Islamification Of Tesco

This asshat worked 8 months at Tesco, doing what he is now suing for… He had to move cases of liquor. Wow. Well he should have thought of that before accepting the job. 

I would venture to say that he has no objection to the liquor, but he has an objection to working and making a living…

As far as I know, Islam does not have any laws against handling alcohol, only consuming it…

A Muslim said he is suing Tesco for religious discrimination because he was asked to handle crates of alcohol in a warehouse.

Mohammed Ahmed, 32, was employed at the supermarket giant’s Lichfield depot in September last year for a job that included transporting various goods on fork-lift trucks.

The Saudi Arabia national told a tribunal he had not been told when he started the job that he would be handling alcoholic drinks – a task he said was against his Islamic beliefs.

The situation came to a head in the run-up to Christmas last year, when more alcohol was ferried to the warehouse in preparation for the festive season.

Mr Ahmed, who moved to Derby in 2006, complained to Tesco in February, but claims he was treated unfairly as a result. After eight months working for the company, he left in protest.

The decision on his legal action, after a three-day employment tribunal held in Birmingham, is expected next week.

He said: “It’s in our religion that we are not allowed to handle alcohol. In the UK there’s equal opportunities that should protect me and my beliefs.

“I was asking for my rights. I am not saying I am a perfect person but there was a conflict with my beliefs.”

Tesco claimed Mr Ahmed was made aware at his induction that he would be handling alcohol, and that every effort was made to find him an alternative role in the warehouse. But the claimant, of Upper Dale Road, Normanton, claims he was victimised by managers because of his stance.

A Tesco spokesman said: “Cases like this are very rare as managers are trained to be culturally sensitive and have an ‘open door policy’ to staff for issues like this as everyone is welcome to work at Tesco.”

But then again, it is just more of the same trend, force us to follow their rules when they come to our country… Pretty soon England will no longer be England, but another Muslim Nation…

MUSLIM supermarket checkout staff who refuse to sell alcohol are being allowed to opt out of handling customers’ bottles and cans of drink.

Islamic workers at Sainsbury’s who object to alcohol on religious grounds are told to raise their hands when encountering any drink at their till so that a colleague can temporarily take their place or scan items for them.

Other staff have refused to work stacking shelves with wine, beer and spirits and have been found alternative roles in the company.

Sainsbury’s said this weekend it was keen to accommodate the religious beliefs of all staff but some Islamic scholars condemned the practice, saying Muslims who refused to sell alcohol were reneging on their agreements with the store.

Islam states that Muslims should not consume alcohol, but opinion is divided on whether it is permissible to be involved in the sale of it.

Mustapha, a Muslim checkout worker at the company’s store in Swiss Cottage, northwest London, interrupts his work to ensure that he does not have to sell or handle alcohol.

Each time a bottle or can of alcohol comes along the conveyor belt in front of him, Mustapha either swaps places discreetly with a neighbouring attendant or raises his hand so that another member of staff can come over and pass the offending items in front of the scanner before he resumes work.

Some of the staff delegated to handle the drink for Mustapha are themselves obviously Muslim, including women in hijab head coverings. However, a staff member at the store told a reporter that two other employees had asked to be given alternative duties after objecting to stacking drinks shelves.

Mustapha told one customer: “I can’t sell the alcohol because of my religion. It is Ramadan at the moment.”

His customers did not appear to have any objection to his polite refusal to work with alcohol. One said: “I have no issues with it at all, it really doesn’t bother me.”

However, some senior Muslims were less approving.

Ghayasuddin Siddiqui, director of the Muslim Institute and leader of the Muslim parliament, said: “This is some kind of overenthusiasm. One expects professional behaviour from people working in a professional capacity and this shows a lack of maturity.

“Sainsbury’s is being very good, they are trying to accommodate the wishes of their employees and we commend that. The fault lies with the employee who is exploiting and misusing their goodwill. It makes no difference if it is only happening over Ramadan.”

Ibrahim Mogra, chairman of the inter-faith committee of the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB), said: “Muslim employees should look at the allowances within Muslim law to enable them to be better operating employees and not be seen as rather difficult to cater for.”

A spokeswoman for Sainsbury’s, confirming Mustapha’s stance, said: “At the application stage we ask the relevant questions regarding any issues about handling different products and where we can we will try and accommodate any requirements people have, but it depends on the needs of the particular store.”

There is a difference between accommodating the reasonable needs and expectations of a group and culture to make them feel reasonably content and justified in their working environment; however this is unreasonable compromise for these hardcore-muslims. madness indeed.

Justin King, London, UK

Once again Sainsbury”s are putting their staffs wacky ideas before their customers. If these zealots do not like the idea of alcohol WHY did they take the job in the first place???. They must have signed a contract of employment, it should be enforced.

Peter Robinson, Leicester, ENGLAND (not India)

Some of us ‘indigenous’ people have had enough of GB being destroyed by over-enthusiastic ‘political correctness’ . So we’ve departed the miserable shores of the UK and set up happy homes elsewhere where we don’t have put up with this ‘religious’ nonsense. Get real Sainsurys and GB government.

Annie, Biarritz, France

Islamification of Doritos

Muslims in Britian are in an uproar over the recent revelation that Doritos and other chip products may contain trace amounts of alcohol… I understand the needs to keep Halal, just as Jewish people keep Kosher. The key is if the product does not claim to be Halal, then don’t eat it if you want to keep Halal or Kosher. Those that keep strict Jewish diets only each food that has been declared Kosher through a series of requirements and certifications.

If the food was marketed as being Halal or Kosher and then it turned out that it did not meet those requirements, then by all means be upset, but do not be upset because you want to eat something and it turns out the process to make it includes contents not to your liking. This has nothing to do with being sensitive of Muslims, but rather considerate of everyone that is not Muslim.

In addition Walkers publishes a list of products that are alcohol fee, and these products were not on it, so it is the store’s responsibility to know what they are buying and to make the logical link that if the product is not on the alcohol free list, then it is reasonable to assume that alcohol is contained in the product.

Another case of Political Correctness run awry. Bend over westerners and take it right up the tailpipe…

Furious Muslims have heavily criticised Walkers crisps after it emerged that certain varieties of the manufacturer’s products contain trace elements of alcohol.

Some crisp types use minute amounts of alcohol as a chemical agent to extract certain flavours.

The report in Asian newspaper Eastern Eye, highlights concerns raised by shopkeeper Besharat Rehman, who owns a halal supermarket in Bradford, West Yorkshire.

Mr Rehman told the paper: “A customer informed us that Sensations Thai Sweet Chilli and Doritos Chilli Heat Wave are not on Walkers’ alcohol-free list. Our suppliers were unaware of this.

“Even if it is a trace amount of alcohol, Walkers should make it clear on the packaging so that the customer can make an informed choice.

“I feel frustrated and angry. I have let my customers down simply because such a big company like Walkers is not sensitive to Muslim needs.

“Many of them were my daughter’s favourite crisps. As soon as I found out about the alcohol in them, I called home to ask my wife to throw out all the packets.”

Shuja Shafi, who chairs the food standards committee of the Muslim Council of Britain, said that he intended to investigate. “Certainly we would find it very offensive to have eaten food with alcohol.”

Masood Khawaja, of the Halal Food Authority, said that this was not the first time the issue had been raised with Walkers.

“They should have looked into the matter and solved it instead of hiding behind labelling regulations. It does not matter what percentage of alcohol is involved.

“Besides Muslims, there are a lot of teetotal people who would not like to consume alcohol in any form. As far as possible we try and lobby for halal symbols on popular products like Kellogg’s cereals.

“But we have always told Muslims to check the contents list even if a product is marked suitable for vegetarians. But to not mention it on the packaging is unfair.”

However, a spokesperson for Walkers said that trace amounts of alcohol in crisps or bread are believed to be permissible for Muslims.

“We do not add alcohol to our products. However, ethyl alcohol may be present in trace amounts in a very small number of our flavours.

“It is used as a carrying agent for flavourings, and is found in many common food and drink products.

“Foods like bread can also contain the same or higher trace amounts due to fermentation. “We are aware of the concerns from some Muslim consumers about the appropriateness of specific ingredients. We take the concerns of our consumers extremely seriously.

“In previous assessments by Muslim scholars, foods and drinks that contain trace amounts of ethyl alcohol have been confirmed as permissible for Muslim consumption because of both the fact that the ingredient does not bear its original qualities and does not change the taste, colour or smell of the product, and its very low level.”

Islamification of YouTube

The media has been blasted publishing cartoons of Mohammad, A teacher was arrested and almost faced death for her class naming a teddy bear Mohammad, Wikipedia has been lambasted for displaying art which depicts Mohammad and now the latest causualty of the Islamic war on Free Speech, YouTube…

Pakistan’s government has banned access to the video-sharing Web site YouTube because of anti-Islamic movies that users have posted on the site, an official said Sunday.

The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority told the country’s 70 Internet service providers Friday that the popular Web site would be blocked until further notice.

The authority did not specify what the offensive material was, but a PTA official said the ban concerned a movie trailer for an upcoming film by Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders, who has said he plans to release an anti-Koran movie portraying the religion as fascist and prone to inciting violence against women and homosexuals.

The PTA official, who asked not to be identified because he was not an official spokesman, said the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority also blocks Web sites that show controversial drawings of the Prophet Muhammad. The drawings were originally printed in European newspapers in 2006 and were reprinted by some papers last week.

The PTA urged Web users to write to YouTube and request the removal of the objectionable movies, saying authorities would stop blocking the site once that happened. /**/

Pakistan is not the only country to have blocked access to YouTube.

In January, a court in Turkey blocked the site because some video clips allegedly insulted the country’s founding father, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. It is illegal to insult Ataturk in Turkey.

Last spring the Thai government banned the site for about four months because of clips seen as offensive to Thailand’s revered monarch, King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

Moroccans last year were unable to access YouTube after users posted videos critical of Morocco’s treatment of the people of Western Sahara, a territory Morocco took control of in 1975.

Said Girls Double Murder An Honor Killing?

Michelle Malkin brings to the front what the liberal media does not want you to know…

The Murder of Sarah and Amina Yasser Said was an Honor Killing… What is worse, it happened in Texas… More Islamification of the US, Sharia is here in Texas..

Relative of murdered Dallas girls: “This was an honor killing;” father abused daughters

By Michelle Malkin  •  January 6, 2008 07:04 AM
1said.jpg Funeral services–both Christian and Muslim–were held Saturday in Dallas for murdered teen sisters Sarah and Amina Yaser Said. Their father, wanted for capital murder in the case, remains on the loose. Dallas Morning News reports on family reaction–including remarks from the girls’ mother, brother, and great-aunt, who is convinced that the double slayings are honor killings and detailed the daughters’ abuse at the hands of the father: 

Before the service, the girls’ mother and brother issued a public appeal for Mr. Said to surrender. Patricia Said said her husband needed to be brought to justice so that her “girls can rest in peace.” She said that she and her son would remain in hiding until her husband is captured.

“I just want him to pay for what he did to my girls,” Mrs. Said said.

Islam Said has previously disputed widespread rumors and media reports that his Muslim father’s religion may have been the reason for the killings. Some have speculated that the deaths may have been “honor killings,” a practice in which a man kills a female relative who he believes has somehow shamed the family.

Patricia Said mourned the loss of her daughters at a Baptist service Saturday at Rahma Funeral Home.

Irving police have said that they are exploring all possible motives for the slayings. Police have acknowledged that the family had some previous domestic problems.

Gail Gartrell, the sisters’ great-aunt, said Saturday that Mr. Said had physically abused the two girls for years. Around Christmas, the girls’ mother – Ms. Gartrell’s niece – had fled because of Mr. Said’s threats to kill the girls after he learned they had boyfriends, she said.“She ran with them because she knew he would carry out the threat,” Ms. Gartrell said. “This was an honor killing.”

She said her niece returned after Mr. Said told her that he would move out so they could reconcile. Within a few days, she said, the girls were dead.

 

The Ft. Worth Star Telegram also reveals details about the missing father’s marriage to the girls’ mother. They married when she was 15 and he was 30:

Details emerged Thursday about the days leading up to the fatal shootings of the Lewisville teens, who were found Tuesday evening in a taxi that police believe was driven by their father.

Patricia Said and her daughters quit their jobs at a Kroger grocery store in Lewisville just before Christmas, a company spokesman said.

Patricia and Yaser Said were wed in February 1987 when she was 15 and he was 30, Tarrant County marriage records show. The two have had addresses in Euless, Bedford, Grand Prairie and Arlington, public records indicate.

Yaser Abdel Said filed a missing-person report Dec. 26. He hoped police would help track down his wife, according to a report by KDFW/Channel 4.

The incident marked one of the domestic problems that investigators believe may have led to the killings of Sarah and Amina Said.

Friends of the girls have said their father didn’t approve of them dating.

America’s Most Wanted spotlighted fugutive Said’s case. There’s also a $10,000 reward for info.

Hajib Murder – Islamification Of Canada

Where to start…

Well let’s start at the title, the liberal media opens this one with Allegedly Kills, when the article clearly states he admitted to killing her. There is no Allegedly here…

In another episode of Islamification, the issue of Hajibs, comes out again as well as the submission of women in Islam. The troubling part is this did not happen in a Muslim country, it happened in Canada. They are bringing their religious laws to our countries and enforcing them. Sharia is coming to a town near you…

These Muslims come to our country and want us to change for them, then they want to force their culture on us, pretty soon we become them. This is the liberal legacy left behind and if we do not do something about it soon, our own cultures will fade away in a see of Political Correctness…

Update: For those interested in learning about how culture of honor killing that this definitely falls under… See Gendercide Watch

Dad Allegedly Kills Girl Over Head Scarf

By Jonathan Spicer,

Reuters

Posted: 2007-12-11 18:17:27

TORONTO (Dec. 11) – A Canadian teenager who was said to have clashed with her father about whether she should wear a traditional Muslim head scarf died of injuries late on Monday, and her father told police he had killed her.

 

Peel District School Board / Handout / Reuters

A memorial for Aqsa Parvez is set up at her high school near Toronto. Some of her classmates were quoted as saying she wore traditional Muslim dress when leaving her house in the morning, but would change into other clothes in school washrooms.

Aqsa Parvez, 16, was found without a pulse in her home in the Toronto suburb of Mississauga earlier on Monday. She was resuscitated by paramedics, treated at two hospitals, and later succumbed to her injuries, police said on Tuesday.

Her father, 57-year-old Muhammad Parvez, has been charged with murder and was remanded back into custody after his first court appearance early on Tuesday.

“There was a 911 call placed by a man who indicated that he had just killed his daughter,” Jodi Dawson, a constable with Peel Regional Police, told Reuters. “Everything else is evidentiary in nature and the investigation is in its preliminary stages at this point.”

The victim’s brother, Waqas Parvez, 26, was arrested and charged with obstructing police.

The story was on the front pages of Canadian newspapers on Tuesday. The newspapers quoted friends and schoolmates of the victim as saying she argued with her father over wearing a hijab, the traditional head scarf worn by Muslim females.

Photos of the teen retrieved from a social networking Web site show her in Western dress with her long dark hair loose.

“She was always scared of her dad, she was always scared of her brother,” the Toronto Star quoted a classmate as saying.

Others were quoted as saying the girl wore traditional Muslim dress when leaving the house in the morning, but would change into other clothes in school washrooms.

Dawson said investigators will likely speak to the victim’s schoolmates. The father will return for a bail hearing on Wednesday.

Islamic Tsunami Washing Through Europe

Sounds like someone in the Netherlands has finally woken up… The response to this movie is overwheming in terms of how Muslims expected to be treated better than other people, but reserve the right to force their ideology on us.  This is an issue of freedom of speech as well as freedom of religion. Bravo Mr. Wilders for identifying and speaking up about the troubles that are sweeping through the EU, but being protected by Political Correctness and Liberal Self Hatred of their own countrymen.

 Threats of murder. Fears of riots and religious violence. Demands for censorship. Politicians in hiding, fearing for their lives. A government preparing for the worst.

It’s happening right now in a most unlikely place … the Netherlands, once regarded as Europe’s quietest and most stable nation.

And it’s all happening because of a 10-minute movie that hasn’t even been made yet.

It’s the work of Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders, who calls his movie “a call to shake off the creeping tyranny of Islamicization.” Wilders plans to present it to his country on television sometime next month.

“People who watch the movie will see that the Koran is very much alive today, leading to the destruction of everything we in the Western world stand for, which is respect and tolerance,” Wilders, the 41-year-old leader of the right-wing Party for Freedom, said in a telephone interview.

“The tsunami of Islamicization is coming to Europe. We should come to be far stronger.”

Like other European countries, the Netherlands is struggling to cope with an influx of Muslim immigrants, and the newcomers are often relegated to working at low-paying jobs and living in high-crime ghettos. Though the Dutch boast of their culture of tolerance, tensions have been high, with some blaming rising unemployment and crime on newcomers from Muslim countries like Turkey, Morocco and Somalia.

In the late 1990s, political leaders like Pim Fortuyn, Somalian-born writer Ayaan Hirsi Ali and outspoken filmmaker Theo van Gogh seemed to tap into a growing well of resentment against Muslims and criticism of Islam.

In 2002, tensions broke into outright murder when Fortuyn was shot by an animal rights activist who told the judge in the case that he was acting on behalf of the country’s Muslims. Two years later, van Gogh was shot, stabbed and nearly decapitated on an Amsterdam street by Mohammed Bouyeri, a Muslim and a Dutch citizen of Moroccan descent.

Van Gogh, with Hirsi Ali, had recently made the film “Submission,” a 10-minute movie that the two said depicted the abuse of women in Islamic cultures. After van Gogh’s murder, the Dutch government placed public figures known for their anti-Muslim stances in safehouses.

Among them was the parliamentarian Geert Wilders. He hasn’t been out of government protection since, a situation he said “I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy,” and his views on Islam have only hardened.

Four months ago, he called for the Koran to be outlawed in the Netherlands.

“I believe our culture is much better than the retarded Islamic cultures,” he told FOXNews.com in a telephone interview. “Ninety-nine percent of the intolerance in the world comes back to the Islamic religion and the Koran.”

Though he refuses to claim the mantle of van Gogh’s successor, Wilders clearly sees himself as continuing the controversial filmmaker’s work. He acknowledges the similarities between “Submission” and his own 10-minute work, about five minutes of which have been completed, he said.

“I have so much respect for van Gogh’s movie, aimed at one part of the Koran, women’s bodies, one very bad part of the Koran,” Wilders said. “I will use not only that theme but many others. Of course at the end it is a different movie.”

Though Wilders has remained steadfastly vague about the specific contents of his movie, saying he wants to maximize the “moment of the broadcast itself,” he added that it will include “images and parts of real-time movies that really happen in the Netherlands and the U.K. and the Middle East, the intolerance of the Koran that is still alive and vivid today.”

Wilders, raised Catholic but long an atheist, said he’s working with professors who are experts on the Koran and Islamic culture, professional filmmakers and scriptwriters to complete his film, which he hopes to broadcast next month on “Nova,” a popular news program on Dutch public television. If “Nova” refuses to air the program, he said, he will broadcast the movie using the air time his political party is guaranteed by the government.

The Dutch government, which is protecting Wilders, has publicly warned him about the potential for violence at the completion of his film and has expressed concern over his personal safety. The government is also concerned about peace within the country and interests abroad. In 2005, cartoons printed in a Danish newspaper led to Danish embassies being set on fire, multi-million-dollar anti-Danish consumer boycotts in the Middle East, and hundreds of deaths in riots across the Muslim world.

“The government is taking the announcement of this movie quite seriously,” said Floris van Hovell, a spokesman for the Dutch Embassy in Washington, D.C. “Obviously, because the movie hasn’t been made, we cannot say anything about the movie until the movie has been shown, but the message Mr. Wilders has told us he wants to portray is disturbing.”

Asked if the government plans to beef up security, Van Hovell said he couldn’t comment. But he did say that the government is making a concerted effort to reach out to the Muslim community in the Netherlands and the larger Muslim world.

“We’re explaining that in the Netherlands you have freedom of expression, and that at the same time the Dutch government is very concerned about the message Mr. Wilders supposedly wants to portray in his movie,” van Hovell said.

Wilders has requested additional personal security from the government.

Wilders’ rhetoric may have struck a chord among a part of the Dutch population. One poll suggests that if elections were held today, his Freedom Party would win 26 seats in the 150-seat Tweede Kamer — Holland’s House of Representatives — up from nine the party won last November.

Muslim reaction to Wilders’ film has been predictably less supportive. Some are calling for it to be outlawed before it is broadcast, and groups of both Muslims and non-Muslims have publicly denounced the film.

“I think he’s addicted to the attention of the media,” said Zainab al-Touraihi, secretary-general of the Contact Body for Muslims, the official Muslim advisory body to the Dutch government. “He’s doing it for political reasons, and I’m sure he’s getting more and more votes. And that’s the scary thing, actually.”

She said she supported Wilders’ right to make the movie, though she said she was certain it would be skewed and harmful to both Dutch Muslims and the Netherlands as a whole.

“He would like to see that every Muslim woman is in prayers and held at home and that they have no rights, but he’s not looking at Muslims these days,” she said. “The Koran is a matter of interpretation, just like the Bible and the Torah. You need to interpret, not take it literally.”

Al-Touraihi’s group has long had a standing invitation to Wilders to speak to its members or take part in a debate. And Wilders has always ignored it, she said.

“If he really believed in these things, he would go out and sit with us and talk about issues, but he’s never responded, so it’s a one-man show and a one-way show,” al-Touraihi said. “As a member of parliament, he can get every camera in front of him and say whatever he wants, but he never goes out for debates because I think he knows that he would lose voters.”

For Wilders, though, all the criticism is just proof that he’s on the right path.

“The reaction is proof of how much the movie is needed,” he said. “This is not Morocco. We’re living in the Kingdom of the Netherlands, a free country.”

Flying Imans, Political Jihad and Rose Colored Anal Looking Glass

A must read article, the intial though I had when I read the title was that it was just a piece about the backgrounds, but as I read the article, a more important theme arose, the deep seeded religious ideology being taught in the US my Muslim Clerics, who are against the US. It sounds like they are trying to establish a separate Islamic Nation Government within the US with the eventual plan to integrate, our government into theirs… They use our Constitution to hide behind when they are discovered, but then they use it to attack as well. The ACLU and CAIR have made sure of that…

This overlooking and using political correctness to absolve liberal demands for the destruction of our country, will lead to the ultimate demise of our freedoms and open the doorway to radical Islamic terrorist attacks within our borders.

Compound this with the stories that the liberal media does not want you to hear about CAIR, the Holy Land Foundation, Dearbornistans Islamic Jihad and Hebzollah ties, and it really illuminates the threat we face from within…

I suggest reading at least twice.

Exposing the “Flying Imams”

by M. Zuhdi Jasser
Middle East Quarterly
Winter 2008

On November 20, 2006, airline officials in Minneapolis removed six imams from U.S. Airways flight 300 to Phoenix after their behavior raised the suspicion of fellow travelers.[1] The imams decried the incident as racist and evidence of discrimination. On March 12, 2007, they filed suit against the airline, airport, and fellow passengers. Some of the imams’ claims are exaggerated; many are false. In reality, the incident was a tactical move to support the imams’ claim to leadership over the American Muslim community. Indeed, the “flying imams” case, Ahmed Shqeirat et al. vs. U.S. Airways,[2] appears to mark just the latest front in the war between Islamists and mainstream, pluralistic American Muslims.

Background

The airport episode appeared pre-planned, the American equivalent of the manufactured Danish cartoon controversy, in which Danish Islamists, who hoped to benefit from polarization, exaggerated victimization and sought a pretext for crisis.[3] The six imams, five of whom hailed from the Phoenix area, were returning from a North American Imams Federation conference. Three drew attention to themselves when they conducted prayers at the departure gate rather than in the airport chapel or quietly in their seats. However, they drew no response. On the plane, however, they aroused passenger suspicion with loud Arabic conversations, requests for apparently unnecessary seat-belt extenders—which can be used as weapons—and a post-boarding seating switch. Other passengers expressed their worries to the crew, who had them removed. After this incident, Omar Shahin, president of the North American Imams Federation and a prominent Phoenix imam, told the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR, an Islamist advocacy group) and its attorneys, “Security at the airport isn’t our problem; it’s their problem.”[4]

On March 12, 2007, the imams, CAIR, and attorney Omar Mohammedi, a former president of CAIR’s New York chapter, filed suit not only against the airline and the Minneapolis Metropolitan Airports Commission but also against the anonymous “John Doe” passengers who alerted the crew to the imams’ suspicious behavior.

The involvement of CAIR, an organization that has received significant Saudi financing,[5] injected impressive machinery and resources into the case. Omar Shahin explained, “Since minute one of this incident, I contacted [CAIR communications director] Ibrahim Hooper and [CAIR executive director] Brother Nihad Awad, and we arranged everything … Everything’s being coordinated with CAIR.”[6] The group underwrote the cost of any litigation.[7]

CAIR used its national network of imams and press connections to draw attention to the case. Tactically, though, the decision to litigate against ordinary passengers was a misstep. It drew critical commentary from the mainstream press.[8] The Arizona Republic dubbed it “intimidation by lawsuit,”[9] and many individuals and organizations, including our own American Islamic Forum for Democracy, offered assistance to the passengers forced into court.[10] While Mohammedi amended his suit to target only John Does whom he deemed “racist” or who had made false accusations,[11] the discovery process would still require suspect passengers to retain counsel. Congress stepped in and, in late July, passed legislation protecting passengers from similar future lawsuits.[12] The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty then filed an amicus brief with the court on August 1, 2007, asking the court to remove the John Does from the suit and denouncing the imams’ “attempt to hijack the court as legal terrorism.”[13] Under this barrage of criticism, the imams dropped their lawsuit against the passengers on August 23, 2007,[14] although they are proceeding with the rest of their suit against the airline, its employees, and the Metropolitan Airports Commission.

My Experience with the Phoenix Imams

I have known three of the plaintiffs in the U.S. Airways suit for almost a decade. Soon after settling in Arizona in 1999, I became involved in the local Muslim community. Before moving to Scottsdale, I usually attended Friday congregational prayer services at the Islamic Community Center of Tempe, Arizona. Often, Ahmed Shqeirat, now the primary plaintiff, delivered sermons at the mosque where he has long been imam. I was struck by the political nature of his sermons. He repeatedly criticized both U.S. domestic and foreign policy and often exaggerated Muslim victimization. He advocated political unification of Muslims internationally and blamed the United States, Israel, and the West for perceived slights. He called for the political empowerment of Muslims in American society.

After hearing several sermons, I spoke and wrote to him to express my dismay at his emphasis of political over spiritual topics. He responded that “secularism is Godlessness” and asserted a right to “speak about political injustice.” The concept of purely spiritual Islam and creation of an intellectual environment welcoming to all Muslims regardless of political persuasion was anathema to him.

To give one example of his abuse of pulpit, during a Friday sermon in April 2004, he displayed an image, which CAIR had distributed, of an American soldier in Iraq with two young Iraqi boys. In the photo, the soldier held a sign saying, “Lcpl Boudreaux killed my dad, then he knocked up my sister.”[15] Shqeirat neither made any attempt to verify the image’s authenticity nor to determine, if real, whether it was representative. Nor, when he was asked, could he explain how such a display related to Islamic theology or spirituality. The goal of using faith identity to divide society highlights the incompatibility of Islamism with traditions of American culture and society.

I had similar concerns regarding the sermons of Marwan Saadeddin, another plaintiff, whose sermons I heard in the Phoenix Valley. Following the U.S. Air 300 incident, Saadeddin spun the incident to the media[16] and transformed it into a parable of victimization during a Friday sermon at a Phoenix Valley mosque. During the sermon, I heard him say, “I’d rather be dead than removed from an airplane in handcuffs.” Such is the political and fanatical ranting of one of Arizona’s leading imams. As is common among Islamist preachers, he substituted politics for theology and spirituality.

I also know Omar Shahin, another imam plaintiff. He resides in the Phoenix area and has been the head of the Valley Imam Council of Phoenix, the former imam of the Islamic Center of Tucson, a teacher with the Arizona Cultural Academy, and the imam of the Islamic Center of the East Valley. His hyperbole is typical of the Phoenix-area Islamists. He called the day of his eviction from the U.S. Air flight “the worst day of [his] life,”[17] a statement far more forceful than any he issued after the 9-11 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, the March 11, 2004 train bombings in Madrid, the July 7, 2005 London bus and Underground bombings, or in response to any Al-Qaeda video seeking to justify the murder of Americans and noncombatants in the name of religion. Indeed, he blamed the 9-11 attacks not on Muslim terrorists but on the CIA and FBI.[18]

There should also be concern regarding the involvement of some of the imams with Islamic charities shuttered because of their terror financing. Shahin was the Arizona representative of Kindhearts and the Holy Land Foundation, both of which the U.S. Treasury Department shut down because of their involvement with Hamas.[19] Saadeddin dismissed Hamas connections as any reason for concern, recently stating that, “Hamas has nothing to do with [the] United States. Talk about Al-Qaeda only, because this is where they hit America … [If] America consider[s] it—the foreign policy of America consider[s] Hamas—as a terrorist. That’s their business.”[20]

Rally and Counter-rally

Had the Islamist imams only apologized for terrorism, it would be bad enough. But they have also sought to undercut the efforts of local Muslims to advocate against and condemn publicly terrorism conducted in the name of Islam. On November 9, 2001, I published my first commentary, arguing that the vast core of American Muslims were loyal to the flag and U.S. Constitution and that radical spokesmen did not represent the core community.[21] This article led to the formation of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD).

In Phoenix in 2004, AIFD organized the first Muslim rally against terrorism.[22] We first engaged the Arizona Interfaith Movement, a statewide inclusive interfaith leadership organization, to support Muslims willing to take this stance. We then approached the Valley Imam Council, which represents nearly all of the local Phoenix mosques and their imams. At the time, Shahin chaired the council. We made it clear that the rally would be apolitical and that the only purpose was to make clear, unambiguous statements about Islamic morality and ethics, including unequivocal statements that there is never any justification for suicide, terrorism (the intentional targeting of noncombatants), and homicide bombing.

Rather than support such goals, Shahin, Shqeirat, and Saadeddin directed the Valley Council of Imams to withdraw support. They used their pulpits instead to criticize the rally and its organizers. Citing the Arab-Israeli conflict, they objected to the idea that terrorism is always forbidden. The local CAIR chapter also withdrew. Once the Valley Council of Imams pulled out, the Interfaith Movement also withdrew support for fear that the rally would not advance harmony.

AIFD proceeded alone. The April 25, 2004 “Standing with Muslims against Terrorism” rally was then held without the public support of any local imams or any of the known Islamist organizations. The rally was a success. Four hundred people attended, perhaps half of whom were Muslims.[23] All major local networks covered it. When the media asked local imams about their refusal to participate, they responded by criticizing the rally’s apolitical nature and said they would only attend rallies in which they could argue that U.S. foreign policy was a major cause of terrorism. They also objected to any linkage of Muslims with terrorism in the rally name.

Two weeks later, CAIR-Arizona held a counter “Muslim Americans for Human Rights and Dignity” rally in which they failed to condemn explicitly terrorism and terrorists by name. The rally drew only seventy-five people.[24] The failure of CAIR and the local imams to rally much support shows the falsehood of their claim to represent the mainstream Muslim community. Many Muslims recognize the problem posed by terrorists justifying their actions in Islam. To deny the association of Muslims with terrorism—as Islamist organizations like CAIR do—is counterproductive. The Islamist strategy of picking and choosing whom they identify as a Muslim depending on the situation is disingenuous. To deny that the Fort Dix terrorist attack plotters were not real Muslims, as CAIR-Arizona chairman (and U.S. Airways employee) Mohammed El-Sharkawy did, sidesteps the problem.[25] And to argue that only scholars can determine who is and who is not a true Muslim not only appropriates God’s duty[26] but also diminishes the egalitarian nature of traditional Islam that accepts no intermediaries between the individual and God.[27]

Imposing Leadership

Creating intermediaries in order to claim false mandate remains the root of the imams’ strategy. Organizations such as the National American Imams Federation and the Assembly of American Muslim Jurists exist to impose hierarchy and, from that self-appointed hierarchy, to establish the mandate to speak on behalf of the entire Muslim community. The Islamic Society of North America, an un-indicted coconspirator in the United States of America vs. Holy Land Foundation et al. terrorism financing trial,[28] formed a Leadership Development Center to train and indoctrinate imams.[29] On March 7, 2007, it announced a leadership certifying program for imams in conjunction with the National American Imams Federation.[30]

Establishing false leadership claims is also one reason why both CAIR and various Islamist imams attempt to partner with U.S. law enforcement. On CNN’s Paula Zahn Now, Shahin said, “If you go back to our background, I am personally the chairperson for the police advisory board. I did a presentation for the FBI agent in Phoenix. I did [a] presentation with CAIR-Arizona to Yuma Air Force Base for more than 600 Marines.”[31] For many imams, participation in such programs bestows or recognizes legitimacy. This is wrong on two counts, however. First, it again conflates policy work with religious legitimacy and, second, groups often exaggerate their partnerships. One Homeland Security official said, “It is not uncommon for that particular organization [CAIR] to issue a press release attempting to overstate their interaction with the department.”[32] Within the mosque, however, congregants rarely question self-appointed Islamist spokesmen about the basis of their authority or legitimacy to represent attendees. Their inflated associations outside the mosque feed their own efforts to legitimize control and tribalization. And government and media acceptance of claims of victimization stops many non-Muslims from questioning the ideological motivations behind the religious rhetoric that many of these groups employ.

For moderate, traditional Islam to reassert itself against well-funded Islamist organizations, though, it is necessary to examine how political ideology pollutes spirituality. CAIR’s involvement in the flying imam suit is problematic. Many Muslims have seen the call by Nihad Awad, executive director of CAIR’s national office, for Muslims to report their victimization to CAIR. “Reporting to an organization like CAIR is important, because it is empowering. It is empowering to the Muslims themselves who report; it is empowering to the organization, and it is important to the status of Muslims within the United States,” he told an audience at the All Dulles (Virginia) Area Muslim Society, urging them to inflate the Muslim component of the FBI’s annual hate crime statistics to compare better to figures on anti-Jewish violence.[33] In 2005, for example, the FBI catalogued 848 anti-Semitic hate crimes, 128 anti-Islamic hate crimes, and 115 anti-Christian hate crimes.[34] In essence, therefore, CAIR’s focus on victimization and minority politics is motivated by political Islam. The imams’ victimization routine creates a self-fulfilling prophecy that CAIR can use to bolster its own claims to be a civil rights organization. It would be as if firefighters committed arson in order to bolster their position inside a community. That CAIR seeks to create facts to justify its political and foreign policy positions also shows the rigidity of its top-down approach to the community it claims to represent.

The Struggle for American Islam

While the press may focus on the flying imams case, for American Muslims, the battle is broader. On one side are the imams represented by CAIR, the Islamic Society for North America, and the North American Imams Federation, all of which lean toward an Islamist view supporting greater interplay between religion and politics and the primacy of sectarian identity. On the other side are Muslims embracing Western secular democracy. The two are mutually exclusive in their interpretation of religious hierarchy, the interplay between theology and contemporary politics, individuality, and tolerance.

Responsibility for the victory of traditional, tolerant, and pluralistic interpretations of Islam lies with Muslims and Muslims alone. The intellectual marginalization of Islamists is the duty of Muslims who value the principles upon which the United States was built and now stands. This requires recognizing the primacy of the Constitution in political life, even if Muslims turn to the Qur’an in their spiritual life. Islamists, though, insist that regardless of temporal government, the Qur’an should be the central guiding document for legislation and interpretation. Islamists believe the Qur’an is the only source of law while non-Islamists believe it is just one source.

Perhaps this was the reason why the Prophet Muhammad and his companions sought to avoid creation of the same religious intermediary class that today CAIR, the Islamic Society of North America, and the North American Imams Federation presume to fill.

Within the United States today, most Muslim organizations—CAIR, the North American Imams’ Federation, the Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America, the Muslim Students’ Association, the Islamic Society of North America, the Muslim Public Affairs Council, the Muslim American Society, the Islamic Circle of North America, and the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy—embrace the Islamist approach. Many imams affiliate themselves with these organizations, fundraise on their behalf, and parrot the political agenda of these organizations. The flying imams lawsuit is just one more example of the synergy between the North American Imams Federation and CAIR.

A few small organizations—the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, the American Islamic Congress, the Islamic Supreme Council of America, the Center for Eurasian Policy, and the Center for Islamic Pluralism—are moderate and support a separation between spirituality and temporal politics. They are underrepresented in terms of resources and organization. Still, it is this nascent anti-Islamist movement upon which the Muslim fight to embrace American pluralism and freedom depends. It is also essential for interfaith relations. Many Americans are hungry to hear from Muslims who are not apologists for terror, who are ready to lead the fight against militant Islamism, who respect the division between mosque and state, and who do not seek to use their religion as a vehicle to change the American political landscape.

The struggle of these two trends to define Islam in America will last generations. It will require development of a new Islamic ideology, one born from the founding ideology of the United States. This will require not only renewed ijtihad (interpretation) but also the confidence of American Muslims to overcome Islamist and radical Wahhabist attempts to label any effort to separate religion and government as bid‘a (illegitimate invention). While the transnational umma (Muslim community) might engage itself in issues regarding theology, charity, socialization, and worship, U.S. politics should be blind to faith. For any American citizen or resident, the concept of loyalty to umma should be subordinate to loyalty to state and allegiance to the U.S. Constitution.

Shari‘a (Islamic law) might guide Muslim individuals as they choose in their homes, but it should not be invoked in government. Faith will still inspire Muslim behavior and actions, as it does with followers of other religions, but it should not be articulated in government. The embrace and exposure of Islamist agendas will repel most Muslims. It is no surprise that despite its claims to represent American Muslims, CAIR’s membership has plummeted 90 percent since 9-11,[35] a claim it first refuted as a “hit piece” before confirming it in an amicus brief to the Dallas federal court hearing in the Holy Land Foundation case.[36] A recent Pew Research Center poll showed that a plurality of Muslims believes mosques should remain apolitical,[37] a finding which suggests the majority may oppose theocracy and Islamism. The finding is also significant when put in the context of the fact that many Muslims came to the United States from autocratic societies where the mosque was often the only haven for political speech. That so many now desire apolitical sermons suggests that they have come to understand and appreciate the freedoms of U.S. society.

A Manifesto to Defeat Islamism

In 1964, Sayyid Qutb, the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s leading theoretician, published Ma‘alim fi al-Tariq (Milestones) in which he laid out steps to achieve an Islamic state and defeat the West. He described a generational process to ensure the victory of Islamism over Western liberal society. Liberal and traditional Muslims have yet to wage an effective counter-jihad against their Islamist brethren. There does not yet exist a liberal Muslim intellectual work equivalent to Milestones to lay the groundwork to defeat Islamism and ensure the creation of integrationist, tolerant American Muslim institutions.

A starting point to counter the Qutb construct would be for Muslim leaders to acknowledge ten points:

  1. An Islamic narrative should not constrain universal human principles.
  2. Mosques should support the separation of church and state, even as they take stands on social or political issues.
  3. The affirmation of an egalitarian approach to faith beyond the constraints of simple tolerance. Tolerance implies superiority while pluralism implies equality.
  4. Recognition that if government enacts the literal laws of God rather than natural or human law, then government becomes God and abrogates religion and the personal nature of the relationship with God.
  5. Separation of mosque and state to include the abrogation of all blasphemy and apostasy laws.
  6. Empowerment of women’s liberation and advocacy for equality as is currently absent in many Muslim-majority, misogynistic cultures.
  7. Ijtihad negating the need for Muslims active in politics today to bring theology into the political debate. Nowhere in the Qur’an does God tell Muslims to mix politics and religion or instruct by what document governments should be guided.
  8. Creation of movements and organizations that are specifically opposed to such radical or terrorism-supporting groups as Al-Qaeda, Hamas, Hezbollah, Hizb ut-Tahrir, Jamaat al-Islamiya, and Al-Muhajiroun, to name a few, rather than simply being against undefined, generic notions of terrorism.
  9. Public identification without apologetics of leaders and governments of Muslim majority countries who are dictators and despots and are, as such, anti-liberty and anti-pluralism. Muslims enjoying freedom in the West have yet to create mass movements to liberate their motherlands from dictatorship and theocracy and to move these toward secular democracies founded on individual liberties for all based in natural law.
  10. Establishment of classical liberal Muslim institutions and think-tanks to articulate, disseminate, and educate concerning the above principles. The idea that individual liberty and freedom need not be mutually exclusive with Muslim theology must be taught to Muslim youth.

Countering Islamism and combating Islamist terrorism should be a greater public responsibility for the organized American Muslim community than the obsession with civil rights and victimization in which current Islamist organizations engage. Americans living in fear for their security are looking to moderate, traditional Muslims to lead this fight. The credibility of the Muslim community suffers because groups such as CAIR, ISNA, and the North American Imams Federation deny the interplay between Islamism and terrorism.

Non-Muslims also have a role. Both the U.S. government and mainstream media often give Islamists and their organizations exclusive voice to speak on behalf of American Muslims, which creates a cycle of apparent, if not real, empowerment. Seldom do they turn to non-Islamists and anti-Islamists who may represent far more American Muslims. The recent refusal of PBS to air the ABG Films, Inc. documentary Islam v. Islamists is a prime example of the manner in which media producers and executives shield Islamists from criticism.[38]

Conclusion

The imams and clerics who push for Islamist societies are none other than politicians who cloak themselves in religious jargon. It is naïve to treat these clerics as simple activists or consider their civil rights discourse at face value. Until moderate Muslims challenge their actions, terror networks and their ideologies will flourish. Freedom and liberty are prerequisites to bring an individual close to God through religious practice free from coercion. If some imams fear that individuals will lose faith without coercive direction, then they misunderstand both Islam and liberty.

As lawyers argue the merits of the flying imams’ case in a Minneapolis courtroom, a silver lining is apparent: Excessive litigation on their part has eroded support for Islamist organizations such as CAIR, ISNA, and the National American Imams Federation, both nationally and also within the Muslim community.[39] Their loss could be the moderates’ and liberals’ opportunity to create a new American Muslim narrative.

M. Zuhdi Jasser, a former U.S. Navy lieutenant commander, is chairman of the board of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (www.aifdemocracy.org).