Sunday, January 9, 2005

The killer wave that swallowed tens of thousands of Muslims was an act of Allah designed to punish the Christians. So went the convoluted logic of some Muslim imams in recent sermons from Saudi Arabia to the Palestinian territories.

If it weren’t for the diligent monitoring of Muslim clerics by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), Americans would be in the dark about the outpourings of dangerous drivel fed to devout Muslims gathered in mosques for Friday prayers.

Saudi cleric Muhammad Al-Munajiid explained God’s tsunami punishment of Christians stemmed from “the Christian holidays [that] are accompanied by forbidden things, by immorality, abomination, adultery, alcohol, drunken dancing and revelry. A belly dancer costs 2,500 pounds a minute and a singer costs 50,000 pounds an hour, and they hop from one hotel to another from night to dawn.

“Then they spend the entire night defying Allah. … At the height of immorality, Allah took revenge on these criminals. … Allah struck them with an earthquake. He finished off the Richter scale. All nine levels gone.”

In the same vein, Sheikh Mudeiris, at a Palestinian Friday sermon in Gaza, said, “When oppression and corruption increase, the law of equilibrium applies. I can see in your eyes you are wondering what is the ‘universal law of equilibrium.’ This law is a divine law. If people are remiss in implementing God’s law and in being zealous and vengeful for His sake, Allah unleashes his soldiers in action to take revenge.”

In Saudi Arabia, one of last year’s measures to counter mosque-generated violence was a ban on imam’s using the word “jihad,” or holy warrior. But the content hadn’t changed much without the banned word. Saudi cleric ‘Aed Al-Qarni told the worshippers, “Throats must be slit and skulls must be shattered. This is the path to victory.” He was reacting to the death of a brother “killed by the brothers of apes and pigs, the murderers of the prophets.” In case there was any doubt, he was referring to the Jews of Israel.

He then deplored lamented the lack of Muslim backbone: “One billion two hundred million nobodies. We are incapable of taking action, of being useful, of harming the Jews. The most people do today is to verbally protest over the TV channels or to demonstrate. What is the use of this? … We must sacrifice people like Abd Al-Aziz Al-Rantisi, and Ahmad Yassin, and thousands of others. Houses and young men must be sacrificed. Throats must be slit and skulls must be shattered. This is the path to victory, to shahada and to sacrifice.”

Imam Al-Qani went to explain the “idolatrous” people of Vietnam, Cambodia and South Africa, “nations with no calling or divine law make sacrifices … in people, blood and souls. All the more reason we should too, the nation of Islam.”

Saudi clerics have also urged Iraqis to resist “the American occupation of Iraq.” They can urge jihad without the proscribed word for holy war.

Saudi Sheikh Fawzan Fawzan said God’s unlisted number informed him the tsunami was punishment for homosexual behavior and fornication over Christmas, even if the victims are Muslims. “All that’s left for us to do,” he said, “is to ask for forgiveness. We must atone for our sins, and for the acts of the stupid people among us. … We must fight fornication, homosexuality, usury, fight the corruption on the face of the Earth, and the disregard of the lives of protected people.”

Arnaud de Borchgrave is editor at large of The Washington Times and of United Press International.

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