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Only in the Islamic world could a zombie movie be classified as porn

THE DEVASTATING COST OF ‘BLASPHEMING’ AGAINST MUHAMMAD #Islam

Raymond Ibrahim is a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center.

Originally published by the Gatestone Institute.

A few days ago in Pakistan, a Christian pastor who has been “tortured every day in prison” since 2012 when he was first incarcerated, was sentenced to life in prison. Zafar Bhatti, 51, is accused of sending “blasphemous” text messages from his mobile phone; but human rights activists contend  that the charge “was fabricated to remove him from his role as a Pastor.”  His wife, Nawab Bibi, says: “Many Muslim people hated how quickly his church was growing; they have taken this action to undermine his work. Yet despite their actions the church grows. I wish our persecutors would see that Christians are not evil creatures. We are human beings created by God the same God that created them although they do not know this yet.”

She adds, “There have been numerous attempts to kill my husband — he is bullied everyday and he is not safe from inmates and prison staff alike.”  In 2014, he “narrowly escaped assassination after a rogue prison officer,” Muhammad Yousaf, went on a shooting spree “to kill all inmates accused of blasphemy against Islam.”

Bhatti is one of countless Christian minorities to suffer under Pakistan’s blasphemy law, which has helped make that country the fourth worst nation in the world in which to be Christian.

Asia Bibi, a Christian wife and mother has been on death row since 2010 on the accusation that she insulted Muhammad.  According to Section 295-C of Pakistan’s penal code: “Whoever by words, either spoken or written or by visible representation, or by any imputation, innuendo, or insinuation, directly or indirectly, defiles the sacred name of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) shall be punished with death, or imprisonment for life, and shall also be liable to fine.”

Because the word of a Christian “infidel” is not valid against the word of a Muslim, accusations of blasphemy, often with little or no evidence, routinely lead to the beating, imprisonment, and possible killing of Christians and other minorities every month in Pakistan.   An Amnesty International report from 1994 summarizes the situation:

Several dozen people have been charged with blasphemy in Pakistan over the last few years; in all the cases known to Amnesty International, the charges of blasphemy appear to have been arbitrarily brought, founded solely on the individuals’ minority religious beliefs. . . . The available evidence in all these cases suggests that charges were brought as a measure to intimidate and punish members of minority religious communities . . . hostility towards religious minority groups appeared in many cases to be compounded by personal enmity, professional or economic rivalry or a desire to gain political advantage. As a consequence, Amnesty International has concluded that most of the individuals now facing charges of blasphemy, or convicted on such charges, are prisoners of conscience, detained solely for their real or imputed religious beliefs in violation of their right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion.

Other Christians accused of blasphemy never get the chance for even a mock trial and are dealt “justice” at the hands of angry mobs—such as the young Christian couple burned alive on a spurious accusation of blasphemy in November 2014.  A report from 2012 found that “Since 1990 alone, fifty-two people have been extra-judicially murdered on charges of blasphemy” in Pakistan.  Last month, three burqa wearing sisters shot and killed a man accused of committing blasphemy in 2004.  “[W]e couldn’t kill him at the time because we were too young then,” they explained later.   Also last month, a 23-year-old college student “was killed and another seriously injured by a vigilante mob for allegedly ‘publishing blasphemous content online.’”  The incident occurred on campus; the mob was yelling “Allahu Akbar” throughout.

Although Islam’s blasphemy law is most associated with Pakistan, several other Muslim nations use it to persecute Christians and other minorities.  Days ago, around the same time Bhatti was being sentenced to life in Pakistan, in Indonesia, Ahok, the Christian governor of Jakarta, was sentenced to two years in prison on the charge of insulting Islam and desecrating the Koran.   Similarly, on March 30, a report appeared saying, “Iran sentences a 21-year-old man to death for ‘insulting Islam’ … after confessing when police promised he would be pardoned if he came clean.”

Earlier this year in Algeria, Samir Chamek, a 34-year-old Christian man, was sentenced to one year in prison after a court found him “guilty of insulting Islam and its prophet over items he posted on his Facebook page.”  They were described as “accusing the prophet Muhammad of terrorism and murder and comparing the prophet to Hitler, mentioning the persecution and massacre of the Jews.”  Also in Algeria, last August a Muslim convert to Christianity was sentenced to the maximum five years in prison for saying that the light of Jesus will outshine Islam and its prophet Muhammad on social media, which the court ruled as “blasphemous.”

In October, in Ethiopia, four Christian girls—aged 18, 15, 14, and 14—handed out a booklet entitled, “Let’s speak the truth in love.”   Because it challenged Islamic accusations against Christianity, local Muslims deemed the book blasphemous and rioted. They attacked a church and assaulted Christians.   The girls were arrested and, after a brief court hearing on November 15, sentenced to a month in prison.

As in Pakistan, Muslim mobs and “vigilantes” often take “the law” into their own hands.  In March, in India, a Muslim turned atheist “was hacked to death by a four-member gang” of Muslims.  Last September, a Christian writer and activist was killed outside of a courthouse in Jordan. The 56-year-old man was earlier arrested for sharing a “blasphemous” cartoon about the prophet Muhammad. As he was walking into court to stand trial for “contempt of religion” and “inciting sectarian strife,” a man dressed in traditional Muslim garb shot him to death.

Last August in Nigeria, after two university students got into an argument, the Muslim student accused the Christian student of insulting  Muhammad. Soon a mob of Muslims assembled and said the Christian must die. Then they savagely beat and nearly killed him.  The following day, mobs of Muslims rioted and vandalized Christian campuses and churches.

Such nonstop accusations, incarcerations, murders, tortures and death penalties meted out to non-Muslims on the mere accusation of “blasphemy”—at the hands of mobs, vigilantes, and court judges— call into question any claims of tolerance, modernity, or pluralism in many Muslim majority nations.

On Jerusalem, President Trump Could Make Two Proclamations

A campaign promise by Mr. Trump was to support Israel by moving the United States embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. President Trump should have acted on that campaign promise on Jan. 20, 2017. He did not.

To prevent post-campaign backsliding, two proclamations regarding Israel are presented herein, in proper format for issuance.

In one proclamation, the U.S. recognizes that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, and declares that the U.S. embassy in Israel is to be located in Jerusalem. The other proclamation recognizes the territory which is subject to Israeli control.

Each proclamation is dated May 22, 2017, the day on which President Trump will be in Israel.

 

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

Jerusalem, Capital of Israel

The Land of Israel has been the patrimony of the Jewish people for the past 4,000 years, ever since God promised the land to them, through their forefather Abraham.

David, King of Israel, captured Jerusalem from the Jebusites 3,000 years ago, and made the city his capital. Jerusalem has always been a unitary city, with one exception (1950–1967). In 1950, Jordan purported to annex the eastern part of the city. In 1967, Israel freed the eastern part from the unlawful grip of Jordan.

Jerusalem was the capital of the First Commonwealth (from King David through the First Temple period), and was the capital of the Second Commonwealth (from Ezra and Nechemiah through the Second Temple period).

During the long, Rome-induced exile of the Jewish people, no claimant (such as Umayyads, Abbasids, Mamluks, and Ottomans) of sovereignty over the Land of Israel designated Jerusalem as the capital of the claimant.

The United Nations partition plan of November, 1947, called for a Jewish state and an Arab state in the Land of Israel. There was to be a special international circumstance — corpus separatum — for Jerusalem. Meaning: the internationalization of Jerusalem under the control of the United Nations.

Neither then nor later was there a United Nations plan which called for a special international circumstance for Lambeth Palace, or which called for a special international circumstance for Vatican City, or which called for a special international circumstance for Danilov Monastery.

The 1947 partition plan came to nothing. The intended dismemberment, by the “international community”, of Jerusalem from the rest of the Land of Israel, through the instrumentality of the despicable United Nations, failed.

On May 14, 1948, David Ben-Gurion proclaimed the establishment of the State of Israel, which is the Third Commonwealth.

Later that day (Washington time), President Truman recognized the State of Israel. National Archives, “U.S. Recognition of the State of Israel” (2006).

Since 1948, Jerusalem has been the capital of Israel. Wartime conditions, during the Israeli War for Independence, prevented the government of Israel from immediate establishment of itself in Jerusalem.

On December 5, 1949, the government of Israel declared that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. Knesset, “Statements of the Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion Regarding Moving the Capital of Israel to Jerusalem” (1949).

On January 23, 1950, the First Knesset declared, “. . . with the establishment of the State of Israel, Jerusalem once more becomes the capital[.]” Center for Israel Education, “Knesset Declares Jerusalem Capital” (n.d.)

In 1980, the Basic Law: Jerusalem the Capital of Israel, became law.

Section 1 of that Basic Law declares, “Jerusalem, complete and united, is the capital of Israel.”

On November 8, 1995, the Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995, Public Law No. 104-45, 109 Stat. 398, became law.

Section 2(1) of the Act declares, “Each sovereign nation, under international law and custom, may designate its own capital.” Section 2(2) declares, “Since 1950, the city of Jerusalem has been the capital of the State of Israel.” Section (3)(a)(2) declares, “Jerusalem should be recognized as the capital of the State of Israel[.]” Section 3(a)(3) declares, “the United States Embassy in Israel should be established in Jerusalem no later than May 31, 1999.”

Waivers of the operation of that Act prevented actualization of the congressional recognition that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. There will not be any further waiver.

No country is authorized to decide that Tel Aviv is the capital of Israel, and to maintain an embassy there, and to maintain a consulate in Jerusalem, any more than a country is authorized to decide that New York or Philadelphia is the capital of the United States, and to maintain an embassy there, and to maintain a consulate in Washington.

NOW, THEREFORE, DO I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the United States, and by laws of the United States, proclaim that the United States of America recognizes that the capital of the State of Israel is the City of Jerusalem, unified now and unified forever. I declare that the United States embassy in Israel shall be located henceforth in Jerusalem.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I set my hand hereunto this twenty-second day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand seventeen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred forty-first.

 

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

Boundary of Israel

The United States understands that the Oslo Accords are dead. The two-state “solution” is dead.

Each was folly. Unique folly. There was no road map, and there was no two-state solution, and there was no sonorous talk about independent countries living side-by-side in peace and Kumbaya harmony, and there was no equivalent of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), applicable to the numerous territorial disputes which beset various countries. Among them:

  • • China, regarding Taiwan and Tibet.
  • • India and Pakistan, regarding Jammu and Kashmir.
  • • Iraq and Turkey, regarding Kurdistan.
  • • Russia, regarding Chechnia.
  • • Canada, regarding Quebec.
  • • Cyprus, regarding the Turkish part of the island of Cyprus.
  • • Denmark, regarding Greenland.
  • • Georgia and Russia, regarding Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
  • • Morocco, regarding Western Sahara.
  • • Philippines, regarding Mindanao.
  • • Sri Lanka (formerly), regarding the Tamils.

The territory which is subject to the control of Israel should include the entirety of the Land of Israel, from north to south, and from east to west.

The United States recognizes that the territory of Israel includes the Golan Heights, Sheba’a Farms, Samaria, Judea, Aza (the so-called Gaza Strip), the Negev, and Jerusalem; and includes adjacent places and in-between places too numerous to mention.

The United States recognizes further that Jerusalem is inclusive of the Temple Mount and of City of David; and that, since the day on which Abraham and Isaac were on Mount Moriah, the Temple Mount has been the sacred place only of Jews.

The understanding of the United States is that some territory which is subject to the control of Israel is not subject to the sovereignty of Israel. The effect of a declaration of sovereignty on the citizenship of Arab residents in Judea, Samaria, and Aza is fraught with peril for Israel. Full Israeli sovereignty over the Land of Israel must await another day.

The policy of the United States is to resolve territorial disputes which affect Israel through the 22-state solution. Israel plus 21 Arab countries would participate in the 22-state solution. Thereunder, Arabs keep the 5,000,000 square miles of 21 of the 22 members of the League of Arab States (that excludes the square miles claimed by the “Palestinian Authority,” one of the members of the League). Jews keep the Land of Israel, and its 12,000 square miles.

NOW, THEREFORE, DO I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the United States, and by laws of the United States, proclaim that the United States of America recognizes that the territory which is subject to the control of Israel is as aforesaid.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I set my hand hereunto this twenty-second day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand seventeen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred forty-first.

San Diego: Ground Zero for Islamic Indoctrination in American Public Schools

With a decade-long history of yielding to Islamic demands and recent, more alarming submissions, San Diego city schools appear to be ground zero for Islamic indoctrination within American public schools.  The current capitulation includes an Islam-centric curriculum with input and resources from a Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated organization, which raises First Amendment issues as well as serious concerns of favoritism toward Muslims students over students of other faiths.

The San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) history of accommodation to the demands of Muslim students began in 2007.  That year, Carver Elementary School in East San Diego ignited controversy when 100 Somali Muslim students transferred from a closed charter school.  To accommodate these new students, the school rescheduled its recess periods to allow a 15-minute break each afternoon for Muslim prayer.  The school also added Arabic to its curriculum and removed pork and other non-halal food from the cafeteria.  The outcry forced the school to rescind the break, but it simply shifted the lunch hour to accommodate Muslim prayer.  SDUSD wasn’t as accommodating to a Christian student in 1993 and was successfully sued when it denied a high school student’s request for a lunchtime Bible study group.

This past week, SDUSD, in collaboration with the Council on American Islam Relations (CAIR), instituted an anti-bullying campaign aimed specifically at protecting Muslims students.  In launching the initiative, SDUSD cited an unsubstantiated study by CAIR claiming that 55% of American Muslim students surveyed in California said they were bullied because of their religion.  The new program will include adding lessons on Islam to the social studies curriculum that emphasize prominent Muslims in history, creating Muslim-only “safe spaces,” adding Muslim holidays to the school calendar, and providing support and resources for Muslim students during Ramadan.

According to Stan Anjan, SDUSD’s executive director of family and community engagement, the new program will focus on promoting a positive image of Islam.  Special disciplinary measures will also be created for the so-called bullying of Muslims cited by CAIR.  Instead of detention, the school plans a “restorative justice” program in which students dialogue with each other about perceived bullying words or actions.  Educational materials on Islam and resource listings will be provided to parents and school personnel as well.

CAIR, “a radical fundamentalist front group for Hamas,” according to terrorism expert Steve Emerson, was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in a Hamas terror-funding case brought by the Justice Department in 2007.  CAIR operatives have repeatedly refused to denounce terrorist groups Hamas and Hezb’allah, and several CAIR executives have been successfully prosecuted and incarcerated for terrorist activities.  CAIR was designated as a terrorist group by the UAE in 2014.

In 2015, Kevin Beiser and Michael McQuary, two members of the SDUSD Board of Education, issued a formal proclamation in support and recognition of CAIR San Diego, citing ten years of “constructive civic engagement” in San Diego and Imperial Counties.  They praised the organization’s work to “promote not only religious and cultural tolerance and understanding but also justice and equality for all who live in the United States.”

CAIR director Hanif Mohebi was specifically complimented for his commitment to “promoting equitable educational opportunity for all students and preparing them to succeed in a culturally diverse society.”  The trustees recognized a community partnership with CAIR in mediating school situations involving “discrimination and other behavioral issue[s]” and announced CAIR’s upcoming tenth anniversary banquet, centered on the theme “Strengthening Our Voices, Advancing Together.”

CAIR, billing itself as a benign Muslim civil rights organization, has long been at the forefront in pressuring schools and businesses to accommodate the special needs of Muslims.  In 2009, CAIR complained of favoritism when Christian students in Roseville, a Detroit suburb, were given permission slips to attend off-site Bible study classes.  Yet CAIR pushed in 2012 for Dearborn public schools to accommodate Muslim prayer on school grounds and early Friday dismissals for Jumu’ah prayers.  The organization has pressured schools to have a say on textbook selection and to feature its own lecturers for school assemblies.  When a public school teacher in Concrete, Washington referenced the Taliban and Hamas while citing examples of the use of violence to bully people, CAIR cried “racism” and called for a federal investigation, saying the teacher had veered off topic to make anti-Muslim statements.  The school district responded that the teacher’s comments were taken out of context.

Mohebi, the head of CAIR San Diego, has been pushing the “anti-Islamophobia” program.  He recently tried to prevent the San Diego Police Department from attending a training session on Islamic terrorism featuring Ryan Mauro, national security analyst for the Clarion Project, a nonprofit dedicated to exposing the dangers of Islamic extremism.  Mohebi said officers would be learning “conspiracy theories” from Mauro.  Further, Mohebi importuned that no taxpayer dollars should pay for the training and that the SDPD should not confer continuing education credits for attendance.  In a further attempt to control police training on Islam, Mohebi requested the ability to monitor police training to vouch for its accuracy and to provide clarifications throughout the session.

CAIR’s recent activity and its incursion into the San Diego schools’ curriculum has been criticized by Charles LiMandri, president and chief counsel of the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund (FCDF).  LiMandri said the San Diego program represents a “wholesale realignment of school curricula and the students’ learning environment to the recommendations of a religious organization whose stated mission is to “enhance the understanding of Islam” and “empower American Muslims.”

The FCDF maintains that the First Amendment prohibits a government agency from attempting to effect a secular goal by the propagation of religious concepts.  LiMandri points out the litigious pitfalls of a curriculum which could easily be construed as a governmental endorsement of a religion.  He also cautions that CAIR’s interpretation of the term “bullying” could extend to the stifling of criticism of Islam, further impinging on First Amendment protections.

Citizens for Quality Education San Diego, a non-partisan group of citizens concerned about public education, voiced their opposition to the new Islamic-friendly curriculum and characterized it as an attempt to implement at local schools “anti-American sharia law,” incompatible with the U.S. Constitution.  The group criticized the blatant singling out of the Muslim religion for special accommodations and demanded that the policy be rescinded.  Despite widespread community outcry, the district seems to be moving ahead.

If allowed to stand, the SDUSD anti-bullying program – geared specifically to the CAIR-identified needs of Muslim students – could mark a dangerous departure from treasured constitutional principles and First Amendment protections.  This case warrants serious attention, as it has grave implications for the direction of education and the supremacy of Islam in the nation.