Why Left is
Wrong on Islam
very sorry I've taken so long to analyze things before formally deciding
whether to join or not join The Socialist Movement. I needed that
lengthy time because, while I am quite meticulous and detailed, I also
tend to move at my own pace. I really needed to consider some things
and watch what the movement officially stands for in words and in actions.
have finally reached a decision.
the amount of time and thought I have put into my decision, I hope you
will read this entire letter in detail and give serious thought to what I
am about to share with you.
I support many Socialist social, political, and democratic goals, I have
decided not to join formally the socialist movement. I am not
joining because of assorted official Socialist groups’ collective stand
on Islam as well as the current Israel-Palestine conflict.
reason these two issues are so overwhelmingly important to me is I am an
Ex-Moslem: I was raised in the United States by Middle-Eastern
Moslems who were Western-educated in the 1950s and 1960s – and I am well
aware of the underlying motives behind what Islam stands for: I was
one of the indoctrinated for 27 years.
I explain further, I think it’s very important to note here Islam is not
just a religion. Islam is a religion, a social structure, a legal
system that decides innocence and guilt, a penal system that metes out
punishment, and a way of thinking about the world based around the four
using the five ideas I mention, plays a key role in oppression, deception,
human rights abuses, and maintaining “the status quo.” Islamic
countries and movements lead Amnesty International’s and Human Rights
Watch’s list of wrongdoers against basic human rights “All Movements
Left,” including The Socialist Movement, stand for. I add with
great vigor that I, as an Ex-Moslem, also stand for these human rights:
I know what it is like to live without them, even in a Western country.
Such abuses within the social structure of Islam are not limited to the
Middle East, I assure you.
bothers me, in this time of moral crisis, that The Socialist Movement
takes a pro-Islam, pro-Palestine stance. I know the arguments:
the underdog, fostering change, supporting the oppressed. But what I
have watched “All Movements Left” do over the last year shocks me –
because I was once a part of that pro-Islamic, pro-Palestinian community
and I know all too well where the greater oppression lies.
once have I heard the atrocities done by Moslems to Moslems (in a
world-wide sense) condemned. I know such atrocities happen: I
have not only heard of them, I have seen them. Yet, The Socialists
are silent: why?
once have I heard the Palestinian contingent criticized for acts of war
(given the definition “freedom fighter” in place of “terrorist”)
against civilians – ANY civilians. I assume that “All Movements
Left” have decided killing Jews is okay because Jews are part of that
“oppressor?” That’s a profoundly offensive question, I know
– but as often as I ask, I cannot get a legitimate answer: that
bothers me. I keep asking, “Why?”
importantly, never once have I heard the assorted Islamic clans within
Palestine (or any other place, for that matter) criticized for their own
human rights abuses against their own people – for Israel is not the
only “oppressor” in this conflict. The Palestinians themselves
– the gays, the lesbians, the mentally handicapped, the alcoholic and
addicted, the Christian, the Apostate, and plenty of others – are also
“punished for wrongdoing” with the same vigor “the freedom
fighters” punish others. Yet “All Movements Left” are quiet.
in the Unites States, “The Right” has mounted an anti-Islamic agenda
designed to whip the general public into a frenzy about Islam and the
atrocities done . . . likely to help turn the oppression I address
to American economic advantage. By addressing the very concerns I
mention, “The Right,” depending on how issues in Afghanistan, Iraq,
and Saudi evolve, will turn Moslem oppression into Capitalist oppression.
No solutions – just more oppression. Why?
“last straw” was the banning of Rabbi Michael Lerner from the coming
anti-war rally in San Francisco. The official Socialist banning of a
man who heads the humanitarian “Tikkun,” who advised the late Senator
Paul Wellstone, and who worked for solutions to current problems in the
Middle East just reeks of either (1) ignorance of Moslem and Palestinian
misdeeds, (2) an incredible arrogance about being right above being fair,
or (3) anti-Semitism. Furthermore, given the work FaithFreedom
International has done (www.faithfreedom.org) in exposing the human rights
abuses I mention, I can’t see any logical rationalization for the
current Socialist position.
any case, the gross closed-mindedness now demonstrated around these issues
I mention is enough to keep me from joining. The Socialist Movement
has proven, via its leaders’ actions, it is as intolerant as “The
Right,” just on the opposite end of the political spectrum.
does not work for me.
a former Moslem who is now an agnostic Jew, a person of non-traditional
orientation, a liberal American who has heavily traveled the Middle East,
and a person in the healthcare profession, the idea of “the party
line” and “silencing others” is as about as appealing as John
Ashcroft’s civil liberties assaults in the name of “Homeland
thank you most sincerely for the insight, the correspondence, and the
perspective. I will continue to vigorously support much of what you
and The Socialist Movement tries to achieve. But I will not join
you, give you my time, give you my money, or otherwise vest in you until
the movement more honestly, even-handedly, and objectively addresses the
concerns I mention.
you – with both greatest sincerity and regret.