There are a number of such preposterous views that is demonstrated within certain western political analysts. One such example is the President of the Mackenzie Institute John Thompson.
1. Muslims as “Apologetics”
He says with regards to the return of ideological warfare the following
Outside the networks of al Qaeda activists, there is the wider second echelon of Islamic apologists and activists who may not (consciously, anyway) share the Jihadists’ goals and aspirations. Yet there is within Islam an ideal of ‘brotherhood’ that, while seldom realized when Muslims are left alone, functions perfectly well when any outsiders are engaged in a conflict with some part of the Islamic world. If asked to sympathize with the US or some Western European nation over the idea (if not the reality) of the community of believers, it is not possible for many Muslims to support the West. However, for various reasons — some of which represent entirely honest impulses — they are making attempts here in the West to undermine our psychological trinity.
This resembles the same format of many other antagonists who, when Muslims are virtually mandated to follow a set of guidelines in determining an issue, by default of their actions of clarifying within the issue, contexts which for the most part are missed (intentionally or not) within Western outlooks and or rejecting the claims of the claimants on an issue based on textual implications and references, then Muslims are deemed as “Apologetics”.
This is the core of the matter with the essence of Thompson’s methodology and those who stand parallel with his methodology. That is, while most of the Muslim world do not share the same aspirations of certain extremists elements within our ranks, the mere “lack” of sympathizing for those who initiated the social outcomes that bread extremism and eventually terrorism are now deemed as apologetics based on the lack of sympathy the western Muslim communities have within their respective countries due to the fault of westerner’s oversimplification with regard to their interpretation of events.
2. Not recognizing Western Foreign Policy as the source for extremism and terrorism
In a social event celebrating the soon to be published book “War of Ideas”, he, Walid Phares, holds a conference explaining the details of his book. Within this lecture he explains how people “err” in interpreting that “jihadism” is a result of U.S. Foreign Policy and he argues the validity of this reality based on his observation that Muslims had prior enmity to the western world prior to 9/11, then he mentions prior to the end of the cold war, then mentions prior to the establishment of “Israel”, and even as far back as WWI.
What Walid Pharis is apparently mistaken or factoring out, is the fact that among Muslim nations, their methodological outlook at others was one of reactionism, and not pre-emptivism as the west adopts as its methodological implementation of foreign policy. History bears witness to this fact. When analyzing historical foreign events between Western dealings with Muslim nations. Whenever western powers showed a form of aggression to Muslim nations, it was only met with aggression by Muslims continually, due to the result of western foreign policy with Islam which operated itself on the world of negativity. In other words, western foreign policy, whether it is British, French, or U.S. policy, always adopted a negative tone, the apex of which was to disenfranchise the Muslims of their honor or wealth, and in modern times, even religion.
If blaming Muslims would be the resounding effect of aggression to the west, then that would be the most simplistic model of a viewpoint that any normal person would opt to. To this date, there is no community or group who hold such an oversimplified position such as this other than the usual demagogues found among the modern apostate community of Islam and the radical conservative demagogues found on talk radio.
If aggression against the west were to go as far back as to the cold war, then there is a monumental amount of proofs and information that lead to the fact that prior to this were events of aggression that predate the cold war against Muslims.
If aggression against the west were to go as far back as the Second World War, then there is much more information regarding the events that lead up to this war that landed the Muslims upon aggression to the west before this event. If it is traced back to the First World War, then likewise there were events that predate the cold war which enabled the Ottoman Empire to seek opposition to the Western Powers.
When concluding this matter, it is beyond apparent that whatever study any western researcher can produce haphazardly pointing to the idea that Muslims began the inception of aggression, then in reality there is an adequate amount of information that predate such a pinpointing of that event to land another objective researcher to opine otherwise.
It is neither my purpose nor intent to go down such path. What is my intent is to bring about the entire context of which landed the world into the path it now faces with regard to western and Islamic affairs.
To analyze briefly this matter, it is important to understand the “religiosity” of Islamic thought and the secularism of western thought.
The Islamic legal thought is summed up to the following
a. There can be no separation between the rule of God in the mandating of everyday livelihood (that is mentioned textually in Islamic sources), business transactions, laws of inheritance, legal punishments, morality and ethics, and foreign policy (jihad) in Islamic thought. In other words, the conceivability of a person to propound such a belief not only excommunicates them from Islam, but is seen as the most ultra radical leftist liberal concoction of an ideology that Islam sees that Satan had influenced man to adopt as a source of political thought.
b. In the penal code of Islam, those who replace Islamic law with man-made laws are to be removed from power and substituted with an authority that rules with Islam, that is, if they substitute all of the shariah (Islamic law) and adding to that, concocting laws that oppose the law of Islam.
In the Western legal theory, secularism is the core of which its political jurisprudence is expounded and enforced. The base inception of this thought was a result of differing ideologues, mainly sparked by Martin Luther.
And this is where the ideological divide begins. For westerners, progress, freedom, and advancement were a result of the separation of religious law from political law and jurisprudence. For Muslims, progress, freedom, and advancement went hand in hand with their religious law. And every moment in Islamic history where Muslims “abandoned” their religion through not following or implementing their law, then torment, oppression, and regression was the result that went hand in hand with replacing Islam for other than the Islamic thought and methodology.
As one can clearly see, both civilizations have a far dramatic demarcation of religion in social life which sparks both views to be the anti-thesis of the other.
The problem that modern western politics finds itself in is the idea that “its” view is the correct view. What adds to the fuel is the fact that in Islamic thought, it views itself as the correct view. However, the only “bendable” (compromising) component in this equation is the Islamic one. The only proof we have to this effect is history, for if history is looked into, it bears witness that Islam is what tolerated other civilizations and their law and only faced others militarily on the event that such nation prevented Islam from being propagated in such territory, but for the most part, such nations were not subjugated or forced to adopt Islam as their religion. In modern and pre-modern American history, it proved itself intolerant of this, for it sought to “convert” the world to its view and way of life, that being what it perceives as democracy and freedom Such a view was going to be broadcast as a way of life whether other nations were open to it or not, and in the event that they were not open to it, such nations would have to be dealt with militarily and through ideological warfare, as what happened with the former Soviet Union, and currently, Islam.
Now, keeping all of this in mind, the western view is what was adopted in foreign policy on an ideological level. Due to this reality, it made Muslims aware, from long ago, that the western powers were already at war with Islam, ideologically speaking for secularism and Islam are the anti-thesis of the other, both perceiving that its own ideals are the proper ideal.
To translate the above to the ordinary reader, what this means is that when any westerner, any western leader or politician advertises as his message of foreign policy their ambition of bringing “freedom” and “democracy” to the world, what that signifies or translates to in the Muslim world is “we want to enforce our way of life of sex, pornography, illicit acts, immorality, vices of all sorts” in the name of freedom and “freedom to do all of these vices and to chose to do so” in the name of democracy. Likewise when this message is given by westerners it basically sends the signal of “we will replace your religion, make you abandon it, and belittle your religion by making it second place after our way of life”. What is more startling is that what solidifies the Muslim thought of these campaign messages is that recent American military expeditions have proved their perception of these messages all the more correct.
What is more intriguing to this situation is the fact that the Arab news media
“al-Jazeerah” actually promotes democracy and the imitation of American Ideals. The problem that al-Jazeerah faces is that in their determination of modeling the early traditional western format of news broadcast (by being ultra fair and objective), by implementing such a policy, their broadcasting actually depict Americans as agents of immorality and war mongering and not holding themselves true to their oath of democracy and freedom. This is a primal reason why political leaders, particularly among conservatives, have a problem with al-Jazeerah showing actual events as they happen because al-Jazeerah’s motto is “everyone should see the whole picture and context” which use to be the American ideal of reporting, whereas American foreign policy is threatened and undermined when truth is caste in propagating what takes place in the wake of bringing “democracy” and “freedom” to the rest of the world.
In essence, by broadcasting fair and objective media, the default consequence of that is the depicting of America as hypocritical to their objective of democracy and freedom. By distorting news for the slant of political aims, being fair and objective is lost in the abyss of American Hegemony it is trying to establish so deceptively. In the wake that al-Jazeerah would abandon this motto they live up to, then would they be accepted among American platforms. However, al-jazeerah knows full well, if that were to happen, their prestige of reliability would be lost and the state of the Arab world would recognize the state of deception it finds itself in, modeling the 2002 film Equilibrium, where the current state of perfection is American idealism and other than that will face retribution of utmost catastrophic proportions.
So I conclude that western foreign policy is the actual source of Islamic reactionism, in fact it is born out of western actions. And what is more tragic in this reality is that the greater the objective and aims that foreign policy takes; the greater the aggression will be expressed in the Islamic world. The greater they are repelled militarily, the greater will the Islamic sentiment be enraged and channeled in forms of extremism and expressed through what America deems as terrorism. This is the utter reality of which no ideologue can counter with their political interpretative gymnastics.
3. Why are good Muslims silent
Make believe statements such as this is one of the pinnacle elements which caused me to initiate this effort to begin with. There are two components to this
a. Who or what is defined as a good Muslim and
b. Are those who actually are good Muslims given any airtime or are they deemed as not good enough?
We can be easily deduced from American hegemonic psychology that the “good” Muslim is one who
· Does not endorse the view of making the Qur’an or the Hadeeth as the criteria to judge all matters or that they take the back seat and placing American values above the Qur’an and hadeeth
· That the realm and meaning of jihaad be limited to its spiritual aspect alone
· That the Muslim would incline to a secular brand of thought by which they would not view of the divine as having any hand or link to the physical creation with regards to legislation and jurisdiction in politics.
If this is what makes a good Muslim according to a westerner then that creates one problem. All three of these, individually, remove the person beyond the pale of Islam. That is, if someone who is labeled as a Muslim were to adopt any one of the above principles, then that principle nullifies his testimony of faith as a Muslim. Therefore one can logically conclude that from the western paradigm that either
· There is no such thing as a good Muslim or
· The very premises on which the western outlook on values and its outlook on others is deficient and fundamentally flawed
So in order for one to be a good Muslim, he would have to opt for assimilation into American society and I have dealt with the topic of “assimilation” elsewhere in this work. Basically assimilation as a Muslim equals apostasy in the same way a Christian would view one of his comrades to have apostatized while entering Islam.
So if what makes a good Muslim to a westerner is actually not a Muslim, then what exactly makes a good Muslim?
Well, in Islam there was one pivotal situation which helps explain this.
The wife of the Messenger of Allah, Aisha radhiyallahu anha was asked to explain the character of Muhammad. Unable to give a long and detailed explanation, her reply was simply “he was a walking Qur’an”. While keeping this in mind, the Qur’an tells us that
لَقَدْ كَانَ لَكُمْ فِي رَسُولِ اللَّهِ أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ لِمَنْ كَانَ يَرْجُو اللَّهَ وَالْيَوْمَ الْآخِرَ وَذَكَرَ اللَّهَ كَثِيرًا
Indeed in the Messenger of Allah you have a good example to follow for him who hopes in (the Meeting with) Allah and the Last Day and remembers Allah much.
( سورة الأحزاب , Al-Ahzab, Chapter #33, Verse #21)
This good example was taken to its most able end so much so that the very enemies of the Messenger of Allah during their physical war with him, after a battle that has taken place would entrust their finances to him. Prophet Muhammad (alaihi salatu wa salaam) was known as “al-amin” or the trustworthy one even before his prophet hood.
So here we have a situation where there are enemies who are bent on fighting and killing this man, Muhammad, and at the end of the battle would come to him and request their wealth back or entrust it to him, and he would grant it to them, sort of like a bank.
However, the condition in the above quoted verse is “for him who hopes in Allah and the last day AND remembers Allah much”. There are three pivotal conditions here that has been commented upon with pages and pages in the annuls of our sciences regarding the explanation of the Qur’an, those three being “hopes in Allah”, then “and the last day”, and then “remembers Allah much”. Therefore, whoever is missing these three components will not find Muhammad as a good example.
We believe that the complete implementation and fulfillment of all commandments of the dictates of the Qur’an and the sunnah as preserved in the hadeeth, to its greatest effort on the part of the human brings about the greatest character man has ever witnessed and this is something already attested in the corpus of our history regarding our dealings with other civilizations when we actually acted upon Islam in its most fullest extent, fundamentally, traditionally, and progressive to the changes time had brought.
So for us, a good Muslim is the anti-thesis of what most westerners believe a good Muslim is even if in the minutiae of issues the west and Islam are in agreement, fundamentally they are on different grounds. For example, the common trait of westerners about being kind to others is for the simple intent of “treat others the way you want to be treated”. However, for Muslims, we are to focus all of our actions to Allah and Allah alone. Our treatment of kindness to others stems from the fact of our obedience to Allah and keeping within His limits. For us, the violation of this simple act, poses to have a greater affect on our psyche than if a secular humanist were to have made a mistake in treating someone unkindly. For us, the maximum that we can think of in our violation with Allah by not treating someone kindly would be that we would ponder over the fact of whether or not we may receive hellfire as recompense to such a violation. And this is our case because theologically speaking; no Muslim knows where they will end up. In other words, for a westerner, being kind to others is simply that, and plausibly with little reference to a verse in a bible merely about good behavior. For us, we have hellfire as component that we ponder over that drives our action. We have paradise as an incentive to partake in a particular action if it leads to Allah’s pleasure. We have the view of angels on our side recording our deeds. We have a multitude of factors that drive our behavior and when the Muslim does not conform to the dictates of Islam in a fundamental fashion and upon a traditional outlook, all of that is stripped and makes such a person more viable to perform vices and injustices than if he were to be fundamental in his thought and traditional in his methodology.
So in analyzing the three points of what would make a good Muslim for westerners, all three point towards a vile or evil person incompatible to Islam. If he does not take the Qur’an and the hadeeth as his ultimate criteria, then he has committed disbelief and polytheism and has either placed the judgment of man over his Lord, or he has taken his own desire as a god. And once someone falls into either of these two concepts, it opens the door for oppression and tyranny.
Likewise if someone were to abandon jihaad in all of its forms and limit it to mere spirituality, then that is called foolishness and heedlessness because a universal pillar of all human beings is that they can
· Have the right to defend themselves physically on an individual level or on a national level militarily or
· Have the right to go on offense if they perceive an eminent threat to a vital aspect of their security or to prevent oppression on a people who are unable to repel such oppression
To stipulate upon the nation of Islam that it must abandon jihaad in this aspect is analogous to stipulating to the U.S. or any other country that they must dismantle their foreign policy, foreign interest, military expenditure, and the enforcement of collecting data and intelligence. No sane person would accept such a stipulation, so how would it be palatable for Muslims to do something that they now everyone else will not do. This atmosphere is only indicative of the ever growing hypocrisy of the west and is one of the central components that drive people who are disoriented in their own lands to do extreme acts. Since this reality is virtually stripped upon conveying this through the American media, the common masses are left without a why, and only given an artificial reason made up through the filters of media to control public opinion in favor of political elites and to those who have sinister plans for the nation of Islam and Muslims. For those who may opine that this sounds “conspiratorial” in nature then they have to answer two basic realities
· Can and do conspiracies exist?
· Does the situation on the ground of our lands reflect the reporting given in western media
As for the first, if someone disbelieves that conspiracy do not exist or that nothing of conspiratorial nature is happening in the most conflictual places on earth, then not only are they dead wrong and infused in naivety, but as well inept.
However the problem with conspiracies is that they are virtually impossible to prove, and when in fact they are proved, no on cares or dismisses it as delusion, even when facts are brought. That is why I personally, and the mainstream of Muslims do not occupy or rely fundamentally on conspiratorial theories even though there is strong evidence based on perceptions and experiences of individuals.
So what would explicit proof would testify that the is something conspiratorial in nature going on. That brings me to the next question
Does the situation on the ground of our lands reflect what is being reported in western media? The clear and simple answer that all academics know is NO. If there is gross inaccuracy of reporting of events regarding conflict that involve Muslims, then how would such a situation not reflect conspiracy?
What is my proof? BBC does far more in the accuracy of reporting information that any American news outlet, in fact they are dwarfed in comparison to BBC and BBC is dwarfed in comparison to al-Jazeerah. I will not spend much time on this as this topic has been dealt with elsewhere. However when BBC reports an incident that has happened in Palestine or Israeli actions, if it is compared to American reports of it, one struggles to see if it is even the same story. BBC would report that Israeli’s intruded into Palestinian land (which is true) and occupy their territory. In the American side of the same story, their intrusion into Palestinian land is omitted and what it is replaced with is that it was Jewish settlements or neighborhoods. Again, if a fight were to break out, BBC usually reports that is because Palestinians raised arms because Israeli tanks or soldiers marched on in their land as an attempt to annex it as part of the Jewish settlements. However, under American coverage of the exact confrontation, it is reported that Israel “defended” itself insinuating that the Palestinians were the initial attackers and therefore the aggressors.
There are many, hundreds of reports of this nature which do not simply point out to mere honest journalistic mistake. These gross inaccuracies point out even beyond journalistic malpractice. This enters deception and that is what conspiracy is.
Now, commenting on the third aspect of what would make a good Muslim for westerners, that being to secularize the views of Muslims. That would be a catastrophe in itself. There are aspects to this
· The removal of Allah’s decision in man’s affairs and what it does to societies and specifically with ours
· Regression and backwardness is the reason for the adoption of secular views.
Historically, when Muslims abandoned the rule of Allah and failed to implement His law as legislation upon the lands, the decline of that nation begin. It happened with the Umayyid dynasty, the Abbasid dynasty, the Ottoman caliphate, the various regional sunni caliphates, and it is what some components are trying to do to the Saudi dynasty of today. The results of stripping Allah from the fight of rule i.e. the removal of shariah law from the system of legislation for us is that
· It brings regression
· It brings strife
That only comes truer when the implementation of His law brought us scientific advancement and success on different world sciences. The law itself is intrinsically adaptable to change so the idea that Islamic law is not accustomed to change is a farce. To virtually comment on the advances that took place on account of our shariah and the degradation on account of our abandonment of it is voluminous in nature. However, since we are in modern times, then it is most crucial that we relate to the previous caliphate and its dismantling by the onslaught of the secularist school. In a nutshell, everyone can trace the perceived backwardness, depravity, and humiliation and injustice in our lands all of it reaching astronomical proportions. However, what no one ponders over is that all of this has happened immediately after the dismantling of the Ottoman state in 1924. The only land to have secured a relatively decent amount of success and progress is Saudi Arabia who has a law based on shariah and at some rate, Pakistan, who implements some forms of shariah but unlike Saudi Arabia. As for the Taliban, they had barely begun as a shariah state when they were being dismantled, adding to the fact of their incorrect theological and jurisprudential stances, became a breeding ground of turmoil like other places. The only other state that can be mentioned with some reference to relatively positive success is Malaysia, which is a theocratic state that has shariah law as well as a secular state with secular based laws.