This is what passes for serious analysis these days, at least among the easy marks who publish The Daily Beast. (Emails to me from the Islamic supremacist snake-oil salesman Reza Aslan, which will expose him further, coming soon.) “Why Obama Can Be Proud of Indonesia,” by Reza Aslan in the Daily Beast, November 10:
As President Obama departs Jakarta, the city of his boyhood, he can celebrate Indonesia’s turnaround from dictatorship to vital Muslim democracy–and just maybe a vision of the future of Islam. […]
At a time when most Americans believe that Islamic values and democratic ideals cannot be reconciled, Indonesia has proved otherwise.
Indonesia, on the other hand, is a prosperous and pluralistic democracy–a free country with free elections and a constitution that guarantees religious freedoms for all its citizens. It is a nation that has thrown off the yoke of dictatorship and created a successful indigenous democratic system founded upon the mores and values of its Muslim majority yet equally protective of the rights and freedoms of its many ethnic and religious minorities.
By no measure can Egypt still be considered the center of the Muslim world; no country in the Middle East can legitimately make that claim. This may be the region where Islam was born, but it is also the place where Islam has lately festered and decayed. While Muslims in the Middle East are still fighting each other over whose vision of Islam will rule them all, Muslims in Indonesia have almost effortlessly fused their Islamic identity with the requirements of a modern constitutional state.
True, Indonesia still deals with a tiny radical fringe that claims loyalty to al Qaeda and employs terror to try to overthrow the state. But unlike in many parts of the Middle East, these radical groups enjoy no sympathy from the wider population. In last year’s parliamentary elections, Indonesia’s largest and most successful Islamist party, the PKS, barely managed 8 percent of the popular vote. […]
So as the president moves on to the next country on his Asia tour, he should be proud that the country he is leaving behind, the country in which he spent his boyhood years, is today not only one of America’s most vital Muslim partners. It just may be the future of Islam.
Here is a bit of what the clownish Aslan didn’t tell you about Indonesia:
“Indonesia: Uphold Religious Freedom: Cease Threats Against Ahmadiyah Community to Ban Their Religion,” from Human Rights Watch, November 4:
(New York) – President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono should uphold freedom of religion in Indonesia and repudiate statements by his religious affairs minister calling for the banning of the Ahmadiyah religion, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to the Indonesian president.
Since August 2010, Religious Affairs Minister Ali Suryadharma has repeatedly called for the Ahmadiyah faith to be banned in Indonesia. President Yudhoyono has failed to repudiate those statements, leading many to believe that he supports such an action. In recent years Islamist militants have repeatedly attacked and burned Ahmadiyah homes and mosques. Anti-Ahmadiyah violence has increased since Yudhoyono announced a prohibition on teachings or public displays of the Ahmadiyah religion in June 2008.
“President Yudhoyono gave a nationwide speech about religious tolerance in the United States, but what will he tell visiting US President Barack Obama about the burned Ahmadiyah mosques in Indonesia?” said Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “Yudhoyono should take clear steps to protect religious freedom, starting with loudly rejecting any ban on the Ahmadis, and ensuring that those responsible for attacks on Ahmadiyah homes and mosques are prosecuted.”
“USCIRF Annual Report 2010 – The Commission’s Watch List: Indonesia,” from the UNHCR, April 29, 2010:
The government of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has taken positive steps to address terrorism and past sectarian violence in the regions of Ambon and Central Sulawesi, to bring peace to the region of Aceh, and to build popular support for democracy. However, during his presidency, religious minorities have experienced harassment, intimidation, discrimination, and even violence perpetuated by groups espousing intolerance and extremism under the banner of Islamic orthodoxy. The activities of some extremist groups are sometimes tolerated by segments of the Indonesian government. In addition, despite legal protections for religious freedom, national decrees and provincial laws have been used to restrict rather than advance the freedom of religion and belief.
Based on these concerns, USCIRF continues to place Indonesia on its Watch List for 2010. Indonesia has been on the Commission’s Watch List since 2002, after sectarian violence erupted in Central Sulawesi and the Makukus.
And recently at Jihad Watch:
There are many more where those came from. Search the archives and you’ll find plenty.