I wonder why? Didn’t the OIC pay any attention to my analysis that proved their actions were not blasphemous?
Fortunately I saved a local copy, so I can look at the OIC’s defamation of the prophet whenever I like.
First there were the Motoons in Denmark. Next came the Modoggies in Sweden. More recently we had the Mopiggie in Norway — which was actually a drawing by a young Israeli woman who spent two years an Israeli prison for her blasphemy against Mohammed.
We need a nice abbreviated Mo-word as a handy descriptor for all phenomena that constitute “Visual Depictions of Mohammed Which Arouse Muslims to Uncontrollable Rage”. If we restrict ourselves to animals, “Monagerie” should do the job. But what about the general case — “Morony”, perhaps?
Mohammed the Pig was back in the news yesterday after Tundra Tabloids broke the story that a report (pdf) on recent examples of Islamophobia by the OIC’s Islamophobia Observatory contains the screen shot of Mohammed the Pig that appeared in a Norwegian newspaper last month. The image appears on page 8, along with this text:
Norwegian Security Services Facebook Promotes Muhammad Cartoons — Earlier this week Abid Q. Raja (Norwegian Liberal Party) voiced his concern about a link on the PST (Police Security Service) Facebook page to a cartoon portraying Muhammad as a pig writing in the Koran. He said he received phone-calls from Muslims who were deeply and intensely insulted and sad about it. He said he himself, as a very liberal Muslim, felt the cartoon in his heart, spine and soul. He said it was a scandal the PST did not realize the explosiveness in this cartoon and was afraid that it could cause violence in both Norway and Pakistan.
The sensation over the OIC’s use of this image — our Danish correspondent Kepiblanc tells me that it’s all over the news today in Denmark — focuses on an apparent contradiction: Muslims condemn the blasphemy and Islamophobia of Mohammed the Pig when he appears in Dagbladet, but the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) has no problem with publishing the same image in its own report.
However, to view this as an inconsistency or as evidence of a double standard is to miss the point. No double standard is involved. In Islam there can be no double standard, because Islam is the only standard. That which advances Islam is good, and is to be promoted. That which damages Islam is evil, and must be exterminated.
It’s a simple rule, but the application of it can become quite complex. In order to understand what’s going on here, it’s necessary to examine Islamic law on its own terms, and learn to think like a Muslim.
The OIC tells us:
Under the Charter [pdf], the Organization [OIC] aims, inter alia, to… Protect and defend the true image of Islam, to combat defamation of Islam and encourage dialogue among civilizations and religions; …
That’s what the Islamophobia Observatory is all about: detecting and punishing defamation of Islam. But what does it mean by “defamation”?
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“Defamation” and “slander” are well-defined terms under sharia, but they don’t mean the same thing to Muslims that they do to us. One of the best resources for sharia law is Reliance of the Traveller (’Umdat al-Salik), which was written in the 14th century by Ahmad ibn Naqib al-Misri. It is a thorough treatise on Islamic law as understood by the Shafiite School, and the other three major schools agree on the essentials concerning slander. Thus Reliance of the Traveller serves as a useful proxy for the “consensus of the scholars”, the general agreement among sharia authorities about what constitutes universally applicable Islamic law (at least for the Sunnis).
In Book R, “Holding One’s Tongue” Reliance of the Traveller tells us:
Slander and talebearing are two of the ugliest and most frequently met with qualities among men, few people being safe from them. I have begun with them because of the widespread need to warn people of them… Slander (ghiba) means to mention anything concerning a person that he would dislike… As for talebearing (namima), it consists of quoting someone’s words to another in a way that worsens relations between them… The above define slander and talebearing. As for the ruling on them, it is that they are unlawful, by the consensus… of Muslims. (r2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.4)
Here al-Misri tell us that there is scholarly consensus on the issue of slander, which means it is an absolute rule, and not subject to dispute. Additionally:
In fact, talebearing is not limited to that, but rather consists of revealing anything whose disclosure is resented… The reality of talebearing lies in divulging a secret, in revealing something confidential whose disclosure is resented. A person should not speak of anything he notices about people besides that which benefits a Muslim to relate or prevents disobedience. (r3.1)
Thus, under the clear guidelines of Islamic law, it is entirely possible that if someone says something factually true, but which does not benefit Islam, that person can be judged guilty of slander under sharia. This is the net that has snared Geert Wilders: the Amsterdam court is implementing sharia on behalf of the Muslims of the Netherlands, and therefore the truth is no defense.
Now let’s apply the same rules to Mohammed the Pig. The republication of the drawing in Norway is deemed harmful to Islam. Therefore the image has defamed Islam, which makes those who display it guilty of blasphemy under sharia. By a strict application of the law, the offending parties must be put to death.
But the OIC’s use of the same drawing is not harmful to Islam: it is intended to explain to faithful Muslims the iniquitous behavior of the infidels, and to illustrate the dangerous blasphemy in which they are engaged. The OIC is acting in the interests of Islam, for legitimate and sharia-approved reasons, and its actions benefit Islam. Thus no slander or defamation is involved in the Islamophobia report.
There are no contradictions, no double standards. Everything makes complete sense, and is as clear as a bell.
But only if you think like a Muslim.
There’s no point in going into high dudgeon over incidents such as this one. No useful purpose is served by waving our arms and asserting that Islam is being hypocritical. Our triumphant “gotcha!” moment is significant only to fellow Westerners who analyze political and cultural events solely within a Western framework.
Applying Western concepts to Muslim behavior is a fruitless and quixotic endeavor. It’s a waste of time and energy, and nothing worthwhile will be accomplished by it. Westerners who pay attention to such things already agree with us, and any Muslims who hear us will only be confirmed in their view of the stupid and ignorant infidel, who is incapable of understanding even the simplest of concepts.
To fight this war, we have to get inside the enemy’s mind and understand how he thinks. If we fail to do that, we will lose.