Today we offer our prayers and condolences to the parents and family of Abdul-Rahman Kassig, also known to us as Peter. We cannot begin to imagine their anguish at this painful time.
Abdul-Rahman was taken from us in an act of pure evil by a terrorist group that the world rightly associates with inhumanity. Like Jim Foley and Steven Sotloff before him, his life and deeds stand in stark contrast to everything that ISIL represents. While ISIL revels in the slaughter of innocents, including Muslims, and is bent only on sowing death and destruction, Abdul-Rahman was a humanitarian who worked to save the lives of Syrians injured and dispossessed by the Syrian conflict. While ISIL exploits the tragedy in Syria to advance their own selfish aims, Abdul-Rahman was so moved by the anguish and suffering of Syrian civilians that he traveled to Lebanon to work in a hospital treating refugees. Later, he established an aid group, SERA, to provide assistance to Syrian refugees and displaced persons in Lebanon and Syria. These were the selfless acts of an individual who cared deeply about the plight of the Syrian people.
ISIL’s actions represent no faith, least of all the Muslim faith which Abdul-Rahman adopted as his own. Today we grieve together, yet we also recall that the indomitable spirit of goodness and perseverance that burned so brightly in Abdul-Rahman Kassig, and which binds humanity together, ultimately is the light that will prevail over the darkness of ISIL. [Emphasis added]
What a curious thing to say.
I can’t think of any religion with beheading as a fundamental tenet. Beheading has been used as a form of execution in various places with various religions at various times. France’s last execution was about 30 years ago, using the guillotine. In Saudi Arabia, swordsmen still perform the ultimate punishment, and all too often.
There is, however, a real discussion to be had about Islam and beheadings. Rev. Dwight Longenecker had this to say this morning on Newsmax:
Has the damning verse from the Quran been taken out of context? The explanation from Muslim apologists is that the background for this command is within an actual battle situation. The Battle of Badr in the year 624 is the time and place where Muslim warriors were called to defend their people. Muslim apologists argue that it is just as unfair to generalize from this verse and say that the religion of Islam condones beheading as it is for critics of Christianity to say that I Samuel 15:3 commands genocide, and that Christianity is intrinsically a barbaric and violent religion.
It seems a fair argument. The damning verse from the Quran, just like the damning verse from the Old Testament, was set in a particular historical context in which the warriors claimed divine revelation for their acts of genocide or violence.
The problem however, is that there are no Christians today who are wiping out whole villages at the edge of the sword. There are Muslims, however, who are doing so in the name of their religion.
So, there’s no commandment in the Quran to go out and behead thy infidel neighbor, but there certainly is a lot of beheading currently going on in the name of Allah. Whether Allah approves or not is a matter best left up to theologians.
But today we have the very curious case of the president of the United States making the claim as a bold statement of fact that beheadings “represent no faith, least of all the Muslim faith.”
Least of all.
From where on earth or heaven does Obama get “least of all”?
Is Buddhism somehow slightly less anti-beheading than Islam? Is Christianity tainted with maybe just a slight case of beheading fever? Are Hindus secretly itching to get a little choppy with it?
With those three little words, Obama smeared every religion on the planet other than Islam, and you may draw your own conclusion as to why he did such a thing.
Another question remains: Why would Barack Obama claim that the Dar al-Islam, the only place where beheadings are even remotely common, is the place where beheadings “least of all” represent the major religion?
I offer a couple of possibilities, neither of which is remotely complimentary of the commander-in-chief.
The first is that Professor Ditherton Wiggleroom has retreated, once again, into his constitutional-law-guest-lecturer persona, and is attempting to signal to ISIL that he knows Islam better than they do, and so they’d better cut it out (get it?) if they want to become good Muslims. And Obama might actually believe this, given his boyhood experiences with the mellowed and bastardized Islam of Indonesia. To counter that, let’s go to Ralph Peters:
Consider our president’s utter lack of perspective (to say nothing of his self-importance): If the king of Saudi Arabia announced that Americans weren’t true Christians, how would we respond? And no, Obama’s childhood contact with syncretic Javanese Islam did not make him an expert on the stultifying bigotries and cruelty of Islam as practiced in its dreary heartlands.
I’d quibble here only with Peters’ selection of the adjective “dreary” to describe modern Araby. The region is an exciting one, in every worst imaginable way. Then again, he’s sold millions of books and I haven’t, so let’s give the author his due.
The second possibility is that Obama’s statement is a metaphorical bow to ISIL. He sees their raw power, and as he has done repeatedly for other despotic foreign potentates, he genuflects. Obama made an obviously untrue statement, provided cover for modern Islam’s many sins, and thus invites further slaughter of innocents.
Imagine yourself the young fanatic with the knife, ready to kill for the glory of Allah. You hold not just your victim’s life in your hand, but in some very twisted way, you also hold the Most Powerful Man in the Free World. By slicing that throat, you aren’t just chalking up another small win for jihad — you’re also making a liar of the president of the United States. And he’ll lie for you again, every time you behead another.
You might make a fair case that it doesn’t take much to make a liar out of any politician. But it’s one thing to tell a lie to get ♡bamaCare!!! passed into law, even if you repeat it over and over. It’s quite another thing to lie about one religion, to smear every other religion, in a statement meant ostensibly to provide comfort to the family of Peter Kassig, and to demonstrate resolve to his killers.
Indeed, what a curious thing to say — how curiously repulsive.