Monday, July 30, 2007

Weekly Radio Show: July 27

Listen to The Gathering Storm Radio Show, which WC and I cohost. The show broadcasts live every Friday for one hour at noon, Pacific Time.

The call-in number is (646) 915-9870.

Callers welcome!

Friday, July 27: Special show! We have two interviewees scheduled this week!

Our first guest, Bob McCarty of Bob McCarty Writes™ will be with us at the top of the hour. According to his bio, his mix of humor, politics, culture and capitalism has earned him guest appearances on a number of radio programs, ranging from the pH pHactor on KFYR-AM in Bismarck, N.D., to Allman in the Morning, Nothing But Truth and The Randy Tobler Show — all on 97.1 FM Talk, the Fox News Radio station in Saint Louis. In addition, he’s appeared as a guest on BBC Worldwide Radio’s World Have Your Say program three times — usually as the lone conservative voice in a crowd of bleeding-heart liberals! All this week, Bob has been following the goings-on at "Muslims Speak Out," the dialogue at the Washington Post/Newsweek On Faith Forum; WC and I plan to discuss Bob's observations there.

Our second scheduled guest at the bottom of the hour is Chaim of the Freedom's Cost blog, which discusses Judaism, its history and how it is being scapegoated by those with a much more nefarious agenda, an agenda that will affect far more than merely the Jews of the West.

If you are unable to listen live to the radio show, you can listen to recordings of the radio broadcasts later by CLICKING HERE.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Attention, Counter-Propagandists!

(Stuck toward the top through July 27)

From this source:

Bloggers, clear your calendars Sunday, July 22, through Friday, July 27. Some real propaganda bombshells are bound to be dropped, and you’ll want to be there when “several leading Muslim clerics and thinkers from around the globe will participate in an unprecedented online dialogue about their religion, terrorism and human rights.”

The “dialogue,” sponsored by The Washington Post and Newsweek Interactive and presented in conjunction with Georgetown University, has been dubbed “Muslims Speak Out” and will take place at On Faith, a blog operated as a joint effort of the Post and Newsweek.

More at this link.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Victory for John Does!

See recent postings at the The Center for Vigilant Freedom. Excerpt from a recent posting, quoting Frank Gaffney:
Thanks to the leadership of Sens. Joe Lieberman and Susan Collins, the chairman and ranking minority member, respectively, of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, and especially that of Rep. Pete King, Sen. Collins’ counterpart on the House Homeland Security Committee, legislation along the lines of that adopted by an overwhelming bipartisan majority of the House of Representatives last May at Rep. King’s initiative will shortly become law.

The language will provide protection against the sorts of harassment lawsuits filed by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) after several unidentified individuals reported six Muslim imams engaged in suspicious – and frightening – behavior prior to boarding a USAir flight in November 2006. CAIR has been identified as a front organization for the Muslim Brotherhood and is an un-indicted co-conspirator in an alleged terrorism-financing plot.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Weekly Radio Show: July 20

(This post stuck toward the top for several days)

Listen to The Gathering Storm Radio Show, of which I am cohost. The show broadcasts live every Friday for one hour at noon, Pacific Time.

The call-in number is (646) 915-9870.

Callers welcome!

Friday, July 13: Our scheduled guests at the bottom of the hour are Baron Bodissey and Dymphna of the Gates of Vienna blog, the header of which reads as follows: At the siege of Vienna in 1683 Islam seemed poised to overrun Christian Europe. We are in a new phase of a very old war.

Gates of Vienna follows developments in the global jihad and in the counter-jihad, particularly in, but not limited to, Denmark. Baron also posts at the Vigilant Freedom/910 Group blog.

If you are unable to listen live to the radio show, you can listen to recordings of the radio broadcasts later by CLICKING HERE.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Muslims Speak Out (July 22-27)

Follow up to this posting...

To access the On Faith forum in order to post comments or questions, CLICK HERE, then on the name of the person to whom you wish to address the question or comment.

To the credit of the Washington Post, the following article was published in "Outlook," July 22, 2007

Losing My Jihadism

By Mansour al-Nogaidan
Sunday, July 22, 2007; B01

BURAIDAH, Saudi Arabia Islam needs a Reformation. It needs someone with the courage of Martin Luther.

This is the belief I've arrived at after a long and painful spiritual journey. It's not a popular conviction -- it has attracted angry criticism, including death threats, from many sides. But it was reinforced by Sept. 11, 2001, and in the years since, I've only become more convinced that it is critical to Islam's future.

Muslims are too rigid in our adherence to old, literal interpretations of the Koran. It's time for many verses -- especially those having to do with relations between Islam and other religions -- to be reinterpreted in favor of a more modern Islam. It's time to accept that God loves the faithful of all religions. It's time for Muslims to question our leaders and their strict teachings, to reach our own understanding of the prophet's words and to call for a bold renewal of our faith as a faith of goodwill, of peace and of light.

I didn't always think this way. Once, I was one of the extremists who clung to literal interpretations of Islam and tried to force them on others. I was a jihadist.

I grew up in Saudi Arabia. When I was 16, I found myself assailed by doubts about the existence of God. I prayed to God to give me the strength to overcome them. I made a deal with Him: I would give up everything, devote myself to Him and live the way the prophet Muhammad and his companions had lived 1,400 years ago if He would rid me of my doubts.

I joined a hard-line Salafi group. I abandoned modern life and lived in a mud hut, apart from my family. Viewing modern education as corrupt and immoral, I joined a circle of scholars who taught the Islamic sciences in the classical way, just as they had been taught 1,200 years ago. My involvement with this group led me to violence, and landed me in prison. In 1991, I took part in firebombing video stores in Riyadh and a women's center in my home town of Buraidah, seeing them as symbols of sin in a society that was marching rapidly toward modernization.

Yet all the while, my doubts remained. Was the Koran really the word of God? Had it really been revealed to Muhammad, or did he create it himself? But I never shared these doubts with anyone, because doubting Islam or the prophet is not tolerated in the Muslim society of my country.

By the time I turned 26, much of the turmoil in me had abated, and I made my peace with God. At the same time, my eyes were opened to the hypocrisy of so many who held themselves out as Muslim role models. I saw Islamic judges ignoring the marks of torture borne by my prison comrades. I learned of Islamic teachers who molested their students. I heard devout Muslims who never missed the five daily prayers lying with ease to people who did not share their extremist beliefs.

In 1999, when I was working as an imam at a Riyadh mosque, I happened upon two books that had a profound influence on me. One, written by a Palestinian scholar, was about the struggle between those who deal pragmatically with the Koran and those who take it and the hadith literally. The other was a book by a Moroccan philosopher about the formation of the Arab Muslim way of thinking.

The books inspired me to write an article for a Saudi newspaper arguing that Muslims have the right to question and criticize our religious leaders and not to take everything they tell us for granted. We owe it to ourselves, I wrote, to think pragmatically if our religion is to survive and thrive.

That article landed me in the center of a storm. Some men in my mosque refused to greet me. Others would no longer pray behind me. Under this pressure, I left the mosque.

I moved to the southern city of Abha, where I took a job as a writer and editor with a newly established newspaper. I went back to leading prayers at the paper's small mosque and to writing about my evolving philosophy. After I wrote articles stressing our right as Muslims to question our Saudi clerics and their interpretations and to come up with our own, officials from the kingdom's powerful religious establishment complained, and I was banned from writing.

The attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, gave new life to what I had been saying. I went back to criticizing the rote manner in which we Muslims are fed our religion. I criticized al-Qaeda's school of thought, which considers everyone who isn't a Salafi Muslim the enemy. I pointed to examples from Islamic history that stressed the need to get along with other religions. I tried to give a new interpretation to the verses that call for enmity between Muslims and Christians and Jews. I wrote that they do not apply to us today and that Islam calls for friendship among all faiths.

I lost a lot of friends after that. My old companions from the jihad felt obliged to declare themselves either with me or against me. Some preferred to cut their links to me silently, but others fought me publicly, issuing statements filled with curses and lies. Once again, the paper came under great pressure to ban my writing. And I became a favorite target on the Internet, where my writings were lambasted and labeled blasphemous.

Eventually I was fired. But by then, I had started to develop a different relationship with God. I felt that He was moving me toward another kind of belief, where all that matters is that we pray to God from the heart. I continued to pray, but I started to avoid the verses that contain violence or enmity and only used the ones that speak of God's mercy and grace and greatness. I remembered an incident in the Koran when the prophet told a Bedouin who did not know how to pray to let go of the verses and get closer to God by repeating, "God is good, God is great." Don't sweat the details, the prophet said.

I felt at peace, and no longer doubted His existence.

In December 2002, in a Web site interview, I criticized al-Qaeda and declared that some of the Friday sermons were loathsome because of their attacks against non-Muslims. Within days, a fatwa was posted online, calling me an infidel and saying that I should be killed. Once again, I felt despair at the ways of the Muslim world. Two years later, I told al-Arabiya television that I thought God loves all faithful people of different religions. That earned me a fatwa from the mufti of Saudi Arabia declaring my infidelity.

But one evening not long after that, I heard a radio broadcast of the verse of light. Even though I had memorized the Koran at 15, I felt as though I was hearing this verse for the first time. God is light, it says, the universe is illuminated by His light. I felt the verse was speaking directly to me, sending me a message. This God of light, I thought, how could He be against any human? The God of light would not be happy to see people suffer, even if they had sinned and made mistakes along the way.

I had found my Islam. And I believe that others can find it, too. But first we need a Reformation similar to the Protestant Reformation that Martin Luther led against the Roman Catholic Church.

In the late 14th century, Islam had its own sort of Martin Luther. Ibn Taymiyya was an Islamic scholar from a hard-line Salafi sect who went through a spiritual crisis and came to believe that in time, God would close the gates of hell and grant all humans, regardless of their religion, entry to his everlasting paradise. Unlike Luther, however, Ibn Taymiyya never openly declared this revolutionary belief; he shared it only with a small, trusted circle of students.

Nevertheless, I find myself inspired by Luther's courageous uprising. I see what Islam needs -- a strong, charismatic personality who will lead us toward reform, and scholars who can convince Islamic communities of the need for a bold new interpretation of Islamic texts, to reconcile us with the wider world.

Mansour al-Nogaidan writes for the Bahraini newspaper Al-Waqt.

CLICK HERE to view the schedule for and to access the On Faith Forum "Muslims Speak Out." Here's our chance to ask pointed questions and to make appropriate comments. I've test-posted a comment there, and it went up onto the site.

As far as I can tell, Mansour al-Nogaidan, the author of the above article is not a part of the forum. Comments can be directed to Mansour al-Nogaidan at the Washington Post web site, but you might have to register first. You can address comments to all of the authors in the "Outlook" section HERE.

Friday, July 20, 2007

"We Are All John Doe"

From this source:
Pete King (R-NY) tried hard but the “John Doe” amendment protecting passengers’ rights to report suspicious behavior without being sued by CAIR in its Saudi-funded lawsuit jihad failed.
UPDATE (as of 9:30 p.m., July 19): Susan Collins (R-ME) submitted her “John Doe” passenger protection amendment for a vote in the Senate (S.A. 2340) but the amendment failed just 3 votes shy of the 60 needed to pass. Michelle Malkin has the vote roll of aye’s and nay’s here. No Republican voted against it, but Sam Brownback (R-CA) and Obama (D-IL) did not vote.Malkin points out that the final conference report could be a last place to add language protecting passengers who report suspicious behavior from lawsuits - but this is becoming more of a longshot.
So, time to gear up:

— Expect more probes of the 6 Flying Imams variety, especially as we go into the August vacation season.

— Bring a videocamera or video cell phone with you, so you can gather evidence as needed to protect yourself and your fellow passengers, from both terrorism and lawsuits. You can pick one up for less than $100 at Walmart (online price maybe cheaper in the store), Target, or Radioshack.

— It’s time for a Passenger Bill of Rights and Passenger Training. If we have to protect ourselves, so be it. Kyle Shideler did a great post on this on May 3, and I’m reposting it below or link here (A Passenger’s Right To Survive) because it’s even more important now.
How the vote went:

Grouped By Vote Position YEAs ---57 (Protect those who support suspicious behavior)
Alexander (R-TN)
Allard (R-CO)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Baucus (D-MT)
Bayh (D-IN)
Bennett (R-UT)
Bond (R-MO)
Bunning (R-KY)
Burr (R-NC)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Clinton (D-NY)
Coburn (R-OK)
Cochran (R-MS)
Coleman (R-MN)
Collins (R-ME)
Conrad (D-ND)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Craig (R-ID)
Crapo (R-ID)
DeMint (R-SC)
Dole (R-NC)
Domenici (R-NM)
Dorgan (D-ND)
Ensign (R-NV)
Enzi (R-WY)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Gregg (R-NH)
Hagel (R-NE)
Hatch (R-UT)
Hutchison (R-TX)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Kyl (R-AZ)
Landrieu (D-LA)
Lieberman (ID-CT)
Lott (R-MS)
Lugar (R-IN)
Martinez (R-FL)
McCain (R-AZ)
McConnell (R-KY)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Nelson (D-NE)
Roberts (R-KS)
Schumer (D-NY)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Smith (R-OR)
Snowe (R-ME)
Specter (R-PA)
Stevens (R-AK)
Sununu (R-NH)
Thune (R-SD)
Vitter (R-LA)
Voinovich (R-OH)
Warner (R-VA)

NAYs ---39 (Those who support suspicious behavior can be sued)
Akaka (D-HI)
Biden (D-DE)
Bingaman (D-NM)
Boxer (D-CA)
Brown (D-OH)
Byrd (D-WV)
Cantwell (D-WA)
Cardin (D-MD)
Carper (D-DE)
Casey (D-PA)
Dodd (D-CT)
Durbin (D-IL)
Feingold (D-WI)
Harkin (D-IA)
Inouye (D-HI)
Kennedy (D-MA)
Kerry (D-MA)
Klobuchar (D-MN)
Kohl (D-WI)
Lautenberg (D-NJ)
Leahy (D-VT)
Levin (D-MI)
Lincoln (D-AR)
McCaskill (D-MO)
Menendez (D-NJ)
Mikulski (D-MD)
Murray (D-WA)
Nelson (D-FL)
Pryor (D-AR)
Reed (D-RI)
Reid (D-NV)
Rockefeller (D-WV)
Salazar (D-CO)
Sanders (I-VT)
Stabenow (D-MI)
Tester (D-MT)
Webb (D-VA)
Whitehouse (D-RI)
Wyden (D-OR)

Not Voting - 4
Brownback (R-KS)
Feinstein (D-CA)
Johnson (D-SD)
Obama (D-IL)

Go to THIS LINK for more information from "We Are All John Doe." Lots of internal links!

Refugee Resettlement

From Refugee Resettlement Watch, a site which states as follows on its "About" page:
A few months ago it came to our attention in Washington County MD that a non-profit group (Virginia Council of Churches) had been bringing refugees into the city of Hagerstown (county seat) for a couple of years. Some problems arose and citizens started to take an interest. One of the most startling things we found out about this very quiet effort is that these non-profit groups bring to the US about 25,000 Muslim refugees from the Middle East, Africa, the Balkans, etc, almost completely funded by the US Government through grants and contracts with these non-government agencies. Of the 168 refugees brought to our county since 2004, 125 are Muslim. Although we all have sympathy for persecuted and suffering people there are real questions to be answered about the wisdom of this policy. It turns out that there are hotbeds of this controversy throughout the US. We have identified some of those. We set up this online community organizing center [HERE]. If you have information or questions from your communities about Refugee Resettlement please get in touch with Ann Corcoran at
From this page at Refugee Resettlement Watch, emphases mine:
Public benefits available to refugees and successful asylees include:
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) formerly known as AFDC


Food Stamps

Public Housing

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Social Security Disability Insurance

Administration on Developmental Disabilities (ADD) (direct services only)

Child Care and Development Fund

Independent Living Program

Job Opportunities for Low Income Individuals (JOLI)

Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)

Post secondary Education Loans and Grants

Refugee Assistance Programs

Title IV Foster Care and Adoption Assistance Payments (if parents are “qualified immigrants”)

Title XX Social Services Block Grant Funds
Prior to 1980, refugee sponsoring agencies were totally responsible for all refugee needs, including housing, medical care and employment. Today they have virtually no responsibilities. A newly arriving refugee aged 65 can immediately retire on SSI/Medicaid never having worked a day in the U.S.

After 4 months the Volags [voluntary non-government agencies] do not even have to know where the refugees are located. Therefore they have no legal requirements to make sure the refugees are o.k. and are assimilating. One very interesting statistic I noted was that a few refugees actually return to their country of origin which brings up the question of how persecuted were they in the first place. In Washington Co. an Iraqi family left the area soon after arrival telling people the conditions were deplorable.

One area of change suggested by those advocating reform of refugee resettlement is to require Volags to identify sponsoring churches and organizations for each family and to be responsible for the family for a year before accessing welfare programs. Although not a legal contract requirement, VCC did not identify enough sponsors for refugees in Washington Co. and therefore many refugees were not adequately supported causing some of the political friction. Recently VCC stated that existing refugee families could sponsor new families which would not be a desirable solution.

The National Governor’s Assn. was critical of the program in its Policy Position on Refugee Resettlement on March 5, 2007. They are concerned about the lack of consultation by the Volags in placement of refugees and they are concerned about the cost of refugee resettlement (a Federal responsibility) being passed down to state and local governments. * This report is available.

It is often difficult to get accurate information from Volags about the numbers of refugees resettled in a community. VCC has stated publicly that they have resettled over 200 refugees in Washington Co. from Africa and Russia. In fact, the State Department places the number at 168 from 13 different countries. Of the 168, 125 are Muslim. Nationally about 50% of refugees brought to the US are Muslim. There are no Muslim Volags, most are various Christian faiths and one Jewish organization. * List of the major Volags is available.

Employment statistics vary from location to location, but in ORR’s 2004 Report to Congress only 16% of refugees find a job in the first 3 months and at 12 months only 62% nationally have a job. The average hourly wage in a 5 year population sample was $8.90. *This report is available.

The Department of Homeland Security is responsible for determining whether refugees pose any danger to the safety and security of the US, but this authority can be waived by the US State Department. For example, on May 5, 2006 Sec. of State Rice gave approval for the Burmese (Karen) people of the Tham Hin Camp in Thailand to enter the US even though some may be members of (or have given support to) the Karen National Liberation Army, considered a terrorist group by the US govt. Burmese (Karen) comprise the next group of refugees VCC would like to resettle in Washington Co. *Waiver is available.

Some states have another layer of bureaucracy, a kind of go-between office, that helps to facilitate Refugee Resettlement between the Volags and the Federal government. In Maryland, it is the Maryland Office for New Americans (MONA). Although listed as part of Maryland’s Department of Human Services it is funded primarily by grants from the Federal Government.

The cost of translation for such things as medical care, emergency response etc. is according to federal law the responsibility of the local government agency. In Washington Co., VCC says they are working with seven languages at the present time.

I have found no location where a Volag does any formal written reporting about their plans in advance of bringing refugees to a community, or any report to local governments during the program.

Other cities are having problems with Refugee Resettlement. Manchester, NH shut the program down completely after they had to build a wing on to the high school exclusively for English as a Second language students and had a problem with many refugee children having lead poisoning. Lewiston, ME tried to stop the influx of Somali Bantu but failed. Eastern Tennessee is having problems. Cayce, SC is the only town I have found so far that stopped Refugee Resettlement in advance.
Read more, especially the bulleted items at the top of the page for the above-cited information.

So, what's going on in your neighborhood?

[Home page for Refugee Resettlement Watch]

Monday, July 16, 2007

Weekly Radio Show: July 13

Listen to The Gathering Storm Radio Show, of which I am cohost. The show broadcasts live every Friday for one hour at noon, Pacific Time.

The call-in number is (646) 915-9870.

Callers welcome!

Friday, July 13: Our scheduled guest at the bottom of the hour is blogger Dinah Lord.

If you've never checked out Dinah's blog, do so! Offering news links and pithy commentary, she follows developments in the global jihad, including underreported events in Thailand and Malaysia. The unique graphics on her sidebar warm the hearts of counter-jihadists. She also posts at Maverick News Media.

If you are unable to listen live to the radio show, you can listen to recordings of the radio broadcasts later by CLICKING HERE.

Friday, July 13, 2007

How Secure Are We?

From this article in the July 13, 2007 edition of the Washington Post, emphases mine:
Bomb Squads Are Left Lacking
Multiple Attacks Would Reveal Equipment Gaps

Many local bomb squads in the Washington area are under-equipped to respond to the kind of simultaneous attacks being attempted by terrorists around the world, most recently in London, officials say.

None of the eight local and state bomb squads in the region is top-rated under the classification of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, according to the local officials. The region has asked the Department of Homeland Security for $8 million to bring them to the highest level.

Some officials said the lack of top-level status isn't critical. In an emergency, local squads would get help from explosives experts from the area's military bases or federal agencies including the FBI and U.S. Capitol Police, they said.

But some first responders worry that federal agencies might be tied up with their own responsibilities during a crisis or could face such complications as gridlocked traffic, particularly if there is an attack in the suburbs.

"We don't want to create a false sense of security for residents," said Keith Brower, head of the bomb-squad committee of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments. "The bomb squads don't have what they need to handle multiple events or provide the top-line services we need in this day and age."


Mike Heimbach, who heads the counterterrorism division at the FBI's Washington field office, said he is "pretty comfortable" that the region could handle such simultaneous attacks because of the cooperation between federal, state and local agencies. But, he said, the local bomb squads believe they need better tools because the area is such a likely target.

"Let's face it: The nation's capital being high on al-Qaeda's radar, we should have the best of the best," he said.

The $8 million request to upgrade the bomb squads is part of the D.C. area's yearly application for a major Homeland Security anti-terrorism grant. The region has asked for a total of $140 million.

According to one official briefed on the process, Homeland Security is expected to announce this month that the region will get about $56 million. It's not clear how much would go to the bomb squads.

The upgrade "is extremely important. That's underscored by the recent events in the United Kingdom," said Robert P. Crouch, the top Virginia homeland security official, who manages the national capital area grant along with his Maryland and D.C. counterparts.

The foiled U.K. plot involved two cars in London rigged with propane canisters and nails, plus a subsequent attack on an airport terminal in Glasgow, Scotland.


Just last year, two U.S. citizens were charged in Atlanta with plotting attacks against targets including a fuel storage depot off Interstate 95 in Northern Virginia.
Read the entire article.

Thursday, July 12, 2007


Who would have imagined that New York-based celebrity gossip columnist Cindy Adams would be a source of information on nefarious doings in Northern Virginia? In her article LOOK WHO'S ON STUDIO BOARD (found via LGF), Ms. Adams writes about the new film company The Film Department. It canceled a film project about two agents stopping a terrorist attack because its board members didn't like the project.

One of the board members is Zeid Masri, head of
SilverHaze Partners, LLC based in McLean. According to Ms. Adams, SilverHaze "secretly invested Palestine Liberation Organization money through front companies." On its website, SilverHaze describes itself as "a firm dedicated to private equity investing and advising on behalf of wealthy individuals, families, and institutions," which makes one wonder, which individuals, which families, which institutions?

SilverHaze is located at 6862 Elm Street, McLean, Virginia.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Weekly Radio Show: July 6

Listen to The Gathering Storm Radio Show, of which I am cohost. The show broadcasts live every Friday for one hour at noon, Pacific Time.

The call-in number is (646) 915-9870.

Callers welcome!

Friday, July 6: Special Show!

This week we have two interviewees scheduled to call in! One is from the UK and the other from Australia.


1. Our first scheduled guest for the top of the hour will be Lion Heart of the LionHeart Blog; he has requested time on the air to discuss the recent failed bombings in the UK.

2. Our second scheduled guest, for the bottom of the hour, will be Gravelrash of Democracy Frontline Blog, which is based in Australia.

If you are unable to listen live to the radio show, you can listen to recordings of the radio broadcasts later by CLICKING HERE.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Small, Inept Attacks Have Significance (Dr. Tawfik Hamid: Review 1)

I have many pages of notes from Dr. Tawfik Hamid's June 29, 2007 lecture at the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C. I foresee at least three posts on that lecture, which lasted nearly two hours. This is the first of those posts.

Because of the recent attacks in the UK, I have decided to post briefly about the motives of jihadists, in part because right now, our media are missing crucial points.

According to what Dr. Hamid said in his lecture, the following are the three primary motivators for jihadists:

1. Focus on the dream to die as a shaheed (martyr for Allah). According to this verse (K 3: 169):

And reckon not those who are killed in Allah's way as dead; nay, they are alive (and) are provided sustenance from their Lord [meaning they are enjoying their 72 virgins in heaven]
Only dying as a shaheed guarantees eternal life. Considering all the brainwashing tactic of sexual deprivation, which Salafism forces upon young males, no wonder so many Muslim males are so obsessed with sexual gratification! Young males are told that in Paradise they can have sex 100 times a day!

At my former site, Always On Watch Classic, on July 15, 2005, I wrote a post entitled "Sleeper Cells May Not Be the Problem." In that post I focused on the eternal reward for jihadists. What I heard from Dr. Tawfik Hamid bore out the conclusions I had reached two years ago, but his lecture was the first time I had heard such conclusions stated by a Muslim.

2. The joy of causing pain to infidels. For this reason, Muslims throughout the world rejoiced on 9/11.

3. The feeling of victory. This feeling is both personal, as in Point 2 above, but also one of experiencing victory for Islam, for furthering the will of Allah. Even if the act of terror is a small one, the cause has been furthered.

Our media often make a point of the ineptness and small scope of an attack, planned or carried out. Dr. Hamid maintains that dwelling on the size of an attack is a mistake. Even the smallest attack has a ripple effect on the psyches of Muslims yearning for the caliphate and for jihadists seeking their eternal reward. In other words, there is more to consider than damage and loss of life when an attack occurs.

The don't-worry-be-happy attitude on the part of our media and our leaders is the wrong reaction to Islamist attacks. Yet, the West continues in that mode, thereby contributing to its own destruction and to the enabling of the Islamists' agenda. Worse, such an attitude gives jihadists the idea that what they are doing is the will of Allah because the significance of their attacks is minimized.

As you consider the above points, remember that Dr. Tawfik Hamid was himself one of those preparing to be a jihadist. From his bio:
Born in Egypt to a secular Muslim family, Tawfik Hamid joined the extremist Islamic group Jamma'a Islameia, while he was a student in medical school. In his studies he was learning to heal, but in his thoughts, as he says, he "dreamed to die for Allah and to share in terrorist acts." His colleague in these formative days of the terror movement was Dr. Al Zawaheri, then an acquaintance with whom Tawfik used to pray, and now the number two person of Al Qaeda.

Eventually Dr. Hamid questioned the hatred and impulses to violence that participation in extremist Islam was fomenting within him. When he began to preach in Mosques to promote a message of peace instead of violence and hatred, however, he himself became a target of the Islamic extremists who had been his friends. They threatened his life, forcing him and his family to flee Egypt, then Saudi Arabia and from there to the West....
Read more here about this Muslim reformer. My short, in-the-field interview with Dr. Hamid is here.

What stopped Dr. Hamid from carrying out attacks? Why is he letting us know how the jihadist's mind works? The brainwashing of his conscience was not complete. My next post on Dr. Hamid's lecture will discuss that brainwashing process.