Turkey and the West Part Ways on ‘Charlie Hebdo’

Turkey and the West Part Ways on ‘Charlie Hebdo’

Turkish reactions to the massacre in Paris once again reveal a growing gap with the West. While leaders and commentators in western countries immediately condemned the terrorists and presented a broadly unified stance denouncing the shocking attack on Charlie Hebdo as an act of violence against freedom of the press, Turkish leaders came up with a starkly different diagnosis: They interpreted last week’s events as yet another assault on Islam itself.

Freedom of the press, it would seem, is not high on the Turkish agenda at the moment. When the secular leftist newspaper Cumhuriyet decided to run a special issue of Charlie Hebdo today to show its solidarity, police raided the newspaper’s printing plant. Cumhuriyet said the police allowed distribution to proceed after verifying that Charlie Hebdo‘s controversial cover featuring the Prophet Muhammad wasn’t being published. Politicians were quick to follow up. “Those who publish some images in reference to our sublime prophet and thus disregard Muslims’ sacred [feelings] are involved in open provocation and agitation,” Deputy Prime Minister Yalcin Akdogan said. Not only the ruling party but the judiciary, too, is offended by the Turkish media’s message of solidarity. A court in Diyarbakir has ordered the Turkish telecommunications authority to ban access to web pages showing Charlie Hebdo‘s front cover with the image of the Prophet Mohammed. Continue reading

Je Suis Charlie (Until Je Get Scared)

 

Je Suis Charlie (Until Je Get Scared)

The New York Times tweeted today that the satirical French magazine Charlie Hebdo, which found itself the victim of a gruesome massacre, “long tested the limits of satire.” I did not know that there were limits to satire or that the Gray Lady, which often unintentionally engages in the art form, had managed to uncover them. The implication here is one that will surely become as tediously explicit in the hours and days ahead as it is familiar: If you “provoke” Muslims by mocking their religion, then you’ve only yourself to blame for what happens next. Continue reading

ISIS leader calls on Muslims in Ramadan message to build ‘Islamic state’

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi demands that all Muslims around the world pledge allegiance to him in audiotape.

By Qassim Abdul-Zahra, Sinan Salaheddin Jul. 1, 2014 | 8:27 PM

A member loyal to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) waves an ISIS flag in Raqqa.

A member loyal to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) waves an ISIS flag in Raqqa June 29, 2014. Photo by Reuters

AP – The leader of the extremist group that has swept over much of northern Syria and Iraq called on Muslims Tuesday to immigrate to the territory his group has seized to help build an Islamic state.

The 19-minute audiotape from Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi comes two days after his organization, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria unilaterally declared the establishment of an Islamic state, or caliphate, in the land it controls. It also proclaimed al-Baghdadi the caliph, and demanded that all Muslims around the world pledge allegiance to him. Continue reading

Nasrallah: We Will Target Tel Aviv and Other Areas in Israel With Thousands of Rockets

Iranian regime President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Syrian dictator Assad and Hezbollah terror leader Hassan Nasrallah met for dinner in 2011 in Damascus. Hassan Nasrallah (far right) has made few public appearances since 2006. This dinner was held shortly after US Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs William Burns met with Assad in Damascus.

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Hezbollah terror group leader Hassan Nasrallah told supporters the “Lebanese resistance” will target Tel Aviv and other areas in Israel with thousands of missiles if attacked.

Fars News reported:

Secretary-General of the Lebanese Hezbollah Movement Seyed Hassan Nasrallah said the Lebanese resistance will target Tel Aviv and other areas in Israel with thousands of missiles in case of a possible Israeli aggression against Lebanon.

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Purdah: Separation of the sexes in northern Nigeria

Examples of hijabs in different regions

Examples of hijabs in different regions (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Written by Nicola Hugo (1)

Purdah is the strict enforcement of seclusion rules upon (typically) married Muslim women. They are expected to remain indoors, except in extreme cases such as to receive medical treatment or to attend marriages and funerals with their husbands’ permission. If women do venture out, they need to be completely covered by a hijab, and in some instances also escorted. Violating these regulations may result in accusation of promiscuity or even divorce.(2)

Human rights bodies have criticised the practice, saying that it limits women’s social, economic and political participation. But supporters of purdah say that it is an act of honour, respect and dignity. They point out that women find creative ways to participate, especially economically. This paper will attempt to better contextualise these opposing views by focusing on purdah in northern Nigeria. It also aims to challenge the Eurocentric image of these women as passive and counterproductive victims.

Purdah in Nigeria

Purdah in northern Nigeria was introduced by the Islamic jihad (religious struggle) led by Usmandan Fodio during the 18th century. This jihad took control of several major Hausa states, eventually establishing the Sokoto Caliphate, a Muslim empire.(3)  At the beginning of the 19th century Islam was well established in all the major centres of the Hausa and Borno states. However, a group of Muslim intellectuals were dissatisfied because rulers in these states allowed the practice of Islam to be mixed with traditional religion. This meant that nowhere was the Islamic law observed in full.(4) This resulted in the Sokoto jihad that was fought, in a series of emirates, between 1804 and 1808. It was led by young men under the leadership of a Shaikh and young men from Fulani pastoralist families.(5) (The Fulani are a people of obscure origins who expanded eastward from lower Senegal in the 14th century. By the 16th century they were proceeding into Hausaland.)(6)

One of the aims of these (and later) jihads was to eradicate syncretic practices, including the free mixing of the sexes. Free mixing of adult females with non-family members of the opposite sex needed to be avoided due to the evil or negative potential consequences of such mixing; infidelity for example. It is an Islamic imperative that women’s modesty be strictly guarded.(7) Enforcement of purdah thus aims to create a pure or chaste society and serves as a measure to prevent the disintegration of the family, further giving men legitimate control over their wives’ behaviour.(8) This has caused profound changes in the social, political and cultural conditions of Muslim Hausa women in the area.(9)

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Senior Sheikh At Jihadist Rally in Jordan: We Need Men To Carry Out The Plan Of Instating Allah’s Rule On Earth

clip_image002 June 4, 2012        Special Dispatch No.4771

The following report is a complimentary offering from MEMRI‘s Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM).

Subscription information is available at http://subscriptions.memri.org/content/en/member_registr_jttm.htm.

A 90-minute video posted on YouTube[1] documents a jihadist rally in Jordan, dedicated to the cause of freeing mujahideen incarcerated in Jordanian prisons, chief among them being Sheikh Abu Muhammad Al-Maqdisi. The most prominent speaker at the conference, jihadist sheikh Abu Muhammad Al-Tahawi, called on those present to support the imprisoned mujahideen, and described the Jordanian regime as heretical, corrupt and oppressive. He urged Arabs and Muslim regimes to take a lesson from the collapse of regimes in the region, and advised them to stop relying on NATO, return to Islam, and reconcile with their peoples – otherwise their future would be in jeopardy. Finally, he called upon the rally participants not to be afraid of these regimes, and to join the efforts to establish an Islamic caliphate and to instate Allah‘s law throughout the world.

The following are the main points of his speech.

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Al-Tahawi opens his address by describing a letter he received from Sheikh Abu Muhammad Al-Maqdisi, which spoke of the anguish and torture suffered by the mujahideen in prison and of the discrimination they suffer compared to the other prisoners, and called on everyone to support them.

Al-Tahawi states that the mujahideen are in prison for raising the banner of “there is no god but Allah,” and for carrying out the “great task” of defending the blood and the land of the Muslims – whereas the regime that imprisoned them is a “jahili and horribly corrupt regime… whose key officials have sold out the state and its citizens. With one hand they kill and with the other they rob the poor of their livelihood.” The sheikh declares that the Arab regimes are even worse than the Western ones, because the latter regimes, though heretical, are at least uncorrupt, while the Arab regimes are both heretical and corrupt, in addition to oppressing and starving their peoples.

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Qaradawi Organization Rasies $6.5 Million For New Islamic Endowment; Qaradawi Donates Large Amount

QassamRocket

QassamRocket (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Gulf media is reporting that a recent charity dinner for an Islamic endowment sponsored by the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS) has raised over $6.5 million dollars for the project. Of particular interest is that the Gulf News report indicates that Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi personally donated over half a million dollars of that amount:

May 15, 2012 A charity dinner in Qatar has raised QR 24 million ($6,586,170) for the ‘Renaissance of a Nation’ endowment project launched by the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS). The project aims to raise enough funds to help the union, headed by Doha-based scholar Yusuf Al Qaradawi, be financially self-sustained. The dinner was attended by Qatar’s Crown Prince Shaikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani, ministers, diplomats and business people, local Arabic daily Al Sharq reported on Tuesday. ‘Your generous donations and the funds raised by selling some rare items will help us build a tower and acquire buildings and shares for the endowments of the union,’ Shaikh Ali Mohieddeen Al Qardaghi, the union secretary general, said in his address. The union has plans to invest up to $100 million within the next 10 years to help secure financial returns that will be used for its charity work. Antique carpets, clothing The sale of historic carpets and Ottoman-era clothes and copies of the Holy Quran from Turkey raised QR17 million. The amount was topped by a QR 5 million ($1,372,120) donation by Shaikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani, owner of Al Faisal Without Borders Charity Foundation who was awarded the Personality of the Year distinction by the union.  Al Qaradawi donated another SR2 million ($548,847). Al Faisal Without Borders Charity Foundation was set up in June 2011 by Shaikh Faisal, a prominent businessman, as a foundation ‘for the benefit of all, at home and abroad, without any reservation or discrimination on the basis of nationality, race or religion.’

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