Saturday, February 28, 2009

Jews bedazzled by Moslem Lies

from New English Review Blog

Eager To Believe

Friday, 20 February 2009

Last night was the second part of the three-part seminar, “Islam: What Every Jew Needs To Know” at Nashville’s Congregation Micah led by Rabbi Rami Shapiro.

So far, during both parts, the Rabbi was so unsure of his knowledge of Islam, he has had a Muslim co-presenter. This time it was none other than Abdelghani Barré who has recently been made director of the Islamic Community Center of Nashville and is a member of several government and private boards dealing with immigration and refugees, including the powerful Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition.

Barré was directly involved with the Somali Community center scandal that involved the diversion of funds from a Health and Human Services grant. When asked about that last night he went on at length about the wonderful transparency in this country and how there had been a thorough government investigation, how the person who had made the allegation had been fired and how he was aided in all this by a good friend at the ACLU. The questioner alleged that at least some of those funds found their way to al Qaeda, but Barré just laughed that off, nor am I aware of any public document alleging that specific connection.

Shapiro stated there are two ways to understand a religion. One way was from “inside,” meaning to get your information from a believer and the other was objective, meaning, to look at the texts in their historic context. Unfortunately, Shapiro did not know enough about the Koran or its historic context to challenge Barré who effectively had the floor the entire evening and conducted a very effective dawa session based mostly on questions from the audience. Naturally, his assertions were filled with contradictions, but both Shapiro and much of the audience seemed eager to believe him, to have some hope that Islam is not the irredeemable, mysognist, homophobic and antisemitic creed it proclaims itself to be.

Barré had wide latitude to contradict himself many times. For example, he said all Muslims believe the Koran is the perfect word of God, and there is only one version which governs all aspects of life including human relationships, but then again he claimed, it is all a matter of interpretation. He knew exactly what his audience wanted to hear and he gave it to them bit by bit.

When someone pointed out that all five schools of Islamic jurisprudence agree on the interpretation of jihad, and that the later war verses abrogate the earlier Meccan verses, Barré agreed that was true, but then went into a long song and dance about “ignorance” and how poor people with no education were being influenced by the evil Wahhabis and how he is a Sufi and how the Sufis concentrate on the spiritual side of things…this seemed to satisfy the audience. He also used a long and convoluted story about how the drinking of alcohol was first tolerated and eventually prohibited as an example of abrogation.

In another example Barré explained that Muslims must follow the rules of God, not the rules of man, but then went on several times to assert that some things were just self-evidently evil, such as the murder of innocents, being careful never to explain that the Koran defines good and evil and who is innocent and who is not. Of course, just like President Bush, he also quoted verse 5:32, that “whoever takes a life, it is as though he has killed all mankind.”

Here is the full verse 32 (note the exception):

32 For this reason We prescribed
for the Children of Israel that whoever
kills a person, unless it be for
manslaughter or for mischief in the
land, it is as though he had killed all
men. And whoever saves a life, it is
as though he had saved the lives
of all men.a And certainly Our messengers
came to them with clear
arguments, but even after that many
of them commit excesses in the land.

And here are the following two verses:

33 The only punishment of those
who wage war against Allah and His
Messenger and strive to make mischief
in the landa is that they should
be murdered, or crucified, or their
hands and their feet should be cut off
on opposite sides, or they should be
imprisoned.b This shall be a disgrace
for them in this world, and in the
Hereafter they shall have a grievous

34 Except those who repent before
you overpower them;a so know that
Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

To his credit, Rabbi Shapiro quoted verses 5:33-34, but he didn’t know enough to interject it when Barré quoted 5:32 out of context.

Nor did he know enough to challenge Barré’s assertion that all Muslim in-fighting today is caused by nationalism or that Arab cultural practices make up pretty much everything that is wrong with Islam. Barré also made the ridiculous assertion that the reason polygamy began in Islam was so that orphans could be cared for. He also made the claim that Muhammad’s last words were “forgive everybody.” A questioner surmised that, according to the law of abrogation, this should bring the religion full circle and back to the Meccan verses, but there is one problem. Those were not Muhammad’s last words. He said three things, one is forgotten, but the other two were:

“Shall be neither Jew nor Christian left in the Hijaz”


“Keep giving money to the Kafir ambassadors.”

Early in the evening, to gain the confidence of the audience, Barré dropped in a vague story about how he met with some imams somewhere and asserted before them that holocaust denial is a self-evident evil and they (whoever they were) unanimously agreed and that now for the first time holocaust denial is being challenged among Muslim scholars.

Barré conceded that Muslims in Muslim countries would most probably retain their hatred of Jews, but that Muslims here, who have the opportunity to know Jews and become educated as he had, could overcome their ignorance. He dwelt at length on education, so much so, that finally an audience member questioned whether education was the answer since “the man who beheaded Daniel Pearl was a graduate of the London School of Economics.” But that didn’t stop others in the audience from proclaiming their faith that “all religions teach love” or that “our hope lies with the children who can learn to live together,” or even that “as in Zen Buddhism, we all can learn to transcend harsh reality.”

At one point Rabbi Shapiro said to Barré, “so, what I hear you saying is that the later verses are only applicable to Muhammad’s time and are no longer relevant today.” Barré, of course did not say that, but he stood silent and allowed Shapiro, and by extension the rest of the audience, to hear what he wanted to hear.

Rabbi Shapiro even offered to send a delegation of rabbis to the Islamic Center to “continue this wonderful dialogue,” after explaining how he wouldn’t presume to ask the Muslims to come to them.

Barré wrapped up the evening after an audience member asked whether the problem was not “fundamentalists of all religions,” by saying that he didn’t think the problem is “fundamentalism, since Islamic fundamentalism brings you back to the pure religion,” but rather that the problem was “radicalism.” Then he said, "Every religion has its extremists, but let’s be honest, we have the highest percentage.” This one meager expression of truth elicited fawning oohs and ahhs from the audience. They were eager to believe him entirely of course, and many of them, including the Rabbi Shapiro, proud in his ignorance, did.

UPDATE: David Gaubatz of the Mapping Sharia Project was in Nashville the day before this presentation.

On 18 Feb 2009, I visited a Sunni mosque in Nashville, TN. A poem was being distributed at the mosque informing children it is heroic to be a martyr (suicide bomber) and to kill Israelis and their supporters.

Posted on 9:41 AM by Rebecca Bynum


20 Feb 2009
Hugh Fitzgerald
How uncritical, how Eager To Believe (as your title puts it) those in the audience appear to have been. No one raised the issue of 5.32 being modifieed by 5.33, and none, in this synagogue, could raise the most obvious questions?

For example, Barre -- by the way, is he a member of the Somali clan that included the warlord and murderer Mohammad Barre? -- mentions, as the reason for polygamy, the need to take care of "orphans." How exactly does that work? What he really means, and someone should have said it, is that Muhammad was a warrior, who engaged in 78 campaigns, who killed men and then seized their women. He did this, for example, with ,a beautfiul Jewish girl, whose husband, brothers, and father -=- inoffensive farmers -- he and his men slaughtered, and then he took her as his sex-slave. The "orphans" of which Barre speaks were those left bereft by Muslim warriors, and usually the women, that is mothers, were left alive to be used as the conquering Muslims, Muhammad taking his share of the loot (Sura 8 is all about such divvying up of the spoils of war).

Did no one in the audience think to ask -- or did Barre strictly control which questions he would anser -- about this? Or mention the word "dhimmi" and ask him, Barre, to define the status of non-Muslims under Muslim rule, over 1350 years, from Spain to the East Indies? Did no one wish to ask him why those who chose to leave Islam faced not only social ostracism, but -- in many Muslim countries -- certain death?

What was wrong with the audience? What do these people think, that all the defectors from Islam, from Ayaan Hirsi Ali to Ali Sina, from Wafa Sultan to Ibn Warraq, are all lying about Islam?

It is not the low cunning of Barre, and the morally preening foolishness of the Rabbi in question, that upset. It is the ignorance and credulity of the crowd, if crowd it was. No one capable of thought? There ought to have been skepticism at every point, and at least a few, who had learned something about Islam, undoing the spiel at every step.

Your report, however, is good. Next time this Barre speaks, make sure he is surreptitiouslly taped, and then a transcription made, so that a point-by-point rebuttal can be ready for distribution to those who next attend one of his Master Classes in Taqiyya.

21 Feb 2009
Paul Blaskowicz
I am almost certain that Shapiro had asked his congregants to be "courteous" to their muslim speaker. This is the word that is used here by semi-dhimmified Jewish and Christian organisers of "inter-faith" discussions.

Of course, only the "courteous," uninformed, all-religions-are-essentially-the-same gang go along. The knowledgeable - and therefore, potentially "discourteous," but de-cozifiers and stirrers of dissent - are thus discouraged from attending these farcical opportunities for taqqiya-merchants to ply their wares. I know whereof I speak.

Shapiro sounds a dolt. He don't know zilch about mohamedanism. Can't he use google? Can't he look at a few hundred clips from MEMRI? The only cure for this galloping cognitive dissonance is to spend a solid week looking at the horrors of what allah hath wrought.

[Warning! The following comment is from an apologist for the hate for "unbelievers" and the unspeakable acts performed by Mohammed and his cronies on all who doubted, disbelieved, or mocked him. lw]

22 Feb 2009
It's good to see how open-minded and unbiased you are.
Abdelghani is one of the nicest people one could ever meet. He spends almost all of his time helping people from all over the world and of all religions.

This man came to you. He knew full well what type of skepticism and doubts the crowd would have, and he still decided to come. He was trying to defend his religion and yet be courteous to his hosts.

There isn't a hateful bone in his body. If you have problems with Islam as a religion, don't translate that into despising Muslims as people.

I am not a religious person, but I tend to have problems with Christianity. But, that doesn't mean I don't like Christians. It all comes down to the person. And, in this case, you will find no sympathy for your ignorant opinion from people who actually know Abdelghani and what he does for people in need in Nashville.

And, by the way, religion is inherently contradicting. For almost every line in the Torrah or the New Testament, there is another that contradicts it. That's because fallible people just like you, I, and Abdelghani wrote them.

So, get off your high horse. When it comes down to it, none of the Abrahamic religions can say they're pure. It all hinges on how people use or abuse that religion, and by what you have just written, you are abusing both you're own and Abdelghani's based on some prejudicial opinion you have about him as a person. And, I am pretty sure there is something in the Torrah and New Testament about judging your fellow man.

If you had a spine, you'd actually go meet and talk to the man before writing something as ignorant as this.
Salaam, Shalom, Pax

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