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May 31 2015

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▶ Sarah Haider: Islam and the Necessity of Liberal Critique (AHA Conference 2015) - YouTube

Presented at the American Humanist Association 74th Annual Conference, May 7-10, 2015, in Denver, Colorado. #ahacon15

Reformists in Muslim countries are routinely silenced, through persecution or violence, which has been increasing over the last few decades as Islamism gains traction. Liberals are in a unique position to make a nuanced and compassionate critique of harmful conceptions of religion- a position which we are ceding. As a result, the only visible voices are those of hate-mongers from the far-right, Islamists and outright apologists. It is of the highest priority that liberals exert pressure on both groups towards positive change.

Sarah Haider is a co-founder of Ex-Muslims of North America, a community building organization for Ex-Muslims across the non-theist spectrum, for which she currently works to reduce discrimination of those who left Islam.

March 12 2015

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Pay close attention to how reasonable and benevolent Qureshi sounds in the beginning. For the first 10 minutes or so, he comes off as a fine spokesman for a moderate Islam that has been unfairly stigmatized by Western paranoia. However, once he is asked to denounce the most despicable aspects of shari’ah—Can non-Muslims be taken as slaves? Should women be stoned to death for adultery?—the mask suddenly slips. It is an amazing moment, when shameless guile reaches the precipice of religious superstition: Qureshi is clearly afraid to misrepresent his faith, lest he blaspheme and break trust with all the religious maniacs standing at his back. In the end, he can’t even pretend to have values remotely commensurate with our own. All he can muster is the lamest of dodges: “I’m not a theologian.”

[...]

Look again at the dissembling of Qureshi. Listen to all his seemingly sane and balanced talk about the “disenfranchisement” and “unnecessary targeting” of young Muslim men, about “cycles of violence,” and about jihad’s being nothing more than the universal principle of “self-defense.” And then realize that this voice of moderation believes that in a properly constituted caliphate, gays, apostates, blasphemers, and adulterers will be stoned to death, Jews and Christians will be forced to pay a protection tax, and all other non-Muslims will live as slaves.
Theocracy with a Human Face - Asim Quresh of CAGE : Sam Harris

July 08 2014

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By Associated Press July 7

NEW DELHI — Islamic courts have no legal authority in India, the country’s Supreme Court ruled Monday, saying Muslims cannot be legally subject to a parallel religious authority.

Individuals may abide by Shariah court rulings if they wish, but cannot be legally forced to do so, Judge C. K. Prasad said.

“No religion is allowed to curb anyone’s fundamental rights,” he told the court, giving the decision of a two-judge bench. Indian law does not recognize Shariah court rulings, he said.

Court: Islamic law holds no legal sway in India - The Washington Post

June 13 2014

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Islamabad - Sharia Correspondent: The Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) concluded their 192nd meeting on Thursday with the ruling that women are un-Islamic and that their mere existence contradicted Sharia and the will of Allah. As the meeting concluded CII Chairman Maulana Muhammad Khan Shirani noted that women by existing defied the laws of nature, and to protect Islam and the Sharia women should be forced to stop existing as soon as possible. The announcement comes a couple of days after CII’s 191st meeting where they dubbed laws related to minimum marriage age to be un-Islamic.

After declaring women to be un-Islamic, Shirani explained that there were actually two kinds of women – haraam and makrooh. “We can divide all women in the world into two distinct categories: those who are haraam and those who are makrooh. Now the difference between haraam and makrooh is that the former is categorically forbidden while the latter is really really disliked,” Shirani said.

He further went on to explain how the women around the world can ensure that they get promoted to being makrooh, from just being downright haraam. “Any woman that exercises her will is haraam, absolutely haraam, and is conspiring against Islam and the Ummah, whereas those women who are totally subservient can reach the status of being makrooh. Such is the generosity of our ideology and such is the endeavour of Muslim men like us who are the true torchbearers of gender equality,” the CII chairman added.

Officials told Khabaristan Today that the council members deliberated over various historic references related to women and concluded that each woman is a source of fitna and a perpetual enemy of Islam. They also decided that by restricting them to their subordinate, bordering on slave status, the momineen and the mujahideen can ensure that Islam continues to be the religion of peace, prosperity and gender equality.

Responding to a question one of the officials said that international standards of gender equality should not be used if they contradict Islam or the constitution of Pakistan that had incorporated Islam and had given sovereignty to Allah. “We don’t believe in western ideals, and nothing that contradicts Islam should ever be paid heed. In any case by giving women the higher status of being makrooh, it’s us Muslims who have paved the way for true, Sharia compliant feminism,” the official said.

Council of Islamic Ideology declares women’s existence anti-Islamic | Pakistan Today
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Justice Minister Mohammed Al-Eissa has denounced international rights groups for attacking the Kingdom’s judiciary, saying laws in this country are based on divine precepts contained in the Holy Qur'an.

May 28 2014

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Mariam Yahia Ibrahim Ishag is a 27-year-old Sudanese woman, sentenced to death because of her Christian faith.

[...]

Because some believe that Islamic law does not allow marriages between Muslim women and non-Muslim men, her marriage to a Christian man was also considered void by the court, based on its belief that she should not have been raised as a Christian, or chosen that faith. Therefore, the court argued that, although a lifelong Christian, she should notionally be treated as a muslim, and that the marriage to the Christian man was not valid. She was therefore also sentenced to receive 100 lashes for adultery, in spite of the sexual relations having been only with her husband, the flogging to be administered some time in advance of being hung. Moreover, her 20 month-old son has also been imprisoned, and is denied all contact with his father, who will never be permitted to raise him.
Mariam Yahia Ibrahim Ishag - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

May 19 2014

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GENEVA (15 May 2014) – A group of UN human rights experts today expressed alarm at the conviction to 10 years in prison, 1,000 lashes, and a 1 million Saudi riyal fine against Saudi online activist and blogger, Raef Badawi.

“This outrageous conviction should be overturned and Mr. Badawi immediately released,” said the Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion, Heiner Bielefeldt, the Special Rapporteur on freedom of expression, Frank La Rue, the Special Rapporteur on torture, Juan E. Méndez and the Chair-Rapporteur of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, Mads Andenas.

“Mr. Badawi is a prisoner of conscience, who has been convicted for peacefully expressing his views on religious and other issues,” they added.

The UN experts also urged the Government of Saudi Arabia to “embark on more comprehensive reforms to bring their judicial system in compliance with international standards.”

The human rights experts stressed that “Mr. Badawi was imprisoned for peacefully exercising his right to freedom of expression” and recalled the right of all people to “freely manifest their views in matters of religion or belief and to write, issue and disseminate information and ideas in these areas through any media without interference.”

Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights

March 08 2014

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Brunei Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah warned online critics of the country’s Sharia Law that they could face prosecution once the new penal code takes effect next month

November 14 2013

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A band of Islamic vigilantes has admitted to roaming the streets of East London, confronting and threatening to kill non-believers in an effort to enforce Sharia law. Three men have pleaded guilty to related charges after self-proclaimed “Muslim Patrols” attacked, intimidated and threatened to stab members of the public in an area of London that hosted the 2012 Olympic Games.

August 31 2013

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21:00

Imam who stirred up the cartoon controversy defects and warns “extremists run all Danish mosques”.  

Hindu children attacked by Muslims for singing (is it racist to bring this up?  Or is it an utter failure of internationalism not to bring this up?).  Meanwhile Hindus are being forced to convert at gunpoint in Pakistan.

Car bombs in Tripoli, 42 dead.  (see above)

Russia tried to warn the US about the Chechen jihad, not that that made any difference.

Christians fear Jihad attacks in Egypt.

Malaysian Muslims want Islam before all else.

Edrogan openly abandons “reformed moderate Islam”.  Go figure.

In France, a direct conflict between Islam and democracy is being openly discussed. 

Al Qaeda vs Hezbollah - pity they can’t both lose.

The New Indian Express summarizes it nicely: No let up in Islam vs Islam.

In Pakistan one of our infidels is being sentenced to death for drinking from a Muslim cup of water.

Every third Christian in Somalia has been murdered.

Yet more attacks on Christians in Nigeria.

Some rousing words from Lars Hedegaard.

Preview of Europe if this goes on – what happens when infidels answer in kind

Finally, some Muslims speak up. “Today, onlookers could be forgiven for assuming that brutal Quranic penalties are critical components to an observed Muslim life, ”  - really?

Friday Jihad round up | The Prussian

August 01 2013

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When is a crime against humanity not a crime against humanity? When it is applied to women of course.

June 10 2013

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Rebels fighting the Syrian regime have shot dead a 15-year-old boy in front of his parents and siblings after accusing him of blasphemy, an activist group said.
Reposted byskuxy skuxy

May 28 2013

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Of course, the overwhelming majority of Muslims are not terrorists or sympathetic to terrorists. Equating all Muslims with terrorism is stupid and wrong. But acknowledging that there is a link between Islam and terror is appropriate and necessary.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali: The Problem of Muslim Leadership - WSJ.com

May 25 2013

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One of the suspected killers who attempted to behead and disembowel a young soldier in the horrific Woolwich attack had listened to the preachings of a radical Muslim cleric banned from Britain over extremist activities, including alleged links to al-Qa’ida, The Independent has learnt.

The cleric Omar Bakri Mohammed has been secretly filmed stating that decapitation of the enemies of Islam was permitted. Today, in comments met with outrage, he told The Independent that he could understand the feeling of rage that had motivated the attackers and that what they had done could be justified under certain interpretations of Islam.

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Although defenders of religion like to portray faith as a source of peace and fellowship, and condemn those who commit atrocities in its name as untrue believers, the daily news media show how far this is from being invariably true. In fact, the relentless drip of bad news about religion-prompted violence in the world shows that the more zealous people are in their religious beliefs, the more likely they are to behave in non-rational, antisocial or violent ways.
Woolwich: Dogma will always lead to murder. In the end, scepticism is the only answer - Comment - Voices - The Independent

May 18 2013

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May 14 2013

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May 13 2013

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Dubai is being promoted as a luxury high-class paradise in the desert, but the reality is brutally different, as Australian Alicia Gali discovered. Gali took a job in the UAE with one of the world’s biggest hotel chains, Starwood. What happened next makes this story a must-watch for every Australian planning on travelling through the region.

Gali was using her laptop in the hotel’s staff bar when her drink was spiked. She awoke to a nightmare beyond belief: she had been savagely raped by three of her colleagues. Alone and frightened, she took herself to hospital. What Alicia didn’t know is that under the UAE’s strict sharia laws, if the perpetrator does not confess, a rape cannot be convicted without four adult Muslim male witnesses. She was charged with having illicit sex outside marriage, and thrown in a filthy jail cell for eight months.

May 07 2013

surveyork
22:49
DHAKA, Bangladesh — Violence erupted across Bangladesh on Monday as Islamist fundamentalists demanding passage of an anti-blasphemy law clashed with security forces, leaving a trail of property damage and at least 22 people dead after a second day of unrest.
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