// Burn the Quran
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Halima
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« Reply #25 on: Sep 09, 2010 10:48 AM »

Religious extremist tag-team stunts

Sep 7th 2010, 18:56 by M.S.

I PREFER not to reward people for doing crazy, foolish things to get in the news, but the people who run most news outlets disagree with me, probably because the public at large does too. And since the public likes to read news about people who do foolish, crazy things to get in the news, the news is often dominated by people doing crazy, foolish things. Sometimes this leaves me feeling stuck; it's hard to find anything interesting to say about people acting foolish and crazy. But I did greatly appreciate today's headline in the San Francisco Chronicle: "Man scales S.F. tower to publicize his message". In this case the reason for the nondescript headline was probably just that this fellow's agenda was too odd and complex to explain in ten words or less. But think about it: what a great way to report objectionable or violent publicity stunts, right? What could be more frustrating for a publicity-seeking extremist than to have the media refuse to report their cause? "Men set off bomb to publicise their message." "Youths insult people to publicise their message." Or, more recently, "Group will burn texts to seek media hype."

It's a free country, and the right to burn Beatles albums, the American flag, or anything else you want to burn, pollution and fire-hazard regulations permitting, is part of our modern reading of the constitution. Nevertheless, David Petraeus is right to point out that Terry Jones's Koran-burning stunt is "precisely the kind of action the Taliban uses and could cause significant problems." It is, in fact, part of a global religious-extremist tag-team rally, in which provocateurs in the West gin up obnoxious anti-Islamic gestures that give extremists in Islamic countries an excuse to damage property and assault people, which in turn grants more publicity to the Western provocateurs. Extremists on both sides end up with more media prominence and more political and social power, and everybody wins.

It would be nice if Mr Petraeus's intervention persuaded Mr Jones not to do the foolish, crazy thing he's doing to try and get in the news. Ah, you say, so now we're supposed to back off from exercising our constitutional rights to freedom of expression and worship, in the interests of inter-religious sensitivities? What about Cordoba House, then? Why don't they move their mosque somewhere else in the interests of inter-religious sensitivities? And yet somehow, it seems to me that there's a subtle difference of tone between proposing to establish an interfaith dialogue centre and house of worship, and proposing to burn another religion's holy book. In fact, establishing an interfaith dialogue centre and house of worship, and making no particular effort to publicise it to the national media, doesn't even seem like a foolish, crazy thing one does to get in the news. Clearly these people don't understand how the game works.

http://economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2010/09/burning_koran?page=2&fsrc=scn/fb/wl/bl/religiousextremiststunts

The Almighty Allah says,

"When a servant thinks of Me, I am near.
When he invokes Me, I am with him.
If he reflects on Me in secret, I reply in secret,
And if he acknowledges Me in an assembly,
I acknowledge him in a far superior assembly."

- Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reptd by Abu Huraira
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« Reply #26 on: Sep 10, 2010 01:47 AM »

I am not exactly sure how to react to this since I still have my doubts about this terry jones guy. He's lying about supposedly making a deal with Imam Feisal canceling Park 51. I wouldn't be surprised if come Saturday we hear about him on the news going ahead with his original plans. I agree with sis Jannah on getting people to realize how stupid and too far they've gone with Islamaphobia but I still don't know about letting these guys burn the Quran. I am upset that, if he does go through with this or some follower of his decides to finish the plans, this might create a lot more trouble for both Muslims and Americans alike. *Note I am not saying Christians because many people see America to be a synonym for Christianity. Anyways, here's the article.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100909/ap_on_re_us/quran_burning

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The anti-Muslim leader of a tiny Florida church backed off his threat to burn the Quran, defusing an international firestorm Thursday after he said he was promised that a planned Islamic center and mosque would be moved away from New York's ground zero. The imam planning the center, however, quickly denied such a deal.

The Rev. Terry Jones had been under intense pressure to abandon his plan to burn the Quran on Saturday, the ninth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. President Barack Obama urged him to listen to "those better angels" and give up his "stunt," saying it would endanger U.S. troops and give Islamic terrorists a recruiting tool. Defense Secretary Robert Gates took the extraordinary step of calling Jones personally.

Standing outside his 50-member Pentecostal church, the Dover Outreach Center, alongside Imam Muhammad Musri, the president of the Islamic Society of Central Florida, Jones said he relented when Musri assured him that the New York mosque will be moved.

Jones had never invoked the mosque controversy as a reason for his planned protest. He cited his belief that the Quran is evil because it espouses something other than biblical truth and incites radical, violent behavior among Muslims.

But he said Thursday that that he prayed about the decision and concluded that if the mosque was moved, it would be a sign from God to call off the Quran burning.

"We are, of course, now against any other group burning Qurans," Jones said. "We would right now ask no one to burn Qurans. We are absolutely strong on that. It is not the time to do it."

Musri thanked Jones and his church members "for making the decision today to defuse the situation and bring to a positive end what has become the world over a spectacle that no one would benefit from except extremists and terrorists" who would use it to recruit future radicals.

After the news conference, however, Musri told The Associated Press there is no deal to move the mosque. He said there was only an agreement for him and Jones to travel to New York and meet Saturday with the imam overseeing plans to build a mosque near ground zero.

"I told the pastor that I personally believe the mosque should not be there, and I will do everything in my power to make sure it is moved," Musri said. "But there is not any offer from there (New York) that it will be moved. All we have agreed to is a meeting, and I think we would all like to see a peaceful resolution."

In New York, the leader of the Islamic center project, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, said he was surprised by Jones' announcement.

"I am glad that Pastor Jones has decided not to burn any Qurans. However, I have not spoken to Pastor Jones or Imam Musri," Rauf said in a statement. "We are not going to toy with our religion or any other. Nor are we going to barter. We are here to extend our hands to build peace and harmony."

Jones later insisted that he had struck a deal, without suggesting that he would go back to his Quran-burning plan in light of the imams' denials. He said Musri told him that officials would guarantee that the mosque would be moved.

"We are canceling the event because we have agreed, I take him at his word, he has agreed to move the Ground Zero mosque," Jones said. "I verified that three or four times with witnesses. I trust that man who gave me that. I believe he is a man of integrity, a man of his word, I do not believe that he lied to me."

Jones said that if the mosque is not moved, "then I think Islam is a very poor example of religion. I think that would be very pitiful. I do not expect that."

His decision comes after a firestorm of criticism from leaders around the world. The pope and several other Christian leaders were among those urging him to reconsider his plans, which generated a wave of anger and criticism across the Muslim world. In Afghanistan, hundreds of angry Afghans burned an American flag and chanted "Death to the Christians" to protest the planned Quran burning.

The cancellation was welcomed in Gainesville, a city of 125,000 anchored by the sprawling University of Florida campus.

"It's very good news for Gainesvilile and good news for everyone involved," said City Manager Russ Blackburn.

Jones' neighbors also have said they disapprove. At least two dozen Christian churches, Jewish temples and Muslim organizations in the city had mobilized to plan inclusive events, including Quran readings at services, as a counterpoint to Jones' protest.

Jones' Dove Outreach Center is independent of any denomination. It follows the Pentecostal tradition, which teaches that the Holy Spirit can manifest itself in the modern day. Pentecostals often view themselves as engaged in spiritual warfare against satanic forces.

Adding to the confusion Thursday was the sudden injection of Donald Trump into the debate over the New York mosque, which is planned to go up two blocks north of the trade center site.

Opponents argue it is insensitive to families and memories of Sept. 11 victims to build a mosque so close to where Islamic extremists flew planes into the World Trade Center and killed nearly 2,800 people. Proponents support the project as a reflection of religious freedom and diversity and say hatred of Muslims is fueling the opposition.

Trump, who made a fortune in real estate, offered Thursday to buy out a major investor in the real estate partnership that controls the site where the 13-story Islamic center would be built.

In a letter released Thursday by Trump's publicist, Trump told Hisham Elzanaty that he would buy his stake in one of the two lower Manhattan buildings involved in the project for 25 percent more than whatever he paid.

"I am making this offer as a resident of New York and citizen of the United States, not because I think the location is a spectacular one (because it is not), but because it will end a very serious, inflammatory, and highly divisive situation that is destined, in my opinion, to only get worse," the letter said.

Trump also attached a condition to his offer: He said that as part of the deal, the backers of the mosque project would need to promise that any new mosque they constructed would be at least five blocks farther away from the World Trade Center site.

Elzanaty's response: No sale.

"This is just a cheap attempt to get publicity and get in the limelight," said his lawyer, Wolodymyr Starosolsky.

He added that the offer's lack of seriousness was evident in the price.

The group collectively paid $4.8 million for the building Trump offered to buy. The other is being leased.

Starosolsky said the real estate partnership had already received two offers in the ballpark of $20 million.

"He knows what the value of the building is. If he were really interested in buying the building, he would have come forward with at least $20 million," Starosolsky said.

Elzanaty added that he remains committed to the idea of having a mosque built on at least part of the property.

It's unclear how much control Elzanaty has over the property, which is owned by an eight-member investment group led by El-Gamal's real estate company, Soho Properties.

El-Gamal said Soho Properties controls the site, but didn't elaborate. His spokesman said he couldn't answer questions about the investment team or ownership issues.

In a pair of interviews with the AP this week, Elzanaty said he had invested in the site with an intention of making a profit and was willing to half the land for private development, and maybe all of it if a Muslim group doesn't come forward with enough money to build the mosque.


Assalamu Alaikum
Halima
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« Reply #27 on: Sep 10, 2010 02:10 AM »

 A 3 YEAR OLD GIRL REPLYING ON THE QURAN BURNING PASTOR Smiley!!!


The Almighty Allah says,

"When a servant thinks of Me, I am near.
When he invokes Me, I am with him.
If he reflects on Me in secret, I reply in secret,
And if he acknowledges Me in an assembly,
I acknowledge him in a far superior assembly."

- Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reptd by Abu Huraira
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« Reply #28 on: Sep 10, 2010 04:59 PM »


The Believers, men and women, are protectors one of another:  [9:71]
Halima
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« Reply #29 on: Sep 12, 2010 08:53 AM »

What Christians Can Learn from Koran Burner the Rev. Terry Jones

By TIM PADGETT – Sat Sep 11, 6:40 pm ET

Even ogres can serve a purpose. The "Reverend" Terry Jones has at least shown us the ugly consequences of the Islamophobia that was this summer's political fad - by turning the tables. How does it feel to be caricatured as a nation of Koran-burning radicals? Americans were appalled to find that a solitary religious bigot and his tiny congregation of 50 pseudo Christians had hijacked our global image. We squirmed as a warped little corner of America's Judeo-Christian culture colored the entire country in the eyes of the world - the way Americans let a warped little corner of Islamic culture color all Muslims, even Muslim Americans.

Let's not point fingers: Jones was everybody's Frankenstein, starting with the media, my own profession. When it came to Jones and his so-called church, the Dove World Outreach Center, in Gainesville, Fla., we affirmed all those Onion.com lampoons that show today's media ready to hype any obscure idiot playing with matches as an important story. One of our biggest journalistic sins was helping right-wing demagogues like Newt Gingrich and Sarah Palin turn the "Ground Zero mosque" story into a disgraceful midterm wedge issue - and thereby encourage delusional, attention-starved hatemongers like Jones to build their bonfires of intolerance. Jones, in fact, insists that he suspended his Koran conflagration, which he'd planned for Saturday to mark the 9/11 anniversary, because he was told the New York mosque and cultural center would be moved. The mosque's imam denies that any such deal was struck, and Jones is now thinking aloud about rekindling his stunt.

We can't pin everything on 24-hour news or 24-hour Newt. Another summer lowlight was watching New Yorkers - supposedly among the world's most enlightened citizenries - expose their anti-Muslim underbelly. In a New York Times poll last week, two-thirds of them opposed the mosque near Ground Zero, one-fifth admitted to animosity toward Muslims, and one-third pegged Muslims as being sympathetic to terrorism. It's understandable at first to sympathize with New Yorkers who argue that a mosque near Ground Zero is insensitive - until you realize that what they're really saying is that all Muslims are like the ones who brought down the Twin Towers. And that's no better than a Muslim in Jakarta insisting that all Christians are like Terry Jones. (See a brief history of lower Manhattan's diversity and conflict.)

One of the only positive things to take from this debacle is the realization that the genuinely enlightened city was Gainesville, which has roundly rejected Jones. Far from being the Bible Belt backwater that northerners like New Yorkers would assume it is, it's a progressive college town (home to the University of Florida) known for its green ethos, for electing an openly gay mayor this year - and for its strong interfaith climate. The Dove center recently complained on its website that Gainesville "may have more 'coexist' bumper stickers ... than anywhere else per capita." (Jones went to Dove in 2008 after being kicked out as the pastor of its sister church in Cologne, Germany, in part because of his messianic condemnation of Germany's tolerance toward Muslims.) (See how Gainesville turned against the book-burning pastor.)

When Mayor Craig Lowe was elected this year, Jones and his Dove devotees stood on Gainesville's streets holding signs that read "No Homo Mayor." These are the kinds of losers the media has inflated on the current-events roster these days - to the point at which no less than U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates had to personally call Jones this week and plead with him not to burn Korans, as the act has the potential to inflame Muslim extremists and put U.S. troops in Afghanistan at risk.

Let's hope Gainesville's interfaith attitude now spreads. Maybe the Jones scare will prompt more Christian, Jewish and Muslim congregations to hold joint Father's Day services that honor their common ancestral link to Abraham - and remind Christians that burning a Koran means torching a text that mentions Jesus in reverential terms almost 100 times. My Muslim friends are as chagrined to see the misogynistic, homophobic leadership of Saudi Arabia define their Islamic identity as I am to see the misogynistic, homophobic leadership of the Vatican define my Catholic identity. And yet we find understanding in commiseration: just as they appreciate the spiritual debt that Islam owes Jesus, I recall that were it not for great Muslim thinkers like Ibn Rushd (called Averroes by the admiring Europeans) who conveyed classical learning to great Christian thinkers like Thomas Aquinas, my faith would have remained mired in the medieval mud.

So what can American Christians outraged by Jones' hatefulness do? Stop by a local mosque today and wish the people well as they celebrate 'Id al-Fitr, the end of the holy month of Ramadan (and try one of the great sweets). Or for that matter, wish Jewish people well as they celebrate the High Holy Days that began Wednesday evening with Rosh Hashanah. But most of all, remember how lousy it felt this week when the world equated you with Terry Jones.

http://www.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fnews.yahoo.com%2Fs%2Ftime%2F20100911%2Fus_time%2F08599201744700&h=cc61c


The Almighty Allah says,

"When a servant thinks of Me, I am near.
When he invokes Me, I am with him.
If he reflects on Me in secret, I reply in secret,
And if he acknowledges Me in an assembly,
I acknowledge him in a far superior assembly."

- Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reptd by Abu Huraira
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« Reply #30 on: Sep 14, 2010 02:11 AM »

Religious leaders trying to show support to Muslims, and counteract the negative images seen throughout the world. It is nice to see glimmers of hope during a time of animosity.


http://news.yahoo.com/video/us-15749625/21878821#video=21879813
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