A Justifiable Fear of Political Islam

A German-Iranian ex-Muslim gives her opinions about the Swiss minaret ban, and its meaning in the larger context of creeping sharia. Thanks to reader JLH for translating the interview from the Leipziger Volkszeitung, November 30, 2009:

Against Sharia

An interview about the construction ban on minarets in Switzerland with Mina Ahadi, Chair of the Central Council of Ex-Muslims:

Question: What do you say to the ban on minaret construction in Switzerland?

Mina AhadiMina Ahadi: I welcome the decision. It really is about minarets. The rejection of minarets is actually a rejection of Islamism, Sharia and the requirement for wearing a hijab. The minaret is merely a symbol of a justifiable fear of political Islam. So it is good that Swiss citizens have intervened in this situation and said a clear “No.” I would also like to see a broader discussion in Germany about female genital mutilation and the rights of children.

Q: Critics of the vote are afraid it will amplify xenophobia. How great a danger is there?

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A: That would be a simplistic and false interpretation. In Switzerland, it is not about fencing Muslims off. Rather, it is a protest against the attack on human rights in the name of Islam. Many Muslims, too, no longer feel that they are represented by Islamic political organizations. Many are resisting the suppression that has been decreed for them. Perhaps this vote will give them the courage to free themselves from it.

Q: Many people now fear he reaction of the Islamic world. What is in store for Switzerland?

A: Naturally, there will be aggressive reactions to Switzerland in the Muslim societies and the Arab world in general. The first threats have already have already been made. It suits the culture of the perpetually offended to take on the role of the victim and decry the suppression of Islam in the Western world. That just shows that this is about politics, not religion. We really hope that secularism and the human rights of the West will continue to be defended.

2 thoughts on “A Justifiable Fear of Political Islam

  1. That just shows that this is about politics, not religion.

    It seems even ex-Muslims make the gross strategic error of thinking Islam is not political.

  2. Although there is much I detest in the minaret debate, (including just about everything that has spilled from the well-fed mouths of the French political class lately), the worst result is that the goalposts have been subtly moved. Possible allies are now framing their comments with things like “I am not against mosques at all, but just againt the symbols of Islamisation.” Fair enough, for those who have held that position with integrity. But with all this backlash (generated by the media for the most part), it is becoming increasingly difficult to find support for a moratorium on mosques themselves, which could have been passed not too long ago.

    Imagine, 5 years ago the headscarf was banned in public institutions in France. And now there is an actual debate on whether the burka can be worn! Talk about going backwards! (And yes, I do get the distinction between public and private, but insist that it does not exist in France the way that it does in the US, due to the different philosophies of ‘integrating’ peoples).

    I have confidance that the burka will be banned eventually, but it will be because of adherence to French law, which does not allow people to walk around in disguise. Then of course, these people will design a dress that abides by the law, but pushes it to the limit and we will have this debate all over again. I mean, nobody objects to seeing a woman in a covering dress, just like I have no architectual problem with a minaret. It is the message behind the symbol which I cannot abide.

    One thing I have noticed, however, is that Muslims get enraged at the most inconsequential things, but then simmer down. They can be taken in hand, but the more concessions we make, the more they demand. The psychology is quite simple. I wish that our governments would make a stand before it is too late.

    Although I realise that I am being maladroit, I hope that your readers recognize that there is more permissiveness for islamists in Europe than there is in countries like Moracco or Turkey.

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