The myth of moderation

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Something very interesting is going on in the US these days. On the one hand, a cloned Hutton Inquiry is underway to whitewash successful 9/11-operation of the Neo-cons and Zionists’ with prior knowledge of the US administration.

On the other, the neo-mods of Islam –” which include all shades from “liberal” to “progressive,” “moderate,” and “enlightened moderate” Muslims –” have intensified their efforts to establish themselves as the only acceptable “moderates” in the eyes of the real culprits of 9/11.[1]

Soon after 9/11, leading media outlets started printing desperate pleas of the neo-mods of Islam for recognition. They called the US administration not to leave them high and dry like other Muslim allies. They assured the establishment in all possible ways that they are the only reliable to rely upon in the administration’s crusade for transforming the Muslim world in the US image.

Irrespective of the confusing fog of clichés, such as “normative principles” and “empirical reality,” there is no denying the fact that the centuries old campaign to classify Muslims has intensified after the fall of Soviet Union. A cursory look at the Western literature over the last 20 years will testify to this fact.

The term “fundamentalist” was further classified and associated with extremism and terrorism in a way that any mention to fundamentalism now leads people to think of nothing else, but terrorism.

The neo-mods of Islam played an enormous role in promoting the misconception that there are a diverse set of Muslims, who claim to be the upholders of different types of Islam.

What is interesting in all of this is not the western demand for moderation. Actually it has been the Neo-cons and Zionist plan to divide Muslims to which many Muslims responded with supplying “moderation” in return for acceptability and the favours they need according to their respective status.

The latest attempts of these diverse groups of opportunists are directed at proving which the actual “moderates” among them are.

This article seeks to examine the real basis of classification among human beings, which has been narrowed down only to Muslims with a variety of rancid notions and confusing clichés. It will try to show that there is no place in Islam for the kind of classification vigorously promoted by the neo-mods of Islam.

It sounds nice to give diverse examples of the Taliban, Brotherhood, Al-Qaeda, etc. and call it empirical reality. When looked from a shallow perspective, these groups might seem relatively moderate or extreme when compared in relation to each other.

What is difficult for the self-proclaimed “moderates” to show is the bottom line of “moderateness.” Where does the advocates-of-war-promoted moderation end? This is necessary to determine because, for example, Daniel Pipes is out to condemn one of the avowed "moderate" as "radical." (See: http://www.danielpipes.org/article/1659)

If Muslims, who never get tired of labelling themselves as "moderates," are considered as "radicals," all the rest must be criminal mass-murderers and terrorists, who could not even be described in the available words for bad people.

Second, who sets the bench mark of moderation which the “moderates” pre-suppose in their blind quest for recognition?

Third, who is the judge? Who gauges deviation or conformity of individuals, groups or states with reference to these benchmarks?

Undoubtedly, the judge for the neo-mods is the US. It is proved from the appeals of neo-mods to the US establishment to support them and asking it to “delegitimize the discourse coming from rogue Islamists.”[2] What kind of contest of opinion and interpretation is this in which one side –” liberal –” is seeking US support for delegitimizing others and promote the neo-mods. Imagine the power of the neo-mods’ opinion which cannot validate itself without a solid support from the ziono-fascists.

The way Muslims respond to injustice, occupations and various other forms of exploitations is absolutely not the criteria to moderation. As long as the self-appointed judges of moderation do not put themselves in the shoes of victims, they cannot set a bench mark that judges a group on the basis whether it targets civilians and their property or not.

These self-appointed judges of moderation always elevate reason over revelation, but they leave reason aside when they first declare in the pages of the New York Times:"The choices we face are tough, but Muslims must realize that the interests of our sons and daughters, who are American, must come before the interests of our brothers and sisters, whether they are Palestinian, Kashmiri or Iraqi"; and then blame victims of 50 years Israeli wholesale oppression for targeting civilians, as if the Israeli oppressors know and respect this distinction.

These are not the valid criteria for such classification among Muslims because the associated vagueness would well classify even Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) as the most radical and militant person for being a model of practicing revelation to the core and being so “aggressive” to engage his followers in a many wars in a short span of after migration to Madina.

The vagueness of the criteria put forward by the neo-mods can be judged from the way they classify Muslims with “minimalist degree of personal religious commitment,” and those who have “embraced secularity in the public realm” as “Liberal Muslims.”

These agents of classification, however, can never come up with any reference from the Holy Qur’an or Sunnah that considers a people with avowed “minimalist degree of personal religious commitment” and rejection of the role of Islam in “public realm” at least as Muslims, let alone any other acceptable label.

It is wrong to assume that Islamic resurgence is a movement in response to the dominance of Western civilisation. The moribund Western civilisation is not dominating the Muslim world. It is the crusade-infected mentality of some in the Western world, who dominate the Muslim world through the use of deputy tyrants, fully supported by economic, military and technological might. The movement in the Muslim world is not for the revival of Islam but for revival of Muslims.

This tendency did not lead to any new ideology, referred to by the neo-mods as “Islamism.” The so-considered ideologies are simply different modus operandi to call Muslims to Islam according to the situation they face in different parts of the Muslim world.

In their quest for prominence and personal success, the neo-mods attempt to turn some non-issues, raised by the neo-cons, into international debate. For instance, Muslims do not consider moderation as a function of secularism. They consider it a virtue of Islam and basic trait of Muslims’ behaviour. This is a non-issue. The issue is: Who sets the bench mark of moderation for Muslims? The Qur’an or the Zionist Neo-cons alliance?

To rise above the confused rhetoric of the classifying agents, one needs to understand the basis of actual classification among human beings, not Muslims alone.

For this one needs not go too far away from the beginning of the Qur’an. Four verses at the beginning of second chapter describe the believers. The next two describe the disbelievers, and thirteen verses that follow describe the hypocrites among Muslims for the simple reason that identifying hypocrites is extremely necessary to avoid their mischief.

This is where we see that all the self-pleasing shades ­among so-called Muslims –” from liberal to enlightened moderates and those associated with the amalgamated religio-political parties –” is nothing but hypocrisy under different labels. The verses 11 and 12 brings the real picture of what we witness today:

And when it is said to the hypocrites: "Do not make mischief on the earth,” they say: "We are only peacemakers.” (02:11). [3] Verily, they are the ones who make mischief, but they perceive not. (02:12).

In the Qur’an, there is no ground for the kind of classification among Muslims to which the whole world is subjected these days. There is a broader classification of Believers and disbelievers. Hypocrites are given specific attention for they appear in the guise of believers and most often than not, they themselves are ignorant of the fact that they are involved in hypocrisy. Calling hypocrisy of these groups and individuals by different names are attempts akin to hiding the sun with fingers in a broad day light.

The CIA is one of the leading forces behind promoting such divisions among Muslims. In "The CIA at War", Ronald Kessler, an investigative reporter and author of several books about the CIA and the FBI, reveals how the agency created fake Islamic scholars to preach a “moderate” message and counter anti-American sentiment in the Muslim world.

"In Islam, as in many other religions, anyone can call himself a religious leader," he said in the book. "So, besides paying mullahs, the CIA created fake mullahs — recruited agents who would proclaim themselves clerics and take a more moderate position about disbelievers."[4]

"We are taking over radio stations and supporting clerics," a CIA source was quoted as saying. "It’s back to propaganda. We are creating moderate Muslims."

Similarly, if it doesn’t smell of collusion, at least finding CIA’s advertisement at internet discussion groups moderated by self-proclaimed “moderates” is really odd. There is a variety of opportunities, why to pick CIA’s advertisement in particular for display on internet discussion list launched for discussing “political Islam.”

This is time for both Muslims and non-Muslims to wake up and test the “empirical realities” on the touchstone of the Qur’anic criteria for classifying human beings and the Neo-cons’ criteria for classifying Muslims alone. It shows everyone the group with which he will be raised on the Day of Judgment. Any denial of finding ourselves in an unfavorable group will simply ensure our place with them.

Notes:

[1] “The U.S. goal in the war against terror must be to eliminate militant Islamist groups that threaten the world’s security. Helping moderate Muslims reclaim the intellectual and ideological leadership of Islam’s fellowship of believers (the ummah) can more easily attain that goal than trying to convert more than one billion Muslims to Christianity.” Hussain Haqqani, Gulf News, July 10, 2003.

Also see:

[1]Dodd, Vikram (2002), "Moderate Muslims fear that war would isolate them further," The Guardian, September 20, 2003.

Haqqani, Husain (2003), "The American Mongols," Foreign Policy Magazine, May/June 2003. and

Haqqani, Husain (2003), "How Bush silenced the moderate Muslim voice," The Indian Express, April 04.

[2] Muqtedir Khan, “Radical Islam, Liberal Islam,” Current History, Vol. 102, No: 668 (December, 2003), pp. 417-421.

[3] Comments of a moderate: “we need to learn to live in peace with the rest of the world. As a doctrine of expansion and conquest jihad will never again get the free hand which it enjoyed for a few hundred years after the advent of Islam. It is time to stop dreaming impossible dreams because they have invariably proved to be delusions in reality.” Ishtiaq Ahmed, “Learning to live in peace,” Daily Times, Thursday, 1 January 2003, http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/print.asp?page=story_1-1-2004_pg3_2

Like General Musharraf and Muqtedir Khan, the “moderates” quote Prophet Muhammed (PBUH) out of context to justify their agenda point. They believe: “The highest form of Jihad, Jihad-e-Akbar (The superior Jihad) is struggle against the self to improve and excel in moral and spiritual realm. The lowest form of Jihad is the military Jihad that is essentially defensive and constrained by strict ethics of engagement.” (Muqtedir Khan, “Radical Islam, Liberal Islam,” Current History, Vol. 102, No: 668 (December, 2003), pp. 417-421. Musharraf believes Jihad against poverty is Jihad-e-Akbar. The reality is that Prophet Muhammed used the term Jihad-e-Akbar when he was returning from Ghzwa-e-Tabuk and had to deal with the mischief of hypocrites. As for as Jihad in moral and spiritual realms is concerned that was on from day one of his Prophethood in Mecca. There was no need for Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) to say, while returning from Jihad against infidels, that now we are going for a greater Jihad.

[4] Tabassum Zakaria, “Did CIA bankroll moderate Islam?,” Reuters, September 23, 2003 4:45 AM, http://www.swissinfo.org/sen/Swissinfo.html?siteSect=143&sid=4268116

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