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No, Jesus WASN’T a Pacifist: The Problem with the Muhammad vs. Jesus Comparisons

jesus vs muhammad

This is part 5-ii of the Understanding Jihad Series.  Please read my “disclaimer”, which explains my intentions behind writing this article: The Understanding Jihad Series: Is Islam More Likely Than Other Religions to Encourage Violence?

Throughout his book The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades), professional Islamophobe Robert Spencer misleads the reader by selectively comparing Muhammad to Jesus.  Muhammad is portrayed as a “warrior prophet” and contrasted with the (supposedly) non-violent Jesus.  Spencer argues on page four of his book that his “Muhammad vs. Jesus” comparisons are intended to “draw a distinction between the core principles that guide the faithful Muslim and Christian.”  We are told that Islam’s militancy stems from its founder, as Christianity’s peacefulness traces back to its earliest figure.  Although Robert Spencer is a fringe extremist, his sentiments are shared by many average Christians (and even non-Christians).  To the average Westerner, Muhammad was a man of violence, whereas Jesus was the quintessential pacifist.

Prof. Philip Jenkins explored a similar mindset when it came to the Koran and the Bible. Jenkins explained (emphasis added):

Unconsciously, perhaps, many Christians consider Islam to be a kind of dark shadow of their own faith, with the ugly words of the Koran standing in absolute contrast to the scriptures they themselves cherish. In the minds of ordinary Christians – and Jews – the Koran teaches savagery and warfare, while the Bible offers a message of love, forgiveness, and charity…

But in terms of ordering violence and bloodshed, any simplistic claim about the superiority of the Bible to the Koran would be wildly wrong. In fact, the Bible overflows with “texts of terror,” to borrow a phrase coined by the American theologian Phyllis Trible. The Bible contains far more verses praising or urging bloodshed than does the Koran, and biblical violence is often far more extreme, and marked by more indiscriminate savagery.  The Koran often urges believers to fight, yet it also commands that enemies be shown mercy when they surrender. Some frightful portions of the Bible, by contrast, go much further in ordering the total extermination of enemies, of whole families and races – of men, women, and children, and even their livestock, with no quarter granted.

I have extensively (and painfully) elaborated on this point earlier in this article series.

The comparisons between Muhammad “the warrior prophet” and Jesus “the pacifist” are equally faulty.  For one thing,  many were the “warrior prophets” in the Judeo-Christian tradition before Muhammad, including Moses, Joshua, Samson, David, Saul, and so many others.  Moses, the prototypical “warrior prophet”, was the key figure of Judaism–would these Islamophobes vilify Judaism as they do Islam?  (Nowadays it is often considered socially taboo to criticize Judaism but completely acceptable to malign Islam.  Why the double standard?)

For the record, these Biblical prophets and holy figures are just as much a part of Christianity as they are Judaism.  Christian theology holds these personalities in very high regard.  Therefore, to suddenly limit the discussion to Jesus alone is misleading.  Yet, this disingenuous tactic is critical to the Islamophobic rhetoric.  If Islam is to be deemed a violent faith based on the personality of Muhammad, then both Judaism and Christianity must similarly be designated as violent faiths based on the personalities of Moses, Joshua, and all the other myriad of figures in the Bible who engaged in acts of violence far more atrocious than anything Muhammad stands accused of.

Leaving aside this point, it ought to be noted that Jesus as a pacifist is pure fiction.  Prof. Reza Aslan recently published a book on Jesus, Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth, which disproves the myth of the pacifist Jesus.  Although Aslan’s message may be news to some lay persons, it is in fact (as Reza Aslan himself points out) “old news” in scholarly circles.  Thanks to the viral Fox News interview and Aslan’s addictive writing style, Zealot became a best-seller.  Christian Islamophobes wrongfully assumed, without reading the book, that Aslan was attacking the character of Jesus.  In fact, however, Aslan reveres Jesus, even while he dispels many of the myths about the man.

One of the myths that Aslan dispels is the idea that Jesus was a pacifist.  Many Christians think of Jesus separately from the personalities of the Old Testament.  But, in fact, there is a great deal of continuity in the Biblical narrative.  According to the Bible, God rescued Moses and his people from Egypt and promised them the land of Canaan.  However, Canaan was occupied by pagans, so God commanded the Jews to completely annihilate the indigenous population.  This divinely sanctioned genocide helped establish a Jewish kingdom in the Promised Land.  After some time, however, the Jews were conquered by outside forces.  By the time of Jesus, the Jews were under imperial occupation by Rome.

What many Christians (and others) fail to realize was that Jesus was a Jew.  He was in fact one of many different Jews who claimed to be the Messiah.  The Messiah, it was believed, would be a conquering king sent down to liberate the Jewish people, “fight Hashem’s [God’s] wars” (Maimonides in Mishneh Torah, Laws of Kings 11:4), and then not only conquer but punish (with great vengeance) the enemies of Israel.  Jesus’s connection to the war heroes of the Bible is underscored by the fact that he is called “a Davidic king”–the same David who engaged in acts of war and genocide against the Philistines and Amalekites.  Aslan writes:

[A] fair consensus about who the messiah is supposed to be and what the messiah is supposed to do: he is the descendant of King David; he comes to restore Israel, to free the Jews from the yoke of occupation, and to establish God’s rule in Jerusalem.  To call Jesus the messiah, therefore, is to place him inexorably upon a path–already well trodden by a host of failed messiahs who came before him–toward conflict, revolution, and war against the prevailing powers.

This was the role Jesus was claiming for himself by saying he was the Messiah.  This is why the Romans crucified him.

In his book, Reza Aslan writes:

It was a direct commandment from a jealous God who tolerated no foreign presence in the land he had set aside for his chosen people. That is why, when the Jews first came to this land a thousand years earlier, God had decreed that they massacre every man, woman, and child they encountered, that they slaughter every ox, goat, and sheep they came across, that they burn every farm, every field, every crop, every living thing without exception so as to ensure that the land would belong solely to those who worshiped this one God and no other…

It was, the Bible claims, only after the Jewish armies had “utterly destroyed all that breathed”…only after every single inhabitant of this land was eradicated, “as the Lord God of Israel had commanded” (Joshua 10:28-42)–that the Jews were allowed to settle here.

And yet, a thousand years later, this same tribe that had shed so much blood to cleanse the Promised Land of every foreign element so as to rule it in the name of its God now found itself laboring under the boot of an imperial pagan power, forced to share the holy city with Gauls, Spaniards, Romans, Greeks, and Syrians–all of them foreigners, all of them heathens–obligated by law to make sacrifices in God’s own temple on behalf of a Roman idolater who lived more than a thousand kilometers away.

How would the heroes of old respond such humiliation and degradation? What would Joshua or Aaron or Phineas or Samuel do to the unbelievers who had defiled the land set aside by God for his chosen people?

They would drown the land in blood. They would smash the heads of the heathens and the gentiles, burn their idols to the ground, slaughter their wives and their children. They would slay the idolaters and bathe their feet in the blood of their enemies, just as the Lord commanded. They would call upon the God of Israel to burst forth from the heavens in his war chariot, to trample upon the sinful nations and to make the mountains writhe at this fury.

Jesus was crucified by the Romans before he could mete out vengeance on the enemies of Israel, but–as a I detail in my earlier article Jesus Loves His Enemies…and Then Kills Them All–he will fulfill this task during his Second Coming:

Jesus will “will release the fierce wrath of God” (19:15) on them, and “he shall execute the severest judgment on the opposers of his truth”.   Because of this, “every tribe on earth will mourn because of him” (Rev. 1:7), and they will “express the inward terror and horror of their minds, at his appearing; they will fear his resentment”.  Just as the people of Canaan were terrified by the Israelite war machine, so too would the unbelievers “look with trembling upon [Jesus]”.  This is repeated in the Gospels, that “the Son of man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn” (Matthew 24:30).  “All the nations of the world shall wail when he comes to judgment” and the enemies of Jesus “shall mourn at the great calamities coming upon them”.

Far from the meek prophet of the First Coming, Jesus on his return will command a very strong military force that will “destroy[] every ruler, authority, and power”.  Not only is this consistent with the legacy of conquests by the Biblical prophets, it is actually a fulfillment or completion of the task that Moses initiated: holy war and conquest in the name of God.  In First Corinthians (part of the New Testament) it is prophesied that instead of loving his enemies, Christ will subdue and humble them under his feet:

1 Corinthians 15:24 [Jesus] will turn the Kingdom over to God the Father, having destroyed every ruler and authority and power.

15:25 For Christ must reign until he humbles all his enemies beneath his feet.

Reza Aslan concludes:

[T]he Jesus that emerges…[is] a zealous revolutionary swept up, as all Jews of the era were, in the religious and political turmoil of first-century Palestine–[which] bears little resemblance to the image of the gentle shepherd cultivated by the early Christian community.

Once Jesus is understood as a continuation and culmination of the Biblical narrative, it becomes clear that he was not a pacifist.  The Biblical war ethic that Jesus believed in was arguably more violent than the equivalent Koranic discourse Muhammad operated from.  (More on this in a future article.)  The only difference was that Jesus’s rebellion was cut short by his crucifixion, whereas Muhammad triumphed against his former tormentors.

It should be noted that Jesus, like Moses and Muhammad, was an enigmatic personality; nobody can know for certain who the real Jesus was.  People (including scholars) subconsciously project into Jesus their own self-image.  Remembering Jesus as a pacifist is a healthy option for the Christian believer, especially when it forms the basis of a peace-loving theology.  But, once that pacifist image is used by right-wing warmongers as a stick to bash Muslims over the head with, it’s time to call foul.

Danios was the Brass Crescent Award Honorary Mention for Best Writer in 2010 and the Brass Crescent Award Winner for Best Writer in 2011.

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    • Christian-Friend

      people with truth and facts in their screen name usually say the exact opposite.

The Top Five Ways Jewish Law* Justifies Killing Civilians; #5: There Are No Rules in Times of War (I)

Israeli soldier posts disturbing Instagram photo of child in crosshairs of his rifle

NOTE:  As you no doubt are aware, LoonWatch just finished raising funds through an IndieGoGo campaign.  Contributors to the campaign will receive an advanced copy of my upcoming book, The J Word: Jihad, Between Hype and Reality.  The book dispels the myth that Islam is the most violent religion on earth.  In it, I not only understand the Islamic tradition and its relationship to violence, but I also look into the other various faith traditions, revealing the uncomfortable truths in them.  The intention here is not to launch an attack against these other faiths, but rather to give the reader some much needed perspective when evaluating the Islamic tradition. In other words, my intention is not to attack these other faiths, but only to prove that Islam is not uniquely violent as claimed by the Islamophobes, many of whom are ultra-Zionist Jews and extremist Christians.

In the media and on the internet, we always hear the uncomfortable truths about the Islamic tradition (and many untruths as well), without ever hearing about many of the uncomfortable truths in other faith traditions, including the dominant Judeo-Christian tradition.  How many countless “What’s wrong with Islam?” talks must we bombarded with, with hardly anyone asking similar questions like “What’s wrong with Judaism?”

In this particular article series, I take a critical look into the Jewish faith tradition.  If the Sharia is to be demonized by so many, then shouldn’t these same people be up in arms about Halakha (Jewish law)?  Naturally, I don’t think any religious tradition ought to be maligned.  Instead, the problematic nature of various religious traditions can be acknowledged, while keeping in mind that no faith has “clean hands.”  This realization ought to make us all a bit more tolerant towards The Other.  (In other article series, I look into the Christian and Buddhist traditions, so this is not meant to target Judaism in specific.)

*  *  *  *  *

Please make sure to read my disclaimer Why Religious Zionism, Not Judaism, Is The Problem wherein I clarify that “Jewish law” here is not meant to be understood in a blanket way.  Certainly, there exist alternative, more compassionate understandings of Halakha.  I understand that many readers are deeply uncomfortable with characterizing “Jewish law” in such a sweeping manner as we have done in this “thought exercise”–but that’s the point of the article series: if you refuse to do it to Halakha, then why do you do it to Sharia? 

Read the Introduction: Does Jewish Law Justify Killing Civilians?

Previous: Jewish Law*: One Israeli Soldier Worth More Than 1,000 Palestinians

Islamophobes often claim that the Sharia permits almost anything to further the cause of the Islamic religion.  On p.79 of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades), Robert Spencer claims that “Islam allows for lying, as well as stealing and killing” in order to advance the religion.  He concludes that “Islam’s only overarching moral principle is ‘if it’s good for Islam, it’s right.’”  Similarly, Pamela Geller–a Zionist Islamophobe–has over eighty posts dedicated to the idea that Islam allows “deception to advance Islam.”

But could the same charge be levied against her own religion?  We have already seen, for instance, that Jewish law* permits:

1)  Targeting and killing civilians

2)  Collective punishment

3)  Ethnic cleansing

4)  Terrorism

With such lax rules of war, one wonders if anything is forbidden in times of war.  In fact, in the introduction to War and Peace in the Jewish Traditiona book written by the world’s leading Orthodox Jewish minds–there is a confession that in reality Halakha* has no rules in war.  Ethics are temporarily suspended in war time.  Whatever needs to be done–to protect the interests of the Jewish religion and nation–can and must be done. In a section entitled “Jus in Bellow: The Conduct of War” (p.xvii), Prof. David Shatz of Yeshiva University admits:

If you can risk people’s lives to go to war in the first place, the argument goes, surely you can take risks with enemy lives to win the war.  In [Rabbi Michael] Broyde’s words: “[O]nce ‘killing’ becomes permitted as a matter of Jewish law, much of the hierarchical values of Jewish law seem to be suspended as well, at least to the extent that the ones who are hurt are people who also may be killed.”  In war we have a type of horaat sha’ah [emergency principle], a temporary measure which partially suspends normal halakhic rules.

Horaat Sha’ah is the “emergency principle” in Jewish law, which permits almost anything under the sun in a time of emergency.  The argument goes like this: if Israel is under attack and its existence is threatened (do Israelis ever think otherwise?) then the normal rules and ethical considerations do not apply any more.  The Jewish state is then given a free hand to do as it pleases.  Certainly, killing enemy civilians becomes permissible.

Rabbi Michael J. Broyde admits on the same page that “Jewish law has few if any rules of battles,” but even these few can become suspended in “an emergency.”  In other words, if the various allowances under Jewish law* (killing civilians who indirectly support the war, collective punishment, ethnic cleansing, and terrorism) are not enough to legitimize killing civilians, then “horaat sha’ah” can be invoked.

Further down the page, we read:

The basis thesis of Broyde’s essay, then, is that the conduct of war is in fact the suspension of the normative ethics of Jewish law to prevent the eradication of Jewish society.  Ethics in warfare are therefore fundamentally different from ethics in all other situations.  Broyde goes on to note that this explains what he regards as the paucity of halakhic material on the conduct of war.  Since Halakhah envisions war to entail the suspension of all violations–from the prohibition to kill downward–it permits the violation, as military need requires, of every prohibition with the single exception of avodah zorah [idolatry].  Assessing this need falls under the purview of military leaders, not rabbis or ethicists.

There is a “suspension of all violations” except idolatry, including killing and fornication/adultery (on the same page, we are told that “seducing an opposing general with the aim of discovering war plans” is permitted).  Would this be a form of Huma Abedin style “Stealth Jihad”?

Perusing Judaism’s Orthodox writings on war, I become somewhat accustomed to reading justifications of the murder of civilians (hardly anything can faze after reading that it is permissible to kill a baby in her mother’s arms).  Therefore, I was actually more surprised by the permission to fornicate in order to advance the cause of the religious state.  (One recalls the Islamophobic claim that Islam gives permission to do anything in the cause of Islam.)  On this topic, Ynet, Israel’s most popular news website, reported:

For the love of God (and country)

New halachic study says seducing enemy agents for the sake of national security is ‘going above and beyond’ and an ‘utmost mitzvah’ [religious commandment]

A new halachic study ruled that seducing an enemy agent for the sake of national security is an important mitzvah, Yedioth Ahronoth reported Monday.

The ruling, made by Rabbi Ari Shvat, was included in the latest issue of “Tehumin,” an annual collection of articles about Jewish law and modernity, which is published by the Zomet Institute, a non-profit organization dedicated to seamlessly merging Halachic Judaism with modern Israeli life.

Rabbi Shvat explores the issue of women used to seduce enemy agents in order to cajole information out of them or see them captured.

The use of “Valentine operatives” or “honey traps”, as they are called in intelligence circles, was applied in the case of atom spy assassination of senior Hamas operative Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in Dubai, last January.

Shvat cites in his study the biblical cases of Queen Esther, who slept with Persian King Ahasuerus to save her community, and Yael wife of Heber the Kenite, who seduces and killed the Canaanite general Sisera. He notes that the subject of “sleeping with the enemy” evokes heated arguments in the Talmud, as well.

The latter, Shvat argues, ruled that sexual intercourse with a gentile for the sake of a national cause is not only sanctioned, but is a highly important mitzvah…

Rabbi Shvat concludes his article by saying that not only should such actions be sanctioned, “Our Sages of Blessed Memory elevate such acts of dedication to the top of the Halacha’s mitzvahs pyramid.”

This, even though Orthodox Judaism–like ultra-conservative Islam and fundamentalist Christianity–have been known to have an unhealthy preoccupation with stamping out societal sexuality.  The fact that the Horaat Sha’ah, or emergency principle of Jewish law, permits even this, means that virtually anything is allowed to further the cause of the Jewish nation.

Rabbi Michael J. Broyde writes:

[W]ar has, by its very nature, an element of hora’at sha’ah, in which basic elements of “regular” Jewish law are suspended–once ‘killing’ becomes permitted as a matter of Jewish law, much of the hierarchical values of Jewish law seem to be suspended as well…

We arrive at a somewhat inevitable tautology. In an emergency situation, there is a hora’at sha’ah (suspension of “regular” morality): killing of civilians becomes permitted.  All war is a type of emergency situation.  Ergo, killing of civilians is always permitted in war.

*  *  *  *  *

Halakha* permits killing civilians whenever “military need requires.”  Here, an important distinction is made with regard to civilian deaths: necessary and unnecessary civilian deaths.  This is yet another adjective attached to the word “civilian” by Jewish law*: not only are civilians who “indirectly” or “passively” support the war effort allowed to be killed, but those civilians who are “necessary” to be killed should be killed: “their death, when militarily necessary, is according to Broyde unfortunate but halakhically proper” (p.xviii of War and Peace in the Jewish Tradition).

Rabbi Michael J. Broyde writes on p.4:

This view–that all conduct in war that is needed to win is permitted by Halakhah–was adopted by the late Rabbi Shaul Israeli, judge of Supreme Rabbinical Court in Jerusalem, in a famous essay. Certainly there is a deep consensus that every violation of Jewish law other than ervah and idolatry would be permitted in the course of fulfilling valid military orders.

He writes on p.5:

Rabbi Joseph Karo in his commentary to Maimonides’ Code explicitly notes that the power of a beit din (rabbinical court) includes the authority not only to kill people who are guilty of some violation of Jewish law but whose conviction otherwise lacks in technical proof, but also to kill people who are completely innocent, if in the judgment of the rabbinical court the exigencies of the times requires such.  The authority for a beit din to make such a determination stems from its leadership role over the nation (manhigei ha-kehillah).  The same ability thus applies to duly authorized governments (secular and Jewish), and can be relegated to their structures of military command.

Rabbi Broyde concludes on p.7:

Jewish law has no “real” restrictions on the conduct of the Jewish army during wartime.

In other words, anything goes.  This is especially true during Obligatory wars (a special class of war under Jewish law)–which all of Israel’s modern-day wars are considered (more on this later).  During Obligatory wars, the few “restrictions” and ethical considerations are abandoned.  Writes Broyde on p.12:

[M]any of the restrictions placed by Jewish law on the type of conduct permitted by war is frequently limited to Authorized rather than Obligatory wars.

Rabbi Broyde argues that “the Jewish tradition has within it a moral license that permits war (and killing) that differs from the usual rules of self-defense for individuals” (p.7) and “permits even killing of otherwise innocent civilians” (p.5).

On pp.4-5, Rabbi Broyde writes:

Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook, for example, permits the sacrifice of oneself as a form of hora’at sha’ah [temporary edict/suspension of law] that is allowed by Jewish law to save the community.  While the voluntary act of heroic self-sacrifice and the killing of an unwilling victim are not parallel, I think that one who would permit a Jewish soldier to kill himself to save the community, would permit the killing of “less innocent” enemy soldiers or even civilians in such situations as well.  In grave times of national war, every battle and every encounter raises to such a level, I suspect.

In “every battle and every encounter,” it is permitted to kill “even civilians.”  Broyde goes on to say: “War is the collective battle of societies, R. [Ya’akov] Ariel posits, and thus there are no innocent civilians, even babes in their mother’s arms are to be killed, harsh as that sounds” (pp.23-24).  This is a statement Broyde agrees with in the footnote, saying:

I would apply this rule in modern combat situations to all civilians who remain voluntarily in the locale of the war in a way which facilitates combat.

To translate that into a familiar context: non-Israeli  (i.e. Palestinian) civilians “facilitate combat” (simply by virtue of “remain[ing] voluntarily” in the area being attacked by the Israeli army) and thus ought to be killed.  This is of course another justification for ethnic cleansing.

“The idea of refraining from harming civilian non-combatants,” concedes Rabbi Norman Lamm on p.228, “has no explicit origin in Torah.”  And yet, Rabbi Lamm somehow has the gall to say:

One might say that only the most radical pacifist is entitled to complain about the classical Jewish views of warfare.


*  *  *  *  *

If Halakha* itself does not prohibit killing civilians, wouldn’t Israel’s commitment to international laws and treaties compel it to refrain from doing so?  Rabbi Michael J. Broyde acknowledges that in general a Jewish state should abide by such conventions, but notes that the commitment to do so is “voluntary” and therefore “optional.”  Such treaties and conventions certainly do not apply in Israel’s current conflict with the Palestinians.  Broyde writes on p.11:

Of course, this approach R. Berlin recognizes that treaties restrict the rights of combatants, but that exercise in self-restraint stems from a voluntary decision to agree to such rules and is thus beyond the scope of this paper and of limited applicability to the modern wars against terrorism fought by both America and Israel.

Broyde concludes:

Thus, conventions do not govern many of the unconventional techniques increasingly employed even by national entities, let alone terrorist armies (such as Hezbollah or the Iraqi resistance).

In the introduction to War and Peace in the Jewish Tradition, Prof. David Shatz writes:

As Broyde notes, this position [of following international law and treaties] is of limited relevance to Israel in its conflict with an enemy who does not consent to restraining rules.

Rabbi Jeremy Wieder of Yeshiva University writes on p.245 that “Halakhah would not recognize the international community’s authority to impose any restrictions on unwilling nations.”  In other words, the Jewish nation is above international law.

As I stated previously:

To be fair, [it is not only Orthodox Jews who hold such troubling views.] Israeli apologists from “liberal, secular” Judaism voice similar ideas.  Case in point: Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz, who is one of Israel’s greatest defenders from the “liberal, secular” spectrum of the Jewish faith.  Dershowitz is credited as being “Israel’s single most visible defender” and “the Jewish state’s lead attorney in the court of public opinion.”

Dr. Norman Finkelstein documents on p.46 of Beyond Chutzpah:

Dershowitz goes on to proclaim that “[t]he time has come for the United States to insist that international law of war be changed” and that for the united States to lead the fight to revise ‘archaic’ international laws and conventions”–in particular, “the Geneva Convention.”  Indeed, in a shocking pronouncement at an Israeli conference, he asserted that Israel isn’t at all bound by international law: “Israelis are obliged to follow the rule of law that exists in the democracy called Israel the way I am obliged to follow the rule of law in the democracy called the United States . . . Your moral obligation to comply with the letter of the rule of international law is voluntary; it is a matter of choice and a matter of tactic, not a matter of moral obligation or democratic theory.”

Dershowitz’s original quote can be found in the article Defending Against Terrorism Within the Rule of Law.  Dershowitz defended himself from Finkelstein’s attack by arguing that he wasn’t asking for Israel to violate international law, but rather to change international law altogether.  As we shall see in the next article, Israel is leading the push to change international law in an attempt to eliminate the pesky principle of distinction.

Note:  The next article in the series will be published shortly.

*  *  *  *  *

Danios was the Brass Crescent Award Honorary Mention for Best Writer in 2010 and the Brass Crescent Award Winner for Best Writer in 2011.

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    • Reynardine

      Your mama ever warned you about B-girls, mickey finns, and getting rolled? That’s still around. My problem goddaughter made her living that way for a while. Could be what Judith did to Holofernes.

    • AM24

      I don’t see why articles critical of zionist terrorism shouldn’t be published on Jewish holidays, the only Jews it would offend are those who support zionist terrorism. Zionists offend Muslims in Pakistan, Palestine, Yemen and other countries on their religious holidays with drone terrorism, house demolitions and other despicable acts, why the double standard ?

    • El Cid

      NO it is NOT.

      Obviously you don’t read or perhaps failed to recall the Noble Qur’an where the connection to Moses is categorically stated and elaborated on at length. This Hadith contradicts the Noble Qur’an, is thus obviously man made, scripted and doctored…thus to be rejected, repudiated, and discarded.

      Moses and Muhammad are the only law givers sent by Allah. Jesus, as stated in the Holy Bible came to uphold the Law of Moses: The Torah.


      Paul corrupted the Law of Moses, and abrogated the teachings of Jesus. Jesus’ brother James separated away from Paul and took his Jesus Jews with him. Paul was able subdue a reluctant Peter to his own way of thinking, away from Jesus. Paul had never met, heard, or seen Jesus, ever. . Paul was a self proclaimed Apostle…a contradiction in terms, and by definition. And established the Christian Church. Again a contradiction in terms.

      Muhammad was thus given the final updated law and message: The Glorious Qur’an.

      The ‘Eye for eye…’ was rescinded, mellowed with mercy, forgiveness, ransom, and compensation.

      Moses was selected along with his brother Aharoon (Haroon) to lead the Jewish Tribes out of harms way but was denied the ‘Promised Land’. . Muhammad, Seal of the Prophets, came as a blessing and a mercy for ALL of Humankind, animals, plants, and the environment: All of creation.


    • Guess

      This hadith, is one of the most powerful Muslim connection to prophet Moses.

  • Just_Stopping_By


    I’m glad that we’re still friends here.

    I look forward to seeing you continue the fight against Islamophobia. As I said, you bring tremendous intellectual firepower to this arena, and I think you will be even more effective with this change in tone. Islamophobes, watch out for the new and improved Danios!

    “God bless!” You too, but can you still claim that you might be an atheist?

10 Days Left of LoonWatch’s IndieGoGo Campaign: Contribute Now!


Hi, fellow LoonWatchers.

We’re down to the wire.  There are only 10 days remaining of our IndieGoGo campaign.  We’ve raised over $7,000.  With only 10 short days left, there is a new sense of urgency… We may not have come close to reaching the initial goal of $50k, but let’s see if we can reach our (new) goal of $10,000.

Please spread the word and urge people to contribute to a good cause.

To contribute, click here now.

Thank you!


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    • CriticalDragon1177

      You’re Welcome! I’m glad I could help

    • Danios_of_LoonWatch

      Thank you!

    • Danios_of_LoonWatch

      Thank you very much, Critical Dragon!

    • Danios_of_LoonWatch

      Thank you, Sam!

    • Danios_of_LoonWatch

      Thank you, Tarik!

    • Tarik

      Thanks CriticalDragon. You’re right the more money Loonwatch has the better we’ll be able to stop bigotry in it’s tracks. And not only Geller/Spencer but more accepted bigots like Douglas Murray, Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, Ayaan hirsi ali, Pat Condell, etc.

    • CriticalDragon1177

      That’s nice to hear! I’m certain it will help. The more money Loon Watch has right now the better. As long as there are people like Spencer and Geller et tal, groups like this one will be necessary.

    • Tarik

      I finally donated $100! I hope we’re successful.

    • CriticalDragon1177


      By the way, I just mentioned this again on twitter in hopes that more people who support our cause will see it and contribute before its too late. Also you guys might want to get back on twitter as soon as you can. I’ve mentioned a few stories you might be interested in, and I’ve seen some stuff posted by other people that could make great stories for Loon Watch.

    • Sam Seed

      Brother Dragon I suspect it’s someone who hates Islam or Loonwatch.

    • Seeker

      I don’t have a credit card ! What do I do ???!!!

    • CriticalDragon1177

      I wonder which anti Muslim bigot came here and down rated your comment. I don’t see why anyone who supported our cause could take issue with it, especially since you are trying to help.

    • CriticalDragon1177


      I doubled my original contribution from twenty five to fifty dollars. Its not much, but every little bit helps. I would have probably donated more, but I really can’t afford it right now.

      I’m going to try see if I can do a bit more to get the word out and encourage more people to donate.

    • Sam Seed

      Ok I’ll donate some more hope we reach the target.

Reza Aslan: “I love LoonWatch!” [Video]

Dr. Reza Aslan, a religious scholar and best-selling author, was unfairly targeted during a Fox News interview that revealed to all the deep-seated Islamophobia shared by the country’s bigoted right wing.  If you were perturbed by the now infamous Fox News interview, then do something about it!  A good start is to support, where we are dedicated to documenting and exposing Islamophobia on a daily basis.

In the video below, Reza Aslan extols, “I love LoonWatch!”  He urges viewers to support LoonWatch’s IndieGoGo campaign:

. Only 23 days are left of our campaign, so contribute now!

Click here to go to LoonWatch’s IndieGoGo campaign to contribute.

Thank you!

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    • johnny z

      i love loonwatch too!

    • Jekyll

      WESTERN academic whose field of study is religious history. “Divine revelation” to them is probably only a Godiva chocolate.

    • Jekyll

      The Reza Aslan love parade never seems to end. Guess he won’t stop until the liberals make him the Mufti of America (Ha Ha [Nelson Laugh])

    • jet2230

      After watching one if his interviews (on fox news I think)I was shocked to hear his views on Islam as a Muslim. I’m picking out just 1 point from many here – why does he disagree with the Qur’an’s interpretation of Jesus NOT being crucified?

      I’m I missing something?

    • Talking_fish_head

      well it is Yahoo news, don’t expect much intelligence from there

    • Hiding in “dark corners” – and behind “freedom of speech” – while at the same time opposing freedom of speech for those who oppose them!

    • …and this isn’t “terrorism?!”

    • golden izanagi

      what the comments section what could be wrong there? I’m sure people on there are kind and respectful, and understanding *takes a few moments to read the comments*

    • mindy1


    • Yausari

      Owe MY EYES! damned comment section

    • JD

      Oh look Not a single word of Christian Sharia Christian Takeover or anything Anyone want to guess how much apeshit they ( Pam Geller and Fatty Spencer) would go if we sub Messiah for Mohammed


      Tennessee judge rules infant’s name must be changed from ‘Messiah’

      A judge in Tennessee changed a 7-month-old boy’s name to Martin from Messiah, saying the religious name was earned by one person and “that one person is Jesus Christ.”

      Child Support Magistrate Lu Ann Ballew ordered the name change last week, according to WBIR-TV . The boy’s parents were in court because they could not agree on the child’s last name, but when the judge heard the boy’s first name, she ordered it changed, too.

      “It could put him at odds with a lot of people and at this point he has had no choice in what his name is,” Ballew said.

      It was the first time she ordered a first name change, the judge said.

      Messiah was No. 4 among the fastest-rising baby names in 2012, according to the Social Security Administration’s annual list of popular baby names.

      The judge in eastern Tennessee said the baby was to be named Martin DeShawn McCullough, which includes both parents’ last name.

      The boy’s mother, Jaleesa Martin, of Newport, said she will appeal. She says Messiah is unique and she liked how it sounded alongside the boy’s two siblings — Micah and Mason.

      “Everybody believes what they want so I think I should be able to name my child what I want to name him, not someone else,” Martin said.

      Ballew said the name Messiah could cause problems if the child grows up in Cocke County, which has a large Christian population.

      “The word Messiah is a title and it’s a title that has only been earned by one person and that one person is Jesus Christ,” the judge said

    • JD

      French Muslims fear surge in attacks by far-right militants

      (Reuters 3 hours euters) – Muslim leaders in the French city of Lyon said on Monday they feared a surge in attacks on mosques in the style of one averted last week in which a soldier was arrested on suspicion of planning a shooting during an Islamic feast holiday.Anti-Muslim incidents have risen steadily in recent years in France, home to Europe’s largest Islamic minority, according to the Committee against Islamophobia in France (CCIF), which blames anti-Muslim rhetoric by far-right politicians.A far-right activist said such violence had been provoked by government efforts to suppress “nationalist movements” that provided a legitimate outlet for discontent.Kamel Kabtane, rector of the Grand Mosque of Lyon, called on local Muslims to gather for a show of solidarity at the suburban Minguettes Mosque, which police said the soldier arrested on Saturday planned to shoot at on the Muslim Eid al-Fitr holiday.The 23-year-old, from an air force base near Lyon, was placed under formal investigation on Monday, accused of “possessing category 4 ammunitions in relation to a terrorist undertaking”. Described by the interior ministry as holding extreme right-wing views, he was also accused of lobbing a Molotov cocktail at a mosque near Bordeaux last year.”There is a clear will today to hurt the Muslim community,” Kabtane said, adding that two minor acts had been carried out against mosques in southeastern France over the weekend.”These are no longer isolated acts. It feels like there is a whole organization being put in place,” he said.RISING ANTI-MUSLIM VIOLENCEFrench media say such incidents have increased by 50 percent in the first half of 2013. The presence of far-right militants at anti-gay marriage protests highlighted half a dozen shadowy extremist groups the government has since shut down.

  • mindy1

    We love you too

When a Jewish Extremist Talks Like a Nazi

shimon gapso

File this away under “What if this were a Muslim…?”  Shimon Gapso, mayor of the Israeli city of Upper Nazareth, has recently published an article for Ha’aretz in which he lays bare his racist and extremist religious ideology.  Gapso implicitly endorses a policy of ethnic cleansing, and defends his statements calling for the “Judaization” of his city.

The article is entitled “If you think I’m a racist, then Israel is a racist state.”  Well, as they say, if the shoe fits… Zionist ideology is, after all, rooted in the belief that the land of Palestine must be Jewish, an ideal that could/can only be fulfilled by replacing the indigenous Arab population with a Jewish one.  Israel is, as Mr. Gapso says, a racist state.

Gapso in the past has supported ethnic cleansing initiatives.  He has opposed the creation of a single Arab school, Muslim cemetery, or mosque in the city.  (I thought only Saudi Arabia had this problem?)

Here is Shimon Gapso’s article with my commentary inserted in between:

If you think I’m a racist, then Israel is a racist state

Upper Nazareth’s mayor answers detractors who say his reelection campaign calling for the mixed city to be ‘Jewish forever’ is racist.

by Shimon Gapso

Over the past few days, many people have been calling me a racist. Sometimes they also call me a Nazi, a bully or even Hitler. One need only look at the comments on Haaretz’s website to put me before a firing squad. What’s my crime? What act of bullying did I commit? I made a clear and unequivocal statement that Upper Nazareth was a Jewish city.

Yes, the comparison to Nazis and Hitler is acceptable here, despite what a distorted view of Godwin’s Law would claim.  Extremist Zionists routinely invoke Nazi and Hitler comparisons to Arab and Muslim leaders, but God forbid anyone say that of a Zionist.

Imagine if a Texan were to say that Texas ought to remain “white forever.”  This would be something only an Aryan racist would say–and nobody would think twice about likening this to the Nazis or Hitler.

One could claim that “white” is a race, while Jewish is not.  This is of course the game that is always played.  When convenient, Jewish is used as a race; when convenient, as a religion.  But, would anyone call it anything other than extremism of the worst sort for someone to claim that Georgia should remain “Christian forever”?

Shimon Gapso continues:

Yes — I’m not afraid to say it out loud, to write it and add my signature, or declare it in front of the cameras: Upper Nazareth is a Jewish city and it’s important that it remains so. If that makes me a racist, then I’m a proud offshoot of a glorious dynasty of “racists” that started with the “Covenant of the Pieces” [that God made with Abraham, recounted in Genesis 15:1–15] and the explicitly racist promise: “To your seed I have given this land” [Genesis 15:38].

When the Jewish people were about to return to their homeland after a long journey from slavery in Egypt, where they were enslaved for racist reasons, the God of Israel told Moses how to act upon conquering the land: he must cleanse the land of its current inhabitants. “But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then those of them whom you allow to remain… as I thought to do to them, so will I do to you” [Numbers 33:55–56].

God gave them an explicit warning. Yes, the racist Joshua conquered the land in a racist manner. More than 3,000 years later, the Jewish people stood bruised and bleeding on the threshold of their land, seeking once again to take possession of it from the wild tribes that had seized the land in its absence. And then, an outbreak of racism flooded the country.

We are constantly reminded by the so-called “Islam experts” (who just happen to almost always be staunch pro-Israeli hawks) that it is only Muslims who take the violent parts of their scripture literally in the modern day and age.  Meanwhile, we are told that Jews and Christians don’t do this.  Pseudo-scholar Robert Spencer writes on p.31 of his book The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades):

When modern-day Jews and Christians read their Bibles, they simply don’t interpret the passages cited as exhorting them to violent actions against unbelievers.  This is due to the influence of centuries of interpretive traditions that have moved away from literalism regarding these passages.

In fact, I have cited studies that have shown that the majority of believers take the Bible to be literally true and the Word of God.  And, here we have an Israeli mayor referring to the bloodiest parts of the Bible in order to justify a policy of ethnic cleansing.  In previous articles, I have documented the Bible’s extensive justifications for ethnic cleansing, and Shimon Gapso is invoking these as a proof for a modern day policy of such.

Gapso is not a lone voice.  In fact, a majority of Israelis believe in a policy of ethnic cleansing.  This is not idle talk.  From its very inception, the state of Israel has engaged in ethnic cleansing.

This is the height of religious extremism.  It is a major problem facing the Jewish community today.  We are told by the pro-Israel “Islam experts” that Muslims have a problem of religious extremism–why aren’t moderate Muslims speaking out?, we are constantly asked.  But, how come we hardly ever hear these people asking why more Jewish people aren’t speaking out against Jewish extremism and supremacism in Israel?

To be clear, there are plenty of prominent Jews who are speaking out against Jewish extremism and supremacism.  The reactions to Gapso’s article are a proof of this.  But, just to set the record straight: the vast majority of Muslims on earth oppose the views of their religious extremists–and condemn terrorism in the name of Islam.  Yet, a very large proportion of the Jewish community seems to support Zionism and, by virtue of this, end up endorsing certain racist religious views in regard to the establishment of a Jewish state in a land that was, up until the turn of the century, inhabited primarily by non-Jews.

The point here is not to demonize the Jewish community.  The truth is that even though far too many Jews are Zionists, it is also a fact that the people who have done the most to stand up to extremist Zionism have in fact been Jews themselves.

The lesson to be learned here, however, is that it is unfair to single out the Muslim faith and community as the only one suffering from a religious extremism problem.

Back to Shimon Gapso’s article (with emphasis added):

The racist Theodor Herzl wrote “Der Judenstaat” (“The Jewish State,” not “The State of All Its Citizens”). Lord Balfour recommended the establishment of a national home for the Jewish people. David Ben-Gurion, Chaim Arlosoroff, Moshe Sharett and other racists established the Jewish Agency, and the racist UN decided to establish a Jewish state — in other words, a state for Jews. The racist Ben-Gurion announced the establishment of the Jewish State in the Land of Israel, and during the War of Independence even made sure to bring in hundreds of thousands of Jews and drive out hundreds of thousands of Arabs who had been living here — all to enable it to be founded with the desired racist character.

How refreshing it is to hear some cold, hard truth about the matter: the Jewish state engaged in the systematic ethnic cleansing of “hundreds of thousands of Arabs.”  This campaign–which continues in a modified form to this very day–was sustained by religious extremism.  What is interesting as well is that this absolutely absurd religious idea–that God gave the Jews the land of Israel–is championed even by many secular Jews.  Such is the endemic problem of this racist and extremist idea.

Gapso continues:

Since then, racially pure kibbutzim without a single Arab member and an army that protects a certain racial strain have been established, as have political parties that proudly bear racist names such as “Habayit Hayehudi” — “the Jewish home.” Even our racist national anthem ignores the existence of the Arab minority — in other words, the people Ben-Gurion did not manage to expel in the 1948 war. If not for all that “racism,” it’s doubtful we could live here, and doubtful that we could live at all.

In these times of hypocrisy and bleeding-heart sanctimoniousness, of the proliferation of flaky types who are disconnected from reality, in the relative security that causes us to forget the dangers we face, we can sit in north Tel Aviv, and cry “racism” to seem enlightened and good-hearted in our own eyes. We can be shocked at a mayor who prefers that his city, which is right next to the largest Arab city in Israel, retain a Jewish majority and not be swallowed up in the Arab area that surrounds it. There will not be a single Jew in the future Palestinian state, but that’s all right. That isn’t racism.

For the record, even Hamas has stated that in their “ideal Islamic state” Christians and Jews would be allowed to live in it.

Gapso gives this disclaimer:

Upper Nazareth is a Jewish city. Fewer than one-fifth of its inhabitants are Arab citizens, and they enjoy full municipal and national rights. Many of them are friends of mine, and I like and respect many of them.

This is of course the necessary disclaimer of “I have black friends, so I can’t possibly be racist against blacks.”

Gapso concludes:

I could wish that Jews were treated the way the Arabs of Upper Nazareth are — not only those Jews who lived in Europe of times past, but also those who live in the Arab countries of today. If that were the case, perhaps we of Upper Nazareth would have no need to be “racists.”

Herein is revealed the fundamental flaw in Zionism–and what makes the comparisons to Nazism reasonable.  It was the Nazi viewpoint that Jews could not live in Europe with non-Jews that led to the Holocaust.  Instead of disagreeing with this baseless argument and calling for racial and religious harmony in Europe, Zionists argued that Jews could not ever hope to live with non-Jews in safety.  According to this defeatist view, Jews must segregate themselves into their own state, and that’s why Shimon Gapso has to Judaize his city (and all of Israel).  The only way Jews can be safe, according to the Bible’s violent verses and bigoted modern day Zionism, is to cleanse the land of Gentiles–whoever (supposedly) worships a different god, speaks a different language, or has a different religious or ethnic background.

Martin Luther King Jr. didn’t buy into the argument that blacks could not live with whites in peace and harmony.  In spite of the horrific violence levied against his people and his own person, Dr. King rejected Marcus Garvey’s “Back-to-Africa” ideology.  Such an ideology–which endorses the idea that a racial or religious group must live only among its own people–is a pernicious one.  It’s dangerous whether it is held by whites, blacks, Jews, Christians, or Muslims.  Instead of believing this segregationist idea, we must all learn to live together.

We must also learn not to unfairly single out one religion over another.  All religious traditions have their extremists.  This includes Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.  He is a fool whoever takes Shimon Gapso’s views and actions as being synonymous with Judaism and the Jewish community overall.  Likewise, so too are those fools who take this or that extremist Muslim’s views and actions as representative of Islam or the Muslim community at large.

Danios was the Brass Crescent Award Honorary Mention for Best Writer in 2010 and the Brass Crescent Award Winner for Best Writer in 2011.  

Did you like this article?  Make sure to contribute to Danios’s IndieGoGo campaign.  

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    • GuestOfGuests

      Oh, and for the record… The “Judaization of Jerusalem” expression has this “Romanization of Rome” or “Hellenization of Athens” twist to it…

      And yes, that’s really how retarded this sounds to us.

    • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

      No it’s not “the Zionist part of the NK, what a silly thing to say. To claim a Utopian eschatological religious belief that goes against the fundamental underpinnings of Zionism as Zionist makes no sense and also displays an ignorance of Jewish theology/history. Sorry you are just digging yourself a larger hole and embarrassing yourself further Chameleon. I urge you to do more study on this subject since you proudly proclaim ignorance on it.

      To edify some of what you lack in this regard the logic of the diaspora for centuries was the fact that Jews should bear their exile in humility and submission to the will of God and the gentiles ruling over them, deliverance would only come from the Messiah after which universal peace would reign (i.e. beating swords into plowshares, the lamb lying with the lion, etc.). Zionism was a rebellion against this concept, as was the Haskala (Enlightenment) in general, in no way are the two compatible.

      So now you are backtracking and contradicting what you said regarding my article because you are unable to rise to the challenge of justifying your claims. The fact is you analogized my article on Zionism and Islamophobia as similar to saying “Nazism is not necessarily bad.” This is the conclusion you came to: “it was analogous to hearing a message something like this after covering all the nuances of Nazism: “Well, Nazism is not necessarily bad, since it is historically based on nationalistic and socialist ideals, which can often be a good thing. It’s just the Nazi extremists that were the problem.”

      So yes you did say through your analogy that the message of my article was that Zionism is “not necessarily bad.” As for my position on Zionism, it is very clear, and my article made a damning conclusion about all the strands of Zionism, stating they are pervaded with a view of the “other” that believes Muslims, Palestinians, the Oriental Jew are at their most basic ontological roots different (inferior) than Western, Ashkenazi Jewry.

      You ask, With respect to the analogy between Nazism and Zionism, by the way, please tell me what other analogy would be more appropriate. Other analogies certainly can be made that are as appropriate or more so. For instance the racist state ideology of Apartheid South Africa.

      Let me make it simple for you with regard to the analogy of Nazism and Zionism. As for why I say it is a disputable analogy based on whether it provides more clarity or precision. Well take one example: the racism Zionism asserts is 1.) a racially based state based on the Israeli historigraphical myth that all Jews in diaspora are only descendants of exiles returning home, 2.) By (most) any means necessary the dominance of one race to secure a “Jewish state” over the concerns of the indigenous population. While there are often expressions on how Jews are superior to gentiles, Zionism does not necessarily hold to the Nazi belief that they are a “Superior race,” in fact as one saw from my article some of the leading ideologues of Zionism held Sephardim and religious Jews in serious contempt, describing them as savages, backwards, uncritical, tainted by the flaws of the Orient, only good to be used as bodies for economic development for a state of Israel.

      A last note, I have not accepted an “irrational definition” of who is a Jew. I have just accepted the self-definition of Jews who define Jewishness as decided by matrilineal descent. I accept that you oppose this despite neither facts, reality or logic being on your side.

      This said I’ll let others judge whose arguments or views make more sense or are backed up by the facts. For me, this is a good place to conclude. I hope you do study a bit more on these topics and discuss them with as much of an informed basis as you generally do when it comes to topics related to the Quran or Islam.

    • Chameleon_X

      “When did I cross this line?”

      And when did I assert you did? I have not debated your opinions here, nor do I desire to, since opinions have no weight. I was merely clarifying how my view on Zionism differs from what I perceive to be your view on Zionism given your negative assessment of my views, with the added suggestion that you follow your opinions to their logical conclusion before you judge mine as “offensive” or “unhelpful”.

      “As for your comments, I checked and I don’t see any that have been deleted. I have never deleted one.”

      I never asserted you deleted any. In fact, I am quite confident that you personally have not. However, I do know for a fact that some have been deleted.

      “How far should we go back to find the “root” cause? How about the Roman occupation, where the Jews were expelled from the land in the first place? How about the centuries of relentless persecution, especially in Europe? Though Zionism predates the Holocaust, I believe without it, there may never have been enough support to establish Israel, so that seems like an important factor too.”

      Previous historical events can never justify racism – period. That would be a flagrant violation of the just war doctrine. Racism is an evil choice worthy of unconditional blame, regardless of historical precedent. It can never ever be justified. Previous historical events are not relevant. Don’t you realize your root cause logic with these examples amounts to asserting “two wrongs can make a right” to justify Zionism? No, they cannot. This is why I firmly believe that the only real solution will have to involve forgiveness of the Israelis once they are shamed into rejecting the racist doctrine of Zionism. The Palestinians cannot justify a racist punishment on the Jews in return, as they ironically could under your logic. Once fundamental change is on the table, I believe everyone should start looking only forward with hope and forgiveness, not back with acrimony and retribution.

      This is the much ignored positive lesson from Nazi history, that rejection of racism by the guilty and forgiveness from others is the only path to reconciliation with those who aspired to a racist state. If we are too uncomfortable making this analogy, then we will never be able to see the solution right in front our eyes. Again, what other state throughout modern history has had the audacious goal of dedicating an entire state to a single race to teach us how to move forward?

      “Palestine was under British Mandate, and Zionism had British support.”

      There are other guilty accomplices, no doubt. However, the British actually tried strongly but unsuccessfully to restrict all this illegal immigration into Israel. That is where the militant Jewish terrorists stepped in against the British with terrorist attacks to forcefully remove those restrictions starting in the mid-1930s. Those same racist terrorists then formed the power structure of the future Israeli military and government that we still see in operation to this day. I don’t recall any “Christian Zionists” signing up for this “reborn” Zionism (per “The 18 Principles of Rebirth”) that actually came into power, but perhaps you could educate me otherwise.

      “What about the warped sense of Western “justice” that says other people should pay with their patrimony for their sins? The supremacist notion they have some God-given right to determine the fate of other people’s land. This is their attitude even today, and it’s hard not to see that also as a “root cause.””

      Same fallacious premise that somehow two wrongs can make a right to exonerate Zionism from some root cause blame. Racism is always wrong, period. This argument also sounds like the kid on the playground who said, “He told me to do it!” or “He told me it was OK!”. Sorry, but those words don’t even sound convincing to the Kindergartener who is saying them in his own defense.

      “They were trying to find a place to live where they felt safe.”

      Again, why did they have to massively overrun, illegally occupy and ethnically cleanse a far off land just to feel “safe”. This argument is nonsensical. They could have just left as my relatives did, and then perhaps returned later without any undue imposition on others. There were much closer and more suitable places to go to feel safe. Read the history. These militant Zionists would not even consider any other location except Palestine for the European Jews. No other option was even permissible, even though it would have likely saved a lot more Jews at less migration cost. The Zionist goal was not to get them out of Germany, but to get them INTO Palestine illegally, with the stated Zionist doctrine to then ethnically cleanse the land of all non-Jews. And that is exactly what they did! Another critical goal, of course, was to get Jewish assets into Palestine via the deal with Hitler in order to fund the Jewish power structure and militant ethnic cleansing, which is also what they did. Hate and ethnic cleansing don’t come cheap. They cost some serious coin.

      “Let’s just agree to disagree on this point.”

      Again, I am perfectly OK with that, since you acknowledge it is nothing more than your opinion, not a claim. I have no interest in challenging mere opinions.

      “I will also add that I’m a bit surprised by your strident tone with me, when I’ve tried very hard to be conciliatory. Even if you firmly believe I’m wrong on some point, please show some patience. I’m not attacking you.” My apologies then if I have crossed the line in getting personal as a result of my obvious passion on this topic. That was never my intention.

    • Chameleon_X

      Yes, we all know how delicious your red herring is. Perhaps you can swap some red herring recipes with Garibaldi later!

    • Chameleon_X

      “Can you not make space for anyone who is not in lockstep agreement with you on every point?”

      Of course! You are perfectly free to have your opinion as long as you don’t try to assert it as an objective claim or assert that my argument is somehow incorrect without facts to back you up. That is when you cross the debating line. It is really that simple.

      “Aside from not agreeing with the notion Zionism is equivalent to Nazism, I think it’s counterproductive.”

      Perhaps if you quoted my claim correctly, you would not be so adamantly up in arms. I said it was analogous as a comparison, NOT “equivalent”. Furthermore, I also very specifically clarified where the analogy breaks down after Kristallnacht and explicitly excluded the later Holocaust. My points are quite valid as such. You are welcome to rebut the facts if you like, but I put zero value in your opinion (no matter how often repeated) or even my opinion in making a compelling argument on this claim. Only the facts and the logic flowing from them matter.

      “You’re deeply offending people and potentially turning them against you, and for what?”

      Because I don’t care if what I see as the blaring, ugly truth is offensive to others, and I firmly believe that only the unadulterated truth will set the Palestinians free – now where did I hear that quote before? I am far more concerned about the horror, hate and unjust atrocities that are stirred up from ethnic cleansing — and still continuing to this very day (more illegal settlements just announced right before talks resume!) — than anyone’s irrelevant sensitivities upon hearing the truth.

      “A failure to take a firm moral stand?”

      This was my comment to Garibaldi, not you. He has taken no such firm moral stand that I have ever seen. My only beef with your view, I think, is that you take no moral stand against the modern ideology of Zionism, and how it was spawned in its hideous form under the aegis of Nazism and militant Jewish terrorists. You don’t seem to acknowledge this ideology as the root cause. Without this root cause, your moral stand against the racist state of Israel and all the Jews who support it is implying that a lot of Jews are simply just bad people without any particular explanation why. I reject this bigoted view, in the same way that history proved unequivocally that this was not true of the Germans after they firmly rejected the racist creed of Nazism. In other words, if you follow my logic and your logic to their ultimate conclusion, you will find that yours is far more offensive to the Jewish people because you have nowhere else to really lay the blame.

    • Just_Stopping_By

      No, thank you, because your responses were delicious for me too, though since you have admitted your repeated error, you now probably have at least some idea how truly delicious they were!

      One question if you don’t mind: If I was bumbling over a fact for seven months while repeatedly getting it right, what verb describes what you were doing with that fact for seven months while repeatedly getting it wrong?

    • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

      As JSB showed, it took you 7 months to finally admit this, though you do so begrudgingly and continue to bizarrely claim that it proves some point you are trying to make. This is one example of the stubbornness that too often characterizes some of your posts.

      So you initially mischaracterized or “misunderstood” JSB as stating that he argued that the NK were “anti-Zionist Zionists.” How long do we have to wait until you walk this back now that you realize that he did no such thing? All the pejoratives that you flung on this topic either because you willfully mischaracterized or misunderstood him is no one’s fault except your own.

      You say you are the same type of anti-Zionist as the NK. So you oppose Zionism out of a religious conviction that Jews cannot have a state in the Holy Land until the long awaited Jewish messiah comes to power?

      You say, “And I showed you that what you thought was “incorrect” was actually an irrational definition, which you could not effectively rebut.

      This is actually patently false. After I wrote this comment in reply to you: you made no effort to a.) Correct your mischarachterization (or maybe another misunderstanding) of Rabbi Kertzer’s view on who is a Jew. b.) You first asserted that Rabbi Kertzer agreed with your view that a Jew is only a religious Jew, this was shown to be factually incorrect and you did not correct this. Instead you seem to now be attacking the same person you cited as a evidencing agreement with your claim as forwarding an “irrational definition.”

      You say I am being “dense” for pointing out the inconsistency in your comment regarding “opinions.” People can see the clear contradiction in your unequivocal statement that on the one hand “opinions are cheap and meaningless” and your now cleaning that up and saying it is only “cheap and meaningless” to “others.”

      After first claiming I was attempting to “recharacterize the repugnant historical facts that I presented as nothing more than your comments,” you’ve dropped that false and insupportable claim, once again another “misreading” or “misunderstanding” perhaps.

      Then you proceed to say about my first article in the series on Zionism and Islamophobia: it was analogous to hearing a message something like this after covering all the nuances of Nazism: “Well, Nazism is not necessarily bad, since it is historically based on nationalistic and socialist ideals, which can often be a good thing. It’s just the Nazi extremists that were the problem.”

      I challenge you to justify this by citing anything where I remotely state or imply that Zionism or any of its various strands are “not necessarily bad?” Here is my article: Right now all we have from you is baseless innuendo and opinion. You state I take no firm stance but clearly my conclusion in that article does, my hunch is you likely haven’t even read the article.

      You say my opinion is “meaningless” because I haven’t presented facts. What facts do I have to bring to those analogizing Zionism with Nazism? My point is that an analogy certainly can be made but that it is “disputable” whether it is helpful which was the point of the discussion. I stated this for two simple reasons relating to the purpose of analogies: 1.) Does it bring more precision and 2.) clarity to a topic.

      You have neither brought facts or presented any solid arguments addressed to me. You’ve also “misread” or “misunderstood” my comment once again it seems: I invoked “Dawood” not to help me out, (where do I say that?) but only to highlight that I wish for the days when there were better informed and more logically consistent commenters on LW threads who didn’t make grandiose sweeping claims without merit and glaring factual errors and constant miscitations and misreadings.

    • Just_Stopping_By

      “What I was arguing initially about the NK was my understanding that JSB was characterizing them nonsensically as “anti-Zionist Zionists” who believe in some sort of nostalgic form of Zionism without all the nasty bits. JSB’s characterization was utterly wrong or else my understanding of what JSB said was utterly wrong…. I think you need to reread JSB’s original comments about the NK to see what I mean for yourself.”

      No, it is you who need to reread my original comments, because you are just wrong on my original comments on NK. See here for the first comment in which I ever referenced the group, of which I excerpt the main point but obviously you can review it all: (“Anti-Zionists like the Satmar and Neturei Karta believe in what you call ‘racial Judaism,’ or inheritance of Jewish identity.”) This was back when you had your first incorrect definition of Zionism, conflating it with the Jewish view of matrilineal descent. I said absolutely nothing about NK’s views regarding a Jewish state! Strike one.

      Next, your response includes: “1) This is a fringe, local group numbering only 5,000 according the Jewish Virtual Library, as referenced on the “Neturei Karta” Wikipedia page.” So, don’t blame me for your misunderstanding when you looked up NK on Wikipedia and the Jewish Virtual Library. Strike two.

      Then, I linked to the NK Wikipedia page and their own home page, pointing out that Wikipedia says that “Neturei Karta opposes Zionism” and that NK’s own slogan is “Jews United Against Zionism.” I gave you every opportunity to see your error and I linked to the most direct source possible. And still you persisted in your error. Strike three.

      All this was in January, and up until this weekend you thought that NK was Zionist and in fact you said that they were whitewashing Zionism.

      Also, I did not call them “Anti-Zionist Zionists” ever. A Google search of that phrase on LW shows its use only by Stephen G. Parker, Ilisha, and then you quoting Ilisha. Not me. Strike four.

      I am glad that you finally admitted your mistake. Mazel tov. But it took seven months after I linked to NK’s own homepage for you to figure out that “Jews United Against Zionism” is against Zionism. I’m not sure if something finally clicked, if you only figured it out from the photo I linked to, or if my call for Danios to set you straight (and my prior citing of him calling NK anti-Zionist) set you thinking.

      I am happy to agree with you that NK is a fringe group, but you still don’t seem to realize how much play they get. That’s why Danios knew of them! Even putting that aside, it is pointless to debate someone who takes seven months after a link to a group’s website to figure out that a group calling itself “Jews United Against Zionism” is in fact against Zionism. If it takes that long for you to recognize what “against” means, it is not worth my time to clarify your errors on other things that you are misinterpreting.

      I want to be clear that this is not because I think that you are dumb. It’s because you are so blinded by your own views and stubbornness on this issue that it is virtually impossible to get you to recognize the errors you are making, no matter how obvious they are. Maybe that will change, but first you have to use this whole episode to recognize just how resistant you have been to repeated efforts to correct your errors.

    • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

      Chameleon, “The Neturei Karta were totally irrelevant to the discussion”

      Still can’t concede that you got the basic fact that the NK are anti-Zionists wrong. It is relevant as it speaks to your ignorance on the subject of Zionism; when people are speaking without knowledge on these topics it does more harm than good.

      What plate do I have to step up to? Quotes from Wikipedia? Are you referring to your questions on the Haavara which are presented as if you want people to do your homework for you? My guess from your comment history on this topic is that your knowledge of the history of Zionism is abysmally minimal, so why should I engage your arguments? Last I engaged you was on the subject of Jews in which you mistakenly cited a source claiming it corroborated your claim that Jews are defined as only those who follow the faith of Judaism. I showed you from the same source that this was incorrect.

      You clearly do put far too much “esteem” in your comments, as seemingly error proof, logically impeccable, when flaws and inconsistencies are pointed out in your arguments you stubbornly refuse to acknowledge them.

      You say, “Opinions are cheap and meaningless…” Good, that goes for your claims about “LW mojo” as well, right? Yet you say you “strongly feel” that such an opinion is “true” which is not entirely consistent with your claim that opinions are “cheap and meaningless.”

      In any case I have made a “disingenuous attempt to recharacterize the repugnant historical facts that I presented as nothing more than your comments.’” or so you claim. This is not only false but I haven’t even addressed the Haavara agreement. I will however in the second part to my series on Zionism and Islamophobia.

      In a comment germane to this topic I have noted that analogizing Zionism and Nazism or Hitler is possible but that it is disputable whether or not it is helpful when one considers whether it brings more precision or clarity to the subject matter.

      Chameleon I could care less whether you like my articles or not or who your preferred writer on LW is, I love Danios’ articles as well, we’re obviously on the same team.

      Your comments do at times make me wish for the days when we had more knowledgeable and logically consistent commenters such as Dawood. Don’t misunderstand me you also make excellent comments at times on matters that you have some semblance of knowledge, I have upvoted a few of them in the past but on balance I’m sorry to say you’re no Dawood.

    • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

      True…but by future battle I mean something more grave, that goes beyond veiled threats.

    • Laurent Weppe

      You make it sound like the conflict has not already started: veiled threats are already acts of violence.

    • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

      Then it portends an inevitable future battle, if liberals and the Left in Israel is up to it?

    • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

      No, Chameleon, you haven’t hit any “hot button.” I’m just not that emotionally invested in your comments.

      We have been and will remain open to criticism, as no one is or should be immune from criticism.

      As for your opinion, of course you are entitled to it, I never said otherwise, we are also entitled to our opinions.

      Secondly read my comment again, I did not say your comments are a waste of time, though I’m sure at times some of them have been, I said writing a detailed critique or “judgment” of your comments would be a waste of my time.

      What I did say was that you esteem your comments far above their actual worth. I think we have one example in just this thread in which JSB highlighted a fact you just got plain wrong about Neturei Karta and were too stubborn to admit, which is unfortunately a pattern.

      Yes your comments are in moderation and will continue to remain so. As we all have our responsibilities apart from the voluntary time we devote to this site, at times any comment in the moderation queue may lag.

      I didn’t know I had the power to “push you into that direction.” You are the one who said you were creating a website, not me. I did not put those words in your mouth or write them out for you.

      As for what you are calling the PDFs you have been working on for the past year or so, we will not be parking them here. Thanks for the consideration.

    • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

      Chameleon: If you’re down voted that’s because commenters don’t like your comments. How you’ve ascertained through your crystal ball that admins are downvoting you is beyond me, considering Disqus doesn’t track downvotes. It speaks to your own insecurity.

      I address this not only to Chameleon but anyone partaking in this conversation.

      My two cents on the issue of comparing any present racist regime/ideology to Nazism and Hitler is that the analogy can certainly be valid. There are parallels between the racism that was espoused by Nazis and Zionists such as Gaspo.

      Ilisha’s contention that it is unhelpful is a considered one especially when one asks: what’s the purpose of an analogy? Analogies in one part should bring more clarity and precision to a topic, it is certainly disputable whether or not analogizing Zionism to Nazism achieves more precision or clarity.

      Considering I am still doing a series on this topic I will have more to say a little later in a further edit to this comment.

    • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

      We’re not all in lockstep! Oh noes, looks like I should find a different site.

    • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

      Maybe in your opinion we “lost” some of our “mojo” but I and most others would clearly disagree with you.

      Whether you comment here or not is of limited importance; Loonwatch will continue to do what it does, as we have in the past, with or without your comments. I’m not interested in making a detailed judgement of your comments, mostly because it’s a waste of time but you esteem your comments far above their actual worth.

      Also weren’t you working on creating your own site for the past year or so, what happened to that?

      We have allowed you to comment here again for months now, before Danios returned…so there is some ambiguity on your part as to this loss of our ephemeral “mojo.”

    • JD

      Islam gaffe candidate Banister quits Australia election

      An Australian election candidate who was widely mocked after she mistook Islam for a country in a TV interview has withdrawn her candidacy.

      Stephanie Banister, 27, was contesting a seat in Queensland for the anti-immigration One Nation Party. She had only been in politics for 48 hours.

      Ms Banister also confused the term “haram” (forbidden) with the Koran and suggested Jews worshipped Jesus Christ.

      The interview, which aired early this week, went viral on social media.

      ”I don’t oppose Islam as a country, umm, but I do feel that their laws should not be welcome here in Australia,” Ms Banister told Seven News reporter Erin Edwards. ‘Quite the fool’

      She announced her withdrawal from the election on Saturday.

      “With the way Channel Seven edited my interview, I was left quite the fool,” Ms Banister said in a brief statement.

      “I’d like to apologise to One Nation, to my friends and family, for any embarrassment this has brought to them.”

      One newspaper headline said Ms Banister had managed to put Islam literally on the map.

      The leader of One Nation, Jim Savage, said Ms Banister continued to have the “full support” of the party executive.

      He said she had been under “enormous pressure”, including threats to her and her family.

      Commentators compared Ms Banister to Sarah Palin, the gaffe-prone Republican vice-presidential candidate in the 2008 US election.

      Even before this interview, Ms Banister was regarded as a rank outsider to win her seat, says the BBC’s Jon Donnison, in Sydney.

    • JD

      Sri Lanka Buddhist mob attacks Colombo mosque

      A Buddhist mob has attacked a mosque in the Grandpass area of the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo, leaving at least five people injured.

      Buddhists and Muslims clashed after the attack, and police imposed a curfew in the area.

      Last month, a group of Buddhist monks had protested near the mosque, demanding it be relocated.

      In recent months, hardline Buddhist groups have mounted a campaign against Muslim and Christian targets.

      Several houses were also damaged in Saturday’s clashes. Two of the injured were policemen guarding the mosque.

      A Muslim resident of the area said that a mob threw stones at the mosque when worshippers were performing evening prayers, the BBC’s Azzam Ameen reports from Colombo.

      The police and special task force commandos were dispatched to the area and have been able to bring the situation under control, a police spokesman told the BBC.

      Buddhists monks had reportedly protested against the presence of the mosque but had agreed to allow Muslims to continue praying there until the end of the Islamic fasting month of Ramadan.

    • Just_Stopping_By

      Neturei Karta defines themselves as “Jews Against Zionism.”

      You say, “I couldn’t care less about obscure Jewish groups trying to whitewash this evil cornerstone of Zionist doctrine.”

      First, they are only obscure to you. As I noted above, Danios used them as an example of an anti-Zionist group because he is not ignorant. You are.

      Second, they are not trying to whitewash Zionism. They are against it.

      whitewash: “anything, as deceptive words or actions, used to cover up or gloss over faults, errors, or wrongdoings, or absolve a wrongdoer from blame.”

      As anyone with any knowledge knows, Neturei Karta publicly protest to highlight what they perceive to be the faults, errors, or wrongdoings of Zionists and try not to absolve them from blame for their actions. Does this look like whitewashing Zionism, glossing over faults, errors or wrongdoings, or absolving anyone from blame???

      It is really embarrassing for you that you did not know who they are. It seems clear that you made a huge mistake in calling Neturei Karta Zionists, but you are too stubborn to admit it.

      Similarly, there are many, many mistakes in the rest of your posts, including this one. But, since you refuse to admit obvious error, your arguments are dismissed as moot as it is clear that you will twist language in a desperate attempt to not admit any error even when it is painfully obvious.

      Put simply, by arguing that Neturei Karta is whitewashing Zionism, you are just digging a deeper and deeper hole, showing that your analyses are worthless.

      This is why one cannot debate you: you refuse to accept facts and instead misinterpret those facts you find. I could dispute those, but it’s pointless if you are impervious to facts that clearly prove you wrong.

      Reply more if you like, but now that I have thoroughly embarrassed you by showing that you won’t even fix your errors, I do not plan to reply further.

      I don’t know if Danios is reading comments, but if you are, could you please weigh in on whether the Neturei Karta are a Zionist group and/or one that is trying to whitewash some cornerstone of Zionist doctrine? Chameleon seems to respect you, so maybe your opinion here would be helpful. Thanks.

    • Just_Stopping_By

      You could more easily debate Zionism with me if you ever gave a definition under which the Neturei Karta (“Jews Against Zionism”) are Zionists, something you claimed. (See here, again, asking you to explain how you can be at such odds with Danios on this fundamental question: what is Zionism?

      Until you stop running from your inability to define the term you are talking about in a way that makes your prior statements sensible, it is impossible to know what you are talking about, and all your arguments are necessarily dismissed as moot.

    • Chameleon_X

      No – “OMG”, you don’t understand a metaphor! The “OPPOSITE SIDE of the same racist coin” with respect to these militant Jewish terrorist Zionists was not “getting the Jews out of Germany”. It was getting them INTO Palestine so that they could “illegally immigrate into, occupy and ultimately ethnically cleanse someone else’s country”, as I repeatedly emphasized. Oh my, it’s like everything I wrote just went in one ear and out the other for you. No wonder it is hopeless to debate with you about Zionism.

      Moreover, even your sarcasm is nonsensical. The illegal Haavara (“transfer”) agreement was executed in August 1933, whereas Kristallnacht happened in November 1938, more than five years later! The Holocaust essentially occurred AFTER that, and the awareness of the Holocaust outside of Germany occurred even well after that. Your attempt to rewrite history by recharacterizing these militant Jewish terrorists as Holocaust saviors is therefore laughably dismissed. The focus of the Haavara agreement was in making a deal to get Jews — and most importantly their ASSETS — INTO Israel for the Zionist cause, not to get them out of Germany! That was another reason for my metaphorical reference to “racist coin”, by the way. If the goal was merely to get out of Germany, Jews could accomplish that much easier by emigrating legally to nearby countries as my relatives did, not by illegally immigrating into, occupying and ethnically cleansing someone else’s country in a far off land, Hitler-style!

    • George Carty

      Indeed, I think while Zionist extremists may be villains on a level with Milosevic, Hitler’s Nazis were on a whole ‘nother level. The Nazi “Generalplan Ost” called for the extermination of at least 50 million Slavs, for example.

    • Laurent Weppe

      Both the commenters and the author of this articles are missing the point of Gapso’s editorial:

      It’s an assertion of strenght and an implicit threat destined to liberal israelis: behind the shallow stylistic chicanery, the brazen display of faked religiosity lies the the untold -but blatently obvious- logical conclusion of Gapso’s statements being:

      If Israel is racist state, then it means that racist bullies like myself are already in control of its institutions (either directly or through submissive lackeys who will obediently help us reach our goals even if they share neither our bloodlust nor our incestuous ideology): therefore if you liberals try to transform the state and turn it into something non-racist, us far-right bullies will use our aforementionned power over the institutions to browbeat you into submission

      Which is why the text was published into Haaretz: Gapso most certainly knows that most of the newspaper’s readership will be disgusted by his claims: his goal is not to convince: his goal is to threaten

Happy Eid al-Fitr!

Eid al-Fitr

The Islamic holy month of Ramadan draws to a close.  Muslims have spent the month fasting, praying, and giving alms to the needy.  The month culminates in Eid al-Fitr, three days of celebration–or, as I like to call it, the Muslim version of Christmas.

For those who celebrate Eid, please do enjoy yourselves.  You deserve it.

But, remember: the Islamophobes don’t take Ramadan or Eid off.  They continue doing what they do so well: demonizing the Muslim community and Islamic faith.  That’s why you need to support our work here at LoonWatch.  Please make sure to contribute to LoonWatch’s IndieGoGo campaign.  We’ve raised over $4,000, which is a great start.  There are only 28 days left of our campaign, so please do contribute now–and tell all your family and friends to do the same.

Our initial goal of $50,000 may not be achievable.  So, we’re setting a lower interim goal of $10,000.  This is a bit disappointing, considering that the king and queen of Islamophobia, Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller, were able to raise almost $50,000 during their IndieGoGo campaign of hate.

We wonder why the Islamophobes are so successful in what they do, but it’s no mystery.  It’s all about the money.  Their patrons are willing to fund them.  The question is: will the Muslim community–and the peace-loving peoples of the world–support the group that is fighting back?

As I’ve said, $4,000 is a great place to start, and we are very grateful to all those who have contributed.  So, it’s not a time to be a gloomy Gus.  But, let’s not stop now though.  Let’s reach our new interim goal of $10,000.  If you haven’t contributed, contribute NOW.  And, as always, SPREAD the word.  Facebook us, tweet us, blog about us, email your friends about us.  Spread our video far and wide.

Thank you for your support.

Contribute now: Click here.

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    • Heinz Catsup

      What Mindy said.

    • Solid Snake

      Thank you for your wishes, Reynardine. And thanks to everyone else.

    • Reynardine

      I’m afraid two extra photos posted by accident. But they’re all pretty.

    • Reynardine

      Happy Eid al Fitr

    • CriticalDragon1177

      Yes, but it hasn’t always been the case. We’re fighting something that at its heart is very similar to racism and homophobia. Jim crow was largely based on a fear of black people, but eventually the civil rights movement was a able to overcome that. Gay people have also been demonized in our society, but now, more and more people support marriage equality. Fear of the other and fear of the different, can be over come.

    • Christian-Friend

      People buy more into fear than the truth…Sad, but true

    • maneatinglizard

      Hello, just a correction: Id ul Fitr is not a three day celebration, but a one day celebration.

  • mindy1


Robert Spencer: “I have exactly the same credentials as [Reza] Aslan”; Oh, Really?


Fox News and its right-wing supporters were cast into shame after Fox News’s interview with Reza Aslan went viral on the internet.  Embarrassed and reeling from this intellectual beat-down by Reza Aslan, the right-wing responded by questioning Aslan’s credentials.  Matthew J. Franck of wrote:

Aslan does have four degrees, as Joe Carter has noted: a 1995 B.A. in religion from Santa Clara University, where he was Phi Beta Kappa and wrote his senior thesis on “The Messianic Secret in the Gospel of Mark”; a 1999 Master of Theological Studies from Harvard; a 2002 Master of Fine Arts in Fiction from the University of Iowa; and a 2009 Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

None of these degrees is in history, so Aslan’s repeated claims that he has “a Ph.D. in the history of religions” and that he is “a historian” are false.  Nor is “professor of religions” what he does “for a living.” He is an associate professor in the Creative Writing program at the University of California, Riverside, where his terminal MFA in fiction from Iowa is his relevant academic credential. It appears he has taught some courses on Islam in the past, and he may do so now, moonlighting from his creative writing duties at Riverside. Aslan has been a busy popular writer, and he is certainly a tireless self-promoter, but he is nowhere known in the academic world as a scholar of the history of religion. And a scholarly historian of early Christianity? Nope.

Franck’s post also took on a life of its own, but this time on right-wing sites.  Career Islamophobe Robert Spencer linked to it as well, and then said this gem (emphasis added):

Here again, the problem is Aslan’s dishonesty. I don’t care about his scholarly credentials. Even if everything he had said about his degrees had been true, it would confer on his book no presumption of accuracy or truth. I am constantly assailed for lacking scholarly credentials, but as it happens, when it comes to writing about religion I have exactly the same credentials as Aslan, a B.A., Phi Beta Kappa, and an M.A. in Religious Studies. His other two degrees are in other fields.

Reza Aslan is being called “dishonest,” but it is really Matthew Franck and Robert Spencer who are guilty of this, by themselves misrepresenting Aslan’s credentials.  Franck fails to mention that Aslan’s Ph.D. wasn’t just in sociology but in the sociology of religion.  This is a very major omission by Franck, one that is almost certainly intentional and meant to mislead.

Meanwhile, Robert Spencer specifically says “[Aslan’s] other two degrees are in other fields.”  This is an outright lie.  As writes (emphasis added):

Aslan has a Ph. D. in the sociology of religion, a master’s degree in theological studies from Harvard University, and a bachelor’s degree in religion from Santa Clara University, as well as a master’s of fine arts in fiction.

So, to summarize, Reza Aslan has four degrees, with three of them being in the study of religions:

1) Ph.D. in the sociology of religion from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

2) Master’s degree in theological studies from Harvard.

3) B.A. degree in religion from Santa Clara University.

With a B.A., master’s, and Ph.D. in the study of religion, Reza Aslan is a scholar of religion.  Meanwhile, as for Robert Spencer’s claim:

[W]hen it comes to writing about religion I have exactly the same credentials as Aslan, a B.A., Phi Beta Kappa, and an M.A. in Religious Studies.

This is also clearly not true.  I wrote an article on Robert Spencer’s [lack of] credentials earlier in an article with a self-explanatory title: “Is Robert Spencer a Scholar?”

It should be noted that Spencer now tries to insulate himself from attack by claiming:

I don’t care about his scholarly credentials. Even if everything he had said about his degrees had been true, it would confer on his book no presumption of accuracy or truth. I am constantly assailed for lacking scholarly credentials…

But anyway, it doesn’t matter: there are plenty of fools with degrees, and plenty of geniuses without them. My work, and Aslan’s, stands or falls on its merits, not on the number of degrees we have.

Yet, I didn’t “attack” Robert Spencer’s credentials because I believe he has to be a scholar to write on Islam.  Rather, I “attacked” his credentials because he specifically pretends to be a scholar of Islam. In fact, Spencer’s site proudly declares him (emphasis added) “the acclaimed scholar of Islam.”  Spencer accuses Aslan of lying about his scholarly credentials, yet here we have Spencer misrepresenting himself as “the acclaimed scholar of Islam.”

Or, does blogging about Islam on a site called “JihadWatch” make one a scholar?  Spencer’s minions quickly claim that he is a best-selling author.  Leaving aside the fact that being a best-selling author doesn’t make one a scholar (is J.K. Rowling a scholar?), there is also the issue that Spencer’s books such as The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) are from the same publisher that has similar “Politically Incorrect guides” on evolution being a myth, global warming being a scam, science = bad (yes, an entire book about how liberals and scientists are in cahoots), and a book on the truth of the Bible (“[t]he enemies of the Bible are the enemies of true reason and tolerance”).  Does this make Spencer a scholar as he pretends to be?

Robert Spencer claims that he has the same credentials on religion as Reza Aslan, but Aslan has a Ph.D. in religion.  Spencer does not.  So, how is Spencer making this claim?  But, it’s worse than that.  Spencer’s M.A. is in the field of early Christian studies.  His thesis was on Catholic history.  So, how does this make him a scholar of Islam?

To be clear, Reza Aslan did not claim to be a scholar of Christianity, but rather a scholar of religions (notice in his interview that he specifically says he writes on all different religions, including Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, etc.).  His multiple degrees in religion corroborate his claim of being a scholar of religions.

Meanwhile, Robert Spencer claims to be a scholar of Islam, even though he has zero degrees in Islam.  Again, how does having a master’s degree in early Christian studies and Catholic history make one a scholar of Islam?

We arrive at the inevitable conclusion: Reza Aslan is a scholar, whereas Robert Spencer is nothing more than a fraudulent pseudo-scholar.

*  *  *  *  *

Matthew Franck holds on to the idea that Reza Aslan misrepresented himself by claiming that he is a historian.  After all, argues Franck, Aslan’s Ph.D. was in sociology, not history.  Leaving aside the fact that the Ph.D. was in the sociology of religion, Reza Aslan’s dissertation adviser, Prof. Mark Juergensmayer, weighed in:

Since i was Reza’s thesis adviser at the Univ of California-Santa Barbara, I can testify that he is a religious studies scholar. (I am a sociologist of religion with a position in sociology and an affiliation with religious studies). Though Reza’s PhD is in sociology most of his graduate course work at UCSB was in the history of religion in the dept of religious studies. Though none of his 4 degrees are in history as such, he is a “historian of religion” in the way that that term is used at the Univ of Chicago to cover the field of comparative religion; and his theology degree at Harvard covered Bible and Church history, and required him to master New Testament Greek. So in short, he is who he says he is.

It is not unreasonable for a person who majored in the sociology of religion to consider himself a historian of religion if his emphasis during study was in history.  There is a very large overlap between the fields, especially since “most of his graduate course work was in the history of religion in the dept of religious studies.”

Yes, he is a professor of creative writing, but he also teaches courses–as a professor–on religion.

The crux of the matter is that Reza Aslan is a scholar of religion (which includes the history of religion).  Aslan has hefty academic qualifications and did not misrepresent himself.  But, just as the Fox News interviewer was guilty of projection, so too is Robert Spencer guilty of projection when he accuses Aslan of misrepresenting his scholarly credentials.

*  *  *  *  *


Lauren Green, the Fox News “journalist” who interviewed Reza Aslan, is an ardent Christian herself who has engaged in faith-based attacks of Islam, which is why she wrongly assumes that Reza Aslan’s book is a faith-based attack on Christianity (another case of Fox projection).  In 2011, for example, Green wrote (h/t Dan Murphy of The Christian Science Monitor):

Is there something in Islam itself that makes believers more susceptible to radicalization?… I believe essentially there are three things that may make Islam more prone to radicalization. One is the Koran itself. The fact that it’s not a narrative makes it easier to pick and choose verses to fit your interpretation. Two, the Prophet Mohammed’s own words and deeds. In Islam’s early days, Mohammed spread the faith with the sword. Three, Islam was introduced into a world rife with tribalism; a shame and honor culture which revered and respected power. Much of what’s going in Libya and what went on under Saddam Hussein, are extensions of that tribalism.

Here we see the familiar claims: Compared to other religions (such as Christianity), Islam is more violent because (1) The Koran is more violent; (2) Muhammad was more violent; and (3) Islamic history was more violent.  These are the central arguments of Islamophobia, and are in fact the same arguments I refute in my article series and upcoming book, The J Word: Jihad, Between Hype and Reality.

For those of you who don’t know, we’ve launched an IndieGoGo campaign to raise funds.  Contribute now and you’ll receive an advanced copy of The J Word.

Support Danios and LoonWatch by CONTRIBUTING to this IndieGoGo campaign.

See: Is Robert Spencer a scholar?

In response to Robert Spencer’s claim about “war is deceit”, please see: Silencing Spencer: Taqiyya and Kitman are part of Judeo-Christian belief.

*  *  *  *  *

Danios was the Brass Crescent Award Honorary Mention for Best Writer in 2010 and the Brass Crescent Award Winner for Best Writer in 2011 

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    • Uthmān

      We defend him because it is unfair to insinuate that it is not right for him to write a book about Jesus just because he is a Muslim.


      Actually, to be fair, Spencer has a BA and an MA in CHRISTIAN/CATHOLIC related studies, not in religion in general… Anything the self proclaimed expert on Islam has possibly learned about Islam is self taught.

    • No, they believe that “University” is minor league football…

    • agreed! The mass media routinely put on talking head, “terrorism experts” with claimed “expertise” from being an Army officer deployed in Afghanistan, or other government services, like CIA and FBI service. Keep in mind that government is NEVER neutral when it comes to “security” issues.

      Research, analysis and writing peer reviewed publications are just as important as education. A peer reviewed article written for a journal in the area of expertise is more of an indicator of scholarship than what degrees an author has. Anything peer reviewed should not be dismissed that easy!

The J Word: Jihad, Between Hype and Reality

Hi, my name is Steven Danios (a.k.a. Danios of LoonWatch).  I recently launched an IndieGoGo campaign to raise funds for the completion, publication, and promotion of my upcoming book, The J Word: Jihad, Between Hype and Reality.

The J Word

Actual book design may vary.

The book focuses on refuting the fundamental premise of Islamophobia–that Islam is somehow the most violent religion on earth.  Sadly, more white Americans than not believe this to be true, which is why it’s extremely important that a book of this type is written.

Robert Spencer is the director of, arguably the most well-known anti-Muslim hate site on the internet.  Spencer authored a book The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades).  The ideas contained in this book are important to refute not just because they constitute Spencer’s attack on Islam, but because these ideas are universally shared by Islamophobes in general.  Spencer’s book can be considered a collection of anti-Muslim myths that the Islamophobes rely on.  Refuting Spencer’s book is therefore refuting all of Islamophobia.


The groundwork for this book is already done: I’ve written several articles on this topic, including the Understanding Jihad Series, which will give the reader an idea of what my book is all about:

Articles by Danios on Islam and Terrorism

All Terrorists are Muslims…Except the 94% that Aren’t: According to the official FBI database from 1980 to 2005, Muslim extremists were responsible for only six percent of terrorist attacks on U.S. soil.

Europol Report: All Terrorists are Muslims…Except the 99.6% that Aren’t: According to Europol’s annual study of terrorism, Muslim extremists were responsible for less than 1% of terrorist attacks in Europe.

Updated Europol Data: Less Than 1% of Terrorist Attacks by Muslims

RAND Report: Threat of homegrown jihadism exaggerated, Zero civilians killed in U.S. since 9/11:  Published in 2010, this article revealed that almost a decade after the 9/11 attacks, not a single civilian in the U.S. was killed by Muslim extremists.  So, why the alarmism?

Europol Reports Zero Deaths from Islamic Terrorism in Europe

Annual Report: Zero Civilians in U.S. Killed by Islamic Terrorism… Just Like Every Year Since 9/11

New York Times Article Understates How Overstated Islamic Terrorism Threat Really Is

Gallup Poll: Jews and Christians Way More Likely than Muslims to Justify Killing Civilians

Surveys Show Muslims in Every Country Less Likely to Justify Killing Civilians than Americans and Israelis

The Greater Islamophobia: Bombing, Invading, and Occupying Muslim Lands: Parts I, II, and III (unpublished)

Eye-Opening Graphic: Map of Muslim Countries that the U.S. and Israel Have Bombed

Reply to Prof. Juan Cole

“We’re at War!” — And We Have Been Since 1776: 214 Years of American War-Making

It’s Only Terrorism When Muslims Do It

Most Victims of Islamic Terrorism are Muslims… And Why America is to Blame For It


The Understanding Jihad Series

The Understanding Jihad Series: Introduction

Part 1: Warrior Prophet: Moses or Muhammad?

Part 2: Who was the Most Violent Prophet in History? (Hint: It wasn’t Muhammad.)

Part 3: The Suicide Bomber Prophet

Part 4: What the Koran-bashers Don’t Want You to Know about the Bible

Part 5: Jesus Loves His Enemies…And Then Kills Them All

Part 6: The Bible’s Prescriptive, Open-Ended, and Universal Commandments to Wage Holy War and Enslave Infidels: Parts IIIIII, and IV

Part 7: Majority of Americans Believe the Bible is Literally True and the Word of God

Part 8: The “But That’s Just the Old Testament!” Cop-Out: Parts I and II

Part 9: My God is Better than Yours: Refuting the Moon God Theory: Parts IIIIII, IV-a, IV-b, IV-cIV-d, and V

Robert Spencer Insists Muslims Worship a Different, Pagan God; A Case Study in Spencer’s Paper Thin Arguments

The Bible’s Yahweh, a War-God?: Called “Lord of Armies” Over 280 Times in the Bible and “Lord of Peace” Just Once: Parts I and II

Allah as the Best of Deceivers?

Part 10: Does Jewish Law Justify Killing Civilians?  (Disclaimer: Why Religious Zionism, Not Judaism, Is The Problem)

#1 Civilians are Really Combatants

#2 Collective Punishment is Kosher: Parts I, II, III, and IV

#3 Promoting Ethnic Cleansing: Parts I and II

#4 Terrorism!

One Israeli Soldier Worth More than 1,000 Palestinians

#5 There are No Rules in Times of War (unpublished)

Part 11: What I Bet You Didn’t Know About the Christian Just War Doctrine: Parts I, II, III, and IV (unpublished)

Part 12: Why You Shouldn’t Trust Robert Spencer’s Biography of the Prophet Muhammad

More Proof You Shouldn’t Trust Robert Spencer’s “Scholarship”

Muhammad is the 99 Percent

When They Almost Killed Muhammad: The Persecution of Islam’s Early Followers

History’s First Jihad: Was it Justified?

Jihad By Any Means Necessary?

Part 13: Warrior Monks: The Untold Story of Buddhist Violence: Parts I and II (unpublished)

Articles by Danios on “Dhimmitude”

The Church’s Doctrine of “Perpetual Servitude” was Worse than “Dhimmitude”: This article is a direct refutation of chapter four of Robert Spencer’s book, entitled “Islam: Religion of Intolerance.”  Here, I forever lay to rest the Islamophobic argument of “dhimmitude.”

Robert Spencer is on the Ropes; Spencer’s Bumbling Reply to LoonWatch: This is a rebuttal of Robert Spencer’s reply to my article about “dhimmitude.”

Robert Spencer Dodges Debate with LoonWatch

Robert Spencer Fuming Over LoonWatch, Threatens Danios with 101 Lashes

The Protocols of the Elders of Mecca: The Final Word on the Pact of Umar: This was part two of my series on “dhimmitude.”

Do Muslims Want to Reimpose Dhimmitude or Live as Equals?  This article refutes another fundamental conspiracy theory harbored by ardent Islamophobes.

More Proof that Robert Spencer is an Intellectual Huckster: Part I and II

Articles by Danios on Taqiyya

Silencing Spencer: Taqiyya and Kitman are part of Judeo-Christian Belief

Articles by Danios on Women in Islam

Robert Spencer Rapes the Truth, Part 1: Does Sharia Reject the Testimony of a Rape Victim?:  This is a rebuttal of chapter five of Robert Spencer’s book.  Here, I put to rest another enduring but inaccurate claim about Islam.

Anti-Sex Laws of Islam: Not as Simple as You May Think

Proof that Robert Spencer’s Relies on Bogus Translations: Robert Spencer uses bogus translation of Arabic to “prove” that a fatwa claims that it is permissible in Islam to have sex with a prepubescent girl.

Articles by Danios on Sharia

Muslim Americans Must Obey U.S. Laws: Nidal Hasan Disobeyed Islamic Doctrine:  This article was written shortly after the Fort Hood Shooting.  In it, I prove that Islamophobes are wrong to claim that the shooter was simply “obeying Islamic doctrine” when he shot and killed his fellow soldiers.

Christians Must Obey God’s Law Over the Constitution:  Many right-wing Christians claim that American Muslims are trying to overthrow the Constitution with Sharia, yet oftentimes it is these same Christians who place their religious laws over the law of the land.

Articles by Danios about “Why Do They Hate Us?”

Attempted Times Square Bombing: Is it Forbidden to Ask “Why”?:  No, they don’t attack us for our freedoms.

Times Square Bombing in Retaliation for U.S. Drone Strikes, No Connection to Islam

U.S. avenges Time Square bombing by killing more Pakistani civilians: Violence is not the proper response to violence.

Why Do They Hate Us?  They Don’t.

Articles by Danios on Debating Robert Spencer

Danios of LoonWatch accepts Robert Spencer’s Challenge to a Debate: And Spencer has been running away from a debate ever since.

Is Robert Spencer a scholar?

Internet Sociopath Robert Spencer Scared of Debate

Robert Spencer of JihadWatch Becomes Desperate Against LoonWatch

Why Can’t Robert Spencer Debate Danios of LoonWatch (Again)?

Surprise, Surprise: Robert Spencer of JihadWatch is Weaseling Out of Debate with Danios of LoonWatch

Danios of LoonWatch Accepts Robert Spencer’s Choice of Venue and Moderator: Will Spencer Keep Chickening Out?

Robert Spencer Runs Away from Debating Danios – Again – in ABN Getaway Car


Miscellaneous Articles by Danios

Witch Hunts: A Muslim Problem Only?: No, Islam is not the only religion with crazies.

Fathima Bary Needs to Read Her Bible; Final Word on Islam and Apostasy

South Park, the “Four Morons” of Revolution Muslim, and CNN’s Epic Fail:  This article is about the cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad, which sparked a worldwide controversy.

Ten Years After 9/11 Attacks, Exploitation of “Patriot Day” Continues

Al Arabiya Poll: Some Arabs Justify 9/11 And Deny Al-Qaeda’s Culpability; I Say: Yeah, So What?: Parts I and II

Iranian Book “How to Eliminate Israel from the Planet” No Different than Israeli Publications

On the Outlandish Claim that there is no Islamophobia

Even OBL Admitted that Homegrown Terrorism is un-Islamic?  What the Bin Laden Letters Reveal

Boston Marathon Bombings in Perspective: Is Dzhokhar the Joker All Al-Qaeda Has Left?

Bomber Motivated by Religion?: Media Regurgitates Government Propaganda

Bat Ye’or: Anti-Muslim Loon with a Crazy Conspiracy Theory Named “Eurabia”

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    • Hamza

      Can’t wait till you release it on amazon. It’s a first-day buy for me.

    • Live and learn

      that fox news interview was uhhh something, eh?

    • CriticalDragon1177

      So am I

    • jameyfan

      Looking forward to reading your book!

    • jameyfan

      Did you guys see him on Bill Maher? He was excellent!

    • CriticalDragon1177

      You’re welcome!

    • Danios_of_LoonWatch

      Thank you for your support, all who posted.

    • Razainc_aka_BigBoss

      Hey Danios good to see you finally got the book going, can’t wait

    • CriticalDragon1177


      I’m definitely interested in your new book. There aren’t people enough out there refuting anti Muslim bigots like Spencer et-al.

    • RD Sultan

      Fantastic. My best wishes for your health and happiness attend you.

  • mindy1

    Good luck with this, sounds interesting

Join LoonWatch’s IndieGoGo Campaign to Combat Islamophobia!

Hello, LoonWatchers!

We’re very excited to announce the launch of our IndieGoGo campaign:

IndieGoGo, like Kickstarter, is a website that allows for crowdfunding.  This is a very effective means of harnessing the power of social media to raise funding.  Our campaign will last only forty days, so contribute now before it’s too late.  All you need is a credit card.  Payments through IndieGoGo are safe and reliable.

In exchange, I’ll send you an advanced copy of my upcoming book, The J Word: Jihad, Between Hype and Reality.

The Islamophobes are heavily funded, allowing them to maintain a robust presence online, operating highly professional websites and media organizations.  We’ve been able to stand toe to toe with them well enough, but we need funding to take LoonWatch to the next level.

Our avid readers and fans like you will need to be at the forefront of our IndieGoGo campaign.  We’ve counted on your support and blessing for many years.  Will you stand with us now?  Click here to go to our IndieGoGo page for more details.  Remember: CONTRIBUTE to our campaign and SPREAD our IndieGoGo link (short link:  far and wide.

Be a part of something historic and truly momentous: the first ever crowdfunding campaign to combat Islamophobia.

Thank you.

-Danios of LoonWatch.

Contact: danios [ at ]

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    • Jekyll

      I look forward to reading your book in particular.

    • WaqasZ

      That’s what I did, so Yes.

    • Seeker

      Does it only allow contributions through Credit Card?

    • WaqasZ

      This seems to be a worthy and much needed effort. Kudos to all those who are working on it. I have donated (which is the least us wealthy Norwegians can do) and am anxiously waiting for Danios’s book. Good luck with it all!

    • Ahmed Ali Shah

      Also, best of luck with your book, and do let me know what you think of this series. It hasn’t been put together by a muslim by the way.

    • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

      Is there a link?

    • Ahmed Ali Shah

      Danios, I tried sending this link to you through the contact and send us a tip forms, but I can’t for some reason. I definitely think you should watch this.

    • Mehdi

      Done, good luck

    • Danios_of_LoonWatch

      Thank you!

    • Danios_of_LoonWatch

      Thank you, Benjamin!

    • Danios_of_LoonWatch

      Thank you, Jon!

Robert Spencer to Debate Achmed the Dead Terrorist and The Dictator

Sheila Musaji of The American Muslim (TAM) has been keeping a close eye on the loons who write for Jihad Watch.  The chief loon of JW, Robert Spencer, had initially been slated to debate David Wood, another Christian loon like himself.  Realizing no doubt that they are on the same side of the loony equation, the debate has been scrapped.  Instead, both Spencer and Wood have agreed to face off against Anjem Choudary and Omar Bakri.

As Musaji presciently noted, “[b]oth Choudary and Bakri are part of the Muslim lunatic fringe.”  The nefarious duo are very familiar to the Muslim community of the U.K., not because they have a large following (they don’t), but because they are routinely trotted out by anti-Muslim right-wingers.  The set-up is always the same: a right-winger pundit will invite one of these two clowns onto their show for a “debate.” By making the hated Choudary and Bakri the representative for the Muslim side, the debate is of course already won.  Muslims are left thinking, “with friends like these, who needs enemies…”

Anjem Choudary and Omar Bakri are absolutely despised by the vast majority of the Muslim community, even by the ultra-conservative and radical Muslims they pretend to represent.   They are caricatures, just one step away from being Achmed the Dead Terrorist or a character thought up by Sacha Baron Cohen (like Ali G or Admiral General Aladeen, A.K.A. The Dictator).  Choudary and Bakri play the part of terrorists and radical Islamists, which is why hateful Islamophobes love giving them ample air time: look at how crazy those Moozlums are!

It’s absolutely no surprise then that Robert Spencer and David Wood, two loons in their own right, would debate two even loonier loons.  Spencer wastes his time engaging such unserious clowns, because–just as Sheila Musaji noted long time ago–he has a pattern of seeking out complete fools to debate with so that he can then crow in victory afterward.  Meanwhile, Spencer will doggedly avoid debating anyone (1) with a serious grasp of knowledge of the topic at hand and (2) the debating skill to back it up.  And of course, (3) anyone named Danios.  What’s interesting is that even Robert Spencer’s debating partner, David Wood, seemed to imply on his website that Anjem Choudary and Omar Bakri are weak debaters.  Wood agrees with Choudary and Bakri’s view that Muhammad existed, but he doesn’t think that they will be able to make the convincing argument.  Why not just debate Achmed the Dead Terrorist or The Dictator?  It would certainly be just as enlightening and perhaps a bit more entertaining.

Robert Spencer’s homepage boldly declares that he is “the acclaimed scholar of Islam”, and yet he has no educational qualifications to validate that lofty claim.  In fact, all he has is an M.A. in Christian studies…If I get an M.A. in Buddhist studies, does that mean I get to be “the acclaimed scholar of Judaism”?  Spencer has never had his work submitted for peer review in the academic world, and so his arguments–while they certainly might pass off in the non-scholarly world–have never been tested by the real experts in the field.  Spencer’s version of peer-review is debating the equivalent of Achmed the Dead Terrorist and The Dictator.

In any case, let’s not beat around the bush.  It’s me in particular who Robert Spencer fears. One would think that he would want to debate me now that I’ve won the Brass Crescent Award for Best Writer last year (and was runner-up the year before), in no small part due to my writings against Spencer.  I have been refuting his book for a long time now, decimating his arguments one by one.  Spencer can’t respond intelligently, so of course, he naturally fears facing off in debate.  It has now officially been 684 days–that’s 1 year, 10 months, and 14 days–since I agreed to have a radio debate with Robert Spencer.  In that time, Spencer has furiously been generating excuse after excuse to avoid the debate.

Spencer continues to use my anonymity as an excuse to cover up his cowardice.  I’m an anonymous blogger and I have expressed my intent in preserving that anonymity for now.  Yet, Spencer repeatedly insists on a public venue–so that I “show my face”–knowing full well that I won’t accept such a condition.  In this way, Spencer gets out of the debate and can then disingenuously claim that I was the cause of the impasse.

Robert Spencer engages in typical right-winger projection: look how cowardly Danios is that he doesn’t show his face.  But, it is Spencer who is the coward, at least when it comes to defending his views.  What difference does it make who I am or what I look like?  The obvious answer is that Spencer wants to engage in ad hominem attacks against me, instead of focusing on the substantive value of his arguments, which my writings have shown to be severely lacking.  It’s now quite evident to all who want to see it: my refutations of his book are irrefutable.  I know it, you know it, he knows it.

And that’s why Robert Spencer will keep running away from me.  Instead, he’ll debate fools and loons.  Yawn, what’s new?

Danios was the Brass Crescent Award Honorary Mention for Best Writer in 2010 and the Brass Crescent Award Winner for Best Writer in 2011.

*  *  *  *  *

Here is Sheila Musaji’s article from TAM:

David Wood and Robert Spencer “Debate”?

by Sheila Musaji

David Wood is not as well known as Robert Spencer, so a little background is in order.  Wood is an Evangelical pastor and has a series of polemical articles on Answering Islam.  His focus seems to be on anti-Muslim polemics.

Kiera Feldman reported on an incident in 2010:

Organized by Stop the Islamization of America, the first rally against the “Ground Zero mosque” was held in a plaza near the site of the Twin Towers on June 6th—D-Day. “We are not hatemongerers!” Pamela Hall proclaimed from the podium. “We just want our families and our future to be safe from the racist, bigoted ideology that murdered 3,000 people.” In the crowd, signs ranged from “Everything I need to know about Islam, I learned on 9/11” to crude drawings of Mohammed with the label “beast.”

Toward the end of the rally, two dark-skinned men were overheard speaking Arabic. The crowd transformed into an angry mob, surrounded the men, and shouted, “go home” and “get out.” The Bergen Record reported that the two scared men, Joseph Nasralla and Karam El Masry, had to be extricated by police. It turned out they weren’t even Muslim. They were Egyptian Coptic Christians who’d trekked cross-country from California to join the cause against the “Ground Zero mosque.” Nasralla later told John Hawkins of Right Wing News that the Record coverage was indeed accurate, adding that he’d been shoved and his camera knocked to the ground. “He said he was worried that things might have really gotten out of hand if the police hadn’t escorted him and Karam El Masry away,” Hawkins wrote.

“I actually caused that by accident,” an evangelical pastor named David Wood told me with a chuckle. He meant the near race riot. Wood is a PhD student in philosophy at a respectable New York institution whose name he didn’t want me to use. Passionate about proselytizing to Muslims, Wood’s expertise is Christian apologetics, the practice of arguing unbelievers into faith. He is best known as the creator of a viral video “Of Mosques and Men,” which argues all Muslims—even those who seem “peaceful,” like “good citizens in public”—had an urge to “smile when there were terrorist attacks.” But Wood allows himself a little laugh about violence when Muslims are on the receiving end.

As he tells the story of that day, “[The Copts] were complaining about not having anything to hand out. And I said, ‘I’ve got some pamphlets on Islam, specifically on whether Islam is a religion of peace.” The pamphlets contained passages of the Qur’an selected to suggest the answer is no. “People thought they were there to defend the mosque and promote Islam,” Wood explained. “Lots of people were fired up about that.” But it was a goofy case of mistaken identity, a funny little mix-up. “The guys who were doing it were actually Christians,” Wood told me as if clearing up the whole matter. “They weren’t Muslims.” In other words: the mob’s anger and actions were justified, but misdirected. Aim better next time?

Garibaldi of Loonwatch has written exposes about Wood in two articles here and here

Wood and Robert Spencer will have a “debate” this coming Sunday on the thesis of Spencer’s new book Did Muhammad Exist?  This “debate” will be moderated by Pamela Geller.  That may be the only time that you will see the combination of Pamela Geller and moderation in the same sentence.

Wood made the “challenge to a debate” by video and Spencer accepted the “challenge”.

Spencer is still falsely claiming that Muslims are afraid to debate him, and says in his acceptance: So David Wood will do their work for them.  Read my article Danios vs Spencer:  18 months and Spencer still avoiding a debate for the Saga of Spencer’s avoidance of a debate with Danios.  See The Muslim Communities Useful Idiots for information on some of Spencer’s past debates with Muslims, and why I believe that engaging with bigots is not productive.

These are not individuals who hold respectable, if controversial opinions.  These are bigots, and engaging them in such a forum only provides them with some veneer of respectability.

Hosts like Hannity, or Bolling can claim that they have been “fair and balanced” because they included a Muslim.  And, full time, paid mercenaries in a “holy war” against Islam like Spencer, will claim “victory” no matter what the outcome.  If they have no “facts” that will stand up to scrutiny, they will stoop to ridiculous slurs, as they did with Christina Abraham.  And, when all else fails, if any Muslim says anything reasonable, they will say that it is taqiyya.

This sort of devious, unethical, and downright childish behavior, is not surprising from individuals who consistently “get it wrong” when it comes to Islam and Muslims, and who see no ethical problem with simply removing articles from a site when they are proven to be inaccurate.  Not too surprising for individuals who are co-founders (Spencer & Geller) of a group, Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA), which has been designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.  The group is also described by the ADL in the following terms: “Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA), created in 2009, promotes a conspiratorial anti-Muslim agenda under the guise of fighting radical Islam. The group seeks to rouse public fears by consistently vilifying the Islamic faith and asserting the existence of an Islamic conspiracy to destroy “American” values. The organization warns of the encroachment of shari’a, or Islamic law, and encourages Muslims to leave what it describes as the “falsity of Islam.”

I believe that it is not “cowardly” to leave these folks alone, just sensible.   It is not that their claims cannot be, and have not been answered, but rather that they have proven themselves time and time again to be untrustworthy and dishonorable in both their tactics and their responses to reasoned argument.

Spencer and Wood seem to have a mutual admiration society.  Spencer posted a notice about the “debate” with a note to watch Wood’s video, and Wood posted a notice with a note to read Spencer’s book.

The notice points out that this “debate” will be right after Geller and Spencer’s “Jessica Mokdad Human Rights Conference” (their most recent anti-Muslim hate fest) ends.  It is worth noting that David Wood will be a speaker at Spencer and Geller’s conference.  I’m sure their promotional video will be more exciting than the actual “debate”.

It seems pretty obvious that rather than a debate, this is a calculated publicity stunt to gain a little more notoriety for their conference, and to publicize Spencer’s book.  I’m sure that they will both have an opportunity to get in a few anti-Muslim zingers in the course of this “debate”.  Let the bigots talk among themselves.

UPDATE 4/30/2012

Just when you thought things couldn’t get any more strange.  Robert Spencer just posted a new notice about tonights “debate”.  The debate is now to be between Spencer and Wood (on the same side) versus Anjem Choudary and Omar Bakri.

Both Choudary and Bakri are part of the Muslim lunatic fringe.  Just type their names or the term lunatic fringe into our TAM search engine for more information on these disreputable folks.

I’m curious as to how Spencer is going to talk to Omar Bakri since the last I heard he had been denied re-entry to England, and arrested in Lebanon.

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    • @British

      Personally I don’t have a problem with anyone wanting Anjem Choudary as far away from them as possible. After all he is a nut job, but if you’re serious, you really ought to know better than to lump him in with all other Muslims in the same box, especially if you spend a lot of time here. In reality he doesn’t even represent mainstream British Muslims.

    • british

      start the great purge of muslims from Britain! First on the list Anjem Chowderhead!

    • Hass

      Spencer will try to look good in front of the audience by PICKING TO CHOOSE THE ONES WHO AREN’T EVEN SCHOLARS i.e. Choudhary.

      Sorry Spencer, your bleak attempt to win a debate has been found out. And your marketing attempts to promote your book are quite open too… it doesn’t take a genius to figure out your petty strategies.

    • Géji

      @john spielman Says: “Dear Geji; Sorry to be late in responding to you, but I didn’t see your last post til now”

      Oh yes you saw-it, even before I reminded you on the other thread. But chosen to ignore-it cause as I suspected you had no logical answer to provide refuting my yet very simple questions you brought upon yourself, other than coming back with nonsensical rants that beats-around-the-bushes when you could have been just as easily shortened- to answer yes or no.

      > “As far as Jesus is God, this is the core belief in Christianity because not only did the disciples affirm this in their writings to the early church (John’s, Peter’s Paul’s epistles or letters but Jesus Himself confirmed this fact as recorded in the gospel accounts and proven by His miracles of walking on water, multiplying the loaves and fishes, healing the blind deaf and dumb, and raising the dead and finally by His resurrection from the dead after His crucifiction”

      Funny, cause even with all “His miracles”, I thought a large section of -“the core belief in Christianity” – was that Jesus was only the 2th person of trinity as son of God, and not God the father himself.

      > “So Jesus with the Fatherand Holy Spirit (one GOD -the Hebrew iterm is Ehad I believe) created the heave and earth (John 1). He gave the law to the Israelites and He spoke through the prophets.”

      So you see, when I’m saying you’re beating around the bushes for no reason, when a simple YES would have suffice to answer my whole question, i.e., — Is Jesus as “GOD” the one who gave the laws/instrustions to the Bible prophets and their followers to carry-out his orders such as ~ him ordering to carry-out genocidal warfares that eliminates everything that breaths & Those ordering on women & Those ordering stoning even those that curse him and his kings? — Thus, YES Géji it is Jesus that did that, would have sufficed and would had save you lots of time typing as well. —— So thus as far it is official! -(according to you) Jesus as “GOD” ordered those punishments to be carried-out by his believers. Therefore, He didn’t did-it himself did he? but ordered others to do it for him isn’t.

      > “As followers of Christ we are not allowed to exact punishment in His name. Vengence belongs to the LORD as we are unqualified to punish”

      Let’s drop the hypocritical cop-out and be consistent shall we. And remember that we already establish it’s your Jesus-(again according to your own words “GOD”)- that “HE gave” the laws/instructions that ordered the punishments his Biblical prophets and their “Israelites” followers carried-out and applied against those infidel sinners such the “evil” Cananites ordering that annihilated them t’ill the last one that breaths including their farm animals, and the stoning of those that curses him and his kings.

      So then why are you contradicting yourself a minute later by saying – “As followers of Christ we are not allowed to exact punishment in His name” – Didn’t you said by the same token that he (Jesus) actually fulfilled the Biblical laws/instructions the prophets carried-out punishing infidels when he came to earth as God/man?

      So by contradicting yourself, you’re either proving your Jesus “GOD” is very contradictory, he’s one thing one moment and different thing the other, by extension proving he is not “GOD” at all as you says he is, thus fake. Or you have to admit since according to you his “GOD”, he did did ordered such cruel punishments in the Bible for his prophets and their followers to carry-out against infidels. He did not did-it himself, but ordered others to do it. Which makes your whole assertion of quote – “As followers of Christ we are not allowed to exact punishment in His name” – FALSE.


      Sir David: “His holy angels …. MMMMM sounds like drones to me No change there then”

      Oh yes ‘dear’ Sir David, I see you too are smelling from miles-away the usual hypocrisy of our dear Mr john spielman . He first claimed Jesus-(“GOD” according to him) will have no help whatsoever carrying-out the delightful job at slaughtering infidels, but then he(Jesus) somehow now a minute latter he’ll have “His holy angels” as helpers? I wonder if john spielman think George W Bush is one of those “holy angels”, since Bush precisely stated such when he invaded Iraq and Afghanistan with the “holy” blessing of Jesus the warrior “GOD”.

    • Sir David Illuminati membership number 16.69

      His holy angels …. MMMMM sounds like drones to me No change there then

    • cont’d. Now the old testament tells us why God “gave” the land of Canan to Israel, it was because the Cananites were so evil (practicing idol worship and engaing in child sacrifice to Molech) Deuteronomy9:5. The penalty of sinning against God was terrible for the Cananites and later for Israel when they turned from God and were nearly wiped out as a people by the Babylonians as God had revealed by the prophets.But now we the world are in an age of Grace (undeserves love and mercy of God) As followers of Christ we are not allowed to exact punishment in His name. Vengence belongs to the LORD as we are unqualified to punish (Let him who is without sin cast the first stone). Luke 19 parable is about the end of this age when Christ returns as King of king and Lord of lords. We will not be carrying out His opunishments as it will be Jesus Himself with His holy angels (see Revelation 19 and 2 Thessalonians)

    • john spielman

      Dear Geji; Sorry to be late in responding to you, but I didn’t see your last post til now. As far as Jesus is God, this is the core belief in Christianity because not only did the disciples affirm this in their writings to the early church (John’s, Peter’s Paul’s epistles or letters but Jesus Himself confirmed this fact as recorded in the gospel accounts and proven by His miracles of walking on water, multiplying the loaves and fishes, healing the blind deaf and dumb, and raising the dead and finally by His resurrection from the dead after His crucifiction. So Jesus with the Fatherand Holy Spirit (one GOD -the Hebrew iterm is Ehad I believe) created the heave and earth (John 1). He gave the law to the Israelites and He spoke through the prophets. He fufilled the entire sacrifical and judicial system on the cross (Matthew 5:17-18 an many otrher passages)so now we are in a age of grace where our sins don’t always result in immediate punioshment by God.

    • khushboo

      How about Wajahat Ali vs. Spencer? He’s not anonymous and could easily bring him down to his knees!

    • flow

      Some people so hate salafis that they boil with rage. They then try to sound as if they have something to say. They dont! Here is a taste: “Anjem Choudary is a Hardcore Takfiri.He makes Takfir of the Muslim Rulers. He even made Takfir of Sheikh Bin Baaz (RahimaHullah). (I personally heard him say that he believes that Sheikh Bin Baaz is a Kafir. (Wa’iyyadu’billah- We seek refuge in Allah). He is very Jaahil with regards to the Deen.” “… then when you criticize these people, and describe them as they are, it is as if you are an enemy of Islam and the Muslims, as if these people represent Islam and the Muslims in the first place. They only represent their own groups, and their own agendas and their own partisanship and their own innovated methodologies.” “…….attempting to deceive other muslims with their claimed attachment to the way of the Salaf.” Basic lesson: Do not let your hatred of a person or group of people turn u away from being just.

    • rookie

      The “Debate”:


    • rookie

      Truth Seeker say: “A lot of Salafis have more in common with Choudary and Bakri than you are afraid to admit.”

      Oh dear, this moron ir right again. They all have beards.

    • “Please don’t call these bozos “Salafis”. They’re not. They are Takfiris and Kharajites…Their inspiration is not from the Book and the Sunnah or The Salaf, but from the 20th/21st century political movements/ideologues. They are blowhards who need to heed the advice of the Ulema.”

      A lot of Salafis have more in common with Choudary and Bakri than you are afraid to admit. Given that the Salafis have no problem beating women in Tunisia or attempt to destroy Egypt pre-Islamic heritage or slaughtering women and children in Algeria’s civil war, is it so hard to believe that a lot of Salafis who themselves want to declare EVERYTHING bidah would come to the defense of Choudary and Bakri? After all, don’t they, in spite of all the mischief they cause, consider them to be brothers in Islam as opposed to liberal Muslims whom they regard as murtads and worthy of execution?

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