Friday, 16 January 2015

Pointed Views

AsH - as you may have noted - practices freedom of speech and has given any comment received in my blog (except the inflammatory and vulgar) the oxygen of publicity. Ash will respond, whether they come from the pens (or rather, the mice) of  serious thinkers or serious cretins.

I am quite taken by 3 comments from my last posting.  They prefer to focus on the tendency for violence on the part of Muslims, and also  their impotency  and stupidity.  They also reflect a common belief that  Muslims have only got themselves to blame.  This is exactly the same argument when non-blacks decry the 'backwardness' of the blacks in UK and US.

As I have prepared quite a detailed riposte for the second and third comments, I think it deserves a posting of its own.  These comments  typify the usual  brickbats : made up of generalizations, snide innuendos and crooked thinking  thrown at Muslims - by non-Muslims  (and insecure Muslims) both in Malaysia and abroad.


Thank you Anon 11 January 2015 at 02:06

( Quotes from the comments are in italics.)

1.  You may be right but remember these are the immigrants from Islamic countries to a non-Islamic country which received them wholeheartedly.

Well, there are also many non-Muslim immigrants who migrate to Muslim countries and who not only prosper, but are allowed to maintain their culture with very little hassle from the host-people e.g. Malaya and Indonesia.
Name me the non-Muslim countries that "received them (Muslims)  wholeheartedly",  that is unless they bring in lots of dosh and gold bars?   Have you read carefully Gai Eaton's piece in my last post? 
As a Muslim living in a non-Muslim country  (UK)  I have received more than my fair share of abuse from my non-Muslim white hosts and officials and non-white, non-Muslim British residents.  By the way, are you making this comment from personal experience?  If you are, then it must be because you look like an 'honorary white' and you're not a Muslim.

2.  ...... yearning the help from powerful secular countries specially the US and Europe.

If  your homes, schools, hospitals, libraries, transport and sewerage systems have been blown apart by missiles and bombs and AK 47s etc  by 'secular' USA and European countries wouldn't you pack up your bags and go to  countries that are safe simply because they are powerful?

3.  As for your mention of the Sunni-Shite conflict, of Saudi Arabia colluding with Israel : if only Middle East politics were that  easy to understand.   I recommend Andre Vltchek's article "Who should be blamed for Muslim terrorism"  in Counterpunch January 9-11, 2015.  

Of course you may not agree with it but it should help to clear some of your naive and over-simplistic interpretation.

Furthermore Muslims do not have a monopoly of in-fighting.  I hope you have read enough history to figure out other examples (take only the 20th century) like the long drawn out conflicts between the Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland (thousands killed) and between the same two groups in Rwanda (hundreds of thousands killed).  What about the 'secular' in-fighting like the Civil wars in pre-Mao China and the North vs South  Civil War  in what is USA today?

4.   Muslim should not be so stupid to counter the threat with violence. Allah do not need  those stupid extremist Muslim to kill to protect his name.

Ask the Iraqis, Afghanis, Gazans (Palestinians) and Bosnians and Chechnyans and Rohingyas if they suffered merely 'threats'  and tell them off for being "extremist" and "stupid"  when they refuse to turn the other cheek?    Ask any non-Muslim  believer or country how they would react  if they were subjected to the same terror.

Just a little correction here :  It's not Allah's name that is being protected.  Both the right-wing and  'liberal'  fascists are intent on making fun (and profit) out of the Prophet of Islam.

5.  The Jews are killed in millions ........ they use their brain to ask others to fight the Arabs as their proxy.

Do you fully comprehend the ramifications of your "suggestion"?  Firstly, it was the
European Jews who were killed in millions (and who hardly had the opportunity to ask anyone to be their 'proxies'), but it was the Israeli Zionist Jews who 'asked others ... as their proxy'.  To follow through your argument, should the  'stupid' Muslims 'use their brains' and get others to be their proxy?  Now, while the few suicide bombers and 'terrorists' do their own dirty work, the rest of  the Muslim population and Islam are punished and reviled on account of them.

Do listen through the Video attached and you may learn a  thing or two.

Okey dokey, that's one comment dried and dusted.


Now for the next one:  Thank you "Said".

If the verb for referencing a comment  used the word "wrote"  instead of "said" ,  the commentator would have to find
a Malay-Muslim name that sounds close to "wrote".  Any suggestions anyone?  

1.  'Muslims have nobody to blame but themselves"  Only a non-Muslim would have the temerity and churlishness to believe that the Middle Eastern situation is the fault of Muslims alone.  A "Syed" certainly wouldn't.

2.  Middle East conflict is an Arab conflict that most Muslim mistaken it as a Islam vs the world conflict.  If the mahzabs can't even agree..... what do you expect.  World peace? 

According to your  interpretation  the bloodshed in the Middle East is an entirely Arab problem and construction and  should not affect the rest of the Muslim world.  In choosing  to separate issues of Muslim integrity and sovereignty  in the Middle East from the rest of  other Muslim countries and communities, you seem to imply that Muslims have no right to a sense of brotherhood with their suffering co-believers.   Shouldn't that also apply to HRH Prince Charles (and many others) who moan about the plight of  Christians in the Middle East?

Read :

What have the attacks on Gaza, the invasion of Iraq (twice by father and son) and Afghanistan, and  conflicts in  other non Arab Muslim territories, such as the razing of Bosnia and Chechnya, the Muslim struggles for autonomy in Southern Philippines, Pattani and the persecution of Rohingyas in Burma have to do with Muslims making a 'mistake' 

 Western countries do not  restrain their intervention when their Judaeo-Christian brethren are under threat or attack.  Most of the time they do not have to send in suicide bombers and undercover "liberators" - they have other means to teach these nations a lesson - and in the case of  Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, and others in South America, they simply send in their boys and their bombs. 

Read : 

You must be familiar with  the First and Second  World Wars - tribal  wars in Christian Europe which dragged non-European and non-Christian countries outside of Europe into the line of fire - often as unhappy "proxies"!!

How grotesque! - to argue that the disunity of mahzabs  gets in the way of World Peace. It's tantamount to attributing the  present carnage in the Middle East to only the Muslims and absolving the Judaeo-Christian world of any culpability.

"World Peace"  is just a slogan for fluffy thinkers who are caught in the aura of John Lennon's 'Imagine' - a convenient tool that the powerful use to whitewash their "policing" of the rest of the world.  During the Cold War, the slogan was "The Free World".   

This reminds me of this interesting image/article from the Mail , on how the advertising world makes food look good.

Today the magic slogan is "World Peace" - and other 'look good, feel good'  concoctions like human rights, freedom of expression, multiculturalism, democracy,  free speech, free press - all used as vehicles for nefarious objectives. 

Liberal Political -Stylists  and Food- Stylists certainly have a lot in common!

3.  Like you I despair at the disunity of the Muslim world and closer to home, the Malay-Muslims of Malaysia.   Muslim brotherhood,  the unity of the Ummah, exists in  Islam and all the texts.  I leave it to our Islamic scholars, academics and professionals to chart the journey - to guide Muslims to maintain an equilibrium between our duties for  'Dunia'  and  'Akhirat'.

4.  As for the floods on the "East Coast of Malaysia" -  I think the people and authorities are doing a splendid job -  'kafirs' and  'non-kafirs' alike.   Surely, giving a hand to someone in need does not depend on the religious belief of the givers and the receivers.  Although sometimes one has to be careful of the hidden agenda of the givers who are out for 'saving souls for Jesus'.

By the way there is no "East Coast of Malaysia" - you must mean the east coast of Semenanjung/West Malaysia.  A true blue Anak Malaysia should know the difference.

Sorry to sound schoolmarmish - when you refer to 'harping on Free Palestine' - the verb 'harping' is an unfortunate choice of word.  To 'harp' is to talk or write persistently and tediously, to  nag, to complain.  Or maybe you are expressing what you actually mean - that the issue of a free Palestine for you  is tiresome and boring.   According to Mr/Ms Sai - "These people only have themselves to blame".


I would have loved to use these comments when I was teaching Critical Reading in USM many years ago.  

                                                    The Power of Words and Knowledge.


Anonymous said...

You certainly are spirited.
It certainly is nice when commenters in blogs get responds from the blogger, if you ask me.

This whole Charlie thing, especially the general reaction from the world powers left a bad taste in my mouth. Probably KJ put it best when he said it's nauseating. The kind of things that Charlie Hebdo cartoonists draws, it's outright negative propaganda that makes non Muslims despise and hate Islam, and it denigrates and provokes Muslims, especially those affected by things beyond their control, into being easy pickings by radical Muslims who want war. When you see the rally resulting, other Muslims who cares about their faith only sees it as proof that the non Muslim world does indeed have something against them. Nothing good comes out of this kind of freedom of expression.

Well, that concerns the rest of the world. As for Malaysia,social discussion in Malaysia IMO is tainted by partisan politics. Everything that comes up is sure to be used by some people to gain political advantage for the party they support. There's cyber troopers roaming around in social media to influence opinion, there's political minded editors and writers spinning the news on their newspapers and online portals, there's various NGOs claiming to champion a multitude of notions, but it feels to me like it's a waste of time to get dragged along, because you don't get the feeling that people care for anything else other than the party they supporting to win the next GE.

Though, I sure believe you're not one of them. I believe you care for more than that.

I hope you don't mind my irrelevant rambling. If you do, apologies.

I'm just tired of it all. At the same time ashamed because I got the feeling I enjoy looking at all this thing happening, as if this adds spice to my boring and insignificant life.

Anonymous said...

"The Jews have come from the tragedy (of the Holocaust), and forced the world to respect them, with their knowledge, not with their terror, with their work, not their crying and yelling. Humanity owes most of the discoveries and science of the 19th and 20th centuries to Jewish scientists. 15 million people, scattered throughout the world, united and won their rights through work and knowledge. We have not seen a single Jew blow himself up in a German restaurant. We have not seen a single Jew destroy a church. We have not seen a single Jew protest by killing people. The Muslims have turned three Buddha statues into rubble. We have not seen a single Buddhist burn down a Mosque, kill a Muslim, or burn down an embassy. Only the Muslims defend their beliefs by burning down churches, killing people, and destroying embassies. This path will not yield any results. The Muslims must ask themselves what they can do for humankind, before they demand that humankind respect them" "The trouble with Islam is deeply rooted in its teachings. Islam is not only a religion. Islam [is] also a political ideology that preaches violence and applies its agenda by force." Dr Wafa Sultan

anak si-hamid said...

Thank you Anon 16 January 2015, 17:21

This is one of the most honest and enlightening comment I've ever had in AsH. Please, this is not irrelevant rambling. If so, my whole Blog has been one helluva rambling since 2008!

This is the world we have - as I'm 70, this is not my world. I reckon, and I may be wrong, the one difference between then and now is that those who oppose you and have differences with you show their faces and their names. There's a lot more cowardice and absence of accountability in this hi-tech generation.

This is the 21st century and like you, I'm tired of it all.

Two months ago, I was so, so tempted to stop writing (and taking up cudgels) and sit in my rocking chair and do nothing but watch junk on TV here in Malaysia and in England. (that includes the news and
'reality' ramblings of experts on politics, religion, art and culture, and of course inane and mind-killing advertisements) just like Calvin in "Calvin and Hobbes".

There's nothing 'boring and insignificant' about your life as seen in your second and third paragraphs!

anak si-hamid said...

Thank you Anon 17 January 2015. 02:14

Ho hum... We've heard all this before from your Dr Wafa Sultan and you of course, as his purveyor.

I see little connection between my riposte and my earlier posting to Islam and Muslims' so-called "pathological" prejudice against Jews.

Firstly, I hope you have listened to the entire video on my posting. That was just a part of a debate at Oxford University.

In UK we, I mean Muslims, have to listen to such implicit and explicit anti-Islam diatribes uttered by politicians/Ministers, academics, media moghuls, hacks and accredited journalists, dramatists, the common riffraff of bigots and of course the cartoonists; almost everyday, on both BBC/commercial radio stations and BBC/commercial TV channels and the liberal and right-wing press.

Such views, as expressed by Uri Avnery in 2004 - an Israeli writer and peace activist - are hardly heard on mainstream media - he's not kosher enough!

So I hope this extract from one of his articles "A Practical Manual: Anti-Semitism vs. Anti-Zionism" will help to assuage your wrath.

"Whatever inanities may be voiced by certain 'experts', there never was any widespread Muslim anti-Semitism, such as existed in Christian Europe. In the course of his fight for power, the prophet Muhammad fought against neighbouring Jewish tribes, and therefore there are some negative passages about the Jews in the Koran. But they cannot be compared to the anti-Jewish passages in the New Testament story about the
crucifixion of Christ that have poisoned the the Christian world and caused endless suffering. Muslim Spain was a paradise for the Jews, and there has never been a Jewish Holocaust in the Muslim world. Even pogroms were extremely rare.

Muhammad decreed that the "Peoples of the Book' (Jews and Christians) be treated tolerantly, subject to conditions that were incomparably more liberal than those in contemporary Europe. The Muslims never imposed their religion by force on Jews and Christians, as shown by the fact that almost all the Jews expelled from Catholic Spain settled in Muslim countries and flourished there. After centuries of Muslim rule, Greeks and Serbs remained thoroughly Christian."

11 years ago, Uri Avnery also wrote this in the same article.

"The situation in some suburbs of Paris, which is often cited as an example of the rise of anti-Semitism, is a quite different affair. When North African Muslims clash with North African Jews, they are transferring the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to European soil. It is also a continuation of the feud between Arabs and Jews that started in Algeria when the Jews supported the French regime and Muslims considered them collaborators of the hated colonialists."

So, thank you Anon for giving AsH this opportunity to transmit this material for the young Muslims out there who have their backs against the wall from the onslaught of the Islamophobes. Remember: only words and knowledge can correct the prejudice and distortions.

anak si-hamid said...

An Addendum,

Dr Wafa Sultan describes herself as "a Muslim who does not adhere to Islam"???

My mistake in describing Dr Wafa as a 'his'. I normally attribute such extreme views to a male. I didn't realise she's an American (migrated from Syria) lady.