Friday, March 23rd | 7 Nisan 5778


Be in the know!

Get our exclusive daily news briefing.

March 13, 2015 7:29 am

The Truth About Islam and the Threat We Face

avatar by Michael Curtis

Email a copy of "The Truth About Islam and the Threat We Face" to a friend

This Japanese hostage was beheaded by ISIS in early 2015. Photo: Twitter.

The barbarism of Islamist terrorists grows every day. They are committing war crimes by systematically destroying the cradle of Western civilization and erasing the history of the region.

The world has become familiar with Islamist actions: not just the cruel brutal behavior of the Islamist State of Iraq and Syria (IS) with its belligerent militarism, its beheadings of hostages, and crucifixion of Christians, but also the actions of other Islamist groups such as al-Qaeda, Taliban, and Boko Haram. These groups have been responsible for terrifying modes of punishment for any divergence from the right way of life they impose, for the suppression of education, honor killings, enslaving and sexually assaulting teenage girls, genital mutilations, and forced marriages.

Now, the world is witnessing with horror the destruction by Islamist terrorists of the cultural heritage of entire civilizations, including UNESCO World Heritage Sites, in Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan.

It is baffling that some well-meaning Westerners still regard Islamist extremists – jihadists – as carrying the banner of the oppressed or the underprivileged. They disregard the reality that the extreme Islamists are not the modern incarnation of the members of the movements that pressed for liberation from Western colonial powers or the elimination of imperialism. Those individuals had a specific objective in mind, the creation of a freer and more egalitarian society, and, for the most part, they observed basic moral rules in their general behavior and political tactics.

From about 1950 until 1970, the “Third World” group of countries and their Western supporters expressed the aspirations of those who wanted to liberate themselves from what they perceived as the iniquities of Western controls. They were influenced to a considerable degree by the heralded, though imaginary, Communist utopias of the Soviet Union and China.

Almost all of those would be reformers were disillusioned by the gods that failed with the revelations of the horrors and mass murders in the two Communist countries. Nor could they seek any comfort in the present autocratic and corrupt Russian regime, or in the semi-transformation, economically if not politically, of China. Perhaps because there is nowhere else to turn, some, especially younger people, have sought out the Muslim world and the Islamists as a surrogate of progressive resistance against Western systems.

But the difference is enormous between contemporary Islamists and those reformers who once regarded Stalin, in spite of the evidence of his brutality and killing of millions, as the incarnation of wisdom. Leftists of the past operated in the context of a Western culture that they, rightly or wrongly, sought to improve. The jihadists and their supporters are not anti-imperialists. They are opposed not simply to the U.S. and other Western-style democracies, but to essential Western values of civilization. Indeed, they reject the traditional leftist concepts – socialism, communism, liberalism, and nationalism.

Jihadism is different from other forms of anti-Western expression. It incarnates justification of slavery, now illustrated by the kidnapping of female Christian students in April 2014 by Boko Haram in Chibok in Nigeria, and by the attacks by IS on 50,000 Yazidis in the mountains of northwest Iraq.

The Islamists seek the restoration of former Islamic glories and the establishment of a Caliphate or an emirate, based on Sharia law and with the objective of conducting jihad. From the 9th century, jihad has been the obligation of true believers against all “infidels.”

Contemporary jihadists have no positive objective as did the traditional leftist ideologists, nor do they adhere to moral restraints. Much ink has been spilled over the true nature of Islam today, and who or what can be seen as embodying the essence of the religion. There are five acknowledged pillars of Islam, the basic obligations to live a good life: belief, prayers, fasting, almsgiving, and pilgrimage to Mecca.

Individual religions are interpreted differently depending on time and place. Today, there appears to be a sixth pillar that the jihadists claim and insist upon as the truth of Islam. That pillar is the obligation to wage war against the infidels, and it is being imposed on an increasing number of Muslims, including those in Western democracies.

The Islamist war against Western civilization, and civilized values is world-wide. What else can explain why the French flag was burned on January 23, 2015, in Surabaya in Java, several thousand miles from Paris, by Islamists who were offended by the publication in the journal Charlie Hebdo of cartoons that they held had insulted the Prophet Muhammad?  Manifestations of jihadism are evident in a line from Senegal and Nigeria to the borders of China. They are particularly strong in those states that have failed: Nigeria, Somalia, Yemen, Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan.

The West has to recognize that Islamists – jihadists is perhaps the better term – have recreated a retrograde and brutal form of Islam directed against non-Muslims that goes back to a dark period in its past.

The brutality against non-Muslims is not new. Saladin (1169-1193) was known for his chivalric nature and courtesy but he also conducted a “holy war” against the alien world, especially the Franks. The Egyptian imam, Hasan al-Banna (1906-1949, called for the return to “true” Islam and for jihad to repel the invaders. He founded the Muslim Brotherhood to do this. Jihad, he held, was an obligation for every Muslim who should resist existing regimes.

What is happening now is not resistance to any form of colonialism, Western or otherwise, but destruction in the areas controlled by jihadists of the very cultural heritage, the historical artifacts of the “unbelievers,” and denial of their beliefs, history, and dignity. Destruction of “idols” is not new in history. But the scale of the Islamist behavior is startling.

The terrorists are removing the very essence of the cultural history of civilization, especially pre-Islamic history. In March 2001 the Taliban began the destruction of the monumental 6th-century Buddhas (180 and 125 feet tall) in Bamiyan, Afghanistan. In Mali in June 2012, Boko Haram destroyed monuments and set fire to the library in the Ahmed Baba Institute in Timbuktu, which had been put on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1988. Not only were 700 monuments destroyed, the clay from the monuments was taken to prevent any rebuilding in some possible future.

Videos have been posted of IS terrorists destroying artifacts, including Jonah’s tomb, in the museum and all Christian institutions in Mosul with sledgehammers and power tools. Bulldozers destroyed the ancient archeological site of Nimrud, founded in 13th century B.C., in northern Iraq, and said to be the best preserved Assyrian site in Iraq. Temples and sculptures in Hatra, on the UNESCO Heritage List in 1985, were destroyed, as were the carved stone reliefs in Dur Sharrulin, the Assyrian site founded in 717 B.C. near the village of Khorsabad in northern Iraq. The Krak des Chevaliers crusader castle in Syria has been heavily damaged.

The Western world tends to have a capacity for illusions. Finally, outrage is now being expressed about the brutalities of the Islamist terrorists. Commendable as this is, the West must also act to prevent the Islamist barbarity from continuing. Islamists must not be allowed to obliterate the entire history of civilization.

This article was originally published by The American Thinker.

Share this Story: Share On Facebook Share On Twitter Email This Article

Let your voice be heard!

Join the Algemeiner
  • Khalid

    those people aren’t muslims. because they do exactly the opposite of Quran! Allah said in Quran ” if you kill innocent human is like you killed all human being ” I know this people gives the world big wrong image about Islam! read Quran And you will know what I mean.

    Thank you for publishing this article.
    Best regards.

    • Mike P.

      Khalid, you have included only half of the quotation from the Quran.

      The full quotation shows that the commandment you cite is for the Jews only.

      I wish that the Quran also commanded those ethics of Muslims, as well.

  • Mike Graham

    Satan plans to do a repeat. Just one Big problem with that: Lesson # 1 EZEKIEL Ch: 38:
    And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, 14 Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say unto Gog, Thus saith the Lord GOD; In that day when my people of Israel dwelleth safely, shalt thou not know it? 15 And thou shalt come from thy place out of the north parts, thou, and many people with thee, all of them riding upon horses, a great company, and a mighty army: 16 And thou shalt come up against my people of Israel, as a cloud to cover the land; it shall be in the latter days, and I will bring thee against my land, that the heathen may know me, when I shall be sanctified in thee, O Gog, before their eyes. 17 Thus saith the Lord GOD; Art thou he of whom I have spoken in old time by [6] my servants the prophets of Israel, which prophesied in those days many years that I would bring thee against them? 18 And it shall come to pass at the same time when Gog shall come against the land of Israel, saith the Lord GOD, that my fury shall come up in my face. 19 For in my jealousy and in the fire of my wrath have I spoken, Surely in that day there shall be a great shaking in the land of Israel; 20 So that the fishes of the sea, and the fowls of the heaven, and the beasts of the field, and all creeping things that creep upon the earth, and all the men that are upon the face of the earth, shall shake at my presence, and the mountains shall be thrown down, and the steep places shall fall, and every wall shall fall to the ground. 21 And I will call for a sword against him throughout all my mountains, saith the Lord GOD: every man’s sword shall be against his brother. 22 And I will plead against him with pestilence and with blood; and I will rain upon him, and upon his bands, and upon the many people that are with him, an overflowing rain, and great hailstones, fire, and brimstone. 23 Thus will I magnify myself, and sanctify myself; and I will be known in the eyes of many nations, and they shall know that I am the Lord.


    Scenes of Horror at Expulsion of Jewish Refugees from Poland


    Arabs Celebrate New Caliph


    No Schechita Prohibition for Austria, Chancellor Ramek Assures Delegation


    Famous Chassidic Rabbi Who Fasted Forty Years, Passes a Way in Poland


    British Colonial Office Inquires into the Land Dispute in Hedera


    Many Injured in Latest Anti-
    semitic Outbreaks in Cities of Roumania


    No Specific Jewish Problem in Latvia Prime Minister Tells J.t.a. Managing Director: National Minorit


    Bewildering Contradictions in Nazi Utterances; Hitler Calls for Subservience to Government While Goe


    Now–editorial Notes


    Jews to Seek Aid of Carol in Rumania


    Refugees Tell of Pogroms Raging 2 Days in Polish Corridor


    Schuschnigg Resigns; Plebiscite Abandoned; Seyss-inquart Asks German Troops


    Jews Fleeing Slovakia As Anti-semitism Rises; Separatist Move Laid to Hitler


    Polish Relief Group Wins New Pact with Nazis; Allies to Lift Blockade


    Expelled Radom and Cracow Jews Resettled in Provinces


    New Hungarian Premier, Though No Anti-semite, is Likely to Compromise with the Nazis


    U.S. Representative Completes Plan for Evacuation of Jews from Balkan Countries


    Jews Will No Longer Be a National Minority in Czechoslovakia; Will Have Equal Rights


    War Was a “jewish War” and Germany Was Not Arab Enemy Husseini Tells Inquiry Committee


    Irgun Blasts Military Headquarters in Jerusalem’s “sealed Area” ; One Briton Killed


    Israel and Transjordan Sign Cease-fire for All Common Fronts at Rhodes Ceremony


    Immigration into Jerusalem to Be Set by U.N. Governor, Trusteeship Council Decides


    Reign of Terror in Bagdad As Mobs Attack Jews and Loot Shops; Migrants Despoited


    Sharett to Meet Pope; to Confer with French and Italian Leaders


    Arab Complaint Against U.S. Contributions to Israelis Resented


    Eisenhower Confers on Arab-israel Problem; Sends Largest U.S. Warship


    World Capitals React to Nasser’s New Defiance of United Nations


    Pro-soviet Arab Countries Will Get No American Aid, Dulles Indicates


    Vice President of U.s.s. R. Displays Interest in Israel Immigration


    Ben-gurion Reported Agreeing to Give Up Premiership to Eshkol


    European Parliamentary Assembly Urges Common Market to Accept Israel


    Syrian and Iraqi Officials Agree to Intensify Action Against Israel


    U.S. and Israel Charge Moscow at U.N. with Practicing Anti-semitism


    Soviet Jews Reported Under Pressure to Demonstrate Against Israel


    Eban Says Impasse in Jarring Mission Stems from Egyptian Intransigence


    Allon Warns Egypt to End ‘aggression’ at Canal and Threatens New Measures


    Dr. Jarring and Tekoah Meet for Exploratory Talks on Continuation of Peace Mission


    High-ranking Greek Cleric Launches-virulent Anti-semitic Campaign


    Israeli Killed by Jordanian Gunman


    Thousands Line Up to Receive the Book of the Dead; All Booklets Distributed in an Hour


    Israelis Glum, Egyptians Optimistic As Kissinger Continues His Efforts


    Terrorist Carnage 37 Israeli Civilians Dead; 82 Injured; Curfew Imposed on Tel Aviv Area Begin Says


    Carter Extends Stay for Additional Day Breakthrough Seen


    Carter; Israeli Security is Principle That Guides U.S. Mideast Policy; Jerusalem Must Remain Undivid


    13 Jewish Organizations to Coordinate Actions to Combat Anti-semitism at the UN


    Gemayel Defends His Decision to Scrap the May 17 Agreement


    American Jews Cautiously Optimistic That Change in Soviet Leadership Will Bring Improvement for Sovi


    Reagan Administration Will Try to Prevent Congress from Rejecting Sale of Missiles to Saudi Arabia


    IDF Officer Killed, Another Wounded in Clash with Terrorist Squad


    Arens Says Israel Must Introduce Momentum in Mideast Peace Process


    Labor Party Central Committee Vote Pushes Government Toward Collapse


    Baker Holds ‘constructive’ Dialogue with Shamir, Sees Palestinians Too


    Bush Welcomes Jordanian King to U.S. and Pays Respects at Israeli Embassy


    Anti-semitic Acts in Australia Hit All-time High, Says Report


    British Seek to Curb Hamas Funds


    Arab Americans Accuse Israel of ‘apartheid,’ ‘ethnic Cleansing’


    Judge Rules Against Pork Sales


    A Walk on the Singles’ Side: Mom/daughter Spa Experience Less Than Refreshing and Healthy


    Around the Jewish World: Jewish Judge is Latest Casualty of Assault on Law in Zimbabwe


    Israel Braces for Verbal Onslaught at Hands of U.N. Human Rights Group


    Around the Jewish World New Hillel Plants ‘seed of Hope’ for Argentina’s Strapped Community


    Director of 9/11 Museum to Use Lessons Learned from Shoah Site


    White House liaison is policy wonk

    More Archives â–² â–¼

    Like · · Share

    Mike Graham