I often get people asking how one knows the difference between a Muslim and an Islamist.
It's the difference between a Nazi and a German; a member of the British National Party or the English Defence League and a Briton; a Christian versus a member of the Klux Klux Klan or Christian Voice.
And this is how I know that the members of the Islamic Education and Research Academy (iERA) who came to the Dublin Atheist Conference the first weekend in June are not some pious Muslims but Islamists and there to promote Islamism in all its vileness. It’s a gut feeling really. I can see them a mile away.
But for those who are not so sure, there are a couple of giveaways.
Firstly, they are members of an Islamic organisation but since Islamism is so reviled they usually give their organisations benign names like Islamic Education and Research Academy (an oxymoron in my opinion) to dupe the public. If one wants to, though, it isn’t hard to find their links with Islamism.
Also, their aims make it quite clear who they are. Just take a look at their website to see what I mean. You don't need to go further than their 'About Us' section to get a clue to the nature of their organisation. The section recites a verse of the Koran saying: ‘Let there arise out of you a band of people inviting to all that is good; enjoining what is right, forbidding what is wrong, they are the ones to attain felicity. [3:104]” And they say they are a “global Dawah organisation committed to presenting Islam to the wider society.” Dawah usually denotes the preaching of Islam and literally means summoning or inviting, like a missionary. This may sound innocuous enough if one falls for the Islamists' double speak but for the rest of us, we know what ‘forbidding’ and Dawah means during an Islamic inquisition.
Furthermore, you can always tell the nature of an organisation by the friends they keep. A far-Right group will invite Geert Wilders on their platform because they share an affinity with him and his anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim perspective and belong to his movement. And the iERA will always have fascist Islamists on their platform and as heads of their organisation for the very same reason. Here are a couple of examples:
In an essay on his website entitled, “Terrible and brutal Islamic punishments or wise and just guidance from Allah?” iERA’s chairman Abdur-Raheem Green argues that homosexuality and adultery are “inexcusable, and justly punished with severity.” For this he stipulates death: “a slow and painful death by stoning. It is indicative of just how harmful this crime is to society.” He also calls for the prohibition of ‘free mixing between sexes’.
Their senior ‘lecturer’ Hamza Tzortzis argues: “Some people object to Islam making the public expression of homosexuality a criminal act. This is subjective and only strikes a chord amongst those who cannot escape the social constructs in their own societies. There are societies past and present which accepted paedophilia and cannibalism as normal parts of human life and they would find Western society oppressive preventing them from carrying out these practices.”
There are many more examples but I won’t continue listing them here for fear of losing my lunch but please feel free to do your own search.
Thanks to Adam Barnett for the below links on the iERA in case you are a glutton for punishment:
Ibis Hotel hosts anti-gay hate preachers
Bigots and extremists in a panic
Changing the World through Dawah
As an aside, I am not for banning Islamists or deporting them to countries that are already suffering under and struggling against Islamism. I say, if they have committed a crime (and again that’s not hard to spot either) - arrest them and put them in jail where they belong. But that is I suppose another story...