Archive for September, 2010

News and Analysis (9/30/10)

Thursday, September 30th, 2010

“Many Muslim scholars say that America is the most shari’ah compliant nation in the world, because it has maintained the vision of its founders as a model of justice, even though the practice has not always reflected this vision”:

As Israel scornfully dismisses a U.N. report that it executed passengers on the Turkish relief ship, Jewish activists contradict Israeli claims that no violence was used against them when soldiers seized the catamaran Irene:

An Indian court rules that “the disputed site is the birthplace of Lord Ram,” and that the demolished mosque had been “built against the tenets of Islam. Thus, it cannot have the character of a mosque”:

Actions have consequences; Pakistani reacts against NATO raids into Pakistan with what the CIA calls Blowback:

Exercising his freedom of speech, Glen Friedman hangs an Islamic banner (along with 8 others) in a window that “gazes directly down onto the ‘Ground Zero’ site”:

The founding of the University of Notre Dame and Brandeis University signaled a changing tide in public opinion for Catholics and Jews; can Zaytuna College do the same for the Muslim American community?

A interview with the a GOP nominee for the House of Representatives in South Carolina demonstrates (too well) an entertaining combination of politics and ignorance:

News and Analysis (9/29/10)

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

In a 7-6 vote, a Texas body that influences the choice of textbooks around the nation “managed to undermine Christian-Muslim relations, hamper religious literacy and impose ignorance on our kids at a time when they need knowledge to live and work in a competitive and integrated world”:

A conservative Muslim finds Americans can be very accommodating in the workplace if you are respectfully open about your religion:

“When asked what law prohibited the Muslims from having a burial site on their own land, [the mayor’s] response was: “I don’t know what the exact law is'”:

“We have as Americans a right to be here, and we also have a responsibility to build bridges of reconciliation with the families of those who died on 11 September” — Sharif El-Gamal, developer of Park51:

A clash between the West and the Muslim world serves “no one except extremists and those who hold perverted ideas on both sides” — Egypt’s Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul Gheit:

News and Analysis (9/28/10)

Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

The ugly underbelly of the military occupation shows itself in the reported premeditated murder of three Afghan civilians for sport:

“We stand in the proud Jewish tradition of justice, of championing the rights of the downtrodden, of implacable opposition to prejudice and racism,” read a statement by European Jews for a Just Peace:

“Independent experts have warned that both sides are building up their forces in anticipation of an outbreak of hostilities over the referendum”:

“We must urgently reclaim the center and the moral high ground that has been usurped from us,” says Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak:

“”I told the court during arguments that there was no chance of a settlement. The High Court should be allowed to pronounce its judgment” — Zaffaryab Jilani, a lawyer for the Sunni Waqf Board:

Australia elects its first Muslim MP, who while downplaying his own faith, mentions the significance of his office to Australia’s Muslim minority …

… meanwhile Europeans are united by “hostility to foreigners, especially Muslims” and polls indicate “a right-leaning party could now receive up to 20 percent of the vote, which would put it in Parliament” …

News and Analysis (9/27/10)

Monday, September 27th, 2010

A Ph.D. student explains the foreign policy establishment’s handicap in “forecasting religiously inspired events (the Iranian revolution), identifying hostile actors (al-Qaeda and its ilk), and developing constructive partnerships (Ayatollah Sistani in Iraq, among others). We need to understand and respect religion, as it forms the beating heart of the countries we are trying to engage”:

A teacher says the ban “attests primarily to narrow-mindedness and an unwillingness to explore new modes of thinking”:

For 82-year-old Reuven Moskovitz it’s his a “sacred duty” as a [Holocaust] survivor “to protest against the persecution, the oppression and the imprisonment of so many people in Gaza, including more than 800,000 children”:

A superhero with a disability: “a Muslim boy who lost his legs in a landmine accident and later becomes the Silver Scorpion after discovering he has the power to control metal with his mind”:

“All groups — Sindhi, Pakhtun, Baloch, Seraiki and Punjabi – should get an equal share in [blame for] corruption,” says Abdul Qayum Jatoi, the now resigned Minister for Defense Production:

The election must proceed “without any coercion or diktat and in an atmosphere of integrity and transparency” — Vice President Ali Osman Taha

“Muslims fought imperial armies, not civilians, and were forbidden to harm non-combatants or destroy property”:

News and Analysis (9/24/10)

Friday, September 24th, 2010

Iran accused the US of human rights violations today over plans by the state of Virginia to execute a woman for the first time in nearly 100 years, despite claims that she has severe learning difficulties”:

A poll “by the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation [indicates]  no more than 5% of Turks are hardcore Islamists and 7% strident secularists. Most fall in the middle, presumably looking for common ground”:

Is America threatened by “stealth jihad” or by open bigotry?

Both Republicans and Democrats “agree the group has the right to build the mosque, but … disagree on whether it’s appropriate to do so”:

“When fools from two villages get into a silly spitting match, it eventually drags both villages into a bloody match if each gets offended by what the fools of the other village are saying”:

News and Analysis (9/23/10)

Thursday, September 23rd, 2010

In the face of what her sister calls the judge’s bias, Aafia Siqqiqui’s advice to supporters is: “Don’t get angry…. Forgive Judge Berman”:

Religious studies in public primary and secondary education would increase cultural literacy, and may have a dampening effect on xenophobia from ignorance …

… however religious studies in public schools would only worsen turf battles and politics out of public school boards:

In a country where “[s]ecurity forces – in full riot gear and plain clothes – always outnumber protestors,” even a small demonstration is big news that “some Egyptians at least, are not intimidated by the system anymore”:

A rebel announcement that they would be satisfied with “a status similar to a U.S. state” bodes well for peace:

As Obama continues to view the peace talks through rose-colored glasses,

“Some staunch supporters of the establishment have made no secret of their opinions, saying the party is finished”:

News and Analysis (9/22/10)

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010

Woodward reports that U.S. intelligence diagnosed Karzai as a manic depressive” and Pakistan as a “dishonest partner,” and despite Obama’s insistence, the military never did come up with an exit plan:

“Hamas refuses to say who has been arrested, a policy that has sparked a furious rumor mill since the arrests began earlier in September”:

French sculptor Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi originally intended the Statue of Liberty (“New York’s most prominent Muslim”) to be placed at the entrance to the Suez Canal:

Seven employees of a uranium mine in the former French colony of “Niger run by French state-owned nuclear power giant Areva, were abducted by armed men”:

Calling “for a national week of dialogue starting around Oct. 22, when mosques will hold open houses … [to] “allay tensions caused by Park51 and to ‘build bridges of understanding that unite and strengthen our nation’ “:

“86.7% of Egyptian families who contribute to charity, 97% bestow part of their income to fulfill the zakat. The study adds that 75.3% of the spending came in the form of gifts, donations, iftar banquets during Ramadan”:

With “the feel of a real mosque … in the epicenter of capitalism — New York City, the World Trade Center — … you had this island of spiritualism.” — Zafar Sareshwala, a financial executive for the Parsoli Corporation:

News and Analysis (9/21/10)

Tuesday, September 21st, 2010

The absence of an Islamic contract, which should be evidence the women were forced into marriage is instead used as an excuse to disqualify the victims’ children from Iraqi citizenship:

“If society inhibits women from whatever they want to wear, that is a problem,” says Silma Ihram of the Muslim Woman’s Network of Australia, stressing the importance of individual freedom of choice, whether it be to dye her hair orange or to wear a burqa …

… while in the only province in Indonesia trying to enforce a Muslim dress code, women protest that the state is only trying to distract from more pressing issues, like the economy:

Limited knowledge and experience of scholars, “the majority of [whom] haven’t gone outside their village”, explains the radicalization of small town mullahs; (trans-oceanic traveler Pastor Jones doesn’t have this excuse):

Khoji Akbar Turajonzoda says blaming Islamists for every problem “only makes heroes of those who bring no good;” the former supreme mufti seeks a “a secular, but not an anti-religious, Tajikistan” …

… and “chronic poverty and a Soviet-style crackdown on religion is furthering the growth of radical Islam in Tajikistan”:

“Mahdi Bray, a Muslim leader from MAS Freedom, said that he believes the Park51 Islamic center should be seen as “a symbol of reconciliation, a symbol of unity and a symbol of mutual respect”:

News and Analysis (9/20/10)

Monday, September 20th, 2010

The quandary, even violence, that may be provoked by the ruling in the Babri mosque controversy underlines the difficulty of defending property rights in areas of emotionally charged communal conflict:

“We have to realize that God’s law is not an alternative to the human mind, nor is it supposed to put it out of action…. Openness is life, while being closed off and isolated is suicidal”:

“In the midst of worsening violence around the country, and with the second post-invasion parliamentary election on September 18, writer and comedian Hanif Hangam says his show is the only program exposing politicians’ corruption”:

“I do not know any individuals or structures here that could be defined as Wahhabi. It is the attempt of political labeling and stigmatizing people who want reforms” — Ramadan Ramadani, imam of the Isa Beg mosque in Skopje:

Khamenei’s plea “what the Holy Koran has taught us is the opposite of what [some Americans allegedly] did … was ignored by his followers in Kashmir”:

With over 4 million Arabs in the West Bank and Gaza and perhaps another one million part of Israel’s current  7.2 million people, “Annexation” would only hasten the arrival date of an Arab majority in an expanded Israel:

News and Analysis (9/17/10)

Friday, September 17th, 2010

The Guardian speculates that the sale of “84 new F-15 fighter jets, 70 upgraded F-15s, 70 Apaches, 72 Black Hawks and 36 ‘Little Birds,'” to Saudi  is a prelude to big arms sale to Israel:

A brand-new shopping center, financed by Hamas, opens in the Gaza Strip, limited in its wares by the continuing Israeli embargo:

The Muslim football star “embraced the attention as a way to share about his faith and perhaps shed some positive light on Islam”:

“Arab peace-making is largely intended for the benefit of the Arab states involved in the negotiations not the Palestinian cause. The search just for peace is not enough. The search must be for just peace”:

“But the Irish narrative is also one of good cheer for the Muslims.” The fighting Irish … “were hardworking and industrious, and their natural genius flourished in the opportunities afforded them in a free and open society”: