Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Raymond Ibrahim: How Circumstance Dictates Islamic Behavior

http://raymondibrahim.com/about/

About

RAYMOND IBRAHIM is a widely published author, public speaker, and Middle East and Islam specialist.  His books include Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians (2013) and The Al Qaeda Reader (2007). His writings, translations, and observations have appeared in a variety of publications, including the New York Times, CNN, LA Times, Fox News, Financial Times, Jerusalem Post, New York Times Syndicate, United Press International, USA Today, Washington Post, Washington Times, and Weekly Standard; scholarly journals, including the Almanac of Islamism, Chronicle of Higher Education, Hoover Institution’s Strategika, Jane’s Islamic Affairs Analyst, Middle East Quarterly, and Middle East Review of International Affairs; and popular websites, such as American Thinker, the Blaze, Bloomberg, Breitbart, Christian Post, Daily Caller, FrontPage Magazine, Gatestone Institute, the Inquisitr, Jihad Watch, NewsMax, National Review Online, PJ Media, the UK’s Commentator, WND, and World Magazine. He has contributed chapters to several anthologies and been translated into dozens of languages.
Ibrahim guest lectures at universities, including the National Defense Intelligence College, briefs governmental agencies, such as U.S. Strategic Command and the Defense Intelligence Agency, provides expert testimony for Islam-related lawsuits, and has testified before Congress regarding the conceptual failures that dominate American discourse concerning Islam and the worsening plight of Egypt’s Christian Copts. Among other media, he has appeared on MSNBC, Fox News, C-SPAN, PBS, Reuters, Al-Jazeera, Blaze TV, CBN, and NPR; he has done hundreds of radio interviews and instructed two courses for Prager University.
Ibrahim’s dual-background—born and raised in the U.S. by Coptic Egyptian parents born and raised in the Middle East—has provided him with unique advantages, from equal fluency in English and Arabic, to an equal understanding of the Western and Middle Eastern mindsets, positioning him to explain the latter to the former. His interest in Islamic civilization was first piqued when he began visiting the Middle East as a child in the 1970s. Interacting and conversing with the locals throughout the decades has provided him with an intimate appreciation for that part of the world, complementing his academic training.
Raymond received his B.A. and M.A. (both in History, focusing on the ancient and medieval Near East, with dual-minors in Philosophy and Literature) from California State University, Fresno. There he studied closely with noted military-historian Victor Davis Hanson. He also took graduate courses at Georgetown University’s Center for Contemporary Arab Studies—including classes on the history, politics, and economics of the Arab world—and studied Medieval Islam and Semitic languages at Catholic University of America. His M.A. thesis examined an early military encounter between Islam and Byzantium based on arcane Arabic and Greek texts.
Ibrahim’s resume includes: serving as an Arabic language and regional specialist at the Near East Section of the Library of Congress, where he was often contacted by, and provided information to, defense and intelligence personnel involved in the fields of counterterrorism and area studies, as well as the Congressional Research Service; serving as associate director of the Middle East Forum, a Philadelphia think tank; and serving as a CBN News analyst and contributor.
He resigned from all positions in order to focus exclusively on researching and writing, and is currently a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center, a Judith Friedman Rosen Writing Fellow, Middle East Forum, and a Hoover Institution Media Fellow (2013), among other titles and affiliations.

http://www.jihadwatch.org/2012/01/raymond-ibrahim-how-circumstance-dictates-islamic-behavior

Raymond Ibrahim: How Circumstance Dictates Islamic Behavior

Preach peace when weak, wage war when strong

Has there ever been a time when one group of people openly exposes its animosity for another group of people””even as this second group not only ignores the animosity, but speaks well, enables, and legitimizes the first group?
Welcome to the 21st century, where Western politicians empower those Muslims who are otherwise constantly and openly denouncing all non-Muslims as enemies to be fought and subjugated.
Consider this video of Sheikh Yassir al-Burhami, a top-ranked figure in Egypt’s Salafi movement which won some 25% of the votes in recent elections. He makes clear a point that, in a different era, would be thoroughly eye-opening””that all notions of peace with non-Muslims are based on circumstance: when Muslims are weak, they should be peaceful; when strong, they should go on the offensive.
Discussing “the analogy between Egypt’s Christians and the Jews of Medina,” Burhami pointed out that Muslims may make temporary peace with infidels, when circumstance calls for it:
The Jews of Medina represent a paradigm””laid by the prophet [Muhammad]””that shows how Muslims should deal with infidels. The prophet’s methods of dealing with infidels are available for Muslims to replicate depending on their situation and their capabilities. The Prophet in Mecca dealt with the infidels in a certain way, so whenever Muslims are vulnerable they should deal with the infidels in this same manner.
Burhami is referring to the famous Mecca/Medina division: when Muhammad was weak and outnumbered in his early Mecca period, he preached peace and made pacts with infidels; when he became strong in the Medina period, he preached war and went on the offensive. This dichotomy””preach peace when weak, wage war when strong””has been instructive to Muslim leaders for ages.
After quoting Koran 4:77, “Refrain from action, uphold prayers, and pay your zakat,” Burhami continues:
In many infidel countries, such as occupied Palestine, we instruct Muslims to do just that [follow Koran 4:77]. Today in Gaza, we do not tell Muslims to launch rockets everyday and so destroy the country, but we tell them “Refrain from action and respect the truce.” When the Prophet first arrived in Medina, he made conciliation with the Jews, conciliation without jizya [i.e., equal-term conciliation without forcing Jews to pay tribute and live as second-class dhimmis]””this is a pattern that can be followed whenever circumstances dictate. However, when they breached the covenant he fought them and ultimately imposed jizya on the People of the Book [Jews and Christians]. Nor is this Sura [Koran 9:29] abrogated; it is acknowledged and agreed upon.
Burhami exposes much here, beginning with the Koran verse he quotes: when weak, Muslims are to “refrain from action–”but “pay your zakat,” which, among other things, funds the jihad. Also, as Muhammad made peace with the Jews of Medina, without making them submit to jizya (tribute to be paid “while utterly subdued”), so too are Palestinians allowed to make temporary peace with Israel. In both cases, circumstance””namely, Muslim weakness””justify it. But, when capability allows, Koran 9:29″”which calls for jizya and subjugation, and which Burhami quotes as having abrogated the other peaceful verses””takes over.
Burhami’s conclusion:
Yes we can deal with those Christians [Egypt’s Copts] as the Jews were dealt with in Medina; it is an option. The Prophet made the Hudaybiya Reconciliation with the infidels and held a truce for ten years, that is also an option”¦. So, it is legitimate to choose from examples set by the Prophet, depending on what suits the situation of Muslims now.
In short, Muslims may be tolerant of Egypt’s Copts now, and not collect jizya and place them in dhimmitude, until they are more capable””just like Palestinians may make peace with Israel now, till they are more capable of waging an offensive. Indeed, Dr. Mohamed Saad Katatni””the secretary general of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, which won 40% of the votes””reportedly said that Copts would not pay jizya now, implying that the idea of collecting tribute from subdued “dhimmi” Copts is very much alive among the Brotherhood, only dormant till a more opportune moment.
One may argue that Sheikh Yassir al-Burhami”””one man,” a “radical–”is not representative of “true Islam.” The problem, however, is that all his arguments have been made countless times by countless Muslims, including the most authoritative, throughout the ages. For instance, the late Yasser Arafat evoked Hudaybiya as representative of “peace” with Israel.
And yet, despite all this””despite the fact that this video is a drop in the bucket of evidence””here is the West, making the way clear for people like Burhami to power in the name of “democracy,” regardless that pacts, smiles, and handshakes over cups of coffee exist solely when circumstance, in this case, Muslim weakness, dictates.
Raymond Ibrahim is a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and Associate Fellow at the Middle East Forum.