“They treated us like infidels”

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"They treated us like infidels"

GRUG­GER: Well, I’m pre­pared to for­get that lit­tle inci­dent.
MEG­LOS: Oh, I hope not.
BRO­TADAC: We’ll remem­ber.
MEG­LOS: Good.

Doc­tor Who Meg­los 1980

You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neigh­bor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your ene­mies, and pray for those who per­se­cute you, that you may be chil­dren of your heav­enly Father, for he makes his sun rise on the bad and the good, and causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust.

For if you love those who love you, what rec­om­pense will you have? Do not the tax col­lec­tors do the same? And if you greet your broth­ers only, what is unusual about that? Do not the pagans do the same? So be per­fect, just as your heav­enly Father is perfect.

Matthew 5:4348

One of the things that get tends to get me into argu­ments with my fel­low anti-​Islamists is my dif­fer­en­ti­at­ing “Islamists” from Islam. Their argu­ment is that Islamists are not doing Islam wrong, they are doing it right.

So when I see things like this from last week from the Iman in Tennessee:

And Qadhi says: “The life and prop­erty of a mushrik [one who wor­ships oth­ers besides Allah] holds no value in the state of jihad.…which means if they don’t say la illaha illa Allah, their lives and prop­erty are halal” — that is, per­mit­ted to be taken by the Muslims.

Qadhi is an imam in Mem­phis. He is also Dean of Aca­d­e­mic Affairs at the Al-​Maghrib Insti­tute. He is a hafiz — that is, he has mem­o­rized the entire Qur’an. He has an M.A. in the Islamic Creed and a B.A. in Islamic Sci­ences from Islamic Uni­ver­sity of Med­ina, as well as a master’s and a doc­tor­ate in Islamic Stud­ies from Yale.

How is it, then, that he mis­un­der­stands jihad so spec­tac­u­larly that he sounds like a greasy Islamophobe?

I’ve attrib­uted it to peo­ple like Qadhi being an Islamist, although Robert Spencer’s ques­tion cer­tainly deserves an answer.

How­ever there was some­thing I saw in the cov­er­age of the Mus­lim Brotherhood’s vio­lence that really struck me.

Here is the base story:

Inhab­i­tants of the Nile island of Manial reported see­ing dozens of bearded Islamists armed with machine­guns, machetes and sticks on Fri­day night before the deadly clashes broke out.

Snipers were spot­ted on rooftops, and medics told AFP they treated some res­i­dents of the nor­mally quiet middle-​class neigh­bor­hood for bul­let wounds with a down­ward trajectory.

Build­ings were pock­marked with bul­let holes. Rocks car­peted the floor and charred tyres showed the feroc­ity of the violence.

What had prompted this, why a Mus­lim Broth­er­hood TV speech:

Res­i­dents say the attack began just min­utes after the Brotherhood’s supreme guide, Mohammed Badie, gave a fiery speech to Mursi sup­port­ers camped out in Cairo’s Nasr City, which was broad­cast live on television.

Sounds like Islamists to me, this cer­tainly seems to sup­port my way of think­ing, at least until the fol­low­ing line:

The attack came min­utes after Badie’s speech. They treated us like infi­dels. They were chant­ing ‘Allahu akbar’ (God is great­est) as they were shoot­ing us,” said Ahmed Fattouh.

Whoa!

Those sen­tences say two things both important:

To the “Mod­er­ate” Mus­lim it says that to the Islamist, you are no dif­fer­ent from any other infi­del if you stand, even unarmed, against them.

To the rest of us, it tells us where we stand. That excla­ma­tion: “They treated us like infi­dels.” sounds a lot like: “How dare they attack us? It’s not like we were infi­dels or some­thing that would be different.”

Chris­tians are required to remem­ber that like any other per­son a Mus­lims are chil­dren of God and their lives and souls are of no less value than any other person.

We are not obliged to for­get that the reverse is not true.

I don’t know if that line will be pulled from the story (I saved a screen shot) but it will take more than that to make me for­get it.

GRUGGER: Well, I’m prepared to forget that little incident.
MEGLOS: Oh, I hope not.
BROTADAC: We’ll remember.
MEGLOS: Good.

Doctor Who Meglos 1980

You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your heavenly Father, for he makes his sun rise on the bad and the good, and causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust.

For if you love those who love you, what recompense will you have? Do not the tax collectors do the same?  And if you greet your brothers only, what is unusual about that? Do not the pagans do the same? So be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect.

Matthew 5:43-48

One of the things that get tends to get me into arguments with my fellow anti-Islamists is my differentiating “Islamists” from Islam.  Their argument is that Islamists are not doing Islam wrong, they are doing it right.

So when I see things like this from last week from the Iman in Tennessee:

And Qadhi says: “The life and property of a mushrik [one who worships others besides Allah] holds no value in the state of jihad….which means if they don’t say la illaha illa Allah, their lives and property are halal” — that is, permitted to be taken by the Muslims.

Qadhi is an imam in Memphis. He is also Dean of Academic Affairs at the Al-Maghrib Institute. He is a hafiz — that is, he has memorized the entire Qur’an. He has an M.A. in the Islamic Creed and a B.A. in Islamic Sciences from Islamic University of Medina, as well as a master’s and a doctorate in Islamic Studies from Yale.

How is it, then, that he misunderstands jihad so spectacularly that he sounds like a greasy Islamophobe?

I’ve attributed it to people like Qadhi being an Islamist, although Robert Spencer’s question certainly deserves an answer.

However there was something I saw in the coverage of the Muslim Brotherhood’s violence that really struck me.

Here is the base story:

Inhabitants of the Nile island of Manial reported seeing dozens of bearded Islamists armed with machineguns, machetes and sticks on Friday night before the deadly clashes broke out.

Snipers were spotted on rooftops, and medics told AFP they treated some residents of the normally quiet middle-class neighborhood for bullet wounds with a downward trajectory.

Buildings were pockmarked with bullet holes. Rocks carpeted the floor and charred tyres showed the ferocity of the violence.

What had prompted this, why a Muslim Brotherhood TV speech:

Residents say the attack began just minutes after the Brotherhood’s supreme guide, Mohammed Badie, gave a fiery speech to Mursi supporters camped out in Cairo’s Nasr City, which was broadcast live on television.

Sounds like Islamists to me, this certainly seems to support my way of thinking, at least until the following line:

“The attack came minutes after Badie’s speech. They treated us like infidels. They were chanting ‘Allahu akbar’ (God is greatest) as they were shooting us,” said Ahmed Fattouh.

Whoa!

Those sentences say two things both important:

To the “Moderate” Muslim it says that to the Islamist, you are no different from any other infidel if you stand, even unarmed, against them.

To the rest of us, it tells us where we stand. That exclamation: “They treated us like infidels.” sounds a lot like: “How dare they attack us? It’s not like we were infidels or something that would be different.”

Christians are required to remember that like any other person a Muslims are children of God and their lives and souls are of no less value than any other person.

We are not obliged to forget that the reverse is not true.

I don’t know if that line will be pulled from the story (I saved a screen shot) but it will take more than that to make me forget it.