Where Are the Human Rights Groups? Where Are the Media?
Assaults on writers and journalists in the Arab world are not uncommon, but the case of the Yemeni poet who just had his tongue cut out appears to be one of the most horrifying crimes against those who dare to express their views in public.
The poet, Walid al-Ramishi, was kidnapped by armed gangsters in the Yemeni capital of Sanaa. The kidnappers released him after they had cut out his tongue.
Al-Ramishi is now being treated in a Jordanian hospital, where doctors say he would not be able to talk again.
His alleged crime: he had written a poem in praise of embattled Yemeni dictator Ali Abdallah Saleh.
Abdel Salam al-Qabsi, a prominent Yemeni poet, condemned the gruesome assault, noting that it was the latest in a string of attacks on writers and intellectuals in his country.
In the past few weeks, a number of writers and intellectual figures were targeted by unknown assailants in broad daylight in Yemen.
Some say the attackers belonged to the government, while others have pointed a blaming finger at opposition groups.
The most recent victims included three women novelists: Bushra al-Maqtari, Huda al-Attas and Arwa Othman. The three women were beaten during anti-government protests in the Yemeni capital.
The assault on al-Ramishi, whose tongue was cut out, has been almost entirely ignored by the mainstream media and human rights organizations in the West.
Even the media in the Arab world, which is controlled by repressive Arab regimes, has ignored the tragedy of the Yemeni poet.
Similarly, the international media is looking the other way as crimes are being committed almost every day against Christians and churches in Egypt, Syria and Iraq.
The silence over such grisly assaults only serves the interests of the perpetrators and encourages them to carry out more crimes in the future.
How many media outlets in North America and Europe have reported about the case of Egyptian Coptic teacher Ayman Metri, who has accused Muslim fundamentalists of cutting off his ear and burning his house?
Or the case of the Palestinian photographer who had both of his arms broken by Fatah thugs in the West Bank because they did not like his pictures and political views?
Those who did not like al-Ramishi's controversial poem could simply have published one of their own, criticizing him or even mocking at him for heaping praise at a dictator.
But that is often not the case in most Arab countries, where violence and terror are regarded as a legitimate weapon to silence critics and or anyone who dares to express a different opinion.
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by Mudar Zahran
"If Hamas does not like you for any reason all they have to do now is say you are a Mossad agent and kill you." — A., a Fatah member in Gaza.
"Hamas wanted us butchered so it could win the media war against Israel showing our dead children on TV and then get money from Qatar." — T., former Hamas Ministry officer.
"They would fire rockets and then run away quickly, leaving us to face Israeli bombs for what they did." — D., Gazan journalist.
"Hamas imposed a curfew: anyone walking out in the street was shot. That way people had to stay in their homes, even if they were about to get bombed. Hamas held the whole Gazan population as a human shield." — K., graduate student
"The Israeli army allows supplies to come in and Hamas steals them. It seems even the Israelis care for us more than Hamas." — E., first-aid volunteer.
"We are under Hamas occupation, and if you ask most of us, we would rather be under Israeli occupation… We miss the days when we were able to work inside Israel and make good money. We miss the security and calm Israel provided when it was here." — S., graduate of an American university, former Hamas sympathizer.
by Ben Cohen
Now, with the Islamic State's self-proclaimed caliphate having captured key oil wells in the Middle East this year, foreign oil has become an even more lethal financial weapon-of-choice for those seeking to destroy democracy and further escalate the War on Terror.
That President Barack Obama failed even to mention oil as a critical factor in the war against IS during his speech to the nation on September 10, is an omission both revealing and dangerous in terms of how his administration wants to depict the stakes involved in this latest confrontation with the jihadis.
by Lawrence A. Franklin
One Pakistani recruiter of child suicide bombers describes these children as "tools provided by God."
Another Muslim cleric in a madrassa [Islamic boys' school] describes child suicide bombers as "a gift from Allah that we have an unlimited number willing to be sacrificed to teach Americans a lesson."
Using children as suicide bombers will stop when... they stop "condoning the killing of innocents."
by Denis MacEoin
"No religion condones the killing of innocents." — U.S. President Barack Obama, September 10, 2014.
"Islam is a religion of peace." — U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron, September 13, 2014.
"There is a place for violence in Islam. There is a place for jihad in Islam." — U.K. Imam Anjem Choudary, CBN News, April 5, 2010.
Regrettably it is impossible to re-interpret the Qur'an in a "moderate" manner. The most famous modern interpretation by Sayyid Qutb (d. 1966), the Muslim Brotherhood ideologue, leads the reader again and again into political territory, where jihad is at the root of action.
If they deviated from the true faith -- as we are seeing in the Islamic State today -- "backsliders," like pagans, were to be fought until they either accepted Islam or were killed.
In India alone, between 60 and 80 million Hindus may have been put to death by Muslim armies between the years 1000-1525.
by Yaakov Lappin
Hamas's long-term ambitions are indistinguishable from those of Islamic State and al-Qaeda.
Hamas will now focus on its next goal -- trying to strengthen its presence in the West Bank and eventually toppling the Palestinian Authority from power there, just as it did in Gaza. If Israel were to withdraw from the West Bank, Hamas would certainly find such a goal easier to accomplish.
Nothing keeps the flames of jihad alight, and Hamas's popularity secure, like frequent wars.