Archive for the ‘Religion’ Category

jihadi-john-split-without-credit-1-762x428Jihadi_JohnWe finally have a face to go with the name of the infamous Islamic State murderer known as “Jihadi John.” He is Mohammed Emwazi and is shown here in a Pittsburgh Pirates hat from his time at the University of Westminster. He turns out to another militant from a well-off family and someone who seemed successful in society as we have seen in other cases. This will make it easier for the United States which, according to Attorney General Eric Holder, has made capturing or killing Jihadi John a priority.

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Yesterday, we discussed another massive book burning by Islamic State as well as reports of the destruction of ancient art pieces. The latter report appears true after ISIS posted a video of its militants taking sledgehammers and drills to ancient art work and statues going back to the 7th Century. The actions are reminiscent of the infamous destruction of the famous giant Buddhas of Bamiyan.

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AQMI_Flag.svgThe_House_of_Leaves_-_Burning_4We have previously discussed the burning of rare books by Islamic State. Now, a new report says that the group has burned more than 8,000 rare books and manuscripts in Mosul. They then reportedly bombed the Mosul Public Library according to the director of the library. A new video also shows ISIS fighters smashing works of art, including a 9th Century figure.

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images-2125px-Flag_of_Indonesia.svgAn execution in Indonesia had led to the withdrawal of ambassadors after an international outcry over the treatment of Marco Archer Cardoso Moreira, a Brazilian man who was a paranoid schizophrenic accused of drug dealing. Moreira was reportedly dragged from this cell and denied last rites with a priest. He soiled himself and was quickly hosed down before being thrown in front of a firing squad.

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220px-Juliana_Tea_Party170px-Ministry_of_Interior_Saudi_Arabia.svgIn Saudi Arabia, the Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice is a religious police force that has been a constant presence in the Kingdom arresting woman having coffee with colleagues or forcing young girls to burn to death in fire rather than run out without their scarves. Then there was the time that the religious police in Dammam marched into a popular dinosaur exhibit and shut it down without any explanation of why the dinosaurs threatened the virtue of good Muslims. Then there was the flogging of a women who insulted them. Then there are the round ups of religious people for simply praying at home. Then there is the arrest of a man for standing in line with his wife at a grocery store. The list goes on and on. The latest entry is the arrest of young men for simply dancing at a birthday party. Birthday parties have been denounced by Saudi clerics as unIslamic, but this the first such arrest that many can recall that did not involve dancing with women.

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By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor

Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi

Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi

A consortium of one hundred and twenty Islamic Scholars have placed onto the internet an Open Letter to Islamic State (ISIS) leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi denouncing the organization’s violent and extremist actions in the Middle East. The letter, in the form of an interactive website, provides the world with an opportunity to read a perspective of the Islamic State’s affront to civilization from an academic analysis by scholars. The letter addresses the fundamental and basis in canon for disputing the claims of Al-Baghdadi that his is the only pure and legitimate form of Islam–refuting his claims of divine assent.

The original, in the Arabic, is presently being translated into other languages. The English is presently available.

There has been unfortunately much misconception in the Western World that there lacks true dissent to the terrorist outrages in the Muslim World.  This letter can serve a secondary goal to educate those in other cultures having concerns.

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Vengeance as Policy

By Mike Appleton, Weekend Contributor

“Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell’s heart I stab at thee; for hate’s sake I spit my last breath at thee.”

-Herman Melville, Moby Dick

The response to the grotesquely brutal murder of Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh on February 3 was intense and swift. Within hours after the Islamic State released its obscene video, Jordan hanged two al-Qaeda prisoners. Thousands of Jordanian citizens marched through the streets of Amman in a demonstration joined by Queen Rania. The young pilot’s father, Safi al-Kaseasbeh, demanded “revenge, severe revenge for the blood of Muath.” Tribal elders, who only recently were arguing that Jordan should withdraw from the U.S.-led coalition conducting airstrikes in Syria and Iraq, now called for retribution in the name of “Muath the Martyr.” By the following day, Jordanian F-16s were bombing ISIS targets in Syria.

The conservative media in this country promptly labeled King Abdullah II a hero. On Fox & Friends, Elisabeth Hasselbeck praised him for “stepping up with strong leadership and clarity, ” adding, “What is our president doing?” Even Charles Barkley weighed in, publicly expressing his wish that President Obama were more like the Jordanian king.

Please excuse me if I refrain from joining the fawning multitudes.

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