Tag Archives | Islam

‘Innocence Of Muslims’ Director Gives First Interview

The man who kicked the hornets’ nest has granted his first interview since the furore caused by The Innocence of Muslims on YouTube. Serge F. Kovalesky and Brooke Barnes report for the New York Times:

Fuming for two months in a jail cell here, Nakoula Basseley Nakoula has had plenty of time to reconsider the wisdom of making “Innocence of Muslims,” his crude YouTube movie trailer depicting the Prophet Muhammad as a bloodthirsty, philandering thug.

Does Mr. Nakoula now regret the footage? After all, it fueled deadly protests across the Islamic world and led the unlikely filmmaker to his own arrest for violating his supervised release on a fraud conviction.

Not at all. In his first public comments since his incarceration soon after the video gained international attention in September, Mr. Nakoula told The New York Times that he would go to great lengths to convey what he called “the actual truth” about Muhammad.

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Saudi Arabia Introduces Electronic Tracking Of Women

In Saudi Arabia, Siri tells you everything your wife is doing. Males will automatically receive text message notifications whenever their spouses, relatives, or daughters pass through travel checkpoints, the International Business Times reports:

Saudi Arabia has introduced an electronic tracking system to monitor its female citizens and alert Saudi females’ male guardians to their movement.

Since last week, some Saudi women’s male guardians have been receiving text messages from immigration authorities, alerting them when women under their [control], which include wives and daughters, leave the country. To leave the kingdom, Saudi women are required to seek permission from their male guardians, who give consent by signing what is known as the “yellow sheet” at the airport or border.

The recent controversy caused by the escape of a Saudi woman to Sweden was believed to have prompted the authorities to implement the system, Al Arabiya reported, citing local media.

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Egyptian Extremist Cleric Calls For Destruction Of Pyramids And Sphinx

If radical Islamists sustain power in post-revolution Egypt, could the pyramids be imperiled? Via CNN:

Morgan Al-Gohary, a jihadi sheikh with a history of radicalism, appeared on the private Egyptian TV channel Dream TV 2 Saturday evening and declared that if he and his ilk ever came to power, they would not hesitate to destroy the “pagan statues” the Sphinx and the pyramids.

He’s no stranger to the notion of vandalizing ancient artifacts, boasting to the show’s host, Wael Al-Abrashi, that while in Afghanistan, he took part along with the Taliban in the demolition of the Bamyan Buddhas in March 2001.

Egyptians have heard this all before — that the pyramids and the Sphinx are pagan monuments and idols, and must therefore must be destroyed. There was a widespread rumor last year that a Salafi (ultraconservative Muslim) leader was advocating covering the monuments in wax but that proved to be spurious.

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Did The Republican Party’s Vilification Of Muslim Americans Just Cost It The Presidency?

You reap what you sow. It seems hard to believe in the wake of the invasion of Iraq and widespread conservative hostility towards Muslims in the United States, but prior to 9/11, American Muslims were a solidly Republican voter demographic. Via Ray on the Royals, baseball blogger Rany Jazayerli pointed out yesterday that, fascinatingly, ex-Republican Muslim voters would have won the election for Mitt Romney:

In the 2000 election, approximately 70% of Muslims in America voted for Bush; among non-African-American Muslims, the ratio was over 80%. Four years later, Bush’s share of the vote among Muslims was 4%.

There is simply no way that I can justify voting for a party that denies the very legitimacy of my identity as an American. Nor can most other members of the American Muslim community, who just happen to be clustered in swing states like Ohio, Virginia, and Florida. If Nate Silver is right, not only will Romney lose the election, but it can be safely said that if the Muslim community had voted the same way they had in 2000, he would have won.

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The Innocence of White People

Picture: Gustave Doré (PD)

Michael Muhammed Knight writes at Vice:

So I’ve just received an email from a reader, asking whether I might have something to say about The Innocence of Muslims. “Is tolerance for satire really a concept that is not compatible with Islam?” he asks. “Is there something about all this indignation that ‘we,’ the West, don’t understand?”

When asked to explain Muslim rage, I have an answer, but I already know the response to my answer. A defender of “Western civilization” will tell me, “Yeah, but we aren’t violent. They’re the ones who kill people over religion.” If numbers matter, however, the mythology of “America” kills many, many more people today than any myth of “Islam.” To sustain a pseudo-secular military cult, we have produced a nation of cheerleaders for blood and murder. We speak of the cult’s heroic work as “sacrifice” and say that it’s all for a divine cause of “freedom.”

That’s what we send out there, at them.

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Groups Planning Worldwide ‘Innocence Of Muslims’ Screening Tour

The worst idea ever, or the best idea ever? Could the Innocence of Muslims be so awful that it’s good? The Atlantic Wire writes:

For the most part, the West has been spared the kind of turbulent protests rocking the Muslim world in recent days, but that soon could change as anti-Islam groups threaten to screen the film Innocence of Muslims in the U.S., Canada and Germany. In a strange jumble of events, the provocative idea appears to have originated from the German far-right political party Pro Deutschland, assisted by Florida pastor Terry Jones and taken up by a Canadian Hindu advocacy group, in a move that will likely test the respective countries’ commitment to freedom of speech.

On Tuesday…the Pro Deutschland party announced plans to screen the incendiary film in a Muslim neighborhood in Berlin later this year. “We plan to show the trailer of the film at a public screening in a mainly Muslim area of Berlin on the first or second weekend of November and then, in a nearby cinema or suitable venue, screen the entire movie,” said Lars Seidensticker, chairman of the party’s state faction in Berlin.

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Anti-Islam Movie ‘Innocence of Muslims’ Sparks Attack That Kills US Ambassador In Libya

The Middle East is in uproar today after the US Embassy in Libya was bombed and the US ambassador, Christopher Stevens, was among those killed. The attack was apparently part of a protest against an obscure film, “Innocence of Muslims,” directed by California-based Israeli Sam Bacile and allegedly financed to the tune of $5 million dollars by Jewish supporters. There’s little doubt that the film is blasphemous so far as Muslims are concerned and will likely be offensive to most non-Muslims. It also appears to be an incredibly bad piece of filmmaking based on the trailer below.

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Saudi Arabia To build Women-Only City.

Photo: Two women dressed in nikab, Wikipedia (PD)

Saudi Arabia wasn’t on my list of places to visit, but with this latest bit of news I just may have to change my mind. In order to encourage career-minded women to pursue their goals and dreams, while maintaining strict adherence to Sharia Law, Saudi Arabia is going to build a female only city within the next year or so. From the Daily Mail:

Saudi Arabia is planning to build a new city exclusively for women as it bids to combine strict Sharia law and career minded females, pursuing work.

It is thought the Saudi Industrial Property Authority (Modon) has been asked to bring the country up to date with the rest of the modern world with the controversial city, which is now being designed with construction to begin next year.

It is hoped it will allow women’s desire to work without defying the country’s Islamic laws.

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Dozens Of Children Freed From Subterranean Islamic Cult In Russia

Led by a delirious, bedridden, elderly self-described prophet, the so-called “catacomb sect” was attempting to establish an underground kingdom. Via the BBC, a likely preview of how we will all be living in twenty years:

Four members of a breakaway Muslim sect in Russia’s Tatarstan region have been charged with cruelty against children for allegedly keeping them underground.

Police discovered 27 children and 38 adults living in catacomb-like cells in an eight-level underground bunker. The sect was uncovered last week in a suburb of the city of Kazan during an investigation into recent attacks on Muslim clerics in Tatarstan, a mainly Muslim region on the River Volga. Prosecutors said some of the children had lived there for more than a decade.

The sect’s elderly leader, Faizrakhman Sattarov, who had declared himself a Muslim prophet, had reportedly wanted to build his own Islamic caliphate beneath the ground. He and his followers began to shun the outside world in the early part of this century.

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A Non-Muslim Spends The Day In A Burqa

Looking for an easy way to make people treat you differently? Via Vice, Annette Lamothe-Ramos conducts a social experiment by wearing Saudi-style burqa in New York City for a day:

I figured that the only way I’d really know what life was like for women who have been consigned to wear the least-revealing piece of clothing of all time was to dress up as one of them.

We hopped on a train uptown to pretend we were tourists. No one really paid much attention to me except the woman on the bench behind me who was sitting with her children. She dragged them to the other end of the platform when she saw me step onto the train. What a bitch!

When we got out of the subway it started to rain really hard. Lucky for me, I didn’t need an umbrella—one of the few pluses of wearing a burqa.

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