Saudi Grand Mufti: No to films that may expose Islam to criticism.
Here is an expose Islam moment and I am writing about Islam’s history, not just Radical Islam.
Saudi Grand Mufti Fears TV Series Will Expose Islam to Criticism
By Raymond Ibrahim
Jul 24, 2012 at 1:35 pm
Cross-posted from Jihad Watch
The Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia—the authority who called for the destruction of all churches in the region—recently condemned a new Saudi Arabian satellite TV series, which was scheduled to air during Ramadan, on the life of Islamic prophet Muhammad's companion and second caliph, Omar ibn al-Khattab.
The series is supposed to tell the story of the early days of the Muslim caliphate, including, most likely, the Islamic conquests, since many non-Muslim nations, such as Egypt, were conquered during Omar's reign.
What is interesting is why the Grand Mufti is condemning this series, calling it a "crime deserving of punishment": It "depicts the lives of the caliphs and companions [of Muhammad] in a movie, exposing them to discussion by every depraved person, making them vulnerable to slander and criticism."
In short, it seems he wants the obscurities of early Islam to remain obscure—perhaps like how Omar allegedly used to strip female sex-slaves in public whenever they were overly-dressed—lest they become a renewed source of criticism of Islam and its early followers, otherwise known as al-salaf al-salah, the "righteous forefathers" whom Wahabbis and Salafis, like the Grand Mufti, pattern their lives after—and, hence, come into constant conflict with the modern world.
RAYMOND IBRAHIM, a Middle East and Islam specialist, is a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and an Associate Fellow at the Middle East Forum. A widely published author, best known for The Al Qaeda Reader (Doubleday, 2007), he guest lectures at universities, including the National Defense Intelligence College, briefs governmental agencies, such as U.S. Strategic Command and the Defense Intelligence Agency, provides expert testimony for Islam-related lawsuits, and has testified before Congress regarding the conceptual failures that dominate American discourse concerning Islam and the worsening plight of Egypt's Christian Copts. Among other media, he has appeared on MSNBC, Fox News, C-SPAN, PBS, Reuters, Al-Jazeera, CBN, and NPR.
His writings, translations, and observations have appeared in a variety of publications, including the Financial Times, Jerusalem Post, Los Angeles Times, New York Times Syndicate, United Press International , USA Today, Washington Post, Washington Times, and Weekly Standard; scholarly journals, including the Almanac of Islamism, Chronicle of Higher Education, Jane's Islamic Affairs Analyst, Middle East Quarterly, and Middle East Review of International Affairs; and popular websites, such as American Thinker, Bloomberg, FrontPage Magazine, Hudson NY, Jihad Watch, National Review Online, and PJ Media. He has contributed chapters to several anthologies.
After a brief athletic career, Raymond went on to receive his B.A. and M.A. (both in History, focusing on the ancient and medieval Near East, with dual-minors in Philosophy and Literature) from California State University, Fresno. There he studied closely with noted military-historian Victor Davis Hanson. He also took graduate courses at Georgetown University's Center for Contemporary Arab Studies—including classes on the history, politics, and economics of the Arab world—and studied Medieval Islam and Semitic languages at Catholic University of America. His M.A. thesis examined an early military encounter between Islam and Byzantium based on early Arabic and Greek texts.
Raymond Ibrahim's dual-background—born and raised in the U.S. by Egyptian parents born and raised in the Middle East—has provided him with … READ IT ALL