Stand steadfast before God as witnesses for justice . . .

Even though categorization is a useful tool for analysis, and OBL is definitely a bad guy, I am curious to hear if people have any objections to the use of the term binladendism as described in this article in the Boston Globe by Abdul Cader Asmal.  I’ve heard some convicing arguments against the blanket use of the term Wahhabism and my sense is that binladenism is probably more accurate but flawed in its own ways.

7 thoughts on “Stand steadfast before God as witnesses for justice . . .

  1. Tony, you have been on a roll as I have agreed with almost everything you have commented upon in the past few months. This time I don’t agree. I do not think that Mr. Asmal’s article is apologist and think that his words can be taken at face value. However, I don’t think that coming up with a name is important. Call it Wahhabism, Binladenism, or Bob, its still a threat and more so to Muslims. This I find a waste of time.

  2. I will explain.
    First, anyone reading my prior posts, especially recently, would say I have a seriously bad attitude concerning self-appointed Muslim leadership. And they would be right. I don’t know Mr. Asmal, but his prior purported leadership in the Boston area means that there is immediately a bad smell about him for me. I know of one Muslim organization in the past 20 years that hasn’t feasted at the Saudi trough, and I’d be shocked if Mr. Asmal’s organizations, or Mr. Asmal himself, were among those few. I heap scorn on the heads of this “leadership” — every last rat-bastard among them.
    Second, on the merits of his position, Mr. Asmal spends too much time defending the goals of the terrorists if at the same time denouncing their methods. That makes his denunciations hollow to me. Third, I absolutely disagree with this nonsense that Islamist is not an appropriate label. It absolutely is, and Islamists like Mr. Asmal will have to deal with it. He cannot obfuscate the problem which is a species of political Islam, whose offspring are now continuing to destroy any hope of development for Muslims.

  3. I did some deeper Googing of Abdul Cader Asmal. He’s associated with Harvard Medical School and is a physician at Mass General. His opinions appear consistent with what he presents in this most recent op-ed, i.e. the US is demonizing Islam for a trumped up war on terror; Muslims are in for a hard time; the terrorists are ruining Muslim issues; blah, blah, blah. He seems also to have a problem writing American Muslim, or Muslim American without putting the whole thing in quotations. I guess that’s the ummah mindset (I’m near to withdrawing my criticism of Chapati Mystery — he seems to have put his finger on the core problem which is a fanatical identification with ummah).

  4. I want to announce my own blog. I hope you guys find something interesting in it, as I have found on Islamicate:
    The most recent post concerns Naomi Klein’s article in the Nation in which she claims that Sayyid Qutb’s hostility to the West is a reaction to racism.
    Man, blogs take up a lot of time, and I have no audience so far. I admire your resilience.

  5. Tony, I have bookmarked your blog and will continue to check it out. Good luck. The more voices writing and offering differing viewpoints is very healty for Muslims in America.
    Did you read about the recent International Islamic Conference which took place in Amman in July? I came across it by accident. Didn’t see or hear anything in the news. Seems like more of the same rhetoric on the surface until I looked at the invitees. Here is a blurb about the conference:
    “Reflecting, thus, the historic plurality that the Muslim Ummah accommodates within the fundamental unity of Islam, the Conference in Jordan achieved a level of participation not matched in similar gatherings in the past. But the Conference was also a substantive departure in that it went beyond broad recommendations. Instead, it succeeded in forging an unprecedented consensus among these schools on the mutual acceptance of the legitimacy of various Muslim denominations held until now in differing levels of suspicion or hostility. The Conference, thus, marked a real break-through and a turning point, in the recognition of pluralism as a fact of Muslim history and heritage to be cherished as a blessing.
    Among the other leading Muslim authorities and dignitaries, who had presented fatwas, were: Grand Imam Dr. Muhammad Sayyid Tantawi, Shaykh al-Azhar; Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali-Sistani, Najaf, Iraq; several Grand Ayatollahs from Najaf, Iraq; Ayatollah Muhammad Ali Taskhiri, Iran; Dr. Ali Jummua, the Grand Mufti of Egypt; High Council of Religious Affairs, Turkey; the Institute of Islamic Fiqh, Saudi Arabia; Sheikh Ahmad Ibn Hamad Al-Khalili, Grand Mufti of the Sultanate of Oman; Sheikh Ibrahim Ibn Muhammad Al-Wazir, Zaidi leader, Yemen; Sheikh Ahmad Kaftarou (late), former Grand Mufti of Syria; Sheikh Said Abdelhafid Al-Hajani, Grand Mufti of Jordan; Sayyid Mohammad Hussein Fadlallah, Lebanon; Dr. Youssouf Aballah Al-Qardawi, Qatar
    Presented at the Conference, and endorsed by its final declaration, these messages affirmed the principle that whoever is an adherent of one of the eight schools of Muslim jurisprudence – madhabib – is a Muslim who cannot be declared or treated as an apostate or infidel, and whose life, honour and property are inviolable.
    Resolving that only those qualified within their respective schools of jurisprudence have the authority to issue fatwas, the Conference condemned forthright the practice among extremists of issuing so-called authoritative religious opinions encouraging violence against Muslims whom they accuse as infidels, and upholding and extolling acts of terrorism, whether directed against Muslims or non-Muslims, as not only illegitimate but an affront to all that Islam stands for.”
    Nice words, but some of these guys on the invite list have justified the use of suicide bombing.

  6. I read about the Conference, but haven’t thought much about it. I generally keep my comments to Muslims in the US, although I’ve recently taken an interest in Muslims in the UK. I haven’t chased down whether there were any attendees from the US at the Conference. Probably the usual suspects if there were.

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