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|US war is about religion: Rushdie|
|11/03/01 at 05:38:41|
|US war is about religion: Rushdie |
RASHMEE Z AHMED
TIMES NEWS NETWORK
LONDON: In a controversial outpouring set to enrage the very section of Muslim opinion that condemned him to long years as a fugitive with a price on his head, Salman Rushdie has issued his own fatwa against "Islamism" and "paranoid Islam" and challenged George Bush and Tony Blair’s "virtuous" mantra that the ongoing conflict is not a war on Islam.
"Let’s start calling a spade a spade," Rushdie said bluntly in his column in Saturday’s Guardian newspaper, "Of course this is about Islam", pointing to "worldwide Muslim demonstrations in support of Osama bin Laden", the fact that "10,000 men (had) massed on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, answering some mullah’s call to jihad", and that "the war’s first British casualties (are) three Muslim men who died fighting on the Taliban side".
Rushdie also questioned the motives of the increasingly-vocal Pakistani cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan, who he says continued to demand "evidence of al-Qaeda’s guilt while turning a deaf ear to the self-incrimminating statements of al-Qaeda’s own spokesmen".
The writer’s passionate 1,000-word denunciation of the "mulch of belief" and "jumbled, half-examined" prejudices that push "believing Muslim men" into a pathological hatred and fear of "westoxication", argued that "paranoid Islam" is the fastest-growing form of the religion in the world today.
In a searing critique of what he felt Islam had become to a "vast number of believing Muslims", Rushdie said it "stands not only for the fear of God - the fear more than the love, one suspects - but also for a cluster of customs, opinions and prejudices that include their dietary practices, the sequestration or near-sequestration of ‘their’ women, the sermons delivered by their mullah of choice, a loathing of modern society in general, riddled as it is with music, godlessness and sex…"
Rushdie’s blunt intervention in an already highly-charged debate, 12 years after he was ex-communicated by outraged Muslims for his "blasphemous" portrayal of the fictional prophet Mahound and a religion resembling Islam, is not entirely unexpected. It was The Satanic Verses that plunged the world into crisis the last time round, as the Western belief in freedom of expression apparently came into conflict with Muslim values. As the riots spread with calling for his head, Rushdie had observed, "How fragile civilization is…how easily, how merrily a book burns".
Now, say commentators, Rushdie’s excoriating views on the "crisis of faith" within Islam are likely to stoke the embers of a still-smouldering hatred.
But Rushdie has cautioned that he is does wholly support Samuel Huntington’s clash of civilisations theory because "paranoid Islam" is not merely against Jews and the West but against fellow Islamists too, as evident from the mutual hostility of the Taliban and Iranian regimes.
In a suggestion that is certain to be receive a muted welcome in European capitals, which are struggling to re-frame the terms of the debate in the context of a war between moderate and extreme Islam, Rushdie firmly laid the Islamic world’s ills at its own door. "The disease that is in us, is from us", he quoted an Iraqi writer to say and called for encouragement for the "counter-project... if Islam is to be reconciled with modernity".
When ppl just cant accept the spread of the fragrance of Islam, they give it another name. naipul couldnt digest it either just like Rushdie. 'paranoid Islam' is just a term to suppress their parania of the message spread by the Holy Prophet sallallahu alaihi wa sallam.
|Re: US war is about religion: Rushdie|
|11/03/01 at 13:54:35|
We as muslims should just ignore the fool rusdie. We've given him too much time and publicity. This is just another attempt from him to try and get noticed, he needs attention to feel wanted. We muslims have got better things to do than make some unhappy man feel wanted!
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