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670 MILLION MUSLIMS EXPECT MAHDI IN THEIR LIFETIME

DizziNY 2012/08/13 11:16:51

Two-thirds of a billion Muslims expect the Mahdi – the last Islamic imam they believe will come and rule the world – to arrive in their lifetimes, according to a new Pew Research poll.

The results affirm the warnings from author Joel Richardson, whose just-released book “Mideast Beast”it is moving up Amazon listings.

It’s a sequel to his New York Times bestselling 2009 “The Islamic Antichrist,” and it recently surged past Joel Rosenberg’s “Implosion: Can America Recover from its Economic and Spiritual Challenges in Time?” and “The End: A Complete Overview of Bible Prophecy and the End of Days” by Mark Hitchcock to claim the top spot in the Eschatology category on Amazon.

In a column written in WND, Richardson notes that he has been criticized repeatedly for believing many Muslims have a faith in the coming Mahdi, especially that there are a significant number who believe that will happen soon.

The survey by Pew Research notes that in the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia and Southeast Asia, “half or more Muslims believe they will live to see the return of the Mahdi. This expectation is most widespread in Afghanistan (83 percent), Iraq (72 percent), Tunisia (67 percent) and Malaysia (62 percent).

The survey said that belief drops to about four-in-10 across Central Asia, except for Turkey, where 68 percent expect to witness his return. It drops slightly further across southern and eastern Europe.

“In some countries with sizable Sunni and Shi’a populations, views on the Mahdi’s return differ by sect. In Iraq, for example, Shi’as are more likely than Sunnis to expect the Mahdi to return in their lifetime, by an 88 percent to 55 percent margin. In Azerbaijan, the difference between the two groups is also large (25 percentage points),” the report said. “Differences between Shi’as and Sunnis on this issue may reflect the more central role that the Mahdi’s return plays in Shi’a Islam.”

The result? An estimated 672 million Muslims expect to witness the Mahdi’s return.

On his portrayal that such a belief is widespread, Richardson said, “I have certainly had my share of critics, not only from the pollyannas on the left, but also from within the Christian church.”

He said, for example, prophecy teacher and evangelist David Reagan has been vocal, saying, “Richardson’s presentation of what Muslims believe about the end times is very misleading, for what he presents is the Shi’ite version which revolves around the concept of an Islamic Messiah called the Mahdi. He leaves the impression that all the Islamic world is living in breathless anticipation of the appearance of the Mahdi, when the reality is that 90 percent of all Muslims – the Sunnis – are not looking for a Mahdi.”

Richardson said until now it’s been hard to refute any statements regarding the percentage of Muslims who await the Mahdi.

“Now, for the first time, a comprehensive study including tens of thousands of Muslims, in over 23 countries, were asked if they believed that the Mahdi’s emergence was imminent, that it would occur within their lifetimes. And the results conclusively prove that which I have been warning about all along,” he wrote.

The Pew findings:

Richardson explains that the false claim that only 10 percent of Muslims await the Mahdi may now be “put to bed.”

“The bottom line is that it is far worse, far more widespread than even I would have guessed,” he wrote.

And in Turkey, from which he believes the Antichrist will come, “68 percent of Turks, a large majority, are expecting the imminent appearance of the Mahdi.”

“Certainly the popularity of Mahdism within Turkey, when combined with the concurrent radical rise in (1) Turkish nationalism and Neo-Ottoman aspirations, and (2) anti-Semitism within Turkey, in so many ways, sets the stage for this nation to move toward fulfilling many of the last days prophecies of the Bible,” he wrote.

“Another important factor that I have been trying to make for years, is that although conventional wisdom has placed all emphasis on Iran as the nation that would produce a false Mahdi claimant (I say claimant, as there actually is no such thing as the Mahdi), the real danger has always lay with the Sunni world.

“The primary reason for this is because while the leaders of Iran regularly make a lot of noise concerning the the Mahdi – often referred to by them as the 12th Imam – there are some very strong reasons that it is highly unlikely that Iran will ever see a genuine Mahdi claimant figure arise. What outsiders must understand is that Iranian Muslim scholars have developed a very thorough systematic theology to essentially guard against any false Mahdi claimant from emerging. … I do not believe that Iran will ever produce Mahdi claimant who will ever be received widely by the leaders or the people of that nation.”

“In my book ‘Islamic Antichrist: The Shocking Truth about the Real Nature of the Beast,’ I walk the alert reader through the frightening world of Islamic apocalyptic views, comparing them with the biblical prophecies concerning the coming of the Antichrist, showing beyond any doubt that in the Islamic doctrine of the Mahdi, the world should in fact be very concerned. In my new book, ‘Mideast Beast,’ I demonstrate beyond any doubt, the scriptural case for an Islamic Antichrist. As always, it is time for the Christian world to wake up and fall to their knees in prayer. The hour is far later than most think.”

It was in “The Islamic Antichrist,” Richardson’ stunning research and analysis suggested that the biblical Antichrist and Islam’s primary messiah figure (the Mahdi) could be the same person. Now, taking a hard look at the most significant biblical end-time texts, “Mideast Beast” argues persuasively that the Antichrist, his empire and his religion will come from the Middle East and not Europe as has been widely taught by many modern prophecy teachers.

The Pew project reviewed what Muslims believe about angels, predestination or fate, the afterlife, heaven and hell (99 percent in Thailand believe in eternal punishment), the Mahdi’s imminent return and the return of Jesus, who many Muslims believe will deny Christianity and pledge allegiance to Allah.

Read More: http://www.wnd.com/2012/08/670-million-muslims-exp...

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  • sam123 2012/08/13 17:29:23
    sam123
    and when the -dajjal - the masikh for the Jews will appear ? any statistic?

    take into consideration the masikh of the Jews is the false messiah for the Muslims
  • I don't... sam123 2012/08/13 21:39:15 (edited)
    I don't like Obama in office
    ? I will have to take some time to study this one... Rock on Mr. Benjamin Netanyahu
  • sam123 I don't... 2012/08/14 12:30:01
    sam123
    that's right , this confirm the belief of the Muslims . what's that belief?

    the Dajjal will claim he is God !

    who is going to follow him ? anyone who believe that Jesus is God!!!

    how can you distinguish between the true Jesus who is going to descend on top of this minaret in dumascuss

    white minaret in damascus

    and between the false one who is going to come by donkey from Asfhan in Iran ?
    from this area
    asfahan
  • I don't... sam123 2012/08/14 20:34:56 (edited)
    I don't like Obama in office
    Isa, or Jesus or Yeshua, was to have been for told to come as he did I.E. into Heaven the here and Now via the Gates of by all man Kind comes .as I see it ...like it or not such is in likness of some of the views of the buddhist -- A Woman as for the Waking of the Spirit to know its self and others once before to be with them or among again known .Such No man knows the hour. Nor is there any thing man can do to bring it bout other then ... Don't have Abortions Get it..you just may kill the messenger!
  • sam123 I don't... 2012/09/01 21:04:27
    sam123
    that is the exact description of the dajjal or anti Christ
  • I don't... sam123 2012/08/14 20:51:26 (edited)
    I don't like Obama in office
    Note Jesus never as I understand ever claimed to be God Yet A Child of , The teaching in the Bible or the people of the Book about Jesus ..reflect nothing of Mohammed and Mohammed was not God either Mohammed was a sick in the head man like the twisted Penn state foot ball coach ,---
  • DizziNY I don't... 2012/08/15 10:43:06 (edited)
    DizziNY
    +1
    Actually, Jesus is a man approved of God and he, Jesus, is God's only begotten son. Jesus did say he is the son of God. As far as abortion, I believe life begins at conception.
  • I don't... DizziNY 2012/08/15 17:38:57
    I don't like Obama in office
    http://nationalprolifeallianc...
    Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) asks for your support of the National Pro-Life Alliance and the Life at Conception Act to overturn Roe v. Wade. http://nationalprolifeallianc...
  • sam123 I don't... 2012/09/01 21:19:15
    sam123
    +1
    thanks for this invitation

    money can't change what people choose to do ,

    religion can , fear of God and punishment for killing a fetus can reduce the massacre of
    little babies on the womb doe not need 50 dollar , they need for their parents to have moralities and principals based on teaching of the prophets.
  • I don't... sam123 2012/09/04 11:34:31 (edited)
    I don't like Obama in office
    You are so very welcome, thus this is One point I could agree with on!
  • sam123 I don't... 2012/09/04 21:52:04
    sam123
    you are very wise person

    by times goes by , we start discovering that money will not make neither people happy nor will return back a killed soul.

    abortion is forbidden in all religion , in Islam , chritianity and judaism.

    if religious people practice their religion properly , we would not have such chaos.
  • sam123 DizziNY 2012/09/01 21:09:50
    sam123
    sorry , jesus never say he was son of god

    what's the mother of god called then ?

    can god get married ?
  • sam123 I don't... 2012/09/01 21:08:15
    sam123
    @@@@Mohammed was a sick in the head man like the twisted Penn state foot ball coach ,---

    well , when you meet Mohammed peace be upon him in the hearafter then you will realize how wrong you are .

    I imagine you talking to him , so prepare an answer for your causation , but please do not blame anyone in the day of judgment but yourself .
  • I don't... sam123 2012/09/04 11:28:00 (edited)
    I don't like Obama in office
    Mohammed , is and was from every thing I have read seen or heard was One twisted sick Human, No Wunder Hitler was friends with Islam and or created by such like minded groups starting 1933 , They have sought to join any such groups to carry out their twisted views of unbridled violence, racism, murder ,pedophilia & dis respect of Women and Contempt of any view but their's , and History shows this for those that research the facts of it ,! http://tellthechildrenthetrut... , The teachings of Islam has been threat to the peace of man kind for 1000"s of years, http://www.youtube.com/watch?...
  • sam123 I don't... 2012/09/04 22:04:05
    sam123
    you simply hate Islam and you would not accept its existence and you hate the messenger who have been sent by god to teach people Islam

    well that hate and lies have been there since the beginning the Islam up to now..( nothing new what you have said ) , if you read your ancestors what they wrote about islam and the prophet mohammed , it's worse than what you have just wrote and described .

    good news for you though ,

    whatever you say , whatever lie you fabricate with the help of all organisation that promote hate in this planet , Islam is here to stay and prosper and it is protected by god , there is nothing you can do about it ,nor able to stop it .

    what you can do though is
    1- to lie
    2- to fight its followers
    3- to hate
    4- do discriminate
    5- to use abuse
    6- to distort the history

    what else , all have been done ,

    any result ?

    instead of reading more about Islam , being more tolerant , more friendly, respect , you went to the extreme?
    this will harm you more than it will benefit you .
  • I don't... sam123 2012/09/05 15:57:18 (edited)
    I don't like Obama in office
    I don't hate Islam I just dis agree with its treachings , Wiser is the One who reads the history of another , thus that one is able to advoid the flaws of teachings, The only Tolerant I am willing to be is in the mannor it what I read if goes against my constitution I reject it , That is being more friendly for how many times has the constitutions for the united states stood to defend Islam from its self, I have no respect for a soical culture view that seeks to wimp another from the earth if it does not agree with it, I stated my mind as I see it that is not extreme . its called freedom of speech free to think for my self
    http://www.hillsdale.edu/news...

    Sura 9, verse 5, reads: “Fight and slay the unbelievers wherever ye find them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem of war. But if they repent, and establish regular prayers and practice regular charity, then open the way for them . . . .”
    Sura 9, verse 29, reads: “Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Apostle, nor acknowledge the religion of truth, even if they are of the 40 people of the Book, until they pay the jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.”
    Sura 5, verse 51, reads: “Oh ye who believe! Take not the ...
    I don't hate Islam I just dis agree with its treachings , Wiser is the One who reads the history of another , thus that one is able to advoid the flaws of teachings, The only Tolerant I am willing to be is in the mannor it what I read if goes against my constitution I reject it , That is being more friendly for how many times has the constitutions for the united states stood to defend Islam from its self, I have no respect for a soical culture view that seeks to wimp another from the earth if it does not agree with it, I stated my mind as I see it that is not extreme . its called freedom of speech free to think for my self
    http://www.hillsdale.edu/news...

    Sura 9, verse 5, reads: “Fight and slay the unbelievers wherever ye find them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem of war. But if they repent, and establish regular prayers and practice regular charity, then open the way for them . . . .”
    Sura 9, verse 29, reads: “Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Apostle, nor acknowledge the religion of truth, even if they are of the 40 people of the Book, until they pay the jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.”
    Sura 5, verse 51, reads: “Oh ye who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians for your friends and protectors; they are but friends and protectors to each other. And he amongst you that turns to them for friendship is of them. Verily Allah guideth not the unjust.”
    And Sura 3, verse 28, introduces the doctrine of taqiyya, which holds that Muslims should not be friends with the infidel except as deception, always with the end goal of converting, subduing, or destroying him.
    (more)
  • sam123 I don't... 2012/09/05 20:53:35
    sam123
    +1
    you are free to think and no one force you to believe in Islam or accept it . you are also have free speech , say whatever you like

    however , if Muslims respect your constitution, your superior wanted to shove it off down their throat, you want them to follow it and accept it to the point for example if the constitution say there is no problem for man to get married with man , you wanted this to be applied in Muslims countries ,
    the long interference in Muslim countries demonstrate that you tried to change Islam and sweep it away ...everyone say that the western civilization does not recognize Islam as religion so whose fault is it ?
    Muslim recognize USA and Christianity as religion , they recognize that Judaism is religion , so why not recognizing Islam as religion ? 1 billion 800 million followers , yet we still hear some people try to ignore facts on the ground and historical facts .
  • I don't... sam123 2012/09/05 22:37:53 (edited)
    I don't like Obama in office
    Whats Wrong you a homophobic person? are you afraid of being the in shower with open gay males in the navy? Let me guess your not happy with Obama's support of Fags in the military! and find such thing of muslim leader..not a good thing.. i couldn't agree with you more..
  • I don't... I don't... 2012/09/05 22:58:11
  • DizziNY sam123 2012/08/15 10:45:10 (edited)
    DizziNY
    Jesus is a man approved of God, and he is God's only begotten son. He is not God but he has God's seed in him just like we have our Dad's seed in us. Jesus IS the Christ, the Messiah, the promised seed who washed away anyone's sins if you accept him and believe in him.


    King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
    Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know:
  • sam123 DizziNY 2012/09/01 21:27:16
    sam123
    you made a lot of mistakes
    1- you did not distinguish between the creator and the creation
    2- god does not look like human being , Jesus does
    3- god is free from all human attributes like sleep and fear and pain and hunger
    4- god created things , he created the sun , the moon , the stars , animals ..ect ... jesus did not create anything .
    5- god forgive not jesus , god cure , god give life and take it away , not jesus
    all what jesus did is by the power of god who created him , jesus said

    '''i can not do anything but by the power of my father '''

    the word father does not mean god slept with a woman and have a baby and they called him jesus ,

    father figurative meaning means the supreme , the one that need to be respected the one who look and care after jesus , the one who forgive and sustain ..

    do you understand the characteristic of god the creator and Jesus the creation ?
  • DizziNY sam123 2012/08/14 18:45:31
    DizziNY
    I do not like the Kabalah. If we are talking the Torah that's fine.
  • sam123 DizziNY 2012/08/14 19:01:45
    sam123
    +1
    i admire your courage to say that .
    unfortunately, you are among minorities.

    Kabalah is an art of life and how to rule and empower others according to some ancient Jewish aqueda . it is everywhere , in art , sport, food , transport ....ect ..
  • DizziNY sam123 2012/08/15 10:42:12
    DizziNY
    As far as I know, the Kabalah is mysticism and it's not about God. The Torah is about God and so is The New Testament. I would say that to anyone's face. No fear.
  • sam123 DizziNY 2012/09/01 21:30:08
    sam123
    we know Kabalah is mysticism , the concern is in its practicality and its effect on human soul
  • sam123 DizziNY 2012/09/01 21:28:32
    sam123
    good , you are on the right direction
    but , a big but

    the Torah itself need a revision , because some section are written by rabbis
  • I don't like Obama in office 2012/08/13 14:25:28 (edited)
    I don't like Obama in office
    http://youtu.be/htshvId51UE in honor of Ramadon Don't for get the Hot Sauce:)
  • I don't... I don't... 2012/08/13 14:27:38
    I don't like Obama in office
    http://www.hillsdale.edu/news...

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    Home > News & Events > Imprimis > Imprimis Archive > Imprimis Issue

    02/2012
    February 2012
    Paul Marshall
    Senior Fellow
    Hudson Institute
    Blasphemy and Free Speech
    PAUL MARSHALL is a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute’s Center for Religious Freedom. He has published widely in newspapers and magazines, including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, First Things, The New Republic, and The Weekly Standard. He is the author or editor of more than 20 books on religion and politics, including Their Blood Cries Out, Religious Freedom in the World, and Blind Spot: When Journalists Don’t Get Religion. Most recently he is the co-author, with Nina Shea, of Silenced: How Apostasy and Blasphemy Codes are Choking Freedom Worldwide.
    The following is adapted from a lecture delivered at Hillsdale College’s Allan P. Kirby, Jr. Center for Constitutional Studies and Citizenship in Washington, D.C., on February 3, 2012.

    A growing threat to our freedom of speech is the attempt to stifle religious discussion in the name of preventing “defamation of” or “insults to” religion, especially Islam. Resulting restrictions represent, in effect, a revival of blasphemy laws.
    Few in the West were concerned with such laws ...

























    http://www.hillsdale.edu/news...

    Return to Home



    Home > News & Events > Imprimis > Imprimis Archive > Imprimis Issue

    02/2012
    February 2012
    Paul Marshall
    Senior Fellow
    Hudson Institute
    Blasphemy and Free Speech
    PAUL MARSHALL is a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute’s Center for Religious Freedom. He has published widely in newspapers and magazines, including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, First Things, The New Republic, and The Weekly Standard. He is the author or editor of more than 20 books on religion and politics, including Their Blood Cries Out, Religious Freedom in the World, and Blind Spot: When Journalists Don’t Get Religion. Most recently he is the co-author, with Nina Shea, of Silenced: How Apostasy and Blasphemy Codes are Choking Freedom Worldwide.
    The following is adapted from a lecture delivered at Hillsdale College’s Allan P. Kirby, Jr. Center for Constitutional Studies and Citizenship in Washington, D.C., on February 3, 2012.

    A growing threat to our freedom of speech is the attempt to stifle religious discussion in the name of preventing “defamation of” or “insults to” religion, especially Islam. Resulting restrictions represent, in effect, a revival of blasphemy laws.
    Few in the West were concerned with such laws 20 years ago. Even if still on some statute books, they were only of historical interest. That began to change in 1989, when the late Ayatollah Khomeini, then Iran’s Supreme Leader, declared it the duty of every Muslim to kill British-based writer Salman Rushdie on the grounds that his novel, The Satanic Verses, was blasphemous. Rushdie has survived by living his life in hiding. Others connected with the book were not so fortunate: its Japanese translator was assassinated, its Italian translator was stabbed, its Norwegian publisher was shot, and 35 guests at a hotel hosting its Turkish publisher were burned to death in an arson attack.
    More recently, we have seen eruptions of violence in reaction to Theo van Gogh’s and Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s film Submission, Danish and Swedish cartoons depicting Mohammed, the speech at Regensburg by Pope Benedict XVI on the topic of faith, reason, and religious violence, Geert Wilders’ film Fitna, and a false Newsweek report that the U.S. military had desecrated Korans at Guantanamo. A declaration by Terry Jones—a deservedly obscure Florida pastor with a congregation of less than 50—that he would burn a Koran on September 11, 2010, achieved a perfect media storm, combining American publicity-seeking, Muslim outrage, and the demands of 24 hour news coverage. It even drew the attention of President Obama and senior U.S. military leaders. Dozens of people were murdered as a result.
    Such violence in response to purported religious insults is not simply spontaneous. It is also stoked and channeled by governments for political purposes. And the objects and victims of accusations of religious insults are not usually Westerners, but minorities and dissidents in the Muslim world. As Nina Shea and I show in our recent book Silenced, accusations of blasphemy or insulting Islam are used systematically in much of that world to send individuals to jail or to bring about intimidation through threats, beatings, and killings.
    The Danish cartoons of Mohammed were published in Denmark’s largest newspaper, Jyllands-Posten, in September 2005. Some were reproduced by newspapers in Muslim countries in order to criticize them. There was no violent response. Violence only erupted after a December 2005 summit in Saudi Arabia of the Organization of the Islamic Conference—now the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). The summit was convened to discuss sectarian violence and terrorism, but seized on the cartoons and urged its member states to rouse opposition. It was only in February 2006—five months after the cartoons were published—that Muslims across Africa, Asia, and the Mideast set out from Friday prayers for often violent demonstrations, killing over 200 people.
    The highly controlled media in Egypt and Jordan raised the cartoon issue so persistently that an astonishing 98 percent of Egyptians and 99 percent of Jordanians—knowing little else of Denmark—had heard of them. Saudi Arabia and Egypt urged boycotts of Danish products. Iran and Syria manipulated riots partly to deflect attention from their nuclear projects. Turkey used the cartoons as bargaining chips in negotiations with the U.S. over appointments to NATO. Editors in Algeria, Jordan, India, and Yemen were arrested—and in Syria, journalist Adel Mahfouz was charged with “insulting public religious sentiment”—for suggesting a peaceful response to the controversy. Lars Vilks’ later and more offensive 2007 Swedish cartoons and Geert Wilders’ 2008 film Fitna led to comparatively little outcry, demonstrating further that public reactions are government-driven.
    Repression based on charges of blasphemy and apostasy, of course, goes far beyond the stories typically covered in our media. Currently, millions of Baha’is and Ahmadis—followers of religions or interpretations that arose after Islam—are condemned en masse as insulters of Islam, and are subject to discriminatory laws and attacks by mobs, vigilantes, and terrorists. The Baha’i leadership in Iran is in prison, and there is no penalty in Iran for killing a Baha’i. In Somalia, al Shebaab, an Islamist group that controls much of that country, is systematically hunting down and killing Christians. In 2009, after allegations that a Koran had been torn, a 1,000-strong mob with Taliban links rampaged through Christian neighborhoods in Punjab, Pakistan’s largest province, killing seven people, six of whom, including two children, were burned alive. Pakistani police did not intervene.
    Throughout the Muslim world, Sunni, Shia, and Sufi Muslims may be persecuted for differing from the version of Islam promulgated by locally hegemonic religious authorities. Saudi Arabia represses Shiites, especially Ismailis. Iran represses Sunnis and Sufis. In Egypt, Shia leaders have been imprisoned and tortured.
    In Afghanistan, Shia scholar Ali Mohaqeq Nasab, editor of Haqooq-i-Zen magazine, was imprisoned by the government for publishing “un-Islamic” articles that criticized stoning as a punishment for adultery. Saudi democracy activists Ali al-Demaini, Abdullah al-Hamed, and Matruk al-Faleh were imprisoned for using “un-Islamic terminology,” such as “democracy” and “human rights,” when calling for a written constitution. Saudi teacher Mohammed al-Harbi was sentenced to 40 months in jail and 750 lashes for “mocking religion” after discussing the Bible in class and making pro-Jewish remarks. Egyptian Nobel prize winner in literature Naguib Mahfouz reluctantly abandoned his lifelong resistance to censorship and sought permission from the clerics of Al-Azhar University to publish his novel Children of Gebelawi, hitherto banned for blasphemy. Mahfouz subsequently lived under constant protection after being stabbed by a young Islamist, leaving him partly paralyzed.
    After Mohammed Younas Shaikh, a member of Pakistan’s Human Rights Commission, raised questions about Pakistan’s policies in Kashmir, he was charged with having blasphemed in one of his classes. In Bangladesh, Salahuddin Choudhury was imprisoned for hurting “religious feelings” by advocating peaceful relations with Israel. In Iran, Ayatollah Boroujerdi was imprisoned for arguing that “political leadership by clergy” was contrary to Islam, and cleric Mohsen Kadivar was imprisoned for “publishing untruths and disturbing public minds” after writing Theories of the State in Shiite Jurisprudence, which questioned the legal basis of Ayatollah Khomeini’s view of government. Other charges brought against Iranians include “fighting against God,” “dissension from religious dogma,” “insulting Islam,” “propagation of spiritual liberalism,” “promoting pluralism,” and, my favorite, “creating anxiety in the minds of … Iranian officials.”
    Muslim reformers cannot escape being attacked even in the West. In 2006, a group called Al-Munasirun li Rasul al Allah emailed over 30 prominent reformers in the West, threatening to kill them unless they repented. Among its targets was Egyptian Saad Eddin Ibrahim, perhaps the best known human rights activist in the Arab world. Another was Ahmad Subhy Mansour, an imam who was imprisoned and had to flee Egypt, in part for his arguments against the death penalty for apostasy. The targets were pronounced “guilty of apostasy, unbelief, and denial of the Islamic established facts” and given three days to “announce their repentance.” The message included their addresses and the names of their spouses and children.
    Mimount Bousakla, a Belgian senator and daughter of Moroccan immigrants, was forced into hiding by threats of “ritual slaughter” for her criticism of the treatment of women in Muslim communities and of fundamentalist influences in Belgian mosques. Turkish-born Ekin Deligoz, the first Muslim member of Germany’s Parliament, received death threats and was placed under police protection after she called for Muslim women to “take off the head scarf.”
    But the story gets worse. Western governments have begun to give in to demands from the Saudi-based OIC and others for controls on speech. In Austria, for instance, Elisabeth Sabbaditsch-Wolf has been convicted of “denigrating religious beliefs” for her comments about Mohammed during a seminar on radical Islam. Canada’s grossly misnamed “human rights commissions” have hauled writers—including Mark Steyn, who teaches as a distinguished fellow in journalism at Hillsdale College—before tribunals to interrogate them about their writings on Islam. And in Holland and Finland, respectively, politicians Geert Wilders and Jussi Halla-aho have been prosecuted for their comments on Islam in political speeches.
    In America, the First Amendment still protects against the criminalization of criticizing Islam. But we face at least two threats still. The first is extra-legal intimidation of a kind already endemic in the Muslim world and increasing in Europe. In 2009, Yale University Press, in consultation with Yale University, removed all illustrations of Mohammed from its book by Jytte Klausen on the Danish cartoon crisis. It also removed Gustave Doré’s 19th-century illustration of Mohammed in hell from Dante’s Inferno. Yale’s formal press statement stressed the earlier refusal by American media outlets to show the cartoons, and noted that their “republication…has repeatedly resulted in violence around the world.”
    Another publisher, Random House, rejected at the last minute a historical romance novel about Mohammed’s wife, Jewel of Medina, by American writer Sherry Jones. They did so to protect “the safety of the author, employees of Random House, booksellers and anyone else who would be involved in distribution and sale of the novel.”
    The comedy show South Park refused to show an image of Mohammed in a bear suit, although it mocked figures from other religions. In response, Molly Norris, a cartoonist for the Seattle Weekly, suggested an “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day.” She quickly withdrew the suggestion and implied that she had been joking. But after several death threats, including from Al-Qaeda, the FBI advised her that she should go into hiding—which she has now done under a new name.
    In 2010, Zachary Chesser, a young convert to Islam, pleaded guilty to threatening the creators of South Park. And on October 3, 2011, approximately 800 newspapers refused to run a “Non Sequitur” cartoon drawn by Wiley Miller that merely contained a bucolic scene with the caption “Where’s Muhammad?”
    Many in our media claim to be self-censoring out of sensitivity to religious feelings, but that claim is repeatedly undercut by their willingness to mock and criticize religions other than Islam. As British comedian Ben Elton observed: “The BBC will let vicar gags pass, but they would not let imam gags pass. They might pretend that it’s, you know, something to do with their moral sensibilities, but it isn’t. It’s because they’re scared.”
    The second threat we face is the specter of cooperation between our government and the OIC to shape speech about Islam. A first indication of this came in President Obama’s Cairo speech in 2009, when he declared that he has a responsibility to “fight against negative stereotypes of Islam whenever they appear.” Then in July of last year in Istanbul, Secretary of State Clinton co-chaired—with the OIC—a “High-Level Meeting on Combating Religious Intolerance.” There, Mrs. Clinton announced another conference with the OIC, this one in Washington, to “exchange ideas” and discuss “implementation” measures our government might take to combat negative stereotyping of Islam. This would not restrict free speech, she said. But the mere fact of U.S. government partnership with the OIC is troublesome. Certainly it sends a dangerous signal, as suggested by the OIC’s Secretary-General, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, when he commented in Istanbul that the Obama administration stands “united” with the OIC on speech issues.
    The OIC’s charter commits it “to combat defamation of Islam.” Its current action plan calls for “deterrent punishments” to counter “Islamophobia.” In 2009, an official OIC organ, the “International Islamic Fiqh [Jurisprudence] Academy,” issued fatwas calling for speech bans, including “international legislation,” to protect “the interests and values of [Islamic] society.” The OIC does not define what speech should be outlawed, but the repressive practices of its leading member states speak for themselves.
    The conference Secretary Clinton announced in Istanbul was held in Washington on December 12-14, 2011, and was closed to the public, with the “Chatham House Rule” restricting the participants (this rule prohibits the identification of who says what, although general content is not confidential). Presentations reportedly focused on America’s deficiencies in its treatment of Muslims and stressed that the U.S. has something to learn in this regard from the other delegations—including Saudi Arabia, despite its ban on Christian churches, its repression of its Shiite population, its textbooks teaching that Jews should be killed, and the fact that it beheaded a woman for sorcery on the opening day of the conference.
    * * *
    The encroachment of de facto blasphemy restrictions in the West threatens free speech and the free exchange of ideas. Nor will it bring social peace and harmony. As comedian Rowan Atkinson warns, such laws produce “a veneer of tolerance concealing a snake pit of unaired and unchallenged views.” Norway’s far-reaching restrictions on “hate speech” did not prevent Anders Behring Breivik from slaughtering over 70 people because of his antipathy to Islam: indeed, his writings suggest that he engaged in violence because he believed that he could not otherwise be heard.
    In the Muslim world, such restrictions enable Islamists to crush debate. After Salman Taseer, the governor of Punjab, was murdered early last year by his bodyguards for opposing blasphemy laws, his daughter Sara observed: “This is a message to every liberal to shut up or be shot.” Or in the words of Nasr Abu-Zayd, a Muslim scholar driven out of Egypt: “Charges of apostasy and blasphemy are key weapons in the fundamentalists’ arsenal, strategically employed to prevent reform of Muslim societies, and instead confine the world’s Muslim population to a bleak, colourless prison of socio-cultural and political conformity.”
    President Obama should put an end to discussion of speech with the OIC. He should declare clearly that in free societies, all views and all religions are subject to criticism and contradiction. As the late Abdurrahman Wahid, former president of Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim country, and head of Nahdlatul Ulama, the world’s largest Muslim organization, wrote in his foreword to Silenced, blasphemy laws
    . . . narrow the bounds of acceptable discourse. . . not only about religion, but also about vast spheres of life, literature, science, and culture in general. . . . Rather than legally stifle criticism and debate—which will only encourage Muslim fundamentalists in their efforts to impose a spiritually void, harsh, and monolithic understanding of Islam upon all the world—Western authorities should instead firmly defend freedom of expression. . . .

    America’s Founders, who had broken with an old order that was rife with religious persecution and warfare, forbade laws impeding free exercise of religion, abridging freedom of speech, or infringing freedom of the press. We today must do likewise.
    (more)
  • MichaelJ 2012/08/13 12:23:06
    MichaelJ
    From my perspective, while I think I will be fine, the rest of you just aren't gonna make it.

    Sorry!
  • JMCC 2012/08/13 11:27:57
    JMCC
    My understanding is that "Mahdi" is equivalent to "Messiah" in the Christian and Jewish faiths, have there been any corresponding studies to see how many people from those faiths also believe that they will see the Messiah in their lifetimes?

    I suspect it would also be quite a high number...
  • DizziNY JMCC 2012/08/13 11:40:33 (edited)
    DizziNY
    +2
    The problem with the mahdi is they think if they cause destruction, it will hasten his coming. Iran, nukes, mahdi return faster.
  • JMCC DizziNY 2012/08/13 11:47:23
    JMCC
    Whilst Jihad "Holy War" is supposed to hasten his return, I do not believe the Iranians would use nukes to achieve this, nor do manly of the security forces that have looked in to this... including a senior Mossad commander.
  • DizziNY JMCC 2012/08/13 11:56:24
    DizziNY
    I'm sorry, I don't trust them.
  • JMCC DizziNY 2012/08/13 12:02:17
    JMCC
    Biggest problem in society at the moment.

    People, banks, governments and nations....
  • DizziNY JMCC 2012/08/13 12:23:13
    DizziNY
    I think corrupt governments are the biggest problem.
  • JMCC DizziNY 2012/08/13 12:25:32
    JMCC
    Indeed, and to corrupt a government, corrupt business and financial sectors are required.
  • D D DizziNY 2012/08/13 13:58:18
    D D
    Exactly! They are working on their plan everday.
  • I don't... DizziNY 2012/08/13 14:08:05
  • I don't... I don't... 2012/08/13 14:15:32 (edited)
    I don't like Obama in office
    I so point out and so too the teachings of Islam to my understanding that is not realy a faith yet A twisted cult or Religion A dictatorial leadership style of Governing standards of Constitutions for a set views of social cultural perspectives of the rule of law .hell bent on racism , Control , unbridled violence & pediphilia by such the Nature of the Belief system of are masters of dismiss information & Propaganda




    http://www.hillsdale.edu/news...
  • DizziNY I don't... 2012/08/13 14:32:35 (edited)
    DizziNY
    +1
    Yep, Hitler liked muslims. I think he even recruited them to fight.

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