Archive for the ‘Islamists and Christians’ category

U.S. Pastor Moved to House Arrest in Turkey. Pompeo Says It’s ‘Not Enough.’

July 25, 2018

By The New York Times July 25, 2018

Source Link:
U.S. Pastor Moved to House Arrest in Turkey. Pompeo Says It’s ‘Not Enough.’

{I’m reminded of ‘Daniel in the Den of Lions.’ – LS}

An American pastor held on espionage charges in Turkey, the focus of an intensive campaign by top United States officials seeking his freedom, was moved from jail to house arrest on Wednesday because of health concerns.

Andrew Brunson, a 50-year-old evangelical pastor from North Carolina, has been held for more than a year and a half in a case that has aggravated already tense relations between Turkey and the United States, longtime allies. He is one of 20 Americans who were charged after a failed coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 2016.

President Trump spoke to Mr. Erdogan by phone about the case, and posted a message on Twitter last week urging the Turkish leader to “do something” to free the pastor.

On Wednesday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also took to Twitter to say that while the United States welcomed the “long overdue news that Pastor Brunson has been moved from prison to house arrest,” the measure was “not enough.”

“We have seen no credible evidence against Mr. Brunson, and call on Turkish authorities to resolve his case immediately in a transparent and fair manner,” Mr. Pompeo wrote.

Just last week, a court in Turkey’s western Izmir Province upheld an earlier decision to place Mr. Brunson in jail while he awaited the continuation of a trial on charges of terrorism and espionage. His lawyer appealed the decision, citing unspecified concerns over Mr. Brunson’s health, according to the semiofficial Anadolu news agency.

On Wednesday, the same court ordered Mr. Brunson released into house arrest until his trial resumes in October. The court ordered him to wear an electronic bracelet at all times and barred him from traveling outside the country.

Footage of a car carrying Mr. Brunson, accompanied by a police escort, was shown live on television as the pastor was moved from a prison in Izmir to his home. He was later seen entering his home.

Mr. Brunson could face 35 years in prison if found guilty of having links to two groups Turkey considers terrorist organizations: a movement led by the American-based cleric Fethullah Gulen — whom Turkey accuses of initiating the 2016 coup attempt — and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party.

Mr. Brunson, who has done missionary work in Turkey for 23 years, worked with his wife at a small Protestant church in the city of Izmir, on the country’s Aegean coast. He has denied any links to terrorist organizations, and says he eschews politics in his work.

The American Center for Law and Justice, an organization representing Mr. Brunson’s family, said in a statement on Wednesday that it looked forward to his ultimate return to the United States. It applauded Mr. Trump for pursuing his release.

“This is a critical first step that we believe will result in the freedom of Pastor Brunson so he can return to the United States and be reunited with his family,” Jay Sekulow, the group’s chief counsel, said in a statement.

Officials advocating for Mr. Brunson’s release believe that resolving his case could signal an improvement in relations between the countries. The Turkish authorities have suggested handing Mr. Brunson over to the United States in exchange for Mr. Gulen’s extradition to Turkey to face charges in the coup attempt. The Americans have rejected requests to extradite Mr. Gulen.

The United States Senate last month temporarily blocked the sale of F-35 fighter jets to Turkey because of Mr. Brunson’s imprisonment and Turkey’s purchase of a Russian air defense system.

A pro-government columnist, Abdulkadir Selvi, said in a televised comment that the dispute over Mr. Brunson had “reached a point that it was poisoning the relationship between the United States and Turkey.” Of the pastor’s move to house arrest, he said, “This is a step.”

Mr. Selvi said that now it was the United States’ turn to take “a step” to improve the relationship, alluding to Mr. Gulen.

The Muslim Terrorist Who Hated Christmas

December 15, 2017

The Muslim Terrorist Who Hated Christmas, FrontPage Magazine, Daniel Greenfield, December 15, 2017

(Please see also, NYPD: Fighting Terrorism on Three Sides. – DM)

Ullah came to this country in 2011. Three years later, he had already been ‘radicalized’. The Bangladeshi terrorist had come here on a chain migration link that began with a diversity lottery visa. But Ullah didn’t actually like diversity. He didn’t want to share a city or country with Christians.

And so he set out to kill them.

We’ve been told often enough that a common sense travel ban would violate religious freedom. But the greatest violation of religious freedom isn’t a selective immigration policy, it’s being murdered for your religion. That’s not just the reality in Bangladesh. It’s now the reality in America and Europe.

Mayor Bill de Blasio, the lefty pol who dismantled the NYPD’s counterterrorism programs at the behest of Islamist pressure groups, insisted at the post-attack press conference that, “We actually show that society of many faiths and many backgrounds can work.”

A society of many faiths can work. As long as all of them practice mutual tolerance.

The diversity visa lottery has brought us the wrong kind of diversity. Our cities have become a diverse assortment of immigrants who will and won’t kill you over your religion. There isn’t much religious diversity in Bangladesh, Pakistan or Afghanistan. If we want to preserve our own religious diversity from going the same way, we have to exclude those immigrants who would kill anyone who is different.

And we need to hurry because the Ullahs of tomorrow are applying for their visas today.

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Akayed Ullah, a Bangladeshi Muslim living in Brooklyn, really hated Christmas. He hated Christmas so much that he used Christmas tree lights (along with a battery and some wire) as a trigger for a pipe bomb. He filled the pipe bomb with screws so that when it went off, metal shrapnel would tear bloody holes through morning commuters in Manhattan.

Wearing a hooded jacket and a backpack to cover the pipe bomb strapped to his body, Ullah got on the F Train at the 18th Avenue elevated subway station off Little Bangladesh. Like the Duke Ellington song says, he switched over to the A Train at Jay Street. It was early morning, but there were plenty of people riding the train. Jay Street is a major transit hub. But Ullah was waiting to blow up somewhere else.

He got off in the crush at the 42nd-St. Port Authority station. Here a whole lot of people can be found rushing up and down crowded staircases and shoving their way through cramped corridors.

Ullah took the long underground corridor that runs between the Port Authority station and Times Square. He strode past movie and beauty ads. He walked under the discouraging poem, “Overslept, So tired, If late, Get fired, Why bother? Why the pain? Just go home. Do it again.” But he wasn’t going home. And there would be no opportunities to do it again. The Muslim terrorist was right on time.

Rush hour was just getting started in the city that never sleeps. The Muslim terrorist probably passed hundreds of people: not to mention a saxophonist or drummer trying out his act on tired commuters.

But he was waiting for something else. Finally he saw it. A Christmas poster.

That’s when he detonated the pipe bomb using a Christmas tree light near a Christmas poster.  Because if there was one thing that Akayed Ullah, like his ISIS masters truly hated, it was Christmas.

Last month, ISIS supporters had circulated a poorly photoshopped poster of Santa next to a box of dynamite overlooking Times Square. “We meet at Christmas in New York… soon,” it read.

As he walked toward Times Square, Ullah appeared determined to carry out the ISIS threat. Using a Christmas tree light in his bomb and detonating near a Christmas poster was a clear statement.

Ullah came to this country in 2011. Three years later, he had already been ‘radicalized’. The Bangladeshi terrorist had come here on a chain migration link that began with a diversity lottery visa. But Ullah didn’t actually like diversity. He didn’t want to share a city or country with Christians.

And so he set out to kill them.

In Ullah’s native Bangladesh, Christian churches have shut down midnight mass before due to threats of violence.

“This is the first time in my life that I find Christians celebrating Christmas with such panic and fear,” the Bangladesh Christian Association secretary general had said.

But with the diversity visa lottery, you don’t have to be a Christian living in Bangladesh to be terrorized by Bangladeshi Muslim violence.

And maybe that’s a diversity we could do without.

That same year, Bangladeshi authorities stopped a Christmas Day plot that involves a suicide bomb vest. But this year, America had its very own Bangladeshi suicide bomber. Christians are readying to celebrate Christmas in Bangladeshi churches this year with metal detectors and thousands of security personnel.

But these days that’s not just Christmas in Bangladesh. It’s Christmas in Europe.

Muslim Christmas violence spread terror across Europe last year. These ranged from the ‘Kindergarten bomber’, a 12-year-old Iraqi who planted a nail bomb in a German Christmas market to the Tunisian refugee who rammed a truck into another German Christmas market killing 12 people and wounding 68. These days, German Christmas markets come with car barriers that are gift wrapped with bows.

An estimated 29 ‘lone wolves’ were arrested last year in Christmas terror plots in the UK, France, Brussels and Australia. A number of these plots targeted Christmas markets, carnivals and cathedrals.

The year before, a Pakistani married couple had opened fire at a Christmas party at the Department of Public Health in San Bernardino. The worst half of the couple had groused about the Christmas decorations. Previous attack plots had included the Christmas Day bomber (the Nigerian terrorist also known as the underwear bomber) and Portland’s Somali Christmas tree lighting bomb plot.

This is what a religious war looks like.

Muslim violence spikes around Ramadan, and around Christian and Jewish holidays, because Islamic violence is inherently religious in nature. Islamic Supremacist terrorists like Ullah are lashing out at non-Islamic religions in order to clear the way for the imposition of Islamic rule.

Mayor Bill de Blasio, the lefty pol who dismantled the NYPD’s counterterrorism programs at the behest of Islamist pressure groups, insisted at the post-attack press conference that, “We actually show that society of many faiths and many backgrounds can work.”

A society of many faiths can work. As long as all of them practice mutual tolerance.

When a society includes Akayed Ullah, Sayfullo Saipov, the Uzbeki Muslim who ran over tourists on a Manhattan bike path in October, Ahmad Khan Rahimi, the Afghan who set off bombs in New York and New Jersey last year, Faisal Shahzad, the Pakistani who tried to detonate a car bomb in Times Square, Talha Haroon, another Pakistani who wanted to massacre New Yorkers in Times Square, Quazi Mohammad, another Bangladeshi who wanted to bomb the Federal Reserve and Raees Qazi, another Pakistani who scouted Times Square for an attack, that society can’t and won’t work.

You can’t coexist with people who refuse to coexist with you. They’re just ticking time bombs. Like Ullah riding the F Train and then the A Train while the passengers around him unthinkingly played games or clicked through Trump headlines not knowing that he could have detonated the bomb at any moment.

There are plenty of Ullahs all around us. Sometimes they wait years before blowing up. Other times hours and minutes. If we’re unlucky, it’s seconds. But the bombs, real and metaphorical, are there.

This is life in a society that has opened its borders to migrants from Islamic states where terrorism isn’t a horrifying aberration, but an ancient religious tradition to which the penitent sinner may turn to when his life no longer seems to have purpose or meaning. This is how we live now. And it will get worse.

Our politicians tout diversity after every attack. They tell us how much it enriches and improves us.

Akayed Ullah was a livery cab driver. His predecessor, Sayfullo Saipov, was an Uber driver. Do we really need two cab drivers so badly that we have to accept eight deaths and sixteen injuries in exchange?

Could we get our cab drivers from somewhere beyond Bangladesh and Uzbekistan?

We don’t have to live like this. We’re only living like this because we’ve been told that it would be mean and unfair of us to actually have a common sense immigration policy that keeps Islamic terrorists out.

The question is would we rather be mean to the Uber drivers of tomorrow or sit next to a ticking time bomb waiting to detonate at the first sight of a Christmas poster?

We’ve been told often enough that a common sense travel ban would violate religious freedom. But the greatest violation of religious freedom isn’t a selective immigration policy, it’s being murdered for your religion. That’s not just the reality in Bangladesh. It’s now the reality in America and Europe.

The diversity visa lottery has brought us the wrong kind of diversity. Our cities have become a diverse assortment of immigrants who will and won’t kill you over your religion. There isn’t much religious diversity in Bangladesh, Pakistan or Afghanistan. If we want to preserve our own religious diversity from going the same way, we have to exclude those immigrants who would kill anyone who is different.

And we need to hurry because the Ullahs of tomorrow are applying for their visas today.

Egyptian Islamist Uses New Jersey Base to Stoke Christian Hatred

November 9, 2017

Egyptian Islamist Uses New Jersey Base to Stoke Christian Hatred, Investigative Project on Terrorism,Hany Ghoraba, November 9, 2017

Most jihadists in the world regard Qutb as the ultimate scholar to follow. Qutb’s writings on Islamic Fiqh (jurisprudence) became the handbook of every jihadist from al-Qaida’s Osama bin Laden to ISIS’s Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi. Qutb denounced the United States after living there for a few years as a decadent and immoral society. Yet Oraby refers to Qutb as the “martyr” and a great scholar whose teachings supersede any other. She advises her audience to teach their children Qutb’s books and biography.

Known for her abusive and foul language, she gloats over the deaths of Egyptian officers fighting terrorism in Egypt and she celebrates them with her followers. “Forty Egyptian police officer got hammered, may God increase it and bless it,” she wrote.

She also frequently promotes a conspiracy theory about dividing Egypt and creating a Coptic state with al-Sisi’s help. She claims the Egyptian president is an Israeli Mossad agent, and she calls upon every Muslim end to this “Zionist-Nazarene” plan.

As with most Islamists, the national borders of their home countries don’t matter in the grand scheme for establishing a global Islamic state, or caliph. They do not believe in political borders, but in borders based on the faith. Oraby is a staunch advocate for the return of Islamic caliphate and mentions it repeatedly in her articles. She even wrote a poem about it with a map of Iberian Peninsula, showing Islamic Spain factions while lamenting its demise.

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Inciting sectarian strife against Egypt’s Coptic Christians is not a novelty. Islamist propaganda targeting the Coptic Church, businesses and doctrine thrived for decades and often led to violence and prosecution. Earlier this month, a young Islamist killed a Coptic priest in the streets of Cairo.

A new incitement campaign was launched against Copts last year, but what is surprising is that it originates from a cozy home in a peaceful New Jersey suburb.

Ayat Oraby is an Egyptian Muslim immigrant, wife, and mother of two children. Her YouTube channel and blog are dedicated to attacking the Egyptian government and other Arab leaders who do not support Islamists. She uses precious free speech rights that she sought in a country like the USA to spew hatred and violence towards others. Generally, Islamists such as Oraby do not believe in freedom of speech except as a tool in western countries to provoke hatred, propagate Jihadist rhetoric, and fantasize about their Islamist utopia i.e. Sharia ruled caliphate.

“The idea of the Islamic caliphate,” she wrote in a September Facebook post, “is not a political rhetoric but a future that we believe in and a revelation by Allah to his Prophet.”

Before the January 2011 Egyptian revolution that ousted former President Hosni Mubarak, Oraby was unknown in Egypt and the United States. She introduced herself as a purported freedom activist who opposed Mubarak and allegedly carried liberal views. She promoted many Egyptian youth demands for freedom and democracy through her Vlog and other social media outlets.

Oraby kept her support for the Muslim Brotherhood hidden and worked as a news anchor for Egyptian television before 2011. She moved to the United States in 1993 and married Ahmed Ibrahim El-Naggar, an Egyptian-American biochemist who is reportedly affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood, according to her brother Abdel-Qader Oraby, who also denounced her actions on an Egyptian TV network in 2014. “I don’t watch her videos and I don’t follow her news because I am very sad from what she says,” he said. “The entire family severed ties with her because of her views.”

She has become one of the most outspoken Brotherhood activists in the United States, with a growing social media following. She also started wearing a hijab to appease Islamists who previously condemned her for posting videos without the Islamic attire.

She incites violence and discrimination against Egypt’s Christians and calls for denying them equal rights to Muslims, including a limit on church construction. She publicly insulted Coptic Pope Tawadoros II by calling him a “puppy” of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

“The problem of the Christians in Egypt is that they follow the church gang,” she wrote. “They believe that (Coptic Pope) Tawadoros the criminal, or any other criminal who will replace him, was selected by the Lord and speaks on His behalf. The church gang deceives its followers in this despicable way, just like a thief or a swindler from the Middle Ages.”

She revels in labeling them as “Nazarenes,” the Quranic term for addressing Christians. It is considered offensive because it refers to an old Christian sect and it is unrelated to modern Christianity. She believes that Christians wield too much power in Egypt. In one of her YouTube videos, she urges her followers to boycott Egyptian Christian businesses and events. She created the “Campaign to Boycott the Nazarenes” with a slogan: “Buy from Houda (A Muslim Nickname) and snub Shenouda (A Coptic Christian name).

“You (Christians) supported the criminals of the Church and their efforts in killing Muslims. You came to revolt against the elected Muslim president (Mohammed Morsi) and you stood in the face of the will of the Muslims,” her introduction to the boycott campaign said.

“O Muslims, boycott them (Copts) and do not buy their products force them to understand the consequences of their actions. To understand that their Cross will not prevail over Egypt and that Islam is above all, whether they like it or not.”

She also frequently promotes a conspiracy theory about dividing Egypt and creating a Coptic state with al-Sisi’s help. She claims the Egyptian president is an Israeli Mossad agent, and she calls upon every Muslim end to this “Zionist-Nazarene” plan. The Coptic Church, she claims, illegally annexed lands next to its monasteries in Western Egypt to build a Coptic compound which will be the cornerstone of a Coptic only city.

“This church constitutes a gang,” she said, “striving to establish a Coptic mini-state. It has shared common interests with the military for a long time.”

Oraby quotes modern Islamic imams to condemn Christians and Jews. For example, she posted a quote on her Facebook page from the popular late Egyptian Sheikh Mohamed Al-Shaarawi: “We have to seek refuge in Allah from appeasing of the Jews and the Christians, and anyone the Jews and the Christians are content with him must know that he betrayed his religion. We need to differentiate between contentment and coexistence (with them).”

She also frequently quotes Islamic scholar Mohammed Al-Ghazali: “The demise of Israel must be preceded by the demise of Arab regimes that have thrived on mocking their people, and the destruction of Arab societies that have adopted illusion and weakness (instead of Islam).”

In Oraby’s eyes, anyone who opposes the Muslim Brotherhood is labeled an apostate or an infidel. She calls the late Egyptian President Gamal Abdel-Nasser a kafir [unbeliever] for executing Sayyid Qutb, the jihadist scholar and Brotherhood ideologue, and for refusing to upheld Sharia laws in Egypt. She also called Nasser’s successor Anwar Sadat a traitor who worked for the CIA and a kafir for signing a peace treaty with Israel.

Most jihadists in the world regard Qutb as the ultimate scholar to follow. Qutb’s writings on Islamic Fiqh (jurisprudence) became the handbook of every jihadist from al-Qaida’s Osama bin Laden to ISIS’s Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi. Qutb denounced the United States after living there for a few years as a decadent and immoral society. Yet Oraby refers to Qutb as the “martyr” and a great scholar whose teachings supersede any other. She advises her audience to teach their children Qutb’s books and biography.

Known for her abusive and foul language, she gloats over the deaths of Egyptian officers fighting terrorism in Egypt and she celebrates them with her followers. “Forty Egyptian police officer got hammered, may God increase it and bless it,” she wrote.

Even dead Egyptian actors and artists get smeared, such as beloved Egyptian actor Mamdouh Abdel Aleem. Aleem opposed former Egyptian President and Muslim Brotherhood member Mohamed Morsi. “It is not gloating, but we should all be happy that the “licentious slave” actor is dead,” she wrote in a January 2016 Facebook post.

She also celebrated the death of a former Egyptian television colleague who also had criticized Morsi. “The demise of the mercenary Fatma Al-Najdi who condemned Rabaa protests and saluted the Misraeli Army,” she wrote. “Misr” is Arabic for Egypt. Oraby calls the Egyptian Army “Misraeli” for holding peace with Israel.

In May, she joined a Muslim Brotherhood delegation that visited the U.S. Congress to lobby against designating the Brotherhood as a terrorist organization. The delegation included members of Egyptian Americans for Freedom and Justice (EAFJ), which has sponsored events featuring calls for Egyptian leader Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s beheading by Egyptian mujahideen.

The delegation included senior officials from New Jersey’s Islamic Center of Passaic County. Center Imam Mohammed Qatanani remains subject to deportation proceedings due to his connections to Hamas.

Oraby joined other U.S. based Islamists in mourning former Muslim Brotherhood General Guide Mahdi Akef’s death last month.

“To hell with Egypt, its flag, its army and their institutions, to hell with Egypt a million times,” she wrote in a Twitter post.

As with most Islamists, the national borders of their home countries don’t matter in the grand scheme for establishing a global Islamic state, or caliph. They do not believe in political borders, but in borders based on the faith. Oraby is a staunch advocate for the return of Islamic caliphate and mentions it repeatedly in her articles. She even wrote a poem about it with a map of Iberian Peninsula, showing Islamic Spain factions while lamenting its demise.

Ayat Oraby’s radical rants and conspiracy theories are nothing new, but her style and reach attract many young Islamist followers. With more than 600,000 Facebook followers, she should not be taken lightly by any security apparatus.

Hany Ghoraba is an Egyptian writer, political and counter-terrorism analyst at Al Ahram Weekly, author of Egypt’s Arab Spring: The Long and Winding Road to Democracy and a regular contributor to the BBC.