Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Imam Elahi Is Upset That The US Will Scrutinize Travellers From Some Arab Countries

Imam Elahi in his irregular column in the Detroit news Religion section, complains that the US is going to subject travellers from certain Muslim-majority countries to higher scrutiny: Expanding terror watch list discriminates against Muslims
In response to the reported attempt by Nigerian Abdulmutallab to ignite explosives aboard the airplane, the Transportation Security Administration has decided to add to the watch list many innocent Americans and passengers from 13 Arab and Muslim countries plus Cuba. This is not the answer.

and he plays the "American liberties card":
While it is an obligation for citizens to contribute to the security of our nation, our liberty must not be a scapegoat. That is the spirit of American Founding Father Patrick Henry.
Hmm., yes some travelers from those countries may be US Citizens but I doubt the majority will be and so its quite the non sequitur feel good phrase.

He also states:
During the past decade, millions of ordinary travelers including myself have navigated the maze of the Amsterdam airport's special security procedures. Yet suddenly this alleged terrorist, whose father had already alerted authorities about extremist associations, passed through security without special checking.
Imam Elahi, you're a former mullah of the Ayatollahs IRANIAN NAVY for Allah's sake! You know the Navy that has made attacks against US interests in the past, for a foreign power that considers America to be the Great Satan, and a country that has launched attacks and supports terrorism against Americans worldwide. If that doesn't mean you merit careful scrutiny then we have a problem.

Of course to Elahi terrorism is bad:
Terrorism is a crime not only against the people and property but also against morality. Detroit Muslim leaders, community members and the Muslim passengers of that aircraft sent a message to the world that there is no place in Islam or in any true faith tradition for terrorism and the destruction of human life. The Ten Commandments says "You shall not murder," and Prophet Mohammad said even in a serious battlefield the life of the enemy's women and children must be safe.

Except of course he's not against terrorism when its for the cause of Islam, then its ok terrorism:
To use Abdulmutallab's case to expand discrimination against Muslims is unfair and immoral. In the beginning, the Palestinians were labeled terrorists because they resisted occupation. This labeling has since spread to all Arabs, Muslims and now Islam itself.

Applying double standards and dividing political violence into good and bad hasn't helped in the past and won't in the future.
So does Elahi now mean that terrorism isn't terrorism when Arabs and Muslims do it, its all just "resisting occupation" or to redress some perpetual grievance or another?

Elahi finishes by throwing out the old root causes canard, ending with a throwaway statement that radicalism could be stopped with better education and social services. Yes, really:
It is caused by social, political, cultural and economic factors and should be treated with education, and social services. To win this struggle, we need to diagnose the diseases and have the determination to create peace and justice. I wish our president the best in dealing with this political and social challenge.
The president will do his best when he and his advisers quit listening to such tripe, and when Elahi and others like him manage to be unequivocal about condemning terrorism without inserting limiting and conditional statements on such condemnation.