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Published in the 1-15 Mar 2004 print edition of MG; send me the print edition

Blind hate daydreams

I well remember seeing hundreds of ignorant Muslim males running through the streets of their cities, screaming praises to their version of a supreme being, when the shuttle Challenger burnt up on re-entry. I remember how the Mulim leaders ranted and raved to their mindless masses that 7 evil people had been destroyed by Allah. All of the astronauts who died are considered by many to be inspirational people in nature sadly your ignorant Muslim masses could only look at their back-dated copy of other people ideas and concepts (if you didnt realise it, your holy book is merely bits of other peoples ideas stolen and claimed by your rather violent and homicidal prophet) and spit blood on the memory of those who died. These people died to help humankind. The Muslim contribution to our present day history is usually some lonely stupid homicidal freak who murders people in a bus, or a shopping center, or an aircraft. You are worth nothing, you cannot accept the fact that you are responsible for almost every negative event that has befallen you and, as you cannot accept responsibility for your own actions, you cannot grow. Unless you change significantly, you have no place in our world. I hope that you can change, and that you can stand along side us, but it is your choice. 
Keith Weinman

Editor: You are a liar. Where did you see these "hundreds of ignorant Muslims"? In your self-created nightmares perhaps. No Muslim anywhere in the world ever rejoiced in that tragic event. And who are these "Muslim leaders" who "ranted and raved" as you claim? They too must be living in your self-inflicted delusions. Your claim about the holy book of Islam and the Muslim contributions to this world only betrays your sheer ignorance of history. Go to your local library and try to read the history of the world from the seventh century onward and you will discover what Muslim scientists, philosophers, artists, authors, translators etc etc gave this world, even the Greek works survived only because Arabs translated them into Arabic. You will discover that Latin translations of Muslim scientific works were being used as textbooks in your own universities like Oxford until the eighteenth century. Seek knowledge. It is the only antidote for ignorance and blind hate that you suffer from.

KW: Unforunately you are either dishonest or honestly lacking in your knowledge. The hundred of ignorant Muslims were displayed, by middle eastern media, in photographs and in video footage. Perhaps you should have a closer look at the real world. As for Muslim leaders, again one only needs to backtrack media reports from the period in question to find more than numerous instances of Muslim leaders interpreting the Columbia tragedy in their own warped way. In particular, one can cite leaders of at least three London mosques and several Middle Eastern communities who were less than complementary in their descriptions of the seven astronauts who died. Incidently, one regularly finds message of support for the 19 murderers who killed 3000+ in NYC, within the British Islamic community. But I am sure that you know this.

As for history, it is clearly you are are unaware of or really understand where the roots of your religion came from. Muslim scientists, artists and so on borrowed very heavily from other cultures which they conquered. The famed library of Alexandria, a significant source of Greek literature, was destroyed by both Christian and Muslims at respective times. So while some enlightened Muslim leaders protected ancient works, others destroyed. Neither the Chrisitian faiths or your faith can claim any special status in the proptection of the ideas and wisdoms of other cultures. The Latin translations were usually accomplised by the Christian monks/scholars of those times.

Your book, the Quran, is by the admission of your own Prophet, Mohammed, a collection of ideas borrowed from Judiasm, Christianity and some other sources. I suggest that you think a little more deeply when you read it it helps to understand rather than to parrot every word back with no understanding.

Yes, many academic sources of Arabic origin were studied in Middle age Europe, however the ideas that many of these texts were based on came from other cultures; depite your belief, your religion, like any religion, can only form a framework within which Science and objective truths can de studied...

Editor: Your reply is a proof that you have no proof to back up your claims. Instead of citing one single instance from the vast Muslim world, you tell me about "London mosques" and "several Middle Eastern communities" also in London as I presume from the context. I am in this very business of Muslim news, editing a Muslim newspaper and working for various radio and TV stations around the world but I have never come across what you claim. If some insane London Mosque leader did it what was Scotlandyard doing? Why they don't arrest such bigots and try them? Muslims have a strong suspicion that these insane elements are on the payroll of the CIA and MI5 in order to justify the American onslaught on Muslims all over the world these days in the name of fighting "Islamic terrorism" which was created in the first place by CIA. These people are free to spread poison in London and nothing happens to them. They are western agents and serve western purposes at present. Muslims do not gloat over other people's miseries.

I am glad you know something about Muslim past but you need to know more so that you may know that original non-Muslim minorities survive in all Muslim-ruled countries while all original Muslim minorities were killed, forcibly baptised or expelled from all European countries. Read the history of Andalus, Portugal, South Italy, South France, Majorca, Minorca, Pantelleria, Canaray Islands, Sicily etc and you will know what I mean. Islam tells us to respect other religions, that there is no compulsion in matters of religion [Qur'an - 2:256, 6:109).

Where did the Prophet admit that he borrowed from other religoins? No doubt you have been reading the wrong books.

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