News and Analysis (12/25/14)

Why do Muslim countries such as the UAE use Christmas decorations in public spaces when Muslims don’t celebrate Christmas? …

… Meanwhile, Linda Sarsour explains that some Muslims celebrate Christmas because “Jesus is very central to Islam and is someone I take great inspiration from”:

… and “Rabbi Jason Miller, Imam Shamsi Ali and Fr. James Martin joined HuffPost Live host Caroline Modarressy-Tehrani to discuss what Jesus means to them.”:

Atheist C.J. Werleman “had intended to be as scathing of the Koran as I had been with the Bible, but” his research made it “glaringly obvious that New Atheists … and Islamophobes in general … were equally culpable of taking Koranic verses out of context as were terrorist groups like al-Qaeda” …

… dividing himself from those accusing actor Ben Affleck of “living in a ‘unicorn-like world’ for his critique of those who engage in uninformed polemic to suggest Islam is “an intolerable religion”:

“Several people close to the defendants … say that [they] are not being charged for defying the driving ban but for opinions they voiced online. They declined to elaborate on the specific charges due to the sensitivity of the case. All spoke anonymously for fear of government reprisal”:

What does  “Moderate Islam” mean? “The imperialist trend insists that Muslims condemn Muslim fanaticism, but do nothing to oppose the extremist agenda of the military industrial complex that too often (mis)guides American foreign policy or the prison industrial complex”:

This defendant was  defendant “was accused of apostasy ‘for speaking lightly of the Prophet Mohammed…. [He] explained that it was ‘not his intention to harm the prophet’ … but the judge agreed to the prosecutor’s request for the death penalty” even though “Mauritania … has not executed anyone since 1987”:

The number of protesters alarms German politicians because of support from far-right groups and concerns that anti-foreigner sentiment might be rising despite PEIGA claims that “they are protesting only against extremism and not against immigrants or Islam itself”:

After the Iraq war, all Iraqis have been experiencing injustices in the name of democracy, regardless of religion. Pope Francis “challenged Muslim religious leaders Tuesday to ‘unanimously’ condemn the violent persecution of Christians in the Middle East, as well as killing in the name of God.”:

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