Leaving Islam






Muslim Cleric Anti-Terrorism Follows Bush’s Lead

J. Grant Swank, Jr.

It is United States President George W. Bush who, more than any other national leader on the planet, has waged the war against global terrorism. Other countries’ leaderships have balked and hampered. The Democratic Party has scolded and crippled. But the President, without hesitation, has kept on course.

He has warned that anti-terrorism is every nation’s business. Killers international are just that — international. They have no care for corner or climb. They are creeping into everyone’s closet, ready to take over — to murder and maim without care, without counting the cost to themselves. Terrorists are on foot, in the air, sailing the seas. They are infiltrating all opportunities vulnerable to their slithery entrances.

Some think the President is overstating the case. If they continue in such denial, remind them of 9/11 and repeat the reminder until they get the reality quotient firmly grasped.

Some think the President is quagmired in a well-worn repeat speech. If they continue such yammering, send them into the heart of the murderers’ tents, challenging them to stop all such carnage — potential and actual.

Because the President has talked up the danger as well as waged Iraqi Freedom Operation against terrorism, we have the likes of Saudi Arabia’s chief cleric Sheik Abdul Aziz al-Sheik addressing 2 million Muslims. Does he wind them up for the kill? Does he rev up their gunfire? Does he hoist the bloody flag, calling on the disciples to see through the Koran dictate to enslave or slay every non-Muslim?

No. He does not. At Mount Arafat, Saudi Arabia, the chief Saudi religious voice on January 31 "decries terrorism in a Hajj sermon," according to the Associated Press. He declares that Muslims around the world are to give up on killers international. They are to put down terrorists — just as vigorously as murderers are seeking to enslave and slaughter. He proclaimed that "those who claim to be holy warriors were an affront to the faith."

This is one of the firsts. The peace-loving world has been waiting with bated breath for this declaration. Why oh why have we not heard from Muslim religious leaders regarding what their devotees are doing to endanger the planet? Why have we not heard the voice of reason come from mosques, prayer towers, seminaries? Why oh why? Are they all bent on destroying civilization and spilling innocent blood? Where are the sane, levelheaded clerics in all this terrible melee?

Now today we hear from Sheik Abdul Aziz al-Sheik as he speaks, not from one mosque in a distant land, but to the milling masses via a televised sermon seen throughout Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries. The Muslims gathered for the climax of their yearly journey.

"Is it holy war to shed Muslim blood? Is it holy war to shed the blood of non-Muslims given sanctuary in Muslim lands? Is it holy war to destroy the possession of Muslims?" he asked. Many slain have been Muslims, victims of homicide attacks. "Islam forbids all forms of injustice, killing without just cause, treachery ... hijacking of planes, boats and transportation means."

According to the AP, "Liberal intellectuals in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait also called for such revisions in the teaching of Islam in schools and mosques. Governments in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Jordan have taken steps toward purging schoolbooks of terms offensive to other religions, and reformers argue that change should start by lessening the religious grip on education. The minds of youth in the Islamic nation need to be shielded with Islamic sharia and good manners and deeds. The nation's future generations will only be reformed by what reformed the past generations."

World, please note: Because US President George W. Bush has waged war against global terrorism day after day, we now have the world’s chief Muslim cleric echoing the same to his own disciples.

Thank you, Mr. President.


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