Stretch, grab a late afternoon cup of caffeine and get caught up on the most important news of the day with our Coffee Break newsletter. These are the stories that will fill you in on the world that's spinning outside of your office window - at the moment that you get a chance to take a breath.
Sign up now to save time and stay informed!

Twitter Flags Saying 'Islam Is NOT a Religion of Peace' as Possible 'Hateful Conduct'

A few weeks ago I noticed that the hashtag #ConfessYourUnpopularOpinion was trending on Twitter. So I thought I would have a little fun, posted the tweet below, and forgot about it -- until this weekend, when I received this email warning me that the tweet was being evaluated for possible violation of Twitter’s “hateful conduct policy”:

Dear Twitter user,

We are writing to inform you that certain content on your Twitter account @jihadwatchRS has been flagged, for possible violation of Twitter’s hateful conduct policy (https://support.twitter.com/articles/20175054), specifically:

We are sending you this notification to allow you to evaluate it.

If it is determined that the flagged content does not violate our hateful conduct policy, Twitter may still withhold content in France if the content appears to violate the laws of France.

For more information on our Country Withheld Content policy please see this page: https://support.twitter.com/articles/20169222

If you believe we have contacted you in error, please reply to this email and let us know.

Sincerely,

Twitter

“We are sending you this notification to allow you to evaluate it,” said Twitter.

All right. Let’s do that.

I could quote violent passages from the Qur’an, but those might be waved away with the dismissive and erroneous claim that the Bible contains similar exhortations to violence. Let’s focus instead on what Islamic authorities say -- because one should get the impression that Islam is not a religion of peace from the authoritative sources in Sunni Islam, the schools of Sunni jurisprudence (madhahib).

Shafi’i school

A Shafi’i manual of Islamic law that was certified in 1991 by the clerics at Al-Azhar University -- one of the leading authorities in the Islamic world -- as a reliable guide to Sunni orthodoxy stipulates about jihad that:

[T]he caliph makes war upon Jews, Christians, and Zoroastrians … until they become Muslim or pay the non-Muslim poll tax.

It adds a comment by Sheikh Nuh Ali Salman, a Jordanian expert on Islamic jurisprudence: the caliph wages this war only:

… provided that he has first invited [Jews, Christians, and Zoroastrians] to enter Islam in faith and practice, and if they will not, then invited them to enter the social order of Islam by paying the non-Muslim poll tax (jizya) … while remaining in their ancestral religions. ( ‘Umdat al-Salik, o9.8).

Of course, there is no caliph today, unless one believes the claims of the Islamic State, and hence the oft-repeated claim that ISIS, et al are waging jihad illegitimately, as no state authority has authorized their jihad. But they explain their actions in terms of defensive jihad, which needs no state authority to call it, and becomes “obligatory for everyone” (‘Umdat al-Salik, o9.3) if a Muslim land is attacked.