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Daniel Pearl’s Widow Highlights Message She Got About His Murder: ‘This is Not Islam’

Suicidal self-hatred continues to sweep the West. Mariane Pearl, the widow of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, who was kidnapped and beheaded by Islamic jihadis in Pakistan in 2002, has suffered a great deal, and it is perhaps churlish and uncharitable to venture any critical word at all. But it isn’t she I am criticizing. It is the general tendency, the felt need or the unspoken imperative, to take all possible opportunities to exonerate Islam of all connection to crimes done in its name and in accord with its teachings. One can never solve a problem by pretending it doesn’t exist. But that is exactly what we are doing.

The 19th anniversary of Daniel Pearl’s murder was Monday, and on Wednesday, Mariane Pearl published an op-ed in the Washington Post entitled “My husband’s killer could go free in Pakistan. Despite the injustice, I still have hope.” It began: “Almost two decades ago, the people of Pakistan sent me messages expressing sadness and anger at the murder of my husband, Daniel Pearl, in their beloved country. Danny was 38 years old and the Wall Street Journal’s bureau chief for South Asia. “I am a Muslim and this, my friend, is not Islam,” one wrote. My favorite message read: “Your husband had a great smile . . . a happy mixture of Pope John Paul and Dean Martin.”

It is certain that Mariane Pearl received numerous messages after the murder of her husband. The one that she and/or the Post chose to give first mention, however, was “I am a Muslim and this, my friend, is not Islam.”

The first question that springs to mind about this is: Why this message? Why is cleansing Islam’s image the number one priority?

The second question is: Why is this always asserted but never explained? Daniel Pearl was made to state that he was a Jew in a video, where he likely read a statement the jihadis had prepared for him: “My name is Daniel Pearl. I am a Jewish American from Encino, California USA. I come from, uh, on my father’s side the family is Zionist. My father’s Jewish, my mother’s Jewish, I’m Jewish. My family follows Judaism. We’ve made numerous family visits to Israel. Back in the town of Bnei Brak there is a street named after my great grandfather Chaim Pearl who is one of the founders of the town.” Then he was beheaded.

In a hadith that Muslims consider authentic, Muhammad is depicted as saying:

“The last hour would not come unless the Muslims will fight against the Jews and the Muslims would kill them until the Jews would hide themselves behind a stone or a tree and a stone or a tree would say: Muslim, or the servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me; come and kill him; but the tree Gharqad would not say, for it is the tree of the Jews.” (Sahih Muslim 6985)

And the Qur’an says:

“When you meet the unbelievers, strike the necks…” (47:4)

In light of all that, it is unfortunate that Mariane Pearl’s interlocutor apparently did not explain how the killing of Daniel Pearl was not Islam, how the jihadis who killed him were transgressing Islamic tenets, or how the passages of the Qur’an and Hadith that seem to allow for such behavior actually have some other meaning or can be interpreted in a benign manner.

In the article, Mariane Pearl describes how it all happened, and how a Muslim who was the chief of the counter-terrorism unit in Karachi offered his help. Mariane Pearl jokes in response to kindness from this man and his wife: “Stop being so nice. How am I ever going to hate you guys?” That is the choice as most people see it today: one must either hate Muslims, or pretend that Islam is a religion of peace. But in reality, the fact that Islam teaches warfare against unbelievers does not mean that every Muslim will believe this to be an imperative or practice it. It doesn’t mean that no Muslims will be kind to unbelievers. But to believe that such kindness precludes the possibility that Islam does teach this warfare is to be willfully blind. And that’s where we are as a society.

The third and easiest question to answer is: Would the Washington Post ever print an explanation of the Islamic justification for the murder of Daniel Pearl, even if such a story included statements by Muslim spokesmen in the West offering differing interpretations of the passages in question? And the answer is, Not on your life! Not only is the Post, and all the rest of the establishment media as well, dedicated indefatigably to whitewashing and obfuscating the ideological roots of jihad terrorism; it is also determined to pretend that there isn’t even a question about those roots: they lay, according to the Post and its colleagues, in “racism” and “Islamophobia,” not in Islamic texts and teachings, and anyone who suggests otherwise is a racist “Islamophobe” himself.

The victory of “Islamophobia” propaganda has been so complete that the elites don’t even consider it remotely necessary even to address the arguments of those whom they smear as “Islamophobes,” or to acknowledge that they have any arguments at all. The only problem with all this is that the jihad, motivated by Islamic texts and teachings according to numerous statements of jihadis themselves, is not going to go away for all this pretending that it doesn’t exist.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Jihad Watch column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

ISIS Beheads American Photo Journalist — Threatens second U.S. Captive

The Islamic State, formerly ISIS, in retribution for US air strikes in Northern Iraq, released a video of the purported beheading of intrepid American Photo Journalist James Wright Foley attired in an orange jump suit.  Foley was captured in Northern Syria in November 2012. Foley was previously held captive by Gaddafi forces in Libya in 2011 for 44 days. Foley, a native of Rochester, New Hampshire was working for the on-line Boston publication, Global Post that had spent hundreds of thousands of dollars trying to find and release him.  The video of his beheading was promptly taken down from YouTube under rules that Google has established as being too violent.    At the conclusion of the video there is a shot of another captive American Journalist, Steven Joel Sotloff.   Sotloff according to a report in the International Business Times (IBT) was captured near Aleppo on August 4, 2013. Sotloff, the IBT noted was,” a freelance journalist who had reported on Egypt, Syria, and Libya for TIME, the Christian Science Monitor, the National Interest and Foreign Policy magazine. There is also rumored to be another American aid worker captured by ISIS in the Syrian civil conflict.

Steven Joel Sotloff with ISIS Executioner

Steven Joel Sotloff with ISIS Executioner. Source: #ISIS.

This barbaric act by ISIS is reminiscent of the beheading on February 1, 2002 in Karachi, Pakistan  of Wall Street Journalist, Daniel Pearl, by Al Qaeda mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed in Karachi, Pakistan and American Contractor Nick Berg executed on May 7, 2004 in  Iraq by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the founder of the predecessor of ISIS, Al Qaeda in Iraq.

The Reuters account noted the contents of the graphic ISIS video entitled, “A Message to America”:

The video opened with a clip of U.S. President Barack Obama saying he had authorized strikes in Iraq.

“Obama authorizes military operations against the Islamic State effectively placing America upon a slippery slope towards a new war front against Muslims,” words appear in English and Arabic on the screen.

It showed black and white aerial footage of air strikes with text saying “American aggression against the Islamic State”

A person identified as James Foley and wearing an orange outfit is seen kneeling in the desert as a man in black dress with a black mask stands beside him, holding a knife.

“I call on my friends family and loved ones to rise up against my real killers, the U.S. government, for what will happen to me is only a result of their complacency and criminality,” the kneeling man says.

The man in the mask speaks in a British accent and says: “This is James Wright Foley, an American citizen, of your country. As a government, you have been at the forefront of the aggression towards the Islamic State.”

“Today your military air force is attacking us daily in Iraq. Your strikes have caused casualties amongst Muslims. You are no longer fighting an insurgency. We are an Islamic army and a state that has been accepted by a large number of Muslims worldwide.”

Following his statement he beheads the kneeling man.

At the end of the video, words on the side of the screen say “Steven Joel Sotloff” as another prisoner in an orange jumpsuit is shown on screen.

Global Post published this early account this evening of the loss of their colleague, Foley, “Reported beheading of James Foley not yet verified”:

The video asserts that the alleged killing of Foley is in retaliation for recent airstrikes by the United States against IS militants in northern Iraq. In it, Foley, kneeling next to an apparent IS militant, makes comments against the US for its actions. The militant also claims to be holding journalist Steven Joel Sotloff, who went missing in Syria a year ago.

Philip Balboni, GlobalPost CEO and co-founder, made the following statement: “On behalf of John and Diane Foley, and also GlobalPost, we deeply appreciate all of the messages of sympathy and support that have poured in since the news of Jim’s possible execution first broke. We have been informed that the FBI is in the process of evaluating the video posted by the Islamic State to determine if it is authentic. … We ask for your prayers for Jim and his family.”

GlobalPost, for whom Foley had reported in Syria, has mounted an extensive international investigation since November 2012 to determine who kidnapped Foley and where he was being held. Significant research has been undertaken throughout the Middle East, including along the Syria-Turkish border, in Lebanon, in Jordan and in other locations.

“Although Global Post’s investigation at one point led us to believe that James was being held by the Syrian government, we later were given strong reason to believe he was being held by Islamic militants in Syria,” Balboni said. “We withheld this information at the request of the family and on the advice of authorities cooperating in the effort to protect Jim. GlobalPost, working with a private security company, has amassed an enormous amount of information that has not been made public.”

National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden affirmed in a statement that US officials are working to authenticate the video.

“We have seen a video that purports to be the murder of U.S. citizen James Foley by ISIL. The intelligence community is working as quickly as possible to determine its authenticity. If genuine, we are appalled by the brutal murder of an innocent American journalist and we express our deepest condolences to his family and friends. We will provide more information when it is available,” the statement said.

Foley was on a freelance assignment for GlobalPost when he was abducted in northern Syria on Nov. 22, 2012. He was on his way to the Turkish border when he was stopped by a group of armed men. Foley reported for GlobalPost from Libya and Afghanistan before traveling to Syria in the early days of the now long-running civil war that has taken the lives of more than 170,000.

Foley’s last article for GlobalPost detailed the growing frustration with the war among civilians in Aleppo.

The fact of Foley’s kidnapping was revealed publicly for the first time by his parents, John and Diane Foley of Rochester, New Hampshire, on Jan. 1, 2012, two months after his abduction. The only other American whose identity has been publicly revealed is Austin Tice, a freelance reporter for the McClatchy News Service and the Washington Post, who was kidnapped in August 2012.

The Foley family’s last public statement on the kidnapping came in October 2013.

While covering the Libyan civil war in 2011, Foley and two other journalists, American Claire Gillis and Spaniard Manu Brabo, endured a 44-day captivity in April and May of that year at the hands of then Libyan strongman Col. Muammar Gaddafi. A fourth journalist, South African Anton Hammerl, was killed when the journalists were captured by Gaddafi fighters near Benghazi in eastern Libya. Foley later returned to Libya to cover Gaddafi’s fall and eventual death. Foley and GlobalPost correspondent Tracey Shelton were at the scene of Gaddafi’s capture in October 2011.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on the New English Review.