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Iowa Candidate Under Fire for Call to Define Islam as ‘Militant Cultural Imperialism Seeking World Domination’

My latest in PJ Media:

The real pandemic today is not the coronavirus, but cowardice. Nonetheless, even in these days of political correctness, wokeness, the cancel culture, and “hate speech,” there are a few public figures with courage. One of them is Rick Phillips, a Republican Congressional candidate from Iowa, who has dared to grasp the third rail of American public life and state that Islam is not actually the cuddly religion of peace that every enlightened American assumes it to be at this point.

The Des Moines Register reported Monday that Phillips’ “platform calls for redefining Islam as ‘militant cultural imperialism seeking world domination,’” and that he “drew fire Monday for saying he doesn’t believe Islam is protected under the First Amendment.

Phillips stated on Quad Cities TV station WHBF that the Founding Fathers had only Christianity in mind when they wrote the First Amendment. “They were not talking about anti-Christian beliefs,” he explained. “Now, if a person doesn’t want to believe in Christ, that’s their business. But to say that this First Amendment right includes all religions in the world, I think, is erroneous.”

The usual reaction ensued, Robert McCaw of the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), demanded that both the Iowa Republican Party and the national Republican Party “repudiate these Islamophobic, unconstitutional views.” McCaw thundered: “The Constitution must protect Americans of all faiths. The kind of hatred and anti-American views promoted by Mr. Phillips places in danger both constitutional protections of religious freedoms and the safety of ordinary American Muslims.”

Responding like the good invertebrate that most Republican Party leaders are, Iowa party spokesman Aaron Britt said that Phillips’ statements “are not reflective of the views of the Republican Party of Iowa.”

Lost in all this predictable intimidation on the one hand and equally predictable pusillanimity on the other was the question of whether or not Phillips was right. Surely everyone can agree, or should agree, that the First Amendment is not and was never intended to be a license to commit all manner of crimes if such activity is mandated by one’s religion. No one, Muslim or non-Muslim, should be considered anything but innocent until proven guilty, but sooner or later the United States and all non-Muslim countries is going to have to have a public conversation about how much to tolerate a belief system that is itself radically intolerant, authoritarian, supremacist, and violent.

Can Muslims in the U.S. repudiate those aspects of Islam? Should they? This discussion needs to take place, but right now it is covered over by claims of “Islamophobia.” In the same way, lost in the shuffle also was the question of whether or not Islam really is “militant cultural imperialism seeking world domination.”

Inconveniently for Robert McCaw and his ilk, there are certainly some Muslims who think it is. I could quote violent passages of 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. One might 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 “the 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).

There is much more. Read the rest here.

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