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Everybody loves a good carnival

Last week, I tore into truthout.org and their inept way of handling their newsletter subscriptions. As Kevin pointed out in the comments, as high-profile bloggers, we get added to a LOT of mailing lists by people who think that we just HAVE to know what they're up to -- and the thought of asking first doesn't occur to them.

Likewise, sometimes we end up on lists that we really, really should not have been put on in the first place, as we are really, really not good recipients.

One of those happened Friday.

Apparently, among all the other Carnivals going around the internet, there is one I had missed "The Carnival of Islam in the West." And among the hundred or so recipients, someone added me to it.

So I have been personally invited by one Hakim Abdullah, the Chief Editor of this web site, to participate in "The Carnival of Islam in the West." However, my invitation arrived too late to participate (the deadline was Friday, the day the invitation arrived).

I won't let that discourage me. So, in the interest of promoting diversity and greater cultural understanding, I'm going to put together my own little "Carnival of Islam in the West" that, I expect, will highlight some stories that the official Carnival's organizers might have overlooked.

First up, I found this story of a Muslim in the West had a New Hampshire angle. It seems that the alleged would-be terrorist arrested in Texas last week grew up in Pelham, New Hampshire, and attended a nearby Massachusetts mosque. Who would have expected that from quiet, rural little Cow Hampshire? I'm just busting with granite pride.

Down in DC, the head of the Islamic Center there is quite a public speaker. It turns out that Mr. Muhammad Al-Asi has strong opinions about the Holocaust (never happened), Ayatollah Khomeini (good guy), suicide bombers (heroes and martyrs), 9/11 (planned by BushCo and blamed on innocent Muslims), and thinks that Americans have an unreasonable fear and dislike of Muslims.

"Unreasonable." As a wise man once said, "you keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

At Stanford, the library's Middle East Collections, the Continuing Studies Programs, and the Abbasi program in Islamic Studies are attempting to promote peace and understanding between Islam and the West by showing the Turkish film "Valley Of The Wolves: Iraq." This sensitive, nuanced work shows a Jewish doctor (Gary Busey) in Abu Ghraib, harvesting organs from prisoners to sell in New York and Tel Aviv, while a fundamentalist Christian CIA agent (Billy Zane) tortures and murders Iraqis as "God's work." Whoops, those hate-filled people who can't handle The Truth forced this fine example of cinema verite to be canceled.

Out west, it turns out that the gunman who killed five people in a Utah mall was NOT a Mormon, or even one of those dangerous, subversive, downright scary Lutherans. 18-year-old Sulejman Talovic, it turns out, was from Bosnia, and -- of all things -- a Muslim. Why, who could have foreseen that?

(More details on this story can be found in the Shire Network News podcast, who apparently DID foresee that.)

Across the pond, we have the tale of a rather dedicated Muslim in England who works tirelessly in the public transporation field, a carraige cleaner on trains. And in his off time, he gets involved in public policy issues. "Involved," of course, meaning "shows up at protest rallies about Danish Mohammed cartoons dressed as a suicide bomber."

Meanwhile, some of Mr. Khayam's role models, those who actually tried to become suicide bombers but were apparently spared by their own ineptitude, are on trial for their attempts at a second London bus/subway bombing incident.

North of London, an Islamic school that had been raided numerous times as a training ground for terrorists was finally shut down. I, for one, worry that the lacrosse team will be unduly tainted by this.

Over in Cambridge, a student had the nerve to publish the dreaded Mohammed cartoons (see above) in a magazine. The school, naturally, did the only things it could: it hid him away from public view to protect him, while simultaneously debating how to properly punish him for "inflaming" Muslims. Had I gone to a better college, perhaps I would be better equipped to understand how his offense was so great that it might merit expulsion, while the thought that he might be beaten or killed by fellow students isn't worthy of college disciplinary action.

Meanwhile, in Spain, the trial for the Madrid train bombings continues.
Prosecutors say that the defendants' Muslim faith was a key motivator behind the 2004 attacks that killed 191 and injured over 2,000 people.

Finally, up in France, the authorities have arrested 11 Muslims and charged them with recruiting for Al Qaeda. Silly terrorists. If they had just stuck to setting things on fire -- cars, buildings, people in wheelchairs -- the French authorities would have left them alone. But by raising the possibility that they might embarass the French on the world stage, they set themselves up for trouble.

I hope that was fun and educational. I'd like to thank Charles Johnson for his tireless work, which I shamelessly ripped off for a healthy portion of the entries. I'd also like to thank Mr. Hakim Abdullah for inviting me to participate. I'll be adding a link to the "official" The Carnival of Islam in the West after it gets posted.


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Comments (15)

Religion of PIECES?... (Below threshold)

Religion of PIECES?

I'm so confused. I've been ... (Below threshold)
Old Coot:

I'm so confused. I've been told that Islam is a religion of peace(TM) and that it's the Christofascists that I have to worry about. Have the liberals been lying about that one too???

And in Chicago, an Iranian ... (Below threshold)

And in Chicago, an Iranian immigrant bludgeon to death his family with a sledge hammer. I'm sure this has something to do with Islam.

Oops! Why, Barney, it appea... (Below threshold)

Oops! Why, Barney, it appears that the rest of your comment got truncated somehow. I am sure you meant to have some sort of ... you know, POINT in that?

Or are you just holding that one example out there, of one Iranian, who may or may not be Muslim, who may or may not have committed a horrific act (citation?), which may or may not have been in the name of Islam (you are aware, I am sure, of honor killings that occur daily in the Islamic world) to somehow vindicate ALL the other acts of violence perpetrated in the name of Islam and therefore prove that Islam is indeed a Religion of Peace?


BarneyG2K always has a poin... (Below threshold)

BarneyG2K always has a point.

If you can't see it, he's wearing a hat.

Take a break from the world... (Below threshold)

Take a break from the world's trouble. Here is the real thing. Happy Mardi Gras!


Here is a live parade camera:


Is anyone here attempting t... (Below threshold)

Is anyone here attempting to deny that muslims around the world are responsible for thousands of murderous terror attacks in the name of Allah?
I hope not, because then you have lost all credibility.
And don't tell me that America is responsible for anything similar because this country has done more great things for more people around the globe than all other countries combined.

The Muslims are truly evil,... (Below threshold)

The Muslims are truly evil, they brought us algebra!

...he's wearing a ... (Below threshold)
Old Coot:
...he's wearing a hat.

And it's made from tinfoil.

...they brought us... (Below threshold)
Old Coot:
...they brought us algebra!

And they likely first used it to calculate the most efficient way to perform beheadings.

Pitiful trolls; it's too ea... (Below threshold)
Old Coot:

Pitiful trolls; it's too easy. I'm going out to play baseball with my kids.

Is Islam a legitimate relig... (Below threshold)

Is Islam a legitimate religion? Or a 7th century death cult? Did Muhammed commit genocide on the Jews at Medina? Did Muhammed own slaves? Was Muhammed married to Aisha when she was only 6 years old? Did he consumate the marriage when she was 9? Enquiring minds want to know......

Is anyone here attemptin... (Below threshold)

Is anyone here attempting to deny...
Posted by: Brian at February 18, 2007 01:32 PM

Not posted by me. Either a clueless drive-by, or a lame attempt at deception.

Hmm"The Muslims are ... (Below threshold)

"The Muslims are truly evil, they brought us algebra!
Posted by: BarneyG2000 "

From this site
"earliest known treatise on Algebra is credited to Diophantus of Alexandria in 3rd century A.D. However, it was a Muslim named Kharazmi from Persia, who for the first time used the Arabic language (the official language of the time) to write a book called Algebra. "

All Algebra is is the writing down of calculations instead of using an Abacus. Besides, what did they do with it, they didn't exactly use it to better their fellow man or themselves. Notice what happened when Scientific men in the West got a hold of Algebra,

"On the other hand, when the West got hold of Algebra, it was Isaac Newton of England and Libnitz from Germany who invented and developed Calculus out of Algebra. With the newly invented Calculus and its mathematical outcomes, the secular West managed to send Man to the Moon; space crafts to distant planets, and space probes beyond our solar system. Over the centuries, it was the West that came up with Linear Algebra and its pattern in Graphs, Matrices, and Subspaces.

To point out that a Muslic Scientist (there's an oxymoron if there ever was one, that's like saying Gallileo was a Christian Scientist) first wrote down something is useless, the point is what they used it for

"As a whole, mathematics was a tool to keep Muslim scientists busy counting and writing numbers to replace the abacus, and writing mathematical formulas to please their Caliphs. In reality, what the secular West did with mathematics was to find the mysteries of our universe by inventing Quantum Mechanics, General Relativity, Special Relativity, cosmology and modern astronomy. "

And to re-iterate

"Islam contributed nothing directly to the advancement of humanity. Some people who coincidentally were Muslims contributed some art, science and literature."

OK, if we're going to get i... (Below threshold)

OK, if we're going to get intellectual here...

Italian carnevale, from Old Italian carnelevare, Shrovetide : carne, meat (from Latin carō, carn-) + levare, to remove (from Latin levāre, to raise)

Anybody else find it humorous they named something about or relating to Islam after a festival that has it's roots in a basically Catholic tradition where everyone in the village pigs out to get rid of whatever meat they had, prior to the start of Lent fasting?






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