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Sunday, December 25, 2011
I really wish there were a way I could freely live in a free society where I could follow the religion that I want without any compulsion. So far, I am not really sure what I am. I just know that I am not an atheist, because I do believe in a God, but that God cannot be the Allah of Mohammed. God is kind and merciful, not evil, cruel, mean and sadistic, as is Allah.
Have you ever read the Quran in English? I never did, I mean all my life I just recited the Quran in Arabic without understanding a single word until August of this year, when I purchased a copy of the English Quran and read the translation for the first time. Previously I had read some parts of it in English, but never the whole thing. But this year in August I read it from cover to cover, and then also read other references on the internet. Then I finally reached the conclusion that this book is the most evil thing on the face of this earth. It teaches nothing else except hatred and violence. I can no longer be a part of a cult which subjugates its followers, making them mere blind puppets with no mind of their own.
During the course of last four months, I have done nothing else but read, read and read. I spend hours a day reading Ali Sina and watching videos of David Wood and others who are trying their best to expose Islam to the world. I read 23 Years by Ali Dashti. The best among them all is Ali Sina's Understanding Muhammad and of course Robert Spencer’s The Truth About Muhammad. These kind of books are banned here, but I managed to find Robert’s book on Ibook, so I purchased it and just finished reading it yesterday.
I don't know how to go about it. I mean, I want to remain anonymous, but at the same time I need help. I don't want to be killed just because I am brave enough to tell the truth. I am really in a terrible jam. I do not want to lose my life just because I do not believe in that evil religion anymore.
Last Sunday I went to the church here and attended the mass. Then I went to see the priest and asked him for help. He said that his hands were tied and he really could not do anything to help me, because when they had first gotten permission to built a church in this country, they had to agree to a few terms and conditions with the government here. One of them was not to convert anyone from Islam. He said if anyone finds out, the church would be closed and he would probably end up in jail.
The priest said he could not help me personally, but that I was more than welcome to attend the mass and sit quietly at the back. He said, “Do not talk to anyone or reveal who you are.” It is a good idea, but frankly, I am not sure if I want to do that every week, because last Sunday I saw quite a few police cars circling the church premises, and I am really scared. What if someone checks my ID or something? They would probably close down the church and put me in jail, and maybe even execute me. My life will be in danger if anyone finds out that I have left Islam.
I have a friend, a pretty young girl from Morocco who also lives here and works with me. She too has given up Islam recently but she is also very afraid of her life. This is what Islam does to you. When you are in it, your life is nothing but living in the fear of hell, and once you leave it, it is not less than hell because you are constantly scared to lose your life.
"The Official Website of the North Carolina WBTS Sesquicentennial Commission"
North Carolina Patriots of ’61:
Colonel Dennis Dozier Ferebee
The son of Samuel and Margatte “Peggy” Dauge (Dozier) Ferebee, Dennis Dozier Ferebee was born on November 9, 1815 in Currituck County. Graduating from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1839, he married Sarah McPherson on February 3, 1842. After studying law under Judge William Gaston of New Bern, Ferebee became a Camden County lawyer, planter and politician prior to the war, serving as a member of the State legislature and later county delegate to the May 1861 North Carolina Secession Convention. Though a stauch Unionist, he voted for North Carolina’s secession after Lincoln’s decision for war against the South.
As Colonel of Camden’s local militia, the 2nd Regiment of the 1st Brigade, he saw action at the battle of South Mills in Camden County in April 1862; in August of that year he was appointed Colonel of the 4th North Carolina Cavalry.
Ferebee was wounded in the foot at Bristoe, Virginia in 1863; absent/wounded through April 1864, and resigned from service on March 7, 1865 – serving on Governor Zebulon Vance’s staff until the close of war. Colonel Ferebee was a prominent member in the 1865 State Convention working with Governor Jonathan Worth to reopen the University. He was described as having “distinguished appearance and elegant manners” and exemplified “what a gentleman should be.” He died in Camden County on April 26, 1884 and is buried on Hodges Farm, McPherson Road, Camden County.
(Source: 4th North Carolina Cavalry in the Civil War, Neil Hunter Raiford, McFarland & Co., 2003)
North Carolina Pariots of ’61: Colonel Dennis Dozier Ferebe
Bernhard Thuersam, Chairman
North Carolina War Between the States Sesquicentennial Commission
"The Official Website of the North Carolina WBTS Sesquicentennial"
Christmas Vandals in 1864 Georgia:
Mrs. Mary S. Mallard in Her Journal [1864, Liberty County, Georgia]
“Monday, December 19th: Squads of Yankees came all day, so that the servants scarcely had a moment to do anything for us out of the house. The women, finding it unsafe for them to be out of the house at all, would run in and conceal themselves in our dwelling. The few remaining chickens and some sheep were killed. These men were so outrageous at the Negro houses that the Negro men were obliged to stay at their houses for the protection of their wives; and in some instances, they rescued them from the hands of these infamous creatures.
Tuesday, December 20th. A squad of Yankees came soon after breakfast. Hearing there was one yoke of oxen left, they rode into the pasture and drove them up…needing a chain…they went to the well and took it from the well bucket. Mother went out and entreated them not to take it from the well, as it was our means of getting water. They replied: “You have no right to have even wood or water,” and immediately took it away.
Wednesday, December 21st: 10 A.M. Six of Kilpatrick’s cavalry rode up, one of them mounted on Mrs. Mallard’s valuable gray named Jim. They looked into the dairy and empty smokehouse, every lock having been broken and doors wide open day and night. They searched the servants’ houses; then the thundered at the door of the dwelling. Mother opened it, when one of them presented a pistol to her breast and demanded why she dared keep her house closed, and that “he be damned if he would not come into it.”
She replied, “I prefer to keep my house closed because we are a helpless and defenseless family of women and children.” He replied, “I’ll be damned if I don’t just take what I want. Some of the men got wine here, and we must have some.” She told them her house had been four times searched in every part, and everything taken from it. And recognizing one who had been of the party that had robbed us, she said: “You know my meal and everything has been taken.”
He said, “We left you a sack of meal and that rice.”
Mother said, “You left us some rice; but out of twelve bushels of meal you poured out a quart or so upon the floor -- as you said, to keep us from starving.”
Upon one occasion one of the men as he sat on the bench in the piazza had his coat buttoned top and bottom, and inside we could plainly see a long row of stolen breast jewelry -- gallant trophies, won from defenseless women and children at the South to adorn the persons of their mothers, wives, sisters, and friends in Yankeeland!”
(The War the Women Lived, Walter Sullivan, J.S. Sanders & Company, 1995, pp. 238-239)
Christmas Vandals in 1864 Georgia
This Christmas let us spare a thought and say a prayer for countless Christian victims of Muslim brutality, over the centuries and in our own time.
An explosion ripped through a Catholic church during Christmas Mass near Nigeria’s capital Abuja on Sunday morning, killing at least 25 people. A radical Muslim group, Boko Haram, claimed responsibility for the attack and another bombing in the city of Jos, as explosions also struck the nation’s predominantly Muslim northeast. The Christmas Day attacks show the growing national ambition of Boko Haram, was responsible for some 500 murders this year alone. The assaults come a year after a series of Christmas Eve bombings in Jos claimed by the militants left at least 32 dead and 74 wounded.
Egypt’s dwindling Copts have seen their position deteriorate over the past year from precarious to perilous. Already facing discrimination and harassment from Mubarak’s secular regime, they now see that things could get a lot worse under the Islamists who are poised to take power. Their annus horribilis started on New Year’s Day 2011, when a powerful car bomb targeted a Coptic church in Alexandria, killing 25 parishioners and wounding nearly 100 just as they were finishing midnight Mass. The next turning point was the Maspero massacre on October 9, when 27 unarmed Christian protesters were killed and hundreds more injured, not by some shadowy Islamic extremists but by the military. An official commission—established by the Army—has unsurprisingly absolved the Army of all responsibility for the killings.
The country’s eventual transition to what passes for democracy in the Muslim world is going to make matters far worse for the Copts, who are fearful the army and courts will no longer be able to shield them from ever-greater discrimination and harassment. The writing is on the wall. The Freedom and Justice Party, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Muslim Brotherhood, won the second round of the three-stage parliamentary elections last Wednesday and Thursday, taking 38 of the 59 seats contested; an even more radical group, the Salafist Nour Party, won 13 seats. The adherents of political Islam, in other words, have captured 86 percent of all seats contested. Their spiritual leader is Sheikh Ali Gomaa, the Grand Mufti of Egypt, who in a recent video reminded the faithful that Christians are kuffar, or infidels. After quoting Quran 5:17 (“Infidels are those who declare God is Jesus, son of Mary”) he went on to declare that any association between a human and God (shirk) is the greatest sin: “Whoever thinks Christ is God, or the Son of God, not symbolically—for we are all sons of God—but attributively, has rejected the faith which God requires for salvation.”
While cleaning out a closet, going through a box full of old magazines, I found the April 2002 Volume 17 edition of Marxist Review. There was a banner across the front cover of the magazine which read, “THE OCCUPATION OF RAMALLAH.” I opened the front cover and read, “Palestinians emerge stronger from three-day occupation of Ramallah On-the-spot report,” by Anna Athow and Paddy O’Regan. The use of the term “occupation” did not seem at all haphazard. Yesterday there was the “occupation of Ramallah,” and today there is an “occupation of Wall Street.” Tomorrow we will see the occupation of “everywhere.”
I was curious about the occupation of Ramallah (which took place nearly a decade ago). Why was an English language Communist magazine committed to making an “on-the-spot” report about it? I turned to page 16 of the magazine and read. The article described an Israeli terror campaign, and the brave Palestinians who marched to occupy Ramallah. It was a battle in which unarmed women allegedly stood up to Israeli tanks. There was also a picture of a 14-year-old boy shot in the chest, recovering in a hospital (there were also pictures of armed Palestinian militants fending off Israeli snipers).How was this article related to Marxism?
The National Defense Authorization Act will be made law with the stroke of President Obama’s pen (perhaps autopen from Hawaii?). With the enactment of the NDAA, Americans suspected by the President of having committed a “belligerent act” may be apprehended by the military and detained without recitation of charges and without access to an attorney until such time as the President decides that the “War on Terror” is over.
Majorities in both chambers of Congress voted in favor of granting the President this autocratic authority. In the Senate, only 13 members of that body stood up to defend the constitutionally protected civil liberties of Americans. In the House of Representatives, 283 of the people’s representatives violated their oath of office and voted to pass this legislation.
Freshman Representative Jeff Landry (R-La., above) introduced HR 3676, which would add the following qualification to the portion of the bill — Section 1021 — that provides for indefinite detention of Americans:
United States citizens may not be detained against their will without all the rights of due process afforded to citizens in a court ordained or established by or under Article III of the Constitution of the United States.
Henrik Ræder Clausen
While I was working on a polite essay “What is ‘denigration’, really?”, events overtook the intended polite and analytical approach. At an Austrian court, Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff had her conviction for “Denigrating the teachings of a recognized religion” upheld. The court deemed that her uttering “an excess of opinion” about Muhammad having sex with minors, and that doing so was subject to a fine of 480 euros, alternatively 60 days in jail.
Many of us consider freedom of expression is a fundamental right in itself. Expressions used in criminal ways, like committing fraud or inciting violence is indeed a matter for the courts, but a victimless crime where not even a single Muslim protested that his faith had been ‘denigrated’, surely cannot be subject to legal action, fines or jail time. In a free society, that is.
The difference comes when the State as such submits to Islam. In that case, the supposed ‘sanctity’ of Islamic teachings obtain protection by the Law, and due to the Islamic tradition that the life of Muhammad was a perfect example for all (male) Muslims, everything Muhammad did is to be considered holy and thus protected from criticism. That includes his having sex with minors.
The implications of this are huge, for how are we to speak out against the tradition of child brides that still exist in many Islamic countries if we’re not even permitted to express any “excess of opinion”, as defined by the Court? Would we have to run every possible criticism or sarcastic comment past the Court for approval before it is made public? What are people whose e livelihood consists of satire and mockery — stand-up comedians, satire magazines — supposed to do if they come across the idea to mock religiously sanctioned sexual relationships with minors, or those who justify them?
Also, according to the Courts of Austria, we are supposed to avoid the term ‘paedophilia’ when talking about old men having sex with prepubescent girls. For, according to the Court of Austria, ‘paedophilia’ denotes the urge to have sex with under age girls, not the actual act of doing so. Further, if these sexual relations continue until the girl reaches maturity, calling the relationship ‘paedophile’ is an excess of opinion that cannot be permitted. One wonders what Mr. Fritzl thinks of that decision…
There exist other and freer countries than Austria, for instance Denmark. Here it is still permissible to express negative opinions about religious stupidity or evil, as long as that is not directed against some minority group or others. Convictions do happen, however, if an “excess of opinion” is directed against minority groups, as happened for Lars Hedegaard and Jesper Langballe, when they made passing references to the high frequency of sexual assaults within Muslim families.
But enough of the boring analysis, let’s get to what matters, namely denigrating some religious stupidity. Here’s a Top 10 of Islamic “religious teachings” that deserve nothing but scorn and mockery. Let’s start with some benign and obvious issues:
Allah’s Apostle, the true and truly inspired said, ‘Regarding the matter of the creation of a human being: humans are put together in the womb of the mother in forty days. Then he becomes a clot of thick blood for a similar period. He becomes a piece of flesh for forty days.
It is (fortunately) well known today that a human pregnancy lasts roughly 9 months, not the 4 months that Muhammad teaches. This unqualified take on embryology is probably a poor paraphrase from the Greek doctor Galen.
|2.||Denial of free will:|
Then Allah sends an angel who is ordered to write four things: the new creature’s deeds, livelihood, date of death, and whether he will be blessed or wretched. He will do whatever is written for him.
The claim that an angel arrives dictating the life essentials of the newborn is both unsubstantiated (no angel-sightings are on record for more than a millenium) and a mockery of other religious teachings, in particular what most religions teach that we have a free will and a choice of being good or evil. Islam explicitly denies humans that fundamental freedom.
The Prophet [Muhammad] said, ‘I have been given five things which were not given to any one else before me.
Now, isn’t this the material that the best of mockeries are made from? The Grand Leader declaring that the Earth was made for him, that terrorism and theft is legal for him, that he has direct contact to the God(s), and is destined to rule everyone? Yet, mocking this ‘religious teaching’ constitutes a punishable offence under Austrian law.
He rewarded them with abundant spoils that they will capture. Allah has promised you much booty that you shall take, and He has made this easy for you.
Take alms out of their property in order to cleanse and purify them, and invoke Allah for them; surely this is a relief for them.
The only difference between this and some criminal ‘relieving’ others of their property is that scorn of this ‘religious teaching’ is punishable under Austrian law.
I shall terrorize the infidels. So wound their bodies and incapacitate them because they oppose Allah and His Apostle.
If you gain mastery over them in battle, inflict such a defeat as would terrorize them, so that they would learn a lesson and be warned.
If you come upon them, deal so forcibly as to terrify those who would follow, that they may be warned. Make a severe example of them by terrorizing Allah’s enemies.
It is not fitting for any prophet to have prisoners until he has made a great slaughter in the land.
Now, given that Austria has been participating in the “War on Terror”, shouldn’t it be natural to mock and ridicule incitements to killing and terrorism as “not very religious”? Try that in front of a court in Austria, for doing so would surely constitute an “excess of opinion”.
We have decked the lower heaven with stars to protect them against all rebellious evil spirit, and provide security from every forward devil. So they cannot listen to the highest chiefs for they are pelted from every side, repulsed; they are under a perpetual torment, being driven off. Except such as they snatch away something by stealth, but then they are pursued by a flaming fire of piercing brightness.
This rather nonsensical explanation of the purpose of stars is another ‘religious teaching’ protected by the Law in Austria. Calling it “utterly foolish” would probably constitute yet another “excess of opinion”, when a cooler and more factual “science has obliterated this fake superstition for good” would do. Or was it the other way round?
Have you not seen those to whom it was said: Withhold your hands from fighting, perform the prayer and pay the zakat. But when orders for fighting were issued, a party of them feared men as they ought to have feared Allah. They say: “Our Lord, why have You ordained fighting for us, why have You made war compulsory?”
Any decent peace activist should roll over laughing if told that this ‘religious teaching’ is protected by Austrian law against mockery and “excessive negative opinions”. Austrians are permitted to state that war is compulsory in Islam, but suggesting that this implies that the idea of the ‘Moderate Muslim’ has been a lie and a fabrication from the time of Muhammed would probably fall on the wrong side of the fence, at least in Austria.
I heard Allah’s Apostle saying, “Allah guarantees that He will admit the Muslim fighter into Paradise if he is killed, otherwise He will return him to his home safely with rewards and booty.”
Calling Islam a “Fanatics creed” in Austria surely would invoke the “excess of opinion” problem.
Allah made the Jews leave their homes by terrorizing them so that you killed some and made many captive. And He made you inherit their lands, their homes, and their wealth. He gave you a country you had not traversed before.
The Jews are devoid of sense. There is a grievous punishment awaiting them. Satan tells them not to believe so they will end up in Hell.
Not only is this openly racist, it is also terrorist, as well as inciting to theft and violence. Passages like these make a mockery of religion as such, yet are protected under Austrian Law.
|10.||Girls and women:|
Aisha, the child bride of Muhammad, explains:
My mother came to me while I was being swung on a swing between two branches and got me down. My nurse wiped my face with some water and started leading me. When I was at the door she stopped so I could catch my breath. I was then brought in while the Messenger was sitting on a bed in our house. My mother made me sit on his lap. Then the men and women got up and left. The Prophet consummated his marriage with me in my house when I was nine years old.
Since Muhammad continued his sexual exploits of Aisha until she was 18, the court of Austria ruled that this cannot legally be termed ‘paedophilia’, since that would constitute a “denigration of a legally recognized religion”.
The Apostle saw Ummu’l when she was a baby crawling before his feet and said, “If she grows up, I will marry her.” But he died before he was able to do so.
This is so sick that adding further mockery seems pointless. Yet this is supposed to be ‘religious’. Yet, it’s worth understanding the logic of the Court here:
The key reason that the original verdict was upheld is that the court objected to her having said: “Muhammad had a thing with children”, Elisabeth restraining her expression trying to keep within the bounds of the Law. That failed, for the use of plural was found unjustified by the Court. Yet, as shown here, the plural was justified, only death prevented another child marriage from taking place. In a truly free country, however, it would still be legal to make the trivial mistake of using a plural form, then accepting the correction to singular without incurring the wrath of the Court.
The Messenger of Allah married fifteen women. He combined eleven at a time and left behind nine.
Layla approached the Prophet while his back was to the sun and clapped him on his shoulder. He asked her who it was and she replied, ‘I am the daughter of one who competes with the wind. I am Layla. I have come to offer myself to you.’ He replied, ‘I accept.’“ [Layla shared her story with her parents.] “They said, ‘What a bad thing you have done! You are a self-respecting girl, but the Prophet is a womanizer.’“
Again we see the Court unaware of Islamic scripture when reprimanding Elisabeth for mentioning that Muhammad “had a relatively high consumption of women”, for that also can be found in the Islamic scripture. That the court objects to an obvious understatement of the facts is a mockery of justice.
Many thanks to Craig Winn for providing good overview and readable translations at ProphetOfDoom.net.
Fair warning: Austrians would be exposed to an “excess of opinion” by visiting this site.
Now, while this is being read in Denmark, I hope it makes sufficient mockery of Islamic religious teachings to violate the law in Austria. But before the crooked judges of Vienna fill out a European Arrest Warrant in my name, let me point them and others to the Master of Mockery Pat Condell whose hilarious videos would now be illegal in Austria. You may watch them here (if you’re not Austrian): Pat Condell’s Godless Comedy
Endnote: The Islam Law in Austria
The specific law that protects Islam from criticism was passed in 1912 by Austrian-Hungarian Emperor Franz Joseph, probably in order to secure that Muslims would serve in the Austrian-Hungarian imperial army. The law can be read here.
This is a sad day for all of us who love Egypt. No one can believe that the Egyptian Scientific Institute has been destroyed.
On December 17, 2011, I joined the many people who watched the disaster on television. I was horrified to see the library burning in front of my eyes. This day will never be forgotten by intellectuals, and indeed all who love learning, not only in Egypt, but all over the world.
I was terribly upset to see young people in front of the building rejoicing at what they had done. When I looked at their faces, I could see that the majority were people who had nothing to do with the Revolution. I saw one boy of about 12 who was asked why he was there. He replied that he wanted el-Ganzory (the recently-appointed Prime Minister) to leave the government. I am sure that someone told this boy to say these words. Why can we not give el-Ganzory a chance to work and to bring safety and security back to the country? I saw another person say that we need the military to leave. This is not wise. The military council helped ensure the success of the revolution. They have promised to complete the elections and the new constitution before June 2012, and I think we should give them a chance to do this.
The day after the Institute burned down, my dear friend Salah Montaser, a famous columnist who has a daily feature in the Al-Ahram newspaper, called me and told me that almost 90,000 books had been lost, containing over 300 years of our shared history. As we spoke, we both had tears in our eyes.
The Egyptian Scientific Institute was founded by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1798, and holds about 20,000 manuscripts and rare books. It is the oldest scientific academy in the Arab world. It is registered as an antiquities site and is therefore the responsibility of the Supreme Council of Antiquities. I could not believe that the people who burned it down were Egyptians. Samir Gharib, one of Egypt’s great writers, told me that he saw one woman whistling with joy; he could not believe it, or understand at all why she was doing this. But I am sure that they are ignorant, and do not understand what they have done.
Many great books of our history are now ashes. A first edition of the Description de l’Egypte, published by Napoleon’s scientific expedition, was burned, but fortunately there are other copies in Egypt, one at the Geographic Society, another in the house of Documents and Books, and an incomplete on at Assiut University.
I think the looters and other ignorant people who did this should listen to what the late Shiekh el-Shaarawy (a great Muslim thinker who would offer advice to the people every Friday) used to say. According to our famous cartoonist, Moustafa Anssien, he said that the true revolutionary who turns in fury to destroy capitalism should first calm down and work instead to build the glory of his country.
I hope that UNESCO and scientific institutions all over the world can cooperate to bring back the glory of this Institute. This is not only our history; it is the history of the world.
I find it very distressing that so many crooks, looters, and thieves have taken advantage of the Revolution to come out of their holes not only to rob and steal, but also to hurt all of us. I can see that many good people are silent, and many crooks have loud voices. We need our young people to protect the Revolution, to stop demonstrating in Tahrir Square and give all of us a chance to make this work. Egypt needs to become stable again so the economy can grow. We need to move forward, to build our country by finishing the elections peacefully and choosing a new president. We should all stand firm in front of the crooks who have come out of their holes not only to destroy the revolution, but also to destroy Egypt.
Nguyen Cao Ky is sitting with General Westmoreland.
I remember this show vividly. As I walked there, Westmoreland drove by and we exchanged salutes. I went to a dinner in his honor in the early 1980's? in Orange County, CA.
I posted the picture above in 2007, but found the video below fairly recently. Man, to be able to do it all over again, but the memories are gold.