Friday, February 16, 2007

Muslim Refusenik, Irshad Manji, Debunks Carter's Speicous Apartheid Accusations

It takes real courage to ask the harder questions, to look at reality squarely, to be self-reflective, and then self-critical. Irshad Manji is a brave soul who is willing to call "a spade a spade" even at great personal risk. Irshad points the way towards reclaiming the proud and rich tradition of Islam that has been largely co-opted by radicals today. She is not afraid to applaud what Israel does right, while retaining her right to criticize Israel when criticism may be due. Of course, because of her willingness to not paint everything with the same broad stroke, her criticisms carry the moral authority of an honest and fair observer. Her challenges to Carter's outrageous distortions of history only point to the shallowness of his arguments, and how he, in effect, trivializes the horrors that were committed under real Apartheid in South Africa. Shame on him and bravo to Irshad!!!

Absurd to Call Israel an Apartheid State -
Irshad Manji
I respectfully challenge Jimmy Carter's recent critique of Israel as an apartheid state. Would an apartheid state have several Arab political parties, as Israel does? Would the vast majority of Arab Israeli citizens turn out to vote in national elections, as they've usually done? Would an apartheid state extend voting rights to women and the poor in local elections, which Israel did for the first time in the history of Palestinian Arabs? Would an apartheid state award its top literary prize to an Arab? Israel honored Emile Habibi in 1986. Would an apartheid state encourage Hebrew-speaking schoolchildren to learn Arabic? Would an apartheid state be home to universities where Arabs and Jews mingle at will, or apartment blocks where they live side by side? Would an apartheid state ensure conditions for the freest Arabic press in the Middle East? The writer is the author of The Trouble with Islam Today: A Muslim's Call for Reform in Her Faith. (The Australian)

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