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Yes, there is a moderate Islam - let's support it
THE JERUSALEM POST ^ | Apr. 17, 2007 | Daniel Pipes,

Posted on 05/15/2007 6:37:58 AM PDT by nuconvert

Yes, there is a moderate Islam - let's support it

Daniel Pipes

THE JERUSALEM POST

Apr. 17, 2007

'What moderate Muslims?" is the near-inevitable retort to my stating that radical Islam is the problem and moderate Islam the solution.

Where are the anti-Islamists' demonstrations against terror, their combating of Islamists, their reassessments of Islamic law? I am asked.

Moderate Muslims do exist, I reply. Admittedly, they do not constitute a movement but represent mere wisps in the face of the Islamist onslaught. This means, I argue, that the US government and other powerful institutions should give priority to locating, meeting with, funding, forwarding, empowering and celebrating those brave Muslims who, at personal risk, stand up and confront the totalitarians.

A just-published study from the RAND Corporation, Building Moderate Muslim Networks, methodically takes up and thinks through this concept. Angel Rabasa, Cheryl Benard, Lowell H. Schwartz and Peter Sickle grapple intelligently with the innovative issue of helping moderate Muslims grow and prosper.

They start with the argument that "structural reasons play a large part" in the rise of radical and dogmatic interpretations of Islam in recent years - one of those reasons being the Saudi government's generous funding over the last three decades for the export of the Wahhabi version of Islam. Saudi efforts have promoted "the growth of religious extremism throughout the Muslim world," permitting the Islamists to develop powerful intellectual, political and other networks. "This asymmetry in organization and resources explains why radicals, a small minority in almost all Muslim countries, have influence disproportionate to their numbers."

The study posits a key role for Western countries here: "Moderates will not be able to successfully challenge radicals until the playing field is leveled, which the West can help accomplish by promoting the creation of moderate Muslim networks."

DOES THIS sound familiar? It resembles the late 1940s, when Soviet-backed organizations threatened Europe. The four authors provide a helpful potted history of American network-building in the early Cold War years, in part to show that such an effort can succeed against a totalitarian enemy, in part to glean ideas for use at present. (One example: "a left hook to the Kremlin is the best blow," implying that Muslims can most effectively batter Islamism.)

Reviewing American efforts to fight Islamism, the authors find these lacking, at least with regard to strengthening moderates. Washington, they find, "does not have a consistent view on who the moderates are, where the opportunities for building networks among them lie, and how best to build the networks."

They are only too right. The US government has a disastrously poor record in this regard, with an embarrassing history of twin delusions: either thinking Islamists are moderates, or hoping to win them over. Such government figures as FBI director Robert S. Mueller III, State Department undersecretary Karen Hughes, and National Endowment for Democracy head Carl Gershman wrong-headedly insist on consorting with the enemy.

Instead, the RAND study promotes four partners: secularists, liberal Muslims, moderate traditionalists, and some Sufis. It particularly emphasizes the "emerging transnational network of laicist and secularist individuals, groups, and movements," and correctly urges cooperation with these neglected friends.

In contrast, the study proposes de-emphasizing the Middle East, and particularly the Arab world. Because this area "offers less fertile ground for moderate network and institution building than other regions of the Muslim world," it wants Western governments to focus on Muslims in Southeast Asia, the Balkans and in the Western diaspora, and to help make available their ideas in Arabic.

This novel stratagem defies a centuries'-old pattern of influence emanating from the Middle East, but it is well worth a try.

EVEN THE generally hard-headed RAND study sometimes lets down its guard. Dismayingly, the quartet refrains from condemning Washington for dialoguing with lawful Islamists even as it cautiously endorses European governments treating some Islamists as partners. It mistakenly characterizes the US-based "Progressive Muslim Union" as promoting secular Islam, when it is really another Islamist organization, but with a hip tone. (No other Islamists dared host a feature called "Sex and the Umma.")

Building Moderate Muslim Networks is not the final word on its subject but it marks a major step toward the systematic reconfiguring of how to implement Washington's policy to combat Islamism. The study's meaty contents, clear analysis and bold recommendations usefully move the debate forward, offering precisely the in-depth strategizing Westerners urgently need.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: blameamericafirst; dhimmitude; islam; moderatemuslims; muhammadsminions; muslim; pipes; rop
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1 posted on 05/15/2007 6:38:04 AM PDT by nuconvert
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To: Valin; zimdog

Pong


2 posted on 05/15/2007 6:40:03 AM PDT by nuconvert ([there are bad people in the pistachio business] (...but his head is so tiny...))
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To: nuconvert

Can someone explain how one can follow the Koran and be a, “Moderate Muslim?”


3 posted on 05/15/2007 6:42:51 AM PDT by JayAr36 (No Party, just a Conservative.)
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To: nuconvert

Yeah. Let’s support all 12 moderate muslims in the world before they go extinct or are brought back into line.


4 posted on 05/15/2007 6:42:52 AM PDT by 50mm (algore uses 20 times as much energy as me)
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To: nuconvert

When it comes down to the nitty gritty, guess who those mods are going to support!

You cannot trust any Muzzie!


5 posted on 05/15/2007 6:43:15 AM PDT by Coldwater Creek
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To: Coldwater Creek

I trust Muzzies...one W88 at a time.


6 posted on 05/15/2007 6:44:10 AM PDT by DCBryan1 (Arm Pilots&Teachers. Build the Wall. Export Illegals. Profile Muslims.Kill all child molesters RFN!)
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To: nuconvert
I know a lot of the secularists. They are born Muslim, but eschew the mosque, enjoy an alcoholic beverage or two now and then, dress western, emulate western culture and even make fun of the very devout.

That comment above tends to bring out the screaming know-it-alls, but they'll just have to deal with it. Here...I'll even say the phrase that sends them into orbit: Not all Muslims are terrorists. ;-)

7 posted on 05/15/2007 6:44:21 AM PDT by Allegra (Hey! Quiet Down Out There!)
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To: Valin

I didn’t even get to count to ten before they showed up
LoL


8 posted on 05/15/2007 6:45:12 AM PDT by nuconvert ([there are bad people in the pistachio business] (...but his head is so tiny...))
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To: Allegra
"There may be moderate muslims, but there is no moderate islam." Ibn Aqqid.

L

9 posted on 05/15/2007 6:45:16 AM PDT by Lurker (Comparing 'moderate' islam to 'extremist' islam is like comparing small pox to plague.)
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To: JayAr36

Islamic teaching says it’s OK to lie to, steal from, cheat, enslave, rape and kill “the infidel” because we aren’t human.


10 posted on 05/15/2007 6:45:23 AM PDT by MrB (You can't reason people out of a position that they didn't use reason to get into in the first place)
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To: nuconvert

Not if they are following the satanic verses of the koran!!!


11 posted on 05/15/2007 6:45:24 AM PDT by Lewite (Praise YAHWEH and Proclaim His Wonderful Name! Islam, the end time Beast-the harlot of Babylon.)
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To: nuconvert

I knew it... we should’a supported the moderate Nazi’s!


12 posted on 05/15/2007 6:46:50 AM PDT by johnny7 ("Issue in Doubt." -Col. David Monroe Shoup, USMC 1943)
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To: Allegra
I’m waiting for one moderate Muslim to criticize his brother terrorists. Still waiting...
13 posted on 05/15/2007 6:47:03 AM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (BTUs are my Beat.)
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To: nuconvert

No


14 posted on 05/15/2007 6:49:36 AM PDT by Sue Perkick (And I hope that what Iíve done here today doesnít force you to have a negative opinion of meÖ.)
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To: nuconvert
I'm more than happy to support true moderate Muslims. The question is, will they support us?

Islam, whatever else it is, seems to be a quasi-tribal identity. Its adherents, therefore, seem to have a real hard time ever truly identifying with a non-Muslim group of people in any significant conflict with a Muslim group of people.

Even the most "moderate" Muslims in the West will still feel a tinge of sympathy for their "Palestinian brothers" (regardless of whether the person is Palestinian, or even Arab). Contrast this with how the West treated the Serbs - only on the Buchananite fringe did you hear anyone speak of them as our "Christian brothers" and advocate not bombing them on those grounds. To the mainstream of Western thought, such a view doesn't even compute.

Why is this? Because - unlike Christianity - Islam is not just a religion, and not just an ideology, but also a global, quasi-tribe.

And there may be moderates in a religion (people who don't follow all the religion's tenets, take them too literally, etc.) and moderates in an ideology (people who don't adhere to the ideology's beliefs to an extreme), but there is really no such thing as "moderate" tribalism; you either identify with the tribe against the other, or you don't.

So the real question is, the Muslims who we are supposed to consider moderates - are they willing to abandon their tribalism?

15 posted on 05/15/2007 6:52:58 AM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: johnny7; Sue Perkick; Allegra

Do you realize that our military works along side of and depends upon the help from moderate muslims every single day?

Would you like to ask our men and women in uniform what they think of your attitude?

Thanks for your input, Allegra


16 posted on 05/15/2007 6:55:17 AM PDT by nuconvert ([there are bad people in the pistachio business] (...but his head is so tiny...))
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To: nuconvert

In Turkey recently there have been huge protests in favor of secular government. I've seen estimates as high as 1.5 million protesting the current Islamic ruling party. I can't imagine anything that would get 1.5 million Americans to take to the streets.

17 posted on 05/15/2007 6:55:47 AM PDT by KarlInOhio (Parker v. DC: the best court decision of the year.)
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To: JayAr36
Can someone explain how one can follow the Koran and be a, “Moderate Muslim?”

Of course you can't. That is why the heretics (moderates) can't win a debate in a Mosque against a fundamentalist. The fundamentalists have the Koran and the example set by Muhammed in the Hadiths on their side.

The moderates are nothing more than heretics who want to alter Islam to accommodate their secular lifestyle and their collaboration with us Infidels.

They are nothing more than our useful idiots. They should get out of the religion, as many have. It's risky, but tampering with the religion is risky also.

The moderates can't abide by the harshness of the religious requirements set forward in the Koran and Hadiths- tom

18 posted on 05/15/2007 6:56:00 AM PDT by Capt. Tom (Don't confuse the Bushies with the dumb Republicans - Capt. Tom)
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To: nuconvert

“This means, I argue, that the US government and other powerful institutions should give priority to locating, meeting with, funding, forwarding, empowering and celebrating those brave Muslims who, at personal risk, stand up and confront the totalitarians. “

And thus insuring that they are seen as nothing but puppets of the “evil United states”....which the Islamists will gleefully portray them as. If the so called moderates want to be taken seriously then they are going to have to stand up on their own initiative.


19 posted on 05/15/2007 6:56:03 AM PDT by Dreagon
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To: nuconvert
Inside the mosques, there are no moderate muslims..........
20 posted on 05/15/2007 6:56:57 AM PDT by Red Badger (My gerund got caught in my diphthong, and now I have a dangling participle...............)
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To: JayAr36
Can someone explain how one can follow the Koran and be a, “Moderate Muslim?”

Can someone explain to me how one can be an "American Muslim?"

21 posted on 05/15/2007 6:57:32 AM PDT by lilycicero (SSgt Wuterich and his squad don't make deals!)
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To: KarlInOhio
I can't imagine anything that would get 1.5 million Americans to take to the streets.

Cancellation of American Idol, perhaps.......

22 posted on 05/15/2007 6:58:11 AM PDT by Red Badger (My gerund got caught in my diphthong, and now I have a dangling participle...............)
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To: nuconvert
Yes, there is a moderate Islam - let's support it

I'm from Missouri. Show me.

23 posted on 05/15/2007 6:58:48 AM PDT by Just another Joe (Warning: FReeping can be addictive and helpful to your mental health)
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To: Dr. Frank fan

Its not just tribal but also a system of governance. They will govern also non-Muslims, not belonging to the tribe, if they have the political power, but the no-Muslims will be lower acste, dhimmi’s, subservient to the true Muslim.

A Muslim that does not endorse the actions of Al Qaida is not a faithful Muslim and will be subject to punishment even by detah. The Koran supports Al Qaida.

There are no moderate Muslims only quiet Muslims (quiet until they are free to speak and act in favor of Al Qaida) and fallen Muslims (who shun Al Qaida but then must shun Islam as well)

Islam cannot ever be integrated with a Christian society to any degree where it may acquire political power. They will defeat all laws of liberty and free practice of religion. (that is their history. irrefutable)


24 posted on 05/15/2007 6:59:01 AM PDT by Mark Felton ("Congressmen who ... undermine the military ... should be arrested, exiled or hanged" - A. Lincoln)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

You forgot “crickets chirping”


25 posted on 05/15/2007 7:00:25 AM PDT by southernerwithanattitude ({new and improved redneck})
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To: nuconvert
Do you know there's no such thing as a moderate muslim? I stand by my convictions no matter what anybody thinks.
26 posted on 05/15/2007 7:02:01 AM PDT by Sue Perkick (And I hope that what Iíve done here today doesnít force you to have a negative opinion of meÖ.)
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To: nuconvert

Great just spit my coffee all over the computer screen from laughing..now to cleaning up. Moderate muslin...hahahahah


27 posted on 05/15/2007 7:02:30 AM PDT by svcw (There is no plan B.)
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To: Capt. Tom

Agreed.


28 posted on 05/15/2007 7:02:41 AM PDT by JayAr36 (No Party, just a Conservative.)
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To: lilycicero

I would welcome an explanation to either question.


29 posted on 05/15/2007 7:03:47 AM PDT by JayAr36 (No Party, just a Conservative.)
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To: nuconvert

Muslims worship Mohamed as a God. Yet Mohamed was far, far more violent and murderous than Al Qaida.

Muslims pray 5 times a day that they could be more like Mohamed.

You cannot be a Muslim and not pray for the success of Al Qaida.

To be a moderate Muslim is impossible. It is like being a moderate murderer. You either condone and support murderers (like the murderer Mohamed), perform murder like Mohamed, or you’re not Muslim.


30 posted on 05/15/2007 7:04:00 AM PDT by Mark Felton ("Congressmen who ... undermine the military ... should be arrested, exiled or hanged" - A. Lincoln)
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To: Red Badger

“Inside the mosques, there are no moderate muslims..........”

That’s a valid opinion, though I’d say there are very few moderates, not none.
Fortunately, the vast majority do not attend mosque. They know what goes on in most mosques too, and stay away.


31 posted on 05/15/2007 7:04:17 AM PDT by nuconvert ([there are bad people in the pistachio business] (...but his head is so tiny...))
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To: JayAr36
Probably the same way people can follow the bible and be Moderate Christians. Fortunately for us, Christianity went through its barbaric period in the past, during the crusades, inquisition, etc. In 1000 years, I suspect Islam will move to the same level of moderation.

The bible advocates extreme violence. Stoning people to death for eating shellfish, or planting two crops next to each other. Even the NT isn't immune from silliness.

Matthew 10:34 - Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword

Mark 7:10 For Moses said, Honor thy father and thy mother; and, Whoso curseth father or mother, let him die the death:

Acts 3:23 And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.

I won't even post any quotes from the Old Testament!

32 posted on 05/15/2007 7:04:22 AM PDT by nomadicone
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To: Mark Felton
Its not just tribal but also a system of governance.

You're right of course, but my point was, what really causes the problem for us at this stage is the tribalism. If "Islam" were just "a system of governance" - or just "a religion" - without the tribalism (the xenophobia, the imperial/land-grabbing ambitions, the amoral "us vs. them" attitude) - everyone else would have far less of a problem with it.

33 posted on 05/15/2007 7:04:32 AM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Allegra

“Not all Muslims are terrorists.”

Not all Muslims are Muslim, is what you say.


34 posted on 05/15/2007 7:05:21 AM PDT by Mark Felton ("Congressmen who ... undermine the military ... should be arrested, exiled or hanged" - A. Lincoln)
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To: Coldwater Creek

Oh I couldn’t agree more! Zalmay Khalizad he’s the worst of the lot, and don’t get me started on Colonel Douglas Burpee
http://www.nysun.com/article/31393


35 posted on 05/15/2007 7:05:32 AM PDT by Valin (History takes time. It is not an instant thing.)
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To: southernerwithanattitude

Here are your crickets.

http://navlog.org/crickets.wav


36 posted on 05/15/2007 7:06:24 AM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (Guns don't kill people. None of my guns ever left the house at night and killed anyone.)
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To: nuconvert

Road Map for Moderate Network Building in the Muslim World (long read)
RAND Corp. ^ | Angel Rabasa, Cheryl Benard, Lowell H. Schwartz, Peter Sickle

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1818382/posts
Posted on 04/16/2007 6:09:23 PM CDT by Valin

Identifying Key Partners and Audiences

A critical part of U.S. network-building efforts, as well as in its broader public diplomacy and strategic communications policy, is identifying key partners and audiences. Difficulties in distinguishing potential allies from adversaries present a major problem to Western governments and organizations attempting to organize support for moderate Muslims. Work done by the RAND Corporation—in Cheryl Benard’s Civil Democratic Islam and Angel Rabasa et al., The Muslim World After 9/11—has begun to lay the framework for identifying ideological tendencies in the Muslim world,1 which is necessary in order to identify the sectors with which the United States and its allies can be most e.ective in promoting democracy and stability to counter the in.uence of extremist and violent groups.
Around the world Muslims differ substantially not only in their religious views, but also in their political and social orientation, including their conceptions of government; their views on the primacy of shari’a (Islamic law) versus other sources of law; their views on human rights, especially the rights of women and religious minorities; and whether they support, justify, or tolerate violence perpetrated in advancement of a political or religious agenda. We refer to these as “marker issues,” and the position of groups or individuals on them allows for a more precise classifcation of these groups in terms of their a.nity for democracy and pluralism.
(snip)


37 posted on 05/15/2007 7:08:08 AM PDT by Valin (History takes time. It is not an instant thing.)
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To: JayAr36
Can someone explain how one can follow the Koran and be a, “Moderate Muslim?”

The biggest problem that islamists have is trying to explain away what is written out, CRYSTAL CLEAR, in their own damned bible.

38 posted on 05/15/2007 7:08:27 AM PDT by Recovering Hermit (There's another old saying Senator..."Don't piss down my back and tell me it's raining.")
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To: nuconvert
That was a quote from a moderate muslim, I can't remember from who, tho.....
39 posted on 05/15/2007 7:08:32 AM PDT by Red Badger (My gerund got caught in my diphthong, and now I have a dangling participle...............)
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To: nomadicone

Butt up, head buried! Good for you.


40 posted on 05/15/2007 7:10:42 AM PDT by JayAr36 (No Party, just a Conservative.)
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To: Mark Felton; Lurker
I believe I was quite clear in what I stated.

Perhaps not?

41 posted on 05/15/2007 7:11:03 AM PDT by Allegra (Hey! Quiet Down Out There!)
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To: KarlInOhio

Thanks for the post.

“I can’t imagine anything that would get 1.5 million Americans to take to the streets.”

Neither can I
I have no doubt that this is exactly what you’d see in Iran and more, if the people weren’t afraid of being mowed down by helicopter gunships. Fortunately, the Turks don’t have that threat.


42 posted on 05/15/2007 7:11:26 AM PDT by nuconvert ([there are bad people in the pistachio business] (...but his head is so tiny...))
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To: Red Badger

Was it the one that said “pretend to be their friends”?


43 posted on 05/15/2007 7:11:35 AM PDT by Sue Perkick (And I hope that what Iíve done here today doesnít force you to have a negative opinion of meÖ.)
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To: Dr. Frank fan

I agree with the tribalism aspect. They have not been blessed by God with enlightenment that Christ brough to Western civilziation (and elsewhere)

They see that God has richly, richly blessed Christians, so much so that Christian flood into their country to ditribute charity and goodwill, and end hunger and ills. They see that 99% of their wealth comes from Christian nations who buy their dirty sludge under their feet.

They see that God forsakes them and they believe it is hbecause have failed to follow the teachings of Mohamed. They started following Christian values of peace not conquest.

Therefore their onlpy salvation must be to begin acting like true Muslims and following the specifics of the Koran. They must launch violent jihads and kill the infidels and conquer new lands to convert to the “pure” form of Islam.

Muslims cannot be integrated in large numbers in free nations.


44 posted on 05/15/2007 7:11:54 AM PDT by Mark Felton ("Congressmen who ... undermine the military ... should be arrested, exiled or hanged" - A. Lincoln)
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To: Mark Felton

Gosh I really have to pay more attention, I missed the announcement where you were chosen to decide who and who is not a “real” Muslim...congratulations on your new job.


45 posted on 05/15/2007 7:11:54 AM PDT by Valin (History takes time. It is not an instant thing.)
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To: Sue Perkick

It was one of those “talking heads” on some news program from about right after 9-11.......


46 posted on 05/15/2007 7:13:19 AM PDT by Red Badger (My gerund got caught in my diphthong, and now I have a dangling participle...............)
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To: JayAr36
Can someone explain how one can follow the Koran and be a, “Moderate Muslim?”

You can't but millions of Catholics who never set foot in Church would punch your lights out if you start demonizing their Catholic families.

Religions, including Christian denominations, have gone through radical phases and the current wave of Islamic radicalism was not too strong in, say, 1967, when the "radical" Arab regimes were secular.

Turkey has been fighting Islamist fanatics since the days of Ataturk.

We are not going to kill off over 1 billion cultural Muslims around the World so we may as well enlist the help of cultural Muslims in wiping out the religious nutjobs.

47 posted on 05/15/2007 7:14:23 AM PDT by Polybius
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To: KarlInOhio
You mention Tutrkey as an example...

Well, in Turkey which is 99.8% muslim (according to the CIA World Fact Book) it is illegal for more than four Christians to gather anywhere other than their own home and in a single handful of existing churches. It is a prison offense to give a turk a bible.

This is what qualifies as 'moderate' islam in the 'most democratic' muslim state ever.

48 posted on 05/15/2007 7:14:35 AM PDT by wtc911 ("How you gonna get back down that hill?")
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To: JayAr36

Keep two sets of books? ooops sorry that was accounting....

Like the Hamas Mouse. In english they say they ordered it removed, but in arabic they probably say they will never stop using it.


49 posted on 05/15/2007 7:15:34 AM PDT by longtermmemmory (VOTE! http://www.senate.gov and http://www.house.gov)
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To: Allegra

A Muslim may not be an active terrorist, but if he does not pray for the success of the activated Muslims nor give them finacial support or other support then he is not a faithful Muslim.

You cannot be a Christian and not desire that all mankind come to know Christ (through peace and love as taught by Christ).

You canot be Muslim and not deisre that all mankind be converted to Islam. (an irreuftable statement). But the Koran teaches conversion by the sword and physical conquest, not by peace.

A “peaceful” Muslim is simply yet be activated into violence, or a fallen Muslim.


50 posted on 05/15/2007 7:16:22 AM PDT by Mark Felton ("Congressmen who ... undermine the military ... should be arrested, exiled or hanged" - A. Lincoln)
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