinian Liberation Organization, and similar Islamist groups throughout the Middle East. The list of Al-Taqwa’s shareholders corroborates the assessment made by DIGOS; among the shareholders is Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan Al-Banna, Osama Bin Laden’s sisters Huta and Iman Bin Laden, members of Hamas and figures connected to Al-Qaeda, and Al Taqwa founder and director Ahmed Idriss Nasreddin, who previously worked for the Bin Laden Group.
Bank Al-Taqwa is connected to another Islamic banking entity in Europe suspected of terrorism, Al Rajhi Banking and Investment Corporation (which is headquartered in Saudi Arabia and operates an office in London). Suleiman Abdel Aziz Al Rajhi, chairman of Al Rajhi’s board of directors, is believed to have funded Al-Qaeda early on, and US officials allege he transferred over $20 million to Al-Taqwa through his network of fraudulent US-based non-profit organizations. Al Rajhi also worked for Bank Al-Taqwa.
At least three other British shari’a advisors sit on the European Council for Fatwa and Research with Al-Qaradawi and two others possess potential connections to Islamist entities, yet Chancellor Gordon Brown continues to promote the UK as a hub for Islamic banking.