Muslim Hate of the Pope

Pope's Birmingham open air mass targeted by Muslim group

Jul 18 2010 by Adam Aspinall, Sunday Mercury

AN MP fears the Pope’s visit to Birmingham could be marred by violence after a fundamentalist Muslim group told followers to ‘convert’ Catholics attending an open air mass.

The sinister orders have appeared in an inflammatory article on a hardline website called the Islamic Standard – which also brands the Pontiff ‘evil’.

It is urging Muslims to disrupt Pope Benedict XVI’s appearance at Cofton Park in September when up to 80,000 Catholics will attend a live mass.

Last night, Perry Barr MP Khalid Mahmood called for a police probe into the Leicester-based website.

He said: “These supposed Muslims are doing all they can to incite violence. Sadly, if Muslims do turn up and preach at Catholics it could easily turn to violence.

“The police should look at the comments on this site because they can only serve to increase tensions and perhaps even cause riots on the day.

“This is just the warped product of warped minds and it reveals how ignorant they are about Islam.

“The Islam I know preaches tolerance, not hate, so these idiots who give Islam such a bad name should be shut down as soon possible.”

The website article claims the Pope is the enemy of Islam and after detailing his four-day UK itinerary, it reads: “But all of these events are either in restricted areas where protests are forbidden or restricted, or where no Muslims are present in large numbers.

“The Birmingham event, however, brings the Pope and those who worship him into direct contact with the the large Muslim population of Birmingham. It offers them the perfect chance to learn about Islam.

“We hope the Muslims of Birmingham take this duel opportunity to give Da’wah (preaching of Islam) to these 80,000 travelling disbelievers, whilst at the same time telling the Pope in no uncertain terms what Muslims think of his evil slanders against the last Prophet of God and his message.”

Pope Benedict, 82, is due to carry out the beatification of Cardinal Newman while in the West Midlands, during only the second Papal visit to this country since Henry VIII broke with Rome.

Security is tight but he is due to lead the open-air mass at Cofton Park, next to the disused Longbridge car plant, on Sunday, September 19.

The website threats come after the Sunday Mercury previously revealed Birmingham City Hospital is on alert for an assassination attempt on the Pope.

Security bosses have revealed that the hospital would handle any medical emergency because of its expertise in dealing with bullet injuries, caused by gang crime.

The Pontiff, who has recently spoken out against gay marriage, abortion rights and contraception, often attracts street protests during his appearances.

He was most recently attacked in St Peter’s Basilica during Christmas Eve Mass by female spectator Susanna Maiolo, who knocked him over after grabbing his vestments.

The late Pope John Paul II survived an assassination attempt despite being shot four times in his Popemobile as he blessed the crowds in Rome in 1981.

In 2002 it emerged that Al Qaeda terrorists had planned to assassinate the Pope during his tour of the Philippines in 1999 – but he called off the visit due to ill-health.


Pope Benedict creates international furor with remarks on Islam

Muslim leaders say he should "look in the mirror" when assailing religious violence.

By Tom Reagan

Roman Catholic Pope Benedict XVI returned to Rome Thursday from his home country of Germany, and was greeted an increasing international furor over remarks he made about "historical Muslim violence." The Times of London reports that Muslim clerics and community leaders around the world condemned his remarks, accusing the pope of displaying "of displaying ignorance and bigotry."

The president of Germany's central council of Muslims went further, saying that Catholicism's murderous and compromised history left it with no moral leg to stand on to criticise other religions.

"After the blood-stained conversions in South America, the Crusades in the Muslim world, the coercion of the church by Hitler's regime, and even the coining of the phrase 'holy war' by Pope Urban II, I do not think the church should point a finger at extremist activities in other religions," said Aiman Mazyek.

The Los Angeles Times reports that the uproar came after the pope attacked the Muslim concept of holy war (jihad) as "a violation of God's will and nature."

He used the word "jihad," a politically and emotionally charged Arabic term for holy war or struggle. And he quoted a 14th century Byzantine emperor who derided Islam and its founder, the prophet Muhammad. The emperor, Manuel II Paleologus, said, according to Benedict, that Muhammad had introduced "things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached."

Benedict, in the same speech, held up Christianity as the "profound encounter of faith and reason."

The Guardian carried a transcript of the pope's complete remarks.

CNN reports that the Vatican issued a press release Thursday night saying that the pope was not trying to offend Muslims when he quoted the emperor. "It was certainly not the intention of the Holy Father to ... offend the sensibilities of Muslim faithful," said Federico Lombardi, the Vatican press officer. No doubt aware of the delicacy of the nature of the remarks he was about to make, the pope twice said "I quote," before introducing the comments made by Byzantine emperor Manuel Paleologos II.

The Guardian reports that the statement, however, has failed to dampen the anger among Muslims. In one case, the Pakistani parliament unanimously adopted a resolution condemning the pope saying he had "insulted Islam and the Prophet Muhammad by making 'derogatory remarks'." But the former Archbishop of Canterbury came to the defense of the pope.

Asked about the Pope's remarks, [Lord Carey] said: "I cannot comment on a few phrases in what was clearly a long speech. The Pope is a distinguished scholar and one unlikely to say offensive things. If he quoted something said 600 years ago, we should not assume that this represents the Pope's beliefs about Islam today.

"But Muslims, as well as Christians, must learn to enter into dialogue without crying foul. We live in perilous times, and we must not only separate religion from violence but also not give religious legitimacy to violence in any shape or form."

Stephen Bates, the Guardian's religious affairs and royal correspondent, also defends "poor old Pope Benedict," saying he believes the pontiff is "innocent of the charges of stirring up hatred against Islam being made against him."

Benedict's offence, of course, was recklessly to quote this 600 year-old expression of the point of view of a medieval Middle Eastern potentate. He didn't endorse it, didn't say that it was his own view, attributed it in context. And is now told that he has "aroused the anger of the whole Islamic world." Most of which, probably, had never heard of Manuel II Paleologue before this morning. Perhaps the pope should be careful of bringing such subversive ancient texts to light.

On the other hand, if you cannot, as part of a lengthy and profound academic lecture, cite a 600 year-old text for fear of stirring the aggravation of noisy politicians half way around the world, what CAN you do? We might as well all retreat into obscurantism. And keep our mouths shut, for otherwise, who knows who we might offend. And if, as a result of the outrage, some Catholics get killed or their churches burned down by offended scholars and textual exegesists it might be thought that Manuel's original point had rather been made.

But British Muslims also condemned the pope's remarks. The Ramadhan Foundation, a youth organization, reacted angrily to the comments. The Scotsman reports that the organization compared the Pope unfavorably with his predecessor John Paul II.

"The late Pope John Paul II spent over 25 years to build bridges and links with the Muslim community. He showed the world that its perception of Islam was false and that we are peace-loving people."


Pope Benedict Criticizes Islam

by Daniel Pipes
New York Sun
September 19, 2006

"Show me just what Muhammad brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached."

These words, expressed six centuries ago by a Byzantine emperor, Manuel II Paleologus, in dialogue with an Iranian scholar, spur three reflections.

Pope Benedict XVI offered the above quote, neither endorsing nor condemning it, in his academic speech, " Faith, Reason and the University: Memories and Reflections," delivered in German last week in Germany. It served to introduce his erudite critique of the Western concept of reason since the Enlightenment.

But did he have other purposes? The head of the Benedictine order, Abbot Notker Wolf, understood the pope's quote as "a blatant allusion to [Iran's President Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad." Vatican insiders told the London Sunday Times that Benedict "was trying to pre-empt an aggressive letter aimed at the papacy by the president of Iran, which was why he cited the debate involving a Persian."

First reflection: Benedict has offered elusive comments, brief statements, and now this delphic quotation, but he has not provided a much-needed major statement on this vital topic of Islam. One hopes it is in the offing.

Whatever the pope's purpose, he prompted the near-predictable furor in the Muslim world. Religious and political authorities widely condemned the speech, with some calling for violence.

The Vatican responded by establishing an extraordinary and unprecedented security cordon around the pope. Further away, the incitement spurred some violence, with more likely on the way. Seven churches were attacked in the West Bank and Gaza, one in Basra, Iraq (prompting this ironic headline at the "RedState" blog: " Pope implies Islam a violent religion ... Muslims bomb churches"). The murder of an Italian nun in Somalia and two Assyrians in Iraq also appear connected.

Second reflection: this new round of Muslim outrage, violence, and murder has a by-now routine quality. Earlier versions occurred in 1989 (in response to Salman Rushdie's novel, The Satanic Verses), 1997 (when the U.S. Supreme Court did not take down a representation of Muhammad), 2002 (when Jerry Falwell called Muhammad a terrorist), 2005 (the fraudulent Koran-flushing episode), and February 2006 (the Danish cartoon incident).

Vatican leaders tried to defuse the pope's quote, as well as his condemnation of jihad (holy war). The papal spokesman, Federico Lombardi, S.J., said Benedict did not intend to give "an interpretation of Islam as violent. … inside Islam there are many different positions and there are many positions that are not violent." Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the secretary of state, indicated that the pope "sincerely regrets that certain passages of his address could have sounded offensive to the sensitivities of the Muslim faithful."

Then, in what may be an unprecedented step by a pope, Benedict himself proffered the sort of semi-apology often favored by those feeling the heat. "I am deeply sorry for the reactions in some countries to a few passages of my address," reads the official Vatican translation into English, "which were considered offensive to the sensibility of Muslims. These in fact were a quotation from a medieval text, which do not in any way express my personal thought."

In the Italian original, however, Benedict says only sono rammaricato, which translates as "I am disappointed" or "I regret."

Third reflection: the Muslim uproar has a goal: to prohibit criticism of Islam by Christians and thereby to impose Shariah norms on the West. Should Westerners accept this central tenet of Islamic law, others will surely follow. Retaining free speech about Islam, therefore, represents a critical defense against the imposition of an Islamic order.


The Pope meant well

Muslim leaders should accept apology - and look in the mirror


When Pope Benedict delivered his address last week in Germany, he set out to define his fundamental, deeply held convictions about the role of reason in religion and society. The world's religious cultures, he said, regard the "exclusion of the divine from the universality of reason as an attack on their most profound convictions." Reason and faith must "come together in a new way," he insisted.

These were points worth making, but they have been overshadowed by the highly charged confrontation that has followed the Pope's scholarly address. To understand and evaluate what has led to the anger in the Muslim world, it is important to remember four points:

First, the presentation was an academic lecture, not a speech. I suspect that not a single person who made a negative public comment about the Pope's words had read the full text. Its content is dense and intellectually demanding - too demanding for anyone not schooled in theology, philosophy, history or cultural studies.

Second, the Pope's reference to a colloquy between a 14th century Byzantine emperor and "an educated Persian" on the subject of Christianity and Islam had much less to do with the justification of violence attributed to the Prophet Muhammed than it did with the role of reason in the understanding of faith. Indeed, when the Pope returned to this colloquy in the lecture's concluding paragraph, it was not to reinforce the point about the incompatibility of violence and religion, but to reassert the emperor's point that acting against reason is "contrary to the nature of God."

At the same time, the Pope's inclusion of the colloquy in his lecture did not require the specific reference that was made to the Prophet and the use of violence in the name of religion. If he felt the need to include the reference to Islam and violence, he should also have explicitly acknowledged the major transgressions perpetrated by the Catholic Church against Jews and Muslims alike.

Third, in an informal address given on Sunday, the Pope said that he was "deeply sorry for the reactions in some countries to a few passages" in his lecture, "considered offensive to the sensibility of Muslims."

But this was not simply the conventional form of too many "apologies," which express regret for any offense taken but without assuming responsibility for having perpetrated offense in the first place. The Pope made clear that the quotation from a medieval text did not "in any way express [his] personal thought." It would have been even better, however, if he also had expressed regret for having included the particular reference, especially since it did not really advance his overall argument. The Pope may deserve a B or even a B- for his unprecedented apology, but certainly not a D or an F.

Fourth, the worldwide Islamic community has a major problem that its leading figures have ineffectively addressed. Certainly, most Muslims would never justify the use of violence (whether physical or verbal) in the name of religion, but it cannot be denied that many do, whether openly or tacitly. The enraged reaction to the Pope's lecture is itself a case in point.

What is clearly needed today is exactly what the Pope urged in his lecture: a respect for reason and an appeal to all religious and secular communities to become "partners in the dialogue of cultures."

McBrien is theology professor at the University of Notre Dame and author of the book "Lives of the Popes."


The Unholy Alliance Rolls Over the Pope

By Andrew Walden

September 18, 2006

In what has suddenly been made into a highly controversial speech, the day after September 11, at Bavaria’s University of Regensberg, Pope Benedict describes Christian belief in a God whose words and acts are bound by reason, truth and the law of non-contradiction.  Benedict contrasts this with Islamic belief in a God not bound by anything—including his own words.  Benedict further contrasts Christian belief with that of secular humanists who see reason as being completely unbound of God.

In response, both Islamists and secularists have demanded the Pope apologize. Benedict’s speech is a work of enlightened genius.  He has clearly laid out the differences between Christian culture and Islamic culture and the basis of the clash of civilizations we now experience as the War on Terror. His analysis also explains the underlying cause of the alliance between the western Left and the Islamofascist Right.

Islamist reaction focuses on one sentence in the speech.  Reaching back to 1391, Benedict quotes Byzantine Emperor Manuel II: “Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached.”

Four days later, according to AP: “Pakistan's legislature unanimously condemned Pope Benedict XVI. Lebanon's top Shiite cleric demanded an apology. And in Turkey, the ruling party likened the pontiff to Hitler and Mussolini and accused him of reviving the mentality of the Crusades.

“Across the Islamic world Friday, Benedict's remarks on Islam and jihad in a speech in Germany unleashed a torrent of rage that many fear could burst into violent protests like those that followed publication of caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad.”

Reuters quoted other sources expressing fears for the Pope’s safety and even fear of an attack on Vatican City.

The Islamist reaction proves Manuel II’s 600-year-old point.  The reaction is not one of anger but a calculated attempt to force the Pope to parrot the PC line on Islam. Since Islam need not be internally consistent and it is not bound by reason, it’s only objective can be to assert the power of a God who is so transcendent that He is not bound by anything. If man is created in God’s image then by extension Islamic man is not bound by anything.  (This explains the predilection on the part of some Muslims to lie.) Islamists are not responding to any ‘offense’ to their non-existent morality.  They are asserting the only ‘morality’ they have—the will to power.

“Will to Power” is a key element of Nietzsche ’s philosophy—hence the root of the term, Islamofascist. Moreover the Western “Left’ is today guided far more by Nietzsche existentialist thought than by Marxist thought—hence the alliance between the Western “Left” and the Islamofascist ‘Right.’

Reuters quotes an Indian Muslim leader doing precisely what Manuel II said they would: “Syed Ahmed Bukhari, the chief cleric of New Delhi's historic Jama Masjid, India's largest mosque, extolled Muslims to ‘respond in a manner which forces the Pope to apologize.’”  Note they intend to use “force” not reason.

Reuters quotes an unnamed diplomat pointing out the Pope was, “calling a spade a spade”.

The secularist mouthpiece, New York Times,editorializes, “Pope Benedict XVI has insulted Muslims….”  This is false.  The Pope’s description of the Islamic God as being unbound by reason is not an insult, it is an Islamic article of faith.  What Muslims and secularists fear is the Pope’s decision to choose to enter dialogue asserting his belief in Christianity.  How dare he not “apologize” for being a Christian?  That is the so-called “insult.”

One might “reasonably” ask when will Muslims “apologize” for being Muslim? But they are not bound by reason to the point is lost on them. 

Amazingly the Times continues: “Muslim leaders the world over have demanded apologies… For many Muslims, holy war — jihad — is a spiritual struggle, and not a call to violence.”  In saying this, the Times implicitly recognizes the Islamists are waging a propaganda jihad against the Pope and by extension against Christianity—and they explicitly endorse and join this jihad.  The Times is saying to Islamists, ‘we can join your ‘spiritual’ jihad, but not your violent jihad.

The Times editors are living in a fool’s paradise.  The “spiritual” non-violent jihad of propaganda is merely the flip side of the violent jihad.  Nowhere is that more clear than in the Islamist reaction to the Pope.

With the Pope scheduled to visit Turkey in November the Islamists are rejecting any apology from Vatican spokespersons and demand to hear from the Pope himself.  This would place raging mobs of semi-literate Islamist thugs in the position of forcing the leader of Christendom to bow before them. 

In this demand for submission they are joined by the secularist mouthpiece.  In its September 16 edition the Times editorializes: “He needs to offer a deep and persuasive apology…”  The secularists too seek the Pope’s submission.  Like the Islamists, the secularists are driven only by their will to power.  While the Islamists represent their demented version of God--unrestrained by reason, the secularists represent their demented version of reason--unrestrained by God.  They are united by their self-worshipping world view.  

It should be noted that the carefully staged “anger’ from the Islamic world does not condemn Benedict’s characterization of Islam as a religion where God’s “will is not bound up with any of our categories, even that of rationality...(The Islamic) God is not bound even by his own word….”  This is not seen as an insult.  Islam embraces this description.  In offering this description of Islam, Benedict refers to the views of leading modern French Islamist R. Arnaldez as discussed in the writings of Professor Theodore Khoury of Munster.

Likewise the secularists express no dismay at the pope’s characterization of a secularist as:  “(A) subject (who) then decides, on the basis of his experiences, what he considers tenable in matters of religion, and the subjective ‘conscience’ becomes the sole arbiter of what is ethical.” 

Benedict asserts that without reason, or without God, there can be no modern system of morality.  He explains, “In this way…ethics and religion lose their power to create a community and become (instead) a completely personal matter.”  

Both Islamist and secularist seek to break God and reason apart.  Each claims superiority over the Christian West.  They believe absolute moral license makes them powerful.  As globalization carries the Western tradition of reason throughout the world, both are in decline. 

Where the force of reason is defeated, Islamist and secularist will meet in combat, just as Hitler’s fascists broke their pact with the Soviet Union, invading in June, 1941 after the collapse of the allied forces on the western front.

What the Islamists and the New York Times both fear is having to reply to the Pope’s key point, borrowed from the Byzantine Emperor:  “‘Not to act reasonably, not to act with logos (word or reason) is contrary to the nature of God,’.…  It is to this great logos, to this breadth of reason, that we invite our partners in the dialogue of cultures.”

Their fear of reason can only lead the world to disaster.


The unholy past of the Muslim cleric demanding the Pope's execution


Choudary: Refuses to discuss his dissolute youth

At 39, Anjem Choudary should be a symbol of success for his peers. Born into the working-class family of a market trader in Welling on the outskirts of London, he has risen - thanks to the opportunities offered by the British education system - to become a qualified lawyer.

But it is unlikely his old school will be inviting him to be guest speaker on prize-giving day. Their former pupil is not famous for his elegant oratory in court.

Instead, the articulate Mr Choudary preaches hatred and murder in the streets of Britain to the next generation of young, impressionable Muslims.

This week he stood outside Westminster Cathedral in central London to call for the execution of the Pope as punishment for 'insulting Islam'. He fulminated against Pope Benedict XVl, adding: "Whoever insults the message of Mohammed is going to be subject to capital punishment."

It's a long way from his days as a medical student at Southampton University, where, friends say, he drank, indulged in casual sex, smoked cannabis and even took LSD. He called himself 'Andy' and was famed for his ability to drink a pint of cider in a few seconds.

One former acquaintance said: "At parties, like the rest of us, he was rarely without a joint. The morning after one party, I can remember him getting all the roaches (butts) from the spliffs we had smoked the night before out of the ashtrays, cutting them up and making a new one out of the leftovers.

"He would say he was a Muslim and was proud of his Pakistani heritage, but he did-n't seem to attend any of the mosques in Southampton, and I only knew of him having white girlfriends. He certainly shared a bed with them."

On one occasion, 'Andy' and a friend took LSD together. The friend said: "We took far too much and were hallucinating for 20 hours."

The only sign of religious fervour came in flashes of anger over Salman Rushdie's The Satanic Verses. A friend from that time said: "You didn't want to get him started on that. He would go on and on about the fatwa and he supported calls for the book to be banned. But he would have a glass of cider in his hand when he was carrying on about it."

Choudary failed his first-year exams, switched from medicine to commercial law and did his final year as a law student at Guildford, from 1990 to 1991, before moving to London.

There his legal career stalled briefly and he filled in his time by teaching English as a foreign language in one of the many colleges off Oxford Street.

But eventually, he found a position with a firm of solicitors and began completing his qualifications to become a lawyer. His personal life blossomed too.

In 1996, aged 29, he married Rubana Akhtar and started a family. The couple, who settled in East London, have a daughter aged eight, and sons aged six and one.

Then he met the cleric Sheik Omar Bakri Mohammed at a mosque in Woolwich. Bakri, who is now banned from returning to Britain from Lebanon, had formed Al Muhajiroun, committed to the creation of a worldwide Islamic state, and Choudary quickly became a leading light in the group and its successor organisation, Al Ghurabaa.

He is no longer a practising solicitor and has left his wife and children to concentrate on his extreme brand of Islam. It was Choudary who organised the Danish Embassy protests over the cartoons of the prophet Mohammed earlier this year, at which demonstrators dressed as suicide bombers and banners proclaimed: 'Behead Those Who Insult Islam'.

He lauded the September 11 hijackers as 'magnificent martyrs' and praised Asif Hanif, the British suicide bomber who killed three in Tel Aviv in 2003.

After the July 7 atrocities in London, he vowed he would not tell the police if he knew a terror attack was being planned and urged Muslims to defend themselves against perceived attacks by 'whatever means they have at their disposal'.

His shocking pronouncements could be dismissed by some as the rantings of a mind clouded by religious fervour but Choudary has an audience and, at a time of increasing disaffection among young British Muslims, his activities are carefully monitored by Special Branch.

A security source said: "He is not seen as premier league because he is so conspicuous. He is seen as an irritant but with a potential to inspire impressionable youngsters to go that one stage further."

Despite his hatred of all things British - he says: "If British means adopting British values, then I don't think we can adopt British values. I'm a Muslim living in Britain. I have a British passport, but that's a travel document to me" - he and his family live on state benefits.

Rubana is said by friends to claim £1,700 a month in housing benefit and income support while Choudary has also claimed £202 a month in income support.

Yesterday, Choudary declined to talk about his past dissolute life, dismissing it as 'irrelevant'. He said: "I was born a Muslim and I have done my best to be a good Muslim all my life."

And the drugs and alcohol? "That's not really part of what's happening in the world today. Anyway, it is all fabricated. It is complete nonsense.

"My personal family situation and background is irrelevant to the situation in which we live. I can talk about politics and Islam but I don't want to talk about my personal life."

He was too busy to answer any further questions. He now belongs to a sect he refuses to name and continues to deny any direct involvement in terrorism.

In a recent interview, he said: "Do I know how to make liquid explosives? No, I'm not military-trained. I can make an omelette."

A flippant remark from one whose extremism is so laced with threats of violence.