The Search of the
for abbreviated version
often hear that Islam is a religion of peace, that the terrorists are
extremists and that we should work with the moderate Muslims to build
a more peaceful world. The question is however, where are they and who
are these moderate Muslims? Let
us find one moderate Muslim, peer into his mind and see what he thinks
and what his outlook of the world is.
is better for this than Doctor Mahathir, the Prime Minister of
Malaysia, who stepped down from the office last October? He was hailed
to be a moderate Muslim. Prime Minister Mahathir tried to create a
modern Islamic country. He believed that Muslims should not just read
religious books but also go after science, mathematics and technology
and build modern countries. He probably would make a perfect choice
for us as the specimen of the moderate Muslim.
Mahathir stayed in power for 22 years. To do so he played the race
card. With his tirades of anti-Western and anti-Semitism and other
conspiracy theories he hoped to foster the national cohesiveness among
the majority Muslim population.
get rid of his deputy, Anwar Ibrahim, after he fell from grace,
Mahathir jailed him and amidst a barrage of charges, widely believed
to have been trumped up by Mahathir himself, accused him of sodomy,
claiming that "he himself had conducted the investigation"
and that had found him (Mr. Anwar Ibrahim) guilty. This is just
to show how committed a moderate Muslim is to democracy and democratic
a couple of weeks ago, in the OIC (Organization of Islamic Conference)
Dr. Mahathir unveiled the real face of a moderate Muslim.
his speech, which received the approval and applause of the leaders,
Kings, and presidents of 57 Islamic countries, Mahathir used the word
"enemy" and "enemies of Islam" 17 times.
said that to the “detractors and enemies”, the Muslims are
considered to be sworn enemies who believe Islam promotes
talked about how in the early days of Islam “Allah helped the
Muslims to defeat their enemies and to create a great and powerful
Muslim civilization” and stated that Muslims today have more wealth
(oil) and are more numerous than the early believers and hence they
can defeat their detractors and enemies.
spoke of the “humiliation and oppression” that Muslims suffer in
the hands of their “detractors and oppressors”. And he kept
repeating, “We are all Muslims. We are all oppressed. We are all
course to incite people to hate you have to make them feel oppressed
and victimized. Muslims all over the world are always told that they
are being oppressed and victimized. It is not clear however, how and
lamented the disunity of the Ummah (the entire Muslim population) and
that they are now divided into thousands of sects that often fight and
kill each other.
groaned, “They will attack and kill us, invade our lands, bring down
our Governments whether we are Sunnis or Shiite, Alawits or Druze or
acknowledged that the early Muslims built a great civilization by
studying the works of the Greeks and other scholars before Islam
and then boastfully added that the "Europeans had to kneel at
the feet of Muslim scholars in order to access their own scholastic
Dr. Mahathir lamented that halfway through the building of the great
Islamic civilization the Mullahs started interpreting the Quran,
discouraged the study of science and emphasized only the study of
Islamic theology, which lead to the intellectual regression of the
Muslims and the demise of Islam.
so surprisingly Mahathir also blamed the “western democratic
system” for undermining the unity of the Ummah and its division in
different political parties and groups who as he said, "claim
Islam for themselves and reject the Islam of other parties and refuse
to accept the results of the practice of democracy if they fail to
gain power for themselves."
me it seems using Islam to undermine the democratic procedure, i.e.
imposing the rule of Sharia over the will of people is a problem
caused by Islam, and not by democracy. This only proves that Islam is
incompatible with democracy. However Dr. Mahathir seems to imply that
it is democracy, which causes disunity among the Muslims.
concluded that this weakness of Muslims allowed the Europeans to
excise Muslim land and create the state of Israel for the Jews.
he spelled out his solution for the liberation of the Ummah. The
solution, according to the moderate Muslim Dr. Mahathir is WAR.
But not petty wars as fought by the Islamic terrorists; Mahathir
envisioned a big war fought by all the Muslims united against the
enemies of Islam.
encouraged his colleagues to amass “guns and rockets, bombs and
warplanes, tanks and warships”. He told them that they should
encourage learning of science and mathematics and modernize. Not for
the well-being and comfort of their people but so that the "Ummah
can produce its own weapons and not rely on its detractors and
enemies for what it needs most.”
that is what the Muslims need most. Not food, not medicine, not
drinking water and good sanitation, not democracy, not freedom of
speech, not respect of their human rights, not equality of rights for
their women; but “guns and rockets, bombs and warplanes,
tanks and warships". This is what the Muslims need
condemned those who interpret the Quran superficially and do not
understand the importance of the above.
warned the Muslims for not realizing the need of having the most
modern weapons and said “Our detractors and enemies will take
advantage of the resulting backwardness and weakness in order to
exhorting the Muslims to go back to the fundamental teachings of Islam
he rightly said “It cannot be that we are all practicing the
correct and true Islam when our beliefs are so different from one
said, “Today we, the whole Muslim Ummah are treated with contempt
and dishonor. Our religion is denigrated. Our holy places desecrated.
Our countries are occupied. Our people starved and killed.” However
he did not specify by whom and how. Who is treating Muslims with
contempt and dishonor? Who is denigrating their religion? How are
their holy places desecrated? Who occupies their countries? And who is
starving the Muslims and killing them? All that may be true, but take
the example of Iran. Who is doing all that to the Iranians? Aren't
their own Islamic leaders dishonoring them, killing them and starving
them? Isn't it the corruption of the governments in Islamic countries
that is responsible for the dishonor, starvation and murder of the
Muslims who live under their rule? Why did Dr. Mahathir try to shift
the blame on others when the culprits were right there in front of
governments of the world have gone out of their way to protect the
Muslims and Islam. It is in fact the acts of the Muslims themselves
that are turning the public opinion of the people in the civilized
countries against them and making them suspect that perhaps Islam is
responsible for all this violence and terror.
playing the card of victimization, Mahathir ruefully pointed out
“there is a feeling of hopelessness among the Muslim countries and
their people. They feel that they can do nothing right. They believe
that things can only get worse. The Muslims will forever be oppressed
and dominated by the Europeans and the Jews. They will forever be
poor, backward and weak.”
fact is however, that it is not the Europeans and the Jews that
oppress and dominate the Muslims, keep them backward and weak. It is
their Islamic leaders who try to impose the archaic and draconian laws
of Sharia on them and deny them democracy and their basic human
Mahathir comforted the Muslims by saying “1.3 billion Muslims cannot
be defeated by a few million Jews. There must be a way. And we
can only find a way if we stop to think, to assess our weaknesses and
our strength, to plan, to strategize and then to counter attack. As
Muslims we must seek guidance from the Al-Quran and the Sunnah of the
Prophet. Surely the 23 years’ struggle of the Prophet can provide us
with some guidance as to what we can and should do.”
is absolutely right. Al Quran and the Sunnah contain the guideline for
the Muslims to strategize and then to attack. Al Quran tells Muslims
to hate the non-Muslims, to divide the world into two halves, the
house of war and the house of Islam. It teaches them to wage war
against the infidels in the house of war and kill them wherever they
find them and cut their throat from above their necks.
course Mahathir’s audience was all Muslim. That is why he told the
truth without trying to sweeten his talk by sugarcoating it. This is
not what we hear from the Muslim apologists who strive hard to make us
believe that Islam is a religion of peace and the Quran is a message
even spelled out the strategy that Muslims should follow to win this
war against their "detractors and enemies". He reminded them
of the Hudaibiyah treaty. In Hudaybiyah, the Muslim Prophet Muhammad
was forced to sign an accord that was less than what he and his
companions had bargained for. In fact it was a retreat. However, he
waited a few more years and after his army was stronger, he broke the
treaty and invaded his opponents.
reminding the Muslims of Hudaibiyah, Dr. Mahathir hinted that Muslims
should make a “strategic retreat”, “calmly assess the
situation, build more
weapons, devise a plan, a strategy that can win us final victory”
and then strike en mass and conjointly at the enemies of Islam.
are these detractors and enemies that Muhathir spoke about so much?
They are the Jews and the entire world that supports their right to
live. He said, the Jews “have now gained control of the most
powerful countries and they, this tiny community, have become a world
power.” “Today the Jews rule this world by proxy. They get
others to fight and die for them.”
“others” are of course the Americans, the Europeans and anyone who
defends the Jews’ right to live and prevent the Muslims from
drowning them in the sea. In other words, we are all detractors and
enemies of Islam as seen by Dr. Mahathir and other Muslim leaders who
greeted his speech with a standing ovation as did other Muslims around
the world. So all those guns and rockets, bombs and warplanes,
tanks and warships that Mahathir was encouraging the Muslim
leaders to amass are for us. They are for killing you and me.
Mahathir however, perhaps remembering the support of few friends of
Islamists such as Jacques Chirac, the BBC, the liberals and the
leftists and their rampant opposition to the USA in its war against
terrorism acknowledged that “not all non-Muslims are against us.
Some are welldisposed towards us. Some even see our enemies as their
advised the Muslim terrorists to abandon their way because it is
futile. He said, “We need to be brave but not foolhardy. We need to
think not just of our reward in the afterlife but also of the
worldly results of our mission.” However his plans were far more
macabre and dangerous than those of the terrorists. He thinks Muslims
should unite, build and amass guns and rockets, bombs and
warplanes, tanks and warships and then strike for a decisive
speech delivered by a moderate Muslim and received with applause by
the leaders, the kings and the presidents of the entire Islamic world
is significant because it sheds light into the reality of Islam. It
makes us see the world through the eyes of the Muslims, not the
extremists and the terrorists but the moderate ones, the ones who are
our allies, "friends" and the recipients of our aids.
is a divided house. Muslims fight and kill each other constantly for
interpreting the Quran in different ways. However all the Muslims are
united in one thing and that is their hatred of the Jews and the
example, Dr. Mahathir while emphasizing on the unity of the Ummah,
acknowledged that a total unity would be impossible however he
suggested that “all the Muslim countries can close ranks and have a
common stand if not on all issues, at least on some major ones, such
as on Palestine".
should Palestine be important to Malaysia, Indonesia, Bangladesh or
Pakistan? Why shouldn’t the plight of the Shiites in Pakistan or the
Sunnis in Iran be the major point of concern for Muslims and their leaders? These Shiites and Sunnis are
being massacred systematically for their beliefs despite the fact that
both groups are Muslim. Why is
there not even a mention of the slave trade of millions of Christians
in Sudan perpetrated by the Arab Muslims? Why this much ado about
Palestine? The answer is that Palestine is believed to be occupied by
non-Muslims and worst of all by the Jews, the ones who, as Muhammad
said are descendents of apes and swine. This is a major humiliation
for Muslims. Even a Muslim living in the UK or USA, enjoying all the
benefits of the free world and who has no ties with Palestine can feel
oppressed because of this.
invaded Lebanon and killed hundreds of thousands of civilians;
no Muslim said a word. Saddam Hussein massacred hundreds of thousands
of Shiites and Kurds, no Muslim complained. Why then is the presence
of the Jews in Palestine such
a thorn in the eye of Muslims
all over the world, to the extent that Mahathir says even if Muslims
cannot be united over anything else they should be united over this
one? Why should Palestine be so important to Saudi or Indonesian Muslims to the extent
that they are willing to kill thousands of people in USA and Bali to
is how a moderate Muslim thinks. None of those present, including
America's darling Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai saw anything
wrong in Mahathir’s speech.
peering into the mind of a moderate Muslim the question that begs an
answer is: what is the difference between a moderate Muslim and a
terrorist Muslim? As a former Muslim myself, my long and careful
analysis leads me to the conclusion that the only difference is the
latter wants to start the Jihad against the infidels now while the
former thinks it is better to wait until the Muslims are strong and
difference is in the form not in substance. Their only disagreement is
when and how the Jihad against the infields should take place.
Otherwise all the Muslims, whether moderate or extremists believe in
the same book. That book calls for waging war against the non-Muslims
until they are subdued and humiliated. The Quran teaches:
9:29, Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last
Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and
His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they
are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing
submission, and feel themselves subdued.