Sunday, March 30, 2008

Dr. Wafa Sultan in hiding after receiving death threats

Can you believe this shi&?

An American citizen in hiding because of a FATWA issued by a Islamic cleric?

It's true. Back on March 4th, Dr. Sultan appeared on an al-Jazeera program about the re-publication of the Mo-toons. (She was awesome, as ever and I can only marvel at her composure and her grace under pressure as she smacked down the Islamic hardliners she was debating.)

It is hard for me to imagine her having to go into hiding with her family but since Egyptian Islamist Sheik al-Qaradawi has issued his fatwa that is what has happened. According to Robert Spencer:

Spencer concludes, "These are serious charges, and Qaradawi states them in terms that his jihadist minions will understand as meaning that she must be killed.

Thanks to Always on Watch (and Memri) for bringing this to our attention. The Memri vids of the Al Jazeera interview are below. Do yourself a favor and watch them. She is amazing.

Through Brigitte Gabriel, Dr. Sultan has made a request for our help. She asks that we send a letter to the Embassy of Qatar (al-Jazeera's home base) advising them of the situation. Contact info and a sample letter can be found here at the site.

It will only take a minute and lord knows, after seeing the way the Dutch government has "supported" Geert Wilders, I'm starting to think we sure won't be able to count on the US government to do anything...

There's more info beneath the fold - and get this, al-Jazeera apologized to their viewing public because of Dr. Sultan's "offensive remarks" after this program.

Bold ex-Muslim threatened by top sheik
Wafa Sultan shocks Islamic TV audience again, Al Jazeera apologizes

Wafa Sultan – the Syria-born psychiatrist whose Al Jazeera interview two years ago sent shockwaves throughout the Islamic world – reportedly is the target of a serious tacit death threat from an influential Muslim scholar in the wake of a second interview with the Arab satellite television network.

Al Jazeera issued an apology after Sultan's interview earlier this month, pointing to "offensive remarks" but never specifying anything she said. Since then, however, the prominent Sheik Yusuf al-Qaradawi of Egypt "has directed his rage against Sultan," writes author and Jihad Watch director Robert Spencer in FrontPage Magazine

Qaradawi said Sultan, a former Muslim, uttered "unbearable, ghastly things that made my hair stand on end." Specifically, "she had the audacity to publicly curse Allah, his prophet, the Quran, the history of Islam and the Islamic nation."

Spencer concludes, "These are serious charges, and Qaradawi states them in terms that his jihadist minions will understand as meaning that she must be killed.

"Given that Qaradawi has justified suicide attacks against Israeli civilians and American soldiers in Iraq, it is clear that he has no distaste for violence, and thus law enforcement officials should take his latest fulminations against Wafa Sultan very seriously indeed," Spencer writes.

In her Al Jazeera appearance this month, she defended the Danish cartoons of Muhammad that have sparked violence by Muslims around the globe.

"The reactions of the Muslims, which were characterized by savageness, barbarism, and backwardness, only increased the value of these cartoons and gave them more importance than they merited, simply because they proved that these cartoons were true, and that the message they were conveying was true." Sultan said.

"The Muslim is an irrational creature ruled by instincts," she declared. "Those teachings have deprived him of his mind, incited his emotions and reduced him to the level of an inferior creature that cannot control himself or react to events rationally."

An Egyptian Islamist, Tal'at Rmeih, who debated Sultan on the March 4 Al Jazeera show, replied: "God help me. First, Islam is too great to be harmed by the publisher of the cartoon, or by that woman who is talking over there. The truth is that everything she said is 100 percent false, I'm sad to say. It seems to me that the American and Zionist intelligence agencies have begun to produce people who are hostile to their own nation."

Spencer points out that Qaradawi – who was praised by Saudi-funded U.S. academic John Esposito as a "reformist" – in 2006 exhorted Muslims to fight against Israel by invoking the traditional saying of Muhammad, that on the Day of Judgment "even the stones and the trees will speak, with or without words, and say: 'Oh servant of Allah, oh Muslim, there's a Jew behind me, come and kill him.'"

Sultan first drew attention worldwide in a February 2006 Al-Jazeera interview that spread across the Internet through a video clip produced by the Middle East Media Research Institute.

In her interview this month, Sultan charged that if Islam "were not the way it is, those cartoons would never have appeared. They did not appear out of the blue, and the cartoonist did not dig them out of his imagination. Rather, they are a reflection of his knowledge."

"Westerners who read the words of the Prophet Muhammad, 'Allah has given me sustenance under the shadow of my sword,' cannot imagine Muhammad's turban in the shape of a dove of peace rather than in the shape of a bomb," she said. "The Muslims must learn how to listen to the criticism of others, and maybe then they will reexamine their terrorist teachings."

Qaradawi fired back, saying her statements are "all based on ignorance," contending she has no knowledge of the Quran or Sunna, the body of customs based on the acts of Muhammad. The sheik also

Spencer says Qaradawi falsely charges – "with stinging irony in light of his support for suicide attacks" – that Sultan "sanctions the killing of Muslims in Gaza and elsewhere, claiming that they deserve to be killed."

Sultan, says Spencer, has "yet again shown up the hollowness of the denial, obfuscation, and finger-pointing that all too many Islamic leaders engage in rather than embarking upon the searching self-reflection" she urges along with and other "defenders of universal human rights and human dignity."

"Wafa Sultan is a national and international treasure," Spencer says. "The American government should be rushing to protect her against any who might be motivated to act by the distortions of the thuggish Qaradawi."

Named to Time Magazine's list of 100 influential people in the world, Sultan told WND in 2006 Bush's insistence Islam is a religion of peace has been "empowering" to Muslim leaders whose ultimate aim is for Islamic law to govern the world.

In her February 2006 Al-Jazeera appearance, which first brought her death threats, she asserted the world is witnessing "a battle between modernity and barbarism which Islam will lose."

The video clip is estimated to have been viewed at least 1 million times, according to the New York Times.

Sultan's 2006 interview found her squaring off with Al-Jazeera host Faisal al-Qasim and Islamic scholar Ibrahim Al-Khouli about Samuel P. Huntington's "clash of civilizations" theory. The exchange took place on the 90-minute discussion program "The Opposite Direction," with Sultan speaking via satellite from Los Angeles.

"The clash we are witnessing around the world is not a clash of religions, or a clash of civilizations," she said. "It is a clash between two opposites, between two eras. It is a clash between a mentality that belongs to the Middle Ages and another mentality that belongs to the 21st century. It is a clash between civilization and backwardness, between the civilized and the primitive, between barbarity and rationality. It is a clash between freedom and oppression, between democracy and dictatorship. It is a clash between human rights, on the one hand, and the violation of these rights, on other hand. It is a clash between those who treat women like beasts, and those who treat them like human beings. What we see today is not a clash of civilizations. Civilizations do not clash, but compete."