Oops, sorry, I got things mixed up! According to the recent Pew Survey, one in four young American Muslims support suicide bombing, "in some circumstances**." If one in four Catholics said they supported bombing abortion clinics, we Americans would admit that we've got an enormous problem on our hands. But somehow, our media is largely overlooking this particular survey result (with the exception of this Washington Times article), and are instead focusing on the more positive elements of the survey. From the Times:
"The first nationwide survey of Muslim Americans revealed that more than a quarter of those younger than 30 say suicide bombings to defend Islam are justified, a fact that drowned out the poll's kinder, gentler findings suggesting that the community is mainstream and middle class. 'There are trouble spots,' noted Andrew Kohut, director of the Pew Research Center, which conducted the survey of 1,050 adult Muslim Americans -- two-thirds of whom were foreign-born -- January to April. The results were released yesterday."
'We should be disturbed that 26 percent of these young people support an ideology in which the ends justify the means,' said Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, chairman of the Arizona-based American Islamic Forum for Democracy. 'But the survey also found that only 40 percent of the overall American Muslim population would even admit that Arabs were behind 9/11. They're in denial, refusing to take moral responsibility, and the radicals will feed on this,' Dr. Jasser said."
Are we surprised? There's support in many Islamic organizations, domestic and international, for suicide bombings.
The Boston Muslim American Society sent an e-mail to its members on November 17, 2005, containing the fatwa issued by Sheikh Omar Bakri Muhammad on March 20, 2004, calling for "resistance" by mujahideen against British and American soldier in Iraq, or anyone who helps the troops. (The fatwa also reminds Muslims it is forbidden to take Jews or Christians as allies, but that's a story for another day). This is a moderated e-mail list which serves the MAS and the Islamic Society of Boston (ISB). Apparently, the MAS and ISB support this fatwa calling for the death of our soldiers. Nobody said "Boo" about this fatwa, there was no follow-up e-mail condemning its message or distribution . Are we suprised that young Muslims support suicide bombing?
Many "mainstream" Islamic organizations in this country have advocated and supported suicide bombing "in some circumstances." Salah Soltan was the founder of the Islamic American University, which recently set up shop in Boston. Soltan was a signatory to the U.S. Fiqh Council Fatwa against "terrorism, religious extremism and use of violence against innocent lives." Yet Soltan has called for suicide bombing and he's encouraged young people to "strive towards martyrdom." Soltan was a guest lecturer at the ISB in 2005, as well as the featured speaker at a fund-rasier for the Al Huda Society of Revere in October 2005. Are we suprised that young Muslims support suicide bombing?
These are just two example that have local significance. But unfortunately there's fairly widespread support from established Islamic sources for suicide bombing, and not just in Gaza, Baghdad or Pakistan. It's here on our shores too, and according to the Pew Survey, in rather significant numbers. We ought to be very concerned about this poisoning of young people's minds in our own backyard.
** Let me guess, do those "circumstances" have anything to do with Israel?