Monday, 25 July 2011

Thank God that’s over. I couldn’t have taken another minute of the finely honed deceptions and omissions that have characterized this series, and if I hear another ‘It has to be seen in the context of the time’ I shall scream.

The programme covered the fall of Mecca, shari’ah law, Mohammed’s polygamy (including his marriage to six-year-old Aisha), the veiling of women and the concept of jihad, and it contained many first-class examples of being economical with the truth. Merryl Wyn Davis, one of the Muslim apologists who dominated proceedings, came out with a classic when she talked of Islam building a society that included everybody. She omitted saying that such a society tolerates non-Muslims only on payment of the jizyah tax and provided that they willingly accept their subordinate status. Further, such toleration is extended only to Jews, Christians, Zoroastrians, Samarians and Sabians; shari’ah law offers no protection to any other faith or to atheists.

The presenter, Rageh Omaar (above), concluded the programme by quoting from Mohammed’s last sermon:

And finally, in his farewell sermon, Mohammed left us with the most important lesson of all—that we are all equal, Arab and non-Arab, Muslim and non-Muslim.

Fine words, but the Qur’an has a different message. It elevates Muslims:

[3:110] You are the noblest nation that has ever been raised up for mankind

It declares non-Muslims to be unclean or najis:

[9:28] Believers, know that the idolaters are unclean

and it explains how the unclean non-Muslims must be treated:

[48:29] Mohammed is Allah’s apostle. Those who follow him are ruthless to the unbelievers but merciful to one another

Excuses for such blatant misrepresentation? Well, in What the Koran Really Says, ibn Warraq writes:

The style of the Koran is difficult, totally unlike the prose of today, and the Koran would be largely incomprehensible without glossaries, indeed, entire commentaries. In conclusion, even the most educated of Arabs will need some sort of translation if he or she wishes to make sense of that most gnomic, elusive and allusive of holy scriptures, the Koran.

Do Muslims (most of whom neither speak nor read Arabic) really know what the Qur’an says, or do they rely on what their preachers tell them it says? Whatever the reason, the series did a superb job of whitewashing Islam and presenting Mohammed as a man of ‘warmth, humanity and kindness’. However, no amount of whitewash can disguise the legacy that Mohammed has left the world—the oppression of women, divine authorization of violence, contempt for non-Muslims and some of the world’s most backward societies.


Cheradenine Zakalwe said...

Haven't seen it yet. I always watch these things retrospectively so I can pause it from time to time and take the lies in small doses. It gives me some feeling of control over it.

Did they admit Aisha was six when he married her? Did they admit he kept sex slaves?

Johnny Rottenborough said...

They obfuscated Aisha very professionally, creating doubt over how young she really was when she wed. We were left with the impression that she could well have been in her mid-teens when she married the Prophet. Nothing at all about concubines (‘those your right hand possesses’).

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