Is Islam a religion? This question, and others perceived as Islamaphobic, were debated by several professors at Union Theological Seminary in New York City Wednesday, with the panelists seeking to encourage the audience to participate in meaningful inter-religious dialogue.
With the Islamic State (also known as ISIS) gaining power and territory in the Middle East, questions regarding Islam and the beliefs and traditions among Muslim sects have been asked repeatedly. Numerous academics have weighed in on the question of whether Islam is truly violent and an authentic religion; three professors, along with one activist, came together at Union Theological Seminary to examine the issue further.
"We can understand Islamophobia as being an imitation, created and recreated across time. It builds across time and space … iteration leads to transformation," argued Ermin Sinanovic, assistant professor in the Department of Political Science at the United States Naval Academy, who has extensively studied Islam and Muslim-Christian relations. more >>
While Houston's lesbian Mayor Annise Parker and her City Council pals subpoena and obsess over Christian ministers' sermons, she ignores incomparable and immanent threats to Americans posed by Islamists in Houston.
Houston's First Amendment squabble is, as Texans say, "peanuts," compared to actual ongoing violations of Article III Section 3.
To put the enormity of Houston's crisis into context, the nation's fourth largest city is a primary arrival and distribution center for illicit drug smuggling. The billion dollar trade of cocaine, heroin, marijuana, oxycodone and methamphetamine has profoundly increased Houston's violent crime rate, which for years has more than doubled the national average. more >>
The gunman shot dead during an attack on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Wednesday has been identified as 32-year-old petty criminal Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, who was reportedly a recent convert to Islam. The shooting, which led to the death of a soldier posted at the National War Memorial, was the second attack on Canadian soldiers in the space of three days.
"We will not be intimidated. Canada will never be intimidated," Prime Minister Stephen Harper said following the shooting. He added that on Monday, an "ISIL-inspired terrorist" ran over two soldiers and killed one in the province of Quebec. The man, who was shot down by police, was also a recent convert to Islam.
Pakistan is a perennial recipient of billions of U.S. taxpayer dollars. It's an occasional ally/frequent enemy, sometimes actively conspiring against U.S. interests, sometimes actually firing on U.S. troops (incidents so notorious they now have their own Wikipedia page), and — of course — it's the home of increasingly virulent jihadist extremism. And, no, this extremism isn't confined to the fringes of Pakistani society but is sometimes even manifested in its appellate courts.
Last week, a Pakistani court of appeals upheld Asia Bibi's death sentence for blasphemy. She's a Christian and a mother of five.
Death. For allegedly saying bad things about Mohammed. more >>
A 15-year-old Islamic State fighter imprisoned by Kurdish forces in northern Syria explained how he was threatened into joining ISIS' military ranks and alleges that ISIS leaders are often drugging their fighters before battle so that the militants would be more likely to commit suicide bomb attacks.
In a CBS report Tuesday, correspondent Holly Williams interviewed various prisoners accused of fighting for ISIS in the basement of the Kurdish-operated prison in northern Syria. Fifteen-year-old Kareem Mufleh told Williams of how he was forced into becoming an ISIS fighter and also highlighted the forceful nature behind their suicide tactics and detailed how the militants kill women for showing too much skin.
While the other men that Williams interviewed in the basement of the Syrian prison ultimately deny that they fought with ISIS, Mufleh, who was captured by Kurdish forces over nine months ago after a firefight, did not hide the fact that he had joined the ISIS ranks. However, it was not by choice. more >>
The Islamic State terror group is raking in an estimated $800 million per year, or $2 million per day, in crude oil sales which is produced in oil regions the group captured in the past year in Iraq and Syria, a U.S.-based global analytics group reported on Monday.
A report by IHS, a leading source in global information and analytics, found that ISIS is making twice as much off of their oil production per day than the $1 million per day figure that U.S. lawmakers were previously told when the Deputy Director of the National Counterterrorism Center Nicholas Rasmussen testified before Congress in September.
The IHS report stated that the Islamic State generates the income needed to continue funding its deadly jihadist movement through the production of over 50,000 barrels of crude oil per day, which is sold to black market traders. The report also added that ISIS is only producing "a fraction" of the total oil capacity of the oil regions it controls. more >>