Australia’s top Muslim leaders have betrayed us again. Should we finally conclude the real problem is not their weakness but their faith?
Twice in three weeks, Islamist terrorists have beheaded American journalists as a warning to the West.
And both times, prominent Muslim leaders here have not defended us but attacked, like some tag team.
On August 20, we learned Islamic State killers had beheaded James Foley, with his killer warning the West not to attack Islamic State terrorists in Iraq and Syria.
On that very same day, more than 60 of Australia’s Muslim leaders and groups issued a statement condemning … Tony Abbott.
These organisations—ranging from the “moderate” Muslim Women Association to the extremist Hizb ut Tahrir—damned the Abbott Government for proposing anti-terrorism laws they falsely claimed “clearly target Muslims”.
They said the laws were actually a con, based on a “trumped up ‘threat’ from ‘radicalised’ Muslims”, and suggested the West—not Muslims—were the real terrorists.
“We are not fooled by those who speak against violence and terrorism but are its proponents at an institutional level through military and foreign policies.”
Last week, same thing again. On Wednesday, we woke up to news of another Islamic State beheading, this time of Steven Sotloff.
Same killer and same message. In fact, if the West kept attacking the Islamic State, a British aid worker would be next to have his head sawn off.
And that very day Muslim leaders again put out a statement condemning … Tony Abbott.
This time, it was from the Australian National Imams Council, our highest Muslim body, and quoted the Grand Mufti, Professor Ibrahim Abu Mohamed, our most senior Muslim cleric.
Again, it made not one criticism of the Islamic State. Again, it blamed the West for jihadism: “One of the main causative factor (sic) for local radicalisation in the West has been the western governments’ military involvement in the Middle East.”
It even said the Mufti “opposes the Government’s current decision to transport and provide weapons to the Kurdish forces in Iraq”—arms the Kurds need to save themselves from being massacred by the Islamic State.
And there was this warning: “If the Australian Government is serious about reducing the terror threat locally, then it must review its foreign policy decisions with regard to this region.”
Consider that warning carefully. If we don’t change our policies in the Middle East—and the ANIC hates our support of Israel—then “the Government will be imputed (sic) for further radicalisation locally”.
That sounds like an outrageous threat. Name one other ethnic or religious group here that warns Australia to change its foreign policies or face violence from its members.
But that leads to a further question which exposes the deceit and evasions of these two statements.
The question: why were the journalists beheaded?
Why were they—and countless Shiites and Yazidis—beheaded when shooting them would be physically easier and cleaner?
The reason is simple. Because the Koran orders precisely this punishment for enemies of Islam.
“I shall cast into the unbelievers’ hearts terror; so smite above the necks, and smite every finger of them,” says Islam’s holiest book.
And this: “And when you meet in regular battle those who disbelieve, smite their necks …”
Then there is the example of Prophet Muhammed himself, as told in Ibn Ishaq’s sacred biography: having captured the Jewish Banu Qurayza tribe Muhammed “sent for them and struck off their heads”.
As Douglas Murray of the Henry Jackson Society has said, how different Christianity would be had Christ not turned the other cheek but beheaded his enemies, too.
And this is the truth that Australia’s Muslim leaders in their two statements refused to address, let alone admit.
The jihadists behead people because the Koran orders it. And they quote the Koran— “Slay the idolaters wherever you find them” and “fight them until there is no more fitnah (disbelief) and worship is for Allah alone”—to justify their slaughter.
Yes, Islam, itself, is one of the “root causes” of this horror in the Middle East—and in Nigeria, Yemen, Libya, Chechnya and more besides—but it is the only “root cause” we dare not publicly debate.
True, many young Muslims have rung me on our 2GB show to protest that Islam cannot possibly condone this savagery. And they denounce their supposed “leaders” as unrepresentative, divisive and out of touch. They may be right about Islam, or may simply not know their holy books well.
But either way, these patriotic young Muslims feel they have been betrayed by these Muslim “leaders”. As have we all.
On the same day we learned Islamic State killers had beheaded James Foley, Australia’s Muslim leaders condemned Tony Abbott.
Andrew’s columns appear in the Herald Sun, Daily Telegraph & Advertiser. He runs Australia’s most-read political blog & hosts Ten’s The Bolt Report each Sunday, 10am. This article is reprinted from the Herald Sun (7 September 2014) with the author’s permission.