Tariq Ramadan — “Freedom of Conscience”
by Michael Copeland
Tariq Ramadan, grandson of the co-founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, and lately adviser to David Cameron, holds a recently created Qatari-funded chair at Oxford. In a talk, rather grandly entitled “A New Vision For Religious Pluralism”, he made a bold rallying cry, “We must protect freedom of conscience.” Straight away this is puzzling: freedom of conscience is not permitted in Islam. Why did he say this? Who are the “we” he speaks of? Why is he urging “pluralism”? The West already permits varied religions to co-exist. “Pluralism” is another feature not permitted in Islam: non-Muslim belief systems, which Islam denies are religions, are only allowed as second-class status, with restricted rights. “If anyone desires a religion other than Islam never will it be accepted of him,” says Koran 3:85, part of Islamic law. No. Fragrance of rodent: there is something else going on behind these words.
Ramadan’s ploy is the Trojan Horse. Fashionable high-sounding concepts are invoked, to which listeners are favourably disposed. The audience is thus put at ease. The aim is that they will not notice there is a concealed hostile passenger. The objective of this sleight-of-speech trick is to succeed in having the hidden enemy admitted without any objection. What is really going on here is surreptitious slipping in of Sharia to Western Christendom, which it openly opposes, and where it has no right to be, with apparent permission and agreement. It is a crafty device, and he performs it slickly.
Freedom of conscience is not part of Islam. Egyptian sheikh Yassir al-Burhani recently made this clear in an interview:
“For example, is it the right of the Muslim to convert to Christianity or another religion?”
“Of course this is not a right;”
(JihadWatch.org 1 June 2012)
A person who denies any verse in the Koran, or who departs from Islam (they are treated as the same thing) is to be killed. The killing, under Islam’s tribal justice of Sharia, may be performed, vigilante-style, by anyone. It is without penalty because the person, the “apostate”, is “someone who deserves to be killed” (Manual of Islamic Law o8.1). This is not some long-dead quaint relic of the past. It is an ongoing reality. The internet keeps receiving video uploads of apostates, mostly converts to Christianity, having their throats publicly slit and heads hacked off to cries of “Allahu Akhbar” (“Allah is Greater”). So much for “freedom of conscience”. These gruesome murders are conducted to terrorise the onlookers into “Submission”, which is what the word “Islam” means, that is to say, Submission Through Coercion.
In many places the Koran says, “Kill the unbelievers wherever you find them” (9:5). In Iran there are converts to Christianity held in gaol, sentenced to death for leaving Islam. Previous prisoners have indeed been executed. Other people have been killed “privately”, as the videos show. Sharia’s vigilante killings occur not just in Iran, but in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Somalia, Sudan, Nigeria, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, East Timor, and so on, everywhere Muslims are waging “warfare to establish the religion”, that is, jihad, as defined by the Manual of Islamic Law. The BBC, who persistently obfuscate jihad by referring to “separatists” and “insurgents”, solve their dilemma over these sensitive news items by simply not reporting them. BBC news is carefully filtered.
A little explanation is needed. When a Muslim is engaged in Public Relations to a Western audience, who are infidels, and therefore “enemy”, he is entitled by Sharia law to use “Permissible Lying” (Manual of Islamic Law r8.2). It has an Arabic name: taqiyya. The Times Square bomber, the would-be mass murderer Faisal Shahzad, was reminded by the judge that he had taken the Oath of Allegiance when becoming a U.S. citizen. “I sweared”, he told the judge, “but I didn’t mean it.” A Muslim audience, hearing Ramadan urging freedom of conscience, will realise that he is using permissible lying, will understand that and refrain from killing him. Hear what Ramadan recommended to Muslim listeners and take heed (canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/8066):
“We must exploit the so-called democracy and freedom of speech here in the West to reach our goals. ….we must use every conceivable means and opportunity to defeat the enemies of Allah [non-Muslims].
Tell the infidels in public, ‘we respect your laws and your constitutions’, which we Muslims believe that these are as worthless as the paper they are written on.
The only law we must respect and apply is the Shari’a.”
Ramadan’s appeal to a noble ideal — freedom of conscience — is a device specially tailored for Western listeners. It is an attractive aromatic incense cloud behind which other undeclared items are being smuggled in. Essentially this is dishonest, traducing the fine concept which we can all support so as to make it mean “keep your noses out of Muslims’ affairs,” which is not at all what freedom of conscience means. This is playing, in a different guise, the well-known Religion Card. “Oh”, we are supposed to think, “we must not tread on religious freedom and infringe a downtrodden victim’s right to practise his religion. We had better give way on this and make allowances.” That is the intention, and giving way has, reprehensibly, been the pattern time and again. The result has been the successful erosion and subversion of British law, always in favour of the Islamic interest, and often without the need for any tiresome Act of Parliament. It is part of Islam’s “Migration Jihad” to spread and impose Sharia worldwide for the dreamt-of Global Caliphate. Ramadan is not showing us a “new vision” with his magician act. They are just the same old demands, but under false pretences.
“Protect freedom of conscience,” when invoked in Ramadan doublespeak, means: “You must allow us to apply Sharia law.” What does this entail? We British must allow Muslims in Britain to force genitally mutilated nine-year-old girls to marry against their will older men who have bought them, to be hit until they wear the niqab, and to stay indoors, not going out unless accompanied by one of their own menfolk. We must allow Muslim men to have up to four wives (and numerous sex slaves), adult or underage, to beat them, have intercourse against their will, and divorce them simply by saying “talaq, talaq, talaq”. We must allow daughter-killings, stonings, the killing of missionaries and of any who leave Islam, amputation of limbs, gouging out of eyes, and floggings. For good measure we are to include sex play with infants, and congress with animals and boys. We are to accept that the Muslim man is authorised to own slaves, and to kill them without penalty. All this is Sharia law. Only then may an observant and diligent Muslim be fully enabled, you see, to practise his beautiful ideology.
In short, under the guise of “protecting freedom of conscience” we are being deceptively induced to throw under the bus a container-load of rights and protections our forefathers fought and died for, and comprehensively to violate our own criminal law.
No deal, Mr. Qatari-funded Horse-Bringer. British law for Britain. If Sharia is what you want for your fellow adherents, advise them to go to Saudi Arabia. It is a rich country, well heated, and has a strictly enforced Muslims-only policy with full Sharia. True Freedom of Conscience is a vital defining element of Western democracies. Each of us in Britain has the right to hold beliefs, or no belief at all, without being coerced, without being killed. THAT is freedom of conscience. We, as free citizens of a Western democracy, have no difficulty in agreeing that “we must protect freedom of conscience”. This is something that the Western world defended at great cost in two World Wars. Freedoms are not free, nor are they self-defending.
Every so often from one generation to another the need arises to take a stand and defend freedoms with our lives. Where do we stand? For Freedom of Conscience or Coercion by Killing? Each of us has that step to take: stand forward or stand back. The choice is stark, and being a spectator is not an option. Yes, Mr. Ramadan, we defend freedom of conscience. We deplore coercion. We would ask you to do the same, and put your feet where your words are, but we are aware you did not mean them. We mean them. We Defend Freedom. We urge all fellow Westerners to do the same. Stand forward for Freedom and defend it. No Submission.
For previous essays by Michael Copeland, see the Michael Copeland Archives.