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Liberal talk show host Tawfiq Okasha recently appeared on "Egypt
Today" airing a video of Muslims slicing a young man's head off
for the crime of apostasy, in this case, the crime of converting
to Christianity and refusing to renounce it. The video--be
warned, it is immensely graphic--is embedded here (the actual
execution appears from minute 1:13-4:00). For those who prefer
not to view it, a summary follows:
A young man appears held down by masked men. His head is pulled
back, with a knife to his throat. He does not struggle and
appears resigned to his fate. Speaking in Arabic, the background
speaker, or "narrator," chants a number of Muslim prayers and
supplications, mostly condemning Christianity, which, because of
the Trinity, is referred to as a polytheistic faith: "Let Allah
be avenged on the polytheist apostate"; "Allah empower your
religion, make it victorious against the polytheists"; "Allah,
defeat the infidels at the hands of the Muslims"; "There is no
god but Allah and Muhammad is his messenger."
Then, to cries of "Allahu Akbar!"--or, "God is great!"--the man
holding the knife to the apostate's throat begins to slice away,
even as the victim appears calmly mouthing a prayer. It takes
nearly two minutes of graphic knife-carving to sever the
Christian's head, which is then held aloft to more Islamic cries
and slogans of victory.
Visibly distraught, Tawfiq Okasha, the host, asked: "Is this
Islam? Does Islam call for this? How is Islam related to this
matter?…These are the images that are disseminated throughout
the electronic media in Europe and America…. Can you imagine?"
Then, in reference to Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood and Salafis,
whose political influence has grown tremendously, he asked, "How
are such people supposed to govern?"
In fact, only the other day a top Egyptian Salafi leader openly
stated that no Muslim has the right to apostatize, or leave
Islam, based on the canonical hadiths, including Muhammad's
command, "Whoever leaves his religion, kill him." Islam's most
authoritative legal manuals make crystal clear that apostasy is
a capital crime, punishable by death.
The first "righteous caliph," a paragon of Muslim piety and
virtue, had tens of thousands of people slaughtered--including
by burning, beheading, and crucifixion--simply because they
tried to break away from Islam. According to the Encyclopaedia
of Islam, the most authoritative reference work on Islam in the
English language, "there is unanimity that the male apostate
must be put to death."
Finally, a word on the "prayers" or supplications to Allah made
by the Muslim executioners in the video: these are standard and
formulaic. It is not just masked, anonymous butchers who
supplicate Allah as they engage in acts of evil; rather, top-
ranking Muslim leaders openly invoke such hate-filled prayers.
See here for examples of prominent Muslims supplicating Allah to
strike infidels with cancer and disease "till they pray for
death and do not receive it," and even formalized prayers in
Mecca, blasted on megaphones as Muslims pilgrimage and
circumambulate the Ka'ba, supplicating Allah to make the lives
of Christians and Jews "hostage to misery; drape them with
endless despair, unrelenting pain and unremitting ailment; fill
their lives with sorrow and pain and end their lives in
humiliation and oppression."
"Is this Islam?" You decide.
By Raymond Ibrahim