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Tuesday, November 08, 2005 

Confusing "anti-riot" fatwa is just transparent

The Union for Islamic Organizations in France may have issued a fatwa calling to the rioters to stop the nihilism, but, as Lost Budgie Blog points out, it's not as satisfying as one would wish. From the article:
France's biggest Muslim fundamentalist organization, the Union for Islamic Organizations of France, issued a fatwa, or religious decree. It forbade all those "who seek divine grace from taking part in any action that blindly strikes private or public property or can harm others."
Sad to say, that's not very clear what's being said by the would-be organization. In fact, as Lost Budgie points out:
That doesn't sound like a wholesale prohibition against violence to me. The use of the word "blindly" offers an exception; a condition under which a Muslim in France could strike against private or public property or harm others and not be in violation of this fatwa. If a Muslim is striking with thoughtful consideration of the verses in the Koran, would he be striking "blindly"?
Targeting private property and innnocent and defenseless civilians is a crime at any time. And by not making that clear in their argument, the Muslim organization in France has failed to convince. In fact, as The Washington Times pointed out back in August, following the London bombings:
A couple of points deserve mention at the outset: One, we haven't seen an Arabic version of the fatwa, at least not when it was announced. Fatwas are generally issued in Arabic. All Muslims around the world should be able to read them and all clerics should be able to comment on them. That is a matter of inquiry. Two, a religious edict is part of the theological domain, hence its discussion should overlap with Koranic references and other religious sources. But since the authors of the fatwa have tackled a subject of a "political nature," they have therefore opened the edict to the public for discussion as well. In other words, once a fatwa is out, and as long as it deals with public affairs and political matters, it can and would be discussed by all Muslims, even if they aren't of the clerical realm, and by non-Muslims as well, since the fatwa also covers their realm. This note of caution is necessary to prevent the exclusion of anyone from the debate, under the stipulation that "discussing" a fatwa is a "religious matter." This would be true if the subject of the fatwa is strictly theological. But once the crossing into politics and policies is done, it opens the door to free public debate.
Read the rest to check out the list of additional points made about the fatwas, which are also important.

On the side of the good news though, there's FOX News' bold use of the description "Muslim riots" just recently. And, as reported today by Brit Hume, the Senate Judiciary Committee is opening its important investigation into Saudi Arabia's hatemongering within the United States:
Also, members of the Senate Judiciary Committee want to examine the U.S. relationship with Saudi Arabia. What is the role of Saudis in disseminating hateful anti-American and anti-Israeli propaganda throughout Islamic schools and mosques in the United States? James Rosen takes a closer look.
It's about time, and I wish the Senate good luck on investigating the case.

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