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The Left and Islam
Pakistani Brit Calls Out Lefty Indulgence of Islamism

Maajid Nawaz is a sharply dressed, cosmopolitan European campaigner against “theocracy” and patriarchal society, so you’d think that he’d win plaudits from the left. Instead he’s been attacked in the pages of the Guardian—because he’s a Brit of Pakistani descent campaigning against Islamic radicalism. Somewhere in the past few years, the international left’s wires seem to have gotten crossed on the subject of Islam, such that the angriest voices in Islam are treated as the most “authentic” (frequently by privileged white Western lefties), while those in Islam who speak out against such voices, no matter how just their cause or how deep their roots in the community, get little support. Nawaz writes in the Daily Beast:

The great irony is that, unlike many of today’s champagne socialists and shisha-jihadists my entire life has been a prototype of their archetypal aggrieved Muslim. Unlike the Guardian’s private school, Oxbridge-educated journalist David Shariatmadari, I am a state school-educated Muslim and racial minority. I have been stabbed at by neo-Nazis, falsely arrested at gunpoint by Essex police, expelled from college, divorced, estranged from my child, and tortured in Egyptian prison, and mandatorily profiled. I’ve had my DNA forcibly taken at Heathrow Airport under Schedule 7 Laws, which deprive terror suspects of the right to silence at UK ports of entry and exit, among much else. I’ve been blacklisted from other countries. I am every grievance regressive leftists traditionally harp on. Yet their first-world bourgeois brains seem to malfunction because I refuse to spew theocratic hate, or fit their little “angry Muslim” box.

Well, Nawaz himself isn’t backing down. And sometimes the simplest truths take the most courage to say:

[I]t is as plain as the light of day to me—a Pakistani-British liberal Muslim—that any desire to impose any version of Islam over anyone anywhere, ever, is a fundamental violation of our basic civil liberties. But Islamism has been rising in the UK for decades. Over the years, in survey after survey, attitudes have reflected a worrying trend. A quarter of British Muslims sympathised with the Charlie Hebdo shootings. 0% have expressed tolerance for homosexuality. A third have claimed that killing for religion can be justified, while 36% have thought apostates should be killed. 40% have wanted the introduction of sharia as law in the UK and 33% have expressed a desire to see the return of a worldwide theocratic Caliphate. Is it any wonder then, that from this milieu up to 1,000 British Muslims have joined ISIS, which is more than joined the Armyreserves. In a case that has come to symbolize the extent of the problem, an entire family of 12 recently migrated to the Islamic State. By any reasonable assessment, something has gone badly wrong in Britain.

But for those who I have come to call Europe’s regressive-left how could Islamist tyranny—such as burying women neck deep in the ground and stoning them to death—possibly be anything other than an authentic expression of Muslim rage at Western colonial hegemony? For don’t you know Muslims are angry? So angry, in fact, that they wish to enslave indigenous Yazidi women for sex, throw Syrian gays off tall buildings and burn people alive? All because… Israel. For Europe’s regressive-left—which is fast penetrating U.S. circles too—Muslims are notexpected to be civilized. And Muslim upstarts who dare to challenge this theocratic fascism are nothing but an inconvenience to an uncannily Weimar-like populism that screams simplistically: It is all the West’s fault.

Except, as Nawaz notes, it isn’t. Voices like his need to be heard and encouraged. The whole essay is definitely worth your time.

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  • theresanursemom

    This IS already happening in America, as blacks have not been expected to be civilized since the days of MLK. You can easily see how well this has worked out for the black community. We are well underway in doing this to Latinos and all the muslims will follow as well. Cavemen don’t tend to do well in civilized society, and it’s all those evil oppressive white people’s fault that they can’t just accept people as they are, so they discriminate accordingly. In America and the west in general whites are expected to be perfect while others can act upon whatever impulse tickles their fancy and if any negative consequences follow, it’s all somehow the fault of the whites.

    • JR

      Agree 100%. I think wars of the 21st century will be race wars. I hope that I am wrong. And if I’m right that I am 6 feet under when the poo really hits the fan.

    • mdmusterstone

      Success? Here is the
      best formula for success I’ve ever heard of, courtesy of Winston Churchill and
      done in twelve words.

      “Success is moving from defeat to defeat and not loosing your enthusiasm!”

  • http://www.librarything.com/profile/Bretzky1 Brett Champion

    “Somewhere in the past few years, the
    international left’s wires seem to have gotten crossed on the subject of Islam,
    such that the angriest voices in Islam are treated as the most “authentic”
    (frequently by privileged white Western lefties)…”

    That’s not that surprising. The Western left long ago rejected the notion of personal responsibility in favor of a victimization narrative when it came to issues of class. With the rise of multiculturalism, they have merely extended that narrative to issues of identity, be it race, ethnicity, religion, gender, etc.

  • FriendlyGoat

    Well, it’s good to know that there are some Muslims somewhere with the courage to call themselves “liberal” and the personal circumstances to keep themselves alive while they do it.

    It’s even better to know there are people from the “liberal” side of anything with the SENSE to call out everyone else on the left who is mollycoddling or “accommodating” Islamism as a philosophy or blaming Israel for the followers of Mohammad being misled in their theology.

    I can’t blame Nawaz or anyone else born and raised in a Muslim place for being taught Islam like nearly everyone else in such a place.

    All of us are “born into” our cultures, and many of us are “born into” our religions. So we grow up saying we “are” this or that.

    But Nawaz now appears to be appalled that 36% of BRITISH Muslims say they think people who might grow into adulthood and decide to quit Islam should be killed. Britain is not Saudi Arabia or Pakistan or Iran. When BRITISH Muslims want to execute the apostates, you can know immediately why the entirety of Islam is a complete crock. It is a complete crock because the source material of the religion condones or encourages killing people who do not agree to be dominated by it. We might excuse those coming from the norm of a place where everyone is already dominated by it. When people who have lived in a free place still agree with the religious coercion, THEN YOU BLAME THE RELIGION ITSELF BECAUSE THERE IS NOTHING ELSE TO BLAME.

    I don’t normally copy my own posts thread to thread. But I put the following paragraph under another article here yesterday and it fits here too:

    I am solidly on the left side of American politics and I have been railing for years that Islam is a complete falsehood which should be actively opposed wherever it exists as a philosophy. Because its claims are simply not true. Because it is not liberal. Because it intentionally falsifies and minimizes Jesus. Because it ridiculously places its precepts above all other human thought. Because it seeks to dominate. Because Muslims do not have enough intellectual courage to let other Muslims quit the stupid thing. Because Mohammad is not really “a” prophet, much less “the” prophet (of anything). Please don’t generalize about everyone on the left. Some of us know there is no such thing as the goofy word “Islamophobia” which seeks to excuse bad theology and its totally tragic world view—–and we’ve known it a long time

    • theresanursemom

      If only more of those of you on the left saw this barbarism for what it truly is. It stuns me that our president would even consider negotiating some kind of arrangement with a country that actively and unashamedly states its desire to destroy us to all who will listen. Especially so when this “deal” offers little benefit for us in the best case scenario, while the worst case could be the end of civilization, if not life on this planet.

      • FriendlyGoat

        While I am for all of us simply saying “no” to Islam on a philosophical level—–without being personal haters of any personal Muslims—–I’m not sure that a president can really do that, due to his/her responsibility for diplomacy and relations with other nations. I would rather our negotiations with Iran had started from a premise of “we think your Ayatollah is a nut and we do not trust him or anything said or done with any Islamic “Supreme Leader” in power”, but I guess I do understand why neither George Bush’s nor Barack Obama’s State Department talks like that. We, in the comment section, are more free than those with the burden of Sarah Palin’s famous words about “actual responsibilities”.

        Obama’s problem, I think, with this is that the current sanctions were not really preventing Iran from developing a weapon. Doing nothing was not much of an option. Initiating a war is not much of an option, too, which is why George Bush declined to bomb Iran in 2008 when some people were asking him to. It appears that the can may be kicked down the road to President Trump.

        • texasjimbo

          So he can say “no” to the traditional Christianity of his fellow citizens but not the radical religious beliefs of people who want to kill/subjugate every American. Glad he wasn’t president in the 1940’s.

          • FriendlyGoat

            I assume you’re talking about Obama and I do not agree that, as president, he is saying “no” to the traditional Christianity of his fellow citizens. No, he’s not a Republican-style church person. We don’t have one of those because we did not want or elect one of those.

            There are tons of people on the political right speaking the God and guns line, the anti-abortion line 24/7, the “let’s protect the wedding bakers line”—-while being bought for no purpose but high-end tax cuts and deregulation of incorporated business. Obama ain’t that so he doesn’t talk like that. Neither is he against Christians.

    • Angel Martin

      i believe that the real issue is that the western leftist elite will take the side of any “other” that appears powerful and willing to challenge the basic norms of western society.

      the communists had a huge pile of bodies and an ideology that should have repelled anyone who wished for a free society.

      but, Communism’s crimes didn’t faze its many western supporters, and no amount of documentation of ISIS/jihadist/islamist crimes will deter their western leftist apologists.

      • FriendlyGoat

        Evidently there are such leftists. But not all of us. Some of us are not at all the haters of America, the flag, free enterprise, Christianity, etc. etc. that is supposed by some conservatives when we call ourselves liberals.

  • Donald Campbell

    The Left believes all evil is committed by white males from western civilization. Therefore it is a totally impossible contradiction that they could hold that an ancient Arab (Mohammed) could concoct such a vile and evil religion as Islam. Case closed.

  • a6z

    I fear for Nawaz’s life. As Stalin said, “No man, no problem.”

  • bittman

    Since the days of Mohammed the all-encompassing political/religious/socialistic aspects Islam has demanded that its followers spread their beliefs to the entire world and give the conquered people three choices: (1) to convert, (2) to be killed OR to be a slave, or (3) to pay a tax and become a second-class citizen. The Muslims have conquered or lay siege to many parts of Asia, Africa, and Europe from 700 AD onward and is still occurring today. They were responsible for Europe’s Dark Ages since they made trade on the Mediterranean impossible. After reading the Koran (and presumably the Sira and the Hadith since they contain the guidance for the treatment of Kafirs (i.e., non-Muslims), jihad, etc), Thomas Jefferson sent the US Navy to the Mediterranean to fight the Barbary (Muslim) pirates who had been raiding the US ships trying to trade with Europe. People who resist the immigration of Muslims into their country are not being Islamaphobic — they are being realistic. Europe is in great danger of being taken over by Muslims within 1-3 decades.

  • Dave M.

    Remember, the Left and Radical Islam have the same boss.

  • teapartydoc

    The left loves their surrogate murderers. Leftism is at base made up of varying combinations of envy, hatred, and moral narcissism. The hate shows itself in the complacent acceptance of murders of those that do not represent support of their positions perpetrated by those upon whom they project their moral narcissism. This has been true in all of the conflicts of the past hundred years.

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