For those that did not hear about it at the time here is the technorati page that lists all my posts on the subject to catch you up.
People often ask why Moderate Muslims do not speak out against the radical extremists that pervert their religion in order to justify killing innocent people...men women and children.
They have as I will show you below, multiple times, starting from 9/11...somehow it either gets missed or ignored and being that we here at Wake up America condemn those radical elements that hijack the Muslim religion, we also find it is important to acknowledge the moderate Muslims efforts to counter and denounce terrorism and the extremists.
The Washington Times has an article out today showing that lawyers and a Muslim group say they will defend at no cost airline passengers caught up in a lawsuit between a group of imams and U.S. Airways if the passengers are named as "John Does" and sued for reporting suspicious behavior that got the Muslim clerics booted from a November flight.
Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, a Phoenix-area physician and director of American Islamic Forum for Democracy -- a group founded in 2003 to promote moderate Muslim ideas through its Web site (www.aifdemocracy.org) -- told The Washington Times his group will raise money for legal fees for passengers if they are sued by the imams.
"It's so important that America know there are Muslims who understand who the victims are in air travel," said Dr. Jasser. "But I hope it doesn't get to that point because the backlash will be even greater when Americans see Islamists trying to punish innocent passengers reporting fears."
The lawsuit specifically cites two passengers who stared at the men as they prayed, then made a cell phone call that the imams say went to U.S. Airways to complain about the prayer.
Gerry Nolting, whose Minnesota law firm Faegre & Benson LLP is offering to represent passengers for free, says the judicial system is being "used for intimidation purposes" and that it is "just flat wrong and needs to be strongly, strongly discouraged."
"As a matter of public policy, the FAA [Federal Aviation Administration] presently tells traveling passengers to report suspicious behavior as part of its homeland security program," Mr. Nolting said. "This has nothing to do with race or ethnicity, but trying to intimidate and discourage reporting of suspicious behavior and [also discourage] the promotion of safe travel."
Tom Malone, another Minnesota lawyer offering his services pro bono, says the lawsuit is "a very overt attempt to intimidate people" and "coerce them into silence."
Appearing yesterday on Fox News, Dr. Jasser told Neil Cavuto, "Americans are going to be more afraid of Arabs and the Muslim community for fear of being sued. Why spend money on litigation when we should be spending it on fighting terrorism?"
Read the rest......
Moderate Muslims DO take a stand and for some, that stand comes at great risk to them and their familes...yet they do it anyway.
Recently a group of a group of Muslims gathered at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum to commemorate Jewish suffering under the Nazis.
Before that though, in fact, in 2003 after Bin Laden issued a tape recorded message dated Feb. 11, 2003, Muslims responded:
In the name of Allah, The Most Merciful, the Most Benevolent.
I begin by reciting some important principles of Islam to remind you that there is more to Islam than just a call to arms.1. Islam was sent as mercy to humanity (Quran 4:79).
2. Do not make mischief on the earth (Quran 29:36).
3. People, We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes that you might know one another. The noblest of you before God is the most righteous of you. (49:13)
4. There are among the People of the Book (Jews and Christians) upstanding nations that recite the message of God and worship throughout the night, who believe in God, who order honor and forbid dishonor and race in good works. These are the righteous. (3:113-114).
I am writing this to make it clear that there are Muslims in America and in the world who despise and condemn extremists and have nothing to do with Binladen and those like him for whom killing constitutes worship.
Islam was sent as mercy to humanity and not as an ideology of terror or hatred. It advocates plurality and moral equality of all faiths (Quran 2:62, 5:69). To use Islam, as a justification to declare an Armageddon against all non-Muslims is inherently unIslamic – it is a despicable distortion of a faith of peace. One of Allah’s 99 names in the Quran is “Al Salam” which means Peace. Thus in a way Muslims are the only people who actually worship peace. Today this claim sounds so empty, thanks to people like you, Mr. Bin Laden. You and those like you are dedicated to killing and bringing misery to people wherever they are. God blessed you with the capacity to lead and also endowed you with enormous resources. You could have used your influence in Afghanistan to develop it, to bring it out of poverty and underdevelopment and show the world what Islam can do for those who believe in it. You chose to provoke and bring war to a people who had already been devastated by wars.
Yes many innocent people lost their lives in America’s war on Afghanistan and many more might lose their lives in Iraq. This is indeed regrettable. But we must never forget as to how the West is divided over this and how nations and people within nations are agonizing in Europe and in America over this decision to go to war in Iraq. While many Americans and Europeans oppose the war, Muslim nations have already agreed to cooperate in this war. No Muslim leader has tried to play the role of a statesman on this issue. It is a tragedy that there is not a single Ted Kennedy, Jimmy Carter or Nelson Mandela in the entire Muslim world who would stand up and speak for justice!
Before we rush to condemn America we must remember that even today millions of poor and miserable people all across the world are lining up outside US embassies eager to come to America, not just to live here but to become an American. No Muslim country today, can claim that people of other nations and other faiths see it as a promise of hope, equality, dignity and prosperity.
Yes, we American Muslims will continue to challenge the Bush administrations’ proposal to wage war against Iraq. We think a regime change in Washington is as necessary as a regime change in Baghdad, but that is an intramural affair. Once the war is declared, make no mistake Mr. Saddam Hussain and Mr. Bin Laden, We are with America. We will fight with America and we will fight for America. We have a covenant with this nation, we see it as a divine commitment and we will not disobey the Quran (9:4) – we will fulfill our obligations as citizens to the land that opened its doors to us and promised us equality and dignity even though we have a different faith. I am sure Mr. Bin Laden, you can neither understand nor appreciate this willingness to accept and welcome the other.
Sure at this moment out of anger, frustration and fear, some in America have momentarily forgotten their own values. I am confident that, God willing, this moment of shock and insecurity will pass and America will once again become the beacon of freedom, tolerance and acceptance that it was before September 11th. On that day Mr. Binladen, you not only killed 3000 innocent Americans, many of whom were also Muslims, but you signed the death warrants of many innocent people who will die in this war on terror and many more who will live but will suffer the consequences, the pain and the misery of war. Before September 11th, the US was giving aid to Afghanistan and was content to wait for the Iraqi people to free themselves and the rest of the world from their dictator. On that day you changed the rules of the game and Muslims in many places are suffering as a direct consequence.
When the Prophet Muhammad (saw) and his companions fought in the name of Islam, Allah made them victorious and glorified them in this world. They made Islam the currency of human civilization for over a millennium. You and your men on the other hand face nothing but defeat, global ridicule and contempt and run and hide like rats in caves and dungeons. You live in the dark. Your faith neither enlightens you nor enables you to live in the light and you have made Islam the currency of hate and violence.
Let me tell you that I would rather live in America under Ashcroft and Bush at their worst, than in any “Islamic state” established by ignorant, intolerant and murderous punks like you and Mullah Omar at their best. The US, patriot act not withstanding is still a more Islamic (just and tolerant) state than Afghanistan ever was under the Taliban.
Remember this: Muslims from all over the world who wished to live better lives migrated to America and Muslims who only wished to take lives migrated to Afghanistan to join you.
We will not follow the desires of people (like you) who went astray and led many astray from the Straight Path. (Quran 5:77).
I conclude by calling upon you Mr. Bin Laden and your Al Qaeda colleagues and Mr. Saddam Hussain to surrender to International Courts and take responsibility for your actions and protect thousands of other innocent Muslims from becoming the victims of the wars you bring upon them.
Sept., 2004, Muslims again took a stand against the hijacking of their religion by the radical extremists:
"The most important message is that we condemn all kinds of hate speech including anti-Semitism and anti-Americanism and that we come out as boldly as possible against violence committed by Muslims in Iraq, in Israel, in Muslim countries like Turkey and Indonesia, and that we do all that we can in this war against terrorism," said Ahmed al-Rahim, a founding member and former chairman of the American Islamic Congress.
AIC was established after Sept. 11 because of a feeling that moderates had been silent for too long in the face of Muslim extremism.
"The mainstream, official voice of Islam in America wasn’t forceful enough in condemning the violence and the acts of terror on 9/11. There was some hesitancy, and there was more concern with hate crimes against Muslims, which I think were relatively low, and there was more focus on that than actually looking at the violence and the hate speech that has been committed in the name of Islam," al-Rahim said.
Khan said moderate views are more widely accepted since Sept. 11. In the past, only "conservative or narrow-minded" speakers would be allowed to speak at mosques and community centers. But after the terror attacks, moderates felt it was worth fighting to have more moderate views aired, he said.
"You can see that the agendas are changing."
Read the rest....
March 2005, Moderate Muslim's Blaze a New Path:
Though met by modest crowds, the recent first-ever Free Muslims March Against Terrorism could be considered a success in one key respect: It further exposed the unwillingness of most major Muslim groups to condemn the radicals that have come to dominate their religion.
It also further cemented the growing reputation of organizer Kamal Nawash, head of the Free Muslims Coalition (FMC), as one of the only genuine moderate leaders of a national Islamic organization.
While most Muslim groups gripe about being expected to condemn every Islamic terrorist attack — they aren't directly responsible, they reason — Mr. Nawash wastes no opportunity to do so. To him, the problem is one shared by all Muslims, even moderates, because most Muslims have allowed the extremists to take control of the religion, more or less without a fight.
Thus his inspiration for the rally against terror. Speakers at the event, which drew roughly 150, were clear in condemning the real root cause of terrorism: radical interpretations of Islam.
Groups like Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) have a track record of condemning — but only targets like the Fox television show "24," which they blasted earlier this year for having terrorists who were Muslims.
Never mind that CAIR officials have refused to condemn Hamas and Hezbollah when asked to do so by The Washington Post and others, describing questions about the terrorist groups as a "game." And MPAC maintains, for example, that the Hezbollah murder of 241 Americans in Lebanon in 1983 was not a terrorist attack.
Again, read the rest....
August, 2005: Muslims speak out against terror.
Last week's religious declaration by a group of U.S. and Canadian Muslim leaders condemning terrorism sends an important message: Muslims cannot support or tolerate terrorism and be true to the teachings of Islam.
North America's leading Islamic scholars and jurists who interpret Islamic law condemned terrorism in language that was direct and unequivocal: "Targeting civilians' life and property through suicide bombings or any other method of attack is haram - or forbidden. And those who commit these barbaric acts are criminals, not "martyrs' . . . It is haram, forbidden, for a Muslim to cooperate with any individual or group that is involved in any act of terrorism or violence." The statement was endorsed by leaders of more than 120 U.S. Muslim groups.
March, 2006: Open Letter To Reformist Muslims.
Man has always come to the assistance of man. The Helpers of Medina to the migrants of Mecca; Indians to the Pilgrims; Ottomans to the Sephardigm; Albanian Muslims to the Jews of Europe. There are men and women in the West who wish to be of assistance to us. So what if they sometimes say things that you find offensive or incorrect. To correct them by way of friendship is much better than to sneer at them. We must judge them, not by their ancestors’ history, but by their love of the oppressed. We are clear, are we not, that there has been one too many Mukhtaran Mai? We are clear, are we not, that there has been one too many tyranny? We are clear, are we not, that there has been one too many Bin Laden? One too many 9/11, 3/11, 7/7, and Aksari Shrine and Shia massacre and Baha’i jailing and Jew-baiting. One too many Bamiyan Buddhas. One too many novelists accused. One too many suicides. The task ahead will be difficult enough. If, then, there are those who will link their arms with us, we must not hesitate. When the moment of reckoning comes — and there is no reason to believe that time is not now — we will be in need of every able mind, profligate pen, and nervous smile. Do it out of pragmatism, or do it out of love, but do it you must.
Please read the whole thing...
March, 2007: Moderate Muslims Speak Out.
Released by the delegates to the Secular Islam Summit, St. Petersburg, Florida on March 5, 2007:We are secular Muslims, and secular persons of Muslim societies. We are believers, doubters, and unbelievers, brought together by a great struggle, not between the West and Islam, but between the free and the unfree.
We affirm the inviolable freedom of the individual conscience. We believe in the equality of all human persons.
We insist upon the separation of religion from state and the observance of universal human rights.
We find traditions of liberty, rationality, and tolerance in the rich histories of pre-Islamic and Islamic societies. These values do not belong to the West or the East; they are the common moral heritage of humankind.
We see no colonialism, racism, or so-called "Islamaphobia" in submitting Islamic practices to criticism or condemnation when they violate human reason or rights.
We call on the governments of the world to:
· reject Sharia law, fatwa courts, clerical rule, and state-sanctioned religion in all their forms; oppose all penalties for blasphemy and apostasy, in accordance with Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human rights;
· eliminate practices, such as female circumcision, honor killing, forced veiling, and forced marriage, that further the oppression of women; protect sexual and gender minorities from persecution and violence;
· reform sectarian education that teaches intolerance and bigotry towards non-Muslims;
· and foster an open public sphere in which all matters may be discussed without coercion or intimidation.
We demand the release of Islam from its captivity to the totalitarian ambitions of power-hungry men and the rigid strictures of orthodoxy.
We enjoin academics and thinkers everywhere to embark on a fearless examination of the origins and sources of Islam, and to promulgate the ideals of free scientific and spiritual inquiry through cross-cultural translation, publishing, and the mass media.
· We say to Muslim believers: there is a noble future for Islam as a personal faith, not a political doctrine;
· to Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, Baha’is, and all members of non-Muslim faith communities: we stand with you as free and equal citizens;
· and to nonbelievers: we defend your unqualified liberty to question and dissent.
Before any of us is a member of the Umma, the Body of Christ, or the Chosen People, we are all members of the community of conscience, the people who must chose for themselves.
So, while denouncing radical extremists, please let us remember that there are more moderate Muslims that are our friends, neighbors and family than there are our enemies and learn to separate the two.
Denounce the extremists, but befriend the moderate.
Tracked back by:
The Real Religion of Peace?? from Stix Blog...