Islam on Trial: The Prosecution’s Case against Islam
Islam on Trial: The Prosecution’s Case against Islam
Amber Pawlik March 13, 2007
- September 11, 2001 changed the world. Islamic terrorists
hijacked American airplanes; flew them into several, major,
symbolic buildings of hers; causing thousands to fall, crash or
burn to their early death. The terrorists who did it did not do it
for land or money: they did it fully, openly and proudly in the
name of their religion, Islam, being promised 72 virgins. It
thrust unto us Middle Eastern politics, Islam, and a new enemy.
Islam itself has come into the forefront of public debate - or at
least it should have.
- The majority of us have at least a crude knowledge of Islam
and what Islamic countries are like. We know they live in abject
poverty. We know their progress is slim to none. We know many of
them treat their dogs better than women. We know they defy just
about all Western ideals.
One would think that, especially after September 11, 2001, there
would be criticism of Islam coming from every which way. Feminists,
Christians, capitalists, secularists, human rights activists, hell
even animal rights activists should have something to say about
Islam. We are, after all, a country with free speech, aren’t we?
Yet, even after September 11, there has been nothing but haunting
In the current state of the world, Muslims are involved in almost
every war or battle. It was Muslim terrorists who bombed a train in
Madrid Spain; Muslim terrorists who held a school hostage in Russia,
killing children; Muslim terrorists who flew planes into the World
Trade Center. The past 1400 years of Islamic history has been
riddled with terrorism, from the days of Muhammad to Al-Zarqawi.
But, for whatever reason, Islam is above any kind of critical
look or debate. It is given an almost holy status. People don’t just
avoid criticism of it; they are quick to defend it. Those who
criticize Islam are often banished to the Never Never Land of
political suicide. The defenses given for Islam are so hysterical;
you would think you just insulted their mothers or something.
Islam is not the problem, we keep getting told. The terrorists,
they assure us, had the “wrong interpretation” of the Koran and are
not true Muslims.
We have watched Islamic terrorists behead innocent civilians. We
have been told that this is completely and totally against Islam.
From the Koran:
"When thy Lord spake unto the angels, 'I will be with you:
therefore stablish ye the faithful. I will cast a dread into the
hearts of the infidels.' Strike off their heads then, and strike off
from them every finger tip." - Sura 8:12 (Bold mine)
We have watched Islamic terrorists commit “jihad” against the
West. Under no circumstances, we are lectured, does the Koran tell
its followers to attack nonbelievers.
From the Koran:
"Make war upon such of those to whom the Scriptures have been
given as believe not in God, or in the last day, and who forbid not
that which God and His Apostle have forbidden, and who profess not
the profession of the truth, until they pay tribute out of hand, and
they be humbled." Sura 9:29
We know that the Islamic terrorists envision a world that is
entirely Muslim. Surely this has nothing to do with the Islam
From the Koran:
“Say to the infidels: If they desist from their unbelief, what is
now past shall be forgiven them, but if they return to it, they have
already before them the doom of the ancients! Fight then against
them till strife be at an end, and the religion be all of it God's.
If they desist, verily God beholdeth what they do:" - Sura
It is interesting the responses I usually get when I start
quoting the Koran directly. When I start quoting the Koran, such as
the verses I previously quoted, the responses I get are usually:
- That I must not be quoting from the Koran but another book
that quotes the Koran, which must be wrong.
- That Muslims believe some parts of the Koran were written by
Satan. (And it must be these bad quotes that I gave them.)
- That what I quoted to them was only one or two verses and I
must take into consideration the whole book. (Which I happily
- That the translation I am reading is wrong, and the original
Koran is much gentler and nicer.
It is really rather obvious: quoting what the Koran actually says
is too much for their ears. Shut if off: let them see and hear no
Today, our unwillingness to identify the enemy today is so bad,
we can’t even watch movies where the enemy is, heaven forbid,
Islamic terrorists. Not only will we not create new fiction, we
won’t even report the facts. The bloody history of Islam is
whitewashed in regular history books and courses. In fact, the more
violent Islam gets, it seems, the more excuses and protection it
gets. If you ever notice, Islam was not called a “Religion of Peace”
before 9/11. Then they kill 3000 people and get called a “Religion
Perhaps it should be our new slogan: Ignorance is Strength;
Freedom is Slavery; Islam is Peace.
September 11, 2001 changed world politics forever. The
oppression, mass murder and terrorism that has marked the Middle
East for 1400 years hurled itself unto Western society. Yet no one
is willing to identify the enemy - scared, not for fear of political
persecution or assassination but of becoming unpopular. When
something so obvious and so horrible becomes so wrong to talk about:
that is when you know it’s time to talk about it.
Ladies and Gentleman, this is the prosecution’s case against
Islam. I am charging it with creating oppression, poverty, slavery,
rape and terrorism.
The Case against Islam
When it comes to the connection between Islam and Islamic
terrorism, it is our ability to reason - in this case the ability to
read the Koran - that is so often under attack. Therefore, let us
begin by reviewing our fundamentals: our philosophical fundamentals.
When reading a book, the two fundamentals involved are what it is
for all of man’s interaction with reality: existence and
consciousness. Existence is what exists and consciousness is
awareness of what exists. A person’s views on existence and
consciousness, which is their view on metaphysics and epistemology,
is the foundation of their philosophical beliefs and will effect
every other aspect of their worldly views. Is existence firm and
absolute or an ever-moldable flux? Can human consciousness
understand existence or are humans doomed to be in a blind stupor,
never able to understand the reality around them?
Please note that reason is the process by which man absorbs
sensory data and categorizes it in his mind as to understand it.
Therefore reason is only possible if existence is absolute and man’s
consciousness is potent enough to understand existence. It is the
philosophy of objectivism that maintains that reality is what it is
and man is capable of understanding it.
When reading a book, what exists is the text and the degree to
which you are conscious of what it says is the degree to which you
focus your mind on it. The purpose is to study the text so that you
can develop an understanding of it, i.e. discover its identity. You
do not re-invent what you are reading or come to your own arbitrary
conclusion regarding what the text says: your goal is to come to a
clear, precise understanding of what the text means. The ability to
do this is called reading comprehension.
You do not typically have an “interpretation” of a text.
“Interpretations” are only necessary when some aspect of reality is
confusing, vague or hard to understand. For instance, an interpreter
is needed to translate one language to another for people, as the
foreign language is otherwise incomprehensible to those people.
“Interpretations” therefore also imply that only a person with an
advanced or specialized knowledge can interpret something - it is
not open to a lay person. “Interpretations,” such as the
“interpretation” of the law or the “interpretation” of someone’s
behavior are also generally regarded as only someone’s opinion -
only quasi-based on fact - apt to be right or wrong.
It is revealing that those who discuss Islam always refer to
human understanding of the Koran as a mere “interpretation.” By
identifying human understanding of the Koran as an “interpretation,”
it automatically establishes the text as fluid, subjective and
moldable - as an incomprehensible text that anyone can take any
There may perhaps be parts of the Koran that are confusing and
contradictory and indeed need an interpreter. But if so, one must
point out what text is confusing or contradictory and what the
different “interpretations” thereof might be, especially, given
their claims, as it pertains to terrorism. This would open the
debate up to human reason. But those who defend Islam do not do
this: instead they typically make a broad, generic statement that
people make the “wrong interpretation” of the Koran. Broad
statements such as this are not indicative of a confusing or
contradictory text but of an assault on objectivity itself.
Notice this author’s defense of not being able to understand a
“true Islam.” This is an article entitled, “What is Real Islam?” by
M.A.Hussain from a website called
“It is impossible to tell what Islam is objectively and what
Islam is not. There are several problems of interpretation of
religious scriptures which are insurmountable such that there cannot
be “real Islam” or real Christianity”. The interpretation of
religious scripture whether by a nonbeliever or of any believer is a
subjective process. The religious scriptures belong to history and
history is nothing but a point of view. The "objective history" or
"objective historical process" is not accessible whatever
methodology you adopt, you can never give an objective account of
history.” (Bold mine; incorrect punctuation and grammar the
Not even history, according the author, is objectively
determinable. This is not just an attack on the ability to
understand Islam but reality itself.
I propose that the arguments about the inability to interpret the
Koran are not meant to emphasize the confusing nature of the Koran
but to exempt it from the Law of Identity. They want you to regard
what is written in front of you in plain language as not being what
it is but that it can be anything at all. Up can mean down; black
can be white; or any A can be any other non-A.
This same attack on objectivity does not just happen with the
Koran; it has infiltrated all the major humanities, and even some of
the hard sciences. For instance, indeed in history, the new breed of
historians (known as revisionists) will tell you that there is no
objective history; that it is (of course), “open to interpretation.”
In political science, new supposed scholars tell us the Constitution
is more of a suggestion than a commandment, and, of course, “open to
interpretation.” (The Constitution was designed to be living but
this means it can be amended not re-“interpreted.”)
Why do they do this? So they can do the interpreting.
History, the Constitution, and reality get in the way of their
ideologies. When reality gets in your way, doubt reality.
If you notice, despite the fact that these scholars believe
reality can never be objectively deciphered, they never become
skeptics. One would think if reality is such a foggy haze that
humans can never objectively decipher, we would be forever unsure
and doubtful of the world around us. Instead, such new scholars
charge right on, asserting absolute knowledge - “interpreting”
history, law, reality for you.
Notice that with the Koran that they don’t become skeptics over
what the “interpretation” of the Koran is. Even though
interpretations are generally regarded as not right or wrong, and
they insist the Koran is too “profound” to understand, they announce
that the terrorists most definitely had the “wrong interpretation.”
The Koran is mostly incomprehensible, but apparently they have the
magical ability to understand its true meaning and dictate it to us.
This is a game that has been being played for decades. This
attack on objectivity stems from the root, from the philosophical
level, from our ideas of existence and consciousness. The ideas that
have permeated academia for decades have been the notion that
reality isn’t real; that reason is impotent in understanding
reality. This philosophical foundation was formalized into an
official philosophical system by Immanuel Kant.
Kant attacked reason (and, therefore, reality) from the inside:
by re-defining it. Allow me to re-emphasize the definitions of some
terms. Reason is the process by which man absorbs sensory data and
uses it to understand the world around him. It doesn’t matter how
big or small the knowledge is - from understanding what a “cat” or
“dog” is, by using your own five senses and rational mind - to
understanding any elaborate science. Logic is the method by which
man processes that knowledge, making accurate, or rather
non-contradictory, identifications of reality. (Forgive me for being
redundant; it is only for explanation purposes). Mysticism is to
develop a conclusion or understanding of the world through some
non-sensory means, such as a person who believes in God based on
Kant said that reason was “a priori,” that is to say “without
experience.” How can man have any knowledge, understanding or
enlightenment while void of reality? Kant made the most offensive
attack on reason possible: smearing it by defining reason as
mysticism, i.e. to develop knowledge with no sensory data, i.e. no
This is why academic elites are unabashed in dismissing reality,
history, and the obvious in front of your eyes in favor of their
bizarre ideologies. Attacking reality doesn’t seem awkward or
illogical to them; it seems sophisticated - the very definition of
reason. Reality is an ever-changing and contradictory flux, apt to
be whatever they say it is. Everything is considered moldable today,
from history to human nature itself. Kant laid the groundwork for
full-scale, institutionalized propaganda.
This is the same game being played with the Koran. It comes
utterly natural to them to portray the Koran as being subjective,
fluid, and totally incomprehensible; outside the realm of human
mind. They wield manipulation as effectively as a knight with a
There is one thing in the way of their schemes: your rational
mind. While thwarting everyone’s eyes away from the obvious, their
enemy is that one person who insists on facts and demands evidence.
Therefore, they need to make you doubt your own mind, i.e. your
ability to reason. In the case of the Koran, this means your ability
to read a book correctly.
Therefore they need to infuse waves of doubt and confusion over
anyone trying to read to understand the Koran. “You are no Islamic
scholar!” they will shout at you. “The Koran is so profound!” they
cry. “It has so many commentaries and notes!” Don’t even bother to
read it, you will not understand it.
Ladies and gentlemen, the Koran is not hard to read or
understand. These are merely the hysterics of intellectual snobs
trying to create an inferiority complex in you.
Notice that there is a double standard. If someone says the Koran
is peaceful, it is taken as plain, simple fact, regardless that said
person has usually never even read the Koran. But the person who
challenges Islam is held to the most excruciating of standards to
prove themselves and their ability to judge the Koran. Unless you
read the Koran in its original language, under a renowned scholar in
Mecca, they will announce you have no idea what you are talking
about. Indeed, it is usually people who have never read the Koran
who are the most hysterical in these kinds of accusations.
When these methods of don’t work, they can always resort to ad
hominems: calling you an “idiot,” “moron,” etc simply for having the
“incorrect” view. However, they don’t even have to do this anymore.
Today, it is not just limited to a select few who want to insult
you: it is popularly accepted to call anyone who questions Islam a
“bigot” or “ignorant.” People have been “educated” from birth that
to challenge Islam is evil. Nothing could be more anti-enlightened,
anti-reason and downright destructive.
Islam apologists, including Muslims themselves, have gotten very
good at thwarting people from reading and understanding the Koran.
They do so in the most effective way possible: by appealing to your
respect for intelligence. Whenever you cite a verse in the Koran,
without skipping a beat, they will cry that you, “Took the verse out
of context.” This appeals to people’s sense of having a full,
conceptual of understanding of any given thing. If you notice
though, they never actually put the verse in context. This is not an
appeal to conceptual understanding, as it seems to be, but is used
to make you believe that somehow, someway, the verses around a
particular verse will change said verse’s identity. They will also
tell you whenever you quote a verse from a Koran that you have the
“wrong translation.” On some level this appeals to people’s respect
for those who take the time to learn another language. But it is
utterly ridiculous to think that only those people can judge the
Koran: there are many, many translations of the Koran, all of which
say essentially the same things. These are nothing but silly,
awkward, and for some unknown reason - often effective - method of
controlling information as to control thought.
One would think if Muslims were so proud of their religion, they
would be encouraging people to read their holy text to prove its
righteousness not thwarting people away from it at every step.
People who are just want nothing more than for others to take a
good, hard look at them - not generalizing them with others or
brushing them aside. An innocent person being charged with murder,
for instance, will want and demand all the facts of the case to come
out, to shine as much light on the case as possible, and to be
allowed to take the stand to make his or her case. The unjust person
seeks to manipulate and deceive others, always trying to stop people
from taking too hard of a look. For an example, see the lying,
deceptive ways of any criminal.
So let’s do just that: shine pouring light onto the Koran to see
what it is. We are going to give Islam what it frankly does not
deserve: the nicety of a trial.
In order to judge Islam, I did what most Islam apologists and
most Muslims (many of whom are illiterate) did not do: I read the
I find it interesting that interest in the Koran skyrocketed
after 9/11. But there are hardly any commentaries describing what is
actually in the Koran.
Anyone who has ever sat down to read the Koran has my deepest
sympathies. It is an extremely boring, mind-numbing and repetitive
The Koran is considered the written word of Muhammad’s teachings,
who was inspired by the angel Gabriel. According to the introduction
to the Koran I read in paper back, Muhammad was born into a poor
family but lived in a wealthy city. He grew up without a father and
ended up marrying a rich widow (and then went on to have many
different wives, including at least one six-year-old girl). The
Koran was written down by others as he could not read nor write.
The Koran is broken up into “Suras,” which are like books in the
Bible or chapters in a book. There are 114 Suras and over 6100
verses. The Suras range in size from as small as 4 verses to as many
as 286. For the most part, the larger Suras are at the beginning and
they get progressively smaller until the very short Suras at the
This is how the very beginning of the Koran starts out.
Sura 2:3-6, which falls on the first page of the Koran:
“And who believe in what hath been sent down to thee, and in what
hath been sent down before thee, and full faith have they in the
life to come.
These are guided by their Lord; and with these it shall be well.
As to the infidels, alike is it to them whether thou warn them or
warm them not – they will not believe.
Their hearts and their ears hath God sealed up; and over their
eyes is a covering. For them, a severe chastisement!”
The very beginning of the Koran starts out with stating that
nonbelievers are wrong, wrong, wrong and believers are good, good,
good. It doesn’t say what the believers should do - there are no
principles, values or morals laid out - just that non-believers are
It didn’t take long for me to be utterly shocked at what I read
in the Koran:
"O our Lord! punish us not if we forget, or fall into sin; O our
Lord! and lay not on us a load like that which thou has laid on
those who have been before us; O our Lord! and lay not on us that
for which we have not strength: but blot out our sins and forgive
us, and have pity on us. Thou art our protector: give us victory
therefore over the infidel nations." Surah 2:286 (Bold mine)
This, quite frankly - is it! The Koran is nothing but one long
vitriolic speech aimed at infidels: saying that they are dumb,
blind, stupid, thankless, liars; that they will have boiling water
poured on them; that they will be sent to hell where they will be
choked with food and without any friends; that Allah hates them; and
also loves those who fights against them
I wanted to be able to give you, my reader, some kind of
percentage estimate of just how much the Koran deals with nothing
but infidels. I could give you an eyeballed estimation of how much
of it is nothing but hatred at infidels, but I would not expect you
to take my word for it. Going through the Koran and summing up every
single verse to get a percentage would be way too cumbersome.
However, I thought of a way to get across to you, my reader, a
warranted percentage: I could take a random sampling of verses from
the Koran and make projections from there.
Now this is not some sort of literary review, not that the Koran
is complex enough to warrant a literary review. I performed the
study I did, at first, solely to get an accurate percentage to
I originally did a small study. I wanted at least 30 samples
because statistically, so as long as there are 30 samples, the
central limit theorem applies, i.e. the sampling is large enough to
be statistically significant. I tried to think of a fair way to pick
samples. Had I gone through and just pointed to verses, I likely
would have gotten accused of cherry picking. So I took verse 10 from
randomly chosen Suras. I did this to show I was not picking one
verse over another. I ended up with 34 verses. You can read the
verses I took along with commentary regarding what context the verse
is in, why I assigned it to the category I did and the calculations
of my confidence interval here.
I was really quite pleased with the results: I felt they provided
a nice broad overview of the Koran and even captured one good verse!
It also hit some of the bigger but smaller aspects of the Koran -
the fact that it mentions Noah's Ark many times (where it gleefully
describes how the infidels drowned); that it thinks infidels are
utterly thankless; that Allah actually makes nonbelievers not
believe, etc. These were the results
- 18/34 (52.9%) - over half - of these random verses is vitriol
aimed at infidels.
- 6/34 (17.6%) Deal with Allah
- 5/34 (14.7%) Deal with believers
- 4/34 (11.8%) Deal with Day of Judgment or Day of Doom
- 1/34 (3.4%) ... is a good verse! (Do not steal from the poor /
Give to the poor)
However, upon some contemplation I decided that my study could be
done better. Perhaps there might have been some bias by only picking
verse 10 from the verses. I took the verses from an online Koran (it
was easier to cut and paste quotes from an online source), and it
was an anti-Islamic site so perhaps there was some bias. (It turns
out there was not; the same translation is used by some pro-Islamic
sites). I also felt there was at least one major theme that was
ignored in my sampling: how Islam treats women. The confidence
interval I ended up with was that one could be 95% confident that
the percentage of hatred of infidels in the Koran was between 36.1%
and 69.7%. That really is not very tight.
So I did a bigger study. This time I took it from a pro-Islamic
site. I wanted to have at least 200 samples. I tried to think of the
most diplomatic way to take random verses. I could go in and take
every 30th verse, giving me approximately 200 verses. But that would
skip over several Suras as many of them only have 5 - 9 verses in
them. So I decided to give the verses a representation similar to
the way our founding fathers set up our Congress: every Sura (just
like every state) would be given a certain minimum representation
and then larger Suras (just like larger states) would also have some
kind of larger representation. So I took one verse from each Sura,
thereby representing each Sura. I took the verse right in the
middle. That gave me 114 verses. I wanted about 86 more. So then I
went through and took every 70th verse. This naturally gave the
larger Suras more of a representation. I ended up with 201 verses.
And, after hours of work, the results are in: they are exactly
the same. For the percentage I was most interested in, how much of
the Koran is nothing but hatred at infidels, it was exactly at 53%.
I was also quite happy that this sampling captured several verses
about women. The confidence interval was also much better this time:
with 95% confidence, we can say the proportion is somewhere between
45.8% and 59.6%. You can read the verses I took, my commentaries,
and the calculation of the confidence interval
Here are the results of my larger study:
106/201 (52.7%) is hatred aimed at infidels, defined as
- Threats towards infidels either in the after life or this life
*Degrading infidels by calling them evil, stupid, blind, deaf,
liars, thankless, etc.
- Calls to fight against them.
- Verses that say "except the
believers" when wishing death on nonbelievers were counted as hatred
since avoiding death is not a positive to believers
- The threat or
insult can be aimed at infidels in general or any specific infidel.
50/201 (24.9%) Deals with believers, defined as
- Mentioning them
- Saying they are righteous
- Saying they will get good things
- Any mentions of one of the prophets was snuck into this category
23/201 (11.4%) deal with Allah,
- Who he is
- That he is almighty
- Any of his creations
10/201 (5%) deal with the Day of Doom or the Day of Judgment
- Either the Day of Doom when destruction is sent on the earth or
- Day of Judgment when all are judged before Allah
- Any message
pertaining to how God records what men do was assigned this category
4/201 (2%) are anti-woman
- That it’s OK to beat a woman
and slaves get married off but have no choice in the matter and is
very self-serving to Muhammad or men in general.
4/201 (2%) deal with giving to the poor in some way
2/201 (1%) deal with some kind of Muslim custom or etiquette, for
- How to divorce your wife
1/201 (0.5%) disapproves of a man who murdered someone, but only
because it was for the wrong reason to kill someone.
1/201 (0.5%) actually says it is OK for people to have their
religion while Muslims have theirs
Over 50% of the Koran deals with nothing but hatred aimed at
infidels. You will notice Allah is mentioned a lot, as well as the
goodness of believers and the Day of Doom/Judgment, the former being
a day when the Koran gleefully exclaims that Allah will send
destruction to the earth and destroy the infidels. Notice how much
of the Koran that deals with not just infidels but with the theme of
believers verses nonbelievers, setting up believers as holy,
righteous, almost perfect human beings and nonbelievers not just as
wrong but as wretched scum. If you add up the number of verses that
deal with infidels, believers, Allah, and the Day of Judgment/Doom,
that percentage is a full 94%. This is really the only thing in the
Koran as the Koran itself readily admits: "... This book is no other
than a warning and a clear Koran, To warn whoever liveth; and, that
against the Infidels sentence may be justly given." Sura 36:69-70
You may notice that details outlining Muslim customs and
etiquette do not take up much room in the Koran. In fact, Ramadan,
from what I can tell, is only mentioned once in the Koran. You can
see how seriously Muslims take Ramadan. Now imagine how seriously
they take the rest of the 94% of the Koran.
There is no moral system outlined in the Koran - with the
exception of allowing men to beat their wives, sleep with their
slaves, and there is an occasional, “give to the poor.” There
certainly is no unequivocal “Do not kill”; “Do not steal”; or “Do
not lie,” let alone any other insight into how to behave properly as
a human being. Most of the “moral” guidance given in the Koran is
not a restraint on humans but permission to do what they want -
mostly for men to do what they want.
The Koran is very self-serving to men and especially Muhammad
when it comes to having access to women. It promises men young
virgins in heaven with “supple breasts” and “large brown eyes,” but
what about the women? Muhammad had up to fifteen wives at one time,
but the rest of the believers were limited to four. Sura 66:1 shows
not only the self-serving nature of the Koran for Muhammad but the
entire purpose of the Koran itself:
"Why,1 O Prophet! doest thou hold that to be FORBIDDEN which God
hath made lawful to thee, from a desire to please thy wives, since
God is Lenient, Merciful? " Sura 66:1
Note 1 from Sura 66 further clarifies this verse:
1 The first verses of this Sura were revealed on occasion of
Muhammad's reviving affection for Mary, a Copt slave sent him by the
governor of Egypt from whom he had recently sworn to his wife Hafsa
to separate entirely. Hafsa, who had been greatly incensed at their
amour, of which Muhammad had himself informed her, communicated the
matter in confidence to Ayesha, from whose altered manner, probably,
the prophet found that his secret had been betrayed. To free
Muhammad from his obligation to Hafsa was the object of this
Muhammad had told his wife that he would stop having sex with a
slave. However, he came back to tell her that he is allowed because
Allah does not forbid it. Hence, to hell with her wishes!
Indeed, the Koran gives men full right to have sex with female
slaves and their allotted four wives:
"It is not permitted thee to take other wives hereafter, nor to
change they present wives for other women, though their beauty charm
thee, except slaves whom thy right hand shall possess. And God
watcheth all things." Sura 33:52
Thus my charges of rape and slavery against Islam.
I propose the Koran is nothing but a rationalization: Muhammad’s
rationalization to do whatever he wants in the name of “religion.”
A verse in the Koran that needs no further comment:
"And we said, 'Take in thine hand a rod and strike15 with it, nor
break thine oath.' Verily, we found him patient!" - Sura 38:43
NOTE 15 IN SURA 38: "Thy wife; - on whom he had sworn that he
would inflict an hundred blows, because she had absented herself
from him when in need of her assistance, or for her words (Job
ii.9). The oath was kept, we are told, by his giving her one blow
with a rod of a hundred stalks. This passage is often quoted by the
Muslims as authorising any similar manner of release from an oath
The only arguable “good” verses in the Koran are commandments to
give to the poor, which according to the study I did accounts for
about 2% of the Koran. Some may argue that giving to the poor is a
good thing. Perhaps. But, in the Koran, it is couched inside
commandments of NOT getting wealthy.
"These are they who purchase this present life at the price of
that which is to come: their torment shall not be lightened, neither
shall they be helped." Sura 2:80
"Let not prosperity in the land on part of those who believe not,
deceive thee. Tis but a brief enjoyment. Then shall Hell be their
abode, and wretched the bed!" Sura 3:196
"... What! prefer ye the life of this world to the next? But the
fruition of this mundane life, in respect of that which is to come,
is but little." Sura 9:38
And if this isn’t malicious enough, the Koran’s wish for people
who have wealth:
"Let not, therefore, their riches or their children amaze thee.
God is only minded to punish them by these, in this life present,
and that their souls may depart while they are unbelievers." Sura
9:55 (Bold mine)
The Koran is hostile to any kind of wealth, pleasure or success
on this earth. Even having children is considered a test from God of
where a Muslim’s loyalties lie. Man is meant to remain humble with
only modest earnings, pouring most of his earnings to the cause of
Islam. How can business, technology, art, music, or any other form
of wealth or happiness develop out of this? Those who “purchase this
present life” like this, according to Islam has done so at the price
of the afterlife. Given Muslims, Muslims who follow the Koran
anyway, are forbidden any pleasure while on this earth, death must
feel like liberation to them
Thus my charge of creating poverty against Islam.
What has a tendency to shock most people about Islam and the
Koran is its belief in predestination, which you may notice in the
study I performed. Allow me to introduce you to one of the biggest
theological contradictions of all time. The Koran is filled with
threat after threat thrown at nonbelievers. And yet the Koran says
that it is Allah who causes people to believe or not believe.
"He whom God guideth is the guided, and they whom he misleadeth
shall be the lost." Sura 7:177
"No soul can believe but by the permission of God: and he shall
lay his wrath on those who will not understand." - Sura 10:100
"And they who believe not say, 'Unless a sign be sent down to him
from his Lord ...' SAY: God truly will mislead whom he will; and He
will guide to Himself him who turneth to Him,” Sura 13:27
"Had God pleased, He could have made you one people: but He
causeth whom He will to err, and whom He will He guideth: and ye
shall assuredly be called to account for your doings." Sura 16:95
So, if God and God only can cause people to not believe, then why
all the threats? What good will they do? Whose fault is it that they
are nonbelievers and why should they be punished for something out
of their control? (I argued that the Koran had an identity, i.e. a
specific meaning; I never promised it would make sense.)
Imagine you are a Muslim and want more than anything to be a good
Muslim and to get into heaven. How do you know that Allah will pick
you to be one that he will guide? Every person, according to Islam,
has no control over his fate but rather is at the mercy of Allah’s
This belief in predestination is not just mysticism; it is much
worse. Not only do men gain knowledge through faith only; it is only
some men (and the Koran says only a few men) are privy to such
knowledge. And now the most pressing question: if all the world is
to be Muslim, as the Koran commands, but people cannot be converted,
how can that happen? There is only one way.
Almost the entire Koran is dedicated to delegating to infidels an
inferior status. They are called blind, stupid and ignorant. No
proof is given of why they should believe; Muhammad performed no
miracles for people. When some skeptics asked for proof, the
"And when ye said, 'O Moses! we will not believe thee until we
see God plainly;' the thunderbolt fell upon you while ye were
looking on:" Sura 2:52
Infidels are accused of being thankless. The Koran says infidels
promise that they will believe in God if God relieves them of their
affliction, but when God does, they forget him. Infidels mock the
prophets when they come to give their message to them. All of this
sets up for what the Koran, at heart, is: one long battle cry
I find it interesting that the Koran is not in chronological
order. It was re-arranged, and interestingly enough, most of the
downright violent Suras were put at the beginning.
"Is it not proved to those who inherit this land after its
ancient occupants, that if we please we can smite them for their
sins, and put a seal upon their hearts, that they hearken not?” Sura
“Say to the infidels: If they desist from their unbelief, what is
now past shall be forgiven them, but if they return to it, they have
already before them the doom of the ancients! Fight then against
them till strife be at an end, and the religion be all of it God's
…" - Sura 8:39-40
"And when the sacred months are passed, kill those who join other
gods with God wherever ye shall find them; and seize them, besiege
them, and lay wait for them with every kind of ambush: but if they
shall convert, and observe prayer, and pay the obligatory alms, then
let them go their way, for God is Gracious, Merciful." Sura 9:5
Yes, this is straight from the Holy Book of the religion that
gets called a “Religion of Peace.”
Muslims are commanded to fight. Only the weak are excused.
"It shall be no crime on the part of the blind, the lame, or the
sick, if they go not to the fight. But whoso shall obey God and His
Apostle, He shall bring him into the gardens 'neath which the rivers
flow: but whoso shall turn back, He will punish him with a sore
punishment." Sura 48:17
After fighting, believers have a right to the infidel’s houses.
“And He made you heirs to their land and their dwellings and
their property, and (to) a land which you have not yet trodden, and
Allah has power over all things.” Sura 33:27
Thus my charge of oppression against Islam.
The Koran is clear on when fighting can stop. Some may say that
the Koran says fighting can stop once “peace” is made, which is how
the following is watered down in some translations:
"Yet if they turn to God and observe prayer, and pay the impost,
then are they your brethren in religion. We make clear our signs to
those who understand." "But if, after alliance made, they break
their oaths and revile your religion, then do battle with the
ring-leaders of infidelity - for no oaths are binding with them -
that they may desist." Sura 9:11-12
Muslims are taught to wage war on nonbelievers. It is written in
plain language. Muslims are to fight until nonbelievers convert or
pay alms. All else are to be killed. Ladies and gentlemen, thus my
charge of terrorism against Islam.
Let me remind you of the September 11, 2001 attacks. Along with
the Pentagon (and another plane which never made its destination of
the White House as some courageous heroes took it down before it
could get there), the Islamic terrorists targeted the twin towers of
the World Trade Center: symbols of American wealth and prosperity.
"And when we willed to destroy a city, to its affluent ones did
we address our bidding: but when they acted criminally therein, just
was its doom, and we destroyed it with an utter destruction" - Sura
17:17 (Bold mine)
"We will not burden a soul beyond its power: and with us is a
book, which speaketh the truth; and they shall not be wronged: But
as to this Book, their hearts are plunged in error, and their works
are far other than those of Muslims, and they will work those works,
Until when we lay hold on their affluent ones with punishment; lo!
they cry for help:" Sura 23:64-66 (Bold mine)
I will remind you the reason why the terrorists were willing to
kill themselves to kill Americans: they were promised 72 virgins in
"But, for the God-fearing is a blissful abode, Enclosed gardens
and vineyards; And damsels with swelling breasts, their peers in
age." Sura 78:31-33
"But the pious shall be in a secure place, Amid gardens and
fountains, Clothed in silk and richest robes, facing one another:
Thus shall it be: and we will wed them to the virgins with large
dark eyes." Sura 44:51-54
The terrorists who attacked us on September 11, 2001 did not do
so in the name of their country or for any demand, such as money or
land: they did it openly and proudly in the name of Islam. They were
not misguided; they were in every way Islamic.
The very last Suras in the Koran are very short and riddled with
cries about the evilness of infidels. Even as I read them, I could
feel the burning hatred of infidels that one is meant to feel after
reading them. These ending Suras can be considered chants - short,
quick, hysterical chants - against infidels.
Some will insist that my verses were totally lifted out of
context. This argument does not have much merit. As you can tell
from my study, the “context” of just about all verses in the Koran
is a sea of hatred. It is in fact the Islam apologists who do not
put things in context. Islam apologists comb the Koran for any and
all “good” quotes and take it as proof that the Koran is peaceful.
For instance, there is a quote in the Koran which says Muslims can
have their religion and other people can have theirs. This may seem
good until you realize that, in the Koran, it says other religions
may exist with Muslims, but they are to live as second class
citizens, paying taxes to Muslims.
The other argument usually given is that the Koran does call for
violence but only in self-defense. In some translations of the
Koran, the phrase “in case of war” or “in case the infidels attack
you” is conveniently placed in all calls for violence. This really
is nothing more than a blatantly misleading lie. Muslims who say
this are taking advantage of taqiyya (or taqiyah), an allowance for
Muslims to lie. While taqiyya can mean that if a Muslim feels his
life is in danger he can lie; it can also mean a permission to lie
in general. According to fact-index.com, taqiyya can essentially
mean that, “[A] Muslim is allowed to say untruths to a non-Muslim if
in their heart they still respect the truths that they externally
I have noticed Muslims downright lying through their teeth in
public about true Islam. It is frustrating and flabbergasting.
However, knowing about taqiyya brings it full circle that they are
in fact lying. But I often wondered: why? If they really are
interested in destroying America (and when you dig deeper most
Muslim fundamentalists, especially ones willing to lie for Islam,
are), why would they lie to opponents? Why do they care what their
enemies think? But I believe I figured it out: it is like an enemy
fighter who waves a white flag, insisting they are peaceful, causing
you to drop your weapons, then opens fire.
However, even so, let’s assume it was true that the Koran calls
for violence only in self-defense. Why does it put it in such
blatantly collectivist terms? Why is it one group, Muslims, only
allowed to defend themselves against another group, infidels?
The fact is, all hate movements have been marked by this same
thing: victimology and collectivism. They convince themselves that
they are a victimized, oppressed group of another group - that they
are being attacked or held down by another group - then launch a
war. It is never specific people who have been hurt by other
specific people, but by a broad, generic group of "Jews" or
"bourgeois" or "nonbelievers."
The Koran is not very unequivocal in stating that enemies as
people who threaten your life. Infidels, according to the Koran, are
by definition enemies.
“And when ye go forth to war in the land, it shall be no crime in
you to cut short your prayers, if ye fear lest the infidels come
upon you; Verily, the infidels are your undoubted enemies!” Sura
4:102 (Bold mine.)
“They (the polytheists) sell the signs of God for a mean price,
and turn others aside from his way: evil is it that they do! They regard not in a believer either ties of blood or faith;
these are the transgressors!” Sura 9:9-10 (Bold mine.)
I asked a Muslim once about Muhammad. Muhammad was obviously a
warlord - apparently the very first Islamic terrorist to hijack the
Islam religion. This man I talked to insisted that that Islam was a
religion that advocated violence only in self-defense. I asked him
if Muhammad fought in self-defense or in aggression. He answered,
“both.” So I asked him why Muhammad fought in aggression, perhaps it
was a pre-emptive strike against enemies about to strike. And, if it
was a pre-emptive strike, I asked him if Muhammad had significant
intelligence data to suggest that “enemy” nations were about to
attack him. He told me that Allah “in his infinite wisdom” told
Muhammad that these people were his enemies.
This is the problem with Islam and this is the problem with blind
faith. There are no prescribed rules for who is an enemy and who is
not. Whoever is perceived to be an enemy is an enemy.
Everything about Islam prepares its people to be fighters. It
riles them with hatred. It prods them to fight. Even the “holidays”
in Islam trains fighters. Take for instance Ramadan. Instead of
feasting and celebrating, Muslims are to sacrifice during the
daylight hours for a month. I propose that this is an effective way
to train its followers for war. Besides the practical ability to go
without food for extended amounts of times, it trains people to
accept a tough life. The only place you will see this kind of
behavior in America is for various types of military training.
This isn’t a matter of clamoring over a few verses or of deciding
whether or not some verses contradict other verses in the Koran.
This is about the fundamental theme of the Koran, which is: burning
hatred of infidels and wishes of death and destruction for them. Any
Muslim who picks up the Koran and takes it seriously will at the
very least believe infidels are evil and deserving of death. Islam
is a fighting ideology with an uncanny hatred for those who don’t
believe as they do. But don’t take my word for it. Please, by all
means, read the Koran for yourself.
Many people, naןve to Islam, will point to the fact that there
are 1.3 billion Muslims in the world and not all of them become
terrorists. True, they do not. The problem is not the regular people
but the leaders. Most people, anywhere, just accept the major
philosophy/religion of their time and usually do not follow or take
it very seriously. Observe that it isn’t the poor or ignorant who
typically become terrorists but the rich and educated, i.e. the ones
who are capable of understanding the Koran and have the means to
implement what it says. This is about what Islam is as an ideology
and what the ramifications will be when adopted.
My detractors might give some other reasons for why terrorism is
created. Typically, many assign the cause of terrorism to some pet
cause that they have. Feminists blame the “patriarchy”. Socialists
blame it on “poverty.” These are obviously grounded not in reality
but ideology. They are not honest evaluations; they would rather
continue grinding their axe against men, the wealthy, whoever it is
they hate. Blaming it on “poverty” is particularly sneaky. It is
simply not true; most terrorists are middle class if not filthy
rich. When the religious fundamentalists are poor, they do not have
the means to fight. It is when they became wealthy, recently mostly
from oil money, that they can launch bigger, more effective attacks.
Blaming it on poverty is sneaky: it suggests the solution is to pour
more money - more money to go to jihad - into their hands. Indeed,
what we need is the exact opposite: we need to starve them of all
resources, especially financial ones.
Some try to argue that Islam has produced scientific achievements
in the past. Most people tend to attribute the invention of Algebra
to Muslims. But it was not Muslims or even Arabs that discovered
Algebra: it was the Iranians. The Iranians have a rich history of
enlightenment and are more influenced by their heritage, which is
one that emphasizes education and scholarship, than religion.
Another person some point to is a man named Razi, who made
advancements in medicine, as evidence of Muslim accomplishment. But
Razi was not an Arab or a Muslim but again an Iranian. In fact, he
was so hostile to Islam that he wrote several books denouncing faith
and upholding reason and had to live as a heretic. Razi was to the
Muslim world what Galileo or Copernicus was to ours.
It should be obvious to Western people: faith, mysticism and
religion are antagonistic to science, reason and progress. We can
easily see how Christianity was responsible for The Dark Ages but
refuse to see how Islam is responsible for the violence and
primitive life in the Middle East. Islam cannot even uphold a decent
society let alone a prosperous one. Progress is not some kind of
gift from the heavens. If you look at all successful societies, you
will see the influence of one man: Aristotle. Progress requires a
commitment to reason. The only way for peace or stability to come to
the Middle East is for Islam to leave and Enlightenment to reign.
One would think that “liberals” would be the first to condemn
Islam. It is the polar opposite of all of their stated values and
they have a tendency to think they are enlightened. But, eerily
enough, they almost seem to side with Islam; although they go after
Christianity with an unusual tenacity. This seems odd, since Islam
is by far a more faith-based and hateful religion than Christianity.
And, while I disagree with Christianity, it upholds at least a
decent, stable moral framework for people to co-exist peacefully.
Islam does not. The fact that liberals speak out against
Christianity, allegedly in the name of reason, but not Islam shows
that the left is not anti-faith but anti-values. If you notice,
leftists didn’t embrace Islam until they realized its potential for
terrorism. This speaks volumes.
Even if we take down every Islamic dictatorship in existence now
that harbors and finances terrorists, so as long as this malignant
ideology is around, it will inspire its followers to pick up and
fight infidels. We attempted to fight communism militarily, fighting
aggressive communist nations and arming ourselves up to our armpits,
to fail. For over a half of a century we refused to call communism
itself evil. Then, in the 1980s, Ronald Reagan was willing to step
up to the plate and challenge communism ideologically. Communism
came tumbling down with hardly a fire shot. Like with Islam, for
decades we were told it was “bad people” running the communist
countries that was the problem. It was not; like with Islam, the
problem is the ideology. I am however more hopeful that people will
call Islam evil, and sooner, as if people can see how communism,
which comes in the package of equality and peace, is an evil
ideology; they can certainly see how Islam is evil.
Never underestimate the power of a simple, consistent, moral
argument against the ideology of our enemies. If we are going to
fight terrorism, we need to fight the ideology that inspires
terrorism. As far as those hysterical people who say that
challenging Islam is akin to starting a mass genocide: fighting -
and winning - in the realm of ideas is a far more humane and
peaceful way to end threats to our lives and nation.
Most seem to believe that Islam needs to be “secularized” for
peace and freedom to come to the Middle East. Frankly, this is just
a politically correct way to say Islam is the problem. Whether you
believe Islam has to be “secularized” or eradicated, the simple fact
remains that Islam is the problem. Until we are willing to prosecute
Islam as a violent religion: our war on terror will never end.
The jury is out. May all those with a rational mind judge
J.M. Rodwell, The Koran (New York: Dulton, 1977).
Amber Pawlik is a 25 yr-old Engineering graduate from Penn State.
She is a fervent Iran democracy activist. She actively writes on
Islam, terrorism, politics and gender issues. Visit her personal
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