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Stephen Schwartz: The Hidden Islamaphobe and His Radical Views

Bisimillahi ar-Rahman ar-Raheem

As is our normative practice here, part of our dedication is to inform our audience of those groups and individuals or entities who serve on the pedestal of Anti Islamism, those who intentionally or otherwise seek to foster a sinister “plot” of Islam being radical fundamentalism. This relatively new phenomenon has been disected by us in two fashions

  • The indiscriminate categorization of everything connected with Islam to be the essence of extremism, terrorism, intolerance, etc
  • The discriminate categorization of everything connected with Islam to be the essence of extremism, terrorism, intolerance, etc.

In the ideological sphere of these two catastrophes to humanity, the first is the anti-thesis of anything remotely academic in nature on the subject of Islam or Muslims. Taking into consideration as of now that this group has no standing among actual foreign policy initiatives by actual government, this is a good thing for the implementation of the wishes of the first group is equal to the implementation of the demands of stalinists despots bent on the politics of fear and the instigation of global war just like their forfather, Hitler, was the instigator for the second world war. Of course we are not counting out the fact that certain individuals who do fall in line with this conventional extreme islamaphobic neanderthalism actually have prestige within the industry of policy initiatives but they are few and far in between.

The second category consists of the exact same paradigm, the fear of Islamic awareness amongst the masses, however, they, unlike their comrades in the first category, have opined to a view that there is an “other face of Islam” and thus propelling the propagation of sufism. In their view, everything that is bad and negative that their comrades in the first category describe Islam with is only assumed upon one distinct monolithic group that as of this day, still do not exist in the Islamic world, and that group is the imaginary world of wahhabism.

One such individual, infact the leading individual in this anti-Islamic propaganda is not T.J. Winters, it is not Hamza Yusif, it is not even Irshad Manji (although her campaign is as well equally bogus in its unacademicness) is the career obituary journalist, Stephen Schwartz. This enemy of Islam has promoted the defunct school of thought of sufism which has been unanimously labeled by all sunnis of all four schools from the classical orthodox scholars of ahlu-sunnah wal-jama’ah as a heretic madhaab (school of thought).  Since the transformation of sufism from its traditional sunni roots and into the philosophic aspects of the pantheist Ibn Arabi, the sunni muslims of across the globe have written off such esoteric groups as sufis along the lines of heresy that the shi’a have been described with, albeit not as extreme as shi’ism, but nevertheless the basis of later day sufism originally stems from baatini shi’ite methodology.

Initial biographical information about Schwartz can be found on wikipedia, we will reserve the gist of the mainstream Muslims criticism of this individual by stating some pivitol information between him and his relation to Islam which can easily be described as his fight against Islam and Muslims.

He is the authored and published the book “The Two Faces of Islam”.  The Two Faces of Islam received mixed reviews. Paul Marshall, in the Claremont Review of Books, described it as an “otherwise good book…marred by Schwartz’s almost Manichean approach wherein all bad things in the Muslim world are ascribed to the work of the Wahhabis.” New York Times book critic Richard Bernstein said the book demonstrated “a comprehensive mastery of history and historical connections, as well as a deep humanistic concern for those who have been oppressed by Wahhabi ruthlessness.” However, he also questioned whether Schwartz had not overstated its significance compared to other extremist elements in Islam, such as the Iranian role in supporting terrorism. Clifford Geertz concluded that the book was founded upon a “conflation of Wahhabism with Islamism generally”.

One of the most crippling articles in criticism of Schwartz was a most profound dismantling of his journalistic and currently, political commentorial malpractices, is by Amir Butler which can be found here. However, I wish to highlight the most pivitol excerpt of his review (and the whole of his review is nothing short of amazing) in whihc he comments that

“In an interview with National Review Online, Schwartz claimed that Hamas “represents pure Wahhabism”. This is in spite of the fact that Hamas are a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood (Ikhwanul Muslimeen) whose scholars have frequently criticised Wahabiism and ignores the fact that many Wahabi scholars have themselves differed with the Muslim Brotherhood as to their methodology. It also ignores the fact that Hamas employ suicide bombings whereas the leading scholars of Saudi Arabia (and therefore Wahabiism) such as the late Grand Mufti of the Kingdom Sheikh Ibn Baz opined that such bombings were not allowed in Islam. In the same article Schwartz then links the atheistic Saddam Hussein with Wahabiism claiming that Saddam “has used Wahhabism to give his regime an Islamic cover”. To claim that Saddam whose ideology has been openly and consistently described as a rejection of Islam by Wahabi scholars is using Wahabism is laughable given the many recorded instances of Saddam having tortured and killed Iraqis simply for having been associated with Wahabiism. Not only is Saddam involved with Wahabiism, but Schwartz claims that Washington sniper John Muhammad was also a Wahabi and his capture has “deeply compromised” the movement in America. To claim that Saddam’s regime sources its legitimacy from an ideology that considers it to be heretical to the point of apostasy is bizarre, but to then claim that John Muhammad was also a Wahabi or associated with Wahabiism is not only bankrupt of any factual basis but it shows the rank opportunism that underpins Schwartz’s treatment of current events: anyone who does anything bad and is Muslim is dishonestly and disingenuously linked with Wahabiism regardless of what the truth may be. In fact, as in the case of Saddam, Schwartz doesn’t even care if the person is a Muslim.”

Thus the highlighted words in bold signify the politically and religiously inclined ideological origins of this man. That is, his campaign is geared towards attributing every negative that happens in either a poltical or religious context that is attributed to Islam, even if it be through the means of secularist atheists like Sadam, or anti-thetical sects like the shi’a, with the “wahhabis”. This is not academic dishonesty or remotely connected with journalistic malpractice, this is outright deception and honestly, purely satanic.

This Schwarts Islamaphobe initiated a research center by which the very title of this cnter is fundamentally in contradistinction with the title which happenes to be “Center for Islamic Pluralism”.