The sprinkler ticks on a summer eve.
On the porch they gaze into the end of the day.
The barking of a dog fades into the streetlight’s buzzing
And as one listens, he thinks he hears
a sound that lies behind the shrubbery’s drowsy leaves,
trace of a sound of someone screaming,
on the far side of night in Guatemala.
On the soft back lawn
the moon falls down upon her knees.
When the wind calms you can hear her,
Mariela, in liquid, melting veils,
whisper on the breath of the night air.
From Islamica Magazine
By Vincenzo Oliveti
In a recent article in The Spectator magazine in the UK, the evangelical leader Patrick Sookhdeo takes a swipe at Muslims and their religion. Does his case stand up to scrutiny?
Patrick Sookhdeo’s Article (July 30, 2005) in London’s The Spectator , “The Myth of a Moderate Islam” reflects a dangerous trend in the war on terror. Under the guise of informing Westerners about Islam, he is in fact spreading the very same disinformation that anti- Islamic polemics have been based upon for over 1,000 years. This plays directly into the hands of Osama bin Laden, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and others, for it encourages the “clash of civilizations” they so appallingly desire. It is indeed of the utmost importance that we learn more about Islam and fight the scourge of extremism with all the tools possible. But Sookhdeo and those like him corrupt this process, seeking to advance their own agenda by turning the war on terror into an ideological war against Islam.
Sookhdeo’s bias is evident from the outset. He argues that terrorists truly represent Islam, writing: “If they say they do it in the name of Islam, we must believe them. Is it not the height of illiberalism and arrogance to deny them the right to define themselves?” The remainder of the essay, however, is an extensive effort to deny other Muslims the right to define themselves by rejecting extremist interpretations of Islam. In fact, less than 5 % of Muslims could be classified as fundamentalist in outlook, and of that 5 %, less than 0.01 % have shown any tendency toward enacting terrorism or “religious violence.” It is thus “the height of illiberalism” to define as terrorists over 1.3 billion Muslims who have nothing to do with “religious violence” because of the misdeeds of a fringe minority of 0.005 %. At most, one in every 200,000 Muslims can be accused of terrorism. That is to say there are a maximum of about 65,000 terrorists worldwide—roughly the same figure as the number of murderers on the loose in the U.S. alone, with over 20,000 homicides a year and a population of only 300 million. Read more…