A couple of days ago I was forwarded the link to an article written about the Swiss ban on the minarets by a migrant researcher, refugee from Bangladesh who immigrated to Canada, and now works for the APCSS, a US government funded institute that looks into security issues of the Asia-Pacific region. The article was posted in a familiar site - Averroes Press, managed by a very controversial Canadian Muslim of Pakistani extract. The site has been trying to present itself in the post-9/11 era as a voice of "moderate" Muslims of Canada. In the post-9/11 era, I have come to know about few of those "moderate" zealots, and found them to be no better than other violent extremists. They claim to be great proponents of moderation, modernity, reform of Islam and its people, which are all great virtues, but a discussion with them show their ignorance; they don't know what all those high sounding words mean. They like immigrant Muslims to appear and behave like the natives of their adopted land (like the crow that dressed up as the peacock in children's storybook), but have no knowledge that it takes generations before a true change of customs, culture and traditions can take root. They all appear to be highly emotional, unbalanced and confused immigrants who have no clue as to what the sociological terms like assimilation and alienation mean. The sad part is they wanted to behave more American or Canadian than a native American or Canadian.
Many of these folks, as I already hinted above, are first generation refugees or immigrants to the western world. Many of them had settled into their adopted countries solely for better economic opportunities, something that has been either denied or appeared to have been shut to them in their countries of origin. Many of these new refugees did not go to schools, colleges or universities in the West to know better. They came as economic labors/migrants/coolies to make a better earning. There is obviously nothing wrong about bettering one's financial standing, if such should bring prosperity and buy happiness. But what has been troubling is their slavish attitude. To them the idea of being accepted at any cost, even religion, appeared the most important goal of their life - the reason of their very existence. It is what a sufi master once called the "hazrat-e Imam dollar" attitude.
Muslim Canadian Congress (MCC) wants to ban burqa in Canada (note: the ex-Muslims of Faith Freedom Internationally had vowed to ban the Qur'an). What good does such actions do to our community? It is no accident that the MCC is viewed by bulk of Canadian Muslims as a very controversial group that has attracted some "confused" immigrants to oppose anything that the mainstream Muslims care about. That is the overriding perception! For it to succeed, have the MCC leaders ever checked how its activities are perceived by people within its own community? Can you be a change agent without preparing the ground, and without even studying and learning about what worked and what did not in the past with similar initiatives, and why? I failed to see such critical studies done within the MCC, at least not from what I read from their articles.
To these "moderates" unfortunately, any rational Muslim who disagrees with their litmus test, illogical conclusions, innuendos, speculations and assertions, and offering a different take on an issue, ought to be an Islamist or a Jihadist, derogatory terms borrowed from the hatemongers of Islam; and what else. So close-minded fanatics these people are that you can't have a reasonable debate with them; they behave and act like brain-dead individuals or zombies. If you disagree with their notions, you are promptly considered an extremist Muslim. How wonderful!
I found this sad truth the hard way very recently. When the article by Raheel Raza on Swiss banning of the minaret was brought to my attention by the new migrant researcher, I had little inkling about gangsterism of his group of fanatics, the so-called moderate Muslims. I objected to some flaws of the author in her inability to look into the issue objectively. Unfortnately, his gang of "moderates", like hungry wolves and vultures, ganged up on me, hurling abuses. I was called everything that one can find in the vocabulary of the Pipesland. Forgotten was the very subject we were debating about. To them, I must have been a Jihadist, extremist, fanatic to have considered the Swiss ban self-defeating, stupid, xenophobic and wrong. Is President Obama a Jihadist too? How about the UN that condemned the Swiss decision? Truly, these fanatic "moderates" were no better than fanatics of the Mukto-mona or FFI brigade.
What was also so strange that on the surface some of these fanatics appeared to be well educated, teaching in colleges. But their behavior showed they were no better than savages and were not capable of having or conducting an intellectual debate on a contentious subject. Truly, their pathetic behavior was like a joke to the profession they work for and institutions that they got their degrees from. I was told that Siddiqur Osmani, an ultra-ego-centric maniac, behaving like 'ami key honure', albeit "moderate" zealot, teaches development economics at a less than mediocre university -- Ulster University, Ireland, UK. [I am told by some academic experts in his area that Osmani has failed to demonstrate originality in his research work and basically borrows heavily from others' ideas and thoughts. That is, he has not contributed anything original in his field of development economics. I was disappointed to learn that he had not written a single paper on "development strategy" on Bangladesh.] Another guy - Wali Mondal - teaches at an unaccredited university in California. (I am reminded by some keen observers that most of these guys won't have a job in any prestigious government university in Bangladesh.) And as to the researcher, the little said the better. I first came to know him a few years ago when he wrote some positive reviews of my articles in the NFB and some discussion forums. At one time, I even tried to find a match for his daughter. We have exchanged e-mails and phone calls many times. He would often send me his manuscripts for review, which I would and then promptly share my comments with him to correct flaws, if any. He is in the habit of making mountains out of moles, exaggerating little events, presenting outliers as the norms; obviously, he lacks knowledge of statistical methods for data analysis. In order to justify his job, he has been in the habit of manufacturing stories, massaging data so that he can prove Bangladesh as a terrorist den, a failed country. I have tried to correct him in the past but without any success. His behavior is nothing short of treason to the very country that nurtured him when he and his family fled from communal India during the partition of British India. If these be the character of our 'moderate' academics, what good will students learn from such narrow minded teachers? And then there are guys like Matin Ahmed, Lutfur Rahman and Mustafa Chowdhury (of Ottawa) whose slavish behaviors are downright comical and ridiculous to be taken them as serious human beings that care about truth and honesty. They were vulgar, obscene and mean-spirited. Clowns!
During my e-mail exchanges, commenting on the article by Raheel, I was continuously reminded by their utter stupidity, lack of civility and comprehension. I could not understand why they failed to see what was so obvious? They behaved like RAND robots, morons, programmed zombies to repeat things taught to them by the likes of Pipes & Co. of the Jerusalem Summit and Campus Crusade. They started with the assumption that any Muslim condemning the Swiss minaret ban must be a jihadist. That is a behavior one expects from close minded fanatics, puppets and stooges of their masters. I was simply amused to find that they considered themselves to be 'moderate' Muslim 'intellectuals'! But sadly, there was no moderation in their behavior, no intelligence, no common sense, and only stupidity and arrogance. It was a disgusting and disconcerting experience for me, which I may never forget. I blame myself for being sucked into the researcher's sly invitation to participate in a debate of that sort. If he was an honorable person, he should have reined on his gang. I felt totally betrayed, as if I was in a tent surrounded by dagger-wielding hoodlums who wanted to stab me for appearing there, to whom no reasoning was good enough. They behaved like people who had no brain, no analytical or deductive reasoning, and only puffed up ego. They were quite old folks, at least 8 years older than me. But as it showed, wisdom is not something that they possessed, nor the maturity to have a productive discussion in a civic way. From the very outset of the debate, the message was clear that if you want to participate in their discussion, you better accept and swallow it, or shut up and leave. You can't have debate with the blind, deaf and morons. Not with such 'moderates.'
These "moderates" were trying to sanctify the Swiss decision, blaming it all on our 1.5 plus billion Muslims. Forgotten were the context, content and place. As I mentioned that guys like Osmani had worked in the academic world. But they had no clue about how to draw inferential conclusions from data, and how to look at data objectively. With little to no knowledge of science and mathematics (note: in places like South Asia, students who are poor in math, analytical/deductive reasoning, and with poor SSC/HSC scores usually end up going to subjects like political science, history, religion, sociology, etc.), most of these guys were drawing conclusions from outliers (i.e., the rare events), the special causes, and not common causes. It was not unusual to notice that most of these guys appear to be social/political scientists. No wonder, with their failure to objectively analyze data and draw scientific conclusions, they have been so wrong with most of their stupid, moronic, half-baked findings. Strange though it may sound, one of these fanatics was presented as having published papers. But what good does such papers do when they are all based on half-baked research work, without credible data, correct analysis, lacking originality, published in third-rate papers and journals? That is the sad story about their scholarship! Simply pathetic!
Coming back to the Swiss debate, I am under no illusion that what the Swiss voters did was stupid and xenophobic. It is bound to strengthen the very forces that they claim to be defeating or fighting against. They forgot the basic: they simply can't preach freedom and equality all over the world while denying their own Muslim minority citizens the right to a religious symbol. And yet to the 'moderate' Muslims, the Swiss action was a perfect one - a justifiable one. Their behavior typified those of the House Niggers and cultural coolies.
What is also so hilarious is that they believed that they were intellectuals, and belonged to a higher plane than those who had differed with them. They forget that before masquerading as intellectuals they ought to understand the underlying meaning of the term. They also ought to read the experiment with Reform Judaism of the 19th century Europe before prescribing such tablets to fellow Muslims. Shame on them!