Islam

After the overthrow of aging dictators in Tunisia and Egypt, seeds of revolution are emerging in other North African and Middle Eastern Arab countries. However, the country where a popular uprising could have the biggest impact, not just internally, but for the whole region and the world is Iran.

Like Egypt, Iran, formerly known as Persia, has a rich culture that pre-dates Islam by more than a thousand years. Iran has a young, well-educated population that has been ruled by brutal religious fanatics for thirty years.

In Egypt political repression was relatively moderate and it is conceivable that the Mubarak regime will ultimately be replaced by something much worse. In Iran, however, any change in regime can only be for the better. While some in the West were cautious about embracing the Egyptian revolution, there should be no such hesitation when in comes to support for the Iranian people trying to overthrow their oppressors.

Almost two years ago, the Iranian people tried to rise up against their government. The Green Movement was brutally suppressed after major initial successes. At the time the Obama administration showed no support for this amazing opportunity to change the Iranian regime. After being supportive of the Egyptian uprising, there can be no excuse for not strongly supporting the desire of the Iranian people to be free and we hope that Obama will not repeat his shameful behavior of 2009.

Demonstrations in Iran started today despite efforts by the regime’s thugs to suppress them. Since journalist cannot operate freely in Iran, the only reports come from people at these protests via the internet. Here is one amateur video of what is happening:

You can follow the events in Iran on Twitter under hash tag #iranelection.

We hope that the Green Movement from June of 2009 can revive and succeeds without massive loss of life.

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Asra Nomani, a Muslim woman and author, has written in The Daily Beast (via Hot Air) that we should profile Muslims as part of airport screening for potential terrorists.

Nomani is a refreshingly rational voice in the debate on how to catch terrorists:

As an American Muslim, I’ve come to recognize, sadly, that there is one common denominator defining those who’ve got their eyes trained on U.S. targets: MANY of them are Muslim—like the Somali-born teenager arrested Friday night for a reported plot to detonate a car bomb at a packed Christmas tree-lighting ceremony in downtown Portland, Oregon.

Nomani doesn’t advocate using race and religion as the only factors to consider, but they should be part of the overall strategy to catch terrorists:

I realize that in recent years, profiling has become a dirty word, synonymous with prejudice, racism, and bigotry. But while I believe our risk assessment should not end with religion, race and ethnicity, I believe that it should include these important elements, as part of a “triage” strategy that my debate partner, former CIA case officer Robert Baer, says airports and airliners already do.

Profiling doesn’t have to be about discrimination, persecution, or harassment. As my debating partner, conservative columnist Deroy Murdock put it: “We are not arguing that the TSA should send anyone named Mohammad to be waterboarded somewhere between the first-class lounge and the Pizza Hut.”

Nomani points out that in the 1970s other religious and ethnic groups would have been targets for profiling and today Colombians receive extra scrutiny because of Colombia’s FARC, a terrorist and drug-running organization. She concludes:

As attorney R. Spencer MacDonald put it in an article in the Brigham Young University Journal of Public Law, we can have “rational profiling.”

I know this is an issue of great distress to many people. But I believe that we cannot bury our heads in the sand anymore. We have to choose pragmatism over political correctness, and allow U.S. airports and airlines to do religious and racial profiling.

Read Nomani’s complete column here.

Watch Nomani’s thoughtful approach on how to conduct terrorist threat assessments at airports in the following interview on CNN:

Nomani has previously been a rational Muslim voice in the debate about radical Islam. See Bizarre Double Standard: Condemning Book Burning without Condemning Murderous Islamic Reaction.

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Protests are increasing against the new invasive methods of the TSA screening travelers at airports. Red State summarizes the choices you have under Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano’s new rules:

Door #1: Have nude pictures of yourself beamed to some video monitor to be viewed by a total stranger where it may or may not be stored; or,

Door #2: Allow yourself to be groped, poked, patted down, felt up, frisked, and squeezed at the hands of some police academy reject in a Smurf-blue uniform [Photo: Kim Kardashian at LAX]; or…

Door #3: Don’t travel.

Worse is the fact that, if you have children, you have the same choices to make on their behalf:

* Have nude images of your kids viewed (and stored?) by strangers,
* Subject your kids to physical molestation, or
* Cancel your trip.

Pilots and flight attendants have complained about the invasive new searches and the potential risk from repeated exposure to radiation from the new machines.

Even three-year-olds are not safe from TSA groping:

When the threat of terrorism causes the government to perform indiscriminate searches in violation of the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution, have the terrorists won? After all, the goal of terrorism is to unleash fear and destroy our society. The TSA’s new procedures allow them to score on both counts.

Ironically, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is recommending presumably effective strategies for avoiding these searches to Muslim travelers:

* If you opt out of the full-image body scanner, you have the right to request that the manual search be conducted in private.
* It is your right to be screened by an officer of the same gender. The TSA states in its Head-to-Toe Screening Policies: “It is TSA’s policy that passengers should be screened by an officer of the same gender in a professional, respectful manner.”
* If you experience any disturbing incidents with the new pat down procedure, particularly if you feel you have been subjected to religious or racial profiling, harassment or unfair treatment, immediately file a complaint with the TSA and report the incident to your local CAIR chapter.

Special recommendations for Muslim women who wear hijab:

* If you are selected for secondary screening after you go through the metal detector and it does not go off, and “sss” is not written on your boarding pass, ask the TSA officer if the reason you are being selected is because of your head scarf.
* In this situation, you may be asked to submit to a pat-down or to go through a full body scanner. If you are selected for the scanner, you may ask to go through a pat-down instead.
* Before you are patted down, you should remind the TSA officer that they are only supposed to pat down the area in question, in this scenario, your head and neck. They SHOULD NOT subject you to a full-body or partial-body pat-down.

* You may ask to be taken to a private room for the pat-down procedure.
* Instead of the pat-down, you can always request to pat down your own scarf, including head and neck area, and have the officers perform a chemical swipe of your hands.
* If you encounter any issues, ask to speak to a supervisor immediately. They are there to assist you.

These strategies work in America, but they do not work in other places where real security trumps political correctness. This summer, when returning from a vacation in Europe via Düsseldorf, a Muslim woman wearing traditional dress stood in line for boarding the airplane in front of me. Out of the hundred or so passengers who boarded the airplane before me, she was the only one pulled aside for extra screening. Oh, and I never even had to take off my shoes and was allowed to keep my bottle of water when going through security checks in Europe.

Hot Air reports on a better way to protect air travel. It has a proven track record. It has been practiced by Israel’s airline El Al for more thirty years with a 100 percent success rate. There have been no hijackings, no bombings, no failed attempts on the airline that has more enemies among Islamic fanatics than any other airline in the world. It does require smarter techniques, constantly anticipating of what terrorists might try next and, yes, – the horror of American political correctness – ethnic profiling.

Don’t expect the TSA to adopt the Israeli model anytime soon. It would require hiring highly skilled people rather than blue smurfs that were rejected for police jobs. And, more importantly, it would require our government to overcome its fear of offending protected groups and to recognize that a passenger’s characteristics matter. A three-year-old traveling with American parents or a nun do not pose the same risk as a young man from the Middle East.

So here is what we will continue to have to deal with from Janet Napolitano’s smurfs to the tune of The Who’s “See Me, Feel Me:”

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On Sunday, Christiane Amanpour on ABC’s This Week held a debate about whether American’s should be afraid of Islam. The following excerpt of radical Islamist Amjad Choudry gives an unusually frank admission of the goals of radical Islam and the intolerance of Muslims who disagree with him. Choudry admits that radical Islam’s goal is the imposition of Sharia law on the West and that the goal is that “the flag of Islam will one day fly over the White House.”

Choudry clearly expressed the radical version of Islam that supports al-Qaeda terrorism. Other Muslims presented more moderate views and experts like Robert Spencer and Ayaan Hirsi Ali debated whether the violent ideology is at the core of Islam or is just an extreme distortion. The inevitable conclusion is that there is a destructive cancer in Islam that is bent on destroying Western civilization and that Islam needs a reform movement that speaks out confidently against the fanatics rather than gets defensive when confronted with Islamic terrorism.

The Rev. Franklin Graham, son of Rev. Billy Graham, speaks out forcefully against the violent parts of Islam while recognizing that there are millions of Muslims in the world who are decent people that do not buy into radical Islam’s violence.

You can watch more of the debate here:

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Nine years ago, the United States experienced the most horrible attack on US soil since the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor. Mainstream media is going out of their way not to show the terrible images from this day. Youtube has some weird censorship in place. Try to search for “911” or “911 footage” or any other similar terms and you will get this message: No videos found for “”

Well, with a little creativity you can still find video of the horrible events of 9/11/2001. Florida Pundit believes it is appropriate for people to witness and remember these horrible acts on the anniversary of the attack.

When I grew up in the 1970s in Central Europe, my school never hesitated to show us the graphic videos of Nazi atrocities committed against Jews. These were acts that were committed when our grandparents were young adults. It was a good and effective way to show how evil can come to power even in a place that, based on its contributions to science, philosophy and the arts, was a center of the best of humanity.

Similarly, we should not shrink from showing what radical Islam did on 9/11/2001. We will know that the lessons of 9/11 have been learned when Islamic schools in the Middle East and elsewhere show these images to their students to make sure this never happens again. Unfortunately, we appear to be a long way from this becoming a reality. We hope that the vast majority of Muslims who live peaceful lives will have the courage to confront the evil that has bred in their midst and will become active participants in eradicating radical Islam.

Here is a collage of live news reports on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, when everyone initially still hoped that the first plane to hit the World Trade Center Towers was a tragic accident, and, during live coverage the second plane hitting the second Tower, made it obvious that this was a terrorist attack:

Here is another video of the events of 9/11/2001. Never forget!

If you search on Youtube for other video, please ignore all the crazy 9/11 truther videos that don’t seem to be censored the way the real events are censored. There is a lot of stupid commentary on 9/11 out there, most recently all the dumb coverage of an idiotic Florida pastor who wants to burn a book and the excuses made for the demagogues in the Islamic world who want to make this a cause for killing more people.

Radical Islam is evil. Period. A few enlightened Muslims recognize this and are calling for reform. We applaud these voices of reason and support them in their difficult task.

In the meantime, we cannot shrink from the responsibility of fighting radical Islam everywhere in the world. We must not lose the will to defend Western values of freedom, tolerance and democracy.

We need to have the resolve that Winston Churchill expressed in 1940 about facing the Nazi menace:

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