“All religions and faiths, throughout the history of humanity, have been subject to criticism and affronts. With time, this has helped in their reform and development. Any belief that chops off the heads of its critics is doomed to turn into terrorism and tyranny. This has been the condition of Islam, from its inception to this day. Islam has sentenced [its critics] to prison, and whoever crosses the threshold of that prison meets his death. The Danish cartoons have managed to break down the first brick in the wall of that prison, and to open up a window, through which the sunrays enter, after a lengthy darkness. The Danish newspaper exercised its freedom of speech. Liberties are the holiest thing in the West, and nothing is more important. But if Islam were not the way it is, those cartoons would never have appeared.”
Dr. Sultan added: “If you want to change the course of events, you must reexamine your terrorist teachings, you must recognize and respect the right of the other to live, you must teach your children love, peace, coexistence, and productive work. When you do that, the world will respect you, will consider you in a better light, and will draw you in a better light.”
On March 16, one of the world’s preeminent Islamofascists, Sheik Yusuf al-Qaradawi took to the airwaves of Al Jazeera to denounce Wafa Sultan and provide the religious basis for her murder. Qaradawi declared that she had “leveled accusations against Islam and the Muslims, and cursed Allah, His Prophet, the Islamic nation, the Shariah, and the Islamic faith and culture. She did not omit anything. She was insolent and stopped at nothing.”
Qaradawi has parlayed his platform as the host of Al Jazeera’s popular “Shariah and Life” program into a prominence in the Muslim world that makes such statements life-threatening to those he criticizes. In a 2004 interview with the Egyptian newspaper Al-Ahram Al-Arabi, the sheik ordered those who strayed from Islam to be put to death. He has also described “the abduction and killing of Americans in Iraq as a [religious] obligation so as to cause them to leave Iraq immediately” and supported suicide bombings against Israeli civilians.
Al Jazeera thought it wise to apologize for allowing Wafa Sultan to appear. Dr. Sultan has been subjected to death threats and she and her family have been forced to conceal their whereabouts.
What makes this story the more appalling is that such a man and his colleagues at the European Council for Fatwa and Research have been engaged by prominent commercial institutions to serve as “Shariah advisors” in connection with the latters’ “Shariah-Compliant Finance” operations. In that capacity, they not only have a say in where capital and credit flow in Western economies. They are also able to advance the legitimization of Shariah and to engage in what these Muslim Brotherhood types have called “financial jihad.”
During the Cold War, a great Democratic Senator Henry “Scoop” Jackson led the effort to help protect that era’s most endangered species – Soviet dissidents – by publicizing their plight and penalizing their oppressors. Today, we must do at least a much for our era’s refuseniks, the Wafa Sultans here and elsewhere, for their fates are truly tied to our own.
Frank Gaffney Jr. is the founder and president of the Center for Security Policy and author of War Footing: 10 Steps America Must Take to Prevail in the War for the Free World .
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