Sunday, 19 September 2004
Review: Onward Muslim Soldiers

Cruxnews.com By Michael S. Rose

Not only does Islam fail to give way to Western laws and customs. Quite the contrary, as time goes by it tries to impose its own law on the West.





Twice convicted of inciting racial hatred after she criticized the ritual sacrifice of sheep by Muslims during their Eid el-Kebir holy day, Brigitte Bardot is making news again this year for much the same reason. Two French human rights groups took swift legal action against the provocative French screen siren, charging that her latest book Crî dans le silence is full of racist attacks against Muslims—though, of course, Muslims are of all races.

The evidence of her latest offense: Bardot denounces the “Islamicization” of France and blames the degeneration of French society on her country’s liberal immigration laws. “For twenty years we have submitted to a dangerous and uncontrolled underground infiltration,” she writes in her new book that became an instant bestseller in France this summer. “Not only does [Islam] fail to give way to our laws and customs. Quite the contrary, as time goes by it tries to impose its own law on us.”

Naked facts would seem to bear out BB’s contentions. For example, practically all of France’s 1,200 mosques are funded by foreign governments, and out of the country’s 230 major imams, none is French. According to journalist Christopher Caldwell, “imams are often chosen by foreign governments for loyalty to their ideological priorities,” priorities that are decidedly not those of France. Anyone who has been to Marseilles recently will understand what Bardot means by “Islamicization.” The Muslim population of France doubled between 1989 and 1998, and if population trends continue, the eldest daughter of Christendom could have a Muslim majority by 2040 or earlier.

Back in the U.S.A., Robert Spencer has topped the aging sex kitten with a new book of his own. Onward Christian Soldiers is jam-packed with some of the most politically incorrect statements about Islam (e.g., “Jihad and killing is the head of Islam.”), though it is instructive to note that many of these statements, like the example above, are direct quotes from Muslim religious leaders themselves. Such is Spencer’s tack in providing his critical analysis of Islamic writings, history, and current practice.

Irony abounds. While Brigitte Bardot is being sued for the third time by French human rights groups advocating on behalf of Islam, Spencer charges that it is Islam itself, its traditional teachings and modern practice, that not only incites hatred—hatred of non-Muslims (infidels)—but also incites violence. Islamic intolerance, he says, plays no small role in our present clash of civilizations.

Last November, for example, Nigerian journalist Isioma Daniel penned an article for the Lagos daily This Day about the Miss World pageant, which was to be held in Nigeria in December. She asked, “What would Mohamed think? In all honesty, he probably would have chosen a wife from one of them.” Muslims were outraged, including the Muslim official in the Nigerian province of Zamfara who called for the journalist to be killed for her “blasphemy.” Riots ensued and Muslims set ablaze the offices of This Day. Approximately 500 people were killed in the rampage, and since then Christians have been fleeing the area. Such is what President Bush expediently called a “religion of peace.”

Again, Spencer’s thesis that Islam is an intolerant religion is not a politically correct vision, nor one that is widely accepted among scholars—big surprise. Despite the fact that he provides dozens of supportive examples throughout his well-documented book, Onward Muslim Soldiers will undoubtedly come under attack as being filled with “racist attacks” against Muslims. To be sure, if he had published his book in France he would be facing the same sort of legal offensive by hysterical rights groups that make a living out of defending the status quo of European multicultural rot.

The most absorbing point, if not the main point, of Onward Muslim Soldiers is that most Western countries, and especially France, are serving the twin gods of multiculturalism and tolerance to their own demise. The big question with respect to the Muslim immigration to Europe and America: How can a tolerant society (as characterized by the West) survive the presence of an intolerant minority (as characterized by Islam)?

Dutch politician Pim Fortuyn asked exactly that question just before he was assassinated last year on the eve of Holland’s national elections. Fortuyn, a self-professed homosexual and unapologetic libertine (whose kitchen featured portraits of Marx and Lenin) was consistently vilified by Europeans as “far right” despite the fact that in most ways he supported the postmodern, post-Christian Holland of hashish cafes and licensed prostitutes. What set him apart? Fortuyn believed that traditional Islamic values are incompatible with the liberal, secular societies of the West and warned that immigration from Islamic countries threatens to change Dutch values inalterably. He once called Islam “a backward religion,” arguing that while Christianity and Judaism have gone through the laundromat of humanism and enlightenment, as much cannot be said of Islam.

Spencer claims it was partly Fortuyn’s flamboyant homosexuality that led him to espouse such a controversial position. The Dutch politician pointed out that in the Netherlands homosexuality is treated on par with heterosexuality. In Islam, not so. Tired of being insulted by Muslims who called him “lower than a pig” for being a gay man, Fortuyn proposed curbs on Muslim immigration to Holland and called for the assimilation of the Muslims already there into the secular, multiethnic, multicultural, tolerant framework of modern Dutch society. “We need to integrate these people; they need to accept that, in Holland, gender equality and tolerance of different lifestyles is very, very important to us.”

Fortuyn’s assassin, Volkert van der Graaf, believing that Dutch Muslims are an oppressed minority, felt that the rise of Fortuyn on the national political scene signaled the advent of fascism. He explained that he shot the Dutch renegade in order to save the Netherlands from such a neo-Hitlerian mentality.

Fortuyn, however, was able to vocalize what his Dutch brethren are unwilling to accept, that most Muslims commonly believe that the only legitimate basis for a society—and that would apply to Dutch society as well as anywhere—is the Sharia, the Islamic law that the Taliban was so strictly enforcing. Spencer quotes an imam in Holland: “The Sharia does not have to adopt to the modern world because these are divine laws. People have to bend to the Sharia.” Defense of the Sharia includes, among other things, the defense of stoning—not only for the sins of Sodom, but also for adultery, a staple of modern Dutch life. Moreover, Muslim cultural features such as arranged marriages, revenge killings, and female circumcision (including sewing up the woman’s vagina from top to bottom) are diametrically opposed to Western values. Fortuyn’s fatal mistake was to warn Holland against the Trojan horse of intolerance it is inviting into its society in the name of tolerance and multiculturalism.

Tensions between Islam and European secularism are also apparent in the realm of women’s rights. If the principles of classic Islamic law hold sway, women will be reduced to second-class citizens.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, elected to the Dutch parliament in January, has criticized Islam precisely on this point. Hirsi Ali, a young Somali immigrant who considers herself an “ex-Muslim,” charges that it is Islam at its core (not simply so-called “radical Islam”) that is oppressive to women. She refers both to verses in the Qur’an as well as modern-day Muslim practices. For example, Sura 4:34 of the Qur’an says women should obey the male members of their families—even if, say, they are forbidden to leave their homes—and if they do not obey then the husband may beat his wife: “As for those [women] from whom ye fear rebellion, admonish them and banish them to beds apart, and scourge them.” According to Hirsi Ali, there are millions of Muslim men who carry out that simple verse, beating and oppressing their women in the name of Islam. For daring to voice such a scandalous testimony, the young Somali was forced to flee her country under threat of death, becoming a latter-day Salman Rushdie.

To be sure, Spencer duly recognizes that some Muslims willfully secularize, but he takes great pains to point out that many other Muslims not only reject the idea of assimilating with the prevailing secular cultures of the West, but see as their goal nothing less than the establishment of Islamic states in Europe. If the mounds of evidence piled up in Onward are to be believed, the groundwork is already being laid in more ways than one.

Turkey’s Catholic Archbishop Giuseppe Bernardini warns, for example, that millions of Saudi petro-dollars have been used not to create work in the poor Islamic nations of North African or the Middle East, but to build mosques and cultural centers in the heart of Christian countries with Islamic immigration, even including Rome, at the very heart of Christendom.

How can we ignore this blatant Muslim program of “expansion and reconquest,” asks the archbishop, especially when radical Muslims have been so forthright about their intentions? Bernardini recounted a conversation he had with a Muslim leader who said to him: “Thanks to your democratic laws, we will invade you. Thanks to our religious laws, we will dominate you.”

In London, Sheikh Omar Bakri openly declared his intention to transform the West into Dar Al-Islam and to establish Sharia on British soil. “I want to see the black flag of Islam flying over Downing Street,” he has said. In fact, his al-Muhajiroun group is dedicated to this goal. Likewise, Abu Hamza, widely quoted as saying there’s nothing wrong with Osama bin Laden or his beliefs, headed up a similar organization called Supporters of Sharia, dedicated to the Islamicization of Britain.

Muslim clerics like Bakri and Hamza (both immigrant British citizens, by the way), have not exactly been shy about their modus operandi: to exploit the Western system which guarantees them free speech, well-being, and respect for religious rights in order to ultimately impose their intolerant (and in many cases barbaric) laws on that same Western society.

This clever brand of jihad confirms Bardot’s contention that “Not only does [Islam] fail to give way to our laws and customs. Quite the contrary, as time goes by it tries to impose its own law on us.”

Thus Spencer devotes a good deal of his book to an in-depth look at the Islamic concept of jihad as it is preached today in mosques around the world. He carefully examines traditional Islamic teachings to reveal the advocacy of violence justified by religion. In his analysis, jihad is a violent doctrine of theology, a tradition, and a legal system within Islam. He answers critics who hold that jihad is not holy war by saying that they are unwilling to face uncomfortable facts of Islamic history and theology. For example, Muhammad himself taught—and he was very clear about this—that jihad is about making war (not peace), about fighting unbelievers in order to establish the supremacy and hegemony of the Islamic political and social system, not just the religion.

It’s clear from Onward Muslim Soldiers that there are more than enough radical Muslim clerics out there to dispel the myth of a tolerant Islam (in fact, Sheik Muhammad Hisham Kabbani toured the American mosques in 1999 and estimated that 80 percent of them are under control of radical extremist Muslims who teach violent jihad). Rather than being “a religion of peace,” Spencer presents a pretty convincing argument that Islam is intolerant and violent at its core, as much in its traditional doctrine as in its modern-day practice. In the words of Ibn Warraq, “unless a reformed, tolerant, liberal kind of Islam emerges soon, perhaps the final battle will be between Islam and Western democracy.” Says Spencer: This is the war we’re in now.






More Book Reviews
The big question with respect to the Muslim immigration to Europe and America: How can a tolerant society (as characterized by the West) survive the presence of an intolerant minority (as characterized by Islam)?

Tensions between Islam and European secularism are also apparent in the realm of women’s rights.
Turkey's Archbishop Giuseppe Bernardini recounted a conversation he had with a Muslim leader who said to him: “Thanks to your democratic laws, we will invade you. Thanks to our religious laws, we will dominate you.”
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