Sunday, August 05, 2007

PBS: "See No Islamism, Hear No Islamism, Speak No Islamism"

Before watching Muslims vs Jihad, the companion to the supposed-to-be-on-PBS-but-now-isn’t documentary Islam vs Islamists, I thought PBS didn’t want to show Islam vs Islamists because the show did not do a good job of depicting that large segment of the Muslim population that does not support Islamism and terror. I was wrong. The thing which ultimately gives PBS pause about Islam vs. Islamists is that the moderates actually do such an excellent job of pointing out the debaucheries of the Muslim radicals.

Now I know why they won’t show it. Because the truth hurts those who don’t want to admit or let it be known that an enormous chasm exists between moderate Muslims and hate-filled Islamists. PBS claimed not to see the moderate Muslims as representative of mainstream Islam. It’s a subtle play on words, but moderate Muslims are Muslims just the same.

Radical members of any society will get more print and airtime that their moderate members. That's the sad fact of an American media who wants whatever is salacious as opposed to whatever is true. Real Clear Politics explains why a cursory glance at our world makes it seem like there are very few moderate Muslims:

Are there moderate Muslims? And if there are, why aren't they speaking out against the beheaders and the suicide bombers?

A lot of people ask those questions. Canadian filmmaker Martyn Burke set out to answer them. He made a documentary. "Islam vs. Islamist," which was financed in part by a $675,000 grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

Mr. Burke hired journalists who reported from Denmark, France, Canada and the United States. There are a great many moderate Muslims, they found, but they don't speak out because they are intimidated by threats of coercion, ostracism and physical violence from the Islamists in their communities.

It’s no wonder that very few moderate Muslims speak out. Have you ever been threatened with violence if you speak out about a certain issue? Many of these people have. It takes great guts to stand up and speak out in the violent face of Islamists, let alone when you find they have their sycophants, such as the “See No Islamism, Hear No Islamism, Speak No Islamism” PBS.

According to a Fox News broadcast, in which several segments from the film were shown and discussed, PBS said the film was alarmist and overreaching, and that the producers of the film had demonized the Islamists. The film did no such thing; it simply allowed those who themselves had been demonized to speak the truth. I can’t help but wonder if PBS is afraid of the screechings of such groups as the Council on American Islamic Relations, who don’t want Islam vs. Islamists to be shown. It is clear to anyone watching the video that moderate Muslims blame Saudi Arabia for financing the bulk world Jihad. The Saudis, therefore, who have a great influence on America and many friends in American high places, will by no means be flattered by this film, and they have a great interest in its not being shown.

Nahid Riazy is one who dares to stand up against the excesses of Islam, such as the mistreatment of women. Many such still-Muslim women, including her, fear for their lives. Some are afraid to have their faces on camera, but she is not. She and others have had obscenities shouted at them and eggs thrown at them as they walk down the street. Others have been killed. Leaders of the Islamists, such as Said Mansour, claim that these women are not really Muslims (a spurious charge often made even by non-Muslims against those who do not follow the Islamist variety of Islam), and that in their struggle for democracy and liberty, they are actually limiting themselves.

Many crisis centers are being created to help these women.

Mansour said that Muslims must be God’s slaves--which apparently gives him and others like him the authority to be God’s taskmasters. They are doing a fine job of it! “You don’t ask questions about the religion. You are either a total Muslim, or you are not [a Muslim],” he said in an interview during the film.

Frank Gaffney, who helped with the film, said that PBS wanted them to change the story, to illustrate a moral equivalence between the Islamists and those who opposed their violent form of Islam. The producers of Islam vs. Islamists made several changes over the course of six months, but they refused to subvert the truth about the controversy inside the Muslim religion. They brought in several consultants from Paris, Scandinavia, and Canada, who agreed that the show was accurate, and who came to the conclusion that PBS must have already decided that it would never be satisfied with the end result.

Abd al Malik of France was in earlier years being drawn in by the thuggery of fundamentalist Islam. Then 9/11 happened. He is now a popular rap star (and is still a Muslim) in France. One of his most popular pieces is called “September the 12th”. Here are some of the words:

I already knew a flow of whackos when the twin towers went down
I already knew a flow of crazies when the twin towers were blown out
I was profoundly shocked. And let me tell you
If I hadn’t had my faith, I would have felt guilty for being a Muslim.

After that the eyes of the world were on us
And we had to show the world that we were human to
That if some of us were crazies
Most of us would never mix our politics with our faith

Previously, when al Malik joined the Islamist gangs of France, looking for and threatening those Muslims who did not seem as Muslim as they were. When he was assigned to plant a bomb in a French police station, he decided that Islamism was wrong, and he left. When he decided to go into the music industry, his break with the Islamists—who felt any kind of music was bad—was complete. Since then he has discovered that the correct--the real--Islam is peace.

The rise of this poisonous version of Islam is being funded by Saudi Arabia. Ahmed Amiruddin, a Muslim sheihk living in Canada, who has been threatened for his view, thinks the attraction of fundamentalist Islam is the glory of a past that was lost. Faheem Bukhari of Canada agrees that the tenets of the radical version of Islam that are being perpetuated in North America are exclusively of a Saudi variety.

Are the movies Muslims vs. Jihad and Islam vs Islamists worth your time? Not only are they, you can’t afford not to watch them. The DVD of Islam vs Islamists is in the pre-production stages, and will hopefully be available later this month. For now, you can watch segments of Muslims vs Jihad by clicking here.

At the very least you can make your own decision about what is really happening in the Muslim world. Unfortunately, PBS doesn't want you to do that.


The WordSmith from Nantucket said...


I'm going to link this to my latest post, as it's rather timely.

A couple months back, I went to a free screening of Islam vs. Islamists, and it was very, very good. And baffling that PBS would really want to hide this, as it's just the sort of program the PC-lovers and multiculturalists should want to love. Yet I guess in order to be a "real" Muslim, you have to grow your beard out, wear traditional garb, and want to live under Sharia Law. So these moderate voices don't count.

At the screening, not only Burke and Gaffney were there for a Q & A, but also Dr. Zuhdi Jasser. He is extremely articulate. You can probably run a Google on him, or YouTube search.

Frank Staheli said...

Zuhdi Jasser is one of the fairly regular guests on, who I am very impressed with.

I sometimes wonder if the stance by PBS (and the British, French, German, Soviet, and US colonialists) isn't a bit condescending and maybe even racist (i.e. that Arabs don't know how to take care of themselves, so we have to do it for you.)

The truth is much better.

Thanks for the link!

rmwarnick said...

If only it were that "moderate" muslims have doctrinal differences with the Osama bin Laden's Islam. Wouldn't that be nice?

Unfortunately, we have got to deal with other cultures as they really are, not as we would like to imagine them.

rmwarnick said...

Food for thought:

"Islam cannot reform itself in any lasting way, because Islam has no source of authority apart from the Koran. In any debate between hard-liners and putative moderates, the hard-liners will have the Koran on their side and will ultimately win the debate."

Elizabeth said...

I don't trust Frank Gaffney, and I haven't seen this documentary, but generally I agree with your comments.

What I find most intriguing in the mainstream media is the constant description of Saudi Arabia as a "moderate" Arab regime. There's nothing "moderate" about Saudi Arabia and its regime. Meanwhile, the US government and media demonize other Arab and Muslim areas that are far more tolerant and diverse and practice democracy.