Sunday, February 27, 2005

Muslims Against Terrorism - They Don't Hide From The Truth

Many times, floating around the blog world, I've seen all kinds of rhetoric and scare quotes about the "religion of peace". Many folks seem to think that because somebody worships Allah and wishes peace upon Mohammed that they are automatically suspect. Not just suspect, but terrorists in waiting. Then there are the folks that seem to ask constantly, "Where are the voices of moderate Muslims opposing the terrorists?"

I've wanted to know that as well. I've also been one of those folks that wondered about those who claim "moderate", decry terrorists as not "Islamic", yet, at the same time, seem to be telling us that they can understand why someone would want to attack us, as if making an excuse while trying to separate themselves.

Let's face it. Fascism and totalitarian ideologies aren't all dressed up in Islam, but there is a nasty streak of folks that want to give their ideology legitimacy by quoting some words from a holy book.

Anyone with the ability to think understands that, if it weren't this religion, it would be something else they'd latch on to. Unfortunately, there are cultural ideologies tied up with Islam that make it the perfect cover for these creeps. But, it doesn't mean everyone who practices Islam, particularly in America, is a terrorist waiting to happen.

Don't get me wrong. I know extremism exists here as well as around the world, but I've often contended that these voices, if they really represented Islam, would be much more powerful than they are considering the number of Islamic adherents around the world (last figure estimates 1.5 billion). The problem is, those extremists have captured the world stage and the media microphone for too long and we've been slow on the uptake.

In the last few weeks, I've started noticing a gentleman appearing on the cable stations, particularly on Fox, who represents the Free Muslims Against Terrorism. I also noted a few blogs that were picking up this organizations website. I liked what he had to say during his interviews and panel discussions so I checked out the site and this is what their manifesto says:

The Free Muslims Against Terrorism is a nonprofit organization made up of American Muslims and American Arabs of all backgrounds who feel that religious violence and terrorism have not been fully rejected by the Muslim community in the post 9-11 era. (..)

Free Muslims' efforts are unique; it is the only mainstream American-Muslim organization willing to attack extremism and terrorism unambiguously. Unfortunately most other Muslim leaders and organizations believe that when it comes to terrorism, the end justifies the means.

Other Americans have spoken up against terrorism, but never before has this message come with such clarity from Muslims or Arabs. Muslims are the only ones who can solve the problem of terror in Islam, and sadly until the founding of this Coalition, they were the only group who had not definitively spoken up against the use of terror.

Please join Free Muslims. We welcome all, whether Muslim, Christian or Jewish.

I suggest you go read the rest of the site. It is very interesting and I believe that we should be supporting these kinds of grass roots efforts to help fight extremism in the United States and promote the image of Islam that we wish to be more prevalent: peace loving and free people.

Let me also say that these folks are not afraid to take on CAIR or the Muslim American Society which masquerade as moderates and get all the publicity.

Kamal Nawash was recently on Bill O'Reilly and also hosted the Laurie Roth show where he spoke with several Arab Americans and Arab Muslims regarding their need to fight terror and not be ambiguous about calling out those who would preach extremism.

These are the people we need to support.

Let their voices be heard.


Kender said...

Finally. I knew they would come. I knew they would. It has been a longtime coming though. I pray peach upon their heads. And success in their endeavour.

Huzzah for the vocal moderates.

Cigarette Smoking Man from the X-Files said...

I think the FMAT type organizations are a tiny minority voice and their cultural center of gravity is located in the west.

From what I can tell, most of the mainstream Muslims in the Middle East are neither to a FMAT level of moderation, nor to an Al Qaeda level of terrorism-supporting. They fervently believe in Allah; they believe that Islam and Shariah should be the law of any land; they believe that there should be struggle of some sort (not necessarily violent) toward an ultimate goal of converting the world to Islam; they believe Israel to be evil invaders; they believe the U.S. is, at best "misguided" by aligning with Israel (and some would say needs to be reasonably persuaded away from supporting Israel, and some would say attacked in Jihad for supporting Israel--not necessarily through terrorist means); and many if not most would say Shariah is Shariah and should never change, most certainly not to fit the attitudes of the west (regarding women's rights, etc.)

Bottom line, most mainstream Muslims in the world are not terrorists, but that also doesn't mean they have interests that comfortably align with our own.

Kat said...

I'd agree ciggy. Not really saying these folks are the majority at all,just saying here they are a group we wondered about and they are finally getting some coverage. One thing I think about the majority of Arab/Muslim Americans is that they came to this country to escape grinding poverty and oppression like the rest of our immigrants, by far and large, they don't agree with our policies in the ME, although, seems some of them have gone quiet since the Iraqi election. And there is a large contingency that is overtly concerned with being discriminated against.

Groups like CAIR bother me because they do appear to be trying to protect certain groups with which they sympathize that have ties to terror groups and support extremism. In the name of the first amendment and the 15th (nondescrimination).

Frankly, and I don't mean to say that I support it, but I do think these folks are lucky this wasn't 1941. Secondly, I heard a man talking last night about what might happen if a second attack, bio, chem or radiological occurred. He mentioned the internment of Japanese Americans and whether that would occur here because congress has a way of reacting to public pressure and there would be pressure about security. I won't go further because I plan to write on it, but he said something about "knee jerk reaction for which we later apologize".

I guess I was thinking, "I'd rather be around to apologize than dead from another attack."

In the mean time, I think I'll support groups like this. Maybe they can have a positive effect?