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Saving al-Aqusa Mosque
Ramzy Baroud

That same dangerous combination - rightwing politicians allied with religious zealots - is at work once more. They are eyeing al-Aqusa for annexation; the same way the Israeli government is labouring to permanently annex large swathes of the occupied West Bank, in anticipation of any future settlement with the Palestinian Authority of President Mahmoud Abbas.....

Under the proposed "national race protection law", Buddhist women would be required to obtain permission from their parents and local officials if they wished to marry a Muslim. In turn, Muslim men would have to change their faith and then provide proof of their conversion to local officials, or risk up to 10 years in prison. They could also have their property confiscated if they could not provide proof of having converted....

As Canadian universities adjust to the country’s increasingly multicultural population, one area that has been especially difficult has been accommodating religious differences and needs....


Reading Modi, Between the Lines
Aakar Patel

I can report that as a writer, Mr Modi is weak and not possessing of many or even any great worldview. He has a shallowness and lack of observation that we would expect from any person from the lower middle-class who has not had much education. His writing, which essentially means his thinking, is full of clichés and dense with stock phrases. There is little original, even in his poetry, some of which is the product of a child. Even L.K. Advani, who wrote a ghastly autobiography, has more to offer in his writing than Mr Modi....


Apparently, Islam Owns the Rights to Words like “Believer” and “Prayer”
Alessandria Masi

The following words are also to be banned for non-Muslims in Brunei: Azan (the call to prayer); Baitullah (house of god); Al Quran fatwa (an Islamic legal ruling); Farman Allah (the Word of God); Haji (pilgrimage); Shariah Law, Ilahi (divine); Ka’bah (Muslim shrine in Mecca); Kalimah al Shahadah (word of testimony); Quiblah (Direction of the Prayers); mosque, imam and mufti (Muslim legal official).….....

“We have a very limited number of Muslims here. People don’t really understand us. But that is actually an opportunity for us. Chinese people respect anyone who follows any religion — they think that those who go to mosques, temples and churches are good people.”….


Praying For a Miracle in Pakistan
Najam Sethi

The policy framework document envisages dynamic coordination and virtual Intel sharing between the country’s 6 Intel agencies (ISI, MI, IB, SB, Naval and Air Intelligence) and assorted police and paramilitary forces in the federal and provincial governments. NACTA will use this Intel to analyse, locate and physically degrade or destroy terrorist cells across the country by means of a Rapid Deployment Force of 500 commandos equipped with helicopters and modern high voltage weapons....


“When we made the decision to offer our (BN) candidate, it is to prevent the problems that may arise after the by-election. This, to me, is a responsibility. In Islam, it is ‘jihad’ (holy war) to seek good, to avert evil, to avoid undesirable disputes. But then whatever happened to this so-called jihad when former Sarawak chief minister Taib Mahmud marauded the state throughout his 33 long years of helming Sarawak?....


The history of Indian Muslims can be traced back to the Malaccan Empire, with Bendahara (prime minister) Tun Ali being an Indian Muslim. Despite its rich history pre- and post-independent Malaya, the Indian Muslim community in Malaysia is currently facing an identity crisis, with the risk of being just a footnote in the nation’s history. “The Tamil Muslims, in particular, are hard pressed to identify themselves with the majority Malays or to maintain their heritage as Tamils…


Omar and the Checkpoint: The Essential Story That Is Rarely Told
Ramzy Baroud

Omar is not a poster child for victimhood. His pain and that of his dad should not merely invoke sights of petty, or philosophical diatribes of how the occupation is killing Israel’s soul, or reignite yet more arguments of what ‘solution’ to the ‘conflict’ we like most…..

Origins of Militancy
Khurram Husain

Origins of Militancy
Khurram Husain

The narrative that emerges goes something like this: injustice in society and a dysfunctional economy creates anger, and that anger finds a voice in terrorism and the voice exerts a pull on disenfranchised youth who take up arms against an unjust order. There is something seductive about this analysis. In a sense it says that there is symmetry between the anger you and I feel at the state of affairs in our country and the anger that animates the Taliban....

That brings us to the question that if AAP is gaining so much popularity among prominent Indian thinkers, in addition to among the masses, where is the recognizable Muslim-Indians in it? And if they are not there, what are they waiting for?....

The Book Banners Win In India, Again
Tarek Fatah

Scores died in 1989 protesting a book they had never read. In Mumbai alone, at least 12 people were killed and 40 wounded when police fired at Muslims rioting against The Satanic Verses. There were deaths in Japan and Italy. The Norwegian publisher of the book was shot and left for dead outside his home in Oslo…..

Mazar-e-Quaid or a ‘Love Shack’? What’s Next?
Samir Tariq

Let’s acknowledge one thing folks. As a nation, we are an extremely industrious people and highly innovative as well. Therefore, our poor economic situation, which seems to be worsening by the day, is beyond any rational reasoning at least to me. Where else in the world would you find such highly creative, extremely ambitious and downright greedy, shameless and vulture-like souls who would rent out the mausoleum of their nation’s founder for a meager amount of a few thousand rupees?....


‘Dancing Girl’ of Mohenjo-Daro
Yasmeen Aftab Ali

As recent as February 7, 2014, the Deccan Herald reported rejection by UK of the Indian demand citing a law “that prevents it from giving back the items”. However, in a very interesting move later, in a repatriation ceremony at the New York Consulate of India, some artefacts were returned to India, reports Al-Jazeera, (16 Jan 2014). These artefacts include two sandstone sculptures. They are of the Hindu deities Vishnu and Lakshmi. The third one is reputed to be “a black stone sculpture of Buddhist icon Bodhisattva”…..


Changing Contours of Censorship
Faisal Devji

Certainly, a number of minor and hastily put-together religious outfits have managed to achieve national and sometimes even international fame by attacking writers like Taslima Nasreen or artists such as M.F. Husain. And this is to say nothing about those who attack ordinary people for doing things like celebrating Valentine’s Day which they consider foreign and lascivious. ....

India Does Not Want To Invade Pakistan And The US Is Not Our Enemy!
Rafay Bin Ali

India no longer considers Pakistan a threat. Let’s face it. India is poised to become a global economic engine; its economy is the 10th largest and third by Purchasing Power Parity. India is a member of the G4 and has recently acquired almost absolute control of the International Cricket Council....

Supreme Court Verdict: Parents for the First Time
Mohammed Wajihuddin and Maria Akram

Supreme Court Verdict: Parents for the First Time
Maria Akram

The schism is evident, with patriarchs like Ali calling the SC verdict an infringement while progressives like Dr Qureishi pointing to how the new ruling will help mainstream future generations. But in the end, as poet-lyricist Nida Fazli, who adopted a girl child a decade ago, puts it, "Human feelings and emotions are not captive to relationships which our society decides." ….

India’s Quiet Muslim Spring
Hasan Suroor

I found a generation of young, educated, self-confident and articulate Muslim men and women keen to shed the minority tag and join the national/global mainstream. They believe that their community has had enough of what Salman Rushdie has called the "politics of grievance'', and time has come for Muslims to stop seeing themselves as victims of external factors. Rather, they should take their destiny in their own hands....

Imran Khan: Flirting with the Taliban
Shamil Shams

Recently, when the Pakistani Taliban named Imran Khan as one of a five-man team to engage in peace talks with the Pakistani government, liberal sections of society exclaimed, "See, we always said that Khan was one of the Islamists!" Although Khan immediately refused to take part in the talks, the controversial "Taliban Khan" tag that he has earned over the years got another endorsement.....

Two Types of Leaders
Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

Two Types of Leaders
Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

Mahatma Gandhi, who was present on the other side of the stage, got up and walked to where Maulana Mohammad Ali was. He placed his hand around the Maulana’s neck and light-heartedly said, ‘If the husband and wife are willing, then what the Qazi can do!’ The crowd burst out laughing, and so a matter that had seemed enormously serious was finished in a trice, and then the meeting began!....


Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had directed the security forces to give a ‘befitting reply’ in their defence to the terrorists. “They will be paid back in their own coin. Our forces have every right to defend themselves and respond to terrorists with full might,” he said, and added that dialogue and terrorism could not go hand-in-hand…..


What a Partition
Ayaz Amir

True or apocryphal the story is related of the poet Firaq Gorakhpuri visiting from India and taken by Faiz Ahmed Faiz to Heera Mandi. This was during the Zia years and as the evening progressed, the company entranced by the singing, the liquor finished and the word went out for some more but at that late hour none was to be had. At which Firaq reportedly exclaimed, “Kya Kambakht Partition thee, Husn Aik Taraf Reh Gya, Sharab Aik Taraf Reh Gayi.”...


Sharia Week on the Volokh Conspiracy
Eugene Volokh

I think many other complaints about incidents of alleged “creeping Sharia” in American law are misguided, partly because the complaints miss the way those incidents simply reflect well-settled (and sound) American law. Indeed, the alternative approach that I offer is, I think, a conservative approach. It urges courts to continue following well-established American legal traditions rather than distorting those traditions either in favour of Islam or against….


Howzzat A Fictitious Of Imran Khan
Jugnu Mohsin

It dates back to the thirteenth century and to another life when I was Sultan of Delhi. And one leading liberal fascist of the day was the Oracle of Delhi. We had differences then, as now. The liberal fascists were supporters of Amir Khusro while I supported Genghis Khan. They wanted to sit around all day inventing Quawwali with Amir Khusro while I was off slaying infidels with my namesake, The Great Khan….

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