Death Threats Against a list of Moderate Muslims in the West
by M. Zuhdi Jasser
An Egyptian group calling itself the 'al-Jama'ah Consultative Council" has disseminated a hit list of moderate Muslims felt by their radical group to be apostates on April 10, 2006. They gave the list three days to disavow their stances or they will be killed. Their threat said the following:
This satanic message also names their families and children as targets with a list of their names.
Stephen Schwartz, executive director of the Center for Islamic Pluralism in Washington D.C. has released the following statement:
Issuers of such death threats are truly our greatest enemies in the war against militant Islamism. While some may dismiss such threats, we must take them seriously until this so called 'al-Jama'ah Consultative Council is apprehended and brought to justice.
This threat is exemplary of the same old tired method used in the Middle East for over half a century to silence many of the moderates of Islam who work to directly combat fanaticism, extremism, and militancy among our fellow Muslims.
And in effect, by silencing through fear Muslim moderates who preach pluralism, they strengthen other Muslim organizations who refuse to engage the radicals and simply speak of victimization.
Our first priority in the War on Terror should be to harness our resources as quickly as possible in making our lands of freedom and liberty in the West safe havens for all those Muslims who are strong enough to wage the war of words against Islamists.
We cannot overstate the importance of making it painfully clear to this organization in Egypt and every other one across the planet which chooses to threaten and intimidate those who speak out that we will all rush to the defense of those Muslims and freedom fighters who are threatened. We will bring each and every one of their satanic voices to justice, and we will strengthen the voices of Islam which preach moderation, pluralism, freedom, and liberty for all.
Moreover, strategically, in the war against militant Islamism, nothing is more central than amplifying the Muslim voices of pluralism and freedom against these voices of oppression and theocracy. Our security agencies, our diplomatic corps, our military on the ground, and our administration should spare no words or action in identifying these individuals, their group, and others like them as being one of the main heads of the snake we fight abroad.
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