From Robert Spencer:
“We sent a clear message to the West regarding the red lines that should not be crossed.”
Islamic spokesman, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu
That sounds like the statement of a victor in a war, dictating terms to the vanquished. And it may well be: free speech is under attack in Canadathe prosecution of Macleans Magazine and author Mark Steynand in the United States as well by Islamic governments and groups whose goal is to end free speech when it is aimed at exposing the truth about Islamic terrorism and its roots. Their goal is positively Orwellian. Replace “Big Brother” with the “Organization of the Islamic Conference” and you have the world the OIC wants to impose on us all.
Apparently Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, Secretary General of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, believes that his powerful, multinational Islamic organization has already won the battle over free speech. Last week he boasted that “the OIC has become an indispensable player at the international level, in many domains.” Notably, he said, the OIC, which comprises 57 Muslim governments in the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and South America, has been actively “defending the image of Islam, and combating the phenomenon of Islamophobia.”
The OIC, said Ihsanoglu, has placed the issue of Islamophobia “at the top of our priorities and preoccupations, while conducting a large-scale worldwide effort to confront it.”
They’ve already accomplished a great deal. “We have been able to achieve convincing progress,” observed Ihsanoglu, at “the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, and the UN General Assembly.”
That is true: Associated Press reported Thursday that “Muslim countries have won a battle to prevent Islam from being criticized during debates by the UN Human Rights Council.” Council President Doru-Romulus Costea explained: “This council is not prepared to discuss religious matters in depth, consequently we should not do it.” AP noted that “while Costea’s ban applies to all religions, it was prompted by Muslim countries complaining about references to Islam.” And Ihsanoglu said: “The United Nations General Assembly adopted similar resolutions against the defamation of Islam.”
Now they’re setting their sights on the United States. “We have established an OIC Group in Washington D.C.,” Ihsanoglu explained, “with the aim of playing a more active role in engaging American policy makers.” This will involve agitating for laws restricting free speech: “And in confronting the Danish cartoons and the Dutch film ‘Fitna,’” (which showed Muslims acting on violent passages in the Qur’an), Ihsanoglu continued, “we sent a clear message to the West regarding the red lines that should not be crossed.” Ihsanoglu says it’s already working: “As we speak, the official West and its public opinion are all now well-aware of the sensitivities of these issues. They have also started to look seriously into the question of freedom of expression from the perspective of its inherent responsibility, which should not be overlooked.”
In other words, “irresponsible” speechwhich is defined as speech he disagrees withshould be banned.
This is simple to comprehend. I can't say that I'm surprised. Merely a lowly blogger, I felt the push toward this awful direction heating up about 3 years ago. When I first voiced my concerns over this matter of freedom of speech, friends and family rolled eyes. Interestingly, few of them are rolling their eyes now, but they are still not willing to take any risks or to buck political correctness except over dinner in a hushed whisper even after a few drinks.
Ihsanoglu is right that such a “message” has found a receptive audience, even in the West. A Rasmussen Reports telephone survey published in mid-June found that while 88% of Americans support the right to free speech (only 88%?), only 53% oppose banning “hate speech.” Significantly, however, only 11% support bans on “hate speech” when they’re reminded that “hate speech” is in the eye of the beholder, and that the government would be deciding what constitutes hate speech and what doesn’t. That is, the government, or the OIC making the government dance to its tune.
“Hate speech” is also a tool to prevent the dissemination of what have more of a claim to be called “inconvenient truths” than anything Al Gore has ever been involved with. Mark Steyn is on trial in Canada right now for telling the truth. The renowned Canadian journalist and politician Peter Worthington commented acidly about the Steyn proceedings: “Truth is no defence before a Human Rights tribunal. Steyn’s accuracy is not at issue, just his opinions. Under hate legislation, opinions are punishable if they offend a particular group. If you think about it, this is an abomination.”
Indeed it isand Steyn is not the only victim. The contentious exchange at the UN Human Rights Council that led to the prohibition of criticism of Islam involved a presentation by David G. Littman of the Association for World Education of information about female genital mutilation, the stoning of adulteresses, and honor killings in Islamic countries. The first victims of the ban on such talk at the Human Rights Council will be those who suffer from such barbaritiesand will now have no one who is allowed to speak for them without dissembling about the causes and extent of the problem.
It is telling that when Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu and the OIC think of “defending the image of Islam,” they don’t mean working in Muslim communities to combat the influence of the jihad ideology or Islamic supremacism among Muslims worldwide. They don’t have in mind developing any large scale initiatives to combat Osama bin Laden’s version of Islam, and to teach Muslims how to resist the jihadist appeal. The organization hasn’t ever acknowledged the obvious fact that it could end “Islamophobia” right away by rejecting Islam’s doctrines of violence, supremacism and conquest and moving strongly against those Muslims who are acting upon those doctrines.
Instead, they have made themselves the enemies of honest men like Mark Steyn who have called attention to this supremacist agenda. They will be working with American policymakers to restrict free speechthat is, honest discussion of the elements of Islam that the jihadists use to justify their actions and gain recruits.
Can honest discussion really be outlawed? You bet it can. As long as free people do nothing to stop it from happening. As the OIC presses American politicians to use anti-discrimination and hate speech laws to “stem this illegal trend,” we need to stand up now with Mark Steyn and all the others who are on the front lines of this battle, and tell them that what they’re doing to Steyn in Canada must never happen here. We must tell our elected officials to stop this outrage, resist OIC lobbying, and reaffirm in no uncertain terms our commitment to free speechparticularly now, when so much depends on our being able to speak with honesty about the nature of the jihadist threat, and so many powerful entities want to make sure we do not do so.
So much depends on thispossibly even including our survival as a free people.
In other news explaining how the Jews and Christians must “feel themselves subdued,” Ibn Kathir quotes a saying of Muhammad: “Do not initiate the Salam [greeting of peace] to the Jews and Christians, and if you meet any of them in a road, force them to its narrowest alley.” He then goes on to outline the notorious Pact of Umar, an agreement made, according to Islamic tradition, between the caliph Umar, who ruled the Muslims from 634 to 644, and a Christian community.
This Pact is worth close examination, because it became the foundation for Islamic law regarding the treatment of the dhimmis. With remarkably little variation, throughout Islamic history whenever Islamic law was strictly enforced, this is generally how non-Muslims were treated. Working from the full text as Ibn Kathir has it, these are the conditions the Christians accept in return for “safety for ourselves, children, property and followers of our religion” – conditions that, according to Ibn Kathir, “ensured their continued humiliation, degradation and disgrace.”
The Christians shall not:
- 1. Build “a monastery, church, or a sanctuary for a monk”;
- 2. “Restore any place of worship that needs restoration”;
- 3. Use such places “for the purpose of enmity against Muslims”;
- 4. “Allow a spy against Muslims into our churches and homes or hide deceit [or betrayal] against Muslims”;
- 5. Imitate the Muslims’ “clothing, caps, turbans, sandals, hairstyles, speech, nicknames and title names”;
- 6. “Ride on saddles, hang swords on the shoulders, collect weapons of any kind or carry these weapons”;
- 7. “Encrypt our stamps in Arabic”
- 8. “Sell liquor” – Christians in Iraq in the last few years ran afoul of Muslims reasserting this rule;
- 9. “Teach our children the Qur’an”;
- 10. “Publicize practices of Shirk” – that is, associating partners with Allah, such as regarding Jesus as Son of God. In other words, Christian and other non-Muslim religious practice will be private, if not downright furtive;
- 11. Build “crosses on the outside of our churches and demonstrating them and our books in public in Muslim fairways and markets” – again, Christian worship must not be public, where Muslims can see it and become annoyed;
- 12. “Sound the bells in our churches, except discreetly, or raise our voices while reciting our holy books inside our churches in the presence of Muslims, nor raise our voices [with prayer] at our funerals, or light torches in funeral processions in the fairways of Muslims, or their markets”;
- 13. “Bury our dead next to Muslim dead”;
- 14. “Buy servants who were captured by Muslims”;
- 15. “Invite anyone to Shirk” – that is, proselytize, although the Christians also agree not to:
- 16. “Prevent any of our fellows from embracing Islam, if they choose to do so.” Thus the Christians can be the objects of proselytizing, but must not engage in it themselves;
- 17. “Beat any Muslim.”
Meanwhile, the Christians must:
- 1. Allow Muslims to rest “in our churches whether they come by day or night”;
- 2. “Open the doors [of our houses of worship] for the wayfarer and passerby”;
- 3. Provide board and food for “those Muslims who come as guests” for three days;
- 4. “Respect Muslims, move from the places we sit in if they choose to sit in them” – shades of Jim Crow;
- 5. “Have the front of our hair cut, wear our customary clothes wherever we are, wear belts around our waist” – these are so that a Muslim recognizes a non-Muslim as such and doesn’t make the mistake of greeting him with As-salaamu aleikum, “Peace be upon you,” which is the Muslim greeting for a fellow Muslim;
- 6. “Be guides for Muslims and refrain from breaching their privacy in their homes.”
The Christians swore: “If we break any of these promises that we set for your benefit against ourselves, then our Dhimmah (promise of protection) is broken and you are allowed to do with us what you are allowed of people of defiance and rebellion.”