Jihad Watch reader Mike has alerted me to a reader review of my book The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) at Amazon.com. Because it is indicative of a common tendency, I decided to post this extract here:
I found this book to be one of the most bigoted, hateful, historically distorted, and twisted tracts that I have ever read. I will not take the time to go into detail as the book just is not worth it…
This reminded me of an email I received awhile back from a close associate of a prominent Islamic apologist who enjoys some influence among the ignorant and easily led in Washington:
You have no idea what’s going on with any of this — and you WON’T because nobody who DOES know will be wasting their time telling you.
It further reminded me of Amir Taheri’s article in the New York Post yesterday, which expansively claims that the jihadists have hijacked Islam without actually specifying how exactly they have done it, or what obvious Islamic doctrines they are transgressing.
All this is as commonplace as the air we breathe. Every day we hear that the jihadists are out of the mainstream, are twisting Islamic teachings, and so on, but at most all we get as an explanation of exactly how are bland affirmations that Islam forbids killing innocents, forbids suicide, allows for war only in self-defense, etc. — all of which have been refuted many times over by jihadists, with the refutations remaining unanswered by peaceful Muslims.
The Amazon reviewer above later adds: “It is clear that one of the author’s thinly veiled agendas is to disparage the ‘liberal establishment’ for ignoring and even aiding the ‘Mohammedan menace.'” I still have the Word document of this book on my hard drive, and I just searched: the words “liberal establishment” and “Mohammadan menace” appear nowhere in the book. This is the kind of analysis that passes for criticism of my work: outright fabrications. Just once, I’d like to see someone who really thinks that my books are inaccurate explain in detail how that is so, with copious references to the Qur’an, Sunnah, and fiqh — instead of just saying it isn’t worth bothering.
But this is a much larger question than just my books. Western governments have invested heavily in the proposition that mainstream, “true” Islam is peaceful, and that the overwhelming majority of Muslims in Western countries accept the core values of Western pluralism. Yet this has been blind trust. No one has yet formulated an Islamic theology and jurisprudence that actually provides for these things, and definitively refutes the jihadists using Islamic texts. I do not believe it can be done, and I think that official Washington needs to be cognizant of that fact. From those who claim that it has been done I have only received airy affirmations that it isn’t worth bothering to show me.
All right. One more time I am asking for anyone of good will to show me. Send me examples of Islamic religious scholars rejecting, on Islamic grounds, jihad violence against non-Muslims; rejecting the idea that Sharia law should be instituted in the Muslim and non-Muslim world; and teaching the idea that non-Muslims and Muslims should live together indefinitely as equals. Send me rejections of the ideas that women should not enjoy full equality of rights with men. Send me information that shows that those who write such rejections are not lone voices crying in the wilderness, with the wolves of Islamic orthodoxy ready to pounce upon them, but that they represent broad traditions within Islam and have large followings.
I’ll be right here, at firstname.lastname@example.org.