The Aftermath of 9/11

By RIAD SALOOJEE, The Globe and Mail, 1/16/2002

An enduring aftermath of Sept. 11 is the continued spotlight on Islam. Almost daily, self-declared experts dissect Islam in articles, commentaries, political prognostications, and, too often, the apocalyptic scenario of a clash of civilizations. Some of these attempts at understanding Islam betray a shocking and simplistic method. Two fallacies — one textual, the other sociological — seem to predominate.

First are those whose analysis reflects their own cultural, historical or political prejudices. They utilize a crude, cut-and-paste analysis that uses Koranic texts self-servingly without concern for context. Verses discussing the combative aspect of jihad figure prominently and demonstrate, we are told, Islam’s dark side.

It is forgotten (or conveniently ignored) that one tenet of Islamic interpretation, as in Talmudic interpretation or Christian scriptures, is that a verse cannot be explained apart from its context. Verses on a given topic must be read together, holistically, for only then can their intent be gleaned. In Islamic law, rules pertaining to human interactions always have a rationale or understandable cause, which, if absent, renders the legal ruling inapplicable.

Take one oft-quoted verse: “Kill the unbelievers wherever you find them.” It usually escapes mention that the intent behind legislating the combative aspect of the jihad here is self-defence. Specifically, this verse refers to a situation of war at the beginning of the seventh century, when the tribal elite in Arabia had persecuted the nascent Islamic community unrelentingly for 15 years, intent on eradicating it.

To read this verse as requiring that all non-Muslims are to be killed runs counter to verses that prohibit killing civilians or non-combatants, or to this important verse: “God does not forbid you with regard to those who do not fight you or your faith nor drive you from your homes from dealing kindly and justly with them; for Allah loves those who are just” (Quran, 60:8). It is worth noting that the Arabic word for “kind” in the verse, birr, is used to express the affection and gentleness mandated to parents.

…History has recorded the full entitlements of citizenship granted by the Prophet to non-Muslims in treaties, the amnesty he gave to those who persecuted him, and his moral exhortations to maintain justice: “On the Day of Judgment, I will be the advocate of non-Muslim subjects who were oppressed” and “Observe scrupulously the protection accorded by me to non-Muslim subjects…”

…To be fair, there is sometimes another cause of misunderstanding: Muslims themselves. Too easily, some Muslims blame modernity for their own malaise, and all too often act contrary to the universal constants of justice, moderation and mercy, which are the essential animating values of any Islamic individual or social action…

Taken from


  1. SJJ says:

    The muslims had nothing to do with 9/11. It was a false flag operation by the military industrial complex to start war for profit and take over oil fields in the mid east.

    All the evidence is public information but the bank control media has been feeding the lies since day one.


  2. Mike Tegano says:

    although I do not understand your religion I do have strong feelings towards muslims. I was a first responder on 9/11. I saw one of your billboards on the NJ Turnpike and I guess you can understand my rage! Or maybe you can’t. Your billboard is in poor taste as is the mosque that is trying to be built near ground zero. Maybe your billboards should be a message of apology for what radical muslims have done in this country. The message that I have received so far from muslim community has only made my feelings towards muslims worse. And don’t think that it is not obvious why billboard is right at newark airport and that mosque is located near Ground Zero. If you want people to try to understand you maybe you should try a better approach

    • Perseveranze says:

      Peace Mike Tegano,

      “I was a first responder on 9/11″

      I believe so were Muslims, as you already should know, many Muslims died as a result of 9/11 aswell.

      “for what radical muslims have done in this country.”

      The same can be said for “radical” Jews, “radical” Mexican’s etc. In fact, a report by the FBI shows that 94% of all terrorist attacks on US soil were carried out by Non-Muslims. That’s overwhelmingly alot if you think about it, there were in fact more Jewish terrist cases than there were Muslim. Source –

      Also you may find this article interesting aswell –

      I hope you can understand the point I’m trying to make regarding this generalization you have.

      The teachings of Islam completly condemn the acts of 9/11. Even if there was an all out war, and the enemy attacked the Muslim civilians, even in that case we Muslims would not be allowed to attack the enemies civilians as an act of revenge. In no circumstance does Islam allow the killing of civilians/innocents.

      The First Caliphate, Abu Bakr(ra) relayed this message to his people before going to war – “O people! I charge you with ten rules; learn them well!

      Do no betray or misappropriate any part of the booty; do not practice treachery or mutilation. Do not kill a young child, an old man, or a woman. Do not uproot or burn palms or cut down fruitful trees. Do not slaughter a sheep or a cow or a camel, except for food. You will meet people who have set themselves apart in hermitages; leave them to accomplish the purpose for which they have done this. You will come upon people who will bring you dishes with various kinds of foods. If you partake of them, pronounce God’s name over what you eat. You will meet people who have shaved the crown of their heads, leaving a band of hair around it. Go in Gods name, and may God protect you from sword and pestilence”

      This became the laying foundations of war rules in Islam.

      “Maybe your billboards should be a message of apology”

      I believe, by understanding the faith itself, you would see that Muslims have no connection with those that kill innocents, nor do they have any responsibility for their actions, especially when it is out of the folds of Islam.

      “The message that I have received so far from muslim community has only made my feelings towards muslims worse.”

      This is why it’s very important for you to understand the real Islam. Do not judge a religion by the acts of a few individuals.

    • thaleia says:

      It is incredibly shocking to me that you would harbour hatred towards Muslims en-mass for what occurred on Sept 11th… Do you not realise that a good 95%, if not more, of Muslims were COMPLETELY and utterly against the attack? It was an act of terrorism that contradicts the peaceful nature of the religion (I’m a Muslim that has bothered to research the roots of the religion so that I interpret it correctly, not like radicals do…)

      Before you judge an entire people, perhaps you should educate yourself and bother to learn more about the religion.

      The mosque near ground zero wasn’t meant to provoke, it was an attempt to mend relations, as are the billboards. It’s incredibly insulting that you would suggest otherwise.

      Frankly, your first statement says it all. You haven’t made any attempt to understand the religion yet you are happy to judge it harshly. Surely that’s not right.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.