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Ed Webb

King Abdullah calls for emergency Muslim summit - The National - 2 views

  • "Saudi Arabia is facing a moment when everybody in Arab world is getting more Islamist. Saudi Arabia is thinking, 'We shouldn't lose this chance. It is coming to our door and our house, so we should open the door. Otherwise, we will give Turkey or Iran a chance.'"
Ed Webb

Egypt's New Grand Imam | Nervana - 1 views

  • Does God prefer an open market economy or a government controlled one? Is privatization in harmony with or against Islamic teaching?
  • Using religious text to justify his political moves is the first step toward a theocracy. Coupling faith with government policies is a risky move. Faith is designed to salvage our soul not to solve traffic congestion or stock market performance.
Ed Webb

Salafist Nour Party visits Sinai to combat 'religious extremism' - Politics - Egypt - A... - 1 views

  • The group will hold a series of meetings urging Sinai citizens to stand by the army in combating the “Takfiri” mentality, referring to supremacist Islamist groups in the region.
Ed Webb

Rached Ghannouchi Re-Elected Leader of Ennahdha Party : Tunisia Live - 1 views

  • The 71-year-old Ghannouchi had previously said he didn’t want to continue as leader of the party, but the shura council, the committee within the party charged with designating a new head, had other plans, as Ghannouchi was selected from a list of 12 proposed names.
  • speech of invited Hamas leader Khaled Mechaal, who invoked solidarity between Ennahdha’s resistance of former President Ben Ali’s dictatorial rule and his own group’s activities
  • some younger members of the party indeed held more conservative views that were in conflict with the moderate line so far extolled publicly by the party
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  • much of the tension was between first generation followers of the party and those who joined later, many of whom became active as part of the UGTE, the student union that swelled the party’s ranks during the 1980s
  • Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali, a member of Ennahdha who spent two decades in jail for his activism with the party, declared during the conference that he planned on reshuffling Tunisia’s interim government, opening up posts to small parties that were not yet part of the ruling “troika,”
Ed Webb

French rapper stuns fans, makes first TV appearance wearing hijab - 1 views

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    French rapper stuns fans, makes first TV appearance wearing hijab http://t.co/ybHq1FcZ #AlArabiya
Ed Webb

Hizb-ut-Tahrir Spokesman: "Our Appeal for a License has Been Accepted" : Tunisia Live - 1 views

  • Ridha Bel Haj, the spokesperson of the Hizb-ut-Tahrir movement in Tunisia, confirmed today that he was informed by the Prime Ministry that his organization would be awarded a license to operate as an officially recognized political party. “We received a call from the Prime Ministry today confirming that our appeal for a license has been accepted,” stated Bel Haj, who explained in an interview with Tunisian radio station Mosaique FM that the call had come from Lotfi Zitoun, a political affairs adviser to Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali.
  • ultraconservative, international, Islamist movement advocating for the establishment of a Caliphate
  • “In the coming days our party’s name will be published in the government’s catalog, listing all legally recognized parties.” The Prime Ministry was unavailable for comment at the time of publication.
Ed Webb

Religion News Service | Blogs | Omid Safi - What Would Muhammad Do? | Why Mitt Romney i... - 1 views

    • Ed Webb
       
      Who were what? Proof reading is important!
  • Very few people who speak in name of “Judeo-Christian” tradition have any intention of taking Jewish legal traditions seriously
  • The unquestioned acceptance of 'Judaeo-Christian civilization' as a synonym for 'Western civilization' makes it clear that history is not destiny.  No one with the least knowledge of the past two thousand years of relations between Christians and Jews can possibly miss the irony of linking in a single term two faith communities that decidedly did not get along during most of that period.  One suspects that a heavenly poll of long-departed Jewish and Christian dignitaries would discover majorities in both camps expressing repugnance for the term.
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  • This notion of all of humanity being related to the same God is also a fundamental teaching of the Islamic tradition.    The Qur’an speaks of the Bani Adam “Children of Adam” as the global and universal community of all human beings who are children of Adam and Eve
  • Given the way that many socially conservative evangelicals are hesitant to see the way that Islam is genuinely a part of the fabric of the American [and European] society, recognizing the shared spiritual and ethical foundation of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity is important.
Ed Webb

'Charter of Honor' Proposed to Prevent Tunisian Mosques from Being Politicized : Tunisi... - 1 views

  • Tunisian imams and religious lecturers will sign a ‘charter of honor’ to keep Tunisian mosques from becoming politicized during the holy month of Ramadan.
  • there are 4,885 mosques in Tunisia. 100 mosques are in the process of applying for recognition from the Ministry of Religious Affairs, while 20 mosques are completely independent of the government and are controlled by what Lefi identified as a Salafist movement
  • “We have an investigative committee that notifies us of any transgressions. Yet, like any other ministry, we cannot control everything. We try to interfere, but it gets hard sometimes with clashes between religious groups and security forces. The situation is not perfect, but it is getting better,”
Ed Webb

Why Can't the West See Class in Middle Eastern Politics? | middleeastaidan - 1 views

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    A blogpost from POSC/MEST260 is relevant for our religion seminar
Ed Webb

Report: Al-Azhar head approaches Tantawi over Salafi Cabinet nomination | Egypt Indepen... - 1 views

  • Al-Azhar Grand Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayyeb is in contact with military leader Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi to prevent the appointment of a Salafi scholar as endowments minister, the London-based newspaper Asharq al-Awsat said. The paper quoted sources close to Tayyeb as saying that the grand sheikh’s office had been concerned over news about the nomination of Mohamed Yousry Ibrahim, adding that Al-Azhar’s grand sheikh usually selects the minister from personalities he believes are capable of helping maintain Al-Azhar’s moderate Islamic message.
Ed Webb

In Egypt's Sinai desert, Islamic militants gaining new foothold - The Washington Post - 1 views

  • The eclipse of authority has also given rise to Sharia courts run by Islamic scholars who settle disputes according to Islamic law.
  • Even normal people, not just jihadis, would fight and die if Israelis came back
  • n the recent turmoil, militants have been carrying out attacks on lightly armed police officers in recent months and have repeatedly bombed the pipeline that carries natural gas to Israel. Bedouin tribesmen with grievances against the state, meanwhile, have kidnapped foreign tourists and international peacekeepers. Drug runners and human smugglers have also seized the moment, making both lucrative trades increasingly violent.
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  • Ibrahim el-Meneey, a powerful Bedouin tribal elder who lives a few miles from the Israeli border, said that arrangement would be ideal, as long as the military sticks to guarding the road. The tribes, which have stockpiled everything from small arms to antiaircraft missiles, are doing a fine job of dealing with violent human smugglers, drug runners and other miscreants who have taken advantage of the security vacuum over the past year, he said. “Here, it’s all tribes,” Meneey said, sitting on a moonlit sandy patch outside his house, which is close enough to Israel that cell phones roam onto the country’s mobile networks. “Security is very stable.”
  • “The bedouin is a peaceful being,” Meneey said, sipping sweet tea. “But if he feels humiliated, he will never forget. The government has to work quickly to deliver justice.” If the Egyptian government fails to find the right approach to restore security and services, he said: “This could become like a second Afghanistan. It could become an international war.”
  • Sinai leaders say they have increasingly taken on tasks the state is not performing. Roughly six months ago, Hamdeen Abu Faisal, an Islamic scholar, became among the first in the region to set up informal tribunals that settle cases that would normally be the jurisdiction of local courts. “The people started to need someone to sort out their problems,” Faisal said. “There are no functioning courts, police stations or district attorneys.” The courts are not imposing corporal punishments, Faisal said, and are only arbitrating disputes among people who agree in writing to adhere to the decision of the scholars.
Ed Webb

Why the Reaction Is Different When the Terrorist Is White - Conor Friedersdorf - The At... - 1 views

  • It ought to be self-evident that non-Muslims perpetrate terrorist attacks, and that a vanishingly small percentage of Muslims are terrorists, but those two truths aren't widely appreciated in America.
  • you don't want to wind up in a class of people whose rights are determined by the Office of Legal Counsel
  • Having flattened so many laws (and a good many innocents) in pursuit of the terrorist, the American majority is naturally loath to focus its attention on a terrorist who looks, talks, and dresses as they do. It is particularly uncomfortable for those in the country who feel most reflexively safe when "an American" is beside them on a plane, instead of a bearded man with a turban.
Ed Webb

Column: The decline of religious violence - 1 views

  • Throughout human history
    • Ed Webb
       
      Apart from this egregious cliche that should never be written by anyone ever again, this is not a bad piece.
Ed Webb

Obama's Secret Plot To Bring 100 Million Muslims to the US | Mother Jones - 1 views

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    File under WTF?
Ed Webb

Not Qualified: Exposing the Deception Behind America's Top 25 Pseudo Experts on Islam -... - 1 views

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    Very interesting attempt to undermine what MPAC terms the 'Islamophobia industry'. Some of those listed, such as Daniel Pipes, have backed efforts to discredit academics who are critical of Israel or otherwise seen as 'pro-Muslim'. How productive is this kind of intervention, in either case?
Ed Webb

Egyptian Elections « The Immanent Frame - 1 views

  • For most here it is not a simple zero-sum game of secular or Islamic, win or loose—that kind of thinking that Mubarak had fostered and exploited and that found new life in the runoff. It is instead a slog with eyes wide open to gain a better life in a better Egypt.
  • A Muslim Brother faced a felool, or “remnant” of the old regime, in the presidential runoff primarily because the Brotherhood and the old ruling party are the only parties with money, cadres, and national organizations that can run campaigns and distribute patronage
  • some commentators continue to insist that in fact nothing has really changed in Egypt and that despite five free elections in the eighteenth months since the January 25th Revolution, Egypt remains, essentially, a military dictatorship, albeit with the Muslim Brotherhood playing the role of junior partner. This analysis, however, is remarkably short-sighted. Egypt now has a dynamic and competitive public sphere with at least three major political groupings: Islamist revolutionaries; non-Islamist revolutionaries; and an old guard whose power is increasingly disappearing
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  • steps toward coalition building suggest a very different political terrain than the one that existed prior to the revolution, and hence of political possibilities whose outcome cannot be foreseen with any certainty. Yes, the entrenched power of the military remains an ongoing threat to any transformation. But the only other stable element in Egypt’s political life today is the knee-jerk refusal of some of the old leftist and liberal political movements to see beyond the politics of the “Islamist threat.”
  • the army will continue to find a way to work with the MB, but at the same time, keeps the military and the security apparatus away from the MB. The Muslim Brotherhood has lost lots of its popularity before the presidential election when it distanced itself from the street. And it seems to be back to flirt with the street to gain political legitimacy battling with SCAF over power
  • The revolution failed to overthrow the state of the Free Officers (Morsi’s victory marks only an adjustment or reform of it), but it has been successful in establishing a large and vocal democratic opposition that has become a powerful political voice in large cities of northern Egypt; less so in southern Egypt and in rural areas. Although too weak and heterogeneous (and, perhaps, too principled) to gain power at the moment, they are the third power block to reckon with, and the only one committed to changing the system towards social justice and freedom.
  • The idea of the revolution was to open up the political field and allow new voices to be heard, including but not limited to the MB. The idea was to restore politics to Egypt.
  • Politics in Egypt is alive, if not entirely well
  • Egyptians are well aware of U.S. support for the old regime, understand American ties to the SCAF, and remain wary of official American influence in Egypt. And rightly so.
  • Like Egypt and the Muslim Brotherhood at the current moment, both post-Communist Poland and post-fascist Spain witnessed the transformation of anti-establishment, counter-hegemonic political movements into legitimate, newly hegemonic, democratic actors. Unfortunately, such comparisons between the Muslim Brotherhood and non-Muslim political actors and contexts are both rare and difficult to put forward. I suspect that the reason for this difficulty has to do with the immense power of the adjectives “Muslim” and “Islamic” in Euro-American political discourse. Within this discourse, “Muslim” as a political adjective connotes a single, problematic relationship to both the systems of democratic governance and a democratic ethos. As long as such an essentialist political connotation of the term “Muslim” perseveres, a multifaceted analysis of the relationship between Islam and any political context, Egyptian or otherwise, remains immensely difficult to achieve.
  • Although many self-described secularists and Islamists in Egypt join US media pundits in presenting a binary view of Egypt’s political choices, the situation on the ground is much more complex and constantly changing. In the first round, the majority of voters (taken as a collective) chose candidates other than the army man Ahmed Shafik and the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate Mohamed Morsi. Divisions within the MB (and within Islamist groups in general) that are marked by geography, gender, and generation belie any attempt to generalize; divisions within the army are also revealing themselves in the process. Furthermore, perhaps the most serious issue obscured by the binary is that the MB and the army are arguably not that different in terms of their approach to economic policy and in their urban, often upper middle class biases towards social betterment.
Ed Webb

How Muslims Really Think About Islam - By Marc Lynch | Marc Lynch - 1 views

  • a really disturbing and widespread belief in most Arab countries that Shias are not real Muslims. Interestingly, in Iraq (82 percent) and Lebanon (77 percent), countries with Shia majorities but notably torn by sectarian strife, Sunnis are significantly more likely to say that Shias are Muslims than are Muslims in Arab countries with small Shia populations
  • This generational divide was the widest in the Middle East compared to any other region of the world.
  • Asked whether there was a single interpretation of Islam or multiple interpretations, more than 50 percent answered "single" in every African country surveyed, as did more than 69 percent of every Asian country. Seventy-eight percent of Egyptians and 76 percent of Jordanians said "single," but no other Arab country had more than 50 percent.
Ed Webb

Is Support From American Evangelicals a Good Thing for Israel? - NYTimes.com - 0 views

  • In a Pew Research Center survey published earlier this month, 40 percent of white evangelicals claimed that the United States is “not supportive enough” of Israel (only 17 percent of white mainstream Protestants and 14 percent of Catholics agreed).
Ed Webb

Anti-Shariah movement loses steam in state legislatures | The Christian Century - 0 views

  • In New Jersey, Republican Gov. Chris Christie pounced on critics last year who said he was allowing Shariah into American courts after he appointed a Muslim judge to the state's Superior Court. "This Sharia law business is crap," Christie said in his signature blunt style. "It's just crazy. And I'm tired of dealing with the crazies."
Ed Webb

Lebanon news - NOW Lebanon -Blasphemy: an indispensable human right - 0 views

  • the Organization of Islamic Conference has seized on the controversies regarding an anti-Islam video clip on YouTube and satirical cartoons about Mohammed in a French magazine to renew its call for a global ban on "blasphemy." The OIC is, in effect, not only announcing that Muslim states in general have no intention of allowing real freedom of conscience and speech, but they want to bully the West into eliminating those freedoms as well.
  • Who, after all, will be authorized to define "blasphemy"? Does anything that offends any religious sensibilities qualify as "blasphemy"? Will a critical mass of objections be seen as legitimate grounds for silencing critics of religious doctrine, scholarly inquiry into their origins, skeptical analysis of superstition and faith, iconoclasm, or mockery of religious claims, symbols, assertions, and shibboleths?
  • Several Arab states, including Egypt and Kuwait, have recently been toying with new criminal definitions of "blasphemy" that specifically ban insulting the wives and companions of the Prophet Mohammed, which is barely concealed code for the suppression of Shiite doctrinal criticism of Sunni Islam. The OIC is based in Saudi Arabia, a country that does not allow freedom of worship for any non-Muslims. The examples of the hypocrisy behind these calls are simply endless.
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  • These calls reflect a paranoid worldview that is widespread among Muslims that their religion is under some kind of global assault. If so—because Islam is spreading faster than almost any other religion, with the possible exception of Mormonism—it's an odd kind of siege. In reality, Islam is thriving in its countries of origin and spreading quickly into the West.
  • Embracing modernity requires tolerating such fears without demanding the enforcement of religious orthodoxy, even of an ecumenical variety, through the power of the state.
  • Reason and skepticism, for good or ill, are not poised to overthrow faith
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