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Saracen21stC posted a topic in News RoomHeadscarved women new targets of anti-Islam groups 23 June 2013 /EMRE DEMİR, PARIS Headscarved Muslim women are increasingly becoming targets of persons with Islamophobic sentiments in France, with the number of racist attacks against them rising dramatically in the last two months, according to observers in the country. Several of the attacks on headscarved women covered by the media in the last two months took place in Argenteuil, a suburb in northwestern Paris. The representatives of Muslim organizations in France are deeply concerned that these incidents are linked. They highlight that new extreme right-wing organizations in France such as Bloc Identitaire and Riposte Laique are gaining in popularity among young people by carrying out anti-Islamic attacks. Evaluating the recent attacks targeting Muslim headscarved women in France to Sunday’s Zaman, Raphael Liogier -- an academic from the faculty of political science at the University of Provence, Aix-Marseille I -- said Islamophobia has been replaced by paranoia. Liogier, the author of “The Islamization Myth,” said: “We can no longer talk about Islamophobia. If we were in a situation of phobia, it would not lead to acting out but just to rejection. Therefore, we cannot define these incidents as the results of a phobia, but paranoia. In the case of a phobia, you can be in rejection or fear. However, we observe more aggressive actions against ‘the other’ in these incidents. Such incidents were not the case before 2003 or 2004.” Stating that this anti-Muslim paranoia has intensified since 2003 when US troops invaded Iraq, Liogier said: “There were no theses claiming that Muslim people had a plan to impose their cultures on French society, or that Muslims were conducting colonialism in reverse in France before 2003. The physical attacks that veiled women have recently been exposed to are not considered by some Islamophobic authors to be the result of phobia,” but a legitimate self-defense movement against the aggression of Muslims.” Noting that the extremist marginal groups such as Bloc Identitaire and Riposte Laique conducting recent racist attacks against veiled women in France cannot be explained with leftist or rightist ideologies, Liogier said: “Such actions have not originated from rightist or leftist ideas. They are fomenting the idea that Europe’s identity is being shattered. These groups gathered around the myth that France is being Islamicized. The rightist groups use religious and national values such as those represented by Joan of Arc to create the perception of a threat, while leftists use freedom of expression and gender equality. Such ideas can sometimes be influential on a wide range of French political parties with various political ideologies.” French Muslims critical of government’s indifference Critical of the lack of interest that the French government and media have shown for the racist attacks targeting veiled women in the last two months, Samy Debah -- president of the Collective against Islamophobia in France (CCIF) -- told Sunday’s Zaman that it is very embarrassing that French politicians remained silent in the face of the attacks. He added: “What is Interior Minister Manuel Valls waiting for to react against the attacks or release a statement condemning the attacks? The French government should take necessary precautions for such racist attacks against Muslims as soon as possible. According to the CCIF’s annual report released in 2012, headscarved women are targeted in 87 percent of racist attacks that Muslims are exposed to in France.” Amar Lafsar, president of the Union of Islamic Organizations of France (UOIF), a national body with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, told Sunday’s Zaman that Muslims living in France say they live in fear. “We know France is not an Islamophobic country. However, the Muslims victimized by racists should regularly inform French public officials about the attacks they experience.” Abdallah Zekri, president of the Paris-Based Anti-Islamophobia Observatory, told Sunday’s Zaman that the number of racist attacks that Muslims experience in France has risen by 42 percent over the past year. Noting that a recent ban on burqa-like Islamic veils and discussions over halal meat in France played a great part in the widespread trend of racist attacks against veiled Muslim women in the country, Zekri commented: “The fact that politicians have recently increased the frequency of their provocative remarks, in which they show Muslims as targets, have also led the extremist rightist groups to intensify their attacks against the Muslims in France.” The French ban on wearing a burqa in public was enacted in April 2011. Under the terms of the legislation, anyone wearing the headdress in public will face a 150 euro fine or be forced to take lessons in French citizenship. The act drew harsh reactions and led to debates in France when it was first adopted. Some recent attacks targeting veiled women in France The latest attack against a veiled woman in France took place on June 13 in the Paris suburb of Argenteuil. A pregnant Muslim woman, Leila O., was physically attacked by two men and was seriously injured. The 21-year-old, who was four months pregnant, suffered a miscarriage. The attackers first tried taking her headscarf off and later cut her hair and tore part of her clothing. After she screamed out that she was pregnant, one of the attackers started kicking her in the stomach. A 33-year-old Turkish headscarved woman was physically assaulted by a motorcyclist while walking on the street in the French city of Reims on June 9. A woman of North African origin was physically attacked by a man with her 1-year-old baby in Beziers on May 24. The woman was injured in the attack. Again on May 24, Jean-Claude Boistard -- the mayor of Montsoult, a suburb in northern Paris – refused to allow a woman to enter the municipal building since she was wearing a veil. Boistard defended himself by stating that because the municipal building is a public place, no one can enter the building with religious symbols. A 17-year-old Muslim girl, Rabia, was accosted by two persons in the street in Argenteuil on May 20. The assailants tore her veil off and assaulted her. Regarding the incident, Rabia told Le Parisien that the assailants were yelling “Dirty Arab” and “Dirty Muslim” at her. Two men physically assaulted a 21-year-old Muslim woman in Argenteuil on May 1 and ripped her veil off. The French police raided the home of a suspected assailant who was allegedly preparing to stage an armed attack on Muslims on June 19 in Argenteuil. http://www.todayszaman.com/news-318968-.html
How we should react to websites that vilify Islam, and what are the ways in which we can support Islam? Praise be to Allah. Firstly: The websites that speak ill of the religion of Allah and of His Messenger (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) are no different from the gatherings where people say similar things that constitute kufr. In both cases it is haraam to stay in such gatherings and it is haraam to visit such websites, except for one who will object to what they do and is able to put a stop to these offences. If he is not able to do that, and those people carry on with what they are doing, then it is not permissible to remain in that gathering and it is not permissible to visit those websites. Allah, may He be exalted, says (interpretation of the meaning): “And when you (Muhammad SAW) see those who engage in a false conversation about Our Verses (of the Qur’an) by mocking at them, stay away from them till they turn to another topic. And if Shaytaan (Satan) causes you to forget, then after the remembrance sit not you in the company of those people who are the Zalimoon (polytheists and wrongdoers, etc.)” [al-An‘aam 6:68] “And it has already been revealed to you in the Book (this Quran) that when you hear the Verses of Allah being denied and mocked at, then sit not with them, until they engage in a talk other than that; (but if you stayed with them) certainly in that case you would be like them” [an-Nisa’ 4:140]. The scholars of Islam – in the past and at present – have warned ordinary Muslims against reading the books of those who promote innovation and misguidance, and against debating with heretics and atheists, except for those Muslims who have knowledge of Islam and of the beliefs and ideology of the person he is arguing against, lest the specious arguments of those who oppose Islam confuse the weak or ignorant person. We have discussed this clearly in the answers to questions no. 126041, 92781 and 96231. Secondly: Based on the above, it is not permissible for one who is lacking in knowledge and insight to go to these websites and look at them; it is also not permissible for him to debate with those disbelievers and try to refute them, because he does not have strong insight, by which we mean correct and sound knowledge that will protect his belief and with which he can stand up to the enemies. Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allah have mercy on him) said: With regard to his words – i.e., the words of ‘Ali ibn Abi Taalib (may Allah be pleased with him) in his will – (in which he says of one who is weak in faith): “Doubt will take root in his heart when he encounters the slightest specious argument”, that is because of his lack of knowledge and insight. This is unlike the one who has deep knowledge; even if specious arguments come to him like the waves of the sea, they cannot affect his certain faith or instil any doubt in his mind, because he is well versed in knowledge, so specious arguments do not faze him. Rather, if they come to him, he wards them off by means of his knowledge, and the specious arguments will be utterly defeated and crushed. Doubts can enter a person’s mind and prevent him from seeing the truth, but once he acquires deep knowledge, those doubts will not have any impact on him; rather his knowledge and certain faith will increase by refuting it and finding out how false it is. But if he does not have deep knowledge, he will develop doubts the first time he encounters any specious argument. So he should deal with these doubts, otherwise they will accumulate in his heart until they become very strong and control his thoughts. End quote from Miftaah Dar as-Sa‘aadah, 1/140 Even the seeker of knowledge is not permitted to enter these chat rooms if he is not going to be allowed to speak the truth. If he knows that his argument against the disbelieving opponent will be erased, then he should not stay with them at all or take part in their gatherings or chat rooms, because his presence in places of misguidance will cause certain damage without achieving any good such as changing evil or speaking out against it and enjoining what is good. Thirdly: As it is not permissible for the ordinary Muslim, or even for the seeker of knowledge or scholar, to enter these websites if they will not be allowed to answer back, then what is the solution? The answer is that the solution is propagating sound beliefs in chat rooms and websites that allow the people of Islam to speak the word of truth they have, without erasing their words. The solution is to set up websites that collect specious arguments and refute them on the basis of knowledge, and to tell the Muslims to refer to these sites to learn about their religion and find out what the enemies of Islam have of ignorance and lies. Fourthly: Supporting Islam is obligatory for every Muslim according to what he is able to do, whether he is an ordinary Muslim or a scholar, male or female; he can do something to support Islam and support the Messenger (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him). That includes the following: 1. Increasing his knowledge of Islam, seeking knowledge and learning, so that he will be able to protect himself against the specious arguments of the enemies of Islam, and so that he can increase in certainty that he is following the clear truth. 2. The Muslim should be obedient to his Lord, may He be exalted, and he should keep away from what He has forbidden. This is one of the greatest things that the Muslim can do to support his religion. Allah, may He be exalted, says (interpretation of the meaning): “O you who believe! If you help (in the cause of) Allah, He will help you, and make your foothold firm” [Muhammad 47:7]. Shaykh Muhammad al-Ameen ash-Shanqeeti (may Allah have mercy on him) said: Those who have Muslim names but commit all kinds of sin then say “Allah will support us” are deceived, because they are not among the party of Allah who are promised His support, as is quite obvious. What is meant by the believers’ support of Allah is their support of His religion and His Book, and their efforts and striving to make His word supreme and to establish His limits on earth, obeying His commands and avoiding what He has forbidden, and judging between His slaves in accordance with what He revealed to His Messenger (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him). End quote from Adwa’ al-Bayaan, 7/252 3. He should play a part in spreading educational and da‘wah websites among Muslims and others, by making email lists that can be used for correspondence or by corresponding with friends he knows so that each one may play his role in spreading this goodness and knowledge among people. 4. He can also support active Islamic websites and chat rooms on Paltalk. The Muslim should also support Islamic activists who are playing their role in supporting Islam. 5. Enabling daa‘iyahs and seekers of knowledge to devote their time to calling people to the religion of Allah and teaching the Muslims the rulings of Islam. There is an urgent need to enable some of these people to devote their time to undertaking the mission of da‘wah and education. And Allah is the source of strength. Islam Q&A http://islamqa.info/en/ref/143146
‘I am sorry, O Prophet…’ Majed Al-Sugairi Okaz/Saudi Gazette MADINAH – Former Dutch Islamophobe and a former leading member of far-right Dutch politician Geert Wilders’ party Arnoud Van Doorn visited the Prophet’s Masjid in Madinah to pray and say sorry for becoming part of a blasphemous film. Doorn was among the Freedom Party leaders who produced the blasphemous film, Fitna. Last month he reverted to Islam after an extensive study about the religion and the Prophet (peace be upon him). He said that the worldwide outrage against the film made him study about the Prophet (pbuh) and that eventually led to his conversion. He headed for Makkah to perform Umrah after meeting the two imams of the Prophet’s Masjid, Sheikh Ali Al-Hudaifi and Sheikh Salah Al-Badar, who enlightened him on how to lead the life of a good Muslim and confront challenges facing Islam in the West. A member of the Dutch parliament and The Hague City Council, Doorn announced his decision to accept Islam on his Twitter profile. He also posted a tweet in Arabic declaring that “there is no god but Allah and Muhammad is his Prophet.” At first, other users took the news as a joke. After all, an active supporter of a notorious Dutch hater of Islam, Wilders, he repeatedly approved Islamophobic statements and public actions, and personally participated in them. But Doorn, who now serves as a regional adviser at the City Hall in The Hague, personally confirmed his decision to practice Islam in an official letter to the city mayor. Most recently, the politician filed a formal application to the mayor of the city to allow him to perform prayers obligatory for Muslims during his working hours. “I can understand people are skeptic, especially that it is unexpected for many of them,” Doorn told Al-Jazeera English satellite channel. “This is a very big decision, which I have not taken lightly.” “In my own close circle people have known that I have been actively researching the Qur’an, Hadith, Sunnah and other writings for almost a year now,” he said. “In addition, I have had numerous conversations with Muslims about the religion.” Driven by his party’s anti-Islam discourse, Doorn decided to dig in for the truth about the religion himself. “I have heard so many negative stories about Islam, but I am not a person who follows opinions of others without doing my own research,” he said. “Therefore, I have actually started to deepen my knowledge of Islam out of curiosity.” The 46-year-old has continued on The Hague Council as an independent candidate since splitting from Wilders’s party. Doorn’s decision to embrace Islam has won mixed reactions in the Netherlands. “According to some people I am a traitor, but according to most others I have actually made a very good decision,” he told Al-Jazeera. “The reactions are generally positive and I also received quite some support via twitter. “It feels good that people who do not know me personally have understanding of my situation and support me in my choice.” Asked if he now regretted joining the Freedom Party, he replied: “I have learned that every experience in life has a purpose. However, with the knowledge I have today, I would have undoubtedly made a different choice.” For the Dutch politician, finding Islam was finally guiding him to the true path in his life. “I have made mistakes in life as many others. From these mistakes I have learned a lot,” Doorn said. “And by my conversion to Islam I have the feeling that I finally found my path. I realize that this is a new start and that I still have much to learn as well.” http://www.saudigazette.com.sa/index.cfm?method=home.regcon&contentid=20130422162428